My dad somehow scored a really great rocking chair from a friend – for free! I had no idea what it looked like and saw it for the first time at Easter (where it was waiting for us at my parents’ place for us to take it home). I’m so thrilled with it, I’m putting it in the nursery and we’re putting the one Mr Content ordered for me in the family room. I tossed an ikea pillow onto it for comfort and have tucked it into the corner of the nursery by the window.
And here’s the big one – THE CRIB IS UP!!! I can hardly believe it. It still isn’t sinking in that there’s a wee one joining us in less than three months but it’s really happening! We’re thrilled with the crib, and it was relatively easy to put together (thank goodness!). It has three different heights for the mattress, converts to a toddler bed and eventually to a regular bed – the front and back turn into a head board and base board. This was a gift from my mother-in-law (Thank you Alice!) and we know it will be much loved for many years to come. No bedding yet, I’ve put it on the registry so I will post further updates as it all comes together. Also I’m still playing with the layout of the furniture in the room, and am holding off on hanging anything on the walls until the furniture is figured out. Stay tuned for the evolution.
I sort of have expensive taste. That’s not really a secret. But right now I’m working on a budget and I’ve got a long list of ‘wants’ for the house regarding decor. My husband has a long (more expensive) list of ‘needs’ for the house (air conditioning, new windows, etc.) So I’m trying to get creative wherever possible to save a few bucks and still get the outcome I’m looking for.
I LOVE setting a gorgeous table, so when it was time to do a registry for our wedding last year I didn’t hesitate to pick out China knowing I’d put it to good use eventually. Until this weekend it’s all been sitting in the boxes it originally arrived in, just waiting for a proper home. I was looking at a full fledged China Cabinet but to get the size I need to look appropriate in our space it would have had to be custom made running us upwards of around $4000. Not really where I wanted to spend that kind of money right now. So I hit up Kijiji and got my craft on. I opted for something a little more ornate, knowing with the right paint and new knobs it would balance out some of our more modern/industrial furnishings. The beauty of antiques is that they were made so well! This sideboard is as sturdy as they come.
Original Sideboard ($250);
The process (remove knobs, sand down thoroughly, wipe down with damp cloth);
I opted for a high gloss navy to offset the black/white/grey theme in the rest of the space;
Fill drawers and cupboards;
I used one of my favourite (and previously framed) tea towels to line the drawers.
With the first floor of the house mostly organized (just a waiting game now for the last of the furniture to arrive) I’m starting to plan the second floor. One morning I woke up with this brilliant idea to wallpaper the hallway. Originally I was thinking of a geometric print in greys/blacks/golds on a white/offwhite background. I wanted something bold so that when you went upstairs it really struck a chord (like the kind of chord that makes you think I hired a professional designer to come up with this brilliance).
So as it turns out sourcing awesome graphic wallpaper is not as easy as one would think, should you be ‘just’ a residential homeowner and not trade. But I persevered and finally found a store in the east end, Toronto Paint Store that had a great selection of Crown Wallpaper that I could actually see in person (as opposed to online). I went during the day and was helped by very friendly staff who also helped me come up with colour concepts for paint on the adjacent walls and also helped me figure out costing.
I brought Handsome Husband back there with me that evening after he finished work to vet my top selections and we brought three books home with us for a few days to see in daylight and in our own space. I was very excited to show him one concept in particular – a mural – for our family room. Initially I planned to wrap the wallpaper from the hallway around to the family room so we had a bit of a feature wall and also some direction for that room. I found this amazing mural that i think really sets the tone for the family room and it got me inspired for a bit of a theme for the whole floor (colour and mood). The family room is a bit of a mish mash right now and screams ‘man cave’ (before and after photos of the final transformation will come at a later date). One wall is exposed brick, one wall has a sliding glass door to nowhere in it (great for light, but so awkward!), and the other wall will have wall to wall, floor to ceiling, white glossy built-ins for entertainment, books, and storage solutions (thinking ahead for storage for children’s toys in a house with virtually no closets).
So without further ado, here’s the Mural that thankfully my husband whole heartedly agreed with. And just like that I have direction for the whole floor, not just one room…
I think it has just enough of the rustic look to work with the age of the house, and the grey tones are perfect with the exposed brick tones (they aren’t bright red, lots of taupe in them). And the hallway that opens up to the living room has a trio of gold & crystal chandeliers so the gold tones in the mural really work well. Instead of putting a couch in front of the mural we’re going to put my (future) rocking chair (new mom friendly room) and a side table of some sort to hold the kind of stuff a new mom needs handy when she’s nursing.
See where I’m going with this? Modern, Stylish, and family friendly. Blog post to follow shortly with wallpaper options.