A Raskog for Stella

Like hundreds (thousands?) of bloggers, and many muggles, I took one look at the Raskog cart that IKEA released a few seasons ago and immediately knew I wanted it. A couple of months ago, I got it. And it’s been sitting in my trunk the whole time. I knew it could serve a good purpose, but the truth is, we have A LOT of storage already.

Bar? Nope, we already have one.

Nightstand? We have two.

Books, school supplies, office stuff, craft items, underwater woven baskets? Nope, we had places for everything.

And then I started my new venture. And I needed a place to keep my samples, literature, display items, planner, etc. together.

It’s pretty damn perfect.





I love having all my business items contained in one place, instead of scattered throughout the house!

Speakeasy Style

Over the weekend, our friend D, who’s the bee’s knees, held a helluva birthday party at a speakeasy up in the city. We got our wiggle on, put on our glad rags and drove up to the juice joint to join the other fellas and dolls who’d be celebrating. D and her husband C definitely put on the Ritz for this party, and we had a swell time!

My husband rented his outfit from a local costume shop, which happens to be a block away from the first place we ever lived in. I, however, relied on the kindness of friends, cheap stores, and some craftiness to put my ensemble together.


My headpiece was made of 3 purple feathers glued to the back of a gold satin rosette that I made. I added some pearls and rhinestones to the rosette and glued felt to the back to secure the feather stems, then sewed the felt to a small comb. I made a thin braid on the left side of my head to anchor the comb, slipped the comb in, and secured it with some bobby pins. It didn’t not move all night, through hugging, windy San Francisco streets, and lots of dancing.

The earrings were made from clear crystals years ago and the necklaces I got from Forever 21.

Our dear friend J lent me a gorgeous ruffly black dress, it was perfect, comfortable, and fun to dance in. I wore sheer dark stockings and black pumps.

The stole was made from costume leftovers and all I did was cut the rectangular piece in half lengthwise, then join small sides together to make it a longer, thinner piece. I used a huge (length of my index finger) needle and since it was faux-fur, didn’t bother to hem it or anything.

We had an absolute blast — the party was great, the band played fab music all night, and there was delicious food AND a candy buffet table. The three chocolate martinis I had weren’t bad, either ;D  I have to admit I got giddy when a lady wearing a real fur stole and a long strand of real pearls came up to me to ask me for my card because she thought my costume was the bomb.  Or I should say, the cat’s pajamas.  What can I say, we like to have fun on the cheap ;D

We were so happy to celebrate D’s birthday — we wish you nothing but the very best, doll!!!

Frame Jewelry Display

You know how sometimes the glass that comes with a photo frame breaks? And you don’t want to throw that frame away so you stash it for months in various places, until your husband is all “hmmm, are you going to do something with this thing?” And then a friend gifts you their old coffee table but one of the ten knobs is missing and you’re all “Whoa! Frame + knobs? Can I say jewelry display?”

Okay, so maybe you haven’t thought this, but I did, and here are the results.
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I took the frame and painted it in Oil Rubbed Bronze, then covered the backing with gold dust vellum paper from my favorite paper store.

The backing was a piece of laminate that my husband had leftover from a project and he cut it to size for me. Once the laminate and vellum were adhered, I marked a grid of nine spots on the back – three across, three up and down. My awesome husband drilled the laminate and paper and we bought some new screws because the ones that came with the knobs were too long.

I now have a place to display some of my bracelets and necklaces:
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The total cost of this project was solidly under ten dollars. The paper was $2.75 (plus tax) and the new screws/washers were under $5. I had the frame, we had the piece of laminate and we had the nine knobs from my craft table project.

I hope you have enjoyed my repurposed photo frame craft!

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UndertheTableandDreamingTip Junkie handmade projects

Really, Anthropologie?

I love some of your stuff, dear A, but some of your prices are seriously freakish.
My little one used to have special needs classes to help with his fine motor skills. One of his “jobs” was sorting balls (get your minds outta the gutter!) and stringing them on a cord, and I’m pretty sure he came up with something like this at one point, when he ended up knotting something that took the teachers 45 minutes to un-knot.

You’re telling me I could have financed my boys’ college education if I’d just given my youngest some string and balls? I could have my villa in the South of France by now? I could be a Real Housewife of Silicon Valley?

Apparently people will pay more than $400 for tangled balls. Who knew?

11 things about me

I figure that with it being 2011 and all, I can tell you 11 things about me you might not (yet) know, and maybe you’ll be inclined to share some tidbits too!

