Modern Fall Decor Round Up and GIveaway WINNER

My "boo-hum-bugs" started to get the better of me this week, and I realized tis time to open up my eyes to other ways of incorporating fall decor beyond the standard cornucopia of orange, browns and reds.

There really isn't a lot out there in Pinterestville that pleases my eye, but these images have me almost ready to pick up some pumpkins and twigs on my way home (and I never thought I would say that!)

This table setting above warms my heart. To me, it is the perfect conception of "fall" with a little pumpkin spiced dessert spread, chalkboard menus, and crisp, neutral florals. Parfait!

If you're somewhat colour averse like me, you may appreciate the monochromatic tones of this pumpkin mantlescape and hydrangea wreath. It looks very fresh to me and doesn't make my brain go crazy with thoughts of stabbing pumpkins and acorns.

This is another set of tablescape ideas that just does it for me. I feel like blending rustic and modern creates that perfect fall vibe. Hopefully I will have my own rustic table top soon that I can place some hydrangeas and white dishware on! 

Last but not least, this is about as "themed" as it would ever go for me. Ok, perhaps scratch the fabric pumpkins in the centerpiece; I would probably never take the time to do that. But I do LOVE the wood charger (brilliant idea if you know how to work a saw!), and the calligraphy-ed burlap runner (hmmm, I sense a DIY coming on!), and the chalkboard place card. The mini gourds are small (yay!), white (hoorah!), inexpensive (woot woot) and disposable (hip hip hooray!), so I could probably push myself to go there as well.

Have you found any spins on fall decor that you're loving lately?

Oh, and I almost forgot, but it's time to announce the winner of the Carrerra bracelet!

Using good friend Random.Org....

And the winner is....  Brandie!!

Please send an email to with your details so I can ship you your bracelet!

Congrats girl!

And if you didn't win, stay tuned because I will have a MAYJAH prize pack coming your way in the next couple of weeks, so get excited!

Happy weekend!
xo J

Calling all people of compassion

Rainy and cold this morning and I'm wondering how my young homeless couple fared last night.  They've been sleeping outside while their year old son stays sometimes with her sister, sometimes with his mother, both extremely tenuous situations that could end at any time because .  I've been trying to get them into shelter all week, but no luck so far.  They are "to blame" for their homelessness because a month ago, when the mom was living with her mom in Connecticut, they were evicted from private housing. I won't even try to explain all the hoops this family has been jumping through, trying to get qualified for shelter.  But in my last conversation with a DHCD worker yesterday, the worker said the Gram had been working 32 hours a week and the mom receiving cash assistance from welfare and they still couldn't pay the rent of $750!  Well, I'm calculating that at minimum wage, Gram was taking home about $700 a month, and mom's cash benefits were about $500, leaving them about $450 a month to pay all other utilities, transportation, clothing, etc. Maybe some families could have pulled this off, but my family couldn't; they gradually fell behind.    (Gram had 2 other children in the household, also.)  So it's their fault they were evicted, and they are therefore ineligible for shelter.

But what does it matter?  They are no less homeless.  Every morning my couple goes and picks up their son from whatever house he's been sleeping at the night before (both her sister and his mother work two jobs each) and then they wander the street.  But according to the DHCD worker, as long as the child has a place to sleep at night, that's all that matters.  And if the situation falls apart, and the child is out on the street with them, they still won't be eligible for shelter-- but most likely they will then lose their child to the custody of the Dept. of Children and Families.

More bad news for my couple-- when I told them that at least they, themselves, could get beds at Worthington St. Shelter, I found out that the shelter has changed its policy from taking all comers to the development of a waiting list.  You have to call at 9 am. and 5 pm. each day to see if a bed has opened up.  (There are only 36 beds for single homeless women in all of Springfield.)

This is scarcely the worst case of shelter denial I've heard in the last six weeks, since DHCD's new regulations went into effect.  Not surprisingly (to us, anyway), many housing and shelter providers choose to say these regs are good for the families, that shelter is a bad place, and what they have to offer, instead, is a housing benefit with a $4,000 maximum.  You can use it for first month's rent and a security deposit, but if my family can even find an apartment that is less than their monthly income (which is zero, at the moment), how far will $4,000 take them?  The thinking on DHCD's part, such as it is, is that before the $4,000 runs out, families will be able to increase their income and stabilize their lives to be able to carry the burden of market rate housing on their own-- at a time when market rate rents have never been higher, when there's a ten year waiting list for public housing, and when most jobs are part-time and low-paying.

