Monday, November 22, 2010

All That Glitters is Gold

Today I took advantage of the unseasonably warm 60 degree Michigan weather and I decked the halls on our front porch.  Here is a sneak peek at our festive entrance:

I purchased simple greens marked 70% off yesterday from Michael's and added a few inexpensive store bought sparkly add ons.  However, I spray painted pine cones from our yard with metallic gold paint and sprinkled them with glitter while the paint was still wet.  I incorporated a few colorful metallic ball ornaments from my collection and they added instant color for free!  The bows are the reddish orange cheap ones (you know the ones) they fade quickly.  They were given to me a few years ago and I kept them in the basement until now.  Guess what?!  I spray painted them with rust-oleum's satin claret wine spray paint and they came out beautifully!

Finally to sparkle up the night, I bought 2 strands of lights at Target.  For around $30.00 our entrance looks warm, welcoming and festive. 

Participating in Monday's Blog Party Link Up

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Kitchen Cabinet Customized

I have always liked the look of glass front cabinets.  It is exciting to be able to display pretty dishes, but be able to hide the clutter of everyday living in the other cupboards.  This glass front cupboard is builder grade.  Here is what I did to add oomph and a bit of sophistication.

Using double stick scotch tape and hot glue I covered the back of the cabinet with poster size red textured artist paper.  For less than $5.00 and about an hour of time, I have a beautiful back drop for my dishes. 


Saturday, November 13, 2010

Basic Baby to Double Cherry Jubilee

Count your Blessings Two by Two ~ Twins

Currently I am working on transforming my 2.5 year old twin daughter's nursery into a cherry themed big girl space.  It has been my dream to decorate their room with red cherries and coordinating gingham since they were about the size of little cherry pits.  The first Autumn in our new home really confirmed that this cherry theme needed to be executed.  Their bedroom window overlooks a big beautiful blossoming crab apple tree that bears fruitful red berries in the Fall.  The red berries contrasting with the green leaves is magnificent and quite a stunning view from their second story window.

 It has been a challenge to find bedding, so I have purchased several fabrics and am trying to work out the logistics of making quilts or duvets.  Since my imagination is not working quickly enough, I am going to put my thoughts and ideas down here and post progress as it gets worked out.  Please leave comments and suggestions. 

We moved into our current home 2 years ago and unfortunately I have not given much attention to their room.  Their furniture and accessories coordinated very well in our other house. 

Here is a blast from the past (This tiny little room was only theirs for 3 months before we moved) :

The bedding and curtain were made by oh-so talented mom.  The rocking (glider) love seat was a life saver for feeding infant twins.   We bought it from Art Van with monetary gifts we received when the twins arrived.  It was money well spent.  We still use it daily for reading and rocking - there is room for our whole family!

My mom and I used wooden letters from Joann's and covered them with scrapbook paper and fabric.  We adhered them together with modge podge and also applied a thick layer over the paper to seal them

Addison is on the left and Amelia is on the right.  They are identical twins.  In their cuddly, cute crib sharing days we made sure to always put Addy on the left and Mia on the right (oldest to youngest).  This was a life saver when they were dressed in the same outfit.  They are less than 2 weeks old here.  If only I could grab them out of this picture and sniff their scrumptious infant scent...

Here is their room in the new house before we moved in:
After we moved in, but before the cherry transformation:

The missing "A" in Amelia was pulled down during a restless nap time.  While changing Amelia's messy diaper my creative husband made up a jingle about the scenario.

Please humor me by silently (or loudly) singing this to the tune of Jingle Bells:
"Mia lost an A, Addy pulled down
Olivia thought it was funny and she danced around. 
Oh!  Jingle bells Mia smells, Addy laid an egg,
Tricycle lost a wheel, Olivia took ballet"

The "A" will return soon, I just need to remember to bring the extra strength double stick tape from the basement and affix it to the wall again.


This hutch-like dresser is going to be painted and used in their revamped room.  A night stand will be painted to match this.

Since the walls will remain beige (for now) I am taking votes on colors for this hutch. 
Please comment with your choice!
  • Green (in between avocado & sage green)
  • Red (burgundy/maroon to match the curtains)
  • Antique White to match their matching twin bed frames

Also, the pulls are going to be sprayed with antique copper to match the ovals on the twin beds (see below).  They would show up best on the green or AW, but would blend in with red.  Will making it red be too much red?  I am thinking green for this piece.  HELP. ME. PLEASE!!!

Here is a picture of their unassembled twin headboard (the foot board is the same only shorter):

These beds were originally painted brown and used in my uncle's room then they were painted white and passed onto my sister and I and .  After years of use the paint was flaking & they needed a lot of elbow grease to restore their beauty.

