Storage Packed Craft Chest

Here is the post I promised last week, when I posted about my Craft Chest. This craft chest was more of a necessity than a luxury to keep things organized at home. See us on days when my daughter and I craft… the scene at our home resembles a tornado hit zone! I am a very visual person I have to see, and surround myself with, pretty crafty things for inspiration! Okay coming back to my storage packed craft chest…it houses quite a collection of my stuff. At 4 ­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­feet long, a centimeter less than a foot wide and at 2.2 feet of height, you may feel that there may not be much storage space. That is where the genius of this little storage work horse shines through!Craft Chest @ Hooked on Homes! (3)

Before you scroll down any more let me issue a disclaimer – It’s a picture HEAVY post!

Look at all the stuff that it stores!

The cabinet on the left has three glass shelves which are packed with my collection of threads, sewing & embroidery tools.

I have built my sequins collection since my college days, have my pocket-money went into hobby stuff. These assorted sequins come in handy not only in embroidery but I also use them for embellishing cards and other projects around our home. My daughter uses a lot of stuff from here for her School projects.

I picked up these hand crafted wood blocks years ago… from Jaipur, Jodhpur, Jaisalmer and Ranthambor. And I have used them to print on curtains, cushions, bedsheets, sarees, duppattas, lamp shades, rugs, paper, hands etc.

The last shelf in this cabinet takes care of (part of my collection) assorted colours and mediums. You see, most of my creative ramblings occur late at night hence I need to be well equipped to feed my creative cravings!

The line of four tiny but deep drawers in the center of the chest houses various tools, sheers, tassels, baubles, rivets, shells, raffia, decorative mirrors, glitter plus a whole load of other tiny trinkets and bells in the red cap jars!

The single drawer at the bottom of the right side(below the sewing machine compartment) has rulers, punches and tapes.

My sewing machine is neatly stored in the right side of the this chest, safe from dust. There is enough space after the sewing machine is placed for a wicker carry-all basket for sewing on the go!

Now you know why I can’t let go of this storage packed craft chest from my sight! And since it is disguised as any other chest, I have kept it in our master bedroom! Eccentricities I tell you! But if it brings happiness and tremendous sense of satisfaction then why not! What say?

Linking up with:  The Table ScaperThe FoleyfamSew Many WaysNifty Thrifty ThingsThe Dedicated House, DIY Show Off, Lines Across, Making the World Cuter, Dwelling- Heart of Your HomeSugar Bee CraftsThe Recipe Critic, Not Just a Housewife , Nap time CreationsCooking MimiA Bowl Full of LemonsA Blossoming LifeGinger Snap CraftsSew Much AdoHouse on the WayOh My CreativeThe Newlywed Pilgrimage, A Glimpse Inside, Beyond the Picket Fences, 733 Blog, Krafty Cards

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Craft Chest

When I wrote about my ‘Treasured Coffee Table’, in one of my previous posts, you’d have known how it was born out of old kitchen cabinets; And that it’s a storehouse!

My coffee table- a storehouse!

My coffee table… a storehouse!

My Craft Chest is another such project which is made out of remnants of the old kitchen cabinets. Having mentioned earlier (in one of the posts) that I have this compulsive disorder of hoarding things…thank God for a doting husband and loving children who bear with all of my whimsical cravings and who withstand the disasters that I,  sometimes, create! Taking advantage of such a supportive family, I have continued building my collection!:-) For my ever-growing collection of art and craft material, DIY tools;  Also to dissuade me from encroaching into everybody else’s storage areas, Hubby designed a space-saving Craft Chest, just for my stuff!Craft Chest @ Hooked on Homes! (3)

The drawing that he made (on his cellphone) was a piece of cake for our carpenter Naeem (he has become so used to our non-standard measurements and out the box designs!)