I could go on, but let me come to the point of this blog post:  I am asking readers for two things:

First, who would be willing to open their homes and take a family in for a couple of days at a time?  We promise to send you only families who literally have nowhere else to go, and who are not eligible for shelter or are still jumping through hoops.  This is a very short-term solution, I know-- sort of like evacuating survivors from a war-torn country-- but it's all we can think of at the moment.  We've been trying to get the attention of the Greater Springfield Council of Churches and Catholic Charities, but they've shown a remarkable lack of interest in the issue of homelessness so far. 

Second, we know there are some other solutions that are possible-- and I won't describe them here-- but we need more people resources. Can you help us strategize and bring these solutions to reality? 

Let me end by saying that we are really over the top here at Arise with the number of families who come to us needing help..  I even had a (now shameful) moment yesterday when I hung up the phone after talking with another homeless family and shouted to the ceiling, :"God help me!"    But it's not me that needs help-- except help helping others.  What can you do to help?

As if on cue.

Amongst some in the manosphere, there seems to be this prevailing notion that the problems between the sexes can be boiled down to the notion that men are good, women bad. I personally do not subscribe to this view as I believe that while Feminism has corrupted the average woman, modern masculinity is nothing to write home about.  In my previous post, I argued that in my experience women seem to have more "balls" than men, and that given their hypergamous nature this makes many men unattractive to them. A patient came in the other day who illustrated this phenomenon quite clearly.

(I've changed the details of the patient and her story to protect her privacy but the details are true to the best of my recollection.)

Patient:  Doctor, I wonder if I could see someone because I'm suffering from quite a bit of anxiety.
Me: Can I ask what is going on?
P: I'm stressed.
M: What is causing you stress?
P: I'm having problems with my boyfriend.
M: What sort of problems?
P: We argue all the time, over everything.
M: What do you argue about?
P: Money mainly. He can't seem to hold down a job and whatever job he does get he seems to be exploited by his employer. I mean he is never able to save any money and he works incredible hours but he spends all his money on alcohol and trinkets and I still end up having to give him money for his lunch.
M: His lunch?
P: He rings me up from work stating that he has nothing to eat. I'm mean, can't he pack a sandwich or just buy something? He rings me up complaining that he is so thirsty from work yet he won't take a water bottle with him.  He complains all the time about stupid little things and seems to want me to tell him how to fix them. It's like he is a little kid and I have to pack his school lunch.
M: Does he help around the house?
P: He leaves his stuff laying around. He won't wash the dishes. If he is at home during the day he won't lift a finger and I have to do everything.  I have to nag him to do anything and I'm beginning to sound like my mother and I hate it. I don't want to be a nag.
M: Do you work?
P: Yes, I do. I work as (uncredentialed clerical work) and work long hours as well.  But I'm trying to pay off a house. I bought a property before I met him and put tenants in it. They can help me pay it off.  It annoys me that my partner is not contributing. All I want is for him to be able to put some money away so that when we get married we can have some furniture and a stable financial future together, but he just seems to blow all his money and it's like I'm supporting him.
M: It's tough out there in the job market.
P: Yeah, I know. But he turns up late for work and can't seem to organise himself while he is over there. (She lists a litany of examples of manifest imbecility.)
M: Do you sleep at night?
P: I have a very broken sleep. I used to sleep very well but lately I wake up at two in the morning and can't fall back asleep. I lay awake in bed thinking of our future. I don't want to be poor and struggling for the rest of my life.
M: Are you intimate with your partner?
P: No, and that's weird, because I've always had a high sex drive. I just don't feel like doing it anymore. He gets angry about it.  Then we end up in a big shouting match. It's like I'm shouting with another girl. He's always making excuses and blames me for everything.
M: Blames you?
P: Yes, he says that I want too much. That I'm too demanding. Look, he was working in sales and his boss was exploiting him. I told him to find another job which he did. When he lost that job he blamed me saying that he should have stayed in his first job. Everything is my fault and he never takes responsibility for anything.
M: (I'd been "reading" the patient whilst she was talking. She was clearly a naturally intelligent aspirational woman who was tough). Perhaps you are being too tough on him. I reckon your pretty strong willed and can be demanding.
P: (Looks surprised!) Maybe, but I only want what my mother has. My father was always able to keep down a job. He's always fixing things up around the house and helps my mum. He never argues like a woman with my mother. When my mother starts yelling at him he tells her to shut up and walks away. When my mother cools down then he will talk to her.
M: What does your father think of your boyfriend?
P: He doesn't like him. He thinks he is a loser.
M: What do you think is the main problem then in your relationship?
P: Look doctor, I'm sick of being the man in the relationship. It's like I'm wearing the pants and I don't like it. It may sound old-fashioned but I want a man who can carry me to bed. Not the other way around.
M: It looks like your relationship is in serious trouble, why are you staying?
P: Guilt. He blames me for everything, he blames all his failures on me and perhaps I'm doing something wrong.  I want to speak to someone to see if I need to change or if something can be done.
M: I see. Look, I only have your version of events and not his,  and it may be that you really are quite  a demanding woman but it does appear that your relationship is in serious trouble and that you are quite stressed. I'll refer you to Dr X for some counseling, I think you should not make any major decisions until you've seen Dr X. He might be able to speak to both of you.
P: Do you think there is something wrong with me Doctor? Do you think I'm too demanding?
M: Like I said, I only have your version of events. But based upon my brief impression of you and your history I think you're tough but I don't think your demands are unreasonable. Your obviously stressed because you're in an unhappy relationship. Your looking for a man to look after you and challenge you and if necessary put you in your place and your current man isn't doing that.
P: Yes, Yes!
M: Look, I'm a bit of a sexist pig and believe that man needs to know how to manage his woman and not tolerate any disrespect. It's not that I want dominate women or think that they're inferior, it's just that when a woman is able to dominate her man she becomes profoundly unhappy.(Starts staring at me with puppy dog eyes)  Once again, I only have your version of events but you seem to be self disciplined and have got your act together; your man doesn't. I'd still want to hear your partner's side of the story and I don't think you should make any decisions till you see Dr X. But that's my personal opinion.
P: (Puppy dog eyes) Are you married Doctor?
M: Unfortunately for you, yes.
P: (Smiles)

