Welcome to And Then We Tried! 

The ladies of And Then We Tried in Mexico

We’re Robin Anderson, Michelle Kowalski, and Hannah Gierosky; ladies from the Midwest who met at design school and bonded over a shared love of DIY projects, travel, and really good Bloody Mary’s.

We’re always trying something new and sharing all our mishaps, successes, and setbacks along the way. We’ve had our fair share of “what if it looks awful” but in the words of Shia LaBeouf and Nike JUST DO IT.




Hi! I’m Robin. As the 2007 song goes “I got it from my mama.” She’s my OG of DIY and jumping into the next huge project. I’ve been looking at everyday things and thinking, “I could make that,” since before I can remember. I grew up and went to college in Ohio before moving out to Pasadena, California, with my dog, Charlie, to be an environmental graphic designer.

On an average weekend, you can find me scouring the local flea market, engulfed in my latest obsession, or at the hardware store getting those screws I honestly thought I picked up the first time. I’m always in pursuit of the next project that will inspire me, so feel free to reach out and say hello!




Hey, Michelle here. I like to travel, refinish furniture, love on my pets, and put together elaborate cheese boards. After graduating from design school and filling up my apartment with DIY projects, I bought a house and have spent the last few years tearing it apart, putting it back together, and packing my garage and basement full of Craigslist furniture.

If I’m not supervising the latest wrestling match between my cat, George, and my dog, Freddie(follow along at on Snapchat @kowalskim), I’m probably rearranging my bookshelves or covered in paint somewhere. I find myself getting sucked into new hobbies all the time and I’m currently obsessing over Korean beauty routines and getting swole at the gym.




I didn’t choose the crafting and DIY life; it chose me. But seriously, after four years of sorority life followed by a few years living with Michelle, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking up projects to start and maybe even finish. I grew up watching my parents work on our house themselves, and because of that, I stubbornly believe that 90% of home improvement tasks are DIY-able.

These days, I live with my fiancé and our dog, Cricket, in a 100-year-old home that needs plenty of love and way less wallpaper. At any given moment, you can assume that I’m either working on a house project while listening to true crime podcasts, reading historical fiction, watching the same episode of Property Brothers for the hundredth time, or trying to convince my boyfriend that yes, we do need a skylight in our kitchen. And I can totally do it myself.

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Check out our Posts

Attaching a wood fence to a chainlink fence

As I mentioned in my last fence/gate update post, I helped Erika attach a wood fence to the chainlink fence in her backyard. The process was similar to when I converted a chainlink fence to a wood fence, except in this case, we left the chainlink fence intact. This method is a good option if you want to add a little more privacy to your yard or camouflage a chainlink fence while you wait to save up for a completely new fence. 

Gift Guide: Indoorsy

Struggling to find gift ideas for your favorite people? We’ve got you covered with our And Then We Tried gift guide! First up: your friends and family who are decidedly indoorsy. While we can’t claim to be experts on much, things to buy people who like to stay inside is definitely in our wheelhouse.

and then we tried obsessions 10.19.18

Obsessions: 10.19.18

You wanna know what we have been decidedly NOT obsessed with in the past month? The blog. Womp womp. We’re hopping back in this week, but we’ll be posting a bit more sporadically for a while. Here’s hoping you all loved getting caught up on Michelle’s driveway gate plans yesterday. See what else we’ve been obsessed with in this week’s And Then We Tried Obsessions.

Fence Updates and Two-Panel Wood Driveway Gate Plans

Hellooooo, I’m thinking about fences again! You all had the pleasure of following along as I moved and rebuilt the fence in my backyard and then converted a chainlink fence into a wood fence along my driveway, and now it’s finally time to build that driveway gate. Of course, I can’t just build a driveway gate and leave it at that, I’ve also decided to cap the entire fence to cover up the dogear pickets and give everything a cleaner and more finished look. HOORAY!