Bargain Hunted: Authentic Persian Rug

I love hunting a good bargain, but this one may go down in history as one of the greatest!

According to Wikipedia, Heriz rugs are Persian rugs from the area of Heris, East Azerbaijan in northwest Iran, northeast of Tabriz. Persian Heriz rugs are typically crimson red and Persian blue, combined with varied neutrals. It’s featured pattern include a central medallion motif surrounded by rectilinear vine-scrolls (as cited by Nazmiyal Antique Rugs).

Here’s a side-by-side of my thrifted Persian heriz rug and a similar one found online.

Finding an authentic, vintage Persian rug is beyond exciting. I can only imagine it’s journey and whether it had been passed down for generations. I certainly plan to do so. The history of this rug was only the part of this amazing find. The other part was the price! Brace yourselves…

As soon as I eyed this magnificent piece I drifted towards it. I had to blink several times to make sure I was reading the price right! I immediacy dragged the entire rug stand over to the cashier to make sure it wasn’t a mistake. Priced for $24.99!! * Nearly faints* but not before I paid so no one else could grab it.

My thrifted Persian Heriz rug in my home.

Nobody’s Gonna Know

For years I stared at my bland staircase and dreamed of it looking…well anyway other than the way it did. If only I could knock out the wall and expose the staircase, but that takes money and finding someone that knows what they are doing. I didn’t have the funds or patience for either. Right when I thought my options were nonexistent, hope appeared.

One quick, budget friendly way to update a staircase is to paint the handrail. I scrounged up two cans of paint from the garage and somehow a masterpiece was done. Because I literally had this paint for over 5 years, it’s safe to say this was a zero dollar project! Here’s a look at the before.

I originally wanted to paint the entire handrail (split level) black, but the can was mostly empty. I did have, however, an unopened Behr paint and primer in Rich Mahogany that was going to have to do!

Here’s what it looked like after one coat. I was starting to get nervous, but knew I had to trust the process.

After a few coats of Rich Mahogany, I then applied a thin layer of black paint. The results were a beautiful stained wood effect. Nobody’s gonna know that this was a DIY! How would they know?

One Room Challenge

One day you’re in your 20s and excited about a new outfit…the next you’re pushing 40 and excited about new appliances! Maybe it’s a crisis or just maybe my new champagne-colored Samsung washer and dryer set is just that damn delighful! I’ll go with the latter.

I wouldn’t say my old laundry room was terrible, the word “outdated” is more accurate. The set that came with the house served me well for nearly 3 years. The dryer was no longer operating after the motor went bad. Even the appliance repairman advised me to forego repairing and buy a new one. I had no idea dryers cost so much! I also learned that I had a gas line, which meant add an additional $50-$100 to the low prices advertised. Figured since I had to spend real money, I might as well get what I want and makeover the laundry room while I was at it.

I spent so many months looking for a washer and dryer set that was cute and affordable. I nearly stalked Lowe’s for a sidewalk sale that seemed to be nearly every weekend when I wasn’t looking for a set. Now that I was in desperate need, there seemed to be no slashed prices available. After over a year I finally found my dream washer and dryer set! A Samsung Front Load Washer and Dryer in Champagne (similiar to rose gold).

Now that I scored the perfect set, it was time to work on transforming the laundry room. Hiring professionals to reconstruct the laundry room was out of the budget. I had to find something quick, easy and cheap, yet chic and high-end looking. With an almost nonexistent budget, I scoured every clearance section looking for affordable, removable wall paper. I found one brand new roll of Opalhouse Eulalia White/Black wallpaper for sale on Facebook marketplace for $10. Sure one wouldn’t be enough, but it was perfect to test it out and see if it was worth buying more. I immediately fell in love with the print and ordered two more rolls at $34.99 each from Target.

This wallpaper was overall easy, but boy did it stick to my hair, face and to itself a few times while trying to put it up. I finally mastered the smooth with one hand and pull down the backing with the other technique which prevented the wallpaper from sticking to itself. Also, I quickly gave up on trying to line up the print images, it required wasting nearly half of each roll just to attempt to have it mirrored correctly.

The only other major changes were spray painting the shelf black to zhuzh it up a bit and swapping out my son’s old Mario and Luigi (hence blue and green) fabric bins for black IKEA bins. The black and white geometric bins are Dollar Tree! The smaller size is perfect for holding washcloths, laundry pins and knickknacks.

