Super cute, but make it cheap 💁🏻♀️— in this episode, we chat all about decorating on a budget and some super good tips for how to make your home look amazing for less. I sit down with DIY and craft bloggers (and twins) Kristi & Kelli as they dish their tips.
We also chat all about their DIY process and how the journey of making + trial and error is key to finding your inner DIY-er. They share the perks of DIY-ing instead of buying, and so much more.
This episode is sponsored by Shoptagr — a must-have app for snagging your favorite stuff on sale when online shopping. Check it out HERE.
what i'm loving this week
Plans for pumpkins post Halloween — I usually let them just sit on my porch and rot until it becomes embarrassing — but you know, these ideas are good too 😂 Check out these articles for ideas on what to do next with your pumpkin before it becomes straight up gross.
There are essentially two options when it comes to repurposing pumpkins: eat them or recycle them to serve another purpose.
The eating category includes ideas like eating pumpkin seeds, making a puree for things like pies or real PSLs.
Article: 7 Things to Do with Your Old Pumpkin
The recycling category includes options like composting them, creating a critter feeder, and slicing them up to serve as a snack to wildlife.
What are you doing with your aging pumpkins?? Do you have any traditions or pumpkin repurposing ideas??
stuff we just need to talk about
people are eating pumpkin spice hot dogs?!
Our fall favorite has gone too far — and we just have to talk about it.
As mentioned in the episode, I'm adamantly opposed to this monstrosity. To help you make an informed decision, here's how it's made:
let's talk about it!
Are you team Pumpkin spice hot dog or team EW!? Have things gone too far or is there a logical explanation?
We’re Kelli and Kristi from sunny Arizona! We’re twin sisters who have been crafting since we could hold a crayon. Our mom would sit us at the counter as early as age 2 where we would color for hours. Today we can still craft for hours… just replacing the crayons with a vinyl cutter, wood saw and paint!
get in touch
things to check out:
let's talk about it!
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EP 19 TRANSCRIPT
...just in case you wanna read
Cara: 00:00 You were listening to the Make Space Podcast, episode number 19
INTRO: 00:24 Welcome to make space a home design show made to inspire you to create spaces you truly feel at home in. Cara Newhart sits down with amazingly brilliant guests for conversations that dive deeper than pin worthy rooms to tease out the essentials of creating spaces that feed your soul and inspire your creativity from home design strategies to decor, advice to interior design, tips and tricks. These conversations help you dream up a beautifully lived in home. Kara is the designer and chief creative enthusiast behind Never Skip Brunch. Her work has been featured in print publications like PEOPLE style watch and Denver style magazine. As an influencer, Cara has collaborated with brands like Amazon,H and M, Twitter and Thrillist. Here's your host, Cara Newhart.
Cara: 01:21 This week's episode is brought to you by Shoptagr. This app notifies you in real time when there's a better price on home decor items that your shopping online and it scans the web for coupon codes that you can easily apply at checkout. I'll tell you more later, but don't forget to check it out by clicking the link in the show notes.
Cara: 01:44 Hello, it's Cara and happy National Donut Day! If you listen to episode number 16 of the podcast, you know that we kind of debunked all the national such and such days that there are and figured out why they're a thing. I don't want to spoil it for you, so if you haven't listened to that episode, you need to go back and listen to know the truth, but just wanted to wish you happy Doughnut day. What else is new? I feel like there's so much to fill you guys in on, so I don't know if you guys are woo like me, but Oh my goodness, this mercury retrograde is the worst you guys. I lost like three different videos that I had finished like finish and was just trying to export and then my computer like died. It crashed like three different times in the past week. I'm currently like reinstalling like the software working on my Mac.
Cara: 02:45 But yeah it's real and if there is ever a time to believe in mercury retrograde, Holy crap it is this week in more positive news we accepted an offer on our house which is so, so exciting. We are the movers come next Monday and they start packing us up and then we were like headed to Houston to close on the 14th which I'm so pumped for and guests were the people that bought our house are moving from Houston. How crazy is that? We're literally just switching places. It's like really trippy but I'm excited to have that finally like in the works and I've been like trying to clean my office, which you probably saw on Instagram stories but it was a mess. Like I have so many craft supplies and things to organize and it was chaos in here but it's, it's going a lot better now.
Cara: 03:35 Things are finally like in order and ready for the movers to come and like start packing everything up. And I already have like a project lined up with home Depot. We're collaborating on like a guest bedroom. Um, so I'm going to get like a whole guest bedroom all finished before family comes for the holidays. But I'm super pumped you guys because it's with their like home decor line. Like literally the whole room is going to be like furniture and decor from home Depot and they have got some good staff. Like I cannot wait to style it and show you guys. But um, yeah, kind of going to be hustling to get that room finished cause it's literally an entire space like starting with a blank room all the way up and I have to get it finished before family comes for the holidays. But I'm so excited.
Cara: 04:21 Um, another really fun thing that I know you guys are going to be interested in is back in episode 10 I talked about like what I was loving, which was some DIY line art and I like explained it and I have pictures in the show notes, but now I've created like a whole video because it was something that was like requested. So if you hop over to Instagram or my YouTube channel both at never skip brunch, you can check out the tutorial for how to make your own line art. I think it would be super cute for the holidays to do like a little metallic marker or like a red marker and do like Marion bright or like ho ho ho or like some thing like some kind of cute holiday phrase. Okay. So that's all the new stuff that I needed to just like fill you in on. So now let's get to what I am obsessed with this week.
#OBSESSED: 05:17 [music plays] Hashtag obsessed
Cara: 05:25 well what iI should really be telling you that I'm obsessed with this week is plastic bins because the number of plastic bins that I have bought to organize my craft supplies in my office is like a little bit ridiculous, but that's 0% fun. And I'm also not like passionate about organization and organization hacks. Like the closest I get is like decorating a planner that I then never actually used organize my life. So we're not going to talk about plastic bins today. What I am obsessed with is the fact that there are a of ideas for what to do with your pumpkin's after Halloween. So if you anything like me, you like put pumpkins out to decorate because yes, we're being festive. You have to and then afterwards you literally just let them sit on the porch probably until they're like, if not fully rotten, like very questionably firm at the least, like what you have is a very soggy, squishy pumpkin sitting on your front steps.