I have these type of consultations roughly twice a week.  The theme is the same. Competent woman, loser man, unhappy relationship.

Many in the manosphere would view this woman as a demanding bitch. I don't. She would be a good modern fit for Proverbs 31:10-31. She has independently, on a low income, saved money and bought herself a house, put tenants in it and has a long term plan for the future. She is keeping down a job and has been able to organise her own affairs. She wants a stable future and does not want to live in poverty. By the way, I'd estimate her BMI at about 22. Such a woman is percieved as a threat to Western Civilisation by the manosphere. Facepalm.

On the other hand, her boyfriend, who can't keep down a job, is poorly organised and pathetic and relies on his wife for everything is paraded as some form of victim of modern Western Civilisation by the manosphere. Houston, I think we have a problem.

Now, it may be my opinion doesn't really matter here, but what I think is most telling is the opinion of her father, who seems to have his shit together. He thinks his potential son-in-law is a failure as well. I feel that the father's opinion may have some validity.

The manosphere has quite rightly denounced the corruption of women by feminism but what it has been unable see is the failure in modern masculinity. Roosh and Roissy may get lots of lays but they would have hardly been though of examples of masculinity either in Roman, Greek or Victorian times. Hedonism was always the "soft" option of manhood. And the reality today is that many men are soft. Not so much physically as in character. Women are far "harder" today and more self disciplined. Making women "softer" may restore some of their femininity but it no way guarantees the masculinity of men.  Taking away a woman's rights does not give a man alpha qualities.


eBay, Australia's online marketplace for fashion, collectibles, sporting goods, digital cameras, baby items, coupons, and everything else has transformed over the recent months, with it's innovative and pioneering concept - Fashion Gallery. No longer is eBay just a place for consumers to sell, search, bid, buy, browse but it's now and online fashion destination for all Australians. The eBay’s Fashion Gallery has taken a leap forward with the launch of editorial like lookbooks – consisting of fresh concepts to curate the best men’s and women’s’ fashion and accessories into inspirational trend reports. The new innovative online lookbook concepts feature hero imagery with beautiful model/blogger Nikki Phillips, who I had the opportunity of asking a few questions about herself and her feelings towards fashion.

Follow eBay in the following platforms for continual updates. 

Facebook:          Twitter:            Pinterest:          Tumblr:         Instagram:  @eBayFashionAU

Like what you see? Lets be friends.

