Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Mood Board: Family Room

Family Room Detail

I've already learned all sorts of things by living in this new house for 5 days! One, I had forgotten that when you live closer to the ground, all sorts of creepy crawlies make their way inside. Like earwigs and mice. (Don't worry, the mouse was only in the garage. And it was dead.) I've also learned that when you go from a condo to an older house, sometimes your furniture doesn't work quite like it used to.

Our family room is particularly off-kilter right now:

Cooler instead of a console table? Check.

Seventeen different shades of brown? Don't be jealous.

Coffee table that crowds the seating space? You betcha.

It's funny how furniture can look so awesome in one place and so... not... in another. We've already ordered a new couch, but here are some other things we'd like to rock down there eventually:

Family Room Detail
Family Room Detail by finalclothesout on polyvore.com

The new couch will be gray and very similar to this one, and observant folks might have noticed that we already got the striped blanket (from IKEA). We also plan to paint the built-ins white, look for a real console, DIY a wood stump table and an upholstered coffee table, and track down a couple of side chairs for ample football seating. Whew!

Naturally, I'll keep you posted as the room chugs along. Have you had this kind of furniture issue before? Things don't really work in your new space? (I didn't think it would happen. Silly me.) What have you been decorating lately?

P.S. I'm also posting over at Kanelstrand today. Come say hello and check out some swanky recycled tote bags!

Friday, July 27, 2012

Pinterest #29

Happy Friday! I'm knee deep in boxes and ready for a break. (I'm actually camping out at a Caribou because we don't get the 'net hooked up until this afternoon. Gaaaah!) To the Pinterest Picks!

My favorite item o' the week is this black dress. I think it speaks for itself:

I'm dying to overhaul one of our new closets, preferably the one in the entryway that has a door smaller than the space behind it. (A waste, I say!) This would be so functional:

Toasted ravioli! I love you! And now I can make you at home!

You know what these candle holders are made out of? PAPER. Go to Michael's or JoAnn and find some pre-punched scrapbook paper. Cut it down to size and wrap it around a plain glass votive. Genius.

Source: uploaded by Facebook user 

And finally, a gorgeous alternative to a traditional bookshelf. I'm not so sure about the chicken wire doors, but other than that, this is a winner:

What goodies have you been eyeballing this week? Any DIY projects you want to tackle? Are you also finding yourself writing with a lot of exclamation points today? What are you up to this weekend?

Are you on Pinterest? Come hang out with me here.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

3 Years

Three years ago today, the Hubster and I tied the knot! Sometimes I forget that it's already been this long, since time seems to go by at warp-speed now that we're real grown-ups. Since I already did a wedding retrospective last year, I figured it was time to shake things up. Traditionally, the third anniversary involves exchanging leather gifts--which we're not doing since we upped the ante and bought ourselves a house--but that doesn't mean I can't round up some ideas anyway:

Leather (3 Years)

Starting on the dude side, the Ben Sherman wallet is $50 and the leather cuff is a crazy affordable $3.50  (which is perhaps an error?); for the gals, the pyramid earrings are $39 and the gold iPad case is $70. What about the other two gifts? Those are for when we find a bag of money on the sidewalk. The fancy-schmancy Frederique Constant watch is $1,055, and the badass Alexander McQueen skull clutch is a mere $2,240.

As far as celebrating goes, we're not doing much. The movers come tomorrow, so aside from going out for Thai food, we'll just be scrambling around with packing tape and Sharpies. You know, the usual.

Do you follow the anniversary themes? Anybody else have a leather celebration this year? What do you think of my picks? Eyeballing that sweet skull purse, aren't you?

Monday, July 23, 2012

Stars and Stripes

Do you know what officially starts this Friday?! (With a few events creeping in as early as Wednesday?!) I'll give you a clue: it brings the world together in a series of inspirational sports moments that leave me weepy and sentimental. And also wishing I was a better athlete, but only for a second because I enjoy watching on the couch too much to give it up.

