A place for Everything Mudroom

I am Chez Sharah’s guest blogger today and sister!  We moved into our 1987 home two years ago and we have been slowly renovating.  When you came in from the garage originally, you came into this empty room that the previous owners used as an office:

It had some sad hooks on the wall

It had some sad hooks on the wall

It was holding all the random things we didn't have a spot for when we unpacked

It was holding all the random things we didn’t have a spot for when we unpacked

When we looked at the house I knew right away that it would be our mudroom to keep everyone organized.  So we had it painted the rest of the house color and left it sitting for 8 months.

Meanwhile, next door was our cramped “laundry space” in the powder room in a dark closet:

It was dark and had no room to sort or fold the laundry

It was dark, and there was no place to sort or fold the laundry

Fast forward 8 months where the renovation began with moving the washer and dryer next door to our empty room.  This required a plumber to move the pipes over, electrician to put in new wiring, and even a new dryer vent cut to the outside of the house.  These are a few pictures of the moving process:

Hole in the wall to move the plumbing and electrical over

Hole in the wall to move the plumbing and electrical over

The wall is repaired and the washer and dryer are moved over

The wall is repaired and the washer and dryer are moved over

Once the washer and dryer were moved over, it was time for the cabinets:

Cabinets were built to the ceiling to give optimum storage

Cabinets were built to the ceiling to give optimum storage

Now, I’m sure that I took more pictures, but I couldn’t find them, so let’s get straight to the good stuff, shall we?  The final product:

Washer and dryer tucked under a countertop, deep sink for handwashing clothes, or filling car washing buckets, a spot for my laundry basket, and an organization station for all those papers!

Washer and dryer tucked under a countertop, deep sink for handwashing clothes, and filling car washing buckets, a spot for my laundry basket, and an organization station for all those papers!

The upper cupboards hold the off season items, and the hooks and drawers hide everything.  The big cabinet holds the ironing board.

The upper cupboards hold the off season items, and the hooks and drawers hide the everyday stuff. The big cabinet holds the ironing board.

Full view of the room, and yes, I made that roman blind!

Full view of the room, and yes, I made that roman blind!

One thing you can’t see in any of these pictures was the closet.  Before the renovation, it was the basic 80’s closet with a shelf at the top and a long bar across for coats.  I had the cabinet maker rip it out and make me very specific shelves.

Lots of shelves for shoes and a very small area for coats since we keep our coats in our lockers on the hooks

Lots of shelves for shoes and a very small area for coats since we keep our coats in our lockers on the hooks

Now back to the old laundry room.  There was not a lot of shelving  or closet space on our main floor, so I had the cabinet maker also build me shelves:

Front view of the closet

Front view of the closet

Side view of the closet

Side view of the closet.  Sometimes the teacher in me happens to shine through with organized pencils, and markers!

The next step for our renovations is to add a light in the closet above and completely renovate the powder room.  Thanks for reading and happy renovating!

Stairway to Heaven (and Delores)

There is one more room to share upstairs – the spare bathroom. It’s kind of small on it’s own though so I thought I’d throw our new stairway in this post too. If you are wondering about the title of this post, we named this bathroom “Delores” because my husband and I kept getting confused when referring to it or the ensuite. I suggested we name it and that’s what my husband came up with. Does that make us odd? Possibly.
Anyway, here are the before pictures:

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So “oak”ed out!!
And here is what the stairs/Delores look like now:
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IMG_3581 We tried to colour match the banister and the posts to the existing hardwood floor. The balusters are Benjamin Moore’s “Cloud White” and the walls are Benjamin Moore’s “Stonington Gray”.
We replaced everything in Delores but the bathtub which was still in good condition:
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And just because I can’t resist, here is a sneak peek of the nursery theme:

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We aren’t finding out the gender so I had to pick something that would work for a boy or a girl. I have lots of ambitious projects for the nursery. Hopefully, they all come to fruition before baby is born!

Thanks for reading!