Cara: 06:27 Then what happens is you eventually make it out the front door and realize, crap, this is disgusting. These need to be thrown away. So you stuffed them in a trash bag. And that is that. And this happens, you know, months later if you're lucky, you live somewhere cold where you know, the weather keeps the pumpkin, um, fresher than it than it should be for the time that it's been sitting out. However, there's a ton of super, super good ideas for what to do with your pumpkin's. Um, I will link a couple articles that had really good ones, but just to hit a few of the highlights. Basically your two options are that if you've carved your pumpkin, you're kind of going the route of like, um, turning it into compost or bird feeder or feeding it to wildlife, which is something I didn't know you could do.
Cara: 07:17 Or if you haven't carved your pumpkin, you might have the option to eat it if it's still a little bit fresh. So coming at you with this, the week after Halloween in hopes that either your carved pumpkin's are, you know, not disgusting yet and ready to be composted or done away with in a way that's responsible and or productive. And if you have like pumpkins that are still fresh, like maybe you live somewhere cold, like here, it was literally an ice box, like literally snow on the ground. We trigger treated in snow. Um, and this is like the second year that's happened. I act like it's a big deal but it's like normal. But the snow kept the pumpkin's relatively fresh. So if you have pumpkins that are uncarved, you can eat them. So that's like eating the seeds, making a puree, making a pumpkin spice latte, like a real one.
Cara: 08:04 Um, there's a ton of super, super good ideas or you can just keep using them as decor if they're fresh enough. Because despite the fact that I'm ready to break out Christmas decorations, we still have another fall holiday, um, Thanksgiving to go where pumpkin's are still a huge part of the decor. So anyway, check out the show notes because I'm going to link the multiple articles with all kinds of good ideas. If you're like me, hopefully we can jump on this and finally have a year where our pumpkins don't rock on the porch. It's like the one time I wished someone would finally steal my pumpkin is when it's gross cause I didn't know how to deal with it. But I also want to know if you guys have any good ideas. Like is there like a tradition or some like way you usually dispose of your pumpkin's slash like repurpose them. I would love to know what you think. You could hit me up on Twitter at make space pod or call the hotline at (720) 319-7438 and leave a voicemail. Let me know what you think. Okay. Time for one last segment and then we will jump into this interview and it's so good you guys
WAIT, WHAT?: 09:18 [music plays] wait, what?
Cara: 09:24 People are eating pumpkin spice hot dogs. Yes, that is a thing and we need to talk about it. Okay, so let's just break down how to make a pumpkin spice hot dog. And then we're going to talk about whether it's right or wrong. I have a strong opinion and I hope you do too. So basically, here's what happens. You take a hot dog, regular old run in the middle hot dog, you hollow out the middle with a straw. Then you mix up some pumpkin filling in the same vein that you would be making pumpkin pie with pumpkin and spices and then you proceed to pipe the pumpkin filling into the center of the hotdog. Just to clarify, the hotdog is already warmed and ready to eat before you pipe the filling into it. Then you just place the hotdog on the bun and if you were onboard until this point, here's where this situation gets iffy.
Cara: 10:19 You add whipped cream on top of the hot dog and the hot dog bun and then it's ready to serve. Okay, here's some things before we really get into this. First of all, this recipe I'm pretty positive is not a prank like it is on a regular recipe website. There are multiple versions of it, so I think it's dead serious. So just for all of you out there like me that are like, you have to be kidding. No one's gonna eat that. Second of all, I do understand that like spiced meats are a thing and in some world like, you know, spiced meats go together, pumpkin is still just a vegetable. So what you're creating isn't really that strange aside from the fact that you've just taken a warmed up hotdog and put pumpkin filling in it. Like pumpkin filling needs to be like warmed and cooked.
Cara: 11:07 And that's what makes like pumpkin pie amazing is that you're not just eating pumpkin with spices in it. Like it's a little more nuanced than that. And where I have to draw like I hard line a hard no is whipped cream. Like in no situation do you need to be putting whipped cream on a hot dog? Like what is that? What's happening? Anyway, this is a very relevant topic when it comes to your home because of the fact that it's almost Thanksgiving. It's almost time to entertain or be entertained at a family member's home. And just in case you needed another polarizing subject to talk about over dinner besides politics or whatever else it is your family loves to fight about. Um, here's, here's one for you. You should definitely, you know, throw this out at the dinner table if not, serve a pumpkin spice hot dog just to see how it goes.
Cara: 11:57 So I know that there are many of you that are going to be entirely in my frame of mind where everything about it grosses you out and absolutely it's not happening ever anywhere in my home or near my mouth. But I know there's going to be some of you that this is either something that is normal that I just don't quite understand or you've had one and it's delicious or you wrote the recipe and you want to bring it to justice. And either way I would love to hear from you once again you can ask me on Twitter at make space pod. You can reach out via email [email protected] or call the hotline. And now thankfully it is time to dive into this interview. Today I'm sitting down with Kristi and Kelly from Lolly Jane blog. They are DIY and craft bloggers and also twins. Their work has been featured so many cool places like HGTV, magazine, country living better homes.
Cara: 12:58 And gardens, holiday crafts, magazine, creative spaces, magazine and so many more. They have a super playful and fresh approach to DIY. So I brought them on to talk about like finding your inner DII wire and some tips for decorating on a budget because doing things beautifully but cheaply. Um, and being budget minded was one of their main focuses when they first started. And even now a lot of their projects focus on getting an amazing look for less. They have so much to share and actually such different styles, which makes it really fun to follow them in their projects because um, their styles are so different that I feel like there's kind of something for everyone on their blog, which is really, really cool. Plus they are like the best follow on Instagram you guys because they do a lot of pranks and they're just hilarious.
Cara: 13:49 They're always like pranking each other. They also have really great Halloween costume so I know he just missed that. But their costumes every year are hilarious. So for all of you that are like visual like me and you need to like see faces of the people that are talking, you can hop over to Instagram and follow them at lolly Jane blog, that's L O L L Y Jane blog. Um, just to see like their vibe and who they are. And also like if part of this interview really speaks to you or if you have more questions, like, feel free to reach out to them and let them know like what you learned or what questions you have because they are genuinely just so sweet and so ready to help and answer questions and they would love to talk to you. So hop over to Instagram and connect with them as we dive into this interview.
Kelli: 14:52 hello.