Follow me on...
Bloglovin / Twitter / Instagram:socialemissions / Pinterest

Easy, Healthy Pumpkin Spice "Candied" Almonds

I have a case of the boo-hum-bugs. What is that, you say? Let's just say that if you called me the Scrooge of fall/Halloween decor, I wouldn't correct you (see my Easter thoughts here near the bottom of the post).

Don't get me wrong, I love fall. We get very distinct seasons where we live, and as much as I anxiously await summers arrival, fall is a close second for me.

Fall is...

Pumpkin spice lattes.

Scarves. Boots.

The change in the leaves.

Fall is just.... fabulous!

Despite my abundance of praise for fall, I just can't seem to get into autumnal decor. You won't see a hurricane vase of acorns or a runner made of faux leaves sewed together on this blog. I have absolutely nothing against seasonal decor of this variety, it's just not my jar of jam. My home is all whites and blues and greys, and fall decor just doesn't jive.

I prefer to put my creative fall energy into seasonal eats. That way, they aren't on display, I can share them with others, and they get eaten instead of sitting in a storage box until next fall (yay for less stuff!).

There are a lot of fall recipes I've wanted to try, but when my grandma gave me a huge bag of almonds (poor grammy has high potassium and can't eat them anymore), I decided to blend one of my favourite desserts with my favourite healthy snack. Pumpkin pie spiced almonds. Yummmy.

As is usually the case with my "original" ideas, I did some googling and of course, my idea isn't so original (is there such a thing anymore?). Go figure. Anyways, instead of reinventing the wheel, I used Robin's recipe tweaked just a bit (I added a little rum extract because I was short on vanilla, and it turned out yumm!).  Check out her blog for the exact recipe, but I'm talking easy ingredients here! Agave nectar, vanilla extract, cinnamon, pumpkin spice. Yup, that's it. Oh, and a sprinkle of sea salt.

I have never made "candied" nuts before, and I have no clue why. They are SO easy. I literally whipped these up during one commercial break. Throw the almonds in a bowl, toss in the coating ingredients (thankfully all of which I had on hand), stir, and then spread on a cookie sheet covered in parchment (DO NOT use foil- I did and ended up having to pick each almond off the foil, and sometimes it brought some foil with it, so that certainly wasted some time.)

Toss in the oven for 18- 20 minutes, and voila! Your home will smell heavenly, and you'll have some delicious, non-refined sugar candied almonds.

They still retain a bit of stickiness as the agave doesn't seem to caramelize like sugar would, but not super sticky. I would call it more tacky than sticky. It won't leave your fingers amuck, which is nice.

The sea salt on top is divine. I love that it blends sweet and salty, and the pumpkin spice isn't overwhelming in any way.

Since you don't want to eat these all to yourself, pack some up and hand out to friends and family.

My favourite packaging tip is to scour the stationery sections of Winners/TJMaxx/Ross etc for wedding favour boxes. I found this set of 24 for just $3.99 and I use them for everything (wrapping small jewelry gifts for friends, toys for my cousins, and now almonds!). Much cheaper than buying them from Michaels and they're nice to have on hand when you need them.

If you have some almonds lying around your kitchen, I definitely recommend giving this a go. Can be made into teeny tiny batches too so you aren't as tempted to eat a whole pan!


xox Jen

Hypergamic Affirmative Action.

The aeroplane is like a woman. To get the best out of her you have to seduce, not rape her.
(Attributed to a Polish pilot in WW2)

Over at Alpha Game, Vox noted the recent developments in Iran on the subject of gender relations. The Ayatollahs have begun to implement a social policy designed to push women out of the engineering professions. Incidentally, it's a very similar approach that has been advocated by many traditionalist bloggers in the manosphere. Vox writes:
Of course, the Iranian action presents a potentially effective means of solving the hypergamy problem presently beginning to affect college-educated women in the West. Only one-third of women in college today can reasonably expect to marry a man who is as well-educated as they are. History and present marital trends indicate that most of the remaining two-thirds will not marry rather than marry down. So, by refusing to permit women to pursue higher education, Iran is ensuring that the genes of two-thirds of its most genetically gifted women will survive in its gene pool.

Now, I have quite a lot of respect for Vox but I think he is totally wrong on this one. Hypergamy simply can't be socially engineered away, and the approach taken by the Ayatollahs and advocated by many in the manosphere i.e handicapping women in order to make second rate men look better is simply an affirmative action program for beta males.

