June 24, 2011

Nico's Big Boy Room: second inspiration...

I had started gathering paint swatches to select the colors for our master bedroom and Nico's big boy room which we will be painting over the next few weekends. I had no issues selecting the paint for our master, but, every time I would come around to selecting Nico's bedroom colors, I felt stumped. I had grabbed several swatches of oranges, greens and yellows. Keeping in mind this quilt set that I wanted to get from IKEA:
I kept feeling like I had to paint the room yellow... And I guess, I didn't want a yellow big boy room deep down.

So, I hit the waves of the World Wide Web and started surfing {ha ha ha! did you catch that?} for a new inspiration for this little man's room-to-be. I came across this bedding set from Bouclair Home:

Fun right? Youthful. Bright. Has several colors... Although it may not scream "BOY", it also doesn't yell out "BABY" which I was afraid a yellow room would do.

As a result of this colorful photo, I present to you my second inspiration board for Nico's Big Boy Room:

I am WAY more comfortable with this scheme! I feel like it is less "all-over-the-place" and "two-many-colors-where-do-you-start".

I am already 100% certain that I will paint the lower walls in the darker blue and the upper in pale grey, more than likely using the two-tone effect in this photo as a transition between the colors:

To start with the decorating, I will purchase this apple green bedspread from IKEA {for only $19.99!}

And you know these floor mats?
I already have a set of four in apple green and bright blue, with grey on the reverse sides, to set up as an area rug / play area! I may buy another set of the same colors to make a larger spot as the carpet in this room is older and we are not planning on replacing it just yet.

All of the remaining accessories in the inspiration board {with the exception of the cushion and square shelves which are from Bouclair Home} are from IKEA and reasonable in price.

My Mom is also planning on making a quilt for Nico and I think the pattern of the duvet cover in the inspiration photo will be easy enough for her to recreate and she can follow that color scheme.

That wall book shelf {photo from Pottery Barn Kids} has already been made by my awesome and handy Daddy-O and has been patiently waiting a coat of paint and a permanent spot in it's new home! I will more than likely paint it grey, as I will Nico's current white hand-me-down dresser, and the DIY bead board headboard I will make! In this particular room, the grey with serve as the "black" {you know, every room should have at least three items in black!} to ground the space.

All in all, I am really happy with this color scheme and entire room inspiration! I actually am really excited now to start painting it and get it done!

MINI UPDATE: Wouldn't these be perfect in my future-athlete's / sports-enthusiast's room? They are both from Sears:

MINI UPDATE #2: So, I went out at lunch today {since the Bouclair Home store is super close to my work!} to see the duvet cover in person as I really wanted to see the colors. Now, they only make it in twin or double bed sizes, whereas Nico is getting a queen sized bed, so I couldn't buy it to actually use it as a bedspread. I could, however, buy the set {for only $49} and use the one pillow sham AND use the duvet for fabric for the curtains! My Mom can still use the color scheme to make his quilt but she can decide her own pattern.  In person {or in "real life" as opposed to on the Internet}, the darkest blue is more like this:
 whereas this was my guessed blue:

I actually prefer the real blue! It's more moody and current!

June 21, 2011

Decorating To-Do List for July!

OK, call me a bad mama, but I am counting down the days until my Baby Boy leaves for two weeks with his Grand-Parents! Jon and I are looking forward to a bit of couple time and I am especially looking forward to tackling some decorating while the little guy is away. Of course, we will miss him immensely the second he steps out the door, and I know I will have to fight with myself to not run out and give him one last hug... But, we will get to complete {hopefully} some of the decorating To-Do's that I have been dying to do! So, here is our...

Decorating TO-DO LIST for July

1. Basement Master Bedroom: paint

As you may recall from this inspiration board entry, we will be painting the current guest bedroom in the basement, which will become our new Master Bedroom:

We will begin by painting the focal wall in a gorgeous and bright mauve color. Then, I would love to create a tone-on-tone stencil in a lighter purple color. I will more than likely order from an Etsy shop called Cutting Edge Stencils who features such stunning stencils as these:

Finally, the other four walls will receive a light grey treatment.

