Archive for the ‘Beautifying’ Category

7 Ways To Restyle An Old T-shirt – Redux

May 12th, 2009 by Amy

One of the most common ways readers find our blog is through a Google search for “restyling an old t-shirt.”


Given that the warm weather is here to stay and y’all are looking for T-shirt ideas … here is the original 7of  … and here are some more!


1.  Chaos

The “Chaos” T (at right) is brought to you from the fun folks at Compai … who are also the masterminds behind 99 Ways to Cut, Sew, Trim, and Tie Your T-Shirt into Something Special.

The following can all be found at (links provided):


2.  Flapper

Feisty and very feminine … you’d never guess this little number (at left) was made from unflattering Ts.


3.  Gathered Yoke

A tailored look … very little sewing required!


4.  Pin Tuck

Form-fitting, yet entirely flexible.


5.  Ruffles



6.  Scarf

Paul, over at, sent in his idea for transforming pre-loved Ts into scarves … cozy!


7.  Skirt

Fun, flirty, and totally functional (at right). 

7 Hysterical Magnets For Mom

May 8th, 2009 by Amy

I love being a mom and I’m sure Anne Taintor does, too.


Pure love … covered with a thick sauce of What You’re Really Thinking!


Which I also love.


Thanks for keepin’ it real, Anne!


Happy Mother’s Day!


All designs available for purchase at

Photo credit & copyright Anne Taintor.

7 Benefits Of Hugging

May 6th, 2009 by Amy

Remember when Michelle Obama broke royal protocol and gave the Queen of England a hug?


Ensuing media frenzy aside, the strangest thing about the whole incident was that while the Queen had never been that intimate in public before, she seemed to like it just fine.


As well she should.


According to family therapist Virginia Satir:

“We need 4 hugs a day for survival.

We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance.

We need 12 hugs a day for growth.”

Which is exactly the premise of the Free Hugs Campaign.


Here is a portion of  Free Hugs founder Juan Mann’s story:


“I’d been living in London when my world turned upside down and I’d had to come home. By the time my plane landed back in Sydney, all I had left was a carry on bag full of clothes and a world of troubles. No one to welcome me back, no place to call home. I was a tourist in my hometown.

Standing there in the arrivals terminal, watching other passengers meeting their waiting friends and family, with open arms and smiling faces, hugging and laughing together, I wanted someone out there to be waiting for me. To be happy to see me. To smile at me. To hug me.

So I got some cardboard and a marker and made a sign. I found the busiest pedestrian intersection in the city and held that sign aloft, with the words “Free Hugs” on both sides.

And for 15 minutes, people just stared right through me. The first person who stopped, tapped me on the shoulder and told me how her dog had just died that morning. How that morning had been the one year anniversary of her only daughter dying in a car accident. How what she needed now, when she felt most alone in the world, was a hug. I got down on one knee, we put our arms around each other and when we parted, she was smiling.”


Be sure to watch the video (42.5 million people already have!) and spend the rest of your day getting your hug on!


7 Benefits Of Hugging:

1.  Reduces heart disease

2.  Diminishes stress

3.  Promotes longevity

4.  Strengthens social ties

5.  Lowers blood pressure

6.  Lowers heart rate

7.  Benefits the hugger and the huggee equally

7 April Observances

April 29th, 2009 by Jane

April Fool’s Day, Passover, Easter and Earth Day have come and gone but there are two more days left in the month to celebrate or observe something important, or even whimsical. Take your pick from these:

1. Join a Cause
April is national Autism Awareness Month and I am betting you know someone that this condition has affected. For more information on autism and to learn how you can help, visit the  Autism Society of America.  

2. In the Garden
Spring is in the air and you can celebrate by working in your garden or the local community garden because it is National Garden Month! This great site has projects, information and links galore to get you started. 

3. The Music in Us
Never heard of Clark Terry, Marian McPartland, James Moody or Chico Hamilton? Then peruse the Jazz Appreciation Month site, hosted by the Smithsonian and listen to these fascinating oral histories brought to us by the NEA. 

4. Save a Life
April is a good time to remind those you love that you want to become an organ donor. Make sure your wishes are understood and choose someone to ensure they are carried out. For more information, visit the government’s organ donor site. Your organs and tissues could potentially save or improve the lives of dozens of people.  

5. Lower Your Stress
Economy got you stressed? Well, take advantage of some available resources during Stress Awareness Month, like this free e-course on living a low-stress lifestyle.

