I see your chairs & raise you a couch

Do you ever feel like you have to keep up with the Jones's?  No?  Me neither.

In my case I like to steal the Jones's ideas and then make them my own. Kind of like design-borrowing, not so much stealing. Plus imitation is the highest form of flattery, right?  I borrow ideas only from really cool houses (aka people I don't know who don't live on my street).  People on my street aren't the Jones's, they are the I-don't-really-care-about-my-house-decor-or-my-yard people, and you already know about our fantastic neighbors, who clearly don't care about their yards/homes.

Lucky for me, there are a ton of cool homes with great decor (remember this one with the cool chairs) not even a block away and I stalk walk by them an steal their ideas.  This actually works better for me since they are not on my street and will never know I stole inspiration from them.

I secretly wish that one of these times while I am strolling by (and taking photographs of their houses), that they will come out (after I'm done taking photos, so they don't catch me and it gets awkward) and we strike up a conversation.  I'm sure we would be best of friends, as we are both (clearly) very stylish people.  Maybe we would become fast friends and sit in their front porch chairs, drink wine and chat about design....ugh, a girl can dream.

Anyway, in the mean time, while I'm waiting to meet these imaginary friends, I spent my weekend hitting up some yard sales all by my lonesome.  Wah wah.

Anyway I found a total diamond in the rough.  I pulled up to this random house with a wood couch in the front yard.  It was not in the best shape and the cushion was totally tore up.
Would you have bought this looking like this???
I walked around the sale and eyeballed the couch 4 or 5 times and realized that the couch was priced at only $30.  I mean, that is a hell-of-a-deal if I do say so myself.  My mind was racing with all the cool things I could do to this couch and for $30, it was a steal.  Plus, it would be so cute on my front porch.

Then the voice in the back of my head started saying, "this is ugly" "why did you waste money on this."  That little voice is also know as Chris.  I knew he would not see it as a great buy, but rather a horrible waste of money.  So, I did what anyone in my position would do; called, e-mailed and texted him to ask him his opinion, because there are no returns at yard sales.

Just my luck, Chris was not answering any of this modes of communication.  So, I walked away from the perfect couch.

Here was what I was thinking: I could go home, measure my front porch to make sure it fits, then maybe stop by a few other sales.  Then, maybe Chris would have called back.  OR.... if I still wanted it then I could go back later and if the couch was still there, then it was meant to be.  Plus, I figured that I could probably resell the couch on Craigslist for at least $30 if Chris really hated it.

Of course I couldn't stop thinking of the couch and quickly headed back to the sale to see if the couch with still there.  I was in luck, it was still there!!!

So I bought that couch and had the lady help me load it in the back of my car.  My intention was to get it home, get it on the front porch and run to the fabric store to buy new fabric before Chris got home, so that he wouldn't see it in it's present condition, but rather in its new and improved condition.  If you are married you know what I'm talking about.  Sometimes, guys can't see the vision of what things could be, so you have to help them see it.

Clearly, I didn't think ahead.

This couch was 6 feet long and kind of heavy.  I got home and realized that I couldn't get the couch out of my car by myself. Crap!

So much for doing the whole couch presentation idea.

So when Chris got home I told him about my big couch purchase.  Lets say he wasn't so pleased.  He thought it was going to be too big for the porch, he hated the cushion fabric and he wasn't in love with it in general, but I promised him that I would make it better.
Some how it looks even worse on the porch, maybe it's the horrible pillows??

I headed to the fabric store (with 4 different 50% off coupons in hand- thanks Mom and Grandma) and started picking out fabrics.  I spent 45 minutes trying to match all different fabrics together.  I couldn't make a decision!
I sent this picture to Chris for fabric help... he didn't respond.

I didn't want it to be too plain, but it also couldn't be too funky.  So I went with Red, cream and green, which actually matches the house colors pretty well.  I ran home, recovered the cushion and started making pillow covers so that I could surprise Chris when he got home with a perfect couch.

I broke out the sewing machine and all my old sewing skills came right back- just like riding a bike, or something like that.

Round sewing.  Trickier than it looks.
I mastered the square pillow shams, then started on my round pillow which was much harder than I expected.  I finally figured it out and let me tell you, I was super proud of myself.  Really amazingly super proud of myself.  You can be proud of me too.

So here you go.  The big reveal.  Here is the couch one more time when I bought it:

Ta da, here it is:
Dear couch, I love you.  Mean it.
 Come on, you love it don't you?  If you don't, please don't tell me.  I'm reveling in the after-glow of the big transformation   I'm not lying. I could do this for life- find old things and fix them up.  It's so freaking fun!!