Etsy Designer: Sohomode

I seriously love almost everything Etsy designer sohomode does.  Her choice of prints is wonderful.  Her styles are figure flattering.  I don’t know why I haven’t actually purchased any of these items yet, except that I’m a woefully terrible apparel shopper.   However, I’m determined that the next fashion purchase that I make should be one of these items.  Check out sohomode’s shop HERE.



The $100 house

While watching 20/20 on Friday night, we saw a piece about a small town east of Detroit that’s in the center of the housing crisis.  Houses here are totally abandoned and going for cheap.  It’s exciting to me though that there are some pioneers that are willing to move in and rehabilitate it.  And they’re able to buy a piece of property for only $100 – $500 bucks.  Here’s a LINK to the original story on the ABC News site.

It also takes me back to my Abandoned Houses post about the Detroit area housing situation.  I’m glad to see that there are some people trying to change this.

Playing catch up

I haven’t had a lot of time to post anything lately, so this post is going to play catch up to get you up to speed on where we are at the moment with all things house-related.  Here goes in short order:

I never showed pictures of the final framed versions of the vintage Cuban posters I bought before Christmas.  So here’s what they ended up looking like on my wall.

I bought Ikea frames, but had professional mats cut at the local frame shop.  It saved alot of money and I love how they look going up my stairs!  The one BAD thing you’ll notice is my un-finished paint removal on the stairs.  It’s been a super slow painful process.  Trying to get paint off the curved bannister is trying my patience.  I was considering trying to remove the bannister itself and just get it sent out to get dipped, but I think that would end up damaging it…so in a few weeks I’m going to have to hit the paint removal tools again.  This time, I probably WON’T be using Peel Away.   If any of you have tips [specifically] on removing paint on curvy surfaces, I’d love to hear it!!

On a separate note, N and I upgraded some household tools, finally!  While we were in NYC last week, we went to Home Depot for something completely un-related, but ended up getting a new power drill & saw combo kit.   This 18V set was on sale for only $89!   The  guy working in the tools department was both really knowledgeable and extremely helpful and he recommended it highly…so let’s hope we’re happy with it once we actually get to using it.

Also while away last week, a friend gave me 2 rolls of Graham & Brown wallpaper!  I’ve decided to use it in the back of my dining room wall cabinet.  (Photo via Graham & Brown website.)  Don’t you just love it!!!?!?!

Then on the fun side of things, we went flea marketing today at our favorite haunt!  Cedars Flear Market in Skippack, Pa.  It’s small and local, but I always manage to walk away with a few good things.  Here’s today’s bounty.

For only $30 we got four vintage 50’s refrigerator dishes, a sweet little yellow creamer, and an awesome stitched deer in a carved wooden frame.  I was thinking about Shauna’s post on thrifting when I was buying these items, and proud of myself that all my items went together in color scheme.  Lots of fun bright colors!   (And as a side note, I’ve been looking for refrigerator dishes like these for ages, so I’m thrilled that I finally got a set!!)

Lastly, I’m on the hunt for a rug for the yet-to-be-finished guest room.  We drove all over the place today looking for rugs for both me and N’s mom, but neither of us could find anything.  We’re both picky and cheap.  Haha.   So after a day with no reallllly great deals, I decided to hit up Craigslist and ebay.  So far I’ve found some really great stuff.   I sometimes forget just how great Craigslist is.

Okay guys…that’s it.  I’ll try to be better about posting and not wait so long until next time.  Until then, don’t forget that it’s spring time and you need to start planning for those monthly flea markets!

Magazine Review: Premiere issue of Fresh Home

On my way to California last Friday, I was looking for new magazines [I hadn’t already read] in the airport lounge and saw that they had copies of the new home magazine put out by Reader’s Digest.   I was very excited, considering 3 of my favorite home magazines have just been cancelled.  So of course, I bought the premiere issue of Fresh Home and trotted off to the plane eager to sit down and have a little moment of inspiration.

Unfortunately, the magazine didn’t quite live up to my expectations.  Rather than have lots of great room porn, it ended up being filled with mediocre DIY craft projects and an overdose of random smiley people.   In fact, there were so many random smiley people that I thought it was useful to show you just what I mean.

So maybe I’m being overly picky, but I’d much rather look at great interiors than a bunch of models paid to look like they’re high on happiness.

Yes, there was one or two pics that were okay…but overall it was geared towards the person first dipping their toe  into home design.  With features like “how to choose the right light bulb”, “choosing the right paint brush”, “comparing different countertop options”, “how to load your paint brush”, “how to put together Ready to Assemble furniture” etc…this definitely told me it was NOT going to be replacing Domino.  There was nothing here about style.  It was more about simple, low-budget DIY.  And if I wanted that, I could easily find it on the internet.  I certainly don’t need to pay $5.00 an issue for it.

Needless to say, I’m bummed.  I miss Domino, Country Home, and Cottage Living…and as much as I love design blogs, they don’t take the place of a GREAT hard copy magazine.   May three of my favorite magazines rest in design peace.

Trip to California

I just got back from a work trip in Santa Ynez, California.   It was a lot of fun to get out of the cold Northeast for a few days, but I was busy nonstop while I was there…so unfortunately for you I didn’t get to do much sightseeing or photo-taking.  I did manage to snap a pic of my hotel room in Santa Ynez though.  It was pretty over the top Victorian style (for my taste), so I had to take a pic to document it.   I mean…check out the chandelier and the drapes!??!  It also had a remote control fireplace and a huge white wicker headboard.  (Sorry my photos are so terrible.  I accidentally left my camera battery at home, and had to use my phone for these few images.)


We stayed at the Santa Ynez Inn.  Even though it wasn’t my style, at least the room was spacious and the beds were quite comfortable.  I have to further mention their over-use of gold & brass everywhere too.  I forgot to get pictures of it, but the faucet in the bathroom was actually a golden swan similar to this one!

The majority of the time I was there was spent working, and the nicest thing about the area was the drive to and from the job.  Here’s the my drive in on the morning commute…

Oh, and lastly…I got to meet John Forsythe of Dynasty fame while out for dinner there.  He was completely fabulous and kissed my hand in introduction!  So lovely of him.   He’s still quite a handsome man for someone who’s 90!