 

Master Bedroom Update

I am slowly making progress on decorating the master bedroom. Here’s what it looked like the last time I blogged about it:

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I am hoping to get the master decorated and fully furnished before moving onto the nursery. When we first moved in, I was going to go with a taupe, cream, and grey colour scheme. I just felt it wasn’t interesting enough though so I scouted out a fabric that could be a jumping off point for a new scheme.
I found this:

Courtesy of tonicliving.ca

And my new colour scheme was born: navy, grey, blue, white, and a hit of chartreuse!
I bought some new throw pillows for the bed and had some custom drapes made. These were both courtesy of Tonic Living which is fast becoming my favourite place to visit on the internet!
Here’s what the master looks like now:
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IMG_3542 IMG_3546And I replaced the console in this corner with this old desk from my university days:
IMG_3547This piece was in the guest room that will eventually be the nursery so I am slowly dismantling the room. I have plans for the desk but that will come in another post!
We ordered a sectional sofa for the bedroom back in January and we’re still waiting for it to arrive! Once the room is totally finished, I will share another update.

Thanks for reading!

Seven Minutes in Heaven

You actually only need one minute in my closet to realize you’re in heaven!
This is the first time that the hubby and I have shared closet space. In our first home, the master had two closets and in our last home, I kept all my clothes and accessories in an entirely separate room. But, after six years of the marriage, the time had finally to come to share a closet!
As mentioned in my previous posts, we took space from the master bedroom and bathroom to increase the overall size of the closet. The result was totally worth it – we both have a lot of space and room to grow into it (i.e. I can buy more shoes and clothes, right honey?)!
We did a “his” and “hers” space, using the closet from Sex and the City 2 as inspiration. We worked with our cabinet maker to get the exact  look and function we envisioned.
Here’s a couple before shots of the closet:

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And here’s what the closet looks like now ( I tidied it up just for you guys):

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Andrew’s side is panelled entirely in walnut. His drawer fronts are made from glass and the pulls are stainless steel.

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We went more feminine on my side with painted white cabinetry and crystal knobs. I also incorporated open shelving to display my jewellery and my shoes. My cabinet maker suggested I add in the mirrors, bench, and little drawers to the awkward space at the entrance of the closet – those little drawers have actually come in handy for storing all my extra makeup! I planned on making a cushion for the bench, but right now that area just tends to collect junk!
I have one more room to share up stairs and then we’ll move onto the main floor which is where some more dramatic renos took place!

As always, thanks for reading!

4th Annual Wine Pairing Evening

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It has become a tradition in our household to host a dinner/wine pairing evening with some of our closest friends. In fact, I blogged about one such night back in this post. My husband and I take care of the main courses and dessert (along with wine pairings) and the other two couples bring an appetizer/other course with a bottle of wine.

We hosted our 4th dinner the other night and below are some photos of the amazing food/wine we consumed over the course of the evening. I, of course, had to abstain from the wine so I’ll just have to make up for it next year, right?!

Appetizer Course:

Assortment of Bruschetta paired with Mateus Rose´ Wine (courtesy of our friends, Kevin and Steph)

IMG_3495From left to right: (1) Garlic tomato bruschetta with roasted garlic cream cheese and parmesan; (2) Bacon and caramelized onion marmalade with brie bruschetta; (3) Prosciutto and basil pesto with mozzarella bruschetta; and (4) Avocado, smoked salmon, and red onion bruschetta

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Main Course

Prosciutto wrapped stuffed pork loin accompanied by rough mashed potatoes and warm brussel sprout salad with apple and walnuts paired with 2007 Wolf Blass Black Label Cabernet Sauvignon Shiraz Malbec Blend – that was a mouthful!

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Pork Recipe
Potato Recipe

Cheese/Charcuterie Course

Assortment of cheeses served with prosciutto, peppered salami, homemade pickled beets, and olives  paired with a 2013 Comoloco Jumilla Red Wine  (courtesy of our friends/sister and bro-in-law, Karissa and James)

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Dessert Course:

Molten chocolate cakes with whipped cream and berries paired with a 2012 Inniskillin Vidal Icewine

IMG_3492 IMG_3487Chocolate Cake Recipe

A couple years back, the six of us broke out in unison to Flo Rida’s “Good Feeling.” This year, it was Third Eye Blind’s “Jumper” along with some other massively cool hits from 1999. Yep, there’s no mistaking it – we are definitely Millennials a.k.a. Gen Y-ers a.k.a. Da Best….too far?

It was a great night with great company and conversation! I hope some of you think of starting this tradition too!

Thanks all for reading!

I’m back…I think…I hope!

I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m a shitty blogger (sorry to my mom and mother-in-law for the foul language but it’s the most appropriate adjective here). My last post was over six over months ago. That’s really not acceptable, is it? Good thing I am not trying to make money at this blogging thing!

