Mad Like Alyce

Apartment Improvements: Update your window treatments

The biggest boon of renting is that you are often not in control of the colors in your apartment, and any attempt to change it could result in forfeiting your entire deposit. That said, there are some great ways to really make improvements to the overall look of a room, simply by updating the window coverings.

When living in a builder-grade apartment, you are often stuck with the cheapest finishes that they had at the time it was built, or in many cases, what was cheap and available at the time it needed to be replaced. Most often, apartments come with your standard vertical blinds on sliding doors and plastic horizontal blinds on all other windows, and almost always in the standard white or beige. In many cases, they blend nicely (hint of sarcasm) with the builder’s beige walls.

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Do I worry about holes?

So many people are afraid of putting holes in the walls of their rental. While it certainly can have an impact on your deposit, there are many holes you can quickly spackle and use a very small sponge brush to apply matching paint. The key is to get your paint cards before hand and pick the closest option to your existing color. Then when using spackle and paint, use only as much as you need to fill the hole and paint the spackle. 9/10 times, most of your nail holes will go completely unnoticed.

The first thing to look at is what currently is in your apartment, and if you can work around it or if it is better to remove it completely. In my bedroom, the horizontal blinds were installed inset into the window frame, which made it very easy to simply add a curtain rod above the window without needing to move anything.

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In the case of the living room, however, the vertical blinds track was bulky and a huge pain. The best option? Remove it!

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I first took down all of the blades, then carefully unhooked the track. To protect it, I used plastic bags to pad the track and blades, and wrapped the whole thing up with plastic wrap. It can then be placed in the corner of a closet or in a garage until its time to move out, and the plastic bags and wrap helps to protect from dust, dirt, and moisture.

The actual hooks that held up the track were not in the way of putting up a curtain rod, so I actually left them in place. The easier you make it to put back what you replaced the better! If you do take down the hooks, make sure to circle the holes that the tracks belong to with a pencil. You may be lucky and be able to re-use holes for your curtain rod, but most will not match up 100 percent, and this will help make putting the vertical blinds back up at move out much more simple.

Tips for aesthetics

1. Hang your curtain rod a few inches, up to even 6 inches above the actual top of the window. This gives the window an illusion of more height, and hides any less than desirable trim that might be in place.

2. Select a curtain rod that is slightly wider than your actual window. This way, when you pull the curtains back to each side, you can get the full impact of the outdoor light.

Hemming your Curtains

When working with curtains, you are often dependent on the standard lengths provided by department stores. When hemming, pay attention to whether or not they have a lining. If there is a lining, make sure to hem both the liner and actual curtain separately, and to keep the liner at the same length or just slightly shorter than the curtain so it doesn’t show. My curtains were the Mariam Curtains from IKEA, and came in a 98in length vs. a standard 80in or 86in.

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What you need:

  • Hem tape
  • Iron
  • Pencil
  • Washing machine & Dryer (or access to one)

1. First, wash and dry your curtains. It helps to wash them with a towel, just to have something to buff them around a bit. Make sure you take them out of the dryer immediately, or even right before it is done to prevent wrinkles.

2. Put your curtains up on the rod to see where they naturally fall. Its best to have them touching the floor, so measure 1-2 inches below floor level and mark.

3. Take your curtains off the rod and measure how far up you had marked. Measure evenly across the curtain panel and use a straight edge to mark with a pencil. Cut across (make sure to have the extra 1-2 inches!!!) Re-hang the curtain panel and see if it was enough. The hemming will shorten them even further, so its ok if they see appear a bit much.

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4. If you determine they are indeed the correct length, use your hem tape and fold 1 inch up from the bottom of the curtain, place the hem tape within the fold, and use the iron to adhere. Work your way down the curtain. Once this is finished, Iron the curtain while you have the iron hot! Immediately hang and double check the length.

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5. If the length is correct, measure the same amount on the second curtain panel and cut. You should not need to re-hang to check length this time. Follow step 4 and hem your second curtain panel and iron!

With your new curtains hung and hemmed to the right length, your wall will take on a whole new look, and most importantly, be a lot more you.

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Hello!

Hi! I'm Alyce.
Welcome to my journey towards living a happier and healthier life while living with PTSD and chronic pain... and never letting it keep me from my passion for Halloween, cooking, and way too many DIY projects... all at the same time!