Here are fabrics I have chosen to use as throw pillows and bedding:

The red and ivory pillow on the far left came with matching bed skirts.  They are by Waverly and were a crazy good Craigslist find $15.00 for 2 twin bed skirts and 2 throw pillows (all brand new).

The vintage printed panels are from eBay.  They will become pillows and possibly framed artwork for the walls.  Some will also be added to the existing valances (see below)

I have searched and searched for factory made bedding.  Literally I have been to the end of the Internet looking for sweet cherry bedding that includes the colors and made up pattern that I have in mind and it does not exist.  Ugh.  Tonight I had a huge epiphany when I was checking eBay for the millionth time - cherries - vintage - kitchens.  TABLECLOTHS!  Why have I not thought of this before?  There were some beauties!  So many that I nearly cried.  Okay, not really.  However, the one above is my favorite.  It is 52" x 65" so they will need some trimmings to make them twin size and I have the option to make them into duvets for easy washability or quilts.  I feel such a sense of relief.  See, this blog has helped me already!  These tablecloths are by Moda and are brand new with a vintage look and there are several listed currently.  HOORAY!

Brainstorming Corner:
  • Decal on wall that says "TWINS count your blessings two by two"
  • Cherry blossom tree decal from EBay on white closet doors to tie in blossoms on curtains?
  • Chair rail added with either paint or other treatment below to add interest?
  • Hire Candice Olson from Divine Design to make this perfect?  Nah, that would be too easy!

 Input is appreciated!  Stay tuned for the big reveal of this "Double Cherry Jubilee" bedroom.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Precious Pink Palace

This room is one of my favorites!  It was put together for my oldest daughter, Olivia.  This room is spacious and bright.  It is the perfect place for reading and imaginative play.  It would only be fair to give credit to the previous home owner once again because she chose the wallpaper, curtains, dresser, night stand, decorative plates and picture frames, as well as the bedding and pillows!  She was kind enough to pass these along to us since her daughter is all grown up.  What a joy, thank you Mrs. K!


We removed the faded carpeting and refinished the existing wood floors.  I painted the bottom half of the walls a cheery coral pink color.  The picture frame above the bed was painted with the wall paint and the picture was exchanged with one of my favorite photos of Olivia and her sisters.

The lamps were found at Marshall's/Homegoods.  The shades were perfect, however I painted the wooden base to match the rest of the room.  The rug is from the nursery in our other home and was purchased at Kmart.  My dad made the BEAUTIFUL rocking horse as a gift for Olivia on her first Christmas!

The shelf above the bed was another 'gift' from Mrs. K, it was moved from the kitchen to this room. 

The "Olivia" oval was a special homemade shower gift that we received from our cousin.
Longaberger baskets are happily displayed throughout our home and they are a beautiful addition.  This coral color basket on the dresser matches perfectly!  I am thankful to my Mother-In-Law who has worked for Longaberger for over 20 years and has graciously given us so many baskets!

The green gingham slip cover on the rocking chair was my first sewing project - ever.  It was a little frustrating and difficult since I was about 8 months pregnant with Olivia when I did it, but it turned out great!  It was created to match her crib bedding and I am so glad that it  matches the green detail in this wallpaper so well. 

This room was designed especially for Olivia Christine.  Hopefully she will enjoy it for many years to come.  For the cost of paint, floor refinishing, and lamps this space turned out great!  It is amazing how most of the components in this room were re-worked to make this precious pink palace for my oldest princess.

Olivia's room is growing up with her.  She now has a double bed because her room doubles as the guest room when we have overnight guests. 

Luxuriously Lavender Laundry/Mud Room

Our laundry room bridges between the garage and family room.  Therefore it must function as an entry/mudroom, laundry room, and mail dropping station.  This room is on a cement slab along with the garage and since we live in Michigan it is a chilly room for half of the year.  The 100% white color scheme made it feel dirty and cold.  Since the paint on the walls was a flat white, it was not scrubbable and filled with scuffs and dirtiness.  For the walls I used Behr's "Silver berry" paint.  By defining the walls in a subtle color the room surprisingly appears larger!    I regret and do apologize that I do not have any 'before' pictures.  Take my word that it was white on white and there was not any organization before this transformation.  Organization was my first priority in this space.  It now functions very well for our busy family. 

