Friday, November 30, 2012

Dresser: seeking new home

Hey guys! Just popping in to see if anyone in the Edmonton Area wants to give this guy a new home. Sean brought home his own find and now this one needs a new family (I'll show you what he bought next week!). Dimensions are 19 inches deep, 34.5 inches high and 40 inches wide. Asking $320.
If you aren't sure if you can get it home we would be happy to deliver in the Edmonton area.
email me at 

Thanks and have a safe and fun weekend!

Tied Up

Besides greenery, my go-to staple for holiday decorating has been ribbon. I clipped out out a Michael's coupon for 50% off last week and grabbed a 10 meter roll for $1.99. And that $1.99 has been the gift that just keeps giving.


I've said it a hundred times, Keep It Simple is my motto. It's cool how such a small touch as a little ribbon can pop when you keep all other things to a minimum too.


Little pops of red are showing up in random corners and on unsuspecting victims.


It doesn't have to be fancy ribbon, intricately tied or anything complicated. Sometimes simple is just the best way.

Now I need to go find more things to tie my little bows on... au revior!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

going green

Simple is my motto this holiday. Oh yeah, and cheap! A commenter yesterday asked how come I would hesitate over a tree skirt purchase when I love designer clothes and that got me thinking... For me it isn't about what I can or can't afford. It is about the challenge that comes with trying to make the most of a dollar.  All of us splurge or treat ourselves from time to time, but stay frugal in other areas. For example, I NEVER get my nails done, hair appointments are yearly at best. And we all know I have a love affair going with thrifting! So I don't have any guilt over my splurges from time to time because of all the other areas I am pretty thrifty in. But really this is neither here nor there.

Today we are going to deck the halls. And while I could go out to buy greenery, I don't want to if I can get it for free in my own back yard. It doesn't take much, and definitely not enough to strip any of my trees, so even if you don't have an ever green tree on your property maybe ask a friend or family member if you can help yourself to some greenery this season in the name of saving a few dollars.

{out with my little helper}

Just a little sprig or two make it so much more festive.

Be sure that when you are decking your halls you try to keep any greenery from directly resting on furniture in the event of any sap dripping or sticking to your the surface. A perfectly tarnished tray feels like it was made just for this little holiday set up.

I threw a few paper towels behind the mirror along with just a few sprigs again.

I kind of loved thinking up items and containers I could throw my assortment of collected branches in. An ice bucket is a sparkly way to keep an arrangement, plus with water in there these ones should last all through the season.

For a more rustic look I literally just plopped the whole thing into an old crate.

My biggest bundle is on the dining room sideboard. I also wanted this one to hold out for the whole season so I threw them into a pitcher and then tucked a length of scrap canvas in there to hide the container and add some texture. No decorations or added work, just simple and lots of lovely fragrances floating through the house.
_MG_1737copy _MG_1738copy _MG_1755copy

My favorite spot I tucked some branches was this old trophy. I picked it up last summer for $.50 at a garage sale. It is plastic and super tacky but I loved the shape and that there was some stone on the base.

So I unscrewed it all and spray painted the cup and wood base.

Voila! All painted up and with the marble back in place it looks super fresh.

I call this one my winning combo. Ba dum bum *ching*
And finally, in the family room I just shoved some more bundles into water in an pitcher a family member gave me and a burlap covered glass vase. A few of you have asked about the burlap one before and I while I wish I could say I made it, I actually grabbed it at TJ Maxx back in March but I have seen them at HomeGoods and HomeSense since then. I think it was $7.99. 


I am all about simplicity this year by not throwing up decorations all over the house. Instead, just doing greenery (and a few other small touches I'll show you tomorrow)  I am so happy to report that it almost feels like this is the most festive our house has ever felt. The real spirit comes from the people who live here.

How is your 'hall decking' coming? I hope I'm not the only person throwing branches up everywhere they can find a spot!

Red and White Delight

I have briefly mentioned my red obsession as of late. And there is no better excuse to add some drama than the holidays so I've been painting the town red this week, so to speak.

With a little help of course!

I am super super thankful because not only did Wren help me this year, but Ikea offered to help as well in getting our holiday perfectly rosy red. And a little goes a long way over there so if the feeling moves you to make a little color scheme switcheroo too then head over there for lots of inspiration. I promise there won't be any guilt involved (which I had at first for abandoning my beloved teal/blue holiday treasures).

