Friday, January 29, 2010

Score! Persistence pays off.

Ever since beginning my dining room makeover, I have been trolling the local thrift and resale stores, Home Goods, Tuesday Morning and even Target in search of the perfect mirror.  Or more accurately, one I really like and can afford.

Yesterday I hit pay dirt.  I spotted my mirror at Tuesday Morning. 

Yes it's the wrong color and a little banged up, but people it was $24.99!

A little sanding, a little lot of paint and it will be good as new and perfect in it's new home.

I'm so excited.  Stay tuned for the unveiling of the new and improved version.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Dreaming of City Life

Have you ever fantasized about living in a cool hip townhouse in the city (New York of course)?  Any big city really, but mostly NYC.  Not the cramped 4 people living in a one room apartment type situation, but a really sweet flat in the coolest neighborhood? 

Although I love my little abode in the burbs, I sometimes wonder what it would be like to live the NYC girl life with the heart of the city at my doorstep. 

I especially love old townhouses as it's a charm that can't be duplicated with a house.  Whenever I go on vacation, I love to find the old neighborhoods with the most town homes and just walk up and down the streets admiring them.  Every one is so unique and beautiful. 

I can't even remember how I found the site, but I occasionally go to a website that markets city properties and peruse the photos.  This one is a gem inside, but lacks the charm you can usually expect with older town homes.

It's listed as a 3 unit town house with a total of 4,762 sq. ft. and it's occupants clearly have vastly different decorating styles.

The first unit...


The next unit is super sexy and colorful.  This looks like the inside of I Dream of Jeannie's bottle, albeit a more neutral version than Jeannie had.

And then you step outside and find this little slice of heaven...

Can you say party?  Oh the cocktail parties you could host here.....

I'm trying to decide who's been sleeping in this bed.  There are definite masculine elements with the rug pattern (seems masculine to me anyway), leather cubes, leather chair and the flat screen TV hanging on the wall.

But, most men hate excessive pillows and this bed has five in various patterns and fabrics as well as a few on the upholstered piece on the right side of the room.  The window treatments are soft and beautiful, but the brown fabric "framing" them seems like a more masculine touch (although I would take them in a heartbeat).

Maybe it's a couple?  Well, I think it's a guy.  What do you think?

Love the subway tiles in the bathroom and the clean crisp look of all white.

This unit is ultra feminine with a shabby chic style.  I'm surprised there is no window treatment.

I love her kitchen with the open plate display rack and the frosted glass cabinets.

Since there are only three units, I'm assuming this is her bedroom, but it's definitely lacking in the charm of the other rooms.  It looks like she started to cozy it up with the cute little green chairs, but that rug doesn't fit at all. 

And it is possible to have all white bedding that isn't boring, but this would not be a good example.


Just a little tour of how the other half lives to make you appreciate your own cozy little home :).


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Baby, it's cold outside!

It is cold in Cleveland, Ohio right now.  This kind of weather makes me want to hibernate.  Just curl up in my favorite chair next to a roaring fire with a glass of wine and a stack of decorating magazines.

Regardless of what you think of the decor, these are some roaring fires I'd like to cozy up to right now...


Stay warm :)

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I'm Showing My Stripes

As promised, here is a mini unveiling of my newly striped dining room.

As you can see, I haven't even put the switch plates back on the wall yet.  Still, I wanted to show off my stripes and I'm loving them more every day that I live with them.

The room is so much brighter and more open than the previous look I had going here.  I did love that too, but this is exactly what I need right now.

The new (super inexpensive) off white cotton duck slipcovers from Ballard Designs look great.  Not sure the initial was a good idea, but I've never had anything with an initial so I thought it would be a fun change.

The white silk panels (amazing deal on on the windows are extremely thick and weighty and I'm still playing around with what I want to do.  Should I leave them as they are or split each panel in two and create decorative panels like I had before?

I bought these curtain hold backs years ago, at a store called Bombay Company that I don't think exists anymore, and put one each on the two windows in the dining room when I first moved into the house.  I had purchased two green velvet panels from Pottery Barn and used these hold backs for those.

Eventually I had custom decorative panels made.  If you can't afford enough of a favorite high end fabric to do two standard width panels per window, decorative panels are a great option.  If privacy is an issue, just insert some kind of sheer or blind between the panels.

Tonight I'll hang some of my artwork, put the switch plates on and maybe stop at the hardware store for some privacy film for the lower half of the windows.

I'm still searching for the mirror of my dreams or as close as I can get on my budget.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Mission Accomplished!

I finished the stripes this weekend and I have to say, I really do love it.  It took forever because the walls are so old and made of plaster so not at all nice and flat and even like drywall.  I had to go over each stripe with a roller, let that dry, go back over it with a brush to catch all the many spots the roller missed and then let that dry.  Then, start the whole process over again.  I'm exhausted.

The over effect is soft and lovely though.  The new slipcovers arrived over the weekend and the window treatments came today.  As soon as I pull all of that together (i.e. iron everything to get it all crisp and pretty), I'll show you the results.  Tomorrow for sure...I need a deadline to get me moving. 

I still need to find a rug option and have pretty much settled on an indoor/outdoor rug as they are inexpensive and great for areas where spillage may be an issue. 

I have been feverishly searching for an affordable mirror but nothing so far.  These are possibilities:

Now don't get distracted by the tacky gold thing going on with this one.  I would paint it.

Who knows I may just go with a plain dark wood frame mirror or...well, anyway tell me what you think.