It's the Olympics! Or as we should be saying, THE OLYMPICS. Are you ready? Are you going to be glued to your TV for the next 3-ish weeks, watching even the "nerd" events like archery and ping pong? Because I will be. I'm even making imaginary outfits for myself, that's how ready I am.

Olympic Spirit

I'm not one for overly-themed dressing, so this is would be my hypothetical outfit for backing Team USA if I were to head across the pond. The navy striped dress is $23, the turquoise wedges are $77, the straw tote is $28, the bangles are $29, and for the necklace I accidentally broke my under-$100 rule (it's $198--oops), but it fit the outfit so perfectly I had to include it. The nail polish and lipstick are both $12.

And because I'm ridiculous, I made a second look:

Team USA

This one is a little more straightforward, but I'd still wear it. The cobalt blue dress is $49, the striped flats are $50, the leather purse is $69, the bangles are $40, and the earrings are $58. The aviators come in at an extra affordable $7.80.

So are you pumped for THE OLYMPICS? What events are you most excited to see? I'm a gymnastics and track girl myself. What's your favorite piece from these outfits? Or would you wear something totally different if you ever attended the Games? WAIT. Have any of you actually been? If so, please tell me all about it in the comments because I have to know.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Empty House Tour!

After the glorious closing of our new home on Wednesday, I popped back to the house to "snap a few pictures" before we went to IKEA. I think you know how it went: I ended up taking 70 pictures and a 3-minute video. Of a house without furniture. Overkill? Perhaps. But I prefer to think that people who don't do this are the weird ones.

Anyway, I've narrowed them down for you. Think of this as an appetizer; I'll save the real house tour for after there's furniture, because it's hard to get a sense of some rooms when they're empty.

Kitchens, however, are a good place to start! This picture has the most true-to-life coloring...

...while this one gives you an idea of the size. I took it standing in the eating area:

This was also taken in the kitchen, but looking over to my left at the entry and dining room:

The lower level is the family room. We scored some excellent built-ins... AND A PROJECTOR. I can't wait to watch Harry Potter on that thing.

You can look right up into the kitchen (yay for food proximity):

We also have a sunroom that leads to the backyard. Unfortunately, it leaks. In several places:

And finally, I inherited a garden! It has tomatoes, jalapenos, broccoli, some herbs, and a giant mystery plant in the back corner. Any clue what that is?

Here are some quick stats for ya:

--built in 1970
--3 bedrooms, 2 full bathrooms
--split level
--just over 1,600 square feet

I'll be back to blogging as usual on Monday. In the meantime, I'm off to finish a bunch of orders and make a second trip to IKEA (we filled up the car the first time). What are you up to this weekend? Heck, what did you get up to this workweek, since I was off the grid for most of it?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

IKEA, you complete me.

First things first: we close on our house tomorrow! TOMORROW. If you're reading this after 9 a.m. central time, then in less than 24 hours we'll officially be the owners. We'll have a garage! And full-sized laundry! And central air! That's right, we're rocking two wall units right now, and they're just as useless as you might imagine on the top floor of a building.

Even though we're closing tomorrow, the movers aren't coming to take our big stuff over until the 26th, so we have some wiggle room to start a few repairs and get rid of a little furniture. Like our bedroom set. All of it is mismatched and old (and not in the good way), so it's time to hit the road. We were debating between a few things to replace it, but then the universe gave us a sign:

HELLO. My favorite line of IKEA furniture EVER is on sale!? And just when we're going to buy multiple pieces?! I hear you, universe, loud and clear. Thank you.

I thought the hard part was over until we started looking at the individual items and realized: the finish. We love them both. We like the combination of light and dark, but aren't sure which way to go about it. I whipped up a couple of visuals and would really appreciate some input before we head to the store tomrorow.

Option #1 (ignore the pink-y white bedding, if you would)

IKEA Bedroom #1

Option #2 (again, ignore the blue blankets)

IKEA Bedroom #2

I might be leaning a smidge toward Option #2, but I really like them both. What do you think? Strong feelings either way? (Perhaps my indecision is a sign that either choice will be a good one. Look at this, I'm getting analytical up in here.) Any thoughts are appreciated. We seriously can't decide.

