Life

OMG 10 years!

Today the hubby and I are celebrating 10 years. We started dating when I was 16!

Me and B

I can’t believe we’ve been together for a decade. Our three year wedding anniversary is next month, which is just crazy.

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Time flies when you get to hang out with your best friend every day.

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Love this guy ❤


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Craft Projects, Furniture

Over-sized Jar Lamp

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Happy one-year house anniversary to us! A year ago today we closed on our house — what an adventure it has been. Every room of our house has been painted, we did a massive family room overhaul, and tackled smaller projects here and there along the way.

My newest project is making our living room pretty, which started last weekend when we got rid of our old, grimy couch and purchased a pretty, new one!

Old Couch

If you are on vine or twitter, you can see the satisfying thud this ugly thing made when it hit the bottom of the dumpster at the local dump. So satisfying.

We didn’t mourn this couch long (or at all) — from the dump we headed to a local warehouse to pick up the clearance couch we’d purchased the night before. Not to brag too much, but we got our new couch for a steal!

AND IT IS ADORABLE!

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The pillows that came with the couch were a little too Hawaiian for me, so I picked up the charcoal gray and teal pillows at Target! I also got a gray throw and snagged the light gray pillow from our bedroom. It is so pretty. I love it.

Now that I actually have a couch I like and something to jump off of from a design standpoint, I am going non-stop to make this room perfect. See, this is my room. There is no TV and no computer, just a big window and a comfy couch. I want to be able to read in here! I can during the day, but at night I am in a fish bowl. That’s why I am working to find the perfect curtains for our bay window. I ordered some online, so fingers are crossed that they work.

In the meantime, I needed some more light in this room. With just the overhead ceiling fan, the light in this room is just mediocre come night-time. I have a beautiful glass lamp that I bought for super cheap at Target because it was broken. I fixed that and just need a flashy shade. I need a few more lamps though, so I decided to make my own.

Using a shade I had from the thrift store and an old, large jar, I set off today to make another light for that room.

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The first thing I needed to do was put a hole in the center of my jar lid. To do so, I had to find a drill bit large enough to fit my threaded pole (attached to the light fixture and to the nut underneath the lid). Once I found one, I carefully drilled through the lid while it was screwed onto the jar.

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Originally, I wanted to keep the green lid for my lamp, but no amount of scrubbing could remove the “crayon” label from childhood.

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Before I started to spray paint my lamp fixture, I figured out just how I was going to secure all of the parts of my lap. I ended up drilling through a mason jar lid with the same drill bit to use as extra support underneath the jar lid. I opted for a stack of washers on top of the lid to raise the light fixture up, and one washer and two nuts underneath for added stability.

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I also used a lamp harp to support the shade.

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Between the brassy harp, green lid and silver washers, I needed one finish for all of the parts of my lamp. I got out some metallic silver spray paint and lightly dusted all of the parts so they would match. I also did a coat of polyurethane.

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When everything was dry, I assembled all of the pieces: Light socket & threaded rod > harp > washers > lid > mason jar lid > washer > two nuts. I tightened the heck out of everything, and when it was good and secure I placed the lid of the jar back onto the freshly washed and crayon-free jar.

I added the shade and the finial and put it next to the couch.

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What do you think? It turned out pretty darn cute if you ask me. Now I just need to replace that old piano bench with something a little classier since my couch is so pretty now!

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Did I mention I only paid $2 for the gorgeous shade?

Life

Happy anniversary, A Smith of All Trades

Blogging anniversary

Holy cow, it’s my one-year blogging anniversary!

I started on this venture a year ago today after many months of trying hard to decide on a name. My coworkers had suggestions and we even had a white board in our kitchen with a running list of ideas. When I finally came up with a name I liked (I couldn’t sleep one night and A Smith of All Trades popped into my head), I started blogging pretty much immediately and haven’t slowed down since.

In 365 days:

  • I’ve written 274 posts — that’s a 75 percent posting rate!!
  • I’ve had 142,379 views
  • I’ve gotten 430 comments
  • I have 94 followers (which is more than I thought I had) on WordPress
  • I have 165 “likes” on Facebook

I have had a ton of fun in my first year of blogging all thanks to you, my readers. I know a lot of my readers are friends and family. It means the world to me that you guys come to my blog to show your support and keep in touch since life is always so crazy busy. And for those of you who I don’t personally know, you guys are awesome, too. The fact that you’ve stopped by once or keep coming back for more (especially since you have no obligation!)– well, that’s the reason I love to do this. I love getting your feedback on projects and hearing what you are up to.

I am very much looking forward  to my next year writing on A Smith of All Trades. I hope you’re ready to join me for another fun, project-filled year. If there is something you’d like to see from me, please let me know! As always, I love to hear from you all.

Here’s to another year!

-Jess