Since it is made of reclaimed boards from old kitchen cabinets, one can see the permanent marks/stains of the old kitchen on the insides of this craft chest (I don’t want to get rid of them, hence didn’t paint the insides)

I wouldn’t say that it houses all of my collection but it does take care of 60% of it! I am still stashing some of my stuff here n there and elsewhere! The intial design was like a desk…it had place for ‘leg-room’ or ‘chair insert’ but while it was being made, we changed it to a chest… for more storage.

When designing this chest the only thing Hubby kept in mind was that I wanted everything safe from dust. It is EXTREMELY dusty here at Noida. A part of the top of the chest opens to store my sewing machine, when not in use.

I guess my collection has grown to a proportion where I think I need a dedicated Craft Room or DIY Room or a Studio ; I’ll decide what to call this room once I ‘arrange’ for a dedicated room…until then I am happy with what I have!

My post, Storage Packed Craft Chest, is part two of this post…where I’ve shared the number of things this work horse can store, do take a look.

By the way do you also run out on place to stash your treasure? How do you store your hobby stuff? Got any tips for me, I would love if you’d share.

Linking up with- Miss Mustard Seed, My Romantic Home, Redoux Interiors

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Old Sofa Makeover

Salvaging something old or unwanted, to turn it into something WOW worthy gives me a high that I cannot express in words… it’s therapy for me! I salvaged these sofas from our basement dump. The size was just right for the master bedroom and I couldn’t just let them feel orphaned, could I? Nobody seemed to want them because of the ghastly upholstery! Not to mention its crooked legs, broken arm rest, poky springs and stinky foam!Sofa Makeover  (5)  Okay they may not look so bad in the picture but they were!

It’s a set of one twin seater and two single seats. I don’t have any ‘before’ picture of all three of them together (blogging wasn’t on my mind at the time). This sofa-set was a wedding gift to my in-laws from my mom in-law’s family… and my in-laws celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary last May! They used them for almost 47 years, in different upholstery over the years, before retiring them to the basement ‘dump site’.

You know what happens when a die-hard DIY-er sees such stuff being wasted? Needless to say, I jumped to their rescue. This is the rescue story of my old sofa makeover!

These are the same sofa that you may have seen in our master bedroom in the post ‘here’ and of course here!

They were given a complete face-lift… and no, I didn’t do the repair & upholstery myself, we hired someone to do it for us (at home). Although I did give company to the ‘repair bhaiya’ for 7 hours and chewed his brains to learn the nuances of the skill! Upholstery only…  I think I would be able to pull off the next one! Did I mention I have acquired all the tools to do so?!

Leaving you with pictures of the twin seater, which was done in a different fabric to match the décor in our daughter’s room.

How do you like it? Do you have a salvage story to share?

Linking up with- Redoux Interiors, Miss Mustard Seed

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DIY A Vase into a Lamp!

Knowing how much I love collecting pretty little knickknacks, a friend gifted this lovely vase to me sometime ago; it goes very well with the colour scheme of our living room. I love its slender shape but the only problem with it is that the base is very small and narrow, compared to its height, which makes it an ideal ‘candidate’ to be put in ‘Highly Fragile’ category. DIY- A Vase into a Lamp! (1)A slightest nudge can knock it off-balance and I do have two ‘free electrons’ who are capable of giving it more than a nudge! Hence, I have been very careful with where I place it; so far I have always placed it against a wall, contemplating the probability of its fall and assuming it would have some possibility of surviving! It’s been sitting on a higher ground, against a wall, next to our TV.DIY- A Vase into a Lamp! (2) It doubles as a camouflaging agent, to hide away the unsightly wires, ports and conduits on the side of the TV. It has been a safe spot so far, definitely safe from a nudge, blow, push, slam or trip! Last night while watching TV, I realized the holes in the vase’s design would reflect light beautifully.

