Who da man?

Otto-man!! (get it??) Our new ottoman to be exact. Arrived today and it’s great!

2/3 of the sectional are sitting in a Pottery Barn warehouse somewhere in California waiting for the last piece to be shipped and then they’ll deliver it all together. I. Can’t. Wait. Estimated deliver is early March, which seems pretty far away still. The original ship date was estimated to be between 9-12 weeks (we bought it in December) because they build the pieces once you order (I guess) for the non-stock colors. I just get impatient. It’s great to see how the whole set is going to look with our rug and since we have a very open flood plan this room pretty much IS our house. Once it comes together everything else will start to come together too.
It’s also nice to see that Kirky approves.


New rug

We were able to finally decide on a rug for our living room. I had been scouring so many websites trying to figure out the right one for our space and for our tastes, and our budget. And what I found was…area rugs are EXPENSIVE!! We measured our space and realized that a 9’x12′ rug was the perfect size, then came the searching. We both decided that a comfy, cozy, durable rug was the way to go. It’s too bad you can’t reach into the computer to see how a rug feels. I had gone into the Crate & Barrel outlet in nearby Berkeley and seen some of the rugs they had on hand so I was familiar with their texture and knew what to look for online.  I had also realized that I was more fond of a geometric pattern rug than a floral one (Matt agreed). So this is what we finally found.


We ended up going with Crate & Barrel’s Quentin Rug, 9’x12′ and it was on sale for $399 which is at least 50% less than what I was seeing on other sites (and originally retails for $999 at Crate & Barrel). The rug arrived today and so far it is awesome! It’s very soft and looks great with our existing furniture. The colors are perfect and will allow for great accessorizing (throw pillows, window coverings, and art), once our new couch gets delivered {which was supposed to be this past Saturday but is now going to be March…waaa!}

All About the ORB

Oil Rubbed Bronze spray paint that is. I have been on a quest for a full length mirror for our room and finally found one that was the right size, and the right price at Home Goods. However I wasn’t crazy about the color but I figured that could easily be changed. Given all the inspiration and instruction from Young House Love I was confident that I could pull it off. Here are some of the before photos all prepped and ready to be painted:

And some during photos. The final product took about four coats of spray paint.

I was quite impressed with the Rust-Oleum metallic oil rubbed bronze. It has a built-in primer and had really good coverage. The extra coats were just to insure that there was deep coverage.

Here is an after shot set up in the bedroom.

And a close up of the finished product once it’s all dry. I love it and it matches the side lamps and is a great addition to our room.

See…look how happy I am.

Seeing Double

So, after a very long wait. We finally have two bedside lamps, we’ve spent the last five months with only one. The long story has to do with a second lamp that arrived damaged and had to be returned, a miscommunication about a backordered (and then out of stock) item from Macy’s. Finally we opted to go with a different seller and purchased lamp number two from HomeClick.com. The original ship date was bumped back two weeks but finally the lamp arrived. It matches lamp numero uno, we finally have two bedside lamps in our room, and I am one happy lady. Now we just need some color in that room. It’s looking kind of vanilla right now (even though our bedding is Sea Spray, it’s not showing up that way in this photo).

Since we are talking about decorations in the bedroom, lets see what else we have in store…

The next item we are waiting to receive is a second bedside rug that is being delivered by West Elm next week. For the time being we are pretty happy with the one side rug that we have. {Mentioned previously in this post}.

And a close up so you can see how fluffy and cozy it is:

And while I was photographing this I realized that our bed is missing something…

a bed skirt. Since our bed is raised up on these bed lifts I have visions of making an extra long bed skirt to cover the box spring and the legs/lifters. Add that to the project list.

Oh and notice those two items taped to the wall in the photo in the upper right?

Paint samples. They have been taped up on the wall for the better part of three months now. And I think we settled on the paint color within the first week. From the top counting down, I think we are going with number 5. It’s called Gravity, and is a light bluish-greenish gray. I think these exact paint chips are from Lowes but I want to color match it with a low-VOC paint at Home Depot, since that is the closer store. I’ll keep you posted on what that ends up looking like, I’m excited for our first indoor painting project.