The past 5 or 6 years I have painstakingly collected and cared for countless antique holiday ornaments. And while I probably should have changed the agenda a few years ago after first losing a few to curious fingers, it hit home last year that Wren will only be little once and she finds so much magic in the season that this year we wanted a VERY kid friendly holiday home. No breakable items. AT ALL. Which is also what led to my decision to try some new colors this year, so long as it didn't break the bank.

The first item to hit the bottom of my cart was this Henrika throw blanket. I love the subtle, sparkly border. It is very well priced ($19.99) but I found this guy in the AS IS area for $9. ALWAYS head back there before you hit the checkout!

We have never followed the tradition of an Advent wreath at home, but I always loved when we lit the candles at school growing up. So I am really excited to start our own new tradition this year. Not exactly a wreath, but we put our own spin on it thanks to these adorable numbered candles (only $6.99 for all 4! this is by far my favorite holiday purchase) and a thrifted silver platter.

My 'most fun' award of the holidays go to these Julmys garlands. I grabbed 8 of them to put on both the mantle and tree. They come in different patterns in black/white and red/white. I tied three together with some grey yarn to swag them on the mantle for a bit of Suess-ical fun.
_MG_1705 _MG_1707 

Because the budget didn't allow for a whole tree's worth of new decorations we got creative and turned the whole tree into our advent calender. Wren and I stickered up this $10 set of gift bags {filled with tiny treasures} and hung them instead of many decorations. If you have little ones I have to tell you that this is a HIT. It was so fun to do together and was impossible for her to do wrong. And Wren cannot wait to get started with finding the right number each day on the tree to see what surprise lies within.

Another fool proof and improvised project came in the form of our tree skirt. Man, those can be pricey! I am gonna keep my eyes peeled after the holidays for a deal on one for next year. But this year I want to keep all the decorating on the CHEAP. So I grabbed a meter of red and white fabric ($7.99/meter, surprise!surprise! also from Ikea) and just draped it around the base of the tree. 

If you actually know how to sew this could be a really easy project. But me. no. sew. 

{ the red and white delight }

The cones are also from Ikea, but the droopy linen bows are just ripped linen I tied to the tree (details on that post here)

And to top it all off I got majorly luck when I stumbled on to a huge bucket of these darling straw ornaments at GoodWill. The whole bucket was all of $3. I am still pinching myself over that one! They fit our Swedish Tree to a tee.

All adorned! I threw Wren's sheepskin under the tree for added texture, but MungKee has now assumed it as his new bed.... for now.

Our 'Swedish Holiday' is just beginning, and so are my Christmas posts. So stop by tomorrow as we add some more holiday cheer with ribbon!

A BIG thank you to Ikea for helping to make our holiday that much more magical!

Monday, November 26, 2012

A homecoming (of sorts)....

I am feeling so fresh and renewed lately. It sounds so superficial but sometimes a change of pace, or in my case space, can put that extra little umphf in my step. 

It has a lot to do with re-calibrating my design compass. Sorry if you are confused, I think Sean is still whirling from some of the recent changes too. So let me explain. I have always LOVED white interiors. Love, love, love them. My favorite design book of all time is called Living With White by my design-hero: Atlanta Bartlett. And while I have ALWAYS loved time-worn and well loved items as well, my original vision for my home was a balance of the two (which Atlanta does exquisitely). When we bought this house it was a big house for two 24 year olds with little furniture and lots of expensive renos to do. Meaning furniture was not in the budget.

As many of you know, that is how WhiteBerry Reinvented came to be. The only way I could get this house feeling like a home was thrifting, garage sale-ing and dumpster diving for furniture I could refinish on the CHEAP! 6 months later I was doing it as a full-time job. While I always stayed true to my vision of white, our house became a constantly evolving 'show room' of pieces, coming and going as they sold and I finished new ones. Obviously I managed, and found myself enjoying the whole process (if you are a design junkie it is addicting to constantly reinvent your spaces). But as WhiteBerry wound down over the past year as I ventured on to bigger and more time consuming projects (aka Lexington and now ParkView) I took a look around and realized that while I loved every item individually my vision for a fresh, yet warm, lived- in interior was not my reality.

I know more and more moms are venturing into the painted furniture business, and if you have then you know that right now distressed furniture is HUGE. Whenever I finished new pieces the first ones to sell were always the most distressed. So before I knew it I was distressing things left and right! Which is a good thing for some people, but for me I need a little bit of that new-sparkle. Some crisp, straight lines to play off my still-insanely-loved old items. And now that we don't live in a 'showroom' I am getting back to it.