Once the painting is complete, we will be moving our furniture to the basement. I believe the first purchase will be curtains and curtain hanging accessories. I will be hanging full-length curtains eventhough the window is very small. I like this pair from Bouclair Home, which are a faux suede plum pair for $49 and are also available in grey!

Or these faux silk white curtains, also for $49 a pair!

In white, it would definitely brighten up the room!

I know I will hang them with black hardware to create more of a contrast since they will be hung on the grey wall.  I LOVE Bouclair Home for their curtains! I will also be purchasing a black-out roller blind to achieve optimal darkness as that is what Jon and I prefer. And the roller blind will be hidden once drawn.

The remainder of the decorating items will come over time. And of course progress pictures will be shared.

2. Nico's Big Boy room: paint

As was shared in this inspiration board post, we will be painting our current Master Bedroom for Nico's new Big Boy room:

I know 100% that I want to get him this orange quilt set from IKEA. 
Since that color will more than likely be incorporated in accessories throughout the new space, I'm thinking we will be painting the walls a warm yellow, then creating some sort of an accent wall with apple green and orange.

As in the Basement Master Bedroom To-Do's, the painting and moving-in of furniture will come first. The rest of the accessorizing will follow over time.

3. Main floor doors, trim and baseboards: painting WHITE

This is a project that I have wanted to undertake ever since we painted our entire main floor in more neutral colors, oh, over a year ago! The current color of the trim and baseboards is cream, which just looks dirty. Three closet doors have been left untreated and are natural pine, so those need to be primed and painted. The three other doors on this level (the two bedroom doors and the washroom door) are stained a warm wood tone so those will stay as is. The rest of it is going a bright glossy white! My father-in-law had also repaired our front door which our now-in-a-new-home-dog Jersey had destroyed, and we have yet to paint that. I think it will really give the main floor a fresh and crisp look. {It may also make my backsplash look more awful!}.

4. MAYBE - Basement washroom: paint

If we have time and funds left, the final project I would like to complete while our little guy is away vacationing with his Grand-Parents and cousins, is to paint the basement washroom a warm yellow as was revealed in this inspiration board post:

{I still ADORE this inspiration board every time I see it! It makes me feel so happy!}

As you can tell, all of our projects require PAINTING, which my poor husband, who will be doomed to help me, DESPISES! But, painting without a 3-year-old constantly wanting to help and asking a zillion questions will be much easier.

My biggest reason for wanting to do the first two items on our TO-DO list? I can't wait to see Nico's reaction when he comes home to his new Big Boy room! At least, I'm hoping he will be happy and will want to sleep in there every night for the whole night {yes, he still sleeps with us every night and has been doing so since last August...}.

What we accomplish and don't accomplish will depend on my energy level at the end of every day, and all the other stuff we want to do while without child, like go to movies, hang out with family and friends, yard work, and hopefully just taking time to relax and act like vegetables!

Of course, Before and After pictures will follow as we go and you'll be kept in the loop of any developments!

June 16, 2011

12 weeks pregnant!

Oh and am I ever counting! I may just feel like it is going so slow because they changed my date a few times.

On to the pics! I decided to let my almost-3-year-old son, Nico, take some pictures.

This one best represents my actual belly size!

Can I just say? This kid is talented! Sure, I may have deleted, oh I dunno, 10 or so that were awful, but honestly! Not bad! I am one proud Mama! And just to keep going with my bragging, which I don't think I do enough of about Nico, he also discovered golf this last weekend when we went shopping for a new golf club for Papa's birthday. Once we got home, it was golf and nothing else. He had a few plastic toy clubs and balls so we set him up in the basement with a real tee (stuck in his floor mat), a hockey net to help him aim, and started to show him how to play. The kid is a natural! Watch this:

Am I the only one who is impressed by that?

