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“Eat Sign” and Kitchen Re-Mix

Like everything in the house, the kitchen lacked character…well let’s be honest it’s fugly.

Here’s a couple before shots… “My eyes!”



Believe it or not, the owners used 4 inch screws to put up that coffee wire thing, and just filling those holes was a job on its own. We covered the kitchen in cloud white and then began to collect.

This is Matt tired from painting and changing the light fixture* to a barn pendant. gorg! (short form for gorgeous!)


* I changed the light fixture…but who’s keeping track?

Next came one of my favourite additions to the “coffee wire thing” wall: our “Eat Sign”!

I got this idea from, an awesome DIY decorating blog. Her “EAT” sign is a favourite on Pinterest. She has a great tip about mixing steel wool and vinegar in order to age where you’ve cut your barn wood.

I didn’t need to age the edges of my wood because I decided to make the sign a WHOLE lot bigger! Go big or go home, right. Instead of having to cut the wood, Cornies and I used the entire length of the palette wood. We were super rushed when we made these, so I don’t have during photos.

However, we did use the same nails that came out of the old palettes to nail them to the wall, in order to keep the letters looking rustic.



In addition, we found a white wood slat table, ticking stripe chair cushions, bar stools, and an antique ironing board to display my prized Le Creuset and an original fan from Chrysler’s that must be 40 years old, all from my Mom!

IMG_2081 IMG_2080

Next we framed old appliance booklets that came with my great grandmother’s fridge, mixer, iron, etc. She saved everything…and yours probably did too…go rummaging ASAP! Oh, and then I found a board that had replica antique fishing lures on it…so fun!


Here are a few after shots…still wanting to get a huge carpet to cover the freeeezing tile…I think everything is freezing, Matt is thinking as he reads this.


“Another bad room bites the dust….” yes…I’m singing that to Queen as I type…very sad.

Good Guys 1; 1973 zero!



5 ways to Fill Shelves that Tell a Story

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5 ways to Fill Shelves that Tell a Story

Filling shelves that tell a story is easy; you’ve just got to look at everything you own with an anthropologist’s eye.

1. Old Sports Equipment

Everyone has it laying around in the garage…the older the better. Collect a glass jar of old baseballs, a small container of whistles, ping pong paddles, or my favorite, a collection of worn in baseball gloves. Store them in a wire basket for maximum visibility.




2. Random Collections

Ordinary stuff becomes amazing, once you have a collection. Start collecting concert tickets, beach glass, gears, or buttons, to fill glass containers, wire baskets, and mason jars. I know a woman who collects bird nests that she finds…what a fantastic idea!



3. Artifacts

If you’ve got a themed shelf like wedding photos, add some artifacts from the day to bring the shelf to life. I added the ribbon from my bouquet. The stripe leads the eye around the shelf adding movement, as well as repetition because it reoccurs throughout the photos. The wedding topper from our cake has a place on the shelf. It’s actually my grandmother’s wedding topper! Also, antique wooden blocks from the guest book table, that read “Labadie Biggley Wedding” find their place.







4. Souvenirs

Shelves are the perfect place for souvenirs from trips. A wire motorcycle with sidecar, made from a street vendor in Florence, finds its home. In the same shelf, antique motor cycle goggles hang tucked into a book. A copy of “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” completes the theme.


5. Framed Paper

Frame wedding invitations, your thank you card, save the date, reply card, plane tickets, to-do lists, notes from friends in high school, or your friends’ wedding invites. Paper becomes immortalized and beautiful once framed.



The moral of the story: let your shelves tell stories…


Stairs and custom made bullnose! Woohoo!

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When we started, the stairs were carpeted and the doors, railings and trim were atrocious!

I have no idea why we ever bought this house!!


It’s hard to see but the baseboards were about 3 inches (smaller than our new door casing) and you can just make out the blue room at the top of the stairs. Both spare bedrooms were COMPLETELY BLUE! Blue moldings, vents, ceiling, closet doors, inside closet, even the light switches were painted blue…before and after pics coming soon.

Now these stairs and oh ya that GAPING huge open hole into the basement…all had to GO!

Their disappearance and our beautiful floors are all thanks to Matt Cornies and his Dad, Rob! I cannot even clock the hours they have been at our house…Thank You!

So here is a start to the renos…notice the doors, trim, custom hand made stairs, and hand made bullnose! WAWAWEWA!


That’s Matt!


That’s Matt pretending to be a teacher, like I do!


That’s Rob!


That’s our  beloved bullnose!

Oooo Weeee….would you look at the size of that baseboard.


That’s “my Matt’s” face saying “Why did we buy this house?” …Don’t worry, it’ll all work out in the end…I swear!

Now we’ve got to paint the risers white, find posts, and a handrail. I’m planning to paint an accent chevron wall along the stair wall. I hope I can start asaparino!