The Project That Never Ends

Well I am finally back with a closet update, and I so wish I could tell you that this project was completed months ago and I’m just now blogging about it, but unfortunately this is in real time.

Building a closet is hard, okay?

When I left off we had completed the demo and were excited to get to work on a bunch of custom shelving. I chuckle at our naïveté.

We started on the right side of the closet, where most of the hanging rods will go because this area had way less shelves and we figured it would be a good way to ease ourselves in.

I ended up choosing a four box design, with Max and I each getting half. Hanging bars across all four boxes with pants on the bottom (one side for me and one side for max) and hanging tops on top (one side for me and one side for Max). Make sense?

I also made a long shelf on top for my purses.

Routing worked well but it makes a huge mess and Max had to take every piece to his Grandpa’s shop to do it. Hence why this took SO LONG.

Finally I was able to caulk and I could see it all coming together. The bad news is, this was just the first (much smaller) side.

We started on the left side by fixing our first piece of MDF to the wall as we had with the first side. This ensures everything is sturdy and also helps with the built-in look.

At this point I’m gonna skip ahead to having the left side almost complete because let me tell you this was terrible to do and I don’t want to relive it. Essentially the boards are all held up by the routered joints but until the entire length was completed there was nothing to keep it upright. Yes it fell. Yes we damaged some MDF. Yes we changed some of the shelf heights to make it easier. And yes, we had to fill in the routed edges for the old layout.

You can see that in the above photo.

But eventually we got it all together, keeping fights between Max and I to a minimum. And I was able to caulk the left side, finally.

Hallelujah finally a part of a project I actually enjoy.

And finally I was able to paint. It took three coats and many, many, hours of Max and I brushing and rolling but it is looking much better and I’m glad we’re onto the “pretty” part of the project.

Stay tuned for the big reveal, as well as for my post on what to do when a project sucks and you hate it. Because let me tell you, after four months of closet mayhem, I’m an expert.

Let me know if you have any questions.


The Closet Project Begins

Closets are very important to me. I have a lot of crap and I love organization, so nice big closets are a necessity.

My closet in the apartment was huge because it was in the space above the stairs and entry to the basement apartment. So when we were house shopping I wasn’t exactly willing to downsize.

To get a walk in closet in a master bedroom is rare where we live, as most homes are bungalows. So when I saw this closet I was psyched.

It is a bit awkwardly shaped and doesn’t have a lot of storage, just a bar and a shelf.

I lived with it for a while and added some shoe shelves and such from my previous closet to make it work.

But I always wanted a pretty, totally built in, dream closet.

When Max got a router from his grandparents for Christmas I took it as a sign and moved all my stuff out and we demoed it.

We picked up a bunch of MDF and I drew up some plans.

My goal is to make enough storage in here so that Max can move his stuff in too, it is currently in the office closet.

Unfortunately we don’t have the right size router bit so it is on order and as soon as it comes we will be off to the races and I will be sure to update.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Updates Around the House

I took a little break from the blog, not on purpose but mostly because our next big project is the garage workshop and we need to get an electrician in there before we can do anything major.

And it’s super cold out.

So I’ve decided to move forward with some other projects, and in the meantime, share some smaller updates around the house.

I updated my chalkboard for Christmas and really went for colour this time. Max said it was his favourite design yet. It is already changed for the rest of winter after Christmas.

The rest of the changes were in the powder room. Max thought this room was done and when I told him it wasn’t he insisted we actually finish it.

So I had to get a new faucet (as previously reported), a new light fixture, and paint the ceiling.

There was a boob light in here before, so we added this schoolhouse fixture with seeded glass.

I also took this opportunity to paint the ceiling which had previously been a light green, the white on the rest of the walls.

And finally, I added this little shelf above the mudroom bench, which Max stained. Toilet paper styling included.

Let me know if you have any questions!

A Built-In Mudroom Bench

There is an awkward nook in our garage entrance mudroom that I never really knew how to style.

It is immediately to the right when you come in the door and so I stuck a little ottoman there and along with hooks that were there when we bought the place, called it done.

It never looked great.

Plus then I added more decor to the rest of the room, hanging my Moravian star light fixture, painting the ceiling navy blue, and adding a gallery wall and new rugs.

So it was time for the little awkward nook to catch up to the rest of the room.

I came up with a plan for some built-ins, a floating bench and of course some shiplap.

And I provided this lovely sketch to Max who got right to work.

He built a frame 18″ off the ground, with all the side pieces secured into studs and a centre brace to prevent sagging.

And then we covered the top and front with this beautiful pine.

Max then got started on the shiplap, which as is elsewhere in our house, is just strips of mahogany underlay. This is a super cheap way to get the look. We used five inch boards.

Next I stained the bench Special Walnut by Minwax and sealed it with poly, and once that was dry I taped it for caulk and paint.