6. Daisies
Yes, the flower for April is the lovely, unassuming daisy. Daisy Paradise is the site of all things daisy! Visit it and brighten your month!

7. Diamonds
The stone for the month of April is the diamond. Want to be assured you are buying a conflict-free stone? Then visit this interesting site for more information. To be green and guilt-free, purchase an antique piece of jewelry.

7 Spring Fabrics

April 20th, 2009 by Jane

Sometimes spring cleaning can morph into spring crafting. If you are a fabric-a-holic like me, then feast your eyes on these wonderful fabrics for projects.

                                        Blues and Greens for Wipe and Go

This Stained glass pattern in blues and greens would be perfect for a table runner on my patio table. It is vinyl coated for easy clean-up which makes it just what I need.

On The Road Again
This cute Road Trip print would be an adorable tote bag for your kids car games. Or stitch up a little travel pillow for them.


                                                         Kitschy Kitchen
My Friend Peggy is a fanatic for I Love Lucy, so this Lucy in the Chocolate Factory print would make a great apron to give her. 

                                                  Cute Mousepad
The Japanese fabric on this mouse pad is adorable and I need it! 

                                                     Breezy Skirt Fabric
I love this mum print from designer Heather Bailey. It is a cute summer skirt waiting to happen. 

                                                   Upholstery Fabric
I have a pair of mod vintage slipper chairs that would look fabulous in this polka dot print. Yum! 

                                                       Outdoor Fabric
I have an old iron daybed on my back porch that needs a mattress cover that can withstand the elements. This kicky sunburst pattern is just the ticket, don’t you think? 

7 Thoughts on Cynicism

April 17th, 2009 by Jane

Maybe you are one of the 20 million people who have watched the YouTube video of the show Britain’s Got Talent from last weekend. If so, then you saw an unbelievable singing performance by Susan Boyle from Scotland. She has a voice that brings tears.  But her incredible talent is not the only thing that blew me away. No, I was left mute by the unbridled cynicism of the audience and the judges before she even opened her mouth.

Britain’s Got Talent is Simon Cowell’s sister show to America’s Got Talent and American Idol. He sits with two other Brits, Piers Morgan and Amanda Holden, and judges people’s talents or lack thereof, in his opinion. There was eye-rolling and audible groaning because Susan Boyle does not look like a person trying to be a star. She looks like a librarian. A British librarian. And she was discounted immediately based on her appearance. But she sings like a Broadway star and she won over every cynical, jaded, disingenuous person in that auditorium. Even Simon Cowell. Brava for Susan. Well-done to the Britain’s Got Talent audience and judges for admitting their own biases and giving Susan Boyle the accolades she deserves.  Maybe we can all take a breath and remember her before we judge someone who doesn’t meet our preconceived notions. Thanks to Thinkexist and Quotationspage for the great quotes.

1. What is a cynic? A man who knows the price of everything and the value of nothing. 
             – Oscar Wilde

2. The opposite of creativity is cynicism.
           -Esa Saarinen 

3. In the end we shall have had enough of cynicism and skepticism and humbug and we shall want to live more musically
           -Vincent van Gogh

4. I prefer credulity to skepticism and cynicism for there is more promise in almost anything than in nothing at all.
          -Ralph B. Perry

5. Never be a cynic, even a gentle one. Never help out a sneer, even at the devil.
          -Vachel Lindsay

6. A cynic is not merely one who reads bitter lessons from the past, he is one who is prematurely disappointed in the future.
          -Sidney J. Harris

7. A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.
         -H. L. Mencken

7 Smells That Bring Back Memories

April 16th, 2009 by Amy

The other day I rinsed a colander of strawberries in the sink.


Just after the water hit the berries, the sweet smell of early summer hit my face – and took me all the way back to a certain early strawberry summer that was very sweet indeed.


These smells take me places I love to go:


1.  Onions sautéing

2.  Coffee brewing

3.  Clean sheets

4.  Sunscreen

5.  Hot bread

6.  Babies

7.  Snow

7 Ideas for Leftover Paint

April 15th, 2009 by Jane

I have a plethora of leftover paint in my garage and of course this inspired a 7Of post! So, I have been researching paint crafts and I came across a great site for paint ideas hosted by the folks at Rustoleum. Did you know that the rust-preventive paint was inspired by fish oil? Try some of these projects and you will be helping the environment while cleaning out your garage!