Oh and another project for this room is way way (WAY) far down on the list of things to do but a girl can dream. I’ve been pining (and pinning) away at all the images I’ve seen on Pinterest for a….sliding barn door. I thought one would be a perfect fit to cover Husband’s closet door.

Can you picture it?? We could get rid of the door that’s there now since it spends 99% of the time wide open and taking up space, and replace it with something like this…

{image source from here}

I’m picturing our painted gray walls, some DIY art, DIY headboard, some colorful accent pillows, a bench at the end of the bed like this, and possibly a dark teal door? The possibilities are endless.

Here’s the pallet I’m thinking, but more turquoise.

{source here}

Holiday Cards

So after all the wedding projects this year I was in serious need for some crafting time. I ordered my cards a bit early from one of my favorite sites, Minted. They are based locally out of San Francisco. Earlier this year I was asked to sit in on a focus group for their upcoming holiday card lineup. I took an hour out of my day and headed over to their office and at the end received a $200 gift certificate to use. So woo-hoo…holiday cards were free. I really love all their designs, and their paper quality is top-notch, they are my go-to site for any sort of invitation or holiday card.  I always like to add my own personal touch so I stamped the envelopes with some festive holiday stamps I had on hand.  {I used this one for the upper corner, and this one for the address location, both from Paper Source.}  I even ended up getting a photo calendar {that now doesn’t appear to be on their site} as well using wedding photos. I’m so excited for the new year so we can start using it.

I love calendars. Maybe too much. Last year I DIY’ed a calendar with the help from some of my favorite bloggers, Sherry and John at Young House Love. They have this great Photoshop file download that allows you to edit the text to fit your family. It’s been a great addition to our house this past year and it’ll go into the scrapbook after December 31 (or in the box of stuff that will someday turn into a scrapbook).

Anywho, I deposited my stamped, addressed, and stuffed envelopes into the mail yesterday. Here is a little preview of what the envelopes look like:

{i was a stamping maniac}

And I also found a great way to display the cards we will be receiving (we have three already, glad I’m not the only early bird out there).

It might be hard to tell by the photo (and the terrible lighting) but I used these great 3M Command Hooks that I bought at our local CVS store and some string that I already had on hand to create two clotheslines on where I can clip the cards. Like this:

And to make them look a little prettier I added those bows with leftover ribbon from last year.  It will look better with more cards. I’ll post an update when they get filled in. The great thing about those hooks is that you can easily remove them and there is no damage left to the surface. Husband is the most excited about that I think, no nail holes = happy hubby.

Do you send holiday cards out? Where do you shop for cards?

Project Garage: Phase 1

Now that the weather is changing and rain is in the near future. It’s time to clean and organize our garage and start to use it for parking, and not just storing stuff in a pile.

We bought some heavy duty shelves at Costco this weekend and are getting ready to assemble them but first we needed to paint the walls of the garage. Our structural garage “makeover” is complete but the walls were partially covered in blank drywall and looked messy. We made a stop at what is soon to become a much frequented store…Home Depot and picked up some cheap-o paint and had an afternoon of rocking out to my iPod whilst paint rolling.

The lighting in the garage is terrible. So I don’t have a good after photo. But here is me “during”…

Next steps: build shelves and bust out the label maker and plastic bins…time to organize!!

It’s Beginning to Look a lot Like Christmas

Last week I attended the West Elm/Etsy Handmade Holiday workshop with my good friend (and blogger) Ana. We were able to browse some local Etsy sellers, as well as peruse the always fabulous finds at West Elm.  I left the night with some awesome handmade letterpress cards and baking labels from Shortstack Fine Paper Goods. As well as two new rugs for our bedroom, they were already a reduced price but I received an additional 10% off since we were part of the Holiday Workshop…SCORE!!! The Channel Rug is 100% wool, so soft and cozy and the perfect addition as side rugs in the bedroom.

The purpose of going to the Handmade Holiday workshop was to decorate Christmas ornaments that were to adorn a tree that was being donated to a local charity. The “making” consisted of stamping and then folding these pre-made ornaments…which was pretty tricky but fun. Here is what I came up with:

Oh, and there was an awesome Christmas “tree” in the center of the Bay Street mall…can you tell what it’s made of?

