Tuesday, March 30, 2010

rain, rain go away

it is SO rainy, gloomy, icky, and depressing today that i can't help but look forward to the temps that are forecasted for the weekend. 70's! with actual sun! It is still too early here to really do any full on outdoor plantings, plus i want to wait til after our trip so that what i plant doesn't die from lack of care (which would just be SO unusual, yeah right). I know exactly what i will be doing this weekend, which is what i do on most nice weekends. Reading in the sunroom. I know what you must be thinking, "girl, get outside and get the stink blown off you." You weren't thinking that? That's just S's dad? The stink can get blown off me just fine with all the windows and the skylight in the sunroom open, thank you very much. But if i was going to be outside (read: minus cat, plus bugs) i would want to be here.

this is not totally unattainable. i have a canvas gazebo thing, but would love S to build a pergola. we have the perfect space to do it by coming off the side of the garage. i have grass under the gazebo, but would love pavers of some sort. is that a fire pit?

hold up, did you see that planter wall hanging thing? i want it. i have a few pots hanging on the side of the garage, b/c i had to pretty up the cinderblock til we stucco. this would cover a lot more ground and looks like a piece of art.

and speaking of cinderblock... what an interesting idea! can't you see this with succulents? those chickens...or hens...er, you know what i mean, right?

this image reminds me of my sunroom, if when we started, my brickwork was nice and bright, and wasn't surrounded by brown paneling on the other walls and the ceiling. if it was an inviting space, instead of dark and dated. three words-orange. shag. carpeting.
you'll have to tune back in to see my absolute, 100% favorite spot in my home.

images from this old house, hgtv, and bhg

Sunday, March 28, 2010

my sweet girl

she usually gets an ottoman to lay on, but the door was only open for a second this time. One of the sunnier moments of the weekend.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Two is better than one

My spring wreath is kinda unspringy. it's isn't pastel. there are no eggs. i wanted it to be able to do double duty, b/c what do you do for a summer wreath? Add flip flops? Last year i was able to see what flowers and bushes bloomed and what colors would look good. The two dogwood trees have white flowers, i ordered red geraniums from a nonprofit fundraiser, and there are various yellow flowers in the summer, not to mention the daffodils doin' their thing now.

Here's a close up. The door is the original that was here, we just repainted it two toned and added more modern hardware.

i really like the way it turned out. I wish it let in a bit more light, so one day we might swap this for one with more glass and less door.

linking to finding fabulous, remodelaholic, fingerprints on the fridge, the shabby nest, it's so very creative, met monday, twice remembered cottage, persimmon perch

A bit o' business

My next door neighbor must have a separate flag budget. Every season and holiday she has brand new houseflags and garden flags displayed, at least 10, and those puppies add up. My flags and my wreaths are pretty much seasonal. Not only does this keep cost down, but because i got nothin' from winter to spring.

I feel like the only Jewish person in blogland. I'm not making any crafts for St. Patrick's Day, and i'm definitely not making any crafts for Easter. Valentine's Day i like to believe is about love inspired crafts, and i got no problem with that. i like love. love is good. But technically...it's St. Valentine's, right? Therefore i keep my snowmen out til it's technically spring b/c there's no filler in between. What, am i supposed to decorate for Purim and Passover? I'll hang up a few matzah's, that'll look good. And spring decor, altho ripe with birds and eggs and bunnies and nests in pastels, screams Easter to my non Easter celebrating eye.

And exhale. I feel better now.

Friday, March 26, 2010

now what?!

The good news is that the letters will be able to rest above the windows. I wasn't sure if there would be enough room to angle them, but there is. The bad news is that they may be too small. Are they too small? They are definitely too small to decorate with all that paper i bought. Which brings me to the fact that i quite like it in plain white. Imagine that D having an REA in front of it. That would look nice, no?

