Merry Christmas and a very Happy New Year!

From my home to yours, I wish you the most merriest of Christmases and a very Happy and Healthy New Year!

Just a quick little note, have you guys seen the Artisto app? My friend, Donna discovered it and I’ve been a little obsessed lately with it.  Take a peek at what it did to some of my photos.

LOG HOME COUNTRY URN WITH SNOWFLAKES

ARTISTO COUNTRY CHRISTMAS TREE

COUNTRY RUSTIC FIREPLACE WITH CAT

And I’m in love with this one of my two cats.

LOG HOME CAT There are different filters so you can different effects and colours.  So fun and quite addictive! Enjoy your holidays!

Lisa

Two mantels, two different looks

Mantels are one of the best places to decorate for the holidays and if you are like me, you love looking at different ones and different styles to get some ideas for your own.

I’m lucky enough to get to do two totally different ones every year, just for me.  Here’s my cottage mantel that I keep pretty minimal and rustic, totally appropriate for the country setting that it is in.

RUSTIC COUNTRY CHRISTMAS FIREPLACE

 

Photo credit: Justin Frost

RUSTIC COUNTRY CHRISTMAS MANTEL RUSTIC COUNTRY CHRISTMAS MANTEL RUSTIC COUNTRY CHRISTMAS MANTEL

 

I used lots of fresh local greenery, some pinecones in a vintage apothecary jar, some antique encyclopedias (which I have sprinkled around the entire place), some sparkly grapevine balls, a birdcage and of course some candleholders. Honestly, this mantel took me all of half an hour to do. Quick, simple and rustic, just the way I like my country Christmas mantels.

Now for my city house, I went with a more sophisticated style.

CHIC AND CLASSIC, GREEN, BLACK AND WHITE CHRISTMAS MANTEL

CHIC AND CLASSIC, GREEN, BLACK AND WHITE CHRISTMAS MANTEL

CHIC AND CLASSIC, GREEN, BLACK AND WHITE CHRISTMAS MANTEL

Some similar elements here, fresh greenery and some dried magnolia leaves (they do last a few years, if you are careful when you store them), some fairy lights and of course candlesticks and candles. I may just tuck in some white and clear christmas balls amongst the leaves, at some point.  Pretty, simple and classic, perfect for my home in the city.

Merry Christmas!

Lisa

 

 

Artesso articulating faucet in the kitchen

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

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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!

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**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.

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

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

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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.

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

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.

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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.

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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.

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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?

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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.

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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?

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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

 

Appliances, lighting, and faucets, oh my!

The most fun part of any reno, well to me anyways, is the finishing touches.  Early on in the renovation planning stage, I sourced and decided on the appliances, lighting fixtures, faucet and sink so that they could be ordered and already be delivered when they were needed.  I didn’t want any problems with waiting for items to be in stock or shipped.

For appliances, I had a wish list, an induction cooktop, downdraft fan, a microwave/convention oven, wall oven, a warming drawer (since we entertain a lot at the cottage and in the winter, it’s always nice to have warmed plates), a wine fridge and a new dishwasher (which quickly became a panelled dishwasher). I decided on Bosch, for everything but the wine fridge, because their appliances hit every mark and I love their sleek look.

Early on, I had seen this Brizo Artesso faucet and I had to have it.  The cool industrial yet rustic vibe was perfect for my vision of the kitchen. Brizo agreed and I’m the happy recipient of it, in a beautiful oil rubbed bronze finish.

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For the sink, I was very torn between a large single, double or a sink and a half. I went back and forth relentlessly.  A large single sink is great, lots of room to do those large pans and soak just about anything, but I really wanted a place to stash my dirty or drying dishes (I hate on-counter drying racks, which I’ve  had and continue to have, and I resent it a little every day).  A double sink would give me that extra space to hide dishes but each sink was a little on the small size, given that I had to stay within a 31″ total width, so I compromised with a sink and a half.  I settled on a Franke sink as it gave me the contemporary edge that I wanted, had the size I needed and had slightly rounded corners to make clean up a breeze.

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Onto my lighting choices – I’ve had a hate on for the existing white track lighting, as there is typically only one or two of the lights working at any one time and let’s face it they are just fugly.  We added the Pottery Barn pendants when we first bought the cottage and they have certainly helped but I desperately need more light than they can give. (see before pics here).

An open rectangular lantern fixture with plenty of lights would be the perfect fit for the long island. I also wanted one without glass, to keep glass cleaning down. The Hinkley Fulton open lantern is perfect with it’s black iron exterior frame and it’s soft bronze interior finish which ties in with the oil rubbed bronze faucet.  To mount this, we will have to have the electrical boxes (where the track lights are now) capped and then somehow hidden (I’ve given this job to our fabulous carpenter and electrician).

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To coordinate with it, Restoration Hardware’s  20th Century Library sconces with their iron finish and touch of brass (to pick up on the warm bronze tones) were an easy choice.  Three of them will line up on the far wall between the windows to light the counters and open shelves there.

prod2460589_av1I also had my heart set on a pendant light over the sink and wanted something that was light and bright but with some dark metal.  Hinkley hit it again with this Clancy fixture, in a warm bronze finish.  Again, some creative carpentry will have to be done to hide the wiring…oh the joys of a log home.

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**Disclaimer, Brizo provided me with the faucet of my choice, in exchange for my honest opinion of it, here on my blog.

Lisa