Friday, September 7, 2012

bind your own custom carpet

After we tore out our old carpet we knew it would be a while before we put down new flooring. (It's been a year, but we have the bamboo floors now and are getting ready to put them in!!) So we bought a carpet remnant with the thought of having it bound into a rug. After calling around we found out that binding it would be $3-4 a linear foot. Our 12x12 piece of carpet would cost around $150 or more just to bind it. After doing some searching, I found a diy carpet binding product, Instabind. I got it for only $50 for 50 linear feet. There's even a handy how-to video.  

First cut your carpet to fit your space. We cut the carpet to match the angles of the window for a more custom look.

If you have a bunch of strings and threads hanging off like this, then cut them all off so you have a nice, clean edge.

The video shows you how to start and finish the binding. I forgot about that and didn't do what they said to give it a nice clean seam from the start point to finish point. But I also started at a point that would be under the couch so it's fine. Don't start at a corner. Working with a few feet at a time, take the paper backing off and start to position the binding on the back of the carpet. You can reposition until it's just right.

 You don't want your carpet all the way against the edging of the binding. You need a little space to add your hot glue. I liked having a generous 1/8 inch between the two.

 After squeezing in the hot glue, push/roll the binding to the edge of the carpet. If you added too much glue, it might squeeze out and burn you and you may do this over and over again and end up with several blisters on your fingers. Don't do that. Once you push them together, hold it for 30 seconds or so. Once you let go, the binding may pull the edge of the carpet and leave gaps in the carpet. I was worried it was going to just look horrible with the gaps, but it wasn't really an issue by the time I finished.

 The video covers how you do the corners as well and I had no issues with the corners or the other angled edges I had.

What the back of the corner looks like. You just cut the back of the binding up to the edge and roll the binding around the corner, gluing as you go. For sure don't cut the binding all the way through, you want the binding to be continuous around the corner, not a seam.

 Finished! I like the idea of being able to make your own custom rug.  The remnant was big and a nicer quality so we ended up spending around $250 including the binding. But I often see remnants for less than $100. I think it'll look so much better on hardwood instead of concrete. Maybe. :-)

Sunday, August 19, 2012

completed bathroom

We finally finished the boys' bathroom. I love how it turned out. 

Here's what we did:

Light fixture from Amazon.
 New Kohler tub from Home Depot.
Gray porcelain tile and dark gray mosaic quartzite from Arizona Tile. I wanted to rip the tiles down several times because I couldn't get them just right. I cried and screamed and threw little girly fits over it. I remained quite calm through the whole process. Just ask J.
 Kohler one piece toilet from Home Depot. Toilet paper holder and other fixtures from Macy's. A one piece potty doesn't have a slot under the tank in which to harbor little boys' distractions. If you have boys you know what I'm saying. This one will get a little less grodey. It's the little things in life...
 I pushed for a herringbone pattern in the bathroom since J said he wouldn't do it with the hardwood floors in the rest of the house. I wanted to shoot myself for this decision at least twice and J at least three times. Again, super calm, zen-like attitude.
 Hand built niche. Trinkets from Anthro.
 Kohler pedestal sink from Mirror from Target.
 Price Pfister faucet from Amazon. Only because the widespread faucet I bought originally didn't fit on the centerset sink holes. Sometimes my brain hurts and I don't think very well.
It's pretty awesome. It {only} took 4 months to finish. Now we are moving on to the flooring for the main house. We just got a truckload of bamboo but I have to finish painting the living room and the kitchen cabinets and remove all the baseboards. Can't wait to have proper floors again!

Friday, July 27, 2012

change your medicine cabinet to a sweet niche

The bathroom is coming along. We've grouted and caulked. Now to install the sink and toilet--so excited! 
 Originally I had planned on just changing out the ugly medicine cabinet for a nicer one. But after J started building the niche in the shower he got the idea to take the medicine cabinet out completely and finish it into a cool built-in with tiled back and glass shelves. (Glass shelves to come.......sometime.) With some basic skills, it's easy enough to take out your medicine cabinet and change it to a sweet niche.

not so great before picture:
(haven't bought a light fixture or a mirror yet...)

The medicine cabinet come out by unscrewing a few screws. Most likely you'll have unfinished walls behind it like so:

 We added drywall to the sides (they were wood studs), screwed round corner metal strips to the edges (to match the rest of the rounded corners in the house), mudded, sanded, and textured, then painted. 

a few basic supplies with a sneak peak at the herringbone pattern floor:
We used 2 1/2 sheets of mosaic tile for the back. You'll need a tile saw or see if the home store will cut for you. But you could also glue in a mirror or frosted piece of glass, or sticks, or rocks from your backyard, or vintage book covers, or fabric, or coasters. Whatever tickles your fancy. If you're going with tile, you can get pre-mixed mortar and grout at Home Depot or Lowe's.

update: niche in the finished bathroom!

We plan on getting a couple glass shelves but I also thought a hanging succulent plant would be cool or maybe a tall vase. We love how this looks and now my husband wants to build them all over the house.

i want to do them for our master bath mirrors like this: