Tuesday, 15 April 2014

going graphic | laundry room artwork

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So the person who made the plans for our house probably had a shiny diploma hanging in her/his office. Unfortunately that diploma was no guarantee for plain old common sense. There is an array of strange things in our house - mostly sockets in very odd places - and this one really takes the price. The electrical box in the laundry room is placed right smack in the middle of the only wall that is not covered with cabinets. It's ugly and impractical and it has been bugging me since we moved in. So that was in 2006. I don't always move quickly. Ha!

I painted the wall last summer when I grew tired of all the white in the room, and I really liked the dark grey but the white door for the electrical box was sticking out like a sore thumb. So I created three pieces of artwork and framed them in white Ribba frames from IKEA.

The laundry when walking into the room

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The wall in question
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The three picture frames
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I might not love it but I think it's at least better than before. I printed the artwork myself on Epson Matte Presentation Paper so if and when I want to change it out it won't be all that much of a heartache. So now the next thing on my list for that room is to change out the hideous light fixtures. I am thinking old industrial looking lamps.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

photography | wall art thoughts

We have a wall of photographs in our house that is supposed to be changed up every now and then. The thing is, it has been changed once since we moved in. Once. That's since October 2006. Clearly not what we had in mind. Granted, many of the photos on the wall are perfectly lovely. Others went on there temporarily because the frames had to be filled. Then that temporarily turned into forever. What can I say, time flies.

(Sorry for the crappy picture, I took it yesterday with my phone when there was far too little light in the house - damned winter)
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But lately I've been thinking that I want to take them all down and put up one big photo instead. I like the idea of one huge oversized photo with a fat passepartout in a nice simple silvery frame, covering a large part of that wall. Kind of like this.

I have been looking for a while for a suitable photo in our EHDs and surprisingly it seems more difficult than could be expected after years and years of clicking that camera button. But maybe, just maybe this one of a street in Rome could be a contender? Feedback is very much welcome!

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Friday, 1 November 2013

home edition | graphic guestroom

So I've been wanting for a while to change things up a little in our guestroom/husband's whisky room (the fact that he's drunk most of it hasn't changed our name for the room). When we moved the big red rug to his "mancave" it got very bare and the need was apparent.

So before the room was very red:
(Please ignore the numbers, the pics were from this post)

I really wanted to go with a graphic pattern to bring life to the room, and when the husband nixed turquoise/mint/teal colour scheme we decided to go with black and white. We really didn't do much; I bought a few new cushion covers, a blanket, and a rug which made up 90% of the change. It just needed two not so minor details to finish it off. I love these two details! The absolutely gorgeous print by Gennifer Bursett that I had printed and then framed, and the hat lamp that we created ourseslves by making holes in hats and putting light fixtures in them. I think it's so fun and quirky. We didn't have any smaller light bulbs at home, but those will be changed ASAP.

So after the room is very graphic and a little more up to date:
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I think the blond wood and the tan sofa seems to look better with the black and white colour scheme than with the red as I think it was just too much warmth in that small room. It feels cleaner, roomier and airier now. I am very happy!

Sunday, 15 April 2012

home edition | chalk

So this post is long overdue. Or rather, the project that the post is about is long overdue. Way back when I got that quote wall decal in our entry, the husband started a project as well; painting a wall with chalk paint. Well, as it turns out following instructions isn't really his strong suit so it all ended up a disaster with big chalk lumps all over the wall. Fast forward about a month and a half, and I finally lost patience in waiting for him to fix it, so I made him get  a board the size of the wall for me to paint.

The board was put up about a week and a half ago, and I am loving it. I have wanted a chalk wall for ages because I hate having little notes and stuff all over the place. I hate forgetting things equally much. So now I am a happy camper, and I think the narrow wall between the entry and the kitchen (actually, it's the side of a kitchen cabinet) looks super smart.

