Gallery walls are not just for museums


This is the wall in my bathroom. The images are a collection of pictures and knick knack from my travels.


I have to talk about walls again. My favorite way to decorate is to hang things on the wall. Pictures, knick knacks, hooks, planters, whatever.

If there is wall space I will find an object to fill it.

There’s no need to be nervous about putting holes in your wall. You can always patch them later.

Don’t be scared about how to hang stuff. Just get a nail and hammer and hang it.

And don’t worry about properly framing things. Traditional framing is EXPENSIVE even with a 50% off coupon from Michael’s.

So let goooo of the idea that things must be framed. That is the quickest way to not to get anything up.

Think about mounting your image on foam board instead. Mounting gives your photo or art a professional finish without trapping it in a frame, and it is wayyyy cheaper.

I have a great local art shop by me that will mount anything, and even include a little hanger on the back for peanuts.

Or just grab some masking tape and stick it to the wall. It will look really cute, I promise.

So grab that hammer,  go make some holes and display all of your cute things!



Who would get rid of these?

Here’s a great thrift store find. Two wooden orange mounted peacocks. I paid $1.99 for each. Who would get rid of these????

I want to see all of your cute finds. Let’s connect on twitter: @evassolo


#CuteFind: The cat in the plant

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This darling #Cutefind combines my two favorite loves, plants and cats. One of my mother-in-law’s crafty gal pals found this for me at a garage sale. I was thrilled to receive it, yet confused why anyone would get rid of this.

If you have a #CuteFind, drop me a line on the Twitter machine (@whatacutehouse) or shoot me an email,

#CuteFind: We’re all nuts here

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The cutest squirrel I’ve ever seen.

I had to make a quick run to the Goodwill yesterday. I needed some khaki shorts for my new part-time, summer gig as a tram driver/tour guide for the Morton Arboretum.

I always do a quick scan in the home goods section. And this is what I found. The cutest, playfullest, little ceramic squirrel. She was a little pricier than I would have like, topping in at 4.99$, but I still couldn’t resist.

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Her new home.

And now she’s found her home among my other woodland creature, the very rare, green Siamese cat. Who carefully guards my wine collection.

If you have a #CuteFind, share it with me on the twitter machine, @whatacutehouse. I would love to feature it here.

#CuteHouseTip: Not all thrift stores are thrifty

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This is my parrot friend from my favorite thrift store, the Stars Resale Shop in downtown Wheaton.

I have to get something off my chest. I get super offended when I go to a thrift store and the prices are anything but thrifty.

Now, I know there are different types of stores. A consignment shop takes gently used trendy clothes and sells them at a nice, but not deeply discounted price. If a piece is sold within a certain time period, the original owner usually gets a portion of the sale. I get that.

And there are both resale and thrift stores that take donations and may or may not give most of the proceeds to a specified non-profit or charity. I get that too.

What I don’t get is when thrift and resale shops get greedy and charge ridiculous prices for junk. And let’s be real, this isn’t retail.

I see it often with vintage items.

Just because a coat is vintage and has a nice shape, that doesn’t mean you should charge 99$ for it. Your customers know better.

Or when you try to sell ugly frames for 10 bucks. We aren’t stupid. I can go to the dollar store and paint cheap frames that look better.

I don’t know why these stores do this. If they adjusted their prices to realistically reflect the stuff they are selling, they would sell more.


But on the flip side, some thrift stores are priced so deliciously perfect that when you discover them you want to cry out in joy.

I’m grateful to have one of those in my neighborhood.

Awesome pressed flower wall hangings, 1 dollar, yes, please.

Retro serving trays, 2 bucks each, thank you.

Giant frames filled with art I might actually keep for under five bucks, oh sing it sister.

And a paper mache parrot sitting on a perch for 12 bucks. Fuck yes.

Thank you Stars Resale Shop. Keep up the good work.


This is my favorite thrift store, the Stars Resale shop in Wheaton. They do everything right!

TP your…wall?


Total credit goes to the good crafters of Pinterest for this idea. And to my surprise, I was able to pull it off.

I was looking for a basically free craft that would dress up a big blank spot on my dining room wall. I found this toilet paper wreath on Pinterest and fell in love.

But could I, the sort of craftily challenged gal that I am, really pull off something so cute?

Turns out I can, and so can you!

I put out a call to my  friends and asking for toilet paper and paper towel rolls. My friends are so great, I got back way more than I needed. About 75 in all, thanks hearty wipers!


This is Boots as his normal, helpful self.

Start by cutting the rolls up into about 1 inch pieces. Then arrange them into a flower shape. I did a mix of 4 and 5 petals. When you fold the pieces in half, they immediately look like petals.

Then using hot glue, glue the petals together.

I would let the glue on the flowers set over night before you start painting them. Originally, I wanted my flowers to be yellow, but the yellow paint wasn’t dark enough to cover the brown roll.

So I switched gears and used pink. Thank you to my Mother-in-Law for digging out her unused paint and letting me use her glue gun. She even got more of the skinny glue sticks, because she knows I prefer the little gun over the fat gun. Love that lady!


Before you glue the wreath together, arrange the shape.

I recommend applying the paint with a brush, versus spray painting it. I think you get better coverage, and it takes less time and paint. Paint the inside of the petals too.

Once the paint dried, I hot glued little beads to the center. I got the beads at Michael’s, they come in a strand for like a buck.

Once everything dried, I arranged the flowers into a wreath and started gluing the flowers together.

In order to hang it so it doesn’t droop, I hung it from the top petal and then used a nail on each side to rest the side petals.

And you’re done. And I have to tell you, it looks finished and polished and didn’t cost more than five bucks.

#CuteHouseTip: Avoid the Flood

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A stuffed Clifford and seats make this estate sale ready to open. But after the flood, who know’s if Clifford took a swim.

Avoid garbage picking and garage and estate sales if you recently had a flood in your neighborhood. My neighborhood got walloped last week. Entire blocks flooded, people had to get evacuated. Cars at the train station were drowned.


The was my commuter train station after last week’s heavy rain.

The garbage did a special pick up, and people heaped the contents of their homes on the sidewalk.

I have to admit, it was hard to pass up so many chairs and tables and knick knacks, but this was not treasure hunting. It was garbage picking. One-hundred percent Sanford and Son.

And then about a week later I came across an estate sale in the heart of one of the worst flooded areas. Now, who knows how much water the house got, but do you want to take that chance on bringing home something that will sprout mold or break because it was once water-logged?

I say skip it and save your salvaging for a sunny day.

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