25 Nov 2013

Holiday Feather Wreath With Burlap Ribbon

A Monday post!! I never post on Mondays, but this is for a special occasion.  Today, 13 other lovely Canadian women and myself are posting our holiday wreath projects as part of a Wreath Hop.  All of our wreaths feature some seriously beautiful ribbon from May Arts, so if you want some more holiday inspiration make sure to hop around and check out the other wreaths. 

When I was thinking about making my wreath, I knew I wanted a mix of glam and rustic.  I've been wanting a feather wreath for a few years, and just hadn't gotten around to making one yet, so this was my chance.  I looked through the May Arts catalogue and found the perfect burlap and red ribbon to go with my white feathers. 

Here's what I came up with.

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

I'm a little obsessed with it!  Want to know the best part?  No sewing and no gluing.  I'll be honest, I couldn't find my glue gun (I haven't used it since the big move), so I managed to whip this baby up without it, and it's held up great so far. 

I started with 4 feather boas from the dollar store ($1.50 each) and some left over cardboard (and a super cute 2 year old!).

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

I used a mixing bowl to trace a big circle on the cardboard and then a pie plate to the trace the inner circle.  Then I cut it out.

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

First off, I used scissors that were too small for this project, which is why it's all jagged, but honestly, it didn't matter in the end.  Secondly, I am a little embarrassed of our grout lines.  Clearly I should have picked a different surface for these photos! But, believe me that it's not dirty...I've tried with all my might to clean them and they are just like that.  And thirdly, apparently boas are supposed to be stirred with a pancake flipper.....

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

Moving on....

I wrapped each boa around the cardboard circle and then just tucked the ends under to hold them each in place.  As easy as pie.

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

Then I brought out my ribbon from May Arts.

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

I used the burlap ribbon to make 3 big fabric rosettes (fold the ribbon in half, tie a little knot in the end and then just twist the fabric while wrapping it around).  I held the red leaf ribbon alongside the burlap and intertwined it in the rosettes every couple of turns.  Since I didn't have my glue gun handy, I wrapped each rosette and then stuck a few pins through the back to hold everything together. 

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

I wouldn't recommend this if your rosettes are going to get any sort of use, but I knew mine were going to be decorative and wouldn't be touched, so the pin method worked.

Once I had my 3 rosettes complete, I then pinned them in a row onto another piece of burlap ribbon.

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

I fed the ribbon through the middle of the wreath to make a hanger of sorts and voila...done.  

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

It's cute, right?  I think it looks pretty fancy for the 15 minutes that it took to make.  Plus, Fin LOVED playing with the feather boas, so it doubled as some serious play time.

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

I am waiting for our new front door to be installed and then this baby is going to get a prime spot to welcome our visitors.

Feather and burlap wreath.  #christmas #burlap #wreathhop

To get even more Holiday Wreath inspiration, make sure to check out these 14 incredible wreaths created by my fellow bloggers:


(from left to right, they are)


Have a great week! 



24 Nov 2013

The Week's End - November 24, 2013

The Week's End - Nov 24, 2013

The Week's End - Nov 24, 2013

The Week's End - Nov 24, 2013


The Week's End - Nov 24, 2013

The Week's End - Nov 24, 2013

The Week's End - Nov 24, 2013
(A little sneak peek of my wreath that's coming up tomorrow.....)

20 Nov 2013

Entry Way Progress

You guys....I feel like I am a bit of a floundering blogger these days.  Winter is kicking. my. butt.  Big time! It started with the time change and I feel like for the last couple of weeks I haven't been able to get my feet back under me.  We are about 2 feet deep in snow and have been shovelling, shovelling, and shovelling.  I have good intentions of taking project pics, but usually by the time I think about it, it's already dark outside.  And we all know dark outside = not so great pics.  Anyhow, the good news is that we have made some pretty decent progress on our entryway.  The bad news is that I seem to have lost a bunch of my 'before' pics and I pretty much forgot to take any in-progress photos.  But that's ok, right?  Yes, I will tell myself it's ok.

So, without true 'before' pics, here's sort of what the entry looked like before we started our work on it last week.

Entry Way Progress

The rug (from Ikea) is the one addition to what it really looked like when we moved in.  

On the other side of the opening to the living room (on the right), was a built in desk.

Entry Way Progress

Don't ask what that is on top of the desk. It's play-food, but I have no idea what it's supposed to be. Yes, I know what it looks like. I think it might be a baked potato.  Anyhow, I had originally thought I'd keep the desk and work with it, but then one day I just got completely sick of it and decided to take my pry bar and go to town.

It didn't go so well.  I couldn't make the darn thing budge even an inch.  I had to admit defeat and wait for Mr. Swell (who of course removed it with 2 little taps....mostly because I had already loosened it for him).

Let's also talk about trim.  The trim in our house was something else.  I believe it's called 'special of the week'.  I am pretty sure the previous owners bought whatever trim was on sale at the time. The profile didn't matter.

Case in point...

Entry Way Progress

Baseboard as header. Yup. Awesome.

See the thermostat in the picture above?  When we had the alarm system installed, we received a new thermostat, and in one actual clear thought (or maybe it was my Mom's idea, I can't remember), we asked them to move the thermostat to the other side of the wall.  Brilliant! So now it's on the wall in the living room, and all we had to do was patch the hole.

Ok, fast forward a few months, and the entry now looks like this.

Entry Way Progress

It's a little bit of progress!!!  

The first thing we did was rip down all the trim and paint the walls.  The colour is Benjamin Moore Baby Fawn - the colour throughout our house.

The next thing was to put up the beadboard.  When we removed the built in desk we were left with giant gaping holes.  We could have patched them, but it would have been major.  I wanted something to separate the entry from the rest of the house anyhow, so beadboard solved both our problems.

