How (Not) To Dye A Synthetic Rug… And How I Painted Mine Instead

Hello friends,

I come to you today with a story. A story of a very frustrating polyurethane rug. So you see, this beautiful white and grey geometric rug came into my life a few months ago an it looked just perfect under our living room furniture. I was weary of choosing white for the living room as we often eat there and often spill, but this particular rug was supposed to be completely stain resistant. It was not. I found myself trying to remove stubborn stains at least twice a week which became rather tiresome.

Eventually, I decided that something needed to be done. Not only was the upkeep exhausting, the rug looked terrible. So, I scoured the internet for inspiration and landed on the rug dying method. I did my research and picked up Rit Synthetic Fabric Dye in the colours Midnight Navy and Graphite. I unrolled the rug out outside, boiled the dye with enough water to saturate the rug and put it in a watering can to disperse easily. I then thoroughly scrubbed the rug dispersing the colour. I let this sit for 30 minutes aaaaand… nothing. I rinsed off a test patch and the colour didn’t take at all. Frustrating. Red wine and pasta sauce seemed to take just fine. Why not the synthetic dye whose job it was to stain this thing??? I guess it is stain resistant after all.

I let the rug dry overnight and brought it inside at which point, the boyfriend suggested abandoning the project. Being rather stubborn, I refused and began to research a way to salvage my mess. Rug painting came up. Acrylic paint mixed with a mixing medium and water. I had acrylic paint, but not much left in the colours that I wanted to use, and I had water. I had no mixing medium but I was feeling bold. I mixed up my acrylic paint and water, running out of paint before I reached my desired colour and opacity so I added some watercolours I had lying around – what could go wrong????

I started in one corner painting on the mixture and rubbing it in with my hand. To my surprise, it worked fabulously. I had the entire rug painted in about an hour. It dried quickly too. It’s now been sitting in my living room for about 3 weeks and going strong. The colour looks vibrant and the stains are unnoticeable. My rug has a very low pile and the paint hasn’t changed the texture at all.

Check out the video here: https://youtu.be/w2zctRsYCt4

Moral of the story: don’t dye a polyurethane rug. Paint it instead. I would suggest getting the proper tools for the job (unlike me). I’m sure if I had a higher pile rug, the mixing medium would have helped me out.

Before – preparing for the Rit dye

After – currently sitting in my living room

xoxo,

Caitlin

Easy Vegan Curry Noodle Soup

Hey friends!

Thanks for stopping by. Today I’m here with a tasty little recipe for a super quick and flavourful weeknight dinner option. I love this recipe so much because you can literally use whatever you have for vegetables and protein and cook them up with the tasty soup base and your noodle of choice. Heres how I make mine:

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • protein of choice (I used tofu puffs)
  • 1tbs neutral tasting oil
  • 1 tbs minced ginger
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbs yellow curry paste, or to taste (red works well here too)
  • veggies of choice, chopped in bite-sized pieces (I used onion, carrot, broccoli and peas)
  • 2 cups veggie stock (or boullion)
  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 1.5 tbs soy sauce
  • 1 tbs sweetener of choice (I used coconut sugar)
  • juice of half a lime
  • salt and pepper of choice
  • noodles of choice (asian noodles work best as they generally cook in a few minutes)
  • fresh cilantro to garnish (optional)

Directions:

  1.  Cook your protein and set aside.
  2. Add oil to a large pot over medium heat and toss in garlic and ginger. Cook until lightly browned and fragrant. Add curry paste and mix.
  3. Add veggies and cook for 3-5 minutes or until half cooked.
  4. Add coconut milk, veggie stock, soy sauce, sweetener, lime and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a simmer
  5. Add noodles and cook until soft.
  6. Top with cilantro and enjoy!

Check out the video here: https://youtu.be/P36Ub38jCCw

xoxo,

Caitlin

How I Balayaged My Dark Brown Hair At Home

Hi friends!

