Monday, October 20, 2014

style files / little guy style

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I'm not a huge fan of logos or, big bears or, cartoonish figures on Oscar's clothing so over the last four years I've come to love H&M and Zara for their lines of kids clothes for boys because they aren't too cartoonish or, plastered with planes, trains and automobiles. (All of that being said, I sometimes can't resist a cute shirt that has a bear or two on it, because I mean, they are only young once, right?) I picked up this green jacket (fig. 1) last week at Zara online last week and it's perfect. Although it fits a little on the smaller side, he's 4.5 years old and the 5-6 year old one fits perfectly with no room for growth. The green is stunning, and a nice contrast to the common darker jackets on the playground.

I was in H&M a few weeks before, and picked up those suspenders (fig. 3) , and some more of those basic T's (fig. 4) that wash so well, and are ridiculously cute. (Seriously, those t's are sooooo good, he's been wearing them since he was a baby) Oscar used to have a little backpack to go to school with but we upgraded to a Herschel Supply Co. bag that I picked up at Get Outside here in Toronto, when I was shopping with a girlfriend. And slouch hats are my favourite hat for fall - Etsy has a bunch. Here are some more favourites that I've spotted for the little dudes in our lives....

Friday, October 17, 2014

bits + pieces

Happy Friday!  Some changes that are happening to this blog that will be rolling out over the next few weeks. My interests are changing and the business is growing. I'm feeling a little shift, and, a little need for change. I love structure, I'm a little OCD that way - so I like to lay things out to have a plan. Here are some of those plans, that are rolling out over the next few weeks!
  • Bi-Weekly e-mails / I love to share my finds, but blog posts aren't always the right space - so bi-weekly e-mails will show you shopping finds, roundups of posts that were popular and sales, discounts and more and also links to resources for your own blogs like the best free fonts and web design software. You can sign up here.

  • More "Roundup" posts - Since I'm not showing Oscar really on the blog, I've struggled with sharing kid related things (that's 99% of my life!) but without showing Oscar. It's harder than it looks. So I'm going to be embrace it and just show you roundups of things I love - because I love them and because I think you may too.  So coming up as of next week I'm letting go of this stigma that I'm a "decor" blog because I'm totally not anymore, and haven't for some time.

  • Sharing photos of things I love. Just because. I've refrained from doing this in the past because I feel as though it comes off as lazy blogging. But then i remember, "Hey, this is my blog. I can blog whatever!" Because that's the joy of blogging, no?

  • Behind the Scenes Photos - Photos on how I do product shoots / day in the life of posts - because sometimes what I think is mundane is really quite fun.

  • I'm letting go of this feeling that every blog post I put up needs thoughtful commentary to go with it. I'm running after a child, wanting to be an involved Mom and volounteer in the school, run my business and have meaningful friendships - my blog is a portion of my life. Like a sliver of it. And sometimes it's daunting to feel like I need to write a LOT. I'm letting go of that. You may get one sentence posts. I kid you not.
Anyways, I hope you like the changes and if not - that's ok too! But I think it will be more fun on the blog as I chill out about what I have to post about. ;)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

currently obsessed with / plaids

Blue + Green Napkin / Plaid Pillow / Purple Plaid Throw / Plaid Ribbon / Plaid Pouch / Plaid Pehr Napkin 

I have a wee obsession with plaid. If it's plaid, I'll likely buy it. I finally was able to source some gorgeous plaid ribbons for the shop and my wardrobe continues to get new additions of the plaid / tartan pattern. This scarf that I purchased on Etsy last year continues to be a staple in my wardrobe during the chillier months. She seems to have expanded her collection - They are generous scarfs, without being too huge. I ordered this scarf from Zara, and although I love the pattern, oh my goodness. It's HUGE! It could be a blanket. Which is why I didn't return it, because it's kind of super comfy to wrap around your shoulders while you watch TV. ;)

Plaid Obsession Elsewhere:
My blanket from Etsy, My Brother's Living Room,

Friday, October 10, 2014

bits + pieces

Happy Friday! Just some things that didn't get blogged about this week. xo

Articles you may like:

Remember my anxiety about sharing online - specifically Oscar? This article I came across articulates my trepidation about it, which is obviously a element of my generation. (Although I'm kind of slightly younger than the author, but it still touches upon my youth)

12 Phases of Entrepreneurship  - I experienced Phase 4, 5, 6, 9 and 11. Overall the list is pretty dead on to what you're going to (or likely have) experienced being your own boss. Related article - "Why the hell would anyone want to be an Entrepreneur?"

How to be Polite. As someone that collects etiquette books (new, and old) I loved this article.

Have a great weekend! - Lindsay

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Making A Marquee Letter

As part of my #ProjectPinkRoom, I really, really wanted to have a Marquee letter for my little client. But the funds didn't allow for me to invest in one from Etsy after I factored in shipping, and that we wanted to get a lot of pieces to fill up the room (we were on a budget). Determined to have one, I googled and searched Pinterest for "DIY's" on how to make my own, and came across some great tutorials.

