Thursday, June 15, 2017

A Few Living Room Updates

Hey Guys, sorry for the slow posts again. I’m kinda in a funky place again.
I suddenly have a really big passion and drive for being more of myself, and myself really loves interior design, so I really want to push past a internal barrier I have, and turn the blog up a notch, and maybe even purse a bit of something more than just on the blog (we’ll see) -- but my barrier is hung up on a bunch of stuff I’m working through. So my fears are louder than normal lately, and I AM working on pushing through those and really bringing it. But just like that discussion I had about weight loss before -- my fears are almost always more afraid of success than failure (Which is saying something, because I HATE failing.)  But I have this lame hang up about my success being detrimental to others. (It’s hilarious in a way, how cornered I can get within that mindset. But then it’s actually not funny.) Which is wrong, I know. But I’m training my heart and it’s kinda stunted here. 
   So I’m really -- well it’s like when you want to go off the high dive for the first time, but you are also terrified. That’s where I am -- inching forward, pulling back, looking down, shaking -- excited and horrified, wondering if I will survive, thinking about how cool it would be if I did it. But what if ALL THE WATER goes up my nose! Oh my gosh….forward, back, forward, back. Standing still.
    And all that is happening just because I want to take pictures with my real camera and maybe do a little staging (try to look legit) when I show you my backyard.
Who does that? Who get’s scared of that?
I do.

ALSO…gotta be real here -- some of my delayed blogging is also the fact that I have to clean off my hardrive because it’s so stinking full of photos, that to upload any new ones takes... for stinking ever getting my photos off the real camera….and I’m just dreading the upload process --wondering if it will even be worth the payoff. 
AND I’m dreading even more the idea of trying to clean up my computer (because I don’t know what I’m doing and I’m afraid I’ll ruin something.) Which might maybe after the hard work make moving forward better. But I don’t even know if that’s true. I’m not techy enough. I’m guessing. lol

SO ANYWAY -- Not sure you care about that stuff.(?)

I thought for today I would take a couple iPhone photos of a couple things I haven’t showed you. (Of which there is a lot -- because grief messed up (is messing up still) my sense of time and so I think I’ve been more interactive than I have been. But lots of stuff has shifted and I forgot to blog it.

So apparently I did this in January, says my camera roll. Geeze I have an amazingly messed up sense of time. I thought I just did this.

This mirror came with the thrifted dresser I got and redid for the girls’ room. I was really excited about it it’s a cool shape. But the frame is blah plastic that’s yellow-ivory, with touches of gold in spots.
I wanted to make it look like weathered wood. So this was my process. I got out this tan paint. Forget the name but it’s a valspar sample jar I had made up for re-doing some tables. It has something about wood or a tree in it’s name.
Then I dry brushed white craft paint over it.

Kept playing with it.
Then I got out the brown craft paint. I went light at first, tried focusing on the edges and keeping the brush strokes looking like grain and sandpaper marks. This look was really pretty and I would have left it like this for some spaces. But I decided it needed to be a lot darker since it would be going up next to a really dark “wood” medallion I have over our fireplace.

And so I just kept going. It was actually really fun. Each step from here on out could have been a good look. But I just kept going until I was happy with the look for the living room.

Then I took off the brackets it came with (to attach to the dresser) and then added some mirror hanging bracket-loop things and hung it up over our living room couch.

(Never mind the bodiless guitar hanging there -- Blake’s doing a project.)

Figuring out what goes over that couch has been hard for me.  This whole room’s scale is so hard. I don’t know if it’s becuase 60’s vs modern scale furniture, or if it’s just a hard room. But everything in this space’s look is so hard earned.
I do like this mirror there. I like how it bounces more window light into the space, because the back of the room doesn’t really get the sunlight, so this helps a little.
I hung the mirror lower than would be good for tall people to see themselves in, because room scale (but I’m short so it doesn’t matter.)
I’m still not 100% sold on just that mirror there. It still feels a bit small for the space. But it’s good for now.

Moving onto another thing I find hard. Lighting sources. I need to up my Pinterest-interior-studying game on lamps and ceiling fixtures, cause those really challenge me. 

But I’m finally happy with two of my lamps.
Over here I had envisioned a clear glass lamp vase -- however reality struck and I didn’t want to spend a fortune on something so delicate with kids around. So I found this lamp for I think $9 at ReStore. (I may have showed you it before?) But the lampshade I was using didn’t feel super great. It was vintage so it’s scale was right, but the tone was less right. I found this one at Goodwill a few weeks (probably longer - ha) ago for maybe $4(?). And it’s so good for this lamp. I was really hesitant to buy it since it’s always so hard to tell without the lamp there -- but it’s great.

