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Thursday, March 31, 2011

One Thousand, Eight Hundred & Twenty Five Days Already?!?!

Happy Birthday to my dear, sweet, funny, quirky 5-year-old girl! She came as a surprise to our little family of 3, and has brightened our lives every day since. I'd hoped to gift her with a completed room makeover, but I know it'll be done by her 6th birthday!

Picnik collage

Preparations are underway for her Pancakes & Pajamas Party this Saturday. I'll show you all the goods tomorrow, because of course I had to take it on myself!! We threw together some impromptu decorations for her to wake up to this morning.

Picnik collage

She's grown quite attached to that unicorn pinata. Hopefully she doesn't fall apart when he's beat to an early death!

On a side note, I was beyond thrilled to see my Urchin Photoshoot on I Suwanee yesterday!! And my friend Emily emailed to say it's even been added to the Furbish store site! Crazy stuff.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Styling the New Mantel

It took making-over the surrounding space, but I think the mirror has a new home at Sugarplum Casa! My waffling days about the mirror are over!


Styling mantels, tables, bookcases and vignettes is something I'm fairly new at, and haven't quite mastered the skill (yes, it's a skill!). I worked on this one several times over a 5-day period, and went through countless items laying around my house, before settling for now on this version.

Here's a time lapse of how I built this mantelscape by layers. I started with the antique candelabras I recently inherited (I love having reminders of my grandparents all throughout the house). The marble bases look so much grander against the black mantel.

(This picture is not out-of-focus, you just need to quick hitting the bottle.)

Next came a botanical print from Bombay (is that store still around?) and our initial from Hobby Lobby. The black and metallic unites the first layer, and the mirror. I'm in a 'prop things up' phase, so I like how they lean together against the mirror.


Then I added some height and a pop of color with faux stems in a pink Tuesday Morning vase. The coral helped to balance out the left side, and satisfied my need to group items by 3.


I was fairly content with the mantel at this point, but really wanted one more quirky item. Enter Furbish Studio and Jamie's amazing collection of accessories. When she posted new shop pics on her blog, I Suwanee, this Brass Urchin jumped off the screen at me. I had to have it, and thank goodness for her speedy shipping because I was eager!


I love this crazy little guy! But I knew I would, I think Jamie and her taste can do no wrong.

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I also scaled back the gallery wall beneath the pass-thru for a cleaner look. The art is actually a needlepoint by my great-grandmother, that hung in my baby nursery. (Yes, I'm completely sentimental and have the makings of a hoarder. Thankfully I'm also a chronic purger.) Bonus points for anyone who can identify the little seat (which is of course another family item!)


And just to keep it real, designing this mantelscape took no fewer than 27 picture texts to my patient and wildly talented Aunt! You're only seeing the finished product, not the anal process.

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I'm completely smitten with the whole thing...the mirror, the black mantel, and my favorite new accessory!

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So smitten in fact, that I had a little photoshoot starring my urchin friend!

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Picnik collage

Yep, it's fabulous pretty much anywhere! And although I'm not technically working on the Living Room makeover yet, the new mantel has helped to elevate it to a more glamorous room.


I still think I'll paint the brick, and my waffling has begun again with a new color option on the armoire. But that's another post. My mantel has certainly had many lives, but this one fits the direction I hope to go in the room. What do you think?

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

A Peek to the Dark Side

You guys are so freaking awesome!! Thank you for all the kind comments yesterday regarding Babygirl's window! It really was a gratifying project, and for once turned out better than I'd hoped. Hopefully I've hit another home run with this latest change in the Living Room.

I know I swore I'd finish Babygirl's Room before moving on to other rooms, but this mirror practically fell in my lap! And since it's a huge focal point, I was itching to get it settled. While I loved the mirror, I wasn't loving it in the room.

It seemed too imposing, and kind of floating around on the pale wall while dwarfing the fireplace. Then some of you genius-readers suggested painting the mantel dark, and my wheels started spinning! (This is where having a decent supply of paint on-hand will get you in to trouble!) After a quick coat of Zinsser 123 Primer (love this stuff, covers almost anything without sanding, and dries in 30 minutes!), and two coats of paint left over from the front door project, my mantel was making a statement!


And it was saying, 'Woohoo Big Boy, over here!'  The mantel went from boring-builder-non-descript, to custom-looking, in a single hour. Or so I'm saying now...I can always paint it again when if I change my mind.

Picnik collage

But I think it definitely gives the mirror something to hang on to, while uniting them both.

Picnik collage

I used a satin finish (because it's what I had on-hand for this spur-of-the-moment project), but I may give it a coat of high-gloss poly once the room comes together.


Patience is not my virtue, and I was itching to style the mantel right away. Fortunately, we left for our Spring Break Road Trip the next day, so the mantel was able to cure for several days before I started dinking around with it. But it's not naked like this for long...


I think I finally have it staged to my liking and plan on showing you tomorrow. But for only giving you a half-post today...I'll end with a picture so many of you seemed to enjoy the first time around!

My stud, finding the stud!
 What do you think? Does the black mantel give the mirror the base it was missing?

Update: See the fully styled mantel here!

Monday, March 28, 2011

{Babygirl's Room} The Window!

Hello Monday! My household is mostly well now, and we even got out and enjoyed the weekend. I hope you enjoyed yours as well. Did you make it to the World Market Friends & Family Sale? Never one to let a good coupon go to waste, I popped in and picked up some pretty linens for our Easter table.

