Wednesday, 26 April 2017

Our Family Room Fireplace is getting a Makeover

Hey there!  If you recall, we shared back in February that we started a makeover on our family room.  We have a lot of plans for this space, and have already replaced the flooring which included adding some tile around our fireplace; as well as a fresh coat of paint and lots of new trim work.  It is so nice to see things starting to come together!

Here is a little peek at the fireplace as the tile is going in.

This fireplace is not the prettiest thing in the world, but it is an integral part of our heating.  We do not have central heating in this house, which is quite unusual for our area of the world. However, this fireplace is so efficient you would never know it.  Plus it offers really lovely ambiance and makes this room a super cozy place to hang out in on cold winter nights.

We had a vision for this space, to make it feels like the cozy space it is.

And while we have changed a few things along the way, one of this things we had our hearts set on was a wood feature wall!

Ian has been busy making that wish come to fruition lately, and today we would like to share the first stage with you.

Our hope was to make the fireplace look more like it was an integral decor element of the room and not an after thought.  Ironically, it was an integral part of the house wen it was built 30-ish years ago!

We knew that whatever else happened around the fireplace, it needed a dark backdrop so we began by painting the area behind it a dark grey.  We just used some leftover paint which helped to save a few dollars.

And then Ian began framing in the space.

We had already chosen the wood we were going to clad the wall in so, he framed with those specifications in mind.

Our thought was that we would run the wood boards horizontally on either side of the fireplace and along the ceiling and then run the boards vertically between those two areas.

We also framed out the wall beside the fireplace.  On the opposite side of this wall is our storage room. For some strange reason this wall was cheap panelling, needing to change that up is sort of what prompted us to created a feature wall in this area.

As you can see from the photo above, Ian is super pleased with how the wall is turning out.

We were on the fence as to whether or not we would be adding baseboard and ceiling trim to this area, to match the rest of the room.

We decided that we would leave it open to whether or not we thought it was needed, aesthetically speaking.

This process came together super quickly!

We love how warm it looks and the fabulous texture it offers!

We do need to decide on a mantel for this space and are currently tossing around ides.  As there is no rush, we may poke around at a few of our favourite antiquing haunts.  Or Ian may just decided to DIY one of his many ideas!

Next steps include painting out the brass trim on the fireplace and adding some art to the wood wall.

Thanks so much for visiting today!
Ian and Laura

Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Sewing for the Family Room

Hi there!  We crossed something else off of the to do list for the family room! We now have new throw pillow covers, for the warm months and the cool months none the less!

As we mentioned previously, we are going with a red, grey and off white colour scheme for this space, so we sourced our fabrics that would worth within those confines and still be seasonally appropriate.

This is our winter look, warm plaids along with solid red pillows and grey corduroy, too.  (shown below)

We opted for a beautiful cream and red basket weave fabric for the warmer months, still pulling in the solid grey and red pillows, too.

The red covers are from IKEA and the grey ones are from Amazon.  The other pillow covers we created using our no failing process which you can see our tutorial on here.

We haven't started using them yet, as we are waiting to pull the room together first.

Thanks so much for visiting!
Ian and Laura

Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Our Family Room Make Over Continues

Hello!  Even though our posting has been sporadic at best, we are continuing to plug along with our family room make over.

If you recall, this is the inspiration board we put together for the space.  We shared this over a year ago, long before we could start to work on the space, sometimes the dreaming part is all you can achieve!  While most of this inspiration is still on our wish list, a few things have evolved over time..

Recently, we have been working on changing the lighting, painting walls, replacing trim and refacing the columns.

Here is a little peek at a BEFORE photo.

Despite being in our basement, this room has a lot going for it.  For one, it is huge!  Like almost 25' x 25', and it has great light and fairly large windows for a lower level space!  Although, the room felt a little lack luster before we started our renos, partly due to the wood trim, paint colour (which is decidedly more fleshy in low light, as in all winter long), fluorescent lighting and window coverings. Which are all things we have been addressing lately.

As you know, we have swapped out the carpet for new flooring that is much more kid, dog, and snack friendly. If you missed that post, you can check it our here. We still love it!

We also painted out all of the walls, this Silver Satin colour by Benjamin Moore.  It is fresh and airy, but still cozy enough for a lower level.  It is the perfect soft warm greige and we are so happy we found ti!  It looks especially lovely with the new white trim.

Ian pulled all that old, dried out ugly wood trim down off the walls and replaced it with nice clean new white trim.

The baseboard is pretty standard trim, however the trim along the ceiling is something we created ourselves.

