Archive | February, 2012

Who Brought the Cool Kid?

28 Feb

Before I get to today’s post, let me just say- I’m writing this on my new lappy!  Last time I got a new computer was 6 years ago, so this is kinda super duper exciting for me.  And it came a day early!  Hooray!!!

Ok, I’m done with that happy dance and I’ll move on to another.  My future nephew’s nursery furniture is D O N E!!!!  I delivered it to his room over the weekend and the parents-to-be couldn’t be more happy (or so they tell me, although I doubt they’d tell me if they didn’t like- that would be awkward- but I hope think they really are pleased).

If you’re new here, or just have a bad memory- I had purchased 2 midcentury pieces that were in rough shape for $15 each to refinish so that my nephew will be the coolest newborn in the history of ever.

Dresser Before:

…and the dresser NOW:

and check out the side view:

Sexy, no?  Perfect to grow with a little boy!

The dresser wasn’t alone, though.  It had a matching cabinet.  that started out looking like this:

Honestly, the closer you got to the original pieces, the worse they looked.  It was bad.  With MUCH MUCH sanding, I whipped them into shape and here’s what the cabinet looks like today:

The original knobs didn’t all match and that wasn’t kosher, so I had to fix it.  4 of the knobs were kinda cool, but I couldn’t find their companions.  I ended up finding 11 matching vintage knobs on ebay for $20 and I like them better than the original.  I’m sooo please with the result on these.  Of course they ended up being much more labor intensive than I planned (because everything ends up being more work than planned, because I suck at time planning) but I’d do it again- maybe for my next niece or nephew.  Now that the room has all it’s furniture, it’s time to get to the details (i.e. the fun part!!).

So to answer the question in the title of this post- Who brought the cool kid?  My sister did, obviously.

Rain Rain

23 Feb

Pinterest is quite wonderful.  It opens you up to an entire world of beautiful images and amazing resources.  I love how you can click on most images and be brought straight to the source- you learn where to buy it, how to make it, or who created it.  Sometimes, however, you come to a dead end when you REALLY want to find the source… like with this amazing image:

It just puts a smile on my face.  I kind of love it.  lots.  but I have no idea where to get it- HELP!  Any idea where to find it?  who it’s by?  have you seen it somewhere else??

HELP!

First World Design Problems

21 Feb

I had started a long winded post, whining about my ‘first world problems‘ and how my how my house isn’t where I want it to be yet, but WordPress deleted my draft.  I think that was the universe telling me to stop b*tching. So I’ll listen.

After I was forced to say goodbye last week to my 6 year old alienware laptop, I decided to take this opportunity to upgrade.  In 8-10 days, I will have this baby in my hands

a 15″ MacBook Pro with the anti-glare screen (not a fan of glossy screens)!!  Kinda excited.  I’m also thinking, now that I’ll have a laptop which actually not run outta juice instantly when unplugged, I can start blogging on the train home, giving me more time to blog better.  I know I promised at the new year that I would blog more & blog better, and I’ve yet to step it up.  I’ll have no excuses now!!

Enough with my tangents, let’s get to what I was planning to blog about.  As usual, I’ve been keeping myself quite busy.  I’m putting finishing touches on my nephew’s nursery furniture and am hoping to deliver it to his room this coming weekend.  My sister will need a place to put all his gifts that she gets at her baby shower in 2 weeks.  Which is another thing keeping me busy of course.  Shower planning and DIY are full steam ahead.  Maybe for this shower, I’ll actually remember to bring my camera (unlike for B’s bridal shower– fail).

I’m already mentally working on my next home project which is scheduled to commence in May- maybe mid-April if I’m lucky (between babies, wedding, and birthdays- none of which are mine- my schedule is overloaded).  My dining room is finally going to get some love!  Aside from putting furniture in it and hanging a few curtains, the room is the same as the day we moved in.

This picture is from May.  If you add a little extra clutter, it looks pretty much exactly the same.