The social, sexual and economic liberation of women in the latter half of the 20th Century has meant that for the first time women were able to compete with men in society without restriction. The result has been spectacular if not particularly beneficial to the happiness of women. Whilst not all degrees are created equal (men still overwhelming dominate the "hard" fields of knowledge) the fact that there are now more degree credentialed women than men is simply astonishing. As income is broadly correlated with economic well being,  its safe to assume that women have been able to achieve a economic parity with men. The manosphere may not like this result but the fact is that women have been able to effectively compete with men when the shackles of social convention have been removed.

In my experience, women today seem to have more "balls" than men do.  They seem more driven, more ambitious and can make stuff happen. They seem to cope better with adversity than many of my male patients.  With most women, life goes on. The kids need to be fed, the uniforms washed and the bills paid. Many men flounder. My readers may not like this but they are my objective observations.

I'm not applauding this phenomenon or deriding it but simply stating the fact of it. The fact is that there are many women of great ability and intelligence. Now its true that this ability can impaired by failing to educate a woman or denying her a role in the economic system, but the innate ability and potential remains. All of us know individuals who, through the hardships of life, were denied an education but are yet wise, prudent and industrious. We also know others who have gone to the best schools but remain eternal morons. In the real world educated morons are no match for the street wise.

Now, suppose we take a bright girl and deliberately hamper her education and deny her economic liberty in order to make her dependent on a man. Now, suppose we introduce her to some buffoon who has finished at Harvard. Does his artificial status enhancement satisfy her hypergamic desires?
I mean, after getting to know him she recognises that he has some social status but in real life can't manage his own affairs, make a decision or have an opinion. Is such a man attractive to her? Ponder this last point.

Sure, she may marry such a man because of her limited options, economic necessity or social convention but she is doing it for other reasons besides being attracted to him. Any marriage where the partners are there for  mutual convenience instead of mutual attraction soon becomes a prison to one or both.  Modern divorce laws are perhaps the most destructive solvent in the West today but it would be a mistake to think all was well with the institution of marriage prior to their introduction. Traditionalists fail to explain the surge in divorce once it became liberalised. Happy marriages don't fail; its the unhappy ones that do, and its quite obvious that there were a lot of unhappy (and sexless) marriages in the good ol' days .

Happy marriages are marriages of mutual desire. It's not a prison when you want to be there it's only a prison when you don't.  In order for a woman to be attracted to her partner (and therefore want to have sex with)  he has to satisfy her hypergamic imperative. The problem with female hypergamy is that is is relative to the woman's own ability and status. A dumb woman has an deep ocean of suitable suitors, a smart woman a far smaller pond. Sure, some women may have an overinflated opinion of their own capability (they are easily cut down to size) but a naturally superior woman has a real problem. She may marry a man because of her economic disability, she may stay with him for the love of God but there is no way in hell that she'll want to screw her husband's brains out if she is not sexually attracted to him. Sexual attraction is an animal instinct not a rational calculation and it is conditional on the satisfaction of her hypergamic desires. He has to be smarter, wiser, and more challenging than the woman. Socially disadvantaging women in no way fixes this problem. For if a man hath no alpha then his woman hath no desire. Alpha here does not mean straight out sexual allure, but things such as masculine virtue and intelligence. Taking away a woman's rights in no way gives a man alpha qualities. There's the problem.

The manosphere rightly criticises women for their diminishing femininity, but what the manosphere does not do so well is criticise the increasing infantisation of men.  When Roosh and his followers point out that quality women are only to be found outside the U.S. he is giving the masculine version of the modern feminist lament that there are no good men at home. What many manosphere commentators fail to recognise is that the nice computer nerd is the male equivalent of the nice fat chick. The manosphere demands thinness  but criticises women for wanting its feminine equivalent. Mote, beam, eye. It's all a bit of hypocrisy.

Calls to take away the rights of women are really nothing more than an affirmative action program for weak and beta men. Desirable men don't have a problem getting married.

It's GIVEAWAY time! Win my FAVE bracelet

I am in major project mode. I feel like I have 4000 things on the go, and nothing is finished. My chairs, my table, our floors (well, just the walls and baseboards need to be patched and painted), my office, our guest room (post to come on that!) and the rest of my to do list are keeping me busy busy busy!

While I work away on crossing some things off my list, how about you toss the dice and enter to win a Carrera bracelet! And let's be honest here... your chances of winning are PRETTY high so what have you got to lose?

