Shop your home: Dining buffet update

There’s this sweet little secret I have seen in the design world called “shop your home”, where for those who want, or need, to be budget-friendly, you are encouraged to scour your own closets and walls to update your home when the urge arises. Rather than buying something new every time you want a fresh look, you rearrange what you already have.

As a new mom of a little one who is now on the move, with toys scattering the floor from sun-up to sun-down, I find if I can have little pockets of pretty here and there that she can’t touch, it makes me happy!

The plant on our dining room buffet was dried to a crisp, a Christmas plant, so when I threw it out, I decided to update the whole buffet look. It had been the same for about two years, so it was time! Here is what it looked like before (minus the flourishing plant! Oh how I loved that plant 😦 )

I still really liked it, but I didn’t have a new plant to replace the old, and new decor just isn’t a priority right now. So, one night after Elizabeth had gone to bed, I pulled everything off and roamed our rooms, looking for something new. I am trying to keep photos of us to a minimal right now, as we want to sell our house, but I had to indulge with a couple!

Here is the new look…

The lamp was in our downstairs livingroom, which we never use, so up it came. It adds such nice warmth to the room at night. The large antique gold frame is from the farm I grew up on, and had a photo of a long-lost relative. So out she came. I love the layered look! I have been collecting old books over the years – some of grandparents’ and some from garage sales. The herbs on the corbels are becoming parsley, and it makes me so happy to see something growing! Those corbels we got for a steal at a local street market a couple years ago. The photo of Troy and I was one week before our wedding, standing in Starbucks with my soon to be sibling-in-laws, and it’s one of my favourites of us. And of course, our little Elizabeth, 5-days-old.

If you were to walk around our home, you would see these colors throughout that are shown on the buffet: navy blue, gold, black, green, and creams.

I also added a leaf to our table because it feels more grand (even though it takes up a bit more space) and we could use the “office space” right now 😉 AND I like to think it encourages me to have people over more often!

Some effective ways you can shop your home:

  1. Use books as part of your decor, using cover colour schemes as a theme.
  2. Use fake and real greenery wherever you can, based on your natural light.
  3. Rearrange your photos or insert new ones for a quick update
  4. Buy some fresh flowers (tulips are cheap right now!)
  5. Add warmth with a lamp or candle.
  6. Mirrors add great layer and texture and help bring in shape and light to small spaces.
  7. Look for things that are different texture and sizes and mix and match in different spots.
  8. Pick anything that makes YOU smile!

Having beauty in the home doesn’t have to be a matter of finances – but a matter of collecting things that tell your story and things that you love. Itching for something new? Shop your home! You might be surprised what you find 🙂

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Nursery progress … preparing for our daughter

I’ve always wanted a little girl. The girly-girl in me loved the idea of having a little one to dress up, shop with, bake cookies with, and to teach all the little things that will one day (hopefully!) make her an amazing young woman who loves Jesus.

Troy and I are still deciding on her name, though we have narrowed it down to a couple. We may just have to meet her and see her to know for sure! We went through all our family history of female names and unless we want to name her Blodwin, Lydia, Dorothy, Agnes, Florence, or Margaret – then she will have her own new name 🙂

Before we even found out we were having a baby girl, I started a Pinterest board for nursery ideas – dreaming. If you know me at all, then it’s no surprise that mint/robins egg blue, soft pink, and gold are the colours in her nursery. I want a “whimsical nature” feel. I have a thing for birds lately, and have always loved flowers. I saw this idea below for a mobile (found here) that I am to make in the next couple of weeks for over her crib. How cute is that? If you follow me on Instagram, I will post a picture when mine is finished!

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Her room is our old office, so it has built-ins and a large window. It is the most peaceful and well-lit room in the house. There will be plenty of shelving space for books and stuffed animals! When I have the whole room complete (sometime by March 20!), I will do an updated blog post, but for now, here is us… preparing for our Baby Girl Lupul…

This is a bunch of decor I’ve collected, and the vintage/girly/whimsical look I am going for. I found this wonderful artist off Etsy that did the verse and prints for me. I have a collection of old hats that were my great-grandmother’s, and one or two of them will definitely be making an appearance in her nursery! I have had the blessing of time to collect and prepare for her nursery, for which I am so thankful! I know many women are working full-time or have other children to tend to while pregnant, so I am savouring the quiet and time I have right now before she arrives!

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Before I knew we were having a girl, I came across this verse and it literally jumped out at me. I knew this was her verse!
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We made this board hanger out of some old barnboard that I had aged to look like wallpaper, along with some doorknobs we had hidden in our garage. I love it so much!
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This morning’s view 🙂 The lamp will go, and a changing pad will go on top of course. I aim to find a floor lamp for beside the rocker. I might add more art to this wall, I may not. We shall see!FullSizeRender (5)

I found the perfect fabric at Fabricland and we ordered foam from a mattress store (way cheaper than ordering at Fabricland!). I bought the pink pillow covers and put them over pillows I already had. The white one I found at the thrift store and gave it a wash, and it’s good as new! For now, our dog Pippa is still enjoying her favourite view here 🙂
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When we have settled on a name for her, I’d like a lovely monogram or her name above the window here. To the left is an old rocking chair (we were just gifted with this weekend!) and some floral/bird art will go on the wall. Yes, the crib needs some outfitting yet! 😉 It’s a small space, but will be cozy and pretty and I love it already!
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Okay Baby Girl Lupul, 10 weeks until we get to meet you!

