Monday, January 30, 2012

Powder room

 I have nearly gathered all the fixings for our new main floor powder room. I have decided to try this lovely shade called Punch by Martha Stewart paints , my husband isn't too sure about it but I am willing to give it a try , he doesn't see my vision. This is a windowless room and I thought this would be a fun spot to try a "punch" of It's just paint , if its not nice guess who will re-paint it, me!
I came across this very rustic over sized peg board at Winners yesterday . I went in to look for toilet paper holders and or towel hooks and I won for sure this day. I love the toilet paper holder in brushed nickle finish for only $5.00 on clearance. I will eventually get a brushed nickle faucet .

 We have already decided on the galvanized lantern fixture for the lighting for the powder room $30.00 at Lowe's , I love this light. We really like this vanity by Martha Stewart , available at Home Depot, it looks green in the picture but it is actually more of a soft grey . Its great , nice storage for a powder room, it comes with the simple white sink. I will paint the trim to match the vanity , it looks great with the punch paint chip.We are going for rustic and polished ...still haven't decided on the floor I am actually considering carrying the wood floor into this room .
Speaking of flooring , I went out to a country mill on Friday to source out the pine flooring we are installing in the new house. I spent the weekend trying out stain options. It took a few tries but I settled on this stain , it is an oil stain in a color called Kona , it is just what we like , deep rich and chocolaty. I am a complete convert to oil stain , it goes on so well and doesn't leave lap marks and it really soaks in too. This is after two coats , so excited. We will have to wait two weeks for the wood to acclimatize so we will be living in limbo for a lot longer than I had originally hoped. Fun!!!
Here's proof positive it was the country. I parked and immediately this little kitty jumped right onto the hood of my car , it gave me a good laugh, I guess he was checking me out.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Wrapped up

 I wrapped up my lantern making project , I love how they turned out. I used some really heavy chain I had outside , it has the perfect weathered rustic finish . The tool I showed you the other day is so easy to use , even my 10 year old can easily open and close a link of chain with one hand , do you know how hard that can be?

I hung up the lantern and gave it a try , I think it looks great. I think it will really be nice in the upstairs hallway , its casts such nice light and shadows because of the grid pattern.

I am still deciding on the counters for the kitchen , definitely going with quartz for the ease of use . Either Bianco Rivers above or Lyra below ? what are your thoughts? I love some helpful feedback.
We are settled on the simple square edge.

I think we have settled on this style of sink , under mount , stainless steel square edged, we were thinking of farm house apron front but I think its getting a little over done and I don't want to do anything too trendy or dating even though I still love them. I think this will be a great choice, I can fit anything I have all the way into it and the counter install and faucet install will be a little more straight forward. As well is is much less than the apron front .
 Can you tell I've been thinking!!! ha ha
We are down to 35.5 days to go , not long now ....

Monday, January 23, 2012

Making a lantern , what it may take?

 The oil paint has dried on my new lanterns I'm making, I am excited to get them all ready and assembled . I decided to attach one link of iron chain right to the handle so that the weight of the lantern will be carried by this handle. But how do you properly attach metal to metal ? Welding right? well I am not welding , I considered soldering but I was told it will not hold well, so I went with glue.
 It worked so far , only 5 minutes of holding it in place. Like my little bag trick to hold the handle up right? my arm was getting tired.

 I am using this easy to install swag kit , I am using a more rustic chain that I had laying around the one that came with the kit is too new and shiny,
 plus a canopy kit ...
 here is the glue , a two part epoxy. I've never used this before , its very neat stuff, really solid when set. I was on the hunt for a great lantern and happened to make my own perfect lanterns are you wondering how much this is going to cost me ? well the large one is coming in at $65.00 and the smaller one at $55.00 , I can not beat that and they are really truly one of a kind.
Ok breaking news...I spied this tool in the electrical lighting kit area at Home Depot today. I thought " what is this?" OMG its a chain opener/closer tool , are you serious !!!! I've been struggling with chains for 20 years and there was this amazing tool. It is so easy to use , no swearing needed and no damage to the chain at all . I can't believe I didn't know this even existed , did you?

