How much fabric to buy for drapes?

September 25, 2012

Firstly I’d like to thanks all of you who offered your opinions when I asked for advice about replacing my current dining chairs with my dream chairs. For now I’ve decided to stick with what I have, and spend my money on other things my condo so desperately needs like window coverings.

I’ve lived for two years with absolutely nothing on my windows (gasp!), but before anyone gets too excited,  I overlook the side of a house with no side windows, and I’m on the second floor, so the only way anyone can peer in to see me is if they climb up on the roof next door. I’m not at all worried.

Adding window coverings was on my to do list for 2012, and since we’re nearly at the end of September (how did that happen?) I thought I should probably get started on that item on my list. I think I’ve finally found a fabric I love to make drapes for my living room, but I’m clueless as to how much fabric I need. Can any of you lovely readers help? I’ve tried asking Google, but there seems to be a lot of varying opinions on the subject.

I’ve done some rudimentary photoshopping in the hopes it helps explain what I need. In the picture below you can see I've got a bit of a quirky situation. The window isn't centered on the wall, but I've also got the wall-mounted AC unit just 6" from the window molding. I've also only got about one inch of space between the top of the window molding, and the bottom of the crown molding, so the  curtain rod's placement is decided for me (Yay! No need to figure out how high the drapes need to be hung!)
Living room with dimension lines
Here is what I’m hoping to achieve. They will be mostly decorative but I’d like to be able to close them on occasion when I have guests sleeping over (on my pull-out couch). I will obviously be moving the desk.
Living room with imaginary drapes
Any advice? or a great online resource you’d like to share? The fabric I'm hoping to purchase is about 53" wide (137cm) with a 25"(64cm) vertical repeat. Any help would be appreciated as I want to make sure I order enough fabric, but don’t want to order too much as it would get wasted.

PS - Please excuse the messy bookcase and desk in the pictures above - I'm a bad blogger who didn't hide all the evidence that someone actually lives in my home before taking the pictures.

Before & After

Update your Kitchen Hardware in 5 Easy Steps

September 20, 2012

Update your kitchen hardware in 5 easy steps
Changing door hardware is one of the easiest ways to update a kitchen, or a piece of furniture. If you’re lucky your new hardware will be the same size as your old, so there will be no extra work involved, but on occasion your new pulls or handles may require you to break out your drill.

When I recently updated my kitchen hardware I needed to use my drill and I thought I’d share what worked for me in case you’d love to update yours, but have been a little scared to try given you have to drill holes in your kitchen cabinets!

Tools you’ll need:
  • Drill
  • Drill bit that is the size of your screw
  • Drill template (I used one from Ikea, but Home Depot, etc will carry them)
  • Masking tape
  • Sharpie
  1. Determine where you want your handles to go on your cabinets, and match that location to the holes on the drill template. Mark the holes you'll use for your new handles on the template  - I used a marker, but tape would work as well.
    Update your kitchen hardware in 5 easy steps - step 1
  2. My cabinets are glossy and I worried that the drill bit would be prone to sliding on the slick cabinet surface once I started drilling. To combat this I stuck a strip of masking tape to the cabinet where I was going to drill. This helped slow any lateral movement, and also made it easily visible if the bit was shifting so I could stop and correct it before I went too far.
    Update your kitchen hardware in 5 easy steps - step 2
  3. Use the drill template to mark where your holes will go. I used a sharpie as I was marking the masking tape I applied in the earlier step. You could also use a pencil if you aren’t using the tape and didn’t want to risk a permanent mark.
    Update your kitchen hardware in 5 easy steps - step 3
  4. Start drilling. I’ll be honest – this part was scary. I started on the cabinet that is the least noticeable in case I goofed. Start slowly and make sure the bit doesn’t drift off your mark. Once the hole has gotten started you can speed up a bit.
    Update your kitchen hardware in 5 easy steps - step 4
  5. Remove the making tape and attach your new hardware.
    Update your kitchen hardware in 5 easy steps - step 5
I did one door from start to finish at a time. I did this in case there was a problem it would mean I’d only ruined one door. The process for drawers is a little different, but the steps above will work – you’ll need to find the center of the drawer (measure twice to make sure) and mark your drill holes accordingly.

Have you ever drilled holes in your kitchen cabinets? Were you as scared as I was to try it?


Scenes From My Weekend

September 17, 2012

Happy Monday everyone! My weekend wasn’t quite as action packed as the last one, but I had a bit of fun, so I thought I’d share.

