Saturday, August 20, 2011

Shopping Spree

I've been on a bit of a shopping spree for the new house.  We close in 10 days!I'm struggling a bit with the idea that it has to be PERFECT the minute we walk in the door.

So here are my recent purchases.  My wish list will have to follow later.

I'm most excited about this...a TOBACCO BASKET that I bought for $40 at an antiques store in Abingdon, VA. 
This is a similar photo.  Mine is in worn condition, but a little better than this.  The basket is HUGE.  Maybe 3'x3' or larger.  Mine says "Prewitt Bros" but I don't know anything about the company...yet.
I plan to hang ours over the fireplace.  Because John said it was too "dirty" for the dining room!

I also ordered 2 of these sconces from Restoration Hardware. 
Lugarno double sconces.  These will replace the builder-grade lights in the master bath, that don't fit the style of the bathroom.  They were on sale (yay) but don't come with the shades (boo).  So I'll be searching for some inexpensive white shades.

I also wanted to get these matching knobs and pulls, but I couldn't justify the price.

I finally decided on a lantern for the kitchen as well. Thomasville Crestwood 3-light lantern in Antique Bronze.  We thought the 4-light would be too large.  I was able to order it from Home Depot, so if it arrives and isn't perfect, I can always return it.

On our trip to Tennessee, I found 10 yards of Sunbrella fabric to recover 2 chairs for our living room.
I figure, if you want off-white chairs in a home with a 5 and 6 year old, you need to use a durable fabric.  This is an outdoor fabric, but is smoother and softer to the touch than most outdoor fabrics.  I'll get on that project soon!
On the same Tennessee trip, John's parents gave us a patio table and 2 chairs that they weren't using.  So we picked up 2 more bistro chairs from our local Lowes.
I decided on a paint color for the entry, all the bathrooms and Caroline's room.  Pittsburgh Paints Toasted Almond.  But I call it "greige".  I really hope the walls don't look purple like it looks on my computer monitor.

My recent Craigslist purchases include 2 awesome finds:
An extra large, solid wood, entertainment center armoire.  The brand is Heckman, but it looks a lot like this Pottery Barn one.  It will hold the living room television.
 And this may have been the best bargain yet!  A Jasper secretary on Craistlist for $160!  It will sit in the corner of the living room and be my desk for paying bills, etc...
 We've picked out a king size bed for our master from a local furniture store.  Great price, and a great look alike to several popular stores.  A consolation prize since I couldn't get John on board with an upholstered headboard (a dust trap). 
John's study has made lots of progress.  Mostly from Ikea.  It would be so tedious to show you piece by piece.  You'll just have to see it in place.

But Caroline's chandelier from Ikea will be worth a little peek, to finish this out.  She's SUPER excited about a little bling in her room.
I'll keep shopping, organizing and packing.  Did I say 10 more days?!?

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

marker on the wall

I've been planning on stenciling a design on the walls of our new half bath.
It's a pretty small room, but the joke may end up  being on me, since the stencil will have to work around a doorway, window, toilet, pedastal sink, light fixture, mirror, and switches/outlets.  hmmm...rethinking...

Here's my hall bath inspiration photo again. 
via decorpad.  photo by Tria Giovan.

Our bath will be painted a base coat of a taupe-y gray.  The color swatch I've been carrying around is from Wal-Mart.  Dutch Boy/Better Homes in the color Creamy Pebbles.  No photo.  I still have a few weeks to decide.  Anyone know the perfect taupey-gray color?

But then what?  Do I buy a stencil, make one?  What pattern?  Geometric?  Intricate?
Here are some of the photos floating around my desktop:

But I have since stumbled upon the idea of DRAWING my pattern on the wall.  A quick search on the interweb shows that several people have had great success using paint pens or Sharpies to add a pattern to their walls without all the hastle of paint, brushes, cleanup, messy patterns, etc..

No mess, count me in!

See Cate Create
Here are some links to lovelies that have tried it with much success.  Hope to add my name to the list soon!

Sharpies from A Penny Saved

DIY Stenciled Wallpaper from The Lovely Cupboard

Easy Paint Pen Wallpaper from See Cate Create

Painted Wallpaper from Mal-licious

Sharpie Wallpaper from Gus and Lula

Friday, July 8, 2011

copy cat steal

I bought a chandelier for John's study.  And got it for a steal!

Here's the high end version.

You can find it on Amazon for $400 (and even more on other sites!)

I bought this one from  With shipping it wasn't even 100 bucks!  In real life, the overstock light looks more like the expensive one.  I like to think it may even BE the expensive one, that was overstocked because no one in their right mind would pay $400 for a chandelier (although I know they do, and I might!)