1 – I am a complete peasant. What I mean is I like what I like, regardless of how grand it is. Sure I enjoy a $300 bottle of wine (usually thanks to our friends who have their own cellar) but I can enjoy a $4 just as much. Same with chocolate. I love Belgian and Swiss goodies, but my favorite type is plain Hershey’s.

2 – I am a snob, which you’d think contradicts #1, but let me explain. If I stay in a $300 hotel room, it better be a damn good hotel room (it not always is.) If I go to Masa’s to have a tasting menu for nearly $400, by the first ever American winner of the original Iron Chef, it better be one of the best fucking meals of my life (it was.) I am not easily impressed. If I choose to spend $$$, it better be fucking worth it.

3 – I used to be a romance novel reviewer. I got into a major romance novel kick and decided I needed to share my opinions with the world, so I did. Eventually I went off the genre and now am a voracious reader of a variety of fiction and non-fiction.

4 – I swear a lot. Mostly online, because I have two boys, ages 4 1/2 and almost 6, so I really need to watch it. The occasional swear word pops out, usually while driving, “mommy, what does ‘useless motherfucker from hell’ mean?”, but I try to be good.

5 – I used to be what I call Latin Goth during my 20s and early 30s. My wardrobe was half burgundy, half black, with some gold thrown in. My bridesmaids wore burgundy dresses and carried ivory flowers, while I wore ivory and gold and carried dark burgundy flowers. I did think of wearing a burgundy gown but I fell in love with my dress and couldn’t think of wearing anything else. Now I’m 39 and still love black and burgundy, but in smaller doses.

6 – I was born and raised in Peru, we moved here when I was 13, and lived in Mountain View for 18 years. Then I moved in with my boyfriend, we got married, and moved to the South Bay. My parents stayed in Mountain View until July 2010, when my darling dad died suddenly, and now I cannot drive through the city without immense feelings of grief. I used to think someday we might move there if we can afford it, but now I could never do that. I don’t think I’d survive it.

7 – I am a gamer. Yep, I am one of those geeks who play MMORPGs (massively multiplayer online role-playing games) – or rather, just one MMORPG, World of Warcraft. My husband got me addicted and I try to play a couple of times a week. I don’t play as often as he does because I actually sleep at night, but I do enjoy it, and the boys love to make my characters jump, which sucks when I’m casting a spell because jumping interrupts spellcasting, but, you know, they have fun, too ;D

8 – I am biologically unable to have any more kids. People are always asking when we’re going to try for the girl. None of my dear online friends, of course, because we have more sense than that, but really, WTF!? Mostly because I’m almost forty and I can hear the unsaid part of the question “when are you going to try for the girl (before you’re too old)?” — After suffering from horrific periods since the age of 11, and just accepting that’s what nature had dealt me, I ended up finding out I had fibroids, and not surprisingly, severe anemia. So severe that when my GYN and I agreed on the hysterectomy, we couldn’t schedule it because my blood count was so low. Anyway, a year and a half ago I had the surgery and have been happier than ever – we had decided on 2 children from the beginning and I actually had already had my tubes tied after #2.

9 – I can write backwards. Years and years ago, I must have been 6 or 7, I remember hearing about someone who could write backwards – not Leonardo. Well, the person could have been named Leonardo, but it wasn’t THE Leonardo. At least I don’t think so. ANYWAY, I remember hearing about this and thinking “well, why couldn’t you write backwards?” and I grabbed some paper and a pencil and started doing it. I showed my parents and then left because it was boring and they were like, um, okay, kid.

10 – I used to be allergic to chocolate. Then I got pregnant with my first child. Ever since, I can eat chocolate and not break out in a rash. I also used to be able to drink milk. After I had my second son, no more milk! If I drink a glass of cow’s milk my belly swells up and things are nast-eee for the next day or so and that’s all I’m going to say about that. Both my sons were born allergic to the proteins in cow’s milk. They can have yogurt and cheese, and little bit of cow’s milk to drink, but now we drink rice milk.

11 – I used to make and sell jewelry. I was darn good at it, too, and did it for a few years. It was very nice play money. Then I went off it. I got bored and to this day I just don’t feel the urge to grab my tools and beads and make something. I learn to sew a couple of years ago and that was that. I sold most of my bead stash, gave the rest to my mom, and now she and my sis make stuff. Now I’m into fabric, my veggie garden, and mostly, finding new ways to make my home cozier and prettier.

So those are my Eleven for 20 Eleven – if you’re STILL reading, I thank you from the bottom of my motherfucking heart because that probably took some time out of your day. I promise my future posts won’t be this wordy 😀