I had actually been hoping the shade would fit this other lamp I’ve been struggling with over on my entry way dresser. But it totally did not fit that one. (Lucky for me -- it was what the stripped lamp was looking for!)

But I finally figured this one out too.
I found this lamp shade at Lowes

Once again, nervous. I’ve tried so many things with this lamp. 
I love it, I think it’s so cool with the scales on it. (Probably due to the mermaid love being revived with young ladies in the house.) A long while ago, I saw it a Restore for $8 and left it, but I had to go get it later because it wouldn’t stop speaking to me. But very recently I was *this close* to sending it back to the thrift store since I couldn’t find the right shade. I was starting to think it was hopeless.

Finally Lowes came out with this and I was pretty sure it was the one. But when I brought it home I was thwarted because the lamp had a tall shaft that holds the light bulb, so the lampshade wasn’t looking long enough. We fixed it by taking the lamp apart and putting the lampshade harp at the base of the shaft. That required Blake to rewire the lamp for me -- but it was pretty simple, just took a couple minutes for him. And then finally the lamp made sense.

I like that it’s harnessing my British Cowboy vibe again. Pairing well with my “new” mirror -- which also works the British Cowboy theme for me. 
I had a different mirror here (well actually a couple have tried this space out -- one moved to the dining area and it perfect there) and the last one just wasn’t right and I finally admitted it. I found this antique mirror from a dresser (not sold together with it) at Goodwill for I think $12. My world is always made by these kinds of finds. Beautiful History for cheaper than new. Life is good.

Since it had the knobs for how it attached to the dress on it still, I decided to do this rope look. I got the rope from Menards in their rope section. It’s one of their medium sized hemp ropes. And the knob it’s hung on is actually a drawer pull, also from menards. It’s (I think) black porcelain. It felt like the right material to pull off this antique/modern look to me. And I was able to just shove it over a finishing nail I put in the wall. I went through our box of nails trying them out, picking the one that fit the tightest since they are irregular. It worked well. It’s been staying put fine. But if I need to I may add a bit of flexible glue called E600 (that stuff is sooo handy for everything!).

So yeah I’ve been enjoying this look for a bit now.
(The tray there is actually intended for my coffee table, but it’s currently a lego castle, so ya know.)
(Also ignore that black thing behind the dresser -- its a project I abandoned while pregnant and now don’t know if I want anymore -- need to make the call and get it out of there.)

Alright well I hope I tided you over with this post.
And Hopefully I can get my mind to let my heart take those pictures of my backyard.

(Did I mention outside photos are harder because lighting is more fickle? Well that’s true.
Also because bikes, brooms and ladders seem to pile up on our patio and I will have to find toddler free time to accomplish allthethings!)
(But hard things can’t stop me. It’s my head that’s in my way. 
Maybe if I call myself hard headed it will mean my head can’t stop me!)


  1. I really like how your "British Cowboy" vibe is working out! And I so admire how you pull thrifted finds together to make them new again and create a cohesive look! Almost all out furniture is from a thrift store or relatives, but it is a HOT. MESS. Someday we'll have a little cushion so I can curate our home more thoughtfully... In the meantime I will enjoy these little glimpses into the beauty you're creating!

    1. Aw thank you, Yvonne, you’re comments are always so uplifting.
      I totally understand that feeling of randomness that happens from hand me downs and thrift store grabs not jibing. I think I’ve just had enough practice time to get the hang of the mixing and making it now. Like everything, practice makes perfect.
      My basic method is really staring down, and studying, all things lovely and beautiful (interior design magazines, shows, blogs, real spaces, Pinterest) and just keeping a very keen eye looking for WHY they are beautiful to me. After I have that mystery solved I can look for this same ideas on the cheap. (Usually things that have enough leeway to be recreated into those looks with paint or creativity.)
      And the great thing is, you can always sell your own stuff to fund the new (new to you) stuff. I have bought and sold more tables than is sane, while hunting down the right affordable table for us.
      Don’t feel trapped with what you have, you can “make it over” by selling it and buying something else at the same price. You just have to have the energy to do it (which often times means LOTS of patience…waiting for the piece to find you, and you to find it.)
      If you play your cards really well, you can even make a small profit on the way. I’ve found some real gems on craiglist, photographed really poorly, and bought them, only to figure out my house isn’t the right house for it. But then turned around and sold them for a bit more because I photograph it better, and then price it competitively but with a bit of pride tacked on. (This is ESPECIALLY true of anything midcentury you can pick up for cheap -- at least around here the price points vary enough -- I’ve made a good profit on those because they are trendy.)
      You can also grab the free stuff on curbs and resell that to fund yourself. There are ways to work craigslist, if you are up for it.
      The point is, where there is a will there is a way.

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