I used this paintable caulk and got all the nail holes and seams.

And then I painted it Blank Page by Beauti-tone.

We finished it off with some hooks custom made by Sam’s Fabrication. It is so hard to find hooks that are simple, sturdy, and inexpensive. It cost the same as buying hooks off the shelf as having these made.

Then I added some pillows. After much debate I decided I love emerald green now and that it goes well with the navy ceiling.

We also added some baskets underneath for texture and a wedding photo above the hooks.

I love the way it turned out and this space looks so much more intentional now.

Let me know if you have any questions.

A Waterfall for the Powder Bath 

When Max and I last went around the house to talk about upcoming and future projects, he was very surprised to learn that our powder room was not completed. 

I have spoken before about how I wanted a waterfall faucet for that room. When I bought the vanity top at Lowes I got a free faucet for it, which was much better than our old one and worked in the meantime while I saved for the new one. 

But when Max learned that the bathroom was not done he told me to just finish it. So I found a deal and ordered it. 

And it is super cool. It has a brushed nickel finish so it matches the rest of the bathroom hardware. 

The opening in the top and the square shape make it feel modern. 

And I made some updates to the other side of the room as well, replacing the crappy outdoor bench we had in here with this wood one that max sanded down and stained to make the wood grain really shine. 

I may have some pictures of the refinishing process that I can include in another post but I will have to dig them up. 

And above that bench I hung this shelf from Homesense. I love the metal work on it. 

Toilet paper is a great decor tool. 

Meanwhile, as I took all these pictures (plus some of the dogs), Max installed the free Lowes faucet upstairs in the main bathroom. The old faucet there was pretty sad so it was a nice upgrade. 

I’m excited about these faucet changes. Now all the powder room needs is a new light fixture and I will be painting the ceiling when that is installed. I hope to pick up the fixture on my next Thunder Bay trip. 

Let me know if you have any questions. 

Future Plans for the Main Bath

Max and I recently decided that the next project we are going to tackle is the garage workshop.

Which is painfully boring. It is a garage after all.

It is absolutely necessary for us to finally finish our workshop, especially with winter fast-approaching. We really need a place where we can work on projects and plus if the garage doesn’t get organized soon I will likely develop a hernia. Unfortunately this is not going to be the prettiest project we’ve done. And it’s not really going to require a lot of design and decorating on my part.

So in the meantime, I can dream about future projects.


I have talked about all the problems I have with this main bathroom in the past, HERE, and I painted the mirror black HERE. And while I had a lot of ideas as to changes I wanted to make, it was about damn time I made a real plan.


I think one of the main problems in here is the wall colour. I had thought that the vanity needed to change, but it turns out it was the walls. I was trying to blend beige and grey too much, and I needed everything to get a little bit cooler toned in order to match better.

In this spirit of simplifying, I will paint the walls Blank Page by Beauti-tone, and leave the vanity as My Favourite Sweater by Beauti-tone. The vanity in my design plan is just a representation of my painted vanity, I will not be switching it out, just putting a new topper and faucet on.

For further cohesiveness, I want all of the hardware to be black. And right now I’m thinking hooks instead of a towel bar, which Max says he prefers because they are “easier”

I also am sticking to my black mirror, but changing the shape to a circular mirror that I already picked up from Homesense.



Another one of the larger changes will be lighting. You can see the vanity light right now is off centered and just in the way. I would love a sconce on either side and am eying these from Wayfair right now.


I already have the shower curtain, so the last thing I need is that beautiful cement tile. Unfortunately it is only available in the states so I may have to figure out a creative way to get it (or go for a shopping trip across the border).

I’m excited to turn this bathroom around and make it something I love. After I finish the boring garage project.

Let me know if you have any questions.


Bye Bye Green Couch

The couch is gone the couch is gone!

Three years after first obtaining our green couches from a friend upon moving into our first apartment, we finally got rid of the last one.

And it is awesome.


Forgive me for this photo, it is pre-DSLR, but it shows both our green couches in their full glory. I bought these guys third-hand off a friend a few years ago, when I was desperate for furniture. By the time we got them, they had been well-loved. Not the greatest quality in the first place, the support was shot in both of them, and they were too cheap to even think about replacing the foam.

Oh yeah, and they were green.

I like to think I made it work pretty well, and things blended so much that you barely noticed the sage colour. And last Christmas when I got my nest chair, I got rid of the loveseat.

And it was glorious.


But I still had one green couch, and I knew just the thing to replace it.

A $3000 Urban Barn leather couch.

So I waited. And I dreamed about it in this post.


When we got married and were given wonderful monetary gifts from our family and friends, I told Max I already knew what I wanted to buy before we put the rest in savings (see beautiful couch, above).