If you are wondering why i bought the D, it was b/c there were a lot more of the other letters, and only one of these. My pessimistic self thought it'd be safer this way. Watch, i'll go back and find the rest gone, but the D's will be restocked.

i might go buy the bigger letters to see how that looks since that was my original intention, and so i can actually utilize the 5,000 pounds of paper i bought.

she's a maniac (maniac) at the craft store

I have a teeny tiny tendency to get overly excited about things and become rather obsessed. It was merely days ago when i posted about how i would like to mod podge me up some words for the sunroom, like READ or RELAX, and i have been thinking about little else since. At the first convenient moment, I found myself at Michaels scouring the $1 section for scrapbook paper even though i have no idea if the wood letters will even FIT in the spot i have in mind, rendering this particular craft kaput. It's quite obvious that that didn't stop me from buying an insane amount of supplies. You know, for future projects, cuz i have so many. Had nothing to do with the fact that these were all half off items, making the majority of them 50 cents.

Here's a close up of some embellishmenty things, movie coasters for the basement, my letter to see if it will fit, a tin with a divine smelling vanilla candle, an apothecary jar beginning (b/c i'm like a child and therefore want what everyone else has) and a .29 book.

29 cents! What am i going to do with it? Who the heck knows! i couldn't let it sit there! What would you do with it?

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Keep it on the CL

We at the cape on the corner obsessively peruse Craigslist, hitting refresh over and over. And over. In fact our dinner conversations begin like this "Anything good on the list today?" I'm a free stuff and furniture by owner gal. S is free stuff, materials, and tools. There are countless occasions when i wish i had instant access to a truck and the ability to just take off and grab the goods. So...that's instant access to S, a helper for loading heavy furniture, a truck, and the kind of jobs that won't mind if we dash off for a few hours to haul what could turn out to be junk back home. Good luck with that.

Lots of times i see what i think the "blogworld" would love, but isn't my style. What to do with this information? Now i have an outlet for sharing. you can thank me later.

vintage queen anne wingback chair, 35 bucks

or how bout 75 bucks for a pair of these

or this tufted chair for 20 bucks. love.
with a tufted ottoman? fantastic.

wooden table, 55 bucks
is this clover considered quatrefoil? i am sure it is called something official, and very much reminds me of all the patterns that are big right now.

holy moly i have not seen anything like this.
700 bucks for the whole set, i know, a lot, but i had to highlight this quatrefoil headboard.
All of these items are from Philadelphia CL, meaning the surrounding counties are in this too. (Delco, Montco, Chesco, Bucks)

Monday, March 22, 2010

the third R

33 shades of green had a fantastic "how to" on decorative letters, and now i am obsessing over how i can do it. i really want to do my own version RIGHT NOW, like the leave work on this miserable and dreary day and go home and get crafty kind of right now. I have a specific place in mind, the top of the window ledges in the sunroom, but i have no idea if the letters will lean perfectly there. And then i will be crushed b/c i am imagining how stinkin' cute it will look.

Yesterday when it was fantastically beautiful i was in the sunroom, doing what i do best there. i read. i relax. perfect. Those are my words. But i need one more! What else do i do there with an R? rest? no, too much like relax. rejoice? uh uh, that's not me. r....grr, i can't think of anything. Oh please help! Someone must have an idea!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Thursday, March 18, 2010

i'm like a child

S says that i only want something when i see other people have it, and he's totally right. i'm not hungry, but if he comes out with popcorn, i want it. Last year at the local home show people were walking around with freebie yard sticks. I needed it. Canvas bags? Yes, please. I'm like a child.

Being new to blogging, and therefore crafting, i have gotten excited over many a project before i realize the person used their fancy cricut machine. Not being nearly crafty enough to warrant purchasing one, combined with being a cheap ass, means it is beyond my reach. Until now. Women Who Do It All is giving one away! This may be my only chance at being a cricut owner, so fingers crossed!

in exactly one month

i will be seeing something like these.

does anyone have suggestions of "must do's?" we will be spending 6 days in maui and 4 days in kauai. i am so excited for this relaxing vacation since our last one was at a breakneck pace. i do not want a repeat of that.

