Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Important Poll: New Stitchalong?

If you've been reading my blog for awhile, you may remember how much I enjoyed Amy Powers' 39 squares stitchalong.   I also started the counting my blessings project, but I admit, I have fallen off the wagon.  My counting my blessings project is kind of floundering, but I do miss my stitching.

I've been tossing around an idea for a few weeks now, and I wanted to get your opinions.  I've been thinking of hosting a Christmas or holiday-themed stitch-a-long.  Something small and defined (like 25 days/squares).  I know that the holidays are such a busy time, already so packed with projects and a million things to do.  But the idea of stitching a bit each night during the holidays appeals to me.

So, the question is: does it appeal to you?  I'd like to get an idea whether anyone would be interested in another collaborative stitching project before I spend time trying to organize it. (By the way, I contacted Amy and asked her if she was planning to do a holiday stitching project.  She said she did not have one planned, and gave me her blessing to go ahead.)  So, I'd love to hear your opinions, thoughts, ideas, comments!  Please leave a comment here or on my other blog, Needle and Thread Adventures.

Thanks, and happy stitching!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Big Reveal

I'm so excited to report that we have reached the finish line on our home repair project.  There are still a few small details that remain, but for the most part, the job is done.  So, without further delay, here is the big reveal! 

Just in case you can't recall the "before," here are some shots of the bathroom before:

And here's the exciting after!

As you can see, the room was completely transformed!  I was going for kind of a vintage European hotel look, and I'm thrilled with the way it turned out!  We have new marble floors, wonderful marble countertops (we went all over town looking for really white marble -- and it was virtually impossible to find.  I'll have to do a separate post on that adventure), a new vanity and cabinet, new toilet, new tile in the shower, and new fixtures.  The walls are a lovely very soft light green (Sherwin Williams Opaline).  We kept the original white cast iron tub, and I spray-painted the gold mirror from the old bathroom silver so that it would match.  My only regret is that the ceiling configuration won't work for the big crystal chandelier that I wanted.  I haven't done any decorating in there to speak of, and I need to find a shower curtain.

The other big transformation was the laundry room.  I don't have many great before photos, but here's one of the utility sink that I hated:

It was dirty and stained, and it was impossible to find a stopper to stop up the drain, so it was useless to me as a soaking sink (and a gal's got to soak her vintage linens somewhere!).  From this pic you can see that there was big white tile on the floor before.  So, here's the exciting after:

Woohoo!  The layout is basically the same.  We replaced the white tile with this gray porcelain tile that I love, and it was laid in a brick pattern.   I have a new stainless steel sink that is huge and very functional.  We doubled the size of the cabinet/counters, bringing it along the wall in an L shape (it used to just be next to the fridge only).  And yes, that's marble on the counters!  (The excess from the bathroom slab had to go somewhere, right?)  I added some glass knobs from Anthropologie -- they look like little vintage glass door knobs.  We painted the room essentially the same blue as before, but I went one shade lighter.  Now it's Sherwin Williams Mountain Air.

Well, I hope you have enjoyed this little tour.  I'm thrilled to have these rooms completed!   Now, maybe it's time to focus on the kitchen.....

Friday, September 17, 2010


If you've been reading my blog for awhile, you know that antique lace makes me irrationally happy.  So, you can imagine how giddy I've been this week, as I've been going through boxes -- yes, boxes! -- of new finds. 

I've already put a lot of new laces into the shop, but I'll be doing more every day -- it's going to take a long time to get all of these fabulous goodies photographed and listed!

I hope that you have a great weekend!  We will be busy watching football, unpacking the last few boxes, taking our little one to soccer practice, and celebrating the end (almost!) of this home repair journey.  I hope to have pics of the finished bathroom and laundry room for you on Monday.  I'm told that my marble countertops are being installed today -- another reason to be giddy!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

I Remember

(Photo from Time.)

Yesterday I was running around in the van, rushing from meeting to meeting to appointment, and I turned on the radio.  One of the talk show hosts on A.M. radio was re-playing audio from the morning of 9/11.  I listened to about 20 seconds of it, realized that I was crying, and quickly turned the radio off.

I still remember, and in some ways it still feels like yesterday.  I remember the horror of that day, the hours while I waited to hear if my brother (in NY) and many friends (in NY and DC) were okay (they were, thank God).  Racing out of my job high up in a building in downtown Houston to get my baby from daycare; hugging her and crying and wondering what type of a world she would grow up in.

I fear there are many people who have already forgotten that day.  Who have become complacent.

I am not one of them.

I remember.