Anyhow, onto a few more pregnancy-related details! I am feeling better nausea-wise. I am down to 4 Diclectin a day for 6 {2 at night and 2 in the morning} and may try to reduce that again soon. I have had a few headaches and also noticed that my feet seem to swell quickly if I consume too much salt. I also noticed my skin is changing... for the worst! It did the same thing during my first pregnancy. The skin on my cheeks becomes bumpy and riddled with teeny-tiny little bumps. I also develop a lot of freckles and beauty marks all over when pregnant {I normally develop a lot of these at any time, but during pregnancy, it increases!} And you know those little tiny red veiny spots? I call them spider bites {don't know where I got that?}. I get a lot of those all over too! But they mostly fade within the first year after the baby is born. But interesting, right? I am also getting restless legs! Ack! Not fun! But so far, that is also tolerable. On the positive side? The fatigue seems a little better. And I love my finger nails when pregnant! So strong and they grow super fast! I am most looking forward to feeling the baby move!

So, hopefully it will keep getting better from now on. Next thing I know, I will be on vacation {end of July} and when I get back, we will have our ultrasound to {hopefully} find out if it is a boy or a girl...

June 14, 2011


At the end of my last post, I hinted to my interest in creating a backsplash out of beadboard to cover the current oh-so-ugly, diamond patterned, terra cotta and peach tile backsplash.

Here are some examples of my inspirations:

From one of my favorite blogs, Thrifty Decor Chick:

This is another one that popped-up last week from a blog called Liz Marie Blog:

And here, another beautiful inspiration from a blog called Revive. Restore. Renew. :

Gorgeous right? Just traditional enough to mix in with my decorating style. And it would instantly brighten my somewhat gloomy kitchen.

A while back, I sent a few links to my hubby as a heads-up that this project was incoming. Last week, I sweetly asked him if we could tackle it over this last weekend seeing as A) we had zero 0 plans; B) it was dirt cheap to complete {no more than 30-40$}; C) it would brighten the kitchen; and D) my sister’s bright white appliances would be here in a few short weeks which would make my current backsplash stand out even more!

Now I have been quite lucky as Jon has very little to say when it comes to decorating. He pretty much gives me carte-blanche. But this time, well... he crushed my dream... burst my bubble... squashed my vision... He said he didn’t tell me that he HATES the look because he was assuming I would never actually DO it! Ha! Fooled him eh?

So now, I am back to the drawing board for my hideous backsplash...

He suggested gutting the current tiles and doing a white subway tile backsplash (source):

It is pretty, but it is twice or three times the cost of the beadboard option, plus twice or thrice the amount of time and work. That and, if I am going to go through the trouble of removing the existing backsplash, renting the proper equipment, putting in so many hours of work, etc... I am going to do it with a backsplash tile that I absolutely LOVE, not one that I am settling for. Know what I mean?

I had found this great glass and natural stone mixed tile in earthy hues of browns and tans and greys. But when we brought it home, it felt like it would be too dark if applied all over. We toyed with the idea of using it as an accent only, by installing more neutral tiles above and below 3 or 4 rows of my choice tile. But at the time, our budget just couldn't allow such an unnecessary and purely aesthetic expense.

So, I am now back to considering simply painting over the entire backsplash in a glossy white as a sort of temporary {1 to 2 year} solution. All I know for sure is that it is definitely NOT getting done this weekend!

Stay tuned!

June 7, 2011

Café sign

Well, I got my craft on this weekend! And it was fun! It was even better because I chose such a simple project which in total took me less than 30 minutes to complete and only cost about $1.50! But, for such a simple project, it adds the perfect amount of impact in the kitchen.

I started out with 4 planks of my recycled hard wood flooring. I selected them to be different lengths as I really wanted a rustic feel to my finished sign.

My first step was to flatten the nails on the back. At first I was going to remove them, but it proved to be way too difficult and time consuming. Plus, we would never see the back of the sign, so I chose to simply flatten them out of the way. Then, I had to sand each piece so that my paint would adhere better since they were quite veneered. I then assembled my pieces using wood glue and chose to reinforce the structure by nailing pieces of 1" x 1" {which I had lying around} across the back of all pieces. This is what it looked like all sanded and connected {I did not snap a pic of the back! Sorry!}:

Next, I {and Nico} lightly applied one coat of glossy white trim paint, which I already had on hand, and let if dry for a few hours.
Using a pencil, I traced what I wanted my sign to say. I went for "Café 5 ".

