Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Back Porch Refresh.


Today, I'm back to blogging and sharing a little refresh makeover of our back porch. The porch is at the back of the house and is the entrance that we and our guests use most frequently. It's just off the kitchen and leads to the backyard. It also home to our washer and dryer and a large built-in cabinet. It's where we hang our coats (unfortunately there is not coat closet in this house) and keep our shoes. 
 
 

As you can imagine, like any multi purpose room, it becomes a drop zone for everything. I find it very challenging to keep the area clean and clutter free. The goal of this refresh was to not only freshen up and brighten the space but to make it as efficient and minimalist as possible.

  
To start, only the coats that we are currently wearing on a regular basis are kept at the back. In the summer, this means there is very little hung on the hooks. In the fall and winter, this is a different story for sure. I try to ensure that our everyday jackets are there but our nicer coats that we wear less frequently are hung in the front entrance, out of sight. My purse and school bag also find a spot on these hooks.

 
Under the hooks is a little bench that Steph made for me way back when I started blogging. We call it the $16 bench and strangely enough it is my most pinned post on Pinterest. I gave it a fresh coat of white paint and recovered the cushion in a soft grey linen fabric. The baskets fit perfectly in the bench and are currently filled with summer shoes and sandals.

We also hung a simply wire basket by the back door to hold Beaufort's toys, leashes, poop bags and towels to wipe his wet feet. It's practical and easy to reach for when you arrive home after a walk with a wet dog.
 
 
 
Across from the bench and coat hooks is a simple three compartment shoe cabinet from Ikea. It holds an impressive number of shoes and fits perfectly in that corner between the wall and the pipes. The pipes are one of those old house quirks that I turned a blind eye to over the years. This summer, I realized I could paint them and although, still decidedly hideous, perhaps a little less so. At the very least, less noticeable. I keep a basket on top to throw our keys in. However, it seems I'm the only one who uses it?
  
 

Opposite the door is a built-in cabinet, original to the house. It got a fresh coat of white paint while I was tackling the walls and trim. The amount of storage in that cabinet in invaluable to us. It holds pantry items, laundry supplies, dog food, tools.. you name it. I can't imagine living without it.
 
Back when I purchased the house, the back door needed to be replaced and I chose to put in a door with a full glass panel. It was a great decision because the space always feels so bright and airy, plus gives a pretty view to the backyard. 



 
 
 
view to the porch from the kitchen
 
view from the porch to the kitchen/hallway
 
I can't even believe that the plants are still alive. Six whole weeks later! I'm so impressed with myself. Must be all that great light.. or the green thumb that I inherited from my dad? I wish..:)
 

It feels bright, clean and organized. Most days at least. The power of white paint... I'm not sure I'll every tire of it. Also, thank you all so much for the sweet comments about our backyard wedding! I just got my photos back from our awesome photographer so I hope to share some with you all soon.

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Married!


I feel that life may be returning to normal after a busy spring and summer. There was little time for blogging since we were busy planning a wedding! Yes, Stephane and I got married in our backyard a couple of weeks ago.

It was a simple and intimate evening wedding, just like we wanted. We were married under the tree in the backyard, surrounded by our immediate family and closest friends. The food was incredible, the rain held off and the simple decor of flowers and string lights felt cozy and romantic as the sun set into the evening. I'd do it all over again tomorrow!


Had to sneak in that photo of our smiling boy. I have a few posts planned for the next couple of weeks so stay tuned!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Living Room Art.

No too long ago, I was looking for your help in deciding which Minted print I should order for the living room. I ended up choosing the Emily Jeffords print called Mid-summertime. All of her prints are incredibly beautiful and I'm sure I could find a spot for any of them in my home. The colors and her painting style are so soft and soothing.


 
 
The Mid-summertime print pairs well with the other prints that I've included on the picture ledge. "Les petits poissons" is a little print that I've had for years. I finally framed my "Salt Water Cure" print, a little quote I find endearing. The little square print is one of my own photos from our trip to the Tulum ruins, printed with Social Print Studio.
 

 
The soft moody colors are perfect in the living room. I'm due to share an updated tour of the space. Since we painted the walls white, the rest of the room has really evolved to included lots of soft blues and grey tones.

I used a white wash frame from Indigo's gallery wall line. I had to trim the print a little bit to fit but it worked out well. The wall still feels a little bare over the couch but I have plans for a couple of other things to add to the mix.


Overall I'm happy with the prints but like I said, it needs a little more. I'll share an update soon!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Spring Mode.

I may not be the best blogger lately but I'm certainly reading and feeling inspired by lots of projects around the web. I'm all about everything outdoors as I patiently (or impatiently) wait for things to feel spring-like around here. We are certainly late to the game, as our last patch of snow just melted away from the backyard. Finally.

I've been pinning perfect backyards, wandering around garden centers, making lists of plants to buy, and incessantly checking my gardens for new growth. I feel like it will never get here!

I have a list a mile long of outdoor projects. Here are some things that are guiding my plans.


I've gone back and looked at Kristen's black shed many times since she made it over last summer. Ours is in need of a makeover and I plan to tackle it early. It's currently charcoal grey and I can't decide whether to keep it that way or go a little darker.


I've loved reading everything that Alison has learned about gardening over the years. Her gardens and her fence are amazing.


I've tried for years, without success, to grow grass in one shady corner of our backyard. I lost the battle and last week turned the soil for a new garden. I'm excited to pick up some new shrubs and perennials. Ornamental grasses are my favorite in a garden and I'm excited to give Japanese Forest Grass a try this summer. The bright chartreuse green leaves are great contrast.



I usually have good luck with my annual pots but I'm never blown away by my window boxes. Any tips? I know the whole thriller, filler and spiller trick but really, I just want someone to come over and make them look just like this. I'm such a sucker for white flowers and I adore that asparagus fern.

Here is my spring to-do list:
  • stain fence
  • restain the deck
  • makeover the shed
  • edge and mulch gardens
  • plant new shade garden
The fence (or maybe the shed) is first on the list.
 
Steph's list involves lots of exciting things like installing gutters, fixing the shed door (check!) and helping me with the staining. I'm sure he's thrilled..:)

Anyone else in total spring project mode?
 
I also have so much I should be blogging about! Living room and dining room changes, new lighting in the kitchen, bunk room updates and I'll be sharing my attempt at creating a capsule wardrobe... Someone needs to give me a nudge!