And John approved. 

dream house (with a dose of reality)

You've seen those blog posts, where the writer posts photos of their Dream House room-by-room.

We'll here's my version.  It's not quite a Dream House post, but rather how I most desire my current (under construction) house to look.  I've limited myself to one photo per room, just for the challenge!

Through the front door, you'll find this entry.  Panelling, stair treads, wall color...perfection.
 The powder room on the first floor.  I'm planning to stencil a more geometric pattern.
 John's study.  The least "concrete" room in my mind.  I just can't wrap my mind around it.  Although, I HAVE purchased a light fixture!
 Kitchen.  Our cabinets will be creamy white, dark brown island, and a HUGE lantern.
 Living.  Hope to have my red chairs recovered to look like these.
 Laundry.  We'll have to add some cabinets.
Moving upstairs, we have Grayson's Flag themed room.  He'll have 2 twin beds, which is more fun to plan for than you can imagine.
 Caroline's room.  Will be based from Joel Dewberry's Dogwood Bloom fabric in pink.
 Guest Room.  Where can I get my hands on a blanket like that??!
 Master bedroom.  Killer Colleen McGill curtains.
 Master Bath.  Dark Cabinets, but our floors will be white.
The kids bathroom is the only room I have NOTHING for.  But seeing as they just use ours, maybe I can keep putting that off for a bit longer.

And, obviously, I desire NO color in this house.  Wonder how that will turn out?

After we move in, and slowly make some changes I'll photograph the actual spaces, and see how well I did.  Or didn't!

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


I have unrealistic ideas about lighting.  Like for 1:  I think it should be free (or practically).  I cannot stomach the idea of paying $1500 for a light fixture, no matter how beautiful and perfect it is.  Honestly, even $300 makes my tummy quiver.  I look at that money and see a summer's worth of swimming lessons, or a week of summer camp for my kids.  But I guess that's just the reality of being a mama!

In our new home, several rooms will come with lighting (recessed lights in the kitchen, living room and basement), and quite a few builder-grade, oil rubbed bronze fixtures for the hallways, kids rooms, laundry, dining room, bathrooms, and entry way.  I will probably want to change most of these out over time.  Some sooner (kids rooms) and some over time (dining room, bathrooms).  For most of these I'm just waiting to see exactly what they put in the house, and see how it looks before I spend more to change 'er up.

But there are a few spaces where there won't be a light fixture (only a ceiling rough-in) and we will have to put a light in in order to SEE!  These 3 immediate places are the master bedroom, which will get a ceiling fan, and John's office/study/library, which will get a hanging fixture, and the kitchen island, which will get a hanging lantern.

I'm most excited about the lantern, so let's start there.  I'll cover the other choices later.

Here are my kitchen inspiration photos.  At least the ones with lanterns.
by Tommy Smythe, via Heidi Claire
 by Healing Barsanti, via House Beautiful
 via decorpad

These lanterns are all so wonderful!  The top image, by Tommy Smythe, is my favorite.

In my space, I only have room for one hanging lantern, which is due more to budget than style or space.   I'd love to keep the budget less than $500 (realistically)  Truthfully, I'd be ecstatic to see something closer to $100..  Although, this is the fixture I'd be willing to spend the most on in the whole house. So, here are some lantern options:
The leader: Cambridge Pendant from Restoration Hardware ($399)
Who knows where we'll end up, but it's fun to plan ahead!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Floor Plan

Our new home is supposed to look like this on the inside.
We didn't make too many interior changes to the actual shape and size of the house.  But we did add a wall between the living and dining room.  The "living" room will actually become a study, office, or library.  Probably study at first, and when we add some built-in shelves, I'll start calling it the library!  And we extended the staircase wall to incorporate some double doors, so the study can be closed off from the rest of the house.
Upstairs, we left everything alone.  Check out the size of that master closet!  We won't have the (optional 3rd bath) so the closet will really be that big.  I have plans.  I'll share them later.

Construction should start in April.  Can't wait to see how it progresses.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

glitter baby

I'm considering an update for Caroline's white dresser and nightstand.

Right now, the plain white dresser, is adorned with simple painted wooden knobs.

The dresser looks a lot like this:
I'm hoping to add some glittery, sparkly, crystal knobs.  Won't it make for a more personalized, girly dresser?

 I've found these examples from Anthropologie.  They are all pretty reasonably priced at $6-$8 a piece. 
Or these pale pink numbers.
But still, for 16 knobs + tax and shipping, that can get really expensive.  So I think I'll have to do some more searching.  I did see the top Anthropologie knobs on ebay for about half the price.  It would still be an $80 project, so we'll see.

Any tips for scoring some great glass/crystal/plastic knobs on the cheap?