Shannon Berrey

I'm in Refresh Magazine!

Wednesday, June 05, 2013


Remember back in January, when a flood went through my little valley and we lost power on the day of our photo shoot??? Well, our generator rescued the lights and camera that day and now my pretty potty is in newsstands!! The Magazine is a Special Publications Summer Issue by Better Homes and Gardens called Refresh. 


Now you can't go and google Refresh Magazine and expect to find this. You will instead find a magazine that you aren't wanting. Well, unless photos of gay British men is your thang. Apparently there are 2 Refresh magazines and just to clarify, I'm not in the British one.

This is the one I'm in.


Last year, blog friend, Sherry Hart, shared my blog with her friend and magazine field editor, Lisa Mowry. Lisa's job is to find the right location for the right magazine. Every magazine has a different feel and a different target audience. Lisa then contacted me to see if I was interested in being considered for one of the many magazines she represents.Then, a few months later, I got an email from her saying that BHG wanted to feature my bathroom in a new magazine that would be coming out this summer. 

Communication with all of the different folks involved began shortly thereafter. There was the editor, writers, a stylist, and photographers. They wanted before pics of my bathroom and every detail that went into remodeling it. They also wanted to know where everything in the bathroom came from. There were lots of emails and a few phone calls.     

A month before the shoot, they sent me some BHG white towels and a blue ceramic garden stool. They ended up only using the towels. They really don't do a lot of rearranging or redoing. Nicole, the stylist, shopped my house to see if there was anything she wanted to include. They are very honest to the original design of what is there and there is very little photoshop work done.    


That's Brie {head photographer} using my potty as her work desk. Pat {assistant photographer} is sitting on the shower, and Nicole is the stylish stylist doing styling things. 

They came with copies of the shots that they wanted to get. They would look at each picture on their computer, study it, and then Nicole would make minor little changes before taking another shot.

**Photography tip for taking pictures of your own home: Turn off the lights! They want no overhead, lamps or even hall lights on. They want to use honest pure light combined with a very diffused expensive flash that bounces light. {This was perfect since we had no power and the whole house was in the dark.}  



This best be the only time that I ever walk in on 3 people in my shower. 



They would bounce diffused light off of the ceiling. It's so cool to hear that big enormous flash fire. It sounds so 'old school', like the little cube flashes on the old polaroid camera. Remember those?? {all of you young-uns look up what a 'polaroid camera' is..}  


 And here it is on the glossy pages! 



I am pleased as punch with the details of the articles and the instructions that they correctly conveyed. The magazines premise is to explain how to implement great design ideas in your home on a low budget. And, I have to say that the magazine is packed full of really great tips that are so detailed and are explained in a way that anyone can achieve. It may actually be the most informative how-to magazine I have ever seen {good job, Lacey Howard!} 

 I also have some very fun neighbors in the magazine! You will probably recognize designer and blogger, Jill Sorensen of Live Like You, and Centsational Girl herself, Kate Riley.

Kate also wrote a great post on tips on getting your house in a magazine.

Thanks BHG for including me in your issue!!  


{Sylva folks--I found them in Ingles, but haven't checked other places yet}




Graduation gift: Ikea hack

Tuesday, June 04, 2013


I wanted to give Maris' closest friends a special graduation present. Something that they probably wouldn't have already, but, something that I really hoped they would use a lot.    




But not just plain ole store bought tools, nope. Personalized glammed-out tools. I bought the tool kits from Ikea. I liked that they were a small size, perfect for a dorm room and they are plain which gives an excellent canvas for customizing.  



Using paint pens and sharpies, I drew each girls college mascot on the plastic lid {because the lid is clear, you can copy your image on the computer, size it accordingly and place it under the lid. Then you simply trace it on}  The sharpies give you a translucent effect while the paint pens are opaque.






I included a letter that explained that they have been armed with the tools in life to get them far...'learn to do for yourself--hang your own pictures, change your flat tires, paint your own furniture, and tile your own floors.'



The tools have black rubber handles. I used my gold Rub 'n Buff and, with my finger, I smeared it all over the handles. I let it dry for a minute and then buffed it off with a paper towel. Instant glam.




Curious if the girls liked their glorious gold tools???????  



I think they did.

I can't wait to see how these ladies change the world with their skills!!!




Cool kids wear felt

Friday, May 03, 2013


Maybe because Jack has watched me create any and everything his whole life that he doesn't see anything strange about storing a hot glue gun in the kitchen drawer, or glitter containers next to the spices, or maybe it's simply because he is just so incredibly cool... that he tolerates his crafty mothers craftiness and allowed me to create his Prom boutonniere and corsage this year.  

