DIY: Frame Your Jewelry

Inside: How to frame a brooch 

While I go for my morning runs I love to think and plan out projects, my day and anything else that may be going on. I have been trying to find something unique to place in a small ornate square frame I bought for my daughter's bedroom at Winners (TJ Maxx in the US) a few months ago. I had a lightbulb moment while my feet were hitting the pavement this morning. 

And this is what I came up with...

a little bling for her room. 

All that was needed was a frame (with the glass removed), a piece of black linen and batting. I wrapped the fabrics around the glass and then inserted it back into the frame. The back cover was put back on, the brooch pinned in place and...


I love how the brooch echoes the lines of the mirror I found!

~ Barbara


~Fabulous Find: Mirror~

This has been my lucky week for fabulous finds. 

I found this fantastic mirror in the clearance section of Homesense for $20.

 It is the perfect addition that will add the touch of glamour for my daughter's room. I wanted a starburst mirror but find this one more original. I love how there is the layering of two mirrors and the overlapping wires that give it the look of a flower. With her walls painted Stonington Gray, a tufted headboard, the mercury glass side lamp along with the thrift store lamp I re-vamped with silver leaf, her room will look elegant and grown-up, very fitting for a girl who is about to turn 16.

 Slowly I am collecting the accessories and furniture needed for her room, I have been enjoying the process and can't wait to put it all together. The challenge is to try to spend as little as possible and so far I have been finding bargains galore!

I have another find for her room that I found on Craigslist yesterday and am picking it up on Sunday which will require a coat of paint. Can't wait to show it to you.

Oh - remember how I was hoping and wanting me some chiang mai dragon fabric? 



I found a store that could order some in but {gulp} the price tag was a bit much, at $256 per yard I think I might just have to win the lottery!

~Fabulous Find: Dining Room Table~

I have been on a blog hiatus for a bit - busy working, gardening, chaperoning another track trip to the US,



Which brings me to another fabulous find! 

We have been on the look-out for a larger dining room table for a few years but found paying over $1500 for a table a bit hard to swallow. I had been scouring Craigslist and hadn't found what I was looking for. I stumbled across an ad last week for a wholesale/custom furniture builder who was clearing out inventory. This past fall I saw the ad and helped my sister buy a table, 6 chairs and a gorgeous sideboard for about $1200. All the furniture is made from a solid Brazilian hardwood. Regretfully I hadn't purchased a table in the fall and was kicking myself until his ad popped up again in the local paper. He only had 2 left and the one I really liked had a few dings but for $400 I could live with them! It is a 7 foot long table and with 2 extensions extends to 9 feet. We now can have family and friends over to eat without bumping elbows. 

What I love is that I can move our "old" dining table, which is an old library desk from the 20's, into the kitchen and FINALLY be rid of the cheap Ikea table that my kids have had fun engraving with their pencils. I love it when one new furniture addition helps re-decorate 2 spaces.

Our old table - now in the kitchen.

Yahoo - this old baby is out the door! (Oh and I am still looking for kitchen chairs and think I found the "ones" - at Target)

New table - sorry for the grainy photos, I didn't take the time to edit them.

Aren't those sexy legs?

Now I need more chairs and need to re-paint the sideboard. I am thinking of  painting it white along with the bookcases you can see in the photos. There is way too much black/dark wood in this room and in combination with the room facing north it gets little direct light, I need to lighten things up. Or I just might actually make slipcovers for the chairs. 

Just more things to add to the to-do list! 

I have yet another fabulous find to share that I found for the daughter's room - I was in a real shopping mode last week. 

~Fabulous Find: Mercury Glass Lamp~

While strolling through Homesense the other day I came across this mercury glass lamp. I doubt it is real mercury glass but has the look I am trying to achieve for my daughter's room. It has a silk shade with a beautiful gray pattern on the inside of the shade. The height and sparkle are just perfect for the bedside table I have in mind for her room.  The price tag was fabulous as well : $39.99.

I grabbed it quickly! 

The room is slowly coming together and I hope while she is gone on her week long hike next month I can surprise her by FINALLY finishing her room.

I had another fabulous find this week and will post about that later. 