On Friday evening, D and I went to our second movie at TIFF with his Dad and step-mom. We saw ‘Caught in the Web’ – a film by Chinese director Chen Kaige, and I honestly can’t say I’d recommend it - it was odd. Before we went to see the film we had the opportunity to eat at Luma, which is a restaurant in the Bell Lightbox. While there I had their Steak Tartare which was oh so delicious.
Steak tartare at Luma
Steak Tartare at Luma. Unbelievably tasty.
On Saturday D and I went to my company’s employee golf tournament.
Scenes from a golf tournament
Scenes from my company golf tournament. Yes, that's a SpongeBob Squarepants ball - he's my good luck charm (Pictures by D - I was having too much fun to remember to take any)
I’ve been golfing quite a bit, but this was only D’s second time playing a round (His first time was the tournament last year). I had a lot of fun, and I think D did to. Of course it helped that both of us took home a trophy – his for closest to the pin (guest) and mine for closest to the rope (employee).

There was also a draw for some rather cool prizes, and I got to take home this:
Kobo e-reader
My new Kobo e-reader. I'm so excited!
Now I’m sure there are some who wouldn’t be quite as excited to get this as I was (ahem – see my expression in the Mosaic picture above) but I've been eyeing these in Chapters for quite some time. I love to read, and given I started the work book club I think it’s about time that I can read a book on an actual e-reader rather than my phone while commuting to work.

On Sunday I planned a relaxing day of working on some projects. I’ve got a couple on the go at the moment that require spray paint. Given it’s getting cooler I’m trying to get them done ASAP as they’re bigger projects that I can’t paint inside. We’re going to forget the fact that I had ALL SUMMER to get these projects done alright? Anyways, here is a selection of my current stash of spray paint – I’m currently using some gold, some white and some ORB, and while I did have some issues with two cans not quite working properly, I think the projects might work out almost as planned. We’ll see though – keep your fingers crossed!
some of my spraypaint collection
I wonder if 8 cans will be enough?
What was your weekend like – did you get any projects started or finished, did you get together with friends, or did you spend it relaxing?


Thrift Store Finds - Birds, Books, and a Dragon

September 14, 2012

As I mentioned in my post earlier this week, on Saturday I did a little shopping at some thrift stores north of the city that I've never been to. I don't know if the people who live up there have better stuff than those of us who reside in Toronto and therefore have better stuff to donate, but I had more luck thrifting there than I've ever had in Toronto (although to be honest I did go to 4 stores).

First up were these two-armed candle holders. I picked these up almost as soon as I walked in the store. I'd seen similar style candle holders earlier this summer while at some antique markets and always admired them.  While I did pick these up soon after entering the store, they very nearly didn't come home with me. They were $7.07 each, and I hemmed and hawed over the cost given I didn't like them quite as much as the antique store version. I then recalled that the antique store was selling their set for $125, so I figured I'd get this set, and save the $110 for something else.
two-armed glass candleabra
I bought a pair of these glass candelabras. A magic eraser cleans dull thrifted glass really well.
I have a little thing for brass animals. I'm by no means a dedicated collector given I only have one animal (this cute owl I found while thrifting almost a year ago), but I always keep an eye out for them - I even spotted some at Aberfoyleearlier this summer. I found this lovely set for $15 and I love them.
brass birds on a branch
I've decided to name my new birds Cliff and Claire.
Way back in the dark ages I had a collection of Nancy Drew books that had been my aunts. When I got to a very mature 12 my parents had a garage sale, and to my lasting regret I decided I was too old for 'kids books' and sold them. I've been looking to replace them, but so far haven't had any luck. A few months ago I picked up a few Hardy Boys books which are similar to the the ones my dad had as a boy. While they aren't Nancy Drew I like the look of them. This weekend I picked up 5 more books for $12.
Hardy boys books between bookends
My collection of vintage Hardy Boys books. I think it's now big enough.
Last but not least I found a lovely little hand carved wooden dragon. He has no purpose, and the tips of his ears are missing, but for some reason dragons make me happy and given he was priced at just $1 I couldn't pass him up.
carved wood dragon
I've decided to keep him by my bed.
What do you think? Would you have picked up any of the same items I did? Have you had any luck at thrift stores recently? Is there anything you always look for when you go thrifting?

Life Lately

Scenes From My Weekend

September 10, 2012

Happy Monday everyone! I hope you had a lovely weekend. Mine was filled with adventures, and I thought I'd share some scenes from those adventures with you (If you follow me on Instagram you will have already seen some of these)

On Friday after work I had to go to Home Depot to pick up some spray paint for a project I'm working on, and on the way I thought I'd stop in to The Elegant Garage Sale. It s a quirky little shop that sells used/consignment furniture, and has been a source for the magical duo of Sarah Richardson and Tommy Smythe.

