Set your martini shakers for Friday...

I've been painting my counters all day. White marble it is. 
 Its actually really easy to do, so I will be bring back How To Happy Hour this Friday.
While painting, I noticed my IKEA...
and thought "Gee, why didn't I marble that to look like this a long time ago..."

So I will.
Get your drink of choice (you actually marble better impaired, SERIOUS), your table and white and black paint. It's IKEA hack time!
You will be doing your countertops next.
See you Friday!

Someone's got a new favorite(s)...

Isn't she pretty? I want to do my bookshelves in this.
Thank you to Kelly Green for bringing Meg Braff's new line of wallpapers (and coming soon, fabrics) to my attention, seriously made my Sunday evening.
I'm also loving the next two as back up options...

Grille of Kells is definitely scratching my geometric itch, and wouldn't it look great with this...

And I love it in this colorway too...
Completely different feel.

Or, how about wallpapering a ceiling in the Kikki...

Love the sweetness of this pink and red...

I really hope she makes the Sasa in fabric, how great would this be in drapery panels?
The Endura is a classic. It makes for quiet wall texture, and would be fab in fabric (ie...on a sofa)...

And I would love this for my boys bath...
Visit here for the entire collection and contact information.

Great Kitchen Reference

I just discovered the website Kitchen Design Ideas while searching for color ideas to paint my cabinets. How did I not know about this site earlier? They have thousands of pictures to browse through and they are organized by color & style as well as helpful information for planning and renovating. Here are some of my favorites...
(Unfortunately none of these can be achieved in my kitchen with just paint, but its giving me plenty of ideas to file away for the eventual real renovation.)

great lanterns and mixed finishes

*love* this soft blue

not my style, but I like for some reason

GO see more at

Guinea Pig, at your service

I blogged about this back in August.

Well, I'm finally going to try it. This will be my last hurrah of the season. I figure I'll keep riding my wave of manic spring fix-up frenzy until I eventually crash. (Yes, I will stop painting things soon. I do this every year at this time, and usually run out of steam just in time to get outside in the nice weather.) Then its all beach and mojitos and crazy projects to do while drinking them.

I will be painting my kitchen counters this weekend. It is all part of "The 5 Year Fix". The kitchen is dated, 1964. Its actually sort of cool in a "Brady" kind of way.

 I have flat front walnut laminate cabinets and off white Formica counters that have some burn marks. 
 Oh, and I can't forget the sweet original white wall ovens.  The fridge is dying, so that my be replaced soon.

We will probably getting around to the "real" renovation in 5 years, basically the life of a painted counter.
 Until then I have been given permission to do what I wish with paint and a modest budget. 
So here is my plan:
1) Paint the counters white, then possibly faux to Cararra marble.

 (Nervous about this, I did decorative painting for 12 years but I haven't done this technique in about 7 years. If I fail, they will go back to white.)
2) Paint the "tall" cabinets white or all uppers. I played around with this on Ben Moore's color viewer...
this helps blend my white appliances away.
tried all uppers, leaving a few walnut pops...
and just doors, too jumpy I think...
3) Replace faucet
4) Paint walls. Currently Turquoise. Need to neutralize. No idea what color yet.
5)New cabinet hardware.
6) Fun part. Decorate and accessorize. I have an eat in area that currently has an IKEA tulip table and white eiffel chairs. Want to switch one of those elements out for either an old limed round table or white caned French chairs I have. (I know this sound like a hot mess.)

I've also toyed with the idea of painting all the cabs to a lighter shade like above.
I have no idea. These are some other inspiration pictures...
trying to work with dark wood...

I'm well aware that I can really screw this up big time and I know my kitchen will never look like the above with just paint. I figure I'll start by fixing the counters and work from there.
I welcome any suggestions or experiences with this matter.
 I will try  or do anything at this point. I am here for your entertainment.

My Living Room/ Dining Room Redo

The super talented Amber at Amber Interiors asked me if I would be interested in participating in her series "Room 2 Ways" where you basically change out accessories, lamps etc. to create a different look for the space. I was so excited to try this after seeing her first unbelievable post where she changed up the look of her bedroom. Have you seen it yet? You must.
She had now given me major motivation, and my head was spinning. I had so many ideas, but I ultimately decided to do my sofa wall in my living room for her.  This quickly led to the whole room getting a makeover.  The kids have had the week off, so I was hanging around the house anyway. 

 I decided I wanted to go in a different direction with color for this space.  I knew I was tired of the red/teal combo going on.

I had originally pick the red Lulu DK Chant wallpaper a year ago around the holidays, so it seemed great at the time.  Turns out I like red in really small doses.  I decided to "tint" it to indigo with paint. I still loved the pattern and I wanted to avoid stripping the paper, and lucky for me the experiment went well.
I love the blue. It has a hint of red that pulls through as a dark plum and it plays nicely with the magenta and teal accents.

I had this big window from one of our prior renovations and I was dying to use it somewhere.
The giant window went up after a bit of a fiasco. See my earlier post about showering with it. This wall also hosted all my random artwork and photos prior. See Amber's blog here for the "gallery " look.

Probably 90% of my furniture is reworked, vintage or passed down. The sofa used to belong to Dirk Diggler (well it definitely looked like it came out of Boogie Nights), and I reupholstered it here.

I moved a lot of the gallery wall over to the dining area...

I love my PS Maskros and the giant table my father built us for our a wedding present.
Its actually made out of the floor boards from the house we threw our party in. Its a long story, but it was in a huge house on the Salem Common that my husband was about to convert to condos. We had a costume party because it was right before Halloween and Salem is CRAZY that time of year. It was so much fun and these boards came from the "dance floor".  Its such a great piece with such sentiment attached. Oh, and he made it 56" wide so I could cut bolts of fabric on it easily.

My mantra...
I found my credenza for $45 at a favorite thrift store and painted it teal green.

The brass lantern actually is original to the house. It casts the best "floral" shadows at night.

 Here are some  BEFORES...

 The room used to be laid out like this until I rearranged it this Christmas for the tree. 

And the gallery wall where the sofa now resides...

We have now been in the this house for almost a year and a half, and I can honestly say it is starting to feel like home.  We've moved so many times, and usually tore through the renovations. Despite my impatience, I am really enjoying taking this one slow and learning the house. This room will change again in the next year when we change out the windows and rip down part of the wall where the sofa is, but I look forward to the changes. Right now I am having a lot of fun with color.
Who knows, maybe by then I will actually do a neutral room!

New addition

So, while on the topic of doing what you love, I happened to stop into a little consignment shop while out and about with my kids. I found this geisha figure and fell in love. There is something so sweet yet disturbing about her giant bobble sized head. The owner told me her twin sold the day before, so if you are reading this and have her... call me.  She is lonely.
Meet Jane. She is the newest addition to the house.
She is hanging out in my living room now and she makes me happy.

My son actually wanted to go to more shops after we left.
He said "This is great! Its like going to yard sales in the winter!" Boy do I have him trained. 
We also had to stop at a hobby shop so he could get some paint. He told me he was tired of a few of his Hot Wheels and needed to change their colors. Chip off the old block.

How are you spending your school vacation week?


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