2.27.2012

DIY stained doors


On Sunday, Adam and I finished hanging our interior doors! I love their dark finish against the white trim and light walls in the bedrooms and bathroom (this picture was taken from the hallway, where both the trim and walls still need to be painted - the trim will be the same creamy white we've used throughout the house and the walls will be the same blueish-grey we used downstairs).


I wasn't sure about using oil-rubbed bronze doorknobs on our dark-stained doors at first, but I love the finished look. So much better than our old doors, which looked like this:



Improvement much? I'm so happy to have this project checked off the list :) We're starting to look into hardwood flooring options for the bedrooms, which is hopefully our next big project! What did you do this weekend?

2.24.2012

Happy Friday!

{snapped with my BlackBerry}
Adam has been working overtime to finish staining and sealing our interior doors. I snapped this picture in our garage this morning after he finished putting on the second coat of polyurethane. He used Minwax Wood Finish in Jacobean and their clear satin poly. The flash from my phone makes the finish look lighter than it actually is (in person it's all brown, not blonde), but I love that it's light enough to let the wood grain really show. The colour is really rich and warm and I can't wait to see it against our light-coloured walls and creamy white trim.

{snapped with my BlackBerry}
He still needs to get a second coat of poly on the other side of the doors, but hopefully we'll be able to hang them on Sunday and I can snap some 'after' shots to share with you early next week.

In other news, we had our first ultrasound today and got an official due date of August 14th! It's too early to tell much, but baby has arms, legs, feet, hands and all that good stuff :)

We're off to visit Adam's parents this weekend and we're going to pick up a bookshelf from my mom's house, so I may have some more basement progress to share too. What are you up to this weekend? Have a great one!

2.22.2012

Pretty patterned shower curtain


Over the weekend, Adam and I took a little trip to Bed, Bath & Beyond with a gift card in hand. I was looking for a new shower curtain and Adam was looking to get in and out as quickly as possible (I swear, within 30 seconds of us walking through the doors he started asking me if I was done yet). I was hoping to find something for $24.99, when I stumbled across this beauty by Amy Butler for $49.99. Not to worry, I quickly rationalized that I was still saving money, so how could I not buy it?

Then we got up to the counter and it rang up at $13.99. Yes, $13.99. I held my breath. The cashier, who apparently really wanted to charge me $49.99, called over not one, but two managers, who looked at the computer and then at the shower curtain and then at each other and then at me and then finally, eventually decided that because they couldn't prove it wasn't $13.99, they'd have to go with the computer on this one.

I love the pop of colour it adds to our bathroom; it makes me smile everytime I walk into the room. And the price just makes it that much sweeter!

P.S. It's driving me crazy that the toilet paper roll is on backwards. I'd blame my husband, but at least he replaced it, right?


2.21.2012

Two-toned desk DIY

Thank you for your lovely comments and compliments about my newly-sewed slipcover. You guys are the best!

Currently, our new interior doors are lined up in the garage, freshly stained and waiting for a couple coats of poly (I like to imagine that Adam is at home poly-ing as I type this). That means the doors are no longer taking up space in our living room/dining room (as an aside, I knew it had taken us too long to get around to this project when not having the doors in the room felt weird).

With the doors out of the way, I was able to make some progress on my little work area. This is our old dining table and the top got pretty beaten up in storage. Nothing that a fresh coat of paint wouldn't fix.



The colour is Martha Stewart's Sharkey grey (I picked up a sample container for $1). I really like the way it contrasts with the white legs - very subtle, but just interesting enough. Since it's not furniture paint, I'm going to ask Adam to add a couple coats of poly so I don't have to worry about marking up the surface (again - I already have a couple of spots to touch up). Then comes the fun part, adding accessories!

2.18.2012

DIY chair slipcover


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I haven't been a very good blogger lately. I've completed a few small projects - like sewing this permanent slipcover for my $20 thrifted chair - I just needed to find time to photograph and share them. You might remember that I sewed a practice slipcover a while ago, using inexpensive fabric, just to make sure I could. But we needed something with a little more weight, something a little more durable than my cheapy test fabric. Enter white denim. It's quite lovely, actually. And I fancied it up with some black piping, which made the sewing part a whole lot more frustrating, but was totally worth it. Oh, and I sewed this little pillow too. Now I like standing in my living room and staring at my chair. It feels like we got a brand new piece of furntiure :)

2.14.2012

Easy bedding refresh


Happy Valentine's Day! I picked up the February issue of Better Homes and Gardens while travelling last month and I love this simple idea to freshen up your bedding. Just add a brightly coloured or patterned fitted sheet to your boxspring and turn down your blankets to show it off - doesn't it look great? All my sheet sets are fairly neutral, so I've been keeping my eyes peeled for a fun fitted sheet to mix in.

