It’s a new year and finally, a new post

Happy September! Doesn’t September feel more like the beginning of a new year, than January? It always has to me. After a ridiculous long blogging break, I’m trying to get back at it. Lots has been going on here.

The cottage kitchen was finished in late March/April and I LOVE it. I am trying to get it published so I’m very limited on what photos I can show here, but here’s a few teasers.

MelissaKewPhotographyLInteriorD-5 copy MelissaKewPhotographyLInteriorD-47 copy MelissaKewPhotographyLInteriorD-84 copy

All photo credits above: Melissa Kew Photography

We also took a short but fabulous trip to Nashville and Memphis in May. My appreciation for country music and cowboy boots has increased exponentially after this trip.

IMG_1657

The view from our hotel room.

IMG_1818

The site of a civil war clash.

IMG_1821

We both picked up cowboy boots and a friend got the same ones.

IMG_1955

We both thought this highway sign was hilarious but accurate.

FullSizeRender

In Memphis, we had to do the Graceland tour.

FullSizeRender-2

And of course, Sun Studio, the birthplace of Rock ‘n Roll.

We also had another very short trip to Quebec City this summer, where I used to live many, many years ago as a child. It is my favourite Canadian city, so old world and charming.

DSC_0052 DSC_0061 DSC_0130 DSC_0140 DSC_0160

Work wise, I finished up a condo decorating project in Mont Tremblant, a complete master bath remodel, started a new client’s living room/dining room/kitchen remodel, commenced another bathroom renovation, helped another client with the finishing touches to her mid-century modern apartment, gave a bunch of consults for painting and decor clients and I’m so excited to be starting a client’s very challenging and huge cottage renovation this Fall.

I’ll be sharing some pics of these decorating projects and renovations in the next while.

On the family front we have been very busy. Our youngest daughter graduated from her Masters program and started her first permanent job with the Government. Our other daughter got engaged and bought her first house, all in the same weekend in March. One of our sons moved back home from out west and will be going back to school this year.

And last, but certainly not least, our eldest son is getting married at our cottage, in like….less than 3 weeks. Whoa, that scares me to write that.  We are well into the throes of final decorating projects and this past long weekend, we were a beehive of activity. The beach got de-weeded (is that a word?), long grass got trimmed and manicured, trees were cut back, things got painted, take away gifts were embellished and readied, terrarium centrepieces were done, chalkboards were written on and general planning and details were ironed out.

14237647_10208383473762704_5986432373408122491_n

Lisa

How to hang a wall full of plates

It feels so much like spring here, even though it is really still a few weeks away, but that’s okay we will definitely take it.  When spring hits, I always get a little bit of spring decorating fever. Are you like me and want to repaint the entire house and change up all the accessories?

Well, the last few weekends I’ve kept myself busy redoing my dining room plate wall at our cottage.  And I’m absolutely loving the results below.

Blue and green plate wall

When we purchased the cottage, the wall looked like this.

Before - plate wall with plate railsI loved the idea of decorating with plates, but I wanted to modernize it and give it more of a free flowing feel.  So here’s the step by steps on how to achieve your new plate wall.

First off, I removed the plate rails and filled all the holes in the wall. Then after a quick coat of paint on this wall, I got started.

Oh yes, before I forget, I purchased these Plate Hangers from Ebay.  I didn’t want to use regular plate hangers as I wanted a more clean and modern look, but feel free to use whatever hanging method you prefer.

41QxI28V5pL

1.  You want to gather all the plates and lids (I used one casserole lid that was minus a casserole bottom) that you would like to hang. I would suggest keeping a somewhat cohesive theme, like I did with mostly blue, green, and white plates. But don’t be too rigid, a few surprises are always a good thing.

2. Measure out the width and height of the wall area that you are looking to cover. Once you have these dimensions, tape out these measurements on a flat surface, a table or perhaps the floor, and start playing with the plate placement.

3. Tips for plate placement –  I placed the larger plates first and then added the smaller plates. I also tried to disperse similar colours evenly throughout.

Blue and green plate wall

4. Next, I cut out newspaper templates of each plate and labelled it with the plate colour. I then followed the instructions for the plate hangers and left them to glue on the backs of the plates overnight.

5. Mimicing the plate placement on my table, I taped the newspaper templates on the wall (with painter’s tape) and stood back.  I adjusted them to ensure a fairly consistent space between the plates and kept standing back to see how it looked overall.

