Saturday, October 19, 2013

No More Birdhouses for Me!

 Just saw this today and I think it is the sweetest thing. No more making bird houses for me!

This photo is from Colonial Williamsburg where these bird bottles are still being sold. Order here ( right now, the entire site is having 20% off and free shipping -- enter Promo Code E13CDFP ).

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Organizing and supplies I do or don't love

I love the before an after pictures in magazines and on interior design websites.  My favourites are viewing: children's playrooms redesigned into something actually functional AND The miscellaneous closet.

However, I've noticed over time that sometimes some of the organization hints aren't as helpful as one would think.

I have used the hanging canvas shelves in all of their shapes and sizes.

Sure for the first week or two they are a Godsend but after that, they just become a pendulous mess. It's a pain to try and put things in them (shoes or clothing) or to take them out without wobbling he whole thing or smooshing other nearby hangers. They can tilt and twist, by the way, if one side is heavy than the other. I think the trick to them is not puting too much in them, but if I can't fill them up an must leave them half empty like this picture why would I continue  using them?

They really make me wish for the plastic or wire racks that can be set up within a few minutes - they're no where near as stable and tidy as a properly built little cubby, but I'll take them any day over the hanging canvas shelves.
  I recommend building these shelves up to the ceiling or up to a level top shelf that runs all the way across the closet. I've had an excellent time with keep these kinds of closets tidy.

I also do not relish the over-the-door shoe organizer. I have used it for shoes, and I don't like it. I have used it for the backs of kitchen closet doors to hold foods and containers and lids, and I still don't like it.
Sure they organize things but they look sloppy and they don't last.

Right now, I have one over the back of my bedroom door holding all of my rolled up cardigans. It is working. But I still don't like it.  What I would like is to just install some wall-mounted-letter sorters.
Imagine it. They could be cast iron, they could be wood with beautiful scroll work, they could be hard clear plastic. They would be beautiful and functional.

Heck, if I weren't renting I'd be tempted to go saw some of my planter boxes in half and nail gun them to the back of my beautiful turn of the century farmhouse door. They would make lovely long pockets for my door and for my growing cardigan obsession.

Recently, I've found single pocket wall file holders that IF I painted white would looks lovely on the back of my door.
Rolodex single pocket wall file from

Maybe two or three per level? They would give enough visibility that I could see the whole item it holds, but not enough so that I will perceive any mess. They would blend in nicely to the door but still be sturdy and lovely to look at. Not like my wobbly, doorframe scratching, paisley mess of a over-the-door-organizer that I currently have.

Or maybe I'll go all out and build in some lovely shelves and add some trim around the edges to secure everything. posted this lovely picture of a door almost identical to mine but with corbels & planks added to create shelves.
Of course, that may not be your style. Perhaps you want something a little more utilitarian for your kitchen? has some excellent ideas for your pantry if you're interested. ^^

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Well, I haven't had internet in what feels like forever, but I'm on the ferry between Tsawassen and Swartz Bay, on my way to Victoria so that means I have some spotty internet! Yay!

When I last had internet I spent my time perusing ARTERIORS from . I went through all of their PDFs and picked out my favourites.
Quite often I find things I love BUT could or would not ever incorporate into my home. Almost all of the pictures below fall under these categories.
Super cool. Not totally in love with the shade but shades aren't hard to change. But look at the craftsmanship in that flower! Gorgeous!

I'm a fan of mirrors. I thought that I loved the sunburst mirrors that have been so popular over the last few years but over the last few months I've been finding my love for them waning. I'm very happy I decided to wait on making/buying and installing one.  This, though, seems softer and a little more classic. I think it will go out of fashion more slowly. How cool would this be on the ceiling. I would totally consider puting a potlight right in the middle of it.

I recall my stepmother has something like this. And I have to say, that woman knows style. This, like hers, is fantastic in a walk-in closet.

I totally don't remember what these are. Are they vases? I know that they will get dusty, but I love them. Can you imagine the white one just blending in while still adding interest to your entrance way or living room?  Need a pop of colour in a bedroom? 

I'm going to make these. Maybe. No, no I won't because the moment I go to do it I'll remember that the knit will get dirty. I would however absolutely use this as a cozy for old cans and tins of coffee that I use to hold stray pens and pencils.

This definitely falls into the cool-but-not-in-my-house category. I love the candle holders. They remind me of candle holders that would have been in someone's home in Constantinople during the Ottoman Empire. I don't know how I'd ever use it or where to put it?
I love terrariums. I would especially have some in my dream library. But, I don't really like these - they just kind of remind me of the terrariums that I do like. They make hanging ones now as well!
I don't know what the things on the bottom left are. I like the wood bowl but not enough to keep it.

Ah, come on. These are cool. I know they're just wooden hoops on feet but still the little kid in my wants to play around them. I would stick these in my back yard and just let my nieces and nephews hop, jump, dive through them and play tag around them. The most simple props always create the most complicated (and fun) children's games.

I like the horns but I think they're made of glass. I'd much rather have a real one. Where to put it? who know.
Ya, I love agates. I would use them as paperweights or bookends.