I have to share with you this super exciting deal I found at Lowe's the other day. It took me a day to decide where and how to use these mosaic's and to go back and pick up 5 sheets. On the fireplace surround , I am going to use the vertically all the way around and 12x12 tiles on the hearth , this is a great place to splurge on tile . But what is better than finding an extra special tile for a steal $5.49 a sheet , normally around $15.00 of more a sheet for marble, LOVE!!!

Friday, January 20, 2012

snow , static and packing boxes

 Well we finally got a good dumping of snow . I have no magical warm feelings of snow like some people. I do not enjoy being cold  or bundling up and static hair is just a nightmare. But it does look pretty in the backyard and the bunkie looks down right adorable. A perfect unblemished blanket since our dogs no longer use the backyard . I look forward to settling into the new house and getting a fence put up as soon as is possible all this dog walking is a bit insane.
 I have given in to the packing , there is no way to hide it . I figure there is no time like the present to get everything organized and if possible packed . It will be like Christmas when I open some of these boxes.
 The more cupboards that look like this the more peaceful I feel and the shorter the to do list is ahead of me.
 There is no time like moving to get rid of junk and to organize your life. I finally have a place for all my little bits and pieces , how did I survive without this ? Its kinda funny before we listed I thought I cleaned and de-cluttered , and then when I started packing boxes I realized I only had just scratched the surface. How do people live without basements? you must have to be really disciplined.
 I have been scouting for lighting , I have quite a few actually that I can not wait to see installed but there are plenty still to find. For me lighting is so important , it can really make a room , I don't want run of the mill. I love love love lanterns but most nice lanterns are in the $200-$500 range , that is not what I want to spent.I happened upon these lanterns at Homesense the other day. The spring pieces are coming in you know!! any how they were light grey and pretty as they were but I thought they would just wash out and get lost. They were not electrified , but I thought that would be easy enough , and they were. I then decided to darken them up , but I didn't want to use spray paint, sometimes the finish looks very spray painted , not what I was looking for . I decided to try artists oils paint , it was perfect , only problem is it takes a long time to dry , like 12 days of more. I have the time. It was so nice to do a project and something creative.
 I have been ordering fabric for the girls rooms , I love this lilac chain pattern its so pretty. From Tonic Living.
I was over the moon when I came across this light today at Lowe's , it is so nice and substantial and only $26.00 , amazing , it will be installed in the coat closet in the foyer and one in the  master closet .

So we're getting there 40 more days and we all know that time will fly by . The new house sits sadly empty almost complete , we can not wait to get in there and make it our home.
I realized the other day that I will likely have to set up a temporary kitchen in our laundry room while I install our floors in the kitchen , oh my !!! this will be quite an adventure.

Thanks for stopping by .

Monday, January 16, 2012

HGTV Canada is looking for your fabulous house

Are you your own amazing designer, do your friends admire your design skills, do you have the nicest house on the block?
Then you might be just who HGTV Canada is looking for. If you live in Southern Ontario and are game for some fun competition going head to head against other fabulous homeowners with amazing pads then I have the outlet for you .
If chosen you will be competing against other homeowners to win the bragging rights and a $1000 prize.
Who's in ? I can think of a few fabulous home owners I would love to see participate.

Interested? Email for more details

Get your place ready for it's big spot light , its time to shine. Good luck!

Friday, January 13, 2012

1300 posts and Friday the 13th

 I noticed just yesterday that I have 1300 posts , wow , that's a whole lot of posts isn't it? I started this blog to create an outlet for my own personal design projects, I really didn't know how I would come up with topics and material at all and I truly didn't know if anyone at all would read this blog.
Happily I have made friends and opened my life up to so many new wonderful ideas and most importantly wonderful people along the way.

