Thursday, January 26, 2012

Our Bedroom

I gave you a little glimpse into our bedroom a few months ago and eluded to some more changes on the way.  Remember, a few weeks ago we painted the bedroom the same taupe we used in the hallway and living room. I also tweaked some of the accessories and I'm very happy with the results.  
 The first thing you might notice is the placement of a matching set of 2 dressers and a nightstand all on one wall. I felt like I was breaking all of the interior decorating rules {broken old rule- Don't put 2 dressers on one wall; broken new rule - Don't have matchy-matchy furniture} when I did it but the result was just right. Oh yea, and I did stack the night stand on top of a dresser, I know, I've said it before I'm weird. The set was from my parents and is very nice, I didn't have the heart to separate or alter it permanently. So I just changed a few knobs out for ceramic ones {teal and ivory} and kept them really close together.
 I have yet to find a name that seems to fit my style. I've had other people call it eclectic, bohemian, scandinavian, weird, hodge-podge. I just find I like what I like. So here are a few pictures of things I like in my bed room right now. Likely they will live in other parts of the house at some point. One of my newest items is the red ceramic Foo Dog in the foreground. I've wanted a pair of little Foo Dogs for a while and when I found this guy (and his mate that lives in the living room) at Target (I know I'm still in disbelief) I was sure they were meant to live at my house.
Like many all of my vignettes the items have been collected over time and from a variety of sources. The blue and white vase as well as the  trio of mercury glass candle sticks were ReStore finds (you MUST go there). And were $8 and $6 (for all three) respectivly. I've noticed the prices there creeping up a bit as they gain popularity but you can still find some amazing deals.
My necklaces and bracelets hang on three sets of hooks (purchased from Menard's for around $5 each). This is amazingly practical because I can see my options and they aren't all tangled, and I get to use my jewelry as wall art (or at least to fill up wall space). The large teal window frame behind the vignette we just looked at was rescued from an old barn on one of my parents' farms.
Smaller pieces like rings and earrings are at home in this ceramic egg crate. I was buying one as a birthday gift for a friend and like half the charge was for shipping so I just added a second one to my cart to help justify the shipping charge and somehow that second one ended up on my own dresser. I makes me feel special to have the same thing as Sherry (and its on Katie's wish list).{Do you see my handsome (although distorted) husband in the reflection? His extra inches gave him a better vantage point for this birds eye view.} The mercury vase was a gift and the books have been picked up at thrift stores and the red glasses are ones I wear almost every day. {I feel like a liar as I type that because I can see the rims of my brown glasses on my face, but truly most of the time I wear the red ones.}
Not much has changed here, just new more appropriately proportioned and shaped light bulbs {that was Jeremy's design contribution to the project}. It all looks much better backed with taupe rather than white.
This large mirror was purchased at Ikea during my last trip (months ago). Funny story - I wondered if it would be tall enough for my bean pole husband to use, so I mortified my friends by asking a couple different tall guys to take it for a test drive as a stand in for my husband. They gave it a thumbs up and luckily so did he when he got home. We hung it off the floor just above an electrical outlet and added 2 hooks of either side for robes and stray towels.

And now for the 360! Thanks to Microsoft PhotoSynth (an iPhone app) you can see the whole room at once {just a bit distorted}.
The first door on the left is the entrance to the room and you can see the sweet built-in linen closet. The first window you see looks out to the north and the second to the east, so our bed is at a 45 degree angle in the room. The other door is to our half bath. The closet is behind those wall-colored bi-fold doors. Thats it for our bedroom. I feel like I just filmed an episode of Cribs, but just wait there's more... 

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

A Quick & Free Project

So I used to do a lot more of office work related to the opening of mail (accounts receivable) and sort of fell in love with the patterns on the inside of security envelopes. I know I'm weird. And when I say "fell in love with" I mean the way you love a scarf or your new hair cut, not the way you love your husband or your child. So I start hoarding keeping envelopes from work with the idea that some day I will do something cool with them. So some day was the other day when I realized that the large circle paper punch (that I bought to make gift tags for christmas) was the catalyst needed to take these used envelopes from trash to treasure. 
 So I started sifting through my now out of control envelope collection and punching out circles. There were stripes and plaids and dots and birds and rings and numbers and all sorts of great patterns. I only used the blue ones for this project, but saved the blacks, greens, and even a pink or two for a future project. 
Then with my trusty purple Elmer's glue stick, I tacked the circles down on whatever cardboardy stuff was in the frame I wanted to use (total transparency here folks).
 I really like the way it turned out! All different shades of blue, with interesting but subtle patterns. I've had a few people try to guess what my material was when they look at the frame, so far no one has guessed correctly. The patterns just look like an old familiar face that you just can't seem to place.
 As planned it is up in the gallery (in the collection of teal frames on the living room walls, I promise I will show you this soon, I have more posts planned than I have time to write).  Please ignore the framed news paper and scrap book paper they are just colorful and decent-ish frame fillers while I wait for my next big idea. {Do you see the hippo (hint: the fish aren't in front of a rock)?} 