My plan for this space include

  • a built in china/liquor cabinet

  • Board and batten

  • A vibrant paint color
  • New lighting
  • Refinished chairs and buffet

I know board and batten is everywhere in DIY blogland lately, but I’m really hoping it’s not over-done.  I think it’ll be the perfect way to add some period charm to my 100+ year old house and at the same time will give me the opportunity to put a vibrant color above the ledge without turning the room into a cave.  I’m itching to get started, but I have to be patient (not my best quality).  I can start with baby steps and work on regluing and repairing my future dining chairs.  My the time free time allows, I’ll be ready to put detailed plans into action.

I can’t wait!

I hope I’m not the only one obsessing fixated on future projects.  What projects are you hoping to get to next?

images via apple, pinterest, pinterest

Bedroom Progress

16 Feb

Why do I second guess myself?

Remember when I blogged about the bedroom mirror options?  I had bought the cheap one hoping it would be “good enough,” but the expensive mirror called to me.  I should have gone with my gut, because it was totally right.

I love the proportions and the finishes.  Yes, it was $300 more than the cheap mirror, but you get what you pay for.

Do you like the new curtains?  I was expecting the background to be a bit more off-white than beige, but Hubby and I both like them.

I also had some help hemming the curtains.  Well, he was less of a help and more of a distraction, but quite adorable either way.  The weird bear just likes to lay on things.  Seriously, if you put something on the ground, it’ll be his new favorite place to sit.

So yeah, the bedroom.  It still needs some SERIOUS styling, but I have some ideas.  Styling isn’t my strength, so that’ll take some work.  I need to practice and hone my styling skills.  If I can eventually be half as good at styling as Emily Henderson, I’ll consider it a win. (Yup, totally have a girl crush on her.  We should be bffs.)

B’s Bridal Shower!!

14 Feb

Before I get to the exciting stuff, I first have to express my sadness.  Not for Whitney Houston (yes she was a phenomenal performer, but the second she went on record with “crack is whack” it was only a matter of time), but I’m mourning the loss of my Alienware laptop.  Hubby assures me that it MAY not be a total loss yet, but the screen keeps going black and we’ve determined its a hardware issue not software.  My laptop has been a faithful friend and photoshopper for 6 years.  You’d think it would be all excited- it got a new harddrive LAST WEEKEND!  But alas it needs some serious medical/it attention and the prognosis is bleak.

On a much lighter note: B’s bridal shower was Sunday!!!! It went off without a hitch 🙂  (what a relief)

We held it at the groom’s parents’ condo clubhouse.  It was a very nice space, but it needed personalizing and brightening up.  Here’s what I had to work with:

It was a nice space with nice light and it worked out PERFECTLY.

It occurred to me as I was loading up the Jeep with all my supplies and decorations and food, however that I may have gone a tiiiiiiiiny bit overboard.  I also forgot my camera because I was running around like a crazy person, but luckily a friend and my mom came to the rescue (Thanks!!).  I just wish we had gotten a few overalls of the room before guests arrive, but I was shocked that they showed up early.  Who does that?!?! 😉

We catered a few items and friends and family contributed the rest.  There was another table of food that I didn’t get pictures of.  I should also mention, this shower was 100% gluten free.  B has celiacs disease and gets super super sick from anything gluteny.  She also blogs about her gluten free culinary adventures at glutenfreeboston.com.  I wanted to make sure that she could enjoy everything single thing at her shower, so I did everything in my powers to make sure Gluten knew it wasn’t welcome there.

I think I’ve mentioned before, I do not enjoy cooking (that’s what I have Hubby for), however baking is another story.  I decided to try my hand at gluten free cake pops

and creme brulee (since B isn’t a big cake person).

They were both all gone by the end, but I got rave reviews for the creme brulee.  Playing with fire (to brulee the tops) was just an added bonus.  I also wanted to draw your attention to the food labels.  With so many food allergies of the guests (nuts, potato, crab, tomato, just to name a few) I like to make sure everyone can clearly see what they can eat or not.  I’m more excited about what I propped these labels up with: pieces of birch log freshly cut from my aunt’s yard and spray-painted silver.  I kind of love them.  Maybe later in the week or next week I’ll take a few and style them around my house.  For something so simple, they’re pretty sexy if I do say so myself.

Paint sample confetti.  I think the guys at Home Depot were onto me though.

I’d be lying if I told you everything worked out perfectly.  A few of my decorations jumped off the wall and tried to make a run for it several times.

