September 2012 archive

Retail Designs….

Another part of me is Master’s Hand Candle Co. & Gift Shop!

About 4 years ago, my mom and I opened the storefront in Tekamah, Nebraska.  After marrying Handsome Man, I moved to Lincoln and she has been running it ever since.   And admittedly it’s a little depressing because she’s not only surviving since I left, she’s THRIVING!!  I console myself with the fact that she had 6 new employees hired after I left.  I’ll just assume it took 6 people to replace me!!! lol!!


Anyway… a few times a year, I go up to help rearrange the shop for the next season.  Because of that, I’m constantly on the lookout for cute retail display ideas.  When Mom and I went to market, I took lots of pictures.  These are some of my favorite displays and why I love them.


The window backdrop… the all-white Christmas….The old wooden buffet….   Adore how it all works together so beautifully!


LOVE this built-in cottage shanty!  Would LOVE to build one of these in the corner of our shop for the antiques.  Keep it all together in one very adorable spot!


Simple but so. stinking. cool!    Brilliant.

Some frosted glass spray….  a few plastic snowflakes…


Put the snowflakes on the glass, and spray over it.  Remove the snowflakes and taaa-daaa!  Love!


This simply made me laugh!   🙂


Love the use of displaying Christmas ornaments on garlands!


Big bowls or platters with monochromatic ornaments…. They were SO pretty!!


Check out the riser.  It would be so easy to make!  1x’s covered with cedar shakes and painted white.  Love!


This is a crummy picture….  But what a difference 12 inches makes!  That table and whole display is on a 12 in riser.  I brings everything just that much closer to eye level and it was a great shopping height.


You can’t tell as well in pictures… But all those wires from the ceiling are actually super long icicle lights.  We used them for our wedding and they were s.t.u.n.n.i.n.g.

They crammed 5 trees together… Did each tree in a different yet sparkly color… and had those lovely drippy lights coming down from the ceiling and throughout the trees.  Pretty!!!


They made an arch that began and ended in great big urns.  This one was loaded with grape lights and tons of winery ornaments.  Pretty awesome in person!


This one you’ve got to see to get the full effect.  It was 3 sizes of wreaths stacked one on top of the other. (Looked like an upside down pyramid when it was hanging)   So pretty and if you hang it within arms reach, it would be a great way to retail ornaments without putting them on the usual tree.


Again…. The corner garlands were a great way to retail ornaments.


How about a switch into spring displays for a sec? So we all know I’m a sucker for branches… But what a great way to retail those happy flowers!


Back to Christmas….  They backed all their poinsettias on this tree with loops of ribbon.  It really made the flowers pop!


This is one half the tree…..


This was the other half…   They were separated by a door.  It enabled them to decorate 1 tree with 2 different styles/colors.  So freaking cool!


Another example….  As you can see… A door changes everything!!!!


Interesting….  A good way to effectively display a lot of jewelry…  Wouldn’t want to do a whole wall like this…. But in smaller quantities….  Hmmmm…


Pretty much drooling over this cupboard.  The color…. the chippy-ness….  Adore.



And that sums up our trip last March to the Minneapolis Market.


Of course I didn’t elaborate on the whole backing up into another car thing….   Totally my fault.  Didn’t do anything to our vehicles.  Scared me to death.  And he was like the nicest guy ever.  Still don’t want to talk about it.   😉

This Old House…

I was just sitting here going through pictures from over a year ago.  Last August when 2 nearlyweds bought a house.  An over 100 year old house.  A house that was foreclosed on and had been vacant for quite a while.  A house that had once-frozen pipes that had burst causing mold in the basement and making it necessary to replace all the plumbing.  A house that had been on the market for quite some time.  In short, it was the house no one wanted.

But we saw something very different when we walked in the side door that had no glass and was instead all boarded up.


We saw a solid house with good bones.


We saw a house with wood floors throughout.    ….Even if they did need refinished.


We looked past the nasty plaster walls covered in numerous layers of paper bag-like wallpaper.  (Who does that??!)


And saw what could be an adorable breakfast nook.



A spacious kitchen if we re-arranged…


… And tore out walls and plaster encasing the brick chimney.   😉


It could be an incredibly functional space….


With a guest bedroom…

A master bedroom….

And an office….


If only we could trim all the trees and bushes and pull all the vines that were smothering the old girl….

Then we could have a house.  Not just a house….  A HOME.  Our home.   And slowly…. Very slooooowly….  We come closer and closer to that vision that no one else had for the house no one else wanted.

Breakfast Nook Re-Do….

