Richard Popovic

Star Wars Epic Yarns: Book Review + Making Of Video
May the 4th be with you! Quick—what word immediately comes to mind when you think of Star Wars? If you answered ‘felt,’ well, you are either really into the fiber arts and ‘felt’ is your go-to answer for everything, or you have one of the new Star Wars Epic Yarns books by Jack and Holman Wang. Trust me, wool never looked so good.
Mar 11, 2020
Rocky’s Star Wars Nursery
Name & Ages: Rocky M Olsen III, 2 months oldLocation: Grayslake, ILRoom Size: 10′ x 10′ When Abbey submitted a few pictures of her son Rocky’s Star Wars nursery, we must admit our heart skipped a beat. It is a perfect balance of tribute and taste that brings together a bunch of fun themed accents, a vintage piece of furniture and a cross-stich from Grandma and pulls it off beautifully.
Dec 19, 2019
Phia and Anthony’s Shared Space
Names & Ages: Phia, 12 and Anthony, 5Location: Yonkers, NYRoom Size: Approximately 200sf Sara has a knack for organizing and zero tolerance for clutter. Both of these traits are clearly evident in Phia and Anthony’s shared bedroom. It’s no easy task to divide a room between a twelve-year-old girl and her five- year-old brother but a combination of cleverly arranged shelving units, distinctive paint colors and a few good-natured children make it all work wonderfully.
May 6, 2019
Before & After: An Updated 1940’s Kitchen
While having a “green” kitchen is a desirable trait these days, it had a whole different meaning in the 1940’s. A green floor, green walls and even a green ceiling is what Linn and her husband faced when they purchased their bungalow last year. But after a month of hard work the only green they’ll have to live with now is the envious kind.
May 6, 2019
Before & After: Bright Stenciled Dresser
I am fairly certain I have passed this dresser by at numerous thrift stores over the years. And I can almost swear I have passed by its ugly cousins as well. This transformation will certainly give me pause in the future.Suzy from Saved by Suzy has a habit of breathing joyful new life into some pretty sad thrift store furniture. This $10 chest of drawers became a gem of a dresser with the addition of legs, a cool yellow paint job and the coup de grace, a bold stencil on the drawer fronts.
May 6, 2019
Before & After: A Mini Master Bath Makeover
A key element of renovating a room is knowing when to say when. If you have a limited budget or limited time then the most helpful thing you can do is to be realistic about what you can achieve. This is especially true when you purchase a house that is a ‘fixer-upper,’ because then you are in danger of succumbing to project fatigue, when there is so much to do in every direction that it is difficult to focus on just one thing.
May 5, 2019
Before and After: Decoupaged Child’s Chair
Take a little four-dollar thrift store chair. Add some cut-up bits of colorful paper and that magical elixir known as Modge Podge. Spend a few hours making it all come together and you get……a one-of-a-kind seriously fun seat! Erin at In Between Laundry made this basic thrift store find something special by getting busy with the colorful paper and the Modge Podge. We especially like how the botanical/butterfly motif echoes the natural texture of the woven seat.
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Box Spring Chair & Table
Of the many Before and Afters we have featured, this one may take the prize for the biggest blindside, meaning when you click through, you will in no way have figured out what was coming and the ‘After’ photo just may knock you flat. While you can sometimes predict how a thrift store dresser or end table will be saved and transformed, just try it with this box spring. You’ll be wrong. Trust us. Just go look.We told you!
May 5, 2019
Before & After: Fabric Front Dresser
What do you do with a dresser that has already been redone once before but has seen better days? Redo it again in a completely different way, of course. Check out how the sad little deer decal got put out of its misery and this basic little dresser got a major style boost.Fabric on a drawer front. We have seen it before, and it doesn’t always work, but Ann Marie from Twice Lovely got it just right.
May 5, 2019
The Night Before Christmas by Clement Moore, Illustrated by Holly Hobbie
The Christmas books have finally come out of storage in my house and are being read on a daily basis, including the classic The Night Before Christmas. The copy my family owns is a good one that we have enjoyed over the last few years. But I recently received a new version illustrated by Holly Hobbie, and it is fascinating how different the same story can look when seen through another artists’ eyes.
May 4, 2019
The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid Of Anything by Linda Williams, illustrated by Megan Lloyd
Halloween for the three- to five-year-old set is obviously an exciting time, but not without a few pitfalls. One of them is finding appropriate books to share. The stories need to be savvy enough to respect their intelligence but not so spooky that you will find a trembling child in your bed at two in the morning.
May 4, 2019
Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise by Sean Taylor, illustrated by Jean Jullien
There are any number of children’s books that are written with the parents who are doing the actual reading in mind. Clever turns of phrase and subtle pop-culture references make the fortieth time through just a bit more bearable. Throw in a dash of dialogue straight from an old-time suspense-laden radio serial and a bumbling yet loveable hero/villain as the main protagonist, and you have got yourself a winner. Hoot Owl, Master of Disguise is flat-out fun.