Blue and green plate wall

6. Once I was happy with the placement on the wall, I measured the back of the plate, from the hook of the plate hanger to the edge of the plate, and marked the corresponding measurement on the newspaper template, so that I knew exactly where to place the screw.

7. Once I had each screw in place, I removed the newspaper and hung the corresponding plate. I worked from the top to the bottom and it went really, really quickly.

So here it is ALL DONE! As you can see, there is lots of room to grow. It is my perfect excuse to hit up the antique/vintage stores and garage sales this spring/summer to fill it all in.

Blue and green plate wall

Blue and green plate wall Blue and green plate wall

Blue and green plate wall

Blue and green plate wall

 

Lisa

Artesso articulating faucet in the kitchen

DSC_0856

Now, is that not a pretty awesome faucet?  I am totally in love with the Artesso Articulating Faucet from Brizo. 

DSC_0853

So as you can see my kitchen reno is coming along. Just down to the final little pieces.  We have almost all of the lighting installed, just one more articulating sconce to be put up (I sense a theme with all this articulation). Unfortunately, one of them arrived damaged in the box so we are awaiting a replacement at the moment.

We had some trim pieces for around the windows and on the ceiling made but I have yet to get to the paint store to have the stain custom matched.  I’m really hoping to get to that this week.

Even the central vac outlet under the cabinets has been all connected up. I have one of these in my kitchens at home and love it so since, it’s relatively easy to set up, since our basement area is open, it was a no brainer to do it here.  Sand and dirt be gone!

DSC_0874

**Disclaimer: Brizo was kind enough to offer me the opportunity to test out this faucet, that I had been admiring, in exchange for an honest evaluation. Well, honestly, I love it. Absolutely everyone who has been in the kitchen has commented on how handsome it is.

As you can see it articulates from the middle, so you can have it higher (easier to fill large pots) or lower, towards the sink. The faucet head also detaches easily so that you can clean the sink and anything else easily.  I know I’m going to love this feature when I’m filling large vases or bowls.

DSC_0878

The oil rubbed bronze finish is a great complement to the light quartz counters.  Is anyone else in love with all the succulents out there?  They are perfect for the cottage, as they are regularly neglected.
DSC_0882

It has this great little switch on the front of the faucet, so you can go from a steady to a spray stream quickly.

DSC_0880

It comes in three other finishes, chrome, polished nickel (shown below, which is pretty spectacular if I do say so myself) and stainless steel.

63225LF-PN-B1.tif

And the finish line is just around the corner…phew!

I’ll leave you with a little snippet of my FINALLY installed live edge wood shelves (that I just managed to stain before this pic).  They were a real pill to get this far, but I’m so happy with them. I will be putting a coat of clear polyurethane on them, but for now, I couldn’t wait to style them.

DSC_0885

**Brizo provided me with this faucet in my colour of choice in exchange for sharing my opinion of it here.

Lisa

Modern, rustic and slightly industrial kitchen reno update

After a loooonnnnggg Christmas break, I’m back.  Hope you all had a great holiday with family and friends.  We finally got winter here and let me tell you, I didn’t miss it.  But, now onto more fun updates.

So there’s been lots of progress with my modern, rustic and slightly industrial kitchen reno.  Cabinetry fronts finished….check, hardware added…check, appliances installed and working…check, sink and faucet done…..check.

A little sneak peek at the cabinetry that was installed just before Christmas (obviously before the hardware was added).  I’m absolutely loving the blue/grey cabinetry, it is such a refreshing change from the overwhelming presence of honeyed wood in the house. Please excuse the dust on these as I was so excited to take a pic and share that I didn’t even wait to dust them off.

FullSizeRender-4

Together with the grey/black island, it’s pure GORGEOUS!

IMG_0545

What are we still working on?  Well, the backsplash and therefore the rest of the electrical outlets, lighting and live edge shelving are still in line.  Trying to figure out how to install floating 100 lb+ maple wood shelves onto a tiled backsplash wall has been quite the learning experience.  In the end we got lots of advice from our contractor, our cabinet maker, a steel company, fellow designers and our local welder.  We, actually my  hubby did most of the legwork on this problem, hey…I just come up with the ideas, the implementation…well that’s a whole other issue.

