Sunday, 26 May 2013

Weekends are for riding tricycles!

We hit up an antique farm in Dundas Ontario this weekend, it's only about an hour outside of Toronto, and it was a beautifully sunny day for a drive out to the country. I almost bought a vintage tricycle with a huge basket for my groceries... Thankfully Andy was there to talk me out of my moment of delirium. He's right, the basket is waaaay too small. ;)

I did find an amazing Mad Men desk clock that actually tick tocks and a bunch of tiny gnomes that I am going to convert into place card holders for my "Hangin' with my Gnomies" garden party this summer. You'll have to wait to see those gnomies in another post when I give them a make over.

Hope you had a great weekend, get ready for Monday, it's going to be a fabulous week for you, I just know it!

Saturday, 25 May 2013

Summer Gardening Project: Terrariums

My project list for the summer is fast growing. I'd really like to add terrarium making to that list as I love the magic and whimsy of them. I always feel like I'm looking onto another planet, sometimes a rain forest, a dessert, and sometimes, even looking onto the land of little elves.

I also think a terrarium in a beautiful glass vessel will look great as a present or housewarming gift, as I'm always looking for eco conscious and plastic free gifts for friends and family. Terrariums are also practically maintenance free, which make them a great choice for those friends with black thumbs.

In February, I went to the Home and Garden Show with a good friend of mine, and there we saw these amazing little planter/terrarium worlds entered into a competition, I couldn't help but snap some pictures:

I've been reading up on the actual process, and making terrariums seems quite simple, which is why I have to add this to my summer project list (right now, simplicity is a top component of what projects I choose to take on). When I'm ready to make one of these babies, I will go here to follow the steps to make one, and will be sure to post about it. Till then, let me know if there are any eco friendly projects you would like to see me take on this summer.

Monday, 20 May 2013

House Tour: Our Living Room

Our whole bungalow is 1100 square feet. Small, but livable.  Our living room needed to function as a living space, complete with a dining table, as we don't have a separate dining room.

I love pretty things (some may even call it tchotchkes) but I also love a tidy, clean home, so everything has a place and most things serve double functions. I also prefer to buy old and antique, so as not to do more environmental damage by buying new.

Our antique chest/coffee table is used to house our vast collection of wine glasses, and our side chairs (from the Habitat for Humanity ReStore) can be pulled back for more seating around the dining table.
Our antique couch was once unwanted by others and sat with a broken leg, all set for the dumpster. I had the couch cleaned, the leg fixed and even used it for lounge seating at our wedding (the colour was perfect for our theme). I try to only introduce items that we absolutely love and have a meaning to us.

I can't resist the beauty and craftsmanship of Sid Dickens tiles, and am lucky that Andy has been giving these to me as gifts on our shared special occasions.
I love the shape of large glass wine demijohns. Though we don't ferment our own beverages in them, I like to use them as aesthetically appealing vases and natural humidifiers.
 I have a large collection of decorated eggs. The large black and white Ostrich egg was made for Andy and I specifically for our wedding day. The Cigar Tin is from one of our antiquing escapades and the brown floral tile is from an old Victorian house from the 1800's that we bought on Portobello Road in London.

 Our little bar pays homage to the Mad Men era. We bought the typewriter on a road trip to Milwaukee, and the ornate mirror from our favourite antique shop in Volo, Illinois.
 I like to mix old an new. The orange and blue vases are from West Elm, while the flower frogs and light bulb salt and pepper shakers are from antique stores.
I designed this dining table from scrap wood that we salvaged from our office when we first moved into the house. The base is an antique drafting table base that the top is cantilevered upon. Andy rolled up his sleeves and put it together for me in less than a few hours.

This charming little built in cupboard is original to the house. I often wonder what the first item held in there would have been.

I love the look of blue glass telephone insulators, but I am mindful of space and have only limited myself to a maximum collection of four insulators.

Monday, 13 May 2013

Whirlwind Weekend

These past few days have been so crazy that I have a few different things to fill you in on.

Friday Night: Andy and I had a date at the Art Gallery of Ontario to check out a new exhibit.  Now we really want to go to Florence. Seriously, we couldn't help feeling like it was time for another European get away.  After the exhibit, we had an awesome dinner at Sambuca Grill, even though we were originally supposed to eat at Frank.  See my Frank rant here.