From the entry

From the kitchen

Up close

So far we haven't filled it with stuff. I kind of like the white space (or should I say black).

Sunday, 5 February 2012

wall decor | finally on the wall

Writing this post is making me truly happy. After many trials and tribulations with emails back and forth with the print company, and a lost package at the post office, I was finally able to get the wall decor that I designed based on a Pinterest find and posted about a while ago .

And I am thrilled with the finished result. I love how striking the entry has become compared to what it used to look like. Of course, we spent a weekend painting the house white a few weeks back and that helps too with the crisp feel that white has.

Alright, so this is before

And this is now

Better, no? I am very happy. I was also able to pick up both the lantern and the chevron door mat for practically nothing at a sale on hm.com just before Christmas.

We also started another DIY project yesterday, but the husband messed it up and so that remains a work in progress for a little while longer. I hope I can share soon (as soon as he fixes it, that is, LOL).

Monday, 19 September 2011

please sit at my table

At the beginning of August my sister and her boyfriend came from Italy to visit (it's been long enough that she has been living there for her to not say she is coming home when she comes here), and we had a little welcome party with the family at our house. I set the table for dinner in a soft colour scheme with a bit of a traditional feel to it.

Pretty linens in a beige colour with floral tone on tone embroideries set the foundations.
I used store bought paper doilies under the plates. I had wanted to use crochet ones but I didn't have any that were big enough. I think they work well enough, but had it been a fancy party I would have gone out of my way to find the real deal.
I made paper bows, following these instructions, from scrapbook paper from the Bella Bella collection by Carina Gardner.
I put silk roses in small vases with lace covers in the center of the table.
As it was in the middle of the summer I opted out of candles, it would only get too hot and we certainly didn't need them for light.

I generally like to keep the table fairly clutter free. Sure, it's pretty with lots of stuff on there, but it's totally not practical if you want bottles, salt & pepper shakers, condiments and so on ready available for the guests. This was especially true for this dinner, with wine lovers, beer drinkers, and coke addicts in the family.

I liked the outcome. It was simple and down to earth, calm, pretty, comforting, and it reminded me, in an updated 21st century kind of way, of the kind of table settings I saw when I was a child.

Saturday, 2 April 2011

The house love continues

The house is an open plan house which I really love. I love the large kitchen/dining/living area. Not only does it mean that the house is very light and airy, but it is also perfect for communicating. Even when it's just the two of us we can still talk to eachother when the husband is cooking and I'm watching telly in the sofa. Of course, the large open area is perfect for entertaining.

The dining area

1. Our large table that folds out to seat twelve is a complete life saver when we have many guests. The padded chairs are super comfy which means that long meals are no problem at all.
2. The big windows facing both west and south ensure that the house is flooded with light. The floor to ceiling windows ar,e granted, a pain to clean but I can live with them being dirty. It's not going to kill me.
3. The vicinity to the kitchen is optimal when having sit down dinners. Serving is a breeze and the island can be used as a buffé.
Living area

1. The wallpaper on that one wall is very clever. The swirly pattern is a golden/bronze metallic that changes depending on the light. From some angles and in some lights it isn't even visible and then during other parts of the day and from other angles it stands out in a 3D like effect.
2. The photo wall is perfect for displaying my photography. We change the photos out every now and then. Mostly then actually. We've changed them out twice since we moved in. I still stop and look a the photos sometimes when I walk past.
3. The oak parquet flooring is a beautiful warm honey colour that seems to get only more beautiful with time. It kind of sucks that it's so soft because there are already knicks and marks in it but I guess I just have to suck it up and accept that it's part of every day life.

1. Our large brown leather sofas are perfect for watching films and falling asleep. We chose them not only for their sharp look but also because they are so comfy lying in. They are also wide enough that we can lie together in one.
2. The stools offer valuable storage as well as extra seating. They hold toys for our younger guests and cooking magazines.
3. The thick blanket is perfect for chilly winter nights. My sister in law gave it to me for Christmas a few years ago and the only chance for someone else to use it is to claim it when I'm not at home.