My post is going to be less of a tutorial a-la-Young-House-Love-Style (they got serious with their how to's!) But more of a "we did it!!!" and "here are some tips" and "here are some links to people who spent a lot of time documenting how THEY did it".

In order to make something substantial I'm going to start by saying that you should make your letter out of wood, and for that, you need a jigsaw. Which I didn't have. The folks at RONA came to my rescue and shot me over a Bosch jigsaw for us to use to complete the project. You can see it in action in this short little video

I'm going to confess. The easiest part was the cutting of the wood and the drilling of the holes. I made it extra difficult because of the three dimensional aspect to this particular one. I wasn't sure if I was going to hang it in her room, or place it on a table - so having it to be able to stand on it's own, was of the greatest importance for me. But should you decide that the three dimensional aspect isn't of importance to you then you'll likely find this project way easier.

I'm going to show you stages of this project, and anticipate that this won't be a guide for every single letter of the alphabet. But as anything I do, I hope it's inspiration for someone else, and perhaps you could improve upon what we did.

1. Design your letter
First off, I needed to design my letter. I chose a font I liked, strecthed it and tweaked it, so it was exactly as I liked. I printed it off on a regular piece of paper and then Aubrey calculated the size, to be blown up.

At the same time we took into consideration the placement of the bulbs - as you can see from Aubrey's X marks on the Z.

You seriously need this Jigsaw. It was glorious to use. Seriously, it was like cutting through butter. Although we were doing straight lines, Aubrey did some text pieces (not shown) that were curvy and beautiful (I'm doing a heart next) and it was so smooth and beautiful.

Minor interruption in the project. Someone wanted to watch TV. Had to ask his Father.

This is where I will stop and say that up until this point, I wouldn't do anything differently. But the following steps were terribly time consuming. Again, go see How Joyful's post on her Marquee Letter because she really goes into great detail on how she did her sides.

As you can see, a lot of measuring, a lot of small cuts and fitting it together like a gingerbread house. Aubrey is a patient man. I didn't take a photo of how he glued it together because I was sleeping when he did it. But below is a shot of the back of the piece ....

He added metal brackets to hold the side together, in addition to using wood glue. He drilled holes through the back, large enough for the socket of the light bulb to fit through.

My little client came over and helped me prime the Z.

Next steps:
  • Once the whole thing is put togther, and primed, fill the holes with wood filler so that you can fill those gaps. Then, add some DAP. I didn't want light to shine through those holes. 
  • I sprayed it using my paint sprayer (that I LOVE!) I gave it about 6 coats, to ensure that it really had great coverage. 
  • Aubrey spaced out the holes and installed the lighting - which was just some globe lights we had from Target. 
  • We used an extension cord like this, which means our little client (the seven year old) wasn't plugging things in. (Kids + electricity make me nervous!) All she does is press the white button and the light goes on and off.... 

And there you go! I appreciate that the tutorial isn't as seamless or as details as one would like, but it wasn't terribly easy and so, not something I'd really recommend. But if you want to take on a project like I did, then you likely have some DIY know-how and the above is inspirational enough to follow. I will, as mentioned, try this project again to make it a little simpler, as I would like a Marquee Letter in my own house. But for now, here is it in the room...

Disclaimer: Bosch 7 Variable Speed Jigsaw was provided to us by RONA. And I HIGHLY recommend it. It's amazing.

Links of interest:
Marquee Light via How Joyful (likely the closest to what we did) 
HGTV Making a Marquee Light 
Pinterest Searches: Marquee Light DIY,

Monday, October 6, 2014

#ProjectPinkRoom - Bedroom Reveal!

It's time for the #ProjectPinkRoom reveal. Skipping back again, this room was designed for one of my close girlfriends daughters. (Read here as to how the project started - pretty much casual conversations around the playground) To pull this room together, I took to browsing Etsy - if you've been a long time reader, you'll know that I've been doing "Etsy Find" posts since 2008.  That site is my go to spot for unique items, and the fact that it's online takes the stress out of me having to source unique items around the city. Because I was really sourcing a lot of items from Etsy in my initial design I reached out to Etsy to tell them about the project - and Etsy loved the idea of helping make over this girls room and gave us a few Etsy gift cards to go shopping with which helped with what I would consider the "layering" of the room. But to help really finish the room, my clients Mom + Dad chipped in for the rest. I think this is a really great example of how you can source the craziest fun stuff off Etsy, mix it with Big Box store items, and get a look that is truly special. To remind you, below is what we started with...