It only takes a little bit of felt to complete and you can find small squares at Michaels or Wal-Mart, or obviously any fabric store. I have collected quite a bit over the years so I had lots of different shades. I like combining different colors of felt in one flower as it looks a little more realistic and adds some depth.

Start by tracing a cup with a pen. Any size will do. Then using either a dime, nickel or quarter, trace it around the interior edge. The different size coins create different size petals. There is no right or wrong so use whichever you like!   

 Cut it out following your lines.


 Cut through one of the petals and cut a spiral close to the edge. I like cutting pretty tight to the edge because it makes a shallower flower. For a corsage, I didn't want the flowers sticking 3-4" off of her arm.



 Starting at the outer petal, began rolling it on itself, keeping the bottom edge lined up.



If you want to add another color, simply overlap the last petal and keep wrapping. When the flower is the size you like, you can cut it off and with dab of hot glue, tack it in place.



Using a needle and thread in a matching color, I ran many stitches through as many petal layers in the back as possible. I also went straight up through the center and then back through the bottom. This also creates really cute folds and bends in the petals. Because there is a lot of Prom dancing involved, I made sure that this was stitched really well. Then I hot glued a little piece of round felt {in the same color as the flower} on the back.   



 Using a sequin elastic, I cut and hot glued it the size of a comfortable wrist fit.



To create the base, I cut an oval out of a piece of posterboard around 4" long. I cut a piece of felt the same size and glued it on to of the posterboard. {Arrange your flowers to figure out what size to make your base. You really want it to be as small as possible so that you don't see it from up top}  


 I first made leaves out of felt, but I felt it looked too crafty for my liking. {yes, it's possible} Instead, I used real rhododendron leaves {you could also use silk leaves if you want it too last}. I hot glued them to the base.  

I dabbed my finger in glitter paint and ran it around the edge of the leaves to give it a little bling.  



Notice the seal on the paint is still in place. I was too tired to even cut it open or to get a paint brush, which explains why I simply screwed it off and stuck my finger in. You choose you own method..



These were my practice flowers. I love all of the different shades of reds and pinks together. 



Finally, I hot glued all of the flowers to the base.



To make Jacks boutonniere, I used one flower and stitched the top of a florist stick around the top. Then I added some hot glue to really secure it.



Using 3 small leaves, I laid the stems next to the stick and wrapped it with floral tape.



Then I wrapped it with a thin blue ribbon. {Sorry, I needed 2 hands for this and didn't get a picture} 






 Thanks Jack and Kennedy for being such good sports!!




My newest obsession: Spoon flowers

Thursday, April 11, 2013


Disclaimer: You {I} can't make just one !!  


I told you last week that I found a photo of an Anthro looking flower vase made with a plastic spoon {!} Luckily, I have lots of plastic spoons and had to give this little idea a try.

 I first used a candle to melt my spoons.  It takes just a few seconds for the melting to begin, and once it does, I took it away from the flame and let it curl and cool for a second. Then I would flip it over and heat another section. Just like in nature, they are all different and there is no right way to form the petals. The candle does leave a soot residue, some which wipes off, but some is permanent. It's not a big deal, it covers up with paint.  


The little bits are the ends of the spoons and they become the stamens.  With hot glue, I stated forming the flower from the back , one petal at a time, working inward and finishing with the stamens. You have to hold the petal in place until the petal 'sets' because it wants to slide around when it is hot. I blew on the hot glue while holding it to quicken the cooling and setting.   


I also experimented with some transparent gray spoons and using my gas stove top. The stovetop eliminates the sooting and has a different more spread out heat which causes a different melting reaction. The gray spoons were more heavy duty and therefore took a bit longer to melt and they were more pliable. You could actually manipulate them a bit with your fingers when they cooled a second.   



I loved the way the gray ones looked, so I didn't paint them. But all of the other ones got several coats of spray paint, making sure to turn them over and cover all the little grooves and crevices.



All of these vases came from the Dollar Tree. They also got several coats of spray paint. 




And see the blue guy in the rear? That crazy daisy is actually a spork flower! The forks are really fun to watch melt because they curl and bend slowly.






And because every little photo shoot ends with my helper making sure everything smells just so, I thought you might enjoy seeing some 'behind the scenes' shots.




These would be great Mother's Day or Graduation Gifts! 


*** Update: I have had several concerned readers contact me that plastics release toxic chemicals when heated, including dioxin, benzo(a)pyrene, and polyaromatics hydrocarbons which are known cancer-causing agents. Please make sure that you wear a mask and do this craft outside. Thank-you to everyone who was concerned enough to look out for me and all of my other readers!


Shannon Berrey Bio
I'm an artist, interior designer, wife and mom. Join me here as I share projects, ramblings, and inspirations.
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