A Pretty Space & Business Cards

Thursday, June 30, 2011

A friend contacted me a while back for advice on making her living room a brighter and in her words "prettier" space.  She had fallen into the brown hole that many of us have found ourselves in lately.  She likes to keep things on the neutral side, but doesn't shy from colorful accents.  Did I mention that she loves horses?  Here is the mood board that I made for her.

My thoughts were to keep the furnishings and wall color neutral and to change out accessories when the mood strikes.  Hopefully I will have pictures to share soon.

In other news, I recently ordered business cards from Pixel Impress on etsy.  The process was super easy and my cards arrived within the week.

 I just noticed this morning that many new styles have been added to her shop.

I'm pretty much in love with these notecards.

Design Tips & a Guest Post

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

If you follow me on pinterest, you might notice my comment "mixture" on many of the images.  I love a balanced room.   By balanced I mean a room that isn't too specific in style and time period.  Layered or collected might be good words to use in this case.  Style at Home has listed 23 decorating tips from their editors and style mixing was one of them.

Here are a few of my favorite tips....

Go here to read all 23 tips.

I still owe you the rest of the details on the chair.  I promise it won't be long - life has been a bit crazy.

Ange from the blog Blooming Hydrangea has invited me over today while she continues to unpack and settle into her new house. If you haven't checked out Ange's blog before, you can do so here.

Sunburst Mirrors - a thrifty find

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

 It seems like everyone finds great things on craigslist except me.  Well, the other day I scored a pair of these mirrors for a steal.  Where will I put them?  Truth be told, I didn't need them, wasn't looking for them, they just found me and started calling my name.  Rene.  Rene.  Look at me.  I come in a pair and only cost $20.  Surely you can find a place for me.  Rene.

My initial thoughts are to paint them either gold or white.  Also, maybe it is the libra in me, but I love pairs and especially love symmetry.  Here are a few images that have me thinking.
 Massucco Warner Miller
 Decor Pad
Decor Pad

Decor Pad
Jan Showers

Now it is your turn.  What would you do with them?

Double Welt Cording

Monday, June 27, 2011

Thank you for the nice comments about the chair.  I am going to break down some of the steps to hopefully answer some of your questions.  Many of you commented on the cording so I thought that I would share how it was made.

Before I do, I should probably remind you that I have never done anything like this before.  Up to this point, my upholstery projects were limited to dining chairs and benches.  Because of this, I started with a chair that 1) was found on the side of the road and 2) I used drop cloth for the upholstery.  My thoughts were that if I decided to throw in the towel and kick this thing to the curb, there would be money wasted.

To prepare the drop cloth, I washed it twice soaking it an hour each time.  Drop cloth right out of the package can be very stiff so unless you are using it for a project that requires a stiff fabric, I recommend washing it first.

To make the cording, I first measured how much I would need using the cording itself going around all of areas where cording is needed.  Then I doubled that amount (because it is double cording).  The beauty of drop cloth is that you can cut a tiny cut with scissors, then rip the rest which is much faster and precise than cutting with scissors.

I used this cording and found it at Joanns.

It is recommended that you use a special sewing machine foot to make the cording.  I did not have one and decided to try it without and it worked just fine.  This was also my first time making the cording and it isn't perfect, but will do.

First lay the strip of drop cloth out and place one piece of cording on the strip.  Fold the cording over about half way as shown in the image above.

Next lay the other piece of cording as close as you can next to the wrapped cording.
Then fold the fabric over to cover both rows of cording and stitch down the middle.  You will have to stop and reposition the cording and fabric every 6-8" or so.  Trim away extra fabric after you finish this step.
When you are finished it will look like this on the top. 
Before gluing the cording on, I first pinned it into place on the chair.  To secure the welting to the chair I used a glue gun.
Hopefully this makes sense.  If not, feel free to email me.

The Chair

Friday, June 24, 2011

Does anyone remember this chair?  Not my favorite subject, but just wanted to give you an update.  To be honest, I worked on it for about a day after I posted about it.  Then I did something that makes perfect sense, I started making slip covers for the wingback chairs.  More on that at a later date.  Anyway, this week, in between sanding and priming the table and shelves, I faced my fears and began working on the channel back chair again.

Here she is in all her splendor.  I went with double welt cording for the trim detail instead of braiding.  Apparently 12 year old boys have an opinion on how chairs should look and they can be outspoken about it.  Actually, I think it was a good call.

