Kitchen Ideas

We're moving slowly with the kitchen. I think that anything of this magnitued I think moves slowly at first because once you start you really can't stop. We're pretty set on white cabinetry, we've picked out our appliances [I really have to show you those soon] and we think we're going with a wood floor to maintain the flow of the rest of the house. One thing we need to figure out is the backsplash. So I'm going to reveal one of the considerations we have, and that is glass subway tiles. And some inspirational pictures to show you why we like the idea...
Image via Better Homes and Gardens

February 2012 issue of Kitchen and Bath Ideas via Visual Comfort Blog

Barbara Waltman Design
I especially love the one above by Barbara Waltman Design. Isn't it divine? It shows a white kitchen but with a splash of subtle colour. Sometimes colour needn't be strong of powerful to make a statement.Anyhow, our mind isn't made up - so blogging about our ideas helps us figure out what to do. What do you think of glass subway tile? Like? No?


Back to work - Custom Rubber Stamp Sale

I decided last night that it was time to reopen my shop. It's a little hard to do so, but necessary to keep myself occupied. Since I closed my shop in the middle of our popular stamp sale I have lauched it again, and it ends next week. Save 20% on the wood handle stamps when you enter STAMPSALE into the promo code. Also, thanks for the lovely comments on the painting yesterday. I've gotten a number of lovely e-mails requesting commisions which has made my year. Many have encouraged me to sell some paintings, perhaps something I will contemplate over the next few months. Anyhow, sorry for the advertising of my shop. But this is what I'm doing today - working - so, well - fitting that today's post be about it. xo Lindsay

Stamp Sale at The Penny Paper Co. Enter STAMPSALE to save.


DIY Abstract Art

I've been slowly adding elements to our living room to make it complete. One of the big puzzle pieces that the room has been missing has been art. We had a stumbling block - The art I did like was out of our price I decided to make my own.

I purchased a canvas in December, and it has since sat in the basement waiting for me to work on it. Although I've done abstract before (Perhaps not on purpose), doing it at such a huge scale like this [40" x 40"] proved to be intimidating. Fast forward to an evening last week and I felt a sudden need to paint. I had already primed the canvas black a few weeks earlier, so all I needed was the willpower to put that first brush stroke to the canvas. So when out of the blue I felt the need to paint - I did. And I'm happy to say, I love it!

Although this canvas could hang without framing, I'm going to get it framed. [pending costs] Right now it sits on the console, and is bringing beautiful colour to our room. I adore it. To read some tips of what helped me create the art, read more. :)

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Recent Fun Finds

Since I started working full time at the beginning of the year, my shopping/blogging/redecorating time has been cut significantly...  I was off the other day  and was able to hit a few of my favorite stores and even had some time to peruse ebay.  

I found a couple of old scales.

I found this cupcake stand and cloche and think the bird looks cute in there.

 These seed packets are so colorful.

I plan to put some chalkboard stickers on these canisters.  I think they'll look really cute.

What fun things have you found lately?

Thanks for your visit!



TV Room

Our house when we purchased it

Now, with new windows
It's done! The last windows of our house have been replaced. We have zero windows left to do. We had Fieldstone Windows come in and do these and I love, love the look of them. However, we're now debating what to do for window coverings (I'll post about that tomorrow) Anyhow, I've been meaning to show the "before" and "now" shot. xo Linds

chalkboard boxes

I meant to post this for Valentine's Day. It is a bit of a recycled project from before but with a fun little spin - I bought a few dollar store boxes, stained them and painted the tops in chalkboard paint.The ways that you could use this project are endless. I especially think they are sweet as place cards at a dinner table. For adults, put a little after dinner mint inside or for childrens seating cards, place fun little things inside of the box to keep them occupied during dinner. Anyhow, it is such a simple and sweet project. xo Linds


KHI Quarterly V3 Q1 - Winter 2012

Featured Project: Groff Kitchen Renovation

When we met Kathy and John Groff a year ago, they were contemplating an addition to their existing kitchen in their split level home. After running through several different options, they decided that maintaining the present footprint of the house was the best choice. We were able to create a significantly different look and greatly  expand the useable space by changing the kitchen layout.

To start the project, we decided to open up the main floor of the home by completely removing the walls separating the dining room, kitchen and living room. As a result, we were able to add about 10 linear feet of additional base cabinetry which contained a small food prep sink and built-in microwave. This increased counter space and ease of food preparation. We constructed an elevated breakfast bar area with a solid Teak top just between the kitchen and living room. The bar area has enough room for three people to sit comfortably and read the paper or enjoy a meal.

To create a craftsman style and appearance, we installed all new exterior doors and windows, trimmed with flat stock casing both inside and out, a new square baluster porch railing system, and double 4” vinyl siding. On the interior of the home, we created continuity between the decorative columns and the cabinets by mimicking the flat recessed panel of the shaker style overlay cabinet doors. This effectively tied the design elements together. The ceilings were trimmed with a simple 2-1/2” cove molding around the entire perimeter.

The lighting in the room was also redesigned with the placement of new 5” recessed lights positioned to highlight the cabinet layout and new under-cabinet task lighting was installed throughout. The breakfast bar area was illuminated by adding two hanging pendants that extend down from the decorative beam on the ceiling for a change of texture.

To complete the kitchen, the wood floors throughout the main level were sanded and refinished. A 4”x4” tumbled Travertine backsplash was installed with a decorative mosaic accent situated over the new cook top location. The mosaic design was subtle but effective at creating some additional texture to break up the homogeneous look of the Travertine.

This project was challenging but very rewarding as we began to see it come together toward the end. We are very proud of the way that this renovation project turned out and we think that the pictures speak for themselves. Thank you Kathy and John for the opportunity!

Kruse Home Improvement LLC announces first Certified Remodeling Project Manager
Shawn Kruse, 

Kruse  Home Improvement LLC is proud to announce that Shawn Kruse, CR, CKBR, CRPM, UDCP, is one of the first to pass the Certified Remodeler Project Manager (CRPM) exam, earning him the CRPM designation from the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI). Kruse is among first to be certified nationally.

The exam is designed to measure an individual's application of knowledge and skills in the role of managing every aspect of a remodeling project. Those who earn the CRPM designation have not only passed a written exam but are also held to a stringent set of eligibility requirements, including compliance with NARI’s strict Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice, earn continuing education hours and have several years of continuous remodeling experience.

“I’ve been on my own for about 10 years now, and it is important for me to learn systems for handling more work and supervising others during the job to prepare for future growth,” Kruse says.

The program, which launched in September 2011, addresses a growing trend in the remodeling industry, which has more companies using project managers to supervise jobs as opposed to lead carpenters. The program follows a set of knowledge domains and sub-domains that include project cost management, communication, project planning, quality assurance, record-keeping and risk management. Those who take the course are provided tools and ideas to improve business operations and efficiency in order to generate and sustain growth. Kruse has already begun to put the things he’s learned down on paper and develop new systems.

Kruse believes the course has helped him refine the communication process between himself, the client and the field staff. “I’m able to be more on top of the job details and to communicate with the field staff throughout the project,” he says.

The increase in control and management of the job spills into the success of the project and into the clients that are being served.

Gain Space and Add Value to Your Home

Winter is a great time to work on interior remodeling projects. One of the easiest ways to add a new room or rooms to your home is to better utilize the space you already have. If you're planning on staying in your home for a while, transform your basement into a beautiful, finished living area for you and your family to enjoy and love.

A basement remodel done by KHI
Besides the obvious benefit of gaining more living space, a finished basement adds value to your home. According to The Wall Street Journal and a poll of the Appraisal Institute, “a basement finish equals a kitchen remodel as the best financial return of all home renovations, but only if the quality matches the rest of the house.” 
There are several advantages to adding additional living space to your basement. Basements tend to be cooler in the summer and warmer in the  winter thus keeping energy costs down. Moving the family room, home office, or children’s playroom to the basement frees up additional space in the main living area. This allows you to expand a kitchen or bath, create a larger master bedroom, or add an additional guest bedroom if needed. By putting a home entertainment center, exercise area, workroom or other "activity" room in the basement, the rest of the house can be quieter and more stress free.
A finished basement often becomes the most popular room in the house. There's no better way to safely and usefully invest in your home’s value.


snapshop from the weekend

Aubrey stayed home from work this week, and weekend to give me some help at home. Having him here meant I could just sneak away to the bedroom and lie down, when I just needed quiet. I love the cocoon of my bedroom. My quilt from my grandmother seems to follow me around the house when I need warmth or comfort - this weekend no exception. The above picture I snapped right before watching some HGTV on Saturday.

Some exciting things are in the works over here. Some news on appliances, rumblings of some filming with a TV show, some painting projects, kitchen details and more. All little excitements that make for nice distractions. Anyhow, more inspiration and blog posts will surely start to flow soon. I'm not feeling all that creative, so I'm keeping my shop closed for another week.  But right now I'm wrapped up in my quilt and I'm going to go watch Downton Abbey with Aubrey. :)  xo Linds

Ps., Thank you for all of your lovely support last week. I can't begin to tell you how much it meant reading each and every note you sent. xo

Living Room Transformation

Our new couch was delivered yesterday.  I am so excited to work on the living room.  It is attached to the kitchen, so it is used a lot!

(I have to find something to put on the big empty spot on the wall.)

