Remember when I chatted a bit about painting my bedroom (here)? That seemingly simple project took weeks. WEEKS. Truthfully, months. Not because it was a particularly difficult project. In fact, due to the coved ceilings and (rather obnoxious and eventually to be removed) faux fireplace and the various doors/windows in the room, there wasn’t a great deal of actual wall-space to be painted. And, the delay wasn’t due to my (admittedly notorious) indecisiveness either. I boldly chose a paint colour lickity-split-ishly and rushed out to buy the paint before I could question my colour choice (since, once paint is purchased, you’re committed) (because if you buy paint from the good Mr Benjamin Moore like I do, painting is a bit of a financial commitment.)
Nope. The delay was caused by this…
Yup. An adorable squishy active smiley drooly nine month old.
Best reason for a delay ever. :)
However, the lack of painting progress seriously started to wear on me a bit. You see, that same ridiculously cute little man isn’t a particularly predictable napper. Sometimes he naps for a glorious two hours. Sometimes he barely shuts his lovely long-lashed eyelids and – poof! – he’s well-rested and ready to play again. This lack of predictability made it super difficult to get much done on the painting front. The days where I’d predict a lengthy nap were the days that I’d dip my virgin paintbrush into the paint and – bing! – he’d wake up. On the days that I assumed he’d take a quick little cat nap, he’d sleep for hours.
Yup. It’s hard to paint with a baby.
So, defeatedly, I called in the reinforcements: my parents. Mom (happily!) looked after Squishy while dad and I tackled the paint job (thanks mom and dad!) And I’m thrilled to have this project done. Thrilled! And I’m (almost) equally happy with the results!
Here’s what I started with…
And here’s the room lovelied-up with a wee bit of BM Copley Gray…
A full gallery of after shots is pending (there are curtains to go up and a mirror to hang and a few other to-do’s that I’d like to to-do before officially announcing the room DONE) but for now the painting part of this bedroom mini-reno project is complete (can I get a big ol’ yay for progress?) (Yup – YAY!)
What’s that you say? You thought I’d decided on Revere Pewter? I thought I had too. But it just seemed a little too predictable. I painted our bedroom at our last humble abode, our happy little 1940′s house, in Revere Pewter and I loved it, but I wanted to try something different. I’ve been eye-ing up Copley Gray for a while now, and I decided to take the slightly bolder paint-colour plunge.
So am I happy? Mostly. Admittedly, it’s greener on my walls than I’d hoped. At some points in the day, depending on the light, one might even call it (cringe…) sage. But at other times (and, really, most times) it’s a lovely gray/brown/green that is super cozy and warm and rustic (can a colour be rustic? If so, this one is definitely rustic.) And it’s far (far!) better than the poop-ish brown that adorned the walls when we bought this house, so I’m a happy girl for now.
And if, in a few years, I decide to repaint, hopefully Little Squish will be old enough to help? Or at least stay occupied for a bit while mommy paints?
Wishful thinking, I know. :)
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My triumphant (albeit slow moving) return to painting (aka the colour in our bedroom is driving me bonkers)
When we first came to look at this old mauve-coloured house nearly two years ago, I walked away thinking that the master bedroom was painted black. In fact, it’s not black. It’s brown. But it’s a dark-ish brown and the blinds were continually drawn in this room during showings (theory: the home owners were really vampires), and the colour appeared even darker and more awful than it actually is (although it is, indeed, pretty awful.)
For your viewing pleasure (or, perhaps, disbelief), here’s what our master bedroom looked like the first time we saw it…
Ack, eh? Yes. Ack indeed. Flowers and nic-nacs and tiny lamps with tiny lampshades and stuff everywhere. Ev-ver-ry-where. Once again, I think it’s worth noting that we bought a house with rooms that looked like that. We’re very very very brave, my Sweetie and me.
(And yes, the two pictures hanging above the bed are indeed hung at different heights. Because lazer level be damned, willy-nilly picture hanging is how the previous house owners rolled. Those crazy loveable crooked-picture-hanging vampire-esque rebels.)
Of course, when Sweetie and I moved in, all that stuff (thankfully!) went away (and, miraculously, the room suddenly looked a gazillion times larger.) But that didn’t change the fact that the room is brown.
Icky brown, to be exact.
Here’s another look at that wall colour, minus all the clutter and with a wee bit of natural light…
Well hello there, ridiculously cute little man! :) Behind all that squishy adorableness are my ugly brown walls. A (temporarily) comfy black cat is also lounging somewhere back there. In fact, this picture was taken mere moments before I had to intervene in feline/infant interactions and declare “No, we don’t chew on the cat.” (A statement I never ever thought I’d have to make prior to having a baby.)
So what colour am I going with? Alas, I’m not being particularly original or daring with this project. Instead I’m falling back on the reliable, always lovely, Revere Pewter. I painted our bedroom at our beloved little 1940′s house this colour and I loved it.
