29 October 2014

green DIY idea: upcycled home decor roundup

People are really creative aren't they? I love these DIY ideas for upcycling old things into very cool home decor. Hope they inspire.

upcycled home decor
repurposed home decoration
upcycling, home decor, shelving, diy
repurposed candlesticks, upcycled home decor
upcycled record, repurposed side table
upcycled vase; carpenters nails, vintage nails

27 October 2014

real life importance of a mood board

I've been taking a course from Holly Becker's Blogging Your Way series and one of our homework assignments has me thoughtfully assessing the importance of mood boards in all the creative work we do. Of course I've done mood boards in design work for myself and my clients, but I've not really thought about using a mood board to inspire my blog and business. Of course it makes sense. Just as a board helps us stay on track when making decisions about the design of a space, a board will also come in handy for adding and deleting everything that goes into your business. This concept could also be extended to any part of our lives really. Trying to write a book? Do a mood board. Big project at work? Mood board it. Kid's birthday party coming up? Get them to help you create a board.

In the class, we have been working on defining our colour seasons, and mine is autumn, with a hefty dose of summer thrown in. This means my blog and business (and me) are earthy and organic, professional but informal, invoke a strong sense of history, and are organized, timeless and traditional. Colours are muted, soft, delicate and warm but light. I've created a moodboard to try and capture this, and it will be what I will use to guide me as I continue to develop my blog and business over the next year. Hint - good things to come!

autumn mood board, blog mood board

I thought you might like to see a few other moodboards from some talented people that constantly inspire me. Make sure to follow them on Instagram for a delightful feed.

Emma from A Quiet Style
Emma from Marion House Book
Leslie Shewring
Breanna Rose

What will you create a moodboard for?

25 October 2014

vegan chocolate treat

I'm not an experienced baker, and I'm certainly not a food blogger. However,  a culmination of an online course that I'm taking in still life photography, and a gradual shift over the past couple of years to a plant based organic diet led to having fun today with a new recipe and then setting it up for some photo practice.

vegan chocolate dessert
Fudgy Mocha Pudding Cake
I recently got my hands on the vegan cookbook Oh She Glows from Canadian Angela Liddon. Her recipes are ones that even a novice in the kitchen like me can follow and reasonably succeed at! The Fudgy Mocha Pudding Cake is divine. This vegan thing might just be all it's cracked up to be...

The Start to Finish still life course from Kim Klassen is full of tips, tricks and inspiration on setting up a photo shoot, getting some great shots and then editing the crap out of them. Some very cool stuff happening over there. I recommend you take a look at her site and pour over her dreamy images.

Kim Klassen {dot com}

So, my homework assignment to photograph chocolate, brown paper and something pretty from the kitchen was rather...delectable. What better reason to bake (and eat) something chocolate?

For more resources on plant-based and organic living, see the sidebar for blogs and books that have been very helpful to me. I'd love to know of others you've found and would also recommend - please leave any recommendations in the comments - I appreciate it, as will others!

23 October 2014

trend to try: mixing design styles

Gone are the days of matchy-matchy decorating and perfect, on-trend spaces. Seems like homeowners and designers alike have embraced the eclectic look of making a home comfortable by mixing styles and furnishings. This is great news for those who care about sustainability while decorating - it means that vintage decor, repurposed and re-painted furniture, wood plank walls, and glam accessories can easily fit together to create a lovely and homey space that is "on trend."

trend, eclectic, mixing styles at home, rustic glam
While layering different styles makes a home interesting and can save big bucks in the decorating budget, do keep in mind just a few simple tips:

First, have a common element - like colour or scale of furnishings. For example, if you have lots of colourful items in the room, think about using white as your backdrop. (You know I'm always going to advocate for white walls, right?) 

how to mix design styles
Second, make sure to spread the styles around, hence the word "mix"! Don't have only one room in the house, or worse, only one half of a room, completely traditional and the rest completely modern. Seems obvious but make sure to step back and survey the space to make sure you've weaved the elements together.  

eclectic home office, natural glam,
And finally, mix with balance and harmony; the room should feel naturally and organically pulled together. So that means you don't have to have an equal mix of different styles. Perhaps you have only two traditional chairs in an otherwise rustic room- but they are not situated together- they are in different spots and therefore provide continuity, not uneasiess. 

modern rustic kitchen, loft, mixed design
modern traditional bathroom; mixed style bathroom
mixed style bedroom, rustic glam,

What do you think - do you embrace the loveliness of imperfection and mixing styles?

20 October 2014

get your entryway ready for winter

Yep, I did it. I said the W word again. Sorry about that. It turned a bit chilly here this weekend and I had to dig around to find some gloves to wear on a walk around the neighborhood. Which then led me to searching for a pretty way to store scarves and gloves  where they are easily accessible in my small entryway.

entryway organization, winter scarf and mitt storage

My solution is a large antique wooden butter bowl. Adds some interest and an organic vibe, don't you think? I also had to bring in the patio herbs, and this rosemary greets me with a subtle and lovely fragrance every time I come home.

winter mudroom, winter entryway, entryway organization

Check out this previous post for more inspriation and tips on winterizing your entryway.

Have you started winterizing your home yet?

17 October 2014

weekend wandering: the island of Menorca, Spain

As we head into the dreaded "W" season here in Canada, I'm wishing I could replicate a home like this one to hibernate in and escape the dreary cold.

Spanish coastal home design

OK, so maybe I can't mimic a stunning view like this, but there are some smart elements in this design that can be applied to homes anywhere to create a serene and uplifting environment.

coastal home decorating

A backdrop of all white walls and netural flooring sets the stage to introduce a few colourful and personalized rugs and other textiles, which can easily and sustainably be changed up when the mood strikes.

minimal and natural home design

Wooden doors and window frames will always be in style, and lend character and strength to a home, even though they are quite simple in design.

natural Spanish coastal bathroom

Natural decor and furnishings like wood stumps as stools and tables, and oversized branches as art not only bring an organic and soothing feel inside, they also help reduce consumerism.

white walls, simple bedroom

High ceilings and curved lines make the space feel light, airy and interesting, making it easier to pull off a soothing minimalistic style without feeling cold.

modern rustic home

Keeping an old stone fireplace and adding vintage accessories keeps costs low and also injects warmth to a modern space,

I'm going to keep this lovely Spanish home in mind when renovating my next project. Or perhaps I'll just move to coastal Spain. Happy weekend dreaming everyone.

14 October 2014

real life colour: fall harvest

Hope all my fellow Canadians had a lovely Thanksgiving weekend. Did your table have heaps of vivid colour from the farmer's market? This swiss chard was so fresh and magnificent it was almost too pretty to eat. Almost.

swiss chard colour

11 October 2014


Thanksgiving image, Thanksgiving quote

5 October 2014

natural rustic Thanksgiving table

Can you believe it's Thanksgiving week already? The leaves here in southern Ontario are spectacular, as are the farmers markets. This is a truly inspirational time of year. So it was a no-brainer to let the colours of nature inspire this simple, rustic table setting for Thanksgiving.

rustic natural tablesetting, Fall table, Autumn entertaining

These are all items that can be picked up at a local market and a walk around the neighborhood. It costs very little to create a beautiful table that connects us with nature and makes us appreciate our planet and the season.

simple Thanksgiving table, natural rustic tablesetting

A solitary delicate antique linen contrasts interestingly with leaves and pumpkins.

rustic, simple, tablescape, Fall

Other gathered things from outdoors become intriguing, organic decoration throughout the room.

natural Fall decorating; Autumn decorating with nature

Thanks Mom and Dad for bringing some of these lovely things from NB! I'm so grateful for your visit and your love.