Cara: 14:52 Hello. Welcome to the Make Space Podcast. I'm so glad to have you guys on today.
Kelli: 15:00 Well thanks. Thanks for having us. We're excited.
Cara: 15:02 yes. So first, how did you two become twins?
Kelli: 15:06 [laughs].
Cara: 15:06 Just kidding — so, so can you guys share how your DIY journey started and how your style has kind of like grown along with you?
Kelli: 15:13 Oh yes. That's such a long answer. So we started as a sign shop back in 2007 so we have been in this industry for a long time. We've seen so many changes. My husband —so this is Kelly talking — my husband went from a high paying loan officer to a low paying police officer and we had three little kids. I was actually huge pregnant with the third one. I pinned him his Academy graduation [inaudible] and we really quickly realized how a $60,000 loss of income affected our family. And so I had my associates degree but I was working at like medical practices and just as the front desk.
Kelli: 15:51 And so we were thinking how can we stay home and try to supplement your income? But we've got these two and a half babies, you know, just had the third baby. Yeah. And he's like, is there something creative you can do you love? You know, you're always creative. And on our blog we said how we got started is our mom, she had nine kids. We're numbers six and seven. Isn't that wild? And so she, yeah, she said I would set you guys at the kitchen counter and you guys would just color for hours. And so we joke now that instead of using crayons, we use, you know, power tools and paint brushes. And so my husband went from a loan officer to a police officer. So we took a huge, huge, huge pay cut. And I went to Christie who was dual income, no kid, she called herself a dink and I said, Hey, we need the money so bad, I'm going to start this little vinyl company.
Kelli: 16:39 My sister in law, she actually had a vinyl cutter down in Tucson. So we're about two and a half hours apart. And her husband was in law school at the time and so she's like, Hey, I can help you get started. So the machine we found was a 50 inch machine and it was meant to wrap cars. And so it was this big thing. And so I said, Kristie, I found this machine and it's $500 then she said, okay, I'll, I'll be your partner. So she put in 250 bucks and I put in 250 bucks, which was a huge investment to me. And over the next few months we started doing little school boutiques, right. Kindergartener or girls nights and craft nights with our local church. Yeah. And we started to build this community without, without trying to or even, you know, intentionally doing this. We started building this little local community and it started getting bigger and bigger, which was so great because even though we were only profiting $200 for the whole night, which was hours and hours and hours of work, that $200 was so valuable to us to help offset the costs of my husband's loss of income.
Kelli: 17:37 And then Kim from today's creative life, which back in the day was today's creative flow log. She shared one of our signs and it was this established science was your last the year you were married. And we had like 10 sales, which was huge. We're like, where did these sales come from? So we tracked where the invoices and stuff were coming from and we emailed Kim and we said, we are so grateful Kim would love to send you a sign. And she goes, no, this is what I do. I just feature somebody a day. And I thought it was cute. We're like, no, we have to send you a sign. We have to tell you how grateful we are. And so it's so funny. It's been like 12 years since then and she still has that sign to the state on her wall and she's still one of our good friends.
Kelli: 18:19 And it was just something so little, but we realized the power of blogging back then, and again, it wasn't intentional. I mean obviously in hindsight, if you knew now what you knew then, but we started to realize like, Oh, there's this whole community and that's when we started following like tater tots and jello and houses Smith and these original bloggers who were, I think doing the same things as us. They were these stay at home moms who didn't want to go in the corporate world and they wanted to try and take care of their kids from home, but they had an itch to be creative and they also wanted to help offset the costs for their spouses. And so it was this kind of a little tight knit community where you actually commented on each other's blogs and you had email. And we ended up finding really good friends from blogging.
Kelli: 19:00 And so since then we have evolved 12 years later into running a successful six figure income company. And the connections we have made are so invaluable. Some of our closest, closest friends are bloggers and Instagrammers and influencers and we work with dozens of brands and the month and it's just incredible. It's grown into something that we couldn't have even thought of and not something that we even planned out.
Cara: 19:28 Yeah, that's amazing because I feel like a lot of people get started with the blogging and just like sharing. But starting with the shop is like, I like a flip side. I haven't really heard anyone that kind of started that way. So that's super, super interesting.
Kelli: 19:41 Yeah, it's been, like I said, it's not something that we intended to do, but it's been such a huge, huge blessing. Our husbands are both blue collar. They love their jobs.
Kelli: 19:52 And so for us this is a way to help support them. Yeah. And then also supplement the income. But just, we have so much fun together and we say, even though I swear it looks like we're working all the time, you know, partying all the time, it really is work. It just happens to be fun work.
Cara: 20:07 Exactly. So true. Um, yeah. So besides just being like creative humans at heart, why are you so passionate about like spending the time to decorate and redesign your homes?
Kelli: 20:18 Oh, we love it. You know, we, we must've missed the boat on fashion and makeup that we don't care about that stuff at all. But when it comes to your home for us, we spend so much time at home and we try to encourage our kids to be home with us and you know, try to be the hangout house with our teenagers, have a lot of play dates with our younger ones.
Speaker 6: 20:35 And so when you walk into your home you don't, you just want it to hug you.
Cara: 20:39 Yeah.
Kelli: 20:39 Like your home. Not only does it reflect who you are, but it can really set the tone. And so when you walk in we were like, we want it to feel peaceful and like a for our kids. And I think that really aligns with our church and our values that we've been taught where your home should be a safe Haven and your home should be a temple on earth is kind of what our church teaches. And so you want that to be somewhere just warm and comfortable. And so home decor is huge for us. Just, it really has like such a bigger thing than, Oh, it's cute. The decor, it's good. There's such meaning behind it. Trying to get our family, you know, together at home with us.
Cara: 21:12 I love that so much. And that's, that's a question I get a lot is like why is it important to spend all this time like focusing on your home, but like it really is a way to serve and it's a way to like kind of help you recharge so you can go out into the world and do good.
Kelli: 21:27 Yeah, I agree.
Cara: 21:29 So what is your creative process look like for a DIY project? Especially cause there's two of you do you just kind of like each coming up with things or do you collaborate mostly? Like how does that work?
Kelli: 21:42 Yeah, so that's a great question. Um, ironically now a lot of what we do is dictated by brands we work with because we have, which is again something that we're so grateful for, but because we have so many sponsored posts coming in, it's kind of nice cause they basically set the schedule.
