Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Window Treatment

It was a "no brainer"!  When we signed on the dotted line to purchase our little cottage, my mind would race with thoughts of where would all my furniture go? Which pieces would be sent  immediately into storage and which would have a place in the cottage?  All concerns aside, there was one thing I knew for sure.  Out of everything I owned, one piece.... one antique, chippy piece purchased at an estate sale.. would have a perfect place to rest.  I saw it so clearly in my mind!

When you come through the side door... no, don't even think of ringing the front door bell as I only think of all of you as side door, shout "hello" kind of friends.... there are three little steps leading to the main floor.  Three little wonky steps that are capped off by a window.  I knew it was in this window that my chippy piece of iron grating would rest.  And there it is!  This odd placement of a window now had significance!

This piece of wrought iron that had been painted creamy white and aged through the years was now secured within this space.

The detailing is fabulous!

And just as I knew this piece of iron grating belonged here, I knew the exact window treatment to sew for it.

A delicious piece of vintage linen sewn with a rod pocket on one end.  Sides left rumpled from being stored away in someone's attic.  All roughly bunched up in a loose roman shade form. 

Funny how some things come together so easily!  A "no brainer" that leaves me feeling  so contented with the end result. 

Linking to:  Be Inspired Tuesday
          What We Accomplished Wednesday 
          The Farmhouse Porch
          Blissful Whites Wednesday 
          Centerpiece Wednesday
          Tutorials Tips and Tidbits 
          Share Your Cup Thursday 
          Be Inspired Friday
          Feathered Nest Friday 

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Here Comes The Sun

Once in awhile, the "spoiled child" comes out to see what's up.  Oh, oh... the corners of her mouth are drooping down thinking about the good ol' days when she'd wake up to the swish, swish, swish of the lawn sprinklers running.  Each station would run about five minutes getting every corner of the yard soaked during those hot summer months.  And how the grass, shrubs and trees would enjoy their daily dose of cool water!!  Responding by dressing themselves up in a rich shade of green, disregarding whatever the temperatures were.

Downsizing has happened in its truest form... even in regards to the size of the yard.  Our sprinkler system here?  Moving the garden hose!  Being a "garden club dropout", I haven't been doing a very good job. I keep forgetting, what with all the projects on the inside of the house to do, that wilting leaves means someone's thirsty!  That tinges of brown appearing within the centers of bushes means "water ~ ASAP"! 

I've reprimanded the "spoiled child" letting her know everything's ok.  That the reason why the neighborhood can be so quiet in the morning is due to the fact that neighbors don't have sprinkler heads popping up every five minutes. And their yards are perfectly fine without them!  I've turned that frown upside down again.  Doesn't take much to realize that this is the good life!

Linky to  Song-Ography where this week's inspiration was the Beatles' "Here Comes the Sun".  This photo was taken last summer at our old house. 

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Chicago Nights

So, the inspiration this week at You'll Shoot Your Eye Out?
                    Song-Ography ~ Up On The Roof 

The song brings back the memory of me as a kid .. alone in my room.. listening to the radio late at night.  I loved that song!  Imagining what it would be like to live in a city with concrete surfaces all around.  Loud noises of cars and buses intent on getting to their destinations.  People's conversations drifting up from the pavement below.  Such a stark contrast to where I lived in Connecticut, where we were surrounded by acreage and the houses were buffered by statuesque trees!  Oh, how I wanted to go out into the world and live this completely different lifestyle! 

Who would have thought that, many years later, my dreams would come true!  Chicago!  Great city with energy that jolts right through you! Towering concrete buildings creating winding canyons all around the city.  Lights blazing... taxis careening around corners... people walking Michigan Avenue until the wee hours of the morning.  And my favorite way to enjoy the city? At night, when I am part of that "hustlin' crowd", stopping for a moment to look straight up at the roof tops ablaze in color.  Making me feel so alive! 

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Making Do

I don't have a fancy-schmancy camera. 
Not even an IPhone (gesh.. did I even spell it right??) 
Nope.  Just a point and shoot.  
Just a little ol' Cannon point and shoot.  And it will do for now. 

