Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Some lovely white rooms

As always, I'm on the hunt for ideas...






Monday, March 30, 2009

Master Bedroom Reno

This room was probably our cheapest remodel (besides the temporary kitchen). After we moved in we knew that we had a lot of demolition to do so I basically kept everything from our first house in the basement to reduce clean up and rearranging. Everything in this room besides the headboard (a cheap and easy do-it-yourself project we did in about 3 hours, for instructions click here) and the shelves we used in lieu of bedside tables ($21 per shelf) are from what we refer to as my basement "store".

Gorgeous drapes, huh?

As with every other room in the house, we went with espresso stained birch hardwood floors in here. The wall color is seed pearl by Pratt & Lambert, but I am considering painting the wall behind the bed a charcoal gray (Sean has yet to be convinced...).

Click any image to enlarge.

Besides the 36 inch pillows in the very back all the bedding is from Simply Shabby Chic at Target.

You might not know her name

But you have probably seen her art in dozens of magazines and ads. Even though it looks like something to play with Tamar Mogendorff makes art that is truely for wonderful for kids of all ages. I am not sure which one, but I want to get one or two of these for Wren in time for her birthday next December:

Fabric Sale

While stopping in at the office for a couple hours yesterday I decided to take a stroll through the fabric store that is literally 2 doors down. I have a couple projects that I am always keeping my eye open for fabrics since I would rather find the perfect fabric than rush to get it done. One of those projects has been adding foam and fabric to the seat of this bench I picked up about 3 years ago at a barn sale for $10.
Since it is only 3 feet long and 1 foot deep I browsed through the remnant pieces, and low and behold they had this perfect natural linen, marked at $1.60 for 2 yards! Wowie! That totally made my day, until a sales lady cutting the foam I needed pointed out that remnants were on sale today: buy 1, get 2 free!!! So I quickly went back and picked up some white upholstery fabric (you never know when you can use this, and I always keep a few yards hanging around) and this gorgeous blue and turquoise fabric.

All for $1.60!!! The foam came to a whopping $3.50 so all in all I finally got this bench done for $5.10 (I guess even less if you divide $1.60 by 3, but those are just bonuses to me).

I think I will put this at the end of our bed, so the dogs have a hangout.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Love these!

Etsy artist Julianna Swaney has a really wonderful blog, rarebird, that features her drawings and inspiration. Her art really feels like it is from a different time, but is still really fun and unique. I am in love with her pieces and think these would look awesome in the family room, and the brooch would make a great gift for one of my family members~

Mirror Image

We have been on the hunt for a huge mirror for our living room for MONTHS now. Well, the Home Sense Gods have answered our prayers. We saw this beauty last Wednesday night while we were killing some time waiting for Sean's truck to be serviced. It is so big (8.5 feet) that my trusty SUV couldn't even do the job and we had to go back for it a few days later with Sean's truck! I am not sure which wall it will eventually lean on yet, so I may need some input from all of you in the next couple weeks~

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Earth Hour 2009

Hope everyone out there is getting ready, currently participating or has already done their share for Earth Hour! We have unplugged everything non-essential (like the fridge), turned out the lights and decided to kick off Earth hour a little early (we're running on batteries on the laptop). Since the Earth does so much for us we figured the least we could do was give up 2 hours of our time.

Have a great Earth Hour!

Time to Vent!

As promised, here is the tutorial on creating your own hood vent! This project is fairly simple, but definitely time consuming, it took me about 6 or 7 hours. The best part is that it is a really cheap project!

Tools you will need:
-mitre saw, or mitre box and hand saw

-finishing nails
-quarter inch screws
-carpenters glue
-flat metal brackets
-L shaped brackets

To start, you will want to get a hood vent that is flush with your cabinets, or if you have a handy hubby like I do you can have him saw off the front of the hood so that it is flush (make sure he doesn't saw the electrical parts though!!!). This way you can still reach all your controls on the hood.

Step 1: You are going to want to create a simple 3 piece attachment for your cabinets. This unit is made entirely of MDF (I used half inch thick MDF), but since you need very little I recommend looking in the scrap section of your Home Depot because you can probably get it for $1 or $2 like I did. To make this you will need 2 identical triangular pieces cut, and one rectangular piece. The height of the triangular pieces should be the height of your cabinetry (length X) but be sure to take into account the addition of the bottom piece of MDF, and length Z will be the length you need to go out from your cabinets to cover your hood. The length (Y) of your rectangular piece will be the width of your cabinet. To attach these three pieces I recommend first applying glue, then using L brackets to attach them, as shown below. To prevent splitting the MDF, you should pre-drill the holes.

