Monday, August 27, 2012

A lotta LOVE

I get to wake up, live my passion every morning and the support my sponsors give is part of how my magic happens. Thank you all for stopping over and checking out the wonderful blogs, shops and sites on the left. And THANK YOU to all our sponsors!!

Thinking of becoming a sponsor? If you run a blog or small business and want to get your name out there this is a great opportunity to garner some new traffic! 

Drop me an email at if you have any questions or want to get set up for September/October!

Old and New

I am making a few minor tweaks in the dining room, trying to merge 2 looks I love: clean and fresh, old and timeworn. It is something that I think may be my biggest stumbling block... I truly do love clean, modern design, but I can't seem to embrace it. Individually, I love many different modern pieces and looks but I could never live in a totally 'modern' home. I love texture, warmth, age, charm and old things wayyyy too much. I think this duality may be part of my inability to feel 'done' with designing some parts of our home. 

So I am determined to make a few small changes in that direction, while maintaining the qualities I love about what I've already come up with. Sounds crazy, but I feel better going in to it with a plan.

Step 1: I brought these Ikea dining chairs in here. I bought the set off Kijiji for super cheap a couple years back. They were brown at the time, but I painted the seats white and keep them on hand for extra seating. They are fresh, crisp and clean looking and a fun mix with the rest of my white, upholstered seating (I decided to only flank the buffet, not bring them around the table as well).

Step 2: We are going to be painting the walls! I am undecided on whether to tackle it alone (hello, I am a painter!!) but there are some really high ceilings in here and I may just see if it is worth the investment to save myself some trouble and hire it out. I still love the white in here (Seed Pearl by Pratt & Lambert), but there are days and months when it doesn't translate as a creamy, warm white. The reality of living in a cold climate is that half the year my warm cream looks like a blue-white. I have narrowed down the selection but I have about 4 shades of warm, clay-like taupes and tans that I am deciding between. I cannot wait to see the white furniture pop off the warmer walls!
Hopefully this will put an end to my multiple-design-personalities for a little bit!

And as a reminder, today is the LAST DAY to enter the amazing SaSea Decor pillow giveaway!!! As I mentioned, about 50 comments went missing the first day and while many of you have re-entered please check to make sure your comment wasn't one of the unfortunate missing ones!

Saturday, August 25, 2012

WhiteBerry Reinvented/Lexington Sale

It's moving week at Lexington! Instead of moving things twice I figured I would save myself some heavy lifting and try and find homes for everything before the end of next week. In my eagerness to get everything photographed and cleaned up I totally forgot my measuring tape, but I will go back and grab all the dimensions today for anyone interested. 

As with all WhiteBerry items, everything is on a first come, first serve basis. Meaning, the first person who wants to pick an item up, not the first person who emails (sorry if that seems obvious, but it's come up in the past and I hate to see hurt feelings).

All items are for local pick up only, for anyone unsure I am in Edmonton, Canada. 

**THANKS everyone and I look forward to seeing everything go to loving new homes**

{ Antique chair $sold }
super solid construction, glossy white paint was already on the chair and in great condition.

{ set of 2  french end tables $SOLD }
Very sturdy, solid wood.

{ round dining table $SOLD }
solid wood, gently distressed. No leaf.

{ antique teacher's chair $sold }
soft salmon colored paint, extremely solid!

{Set of 2 nightstands, $sold }

Soft grey paint with neat Anthropologie luggage style pulls.

{ nightstand $sold }
Small, but really charming. Gently distressed with new, pink crystal Anthro knobs.
For scale:

{ antique waterfall vanity $sold }
bench covered in beautiful original pink satin fabric.

{ antique dresser $SOLD}
beautiful original hardware. Mirror not included, but am open to offers on it if you want the set.

{ white sofa/console table $sold }
there is a small scuff on the back side that is hard to see that is got during the move, can be easily touched up.