But I still wanted a deal.

So, when we walked in to Urban Barn in Winnipeg after our honeymoon and saw this guy on sale, I had to have it.

The salesperson gave us an additional hundred dollars off, and so we ended up getting it for 66% off. DEALS.

This was a floor model and no longer produced (hence the deal) but there are a lot of similar Urban Barn couches HERE.


I just love the warmth the leather brings to the room. I’m looking forward to the patina over time, and this kind of couch just gets more beautiful with age. The leather is not bonded either, but real leather, so we really did get a steal for the quality.


The lady also asked if I had pillows for the couch or if I would like to pick some out. Please.


Now between this couch and my nest chair, Urban Barn is taking over my living room.


There are a few more changes I want to make in here (including curtains, a rug, new bookshelf, move the piano in, you know, just SEVERAL things), but this is a great step towards my dream living room.


The low profile of this couch also makes a huge difference. This also makes me want a new basement couch as well #createdamonster.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Tile Reveals – Powder Bath and Master Ensuite

Oops I didn’t post for two months!

It wasn’t purposeful, it really wasn’t. At some point I just realized it was necessary to put the blog on the backburner while I got married and went on my honeymoon in order to not lose my mind. Because executing a wedding is hard. I need a nap just thinking about it.

The good news is soon I will have wedding pictures to share here.

Until then, I wanted to share a bit of an update and reveal as to all the tile work I had posted about starting back in the summer. Despite not posting about it, the physical work was completed in fairly short order. And I’m OBSESSED with the hex tile I chose.


In the powder room we completed two rows of subway tile above the chunky white countertop we installed not long ago. I used grey grout (Delorean Grey) for some contrast and some caulking in the same shade finished off the edges. The wraparound of this tile is great for splashes, which is good because this bathroom is most used and often used by guests.


In our master ensuite, we completed the floor tile in this beautiful black and white hex pattern.


I love how white and clean it looks now compared to the old linoleum. A new white vanity top and white toilet also helped with the overall brightness of the room.


In this bathroom we also installed a backsplash along the back wall only. It can go a little higher given the mirror placement in here and I finished it with the same grout and caulk.


Now I can’t wait to change out my shower and get all the beige officially out of this room.


The black tiles match the black vanity (Black Cat by Beauti-Tone) perfectly as well.


I have some fresh new hammam towels in here as well.


I am so excited to have one of my four bathrooms so close to being totally completed!

I still hope to find a new light for this space, it still has a dreaded boob light in the meantime.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Cabin Updates with Paint

Years ago, my parents dragged our little cabin to the back of their property and built a new one in it’s place. This meant the back cabin or “party shack” was up for grabs.

So Max and I are moving in on it.

At the start of the summer, we purged the entire thing and threw out truckloads of old stuff. Next we cleaned and made some slight improvements with paint.


I found this coffee table on the side of the road and rescued it. It was solid wood and I love the length of it, I knew it would be perfect in front of the couch. It is also the perfect height for putting your feet up.


I painted this in My Favourite Sweater by Beauti-tone and finished with a quick coat of spray varathane.


Next I painted the little storage cupboard where we keep the water cooler and dishwashing bucket. In the drawers are our food and some pots. This was actually the island for the new cabin but it came damaged so they sent a new one and my Dad built some pine drawer fronts to use this one in here.


And finally, I painted the cabinets. None of the cabinets here match, the bottoms are all one piece but the tops are actually a display unit from the store with four different cupboard styles. Painting certainly helped make them more uniform, again I used My Favourite Sweater by Beauti-tone.


We’re well on our way to updating this place. Next we need some new flooring and a screen door, but for now it’s great for us and the dogs.

Let me know if you have any questions.

Wedding Invitations Are Out!

If someone asks you to marry them you better think long and hard about how bad you want to because let me just tell you, wedding planning is the worst.

Luckily I really want to marry Max.

But the latest horrific wedding planning item was getting invites out. It took me three to four full nights of work to get these assembled, tied, sealed, addressed, stamped, and mailed. And it hurt my back.


Our invites are all from Precious Invitations and match our Save the Dates, which I posted about here. I loved Precious Invitations and couldn’t recommend them more. When I had an envelope mishap, they expedited 50 new ones to me within two days. Great customer service.


Our invites basically consist of three cards, the invite, reception card, and RSVP. I tucked the two smaller cards under the large one with a jute string because it would have cost a million dollars to get envelope backs (an extra flap of paper to tuck the smaller cards into).


And I also tucked the RSVP into the RSVP envelopes to keep it looking classy.


I used our stamp on the RSVP envelope as well as on the back of the large invite envelope as a return address.


And then I ruined my poor little fingers writing addresses on each of them.

Needless to say I am glad it is done.

On to the next task (there are many).

Let me know if you have any questions.