1. Bottles
Event producer David Stark painted bottles from his recycling bin and crowned them with paper doilies to make these adorable and inexpensive vases.  View the whole tablescape in the May issue of Country Living magazine.

2. In the Garden
Refresh that small wrought iron table on your porch, paint your mailbox or spray paint some window boxes.  Look around, I’ll bet you will find something that needs a burst of color!.

3. Place mats

Use leftover chalkboard paint to transform tired plastic place mats into a blank canvas for your kids or guests. 

4. Stair Risers
From the creative minds at Real Simple magazine comes this idea to paint the risers of stairs in your home. I think this would be fabulous with several colors, or each one a different shade of the same color. Just keep adding white paint to lighten the color you choose. 

5. Tchotchkes
In the last year or so, I have seen several design articles on how to paint home decor accessories to make a bigger visual impact. One of my favorite ideas was painting old trophies the same shocking color like electric blue or lime green. Or painting cheap ceramic cat figurines all black or all white. How about painting dime store candlesticks varying shades of your favorite color? Line lots of these on a shelf or table for the strongest impact. 

6. Paint Chips
I have a lot of chips from when we remodeled my house and I have been using them to make greeting cards. Or they could be wall art. Or bookmarks or gift tags. Think of them as colored paper instead of detritus and you will find tons of uses for them.

7. Recycle the Paint!
The fine website, Earth 911, has tips on how to buy the correct amount of paint for the job, how to extend the life of leftover paint and where to recycle paint when you are done with it.

7 Ways To Say Thanks

April 10th, 2009 by Amy

Photo credit  perchpapiers

“Saying thank you is more than good manners.
It is good spirituality.”
Alfred Painter

1.  Apoplectic
For the times when you just want to thank a friend for being unabashedly themselves … go ApoplecticThese surreal cards feature wordy lists of thanks for things like “not seeking employment as a ruthless CEO of a criminally psychopathic multinational company” and “having an interminable nagging sensation that Bill Gates may have more than his fair share.”  

2.  Gesture
Thanking can be complicated, but The Gratitude Campaign encourages folks to do it from the heart. As the movie says, it’s not about politics, it’s about acknowledgement of service.

3.  Lasting
A simple token of thanks becomes something special when given in a Gratitude Bag from Paloma’s Nest (at right). Package of seeds? A special rock? A ring? The bag is sturdy, yet delicate, and the beauty of it is you can re-gift it without an ounce of guilt … just gratitude.

4.  Namaste
Rhode Island artist and designer Maeve Donohue created this sweet print of a kokeshi – a Japanese folk art doll traditionally given as a token of appreciation – and captured the spirit of thanks (below).

5.  Signage
Reach everyone at once with this big show of thanks … so cute it’s sure to become a keepsake. The cheerful photo above is from perchpapiers.

6.  Simple Is Best
Based in the Netherlands, this understated and inspiring Thank You site is filled with well-chosen words of appreciation. For 3 euros, they’ll send yours.

7.  Write Right
Grasping for words? This article will help you construct a heartfelt Thank You note that hits all the highlights.

7 Roses For Spring

April 7th, 2009 by Jane

We have about eleven or twelve rose bushes in our yard and they are all in full bloom now. The above bouquet is from my garden. About half of the plants have come from a wonderful place in Central Texas called
The Antique Rose Emporium. This is indeed a rose emporium, run by people who are dedicated to preserving old roses. The great news is that they do most of their business by mail order and you can find roses based on the hardiness zone of your area. Their website makes it easy for you to search for a rose by color, bloom, fragrance, class, size or growth habit. Be sure to read about them and take the virtual tour of their display gardens. You won’t be sorry-especially if it is still snowing where you live. 

1. Apricot

Jacotte  is a lovely, large flowering climber from 1920 that has a marvelous fragrance.

2. Green

Yes, green.  The Green Rose dates back to before 1845 and has a spicy fragrance. 

3. Orange, Pink

Clytemnestra is a hybrid musk that was introduced in 1915. The fragrant, copper and salmon buds of this rose will repeat.

4. Pink

The beautiful Bubble Bath can be either a climber or a shrub. Put a few fragrant petals in your bath and let it live up to its name!

5. Red

The Chrysler Imperial is velvet red and has a citrus scent.  It was involved in a marketing promotion for the car of the same name.

6. White

Katharina Zeimet has double blooms that repeat and is well-suited to a container.

7. Yellow

Amazone is a buttery yellow tea rose with fragrance that was introduced in 1872. 

© 2008 7of