February 23, 2013

Paper Blinds - I never thought I'd use them

Ok, so I put up paper blinds and now I understand why people put them up and then never take them down again. How did this happen to me?

After getting my windows replaced, I was left with a lot of beautiful windows but zero privacy.  This was a bit of a bigger issue in my kitchen, where I have floor to ceiling windows that face my neighbour's house with a shared walkway and in the principal bedroom which also has a huge window with an unobstructed view of the alley and the east side of my neighbourhood.

I decided to not re-install the previous blinds as I didn't want to drill holes in the new vinyl windows (there goes the warranty) and I knew that in the future, I would be trading them in for a different style anyways.  So what do you do when you don't want the entire neighbourhood seeing you in your pig-patterned pyjama pants?  The answer to that came as I strolled the aisles of Home Depot frantically looking for something that would allow me to turn on the lights in my bedroom without creating a mini red light district in Bridgeland.

Redi Shade available at Home Depot
Redi Shade is designed as a temporary solution when you need something on your windows to filter the light and add privacy.  The key word is "temporary" as these are made of paper and aren't a long-term solution.  I was really surprised though by the quality of the paper and how nice they actually look and now I definitely understand why people may keep them up for longer than intended.

Installation was easy-peasy.  All you do is measure the window, cut the shade to size, peel the backing and stick. So quick!

All you need is a measuring tape, pen, utility knife, cutting edge and a cutting board.

You want to make sure you have a fresh blade when cutting so that you don't tear the paper.

Once that's done, all you do is peel the backing off and stick the blind along the inside of the window.  No holes to drill!

I went from this.

To this!  Huge improvement and not an unattractive solution.

The blinds also comes with plastic clips that you can use to clip up the blinds rather than leave them down all the time.  Very convenient.

I now have four windows with these temporary blinds which gives me a bit of breathing room to figure out what type of window treatment I can design for these spaces. 

February 21, 2013

New Windows

I had new windows installed this past week throughout my house.  Thankfully, the weather cooperated and since it's not a busy time for the installers, two crews were sent out so it was only one day of noise and dust.

After getting several quotes, I decided to go with Supreme Windows.  They're one of the more established companies here in Calgary with great reviews on HomeStars and I knew friends that had worked with them in the past and were happy with the end result.  I also felt that when I was getting the quote that they had a really good understanding of what I was looking for and spent a lot of time examining the windows I had and trouble-shooting a few things that come with an old house (like why is every single window a different size, age, and material?).

I did not take photos during the installation as I was really just trying to ignore all the sounds of hammering, ripping off of trim and seeing mounds of dust and debris beginning to accumulate. I did snap this one photo of the 'interesting' wallpaper found behind the trim in the upstairs bathroom:

The bathroom as it is today has a lot going on (future post to come on that space) and I can't imagine adding something as busy as this to such a small space.

Here is the finished window in my guest room.  It's a huge improvement from what was here previously as the window was barely operational before.  I also love how window handles fold down now and don't get caught up on window treatments.

I went with simple trim and the header has some detail on it while the side pieces are plain.  I chose trim with 3 1/2" width which gives a nice presence in the room.

Here is my new bay window.  I still need to paint out the wood and I intend to match the window trim with the rest of the windows in the house.  

I've already ordered drapery for this room in a great navy/cream ikat from Chintz & Company. These should be finished in another week and I'm planning to find coordinating fabric to create a cozy window seat and something to re-cover my current chairs with.

February 17, 2013

Loving the New Sofa

My new sofa was delivered this week (on Valentine's Day - a little gift to myself) and I couldn't be happier with how it turned out.

I ordered the Reverie Apartment Sofa from EQ3.  The front of my house is very wide but I've split the space into a family/living room and an office so I needed something with a slightly smaller scale. I wouldn't call this a love seat though as you can easily fit three people and for a tall girl, I can comfortably stretch out.

I chose the Mila fabric which is a Grade 20 and has a gorgeous hand to it.  A bit of a nubbly, soft texture.  The colour is Silver.  I love the tufting and it certainly has a mid-century modern feel to it. 
The legs are in onyx which is a nice contrast to the existing hardwood although I will be swapping out an existing rug from my bedroom for this room.  I already had the pillows and the fabric is from the Eclectic Modern collection by DwellStudio for Robert Allen. The name of the fabric is Vintage Blossom and the colour is Dove.
The new sofa has also proven to be a big hit with Shoppy and even as I write this, he is currently curled up and snoring away in almost the same spot as this photo.  What a lucky guy to have such a lovely bed.

February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day

Contemporary Drawings design by Raleigh Architect Coffee with an Architect

This collection of Valentines from Architects is so perfect.  You can see more at Coffee with an Architect or at houzz.

Happy Valentine's Day!

February 07, 2013

My New Desk!

I finally found a fantastic vintage table at Cozy Cottage Interiors that will work perfectly as a desk (I'm writing this post from it).  It is a lovely drop-leaf table with that "perfectly worn in" look I was aiming for.  I decided to paint the legs and base of the table a deep black-blue - Old Navy and keep the top as-is.
Old Navy 2063-10 - Benjamin Moore
Trying to figure out the right 'blue'
No 'before' photo as we took apart the table to get it into my car 
Such a lovely deep blue and Regal provides great coverage
I primed the legs before painting them 
Shoppy admiring the first coat - three in total were needed
Project finished and I added a chair and lamp from Restoration Hardware 
A few more accessories in place and I can start working 
A small shelf to the left and some artwork will finish things up 
Detail photo of the worn-in table top

February 03, 2013

Store Love - Habitat for Humanity Restore

I took a trip this past week to the Habitat for Humanity Restore (3465 Sunridge Way NE).  The warehouse is huge (28,000 sqft) and is full of amazing finds at great prices.  I also love that the website includes photos of many of the in-stock items so that you get a sense of what you'll find during your visit.

You can also feel good about shopping there as the proceeds generated helps support Habitat for Humanity Southern Alberta to provide safe and affordable housing.

Some interesting finds I spotted:
Cool "Exit" sign
Industrial lights
Colourful pendants
Lots of tile to choose from 
These sinks were in great condition 
Pedestals in all styles
Modern kitchen cabinetry  
Fireplace mantle for $50!
Very traditional chair that could feel more modern with a bright fabric
Fantastic wood desk 
A little loveseat in need of some love
This place is certainly worth a visit.  I would also recommend signing up for their newsletter so you can see the latest items and once you see something you like, you need to pull the trigger as inventory is VERY limited.