Kelli: 21:59 And so, um, if we're working on Kristi's house, we try to just share the load and hey, I'll, I'll come over and help you paint. Or she's like, Hey, I can do the heavy on it if you'll help me with the social shares or you know, come over and let's do stories together. So we try to just split the load, but there's always something going on. I feel like even, Hey, I'm so sick of my floors, Hey, let's paint them. Okay. Yeah. Yeah. So the nice thing is we motivate each other, but the bad thing is we motivate each other because all of a sudden our husbands will come home and they're like, you literally ripped the carpet out and throw it out the front window right now it's going gonna be so great. We're painting the concrete. And they're like, okay, go.
Cara: 22:35 Part of them had to know they were getting into some kind of thing with the two of you.
Kelli: 22:39 They really had no idea when they first married us. Her husband always jokes you two share a brain other than students are like, that's okay. We have a good brain together.
Cara: 22:48 Yeah, it is. Got great ideas. So for like the everyday girl that wants to get more into DIY and more into decorating your house. Um, how like, like for example, someone that literally has nowhere to start because I hear people all the time, at least my followers and maybe you get this too, like how did you do that? I wouldn't know where to start. Like when you're planning a project, what does it look like? Is there like an inspiration image you find? Does it start with like a piece that you're going to make over? Does it start with like, I hate this so much. What is the, do I process like?
Kelli: 23:23 So because we have, you know, our blue collar lives, it's, we can't do these exciting giant makeovers all the time and bring in these expensive pieces of furniture.
Kelli: 23:32 And so it starts with probably just being around Pinterest so much on Instagram, so much in your sing. And we only follow home decor blogs and so all the bulk of who we follow. And so when you're seeing these all the time like Oh, that looks really great. But I think most of it is when something we get sick of something or something gets worn out, we can't afford to go spend a ton of money to replace it. So we're like, how can we do this ourselves? And so because we got started with that, that's what we tell people is what, what do you dislike the most and how can you change it? Cause paint is our number one resource. Pink can change the entire look of a room or the entire space with 30 gallon, you know, $30 gallon of paint. Yeah. So that's where we tell people start with paint. You'll be surprised how much paint can really change the look of the entire room.
Cara: 24:21 Yeah. So I am totally a color and prints enthusiast. I know you guys really love using fun colors in your homes too, but not everyone really feels confident enough to do that. So do you have any tips for using like those fun colors like bright pink, bright yellow fearlessly in your home decor?
Kelli: 24:39 Oh we say go for it. One thing that I remember getting in a conversation with my sister in law cause I painted my walls bright blue and she's like, I really want to do white walls so I can pull in different colors in the furniture. I'm like, no, you just gotta paint your walls if I'm color. Yeah maybe we'll say that was probably a five years ago we had that conversation and I can see the wisdom in her young newlywed mind and they make so much sense. And even we have kind of gone to more muted walls because you can pull color and you can paint a piece of furniture, which is probably a little bit faster and cheaper than painting the entire room. You know, you can get like a $2 gallon or $2 sample, throw some chalk paint in it and you can repaint your furniture quickly and cheaper than pulling all your things away from the wall.
Kelli: 25:23 And so I say start with pillows, rugs, textiles, and just go for the color. There's no rules for decorating. There might be in school. But the nice thing, because we didn't go to design school, we don't know those rules. So we can, we can do whatever you want. So we're like, just do what you love. If you hate something, change it. There's no rules. Just, I don't really know what our style is. We kind of just do what we like and we're lucky that people tend to tend to like what we liked, but really it's just go for it. Just don't be afraid.
Cara: 25:53 That's so funny because even like in design school, they teach you all the rules and then they teach you how to break them. So you just kind of skipped a step there.
Kelli: 26:01 That's interesting. Yeah. And then we didn't have to pay that money for school.
Cara: 26:03 Exactly. Yeah. So is there — what are some of your very favorite things to DIY? Is it more like big, big, like redoing a room or, um, smaller like furniture pieces or like decor pieces. What's your personal favorite?
Kelli: 26:18 Oh, I love painting. I love painting anything. There's something which my sisters say, I'm so weird, but I'll wake up one day and just say, it told me I wanted to be painted today. And they're like, you're so weird. I'm like, it really did. And so funny. So I love painting furniture. There's something about taking something older and used and just giving it new life with paint. Um, and I love painting walls. I think it's so therapeutic, even the boring tedious things like cutting in and I just think it's so fun. So that's where, that's what I really enjoy. Kristi really likes to style and that's why we compliment each other because I'll do that, the DIY and then she'll come through and she'll stage and that's, I'm not a huge fan of staging. I'm not very good at it. I struggle with it. She has a natural eye for that.
Kelli: 27:03 So that's why we really compliment each other. And I'm like, let me paint. And then she's like, okay, and I'll stay do when you're done. I love it so much. I really get to implement way better. Cause you have like two brains. See her husband says, we share a brain. What does he know.
Cara: 27:17 Um, so a lot of like what the purpose of this podcast is, is really to inspire everyday women to kind of dive in and DIY, um, do it without fear and intimidation of like, you know, the boys club. That is the, uh, the design world sometimes in terms of like, you know, hardware stores. But what tips do you have? Um, cause I talk about a lot how like DIY is a journey and how you can't really be like, Oh, I couldn't do that. Like you have to dive in and practice and like you're gonna make stuff that turns out like crap, you just have to be okay with it.
Kelli: 27:49 Oh, absolutely.
Cara: 27:51 I was just going to ask if you have any like tips for someone just starting out and like kind of afraid to make mistakes and maybe an encouragement for projects that you have that have totally bombed.
Kelli: 28:02 Oh, I would say half of our house is a bomb. You just see what we want you to see. So one thing that really, um, pushed us into DIY because like I said, it wasn't this intentional journey. Like, I love the word that you said, the word journey and wasn't this intentional journey that we started from vinyl to signs to showing our houses to now working with companies. It was, that's exactly what it was. It was trial and error. My husband was on the SWAT team and we, we needed that money desperately. But he also loved SWAT to the point where I really feel like for eight years I was a single parent.