May 7, 2015
‘Over and Under the Snow’ by Kate Messner, illustrated by Christopher Silas Neal
Last week, my daughter and I were reading some winter-centric books. She pointed out that all of the them had ‘lots and lots of snow’ and wondered why we hadn’t had any ‘real’ snow yet. It’s amazing how much can change in a week. While this major storm blankets the Northeast I plan to settle in with the kids, read some books and map out our next adventure. Over and Under the Snow might as well be a blueprint for how to spend a perfect snowy day outside.
Feb 2, 2015
Red Sled by Lita Judge
Children’s books without words are, in my mind, an incredible asset to have on hand at bedtime. Here’s why… If things are going well and there is no rush, you can take the time to point out small details and start a dialogue about whatever it is on the page that strikes your fancy.
Jan 2, 2015
Draw Paint Print Like the Great Artists by Marion Deuchars
Budding artists are a great boon to family members when the gift giving season is upon us. There always seems to be one more set of pens or brushes needed, and gifts that spur creativity allow the giver to feel good about their purchase. Books also tend to fall into the “feel good” category, so Draw Paint Print Like the Great Artists by Marion Deuchars has got you covered on two fronts.
Dec 3, 2014
Backseat A-B-See by Maria van Lieshout
‘Tis the season for road trips to see far-flung family. ‘Tis the season for a whole bunch of other stuff too, of course, but focusing solely on the traveling aspect is the perfect setup to talk about Backseat A-B-See by Maria van Lieshout. And talk about it I will, quite easily, since it has been in heavy rotation with my kids for weeks and has already logged in an impressive amount of miles in the backseat.
Nov 26, 2014
Mix It Up! by Hervé Tullet
My house is full of children’s books, both on the shelves and stacked next to every chair, couch and bed. More and more of the recently acquired ones seem to be of the interactive kind, which usually equals flaps, pockets, pop-ups or compartments. There is one interactive book that has none of these but still manages to find its way to the top of the piles (yes, it somehow moves from one room to the next, I suspect my daughter has a hand in that). Mix It Up!
Oct 30, 2014
The Bear’s Song and The Bear’s Sea Escape by Benjamin Chaud
My kids both enjoy ‘I Spy’ books, so we have accumulated a lot of them. And they are fine and entertaining, to a point. Eventually I get tired of looking for the same red car or plastic cow, although my children do not seem to share this sentiment. So it was refreshing to read through a few new books by Benjamin Chaud and realize that, while not exactly true ‘I Spy’ adventures, they served much the same purpose in a much more interesting manner.
Jul 18, 2014
What’s In Your Purse? by Abigail Samoun, illustrated by Nathalie Dion
If I have learned one thing as a parent of two young (3 and 1 1/2) kids, it’s that flaps rule. Snaps, too. Mirrors are magic, and handles don’t hurt either. Do you see where this is going? My kids, and I know they are not alone, love books that let them get involved. Incorporating all of these extras is not breaking new ground, but making them part of a purse’s interior is pretty slick. After all, what kid can resist digging through an object that is usually off limits?
Jun 16, 2014
This is a Moose by Richard T. Morris, illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld
As my daughter and I were planning her third birthday party, she decided what she really wanted was a pinata. OK, no problem, I said. Then she clarified: a moose pinata. Really? What on earth could have given her that idea? Then it hit me: that new book we got last week. That one we have been reading every day. That one that has the big picture of a moose proudly posing on the cover, what was it called? Oh yeah—This Is A Moose. The power of suggestion, I guess.
May 7, 2014
Here Comes Destructosaurus! by Aaron Reynolds, illustrated by Jeremy Tankard
The term ‘required reading’ gets thrown around pretty casually these days and I made a solemn vow to never use it in a review. So while I will not go so far as to say Here Comes Destructosaurus is required, I will suggest it quite strongly to anyone who is in any way connected to a toddler. Especially if that toddler is particularly active and willful, which in reality is a description of almost all toddlers, as far as I can tell.
Apr 14, 2014
Nest by Jorey Hurley
As my young toddler has become a bit more picky in his eating habits, I have found that a bird feeder located right outside the dining room window has helped things immensely. While he is distracted by the frenetic comings and goings of the chickadees, nuthatches and woodpeckers, I can sneak in spoonfuls of porridge with no resistance. So I found it serendipitous when Nest arrived at my doorstep, because tracking the daily activities of the birds is right up my family’s alley.
Mar 18, 2014
Before & After: A Colorful Decoupage Game Cabinet
Board games. Where do you keep yours? In our house, they teeter unsteadily in a big pile on the top shelf of our coat closet. Admittedly, this is not really a great place for them, especially when the time comes for the kids to grab one. A nice game cabinet would be ideal. A nice, colorful, unique and all-out fun game cabinet. Like this one.Lori at Bleak 2 Unique certainly wasn’t going for a subtle makeover when she came across this cabinet.
Oct 11, 2012
Before & After: A Trashed Curbside Dresser
I am fairly certain that if I drove by this dresser on trash day in my neighborhood, I would have kept on going. Sure it is an interesting size and has nice lines, but the utterly awful painted finish would have had me imagining all types of other things that would undoubtedly be wrong with it, not to mention the hours of labor involved in stripping it.