I picked a turquoise blue craft paint and free-handed the writing, and let that dry for several hours.

Finally, I sanded the entire surface. I wiped it down with a damp paper towel and sanded again until I obtained the look I was going for.

I purchased this stand for $1.50 at the dollar store. I especially liked it because it could easily be bent to the angle I needed.

And voilà!

A perfectly imperfect custom café sign! I'm very happy with the results! It demands just enough attention for the top of the cupboards, and helps to tie in the color scheme. I also went through my "decorating store" and selected some baskets to place in other areas over the cupboards, so my sign would not feel so lonely.

Here is the material I used:
-Recycled hard wood floor pieces: FREE
-Sandpaper (100 grit): FREE
-Glossy white trim paint: FREE
-Acrylic craft paint in Desert Turquoise: FREE
-Stand: $1.50
TOTAL COST: $1.50!!
It was nice being crafty again! And my almost-3-year-old son is at the curious and helpful stage, so he was by my side every step of the way, asking to help. He even took a few pictures for me!
The next project(s) on my list will more than likely be tackling the basement master bedroom and Nico's big boy room over the next several weeks. As Nico will be away at my parent's cottage for the first half of July, we will be tackling what we can while he is away so that he can come back to his Big Boy room! I can't wait! Scratch that...

Before you say anything, I know the backsplash and ivory-colored appliances have to go! Happily and luckily, my sister and brother-in-law are moving into a new house in a few weeks and will be donating their WHITE stove and fridge to us as they are buying new ones! Yippee!! And my next project {hence the scratched out "next project" paragraph above} will be a beautiful and bright white beadboard backsplash! It is so inexpensive to complete, so easy and will make a huge difference in the kitchen! So I am hoping I can tackle that in the coming weeks. THEN, I can move on to the scratched-out projects above! But that's the fun of it all! If I had no projects on my TO-DO list, I would be bored and most likely miserable! Sometimes TO-DO lists just keep us going!

This post is linked to:

Transformation Thursday

June 3, 2011

Incoming project!

I am overdue for a project... I haven't actually created anything in a while... Yes, I may be pregnant and tired and nauseous, but I am still creative!?! When we changed the hardwood / ceramic floor in our kitchen a while back, I kept a few of the wood floor boards as I felt inspired to create a sign to place over my cupboards in the kitchen. It would recycle some of the product and remind us of the remodel. So I have had a pile of wood lying on the floor in my laundry room since, oh, March??? It's about time I do something with them.

Here are some of the signs I've seen in Blog Land that are inspiring this project:

The most recent from a blog called That's My Letter:

Another from a blog called It's Just Me who gives a tutorial on how she makes signs:

The next three were shared on a blog called Knock Off Decor as they are inspired by products you can buy at stores like:


My favorite blog, Young House Love, also created a small number sign and provided a tutorial where the design appears as the original wood and the outline is painted:

I like this technique and look the most, so I think I will use it! It would allow the original color of our "old" floor to peak through, I guess as I reminder. Mind you, we still have that floor throughout the living and dining room... So I don't think the reminder is necessary! I do want to give the sign a used and "recycled" look so will definitely be distressing it.

Since my sign will be in the kitchen, I want to use a food or kitchen related word like "Café" or "Market" or "Appétit"... something epicure related... I saw a sign once {which of course now I can't find to share it with you} and it read "Coffee 5 ₵" and I really liked it.

So we'll see what I end up with when I sit down to do it this weekend... It will be a rainy weekend so I'll be doing this project indoors. But I am looking forward to getting my hands dirty and getting some creative juices flowing. I will hopefully be posting pictures Monday or maybe as early as Sunday night, depending on my energy level... stay tuned!