DIY a vase into a lamp

DIY a vase into a lamp

What followed next was a quest to DIY a vase into a lamp, by thinking of ways to fit in a bulb! It wasn’t meant to be… its mouth is so narrow. DIY- A Vase into a Lamp! (4)But the idea kind of stuck in my head, I had to figure out a way to convert it into a lamp…but how? Trying to concentrate between Castle’s histrionics (I love that guy!) and Kate Beckett’s level headedness I continued brainstorming and by the end of the serial I knew what I had to do, just like Castle always figures out in the end! Before I reveal how I did it, here is a glimpse of some before & after pictures of my project- ‘DIY- A Vase into a Lamp!’

All I needed was a string of Diwali lights (fairy lights) and my tool kit! I removed the two-pin plug from the string lights and dropped that side of the string into the vase through the mouth of the vase.

DIY- A Vase into a Lamp! (6)With some probing and manipulating I got that side of the string light out from one of the holes along the base of the vase (my tools were my eye brow tweezers and a crochet hook!). I reattached the two-pin plug and dropped rest of the fairy lights string into the vase, pushing it down using a pencil… rest is before your eyes!

My zero expenditure Vase Lamp!

Light pours out beautifully… I love the effect it creates! What say?

You can pull off something similar with glass bottles, jars, gold fish bowl etc. Have you tried making lamps out of unusual things? Do share your ideas!

Linking up with- Sew Many Ways, Cherished Bliss, Nifty Thrifty Sunday, The Table Scaper, The Foley Fam, Moms the Word, Your Home Based Mom, Making the World a Cuter Place, Lines Across, DIY Show Off, Dwellings-The Heart of your Home, Make it Pretty Monday, Sugar Bee Crafts, The Recipe Critic, Nap Time Creations, A Bowl Full of Lemons, Cooking Mimi, Not Just a Housewife

So Much Better With Age, A Blossoming lifeHouse on the Way, Oh My Creative, Sew Much Ado, Ginger Snap Crafts

Beyond the Picket Fence, Seven Thirty Three, A Glimpse Inside, Krafty Inspirations

Liz Marie, My Romantic Home, Nancherrow, Six Sisters Stuff, Angels Homestead, I Heart NapTime

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Liven Up A Dull Corner

Last weekend one of my ‘pretties’ broke…:-(  I had taken it out for some sun bathing. Although my money-plant is safe but I am unable to forgive myself for not being careful enough. I will soon be on a lookout for something similar. In the meanwhile I wanted to do something to liven up the sad and lonely corner next to my refrigerator… I really do miss my planter and as a penance (for breaking it) I challenged myself to liven up a dull corner without buying anything, at least for a couple of months.

Khurja Pottery Planter

Khurja Pottery Planter

I went around my home collecting things which I felt would help liven up a dull corner in my home, although nothing can replace my planter except another similar looking one , here is what I did…to add a little happiness in this corner of our home.

I found this low height step stool (it was meant for I don’t know what!) lying in the basement.

Decorating a dull corner with things around my home!

Decorating a dull corner with things around my home!

I painted it with some left over paint (at 10 @ night). Placed a low height grassy plant next to it. The following day I added a few things I had collected…

The straw mat is a one of the dining mats, I added a few brass ware… if you remember I retrieved them in a sad condition from our native place last year. To know how I polished them, organically, click here.

I clipped some branches of a creeper from my garden and placed them in an old whiskey glass (the branches would stay good if I keep changing the water and sun it every once in while). To balance the branches I added an ornamental glass rose (I left it with a broken stem the day it was gifted to me, couldn’t bring myself to part with it. Finally I found a good use for it!) plus, it kind of looks pretty in water!

And finally I added a glass dish (which was occupying a lot of space in my crockery cupboard!), threw in some coloured glass pebbles and filled it up with water. I like to float-in flowers (when I have them) otherwise the coloured pebbles too look pretty in water.

Decorating a dull corner with things around my home!

Decorating a dull corner with things around my home!

All it took was 10 minutes of styling the corner, that is, if I exclude 30 minutes of painting (no sanding or priming), the previous night and roughly 20 minutes of collecting & coordinating stuff around the house!