Kelli: 28:35 He was never home. He was always on these call outs and we have this beautiful table, I think it was Oak from Costco for my inlaws and it was their wedding gift to us. And I know it was an expensive table. And my father in law still cringes when he sees it, but I said, Nate black is trending. I really want you to paint it black. And he's like, I don't have time. I don't have time. So I think I waited around for about a month for him and they finally painted it and he spray painted it and it looked like crap. Yeah. I looked at this table and I looked at him and I know his time is precious. I said, thanks so much for doing that. And then I started looking at blogs and figuring out how could I paint this better myself. Cause what did he know about painting?
Kelli: 29:15 He was, you know, he had his degree, but it was just a general degree. He was actually pre-med when we were dating, so he knows more about medical things then even cop stuff. And then he became, you know, a cop and then a sniper. So I'm like, why did I think that you had the power? Because you are a man. Right, right, right. Oh my gosh. Why did I talk myself in the thinking you knew just because you were a man. And he looked at me, he's like, babe, I don't know anything about painting. I'm like, well why did I ask you that first? Right. And so that was a huge valuable to lesson to me is I can do this myself. And I did. I went and I found a different paint and I think I use a latex and I painted it, but then I learned all about sealers.
Kelli: 29:51 And now I feel like that's one thing I get asked the most about for my friends. Like what should I seal it with? And I'm like, okay, let's talk about this. What would you know? What look are you going for? And so from there, my mom, she gave us this cute little um, our — we had our first, our first house was this little apartment we rented from his grandma and she gave us this little cabinet from target and it was actually real wood and it was nice, but it was that blonde wood. And I'm like, I really want color. So I went to Michael's [and got] paint. It was like this bright Apple green and I loved it. And I turned it into a TV stand on my mom's like, that is so cute because it's meant for dishes. And she's like, look what you did. And I was like, Oh, I just thought it was so cute.
Kelli: 30:28 And she's like, I really like what you do with that. Like, Oh thanks mom. And so I think that's what you just have to do is trial and error. Should you paint furniture with acrylic paint? Probably not. There's, yeah, there's definitely better paints out there, especially time wise. Like I could have, you know, saved up a dollar more and got the little sample one and it would have been enough to do it. But yeah. But you said it's trial and error until and then just do what you love.
Cara: 30:52 Yeah, no kidding. So something pretty related is like for people that are budget conscious and are trying to maybe not even make a business out of it, but just kind of do their own home decor on a budget. Do you have any tips for like doing trial and error but not wasting money?
Kelli: 31:09 Oh, that is a great question.
Cara: 31:11 It's hard. I feel like for me at least
Kelli: 31:12 Yeah, no, it's true. Um, so the thing that we love is when we look for home decor is we always hit the thrift stores first. And some thrift stores tend to be a little more expensive. Like Goodwill I know is a nationwide chain, but it's, they're pretty pricey depending on the area you're in. Like we're in kind of a nicer area and so sometimes their prices on like you could get that brand new at the store, but if you're willing to dig and get your hands dirty. Some of my favorite pieces of furniture that I have on my back porch still are side of the road fines and neighborhoods that um, put all of their stuff out. You can go get those things for free and there's no laws against us and definitely check your lofts. But we loved a dumpster dive.
Kelli: 31:54 You can find a lot of really great furniture that people are like, man, I'm done with it. And you're like, wait, there's still so much life in there. Um, and then definitely using your coupons if it's hard when you're looking at all these beautiful accounts on Instagram, especially because that's kind of the platform that people are at. But just know they see what you want, they, what you want to see, right? Like their life is just as much of a mess as yours is. But you can copy that look for less by being patient and using your coupons and then doing it yourself.
Cara: 32:26 Yeah, I love it. So are there any other like budget decor tips like I don't know, like paint samples or like freebies that places offer that you could use or anything along those lines.
Cara: 32:49 So now that we have some of Kelly's best advice, we're going gonna switch gears and chat with Kristi about all things budget decor tips. But first let's take a break and talk about our sponsor.
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Kristi: 34:41 So we're talking about budget, is that right?
Cara: 34:44 Yeah, I was just asking like for people that are kind of decorating on a budget, do you have any tips for like how to do it really well and kind of, um, yeah, let's start with that and then we'll do the second half.
Kristi: 34:55 Yeah, sure. So if you're decorating, like for home decor for example, we always shop in the back first. So say we're going to home goods and we're like, okay it's fall Halloween, you want to add a few new pieces of decor. But we're on a strict budget. So what we do is we walk to the back of the store past all the full price and there's usually some clearance items or on sale, whether there's a chip or a ding or crack or like a pillow that's on the floor, but it has a little bit of um, you know, like some of the seams have been torn or something like that.
Kristi: 35:27 So that's our number one tip is go shop the clearance and sale area first. And you'll be surprised a lot of times there usually is at least one or two things that are on the floor, full-price that are in the back. And a lot of people don't know that and that. So that's fun. Yeah. Our second tip is we shop the hobby stores a lot. You know, the big three hobby lobby, Michaels and Joanne. And we always take our coupons and we shop, we tend to shop. Joanna, Michael's more than not be a lobby because they take their competitors' coupons. So we can go to Joanne and stuck up gal. So we'll have a Michael's coupon, they'll apply. And the also apply hobby lobby on one item. So something that you think is 40% off, you can actually get for 50 to 60% off because they're letting you double up on those coupons, which is super cool.
Cara: 36:08 Oh, that's awesome.
Kristi: 36:09 Yeah, so it depends on the cashier usually try to look for the friendly younger ones who don't really know. The older ones are like, no, but typically they do allow competitors coupon and they do loud double and triple couponing. So that's a good tip. Um, and our favorite tip I think for our personally is because we are thrift shoppers. Um, as we go to, um, our thrift stores, but we know the days like if you go to your local thrift stores, you'll know the days or the times that they set out their, um, their halls for the days. So like for Goodwill for example, on our neighborhood Goodwill, they, they are loading every day. So if we're there first thing in the morning, right when they open, we usually have first pick of the home decor and they have some really cute items that you'd be surprised.
Kristi: 36:59 I mean they're just people like us that are like, Oh, I'm sick of it this season I had 50 plus pumpkins, I'm going to go drop off half. So I found stuff that still has tags on it at the thrift stores. And then we're so lucky we're in Arizona and I think Utah and Texas also have, and I think parts of California have desert industries, which is that thrift store that's owned by our church. But it is amazing because eight of the cheapest and B they unload all day long. So no matter what time you'll go, yeah, if you're lucky enough to live by a DI — desert industries, then that's our favorite because they are loading all day. So those are some of our favorite hacks for trying to be a little thrifty. It's hard to, because you have this comparison game, you see a lot of influencers who have like, Oh their houses are so beautiful.
