A place to hang your hat (and, more importantly, a place to hide all the winter coats that have taken over my entryway)
One very important storage component has been dearly missed since we (rather bravely) claimed our old mauve house. At some point in the past 100-ish years, someone (quite unfortunately) removed an existing entryway closet. And the resulting lack of entryway storage has been a bit of a bur in my tooshy, truth be told.
It wasn’t nearly so dire in the early fall, when the odd light jacket would occasionally end up temporarily draped across a chair. Even in later autumn, when heavier coats began to appear once in a while, I remained impressively calm and sane about the whole situation.
But then winter hit. Snow and scarves and jackets and more jackets and Sweetie’s ginormous jackets (he is 6’4″ afterall) and the odd mitten strewn haphazardly across the dining room table all happened, all at once. And I sort of lost my marbles just a wee bit. It was uncontrolled outerwear chaos. And I decided that we desperately needed to find a containment unit for the renegade toques and the bulky parkas that were rather ruthlessly taking over our house.
The solution: a wardrobe.
My first instinct? Ikea, of course! My favourite of the bunch was this one…
Oh, Hemnes, you make me happy. :) But at $299 (plus taxes and travel), handsome Hemnes was a bit beyond my post-holiday budget.
So I turned to ever-dependable Kijiji. And Kijiji didn’t disappoint! I found this…
And after a little well-calculated haggling (aka begging) I brought the price down to a fairly reasonable (and somewhat wallet-friendly) $100 buckeroonies. Was I happy? Yes! At one third the cost of my beloved Hemnes wardrobe, I got twice the character (and, truthfully, a far better fit for our space.)
I immediately gave her (since she’s far too pretty to be a boy wardrobe) a good scrubbing with good old fashioned Murphys Oil Soap – there were paint splatters here and there and old water marks everywhere and the whole cabinet reeked of smoke and dirt and old. Luckily most of the paint came off fairly well with a little work, but there’s one big splotch on the side that refused to budge. My next cleaning attempt might involve a wee bit of steel wool, but I’m calling the paint splotch “character” for now.
And then, like every good found-furniture fluffer, I swapped out the dirty brass knobs for something a little sparklier. Because every old wardrobe deserves a little fancy new hardware. And because glass knobs make me happy.
I also added a couple baskets on top. Because scarves and hats and miscellaneous mittens seem to fit best in baskets.
And someday, maybe, down the road (if I’m feeling super ambitious and DIY-ish) perhaps my lovely little wardrobe will even get a new paint job. I think she’d look rather pretty in a creamy white. Or maybe even something more adventurous (if I’m feeling super wardrobe-brave.)
But, for now, I’m just happy to have a coat chaos containment unit. :)
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Last night’s dinnertime conversation went a bit like this…
Me: Yay! The new Ikea catalogue is out!
Sweetie: Ooooh. That is exciting.
Me: I know! However, please note that I don’t yet have one. This is extremely upsetting.
Sweetie: Well, can’t you just order one?
Me: Maybe? [Insert frantic Ikea-website search here.] Crap. No. It looks like they no longer send them out upon request to any household that’s beyond a certain radius from a store. The site says that we need to visit our nearest Ikea location for a catalogue. Oh despair. My world is crumbling.
Sweetie: Well, we’ll just get you a catalogue the next time we pass by a store then.
Me: But there’s all sorts of amazing new stuff at Ikea now and I don’t yet know about it. I need a catalogue now. Now now now.
Sweetie: [Eye rolling]
Yep. That all actually happened. And yes, it’s sad but true: the FAQ section on Ikea’s website does indeed state that I cannot order the catalogue and have it delivered by mail. I must now trek to my nearest Ikea store in order to view the catalogue that’ll tell me what I want to buy at my nearest Ikea store. To quote my favourite blue and yellow retailer:
The IKEA catalogue is mass-distributed annually in the area around each IKEA store. If you did not receive this year’s catalogue, stop by the IKEA store near you for a free copy.
It’s all a little silly.
Of course, I could peruse the catalogue online. The website reminds me that I can flip through virtual pages as much and as often as I’d like until my heart’s content. There’s even an app for that, the website claims, if I’d like to saunter through the virtual catalogue on my teeny tiny little smartphone screen.
Call me a purist (hell, call me archaic and silly and an outdated poop-head if you’d like) but I want my catalogue, with it’s slightly glossy, thin (but surprisingly durable), glorious real-life pages. I want to dog ear the pages that feature those items that I really really want. And I want to flip leisurely through the catalogue and marvel at all the Ikea awesomeness. Over and over and over again.
