Wednesday, January 27, 2010

J' adore

The past few weeks I've found that I'm talking to myself, keeping myself up at night, banging my head against the computer screen, anything to get myself to focus on exactly what I want for our bedroom redo.
At first I dove right in, I didn't give the whole picture much thought, but luckily I didn't end up spending a single penny so far.

For the past week I have been torn between going with my typical comfortable red accent color, or branching out and going with what feels

Finally, I sat down and wrote out everything I had at my disposal to use for the room, and everything I would need to buy. After looking at what I had written down, I went with my gut. Blue it is.

A while back I had bought 3 different shades of yellow paint for Lincoln's room. A few strokes on the wall and I knew it wasn't right. So it sat in our basement, unused and unloved, until now. I know I can put it to good use in our bedroom in a number of ways. Thinking of blue and yellow together leads my mind to more of french country feel, which I love implemented in bedrooms. It's soft and romantic, it can be fussy, but often times, when left simple, is just as beautiful.

After giving this room ALOT of thought, I think I'm finally ready. I have my plan laid out, I have my budget in mind, and I'm ready to dive in. I can't wait to share the results.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

DIY French Striped Table Runner

For a long time now I have coveted these beautiful French striped table linens. I love the farmhouse vibe, the vintage appeal, and the simple beauty.

This beauty will run you $36.00 plus shipping from the UK (available at

This one is available through for $17 plus shipping. Not a bad price, but I didn't feel like spending that much, I never do. So I came up with an it myself!

Last time we were at Ikea I picked up the Marit Table Runner in "Natural" for a mere $4.99, she's been working beautifully on our dining table, but this morning I decided I wanted to jazz her up a bit. offers instructions for doing something similar here, but I didn't have all the supplies they called for, so I improvised.

Using a tape measure I marked off in pencil where I wanted my stripes on each end. I then taped my tape measure down and, using my pencil, traced a straight line from end to end.

 I did this for each side of all 3 stripes (I decided I wanted 3 stripes, but use as many, in as many sizes, as you desire).

After I had my stripes marked off, I simply used a small paint brush and filled them in. My lines are not perfect, and totally not straight, but I'm used to my projects not turning out picture perfect anyway. :)

Total cost for this project was $4.99, the cost of the runner itself! The rest of supplies I already had handy, including leftover wall paint. I adore it!

From bland and boring:

To très magnifique, no?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Always kiss your children goodnight - even if they're already asleep.
~H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

I am very excited about my most recent purchase for our master bedroom update. I don't want to give it away before I actually see how it works in the space, but it just might be my favorite element by a long shot. We'll just say this photo proved to be some major inspiration for me:

Thursday, January 14, 2010

So This is Love...

I never thought I could be in love with a light fixture...until I met this one.

I adore the look of shaded hanging pendant lights, and this little one combines the convenience of a table lamp with the grace of a hanging pendant lamp. I adore it!

A Head Above the Rest

One element I'm certain I'm adding to our bedroom is a headboard. Headboards add a focal point from the moment you walk into the room, and can complete an entire bedroom design. Because of my budget, my headboard is going to need to be cheap. I'm drawn to the simple country feel of a wraught iron bed, and found this one from Wal-Mart Marketplace to be a cheap and chic option (although it would need a good solid coat of spray paint to cover the gold):

When I jumped onto Better Homes and Garden's website today I immediately vistited their section titled "Cheap and Chic Headboard Projects". This first one amazingly beautiful, and would be a good contender if I happened to have a bench cushion hanging around. I don't, and looking for one online doesn't prove to be very cheap. None the less, I love the look. What a fun take on an upholstered headboard!

This one uses a plain canvas from a craft store (although you could also use plywood if you can hang it securely). Covered in your choice of fabric, it's a super simple, custom option. Plus it's easy to change the look of it as often as you want.

As a lover of all things salvaged and chippy, these following ideas capture my heart.

Using a salvaged mantel or fireplace surround in a new and unexpected way makes these headboards one of a kind.

Another great option is using a salvaged door. Don't have a salvaged door? No problem, this one uses
a new, unfinished door from a home improvement store.

This last one is my all time favorite.

Le sigh. Need I say more?

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Our Bedroom - The Before

I want to start off by saying that Kmart cancelled my lamp order, how dare they! No explaination, nada. I suppose it will search for another option tonight and give them a call tomorrow. Maybe I'll find something I like better...maybe it's a blessing in disguise? I'll keep you posted.

On the tail of posting about the lamps, I wanted to share the before photos of my bedroom at this point. Our room is SO hard to get great photos of, and I took these at night, so the natural light is lacking.

This is the view of our teeny little room looking in from the door. I love this bed, I can get cozy there. The bedspread and shams were a set from Wal-Mart for only $10 on clearance. Throw pillows were less than $20 for all. White throw blanket came from my grandma's house, it's huge and comfy. The drapes are black out curtains...necessary when your honey works nights and sleeps during the day.

The side tables are actually those TV trays people use, but in black they work perfectly for our side tables, and they were dirt cheap. Lamps were $7 each from Hobby Lobby a long time ago. Picture frame above bed was a bridal shower gift from my beautiful sister.

This jewelry armoire is special to me, it was a Christmas gift one year from Mr. Z, he even filled it with quarter machine jewelry for me! :) I love the "Dream" sign, it flows effortlessly with the wall color.