I felt like such a chump for not getting to this post last week after showing the pelmet and monogram, but I assured myself that none of you is living and dying by this blog. Or are you?!? I'll keep my chit-chat to a minimum and just let you gaze upon the gorgeous window in Babygirl's Room.


I'm crazy for how the Art Center pairs with the window. It's almost as if I planned it!?! Using fabric glue, I trimmed the drapes in perfectly-coordinated grosgrain ribbon. The drapes aren't as sheer as they appear, it's just difficult to get a good picture of a West-facing window when it's actually light enough to see it.

Picnik collage

I decided a simple shape for the pelmet would pair nicely with the straight lines of the Faux Crown Molding. I love how the molding and pelmet trim are perfectly aligned.

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Here's a view of the window with the drapes closed and open.

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And another at night.

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The L-brackets worked perfectly, and the pelmet rests flush against the wall. I'm pretty much obsessed with the khaki ceiling too!


Since I walked you through every painful step in building the pelmet, I thought I'd show you how we actually hung it. After the curtains were hung, we positioned the pelmet exactly where we wanted it (covering the curtain rod), and screwed the bracket into the wall. Ours is 53" wide, so it was definitely a 2-man job. {Thanks babe!}

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Here's a peek looking up, where you can see the darkening shade. When rolled up, it's completely hidden by the pelmet.

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Hard to believe this is the same little 36" wide window.

Picnik collage

I think the monogram is the perfect finishing touch...making it sophisticated, yet the pink keeps it youthful! Here's a peek of of the window with her Radish Bed.

Picnik collage

I only have a handful of projects left to show you before revealing the full room...including one for the light that I've yet to attempt. Are you still with me??? Did you almost die waiting for this window reveal?!?

Friday, March 25, 2011

{Dreaming} West Elm Summer Collection

Thanks so much for all the great comments about the pelmet and monogram! I don't mean to be a tease this time about showing you the completed window, but our house is just a hot-bed of germs and sleep-deprivation. Stomach bug, allergies and sinus infections have us all running on empty, so today I thought I'd cheer myself up with some dreamy pictures and fun new offerings from West Elm's Summer Collection.


wood slat dining table

tillary modular seating

bird melamine plates

montauk nest chair

grecian block pillows

terracotta cutout hurricanes

modernist bowls

rainbow napkins

david stark brushstroke dinnerware

gourd table lamp

trellis shower curtain

lourdes sanchez whales pillow cover

West Elm has hit another home run...I'd bring any of these items into my home this Summer! What's your favorite? Have a grand weekend! Fingers crossed that we're able to get out and enjoy the Spring sunshine as well!

p.s. -- I should have actually done this {Dreaming} list for World Market...seeing as how it's Friends & Family Weekend! Get your coupon on their website for 25% off thru Sunday. I do believe I'll be stopping by!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

{Crafty Cassie} Monogramming the Pelmet

So yesterday we made the pelmet for Babygirl's window. Today we're going to pimp it out with a monogram!! Oh yeah! (Some of you savvy readers noticed the monogram in my sketch yesterday. Nice eye!) If you recall, the original plan was to put a monogram on the headboard:

But once the mattresses, bedding and no-sew throw pillows were in place, it was obvious a monogram would be lost on the headboard.

I was determined to find a place for her monogram in the room, and was thrilled when my clever mom suggested I put one on her window pelmet!! Then the search for how to actually do it began! Just when I thought I'd have to have the fabric embroidered, I found the fabulous Shannon Berrey's tutorial on how she created these amazing lampshades!

Shannon Berrey 
(I die for this room!!)

The talented Kristin provided further inspiration with her version of monogrammed pillows!

kfd designs 

First step is to create your monogram on paper. I was fortunate that Etsy seller, Gift Chick, had provided me with a monogram proof (for the original headboard decal). So all I had to do was choose one and enlarge it on the copier.

You could also create one on the computer, by hand-sketch, or those nifty Silhouette machines so many of you brats seem to have! I tried multiple sizes before settling on one with the best proportion to the pelmet.


Determine which side of the felt you want to show, then turn it face down. Please your paper letters face down on the backside of your felt. I used a little glue stick to help hold them in place while I traced.


I traced the backside of the letters so I wouldn't have to worry about marks showing.


If you use really good fabric scissors, then you'll get a clean cut in the felt. Those ratty kitchen scissors you use to open boxes and cut flower stems will only shred the felt. Flip your letters over and clean up any weird cuts and angles, and make sure everything aligns the way you want.


Find the center of the pelmet and place the middle letter there with a light layer of fabric glue. Position the other two letters the same way.


I love the perfect amount of texture and dimension the felt adds. It definitely doesn't look "crafty".


In fact, I think it looks even more professional than embroidery! (toot toot)


We gave the pelmet a few days for the glue to dry, and to be sure the L-brackets weren't going anywhere. I'm thrilled to announce it is installed and so-far-so-good! 

A stomach bug struck my son the other night (why is it always in the middle of the night?!?!), so I haven't been able to get decent pictures yet (very limited good light in Babygirl's Room since the single window faces west). And I'm just a big, fat you'll have to wait to see the full window. Muahahahahaha. Hopefully tomorrow.

Do you love this monogram method? Is your mind spinning with all the things you could brand?! Do tell!

Update: See the final window with pelmet in place here!

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