 I have received support through my many projects , advice and encouragement through some personal situations.
Sometimes sadly I have experienced mean and hurtful comments and jabs but they pale in comparison to all the kindness that I feel from the majority of the comments and emails I receive. Most people are kind , but of course there is some ugliness out there, some people just can't help themselves. Here is where every post has been created.
 Its funny to see how far this blog has come and how far the house has come, it is so much better than when I first started, well the house anyway.
 I love this house even though we are moving on. Its not a palace or a million dollar home but it is our home full of warmth and loads of charm which we added one project at a time . In 46 short days it will belong to a new family who will make it their own. I'm sure they have plans .
 I will miss all the one of kind details we leave behind. The finally established gardens. I hope spring brings the new owners lots of beautiful surprises outside. We added so many new plants to the gardens this past year including a front yard tree and loads of boxwoods and hydrangeas and so much more, we weren't planning on moving at all remember.We made sure to not let our doggies outside since we sold to leave the new owners with a clean yard , those of you with doggies who use the yard for their business will know what I mean. We have been walking the dogs lots and lots and we have been thankful for a mild winter so far.
This kitchen has come a long way. It was actually pickled oak when we moved in , by choice, and I painted them this mocha color two days after we moved in. I found it too gloomy , I love a white kitchen. We have spent so much time here. It is a great kitchen , just the right size . I always dreamed of adding soapstone counters but never got around to that . I wonder how the new owners will change it if at all. I think it would be so nice with a farmhouse style sink , but it is not mine to change anymore, boo . ( Mason was 4 years old there now she is 13 , where does the time go?)
I have been going through such DIY with drawl, I haven't been to Home Depot in so long....I wonder what they think happened to me , I should go for a little visit.

So thank you for coming to share your time with me. Don't know what the future holds but I thank you in advance for all of your kindness and support.

Have a happy day this Friday the 13th , it's a lucky day in this house.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Planning and deciding

I love the planning and decision process of interior design , there are lots of ideas and too many choices , sometimes it is very overwhelming . Many people get stuck in the decision stage and become paralyzed and don't do anything because of the fear of making a bad or wrong decision. That is not an option for me. It took me 7 years to pull this house together to add all the special touches and to create a home full of character and I don't want anything less for our new house. I will not be giving myself quite so much time on the new house . I figure 2 years tops . Lots of blog post material.
We have finally decided on the wood flooring , drum roll please..... its is going to be rough sawn pine flooring stained dark . The photo above is my inspiration . I have done lots of homework and asked lots of homeowners that have pine floors to let me know what they think of them. Turns out they love them. See wood was a no brainer , we love wood, but having two kids and two dogs we know wood floors get scratched and show wear and that is just a fact of life. So do we want rustic floors that have loads of charm that can have character added to it by everyday life, or perfect floors that will get scratched and marks that will break my heart and make me mean, no we don't want that . I want the bones of the house creamy white and have quiet elegance but the floors obviously rustic.

For the family room we will need built ins flanking the fireplace to house the tv components. When I recently saw this image on House of Turquoise I thought how perfect . Where they have art we have windows. This will be the perfect arrangement for our family room.I think a lantern will be in order for our family room as well.

I recently ordered a box of these Moroccan tiles from Overstock , they made it all the way from Utah . I don't know how any of them made it in one piece however. The bottom of the box was wide open , they where barely supported ,its a miracle there were only 4 tiles broken, luckily I will have to square up the bottoms anyway to add these to our back splash above the range. They are so lovely and only $11.00 a sq foot.

I went over to the new house on Friday to measure for blinds for the bedrooms , did I mention we have 27 windows. For now I am only concerned about bedroom blinds and bathrooms . As you can see they installed the lovely slider closet doors , gosh they are something else. Mason and Sophie both want curtains and not doors at all , so they will be removed at some point.
I will have to absolutely replace the linen closet sliders , because they just look plain awful. I actually found the same doors we have throughout the house in slider form for $169.99 , I think that is pretty good , I will just have to trim out the opening nicely to add some character. Why don't they trim nicely around closets with sliders ? , well they did in the laundry room , which makes it look so much nicer.
Great Room eclectic family room
eclectic family room design by general contractor Borges Brooks Builders
I have been noticing a lot of rustic wood accents in the houses I am drawn to on Houzz , like this photo above of the eclectic family room. I am planning on the cladding the soffits in the dining room with wood to create this look , so it will look structural .