Step 2 is creating the actual cover for the hood, and since this is the visible part it needs to be done cleanly and neatly. I chose to use wainscotting since it is very light weight. Like the MDF, you only need a couple of feet in length, and a couple inches in height so you can definitely find a scrap piece for mere dollars. I attached the wainscotting to the base with glue and then several finishing nails along the top where I will later cover with trim.

Step 3 is attaching is back to your cabinets. You will need to remove your cabinet doors along with their hinges. I recommend 2 people for this job so that one person can hold it steady while the other person drills and screws. Once again, pre-drill holes where you will be using metal brackets to support it. Once you have it mounted you will replace your doors and hinges on to the front of the cover but attaching them to the triangular pieces.

Once you have the doors back up and everything attached you can add decorative molding and trim to embellish the front, like I did below. I also prefer not to have handles on those upper cabinets so I just used wood filler to fill the holes and touched up the paint. You will now be able to paint your hood to match your cabinets!

I think that pretty much covers it, but if anything is hard to understand or if you have any questions just let me know!

Friday, March 27, 2009

A quick note

I will definitely do a tutorial on the hood vent for everyone this weekend~


Gone Country

Yesterday we made the 1 hour drive out of the city to go hang out with my Grandparents. It was a warm, sunny Spring day and so we were happy to get out and see the country side. Wren was very excited of course because we promised her there would be TONS of horses, both outside and in (my Grandpa is pretty passionate about his horses!). As expected we all had a great time, Grandma just so happened to make the noodles I had been craving for the last month (and even gave me some to take home!!!), Sean got homemade ice cream and raspberry sauce, and Wren got cuddled to death by the Baby Whisperer, aka Grandma. All in all, a pretty good day!

When we arrived back home we all just cuddled up and watched a movie, unfortunately Wren wouldn't share any of the blankets or the huge arm chair...

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Easy Kitchen Update

I am so excited to get started on our new kitchen (c'mon good weather!!!), but sadly that will be the one room we do not DIY. We decided to have custom cabinetry and countertops done since we are really looking at it as an investment. We plan on living here for a veryyyy long time because we hate moving more than getting our teeth pulled, so we agreed that it was best to leave this room to the professionals.
But we still have some great DIY kitchen ideas, thanks to our beloved first home! The kitchen was about as basic as "builder basic" gets: laminate counters, oak panel cabinets, cheap appliances... and since we were poor, first time home owners there was no justifying a new kitchen.
For about $400 we took the old kitchen from "yeow!" to "WOW"
The befores (click any image to enlarge):
We did several things to spice it up:
-paint the cabinets
-change the hardware
-add crown molding
-subway tile backsplash
-hide the ugly hood vent over the stove
We did the transformation over a 1 month period, working on something every weekend, and before we knew it we were cooking in a kitchen that we loved. The key to a successful kitchen update is to go for a custom look. The molding is the cheapest and fastest way to acheive that, and if you are up for a bit more of a challenge, the hood vent is a very cheap way to look like you are cooking in a kitchen out of a magazine! Good luck with any updates you have planned and please share any of your transformations!!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Anyone have any clue

how to fix my blog list on the left? Ever since we switched over to our own domain name it seems my list has disappeared. If it is some easy fix let me know! Otherwise I will have my computer savvy sister take a look this weekend.

Going Green

This is obviously not a high priority since I have a whole lot of decorating and renovating to do. But maybe someday after everything is done, after the last picture has been hung and the final light fixture mounted, Wren and I can have a space like this to play with:

When I was a little girl my Aunt Carol actually had a "guest house" that looked like a life sized doll house in her garden. I remember wanting to sleep there whenever we visited (which she let me do) and thinking to myself: This is awesome!! So even though it may be a few years away, I will definitely be looking forward to doing something like this:

photo credit: country living

Sunday, March 22, 2009

This one's for you Torri:

I'll start off by apologizing to my Mom (Sorry Mom!), but these are just too funny not to share...
God bless the man who invented this imac program:
Torri, looking crazy HOT!
Me, imitating a bug:
Mom after grabbing a 10,000 volt wire:
Mom again:
Wren, the alien child:
The incredible shrinking headed baby:
Wren doing her impression of Sloth from Goonies:
Wren again:
Me, doing my Eddie Murphy impression from the Nutty Professors:
Blogging tips