Sunday, 7 May 2017

Urban Barn's Summer 2017 Collection

Ontario’s spring weather is leaving much to be desired. We’ve had a pretty consistent drizzle of rain throughout the past week, and the only break in sight is Sunday’s morning forecast of flurries. Needless to say, the days are pretty grey and summer weather feels far away.

I recently popped into my local Urban Barn to peruse the summer collection, and despite the weather, I left feeling pretty amped about summer BBQ’s, boat trips, afternoon swims and lounging around. And even if our weekend weather isn’t consistently hitting those high temperatures, there are a few things we can do to make the indoors feel cheerful and relaxing, (with the help of a few essentials from UB’s summer collection!):

1. PILLOW REFRESH: Urban Barn’s selection of pillows has something to suit pretty much everyone’s tastes. From tropical florals, to beautiful blues, colourful geometric prints and everything in between. You can easily liven up a gloomy sofa with a few new pillows sporting a summery palette.

2. NEW ART: A new piece of artwork will easily breathe new life into a room. Urban Barn has lots to choose from, but for summer my eye is on those over-sized ocean landscapes, but also partial to those Just Docked row boats.

3. NAUTICAL NECESSITIES: It’s no secret that anything nautical will instantly make a space feel beachy. Urban Barn has TONS of options that are quirky and fun, without feeling cheesy (as nautical can easily become). Choose one or two to add to your summer space for a touch of whimsy.

4. POPS OF COLOUR: Summer is the best time of year to add colour to your space. Blues, corals and yellows are all over the summery vignettes at UB, and although we usually look to pillows to add these pops, it’s just as easy to add a new pair of brightly coloured drapes, a new table or floor lamp or a foot stool as colourful accents.

And for the record, I've managed to narrow down my shopping list to these guys featured below :)

Saturday, 8 April 2017

One Room Challenge: Living Room Makeover

My mind is boggled for two reasons: 

1. It has been six months since the last round of ORC madness has ended
2. My parents and I have been in our new place one full year! 

My mind is boggled for another two reasons: 

1. Time flies. 
2. We've only completely finished two rooms since moving in. And BOTH of those rooms were done via the One Room Challenge. So, why not take on another challenge and earn my keep here at hotel Mom and Dad :) 

For those who are new to the One Room Challenge, you'll need to click here and meet Linda, the host/master-mind of the ORC. Over the last six years she has challenged bloggers and designers to choose a room of their choice and decorate it in six short weeks. To date, over 1,250 rooms have been transformed, and each season 20 designers and 200+ bloggers share their progress, motivate one another and inspire with some pretty brilliant before and after pics. 

If you'd like to check back on the last two rooms my dad and I revamped you can see the final reveal of my bedroom (also featured as one of Metrie's Top 25 rooms in their 2016 Every Room Tells a Story designer challenge). 

And our second room was the guest room, she's pretty, but just doesn't photography very well, due to some shady you'll have to trust. 

This round, my dad and I will be taking on the living room. This is the spot where our family spends the most amount of time, watching TV, entertaining family/friends, or just hanging out. This space gets quite a bit of foot-traffic as those two garden doors are our main entrance/exit into the backyard. 

We're aiming for a modern-farmhouse-cottage style, lots of natural textures, a neutral colour palette with splashes of blues. 

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Tuesday, 17 January 2017

Inspiration: 5 Times Over-sized Art Trumped the Gallery Wall

I love a good gallery wall, but I'm thinking 2017 will be the year I begin thinking about investing in some large-scale artwork. Not necessarily anything that breaks the bank, but a piece that can help to give interest and depth to an otherwise neutral space and really make a statement. Not to knock the gallery wall, but there is a fine line between clean and cluttered, and a gallery wall can easily become the latter if not careful. With one large piece of artwork, you'll be less likely to make a design faux-pas and instead make the chicest of statements.

Although I'm usually drawn to those vintage landscapes with big (borderline gaudy) frames you find at thrift shops, I'm loving the way these abstract prints bring a little unexpected edge to an otherwise tame vignette.

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Monday, 9 January 2017

Inspiration: 5 Home Office Spaces You'll Actually Want to Spend Time In

My Christmas break is officially over. It's back to the grind (aka school) for the final semester of my three-year break from adulting and the beginning of what I hope to be a long and exciting career path in Interior Decorating and Kitchen Design!

To ease the transition of having had three glorious weeks worth of lounging around and doing nadda, into what will likely be a hit-the-ground-running type of January, I'm in need of inspiration to get my work space looking like a place I want to spend some serious hours in. I had a great setup in our last house, with a fun little live mood board, but this time around I'm hoping for something a little less fussy and time-consuming that I can easily pull together.

Storage and shelving are always a must (gotta have space for my chachkies and books), I have my rattan chair that I still love and want to keep, plus my faithful Besta Burs Ikea (best investment) and just some pretty things to stare at while I think about all the things I would rather be doing than sitting at a desk struggling to finish a project at 3:32 am.

Alright. Enough slacking, time to get to work...and by 'get to work' I really just mean stare at pretty pictures of home offices I found on the internet...

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Saturday, 7 January 2017

Sponsored Post: Great Gift Ideas from UncommonGoods

Ya’ll know that thing that happens when the holidays have just ended and you’re calmly settling into the new year and then BAM, someone’s birthday, engagement, housewarming etc. hits you, and you find yourself in need of a gift. You’re not ready to step back into a mall (the nightmares of lineups, crowds and dry mall air are still too real), so you decide to hit the interweb in search of something special.

With your web browser open and recipient in mind, if you're anything like me, you typically go blank at this stage of the online shopping process. Enter UncommonGoods, a handy online shop that not only offers unique and meaningful gifts, but is also a shop that has made sustainability a focus for their business. Offering an eclectic mix of products, with many made from recycled materials and in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. Alongside many of the items you’ll find  a head shot of the maker along with a bio and inspiration behind the product. When it comes to gifting your item, you can always pass along what you’ve learned about their gift, which adds to the thoughtfulness and will likely turn your gift into a true conversation piece. Plus these little tidbits from the maker are just kinda cool and interesting to read about. 

As with any site, there is always lots to see and search, but UncommonGoods makes it easy on you with curated gift-giving lists based on occasion or person. Not sure what you get your sister for her birthday? You’ll want to start here, and those Birthstone Mineral Soaps make a great add-on to whatever you choose. In need of something for your team of groomsmen? You’ll want to check this page out, and take note of those Scotch Infused Toothpicks and Beer Soap Sets.  Stumped on an anniversary gift? The RememoryGame is a sweet and simple choice, while that personalized Hearts Four-Across Game is perfect for family game night but will also look cute just sitting on your bookshelf. 

Naturally, I combed the Home Decor and Kitchen pages, and have found many many many many things that I'd love receive (and of course gift...) and rounded up a small sampling below. 

Soapstone & Copper Saute Pan, Pizza Pan and Stew Pot  /  Hot and Cold Soapstone Handheld Bowls  /  Cacti Canisters  /  Nesting Lotus Bowls  /  Birdhouse Bookshelf  /  Floral Garden Felt Table Runner  /  Wood and Ceramic Tumblers

** Special thanks to UncommonGoods for sponsoring this post. Despite the partnership, all thoughts, ideas and products selected are my own**