Above is what we had - which really, is awesome for anyone because of that headboard. But it needed some "finishing". My girlfriend was not sure the pink walls she had painted a few years back was the right shade. I really thought it was perfect - the softer the better as it allows for bringing in punches of colour elsewhere. It's all about the layering in my mind, and that's what I came in to do...... So, here is what I did..................................

Tassel Garland Above Bulletin Board - Etsy , Gold scalloped pillow on bed, Etsy, Magazine Rack (bottom left) Etsy

EEEEE!!! I was seriously giddy with excitement at every picture hung, and when the chandelier went up. (acting like this)

Vintage alarm clock via Etsy

Gold Magazine Rack for Books - Via Etsy
Drapery and Hardware - Tonic Living 
Goose via Etsy - Shop here

Painting by Pamela Munger 

OMG. I love this room so much.

So here are some details on the room.

Marquee Light &  Chandelier
Originally I was going to put the marquee light (the light up Z) above her bed  - and can see that there is space for us to put it there. However, I found the crystal chandelier at a live auction, it was too good not to buy, so it took center stage in the room. Although nothing is hanging on the walls above the bed - when you look at the bed straight on the chandelier is placed perfectly to fill that wall space. (We swagged it to be centred above her bed) The Z now sits on her new desk, and is a pretty fun addition.

Bulletin Board
Other DIY's included making the bulletin board using tacks we sourced from Etsy. Not only does Etsy have artisans, but they also are a great source for finding supplies for projects. Don't forget to turn to the site for trying to source those tricky items that you may need to finish off a project. I've purchased SO many supplies for my crafting from Etsy.

OMG. The drapes. We knew we wanted to do something fun, so my girlfriend and I went into Tonic together to look at fabrics. After a few minutes of browsing we picked up Secret Gate Blossom and the two of us knew, right away, that it was *the* fabric. We didn't necessarily need the drapery to act as privacy or, sun protection for the room as they already had blackout roller shades installed in the room. So all we needed were drapes to highlight the window. By going this route you save money on fabric. Adding a blackout lining also adds weight and, bulk. So I wanted to really minimize that and keep it light. We did a pinch pleat at the top (my favourite!!) and I chose the Old Gold curtain rod and, end cap. I wanted to keep the end cap very simple, so not to compete with what else was going on in the room. The Old Gold finish is stunning - not too gold, so it really will grow with the girl as she grows up.

Side Tables
For the side tables, we found two different, but similar sized side tables from the Salvation Army and I painted them in the same shade. Although they are different tables - by painting them the same colour, it unifies them and you don't really even notice that they are different.

Original Art
Pamela Munger's painting was the first piece we got for the room. I'm in LOVE with Pamela's work, and I think her pieces are pretty economical considering her amazing talent and the size of the pieces. Typically one may not bring in original art to a kids room, but I think if you see an original piece on Etsy that is in your budget, you should go for it. I love, love Etsy for sourcing original art.The parents bought a new desk for her but we added in a vintage wood chair that I had found, and I sprayed it the same soft grey as the side tables. There's a lot going on in the room, so I wanted to keep certain things consistent, so not to compete with the major pieces - the chandelier, or, Marquee Light.

The room is fun. It's not serious, and it can grow with my little client as she gets older. If you wanted to tone down the room later on, you may one day replace the headboard with something in a linen. Easy switchups (and inexpensive changes) can be done down the road to make it less pink, and more grown up.

And there you have it! #ProjectPinkRoom complete.

xo Linds

Items Sourced From Etsy
Painting on Wall: Pamela Munger, Etsy
Gold PillowEtsy
Pink Wool Throw: Etsy
Pink Pillow On Floor (for when friends come to hang out): Etsy
XOXO Framed PrintEtsy
Vintage Alarm ClockEtsy
Gold Magazine Rack (For her books) Etsy
Pink Tassel Garland: Etsy
Goose on the wallEtsy
Bulletin Board: Tacks - Etsy / Fabric - Home Depot / Bulletin Board - Staples
Missing --- We bought this print as well, but it didn't arrive in time for the shoot. :( But it's super cute!

Other Items
Bed: Clients Own (HomeSense)
Don't Grow Up It's A Trap: The Penny Paper Co. 
Bedside Tables: Salvation Army, Painted by Lindsay
Curtain Fabric + Sewing: Tonic Living (Fabric here)
Hardware for Drapery: Tonic Living - Old Gold Rod and End Caps
Chandelier: Lindsay scored at an auction but similar ones here
Yellow Vase on Side Table: Cottage Country find but similar ones here
On The Desk: Pencils, Tape Dispenser, Personalized Note Pad - All via The Penny Paper Co. Statue of Libery - clients own.
Marquee Light: We made it!!! (how to, coming soon) or you can buy one from Etsy. :)

Shop similar items to that I bought for her room, in my #ProjectPinkRoom category on Etsy!

Disclaimer: This post was done in collaboration with Etsy. We were provided a gift certificate to purchase some items from Etsy sellers.