August 30, 2012

Party Time ~ Puppy Dogs & Tonka Trucks

My sister's finance's son, Trai, turned 2 a couple of weeks ago and she asked me if I was able to put together some themed decorations for the birthday party. The catch was that the party would be taking place in Prince George and I wouldn't be attending. So instead, I staged some of the party decor in my spare bedroom and took some photos to send up with the party goodies. That way Jen would have an idea of how to set things up on the day of the party in PG.

Can you guess what the theme for this 2 year old party was? You got it.....Puppy Dogs and Tonka Trucks!! An odd combo but super cute. I went more with the puppy dog theme but added the yellow accent colour to represent the tonka trucks.

I have to admit I have been pretty grumpy this week. Posession day on the bungalow seems to be dragging on at a slug's pace. We just want to get this show on the road already! Good news is we only have 5 more days to wait! And I only have 1 more day of work before I will be on a week long "work-cation".

August 24, 2012

Friday Funnies ~ Elephant Hop

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Completely not house related but this is too wonderful not to share.
Every time the elephant hits the tramp my heart lets out a small squeal of delight.
I could watch this all day.

Happy Weekend Everyone!

August 17, 2012

To Ikea Or Not To Ikea

Folks either love Ikea and their products or vow to never step foot in an Ikea store claiming their products are cheaply made and mass produced.

I personally would rather spend my money on a found vintage piece of furniture over buying bigger items from Ikea but definitely feel Ikea is a great place to buy the small everyday items such as drinking glasses, candles, plants, bath accessories, cutlery, the list goes on. I am also drawn to Ikea's clean, simple, Scandinavian style.

I must admit I was pretty darn excited to come home from work the other day to find the new 2013 Ikea Catalogue on my doorstep.

I immediately made myself a cup of tea and set out to study the catalogue page by page. This year Ikea is focusing on the use of textiles and how small changes such as introducing a few new throw pillows or DIYing some new window coverings can add new life to rooms and old pieces of furniture you already own around the home. The main concept of the catalogue though is Ideas. I was impressed to read this excerpt in the first couple of pages......

"You don't have to buy a single thing to bring new life to a room. Start with what you have, then apply a fresh eye and a few spare minutes. Move a sofa to a new spot. Swap curtains. Borrow a rug from another room. It doesn't have to cost anything. It's about ideas."

Of course the catalogue is full of inspiring photos and product shots and consumers will still be snatching up these fair priced goodies, but it's nice to be given the option and to be encouraged to decorate your home with what you already have.

I would say this is Ikea's best year for textiles and fabrics by the metre. They have increased their textile lines, introduced new designers, and their cut fabrics are cheaper than ever before.

The 2013 textiles are made up of a mix of bright, bold, soft florals, nature inspired and classic black and white patterns that can appeal to wide range of design aesthetics.

Of course being the black and white lover that I am, my favorite textiles are the ones of this nature. Launched on June 1, 2012 the MYRLILJA line is a new limited addition textile line, only available while supplies last. The cushions below would add a playful contemporary touch to any room in the house.


Some other favorite fabrics from this year......

SARALISA $7.99/metre


TRÅDKLÖVER $5.99/metre




CECILIA $2.99/metre

The 2013 Ikea catalogue will definitely join my stack of catalogues on the bookshelf from years gone by after it has spent some more time on my bedside table mind you.

I found an easy DIY project over at Poppytalk using the new GURINE fabric to make fun leaf pillows. Simply cut out the different leaf shapes, sew together and stuff. These would be super cute in a child's room, add some whimsy to your patio chairs, or bring the nature indoors up at the cabin.  Ikea has also introduced fabric designed to be coloured in using fabric paint. This would be a great DIY project to do with the kids, helping them make their own personalized pillows for their beds.

Another discovery I have recently stumbled upon is Ikea's Swedish blog Livet Hemma, Life at Home. The blog is full of inspirational pics, ideas, DIY projects and recipes. The blog is in Swedish but can be switched to English by using the Google Translate button at the top of the page.

Check it out!      

August 13, 2012

Collections ~ Fabric

My shades of grey thrift store fabric collection is growing. I claimed each of these for no more than $6.99 a piece. I look forward to putting them to use on some furniture finds, maybe some cushion covers...

August 10, 2012

Window Shopping ~ Craigslist Part 2

The theme of this Window Shopping installment are items that are priced higher than I am willing to pay, that I believe are slightly over priced, or maybe I'm just a true cheap skate.


1930's Boy's book - $25 (White Rock)

I am a sucker for vintage books. Especially children's books. The posting includes photos of some really great  illustrations. $25 seems a bit pricey but if I found this at a thrift store that I was already at, for slightly cheaper, I would definitely give it some serious consideration. (Yes sometimes I'm pretty lazy as well). At the very least I would take the time to leaf through and soak in the vintage stories.



Antique wood bed frame - $70 (Cloverdale)

This antique bed frame has been listed for quite a while and I have been admiring it from afar. I'm quite surprised it hasn't been snatched up by now. I think it's absolutely  gorgeous and would be a great addition to our spare bedroom. It's a single, so only one guest would be able to visit at a time (obviously a double would be ideal) but design over function right? ;) The owners have just dropped the price from $100 to $70. I still don't know if I can fork out that much right now though. I think I would be comfortable with $50.....