The cabinet to the right of the washer/drier and above the wash tub was a dark wood tone before I painted it.  I also spray painted the gold hardware with silver.  The striped boxes above the cabinet house my sewing supplies.  Since my sewing machine matches this room, I decided to display it.  I only use it a few times per year, so this works for me!  I have travertine tiles left over from our kitchen back splash, so I would like to use them up under this cabinet.  I also think it would be a neat detail to add corbels to the bottom of the cupboard.

The shelf above the laundry machines was a free basement find.  I painted it to breath new life into it.  The mail organizer has been a life saver in this space.  No more piles!  This was purchased on clearance at Marshall's/HomeGoods.

The framed poster was leftover from my college dorm days.  Funny how the Eiffel tower never goes out of style.

The key holder was a bargain find at Marshall's/Homegoods. 

For now, this space also functions as a diaper changing station.  Hopefully my twins will be done with diapers soon.  Maybe someday I can add add a counter top surface here?

The towel hook near the sink is new as well.  When we purchased this house there were not any towel holders in any of the bathrooms or other spaces.  Strange, I find them essential.


A full length mirror was added to hopefully avoid leaving the house with two different shoes or worse. 

The two framed tissue paper collage pieces were done by my 2.5 year old twins.  Such treasures!


The two matching floor rugs were given to me by a neighbor.  They are perfect for the space and I am certainly grateful for them!  

Mud Room

This coat rack and organizing bench set were purchased from JCPenney.  Everything has a place so everything is in place.  Hat/mitten bin, diaper bag space, school papers, coupons, etc. it is really wonderful!

As I was sitting on this bench for the first time observing my accomplishment it felt like I was sitting in a lovely sun porch.  Tea, lemonade, cookies anyone?  Oh wait, this is a laundry room.  Tide?  Downy?  Biz?  At least this space is relaxing and enjoyable for tackling the mounds of laundry that never seem to end.

 "As long as there is laundry to be done than you are surrounded by loved ones"

Pure Joy

It's the simple things in life

Friday, October 15, 2010

Bargain Bath

Our first floor half bathroom was in need of beautification.  For starters I could not stand carpeting in the bathroom, YUCKY and I was not a fan of the apple tree/horse and carriage wallpaper border.  This project needed to be finished quickly and I wanted to keep costs below $100.00.  Here is how I did it:

Shelves above Toilet

Breakdown of project costs:
  • Price Pfister Faucet = $40 EBay (Retails for ~ $140)  Hooray!
  • Wallpaper border placed on top of existing border $15 (including shipping EBay)
  • Light fixture Home Depot = $28
  • 2 door pulls Home Depot Clearance = $5
  • Red paint for vanity & mirror = Free leftover from master bedroom walls
  • picture frames and accessories = Free moved from other parts of the house
  • Linoleum flooring = Free lovely surprise when we pulled out the carpeting
  • Rug = Free from another room in the house
$88 Total = HAPPINESS

Monday, October 11, 2010

Beige to Breathtaking Black

Our formal living room features the most daring design decision I have ever made.  When we purchased this house the formal living room featured beige from the bottom up.  Flooring, walls, curtains, ceiling, and even the furniture were varying from beige to white.  In my opinion, boring and bland, not to mention hard to keep pristine with 3 toddlers.  Working with our existing couch and leather chairs I chose the curtains from JcPenney and they inspired me to boldly paint the walls black! My mom made throw pillows and a cushion for the wooden rocking chair out of an extra curtain panel.  This room has sufficient light during the day, but we really should add recessed lighting on a dimmer switch to illuminate it properly at night.

Here is the Boring Beige Before:

Drum roll please....

Beautifully Black After:

The  coffee table and end tables were a fabulous Craigslist deal ($100.00 for the 3 piece mahogany set), the lamps were 70% off from Joann Fabrics, and the curtain rod was on extreme clearance at Bed Bath and Beyond and I also used a 20% off coupon.  Large picture frames were a splurge from Michael's, but I made sure to get the best price possible by waiting for a sale.  To keep the project costs in check, I printed the portraits at Costco and matted them myself.  The three pictures are the focal point in the room and they turned out beautifully!

The round table was left by the previous owner and doesn't have a very nice finish on it.  I dressed it up with a piece of fabric for a table cloth and that works for now. 

Remember the old light fixture I removed from our kitchen?  Gold detailing be gone! It has been re purposed into a beautiful crystal bowl on the coffee table!  It does have a hole in the bottom, but it works beautifully for displaying seasonal pretty things.  For Autumn I have metallic spray painted pine cones.  It also looks fabulous filled with shiny ornaments for the holiday's.  I love this free beauty!

Stay tuned for photos and information about the adjoining dining room. 
These rooms go hand-in-hand.

Linking up on 5/16/11
HOUSEography House Tour Link Party