I am very particular about the quality of light in our apartment. I very much dislike most light that comes from overhead fixtures (my friend who also doesn’t like this type of light calls it the big light) and would prefer that all fixtures give off a soft diffuse light from a bit above my eye level. Add to that the fact that I am not a huge fan of most conventional lampshades out there and you can imagine how difficult it can be to find light sources. I love this DIY shade solution by Janis from Pinecone Camp! Not only is it a lovely alternative to white or beige shades it also would help cast a lovely magenta (or any color you choose!) light throughout the room. It doesn’t hurt that this base is so simple and beautiful. I will certainly be looking a little more closely at some of the thrift store lamps that would normally not get a second glance.
Many years ago I purchased a sweater that I really loved. Until I washed it. Even though I didn’t use hot water, or dry it, and it was only partly wool, the darn thing shrunk about 2 sizes. So sad. I loved the color so much that I unraveled the sweater and have used the yarn in a few projects over the years. I wish I had this wonderful tutorial to help me in my unraveling. The bit where Ashley clearly demonstrates what makes a good seam and what makes a bad seam is worth its weight in gold if you are hunting your local thrift store for a sweater to unravel. via
White. So simple and so beautiful. I didn’t always love white for walls and furniture. In fact until recently I didn’t understand the potential the crisp cleanness that comes from white as a major color in interiors. I think it was too many years living in rentals where I couldn’t paint the white walls and did not know what to do with all that white. Now I see how the lovely white palette can help the color pieces you choose really pop and look more lovely than they do when they get lost in a sea of color. I see many lovely white interiors as a click around the blogosphere, today’s image comes via Apartment Therapy. We have an abundance of white paint and primer from our changing table makeover and I am starting to get the itch to paint some of our other pieces of furniture, you guessed it, white.
This summer M&I spent a few weekends in our little 10×10 country retreat, although in my current condition, my time was mostly spent at the pool which left M to toil away on projects. I say toil, but he loves to get his hands dirty so it is isn’t exactly a hardship for him. We have things set up so that it is quite comfortable to spend the weekend. We have a few pieces like a mini fridge that were handed down to us and we have talked about painting it but haven’t gotten around to yet. This great project by Apartment Therapy reader Sarah has me inspired to finally get the job done. So simple and inexpensive but what a difference! I love chalkboard paint and what a great way to write little notes and reminders to ourselves without having to scrounge around for paper. Soon it will be a little too chilly to stay in the cabin so this project may have to wait until next season.
One of my beefs with CFLs has always been that while they are super energy efficient and last 10 times as long as an incandescent bulb they have are just meh when it comes to style. So if you have a fixture that doesn’t hide your bulb, you have a meh looking bulb hanging out for all to see. The Plumen bulbs are the perfect example of how form doesn’t have to take a back seat to function. Sadly they are only available in Europe until next year.
At the risk of repeating myself, I heart cashmere. So much so that even when a sweater isn’t quite right on me anymore, I have trouble letting it go. I have been considering what I might be able to do with these misfits considering my limited sewing skills. A cashmere baby blanket seems well within what I can accomplish but I do wish I was able to do something a little more special. Something perhaps like these endangered stuffies by the ladies behind Modifyd who use the all pieces and parts of garment industry cast-offs to make pillows, cup cozies, and pet beds in addition to the stuffed animals. Personally I am in love with the elephants… for baby of course. OK, maybe for me too. Who’s up for a little thrift store cashmere hunting? via
I love the way these side tables from The Steel Fork bring together two materials that are so different in such a simple elegant form. At first I thought they were stools and could definitely see a version scattered around our small deck upstate for those times we have guests. via
I am not sure what I like best about this lakeside retreat in Sri Lanka. Maybe it is the creative use of a shipping container or that all the materials used were found on site. The nicely sized covered deck sitting on top of the container is a nice touch. Although maybe it is the incredible view of the lake and mountains. It looks wonderfully peaceful and I can imagine myself sitting on the deck sipping a faux-jito.
You would think that living in a smallish NY apartment would deter M&I from taking on projects like building furniture. Well we have two couches built from scratch that suggest it isn’t as bad an idea as you would think. We have been hemming and hawing about a new computer desk for a while. The one we have is perfectly serviceable and nothing has come along to catch our eye. What we have now is a glass top metal desk that we picked up off the street on day. My main issue with the desk is that the wires are all over the place and it makes the desk look messy. I love the simplicity of this wooden desk top that is made to hide wires and look good doing it. In fact the only thing I love better than the simple design of this desk is the wonderfully simple, easy to follow, and beautifully designed instruction manual.
Each year when we are choosing our charity gift donations for Christmas M&I talk about what we think would be good ways to encourage charitable giving in our children. While we had some ideas, none were as elegant as Piggy. This set of nesting momma (for personal savings) and baby (for charitable savings) piggies become a visual reminder to set aside a little bit of what we get for those less fortunate. Thankfully there is no need to take a hammer to these cuties. Once the banks are full there is a rubber stopper on the bottom to access funds. I have a weakness for pig shaped things and I find these to be especially adorable but I love the idea of choosing a cause that my little one can get behind.