I recently had the urge to change up my hair, so naturally I went to youtube to find out how to do it myself. What I found was loads of at home balayage tutorials, but very few of them were on hair that was a dark as mine. Soooo… I made my own! Check out the video here: https://youtu.be/7QzLq52Rygk

Before

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After

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I used a combination of the teasing method and my own method of choosing small pieces and bleaching them for a more effortless and dimensional effect. Here are the steps that I took:

  1. Section hair off into 3 chunks – one on each side of your face and one in the back of the head.
  2. Mix up your bleach powder with developer according to the packet instructions. Add Ion Absolute Perfection Booster.
  3. Starting with the front sections, take small slices of hair and tease them.
  4. Apply the bleach to the hair left out of the tease.
  5. Process according to packet instructions, wash and dry hair.
  6. Asses where your hair could use some additional lightness and apply bleach to small pieces of hair, blending it well where the bleached part of the strand meets the unbleached part of the strand (see video for clarification).
  7. Process, wash and dry hair.
  8. Mix up root smudge colour with developer and apply at roots, blending a couple of inches down into hair.
  9. Mix up end toning colour. I used wella colorcharm demi-permanent hair color in 6N and 7A. Apply liberally to remaining hair.
  10. Brush hair from roots to ends using a wet brush or wide tooth comb to bend the dark colour into the light.
  11. Process, rinse and apply colour protector treatment.
  12. Rinse and style as desired.

Products used (all from Sally’s Beauty Supply):

– wella color charm demi-permanent hair color (3N, 7A, 6N)
– salon care 30 vol developer
– salon care 10 vol developer
– l’oreal super oreal blanc professional bleach
– ion after color treatment packette
– ion absolute perfection booster
– ardell unred
– plastic bowl and brush
– rattail comb (for teasing)
– latex gloves

xoxo,

Caitlin

Currently Craving: Mini Totes for Fall

Hey friends!

Happy Tuesday! I’m back today to share with you one of my very favourite trends for Fall 2018. Mini totes are IN and I’m here for it.  Day-to-day I tend to carry around a small crossbody bag that holds little more than my credit cards (often not even my phone!) and I’m finding it less and less practical. I don’t like big bags because they make my bak hurt, but I definitely need something a little bigger than what I typically grab for.

Enter… the mini crossbody tote. Not only are these little bags completely adorable, they’re actually pretty practical too. With just enough room for your essentials, they won’t weigh you down. Their optional crossbody straps offer additional versatility and practicality. Check out some of my favourites here:

ksKate Spade ($298)

mk.jpgMICHAEL Michael Kors ($248)mjMarc Jacobs ($360)rmRebecca Minkoff ($138)

z

Zara ($45.90)

xoxoxo, Caitlin

Inexpensive Upgrades To Make Your Home Feel Fresh For Fall and Winter – PART 2

Hey friends!  Happy Friday!!

Today is the second instalment of my Fall/Winter refresh. If you missed my post from yesterday, check that out to see my first 5 tips.

  1. Complete all those little tasks you’ve been putting off: We all have that mental list of things we need to do… eventually. Hang that picture, get that dripping faucet fixed, have a new key cut, etc. These nagging little tasks often get pushed aside in favour of more pressing issues – rightfully so. However, setting aside half a day to knock all these little things off your list will not only make you feel great about your home, it’ll give you such a sense of accomplishment for FINALLY completing them.
  2. Clean or replace (and donate!) old throw blankets, pillows and rugs: Textiles can really cozy up your home. With constant use and wear, they can begin to feel a little dingy. Tossing throw pillow covers and blankets in the wash regularly will keep them feeling and smelling clean. As for your carpets, a good vacuum and an inexpensive cleaner (which can be found online or at Walmart/grocery stores) will make a world of difference.
  3. Deep clean your fridge and freezer: I happen to be pretty good about cleaning out the fridge and keeping things tidy. Even so, I’m always amazed at what a good purge and clean with hot soapy water can do for it. Bonus points for purchasing a new package of baking soda to keep things smelling fresh.
  4. Purchase new candles and candle holders: There’s nothing quite like candles to create a cozy ambiance in the fall and winter months. Walmart and Amazon are my go-to place to buy inexpensive candles (non-scented – I prefer to keep things natural with essential oils because allergies). Cute new candle holders can be found at Ikea, Structube or Home Sense for cheap. You can also check out second hand stores or garage sales. Pick up a few different styles of candle holder and spray paint them all the same colour for a fun DIY project.
  5. Clean your carpets and deep clean your hardwood or tile: Buy, rent or hire a carpet cleaner to clear out all the gunk and dirt that a vacuum cleaner just can’t reach. Clean dust out of hardwood corners and give them a good wash and finish up by cleaning tile grout with a toothbrush. Super clean floors make a beautiful canvas for a fresh home!

I hope you enjoyed my little mini-series. Have a great weekend!

xoxoxo, Caitlin

Inexpensive Upgrades To Make Your Home Feel Fresh For Fall and Winter – PART 1

Hellooo friends!

Welcome back to the blog! Today I wanted to share with you a passion of mine that is not fashion. I have always loved working on anything to do with the home. Whether thats painting a room, patching a wall, choosing new furniture or just paying a quick visit to Home Sense. Something about fixing up and decorating my space gets me all kinds of excited.

