January 30, 2013

Cornice Inspiration

Well can I just say a huge 

T H A N K  Y O U

to all of my readers that commented and emailed me ideas and advice to fix my cornice dilemma!  
You know the times when there is too many ideas in your head and one idea just doesn't seem to jump out?  Yeah.. that is where I was.  Plus I had already purchased the fabric, so I sort of felt like I had to use it!  But after the tragic fail of the first go around I have changed up my plan and am 

S O  E V E R Y  E X C I T E D

about my new design!!!  I have talked my mom into helping me this weekend so hopefully there will be new ones to share next week!!!  I had to laugh because several people told me I was brave to ask for advice.  Well isn't this half of the reason I write a design blog... to share creative ideas and opinions?  I already knew what I needed to change for the most part, but it was so nice to put it out there and hear other people say the same things!  Plus it makes it easier to convince the hubs re-make them!

On my hunt for inspiration over the last 48 hours I have came across some pretty fantastic cornices and window treatments.  I thought I would share some of my finds!

Oh SOO many great options... what do you think I am leaning towards?

January 28, 2013

Cornice Help!!!

Well hello Monday!  
This weekend I spent some time hanging out with friends and doing a little DIY.  Typically that makes me super happy and I am even more happy when I finish it.  
But happy didn't happen this time...

Since we moved into this house back in October I have done very little to this house.  Granted we did have the keys less than an hour before we started giving our kitchen a mini makeover... but since then I have done very little.  It is so very unlike me.  I had purchased fabric to make cornice boards for this room before we moved in!  I wanted them simple, but not just straight.  I also wanted the fabric to be very monochromatic to my walls, but also to have texture.  The hubs build the box and I gave them a quick wrap with a little welting and... done.  At least one of the two... but I am not feeling it!

What is it about them that I don't like?  Well I am not totally sure... but I feel like they are missing something.  

I planned on adding a matching cornice to the slider with drapes on a transverse rod pulled to the right.  Do I need to add panels to the window on the left to balance it out?  

My wonderful grandma gifted me these awesome modern wing backs.  She picked these up from a consignment shop, but decided she didn't like them.  They are from West Elm and I love them, but not sure where to put them in my house.  For a moment I liked them in place of my brown leather chairs, but now not sure I am loving them with this new cornice... 

give me your thoughts!  

Keep the cornice? Add panels? Keep the chairs, go back to the leather?  
Change the fabric of the cornice and keep the wing backs with a new table in the center?  

January 25, 2013

Happy Weekend!!

Oh my... Do the days of the week just fly by?  
I am excited for this weekend because I am actually going to work on a project for my house!  Not that I have any complaints about working on projects for clients... sometime it is way more fun!  It is just that I have literally had 85% of the stuff purchased since before I moved in to the house in October!!  It has been awhile since I did a little weekend DIY!

Do you have any DIY plans for the weekend?

January 24, 2013

How To... Rustoleum Countertop Transformations

 Earlier this week I gave you a little peak in the office I am working on.  On the exterior the building has a funky mid century vibe... but on the inside it had a bad mid 80's vibe!  This office space is rented, so though my client knew he had to spend some money, we wanted to make a little changes to the permeant fixtures as possible.  With that being said we just couldn't leave the "marbled" green laminate alone!  I am a great designer, but there was no designing around this...

For a couple hundred bucks and about 4 of my hours {NOTE: this is not the actual time this will take} I was able to change the green to a more appealing modern black.  Here is my step by step process... 

As any paint project starts out, prep and tape your space.  There is no way that you could cut in!  You have to tape off the edges... I tried! 

The kit consists of 4 different products and up to 5 steps.  Included is a sanding block to give your countertops a quick sanding.  I did not go to town, I just sanded until it I could feel some grooves in the countertop.  It took me about 20 mins to do the whole area.  Next is to apply the base coat.  It is super thick and is recommended to apply like frosting on a cake.  So I applied as directed.

Per the directions it was recommended to use a brush to paint the backsplash, 1" or 2" from the corners, and the edge.  And then to roll the rest.

Working in small manageable sections {as suggested} apply the base.  It is hard to tell when wet, but be sure to cover the countertop well!  Once you are done with the section immediately apply the provided wetting agent.  Next fill the provided hopper {dispenser} with the provided chips and spread over wet surface.  And that is where I stopped following directions!  EEK!  The kit came with 6 bags of chips!  It also came with an example of how the counter should look and feel after step 4.  Once I started adding the chips I decided I didn't want that much grey.  I wanted the countertop to look black with small specs of grey.  So I applied the chips evenly, but not nearly as much as it recommended.  If you do follow the directions included you will need to use all of the chips!  If you miss a spot or two with the base coat the chips will cover it up in the end.  You can can go back and touch up some areas if needed, but try to do it in the first coat.