{ Large mirror $sold }
8 feet tall by 3 feet wide. From Ethan Allen.

{ antique buffet $SOLD }
I thought I had more pictures, so I will add more today. This piece is very large in person, the large living room really makes is seem smaller than it is. Original mirror, new anthropologie knobs.  Lots of detail and character!

I think that is everything that needs a home! If you have any questions be sure to email me at 

Friday, August 24, 2012

Doing a little dancy dance


It's hard to believe that this little chapter is almost finally closed! I am handing over the keys to Lexington in exactly one week to a super duper excited young couple (if you are wondering what the heck a Lexington is? click here to learn more). I think it has been harder to let it go than it was to get it done! All the sleepless nights, dreaming about what to do there, all the exhausted evenings after doing a million errands and then sanding old paint until my arms felt like Jello. I am a little sad to say goodbye.


But as they say, it's on wards and upwards for me. I learned so much about myself, ambition, drive, laying tile, making mistakes, why I hate carpet, making friends, and true passion throughout the whole process. Above making money while flipping houses, those things are priceless to me. 

(but I'm happy to report the 'making money' stuff worked out as well)

If you were one of the ever patient people who was waiting for the House Sale I was promising for all the furniture and fix'ins at Lexington I am not sure if it is going to happen as planned. The new buyers want a few things and besides that the whole deal, from first offer to handing over the keys, is taking only 13 days. Not nearly enough time for me to tag and price everything and then give you a few days notice as to what day a sale would be on. So I am going to do a photo inventory and have a little sale post here in the near future. Hopefully that will give everyone a chance to join in~

Thanks so much for all your support, encouragement, and advice with Lexington!!! It made this giant leap from flipping furniture into real estate so much less frightening and all that much more exhilarating. Stay tuned because I will be sharing my next house project in the very near future and as those on my instagram feed briefly saw, it's a bit of a bigger project...

Thursday, August 23, 2012


Totally out of the norm for what I would usually post, but I just have to share this amazing local man. This is one of the best new businesses I've seen in a long time. 

Check out Anthony's website if you want more info on his services!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Bed Head

It's at that point in the Summer when even the novelty of being flushed and golden after a day at the pool is getting old. I no longer wake up excited to throw on my denim cut offs, instead I long for the variety of boots and jeans in my daily wardrobe choices. 

Yet, I'm not ready for Summer to be over! I just want and need a little change of pace or a break in this heat (which I hear is headed my way... watch me eat these words). But I will admit defeat in the hair department for the remainder of this heat. What did people with long hair do before messy top knots were acceptable?

For me, the messier the better. Being a busy mom this usually happens naturally for me by about 9am and only gets progressively crazier as the day progresses.

Unfortunately, my love of messy hair has been passed on to Wren who is in a stage where she rarely lets me do anything with her hair. Admittedly she doesn't have enough of it to be concerned about this, but she is starting her first year of play school in just a few weeks and I am a little concerned over how we'll handle the hair situation. I am hoping that seeing other kids with actual combed, detangled hair will light a fire under her. 

Let it never be said she isn't an independent thinker!

{ divas in striped dresses with bows... and messy hair }

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Pillow Perfection.....psssst there's a giveaway!!

** Edited Wednesday, August 22: If you left a comment already and do not see it below please feel free to re-enter. About 50 comments awaiting moderation disappeared overnight and I have no way to figure out who left them or what happened to them. Please check and see if you need to re-enter!!! Sorry for any confusion and let's hope it doesn't happen again**

My love of beach/sea side decor is never ending. I don't like 'theme' decorating, but just a few hints of naval fabulousness makes me feel like I'm on cloud nine. My long time blog friend, Katie, is one of those amazingly talented ladies who has taken her passion and talents, merged them together to form Etsy shop SaSea Decor and the results are beautifully simple pillows that girls like me dream about.

