Thursday, April 26, 2012

Industrial Modern FUN

After a night full of working (mostly Steve) until 2am, we wrapped up the shelving unit! It looks 1000x better than I even imagined and I couldn't be any more thrilled with it. My incredible husband amazes me with his skills! He always works so hard to see my ideas and designs come to fruition. What a guy!

(Now, pardon the photos. I am a day or so away from being able to use my computer and Lightroom again, but for now I had to shoot in jpeg and do zero editing. So these are all straight out of the 'ol camera.)

Without further ado, here is our industrial/mid-century modern work of art. VOILA!

Don't mind the TV cords. Soon to be moved behind the TV.

Are you loving the gray wall as much as I am?? Again, we chose Sherwin Williams Grayish and it is perfect. Bright and light, with a touch of warmth, and it contrasts nicely with the white trim. It is a smidge off in color here, sorry, again, no editing. It is showing a bit greenish in the top two photos, but it is more warm and ZERO green in real life.

In terms of the styling, I am really enjoying how it is coming together. I am trying to blend loads of texture and keep everything earthy in color. Notice glass, metal, leather, lambskin, soft blankets, mirrors, paper, greenery, wicker, wire.

A bunch of the pieces I have found recently while antique shopping, some of them we've made or repurposed, and a couple of items we already had. I still have a fantastic Kodak camera from the '50s on the way from Ebay, as well as a really cool metal airplane. Other than that, this is it.

LOVE these '50s books I picked up last weekend for a buck or two a piece (Actually, the blue one is more recent, but looks super modern to me). Talk about great titles too!! "Fortune Is A Woman". Truer words were never spoken. ;) I painted that little wooden airplane that I snagged for $1.

Steve welded this nifty piece of artwork for me. Totally cool.

I am diggin' the mixture of soft/cushy with the wicker and metal and wood. Again, sticking with earth tones.
I picked up those wicker boxes at Michael's (last night actually) for 40% off plus 20% off with an entire purchase coupon. DEAL! They are perfect for holding all of our DVDs and our DVD player.

This awesome antique toy phone Steve and I discovered while on our day trip last month. The box is one I had that I painted with chalkboard paint.

These are all books I had. Camera for $5 last weekend. Spheres I made and featured HERE.

This cigar box I scored last weekend as well. Marked for $20 at the antique shop, I offered $10, she agreed. Woohoo! Perfect spot for the remotes and incredibly cool. 

All in all, a BIG success! It was surely a labor of love though. It took more time, more money, more stress, less sleep and a smidge of disagreeing (only natural right?) to get it done, but in the end, it is even better than I thought. 100% custom, totally unique, and crafted by hand by my amazing Stevie-Poo (sorry babe). 

Maybe I'll get more into the construction of it later (including more photos once we paint more than just that one wall), but for now, that's all folks! What's your favorite element/piece??

Oh, and a before and after, just for fun.



Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Family Room Sneak Peek!

GAH!!! I'm so excited! Steve and I finally mustered up the energy to start back up on the family room shelving unit. We have been a smidge burned out lately and needed a minute to catch our breath. AHHHHH. So. Now that THAT is out of the way, onward!

Last night we set up the entire thing. Measured it, anchored it to the wall, put the unstained boards on it, hung the tv, and made sure we were happy. Ummmm. Happy? ECSTATIC! I didn't want to take it down!

Alas. We had to. Steve has to remove the two middle units in order to remove the boards to stain them. So it was just a sneak peek. But he managed to stain all the shelves last night and they are ready to go tonight. See? (iphone pics again, my computer is still on the fritz so I have no Lightroom)

Oh they look heavenly. Nice and dark cocoa-ish to pick up on the woodtones on the other side of the room in my desk and post office box. Coordinates so nicely with our coffee bean couches and contrasts perfectly with the white end tables and frames and the blue rug. I wanted them to look a bit distressed and aged, and Steve did such a great job. Love love love!

Here is what the piping looked like up, without the wood of course.

HUGE right??! I was surprised at how substantial they are! I mean, I knew it was going to be most of the wall, but it is hard to envision until you actually see them up. It is going to make SUCH a statement in the room and the entire first floor (this wall is visible throughout the floor). I don't even think you can tell that well from the photo, but they are lovely.

We are also planning on painting that wall tonight. Steve picked up the paint that I finally chose last night, and hopefully we'll whip that out this evening. We don't want to have to take the entire unit down again just to paint, so we'll do this one wall and then finish the rest soon.

Here is the color I picked.
Sherwin Williams Grayish. We color matched (like always) to Olympic Premium Latex paint since it is one of the only zero-voc paints with zero-voc colorant as well. Can't wait to see it up!! It is nice and light and bright and slightly warm to coordinate with all the warm brown tones we have in the room. Yet not beige-ish or too cool. I think it is going to be perfect with the industrial shelving. Hopefully tomorrow I can come back and show you! Maybe, maybe not. We'll see how much we get accomplished this evening.

