I know, I know, it is only Halloween, but I just had to buy this Christmas magazine.
While waiting in a really loooong grocery lineup today, BHG Special Interest Publications 2011 Christmas Ideas caught my eye. A quick flip through revealed lots of pretties including the Christmas homes of diy/decor bloggers Layla and Kevin of The Lettered Cottage...
Jennifer Grey of The Old Painted Cottage...
Lauren Liess of Pure Style Home...
and Kate Riley of Centsationalgirl (edited to add this one that I somehow missed on my quick flip through.)
Of course I brought this one home! I find myself reading shelter magazines differently now, always checking to see if the photographer, stylist or home is the work of someone I 'know' from the world of blogs. I admit it kind of makes those articles even better. I can hardly wait for some quiet time this evening to read the whole issue.
The little shelves in our kitchen got another seasonal update, this time for Halloween.
I kept the pumkin soup tureens and a few other things from the Thanksgiving display, and added my square Halloween plates, the black and aqua tea set, and a black battery operated lantern.
The plates are Gates Ware that I bought at HomeSense two years ago. I visited quite a few HomeSense stores trying to find more, but it was late in the season and I didn't have any luck.
The pair with the skeleton and Jack-o'lantern are cute, but I think the pumpkin scarecrow is my favourite. While I enjoy decorating seasonally, I won't be sad when Halloween is over. That just means it is closer to decorating for my favourite season.
I don't usually have luck at the thrift store, but when I stopped in last week I found four vintage oval plates, or maybe they would be called platters.
They look like restaurant ware that you might find in an old diner, but I'm not really sure. I love that they are oval and have a simple grey band around the edge.
The marking on the back says 'Steelite Made in England" and they are fairly heavy. Would these be ironstone or china? Whatever they are, I think they were a good deal at $1.99 each, and I'm happy to add them to my dish collection.
Trick or treaters will be coming to the front door in less than two weeks so I thought I had better get a start on Halloween decorating.
Since our mantel in the family room is STILL not finished, I thought I would throw together a display in the living room (that you can see from the front door and window.) We would really like a large piece of furniture (bookcases, hutch etc.) for this spot but in the meantime I used the little bench. I love our living room now that the walls are white (Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls, and trim BM Snowfall White.) Even on dark and rainy days like today it is brighter in here.
We love cows so I thought the cow skeleton print would be cute (I'm not into super creepy.) I hung the frame with some Halloween ribbon and added the little orange wreath for colour.
The cute vintage cat conductor and pumpkins fills another repurposed frame. I had painted the frames and mats white (formerly'80's pinks and blues with cheap prints) and was just waiting for a use for them.
The shutters were $5 at a yard sale and the empty frame was a $1 find that I also painted white. I used one of my Halloween quilts and a pillow I made with leftover check fabric, on the chair.
The little metal haunted house lights up with a tealight, and is propped on some black books that came in a box of free books from my sil. Note the titles~ Grave Secret and Ghost at Work!
Another Halloween quilt hangs on the ladder. The little bench is a $3 yard sale find that I painted black and then white. I still plan to distress it and use some extra trim to cover up the heart cut-outs. Until I pick up some fresh pumpkins I am using this white ceramic pumpkin. We will go get our pumpkins if this rain ever lets up! I think I managed to add some Halloween fun to our home, even without a mantel, using items we already had.
This past week I worked on two little tables that were damaged by sun and rain all summer.
Waiting for some sunshine to take photos this week didn't work out so I went ahead and took these photos late this afternoon (lamps required at 3 pm, yuck!)
I really liked the look of these little rattan and iron tables ($5 each at a yard sale in May) but I left them outdoors over the summer and the weather was really rough on them. They started like this:
They were probably meant for a sun porch or covered patio, not full on sun and rain exposure. Oops!
I decided to take them apart and spray the wrought iron legs with Krylon satin black spray paint. I used a stiff brush to scrape off the chipping and peeling finish from the rattan. I was going to try a stain, but I thought it might look too patchy. I ended up giving the top and lower shelves a coat of mistint grey Behr Paint and Primer in One. Some spray sealer should protect them enough for indoor use.
I prefer the original finish, but the grey gives them a fresh start. The tables are currently in our living room, but may be switched out to the basement guest bedroom as night tables. Hoping you are having a great week!
If you haven't already, you may want to go and see the Vintage Tea Collection and Winter Nesting Collection over at Jennifer Rizzo's blog. The collections are beautiful and would make awesome gifts too.
Jennifer is giving away $400 worth of merchandise from her store plus an extra $100 gift certificate for jewelry. The Winter Nesting Giveaway includes:
a vintage picnic basket filled to the brim with goodies
Our family room and kitchen share the cathedral ceiling and skylights end of our home. I showed the updates to our family room here. Rene at Cottage and Vine has a Room to Room: Kitchens happening so I thought I would update and join in.
Our kitchen is long and narrow, with our free farmhouse table and chairs at the patio door end of the room. Our walls are Stone House by Benjamin Moore. I tend to use lots of whites, black, blues and wood tones in our home.
I love to bake but I'm not an expert, so I keep practicing ;)
We added some architectural interest with a white board and batten wall, that continues on the soffit above the cabinets and eventually hopefully soon will continue around to the family room side. We love barns and anything farm related and added the barn photos I took in inexpensive frames.
Our breakfast bar divides the working and eating areas. I painted the farmer's market sign with items I already had on hand.
White kitchen cabinets and white appliances.
I like adding small pops of colour to our mostly white kitchen, like in this aqua painted mirror, a few dollars at a yard sale and leftover paint.
Glass canisters keep my baking supplies (and Remington's treats) close at hand.
The little counter between our stove and fridge has a beverage tray filled with things we grab often for hot or cold drinks.
I enjoy using white dishes and simple glassware.
We added the shelves to the end of the upper cabinets for some pretties.
The arrangements on our table and hutch change frequently. My dream/future kitchen has wood floors, painted wood cabinets, a farmhouse sink and a huge eating area, but we are happy with what we have. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed the updated tour of our kitchen.
I took some new photos of our family room while our home was still quiet early Sunday morning.
My family arrived for Thanksgiving dinner later in the day. The slipcovers are still wrinkly from a recent wash but with kids and a chocolate Lab that is the least of my worries. I just added some new frames and photos this week so the photo galleries are a work in progress.
My roses seem to keep following me from room to room ;-)
The IKEA sofa slipcover isn't a perfect fit on our custom couch, but it works fairly well and hides the busy upholstery.
We brought a wing chair up from the basement for extra seating and I need to make a slipcover (it has dark green and navy upholstery) so I am using a bedspread temporarily. The blue is pretty close to the colour of the armoire to the left of the chair.
Our family room is not perfect but it is a comfortable room for our family to watch tv and use the computer (our computer table is in the corner behind the blue chair.)
This room has changed a fair bit in the past two years. Before (2009):
I have lots of plans for it, but for now I want to finish the fireplace/tv nook wall to carry the kitchen board and batten around to the family room side of this wall and add a fireplace mantel. I also need to change the lamps and/or shades. Oh, and work on the photo walls.
Happy Thanksgiving to all my Canadian readers and friends and wishing you all a great week ahead! Thanks for stopping by!