1. The big mirror reflects the whole living area and makes the room look much bigger than it is (as if that is needed). I also love the rough edge of the frame.
2. The books are placed colourized rather than alphabetized because I can't stand the cluttered look of books in different colours next to eachother. The look is also broken up and lightened by the white doors and the glass bowl. I had to put away 75% of my books (which was already halved by a previous weeding) when we bought this shelf. It hurt but surface proved more important than being intellectual. How shallow of me, lol!
3. The lamp shaped like a bonsai tree is a favourite of mine. It has a bunch of tiny lights that makes the lamp look like a floating tree at night. It's difficult to explain but it's just gorgeous.
4. The big vase holds wine corks. Our plan is to fill that bugger. I'm realizing it will take a while since the little sliver of a layer is the product of about eight months worth of drinking. But it looks cool I think.

1. The suede panel curtains are sleek and luxurious at the same time. I am so not a frilly person (which might not come as a surprise to you at all, lol) and these are the perfect match for me.
2. The large glass table with storage underneath holds a lot of books and all our techie gadgets but still manages to look clean and tidy. The glass gets dusty quickly but is super easy to clean with some glass polish and a paper towel. I will cry when the glass gets so scratched that we have to replace the table.
3. The candle holder on the wall was purchased at an outlet and looked like crap. It was black and the glass cups to hold the tea lights were so tacky. But I spray painted it silver and changed the cups out and all of a sudden it was elegant and pretty. I love the look of the candles glowing on the wall when we light them.

Alright that's about 50% of the house covered. Next house post will cover the bedrooms.

Oh, and I also created a layout!

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Supplies: Meet & Greet Paper Pack and Elements Pack, Moments Elements Pack, It's a Start Templates 5 (coming soon) all by In the Making Design.
Staples by Vinnie Pierce.
Fonts are Century Gothic and Another Typewriter.
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Friday, 1 April 2011

Serious house love

We moved into our house about four and a half years ago and it's been a love story from the start. I adore the comfort and simple elegance of our home. Having grown up and lived all my life in apartments I never thought for a minute that I would be a "house person" at all but I am feeling like I'm in the absolute right place in a way that I have never felt before. I can only chalk it down to it being the perfect match. Of course, had I won millions and millions on the lottery I would probably be in a bigger and more spectacular place, but let's live in reality here, lol.

So despite all this love and lah di dah, I think we all go through bouts of just plain tired. I do when we haven't had time to clean and keep the house tidy. Those are the times when I feel like just packing up and staying in a perfect hotel. If I happen to have spent time perusing Pinterst at the same time I feel like so even more. The other week was such a time and guess what I did to get out of the funk? Well, let me tell you. I really like this idea. Here's what I did. I whipped the camera out and shot a bunch of photos of all the rooms in the house and once I had loaded them in I listed things I really, really like of each room. After having gone through them all I felt quite differently about our home.

Please allow me to share with you! Things I love about our home!
(ok, brace yourselves , I will have to break this up into several posts because I discovered I love a lot)

The entry

1. The granite floor is so easy to clean and the rough surface hides dirt quite well which means we don't have to mop it all the time.
2. The sliding glass doors to the wardrobe makes the space seem bigger and reflects a lot of light from the windows in the kitchen (off the left edge of this photo).
3. The huge painting, that the husband painted when we had just moved in especially for that wall, is absolutely stunning and exactly our style.
4. The three windows in the entrance door lets even more light through which means we have ligh coming in from all four sides of our house.

1. The bucket with the fluffy slippers for guests is a popular feature of the entry. It was one of the first ideas I had when we signed the contract to build.
2. The hand written text (by me) on the wall says: "Come as you are, leave as you became". It encompasses the feeling of freedom and relaxation that I want guests to feel when they come to visit us.
3. The photos on the wall were taken with our first DSLR and back when we were completely clueless when it came to photography. But they represent a beginning of a lifestyle - one as a photographer (not professionally of course but I do consider myself a photographer).