Sep 19, 2012
A Double Murphy Bunk Bed by Casa Kids
A common dilemma for expanding families in small spaces is what to do when the number of kids outpaces the number of bedrooms. Bunk beds are a popular and obvious solution, and rightly so. Going vertical is always a good option. But what if your small space cannot accommodate a traditional bunk bed setup? All is not lost. In fact, floor space is gained with the Tuck Double Compact Bed.
Aug 22, 2012
How To Ant-Proof Your Hummingbird Feeder
Hummingbirds are a big hit at my house. My wife and I love them, my daughter loves them, even the cats love them (just watching them, they are indoor cats). Unfortunately, the ants love them too. More accurately, the ants love the hummingbird feeder, with its steady supply of sugar water. It does not take them long to find the feeder and once they do, they will take it over. Here is a quick and easy solution for keeping your feeder ant-free.
Jun 13, 2012
Before & After: Bare Patio Turned Luxurious Cabana
Concrete slabs. Many an outdoor space has them, installed by a previous owner whose original intentions for the space are lost to time. It is easy to view them with disdain, a harsh element forced into a natural setting. Many people get rid of them, to be replaced by bluestone, brick pavers, or maybe even a water feature.
Apr 26, 2012
How To Make a Forsythia Wreath
Some days are meant to be spent outside, and today was one of them for me and my daughter. As we took a walk down our road, admiring the forsythia in bloom, I had a thought about trying to recreate a forsythia wreath I saw hanging on someone’s door the other day. I grabbed my pruners and some twine and clipped some branches. Usually this is the point where I go online and search for the perfect tutorial. Not today.
Apr 19, 2012
Before & After: A Fire Station Playset
Most people would consider this playset good to go, as is. It’s big, in great shape, and loaded with features. Clear a space, secure that puppy to the ground and let the kids get crazy. But some folks are not satisfied with good to go — they envision great to go. And then they make it happen.Whee-ooo whee-ooo, call the fire department because this project is blazing with awesomeness. Michell from Girl in Air scored this play set used for a fraction of what it would cost new.
Apr 4, 2012
Is it OK for Kids to Sleep in the Closet?
When my wife and I built our house, we added two small bedrooms upstairs with kids in mind somewhere down the road. As I was framing the closets in each room they took on a weird shape, due to the fact that the house is a cape with a short knee wall and the upstairs rooms have steeply sloped ceilings. As a result, the closets are long, angular affairs, with one end 30 inches high and the other about eight feet.
Mar 29, 2012
Before & After: A 24-Hour Boy to Girl Bedroom Makeover
Many of the ‘Befores’ of our Before and After posts are hopeless spaces where any bit of attention would be a marked improvement. But sometimes the room itself is fine and it is the needs of the occupant that dictate the change. In this case, a little sister was moving into her big brother’s room. To make things interesting, the makeover was a birthday surprise and had to be completed in just one day. The suspense is killing me!Voila!
Mar 22, 2012
Chip It App: Create an Instant Color Palette
Some folks are gifted when it comes to choosing colors. Then there are the rest of us. I have a basement shelf full of little tester paint cans because I never can quite nail down that perfect shade I have in my head. Heaven help me if I need to choose a complementing accent color to boot, then all is surely lost. So when I see pictures of rooms with three or four daring but perfect colors, I am in awe and at a total loss as to how to achieve such a look. Thankfully, help has arrived.
Feb 15, 2012
Before & After: Simple Shelves Become a Stylish Cabinet
Most of us have a set of shelves that are decidedly more functional than they are fashionable. This shabby set survived the move into our new house and managed to look even shabbier sitting on our brand new tile floor and adjacent to a freshly painted wall. It only took me three years but it finally got a makeover more befitting its new station in life.The epiphany came as I was sketching plans for a cabinet and realized that, duh, a cabinet is basically a set of shelves with a back and a door!
Feb 6, 2012
Mess-Free Finger Painting with a Plastic Bag
Finger painting is a classic activity for kids, exercising the artistic and tactile parts of their brains at the same time. But the reality is that most days, it is hard for parents to just abandon themselves to the complete mess that ensues. Here is a way to get some of the rewards of finger painting with no clean-up required.It took us a couple of seconds to get what was going on with this project over at Lovesome, but once we did, we liked what we saw.
Jan 25, 2012
A Bright Kids Bathroom Refresh
Bathrooms are something of a catch-22 when it comes to remodeling. On one hand, unless it is one solely intended for guests, not many people see it besides you and your family. But on the other hand, since it tends to be the room where contemplation occurs most naturally, thoughts often drift to how much better it could look with a bit of work.
Jan 25, 2012
Stella’s Room or Daddy’s Office? Both!
Name: Stella (6)Location: Alamo Square neighborhood, San FranciscoRoom Size: 10′ x 16′ (160 s.f.), not including closet We have featured shared rooms before but they usually focus on how two or three siblings occupy one space. An example which we do not see as much is a shared space between a parent and a child. This is exactly what Tiffanie did in her San Francisco apartment, where every square foot counts.
Nov 23, 2011