I am totally in love with my new laundry room! My son, Art Effect Kid, made his own mask and sunglasses art to give our new washer and dryer a bit more character. After a few weeks of bending over to load and unload clothes, I noticed that I didn’t get the stacker. Not only will it cover the water line/washer hookups but will the set more height. Overall, I think I came out a winner in this one room challenge!

DIY Kid Furniture Makeover

My son, Art Effect Kid, decided to take matters into his own hands and update his favorite bookcase he’s had since first grade. That typically would spell disaster… but even I was impressed with the final reveal.

Check out Art Effect Kid’s DIY LED bookcase using supplies around the house!

Furniture: Cube Storage Bookcase (found around 5 years ago at a local thrift store for $10)

Supplies: Black Spray Paint (already on hand from previous projects) and White Motion Activated LED Strip Light ($12.99) from Hobby Lobby


The original bookcase was a natural, light wood color. It took approximately 6 spray cans to cover the entire bookcase. Not sure if that sounds excessive, but some spray cans weren’t full because they were previously used in other projects. He didn’t do any sanding or other prep work other than wiping away any obvious dust.

After a few hours, the bookcase was dry and ready to move inside. I recommend leaving the furniture outdoors overnight to make sure the spray paint smell is gone. The Kid was a bit impatient and didn’t want to wait til morning!

The led strips were placed around the top edge on the back of the bookcase. This allowed the light to reflect off the back of the wall. Took 5 minutes top-the back was self adhesive so it was quick and easy to apply!

One pack of LED lights was an exact fit!

One proud tween and his dog! I give this makeover 5 stars!

Elf’n Around

Look who made Santa’s Helper list! Smokey is ready to help build toys and help feed the reindeers!

It’s the little elf hat for me! I love a good find and a cute pet costume…put them both together and DOUBLE SCORE! Doesn’t he look dashing in his Dollar Tree Elf costume? Yup, Dollar Tree! He’s a skinny thing under all that hair/fur so a size Large was a great fit! Stay tuned for his Santa outfit!

Holiday Fuss

2020 has been a year of _________ (fill in the blank).

Creativity. Through adversity we’ve launched a new business venture, Art Effect Kid, LLC and Kid Coffee, as well as revamped our website. It’s also been a year of fun house projects. My first and biggest decorating project for the Thanksgiving holiday was setting my dining table, Pinterest-style.

The center of my theme was a black and white damask table cover from Dollar Tree. I was quite surprised at how well it fit. Although it didn’t hang as long as I preferred, once the chairs were in place the cover’s shortness of length was less noticeable.

Figuring out exactly how to set the table was a bit of trial and error. Every fancy table setting has candles so I figured that would be a good place to start. I grabbed my fav vintage brass candle holders and “good dishes”, the only full set I have without any dings. Even after covering the gray dining chairs with a mustard yellow cover (courtesy of Wish.com), I was underwhelmed with the overall look. The table was drab. What am I missing?

When I wasn’t sure what direction to go in, I kept going back to these saved pins from Pinterest. The gold spray painted pumpkin was a bit over the top for me, but I loved the pop of color and it also reminded me that I had real pumpkins that I could use. The table garland also gave me the idea to create my own using craft supplies around the house!

The transformation was fun and exciting! I created the table centerpiece by wrapping an artificial Hanging Eucalyptus Bush (used in my DIY: Globe Hanging Planter) around my brass candle holders and a glass hurricane. For florals, I used Dollar Tree peonies and red roses. I love how the colors created a romantic, moody vibe. For a touch of fall décor, I added a small orange and white pumpkin. The napkins and cutlery were also Dollar Tree! No need to fuss with fancy napkin folding with these “ready sets”. The black champagne flutes were an estate sale find, however there’s a similar set available on Amazon (Artland Flute Glasses/$64.00). To tie it all together and add a bit of fancy, I included personalized table number frames from, yup Dollar Tree!

Since I was on a roll, why not create my own menus!

I’ve always prepared a menu to keep track of groceries to buy and meal prep. Since fancy on a budget was the motive, I decided to print a black and white menu showcasing the appetizers, main course, side dishes and dessert. The rosemary branch was from my backyard-a convenient and personal touch!

Love the idea of having a Thanksgiving or Holiday menu? Download my menu template and create your own.


Here’s a final look at my Thanksgiving table setting! I purchased a second table cover to create an outdoors table setting as well. Don’t’ forget to include you balcony, patio or backyard as an option to enjoy appetizers or dessert.