Oh well.  I really don’t think anyone cared at that point.  (Notice some more silver birch logs snuck onto the mantel)

I’m the one perched on the arm of the loveseat- I was grabbing presents for the bride to be to open.

And here’s the beautiful Bride-to-Be.  I hope you enjoyed the shower as much as I enjoyed planning it!!

Circle Garland DIY

7 Feb

I love it when small DIY projects actually go as planned, really DIY projects of any size.  It’s just fun when things work out the way you want, don’t you think?

Well, I’m trying not to go too crazy with decorations for B’s bridal shower on Sunday, but I really can’t help myself.  I think I missed my calling as an event planner.  At the very least, I can’t turn my designer brain off and I… must… make… it…all… pretty….

This is the room I have to work with (the clubhouse at the grooms parent’s condo):

It’s a little dark, a little formal, and generally in need of some pizazz.

I stopped at Michael’s Arts & Crafts when I got home from work yesterday to get some supplies for some misc decorations.  The first decoration project I tackled was circle garland.

Supplies:

  • 2 sheets of yellow paper
  • 1 sheet of white iridescent paper
  • 1 sheet of gray iridescent paper
  • 1 1/2″ hole punch
  • craft needle
  • string

Once I punched a bunch of circles, all I did was string them up (2 holes in each circle, like a button).

I taped it onto my banister just to see how it would work for the shower and it works like a charm!  I did have to space the circles out after hanging, but I love the result.  (I also had to enlist Hubby to entertain a playful bearcat who felt the need to paw at my garland.  Beware of ferocious bearcats.  Luckily there will be no bearcats at the shower.)

I love the way it looks, and I can already see it draped on the banister at the shower.  Playful, bright, but still chic.

I wrapped it around a piece of cardboard and taped the ends so it won’t tangle until it’s big performance Sunday.

Successful, quick & easy DIY projects can really put a smile on your face.

Mirror Mirror on the Floor

1 Feb

I wish I had a good pun to rhyme with that title, but I’m at a loss.

When we first moved in, we had to take the mirror off of the dresser since the only place the wide dresser fit was in front of the windows.  For weeks, we had the detached mirror chillin’ against the wall next to the closet door.  Even though the size of the mirror cut off my head, it made me realize how nice a large leaning mirror in that spot would be.  Flash forward almost a year later and I made the executive decision to finally get a mirror.  I’d been stalking mirrors at HomeGoods for a while, not finding anything that was quite right.  Sunday I decided, come hell or high water, I was going home with a mirror.  Well, I found not one, but 2, which creates another dilemma.

This guy was $100.   And has the quality to match.  The frame is plastic, painted to look like wood, and is more than a little flimsy.  It is, however, nice and light and this weakling could carry it all by herself.  He’s 78″ tall.

This sexy beast called to me right away.  Sadly he also commands a whopping $400.  He’s solid wood and sturdy.  So sturdy that I couldn’t even lift it easily from the little display ledge to the floor.  He’s only 72″ tall, but wider than the other.  I’ve been looking to introduce some more ‘rustic’ elements to bedroom since I came across this room.

Aside from the obvious debate of price, I was also debating height.  The taller (cheaper) would be closer to the height of the adjacent closet door in the bedroom, but is that what I want?  I wasn’t totally sure.

What’s a girl to do?  The quality and craftmanship of the rustic mirror comes with a price.  The other mirror’s appeal is definitely that its easier on the wallet.  I took home the $100 mirror to help me really make a decision.

I’d REALLY like you guys to weigh in on this.  Hubby’s not much help- he is not a fan of ‘leaning things,’ but that’s the nature of a big-a$$ mirror like these & I’m sick of using a little over-the door mirror that’s damaging the door frame.  After seeing it in the room with one of my curtain options, I’m thinking the shorter height of the $$$ mirror would work better to break things up a bit.  My real issue with the mirror in the room right now is this:  it FEELS flimsy in the space.  It looks like a smaller frame that should be hanging on the wall.  It commands no attention, it looks like a necessity, not a feature.  The wooden mirror would be a feature.  He would command respect and would feel more like a piece of furniture.  But of course there is that nice price tag to consider.

So, which do you like better for the space?  How do you feel about leaning things?  Should I bite the bullet and fork over the money for the better quality?