Who doesn't love these? I like the giant Jack. It makes me nostalgic for times that I never experienced. I do remember how the faces of my aunts and uncles and grandparents would light up whenever they came across one (unless they stepped on it! Then I remember running). 
I love the carvings of the bonzai tree. They make me feel relaxed but I think I would just keep a bonzai tree.
I have no idea what the thing on the bottom right is and it feels like something I would find under a pile of stuff at the salvation army. Not a bad thing, just not something I'm likely to enjoy.
I do however adore the bronze flowers on the top right. They're gorgeous. I don't know where I would put them but my goodness do I love them. They just make me feel happy inside.

I don't think I even have to explain why these are cool. I could easily find a place for the bowls but I think it would be harder to find a place for the candle holder. They draw the eye so much that I'd definitely need a second in order to balance what ever room it ends up in.  If this had a patina it might be easier to decorate with, otherwise the room would just end up too busy.  Maybe a few of them along an long gardenfloor deck? In a bathroom? So many ideas!

I don't really want any of these in my home but they are neat. I just love round tables. They just feel homier.

I'm sure everyone has seen the bed frames that matches these (or seem to match them) and just like the amazingly amazingly lovely sylvan bedframe, I don't know if I'd want them in my home. If I had them, I would work it. But as I don't I feel like I have so many more options. By using these I would really limit my decorating options because they are the total focus of the room. Anything else I could do would have to be very calm and unnoticeable or the room would be far too busy.

Neat, but I don't like them for me. I love wardrobes - they are great for everything from storage, hiding televisions and computers away to holding clothing and linen. I really enjoy that they are textured. That, and the deep rich colour. 

Look at that wood. Look at the solidness of the wood and the metal. Gorgeous. Made to last. Made to pull up for chats in the kitchen. Made for backaches. I know I sound like a grumpy old woman but you'll have to trust my experience on this one. They look gorgeous and for a short while they feel gorgeous. But having to sit in one of these for any period of time over 5 minutes will be frustrating. No back support except in the most unhelpful place. Trust me, I've sat through cocktail parties in these.

Not sure I want one of these. Maybe in a guest bedroom? They're cozy, not overly stylish, and they look well made. What do you guys think?

I like these because they are "big chairs" by which I mean they make anyone sitting in them feel petite.  I enjoy that. I enjoy furniture that makes me feel larger than life even if they make me look small. On the same note, small furniture - small couches in particular - can make their inhabitant seem incredibly grand. Take a peek at some of your favourite old timey moviestars. They're pictured on the same little couches or giant armchairs.
Very cool. But where would this go?

I really like these especially the top right lamp. I would probably use it in my dream "Moroccan room."

I stayed with my stepmother for a few months during my first year of college and I remember her glasses. They were a lovely rounded collum set of glasses with lovely little air bubbles throughout the glass.

Really not sure why I like the one on the left so much. I don't think I'd ever use it but I still feel nice when I look at it.

I LOVE ocean life based lamps. I just do. The one on the right reminds me of a long jellyfish. On my next update I'll be sure to add my favourite lamps.


Gorgeous again. but again, where?

These are just neat but I'd have a hard time incorporating them without making the room feel more full than I want it to feel.

This one I would use, maybe with a shorter shade, if I could find a place for it.

these are neat.

You know me and ocean lamps. I like the top left

These I would buy. Where I would put them, I have no idea but that wouldn't stop me from buying them.

mmmm steampunk-sh lamps. I will own these. My favourite are the accordion lamps.

weird but cool. kids room?


oooo. I like the flower one but I kind of wish it were a torch. :(

That's right! I love mirrors. Especially rounded ones. I feel like they're very useful for pulling together a room and creating a focus. Love them.

Well we're almost at the port! So I need to head back down to the coach lines bus. Back down to the car deck with THREE horse carriers. UGH. This wouldn't bother anyone else but I'm allergic to horses and the ferries don't carry benadryl. I'm just going to start carrying it with me always.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

I need to stop posting late at night. I just did a quick view of my last few posts and my spelling and sentence structure in some places is terrible :(
Well, it's the middle of the night and I'm still not yet sleepy. So, I'll try to begin a post and I'm sure that by the time I'm a paragraph in I'll be asleep at the keyboard.

Don't expect anything deep or complex!

I've come to the conclusion that I am a sucker for animals, not just in everyday life, but also in design. I know some people are taken in by the smell of cookies during house viewings but what does it for me is to see an animal just chilling.

Sure the majority of the house has been staged but the owner's cat is still flopped on the wide windowsill asleep in the sun. That for me is an instant impulse buy. The cat is happy therefore it must be a good house.

It's also why I love to see pets accidentally or otherwise featured in home advertisements. A cat asleep on the bed during a virtual tour. A golden retriever rolling around on its back in the background of a picture. What's not to love?

My favourites though are when the animals are sneaky. You wouldn't expect a cat to be sleeping on top of the refrigerator. And I certainly wouldn't have noticed that the fridge is deeper than the overhead cabinet above it if not for that cat.  But, it can also draw attention to positive construction that I am happy to see, like a pet bed stashed under a counter.

Pets are great. I really can't imagine a home without a happy animal with a full belly to pet.

While we're on the subject of taking pictures of houses for sale, how do you prefer you pictures are lit?

I really don't like the ones taken at night. I know that with all the lights on it's supposed to look warm and inviting but it has the opposite effect for me for some reason. What about you?