Ikea Hack - Leksvik Dresser

When my plans for Christmas fell through unexpectedly and at the last moment, I decided I would treat myself to a master bedroom makeover.  The master bedroom redecoration project has been on the back burner for a long time - partly because it's such a large room, partly because I didn't know what colours I wanted and partly because I was just too lazy to take it on!!

The first leg of this odyssey was moving all the furniture into a more pleasing arrangement that had better flow.  So I began swapping out and rearranging furniture.

My furniture consists mainly of Ikea products.  I love them all, but in the case of my makeover I wanted something fresh and new...  I've been watching all the furniture painting that's been going on in blogland and I was now ready to jump in.  I painted my bedroom walls Benjamin Moore's Lenox Tan (love, love, love that colour!!) and I wanted a warm winter white as a contrasting colour.  I took a can of Behr's Almond Cream and mixed a cup or so of the Lenox Tan into it.  The warm off-white was PERFECT!!  I began with my Leksvik 4 drawer dresser:

Versatile Blogger Award, Liebster Blog Award and Sweet Blogging Friends

I am extremely tardy in acknowledging a special award given to me by Linda at  Coach House Crafting on a budget  more than a few weeks ago :(.  Please excuse me, Linda!  I was both surprised and thrilled by your choice of my blog and I so appreciate the honour of being given the Versatile Blogger Award.

To accept this award, I have to share 7 things about myself that you might not know, so here goes.

1.  I am fluent in English and French
2.  My mom is British, my dad, French Canadian (they met during WWII)
3.  I took up painting pictures one year ago
4.  I began blogging less than a year ago, mostly to share my ideas and projects but then I was completely blown away by all the talent I kept coming across in the bloggy world!  You guys are AMAZING.
5.  I had never built anything in my life until last year (I tried to build a bird house when I was a kid, but failed miserably because I had no idea that a frame was necessary to the project...)
6.  I love to dance
7.  I love, love, love classic movies :)

and now I pass this award on to 7 blogs that I am inspired by:


You are all amazing! and now, please pass on the Versatile Blogger award to 7 of your favourite blogs.
And if that wasn't sweet enough,  today sweet Myric from Petites Passions awarded me the Liebster Blog award.

This award is for bloggers with less than 200 followers and is given in the hopes of bringing new friends/followers to the blog.   What a lovely award!  I am very honoured to accept it.

In Myric's words:
The Rules are:

1.  Show your thanks to the blogger who gave you the award by linking back to them.
2.  Reveal your five picks for the award and let them know
3.  Post the award on your blog
4.  Bask in the love from the most supportive people on the blogshare - other bloggers
5.  Finally, and the best rule of all ........ Have fun and spread the love!

My choices for the Liebster Blog Award are:

And for those of you reading this who don't appear in these lists, please know that I would have chosen you all if I had the space...

Thank you so much!


Merry Christmas!!

May all your hopes and wishes be fulfilled this holiday season.  I wish you all the very merriest of Christmases and a new year full of joy and creativity.

Thank you for being a part of my blogging life.



Homemade Gift Ideas via Pinterest

I absolutely love giving and receiving home made gifts and thanks to Pinterest, it's now super easy to save all the ideas I find on the internet in one place.

These are a few of my favourites - for more, check out my Pinterest pinboard  and click on any of the images shown below to get to the tutorials.

Adorable bracelets from http://honestlywtf.com

Fabulous idea for a pet lover, see the cute cookie cutter attached with a bow??
dogbones (15K)  

Recipes in a jar are such a fabulous idea - how about these:
Curried Lentil Soup

Christmas Cookies

and how about some really pretty home-made jewelry?
these are made from salt dough and spray paint!!

Pretty button earrings:

Old chandelier prisms:

How about a wool scarf you can make in 45 minutes with no knitting skills?  http://www.marthastewart.com/272433/no-knit-scarf

And there are so many more ideas out there.  

I love, love, love Pinterest :)

Have a great week!

Letting Go

I'm so glad I've learned to turn to painting to release pent up emotional energy.  I'm expecting another burst of inspiration to come shortly thanks to another low this week that I'm working my way through.  This year has been a year of extreme highs and lows for me.  While it's been difficult to handle emotionally, it's been exactly what was needed to unleash the painting monster inside of me!  I'm now learning to paint by allowing the energy to move through me and it's been an amazing experience.  The more I can let go, the better the results.  It's absolutely fascinating, like someone else is painting through me.


I love how this one turned out.  It looks ancient!

This was an early painting of mine that I painted over.  This looks so much better than the original!

Abstract Christmas tree

trying different styles

I painted this for a double picture frame. 

I also painted a mini version of my sparrow painting.  The colours turned out nicer and the poor little sparrow gained 20 pounds!!  lol

Have a wonderful weekend!

Linking to:

Alphabet Decor

To add some colour and interest to my living room bookshelves, I bought two plain MDF alphabet letters that were on super clearance so I could paint them.  Unfortunately the clearance sale had been picked over pretty well and that meant that I could only find one vowel in the entire box of letters so I couldn't have the words "JOY" or "READ" like I wanted.  Since the one vowel available was "A", I chose "Z" - at least A-Z is kind of relevant to books!