The kitchen

1. We chose to go with aluminum doors for the fridge/freezer instead of stainless steel. This is great because finger prints and smudges are much less of a problem. It meant that we had to have two towers with a fridge/freezer combo (they didn't have one large frigde and one large freezer) which we thought would be a problem at first. It ended up being a huge plus though. We don't use the right freezer, which means less using less energy, and we can use one fridge entirely for drinks (wine, beer, soda and so on) which means we can have the temperature a little higher without it affecting the food.
2. The cutting board, cut from a solid wood counter top, covers the whole width of the island and this is perfect for a household where food is a huge priority. I was against it at first but the husband stood his ground and now I love it.
3. We eat most of our meals sitting beside eachother at the island. It feels relaxed and we get to be close to eachother. It's also a perfect place for me to sit and sip some wine on Friday nights when the husband is cooking.

1. The magnet rack of professional knives used to scare the heck out of me. Now that I have started cooking on my on I appreciate having the perfect knife available to me.
2. I don't drink coffee but I love the idea of the espresso machine. I love how metropolitan and Mediterranean it makes me feel owning one.
3. The sleek look of the the cabinets is perfect for a semi minimalist. I sometimes wish we had gone with white, and I think we will once it's time to redo the kitchen further down the road, but most days I'm quite ok with the look of our kitchen.

Alright, let me break it up here. I'll be back with the dining area and living room tomorrow.

Sunday, 31 October 2010

Project 52, celebrating autumn

This post features two  weeks of beautiful autumn inspiration.

We got some new plants for the pot outside of the front door and added a colourful pumpkin. I like how homely and warm it feels.

#43, 2010
The husband celebrated his birthday yesterday with our parents and (some) siblings and we went all out with an autumn theme, both with decorations and food (mmm, pumpkin soup). I really liked doing this one.

I will do a separate post on the table setting but here's another photo of the table.

Have a great week everyone, check back tomorrow as I have new stuff going live in the shop! :D

Sunday, 31 January 2010

Photo wall how to - Linda style

disclaimer: this tutorial works for frames that have holes in the back for the nail, if your frames are strung you will need to find another way to group them and hang them straight

So I said a while ago that I would come back and post my way of getting the grouping of the frames on my photo wall the way I wanted it. Here it is. I don't claim to have found the fastest way in the world and I am sure there are lots of great ways out there to hang picture frames in straight lines. I just want to share how I did it.

1. Get a roll of cheap-o wrapping paper that you don't want to use for beautiful gifts. I am a hoarder when it comes to wrapping paper and had lots to choose from.

2. Roll the paper out on the floor so that it's long enough to cover the wall  you want to hang your pictures on and cut it off. If your wall is wider than the paper roll out new lengths and tape together lenghtwise until you have a piece that is wide enough. For me it was enough with two lenghts. You don't have to bother measuring or making sure that the lenghts are taped together straight. You just have to make sure the whole piece is as wide or wider than your wall.

3. Now place your wrapping paper on the floor with the back side facing up.

4. Use a ruler to draw a line across the top of the paper. This will act as a guiding line for your frames, and later also to make sure that you get them straight on the wall. Then take out your frames and start placing them on the wrapping paper, trying out different combinations to find a look that appeals to you. At this stage you don't have to measure for alignment and exact distances. Your main objective right now is to find a grouping that you like. As I used identical frames all I had to do was to decide how many I wanted on each row and how to arrange it so that there was a balance between portrait and landscape photos. Take your time and step back from the floor from time to time so that you can see the whole thing from a distance.