Wish us luck tomorrow! I'll bring you pictures as soon as I can! (Aaaah!)

Monday, July 16, 2012

Blitz! (Not the football kind.)

Yesterday I did something brand new: I met people from the Internet! And before anybody gets too excited, know that I only took like 4 pictures. So... my bad. I did get this great shot of the view from Market Bar's swanky rooftop deck, though:

The event was Blogger Blitz Chicago hosted by this girl, and not only was it my first bloggy party, but it was also the first time I've met Internet friends face-to-face. Ever. I was really nervous beforehand and spent an extra long time straightening my hair (it was a special occasion, after all), while also wondering if I would be that dorky person people kind of inched away from after a few minutes.

But no! I worried for nothing! It was a ton of fun. I definitely think there should be more bloggy meet-ups in the future. Everybody was so friendly, and it was an all around great afternoon of drinks, sunshine, and conversation. This was the group of ladies I spent the most time with. Say cheese!

Chris  |  Nikki  |  Me  |  Erin  |  Taylor  |  Dana

If you want to see some actual pictures of the event, other than those sweet buildings I captured, Dana and Erin have good ones to share.

So how was your weekend? Anybody else ever met any friends from blogging/the web? Am I the only one who watched Breaking Bad last night? Holy villain, Walter White!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Look who joined the 21st century!

That would be me. I crashed the Instagram party about a month ago, but I wanted to make sure I was actually sticking around before I told you to come hang out with me. It would've been rude to invite you over and then not show up.

Come holler at me, my username is littlenostalgia. I'm always looking for more people to follow, so feel free to drop your name in the comments, too.

Some pretty cloud action.

A mild attempt to be healthy.

A touch of country in the city (this is 5 minutes from my house).

And my favorite cluster of artwork.

It's funny how much better my pictures look with a little filter on them. Almost like I know what I'm doing!

Are you an Instagrammer, too? It took me a while to warm up to it, but I'm glad I'm there now. (Unlike Facebook. I haaaate Facebook. But that's another rant for another day.)

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Texts from Jane Eyre

This is a total departure today, but I think you'll forgive me. This is magic. A true gem of the internet.

It's Texts from Jane Eyre.

I. Cannot. Stop. Laughing. I've read it through about five times now, and I still do the shriek-y cackle that scares Hubsey. In fact, he took his computer and went into the dining room, but the joke's on him because that's only 15 feet away from where he was, AND he can still hear me.

Jane Eyre

I won't put the whole thing here, for that you'll need to head over to The Hairpin, but this is my favorite part (Hubsey wants me to clarify, this is Rochester talking to Jane):


i am with my cousins
Please don't try to talk to me again
I'm not going to answer that


Ohmygod. It's so perfect I only wish I came up with it first. And for the record, I think Attic Wife would make a great insult. If you liked this one, there's also Texts from Scarlett O'Hara, which is equally hilarious.

What did you think? Rolling with laughter? Suspecting I'm weird? Hoping the author will do other characters? (Mr. Darcy would be hysterical.)

Monday, July 9, 2012

Shop Update

First of all, that monster heat wave FINALLY gave us a break this weekend. It was 79 degrees on Friday night! That's jeans weather! Well, not so much for being outside, but for an air-conditioned restaurant they were delightful. It's only supposed to be in the mid-80s this week, and I don't think I've ever been so excited for weather like that. I'm not cut out for heat.

Anyhoodle, since I was trapped inside for two weeks, I used my extra time to get ahead on some new designs. These blue earrings were based on a custom bridal order I made last month:

This rhinestone necklace is a bit of a departure from what I usually make for LWC, but I dig it:

And I'm trying to do more bracelets. I don't wear very many of them myself, so I typically don't get inspired to make any new ones (except for this one, obvi):

Meanwhile, over at Oh Nostalgia, there are some new Art Deco inspired earrings:

And a long necklace made from the sparkliest rhinestone you ever did see. Also, it's gigantic:

I'll have even more items up by the end of the week. I don't have another show until September, so now's the time to crank things out while I can.