We also created custom window trim for this space,

This is a hard window to photograph as it gets great light so you'll have to take our word for it the trim looks waaaay better!

You can also get a glimpse of our new window treatment in this pic, with it's white blinds and grey and beige striped drapes.  They are a perfect combination for this space!  There is also a small window which we are working on creating a custom treatment for. Mostly because I totally forgot to order a blind for it when I ordered the other blinds! ;)

The fluorescent light fixtures were swapped out with these fixtures.

These fixtures were chosen largely due to the fact that the prices was right ($39 at Costco), they are clean looking and do not really attract a lot of visual attention.  They are not often on so we didn't want to make a huge investment.  Of course, when we took down the old fixtures we found so many holes in the ceiling. It seemed as if who ever installed the old lights drilled into the ceiling saying "no stud here, no stud here, no stud here" etc.  There were over fifteen holes for fixture in this spot alone!

So ceiling repair is another project on our list!

Since removing the columns wasn't an option, Ian dolled them up with bead board wainscotting and fresh trim.  The tops were painted the wall colour and the trim and bead board was painted the same fresh while as the rest of the trim in the room.

Of course, Ian is a details guy, so he switched out all of the electrical outlets and light switches in the room, too.

Fresh white, beats 30 ear old beige any day of the week!

Next on our list for this room, is removing the weird bit of paneled walls.  You can sort of see them on the walls behind the columns in the photo above. As well as some sewing, new sofa slip covers,  And on and on! You know how it goes!

We are also starting a new project in the living room this week.  And of course, as the weather is turning nicer we are wanting to be out of doors so we will likely be beginning a few projects out there, as well.

Thanks for visiting!
Ian and Laura

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Hello again, and our Family Room is getting a make over!

Hello! It has been so, so long since we have posted here, for a multitude of reasons really, not the least of which was Ian's retirement and the lead up to it.  Which meant a bit of a hiatus from home renos here, partly because well hey he is retiring so we will have more time for all of our projects once he has more time at home, and partly because he was working on his "bachelor pad" and getting it ready to sell. We say bachelor pad sort of tongue in cheek, as when we were looking for a place for him to stay after we made the move to our new home for the months he had left of work before retiring, we ended up buying a smallish town-home because it was more economical than the rent on anywhere "decent".  And while it was costly, as in very, to own two homes at the time, it ended up worth our while when we were able to sell it at a profit thanks to all of the work Ian and our older sons did on the place and an amazing real estate agent!

Ian started his retirement mid-December, with six weeks vacation before his official retirement date, and wow was it ever nice to finally have him home with our youngest and I!  Ian and I quickly fell into a new routine of being super lazy!  We headed for the hot tub every morning after getting our son off to school, and then we puttered around the house before stopping for coffee once or twice during the day.  Once the Christmas break started, we got even lazier and enjoyed all of our down time, between our sons many hockey games that is.  The new year and return to school for our son brought on a new routine and we are trying to be more purposeful with our time.  But not so much that we do not take time for Ian to catch up on his reading and me to do things that I enjoy.  After all, balance is important, right?

However, in the days between the start of his retirement and Christmas, Ian did manage to replace the flooring in our family room!   I love that he is able to save us so much money by being so handy, and he loves being busy!

We opted for this product, partly because even though it is a laminate, it has great texture and feels very realistic, and partly because it is waterproof.  We found it at our local Benjamin Moore store, the owner there is so helpful and accommodating. He let us bring all of the samples home!

 It came in several colours, which was nice.

  Options are always a good thing!

Although, if you are indecisive like me, you turn to your online friend to help you make decisions.

But then you go with your gut and choose the warm grey brown. Something that is mid tone which helps hide the dirt and dog hair and something that will coordinate with the decor direction we have planned for this room.

You can check out this post for more information on the ideas we have for this room, although admittedly some of these ideas have changed already.

Of course once you choose the new flooring, you have to do the grunt work of pulling out the old flooring.

Although the carpet and underpad are not usually the hard part. That woudl be the glue! Which entitled much scraping!

Thankfully there wasn't a lot of glue.

Once he had the old carpet stripped, he began the install of the new flooring.

He was really pleased with how easy this product was to work with.

He managed to make good progress, as you can see we had our Christmas tree up already, so we just kept moving it around the room!  Thankfully, it moved easily in this old tin tub.

Before you know it, he was halfway done!

Although, there were some scary moments, like this shot of pre-Christmas chaos.  You know decorated and trashed all at the same time! But before our grown boys, our daughter in law and our grandson came home for the New Years weekend, he had all of the flooring done!

