Monday, February 28, 2011

mudroom inspiration

Is it Monday already? This weekend we started sprucing up our back stairway/coat and shoe drop off area. You know how a few pretty pictures can motivate you even if the space you're working with doesn't look anything like your inspiration? That is what I have going on here by the way.

We have a side driveway and a side door that leads up into the dining room or down to the unfinished basement.

Southern Living

This is the way we come and go everyday so it gets a lot of abuse, especially since most people are holding on to the wall while they get their shoes on and off while trying not to fall down the basement stairs. Not very functional or pretty, but it's what we have to work with.

source unknown

We are tying to come up with a solution to keep the shoes off the stairs. This drawer is pretty clever.

Photo by Janis Nicolay

The before pictures are too embarrassing to show you just yet...but I will share some soon. Everyone who has been here for a visit knows just what I'm talking about, it's really ugly.

Photo by Michael Partenio

For example, when we installed a new exterior door over a year ago, we removed the molding around the door and never put it back up. I didn't think it would take us so long to start working on this space.

Martha Stewart

Today I will be doing some painting for the stair sprucing project. I promise to share some progress pictures with you soon. Have a great day today!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Feeling springy

No sign of spring yet, sadly it won't be coming this way for a while. But we had lots of sunshine the other day and I found new drapes that were on clearance at Pottery Barn. They make the dining room feel fresh and springy, just what I need right about now.

I hung them and took pictures right away without getting the wrinkles out so you just get a peek for now. If you are in the market for new drapes, I highly recommend the peyton drape from PB. The mineral green panels are on clearance for less than twenty five dollars each.

We had the same drapes in here before but they were the oatmeal color. Then I washed them instead of having them dry cleaned and one of the panels shrunk...about three inches!  A blog friend gave me a tip on how to fix them (It involved getting them damp and stretching them out) but I was ready for a change.

Here is where my great deal got a little more expensive. Rings. Drapery did I live without them? When the weather is nice we always use the sliding door to get to the backyard and outdoor family room. I have struggled for so long trying to keep the drapes open wide enough so they weren't in the way. The answer was simply...drapery rings. Now they stay where you put them.

I'm liking the way they look too.

Only problem is now I have long duck I need to raise the rod a bit. I still want some puddling, just not so much. What? long duck dong isn't in your daily vocabulary? It really is fun to say! Can anyone name that movie?

I'll leave you with my clock turned cloche base.

 I have a thing for using clocks in ways other than telling time I guess.

Photo wall post is over here.

Sharing with Rene at Cottage and Vine. Lots of dining room inspiration to be found at Rene's.

this blessed nest

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Chalkboard favorites

I am so inspired by all the great chalkboards you shared! I thought it would be fun to feature some of my favorites, so here we go....

If you combine flowering branches with chalkboards then you have my attention. Janet from the The Gardener's Cottage has a gorgeous home that I never get tired of looking at.

Michelle from Vintage Junky turned an old painting into a huge chalkboard.

Her talented husband does some amazing chalk drawings. Check out the owl themed Birthday party they had for their little guy is really cute!

 Polly put together an adorable room for her son.

Kendra at House of Ficek created a cute play kitchen for her son complete with a chalkboard.

Tammy from Tinsel & Company used twine and clothespins to displays her little one's artwork.

I'm loving this gold vintage frame from A Vintage Vine

Lisa from Shine Your Light had a very smart idea to use a shelf to catch the chalk dust and hold pieces of chalk.

How cool is this old mantel? Caroline has six of them in her home!

Kristen from Just Live Simply drew a gorgeous chandelier on her chalkboard that she made for just seven dollars!

Cassie from Primitive & Proper gave this armoire from Craigslist a fabulous makeover. This piece would be perfect for a mudroom don't you think? 

Ok, I am now realizing that I can go on and on because I love them all! Here is just one more...

I love this idea....Julie from Less Than Perfect Life Of Bliss made these beautiful magnets out of old brooches for her magnetic chalkboard.

Thanks again to everyone who played along! Talk to you soon.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Were home!

Hello everyone! We ended up at Disney World and had a fabulous time. It was so nice to get away from the cold for a while and play outside in the sun everyday. Don't worry, I won't bore you with all the pictures I took. ;)

I am looking forward to catching up with you all and checking out the rest of the chalkboards that I missed from the party. I will be featuring some of my favorites on Monday. Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Au revoir

Courtesy of the Cedric Wright Family.
Ansel Adams, photographing in Yosemite National Park from atop his car about 1942.

Hello, I will be signing off for a little we are not going to Yosemite, although that would be wonderful. I just like that picture of Ansel Adams. I will fill you in next week. Oh and the chalkboard link party will be open until Monday. Thanks to everyone who shared a project or two, it's been fun looking through them.

Talk to you next week!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Chalkboard Link Party

Hello and welcome to the chalkboard party! I thought I would start it off by sharing the various chalkboards we have around our house.

First we have the chalkboard sign I made out of a scrap piece of barn wood. I sanded the edges to keep it looking old and weathered. It hangs above our photo wall in the dining room.

Next is the garage sale frame freshened up with some pink paint for the playhouse.

The faux mantel got some chalkboard paint too...I think this is my favorite. You can see a before picture here.

Oh so easy labels.

Then I got really brave and painted a whole wall in the kitchen. Now I would love to see how you use chalkboard paint in your house. If you're chalkboard crazy like me and you have more than one idea to share go right ahead! And I don't mind if you use an old post.  Mr. 65th made us a party button, you can use it to link back if you want. Have fun!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Chalkboard party

You probably know by now that I love anything that's painted with a little chalkboard paint. I get excited seeing what people write or draw on their boards and the cool things people turn into chalkboards. I think everyone needs at least one in their house, don't you?

Cottage living

I thought it would be fun to have a link party (my first one) here on Monday to show off your chalkboard ideas....just because I love them so much. What do you think? Will you join me?

Update~Older posts are welcome.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The blizzard of 2011

The forecast was right on...we had quite the blizzard! Almost two feet of snow with lots of big drifts because of the wild winds. But I was happy and content to have my little family safe at home yesterday to wait out the storm.

Cars stranded on Lake Shore Drive Chicago (Yahoo Pics)

Looking out our patio door.

Our side door

Taking a spin down our street. 

The power started blinking on and off while giving the little one a bath and getting her in bed last night...she didn't like that very much. Then about 9:30 p.m. it went off again...the furnace shut off with a thud. I had a feeling it wasn't coming back on anytime soon so I covered the little one up with a few warm blankets and we hoped for the best. Thank goodness the power came back on about six hours later.

I heard spring might be on its way early this year...let's hope so!