Orange Stapler Lust.

Saying orange is my favorite color is an understatement.  I seem to have over the years collected a lot of orange things.  It was never a conscious decision and until recently I didn’t even realize that I had a lot of orange objects.

Anyway I just saw this orange Swingline stapler at cb2.  What a beauty!  It’ll look great on my desk in my  room.

This is just an object of lust right now because we are saving up for some major renovations.  The stucco in the back (surrounding my room) will be removed and replaced with new stucco.  Also the bricks on the front and side of the house will have to be repointed soon.  Sigh…but I really like this stapler…


Living Room Shelf Remorse.

This is a photo of the shelves and Tv set up in the living room (this photo is a little crooked but you get the idea).  Am I happy with the arrangment? Not quite! I love having the Tv downstairs and I love the credenza but I don’t love the shelves.  I thought that we should have some shelves over the Tv for the CD player and also to stack some books.  Unfortunately  the books on the shelf looked too cluttered.  So then I put some plants on the shelves and I am still not quite satisfied with the shelves.  I don’t know what I was thinking putting up shelves on this wall!

I really need to work on curating the shelves better (and no taking the shelves down is not an option).

Saturday spent thrifting.

We went to a “thrift” store way out in West Philly today.  While I didn’t see too many things that I liked I found a few not so thrifty things, such as this desk.  I didn’t enjoy sitting at my old desk.  I loved that it was small and had clean lines but it needed lots of work.  The drawers had to be fixed, it was a little unsteady, also it needed to be sanded and repainted.  I like that this desk, while having the same dimensions as the other desk, takes up a lot more visual space.  This room is small and this side of the room needed something substantial.  I think that sometimes in a small room you have to go large so that things don’t look too cluttered. Click here  and here to see more pictures of my room.

 I love the juxtaposition of the ornate desk next to the yellow industrial clamp lamp (eBay) and red metal filing cabinet (Ikea).

The desk is solid wood and extremely heavy. It is in excellent condition. 

Since we are talking about the desk I might as well mention the chair…I upholstered this chair (which we got with the dining table) in this fabric from Ikea.  I love black and white fabrics and I’ve accumulated a small collection. 

This is the old desk.  For now I am moving it to the basement but in the future when I have some free time I will sand it and refinish it.  It will either go into Kiran’s room or in the office room as a table for my sewing machine (not yet purchased).

Here are some pictures of the yellow porcelain  cups that we got (they were very thrifty at $5 for eight of them):

Chalkboard Paint.

Another obsession of mine right now is chalkboard paint.  I am seriously considering painting the side of the refrigerator in chalkboard paint.  Why?  I am not sure.  I think it will be a great use of space (to write notes, phone numbers, etc).  Also, Kiran can draw on the bottom of the refrigerator while we are cooking.  Our refrigerator is so white, large and boring and I think a little black will make things more interesting.

Take a look at these rooms with chalkboard paint:

It is so easy to apply (at least on a refrigerator).  All you have to do is buy chalkboard paint and apply it!  If you were applying it to a wall you would have to properly prepare the surface (spackle, sand, etc.) and then prime before applying the chalkboard paint.

Shoe Shelf.

I am a big believer in buying great quality leather shoes with leather soles.  They aren’t necessarily expensive (I am a size 7 and I am lucky enough to live close to Daffys where I find amazing Italian shoes in my size).  Whenever the soles or the rubber on the heels gets worn down I take them to be repaired.   I have acquired a lot of shoes over the years (what can I say I hardly ever throw out any shoes).  Anyway, I needed some shelves for my shoes and one very snowy day (last week) Scott built these shelves for me.

As you can see they are only half way done.  I want the shelves to go all the way up to the ceiling.  One of the shelves will hold my boots.  Once all the shelves are installed I will prime and paint the wood white.


This is a close up of the shelves.  I color cordinated the shoes (!) so they wouldn’t look too cluttered.

TV in the living room?

After having the television on the third floor (in what is now the office room) we finally decided that we need the TV on the main floor.  Neither Scott nor I watch a lot of television but we love watching movies.  So we decided to move it downstairs mainly because we really want the living room to be the room that we spend most of our time in.  Our biggest challenge is incorporating the TV into the rest of the living room and making is sort of blend in. 

