Thrift Store Keepsake Box – Para Paints Blog Crew Spring Fever

When the idea of a Para Paints Blog Crew Spring Fever Challenge was hatched I must admit to being a bit hesitant – I mean what would I paint? Sure, I still live in a condo with all white walls but, while I have vague ideas of what I want to do with the rooms, with school and work I simply haven’t had the chance to sit down and really figure out what colour(s) to use. I wish I was one of those people who can pick a colour out of a fan deck and immediately know that it’s the perfect colour for the space. I take a while pondering and second guessing myself and I didn’t have that much time for this project.

Anyways, once I committed (along with Meredith and Susan of Newberry Sykes, Tash and Kes from The Dream House Project,  Sabrina from the Pink Little Notebook, and Sara from Saige Wisdom) I decided that as this was a spring themed project I would try to do something fun with a used item – a renewal of something old which I thought was appropriate as spring brings a renewal of life (both for plants, and for us unfortunate humans who’ve been hiding from mean Mother Nature for months). I thought of reworking something I already had but in the end I found the perfect item at Value Village for just $1.99. Thrift Store Painted Wooden boxI’ve wanted one of these keepsake boxes since I first saw them a few years ago, but as they’re priced from $95 to $145 (US) each they are a bit too pricey for my ‘tuition-is-expensive’ pocketbook. When I saw this wooden box sitting on the shelf at the thrift store I knew what I would do with it. The box had been the recipient (victim?) of someone’s artistic touch, but I figured a bit of sanding and some primer and I’d be good to go. Famous last words.Thrift store wooden box insideI used Para BlockOut primer which worked wonders on the untreated pine of the box including a couple of knots, but strangely the little blue dots thwarted my efforts to remove them. I have a feeling the only thing that would have blocked the ink was something oil based which I didn’t have on hand since it tends to be smelly and I was painting in my dining room. As I planned to use dark paint on the top of the box and the worst of the dots were on the inside of the box (which would rarely be seen), I decided they just add a bit of character to my project. Besides – polka-dots are ‘in’ right?Wooden box painted whiteOnce I’d primed the box I added two coats of Jo Jo Whitewash (PF 17), and then it came time to tape off my borders.

I debated the size of the borders a bit, but eventually I decided that 1/2″ was the perfect size as the box is 14″ long. Taping didn’t take as long as I thought it might, and once it was completed I used an artist’s brush to paint some more Jo Jo Whitewash along the edge of the tape to try to eliminate any colour from seeping underneath. Painters tape added for the borderThe colour I chose for the box is called Rubber Boots (P5027-73D). I love the colour, but I think it was the name that sold me – can you think of a paint more perfectly named for a spring project? A couple of coats later and it was time to peel of the tape. I’ll admit to being nervous, and wondered if painting over the tape would make it hard to remove, or worse remove some of the paint entirely, but I had no trouble when I peeled it back slowly, and it revealed a crisp line.My new keepsake boxI’ve decided I’m going to store various keepsakes in the box. I’ve got some ‘First Home’ cards from when I moved into my condo, some recent birthday cards, pictures of friends and family, and a couple of pieces of jewellery (a bracelet from my Gran, a ring from my great aunt, and a bracelet I got for my first communion) that I don’t wear (but want to keep) and I think this will be the perfect place to store them all instead of in a few different places. For now my new keepsake box is sitting beside my TV, but I don’t think that will be it’s forever home I’ll probably move it to the bookcase, or maybe my bedroom. What do you think? Not bad for a thrift store box right? Wooden box Storing special keepsakesNow that you’ve seen my spring inspired paint project, I hope you’ll check out what each of the other members of the Para Paints Blog Crew created – click on the banners below. spring fever newberry sykes bannerThe Dreamhouse Spring Fever ChallengePinkLittleNotebook_SpringFeverSaige Wisdom Spring Fever Challenge BannerOnce you’ve been wowed by their projects I hope you’ll share one of your spring painting projects in the link-up below (You just have to share your project once, and it will appear of each of our blogs).

SPRING FEVER – Share your Spring paint projects!

A few simple rules:

  1. We ask that you only link projects that were created by you.
  2. You must link directly to a specific post.
  3. Do NOT link posts that are linked to your link party, shop or giveaway.
    If you do, YOUR LINK WILL BE DELETED

Be sure to follow each of your PARA Blog Crew hosts:

The Dreamhouse Project
Bloglovin’ ~ Twitter ~ Pinterest ~ Facebook ~ Instagram ~ Google+

Newberry Sykes
Bloglovin’ ~ Mere Twitter ~ Sue Twitter ~ Mere Pinterest ~ Sue Pinterest ~ Facebook

Pink Little Notebook
Bloglovin’ ~ Twitter ~ Pinterest ~ Facebook ~ Instagram ~ Google+

Saige Wisdom
Bloglovin’ ~ Twitter ~ Pinterest ~ Facebook ~ Instagram

Sweet Suite 10
Bloglovin’ ~ Twitter ~ Pinterest ~ Instagram

By linking up, you are giving us permission to feature your project on our blogs,
Facebook, Pinterest, Google+ and other social media platforms.

Lastly, PLEASE VISIT & COMMENT ON OTHER LINKS!