With great bravery I have decided to join a new party hosted by my fellow blogger, Kathy at Youll Shoot Your Eye Out.  I love the way she writes, leaving me cracking up at the end of each post.. she's that funny and witty.  Besides a way with words, Kathy has an innate way around a camera being able to capture moments through the eye of the lens.  I feel so lucky to have found her in blogland!  

Anyway, as I was saying, Kathy just started hosting a photography party called, Song~Ography.  Using a song title as a prompt to get your creative juices flowing, you match up a photo you've taken with the title.  First up?  Homeward Bound.  Ok, missy... I'm going to jump in with both feet and offer up one of my shots.

"There I was ... sitting at a table in the darkened corner of a hotel restaurant lingering over a poorly made Mai Tai (I knew the girl was too young to know how this concoction was made). One more night in some small town ... one more restless sleep in a hotel bed not familiar to me.. and I would be on the road heading back to....."

Ha, Ha!! Ok, I let my Drama Queen come out to play for a bit!  I took this shot at an historic hotel in Franklin, Indiana.  Road trip with my best friend.  But we were on our way back home!  

So there you have it!  I stepped outside my comfort zone.  Felt pretty good, too!  Thanks for hosting, Kathy!

Linking to: Song Ography

Friday, July 12, 2013

Only the beginning...... Studio Tour

Our little cottage.... just delightful for two!  When this house came on the market, it was perfect timing as we had to find something immediately ~ our house had sold that quickly and the new owners wanted possession within eight weeks.  YIKES!!! We pulled up in front (hmmmmm... it has potential.. needs a bit of fluffing to get some curb appeal) and upon entering through the side door (where the newly remodeled kitchen is ~ smart marketing on the realtor's part) I knew it was perfect for us me (husband misses a bigger home with a few added bells and whistles).  And like my boys when they were little, I went through the home wondering which room would be mine for my studio, giddy with anticipation!  As I topped the stairs... BINGO!... I found it!

A cute little room with wide old windows that end a foot from the floor. A room that faces a big ol' tree in the front and windows wide enough to give me a bird's eye view of the street and sidewalk. I love all the activity outside my windows...

 ... the swish of the cars coming.....

... and cars going.

People walking to the train station for another day of work in Chicago, women going for their daily walk or girls coming back from Starbucks which is a block and a half away from my front door.  Ok... now you see why I love it here!!!  Pretty soon I am going to have my own version of "Cheers" where I walk through the door of Starbucks and everyone turns and shouts out "Kaaadee!" 

Anyway,  the room with a view is my studio and I love it.  Now before I show you around.. which won't take long~ remember, it's a small, but darling cottage I live in~ I want to remind you that with downsizing came a lot of tossing and donating.  But that's a good thing because I really need to focus more on what I truly want to do within the confines of these four walls.

The picture railing around the room was perfect to rest my distressed "BE",  showcased with my banner from a swap I participated in.  A great way to be greeted upon peeking into my space.

I kept my two bookcases where I still have a large stash of fabrics..

... bins of trims (my two Navy duffel bags jammed with even more laces and trims are in another room for now)....

.. love the cloth bins from The Container Store!

Like "Sophie's Choice", I had to pick which mannequin of mine moved to the new house and which one headed for storage.  This precious lady drew the "lucky card" and now greets me each and every time I walk in.  

She's dressed in her twirly petticoat .. studded belts... and

.. pearls layered with bling!  Ahhhh.. a girl after my own heart!

I have some of my things tucked away in the large, but awkward, closet I've dubbed the Hobbit Hole!  No light, but working on it. 

It actually goes deeper on the right hand side.  And see what I mean about needing a light?  Made for a cool picture, though!

And the door knobs make my heart go pitty-pat.  Reminds me of the door knobs in Alice in Wonderland with their talking "faces".

Don't you love their big "noses"?  One door knob has the duty of holding my collection of keys.

So, now we turn to the right and see my work area.

The stool used to be in the master bedroom at the old house but I'm using it here to remind myself of the drop in the floor.  This ol' girl was built in 1907 so, like some of us, she has done some sagging with age. I've had a couple of plastic surgeons contractors come in for a consultation and they both said not to worry.  However, one did say if it gets too bad, it would be demo time.  Gesh... I hope no one every says that about me!! LOL

The other side of that desk area, shot in the morning light.  No, the cabinets are not green, but cream.  The leaves on the tree outside my windows cast a green hue. I need to add lighting to this room.  And whatever I choose, it has to be on the funky side. Funk mixed with junk.. oh, the ideas percolating in my little ol' head!