We used the plank style boards that were already pre-primed.  

Entry Way Progress

Mr. Swell did all of the work, so really, let's say that's why there aren't any progress pics.  It's quite an easy process though. Put the baseboard up, glue the planks on the wall, add some trim to the top and then a little ledge.  Fill thole holes, caulk the joints and paint.  

Entry Way Progress

We bought the top moulding made specifically for this type of board.  It has a special little lip that lets it cover the top edge.  This helps so that everything doesn't have to perfectly straight at the top.  Then we added a piece of 1/2 x 1 1/2 pine to the top to make a little ledge. 

Entry Way Progress

I need to go back in and cut in with the wall colour one more time to make everything nice and crisp.  I find the caulking always messes things up a bit and requires a bit of touch up, but it's better to deal with that than have big gaps between the moulding and the wall. 

Our antique sewing machine sits where the built in used to be.  Much better, and it's just the right size to hold all of the junk we drop when we come in the door, plus still have room for a few pretty things.

Entry Way Progress

Also, please note the new header on the living room doorway that is NOT baseboard.  :)

We haven't done the casing around the door because we are getting a new door and side-light.  The new windows upstairs are slated to be installed the first week of December, and with it will come our fancy new door!  I am in the middle of picking out door colours, which is always a bit of a stressful activity on its own.

But back to the entry. The other big change is the light.  We went from a basic boob light, to a fancy new light.

Entry Way Progress

It's from Lowe's, but I cannot for the life of me find it online so that I can link to it for you.  It was originally a dining light that was supposed to be on a long pole from the ceiling.  We did a bit of a farmer fix and removed the pole so that it now hangs only a couple of inches from the ceiling.

I especially love how it looks at night. 

Entry Way Progress

I think it's going to look really nice with the new door that has some glass in it. 

So there you have it. A tiny bit of progress in the front entry.  Although I really like what we've done, it's all feeling a little formal and granny-ish to me right now, so I need to add some modern touches.  It's that part of the DIY process where you just have to have faith that it will all come together.

I'll be back on the weekend with The Week's End and then again on Monday with a holiday wreath using some seriously beautiful ribbon from May Arts.


17 Nov 2013

The Week's End - November 17, 2013

The Week's End - November 16, 2013

The Week's End - November 16, 2013

The Week's End - November 16, 2013

The Week's End - November 16, 2013

The Week's End - November 16, 2013

The Week's End - November 16, 2013

The Week's End - November 16, 2013

12 Nov 2013

The Hallway With Painted Interior Doors

I've been talking about the interior doors that we painted for what feels like months (maybe it has been months??), and today it's finally time for the reveal.

Ready?  Ok!

hallway reveal with painted interior doors.

hallway reveal with painted interior doors.

hallway reveal with painted interior doors.

Let's take a little walk down memory lane, shall we?

I apologize ahead of time for some of these pics, but you will at least get the idea. My old camera didn't love dark spaces and I have yet to invest in a tripod so that I can leave my shutter open for longer.

This is how the hallway looked when we first took possession:



Ugly green and mismatched casing. It was bad.

Then we opened up the doorway to the 4th bedroom to make more of a loft area.



Then I stared at paint swatches for a while.  Can you tell the difference between the 2 colours? Ya, neither could I, so I eventually just picked one.


 Then I painted the railing dark and waited for our new carpet.



And then the carpet was installed....and our feet thanked us.

hallway reveal with painted interior doors.


And then we took all of the doors down and painted them, hung them back up and trimmed everything out.

hallway reveal with painted interior doors.

I also spray painted the door handles - rustoleum hammered metal in black.  We hope to get some new hardware down the road but for now the spray paint works.

I also painted the railing going down the stairwell.  

hallway reveal with painted interior doors.

The painting in the stairwell is from Urban Barn and used to hang in my office in the old house.

We still need a new light and I really need to figure out something for the thermostats. Why are they always in the middle of a wall???  We have one really old one that's for the humidifier and then a brand new one that came with our security system (that I can control from my phone...for when we are too lazy or cold to get out of bed!).

hallway reveal with painted interior doors.

We sprayed the doors using our Critter sprayer.  It made the whole job really fast and easy.  We had enough room in the garage to do 2 doors at a time, so we just sort of worked our way around the hallway.  Living without a bathroom door for a few days was interesting. 

The trim was by far the most time consuming part of the project.  There are still a few small places that we need to finish off, and I still need to go around and fill in all of the gaps and holes and then apply a second coat of paint.  I am convincing myself that it will be easier to the do the whole house at once, but I am not sure if that's really true. So for now, we have nail holes everywhere.

At the end of the hallway I hung my 3 Lucy Snowe bison prints that used to be in our old living room. (If you love them and want some of your own, they are still listed in Lucy's shop.)

hallway reveal with painted interior doors.

I went through about 10 options for art at the end of the hall, but I am really happy with the prints.  They are neutral enough to go with the rooms on either side, but they still have a bit of impact.  

The inside of each door is white, and then I painted the edges of the doors all different colours to match the interior of the rooms.  

You saw the bathroom a couple of weeks ago.


I painted the door to our master bedroom the same colour as the walls, but I am thinking of adding a bit of gold to it too - maybe stripes or dots. 


I have to admit, painting the edge was just sort of fun.  Something a bit unexpected. 

So there you go! Phew - I wasn't expecting a post about doors to be so long.  

As a reference, the paint colours are:
Doors - Benjamin Moore Baby Seal Black (Advance Interior Pearl)
Trim - Benjamin Moore Simply White (Advance Interior Pearl)
Walls: Benjamin Moore Baby Fawn (Ben Interior Eggshell)

What do you think? Are you a fan of the dark interior doors? It's ok if you aren't - everyone is entitled to their opinion :)

Have a great day.

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