So for now I am planning our first steps after we take possesion and move in .
Projects  # 1 Kitchen: remove sheet vinyl flooring( laid in the kitchen to close the house , darn by-laws) lay wood flooring in the kitchen first and foremost , and finish the kitchen flooring.
#2 remove kitchen counters
#3 paint the kitchen  cabinets before installing gas range.
#4 build onto kitchen island to add microwave cabinet and wire for electricity
#5 add stone counters and new farm house sink
#6 install appliances ( run gas line and water line for fridge)
# 7 customize kitchen cabinets with valance and crown moulding.
# 8 add wood counters to island.
#9 find and install two beautiful pendants
#10 back splash
#11 install range hood
#12 trimmed chalkboard wall

Other projects : (inside only list)
paint all interior doors black
install all the pretty lights starting with bathroom vanity lights
install entry hall brick floors in herringbone pattern (easy right)
stain and paint staircase
install remaining wood floors on main floor upper hall and office
beam treatment in dining room
add trim to staircase walls
customize entry closet
install open shelving in laundry room
paint kids bedrooms , bathrooms and our bedroom
built ins in the family room
add tile accents to master bath
build upholstered master king sized headboard
replace all interior door hardware
install floors in the powder room
trim out nicely all the bathroom mirrors

well that is a starter list , I'm getting worried , oh heck who are we kidding I love this stuff don't I , I live for this kind of list.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Fresh Start

Happy new to you , hope you had a whole lot of fun.
We had a nice relaxing holiday and now its back to reality , back to work , working out , cleaning house and packing for our move next month.
Lots of planning and day dreaming going on here that is for sure.
We have almost 100% decided on rough sawn pine floors stained dark, this has been a tough decision for sure , but from what I hear we will be happy with it , lot's of character for our spanking new place.
Our new house is on a corner and we have been trying to figure out how we will fence our property when the time comes. Lucky us a near by community has homes by our builder set up exactly the same way as our new house is with the separate garage. So we have been able to see how at least 7 other home owners dealt with such a set up. I love the one below most of all with the open iron fence and all the mature trees. We also like the home above how they kept the fence back which visually connects the house and garage. Really in our climate you use the yard 6 months of the year maximum , and we don't need a ton of privacy as we mostly just hang out and relax in our yard. Most likely we will opt for the privacy fence .

But the fence is an issue for the future.  For now I have been just looking for appliances.
As I'm sure I mentioned I have a 36" opening for our range , we had considered building it in to accommodate a 30" range because 36" ranges are very pricey. I have been eyeing a beautiful Kitchen aid range at Sears . This floor model has been marked down for quite some time , since well before the idea of a  new house was in our minds. It was crazy expensive , I won't even say how much , let's just say there was no way no how. But clearly not many people around here buy 36" ranges , so they were trying to move it. The price was fair but not low enough for us, that is until I asked . It really does pay to speak up because they came back with an unbeatable price so it ours now I'm so happy to say. It is so exciting , it is duel fuel , 6 burner and so pretty. We currently have a Kitchen aid convection smooth top range which we love , but it was sold with the house . The new range has all the same digital features of our current stove which will be so nice , no new learning for the kiddies.

I am really loving this corner house separate garage set up , a mere 56 days and we will be moving in to our very own corner house.

We indulged in lots of holiday goodies for Christmas and New Years , I enjoyed cooking up some killer treats , but it is time to get things back on track.

 This was the most delicious Pumpkin Chipotle soup for Christmas Eve.
And these are the easy chicken enchiladas I served with the soup, yummy .
I'm off to tackle some more packing and cleaning .

Here's to a great fresh start for 2012