Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Not too shabby

Here's a photo of what the outside of the house looks like right now.  Neat and tidy, and almost ready to put up for sale.

Monday, May 25, 2009

How the garden grows

There's a lot of different plants crammed into this little postage stamp sized yard.  Right now the lilacs (there are three) are all in bloom, and when I keep the back door open the house smells amazing. 

Thursday, May 21, 2009

School's in: Staging a bathroom

I'm going to focus on the master bathroom in this post as it seems to have the most value placed on it.  Gleaming sinks, polished fixtures and a squeaky clean bath and toilet are all musts.  Toothbrushes, floss, deodorant -- you get the idea -- gives the impression that someone lives here, and that those someones have fuzzy teeth and stinky armpits.  No potential buyer wants to see that, or imagine that (or smell that!).  

So how do you manage to present a bathroom that has the nice little details?  Let's investigate some photos:

This bathroom is one of my favorites.  I love the little punch of the poppy red and fresh green with the cool greys.  

One guess why I picked this bathroom.  I know you already have the answer (if not, you must have this blog mixed up with another)-- the green accessories of course!  

This bathroom feels lived in, but has a nice quirky edge to it. 

The addition of the baskets in this bathroom make the blue tones stand out.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Obsession: Tilt-shift photography

This shot was taken in Malta.

I've loved this style for a while, but haven't managed to put out the mucho $ for a tilt-shift lens.  Until that day, I can use this to transform my photos, which is just as fun!*
(*Seriously, I was giddy.)

At the old Popeye movie set in Malta.

A school in Monte Carlo.

Trevor in Northern Ireland.  (He looks like a plastic toy!)

Looking down on a view of Monaco.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

School's in: Staging a bedroom

I need extra help in the bedroom with figuring out pillow arrangements and organizing bedside trinkets.  The room is mainly blue-ish* hues, with a wall of drapes in a slightly darker blue.  The linens are all white with throw pillows in more of those blue-ish hues, and a throw blanket, in yes...a blue-ish hue.  
(*'blue-ish' = mainly blue, but a bit of green so it's not too cool)  

Why look!  A blue-ish room!  A big 'X' goes on those lilies though, I'd wake up a big snotty allergic mess with those right next to me.  The retro telephone is tres hip though.

Okay, look past the busy tree/bird mural in this bedroom and count the pillows with me: I spot eight.

Accent colours galore!  And the black scotty it.  I think the corded phone would have to go though.  How annoying would it be getting that caught in the drawer every time you opened it?  Wait, we're not talking practical, we're talking staging.

And with today's staging 101 I thought about the colours that would best pop against those blue-ish colours, but without looking too bright (it is a bedroom after all, serene, peaceful and all that).  So I think some yellow and slightly yellow-greens with a nice dose of white and grey/silver/pewter could bring this room together.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Welcome to the moulding circus

This what my stairwell looks like this morning.  It's officially the most dreaded, and worst remaining  job in the house.  But here it is, all set up and ready for a couple of people (not me!) to get up there and nail up moulding (or...swing from a trapeze?).  The original plan was an 8am start, but Trevor got called into work for a bit this morning.


Thursday, May 14, 2009

School's in: Staging a kitchen

In two weeks we'll be in full deep cleaning mode, and staging mode.  The cleaning part I know, the staging part, well, not so much.  So I've been doing a little research and getting some ideas on what we can do to pull the kitchen together.

In this kitchen (and in the photo above) I like the idea of adding a little pop of the same colour.  Smart little ideas like using yellow flowers, lemons, a yellow pepper, a yellow book and yellow bowl make this kitchen look tidy.

I like this kitchen because it uses mainly white accessories. 

Using the limes in a container looks fun, and the white flowers in the neat and tidy rectangular vase keeps it simple.

The picture frame on the countertop in this kitchen is an interesting idea.  But what sort of picture would you put in it?

Okay, so the Le Creuset french oven really sucked me in with this kitchen.  I still want one.

And so, with a quick 101 on kitchen staging/styling (and so on...) I devised the colour palette above.  The top left row starts with two paint colours that are in the kitchen (and family room, can't forget that!) and the third in from the left is the cabinet colour (Behr's 'Pot of Cream').  I think green on green accents, a little pop of yellow, some white and a highlight of a cool blue could work nicely together. 

Monday, May 11, 2009

A nice mistake

I put the camera down in the yard and accidentally took a shot, and I think it looks lovely.  A fresh and green (and yes, it has been mowed since!).  

Lack of posts last week, much of the time here was spent attempting to put much of the house back together.  The main floor bathroom has been put back together and the laundry room has been finished.  The kitchen is still in a state of flux (but it's almost there!).  Far too much time was spent taping, filling, sanding, painting, painting again, and removing said tape from moulding in the stairwells -- not something I want to repeat anytime soon, but it looks all fresh and bright now.  Photos to come this week, of course, providing that I can clean up all the stray tools and garbage bags.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Front porch: Before + After

The after.

I finished up the front porch last week, and I'm proud to say that this project lasted 3 days (compare it so some of our never-ending ones...).  The outdoor carpet was ripped up, the wood underneath was patched, sanded and stained, and the front door was painted.  I bought an outdoor area rug (Home Depot - $60, and can also come with us when we move) and then did the planters (all existing, the tall ones are from Ikea).  I looked into finding a used rocking chair that I could refinish and put out there, but I think that time and effort is better spent inside on the other projects at the moment.

The before (Halloween shot from a while ago, on the Saturday I started this project I discovered the camera battery was dead.  I'm sure you get the idea.).

Close up of the planters and rug.  I love that rug.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Plants, plants, plants

These are the containers I've planted this year.  I chose a mix of annuals and perennials, and tried out some used in rock gardens (and suited for draught, if I get lazy with watering!).  I've also bunched the plants tighter together this year, and hopefully they'll get nice and full around the time we plunk that 'for sale' sign on the lawn. 

Friday, May 1, 2009

Inspiration boards

I'm thinking I should start one of these soon, they're useful and pretty.  To see more examples, check out the Inspiration Boards flickr group.