(my 15 year old started driver's ed this week)

We are off to a sporting event that will take up most of the weekend.  Young mamas who think it gets easier when your babies get older - have I got news for you.  When kids get bigger: 1) they eat more 2) they cost more 3) they do more.  You will find yourself in your house in 10 minute increments throughout the day wondering if you have time to do a load of laundry or prep dinner.  You will realize that you have time for neither.  Later, when you come home everyone will ask you what is for dinner and when their clothes will be clean.  This is not a complaint, just keeping it real.

Happy weekend!  You all are wonderful!

Robin Stubbert

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I recently stumbled upon images from the talented photographer Robin Stubbert.  This kitchen is one of my favorites with all of its lovely modern farmhouse details. 

Honestly, I wouldn't change a thing.  You can see more here.

What's New

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Thanks to the title of this post, I can totally picture Tom Jones.

Last weekend I scored a few new treasures for the etsy shop that I thought you might like. 

1 * 2 * 3 * 4 * 5

The bird house has been refurbished.  I chose red because I love the way it wakes up a neutral room.  Here are a couple of images for your viewing pleasure...

Decor Pad

Decor Pad

Windsor Smith via Decor Pad

Decor Pad

Happy shopping!

Upcoming Projects

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

If you have followed my blog for a while, then you might know about the 25 times that my family room has been re-arranged.  We finally decided to go with the tv over the mantle which has created several new projects for me.

Part of making this all work is getting rid of this armoire (which by the way has been reduced for the 4th time on craigs).  Local followers, do you need an art cabinet, bar, clothing storage, or media cabinet?  Email me

On the agenda is this table given to me recently by my aunt.  I want to place it under the front window in our family room and am torn between going with a glossy black or white, or something completely different like bright green or inky blue.

This gorgeous green chest found here is speaking to me.

And I love the color of this mirror found here.

Now that the the tv is mounted over the mantle, we have the media components to deal with and the wires grrr.  Slowly we are making progress.

I found this bookcase that will fit perfectly under the window to the left of the mantle and we will use it to store the wii & dvr box along with books and accessories.

Eddie Ross recently lined the backs of an ikea bookcase with fabric wrapped around foam core.  This is a great temporary trick.  Changing it out for something new would be easy to do later on when I want something different.

I also like the idea of painting the background in a moody color.  With all of the white in the family room, this could bring in balance.  Foam core was also used in this project which is genius.

The striped curtains will have to go too.  They were only a temporary fix and an experiment.  

Depending on which way I go with the furniture painting projects, I might like this dark blue from ikea.
I have had my eyes on these for a while.  Do any of you have them?

Or maybe the ritva, with a row of ribbon trim on the leading edge like this...

though I think looks better in a room with contrasting walls and mine are white.

Decisions, decisions.  I'll keep you posted.

Your Ektorp Questions Answered

Monday, June 20, 2011

Several of you have asked about the sofa in our living room and I meant to prepare an informative post months ago.  Here is what I can tell you and by the way, no one is paying me in any way (but if IKEA would like to send me a gift card, well that would be OK).

To begin, the Ektorp is $499 with the white slip cover.  Slip covers come in many colors and to my knowledge the only one that is machine washable is the white one.  The others are dry clean only.

Was it hard to assemble?
This is the box that it came in and it was HEAVY.  Thankfully we had a large van to carry it home in otherwise, I'm not sure we could have managed.  The assembly was easy and took less than an hour with the tools that were provided.  One of my blogging friends was happy to learn that you had to assemble it yourself because she couldn't find a sofa that would fit through her bedroom door.

How do you clean it?

For spot cleaning, I use household peroxide.  There are many products on the market that are basically the same thing, but with a pretty label.  Mom has always used this to spot clean linens, etc. and it works.  For major cleaning I followed the cleaning instructions provided:

Removable cover
Machine wash ,hot 140°F (60°C).
To be washed separately.
Do not bleach.
Do not tumble dry.
Iron, high temperature.
Dryclean, normal cycle.
I added oxi-clean to the water because I was afraid that bleach would make it yellow.  I will say that putting the pillow covers back on was easy, but putting the slip cover on was a struggle because it did shrink a little.  I have read before that it is best to remove a slip cover from the dryer while it is still damp so that it will stretch a when you put it back on.  I did this and it was still a struggle.  Do-able, but not easy.

Is it comfortable?

My family and I think it is comfortable.  It is firmer than a normal sofa because there are no springs so I recommend sitting on it in the store first.

Has it held up well?

Yes.  We have had it for a year and use it daily.  So far so good.

Would I buy it again if I had it to do over?

Yes, at the time, it was exactly what we needed - a white sofa that was inexpensive.  I would definitely buy it again.

If you have any more questions, send them my way and I will try my best to answer them.  I hope this helps.