I do love this simple vignette.  An antique doll's dresser to set my solitary lamp on.  My uncle gave this to me when I was little so it has sentimental value.

And as you leave this little space of mine, glance to the right.  On the wall is a reminder of who I was/am.  

I'm the one in the pigtails to the right of the word "Days".  That little girl who loves to laugh, be silly and talk to strangers.  Who, to this day, feels most comfortable sporting bangs.  And in the frame underneath my class photo?  My award from the fire department for writing the best essay on fire prevention, composed in the fifth grade.  See?  Loved to write then and still do! I think we all need to remember our roots because a little of those beginning years still hangs in the fringes of our heart!

That's it for now!  Not bad for living here only three weeks, huh?  Next time I show you around, the studio will have layers of yummy goodness.  This is just the beginning of a love affair with my vintage cottage!

AND.... a huge "Thank You" to a very special lady who started out as an acquaintance designing my blog and has now turned into an amazing friend!  Karen Valentine is again hosting  the "Where Bloggers Create" party and this girl knows how to throw a good bash!  Visit Karen Valentine's "Where Blogger Create"  for a full list of other fabulous studio's to visit!  Lots of great ideas there!

Enough chat... thanks bunches for dropping by! Now to get my party on!!

Linking to:  Inspire Me Tuesday
          Wow Us Wednesday
          Tutorials Tips and Tidbits

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Making a Liveable Space

It can be overwhelming when moving into a new home!  Seeing all the boxes piled one on top of another.  Every inch of space crammed with "stuff" that you decided must move with youEspecially overwhelming because instead of seeing the mess surrounding you, you see ideas and projects that will make this new abode your home! 

This is the halfway point of moving... trust me, this room got worse!  Piles upon piles filled this space as you must remember that we down-sized.  For the previous owners, this room in the basement was utilized as an office space.  Complete with metal file cabinet and mitered formica countertops.  Peel and stick tiles grace the floor.  Ok... you should know me by now!  This would all have to go and quickly! This would be the first room I would tackle!

Ahhhh.. much better!  Dings filled in and a fresh coat of paint (Benjamin Moore: Crown Point Sand as we already had a gallon of it from our last home) and this room is ready to take on new life! I envision it as a space for exercising.  Not as nice as my last one but it will do.  Now onto storage as furniture must do double duty.

Thankfully, I decided to keep my aunt's chest of drawers when purging my previous home.  All it would need is a bit of paint and some elbow grease.

A coat of Annie Sloan Old White.

Don't be afraid of paint strokes as they add character when waxing.  In fact, I remember reading, years ago, that Martha Stewart will go back and make paint swishes before the paint dries.  When glazing or waxing,  those marks will get highlighted and add an aged, worn feel to your piece. 

And of course, sanding the edges here and there are a must in my book!

New drawer knobs bought from Hobby Lobby....

... lined up in a row.  These give that Ikat look that, lately, I am gravitating to.  Love them!

One piece transformed!  I think my aunt would be pleased!  Three large drawers now filled with things that no longer grace a corner of the room.

Finally, some peace of knowing that one room is making progress.  Is it finished?  Heavens, NO!  I will probably change the color on the walls... need to figure out what to do with the floor as there is a drain hole in the center of the room and not sure if it is wise to cover it up with carpet... need to give oomph to the window.. and of course, there is more accessorizing to be done.  See? My mind never stops churning!  When all final decisions have been made and executed I will post about this room again.  And if you have any opinions on what I should do with the floor I would love to hear about them.  Do I cover the drain hole with carpet or not??

Linking to:  Amaze Me Monday
              Make It Pretty Monday 
              Tweak It Tuesday
              Inspire Me Tuesday 
              Be Inspired Tuesday
              Blissful Whites Wednesday 
              Wow Us Wednesday
              Tutorials, Tips and Tidbits
              Share Your Cup Thursday