Kristi: 37:43 But with you, our tip is to follow influencers that DIY home decor bloggers that you know can make these products, but they make them on the cheap. So that's who we typically try to follow too. I mean everyone go to Nordstrom all day long and buy pretty things, but then you don't have any money at the end of the day.
Cara: 38:01 Exactly. You're like good for one season and then you like spent out so. Right. Yeah. So Kelly and I were talking about how like DIY is totally a journey and like a lot of it is trial and error and like we've all made those like crap projects that were a total flops.
Kristi: 38:17 Oh yeah.
Cara: 38:18 Do you have one to share to kind of encourage..?
Kristi: 38:21 Yes. Okay. This is probably our favorite DIY flop today. It was one of our very early posts and we were challenged by Elmers glue to create a wreath that was Halloween style.
Kristi: 38:34 And so we're like, okay, can we like be out of the box thinkers besides just like, which was totally trending at the time was like covering in fabric and then putting like some, uh, do you remember those flowers you would like fold up and felt you'd cut them in circles.
Cara: 38:48 yeah.
Kristi: 38:48 yeah the rose heads, those are like super trendy. So all these like different felt flowers. Like what can we do that similar but different. So we're like, Oh, let's do, let's do a, what are those called? Kelly? Yeah, Mason jar lids. And like not the actual ring but like the flat part that, you know. So we did it. We were like, Oh this is so cute. So we like put them on some sort of like cardboard. It was like a donut shape and then we just layered them and we painted them first and the back was unfinished and then we put a some ribbon around it and type some cute Halloween embellishments on it.
Kristi: 39:22 So then we took all the pictures. We were so excited. And then a couple hours later we're here think I think the day to day thing I'm like well the blog post is due let's slap that sucker.... Then we felt so guilty we had to take it down cause I'm like I don't want people making this. But it was so funny cause you had just watched it all fall apart.
Cara: 39:42 Oh my gosh!
New Speaker: 39:42 Glue does not — now you know Elmers glue does not hold metal.
New Speaker: 39:46 You could try hot glue. Any other yeah, exactly.
Kristi: 39:48 But don't do the Elmers glue. It was so funny. But lesson learned. Yeah, we still laugh at it. We have some of the pictures that were still floating around. We're like we need to delete that.
Cara: 39:56 Yeah. Oh my gosh. But that is true. Like when people are like, Oh my gosh, how did you make this? Like I could never do it. It's like you haven't seen all of the crap that I've made. That was just crap.
Kristi: 40:07 Oh it's so true —It is that you're like, it literally ended up in the, in the — Let me tell you a really funny story real quick about that. So my husband, he is like totally opposite of me. We were both raised with a lot of siblings on the small farming town communities. But the difference between us is I kept my thrifty ways, but he didn't. He is the fifth of six kids. No, he's the fourth of six kids. And so his siblings got the nicer, newer stuff first. And then his older brother would, he would get all the hand me downs. Yeah. Now as a married couple, he is like shopping at Dillard's and Nordstrom on these places. I like don't even know where they're located in their town. And so it's funny, we're so different.
Kristi: 40:45 So he appreciates the DIY stuff, but he like, he appreciates the quality side of it. So when we were first getting started with Lolly Jane, we had this really fun wreath on our, on my front door, and he was like, Oh, I hate this wreath. I just think it's so janky. And I'm like, it's so pretty. I made it. I love it — do you know how many hours went into this and so then one day I was like at Goodwill and I was —no, it wasn't goodwill. It was Kelly's neighbor's house. That's right. So I went by her neighbor's house and I was like, Kelly, she has my wreath on her door! And then I was like, I think she stole it. I still, I'm like, can you ask her about this wreath? And then she's like, yeah, yeah. So then she's like chatting with this girl. They were friends and then she's like, do you know what she founded at Goodwill?
Kristi: 41:32 I'm like, what? And so I went home and my husband, he's like, I totally don't do it. Like a week ago, and you didn't even realize it.
Cara: 41:38 Oh my gosh! That is SO funny
Kristi: 41:40 It was pretty hilarious.
Cara: 41:45 ..That someone wanted it and loved it.
Kristi: 41:45 And that's what you said, she was like, this is such good quality. You never find this here. And I was like, what? Yeah, that story still makes me laugh that she felt my, and the worst part is I didn't even know it wasn't even on my front door anymore. My cherished wreath — poor forgotten neglected wreath. Yeah. But I think we have like, Oh gosh, we probably have like 50 to 60 style of wreaths on our, on our site right now. It's crazy. Yeah, I love them.
Cara: 42:13 Love that. So what are some of your personal favorite things to DIY and is there anything you stay away from?
Kristi: 42:21 Oh sure. So Kelli is definitely the painter. So just to answer the second part first, I do not love painting currently today, getting ready to review a new paint at ACE hardware and she's like, Hey, come ready to pick up the paint. And I'm like, I need to finish priming this wall. It's taking me like four days, which is so dumb. It's not a big wall. I just hate painting so much. I love painting furniture, but indoor like painting my walls. Not my fav, but something that I personally love to DIY and Kelly will notice that I'm more of like the kitschy DIY or I'm the one that keeps like our little holiday crafts going on our site. I think it's kind of old school. I did it a lot when my kids were little. I'd pull him up on the table next to me and I think, cause I'm, I'm still in like that um, toddler mom stage of life.
Kristi: 43:11 Even though I'm so old now. Kelli's oldest is 16 and my oldest is nine, so my youngest is three. And so I'm her youngest who's 10 and my three year old, I'll get the younger kids and still get the crap together. So I still love like, you know, the seasonal rates and I'm just looking at my house right now. I just did some fun Halloween candlesticks. What else am I looking at? Um, Oh I love doing like arrangements for flowers and things like that. So it's really fun just to get your kids involved. So I still really enjoy that. Versus Kelly who does like the larger projects, like let's do a wall treatment. And she's trying to convince her and now we can do it. We can DIY our own fireplace mantle. You don't need to wait on your husband. And I'm like, yeah, that's, Oh my gosh, I totally want to make one too.