However, despite my better judgement, I did indeed visit Ikea’s website. And I did indeed view some of their new products. And I did indeed squeal just a bit in delight.
(Although I would indeed still like a catalogue.)
Here were some of my favourite new items…
There’s marvellous Majviva, the pretty purple-ly duvet cover…
And Ullgump the spectacularly spotty rug…
…which claims to be listed at a new lower price (but I don’t remember it ever existing at an old higher price.)
And while we’re chatting about rugs, I absolutely adore this cheerful yellow swoon-worthy Stockholm rug in yellow…
…which actually does appear to be new to Ikea. And actually does need to come home and live with me somewhere in some room in my not-yet-officially-mine house. :)
Despite being a wee bit (ok, a lot) feminine, these beautiful Borghild curtains may eventually reside in our living room…
(Maybe Sweetie won’t notice that they’re floral?)
And I love that Hemnes now comes in blue…
And there’s more. There are new kitchen items I’m swooning over. And new lighting that I’d like. And new storage options and mirrors and frames and so… much… more.
All discovered while perusing the Ikea website.
I still really, really want a catalogue though.
Dear Ikea folk: If you’re reading this, I adore you lots. Lots and lots and lots. Please please please send me a catalogue.
Love, Melissa. :)
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Admission: I cringe whenever I start planning to mount things (hooks, frames, mirrors, random tapestries) on my walls. I’m not sure why. Perhaps it’s the assumed permanency of drilling into my lovely (ie: freshly painted and yet unmarred) walls. Maybe it’s a fear of placing items too high or too low (since, um, that happens. To me. A lot.) Maybe it’s because I don’t use power tools (that’s Sweetie’s job) and because the whole anchor (necessary with our plaster walls!) + screw (in a very specific size and type) combination confuses me just a bit. Not sure. Let’s just suffice it to say that when I repainted much of this house, I actually left some of the previous owners’ screws in the walls and painted around them. The previous owners had already done the dirty work for me. Why mess with that?
But I’m thinking it’s nearly time to face this fear and address the empty wall space around my fireplace. A space that drives me a little bonkers. And now that the Christmas tree is down (it finally – FINALLY! – came down last weekend) it’s especially obvious that there’s a big gaping hole in my living room loveliness.
Yep. I’m ready to tackle the vacant (and rather sad-looking) space around old not-at-all smokey.
The corner to the left of the (faux) fireplace is particularly lonely looking. Even Sweetie exclaimed (once the tree was all packed away and the merriness banished to the attic for the next eleven months): “You’re going to put something else there, aren’t you?”
And if Sweetie (aka Mr “Oh… What’s that? You say you painted the kitchen fuchsia? I didn’t notice…”) recognizes that something isn’t quite right, something obviously must not be right.
My dilemma? What to decorate the void with. Given my fear of putting stuff on walls, I’ve been doing a lot of research on empty corner filling (since I’m a tad OCD and indecisive and generally nervous about any sort of wall-marring commitment.) A quick discussion with the lovely folk over at Pinterest (they’re exceedingly helpful over there, btw!) left me with the following suggestions…
Wall-filling strategy #1: Framed… somethings. For the record, I’m in love with this room (holy moly that’s some gorgeous tealness!) from Emily Henderson…
But what, exactly, would I put in the frames? Prints? Art? Pictures of the cats? And should I go with white frames? Dark wood frames? Metallic? Sigh.
Or I could fill the space with plates perhaps (aka “Wall-filling strategy #2.”) Just look (look!!!) at this stunning wall of pretty plates from Larissa over at mmmcrafts…
Lovely eh? I adore this idea. Although my supply of decorative plates is a little low at the moment. And planning out which-plate-goes-where seems like the sort of thing that could drive an already somewhat strange girl completely batty.
I could scatter some pretty ceiling medallions across my wall. I’ve admired Dave and Joi’s medallion-adorned wall for a long long while now…
Love love love their living room!
Or I could embrace the emptiness… This room, from my all-time most favourite designer ever Samantha Pynn (hi Sam! You rock!), makes me think that my living room void isn’t really a void afterall. Perhaps I just need to add a lovely lamp (oooh! And a chandelier!)…
I’m not sure. What I AM sure of is that something needs to happen. To spice things up a little. You know, shake it to the right (if you know that you feel fine.)