I don't have the time to design a ton of jewelry for the Paper Society, but I am head over heels in love with this bracelet and I'm sure you will be too! It goes with practically everything and is the perfect little amount of bling!

To enter:

1.) If you haven't already, make sure you're following this blog someway or another :)

2.) Pin something (anything!) from The Social Home.

3.) Comment on here and let me know that you did so!

Sorry worldwide friends, only open to residents of Canada and the US of A!

Winner picked next Friday, September 27, 2012.

And pssst- did you see the end of September sale I posted about on Facebook? Totally worth checking it out!

Healthy Home | Smoothie Love

I have a major soft spot for smoothies. I touched on it in this post about some of my healthy tips and tricks, but my love for smoothies is deserving of an entire post of itself.

Being a vegetarian almost my whole life, smoothies are not a new thing for me. In high school and university, I forced down many a protein shake (basically protein powder, banana, milk, ice) to try and get more protein into my diet. I had enough protein shakes to turn me off for life. Blech.

But smoothies are another story. They are a fantastical blend of many yummy things, that make for a wholesome, filling and nutritious breakfast or post-workout snack. Did I say they were filling? Yup, so so filling. The volume really gives you that satiated feeling, and staves off hunger until lunch time. It's also very refreshing in the summer because it's a cool and blended treat.

I mix up my smoothie ingredients from time to time, but this is my current go to smoothie recipe: 1 small banana, handful of frozen fruit, a couple frozen spinach/kale cubes OR handful fresh greens, a few coconut water ice cubes, green tea protein powder OR greek yogurt, and a mix of chia seeds, hemp hearts and buckwheat. I top with a little water, or brewed chilled green tea, and give her a good blend.

I had never heard of the Nutri Bullet nor seen the infomercials, but when my 7 year old Magic Bullet gave out, and this baby was on sale for $79.99, I thought I'd give it a whirl. It has 600W (or as I called it before being corrected by my husband, 600 horsepower) versus Magic Bullet's 250W. It makes a huge difference and really crushes through seeds and nuts like nothing I've ever tried (I'm sure the VitaMix is loads better, but I have yet to desire one because they are massively huge and clunky and I just don't want that in my kitchen. Oh, and they cost $500+ ;))

I start my day with a smoothie, and try to use fresh ingredients as often as possible, but since I'm the only one who uses them in my household, I find my produce goes wilty or overripe before I have time to finish it up. That's when I started making frozen cubes and using frozen fruit instead of always fresh. Coconut water is also something that only lasts a couple days, hence why I freeze it. I make up about 5 batches to freeze every week so that they are really easy to grab, and all I add is warm water (to help thaw all the frozen ingredients), my seed mixture and the protein of choice (I have been known to freeze greek yogurt and add to the mix as well!

I use mason jars to hold my baggies while I fill them, and then freeze.

Any great smoothie recipes you're loving right now? Would love to hear them!


Whilst the boyfriend style jean is not every girls cup of tea, I on the other hand can not get enough of them. Nothing like wearing a loose fit pant and feeling comfortable whilst still looking "fashionable", win! Admittedly as much as I love the style, I searched high and low for a pair I was 100% happy with and finally I settled on a pair of actual MENS jeans ... which makes so much sense. Since purchasing my shredded best friends from Ksubi, I have been lucky enough to find some other styles that I have also fallen in love with. If you follow me on Instagram (@socialemissions) you will know which pair I am talking about. If a dropped crotch and low waist line isn't your thing, you will struggle to feel feminine in this style, but when paired with a sleek heel and jacket, you really can't go wrong.

I'm wearing..

Mens jeans by Ksubi
Jacket by ZARA
Neon Heels by Windsor Smith from The Iconic
Basic Scoop Neck Tee in Citron by Witchery
Make A Wish Star by Sass & Bide

Photo's by Starring Nobody

Like what you see? Lets be friends.

Follow me on...
Bloglovin / Twitter / Instagram:socialemissions / Pinterest

DIY Love: Easy, 1-hour Bench Project

Thank you for all the input on my chrome table base! From your comments, I realized my initial plan is probably the best route to go, so stay tuned for that!

I'm going to be taking some photos of my new floors on Tuesday as the project is almost officially done! It looks done, we just have some wall repair and caulking to do, but that's for another day once hubby has recovered from the trauma of install.

I know it's fall, and I know the weather is a changing, but I just HAD to share this DIY with you.

Perhaps it's been around forever and I've just never seen it, but it's absolutely INGENIOUS!