I have been searching for a white high gloss TV stand for a while now.  The living room has a lot of wood so I needed something lighter and airier.

The first step in moving the TV into the living room was buying a credenza to place under the TV.  We  bought  Ikea Trosby sideboard.  This is the first big piece of furniture that we have purchased at Ikea and I am very pleased.  It is very sturdy and the size is perfect.  Also it has tons of storage and we use one side for Kiran’s toys and the other side for the DVD player and CDs. 

We decided on installing two shelves over the TV to put our CD player on.  The main reason for this is that We have a Bose CD player (best purchase ever) and it just sounds better when it is higher.  Also we needed it to be away from Kiran’s reach because he loves shoving CD’s into the CD slots. 

Next Scott installed a plug point slightly higher from where we decided to put up the shelves.  I am not sure how he does it but Scott has become quite an electrician now.  Scott installed, wired and did everything else necessary for me to have a plug point on the first shelf.  I am so excited!

See the plug point!

This is a close up of Scott installing the shelves.  One more shelf to go…

It took a lot of time to align the shelves (everything in our house is slightly crooked) and to decide what to anchor the shelves on.  Most of our walls are plaster but this wall is drywall to it look a lot of time for us to decide whether we wanted to attach the shelves on just drywall or if we wanted to find the wood studs.  We ended up attaching one side of the shelves to the wood studs and the other side was anchored with drywall sinkers.  It took a lot longer than we anticipated but it is almost done. More pictures to follow.

The Dining Room (update).

I  haven’t posted many new pictures of our house because I can’t seem to take good pictures even with my new camera! Also, every time that I am ready to take pictures the sun disappears so my pictures end up looking really dark.  Anyway here are some pictures of the dining room.

My favorite reading spot

We bought the table and buffet from a neighbor about 10 years ago.  I really want a new sleeker and longer teak credenza but we are keeping this one until we find another one.  I bought the chairs on Ebay (two separate auctions from two different sellers).  I love the juxtaposition of the chrome with the wood table.  While we have been looking for a new table I am pretty sure that we will end up keeping this table.  It has four additional leaves and seats twelve people really comfortably.  Also the table is solid wood and indestructible.  I recently bought the yellow enamel lamp on eBay for about $45.  It works and it is great to have a task light because we use the dining room table to read, write, draw etc.  Also, I think the bright splash of color really livens the room.

Click here to see pictures of the progression of the dining room.

All I want is a black wall.

…maybe even a black room. I am seriously thinking of painting the office room on the third floor a very matte black. I am in love with Jenna Lyons house, especially her bedroom which is the perfect shade of black.

Jenna Lyons bedroom from Living etc.

If not black then I am thinking of a very deep and dark grey color as in the picture below:

Gemma Ahern’s apartment (more here)

…maybe I could do one wall in the dining room as in the picture below. Although I am generally not a fan of “accent” walls.

From Rum Magazine

Black walls are everywhere now and while I am not into following fads I have to say that I am getting increasingly more obsessed with having a black room. For more great inspiration check out Door Sixteen.

Happy New Year!

view from the living room window

In the past I have rarely made new year’s resolutions. However, this year I have decided that I have to make some changes. Between working, renovating the house, cleaning, cooking, and taking care of our son I feel like I don’t have any time for myself! I have always liked my time alone and this year I resolve to find some time for myself.

Here is a list of my resolutions (in no particular order):
1) Take a renovation hiatus of two months and enjoy the house without thinking of the next project (this will be very hard to do).
2) read more books (I used to read a lot and now I spend all my reading time pouring over magazines, blogs, the internet etc)
3) get back to sleeping at least eight hours a day
4) watch a movie at home at least once a week
5) Save and spend less (hard to do when I am constantly dreaming up a new house project)
6) Relax
7) Call all my fabulous friends, who live really far from me, more often.

PS: I love plants and even when it is freezing cold outside, with snow on the ground I have a little bit of paradise on my window sills.