I love that there is now lots of seating.  


I love these pillows.  I saw them in the Sundance catalog and they were way out of my price range.  I was in the Sundance outlet a few years ago and there they were! 

 I was able to find a place for my 'new' chair.

  The end table that we redid this summer fits nicely between the two club chairs. 

I like the little bird here that I bought on our recent trip to Chicago.

 I have to keep my apothecary jars in a spot where the cat can't constantly get near them. 

Thanks for coming by!


I am linking to the following parties:

The DIY Show Off UndertheTableandDreaming


My Dad

My Father, Robert,  passed away Sunday. He was hands down, the nicest man you will have ever met and is the person that I always turned to when I needed help sorting something out, or a reassuring voice. If you'd like to know more about my Dad, I encourage you to read this lovely letter written by his firm, McCarthy Tetrault and a lovely post here. Right now I'm going to take some time to just be quiet and be with my family. Thank you for the well wishes that some of you have shared already privately, it's been very appreciated. I'll be back soon. xo Lindsay
Update, Wednesday, February 15th: Thank you to Trent University for this post. It is lovely. 


What didn't get blogged about

Happy weekend! I'm going to be spending some time with my family, doing some painting, tidying up, laundry - the usual weekend stuff. Here is what didn't get blogged about this week:
Happy weekend!


Windows..the last ones!

I haven't uploaded my "good" photos but here is a sneak peek at what was going on in my house today. When we hired Fieldstone in the Summer to do our windows we left the TV room out from the project because it was too much to swallow financially all at once.

Fast forward to now...Even through this mild winter Aubrey and I still found ourselves curling up with big quilts at night to watch TV. So....New windows! Here is the Before picture on the left, and the arrival of our new windows on the right. YAY! We have absolutely 0 windows that need replacing now. Kind of crazy. I'll post nicer pictures later on.


little things around the house

When I was at my cottage over the summer I found a stock of the most lovely wooden boxes. I have gifted many of the boxes to family but the box above stayed with me. I was moving it around the house and finally placed it on our console table in the living room. It was supposed to be temporary, but it has stayed there ever since - a perfect spot to put coasters. I don't like things being out on display, for the sake of display. This box not only is functional by hiding the little things, but it also reminds me of the cottage. :)


Shot from the office today...

Just a scene from today. I'm just scanning more and more images from the magazines. There is something very awesome about letting go of years of magazines that have accumulated. I adore print - there is something about getting the newest magazine issue in the mail, and soaking in all of the imagery - I will never stop subscribing to my favourite magazines, but I think I need to just let go of the idea that I need to keep them. Anyhow, back to work!


I'm going to be on CityLine and some rug love!

If you saw my tweets 2 weeks ago you may have seen that Leigh-Ann and Patrick were at my house filming for an upcoming Cityline Episode. [See a picture of them filming after the jump] It's not a huge segment with me, but I do make an appearance and it will air on February 13th. The shoot was a well oiled machine - they came in and in one take we were done. [Which made me somewhat sad because it was so much fun and I wanted it to last longer]

Aa week later, Leigh-Ann was by and she happened to have a rug from West Elm in her car that she thought would work in our house. She brought it in, and I gasped at how much it completely transformed the room - and proceeded to snap a lot of photos. Isn't it lovely? Aubrey liked it too, and said we could get it - but I'm a little sensitive about saving for the kitchen and bathroom. Also, I'm a little nervous that something with that much of a pattern will compete with other things, like the artwork I'm working on (coming soon). I'm gun shy. But even though we're not getting it, it made me realize that we really need to get a rug (and an 8x10 will work!) and it gave me insight into the value of decorators - they push you to look at things you may not have considered. Anyhow, if I can't have it for my house, maybe one of you can grab it!! ;)

West Elm Dhurrie Rug
Ps., Click on read more to see a picture of them filming in our house!
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Updating an Ugly Box with Graphics and Paint

My husband had a box in the garage that originally held a car waxing kit. The box was sturdy and a great size, but not very cute!  :)


I tried to 'age' it with tea.  I really didn't have to do this step, as it didn't make a huge difference.


I painted the box with a couple of coats of green spray paint.  

I then sanded down the edges.

I cut close to the edge of the graphic, then mod podged it on the box.

I put an antiquing gel on the whole thing, then rubbed off the excess.  They used to sell a one-bottle antiquing gel, but now you buy the Martha Stewart Antique Effect and mix it with any color you want.  I mixed it with the color Vanilla Bean.  I bought both of these bottles at Michael's.  I mixed them together with equal parts.


I added a knob so it's easy to open.  I now have a great place to store my weekly ads and coupons.

Thanks for visting!


I am linking to the following parties:


UndertheTableandDreaming The Graphics Fairy