Saturday Morning: Got up early and headed to the gym, cause I'm workin' on my fitness... then went to the Home Depot to buy a gagillion plants for the garden. Spent 2 hours in the backyard planting flowers, and I'm so happy that with the turnout. In the afternoon I started and finished my first sewing project ever.  My awesome MIL gave me a brand new sewing machine and lessons and I decided to create a couple of outdoor cushions for the patio furniture. Loving the end results.
I used 100% cotton fabric in stripes and florals, and made sure to use an eco friendly filler made from recycled plastic bottles.

Saturday Night: Andy taught me how to play beer pong right before we headed to a housewarming party/beer pong party.  Our friends bought a lovely home and it was so nice to see them so happy.  Andy and I had to leave for another good friend's birthday, but not before winning all three of our beer pong matches. Good to see my hand-eye coordination come in handy for something.

Sunday Morning: We headed to Andy's parents' place to make his mom some brunch for Mother's Day.  We made eggs, chicken bacon (74% less fat), whole wheat french toast (with almond milk instead of regular milk) served with a fresh sugarless strawberry syrup we made on the stove and transported with a mason jar. Freshly squeezed orange juice was also on the menu.
Sunday Afternoon: Got in some training by doing this 20 minute HIIT Tabata workout by Fitness Blender:

Sunday Night: We made our way over to a sushi restaurant to celebrate my mum and sisters for being such great mamas. I ate way too much food. Right before we arrived at the restaurant, the temperature dropped dramatically, the skies opened up, and a hail storm took over.  So odd, the weather has been summer-like for the past two weeks, and now that I've planted flowers, there is a frost warning... just my luck, check out this quick photo I snapped up en route. Crazy huh?

This week: I have some new recipes and craft projects I'm working on and I am hosting a dinner party for some of Andy's colleagues. It's another busy few days, but that just means more things to blog about!

Have a great week!

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Awesome Snail Mail: Statement Jewelry

I opened our mailbox and found me a belated birthday present from one of my three awesome sisters.  She has great taste and knows that I'm obsessed with neon colours (I'm crazy about Neon Pink). I can't wait to wear it!

Chunky, statement necklaces are so versatile and so in right now. They can take a relaxed outfit to a whole new level. Here is some style inspiration from two of my favourite bloggers (photos below are the property of the perspective blog linked to each photo)

Monday, 6 May 2013

Wedding Wear: What to Wear as a Guest

Every spring I watch our mailbox fill with a plethora of wedding invitations. Garden weddings, grand banquet balls and artsy gallery nuptials all have the same common denominator, they all require killer outfits.

This year the five weddings I am attending will require five completely different dresses as a lot of the same guests and friends will be at all of them. Trying to find one dress to wear to a wedding is hard to do, but imagine having to come up with five separate looks.

I've decided on a silhouette and I love to wear colour (wearing black to a wedding just seems wrong to me) so I've decided on five great knee lengths that will look ladylike and lovely.

Combine all of these looks with shiny, freshly blow dried hair, and you've got yourself some wedding guest winners.

Gucci knee length dress, 1,525 CAD / Monsoon dress, 175 CAD / Coast knee length dress, 180 CAD / Peacock blue dress, 94 CAD / Mary Portas shift dress, 155 CAD / Manolo Blahnik blue high heel shoes, 975 CAD / Badgley Mischka gray sandals, 330 CAD / Badgley Mischka , 215 CAD / Dune spiked heel shoes, 135 CAD / Michael Antonio shoes, 40 CAD / Alexander McQueen clutch, 2,385 CAD / Bottega Veneta handbag, 1,395 CAD / Nine West clutch, 70 CAD / Satin evening bag, 31 CAD / Turquoise handbag / Sapphire earrings, 13,880 CAD / Astley Clarke round diamond earrings, 780 CAD / Blue Nile fresh water pearl earrings, 370 CAD / Chalcedony earrings, 110 CAD / Amrita Singh earrings, 76 CAD / Flower brooch, 16 CAD / Open Peony Corsage , Pale Pink, 16 CAD
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