Category Archives: decorating

Back in Black

So it seems that I may be a little dresser happy. Dressers are not just to house clothing you know. My first installment was the subway sign media cabinet.

A few months ago I was thrift store shopping with a friend. My purpose was to purchase a dresser (or two) to rehab for more storage in my condo. I came across this lovely vision in pink (for those of you that know me – I am NOT a fan of pink) and I temporarily named her Princess Pepto. Yeah, you can say it – it’s hideous. All of the pepto bismol pink and rose patterned paper. But I had a vision.

PP did not fit in my car so a friend went and picked her up the next day in her mini van (ha! every time I see the word mini van, in my mind I add “not Cooper” and it’s all Kasey’s fault!).

First step was to remove the top of the unit. It was screwed in at all four corners through the top. That was OK as I really want to replace the top with a nice piece of sanded and stained wood or granite (it helps my sister is an interior designer and can source these things for me).

Next step was to removed the contact paper on the inside and outside of the drawers (yes someone actually stuck rose patterened contact paper on wood – the horror). The paper on the inside came up in about five minutes. The paper on the outside took the equivalent of a full day with the help of a bottle of wallpaper remover (and some wine).









After I removed the contact paper and wiped it down I got out my trusty palm sander and went to town on her. A friend was over and inspecting my piece and he told me it was actually probably a lower kitchen cabinet and not a dresser. Further proof is the sheet rock attached to the back.

The hardware I chose for this piece had holes spaced slightly closer together than the holes in the existing piece. I plugged the holes with some dowel and wood glue (at the suggestion of the same friend) and procedeed to paint her with two coats of Onyx Black in high gloss by Behr.

The hardware was super easy to put on, even for a novice with a drill like me (not gonna lie, sometimes I am intimidated by power tools). I measured carefully and was able to get all of my hardware put on in about an hour one evening.

I am not calling this project completely finished as I still need a new top and hinges for the door. But for now it’s serviceable and holds all of my sewing and craft items. The third and final installment of my dresser fetish is sitting in my bedroom and I will share with you soon.


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Subway Sign

Several months ago I saw this post by Mrs. Limestone and I knew I had to recreate this project in my house somewhere. As the months went by I suddenly realized I had the perfect piece. Sitting in the storage closet off the patio was a dresser used to store gardening equipment and small tools. It was missing a drawer but that just made it all the more enticing for what I had in mind.

Over the Labor Day weekend I got the dresser out of the storage unit and emptied the drawers. I sanded it down with a palm sander and got to work painting it in Behr’s Black Suede which looks more like a Charcoal grey but I like it. A lovely friend let me borrow his drill and I was able to put a hole in the back of the dresser for power cord access.

I painted the drawers white and then added sticky vinyl backed letters in two sizes. Originally I had thought about putting stops from London, Paris and Rome but stuck with London to go with the other artwork in my living room.

I did sneak in a silly one – can you find it?

A neighbor came over this evening and helped me get my TV off the wall mounting bracket and on to the base. The top shelf area has my Blue Ray player, Wii, modem, router and a basket for my remotes. All of my DVD’s fit in the three drawers and I have room to grow. This allowed me to eliminated a shelf the DVD’s were previously sitting on.

Being non tech savvy, one thing that helped me was to label all of the cords and where they go before I unplugged them. I added my signature paisley to plump up my couch.

I am imensly pleased with this project. It makes me just a little giddy. Living room almost complete. Would like a rug and need to tile my hearth and bulk up my mantle.

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Filed under completed goals, Condo, crafts, Decluttering, decorating

So many shades of blue…..

Sorry I have been a little absent on this here ol’ blog. Due to a couple recent life changes I have just needed to chill. But I’m back.

To make a long dramatic story short, I find myself in the position of needing a roommate. I’m not going to go in to the story on here as I want this space to be a positive place. Suffice it to say – I filed for divorce last week. There I said it – on the internet. Moving on…..

I am staying in our condo but I need a roommate to ensure I don’t eat more than Ramen and PB&J’s morning, noon and night. I have been decluttering and clearing things out and doing some redecorating.

The master bedroom, closet and bathroom need touch up paint. Since my husband chose the paint color I currently have, I have decided to repaint in a blue that is a little more me – reminicient of the ocean. So my choices are three very similar colors (from left to right in the photo below);  tropical skies, peacock tail and moonlit pool.