Once complete with steps 1 & 2 it needs to dry and cure for at least 18 hours but not more than 24 hours.  I let it sit for 2 days!  Once I made it back to the office, my client asked what was left in the process and I told him {per the kits directions} I need to sand to smooth and then apply the top coat.  He told me that he like the texture of the chips and he didn't think I should sand it.  I agreed, but gave it a little scraping {with the included scraper} to free up some of the loose chips.  It is a good thing my client liked the texture, because if I had sanded it smooth I would have exposed the green!  Well that is why 5 other bags of chips were included!  So after I scraped some loose chips I applied the clear top coat.  I brushed and rolled in the same fashion I applied the base.  Once the base is applied then carefully remove the tape.  It recommends to use a blade to cut away the tape... and they are totally right!  Maybe it was because I let the paint go for 2 days, but the paint was fully dried and the tape difficult to remove! If you waited until the top coat was dry I think it would be impossible to remove the tape!

 The kit recommends 48 hours for it dry and cure before light use and 2 weeks before heavy items are set on it.  We waited about 48 hours and then moved in the computer and worked on it.  The top coat filled in some of the texture so it was not nearly as rough as it was before, but there is still texture.  In the end I would recommend following the directions as always {and if you want to watch a full video tutorial on the recommend directions go here}.  But if the client is happy that is all that matters!

January 23, 2013

Client Project.... Parents Kitchen Update

We are in phase 2 of my parents kitchen!  All of the rough {electrical & plumbing} has been completed and the walls are closed up and ready for cabinets!  

 This is about where I left you all last update.

And here it is today!  After the texture was done, my parents painted where there wouldn't be cabinets.  With the wall down, there is so much light!  My mom is very happy!

 Last summer when we were selecting tile for the fireplace project, we came across this flooring tile.  The beautiful porcelain... {yes you read me right porcelain!!!} is the perfect combination of grey, yellow and blue!  We did a dry tile layout to get the position of the "tile rug" placement and then worked the field tiles off of that.

 These are the tiles for the backsplash!  Honestly I was a little socked when my parents came back with the modern brick layout, but I love it.  We are going to work in the glass "bling tile" as my mom likes to call it into the modern brick.  The 1x1 marble will be used as the decorative backsplash behind the range and we will pop a few of the tiles out and work some of the "bling tile" in.  It is the perfect light breakup of the white cabinets, white counters {Carrera},  and a white backsplash!

In the new kitchen design we were able to re-use all but one of their existing cabinets!  We had to purchase a few extra boxes and some trim, but re-using existing has allowed them to spend $ on other items.  Once my dad has all of the cabinets installed in their new layout he will paint them.  He is using the Rustoleum Cabinet Transformations to paint them.  So far he says it has been easy... maybe I can get him to write a tutorial for the blog!

 This is the new view from where the new range will be.  The house just feels so much more open and functional... well not right now {it will be more functional then their make-shift kitchen in the far distance!!}

January 22, 2013

Design Drawing Software

I need some advice!!!
Over the last couple months I have been in need for a drawing program.  I have been trained in CAD, and drew in that program for 10 years.  I am also trained in 20/20, but really don't need to use that unless I am designing a kitchen.  Over the last 4 years I have tried a variety of drawing programs, but none of them seem as easy as CAD.    

I currently use Icovia to do my space planning and limited elevation drawings.  When I worked for a high end interior designer/general contractor I was constantly drawing tile layouts, and space plans.  I even got as good as to draw sketch like window treatments.  Most clients are visual, so it has been helpful to be able to show them a picture of space plan options.

When sending drawings via email and posting them to my blog I don't have to worry about them transferring in scale, but I would like to be able to print out drawings to scale if needed.

I wonder if I am just expecting too much from these sort of drawing programs?  Or should I brush off my graph and trace paper for good 'ol conceptual design drawings? 

So I ask... what drawing {if any} program do you use to draw designs for your clients? 

January 21, 2013

Client Project... Office Space

Happy Monday!  Hopefully you are enjoying a 3 day weekend... I will not be taking the day off, but maybe I will find a few extra minutes to play around with the boys!

Back in October I started working on a very, very, very, outdated office space.  The client wanted his space to feel young, modern, and a place he could spend his 12+ hour work days in and not feel crazy in it.  Through the holidays we finally have seen some progress!  Working office space by office space we have finally seen some progress.  Here are a few work in progress pics from the lobby area.


The walls were white and damaged in weird places!  I wanted to warm up the walls, but not be too aggressive because this room has no natural light and just a drop ceiling with fluorescence.


I choose a soft grey for the walls with a few accent walls of a darker shade of grey and a very deep blue grey.  The countertops just had to go!  Since he rents this space, replacing them was not in the budget so I used the Countertop Transformations kit from Rustoleum to give them a make over.  {I will share a tutorial soon!}

..Almost Done..

I will be installing a couple chairs and a few more items today and then we can call this lobby a true reception area!  It is really amazing how much a coat of paint makes in the right areas!