Bad blogger that I am, I forgot to take before shots so all you get to see is what I was inspired to paint.  I chose the paint colours from the book spines on the shelves where I would display the letters.

Freshly painted letters

Have a great week!

I'm Dreaming of Christmas

My Christmases will always be about red & gold. I love those colours together with evergreens.  This post is mostly photos of my Christmas decor.  I'm still trying to get a good photo of my little Christmas tree but for some reason all the photos I've taken are too blurred to be useful! 

I love the snowmen wreaths I've seen lately, so I created my own version - kind of like a sailor come home for Christmas :)

And may all your Christmases be white.


Box Makeover #4 - Chippy Paint

* B E F O R E *

I hated the look of this jewelry box.  Don't get me wrong - I appreciate the gorgeous wood and the inlay work.   If it had been a guy's box, I would have thought it was great.  The craftsman who built this box used these ridiculous pin-things as hinges.  They would fall out every 4th time the box was opened (and I open my jewelry box A WHOLE LOT!!!).  It frustrated the heck out of me until I finally just discarded the lid completely and stuck the box inside an armoire to keep the dust off my jewelry.

I wanted a jewelry box that was prettier and more functional, so I spray painted it black.  Um well, ok so THAT didn't work out.  The newspaper I had set the box on blew up and got stuck to the sides and then I ran out of spray paint, there were drips everywhere and... well, things just went sideways from there.  Quick sanding job and back at 'er...

I painted it Behr's Almond Cream.  I used an almost dry brush so you would see some of the black underneath.  I didn't like that either...

Then I painted it with my own concoction of ugly mistake paint Behr's Agave and a pure white.  I used a dry brush again so the cream paint would show through.  Then I scratched it up a little and sanded the corners.  I had a bunch of old knobs kicking around that I wanted to use, so I played around with them until I came up with a design I liked and attached them to the lid.  I also installed some hinges and painted them over to make them look old.

I like the look now and it's soooooo much easier to lift the lid.

* A F T E R *


Painting with Passion

Whatever it was that has stymied my desire to paint was definitely released by overcoming the emotion stirred up through an extremely frustrating day one week ago.  I am always so appreciative of those moments that force me to stop what I'm living and either wallow in it until I can't stand it anymore or inspire me to make the effort to find a better perspective right away.   Those are the moments that help me to grow and become more determined to let go of trying to make things happen and just let life flow.

Thanks to that day, I have painted 20 pieces in one week and today, I was inspired to paint over an early painting of mine that I never really did like.  I found a photograph on Pinterest that I loved so much, I had to paint my version of it.  So happy to say that I love my painting as much as I love the photograph!

To all of you wonderful artists and followers who take the time to leave me your very generous comments, your feedback means more to me than I can express.

Thank you all and have a wonderful week!

Linking to:

Box Makeover #3 - Country Charm

I bought this a long time ago. It had an assortment of tea leaves in it.  I had been using the two parts of it separately as drawer organizers, but decided to use it in my front entry to hold change and odds and ends that accumulate there.  I painted a little chalkboard label area on the lid and then I decided it needed a paint job.

I used a pale turquoise paint on the top of the lid and the base, then stain on top of the paint and on the raw wood sides of the top.  It still looked a little plain, so I glued jute string on to add some texture.  When it still looked  plain, I added a checkerboard pattern to the top.

This is what I call "country rustic".

For my next box transformation - a large jewelry box.

Very handy but I've really disliked the look of this thing ever since it was given to me.

I can't wait to get at it!!

Energy in Motion

After a very frustrating night, I had a ton of energy to expel and since it was cold and snowy outside I picked up my paintbrushes and went at it.

I painted page after page and when I was done, I felt so much better.

Here is the work of the last 12 hours:

I wanted to try watercolours in a different way (for me that is!), so this is what I did by hardly using any paint at all.  Not what I was trying for  :(
8x12 on watercolour paper
Letting it all hang loose!  This one felt REALLY, REALLY good to paint.  lol
8x12 on watercolour paper

Oh how I love flowers :)
8x12 on watercolour paper

This one isn't even dry yet!
12x8 on watercolour paper

Attempt #1 - couldn't get this to look like I wanted it to.
8x12 on watercolour paper

Attempt #2 - This I like better, it's kind of in the same style as the sparrow painting, loose & structured at the same time.
8x11 on watercolour paper

It sure felt good to let out all that frustration - wish I'd thought of doing this years ago!  Much more productive and fun.

Thanks for stopping by!!

Linking to:

Paint Party Friday
Funky Junk Interiors
Sunday Sketches
I heart nap time

Box Makeover #2 - Hand Painted Jewelry Box


I decided it would be nice to hand paint this box.  Lavender seems to be on my mind these days, so I chose that colour as a base with flowers on the lid.

Then I decided to seal the paint and used the wrong product and ruined the painting :(.

Back to the drawing board...

Painting #2 turned out like this:

Not quite as charming as the original, but I like it all the same.  And it's a huge improvement over the before shot:




Up next, Box Makeover #3

 * B E F O R E *
Linking to: