love these countertops, countertops, repurposing upcycling, tiling

Love these countertops

So I don't have a great excuse for replacing my countertops. The previous owners replaced with some decent laminate (the color is not my favorite, but it's not awful) that is holding up well. But that doesn't stop my from ogling all the fantastic eco-friendly countertop options out there. I recently ran across a new favorite: this recycled glass surface made with Skyy vodka bottles. Those bottles are made with the most beautiful blue glass, and I think this just looks great.®-with-patina/110

bike chain chandeliers, lighting, repurposing upcycling

Bike-chain chandeliers

My bike geek friends were buzzing about this today, so I wanted to share it with my remodeling geek friends. These chandeliers are made of salvaged bike parts. There are more photos and a video here:

memory foam mats, bathroom ideas, flooring

Memory foam mats

So I'm guessing a lot of you know about these, but in case anyone else is late to the party, I want to rave about memory foam mats. I just found out about these when I stood on one to shave and such at my aunt-in-law's house last week. They are soft and squishy and really pretty nice. And for cozy warm comfort, they sure beat tile or even hardwood floors.
And they are cheaper than you might think. You can find them for $10 to $15.
I'm a pretty simple guy who doesn't need a lot of cushy comforts, but I think these would provide a serious quality-of-life upgrade. Not even as much for the bathroom, as I don't spend as much time in there, but I would really appreciate one at the kitchen sink and one in the nursery in front of the changing table when baby #2 comes along.

heart shaped bike chain hook, repurposing upcycling

Heart-shaped bike chain hook

Some of you know I am a sucker for anything made from recycled bike parts. I mean bikes, recycling, what could be better. So just in time for Valentine's Day, I came across this heart-shaped hook made from a bike chain. They sell them here, but it would be really easy to make your own from a discarded chain:

magnetic chalkboard desk, chalkboard paint, painted furniture

Magnetic chalkboard desk

I finally finished a project - I painted the top of my son's little desk with magnetic primer and chalkboard paint, and added a special message for Susan S.

reclaimed wood flooring made from pallets and such, flooring, hardwood floors, woodworking projects

Reclaimed wood flooring made from pallets and such

So I'm not cool enough to post a cool pallet project like so many other Hometalkers have done. But this is almost as cool - I happened across this amazing flooring made from pallets, shipping crates and other used wood. It looks fantastic and seems to be pretty well-liked:

patterned paint rollers, paint colors, painting, wall decor

Patterned paint rollers

I like the idea of patterned walls, but don't like the idea of messing with wallpaper. This seems like a good solution

got a question for the interior decorators in our little hometalk family i am having, dining room ideas, home decor, My living dining room

Got a question for the interior decorators in our little Hometalk family.

I am having a little Festivus party in a couple of weeks at my little house. Lots of little kids and their parents running around, and I am looking to maximize the space while also allowing comfortable seating space and such. Anyhow, here is a little diagram I drew up of our living/dining room. It's not really to exact scale, but you get the idea. Any advice on how to move things around for a party would be great.

label makers are your friend, organizing

Label makers are your friend

Label makers may seem like an item for businesses, but I highly recommend them for organizing any home. I laughed when my wife started living the "Getting Things Done" system and bought a label maker, but I'm totally on board now. It's so easy to label files with them, and with the printed labels, everything is really easy to sort and find.
Moreover, they are great for labeling other stuff. I stick labels on dishes I take to potluck dinners. I label boxes in the attic and such. I attach labels to all those gadget cords. Bonus tip - make the label longer than necessary, coil up part of the cord and attach the label to the coiled cord. Sorry about the lousy photo of this concept, but you get the idea.

starting seedlings in eggshells, container gardening, gardening, repurposing upcycling

Starting seedlings in eggshells

Not egg cartons, but egg shells. Spring planting will be here before we know it (the days are already getting longer again, hooray) and I came across the most interesting idea for planting seedlings. I have planted seedlings in egg cartons, then "planted" the carton with seedling, but it never occurred to me to actually plant in empty eggshells. To give credit where due, I stole this idea and picture from this blog:

About meI have been working on all kinds of energy-efficiency, landscaping and aesthetic projects since I bought my first home two years ago. Before I bought this house, I spent several months rebuilding homes destroyed by Hurricane Katrina. It was an all-volunteer organization, and we all learned to do a little bit of everything. I have all the skills to rebuild a house that is stripped down to the studs (if I have a bunch of extra hands) - and I can probably recommend the least expensive, least complicated way to do it. We were getting people back in their homes for about $10,000 with (mostly) unskilled volunteer labor.
Now I own a small 50-year-old ranch home in northern Colorado. I love the location, the big picture window and the funky stone fireplace. I also love small energy bills. I am constantly trying to find ways to save energy around my home.