~Check This Out: Vintage Superhero Posters~

Odeedoh by Apartment Therapy is one of my favourite reads full of inspirational photos and products geared towards families with children. While the website focusses on the younger set, I can take ideas and tweak them for my growing-taller-by-the-day teens' and tween's bedrooms. I am trying to re-design my son's room and am avoiding the typical blue/red (something I started but want a change) or theme room. I want some personality injected into the room and as much as he would love to hang posters all over the place, because of my controlling design obsession I absolutely abhor posters hung up with sticky tac all over the room. He wants some cool posters and this weekend Odeedoh featured these amazing vintage-style superhero posters by Michael Myers. Framed and artfully arranged these would be perfect for his room, something both he and I could be pleased with.

How cool are these?

source: Odeedoh

I think I am going to track down at least one for my son's room (if they are reasonably priced)

~Chalkboard Walls~

While I am shopping around for furniture and deciding on paint colours for my daughter's room, I am considering painting a large chalkboard in her room. I am having a love affair with chalkboard walls lately and think it will give her room that teenage edge that she wants.  My daughter is constantly writing on her window and mirror with a dry erase marker, what better way to write messages to herself than a chalkboard wall? 

Chalkboard walls are everywhere, I have found them in blogs and in the pages of my favourite magazines. I love the modern vibe they give a space. Chalkboard walls could even be viewed as functional art with the images and messages on the wall constantly changing. I want one in my kitchen. A few houses back I had a door in the kitchen that I painted with chalkboard paint. Our family love writing silly notes to each other. It also helped me stay organized by jotting down the daily schedule.

Here are some of my favourites:

Isabella and Max Rooms

This isn't a chalkboard wall but you could use chalkboard paint to colour block a section of wall.

Source unknown but have it stashed in my tumblr files

Canadian House and Home

I am really drawn to this photo. I love the eclectic mix of modern (the chairs and chalkboard wall) with the old (the farmhouse table and chandelier) I can see myself enjoying my morning cup of coffee and reading the paper. 

Distracted again.....need to focus on the daughter's room!

~Off to the Candy Shop~

Going to the paint store is like going to the candy store. 

You might be thinking I am not all well in the noggin' but I can't help it. I love paint. Even as a child I loved to tag along with my dad to the now defunct Lumberland. While he was searching for materials for his latest project I hung out in the paint section to collect paint chips that I fancied. 

Yesterday I visited the local Benjamin Moore store to find some inspirational colours because I am itching to paint a wall or two. Even though we are renting I have painted the walls in the house to suit our taste. I am bored with some of the rooms and what better way to spice things up is with paint!

 My goal is to finally finish all the kids rooms before summer. I am not happy with the colour on my son's wall and neither is he, and my daughter chose an apple green when we moved in and I am not feeling it. 

I think I may have worn her down to let me paint it a grey. She said that I can change the paint colour as long as I finally finish her room. You see I am really good at procrastinating and have yet to find/build her a desk and upholster a headboard. 

The colours I have narrowed down are  a blue-gray, Stonington Gray or  beige-gray, Edgecomb Gray, by Benjamin Moore. In my sons' room I think I going to go with Stonington Gray. I like the blue undertones and think it will go well with his furnishings. 

Here is a room in Stonington Gray

Don't you love how clean and classic this rooms looks? I love how the white looks so crisp and black visually grounds the space.

 My daughter wants hot pink accents and that is where this room by one of my favourite Canadian designers, Samantha Pynn, is an inspiration. Also painted, I think, with Stonington Gray

Here is a room painted in Edgecomb Gray, it is a like a "greige" and am not sure how well it would work with fuschia accents.


This is a glimpse of her room now. I think the gray will make it look classic and grown up. 

~A Giveaway for a Good Cause~

My wonderful blogging friends,  the dynamic duo of Design Ties are having a giveaway for a good cause. 

They are supporting a friend and artist Matt LeBlanc in his Art for Life Campaign to paint 200 paintings in 6 months to raise $25, 000 for cancer research. This cause strikes home because I watched my aunt fight and lose the battle with breast cancer when I was 16. She was only 38 when she passed away, which is one year younger than I am now. She left behind four children and her death caused such pain and a void in our hearts. Since medicine has advanced in such a short time we know that she would of survived had she been diagnosed today. It is your support that enables researchers to find cures and treatments so that lives can be saved.