It’s peaceful. It’s serene. It’s an actual colour and dark enough to be impactful, but not so much so that it’s overwhelming. Some have called Revere Pewter the perfect paint colour. I call it lovely and soft and well-suited for a bedroom. (And, particularly, for my bedroom.)
Now all I have to do is find the time to paint this aforementioned bedroom. With a small boy who doesn’t nap predictably (or, oftentimes, for very long), this might be a project best suited for the evening hours (once that same small sweet little man is fast asleep for the night.) Assuming, of course, that I can stay awake long enough to attack those ugly brown walls with my trusted paintbrush.
But, ahhhhh… Yup. It feels good to return to home renos, even if I now move a whole lot more slowly than before. Slow progress of any sort is still progress nonetheless. :)
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Today is my due date. TODAY. It’s wonderful and unbelievable and crazy and scary and exciting all at once. As of last week’s OB appointment, Baby hadn’t yet made much of an effort to join us out here in the real air-breathing world, so I’m guessing that he or she is still feeling comfy cozy in there. Which, truthfully, is rather fine by me. That said, I’m very aware that time is now ticking away quite quickly and that Baby could make an appearance at any moment.
And I’m also very aware that I’m ridiculously ginormous…
Crazy eh? I’m still not entirely sure how I manage to stay upright.
Last week, with nesting instincts in overdrive, I put a few last minute touches on the nursery. Curtains were hung, art was placed up on walls, the more-complex-than-anticipated baby monitor got installed, and I fussed over silly little details (would bashful bunny look better here? Or here?) And, with Baby overdue as of tomorrow, I’m happy with the rather peaceful teal, gray, white and mustardy yellow space that this nursery has gradually morphed into.
My dad found this metal wall hanging at a street art fair. I added the ribbon and hung it from the door. It’s perfect in every way.
We’re using Ikea’s Hemnes dresser as our change table: it’s a good height for both normal-sized me and super tall Sweetie, it has lots of room for the change pad and diaper related stuff, and (most importantly) it’s rather lovely-looking.
(Unfortunately it was also rather difficult and time consuming to assemble. But that’s a whole other blog post for a whole other day.)
The Celebrate Everything canvas was a HomeSense purchase (on clearance, no less!) made a couple of years ago, long before Baby and nursery planning had ever started. Again (and again and again): I heart HomeSense.
And this trio of friendly stuffed animals will eventually be relocated to a shelving unit of some sort (I’m still in search of the perfect bookshelf for this room.) I’m hoping to find something fairly small, but still very functional. Until then, these three will bravely stand guard over the change table.
Because the nursery is fairly tiny, we didn’t want a crib that felt large and bulky (as so many of them do.) Enter: Ikea. Of course. We fell in love with Gulliver (and hopefully Baby will too!)
My friend Nadia (we’ve been friends since Grade Nine) (which means we’ve been friends for… um… many many years) made Baby this gorgeous yellow and teal baby quilt.
And the small vintage rocking chair, that long ago belonged to my grandparents, was reupholstered by my mom and dad as a gift to Baby. It’s the perfect size for this little space. And I love knowing that I’ll be rocking Baby to sleep in a chair that once belonged to people who, while no longer here, were such an important part of my life growing up.
Keeping watch over everything from beside my beloved rocker is the ever adorable bashful bunny (along with his good friends the happy hedgehog and hilarious hare.)
But my absolute favourite part of the nursery? This sheep mobile from amazing Etsier (and fellow Canadian) TheMemis…
Each little sheep has a different expression on its face. It’s absolutely perfect, and I can’t say enough good things about Emi at TheMemis. :)
So there you have it. Our sweet and peaceful (and gender neutral) little nursery. I’ll likely continue to add to it as time goes on – I have lofty gallery wall plans for the wall opposite the crib, I still need to find that bookshelf for stuffies and books and toys and nicnacs and such, and I’d love to add a little more coral (if Baby is a girl) or greens and navy (if this belly-wiggler is a wee boy) once Baby arrives. And my friend Shawn (who I’ve been friends with pretty much since forever) has commissioned a baby blanket for me as a gift for Baby from another mutual friend (Sheilagh) who is an amazingly and incredibly talented quilter (you can see some of her work over at her site, Lay it on Me Baby) – I’m so excited about planning the blanket with her once Baby is born!
But for now I absolutely adore this serene little space, just as it is.
Let’s hope that Baby does too.
Whenever he or she decides to make a big appearance.
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A quick closet makeover (another “slap some paint on it and it’ll look so much better” sort of project) (aka: paint fixes everything)
Some people have scary basements. I had a scary closet. (Well, I have a scary basement too, but that’s a whole other story for a whole other blog post.) How scary was our bedroom closet? It looked like this when we moved in…
Ack. Nightmarish, eh? Yup. Absolutely terrifying.