Love you already,
Mommy xo

$100 decor update

Recently, a friend of mine texted asking if I would decorate her built-ins in her livingroom. She has two boys under 3, and was looking for something to spice up the space, but still be functional.

Shop for someone else’s home on someone else’s dime? Heck yes! 🙂  Her built-ins are tricky, as the top shelf is super tall. Working with the vases and some frames she had, I opted to find ways to add some warmth, texture and more color. I could tell she liked red, so I chose a secondary color in turquoise.

BEFORE

BEFORE

I found pretty much everything at Homesense:
*wooden frame (I filled it with a red door photo of my own that I had at home that I took while travelling)
*globe (her husband does international justice work so it seemed appropriate!)
*two dish clothes in red stripe with tassels
*turquoise candle
*turquoise pear figurine
*floral for smaller vase on right
*pussy willows (free, I had lots at home)
*turquoise picture frame
*some green berries for the second shelf to add some nature
*and she found some hard cover books at home that we added in
*we left the baskets in the bottom, as they have the boys books in them!

All for $92 🙂

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They have since hung one of the 8×10 gold frames on either side (within the built-in) and filled them with new black & white photos. My suggestion was, in the long run, to find something like a wooden shutter in a fun pop of color that could lean against the top shelf wall, to fill in all of that space. And my husband, Troy, suggested building a closing screen/shutter for the TV as well.

Amazing what you can do with what you have, $100, and just a little bit of creativity!

Herb and dried flower hanger

A while back Troy and I were watching a cooking show on the Food Network where it featured 5-star chefs from around the world. One word – inspiring. One of the restaurants (likely European), had dried flowers and herbs of every color and size and texture hanging from old wood beams throughout the entire restaurant. My heart melted and I was in awe of how rustic AND pretty it was at the same time!

Something about it inspires me…bringing nature inside, enjoying something just a little bit longer. Well, in our home, I’ve had quite a time keeping plants alive. I think we need more sunlight (that’s what I blame it on 😉 ).

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Since I have a husband who can make anything, and a garage full of all kinds of wood, a while back we made this herb and flower hanger that hangs over the mirror in our front entrance. A friend had given us the knobs she found at a boutique, as a housewarming gift. ‘Ergo, we had a new project to create!

Tip: Mirrors are great in small spaces or a narrow entrance so as it makes it seem larger.

The plank is made of cedar I believe (or fir. Honey?). We sanded it down, stained it, and added the knobs. This size is 20″ long by 5″high. For now I have some fresh and dried rosemary, lavender, and dried hydrangeas. Can you smell it?! At Christmas, you can guarantee something festive will be hanging 😉

It’s a simple way to bring nature in, especially in an area of a house that is hard to keep plants alive! Seriously, you could get a plank of wood and some knobs at Home Depot and do this project for less than $20 (depending on what kind of knobs you get!)

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Happy herbing and planting 🙂

If this wall could talk…

When we first moved into our house over the Christmas holidays, I had a lifestyle article due just three weeks later, that required I take some photos of our home (It was a home magazine). We hadn’t had time to live in our home, and decide what we wanted and where, but I felt inclined to get it decorated ASAP. Thus my favourite photo I took of the Eiffel Tower, and a few other frames, went up on the livingroom wall. I had never really sat down to map it out (as you should for a gallery wall), and give myself time to collect things I really loved, and wanted to showcase.

Fast-forward seven months later, and I decided on a do-over. I liked some of the things that were up already, but I felt I was too linear and perfect with the initial hanging. It required a more eclectic and mismatched feel. And it’s only nail holes right? 😉

So this week, I pulled everything down and put it all on the kitchen table.  A few hours later of measuring, taping, sweat, and hunting for nails, and my eclectic gallery wall is up, with room for more small treasures as I find them. And, I LOVE it. I feel that it is like a giant art piece that now tells a story.

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I really wanted our wedding picture in our living area, and didn’t have any other wall for it, so up it went. Along with a mirror of my grandparents’, a scripted message from the Canadian government from when Troy’s grandpa was killed in WWII, the rose that Troy drew and gave me on our first date, some barnboard art I am starting to make, along with some thrifted antiques that just make my heart smile. And the best thing, there is still room for more 😉

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I am learning, in a lot of things, that the process of planning, time, and work is worth it. For some reason, I gravitate to quick-fixes, and then end up not liking it anyway. The Lord and Troy both know this is a process I am in! I WANT to put the effort into those things that will be worth it, I just tend to try and determine the outcome before I even set out. This feeling follows me in my writing especially, as I start a new book. I try to determine the outcome before I set out, rather than being obedient to the process I know I am to be doing right now – write. I have to let the process take however long it needs to, in order to get out the message I feel is in my heart.

Creating a home, sharing a story, anything worth doing, will take time. Lord, would You help me to learn this sooner than later?!

Hope you enjoyed our little gallery wall!