Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Day 304's update

Can you believe how big she's gotten?! Remember how small she was when we got her? She still likes to chew on sticks, squeak her pink bone, chew on our shoes (despite our best efforts to convince her not to!) and has managed to befriend Peepers the Cat. They are quite the pair, that is, until Maddie loses her patience with being nice and jumps on top of him ...

Here she is stretched out and being adorable in the living room. We are completely smitten; it's kind of ridiculous. But she's a lot of fun and we're enjoying watching her grow and learn.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Day 303's progress

Let there be light ... fixtures!

Over the weekend, Wes sanded, primed and painted the walls in the bathroom, and hung the light fixture. It's really starting to look like a bathroom again! On the list for this week: grouting the tile on the floor, then installing the sink and toilet (hooray!).

While we were busy at home, our friend Lindsay ran her first half marathon! We're so proud of you, LJ!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Day 300's departure

It's not a secret that I love a clean, white kitchen. Since we've got a kitchen remodel hovering the in future, I can't help but wonder just how much longer they will feel fresh and up-to-date, but still classic. Though I don't think I'm ready for the return of wood finished on cabinets (except in very specific instances), I'm not opposed to considering other options. Namely, cabinets painted a color other than a shade of white.

Now this is tricky territory, especially for a neutral-lover like me, but I think I've come up with some beautiful examples.

This kitchen is by the lovely and talented (and often mentioned on this blog!) Erika at Urban Grace Interiors. I'm really into blues and greens lately, but I'm not sure if I could commit to them on my cabinets! This is such a great kitchen though. Love the mini tiles on the back splash -- Erika, are those marble? Gorgeous! And the back-to-back farmhouse sinks are quite indulgent.

Jean Allsop for Coastal Living

Now this is just ridiculously pretty -- here I go again with robin's egg blue. The island is wonderful, and I'm obsessed with the tin on the refrigerator. Though this is a muted color, once again, I just don't know if I could commit, so let's go a bit more neutral.

Photo via Cote de Texas

Joni at Cote de Texas is responsible for this find. Baton Rouge attorney (yes, attorney!) created this lovely kitchen. To me, it reads like a white kitchen, but is a bit more interesting, and a tad warmer (even when empty). Oooooh and I love dark window casements and the subway tiles that go all the way to the crown molding.

Jean Allsop for Coastal Living

While we're talking neutrals, let's dissect these putty-colored cabinets. If you look closely, you can tell that the color was probably chosen from the tile back splash. And I like the way the island is set off with another color. I can't say I'll ever have green kitchen cabinets, but it is pretty.

If you're still not convinced, there are other ways to bring color into your kitchen without committing to painting your cabinets.

Windsor Smith painted this floor a bold color, and notice that the ceiling is a paler shade. Once again, the tiles go to the ceiling!

Michael Arnaud for Domino magazine

Painting the inside of your cabinets a favorite color is an effective, yet subtle, way to inject a little color into your kitchen. When displayed behind glass-front cabinets or on open shelves, it will also make your accessories and dishes stand out.

If you had your way, what color would your kitchen be?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Day 299

Thank you, thank you, thank you to The Washington Post for naming our story on robin's egg blue one of their "picks to click this week!" We are thrilled to be in such wonderful company!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Day 298

Mmmmmm how much do I want to be sitting by this fire pit right now?! A lot.

See the rest of this house here.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Day 297's purchase

I'm feeling pretty uninspired this week (and from the looks of it, was last week too!), so I can't really come up with anything other than this: Over the weekend, Wes and I placed an order for some chairs for the living room. They look a bit like the ones in this photo, and they rock. Yes, they are great, but they also literally rock back and forth. Based on the fabric offerings (blue and pink gingham), I assume they are intended to be used in a baby's room. Soooooo comfortable! We won't have them for 8-12 weeks (!!!!), but I'm already counting the days until we have one presentable room.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Day 293's favorite color

Last weekend, Mom and I were playing with Maddie in the front yard, and Mom found a beautiful robin's egg on the ground. I've been seeing robins in the front yard every day (even though Peepers likes to chase them away), but it hadn't occurred to me to look for hatched eggs, so this was a really fun surprise!