Friday, September 10, 2010

For the Love of Marble Tile

Things are still moving right along at the casa.  I wanted to show you a few new pics now that the bathroom floor is in and finished.  I love this marble tile even more now that it's on the floor!  I know it's not particularly practical, but I love the way it looks and it gives such a great vintage feel to the bathroom.  In the picture above you can see a part of the vanity, which is going to be painted white.  I had found these pictures in the new Restoration Hardware catalog:

I wanted that vanity and cabinet, but painted white and scaled down for my space.  (As a side note: as much as I love Restoration Hardware, all of their new furniture is SO HUGE!  Who has room for furniture that big?  If you do, then my hat is off to you!  But my little teeny tiny hall bathroom requires something more "wee" than that.)  Anyway, I gave the carpenter the picture, and crossed my fingers.  Well, it may be hard to tell from my photo, but this is what he created:

I'll take better pics when they are painted (I think I'll need to stand in the bathtub to get a good shot), but let me tell you -- this totally exceeded my expectations!  It took my breath away.  I am so impressed; I wish that I had the skills to make furniture like this!

In other house news, when we last left the hallway, it looked like this:

And now, ta da!

So, as you can see, things are looking up around here!  I hope you have a great weekend!  I'm going to be busy this weekend dealing with this:

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Say Hello to my Little Friends!

So, what does one do when trapped in a hotel room for 3 1/2 weeks?  Other than climb the walls???  One makes lots and lots of little festive trim tags, of course!

These cute little trim kits, that include these darling vintage picks that someone, long ago, must have spent lots of time creating, are now available in the shop.

In other news, my movers are here as we speak.  I think last night may have been our last night of sleeping on a mattress on the floor in my daughter's room.  Hooray!!  Hope you're having a great week! :)

Monday, September 6, 2010

I'm Back! Let's celebrate!

I'm so happy to report that we are back home!  It's still total chaos here, with half of the house a construction zone, and currently no fridge and no downstairs furniture.  But it's still home-sweet-home, and we are all thrilled to be here.  Read on down to the end of this post for a special celebration sale announcement!

As promised, here's a pic of my new Ikea desk, which the hubs put together for me yesterday in record time:

It feels a lot more permanent and substantial than my folding table!  This pic makes my office look oh-so neat and tidy, right?  Well, here's the rest of the story:

That's the cabinetry for the laundry room, waiting to be installed and painted.  And in the big box is my new laundry room sink.  So, I've eeked out a corner of normalcy in all this, but it's still a big construction zone.

Here are some other updates for you.  When our story left off, here's what the laundry room looked like:

And here's how it looks this morning:

New walls, new paint, new tile floor (what do you think?) just waiting for grout.  And here's where we left the old bathroom shower (before demo):

Here's the current state of things -- new subway tile, also waiting for grout:

Last on our little tour today is our master bedroom, which looked like this:

And now, miraculously, looks like this:

The workers have really done an amazing job!  But I'm afraid I'm going to have nightmares about the way that wet subfloor looked and smelled.....  ICK.

Thanks for joining me on this little tour.  I'll keep you posted as things continue to get put back together!  And I'm so excited to have my computer back that all sorts of new things are coming to the shop as quickly as I can list them.  To celebrate, let's have a little private sale, why don't we?  For the rest of this week (through Friday, September 10, 2010), mention this blog post in your notes to seller, and get free shipping on your entire order from my Etsy shop!  (I'll refund your shipping charges through paypal.)

Happy Labor Day, and happy shopping!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

A Fun New Swap, a House Update, and an IKEA Shout-Out

I'm so excited that Heather is doing another fun petite box swap -- this one with a black and white theme.  Spots are limited, so if you're interested, run on over to her blog, Speckled Egg, and sign up!  I'm feeling inspired to do something spooky for this one; visions of the Munsters are coming to mind.  :)

In other news, we are still living at a hotel.  Of course, it's a huge blessing to have a place to live, but it's been 3 weeks now, and we are looking forward to going home soon.  They were in the process of staining/coating the new hardwood floors this week, so we are hopeful that we may be able to partially move back over the long Labor Day weekend. 

I made a pilgrimage to Ikea today.  We are very fortunate to have a huge (and I mean Death Star huge!) Ikea only 5 minutes away.  But the truth is that I rarely go, because it's so big and so crowded -- you kind of have to psych yourself up for it.  But I need a new desk for my office (I've been using a large folding table as a "temporary" desk for the last 2 years), so today I ventured over there, arriving right at opening time.  I found my new desk (I'll post pics soon) and I have my eye on some new bookshelves as well.  It's hard to beat those Ikea prices, I tell ya!  But the big news was what I found in the housewares area:  towels and aprons covered with cupcakes!!!

Sorry about this kind of weird far-away picture of the apron, but it was all I could find on the web.  The towels are darling, too, and I think the set of 3 was $7.99.  Just can't beat that!

Hope you have a great holiday weekend!
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