Kristi: 43:52 I can't wait to, we have no plan yet, but it's going to be happening in the next week. So follow along in just crossing fall apart in the middle of the night like,
Cara: 44:04 "clink" yeah. Can you talk a little bit about your style? You guys love using like bright, fun pops of color, which is totally my vibe too is always like that, Or?
Kristi: 44:15 um, it's actually Kelli. So I, my husband and I are, we're totally more muted, which Kelli's always like you're borderline boring. So I'll paint my walls a safe color choice. Like every wall in my house is painted like this. It's my favorite color. It's moonshine, by benjamin moore so it's a really gray, just a solid gray. There's nothing fancy about it. And then I'll have like, I'm looking at my kitchen, I have like a mint Hutch and then, um, uh, what else? My kitchen. Oh my Island is painted like a fun Aqua color.
Kristi: 44:45 But that's it. Like everything else is pretty neutral. Versus Kelli who was like, okay, I'm going to do yellow walls and then I'm going to do like, you know, blue table and then I'll have like my chairs, I will be blue too. But a different color colors are pink doors. And so it's funny because just a couple of days ago my neighbor was walking by and he's like, I love that you guys painted your house. That was, it was like a dark tope before. And so it just didn't really pop. And we live in Arizona, so we're in the desert. So it was like Brown on Brown on Brown. So I painted it just like a creamy gray, which is a very safe choice. But then I have this peach door, which is super fun. And so it's just a pop of color and he's like, yeah, I don't love your door color, but your house looks really nice.
Kristi: 45:25 And I was like, I'm Lolly Jane and I have to have a fun door. Color job. Yes. So we're kind of known for that now, which is fun. But so Kelli's definitely more color on color, on color, but in the past year I have gotten her to be a little more, which I think the trend is kind of going that way too. Um, it's just a little more neutral with pops of color, but I still really appreciate how bold her style is because I shot my dining room this week with a fun, um, double centerpiece I made and I was like, dang, I have a lot of like Brown on Brown. I'm like, this is kind of dull. So this is why, what, when we were offered this opportunity to review this paint on, I'm gonna do blush pink wall, one blush, pink wall in my house.
Cara: 46:04 I love that. I love that your style is different because I feel like it helps. Well, yeah, it just gives different perspectives and helps people relate better cause you can, be a color person or not.
Kristi: 46:14 It's nice because I think when we have a colorful post on an Instagram feed for example, and then more of a neutral pops of color, we have a lot of our readers who are very Kelli and a lot who are very Kristi. So no matter what we post, I feel like we're lucky because those readers who are more me and more drawn to Kelly's style will still like and interact with us. Yeah. That's so cool. Yeah, it's fun. So Lolly Jane started out with color. I, I think will never ever be black and white with pops a stain because it's just not who we are. But we appreciate that style and we'll put it on our Pinterest and things like that.
Kristi: 46:47 But it's, when it comes down to our, our, um, personal preference, I think color is always going to stay with us. Yeah. I love that. And I love the idea of like appreciating things, but knowing they're not for you. Cause I feel like that's part of like finding your style and maturing. It's like everything that's trendy. You don't have to have it in your house if you didn't. Right. Yeah. I'm going to, we've tried to stay true with our readers. We've noticed a lot of readers. It's so, it makes me sad sometimes that they feel like they have to go buy everything that these influencers are sharing and do everything that they're doing. And I, we always try to preach. I do what works for you? If you're drawn to it, then it's your style. You don't have to go to hobby lobby and buy everything on the wall and throw it in your house.
Kristi: 47:26 It doesn't speak to you. So we tried to be really selective and we also are really preachy about trying to shop your house first for every season before you go out and break your budget really.
Cara: 47:38 Yeah. That's so good.
Kristi: 47:39 Yeah. We just shared yesterday or Halloween mantle, which was fun. Other than the new skeleton we bought, we just dug through both of our bins and were like, Hey, let's put this together. And it totally worked. Yeah. I liked how festive that was without being like way over the top. That was like, yeah, sometimes help me out. Halloween is a hard one cause it's like orange and no one loves orange. And if too much of it then it like throws up. So it's been fun. Cause this year we introduced like some just pink pumpkin's with gold stems, you know, mixed with like the white. So it's fun to have color but it's still subtle and it still works for, I think everybody's decor.
Kristi: 48:13 Everyone can use a, you know, a blush pink pumpkin in their decor. Right.
Cara: 48:16 Yeah. It's fun. You need one.
Kristi: 48:18 Yeah. A little different. Yeah.
Cara: 48:19 Yeah. So, um, a lot of this podcast is like inspiring everyday women to be brave and dive in and start DIY thing. Um, cause I don't take, I can't do it for an answer. You just have to start and learn. So yeah. Do you have any tips for her in terms of like finding her style or being brave to jump into the big projects or getting started?
Kristi: 48:40 Yes. Um, this is actually a great question. So a lot of our demographic is our same age. Um, so a lot of kind of younger kids at home and a lot of them are just scared because they rely on their husbands. And so, um, I think our biggest tip is to follow influencer.
Kristi: 48:58 I say influencers, I hate that term. Bloggers. I'm going to say bloggers because these are like, these are more of the DIY girls that have tutorials but follow bloggers that who style that you can relate to. And then when you're following, a lot of them will have on their blog like their, their dos and a lot of them are step-by-step. They break it down. And so start with small simple projects. Don't start with painting your kitchen cabinets. Like that's a huge one. But start with like start with simple things that you can do everyday. Okay, I'm going to, I have this little chair in my daughter's room and you know, it doesn't look very big. It's not intimidated. I'm going to go see a few of these dos. I'm going to type in on Pinterest. Hey, how to paint a chair. And then you can start with some things like that.
Kristi: 49:42 Or if that's even too big, Hey, I have these candlesticks, I just went from the thrift store, how can I, they're painted black, but I love that neutral Barnwood color that's coming around. How can I make these Barnwood so then she can go and invest in a really simple Sandor from home Depot and now she has a tool in her arsenal of things that she can make over standards or such. I mean, if I had to say like three things that every DIY mom should have at home, it's the sander. It's a two inch paint brush because you can paint anything but two paintbrush. There's so versatile. And then Kelly, what would be your third one, do you think?
Kelli: 50:14 Chop saw?
