March 26, 2014

A continuation of 'Mini Home Renovation'


I am painting the hickory cabinets/vanity 
to match the black granite and will post a 
blog of that in the coming weeks.

{An early before}                                   {After}


{Before}                                              {After}

March 11, 2014

Wall Stenciling

I think I'm starting to get the hang of this stenciling thing.  Not that it's very hard (you can check out my first stenciling project here); however, when you're working in a cramped space that has 7 doorways, then it becomes a bit of a challenge.

I reveal to you the product of 6 straight hours of stenciling, having used three
separate trellis stencils of varying sizes.

[P.S. It's not even finished yet]:  

{Before:}                                           {After:}

{An early before:}                                  {After:}


{An early, early before}                         {After}             


February 9, 2014

Mini Home Renovation

Phase 1: Floors

Sayonara bamboo, hello oak.  Not that there's anything wrong with bamboo - but when you have all that oak wasting away under there, it should be unearthed.  So, in a quest to restore the 
original hardwood that was underlying the bamboo that J installed six years ago, 
we hired the help of professionals.  We are thrilled with the outcome and 
so happy to be walking on 60+ year-old floors.  

                                                {Before:}                                       {After:} 

Phase 2: Paint

After much trial, tribulation and deliberation, we had fresh new coats of paint applied 
to all the trim, ceilings, doors and walls, and added new baseboards.  

Living Room



I had sooooo much fun recreating my gallery wall in a diagonal:

 {Before:}                               {After:}


Continued here

December 2, 2013

My 80+ year-old neighbor had a tag sale this summer right before she moved.  I didn't expect to see anything I liked - much less buy anything - until I feasted my eyes on this beautiful antique blown-
glass lamp.  I brought it home, trashed the dirty old shade, then re-used the one that I had lying 
around from Restoration Hardware that had a faint wine stain on it (from this debacle).  
Because amber complements blue, I knew it would look great in our living 
room.  Such a pleasant and unexpected find. :)

November 23, 2013

I've been slacking on my blog lately, so I thought I'd quickly share with you a new rug I recently acquired that's perfectly cozy for winter.  It disheartens me to also share with you that, to make
way for this new rug, I decided to sell my whorled Trapunto Anthropologie rug in gold.  
Anyway, introducing the new area rug for my closet:

{Souk rug courtesy of West Elm}


In loving memory of my old rug:

{Stock photo courtesy of Anthropologie}

September 25, 2013

Another gallery wall in the works, this time in my hallway, featuring my adorable felines:

{Gallery wall frames courtesy of Pottery Barn}


Did you know that Mark Twain once said: "I simply can't resist a cat, particularly a purring one.
They are the cleanest, cunningest, and most intelligent things I know,
outside of the girl you love, of course."

April 20, 2013

I've finally overcome my addiction to throw pillows.  However, I seem to have developed a new addiction to area rugs.  Isn't that the way it goes?  So, without further ado, I reveal to you my latest purchase:

{Whorled Trapunto rug courtesy of Anthropologie}

February 13, 2013

Following my last blog, I decided to more adequately label my assortment of jars with none other than... 

chalkboard paint.

Because I have a penchant for labeling things.




October 14, 2012

A sneak peek at the making of a new blog...

About six years ago I went vegetarian [then vegan then back to vegetarian], and about four years ago I went roughly 90% chemical free.  That means no harsh household chemical cleaners (only vinegar), no perfumes (just essential oils), no artificial flavoring (ever), no harmful dyes... you get the gist.  Nowadays, me and my better half are making our own products, including laundry detergent, dishwasher detergent, deodorant, body butter, shave gel, liquid body wash, eyeglass cleaner, liquid hand soap, hairspray, toothpaste, lip balm, and fragrances.  These products are incredibly cost-effective and REALLY fun to make, but most importantly they are 100% kind to your health and to the environment.  Did I mention they also work better than their store-bought counterparts?  Really!  I'm going to try my hand at some new recipes but, in the meantime, here are some photos of my new love and labor:

Homemade shea body butter:

Homemade laundry detergent:

Homemade fragrances:

Homemade deodorant (works better than store-bought!):

Homemade lip balm:

Homemade liquid body wash:
{I repurposed my old 32 oz. liquid body wash container}

Homemade liquid hand soap:
{Recipe yields A LOT}

September 3, 2012

In light of our newly stenciled hallway, I felt like our bathroom didn't quite measure up.  So, as you probably already guessed, I updated our bathroom to something a little more fresh and simple.