Monday, January 16, 2012

Taking My DIY Skills to Work

Obviously as a florist I get to be creative at work (proof 1, proof 2), but a couple weeks ago I got to be creative about rebuilding, repurposing, and redecorating at our anchor store. This building had been a flower shop for over 50 years and thus had been used and abused. So while Ron, my boss and stepdad, was gone for a sort ski trip. I made some changes (with the help of my whole team). One fixture that was a little worse for the wear was our delivery table. No one still living remembers anything before this table, some drawers barely opened and it last received a fresh coat of paint more that 10 years ago - it was time for retirement.
So we took it out a tore it apart with crow bars! -What every florist dreams of doing at work.
And that's what was underneath ... gross! We needed a table with lots of storage and roughly the same dimensions (12ft L x 4 ft W x 3ft T). I chose four 5ft sink base cabinets in unfinished oak from Lowe's, to put back to back to achieve  10ft L x 4 ft W x 3ft T.

We stained the oak with Kona by Rustoleum, for a deep rich and very forgiving color. And 2 coats of oil-ehanced polyurethane, for protection and easy clean up. The top is 2 separate pieces of MDF (or is it particle bard I can hardly tell the difference) particle board (thanks Jer), with laminate and oak trim stained to match. When the tops are removed all four base cabinets are seperable. The design room looked more like a woodworking shop than a flower shop for the 3 days we worked on this. Basically every surface was covered in plastic and used for staining, sanding, etc.  And everyone on the staff helped: delivery drivers would go and pick up materials, designers and office personnel would stain and polyurethane (and paint - I'll show you that in a second). It was fun to work together on a big atypical project and hopefully everyone now has ownership in the work we did and will work to keep it nice in the future.

My husband is so wonderful and joined the team as our carpenter each day after he got off work. He and I put in some long nights to get it done but I really like the way it turned out. Now it looks like a piece of furnitute that has a place and a purpose.
And true to form I cannot let one project be enough. I decided that while everything was torn up anyway I might as well update our "break area," which was more like dysfunctional microwave storage in a hall way to the office and broom closet.
Scary right? So we modified a counter top (in matching laminate to the new delivery table), to function as a "break bar" with stools. It is great because someone can actually sit down without being in the way of traffic. The computer counter that it backs up to was a mixture of sweet (sarcasm) 70's style paneling and raw 2x4's so we painted that purple to match accent walls that are other places in the store and to unify this area.
 Major improvement for a little add-on project right? And of course we painted the other side of the computer counter.
While the purple paint was out we also revived another piece of dilapidated furniture.
3 projects, 3 days, amazing transformations.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Welcome to Our Home - Floor Plan

I love sharing my house projects with you! I have shared pictures from a couple rooms in the house with you, and now I will give you a little perspective in the form of a floor plan that I just created on

-The kitchen has a peninsula (where we removed the upper cabinets) which opens up to the dinning room.
-The laundry room is accessed from the kitchen and is just big enough for the washer and dryer. I would love to have a true laundry room with room to stand someday, but it is still very nice to be able to close the doors and have a laundry free kitchen.
-Near the living room off the entry/hallway there is an oversized closet. It is wonderful and large (big enough for a baby crib some day - although most people don't like the idea of keeping a baby in a large closet so ... forget that I said that).
-The color you see for each room represents the wall color.
-The tiny unlabeled closet looking thing between the Full Bath and Kid Room is a built-in linen closet.

I have more pictures that I will share soon of more rooms and other projects.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Pinned it - Did it!

If you arn't already addicted to Pinterest don't read this post and don't go to . Stay far far away from this wonderful website that will give you a million amazing ideas but will make all of your free time disappear. If you are a Pinterest addict like me, then read on and follow me!