{ a few of Katie's designs that recently joined our family room }
Some of Katie's older designs, bumble bee pillow and french script pillow, are common sights in many of my previous posts, and home.

I am so proud of her new collection of hand printed pillows, they are truly works of art!

Katie is not only talented, but uber generous and wants to share 2 pillows with one of  you!! One lucky winner will choose any 2 of Katie's designs for their own home. The only thing you have to do to enter is head over to Katie's Etsy shop, SaSea Decor, and tell us which 2 pillows you would choose in a comment on this post.

My thrift store octopus pillow loves his new friends!

You have until Monday, August 27 at 9pm Pacific time to post your choice of pillows here so don't forget! I will announce the winner later next week.

If you are impatient like me, and could use a little retail therapy Katie is offering us all 15% off any order using code inthefunlane 

A big thank you to SaSea Decor
Good luck to everyone!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Paint Perfection: The final Class

As promised, the long overdue last class in my Paint Perfection is finally ready. Funny fact: the forces that be REALLY didn't want this class to happen. First time I typed it out my computer died, second time Blogger ate it in their transition to the new layout and then this week Photobucket has been giving me error messages like there's no tomorrow. I had to go old fashioned and upload straight to blogger to make it happen but I am happy to say we are finally in business!

Our final class covers the last step I do with all my furniture: sealing it up. It is a step that is so simple but can make the difference between getting a year of use out of something or 10+ years. There are not a lot of secrets to sealing but there are a few things that I think are crucial to getting that perfect finish.

If you are just tuning in, here are our previous Paint Perfection Classes that work on everything up to this step.

To go over everything briefly I have a couple pieces we'll be sealing up together. The first is this little desk that I found at goodwill. It was already painted a cute greeny-grey but I wanted to make sure that it would stand the test of time by sealing it up.

The other is this old waterfall dresser that I have had sitting around for quite some time. It has beautiful brass art deco hardware and I think it will be lovely all revamped. Let's start from the top and cover everything quickly up to the sealing step.

We took off the hardware, gave it a quick sanding (not stripping it), and put a good coat of Kilz on it to prime. It is soooooo crucial that you prime pieces first like this because sometimes you won't see any discoloration aka bleed through until you start sealing it up. But trust me, they can and will bleed through making your beautiful new paint all dotted with orange/brown/red blotches. It is worth the extra work to prime!

All painted in a soft pink.
Ready for distressing!

Now comes the final portion of our project: sealing our furniture.
I am very specific on this step because I have tried a few products and have come to heavily rely on Varathane brand interior sealers. If you have worked with something else and it is a product you trust please do share because I have had American readers tell me they have had troubles finding Varathane. There are different kinds of Varathane, but look closely at the labels and buy only the Interior, water-based formula. You might be wondering what could possibly go wrong if you buy something else? Well the answer is that your paint job will yellow and discolor over time. I have made this mistake, trust me!! Just go with the good stuff in the first place and you will have no problems.

Many of you have asked if I use Varathane in my paint sprayer and the answer is yes! I love the finish I get doing that way but it can be tricky. I will go over the technique in a moment, but first let's talk other applications. If you don't spray your furniture you can get the same finish by buying your sealer in a spray can, it can be a little more pricey this way because I often need a can or two for an average sized dresser. You can still get a smooth, professional finish without spraying as well. In my experience the best way to manually apply sealer is with a foam brush. Rollers and brushes leave a small amount of texture and I like that you can simply toss the foam brush into your eco-station pile after only one use.

Now is the difficult part, getting an even, smooth surface. The issue many have with spraying on their sealer is that they are too light with the application and then it has a different smoothness in different areas. The other issue is that some people go too heavy and get drips. This is a very common issue, mainly because it goes on so thin that it doesn't feel like you are getting enough coverage. Then you come out a half hour later and your furniture looks like it is melting!