When we bought our foreclosure house, things were pretty rough….   The little breakfast nook was no exception.  I think this is the only picture we have of it pre-demolation.  All the pipes had burst in our entire house so we had to tear out the ceiling to re-do all the plumbing.

{Handsome Man hard at work…}

Little did we know…. Behind that simple flat ceiling with cardboard-like tiles was a ceiling with character!!

It angled up up to a peak, so we added wainscoting and a pennant light.

We’re still working on it and I CANNOT wait to show you the finished project!!!


Here are some of my favorite breakfast nook inspiration pictures!  Eye candy for your Wednesday! 🙂











Ooooh! A Blue Painted Dresser Before and After!


The Before and After of a blue painted dresser acquired on Craigslist!


Because a little paint and distressing is awesome.



Complete with sugar and a coffee cup.  At that time, we didn’t have a kitchen and we kept the coffee maker in our bedroom.  Newlyweds!!!! Ha!

Can’t knock it though until YOU’VE had a coffee maker with a timer sitting on your side table and woke up to the sounds and smells of COFFEE!!!!!  🙂

DIY Tutorial of Curtain Rods Made From Plumbing and Electrical Supplies…

How’s THAT for a hefty title??!

DIY in Real Life - How to make curtain rods out of plumbing and electrical supplies


Okay…  So I always love me a little industrial.  Not a lot.  Just a touch here and there….  So when I saw THIS….   *Insert a little Emperor’s New Groove – BOOM-BABY!*




I fell in love.  Deep passionate love.  And I soooo wanted them.

Entrance: Handsome man.


The decision went something like this.

Me: I’m not sure what to do about curtain rods.

Handsome Man: What are you thinking?

Me: Well….   I-saw-an-idea-on-pinterest-and-I-really-really-love-it-but-I-don’t-know-how-much-it-would-cost-or-how-much-work-it-would-take-but-did-I-mention-I-really-really-loved-it??!

Handsome Man: Can I see it?

{Showing of inspiration photo}

Handsome Man:  Yup. No problem.

{This was the abridged version}


And so it began!



For every window, you need:

{2 of these}

{2 of these}

{And measure how much of this you need.  Some stores will even cut it for you!  We got 10 ft. lengths and each one did 1-2 windows of varying sizes.  We did our whole 1st floor with these curtain rods. We got all 3/4 in. fittings and 3/4 in. conduit.  We found that the conduit fit tightly enough that it almost threaded snugly into the street elbow fitting.  Friction fit, baby!}

You’ll also want curtain rings.  I got these from Menards as well… Once the curtain rods are up, they’re up.  4 screws on each side makes it problematic to take them down.  Obviously, you don’t want to do that every time you want to wash your curtains.  I found these to be the perfect solution!!

As to needed tools…



Tape measure

and a pipe cutter if you did not have them cut at the store

This project was a total B-R-E-E-Z-E~ ~ `~ ~ ~

First we removed the labels.

 Super easy… Just ran some water over it in the sink for a few minutes.  

Okay… Okay….  As long as we’re being “REAL” here….

This is what it really looked like.

I was too excited to get the new curtain rods up.  I totally didn’t want to do dishes.

*cough cough*

Moooooving on….

Your pile of fittings will look something like this! 🙂

Just thread the street elbow tightly into the floor flange.

The conduit will twist tightly into the street elbow.

Before twisting the 2nd side onto the conduit, put your curtain rings on. I’m not even going to admit how many times we had to take off the other end because we forgot to put them on.  Ha!

{Handsome Man concentrating deeply.}

Just put one screw in the first side to keep it there…  I chose to mount my curtain rods 4 inches wider and 6 inches taller than the window casings.  Normally I would go even higher/wider to show off more of my windows, but we. have. so. many. windows.


Measure the 2nd side to insure that it’s level…. and start fastening!  With a grand total of 8 screws, I wonder if I could do pull-ups on these things??!

Probably not.  Who am I kidding.  I don’t do pull-ups on anything!! 😉

TAAAAA-DAAAAA!!!!  Finished Product!!!!

Are they not the coolest thing ever???

Let’s add this up:

2 street elbows = 2.72 total


2 Floor Flanges = 6.78


Conduit = 1.58 to 3.15

Seeing my man lift the curtain rods like he was the heavy lifting olympic champion….


That brings the total of each curtain rod from $11.08 to $12.65.

Which is a REALLY great price for curtain rods!  At Menards, the dinky, scrawny ones start at 19.99.  And with as easy as they all were to put together??!   I couldn’t be more thrilled!

They went in on our whole main floor since it’s all very open and they totally tie everything together.  Love that!

Dining Room


Living Room


A knock-off of West Elm’s version!!

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