And since “make closet pretty” wasn’t first and foremost (or even seventh and semi-important) on my big ol’ home reno to do list, it stayed that way for the past ten months. Empty. Ugly. Mocking me. Daring me to step inside (which I would never ever ever do due to the aforementioned scariness factor.)
So where were all of our clothes? In the nursery closet of course. (See where this is leading?) But, with Baby on the way in a few short weeks (yep, you guessed it), it was time to clear out that closet. Meaning that it was also time for us to face the scariness once and for all and make our bedroom closet a much more hospitable, much less horror movie-esque little place.
So what did I do?
I painted it.
And by that I mean that I really quickly and lazily painted it, using leftover Edgecomb Gray paint that I already had on hand. Did I remove the wallpaper from the walls? Nope. Did I sand down the drywall compound patching job that Sweetie did (since originally there were plaster cracks on the back wall of the closet that made it look even more terrifying?) Nope. Did I prime or prep or do anything to make the ugly innards of my closet more humane-looking? Nope. I just slapped some paint on those closet walls and called it a day.
And it didn’t turn out so bad. Behold the after…
I even tossed a quick coat of paint on the baseboards. Same colour as the walls. We’re not talking anything fancy here (it is a closet, afterall.)
Yep. A quick coat of paint and suddenly the closet ain’t so scary any more.
(I mean, I wouldn’t want to hang out and read a book in there, of course, but it’s way better.)
So there. That’s my scary-closet-turned-not-quite-as-scary-due-to-Baby’s-impending-arrival story for you. Since I’m guessing that Baby will need its own closet.
You know, for cute little onesies and pretty dresses (if Baby is a girl) or tiny overalls (if this wiggly little belly-mover is a boy) and stuff. :)
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My ongoing staging attempts (you win some, you lose some… but all that really matters in the end is that you got a kickass bee canister)
After Ms Stager’s visit the other day, I headed out to HomeSense, my favourite home-stuff store. Have I ever mentioned how much I adore HomeSense? I probably have. I’d put a big flashing promotional HomeSense sign on my front lawn if I could (but I won’t – that’d likely be bad for resale.) (Although, good HomeSense people, I’d seriously consider it if the price was right? Just saying…)
Anyhow, Ms Stager mentioned that we should probably get a new shower curtain. I’ll be honest – I knew this suggestion was coming long before she stepped through our bathroom door. And I totally agreed with her – while I’ve loved the practicality of our little PVC (ack – I know) shower curtain, and its pretty little dots (oh how I adore my pretty little polka-dotted shower curtain!), I knew that something a little more… grown-up (and a little less college dorm-ish) would likely be advisable.
While out merrily meandering around HomeSense, I found THIS…
…and I swooned. So pretty! And here’s that same shower curtain in our tiny bathroom…
I feel very grown up indeed. And I’m completely enamoured. I’ll occasionally wander into our little loo and just stand there for a few seconds staring at the shower curtain. It’s weird, I know, but I’m a little obsessed.
(I’m also hoping the wrinkles fall out of the curtain soon. Why pull out the iron when I can let steam do all the work for me, right?)
The second thing Ms Stager asked us to do: declutter and make things visually less cluttery. In particular she zeroed in on the clear canister (well, it’s actually a vase) (fancy eh?) of ladles and spatulas and spoons and such that we had sitting out on our countertop.
She asked us to put all of it away entirely. Instead, I went to HomeSense and found THIS…
TWELVE bucks. Twelve! That’s a whole lot of cuteness for very few buckeroonies, if you ask me. And now it holds my pared-down utensils very nicely (and with way less clutter-ish-ness) next to the stove.
Adorable, non? I’d buy this house JUST based on that. And then I’d ask the home owner to throw in that sweet little bee canister. Because it’s lovely.
The third thing Ms Stager requested? All new luxurious bedding for our bed. I almost had a meltdown. For the record, we will not be getting all new bedding – hell, our duvet cover is only two weeks old! However, while out on my HomeSense mission, and as a compromise, I found new red pillowcases that coordinate rather nicely with our pretty Alvine Orter duvet cover.
And here they are all coordinate-y-ish on our bed…
Wait… Don’t see them? That’s because they’re not there. They were very… red. Too red. And not nearly as serene as I wanted. (I’m not sure what I was thinking – red isn’t a particularly soothing colour.) Instead, I dug out the Alvine Orter matchy-matchy shams that came with the duvet (I normally just ignore the shams that come with Ikea’s duvet covers, but in the name of staging, I bravely pulled them out of the linen closet) and grabbed a spare throw cushion and tada! This was the result.
I’m definitely not going to win any bed-staging awards, but it will do. :)
So those were my little moments of staging fun over the past couple of days. It’s been a fantastic procrastinating tactic – I really hate packing. And moving. And applying for jobs. And whatnot. I just keep reminding myself that wherever we end up next will be even better, right?
And besides, I was running out of rooms, here, to paint. :)
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