I’ll be honest with you folks and tell you that today is the first day that I felt like blogging in a long time. This is not because I’ve lost interest in decorating, renovating, organizing, or the blog itself. The truth is that the last several months have been a little rough because I am with child!

I am 21 weeks pregnant and, well, I felt really shitty (again, sorry mom and M-I-L) for about 14-15 weeks. It felt like eternity! When I finally got over the nausea/morning sickness, I still didn’t have the energy to tackle projects to blog about or just blog period. Apparently, growing a human being takes a lot of energy! I am beginning to feel like myself again and am back to tackling some projects around the house – hallelujah!

I still haven’t finished sharing pictures of our new house which I will continue to do over the next few months. We are also doing some work in our backyard this spring and, of course, there is the nursery which I will be decorating in the summer when I go on maternity leave. So, there will be a lot to share with you!

Anyway, that is the update from Chez Sharah and thanks to all who are continuing to read despite my absence!

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Here we are, showing off the baby bump (there is actually a decent sized bump there – just hard to tell in this photo!). As you can see, we take ourselves pretty seriously 😉

Stay Tuned!

DIY Autumn Banner

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While browsing fall wreath ideas on Pinterest, I saw a picture of a black and white fall banner with gold sparkly letters on this blog.
I thought the banner was so cute and decided that it wouldn’t be that difficult to recreate it. Here are the supplies/tools you will need to complete the project:
  • Card Stock (or scrapbook paper) in a variety of patterns
  • Construction paper in coordinating colour (unless you use card stock to begin with)
  • Block letters (I used wood ones from Michaels. Cardboard would work too.)
  • Spray Paint
  • Glitter
  • Ribbon or twine
  • Glue (spray adhesive and regular glue)
  • Scissors
  • Ruler
  • Pencil
  • Glue Gun
  • X-acto knife or hole punch
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The Letters
Choose the message for your banner. I went with “Thankful.” I also made one for my mom and she chose “Give Thanks.” Tip: I would go with a shorter message because it’s less work!
Spray paint your letters outside or in well ventilated area in your desired colour of choice. I placed an old sheet underneath the letters and painted in my garage with the door open. I sprayed two coats and waited about 15 minutes between the coats (*read the directions on your can of spray paint to see what it recommends about multiple coats). Wait 15 minutes after the last coat of spray paint.

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Spray the painted letters with an adhesive spray. I used Elmer’s Adhesive Spray. Pour a generous amount of glitter over each letter. I chose glitter the same colour of my spray paint. You do what you want though. I did this over looseleaf paper so that I could roll up the paper and pour the leftover glitter back into the container. I poured A LOT of glitter on each letter to make sure they were adequately covered.  Let the glitter dry for at least 15 minutes. I also did this step out in my garage so I didn’t have a glittery mess in my house.

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The Banner
While the glitter is drying, begin your banner. Draw your banner shape on the construction paper or cardstock using a ruler and cut out to the shape to create the banner template.
Using your template, trace the shape onto your patterned paper and cut it out. Draw and cut out enough “flags” for each letter of your message, taking care to alternate the patterned paper. I also had to cut out a flag for each letter onto the construction paper. My patterned paper was scrapbook and it was too flimsy to support the wooden letters. If you are using cardstock or a sturdier paper, you probably don’t need to do this. I then glued the construction paper to the patterned paper using a few dollops of Mod Podge.
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Cut two slits in the top corners of each flag. For my first banner, I used an X-acto knife and, I’m not gonna lie, it was painful. This was the most tedious part of the project. For my mom’s banner, I bought a rectangular hole punch which made the job marginally easier. The easiet thing would be to use a regular hole punch with a thinner ribbon or twine. BUT, I liked the asthetic of the slits with thicker ribbon better.
Putting It All Together
Bring your letters in on a paper plate until they are ready to be used because they will shed glitter….everywhere!
Using a glue gun, glue each letter to a flag.
Thread the ribbon through each slit of the flags. I used black grosgrain ribbon – 5/8″ for my banner and cream satin ribbon – 5/8″ for my mom’s.

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To hang, I kept the ends of the ribbon really long and stuck them under heavy items I had on my mantle. You could loop and tie the ends of the ribbon and hang them over 3M hooks as well.
That’s it. That’s all. The whole project will take you about 3 hours. I am also a perfectionist and was watching Californication the whole time so it might only take you 2!
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Thanks for reading and happy fall y’all!