This side of the room is bad news bears. I haven't been inspired to do anything with it, there isn't much room for a wide peice of furniture, so this cheap DVD case has been filling empty room since we moved in.
The flag case on the dresser is very special to Mr. Z, it's a Japanese flag that belonged to his grandfather, during WWII his grandfather had shot a japanese soldier and took this flag off the body, it even has handwritten japanese phrases on the flag itself. It sounds like a morbid story, but it's special to Mr. Z and I enjoy having the peice of history as well.
I have some fun idea for this little area in my redo though. ;)

The last photo I want to share shows in detail the stripe we painted on the walls. This technique is supposed to make a smaller room visually appear larger. The trick to making this work is painting one stripe horizontally around the entire room in only one shade lighter than the rest of the paint color. In our case we chose some creamy goldish tan colors, mostly because my mother in law gave it to me for freee! Gotta love that!

So now that you have all seen the before, I can't wait to share the after! Just a few more items to find and I should be ready to make the transformation! I can't wait!

On a Whim...

This photo speaks to me. The simple, no-fuss, farmhouse style is breathtaking.

Even if it is totally opposite what our bedroom currently is, it's something to strive for. I love the subtle color the bedspread adds to the room, so when I came across this duvet from,

 who's color is actually more of this,

I knew it would be a good option.

After sleeping on it, I woke up with a decision to try it. For the price of $31.99 it was a hard deal to beat but still I debated between black or burgundy/spice. After revisting my inspiration photo above, I decided the burgundy is the way to go. After adding it to my cart, I saw that there was only ONE LEFT! Yikes! (although don't you love that overstock is able to inform you of this, to me it's actually a great feature). Not wanting to miss out I whipped out the card and placed the order. I never do things on a whim, but this one just felt right.
I've gotten more and more ideas for our master bedroom redo, and adding this duvet cover should allow me to really incorporate my ideas.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

And the winner is...

I've made a decision on bedroom lighting, and it's none of the three I posted previously (I'm not indecisive I?) My darling and wonderful Aunt and Uncle sent us some late Christmas presents which we got yesterday. Lincoln got two new books, and we got a Sears/Kmart giftcard! My first stop this morning was Kmart, in hopes of finding the perfect lamp, and because even if it ended up being out of budget, I had my GC to absorb the extra cost. Well to my pleasant surprise, they actually had some great options (I hardly ever shop at Kmart, I just never think about it).

I really liked the shape of this one, but I had my heart set on a silver-toned lamp, and this one is brass. (Essential Home Antique Brass Accent Lamp $16.99 -

A good contender, but a little too modern, if the chrome-like color had been toned down a bit this would have been a great option.
(Essential Home Polished Aluminum Accent Lamp $16.99 -

This photo wasn't taken off the kmart site, I couldn't find the same one online, so I stole this similar one from another site. I have always been drawn to these glass ball lamps, I think in the right room they can lend themselves to either a modern feel or a more traditional feel. In my case, alot of the room is already more modern than I normally go, so I passed on this one.

And so...the winner is....

This one! Simple, compact and oh-so-pretty! This photo makes the color look quite dark, but in real life its a beatiful matte pewter.
(Essential Home Spun Stick Antique Pewter Lamp $12.99 -

Sadly, there was only one in stock at the store, so I left without purcasing them. I checked online and was pleased to see that they are running home decor at 20% off. That saved me over $5, which cancelled out the shipping costs, I love that! These babies should be to me within the week, and I can't wait! Now I just need to decide on a shade....decisions decisions!

Have a great new week everyone!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Shopping the House

A great way to freshen up any room, and save a little money in the process, is to shop your house for new decorating ideas. Whether it be simply pulling a few items from the guest bedroom that rarely are seen, and giving them new life in the living room, or repainting those tacky brass candle holders you recieved as a wedding gift. Not only do you not have to leave the house (and the way the weather has been here lately, I don't leave unless I have to!), but you also don't have to spend a single penny to get a new look.

I am applying this theory in our bedroom redecorating. I have a large, round, white wicker mirror hanging in our entryway, and it's never looked quite right. Neither have the glass and silver key holders I have below. Although I love them both dearly (the key holders are two of my fave Salvation Army finds), and they do their jobs wonderfully, they needed to find a new home. they are going to the bedroom where they will fit in much better.

This is where some fudging comes in however. When I move these, it leaves me with an empty wall and no place to deposit our keys when we walk through the door. But never fear! Target-Gift-Card-Wedding-Gift to the rescue! I eyed this functional peice online at a few days ago, but put it in the back of my mind since I wasn't thinking of moving the current entryway mirror until tonight.

$18.88 wasn't a phenomonal deal, but it was 30% off. Not only does it have the mirror feature for last minute hair and makeup checks before running out the door, but it has a place to hang our keys and not one, but two, shelf ledges for displaying some other decoratives.

So as soon as she arrives in the mail (yes, she) I can move the other items to the bedroom and be one step closer to our updated master. Now if only I could make a decision about the lighting...

Friday, January 8, 2010

On The Hunt For New Lighting

One of the main elements I plan to change in our bedroom is the lighting. Our ceiling fan/overhead light has seen better days, but Mr. Z isn't big on buying a new one until it totally bites the dust. So I rely mainly on table lamps that flank each side of the bed. Do I love the ones I have right now...not really. They remind me of a safarri. They have some sort of leopard-spotted glass parts, and they just aren't really my style. Sure I could paint them and buy a new shade, but I really think I'm in the mood for something new.

I really like the look of this lamp from Tar-jay ( but it's online only, and for the cost of shipping I could almost buy a third lamp. It's not my style to waste money on shipping (unless it's USPS...shout out to my postal-worker-father-in-law).

Ambassador Table Lamp $17.00 (

I also looove the idea of wall mounted sconces that simply plug into an outlet below, like these beauties from overstock.

Old Bronze Finish Pin Up Plug In Lamp $28.99 (

Pin Up Plug In Brushed Nickel Lamp $28.99 (

Looking at these now, I realize I have 3 options, and they could not be more different! Let's sleep on it, shall we? Have a great night!