(And yep. I just quoted Spice Girls. Random? Yes. Scary? Agreed.)
Anyhow, this debate obviously isn’t over. I’ll be taping templates of some sort to my walls shortly, I’m sure. And then the inevitable (and ongoing) template rearranging will begin. And likely more Pinterest-ing too.
Being an indecisive commitment-phobe is a lot of work.
But yes! Those are my quasi plans to date. Hopefully the next time I chat about my living room walls there will be stuff strategically mounted on them.
Or, if nothing else, print/medallion/tapestry-sized paper templates.
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Despite that I love our dining room (wait – have I ever shown you our dining room? Hmmm… I may have skipped that. K! Post to follow on that shortly!) Sweetie and I most often eat at the island that divides the kitchen and living room (well, when we’re not enjoying dinner in front of the telly, that is… shhhhh… don’t tell…) Eating at the island is just easier and closer to the kitchen than eating in the dining room (since, well, that 10 extra feet ALL THE WAY over to the dining room is just way too far to go for casual meals when it’s just Sweetie and me.) Don’t get me wrong: I absolutely love our dining room (which is why I’m super surprised I’ve never done a dining room post) and we eat in there whenever company is over, but if it’s just Sweetie and me (like it is 99.9% of the time) we just eat at the island (or, um, in front of the telly.)
The stools on the living room side of the island are AWESOME. I adore them. They’re Ikea’s Ingolf stools (bar height) and I think they rock.
BUT, they’re far too cumbersome for the kitchen-side of our island (since there’s no overhanging countertop to push the chairs under there.) For a while we tried the little white piano stool I scored a la Kijiji a while back…
…and while I LOVE my pretty piano stool, I didn’t love it in the kitchen (and plus Sweetie and I are different heights, and he was always screwing the seat down, while I was screwing the seat up, and it was just a big pain in the tooshy, truth be told.) (Ha! Get it? Pain in the tooshy? Sitting? Chair?) (Yes, groan. I know. K. Carrying on…)
Enter: my parents. Well, actually, enter: my grandparents. While visiting last time I was home, my parents offered me this…
…and I did a ginormous (and rather embarrassing) happy dance right there on the spot. This metal bar stool used to reside in my grandmother’s little 1940s kitchen. And then it migrated to my parents’ home at some point. And now it lives in my kitchen. And it’s perfect.
Am I going to paint it? Oui. It’s been a long time since this lovely little stool was last painted, and some of the yellow paint has chipped off at the corners and such. Being my indecisive self, I haven’t officially decided on a colour yet, but it may end up either pistachio green or (big surprise) teal. Because I adore teal (in case you hadn’t noticed!) And, seriously, I can’t help but be inspired by Young House Love’s teal-coloured bar stools…
Squeal! Pretty! :)
Further updates on the fate of my cute little vintage bar stool to follow! But in the meantime, Happy Labour Day Weekend to everyone out there! And welcome September! (Dear September: I love you.) I suppose this means I should get on all those September resolutions eh? Hm, k. Off I go to work on our basement…
Have a fantastic Labour Day Weekend! :)
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The carpet is stripier from the other side of the room (Ha. Get it? Grass is greener? Carpet stripier?) (Yep. I’m a dork. See? This is what happens when I have a big fat migraine)
First off, MANY MANY MANY apologies for my absence this week. It was a migraine week, and when I have a migraine (especially a multi-day migraine) (ugh) I’m only marginally-functional (with lots of emphasis on the “marginally” part.) The migraine-inducing culprit? My guess: the weather. While it’s absolutely fan-mazing-tastic that – poof! – over the past week it’s suddenly become summer (thank you Mother Nature!), my noggin paid the price, methinks. That said, I’m all better now (knocking on wood), so I’m baaa-aack. :)
Secondly… look at my living room!
I took my own advice (from THIS post) and decided the living room looks better/bigger when it’s more open (without the couch cutting across the room.) And indeed it does! I actually squealed once Sweetie and I had everything moved around (for, like, the the seventh time) (it took a couple attempts to get things just right) (it’s a good thing Sweetie loves me!)
And Jacob is pretty darn happy with the new arrangement too. He has the hugest pillow ever (aka: the couch), right next to our big front window. I’m predicting that I’ll find a prominent orange-cat ass-groove in that top cushion very very shortly.
Hope everyone has a happy and sunny Victoria Day Weekend!
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