(Eyres Shower Curtain courtesy of Anthropologie}
{Damask Bathmat courtesy of Anthropologie


(Waves of Ruffles shower curtain courtesy of Anthropologie)
(Castile Rose bathmat courtesy of Anthropologie)
(Mirror stems courtesy of Z Gallerie)
(Wall paint - "Sharkfin" by Valspar)

August 27, 2012

I finally got around to that stenciling project I blogged about earlier.  And, believe it or not, it was EASY!  More importantly, I am thrilled with the way it turned out.  My only disappointment (and this was by my own negligence) is that I didn't stencil a more expansive wall.  Since there are seven - yes, seven - doorways in my hallway, they interfere with the pattern aesthetic I was going for.  I would have preferred more continuity.  In any event, here is a glimpse into the hallway from the living room.  Note that I've had trouble capturing a quality 'after' photo because of poor lighting.

June 26, 2012

Fresco towels.  They're a bit pricey at $70 a pop - but well worth their beauty and craftsmanship.  They're made from 100% Turkish cotton by a family-run company out of California. Who also happens to offer free shipping.  It doesn't get much better than that.  And I adore my first set:

The one on the right (Casbah sunset) is for my fiancĂ©.  He once remarked that there is no red in our home.  So, now... there is.  But as a general rule of thumb: I do not do red.  Just a personal choice.

June 23, 2012

Silverware nouveau.  Granted, I wasn't in the market for silverware... but, after all, who can't use more silverware?  Besides, these had a special charm to them.  Yes, I think silverware can be charming. :)

{Silverware courtesy of World Market}

*Blog Update:  

After the first or second wash, some of the knives in this silverware set rusted.  I've never seen this happen before.  If you are in the market for silverware, do not make the mistake I did by purchasing them from World Market; these are are obviously of poor quality.

June 20, 2012

It hath arrived - the stencil that I took six months to commit to:

Why do I get the feeling this stencil is mocking me?  Wish me luck as I take this, along with a gallon of paint, to my hallway...

June 17, 2012

I was laying in bed, reveling in the comfort of my new pillowcase, when I thought I'd shoot a photo of the price tag that came with my new pillowcase.  I know what you must be thinking and, no, I did NOT spend $109 on a standard pillowcase; if it weren't for the Tres Jolie liquidation sale, I would not have the honor of owning a Bella Notte.  But, now that I do, I'm going to continue reveling in this amazing, heavenly linen. 

June 16, 2012

For a simple and inexpensive way to update a room, new switch plate/outlet covers and new floor vent covers make all the difference in the world. 

{Switch plates/outlet covers courtesy of Lowes}

{Floor vent covers courtesy of Lowes}

May 19, 2012

I must be on a light fixture kick.  I just purchased this new sconce light fixture for my entry.  I'm in love with this latest.  Of course.

{Faceted Mirror Sconce courtesy of West Elm}

May 13, 2012

I'm so very, very excited to present to you my latest and greatest find.  I purchased this light fixture on the premise that it was just too beautiful to pass up.  (That's allowed.)  I wanted to hang it in an unexpected place, so I fancied the kitchen - then fell in love instantly.  See for yourself.  The illumination is stunning; the shadows dance:

{Large Organic Blown Glass light pendant courtesy of West Elm}

March 28, 2012

'Project Walk-in Closet'

When you purchase a home that was built in the 1950s, and assuming it hasn't undergone any major renovations, you can count on the fact that you're going to have to forgo a walk-in closet.  So, when life gives you lemons...

1. Claim the third bedroom as yours for the taking:
(isn't this the perfect size for a walk-in?)

2. Slap on a fresh coat of paint and install new flooring:

3. Purchase a new area rug:

{Mutabilis runner courtesy of Anthropologie}

(The Girl loves it, too)

4. Purchase new window panels:

{Curtains courtesy of West Elm}

5. Purchase a fun new light fixture
(I chose this, but a chandelier would be awesome):

{Lighting courtesy of World Market}

To Be Continued... (click here)