A few months ago, the boyfriend and I moved into a new apartment which we’ve had so much fun cleaning up and decorating. This process has gotten me thinking about all kinds of different things one can do quickly and easily to freshen up their home. I’m turning this into a two-part series because I just have way too many ideas, so check back tomorrow for the second instalment. Without further ado, here are my first 5 ways to freshen up your home for the coming winter months:

  1. Clean and paint the baseboards: If you own your home or you have a landlord who will allow you to paint, this. makes. such. a. difference. OH MY GOODNESS. I don’t know why this isn’t talked about more. We all know that a fresh coat of paint can make a world of difference for a room, but this can be both time consuming and expensive. The baseboards are often the first to show signs of wear, and of course they easily collect dust and dirt. Properly cleaning and repainting your baseboards will instantly freshen up your home with little cost and effort. If you want to take it a step further and you still have a can of your wall colour lying around, you can clean up any spots and noticeable marks on the wall, too. A can pf baseboard paint, a brush, some painters tape and a pre-paint cleaner shouldn’t cost you more than $60.
  2. Get new sheets: A fresh new set of sheets can change up the look of your whole bedroom. I more often than not, choose clean white because I love how crisp they look and that they can be thrown in the wash with some bleach, should I stain them (self tanner, coffee, etc … oops). A whole new set can be purchased for less than $100 on Amazon.white bedding.jpgsheets | duvet
  3. Clean out and reorganize all cupboards and closets: You might have already gathered that I’m big on closet purging. I’m someone who realllllllly doesn’t like to be surrounded by oodles of unnecessary things taking up my space. If you’re not exactly the type to regularly donate what you’re not loving, the change of seasons can be an excellent time to do it. As you’re pulling out all of your Fall and Winter clothing, evaluate what doesn’t fit, what you no longer love, what needs to be repaired and altered and TAKE CARE OF IT. Starting the season with your wardrobe feeling fresh and your closet clean can make a world of difference. The same here goes for bathroom and kitchen cupboards. Take everything out, wipe down the inside and dispose of any expired or unnecessary products. You’ll feel so much lighter. Trust.
  4. Change up your art work or wall hangings: Art can be expensive. Really, really expensive. But, it doesn’t have to be. If you’re on a budget, but you still want to change up the feel of your place, prints can totally be the way to go. I like Etsy and Society6 for unique designs and a cheap Ikea frame has never done me wrong. You can easily get a new print with frame for under $50.         print2.pngprint.png                                                                                                                                          print 1 | print 2
  5. Wash your windows and blinds: This can so easily be overlooked, but its on my list for pre-fall cleaning. A quick vacuum and wipe with a wet microfibre cloth will quickly remove years of accumulated dust. Finish the windows off with a swipe of glass cleaner and your space will instantly feel brighter and cleaner.

I hope you found these tips helpful! Check back tomorrow for the next 5!

xoxox, Caitlin

My Strategy For Keeping My Wardrobe Current Without Breaking The Bank

Hey friends!!

I’m here today with two of my very favourite topics: fashion and finance (okay, mostly fashion…). While I could easily spend hundreds of hours each season googling and dreaming about what I’d like for my dream closet to hold, I’m far too practical to take any major steps in the direction of actually HAVING said closet.

What I choose to do instead – and what has actually become my preferred method of closet-wrangling – is to invest heavily into my basics, do my best to take care of them and then spend very strategically on a few new, trendy pieces each season. Not only is this ultimately much better for my wallet, its also super beneficial to the planet. Rather than having to discard large chunks of your closet which have gone out of fashion, most of your wardrobe will made up of timeless staples that can be worn for years. This way of dressing can also keep you from looking like you’re overdoing the season’s trends. A super current jacket thrown over a plain t-shirt and jeans with suede booties will have you looking totally stylish, yet still classic.

I begin by identifying what I currently have in each category of clothing (tops, bottoms, dresses, shoes, outerwear, accessories, etc) and quickly run through my closet to get rid of anything I’m not wearing or loving. I find which categories I could add some pieces to and I start there. Usually, I set a budget for myself for what I can spend each season, so the number of items I pick up depends on how much everything costs. I try to look for deals. If I’m trying to keep my budget low, I’ll go for more accessories like hats, scarves or shoes that pack a punch or I’ll hunt for amazing deals on outerwear which can be worn over many of my basics to get the most wearability for my dollar.

How do you upgrade your wardrobe each season?

xoxox, Caitlin