After using Varathane for so long I have come to get a good feel for it's consistancy. I set my sprayer on a very wide radius and have minimal fluid flow. It is so thin that it almost looks like you are spraying water so do some test sprays until you feel like you have a good feel for it as well. This dresser is a good example of how it should look as it dries. You can see it is unevenly drying (it was like a million degrees the day I shot it) but where it is wet it does not seem too 'wet'. I slowly build up a couple coats like this.

If you are working on a piece that will see A LOT of use and wear (like a kitchen table) or something that has some unevenness to the surface (like the brush strokes the last owner left on this desk) there is a little trick that I do. On the flat, horizontal surfaces I apply the sealant in a thicker coat. Not near the edges where it could possibly drip down, but on the bulk of the surface. Do this in a spot that is a little cooler so your sealant doesn't dry too fast, and after a few minutes your sealer will 'self level', filling and evening everything out. 

Right after applying and starting to level out. The back is where I started to work and you can already see it is smoother than the front which was just applied just seconds after going on. It won't perfect the surface but will make it really durable and easier to clean, etc.

All in a days work!

All finished up and ready to write a love letter. 

Protected and able to withstand years and years of use.

I think that covers everything, but please don't hesitate to ask any questions below and I'll do my best to answer!

Have a great weekend lovelies and thanks for your patience~

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

My mini Summer beauty update

Hey guys, was a little bored and whipped up this video last week. I now realize I accidentally turned off the HD setting so sorry it is not very crisp... but I haven't had time to go back and refilm. I like winging it anyhow, feels more like a conversation than a speech. 

As I mentioned before, I'm a rambler so apologies in advance (again) for the word vomit.
And another apology for the exposed tummy, my buttons were not cooperating either... 

Seems like I have covered all my apologies, so let's get down to it, shall we?

I am working on our Lexington video tour as well,  but if you have any suggestions for vlogs or blogs leave them in my 'comment box' 

Have a wonderful Tuesday my cookies!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Pretty Matchboxes

I think little projects that make the ordinary extraordinary are the funnest ones. By now I am convinced you have all witnessed my well established candle fetish, so it only makes sense that by relation I should love pretty matches. But the truth is I hadn't put any thought into it until  now.

Of course I've seen cute matches around, but spending $5-$10 on something so trivial seems pointless. So I decided it was high time I prettied up some matchboxes of my own. I love this project because I feel candles are one of those perfect gifts you can give for nearly any occasion. If you have a little stash at home you can handle almost any last minute gift with grace and elegance, and the only thing that would make it that much better would be to personalize a matchbox to the recipient, candle or event!

{ my new, pretty matches }

Oh yeah, and this is a super cheap craft/gift! I bought the matches at the dollar store and then headed over to   Creative Scrapbooks, a local store that has a seriously beautiful paper assortment. I coordinated  a cute leopard pattern with some teal glittered paper for a grand total of $2.60 and the rest of the supplies I already had at home. But if you need to make a trip to the craft store here is what else I used:
-a paper cutter (you could use scissors instead)
-a pencil and ruler for measuring and marking
-double sided mounting tape

Overall, this project is basically just like wrapping a present.  But we still need access to the striking material so we have to work around it. Simply cut your paper so that it goes from the edge of the striking material to the other side of the box, with some overhang on the sides to fold in.
Put tape on either side to adhere it. I think glue would be a little tough to work with and keep everything in place while it dries, but hot glue might be a good alternative.
All attached.
The same steps go for the other side, which I chose to do in the coordinating paper, but all one paper would be nice too.

Depending on what colors your paper is the side of the box being white might look good, but I wanted to up the glam factor and did more glitter paper
I didn't do the whole box, just each side. Again, fold in all paper edges for a cleaner look.

There are so many ways to make these even more exciting, using glitter, doing a monogram, the possibilities are endless really! 

All done, my glamorous matches add a little extra sparkle to my bedside candle. More than fragrance, I love the glow of a late night candle. It gives a simplicity to the evening and my routine as I wind down for the day.

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