I love colors that are found in nature, and robin's egg blue is one of my favorites. It's happy color that reminds me of spring and of new beginnings, and, of course, it's pretty!

One easy way to incorporate the color in its natural form also happens to be a favorite of mine: antique egg lithographs and prints. Wes and I fell for antique prints on our honeymoon when we stumbled into Carolina Antique Maps & Prints, a charming little shop on historic Church Street in Charleston. We came home with an egg lithograph and a bridge print (can you guess who picked out which?) and we've been hooked ever since.

Tria Giovan for Southern Accents

Designer David Mitchell hung a collection of egg prints over robin's egg blue wallpaper a hallway.

Katie's enviable collection of egg prints hangs neatly in her dining room.

Courtesy of Buck Hollow Farm

It's not just the eggs that charm me, I love the color. This shabby little chest would look great under a big mirror treated like an entry table or bar. I'm a neutral-lover myself, but I still love little bits of color in surprising places.

Courtesy of Pigtown Design

I think my favorite incarnation of this color is also known as "haint blue." You may have seen it on porch ceilings around the South, particularly on older homes. Traditional reasons for using shades of blue vary; some say you should paint it the color of the sky, others say the color deters insects (mosquitoes in particular) and in the low country of South Carolina, blue is said to keep evil spirits away from homes. Whatever the reason, it sure is pretty, and nothing makes me feel more Southern than sitting under a robin's egg blue porch.

Even if you don't have a porch, you can still greet visitors with this happy color, as Housemartin found in New York City (another obsession illustrated here, functioning shutters! more on that another day ...) .

Coastal Living

Blue ceilings work indoors, too.

Courtesy of Bryan Johnson

A blue door or ceiling not enough for you? Paint the house!

What's your favorite color?

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Day 291's reveal


And, after:

Wow, you can barely tell the difference! I promise I slaved all weekend to put two coats of Benjamin Moore's #1032 on the walls. I don't know if I've mentioned it, but every single wall in the.entire.house. is the same color, and changing one room really has made a difference (even if you can't tell in the photo!).

Up next for our bedroom, window treatments (these or these), waiting patiently for my already-picked-out anniversary present to go above the bed with the one we bought on our honeymoon, and painting/replacing the closet doors.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Day 289's pretty

Jeremy Samuelson for Cottage Living

Loving this cool cottage today!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Day 286's hint

A hint of what's to come!

Happy Weekend!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Day 285's discoveries

When we moved into our house, it was the end of February, rainy, dreary and cold. Everything was brown, muddy and dormant. With the first hint of warm weather, I was poking around the yard, fingers crossed, looking for something that might bloom. Now that it's April, I have to say, I have not been disappointed!

We azealas of almost every shape, size and color spread allllll around the yard. If we ever get around to turning our attention to the exterior, I hope we can transplant them all to more logical locations.

Along the border of our neighbors' yard, we have the quintessential Southern flowering tree, the dogwood. And I think there are some oakleaf hydrangeas starting to leaf out along our border in the back -- my favorite! Also in the jungle of our backyard are four or five gigantic forsythia bushes (another favorite!), and you'd better believe that I was risking life and limb climbing through thorny vines to bring cut branches into the house every week they were in bloom. Oh so pretty.

And in addition to the flowering bushes, there is a plethora of evergreen bushes too. Can't wait for Christmas to come around so I can use the boxwood, holly and nandina cuttings to decorate the house.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Day 284's ideas

No updates on the bathroom to report, but it is beginning to come together in my head! Our vanity is similar to this one, but without the drawers on the side. The counter top is white "cultured" marble, and we got a deal at a local discount warehouse on a great-looking faucet kind of like this one. Above the sink will be my favorite mirror, and above that, this light fixture.

Underfoot, white 1-inch hexagon ceramic tile (special ordered from Lowe's), and 4-inch square tiles (from Home Depot) will go in the shower stall. I've been dying for this rug for months, so maybe I can talk Wes into it. I know that as soon as he sees it in person, he'll know why it is leaps and bounds above the three cheap little rugs we currently use in the bathroom.