 Kayla from Kayla's Basement made this uber impressive outdoor bench for $40 in less than an hour.

Now, that's the kind of DIY I like! Such a simple design that makes me ponder, "How have I not ever thought of this?"

Perhaps it's late in the season to do, but I know I will stashing this goodie somewhere for a perfect spring 2013 project!

Advice Time!

I really really need some input on this one! I am STUMPED!

I figure since we're overhauling our main floor with new floors and new dining chairs, we might as well upgrade the cheap dining table while we're at it.

Hmmmm. Dining table. Wait. Don't I have one in the garage?


Well, half of a table at least.

I bought a chrome dining table base a year ago at that amazing wonderful heaven of an interior design warehouse sale. It was $75. Score!

It has no top though, and I am still really torn as to what I should do. I've already attempted one option. I bought a bunch of pine treated 2 by 6's, had them cut to size, and was ready to use the Pinterest technique to age the wood to make it look, well aged, or beached, until I was quickly taught that 2 by 6's are NOT 2 inches by 6 inches. ARGH. I spent close to $100 on my special wood, to come home and find my measurements were so wrong. Major fail.

So, a year later, my beautiful table base is still in the garage. I really want it to come inside and keep my new chairs company.

I've thought of a glass top, but if my side tables are any indication, glass tops scratch easily and look dirty quickly.

I would love white marble, but let's be honest, I'm not buying a white marble table top any day soon. Cha ching that I do not want to spend.

What other options can you guys think of? What would YOU do?

Chair Painting Part I

Ya, painting wood chairs is old news.

Painting fabric? That's a whole notha ball game.

Sure, it's been done before. We've seen it on Pinterest.

We've maybe even tried the technique using fabric medium on pillows...

But SPRAY paint on fabric chairs?

You heard me.

I found this product online, and after doing some searching, I found this link to Johnny in a Dress. She spray painted her vinyl sofa using the Rustoleum Fabric and Vinyl Spay Paint and went from navy to white with fabulous results.

My chairs in question, however, are fabric. Almost velvety, but not quite. I wouldn't even know how to describe them. But they are certainly not vinyl.

I first had the idea to spray paint my six Louis chairs once I decided I didn't have much to lose. The camel fabric colour is not even close to workable in my home, but the light ostrich texture is nice. Before I rip the chairs apart, why not give it a go? The worst that can happen is that it doesn't work out, and then I reupholster. Plus, the double piping and upholstery job on them now is SO much nicer than I could ever do, so I'd prefer to keep that professional work in tact if possible.

Tuesday was test day 1. As you can see from the image of the can above, the "Vinyl" is bolded, the "Fabric" is teeny weeny. This is obviously deliberate. I think this product would work much better on vinyl than on fabric, unfortunate for me. I chose this product over other true fabric paints and fabric spray paints (and their DIY alternatives) because I was going from a darker colour to white. I need as much heavy duty coverage, so this seemed like the most promising.

I used 2 whole cans, about 8 light coats, and there still is a need for a little more coverage. It's scratchy to the touch (although doesn't sound crunchy like a regular spray paint might) and although I wouldn't call it an epic fail, it's not a hurrah quite yet.

I still have 5 other chairs and I think I might test out a couple other alternatives with them.

I will have a more in depth post about the process with before and after pictures coming, but for now, this is my 2-can (Toucan?) chair. I didn't tape off the legs because I'm going to be reinishing those (and couldn't find painters tape :P - I've told you before I'm not a by-the-book DIY-er, didn't I?)

This post is not affiliated nor promoted by Rustoleum by the way, I just happened to find this product while searching online :)

Charles Wilhite: Never give up! Panel next Tuesday

Panel Discussion:

Resisting the New Jim Crow in the Pioneer Valley and the Campaign to Free Charles Wilhite of Springfield

Speakers: Ed Cage, Uncle to Charles Wilhite; Emahunn Campbell, W. MA Students Against Mass Incarceration; Sheldon Gaynor, Community Organizer; Ellen Graves, Arise for Social Justice; Holly Richardson, Out Now


Charles Wilhite was convicted of murder in 2010 and sentenced to life in prison without parole.  Hear about the community and legal efforts that resulted in his being granted a new trial and how this struggle is related to legal scholar Michelle Alexander’s writings on mass incarceration and the New Jim Crow.


Presented by: Student Chapter of the WNE National Lawyers Guild