Another really cool update for the room is in the artwork realm. I managed to snag four (fantastic!) nautical maps of Lake George NY on ebay this week. Graphic yellow. Gray. White. BIG. Annnnnnd $15 for all four. KILLER! I am going to frame them in the same frames that I used for the gallery wall and they will be grouped as a set on the wall where the old oak bookcase was. Here is a sneak peek.

PERFECT right??! I am in love. I had no idea they were going to be this lovely. What an absolute steal. Just when you think Ebay is lost and way overpriced. Wait until you see how incredible they are going to look all together.

I also have been wrangling some funky objects for the shelving lately. Today I painted a box I have been saving, with chalkboard paint. CB2 inspired! You'll see that soon. Lots going on here, and soon I'll have some more reveal photos to share. It is just so fun to see things coming together!

Monday, April 23, 2012

Outdoor Shenanagins

Now that the weather here has begun improving (ok, aside from the SNOWSTORM today!), we scribbled down our outdoor to do list. It is long. It is extensive. BUT, it is doable. I think. I hope! Here is a shot of what we have to do for this year.

The decking gets delivered tomorrow and we'll be getting the permit this week so that we can break ground on that next weekend. That is super exciting for me!! We didn't have a deck at our first house either, so it is going to be new and fun for us. May is a busy month for us, so hopefully we can finish it before June.

I did manage to accomplish a small task last week. Mulch! Steve picked it up during lunch one day and dropped it off for me. I spent nap time with the monitor on my hip and got to work! I managed to finish most of the front "garden" and it made a big improvement. It is always amazing the difference mulch can make. Gives everything a fresh, clean, polished look. Very affordable too. Lowes has mulch on sale for $10 for four bags. Cheap cheap. We used 10 bags for the front.

Here are some before shots. I only managed to use my iPhone that day. Notice the rock edging we did last month. We dug out all the red scalloped brick edging they had previously.

And the afters (again, sorry about the iphone pics. Nap time hurries!)

Look at our purdy flower blossoms! (I don't know if this is a cherry or crab apple or what. Do you??)
We stuck with the dark brown mulch and I like how it looks like nice freshly tilled sod. Or dirt. I don't really know the difference. (Can you tell I am not a landscaping expert??)

These are some of the bushes we will be ripping out. Yuck! All the greenery you see are Black-Eyed Susans.
Ahhhh improvement already! All it took was $25 in mulch and an hour during naptime. Plus I scored a free arm workout (dragging those bags around) annnnnd a teeny sun tan. SCORE.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Quick & Dirty Cushion Recover

Last night I had a burst of energy and inspiration to do a little project while the kids were with Steve outside. I grabbed a piece of scrap fabric and my staple gun and got to work! I have two ottomans/benchs in our family room for people to prop their feet on. Our room is very wide, so you can't reach the "coffee table" to put your legs on, so I like to have these available. Who likes to relax on the couch without a foot rest?? I recovered one already with a bright yellow chevron fabric, but this one was just plain white and I really wanted to update it a bit. I had a minute so off I went!

Here it is before. We actually recovered this about seven years ago. It was Steve's grandparent's old stool and it used to be floral.

All you need is a piece of fabric (I am using leftovers from the roman shades in the kitchen, which was actually a tablecloth from Target), a staple gun, and staples.

Step 1) Remove the cushion from the stool. Mine was not attached this time because there is a little storage area underneath, but the last one I did was screwed in.

Step 2) Lay your fabric out and place the cushion on top. (Don't mind the old gross vents. When we redo the kitchen they will be getting replaced.)

Step 3) Cut. I know. This is all very complicated. Thank GOODNESS you have the photos. ;)

Find a baby to park it on the corner of the cushion. PHEW! Glad I have one just hangin' around.

Kidding. I couldn't get him to move his tush.

Step 4) Start stapling it nice and tight. Make sure your pattern is right where you want it by flipping it over and checking the placement first. I do the two long edges first, then corners, then short edges. I'm not an expert on corners, I just fiddle with them until I like the way they look and do lots of stapling.

Step 5) Replace the cushion on the bench, screwing it on if you need to. VOILA!

Now. I am planning (I think) on painting the wood either white or gray. But I want to wait until we paint the family room because I'll just do it at the same time. Also, I always have a hard time taking the plunge when it comes to painting hardwood furniture. I am always afraid of ruining it! So, I mull it over awhile just to be sure. For now, both ottomans are wood toned and when I decide, I'll do them both. Or not. We'll see.

Here it is in it's home. Ready to be pulled out as needed or have a drink or magazine plopped on it. Whatev.

Oh shoot, I should have taken a better photo. See at the top of the mail sorter? I put the West Elm spheres that I made up there. Perfect spot! The stain matches 100% and it adds a bit of height to the piece which, in my opinion, was just a teeny bit short before. Someday I'll take a real photo to show you better.

So there you have it folks. That took me 5 minutes. Quick and dirty (notice I didn't show you the underside once it was stapled? That is where the dirty comes in. Who cares! No one can see it). Now it looks like it was purposely chosen for the room. YAY!