images from photobucket.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

the inspiration for it all

the only thing i wanted 9 years ago when i graduated college was a trip overseas. Since i knew i was doing this on my own, it had to be somewhere with English as the main language, and it needed to be a guided bus tour. No backpacking for me. So thanks to my dad, off i went for three weeks to England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales with total strangers. Every morning when we got on the bus, our tourguide would pass around his map and highlighter, and we would take our turn highlighting our route for the day on our own map, each day being a separate color. We started in London, went down to Wales, ferried to Ireland, (not going to the north) ferried back to the English Lake District, went to the Scottish highlands, and ended where we started in London. This has become one of my most prized possessions, and after my mom had it framed, became the inspiration for this room. Room Remix recently blogged about maps being used in decor and i am so thrilled that i am able to use one that has so much meaning. they're also offering a 25 dollar giveaway to HomeGoods, among others, on their site now. How great a giveaway is that?!?

i'm pretty sure i can do that myself

like i said, it takes a lot of image collecting before i get confident enough to do something myself, and even then my motivation is purely money saving. so i had been looking for art to go above the tv stand now that we chopped it down to work for the flat screen. wait, let's start again. friends of ours gave us the tv stand when they got a ginormous 65 or so inch screen b/c it clearly wouldn't work for them anymore. when we finally joined the masses and got our own flat screen, i searched for a new stand. the cheaply made ones were over 100 bucks and were all chrome and glass. S, being the genius that he is, said he could chop this down and make it work for our new one. doesn't it look fantastic? especially since he was able to use that topper piece again. my only beef with this unit is that it doesn't have doors to cover those shelves.



Better After:

so now i had that empty space and this huge blue wall. i wanted a series of connecting images, but what i came across was all floral, and i am NOT a floral person, not to mention the color palette needed to work. AC Moore had these 2 pack canvases, the craft paint and brushes (i own nothing of the sort) was borrowed from my SIL and mixed til i found what i was looking for. i have since seen 2 packs that are much bigger and would probably work, but if you think i am redoing this project, think again. the friends who gave us the tv stand had no idea this was the same one, and they also marveled at how we managed to find the perfect art piece for the space.

Here's a better shot of the art. it isn't perfect, and neither am i. you gotta be fine with that.

i'm linking up to my backyard eden, room to inspire, the persimmon perch, and mustard seed creations where i am sure there will be many more ideas to get those wheels a turnin'.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

turquoise, you say?

the single nester is having a link party about using turquoise or shades of blue in your home. this is right up my alley since it is my living room accent color, and i just keep buying more and more and more! so here we are:

the vases are from homegoods and ross, none more than 12 bucks. that striped one is perfect for my room colors.

this was once a brass lamp, but i think it looks ceramic now that it received a few coats of spray paint!

my living room with accent wall where all these items live. you can't tell from this pic, but the curtains have a thick blue stripe in them, as well as the carpet.

check out thesinglenester.com

Monday, March 15, 2010

bedroom to dining room

when we bought this house there was no dining room, a problem i never knew could exist. the solution was to turn the 4th bedroom (2 are on the first floor) into a dining room which would create flow, open up the closed in feeling of the living room, and allow the front door to swing open completely. I didn't want to open it completely, i like the separation of spaces but still feeling open.

The fancified transitional flooring looks like it was always there instead of created ex post facto. We did this 2.5 years ago, before i became blog obsessed and had no idea grey was such a huge color. i'm way ahead of my time, i tell ya. i just had this vision of what i wanted for the dining room--Black and white photos, red accents, two tone grey wall, chair rail, black furniture with white seats.

These frames were various shades of wood and were my first craft/DIY project. All i did was spray paint them black, but you have no idea how long it took to muster the courage to do it! It took months of watching HGTV for me to trust that i could actually accomplish this most basic of tasks. Please don't laugh. I've lived a sheltered life. All of the photos, except 2, were taken by me and turned into black and white. i've never been to France or Italy, nor do i know anything about photography. Still, i am quite proud of the ones i took and of course it means more knowing these are memories from my travels. The two i didn't take were bought at the Penn State Arts Festival. Despite my crap salary, i like to support the little guy. Top left photo: Tower Bridge, London. Soon to be replaced b/c there is too much England representin'. Top right: Formation in Stonehenge that reminded me of Brancusi's Kiss sculpture, on top of red construction paper b/c Michaels only had 2 red mattes. Bottom right: professional, Paris. Bottom left: Looking up at the London Eye. The key is from Ikea for 99 cents, and was glued in place before being hung.