My birthday was on Friday and I celebrated by going out to dinner at one of my favourite Greek restaurants with friends. Adam even baked cupcakes with my favourite icing topper - crushed Skor bar! He also gifted me with #5 and #2 from my recent wishlists - now you understand why I put these things together :)

2.10.2012

Nursery plans

via
Maybe it's because today is my birthday or maybe it's because we heard our baby's heartbeat for the first yesterday, or maybe it's just because Serena and Lily is offering 25% off all signature patterned sheeting until Valentine's Day, but last night I impulsively ordered this Pimento French Ring Crib Sheet:

Seriously, how could I resist? The first picture is the inspiration for our nursery - we're planning to convert the current guest room into a nursery (the third bedroom will become the new guest room). The current guest room actually shares a lot of elements with my inspiration photo: greyish-white walls, white trim, green curtains, light hardwood floors and my there's my beloved pistaschio green dresser. We recently bought a crib on Kijiji and I've been going back and forth about painting it white or aqua blue, so when I came across this picture I felt like it was a sign. And the colour in the crib sheet is the perfect accent colour (kind of like the pink pillow in my inspiration photo), don't you think?

Happy Friday!







2.09.2012

Another basement update

Finally, some progress shots of our basement! Just keep one thing in mind: we're not done yet.


I still need to paint the window (you can kind of see the painter's tape around the window panes) and the plan is to replace that bare bulb with some kind of track lighting (we just have to find something we like). This weekend we're hoping to have a large piece of carpet cut and bound to make a custom shaped area rug - you can see the ugly carpet remnants Adam's been using in the meantime. We also need to pick up a bookshelf from my mom's house (thanks mom) and add some other storage for cords, mics, music books, papers, etc. (in case you're wondering, that's a spare couch cushion inside the base drum - it helps dampen the sound).


This is the other side of the room - you can see we have another bare bulb to replace (there are actually three in the room) and some wires running across the ceiling that still need to be cleaned up. You also get a better view of those ugly carpet remnants - the area rug will leave more space around the border of the room, but you can see the bump out we need to work around (hence the custom shape). The furniture is also temporary. Adam obviously needs a larger desk, and we need some kind of unit to store the stereo (I'd also love to replace the chair, but Adam may fight me on that one).


This is the small storage room off Adam's studio. This space was completely unusable before (it didn't even have lights), so we feel like we've gained some brand new space. The plan is to build some shelving to maximize storage, but otherwise we're done here (it's a storage room after all).

I wish I had photos of the uninhabitable 70s man cave that our basement used to be, but you'll just have to trust me that this is a massive improvement. I can't wait to add those finishing touches!

2.07.2012

Finishing touches

The trim is painted and Adam started teaching out of his basement studio yesterday! I still need to snap a few progress photos (soon - I promise!) and there are some finishing touches to take care of too. My mom is giving us a wooden bookshelf that will hold Adam's stereo, music books, papers, etc. but we still need to pick up some containers to organize all his 'stuff'. He also needs a proper desk area, some art for the walls would be nice, and we're planning to have a large piece of carpet cut so we can turn it into an over-sized area rug.   

1 - Aluminum top writing desk. I love the look of this desk and I think it's tough enough to handle life in a drum studio. 
2 - Painted tin cans. I spotted these on DIY planters on Pinterest, but I think they'd look just as cute holding pens, pencils or drumsticks. I'm definitely going to try my hand at making these.
3 - Storage boxes. Adam goes through a lot of paper. These boxes are the perfect way to hide the mess while still keeping it within easy reach.
4 - Magazine file. A great way to store music books and our growing collection of New Yorker magazines, which Adam likes to read in-between lessons.
5 - I'd love to frame some of Adam's band's best album art and show posters to hang on the walls.

Have you put the finishing touches on any home improvement projects lately? 

2.03.2012

Chapters Round-up

While I was in Ottawa last weekend, my friend and I took her 3-month old daughter on her first Chapters outing. I spent most of my time browsing their "lifestyle" section, which seems to keep getting bigger and better. Here are a few of the items I was drooling over. I didn't bring anything home with me, but I can't get that soapdish out of my head, so I may have to go back and grab one. I've included the online prices below, but many of these items were on sale in-store (including that grey vase, which I carried around the store for awhile - the colour was so soft and pretty!).
  1. Set of 3 hammam guest towels, $24.50
  2. Round vintage bath container, $19.50
  3. Shellish grey vase, $14.50
  4. Giraffe bookend, $32.00
  5. Goa soapdish, $14.00
  6. Large porcelain candleholder, $29.50
Adam's working tomorrow, so I'm planning to tackle the trim painting in the basement. I'm hoping to have some reveal photos for you on Monday! What are you up to this weekend?

2.02.2012

DIY (fake) succulents

A HUGE thank you to everyone who commented or tweeted in response to my baby news - you guys are the best!

Ever since the garden shops closed for the season and succulents became impossible to find, I've been really wanting to add a few to our house (I have great timing).  On Tuesday night I was in Michael's pondering the exorbitant price they're charging for wool roving, when I stumbled across some plastic succulents. I know you're probably silently praying that I didn't buy one (spoiler alert: I did), but hear me out. I'm normally not a fan of fake plants, but I've been killing a lot of plants lately (not on purpose, mind you) and it kind of seemed like the right thing to do.


via All my friends are dead.

Also, it was on sale and I figured I could afford a $4 chance. Here's what I came home with (in addition to pictures of something at HomeSense I'm trying to convince my husband to let me buy):

Please excuse the flash - I was working at night!
I added peastone from our driveway, cut the succulents off the stem and arranged them on top.



My apologies if you can't get over the whole fake plant thing, but I'm thinking it's not the worst placeholder until I can find the real thing. Where do you stand on fake plants?
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