I am happy the way it has turned out…more so, since I didn’t spend a penny! How would you liven up a dull corner in your home?

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Great Ways to Create a Beautiful Home…Wall Paint Trends

This post won the FIRST PRIZE  in ‘Great Ways to Create a Beautiful Home’ contest on, sponsored by Asian Paints.

Always in pursuit of ideas to create a warm, appealing and a comfortable home…on a budget, I came across this term ‘Chameleon Decor’ as one of the trending decor styles. Wanting to know more about this interesting style I scoured the net; surfing, googling, blog hopping and learned how versatile this style is, with its big impact interchangeable bold accents. All this surfing augmented my ‘Decor Ideas’ folder on decor trends to create a beautiful home. This is the first of the four-part series from my folder; Great ways to create a beautiful home… Wall Paint Trends. I organized all my ‘research’ and personal experiences to start with quick and dramatic ideas with paints. I get this itch in my DIY gene to paint, repaint and repaint, every few months! Here is a sampler!

To read more about my DIY escapades ‘Click here’  and you would know what I mean! So, now you know why I started with ‘Wall Paint Trends’ as my top decorating idea for creating a beautiful home. Do drop by to check out the other three posts, in this series. The second one is on ‘ Great Ways to Create a Beautiful Home- Window Treatments’.

Whether you are planning a complete overhaul of your walls or just adding an accent wall… or DIY-ing for a fresh new look, consider these wall trends that are really hot! It’s good to know what’s hot and what’s not. Personally I don’t believe in trends but I do believe that knowledge is power… power to make better decisions (read inspired decisions). Whether you flow with the trend or make your own mark the choice is yours. So here are 5 (of the many) inspirational wall trends for crafting a beautiful home with walls that reflect your style:

Wall Paint Trend #1– The Chameleon Look… Make way to bring an exotic global look by adding splashes of colour on a neutral base (whites, beige, pastels). Take cue from nature by combining bright colours with neutrals to leave a lasting impression in this textured or non textured look. Using multiple layers of colours on the walls allows you to change the complete look of the room by changing the accessories in the room (to match one of the colours on the walls)…the way a chameleon does!

Wall Paint Trend #2- Breezy Contemporary Look … Use stand alone solids to add spunk and passion to your home. It is advised to use such colours as accent walls… Teem it with matching accessories and the room will be your conversation starter! One can add energy for that fresh and gorgeous look by opting for colours like fuchsia, tangerine, sunny yellow etc.

It doesn’t matter if your room is small, you can experiment using a solid colour if the light, natural or artificial, is ample. These stunning walls weave a spectacular drama of wonderland.

Wall Paint Trend #3- Royal Engagement … Saturated deep hues and enchanting purples (Thanks to Radiant Purple being nominated the colour of the year, this colour is going places! Click here to read a post on it) makes a bold stately home.

Painting such deep hues with a more subtle colour to offset a too dark look is the key to achieve a chic home with a regal elegance.

These walls come to life with various painting techniques. Add a dash of metallic gold, silver or copper and you would nail the imperial look!

Wall Paint Trend #4 – Forever Classic … I guess this is my personal style. I love the muted undertones of warm and cool colours for a cohesive look. Some may call it playing it safe but let me tell you it is extremely challenging to bring such colours to life. If not rightly accessorized the rooms may seem dull and flat. For that calming retreat choose subtle or earthy colours for walls and then work on the various accessories to create that elegant sophistication.

Wall Paint Trend #5 – Crowdy Threesome! A combination of three colours comes into play in this look for your walls. The choice of using three colours for a room adds a fun element; the colours used are from a pastel palette to play this look right. While combining  colours is a great way to create a beautiful home but too many colours can also result in a disastrous effect. To avoid this disaster, always follow the ‘60-30-10’ colour percentage principle, where 60% is the majority colour, 30% is the secondary colour and 10% is the accent colour.