So they came up with a custom made steel bracket that has three rods that will fit into the corresponding holes that will be bored into the wood shelf.  These brackets will be lag bolted into the wood logs that form the frame of our log home, and the shelves will then slide onto the rods. Presto……magic!  Apparently we will be able to park a car on the shelves 🙂

So since we couldn’t finish the tiling until the brackets are totally completed and installed, my hubby just tiled the areas where he could.  We are really hoping to have both the brackets installed this weekend and that the tiling can continue.  I will then resume the sanding of the shelves….which is a joy, let me tell you. Then a coat of a clear finish and we will be ready to get them up there and start using them.

We also have some trim work that needs to be completed. I’m going to be trying to match 24 year old wood stain, so that the new trim is not too noticeable against the original pieces…wish me luck!

The electrician was also hoping to have this large lantern installed over the island and all the switches and outlets finished this week as well.  I can’t wait to see it actually hanging in the space!

3338BZ

That will just leave the articulating sconces and of course, the shelves, to be installed on the backsplash wall after all the grouted is done. So exciting!  I am seriously dreaming (no, not kidding) about styling those live edge wood shelves.

prod2460589_av1

I’ll leave you with one more pic that I shared on my Instagram account recently.

IMG_0548

****Some design inspiration coming up, I’ll finally be sharing some pictures from my recent trip to Miami for #ModenusTalksMiami and #DesignMiami in my next post.

Lisa

‘Modern meets rustic and tangles with industrial’ kitchen reno update

Well, if that title isn’t a mouth full, I don’t know what is.  Obviously, trying to come up with catchy titles isn’t my strong suit…so modern/rustic/industrial kitchen it is.

It’s been awhile since I posted any updates on this ongoing reno, but not to fear things have been moving along, slowly…but still moving forward.

When I last left you, I had posted about the finishing touches and we were patiently waiting for the new cabinetry boxes to be done.  Well, they were finished up fairly quickly and installed.  Which meant lots, lots and I mean lots, of boxes filled with various kitchen paraphernalia, most of which will not be making their way back into the new kitchen.

Once the cabinet boxes were installed, the counter fabricators came in to template the kitchen and about two weeks ago the new counters were installed.

IMG_9972

Swoon……(excuse the reflection in the photo, my bad…)

The Caesarstone quartz looks exactly as I had expected it to look, warm, calm and natural. The perfect compliment to the busy, stone island wall.  The stone, black island cabinets, hardwood floor and the quartz make me very, very happy.

FullSizeRender copy

And speaking of counters, I had originally wrestled with the thought of putting butcher block (which I had in my previous cottage kitchen and loved) on the lowered cabinet area (under the windows) to break up the quartz and to also make this area look even more like a piece of furniture.  Well, I had decided to keep things simple and just go with quartz everywhere. But when my fabricator came to measure, we discovered that we would be short with two slabs and we would need to order a third to complete all the counters. Well, I felt that it was a big neon sign that I should go back to my original thought about the butcher block and it would also keep our budget in order.

So, off I went to Ikea and I picked up the Hammarp countertop in Oak, the best match with the oak flooring and the golden oak stained pine.

hammarp-countertop__0315451_PE516151_S4

I also received this stunningly gorgeous runner from West elm that I had ordered a few weeks ago and placed it up against the blue/grey cabinets. Isn’t it charming?

IMG_9895

FullSizeRender-2

And for my November birthday, I asked hubby for some new everyday dishes. The current ones at the cottage are a hodge podge of my first set of dishes, my Mom’s old dishes, my sister-in-law’s, mother-in-law’s old dishes (I knowwww) and the previous owner’s dishes.  I mean…really…..it was time to move them all out to their new homes and get some fresh new ones.  I knew I wanted white, organic, matte and durable.  It took quite some time to find and commit, but I’m thrilled with my new dishes.  I think they will be so pretty sitting up there on the wood shelves.

IMG_9716

And speaking of the wood shelves, when I was in Miami last week for Modenus Talks Miami (stay tuned for a future post), we spent some time at DesignMiami.  And when I saw this vintage 1950’s credenza in all its live edge loveliness, I knew this was exactly the look I wanted for the shelves.  So, I will be sanding my little heart out to get the rough maple slabs, currently in my garage, to get to this look.  But it will be well worth it, don’t you think?

FullSizeRender-3

 

IMG_0090

That’s it for now. Thanks for reading. If you are interested in the previous posts on the kitchen, here’s the links.

Appliances, lighting and faucets, oh my!

Changes, compromises and cabinets

Industrial farmhouse kitchen reno update

Rustic/industrial/farmhouse kitchen makeover

 

Lisa