We will share more photos of the floor and the finished room at a later date as we pull it more together.  There is still so much to do!

In the meantime, we also needed to address the floor area around the woodstove.  It was carpeted before and we felt it should be tiled, in keeping with a more traditional look. So we headed back to our local Benjamin Moore store to look at tile.

We talked to the owner about our needs and the direction we were heading as far as looks were concerned.  And of course we talked kids league hockey for a while, too!

Anyway, he had some leftovers of this tile in his storage area which was perfect since we only needed a few pieces and he sold them to us for a great deal!  They are light muted grey and look like marble.

And even though Ian had never tried tiling before, he bought himself a tile cutter and set to work!  Of course he did a great job, the man never ceases to amaze me! Although, if truth be told I have way more faith in him than he does! And of course, you know I now have a new set of to do's for him and his new skills! Ha!

Since we cannot show you our after pictures just yet, we thought we would leave you with the before photo!

Next on this list for this room is paint, baseboard and trim around the ceiling (not crown moulding but maybe something like the trim we used in the kitchen).  Oh, and a feature wall, we have big plans for a feature wall, as well as dolling up the fireplace!  We can't wait to start that project and share it with you!

So glad you visited today!
Ian and Laura

Friday, 14 October 2016

Coffee and Tea Fabric Dying

Hello there!

A couple of weeks back, when I was planning new pillow covers for the living room, I was hoping to introduce a striped pattern.  You see, as much as I love our quatrefoil patterned draperies, I struggle with what other geometric patterns I can use in the room.  I settled on a stripe as it is a fairly nuetral pattern.  When I was searching for the right stripe I was feeling a little guilty as I have a striped fabric in my stash.

However, it is a white and grey stripe and a little harsh for this room, which really needed a cream and grey stripe.  In the hopes of saving some money I tested a  few scraps of fabric, with some coffee and tea dying.   The just coffee scrap was a little too dark, and the just tea scrap was a little too red.

But the scrap that I soaked in both coffee and tea, was just perfect!  The photos above shows a piece of dyed and un-dyed fabric.

After soaking, I washed, dried and ironed the fabric prior to using it for sewing.

I then whipped up this super quick and easy pillow cover using this process.

All in all, it turned out great and saved me a bit of money and saved Ian the agony of waiting for me to scour the fabric store, yet again!

Have a good one friends!
Ian and Laura

Monday, 10 October 2016

Fall Home Decor Accents

Hi there!

I spent a bit (a very little bit) of time adding a few hints of Fall decor to our living room and dining room and thought I would share.  I was not really ready to say good bye to summer this year, and delayed embracing Fall, in fact we haven't even done any of our usual Fall activities.  However, the changing of the leaves and cool nights are big hints that it is time to embrace the joys of Autumn.

I pulled the tray off of our coffee table in the living room and filled it with the Drop Cloth Pumpkins 
that I made last year, some greenery and a candle tucked under a cloche and resting on top of a wood slice.

I wrapped the candle with some burlap and a piece of scrapbooking paper. I love the added texture it gives.

Gathering a few things from around the house and making a compact vignette is completely meshing with my non fussy decor sentiment for this home.  And it is super easy to move out of the way when we sit for dinner.

I found these stems of cotton at Homesense and could not resist bringing them home.

They remind me of the year my family lived in Georgia.

I also swapped out the throw pillow covers in the living room.   I picked up the grey ones on Amazon.

The green Ikat covers were revamped from covers I made last January (12 Easy Peasy Steps to Sewing a Throw Pillow Cover) to house new square inserts.

Ian has wanted a wool Hudson's Bay blanket for many years.  They are pretty pricey.  And honestly I couldn't see the traditional Hudson's Bay red, blue, yellow and green stripes working into our decor - in any main room at least.

Then we discovered their new "millennium" colour scheme in cream and grey tones! 

And found it for a great deal - so of course, it needed to come home with us!  The Mr. is happy!

Since our coffee table / basket / trunk was naked (because I moved the tray to the dining room) I draped it with a green plaid fabric that feels like Fall picnics.

And topped it with my green ceramic pumpkin! 

Of course my ever present (and growing) stack of magazines is resting beside it. Can you believe the Christmas issues are already starting to come out!

The chair across the room, got a new striped pillow.

The gingham chairs also got new grey pillow covers to replace the cream and green covers (Easy Throw Pillow Covers) that usually adorn them.  They are actually a super soft corduroy and definitely feel like Fall.  Miss Ruby Tuesday approves of the new look!

I think that is going to be all we do to ease into Fall around here, with the exception of lots of Fall cooking!

Thanks so much for visiting today!