Unify the room using this principle to create an eye-catching contrast or to disguise architectural columns and beams into decorative element of the room. Or go in for various painting techniques that add more colour to your walls artistically.

Now the big question- ‘How does one choose the right colour scheme, the right look, the right technique?’ Wouldn’t it be nice if you could ‘try’ the look in your home before actually settling for the right palette?

It would be fantastic just to try out all possible combinations! Don’t just rely on shade cards before settling for a colour palette. Start crafting a colour scheme to apply to your rooms before actually starting with the paint job… Life has been made easy with technology and Asian Paints right in the luxury of your home… ‘Click here’ to try this out at their website. And also keep these points in mind when you try out the virtual experience of dressing up your walls:

  • Your personal colour choice
  • The purpose of the space (or what the room is for)
  • Size of the space
  • Lighting of the space (natural /artificial)

If you find all this too overwhelming, just login to their website to try Asian Paints Home Solutions Guide and leave your worries to their colour advisors and chew their brains out with your questions, queries and doubts! I did that when our home was being painted about a year and half ago… and boy did I get a patient hearing? I sure did!Of the dozen plus ‘Base homes’ that we lived in, I’ve always had some DIY done with Asian Paints tester jars, I have been to their stores with fabric & paper scraps, thread spools, bindis, to get a matching colour… I always got the colour I wanted…made to order! To check out some more of my DIY wall stories ‘Click Here’. Now that you have all the info, how are you going to dress up your walls? Let your walls do the talking! Happy decorating!

PS- Thanks to Ripple Links for the contest invite.

And super thanks to my friends Nindiya Saket, Avneet Sachdeva and Surabhi Bhatnagar for allowing a peek into their beautiful homes!


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Photography Challenge # 8- Patterns

Sometimes I act like a real muddlehead… my friends would vouch for it.  I feel rather silly typing this post, as I had my post ready (or so I thought) and I am glad I didn’t push the publish button (it’s safely sitting in my drafts). I made it on ‘Light’!! I am so glad I checked back in the Photography Challenge Themes. So, here I am now…clueless, thinking what to post! (This was the thought on my mind throughout the day at work today!)
Back home now… and I am ready with what I want to post today 🙂 🙂 🙂 So here is my take for M’s Photography Challenge # 8- Patterns.
I attended a friend’s wedding, in October last year… a big fat Indian wedding, a gala affair with all the grand elements of tradition, culture and of course the bling! Here are three of my favourite pictures of the wedding (Thanks to my friend for allowing me to post these photos!)

The ‘mehandi'(Henna) pattern on her hands was divine and she made one of the prettiest bride I’d ever seen!

The ornate ‘kundan’ embroidery on her bridal ‘lehenga’ (gown) is designed by her… I remember how she fussed over the oodles of doodles she drew in her little bridal notebook, to show to her designer for the embroidery pattern. Days before the wedding she rejected the entire ensemble! It didn’t have the embroidery pattern that she designed!

Finally it was re-embroidered, to her desired pattern and delivered hours before her ‘pheras’ (wedding ceremony)! Last minute delivery, Bollywood ishtyle!

Married Indian ‘aunties’, (wring my neck if you want to!) are supposed to sport a ‘bindi’ (dot) on their forehead. Jokes apart, I am a big fan of ‘bindi’, I love to wear matching ones especially if I am wearing a saree (or if I am traditionally dressed). Here is a patterned one, that I just did for the PSC! Image credit goes to my lil one!

I like to wear this patterned ‘bindi’ with this sari 🙂

I hope these photos do justice to Photography Challenge#8- Patterns… given the soup that I was in… I think I should be allowed a reprieve! Good or bad, the excitement to stay in this PSC made me pull off a post in such a short duration i.e  after coming back home… an hour ago! I am off to visit other members of our group, do join me… I promise, you would love ’em all!

To see what we were up to last time, in Photography Challenge#7, ‘Click here’
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