This is my homecoming. To embrace the idea of designing a room and *gasp* then live with it! So slowly, bit by bit Sean and I are tweaking a few things. Not starting from scratch, just shifting a few things in the direction we always envisioned our home to be. 

So we started with our dining room/living room. I have rambled about it endlessly here. How I have never been content in here, hence the constant work in progress. 


Just because we are finally making our space our own, it doesn't mean we can break the bank, so you know I hit the thrift store when I went looking for a new table.

I found this tacky, dated table for $45 (of course my original before shot disappeared mysteriously from my camera). It had good lines, but most importantly it has really awesome chrome legs. So I unscrewed them from the table top to save myself a ton of taping during the painting process. Thanks for the support during this project mr. garbage can!


The table was not special or all that great, in fact it is what I call a 'particle board special' with plastic veneer. The lesson here is you don't always need to buy solid wood furniture to paint, so long as the veneer is in good shape and you use a paint that adheres to plastic. For this table I just used a can of krylon spray paint.


30 minutes and $8 of spray paint later this is what the outcome was. I left it in the Garaga
 to 'cure' for a few days then we hauled her in and used a little stainless steel polish on the legs.

And Voila, I finally have that little bit of sparkle I've been craving.

I played around with bringing the wing backs around the table but in the end I feel like I simplicity won out.

As things stand.

The one splurge we have made in our tweaking is the Stockholm rug from Ikea. 

There are 2 sizes they make but the largest size is almost ALWAYS out of stock. It is massive people, you don't get this much rug for under $500 very often! 

It is just the perfect punch of fun for us. We are negotiating what we want to do for a coffee table still because we've always known the trunk was both too high and not substantial enough for our big room but loved it enough to look past those flaws. So who knows what will happen there...

But for now we enjoying the luxury of feeling like we are actually creating the home we insanely adore. 

And if you read this whole post, thanks for listening, and more importantly thanks for not laughing (at least to my face) that we've changed the dining room... again. 

ScaRy Hair

I have had a long road to this moment in my life as a mom. The moment when I realize at the grocery store that my 3 (almost 4) year old has the exquivalent of a tumbleweed for hair do. Wren has always been super advanced for her age, except in the hair growth department. I have lamented over this fact previously (exhibit A) but now that I have a little person with hair I am definitely getting a good old reminder about what they say about greener grass. Dare I even say that I have been a little spoiled to not have to deal with the hair issue much until now? All those cute bows and clips I've been patiently saving are finally getting some use, and getting lost and getting pulled out 10 minutes later...

Because not only does she finally have hair, but she has her own sense of style. 

Showing off her 'headdress' (aka a ribbon stolen from the craft room she insists I wrap and tie on her head)
But once in a blue moon she lets me have my moment with the brush and a few elastic bands. So of course I have to document everything about it.

Because an hour later it looks like this. 

Which is perfect in it's own way because it is exactly, perfectly, Wren.

And just because I might need some blackmail material in the future, thought I'd share this little diddy.


PS: Don't forget to enter my Ara.02 giveaway, entries close tonight at 8pm Pacific time!

Friday, November 23, 2012

My Insta Favorites

I have really gotten into Instagram lately. Not as in posting more per se, but really branching out and finding inspiration, motivation and beauty. I was all about following friends and family (and still am) but I am completely awestruck by how amazingly some people capture moments, places and events. Not just re-posting inspiring rooms or outfits, there are some very gifted amateur photographers, decorators and mothers that can honestly capture the most mundane moments and make them refreshing and beautiful. And I am so excited to have found a couple new addicting blogs through instagram as well, but that's another post for another day.

For today, I want to show you some of my absolute favorite feeds. The user name is on the top of each photo so you can follow them as well should you desire a little more eye candy in your day. I subscribe to many lovely feeds, but these are the handful that I find myself liking every photo of. And I can honestly say that all these ladies are very sweet and respond to questions and comments (I know from experience because I leave them often).

In case you couldn't really tell, I am in the midst of a major Nordic-design crush, so check the list of feeds I'm following if you want to see more black and white minimalist design. 

And be sure to follow me for updates and sneak peeks that may take a few days to get blogged (like our new dining table and holiday decor).

{please keep in mind that the above images are not mine, but belong to the talented ladies who took them}

Who is your favorite Instagram feed? I am always looking for more inspiration!

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