I pinned this cute idea for putting fabric in wooden embroyery hoops as wall decor. 
I knew this would be perfect for the bare walls in my guest room. Since the most common guests in this room are my young (ages 3-6) siblings we often call this the kid room. However, my 6 year old sister Grace calls it her room. My goal is to create a colorful kid friendly space without buying too many decorations as we know the use for this room will change someday soon.  
The quilt on the bed is made from my high school tees, the pillows are mostly from Ikea, and the lamp I made a few months ago. But from other angles, like this one from the doorway, the room looked a little bare. 
I had collected a few round hoops over the past year and my friend Amanda found a couple oblong ones that are very cool. I also had remnants of 3 different bold colored floral fabrics and knew they would be perfect for this quick project. So after stretching and trimming the fabric I convinced my husband to help me hang them. 

Ahh.... much better. 

On a much different note, I pinned this no heat curls tutorial early in my Pinterest experience. As I'm trying to grow out my hair, I've been limiting heat styling and have been using this technique and love it. Sometimes I put up my hair before bed, this time I put it up for just a few hours in the morning before church.

And tonight I was able to give one of my pinned it/did it projects as a gift. When I sewing project I knew it would be perfect for my siblings who like to spend the night at my house!
Tonight we were celebrating Marty's 3rd birthday and I gave him one that I made from 4 pillow cases and 4 pillows. 

I even had a handsome volunteer to try it out.  The smile means comfortable and fun!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Holiday Cheer

Wow! The holidays are truly exhausting. In my mind {Utopia} the holidays are relaxing and stress free and the perfect time to spend with family and reflecting on the real reason for Christmas, Christ's birth. But alas like everyone else I find my self sucked into "holiday season". There are gifts to buy hunt down wrap wrestle with paper and tape, and give bestow. One of my favorite things is finding the perfect gift for someone, something they will use, love like a lot {you shouldn't love things}, and keep forever or use all the time. I talked blogged a little about how I like to make gifts here, and I did some of that this Christmas but lets be honest that's not really practical when your time is at a premium around the holidays.  Man I am good at getting off on tangents, anyway... I will show you what I've been up to the past 2 weeks ...

Well here's the thing, I should have showed you my tree around Thanksgiving when we put it up, but I did't so now that I'm talking about Christmas it seems like a good time.

Traditional Red and Green Glass Ornaments,
with silver, lime and red poinsettas
and some sparkly red feather looking things

Presents under the tree
Between my Kansas trip and Christmas my friend Amanda, came over to work on a gift for her sister-in-law. For some reason people think I am creative or something and that this will rub off on them if they are in a close proximity. This isn't true, but I let them think it so I have an excuse to get out paints, scisors, modge podge, magazines, Dr. Pepper, etc. and play. So we each started with a blank canvas, and Amanda ended with a beautiful tree for a gift, and I (after lots and lots of cutting) ended up with a blank canvas, but made lots of head way toward a cool project.

Mine is on the left and is inspired by this image from Pinterest.
Hopefully soon I will have a Pinned It/Made It post for you with the completed canvas.
My photographer husband was very sick on Christmas so I do not have any pictures, but did have a great day with both of our families while said photographer husband was at home in bed/the bathroom. 

For New Years Eve I got to have lunch and catch up with some wonderful college friends, Liz & Linda. We have all been friends since we lived on the same floor freshman year and are a subset of the larger group that you saw here at Liz's wedding.  She has a nice bronze glow from her recent honeymoon!

Later Jeremy and I went out for dinner downtown with some friends. And although it was hard (because we are lame grown ups) stayed up to toast the New Year at midnight. 
Well here are the ladies that celebrated the New Year together.
{Me, Sara, and Courtney}
For some reason there is no picture of the guys. 
New Year's Day was spent in (Sara's) comfy sweats, doing stuff around the house.  Sara calls this look the Grey Goblin and I really enjoyed it! We did end up having a couple friends over for an impromptu dinner party, which is one of our favorite things to do. 

We also painted our bedroom on the 1st and will finish putting it back together today. We decided to go with the same color {Valspar's Cincinnatian Hotel Nichols Taupe} from our living room and hallway because (1) We love it! (2) It's a great neutral & (3) I may have purchased a giant 5 gallon bucket {which made me feel really cool at the time, like some champion of home remodels} and have had half of it left. I will have an after picture for you soon.  
Hi hansom husband - thanks for posing for a picture for my blog
And then last night, I added names to bags for my Mom's girl scout troop {They are moving up to brownies so their blue daisy bags needed to be replaced. And they are running out of room for patches on the old bags. }...

while I cooked dinner {lemon pepper tilapia, rice, green beans, and salad}, ...
A picture of raw fish is kind of gross and doesn't exactly help you
visualize me cooking, but its the picture I have and blogs are much
better with lots of pictures
set the table {I love really like my colorful fiesta ware and napkins with mismatched silverware}, ...

and wrote most of this blog post.