{hint: shopping carts}

Busy summer

Since my last post, I hosted book/wine/eating club (here’s Kirky with all the ladies):

Gone on vacation to our favorite place, the Lair of the Golden Bear:

Met a darling new baby, Mason:

Shopped for a bench for the foot of the bed in our bedroom (oh how I love Home Goods):

And have not really unpacked anything else in the house. To be honest there isn’t really anything left to unpack, we just need to organize (and then start painting projects).  Our next big house project is going to be organizing the garage which became a dumping ground for things that didn’t really have a definite place in the house. Most of the items are true garage type items (bikes, camping gear, etc) but need a little bit of organization to get them settled in. We have visions of hanging bike racks, and heavy-duty wire shelves (like these) with plastic bins lining the back wall of the garage. Our deadline is to have this happen before the rain starts up again, so we can actually park our cars in the garage. We do have a bit of reinforcement wall/foundation work to get done before we start to permanently set stuff up, but hope that will happen this fall as well.

Last week I was so excited to attend the first Pinterest/West Elm “meet up” at the West Elm store in Emeryville, Ca. It was so much fun! The store is quickly becoming a favorite of mine since I bought our new duvet cover and pillow cases (shown here). Not to mention how much I LOVE Pinterest (proof is here). It is becoming an obsession of mine and it was great getting to meet some of the people behind the genius that is Pinterest.  I took a bunch of photos using the instagram app on my iPhone and was tweeting up a mini-storm while I was there. This photo was one of my favorites (sorry it’s a bit fuzzy my iPhone 3G is an awful camera, can’t wait for the iPhone 5…I’m holding out to upgrade), the colorful banner made of pillow cases. So smart!


How has your summer been? Anything fun happening? Football season starts this weekend, CAN’T WAIT!!! Go Bears!!!



How’s it hangin’?

We have had a productive few days. Saturday was quite busy with running errands. Final wedding returns, thank goodness, to Williams Sonoma and Crate and Barrel. We were able to purchase our set of pots and pans…yay! We have been using the pots and pans that were my grandparents, pretty sure they are older than I am.

Also, apparently when you get married, change your name AND change your address your credit cards think that someone is trying to steal your identity and don’t let you use your credit cards. That sucked. But I’m glad the flags were raised and it’s all settled now.

One of the items on my list of “to get” was a desk. My current desk is the same one I have had since I was about 9. It’s a great desk. But it’s a bit small for my needs. I have a sewing machine that I anticipate using more and lots of paper crafts that need a home. The desk I found is totally perfect. It has a sturdy top and the legs are adjustable, with room for storage. And it looks pretty. AND since it was an Ikea purchase, it didn’t break the bank. (This top, and these legs). Shown in our joint office here:

I have already completed my first and second sewing assignments. First, sewing the curtain closet door to hide my piles. And second, making double sided napkins and a table runner for an upcoming bridal shower. Happy to report they both turned out great. I should have taken photos to show the progress. But I’ll post on the “after” and try to do a tutorial along the way. I’m pretty excited that the curtain turned out as good as it did. This bodes well for future curtain projects, since every window in our house is naked. Luckily for us, no one can really see through any windows. The good thing about having a house on a hill.

One of the items that I was most excited to register for was a hanging pot rack. I have always wanted a hanging pot rack. They look cool. But with the skylight in our kitchen it wasn’t really a practical item for us. We still needed a solution to store our pots and pans. While I was shopping through the maze that is Ikea I happened upon the Grundtal Rails. We decided that the best place to have our bulky items was the pantry. So here is how it’s hangin’…

I am pretty pleased with the result. They are out of the way, but also easily accessible. To give you a more full shot of the pantry in all its storing appliances glory here is another shot:

It looks a bit unorganized in this image, but I’m not sure what else we can do. It’s hard to really organize appliances.

One of the things we love best about our house is that it is walking distance to the village of Montclair. The neighborhood in Oakland where we live. From our house it is about a decent little walk into “town”. There is a dedicated footpath and it’s a lovely little stroll. We had our first family walk down there on Sunday morning to the farmers market. We made coffee at home and took it on the road, did some shopping for locally grown fruits and veggies and then walked back. It was a perfect way to spend a Sunday morning and I’m very much looking forward to making it part of our weekend routine.

How was your weekend?