Moonlit pool won my unofficial Facebook poll and turned out surprisingly to be my favorite.  When viewing them on the small little paint sample squares I thought for certain I would choose peacock tail. I painted a first coat on a small bedroom wall to see how I liked it.

It’s looking more green that I thought I wanted but I don’t hate it. Tomorrow morning I will paint a second coat and see how I feel about it. I have a tank top that is more the color I want so may have to do some color matching at my local Home Depot.


Well I woke up this morning and decided Moonlit Pool was just still too green. It’s a lovely color but not what I want surrounding me on all four walls. Back to my local Home Depot where my awesome friend Micah helped me choose two more colors. Bermudan Blue and I color matched my favorite Old Navy tank top and I’m calling it Paisley’s Pad.





Paisley’s Pad looks greener on here than in person. It’s probably the closest to a true peacock blue I am going to get. Bermudan Blue is lighter in the photo above than on the wall but doesn’t have enough green in it.

I believe the winner is Paisley’s Pad!

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Designing With Canine’s in Mind

Here in the paisley household we love our canine. When ultimately a house is purchased it would be great for BJ to have a buddy to pal around with. Keeping in mind the goal is to stay pretty clutter free, I came across this great idea. Custom dog kennels.

These are made from custom cabinets and mesh was inserted in to the doors where normally there would be glass or wood. In looking at the photo in more detail I think the doors actually tuck in to the space and out of the way. The little drawers beneath the kennels would be prefect to hold food and water dishes and tuck away when not in use!

Beej only weighs 14 pounds and has an old suitcase with a pillow in it for a bed which he loves. However, anything custom would suit his taste just fine!

The cutest dog in the world – Beej begging for some of my dinner.


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Houndstooth Obsession

My husband is a huge Anglophile and admittedly so am I (but my first love is Italy). So it doesn’t surprise anyone when both C and I are drawn to plaid and tartan and houndstooth and herringbone and pinstripes.

Last spring my sister and I went looking for fabric for me to slipcover my sofa. Back when I thought I was going to do a multi fabric slipcover. My sister is an interior designer and I get to use her discount on occasion (bonus!). We went to our local Calico Corner and what did I spy right away? This gorgeous houndstooth plaid.

Of course I needed some the way people need air to breathe. I saw it on this chair that I REALLY wanted for my house (well two really). But the price tag was over $1000 for one. Not gonna happen on my budget. I thought perhaps I could just buy enough of hte houndstooth plaid to work in my design – yeah discontinued.

I was perusing the internet tonight and found this same fabric pattern on a cotton version. At $5.98 a yard I bought 12 yards. That should be enough to slip cover the inside of my current chairs (the outside will match the slipcover on the couch), slipcover two throw pillows and make Penelope a new top (a girl’s got to coordinate). If I get really crazy I may recover a lampshade in my dining room currently covered in burlap (seen below in a Halloween shot).

I don’t know what it is about these fabrics but I love them and need more of them in my home. I am always on the lookout for yardage of fabric at the thrift store so slipcover a pillow.


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>Hello World

>Wow, it’s been a bit since I wrote here. I have been busy.


Photos below may not be “pretty” as they are “in progress”. You have been warned!

*************************************END WARNING*********************************

Our living room is REALLY hard to decorate. I have lived here for going on ten years and we FINALLY think we have a solution. I will NEVER live with angeled walls EVER AGAIN!

Walls, crown and baseboard trim all completely painted, we mounted our TV on our angled fireplace wall (the bane of our existence – see note above) last weekend. We mounted two floating shelves to the left of that wall to hold our components (top shelf Wii and modem, bottom shelf XBOX, wireless router & Blue Ray player). We will probably get a guitar mount for the Wii Guitar leaning against the lower shelf.

Now we are dealing with wires. Lots of them. (Notice how the power cord for the TV does not reach to the outlet and we have that very attractive surge strip nesteled in our fireplace tools? I think it really adds something). The mantle in the photo below is part of our old one and will be replaced. The tan tile surround will be replaced with grey and white Carrara marble tile.