Antique Cabinet/Shelves - $60 (Marpole)

This piece would look spectacular in a rustic country kitchen, dining room or just about any room in the house really. It looks great in white but could be painted any colour to match your decor. It is perfect to use as a collection cabinet or as a book shelf.  It looks like quite a large piece so definitely worth $60 (just not to cheapskate over here). I also love that this piece plus the bed above come with a story.

Bamboo bench - $45 (East Vancouver)

This bench is a combination of a few of my favorite has a rustic feel, it's rattan/bamboo and it's black. It would look fabulous at the end of our bed as a catchall for magazines, books or clothing at the end of the night. Unfortunately I'm not willing to pay the asking price right now.

Vintage coal bucket - $20 (Vancouver)

This vintage coal bucket is super cool. It is an excellent way to add a pop of colour to any home decor. It could be used as a toilet roll/extra towel container in the bathroom, a place to store books/magazines in the bedroom, or a wood container next to the fireplace. I would jump on it if it were perhaps listed for $10, maybe even $15....

Box of vintage maps - $20 (Vancouver)

I have always wanted to find a really awesome vintage map to hang in a frame. Excerpt from the posting...."Not sure what the hell is in there but some look kinda cool and go back to the thirties and forties. Kind of an as is deal as I don't have time to go through them all"....Would you pay $20 for a box of maps at the chance of finding the perfect vintage one??.....

Of course almost everything on Craigslist is listed OBO or is negotiable. We will have to wait and see if anything pushs me to take the leap while it's still up for grabs!

August 8, 2012

Party Time ~ A year after 60

Over the weekend my Dad turned 61. Unfortunately turning 61 isn't as big of a deal as turning 60. Last year we threw an outdoor woodsy themed birthday bash for my Dad plus 2 of his co-workers who were also celebrating the big 6-0.

It's occasions like birthdays that force you to take note of how fast a year goes by. It seems like yesterday D and I where at the shop cutting logs into small sections and gluing them together to make the 60 sign.

Even though we didn't have a big get together this year, we did spend the afternoon relaxing and swimming down at the lake. Which really was our best and only option because this weekend the weather was scorching hot!

The kids, D and I pretty much stayed in the water the entire time. The photo of Orrin above reminded me of how much he is growing up. I used to call him my little budda baby!

August 3, 2012

Window Shopping ~ Craigslist

So I thought I would let you in on a couple guilty pleasures of mine. My love for thrift stores and Craigslist.

I was wandering around one of my favorite thrift stores after work last night and started thinking to myself...."man I'm glad I have a tiny ounce of self control because I could end up spending a small fortune at these places if I allowed myself to".

Because of this I have come up with a second hand shopping system. I start by slowly scanning my favorite sections and taking inventory of what I would love to take home but I leave everything where it is on the shelf (sometimes hiding the really good finds behind larger objects just in case). Then I retrace my steps and ask myself a few questions.

  1. Do I really NEED it?
  2. Do I have a specific spot in the new house for it?
  3. Is it a one of a kind item that I probably will never see again?
  4. Do we have room to store it before we move?
I usually end up finding anywhere between 2-6 things that I would love to have but only end up purchasing 1 or 2, sometimes leaving the store empty handed.

I have also set a price limit for myself.
  1. Ceramics and small household items, nothing over $5.
  2. Larger household items, nothing over $10 (unless it's really special).
  3. Furniture, nothing over $20.
These guidelines keep me from taking home everything in sight! I must admit I'm slightly addicted to shopping at thrift stores. I'm also slightly addicted to scanning Craigslist whenever I have a few minutes here and there. 

I have scored some awesome finds from Craigslist in the past. The free kind and the super good deal kind. I will share those items once we move into the house.

I also end up finding things that I would love to have but the sensible part of my brain tells me to just let them be. Usually because we don't have room for them or they aren't really worth the effort or gas money to drive out and pick up.

So to share the love and found goodies with others, I have decided to start a Window Shopping section. Here I will post Craigslist and thrift store items that I come across and love, probably won't jump on for whatever reason, but maybe someone else out there will!

Round Rattan Coffee Table - $20 (Downtown)

This rattan coffee table doesn't come with the glass. Even so, a piece of something could be cut and attached to the top as a base, turn it upside down and now it can be used as a laundry hamper or other type container. It could also be cut in two and the bottom half turned into a drum lamp shade. Basket lamp shades are hot right now.

Vintage Desk - $20 (Fir and 12th)

 I'm actually pondering picking this desk up. I have been thinking of putting a small desk in our guest room under the window at the new house. This would look super cute paired with a bright turquoise chair. I also have a love affair with black furniture (as you will soon find out).

Mid-century modern home stuff, credenza and more - $5 (East Van)

The glass orb on the right hand side of the photo is the only $5 item. Everything else is under $30 (except antlers are $50). I could find a home for all of these goodies, especially the little yellow bubble desk lamp. That lamp has been haunting my dreams the past couple of nights. It is listed for $20 and would be perfect in our bedroom on one of our nightstands. Not sure if I can bring myself to drive across the bridge for it though......

Vintage dresser - $40 (West End)

I love this dresser but unfortunately I don't have a specific spot for it in mind or a place to store it at the moment. BOO!

 I'm sure as my thrifting obsession progresses there will be many more of these Window Shopping posts. Stay Tuned!!