I LOVED this hutch. I've been on the lookout for something similar for my dining room, and I was sorely tempted by it.
hutch at the Elegant Garage Sale
I wanted to bring this hutch home - $395
Somebody NEEDS to come and give this divine dining table a home. It need a bit or work - some of the veneer is damaged, but I think it's stunning, and the price is amazing.
Table with curved base at the elegant Garage sale
Amazing table at The Elegant Garage Sale. $795 - including 6 chairs
The closest Home Depot is conveniently around the corner from a Home Sense, so I stopped in for a quick look around. This time I didn't find anything I had to have, but I did spot this very disturbing piece. Is it art? Is it a ring holder? Either way there is no way I would ever bring it home.
A post shared by Michelle (@eamonnandjack) on

On Saturday I had to go quite north of the city to pick up a little piece I found on Kijiji. Since i was up there I decided to do a little thrifting at stores I'd never normally have the opportunity to frequent. I took home a few things (Which I'll hopefully share later this week). This didn't come home with me, but I was tempted.
A post shared by Michelle (@eamonnandjack) on

Saturday evening found me attending one of the screenings at TIFF. We went to see 'The Attack' by Lebanese director Ziad Doueiri.
A post shared by Michelle (@eamonnandjack) on

Sunday morning I was up early, and I indulged in the very first true sign of fall - a Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte. Mmmmm.
Starbucks cup
The pumpkin spice latte is back at Starbucks - fall is coming!
We were up early on Sunday so we could go to Canada's Wonderland. We had originally planned on going on Saturday, but the torrential rain pushed our adventure back a day. It's been quite a while since I've been (I think the last time was 1998) and I have to say that the two newest rollercosters (Behemoth and Leviathan) were pretty incredible.
A post shared by Michelle (@eamonnandjack) on

A post shared by Michelle (@eamonnandjack) on

A post shared by Michelle (@eamonnandjack) on
How was your weekend? Did you do anything fun, or was it nice and relaxing?


Pretty Eye-Candy at HomeSense

September 04, 2012

The last few weeks of summer mean things are ramping up at work, so by the time I get home I’d rather do anything than type on a computer or do anything house related. I took today off to give myself a lovely 4 day weekend to relax and to work on a long-delayed DIY project, but mother nature has conspired against me - it's rather hard to spray paint outside when it's pouring rain. Boo!

Last Friday after a long week I found myself craving something pretty so off I went to a favourite source of all things pretty – HomeSense (I actually went to two locations). I’ve promised myself I won’t purchase anything until I get a little bit more decided on the direction I want my living room to go, so this was purely a trip in search of eye candy (although there were a number of items I could have easily brought home).

It looks like white ceramic animals will continue to be popular. Here are two I spotted, and I’m honestly not sure which one I would adopt - I keep changing my mind.
White ceramic moose
Bring some Canadiana into your home with a white ceramic moose - $15
white ceramic rhinocerous
What about a white ceramic rhinoceros? (similar to the one at One House Love)
I always love the lamp section at HomeSense – there are always a few lamps I love. This trip was no different.
Blue glass lamp
Lovely blue based glass lamp - $70
Orange coral lamp
I loved this orange coral lamp. Too bad I have nowhere in my house where it would go - $50
I rather liked this little console table. I think it would be lovely in an entry way.
mirrored cabinet
Pretty with just a hint of mirror - $350
I loved these mint polka-a-dot sheets by Kate Spade. They also had them in coral which were  delightful too.
Kate Spade mint polka-dot sheets
Kate Spade mint polka-dot sheet set - $60
I liked the scale of this side table – it wasn’t too big which would allow it to be used in a smaller living room. I think I may need something similar in my living room.
black side table
Black side table. Imagine a colourful band around the top - in gold perhaps? $60
I LOVED this basket. It had a rounded shape which was lovely, and was available in several sizes. I picture it beside my couch filled with some cozy blankets, all ready for winter.
This was the medium sized in this style, and was $25
Finally I thought this tufted footstool was fun. I love the bright colourful fabric and pattern.
Tufted footstool on blue ikat pattern
Colourful Ikat footstool - $100
So, would you bring home any of the items above? Do you ever just go shopping to feast your eyes on pretty things – or does that just happen in my world? What are your favourite sources of pretty things?

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