Hiding the power cords is going to be a challenge. There is no option to go in to the wall. So far my husband has used flexible hosing to “hide” them and plans to paint them to match the wall. I still don’t think painting them will completely hide them. We have not built our mantle yet so I hope we can encorporate hiding the cords in to the design. Especially on the right with the surge strip. Even if the surge strip was mounted to the side of the mantle “legs” and the cord hidden by one of those squared off cord covers you can mount to the wall and paint your wall color. This actually looks better then it did when first put up. Don’t even get me started on a surround sound system which we have yet to purchase. This living room project is going to take a bit longer than planned I think.

C and I both tought the floating shelving would make the room feel less cluttered but I am sad to say I don’t feel that way right now. I thought about a small lingerie chest that could sit there and cover the outlet. We could change the drawers to flip down when we needed to access the components. I dare not suggest to C since he worked so hard getting it this far. I just really need camoflage for that wall under the shelf. It’s complicated by the angled (and unfinished) hearth.

Any suggestions would be appreciated as well.

Because we mounted our TV we were able to move our couch to a wall instead of blocking traffic flow through to our dining room. This makes me incredibly happy and almost makes up for the cord situation. Last weekend we scored two IKEA chairs through CL for half off. I bought some great brown and cream zebra printed fabric yesterday to slipcover two pillows for the chairs. You can just glimpse our DVD storage in the background – oops didn’t notice the storage box behind the chair. In my defence I did warn photos were not pretty.

The room feels really roomy and I am loving it! With the curtains open and the couch facing the window it feels much brighter in here. There is no glare from the window on the TV anymore either. We have furniture we were sorely lacking for a family of four as well.

We have a few more tasks to complete before the big reveal. We need to take the rest of the old tile off our hearth and replace it with yummy grey and white Carrara marble and redo our mantle. We have decided to purchase a surround sound system first (our old one died about a year and a half ago) so we can design the mantle after we have ALL components. I also need to make a slip cover for the couch and I have an art piece I want to do to go on the wall over it.
Down the road we will be purchasing a rug but not until after our cat is gone. She is responsible for ruining our last one. We will eventually replace the sofa with something nicer and do some in ceiling can lighting.

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>February Update and March Goals

>February flew by and I am so ready for spring. We met some of our goals for February and are crossing things off the lists. One thing you can count on is our ever changing goals list or at least where/ we are focusing. On to last months goals.

Paint living room walls and trim. This is done. We have two and in some cases three coats of paint on the walls and trim.

Make DVD shelving. This is done. They have been sanded and two still need to be painted but they are living in their new home in the hallway. We also took back the feet I had purchased for the shelving and recouped about $50.

Tile hearth did not happen. C and I have been having an ongoing debate on how exactly to do this. I wanted to get the old tile off and he wanted to tile over the old tile. We ended up using some of our condo money to buy a new tool called a Dremel Multi Max. This baby is so awesome and takes the tile off the hearth like buttah! We were trying with a hammer and chisel and not getting very far. It’s time consuming though. We have some of the old tile off but need to pace ourselves as the tool get’s hot quickly. We hope to tile the hearth this month.

Buy a couch is not going to happen right now. We decided the tax return (which we don’t have back yet) would be in a better place if we put it in savings towards a new car (my car needs to be replaced). The couch we have will be “revamped” (post to come) and slipcovered. We have a goal to eventually buy a new couch but for now we are fine with this decision.

Put $200 in savings. This didn’t happen because I forgot about getting my dogs teeth cleaned. February is national dog teeth health month and we saved about 50% getting his teeth cleaned. They have to knock him out to do it. Boy was he funny afterwards. Kinda stoned.

Put $300 divided between three credit cards. This was on top of minimum payments. We ended up putting an extra $185 on one of our cards. We decided rather than get all five of our cards to 50% we would pay off the smallest balance first and so on. We should be able to pay off CC #1 in March.

Use Wii fir three times per week. I got sick last month with the kind of cold that the cough lingers. I’m still coughing. Working out was kind of hard because it made me cough. I did do some but not as much as planned.

Lose five pounds. I lost a couple but without working out and being sick it was harder.

Next months goals…

Finish fireplace wall; hearth, mantle, mount TV

Slipcover couch

Make and slipcover a custom ottoman for couch and chairs

Put $200 in savings

Pay of CC # 1

Put an extra $400 on CC # 2

Use Wii Fit at least three times a week

Lost five more pounds

Stay tuned for some update posts of our living room! So loving the grey color!

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