What were you up to this weekend? Anybody else making some new pretties? Or thanking the powers that be for that sweet, sweet air that made its way down from Canada?

Thursday, July 5, 2012

12 in 2012: Halfway There

I can't believe it was just the 4th of July. We're slightly over halfway done with 2012 and I still have a lot to accomplish by way of my 12 goals for the year. After I saw Kristen's post the other day, I realized it had been a while since my last report.  Let's start with the stuff I'm doing well!

1. Reach 650 sales in my main shop. I'm actually ahead of schedule for this! Not that math is my strong point, but according to my calculations I should hit that number sometime in October. Score! I also wanted to hit 100 sales in my secondary, forgotten stepchild shop and I'm exactly 50% of the way there halfway through the year. Not too shabby.

2. Cook more. This one is still going strong. I even tried my hand at baking and only ruined two pans of brownies before I got it right. (Jealous? I thought so.)

Haven't actually made these yet but they're on the list. (Which is my Pinterest board.)

3. Stop working 24/7. Now that it's summer, I've managed to carve out a lot more free time for myself. Part of the reason is that it gets REALLY hot in my office so I just take myself to the movies for the sake of real air conditioning, but still. It counts.

4. Read more historical fiction. This is also part of the aforementioned free time. Turns out I'm really good at reading when I should be working.

And of course, with the good always comes some bad.

1. Exercise everyday. Definitely not happening. I fell off the wagon when we went to California at the end of May and I never really got back on. I do a halfhearted 2 or 3 days a week now.

I don't look this elegant when I do them. Source.

2. Paint the living room. I painted the hallway. Does that count?

3. Get rid of my old computers. Well, Hubsey bought an iPad, which is at least computer-related. I bet I'll get rid of my old desktop when we move, but haven't actually done it yet.

So, it's a work in progress. I've gotten a lot done, but some things still need the ol' heave-ho. Did you make any goals this year? How are they going? Feel free to share your updates with the class.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy 4th!

In honor of our nation's birthday, I'm takin' the day off (and I hope you are, too).

Sweet picture, right? It's actually from the Golden Gate's 75th anniversary celebration, but I thought it worked nicely today, too.

Stay cool, enjoy some delicious barbeque, and I'll be back tomorrow with a fresh post.

Happy Independence Day!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Vintage IKEA

Normally I don't say "Happy Monday," but since this week is a holiday I feel like that can get a pass. A four-day workweek for most folks is reason to celebrate. Another reason to raise a glass? We dragged this beast up the stairs of our condo building:

The description on the Crate&Barrel website says it has the "heft and character of a European farmhouse antique." That's an understatement. They should've said, "Don't be fooled by the 16-year-olds who will toss this into your U-Haul like a piece of driftwood. We give them steroids. You will have to call extra people to help you." (And we did. One of them brought his new girlfriend, who we met for the first time. Welcome...)

Anyhoodle, that's not what I have for you today. With our closing date looming on the horizon, you may have noticed that I'm extra interested in house-y things. I got sucked into the black hole that is Retronaut the other day and I came across an IKEA catalog from 1965. Naturally, I had to peek.

Take a look at this stuff. What do you notice about it?

It doesn't look that dated! Well, the accessories and rugs do, but the furniture itself is so versatile! I'm drooling over the last two rooms especially. I know retro styles are back in a big way, so that's part of why this stuff still looks great, but I think it's also good design. Look at the white bookcases. You could literally have those in your house for.ev.er. and they would never look bad. Ditto that leather armchair and the white dining set.

Basically, I'm surprised. Maybe I shouldn't be, because they've obviously been in business this long for a reason, but I am. Shame on me. I shouldn't doubt the blue and yellow palace.

So whaddya think? Are you pleasantly surprised at this too? Would you want stuff like this in your house? What's your favorite piece?