Friday, April 6, 2012

A Random Smattering of Goods.

After yesterday's post, both writing it all out like that, and hearing people's opinions/thoughts, we decided to go ahead with the mahogany. It will contrast nicely with the green when we replace the siding next year, and I think the dark, rich color will be perfect. As much as it will be hot, I remembered that the back of the house is facing north and doesn't get much sun until the evening. So that's good. I know it will show dry dirt and dust a lot, but I think overall, it's an alright trade off. One decision DONE.

Last week I also picked up some new lamps for our master bedroom. The lamps we were using were about a foot too short for our VERY tall bed and just were a pain in the neck to use. I was waiting for a sale at Target (where else), and finally I lucked out with a buy one, get one half off promo! Score. So I snatched up two of these babies (and lampshades of course).

I was trying to find lamps that were feminine & sparkly, yet not TOO in your face girly. I think they add the perfect touch of luxury and girl to the room.
Not to mention, they are tall enough for us to actually be able to read at night. Imagine that!

So pretty. I just love 'em. At under $35 a piece for the base and shade, they were a good price and make a big impact in the room.

Here is what the old lamps looked like.

annnnnnd the new! I love the height.

In other news (I'm all over the joint today), one of the next projects up is the dining room. Currently it is our staging room for things that haven't found a home since we've moved in/we won't be using anymore, as well as other random junk. Here is what it looks like right now.

Oh man, why am I showing this?? My brothers plants, random wall art that hasn't found a home, furniture we're not using, an old hideous chandelier, miscellaneous items for the new bookcase. Just craziness.

Yup. Craft supplies. Stuff to return to Target. Stuff to take to Goodwill. Baby carrier.

 I have a long to do list for this room, but mostly it is all quick and easy things that I can do myself. Or with just a little help. Here's the plan:

-Redo the chandelier (I can't wait to show you what I have up my sleeve!)
-Add crown molding (ok so Steve will be doing this one)
-Remove top part of white china cabinet and use it as a buffet instead
-Hang large mirror above buffet (again, that's a project you'll see later)
-Return huge antique dresser to my parents (it was perfect in our last home, but too big for here)
-Remove alll the junk of course (that's #1 on the list)
-Find a home for the bench in front of the window
-Add curtain and shades to the space
-Add wall art to the big blank wall where the dresser is now (again, another project you'll see)

All in all, it's not too bad! Down the line we also want to rip up the carpet and replace the flooring, as well as open up the wall into the entry way. But for now, just a few little things will make a HUGE difference!

The paint color is actually the ONLY color in the house I don't mind. It is a nice light gray. The color scheme for the room is going to be white/gray/black/silver. Very traditional yet with a modern, sophisticated twist.

You'll have to keep comin' back to see how things end up...

Have a great Easter weekend!

Thursday, April 5, 2012

It's Summertime & The Livins' Easy....

Well that's a bit of a stretch, wishful thinking maybe? It is Spring time though and Steve and I have a lot on our plates with the exterior of the house this year. First things first, building a deck. I find it hard to believe that this house didn't already have a deck, but they spent the money on a humongous front porch, so it's alright. We want to get it done nice and early in the season so that we can have lots of time to enjoy it. Plus, without a deck in the back, it is hard to really spend time back there. There isn't really anywhere for the babies to crawl around (since the yard is still a bit muddy) and there aren't any chairs or places to sit. So instead we spend most of our time in the front. Seeing as we have a nice playset and clubhouse for the kiddos, we want to be able to fully maximize our time in the back!

So this week we are ordering our decking and I just can't decide between two. Let me talk you through it a bit and then you can help me pick.

Here is our house now. Front and part of the back. It is a light cream color.


The deck will be two levels. The first level, with the railing, will go from the edge of the sliding door, to the bump out of the family room. The lower, ground level deck, will span the entire length of the family room.

(this photo was from the previous owners)

Our plans for the house include re-siding it next year and painting all the trim and shutters this year (hopefully). This is the color scheme we are going with.

An olive-ish, gray-green with nice bright white trim. That trim is slightly beige, ours will be white. I haven't decided 100% on shutters yet.

So the trouble is, picking a decking that will look alright with the cream we have now, but ultimately look best with the new colors coming in the future.

Here are our two choices. Sage & mahogany. The sage is more like a slight greenish tan. We will be going with a white railing, no matter the decking choice. We are using CorrectDeck composite decking.

This photo makes it look a smidge more tan than it is.

Sorry the photos aren't GREAT, but I wanted to make sure to use photos of the actual product, so there wasn't much of a selection.

Here are my thoughts. The green/lighter color will not get as hot, but it will also show dirt and scuff marks. The mahogany/dark color will get scorching hot, won't show mud, but will show dust and dry dirt.

Unlike the photos, our railing will be solid white, identical to this one.

So, with this color scheme, which decking do you think would be better, sage or mahogany??

The more I talk about it, the more I am thinking the mahogany...