The lovely gals at Design Ties are giving away one of Matt LeBlancs originals he has aptly named Empowering! I would LOVE this one, since I have yet to win a giveaway maybe this one might be mine? 

So visit Design Ties to enter the giveaway.  If you feel the need to purchase a one of kind painting for your home and support cancer research check out Matt LeBlanc Art for Life Campaign website.

~Happy Easter~

Wishing everyone a relaxing long weekend. 
Us Canadians get Monday off too -tee hee.

Czech easter eggs that my mom has collected for me. The one with the flower was always my favourite as a child. Now it is mine. I had more but...

my dog decided to eat a few last year.

~Burlap Bulletin Board~

I have officially jumped on the burlap bandwagon. 

I have seen many posts where burlap is used as the cheap, chic and rustic fabric of choice. So I had a desire to recover something with burlap and having a project in mind I set off for the fabric store. While searching for the chiang mai fabric I so want, I asked the clerk if they sell burlap. 

 The clerk informed me that yes they did but the fabric needed to stay in its plastic wrap and had to be cut at a specific table.


I guess people are allergic to the stuff. Once cut it was to stay enclosed in the bag, I felt like I was carrying hazardous waste. Not ever possessing burlap I wasn't sure what she was talking about. No one ever mentions that on their blogs. 

 I soon found out as I brought home the burlap that I began to sneeze and itch. It smelled like a garden shed and I felt like I was duped. After prowling several blogs where the authors use it for various projects I finally had the guts to ask "How to you get rid of that dusty garden shed smell?" Jen from Tatertots and Jello was so kind to answer me. She washes it on the gentle cycle and then air dries it. 

Tried it and the dustiness and smell are not that noticeable anymore.

Yay - my project was not doomed.

So without further adieu here it is....

I recovered my son's bulletin board but never really liked it so I wanted to give it a more rustic manly appeal. Using burlap, black upholstery tacks and my trusty staple gun the bulletin board went from this:

to this:

This is how I did it:

1. Cut a piece of burlap larger than the bulletin board.

2. Staple the burlap to the back of the frame.

3. Turn the board over and press upholstery tacks just where the frame meets the board. I eyeballed the placement of the tacks.

4. Hang up and enjoy.

I am wanting to re-paint my son's room. When I mentioned that to him, he said "finally!

Apparently he has never like the colour I chose. I don't either. When I suggested a light khaki colour he was adamant that he did not want a colour on the wall that would remind him of diarrhea.

I guess not. He is a tween and has his own ideas about what is acceptable on the walls but that will be another post on another day AFTER I finish my other to-do projects.

Linking to:

~A Little Canadian Goodness~

While I am waiting for my shoulder to heal I am finding time to explore the blogging world. My head is reeling from all the ideas floating around. My idea file is getting bigger!

 I am feeling an anxiety attack coming on....

I was excited when I opened my mailbox on Friday to find the latest Style at Home, a great Canadian publication, waiting for me! It is like getting a birthday present every month.

Style at Home usually features one of my favourite Canadian designers, Samantha Pynn. She has her own HGTV Canada show, Pure Design, which I love to watch. It is hard to catch though, no re-runs, because I find HGTV Canada is inundated with Holmes on Homes (re-runs galore) and such, 

but that is another story...... 

What I love about Samantha's design is her focus on eco friendly design. She re-purposes used and vintage finds, uses eco friendly paints and fabrics to put together rooms that just are absolutely amazing. 

I love this toddler's room. She had a Craigslist bed repainted that beautiful red, and using thrift store finds and paint turned an ugly space into something to feast the eyes on!

photo source: HGTV Canada

photo source: HGTV Canada

Or check out this bedroom

via decorpad

I am loving the pure elagence of this space. You can see the mix of old and new, the thrift store chest of drawers, headboard, new linens and upholstery, creating a glamourous room that I would love to relax in.

More elegance in this living room designed by Samantha

via decorpad

I love the eclectic look, the muted colours and the sparkle from the mirror, sconces and table tops. 

via HGTV

I love the pop of colour against a neutral wall. The curtains are beautiful  - a great way to add glamour and a custom look to the room by adding silk and ribbon along the bottom of pre-made curtains.  

I actually finished the project I was planning to do last weekend using burlap and upholstery nails. All it required was a staple gun and since I am left handed I was able to finish it. I am posting pictures tomorrow.