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  • How appropriate that I dressed up as Sally at the haunted house last night, because I was featured as Sally on @liquidcosplay in the same day... Halloween no less! I love love love this costume, and it’s the one that got me started in cosplay and makeup. #halloween #cosplay

#Repost @liquidcosplay with @get_repost
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If you've got it, haunt it. Here's @madlikealyce as Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas. 🎃 Visit her page for more great cosplay!
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#nightmarebeforechristmas #nightmarebeforechristmascosplay #sallyandjack #sallystitches #sallyragdoll #halloween #halloweencosplay #halloween2018 #happyhalloween #EverydayIsHalloween #CreepItReal #repost #cosplay #cosplays #cosplayer #cosplayers #cosplaying #cospositive #cosplaylife #cosplaygirl #cosplaygirls #girlswhocosplay #cosplaybabe #sexycosplay #cutecosplay #womenofcosplay #girlsofcosplay #curvycosplay
  • You would think that I would have done makeup on all of my family at this point, but sadly that is not the case, however, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to do my brother's makeup after the haunt had opened Saturday night! He managed to pull together an incredible maroon clown outfit, and I am really pleased how the makeup looks! I personally like the messier clowns, and it worked well to have brighter pink-ish hues toned down by smudges of black and watering down the paint overall. 
#clown #clownmakeup #hauntlife #hauntedhouse #halloween
  • My first ever zombie for Halloween was a shotgun bride, and although it was a real bridal gown with real shotgun damage, I just used 3 or 4 latex bullet wounds. It was fun, and a great introduction to using prosthetics, but it wasn't really accurate to what I would have had for damage with an actual shotgun wound. So years later, I made up for it by re-creating a more realistic wound of where the shoulder and partial face would have been torn up by the blast. Personally, this is my favorite zombie creation to date! #zombie #zombiemakeup #zombiebride #shotgunbride #zombiecrawl #woundmakeup
  • Ready for my closeup!!! Getting ready for Sioux Falls Zombie Crawl tomorrow!!! #zombie #zombiemakeup #zombiecrawl
  • OK you guys, this is where I love the internet. I created this zombie 2 years ago and had (kind of) forgotten about it until just this week when someone re-created it... and she is on the other side of the globe! Seriously, it made my my entire day/week/month, and reminds me why I love doing this. <3 <3 <3
#zombie #zombiemakeup #zombiecrawl #halloween2018
  • Its GO TIME PEOPLE! T-Minus 7 days to HALLOWEEEEEEEEEEN. Im running on fumes and caffeine, but it is 100% worth it. I love working at the haunted house, and am beyond thrilled about this coming weekend. I still have 2 costumes to finish and 2 zombies to do, plus some donut deliveries (a great fundraiser... friends scared of clowns? Send them donuts a-la-clowns). One more look at this first clown because I was obsessed with this wig from Rockstar wigs... I WILL find a way to use it again in the near future. #hauntlife #hauntedhouse #clowns #halloween2018
  • I had a request to recreate a clown mask as a makeup so it wouldn’t be as hot to wear in the house (swipe to see said mask), and it was quite the learning experience. I made this about a month ago when I was still trying to use the cream paints that the haunt had, though I’ve since decided to buy more of my own water paint to use on my actors. The base here was the basic white clown grease paint, and while I loved the coverage, it felt awful to wear, and it was incredibly difficult to add fine details with cream paint or shadows. So my first and last grease paint clown! 🤡 I still think it’s important to share our failures as well as the successes... this is still far better than what I might have created even just a year ago! #clowns #hauntedhouse #halloween
  • Hey Guys! I've been quiet on Insta so far this October, but its because IM SO BUSY and i'm pretty much in Halloween Heaven. Between finishing my first commissioned costume (its super simple, but I completed foam armor for the first time!!!) and doing makeup at the haunted house, i've hardly had time for sleep... and I wouldn't have it any other way. 
This is one of my first clown practice runs. I tried doing 30 minutes or less, and initially I wasn't planning on posting. Having a few days of the crazed makeup chaos that is getting ready for house open under my belt, I have a new appreciation for what details you can and simply cannot complete in such a short time period, and kind of like the grunge this clown pulled off. Not everything you will create is perfect, but thats how we all learn! #clowns #hauntedhouse #halloweenmakeup #halloween2018
  • I think this barrel look could make a great clown character.... am I going over to the dark side and starting to like clowns?!?! Only time will tell, and there are still 20 days until Halloween! #nightmarebeforechristmas #halloweentown #lockshockandbarrel

@madlikealyce

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