Kristi: 50:15 Oh yeah, that might be a little heavy. A little heavy. But um, I'm like mm. Maybe a lot. Yes. I, I just said that you're a [inaudible], so maybe your top two tools.
Kristi: 50:27 But um, we, other things that I use on the, not on the daily, but on the weekly, just to really give things new life. So I would say start with small DIY is, I mean just think small and tiny because when you walk past that thing that you recreated or you repurposed, you're like, wow, I did that. And then hopefully it'll give her more motivation to keep going to move on to those chairs or to move onto the table. And then, um, Oh my gosh, I've seen all these wall treatments lately that are all like these, you know, little two inch pieces of furring strip. How can I create my own shiplap DIY wall? Well, I'm going to follow and just get on YouTube and watch all these tutorials because there's so many. And IGT V is a really undervalued resource. There's so many people that are on there now and they have full tutorials and I love watching for my phone personally and so I feel like it's easier to watch IGTV versus YouTube.
Kristi: 51:17 Plus I feel like they're more geared towards people in our niche versus YouTube is like more old school. More, I dunno. Yeah, no, I feel like it's a little more stuffy. Maybe.
Cara: 51:28 Or like some little sweet old guy in his garage garage and he's like — you cant even hear him, and like..
Kristi: 51:35 Totally! vs IGTV is like hip and fresh and yeah. So I would say there's my two tips, hop on IGTV and start watching, but make sure that they're following bloggers that are [inaudible] creating these steps. And when we write post we're thinking this is for someone who's never done this before. So we're breaking it down really, really detailed. Like, Hey, we have a free printable — K - here's how you download it, here's the type of printer, you know, here's the paper you should be using and then here's five weeks how to style it.
Cara: 52:04 I love that so much. I just love how empowering DIY is because once you like get started you just learn and you grow and it's such a journey. But then I like watching moms that are able to like do all this stuff themselves and don't have to wait for their husbands to come home and do the honey do list or girls that live alone and just like, I don't have anyone to help.
Kristi: 52:23 Like yeah, it is cool. I mean, and they can do, I just, I just think once you're not relying on someone, there's so much freedom in that and worst case scenario care what they fail. So then you try and try again. Right? I mean, other than you will, you will fail. But so what you're at a little bit of money and a little bit of time, but that then it makes you love it. You know, even more when you're like, okay, I failed three times making this, but I got the fourth time, right. Look at this amazing kickstand that I just made by myself.
Kristi: 52:51 Or you know, I just refinished this piece of furniture and look how awesome it is. And like there's this, yeah, there's a sense of pride and looking at something that you made and did. So, Oh my gosh. So yeah. So good. So, um, where can everyone connect with you online and follow along with all your amazing projects? Oh, well thank you. We made it really easy. All of our handles are @lollyjaneblog. I mean, this is what Instagram was for. If you look on our stories we have, and so my favorite highlight has nothing to do with DIY, but it's called pranks.
Cara: 53:21 Oh my gosh, I love your pranks!
Kristi: 53:25 my parents are married for it. Yeah. Our parents been married for 40 plus years and they just prank each other all the time. Ever since we were tiny, like my mom's famous prank that she got pranked by my dad was when we were just, I think like three months old April full say.
Kristi: 53:39 Yeah. So we were three months old and he, my dad kidnapped these infant twins for the day and made her go on a scavenger hunt with like 50 people. Go find her babies. It was so funny.
Cara: 53:51 That's hilarious. But that would have me all kinds of stressed
Kristi: 53:54 Totally. Back in the day it was just, you know, it was small town and they were all neighbors and stuff, but it was so fun. Anyway, so that's, we have a really good sense of humor and so yeah, if people want to follow us on Instagram, we're always, you know, scaring people in between DIY, which is very entertaining. It's what I like to watch anyway.
Kristi: 54:15 And our website is lollyjane.com.
Cara: 54:18 And then if they don't want to DIY and just want to buy some of your cool stuff, you have like an Etsy shop?
Kristi: 54:23 We do. Yes. I don't even know if Kelli probably touched on that with how we got started. We do have an Etsy shop. We have so many printables. We'll, our site has handfuls, I mean hundreds of free printables, but then we also offer some printables on our shop. And that's Etsy dot. Lolly Jane, I think it's etsy — anyway. It's lolly jane.
Cara: 54:42 Yeah, an I'll link it in the show notes.
Kristi: 54:44 Yeah thank you. I never know it its a shop dot Etsy — Yeah. So yeah, it's just Lolly Jane. And then we have, um, how we start off as a sign shop. We still have some signs in there. And then recently we have added a CNC router to our shop, which is really fun.
Kristi: 54:56 So we have all these wood cut outs, everything from address signs to simple letters to names. I mean, if you can think, dream it, we can cut it. And would or on a sign or even paper form?
Cara: 55:08 Yeah — no but I saw like a little pumpkin sign that you guys had in the shop and yeah, a little wood cutout. It was adorable!
Kristi: 55:15 Yeah. Isn't that fun? Yeah. So our younger sister who has recently moved to Arizona from Louisiana, I don't know if Kelli touched on that, she was like, she's pregnant with her third baby and her husband works from home and she's like, I need some money. My husband just started his own company. We're like, we have a sign shop that we do with our blog right now. Do you want to take it over? So it's been nice because we want to help help employ her younger sister but also keep our signs going.
Kristi: 55:37 So we still make and design them and then she just kind of bust them out, which is fun during nap time.
Cara: 55:42 Yeah, naptime Warrior. That's so perfect.
Kristi: 55:45 Yes, totally. And so our signs are really they, I mean they're handmade, one of a kind. Everyone is different. And there, I have to say, to our credit, they are really, really have like high quality.
Cara: 55:55 Yeah. You could just tell from the pictures that they look just awesome.
Kristi: 55:59 Well thank you.
Cara: 56:01 Well, thank you both so much for coming on. I love hearing all your stories and all your insight. It was really, really good.
Kristi: 56:07 Yeah. Thanks for having us. We appreciate it.
Cara: 56:10 of course!
Kristi: 56:11 Oh, KellI — oh stop — Kelli apologizes for being boring.
Cara: 56:15 Oh, it was all good. Have a great rest of your day. Thank you again.
Kristi: 56:22 You too —Thanks, Cara. Alright, Bye
Cara: 56:24 Bye.
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