5. When you are happy with the grouping of your frames it's time to whip out the ruler and pencil again. If you are like me - anal - it's important that the distance between each frame is the same. Here's where the ruler comes in handy. If you have problems keeping numbers in your head like I do sometimes write down the measurements that you decide on, both between frames on one row and between two rows. If you have decided to go with a less strict pattern for your grouping you might not feel as compelled to measure and align. That is fine too. It means one less thing to worry about.

6. Once you have your first frame measured and aligned with the top line you drew earlier then trace along the sides of the frame. Repeat with the rest of the frames. If you are going with a free form grouping then trace along the frames after placing them where you want them. This step is important. Do not skip this step!

7. When you have traced all the frames it's time to remove them from the wrapping paper. Pick up one frame and have a look at the back. Measure the distance from the edges to the hole where your nail will go once you hang it. If you are like me you will want to write these down too. If you are using different frames you need to repeat this step for each different frame. Now on each of the the traced frame lines on the wrapping paper use your measurements to mark the center of the hole. This step is also important. Do not skip this step either!

8. OK, by this time you should have lots of traced lines on your wrapping paper with marks for the holes inside each traced line. If you do, you are good to go. If you don't, please go back and review.

9. Now it's time to get the wrapping paper up on the wall. If the wall is very wide you will probably need help from a second set of hands. Either that or you are a stubborn type-A personality who are adamant on doing everythin yourself, and perfectly too. That was me. Tape the wrapping paper to the wall, making sure that the top line is completely level. You can either use a level or use your ruler to measure from the top of the wall (assuming your ceiling isn't round).

10. When the paper is up on the wall step back and look for a while at the lines. This will be how your wall will look. If you aren't happy with the look, take the paper down and start from the beginning. If you like it go get your hammer and nails.

11. Put a nail right where each mark for the holes are. Make sure the nail goes in at the center of the mark. Once you have all the nails in the wall you are ready to take the wrapping paper down. If the paper is thick and sturdy you need to be gentle so that you don't rip the nails off as well. If you used really thin and cheap paper from IKEA, again like me, you can just rip. You will now have perfectly placed nails with no marks on the wall to clean up or paint over.

12. Take your frames and place them on your nails.

13. Step back and admire your work.

And that's it folks. Easy peasy, right? ;)

Sunday, 24 January 2010

Framed art for the office

A little while ago I decided to spruce up one of the office walls a little with some home made art. The colours in that room are grey, silver, and red and I have somewhat of a theme going with circles (and dots) and letters (with an emphazis on R). So I made two pieces in red and framed them in silver frames. I haven't gotten round to hanging them yet - seriously need to get the drill out this week - but today I propped them up on a picture shelf to at least take some photos of them.

The first one I made all by my self by putting together red dots in different sizes into the letter R. I am so in love with how this came out. The funny thing is that the other day I saw a snippet of a rerun of an Oprah episode and there was a logo of her O that consisted of dots in different colours. I swear I made mine before I saw that though! ;)

The second piece I made is of the Swedish alphabet in different fonts, with a few numbers and a snowflake at the end, just for good measure. I am thinking about redoing this. I am not 100% in love with it. But yeah, it will do for now.


I have a bunch of things to catch up on; I know I promised the wordart last week, two P52 photos, and also some ideas for Valentine's that I wanted to share with you, as well as a mini tutorial for my way of doing a photo wall, but I am putting in a lot of overtime at work at the moment, so please have some patience with me. :D

Monday, 18 January 2010

Photo wall change

Sometimes even I have a stroke of genius. Like when I decide to look through my IKEA catalogues and be inspired. I did that four or five years ago and was really inspired to start a photo wall. We lived at a different place back then but we decided to bring the idea with us to this house when we moved just little over three years ago.

Being the lover of "simple" that I am, and let's face, plain anal about order and "clean", used 19 identical frames, all B/W photos, and arranged them in a grouping that I personally thought was appealing. But, that was three+ years ago, and to be honest both my photography and my editing skills have improved vastly since then. It was time for an update.