Top left: Professional, Italy. Top right: Big Ben and parliament, but doesn't it look romantic with the street lamp? It's hard to tell, but there are strands of bulbs strung on either side, connecting to other street lamps. Bottom right: Overlooking Jerusalem and the Western Wall. Bottom left: A sculpture in Sfat, Israel depicting Adam and Eve. Red heart from Ikea, also 99 cents. I thought it was wise to lay out the design before putting holes in the wall. S liked that idea, too.

This is a photo i took pre digital camera age on the living room inspiration trip i mentioned before. Blew it up to poster size, and if you squint towards the left you can see two
people who were on my bus tour! pardon the flash.

the chair rail may be high, but this is where i wanted it so it would stand out. is it supposed to be lower and blend in with the window sill? i also don't like when it's only a foot off the ground. the big black mirror was a trash find and S made the frame. The sconces also got the spray paint treatment. The valances are table runners from Target that i attached with drapery clips. Look at me thinking outside of the box!

here you can see where the doorway to the bedroom was. we just took off the door frame components, and did the fancified flooring for cohesion. Love it. Did you have to create a room that was missing in your home, or turn one into something else?

i'm linking to the diy showoff, remodelaholic, persimmon perch, it's so very creative, met monday, my backyard eden, the thrifty home, room to inspire.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Everyday is like...

If you are familiar with this song from the Smiths, you know the last word is Sunday, and it pretty much fits this dreary day (nay, dreary weekend) to a T. And altho the work week looms ahead ominously, there are three things i look forward to about Sundays making it slightly more bearable. First, I have decided to post a picture of the world's cutest cat on the day of her namesake, so every Sunday i will try to post a picture of Sunday, who was named after the Smiths song for obvious reasons. I can't get enough of her.

The second reason i look forward to Sundays is that Frank Warren, of PostSecret.blogspot.com, posts a new batch of secrets that are mailed to his po box from around the world. The secrets are funny, witty, sad, depressing, expressive, creative, an outlet, and a support for others who feel as if they are the only ones with that secret.

And lastly, "the most fast paced hour on TV," and the only show i make it a point to watch is on. I shush the boyfriend, i accept no calls except during commercials, and i hunker down for an hour of The Amazing Race. Traveling the world is my dream, and i love to see places i have been and places i hope to get to featured on this deservedly Emmy winning show. Consecutive Emmys. Like 7. Take that, Survivor!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

to the left, to the left, to the left

Seriously, how am i supposed to greet guests at the door? Scurry backwards up the steps so they can actually enter the house? Yeah, that doesn't work for me. Enter fantastically handy-handy is too small a word, but what else is there?-boyfriend and cohabitant, S. Did I want the whole wall to come down? It would make it feel bigger, true, but I couldn't hastily whisper a conversation about S's mother if it was only one large room, now could I! She'd surely see! No, no, let's open it up and create space, yet keep it feeling like two rooms. Opening it completely allows for cross ventilation and for the door to be fully opened against the dining room wall. Much better. Now i don't have to feel closed in, and people can have separate conversations without having to struggle to be heard. Or be overheard, for that matter.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

there's a first time for everything

i can do this, right? after months of blog stalking and image collecting i shall start my own blog. none of the blogs i have come across mention "cape cod" style homes. actually, i am not talking cape cod style. i am talking cape cod shape--an absolute difference. i have tried googling, and all that comes up are decor in a cape cod style, or cape cod real estate for actual cape cod. in the blog world i see "brick ranch" and "cottage" and "bungalow" but where are design ideas to help figure out my little rooms in their closed off floor plan, or my statement dormer windows, or my lack of space to create adorable vignettes in threes?? let's paint this picture, shall we...walking in the front door you are met with stairs (darn you, feng shui meaning of money leaving straight out the house!) that you ascend to the second floor, and bam, you either walk straight into the bathroom, left to the master, or right to the guest room. i have no hallways, people! back to the first floor....when we bought the house 3 years ago, you would open the front door and only be able to go to the left, into the living room. By opening up what was a bedroom, and creating a dining room, we are able to have a lovely circular flow in this space.