[home]: Spring Might Be Here


Here are some of the springy snippets around the house.

I just could not pass up this great potted lavender from a flower shop even as I am afraid that it might not survive given my track record with house plants.  

Backyard is slowly recovering from this terribly long and cold winter and kids are already enjoying a bit of sunshine.

With spring come birds looking to make a nest. As much as would like to accommodate them, I could not allow the birds to make nests on both of my outdoor sconces.  

[decor]: More Lighting - Part II


If money were not an object, I would be able to complete my quest for 3 pairs of sconces at one of the stores I've reviewed in Part I - Ginger's, Union Lighting or Elte.

So the search continued:

4. Lowes

At Lowes I found a number of interesting swing scones that we ended up bringing home and trying out.

Portfolio 4.5-in H Olde Bronze Swing-Arm Wall-Mounted Lamp with Metal Shade

Portfolio 7-in H Olde Bronze Swing-Arm Wall-Mounted Lamp with Metal Shade


[style]: St. Germain One Bedroom Apartment


A charming Parisian apartment. Grocery, bakery, coffee shop all within a block or two. It is ideally located within easy walking distance to the heart of the Latin Quarter and just a bit further just across the Seine is the Marais.  It is in a quiet and upscale neighborhood near an amazing park, shopping, and restaurants (and the famous Gerard Mulot's bakery!).

[design]: Esthetics Salon


Here is e-design created by the team for esthetics salon. 

Waiting area
Separated area for pedicures allowing for some privacy
View of salon from pedicure chair
Bar and coffee making area
Same as above, just different colour options
Separate room for face and body treatments

View onto manicure desk as one enters the salon - waiting area is on the right.

[decor]: Let there be light! - Part I


Our basement renovation included some 20 pot lights throughout the space and we added 3 pairs of sconces. While a decision to add sconces was fairly quick - search for these sconces was anything but... and it actually still continues.

The issue with finding the right lighting has not been for the lack of trying, or lack of really nice sconces but more due to almost impossible quest to find something that captures me at a really good price. And I mean really really good price as I was ready to pay maximum of $100 per sconce for sconces of my dreams. Unfortunately, they don't come at those prices.

Here are some of the sconces that we considered, purchased and tried, and returned...

1. Ginger's

2. Union Lighting




3. Elte

[home]: Basement Progress


Clearing out all of our stuff from basement took quite a bit of time - couple of full weekends and days in between. I was determined not to move 'garbage' around the house and to really look at every single item before deciding to keep it. Well, even though we had couple of big bags of garbage filled and even more bags for Goodwill, I still feel like there was more I could purge but could not find time or energy to tackle.  I am thinking mostly about kids stuff, both toys and clothes. My hope is to take the time and assess these when we work from our temporary storage room back to wherever we will be storing these items. 

And where will be storing these items is a big question as we purposely made our only big storage space smaller for the sake of the rest of the rec/family room in the basement. That means that I will have to be even more ruthless in my purging during round no. 2. 

Here are some of the photos of the basement progress. It almost looks unrecognizable as all the stuff is gone - needless wall are removed allowing more light all around and HVAC was cleaned up. Most of the framing is done in these photos. Next up was electrical work and replacing 3 old electrical panels with only one of them.

View from the little hallway onto both laundry/utility room and left side of the big basement rec/family room.
View from laundry/utility room onto bathroom. We were lucky that there are windows for all of the spaces. Framing for bathroom door is purposely large as we decided to put pocket door there. We were not as lucky with laundry room as there was not enough head room for pocket door there.
Better look at the left side of the family/rec room. As discussed in the previous post we were debating several options and versions of how to handle the support post in the middle of the room. We did not want to remove it as we were keeping the costs down as much as we could and we decided against adding any walls to make this post not feel so alone in the space as we cherished the light and openness of the space as is.

View onto laundry/utility room and wall.
Look from left side of the family/rec room onto the right one; or from front end of the house onto the back end of the house. 

Similar to above, look onto side entry door. While there still appear a lot of HVAC boxes, it is vast improvement from the starting point especially as we needed to take care of the upstairs heating.

Look from a different point proving to us that not creating more walls was a right decision.

Look onto family room from the side door entry.

Also look from side entry onto bathroom wall, where future bar area will be as well as a small hallway at the very end and laundry/utility room on the right.

Look from side door to immediate right where old electrical paneling resided - good riddance!

[decor]: Sofa Search - Part II


As per part one our sofa search took us to many different stores and to some of the stores many different times. 

3. Cornerstone Home Interiors

One such store was Cornerstone Home Interiors both in their Toronto and Cambridge locations. Cambridge location is bigger and displays bigger selection. There are also some price differences between the two stores for same items. Delivering from Cambridge is not an issue as they would ship the item(s) to Toronto store and then you would just do regular delivery.

Here are some of the finds out of which first two we seriously considered:

We liked this sofa as it feels very inviting. It has linen/cotton slipcovers that are not white, down filling, it is deep enough (41 in) and wide enough (about 90 in). However, the sofa felt too worn out, like one owned it already for 5 years, plus colour while nice had an undertone that I did not think I wanted to work with. Price was $1200.

We really liked this sectional as it has met many of our search criteria - slip covered, 100% cotton, one seat cushion, decent price at about $1800. Cons were the seat depth at only 36 inches and I really hoped to get something that is not white.