Wednesday, November 28, 2012

weekend project: pendant lights

I was so happy that we had time over the long Thanksgiving weekend to hang my new lights. The lights were originally candle holders that I had made into pendants, for those of you who have been following my blog may recognize them from a previous post. But we finally got them up over this past weekend and I love them. They make such a difference in  my kitchen and look great a hanging over the island. Now if we can just the backsplash done, the kitchen will be all finished.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

part one: design challenge, getting started

I'm so excited to be getting started on the design challenge project I posted a few weeks back. I went to see the room the other day and was so happy to meet with the homeowner, Liz. She couldn't have been nicer. Their home is an adorable cape cod. The pictures of the room are below and here is how she described the issues with her room last month during the challenge posting;

"Our living room is a problem design wise for us for 2 major reasons. First, one entire wall is wood- built in shelves, real wood paneling, and a wood fireplace and mantel. I can't for the life of me figure out how to break that space up or what color to paint the room because of that whole wall being wood. The second issue is that we use a door from the outside into the living room as the main entrance of our home, so we need entry way living, along with a clear path to enter the rest of the house. Can't figure out how to set up the furniture in the room to do that. The room drives me nuts considering it's the first thing I see every time I walk in the house."

Liz and I talked a lot about the room, her biggest concerns, and what she would like to get done in the space. I think we came up with some pretty good ideas. To start, I will be working on a color scheme. Right now there isn't much color in the room, the walls are white and there is a white rug and a dark leather chair and sofa. There is also a lot of wood in the room - besides all the wood on the fireplace wall there is a wood coffee table, a TV cabinet and a beautiful secretary. I want to break up some of the wood tones but I've not yet decided on painting the wood paneling. Maybe portions of the wood paneled wall should be painted but not necessarily the whole thing. I am thinking it would be a good idea to have the TV cabinet and possibly the coffee table painted. 

To address the other issue in the room, how it is being used as a main entrance, I suggested some type of bench with baskets below or a bench with a lid for storing things. She could even add space above to hang coats. Putting this behind the door will be a handy spot to unload things when the family comes in. 

The room also needs a natural walkway through the space, so by adding a runner it will create a natural flow to the rest of the house and also help reduce any wear and tear on their hard wood floors. I will devise a new floor plan, by moving around what she already has and working it into the room to create a better arrangement to suit their needs. There are also some issues with lighting so I will be suggesting some new lighting options. 

Lastly, I will offer suggestions for some window treatments. Overall, there are many possibilities to be able to bring color into this living room to create a cozy and inviting space for the family.  I will follow up with an updated post as I plan out the space and share my progress. But look at the pictures below and check back soon for the transformation.

There is a good spot behind the door to put a bench for storage and move cabinet out of the room.

This chair should be moved, as it's too big for space and sits in front of fireplace

This is the beautiful secretary that belonged to Liz's grandmother
Stay tuned for more to come.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

2012 Holiday Bucket List

I already feel the stress building with the Holidays quickly approaching. Every year I say I am not going to do what I did last year and of course I do. So this time I thought I really should have a list of what my most perfect Holiday would be like instead of all the stressful stuff that comes with it. After the shopping, the decorating, the events, and the rush of it all, it is all over in one big wrapping paper mess. But if you could take away all of that, in a perfect world, this is what I would want, my holiday bucket list.

2012 Holiday bucket list
enjoy being with family and friends
eat extra turkey and two pieces of pie without feeling guilty
bake lots of cookies with the kids and forget about the mess
watch the movie "Elf" over and over again
be thankful for one new thing everyday
have a snowball fight
play Christmas music and sing with the kids
always remember giving is better no matter what
slow down and drink hot chocolate
make a snowman with the kids
don't get caught up in all the madness
love those around you as much as you can
pretend that the gingerbread man really did run away
never forget and always remember
make a Christmas list of my own and mail it to Santa
take a deep breath and relax

What's on your Holiday Bucket List?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Upcyled series part 2: Thanksgiving

Upcycled Home Decor Series: Part Two {thanksgiving}

Guest Blogger: Liz Ohsiek from Liz Ohsiek Designs 

Are you ready for Thanksgiving? I'm not either. In fact, I'm still convinced that it is September. Apparently we skipped right over October and landed in the middle of November. But, here we are. So - let's count our blessings and enjoy our families (while silently cursing them and counting the minutes until the meal is over).  Need some decorations to go along with your neurotic turkey dinner? And please tell me it isn't just me (and my lovely family that I love very much)! Check out these examples I found on Etsy (THE place to buy handmade items).

Book Page Pumpkin  by Anthology On Main

Thanksgiving Napkin Rings  by Sierra Metal Design

Thanks to Liz my guest blogger for her great post and for sharing these creative upcycled  finds from Etsy!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

shower curtains turned custom panels

Apartment Therapy
I had been trying to find some fabric for my daughters windows in her room to coordinate with some existing fabric. She has somewhat of a bird theme in her room, (click here to see her room at our old house.) I had come across this bird fabric before from Thomas Paul, called Aviary, I love this fabric and was thinking about getting it and had the windows all measured out.

Thomas Paul fabric
But I had happened to be out getting something at T.J. Max the other month and out of the corner of my eye I spotted these shower curtains made out of the same fabric- well I did a little quick calculation in my head knowing how much the fabric cost per yard. I knew that I needed 9 yards and lining for 2 panels- so we are well over $200 bucks. Of course it was a no brainer, I purchased my two shower curtains at $14 a piece- so $28, plus about $30 for lining was a great deal. With the money I had saved I also bought some pom pom fringe and jumbo rick-rack. But, of course for those of you who follow my blog know that I do not sew but very fortunately I have a mother who can.

She did a great job. I love how the trellis fabric, that I had left over, was used to match with the fabric in her chair, the jumbo rick-rack and fringe really give the panels a very custom look. The shower curtain fabric has  a little different feel then the fabric by the yard, but it looks exactly the same, and I'm really not bothered by it. I do have to get a better rod to hang the panels, so they are a little long at the moment and that is why I am not showing the whole window. But when I get her room all put together I will post better pictures.

I was very happy when there was enough fabric left over to make two pillow shams, which was nice surprise.

Custom curtains can be very expensive when you add everything up, especially when you tack on the labor, (I am very lucky when it comes labor-big savings there). So, if you are able to find some fabric to use that can cut back on costs, it can really make a difference. Shower curtains and sheets are a budget friendly way to be able to get a custom look without spending a fortune. There are so many fabrics out there that fits with every type of budget. Overall, I am so happy with how the panels came out and love the money I saved.

I am linked up over at Jennifer Rizzo, and French Country Cottage