I don't think I can express my excitement about this new bathroom! As soon as it is finished, I'm closing the door to the "blue bathroom" (so named for it's bright blue toilet, counter top and tub) and forgetting that it even exists! So if you come over, don't feel a bit shy about marching right past the hall bath and into our bedroom to use this shiny, pretty new one (or to just admire it!).

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Day 283

You've probably noticed that it's Bathroom Month here at the Newlywed house. As our bathroom begins to take shape, let's have a look at the bathrooms in a lovely old limestone in Brooklyn, home of my new favorite blog (ahem, obession).

I really don't have much to say about these pictures (they speak for themselves), except that, budget notwithstanding, these are my dream bathrooms. Have a look:

Parlor bath, before (did you see the first Saw movie? I'm pretty sure it was filmed in this very bathroom. Oh.My.Gawsh.).

And after. Cararra marble hexagon and subway tiles + vintage fixtures = me drooling.

Upstairs bath, before. Kind of makes our yellow and brown bath look much less scary, doesn't it?!

And after -- oh so pretty!

Monday, April 7, 2008

Day 282's progress

Hooray, we have a floor! As you can see, we're moving right along with the bathroom remodel. Wes and his Dad worked alllllll day Saturday replacing the subfloor, re-working the doorway to the shower, installing an exhaust fan, replacing sheet rock, patching holes, making new holes (for the new lighting) and getting started laying the floor tile (am I leaving anything out, Wes?).

While the fellas were busy in the back, Mrs. Nancy and I Windexed the inside and outside of the living room windows, took down the grape bunches border in the kitchen, gave Maddie a much-needed bath, cleaned out the dining room, re-arranged some dishes, took down the old hardware on the windows around the house, and did what seemed like 87 loads of laundry. We also made three trips to Lowe's and two to Benjamin Moore, but we were eventually able to settle on a paint color for the bathroom and bedroom.

As you can probably tell, we needed a rest on Sunday, so after a nice lunch with the Birmingham family and finally joining our church, we settled in for some R&R in front of the TV.

And in case you were wondering (don't lie, you've been on pins and needles!), Kansas' Saturday victory over UNC means that I won the 3rd Annual Bracket Challenge and am taking suggestions for what to make Wes do on Friday night! Thank you, Jayhawks!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Day 279's inspiration

Amanda Friedman in Domino

Just a little inspiration for the weekend!

Happy Friday!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Day 278's find

Pier 1 Imports has turquoise (and orange) foo dogs made of terra cotta for $20 each. Antique versions are turning up everywhere lately, and I think they're kind of fun. What do you think?

Pottery Barn

They make such cute and colorful bookends -- and what room doesn't need a little turquoise? (I'm getting a little tired of looking at construction, aren't you? Here's to hoping we'll have some pictures of progress to share next week!)

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Day 277's messes

Our smart girl found the only shaded spot in the front yard!

Whew, it's been a doozie of a week already! Little Maddie got into something foul (and apparently bacteria-ridden) and has been sick since early Tuesday morning. Poor thing. According the vet, it's not serious, but it is slightly mysterious and definitely unpleasant. Poor sea grass rug, too. I'll spare you the details, but eewwwwwwww. We've exhausted all of our home remedies and are now turning to professionals; I'm determined to save it!

In the middle of all of this, our friend Ben came over to help Wes with the bathroom demolition. Actually, the word "demolition" doesn't really do their work justice, as it became an Official Bathroom Removal last night. The Sheetrock around the sink and the sub floor were both rotted, so out they went (er, more like down they went, into the crawlspace below), and I'm sure that we'll lose more wall before they're done. Yikes!

Sweet mercy! Will we ever have a bathroom again?!

Wes and Ben were roommates, pledge brothers and classmates at Auburn. Now they work together, and you can see by this photo that they had a little too much fun at the expense of our house and at least one hammer. Thanks for the help, Ben!