We discussed me doing something artsy and creative but in the end we (or I rather) came back to the simple, clean style that I want to define our house. So I simply printed some new photos and changed out the old ones.



What I want to convey with this post is that you don't need to do elaborate stuff to get a good end result. You don't need to do LOs, or books, or hybrid projects with all your photos. You don't need a lot of fuss. Sometimes just printing the photos and putting them in frames can be more than enough and very effective.

I love walking past this wall - it's on the way from the living room to our bedroom so I pass it at least twice a day - and see people we love, or a place we've been to, or a detail of something beautiful in our lives. I love to have guests go over and stand there for a while, striking up conversations whether they were there when the photos were taken or not. I love that they are a part of our daily lives and not stuck in in a box or in a book case.

Now you might not like the straight rows that I have. You might not like the uniform frames. You might not want all of your photos in B/W. Well that is the beauty of it, you can do it any which way you like! If you want inspiration, you can check out Decor8 Flickr group. There are plenty of photo wall pictures. Through this group I found Chez Larsson and fell in love instantly. Wow, what a beautiful home. What beautiful ideas.

Oh, and if you need tips on how to get perfectly straight rows like mine for a photo wall just give me a shout. I thought and thought about this for the longest time and came up with a way that works really well if you have enough photos to finish up the photo wall all at once.

Tuesday, 31 March 2009

The office

Alright, as dysfunctional and crazy as we may be in this house from time to time, I do dare say that we are not quite as crazy as the lot on the actual TV show (and if anyone comments here disputing that statement I will have to hunt you down, so be warned, lol).

We do have an office, though. Or at least half an office. How does that work, you ask? Well, our house has three bedrooms. In one, we sleep. The second doubles as a guest and whisky room (and by now you might be thinking that we really are loons, but my husband loves and collects single malt whisky and we keep the bottles in cabinets in that room). The third one doubles as a dressing room and office. I sometimes wish we had another room in the house so that we could have one office and one dressing room. But alas, that is not the case and we're making it work.

The layout of the room was not working perfectly for me. I have stuff. It's not overwhelming, not by my standards at least even if my husband might beg to differ, but there just wasn't enough storage in there. So we moved around a little in there and got some new furniture and knicks and knacks. It's still new but I think we like it better.

The room has a north facing window, so it's not getting a lot of light, and we had kept the colours very uniform; silver and grey with the only exception being the wood of the furniture. So to spice things up a bit I chose to bring in some red.

Coming in the first thing you see are our wardrobes. Yah, you can't see a third of the lot, and yah, I have a lot of clothes. A girl's gotta do what a girl's gotta do.

Looking into the room you see the desk (please excuse the mess in the small shelf at the end, I am hoping to tend to that next weekend). On the desk is the lamp we bought but have not yet put up.

Standing by the desk, looking back towards the door, you see the shelf where I keep all my papers and some of the craft stuff. I plan on writing something fun on the wall above the mirror. I just don't know exactly what yet. Suggestions are welcome.

We chose to cover the glass doors with leftover wallpaper from our bedroom accent wall. The rugs on the floor are actually bath maths, but shhhh, don't tell anyone.

Behind the desk you find the new furniture, which basically are two shelves. Earthmoving, I know. As you can see all the boxes and jars are sitting there ready, waiting for me to fill them with my things. Again, I hope to do this next weekend.

On the wall above the desk we have shelving where we keep important things like cables to old and no longer existing computers and cameras, instruction manuals to said computers and cameras, and other fun things. I am planning on putting three small photo frames in that area right above the desk under the shelves where I can rotate some of my work.

And that's it my friends. My office. It's not like I imagine Martha's home office to be. Heck, it's not even what I would have wanted had not those blasted wardrobes been in the room (I dreamed about a huge island, and a beautiful lace wallpaper covering one wall). But it works. And I guess that is more than enough.