The Interior Design Show – 2013

The Interior Design show ran this past weekend, and I was lucky enough to attend again. This year I was exceptionally lucky to be invited by Masco and Beige Is Dead to participate in their #instawalk with a bunch of very talented design bloggers (seriously – Meredith Heron, and Jonathan Legate were in the group, and it was led by Margot Austin – I have no illusions that my blog is on par with their work, but I was honoured to be asked).

We spent the morning in Friday wandering the floor at the Interior Design show Instagraming all the great things that caught our eyes, and I thought I’d share some of my shots below (If you want to see more search for #ids13walk in Instagram)

IDS Bag

These clocks at the Felt Store booth were neat

These clocks at the Felt Store booth were neat

This antique copper bathtub In the Ikea Canada had to be one of the most photographed things at the show.

This antique copper bathtub In the Ikea Canada had to be one of the most photographed things at the show – with good reason – it’s was stunning in person.

Ikea Canada impressed again with this display of grouped Hektar Pendants

Ikea Canada impressed again with this display of grouped Hektar Pendants

This display of their paint colours by Farrow & Ball was really pretty

This display of their paint colours by Farrow & Ball was really pretty

I really wanted to take this lovely gold flush mount light from Living Lighting on King home with me - I think it would look pretty in my foyer

I really wanted to take this lovely gold flush mount light from Living Lighting on King home with me – I think it would look pretty in my foyer

There were some many wonderful things to look at, that it was hard to take it all in. Looking at the hashtag on Instagram later I saw lots of things I had somehow missed.

Did you guys go to the show this year? Did you go gaga for the copper tub like I did? What was your favourite booth?

I Live in a Blank Canvas, and that Needs to Change!

When I bought my condo way back March 2010 I didn’t really have any direction as to how my home would be decorated as I moved from a space of just 330 sq. feet and had the bare minimum  of furnishings and other pretty things to guide me. When I decided to paint the walls in the bedroom and living room when I moved in I had no starting point so I went with plain ol’ white. I wish I could say that the shade at least had some sort of cute name like ‘Snowflake’, ‘Puffy Cloud’ or even ‘Milk, but it was straight off the shelf ‘white’.

Yes, white is boring, but I worried that if I picked a fun hue to paint my walls right after I moved in, that choice would taint or colour (Ha!) any decisions I made later surrounding the space itself. I wanted any choices to happen naturally – as I found pieces I loved. Over the past two plus years I’ve accumulated a few more pieces of furniture and a number of dare-I admit-it knickknacks, and I have a better understanding of how I’d like my space to look. When I look back on what I believed my future space would look like when I moved in (very modern and cool, with an arc lamp and other chrome accents), to what I want it to be now (more transitional, with some warm wood and small gold accents) I’m surprised at the almost 180 degree change in my decorating direction, and I’m really thankful that I decided to resist the new-homeowner temptation to rush out and buy stuff to fill the space so it wasn’t so barren and unloved looking.

I’ll be attending BlogPodium next weekend, and the title sponsor is Para Paints. Para is offering 5 bloggers who are attending BlogPodium the chance to become part of their blog crew, and giving them 15 free gallons of paint to play with. With the decor direction for my condo more firmly laid out, and the enticement of the contest I’ve started to think about adding some colour to my space in the form of paint.

This is my kitchen, which in over a year of blogging I haven’t yet shown you. It’s quite a small space, with not much opportunity for major change without spending quite a bit of money. BTW – those are the counters that were installed when my condo was in an episode of `Home to Go`on HGTV way back in 2002. They were reused when the current cabinets were installed a couple of owners ago.

My Kitchen

Last week I looked up and realised that the ceiling might be just the place to add a bit of colour. The only trouble is that I inherited someone else`s colour choices when I moved in – the almost navy blue tiled floor, and the mustard yellow accent tiles in the backslash and along the back wall. At first I considered painting the ceiling a light sky blue, and then a pale yellow, but now I’m wondering about a dark blue to mirror the floor. Would that make the room too cave like? Maybe I should just stick with a bright white on the ceiling – so much for being adventurous!

Kitchen Colour Ideas - The Banker`s suit appears almost black online, but it`s more blue. All Paints Para

My living room is a space I`m quite anxious to add some colour to. The room has some really nice crown moulding and large baseboards that are quite difficult to see when everythings the same shade of white – a bit of colour will help them stand out.

My Living room

While I`ve toyed with the idea of a vibrant accent wall behind the television, I`m currently plotting something a little more subdued and classic – perhaps a soft beige or even purple.

All paint Para Paints

If I introduced a bit of light purple to the room via the wall colour it would allow me to add more vibrant colours to the room via accessories. Remember those Louis XV style chairs I got from Kijiji well over a year ago and haven`t done anything with yet? What do you think of this idea?

An idea for my Kijiji chairs

My bedroom is another room is desperate need of colour. I rewired some antique lamps that have some gold and Kelly green dots, and I`ve been trying to imagine a way to add those colours to the room without it becoming overpowering. I think the way to do it is by using a cream colour paint on the walls with a stencil using the same colour in a gloss paint – this will give some interest to the walls without it becoming overwhelming.

My Bedroom (sorry for the awful picture)

I`ve seen lots of talented bloggers paint their own fabric when they haven`t found what they`re looking for – I`d love some horizontal stripes in green on white fabric.

All Paints Para

Have I gone a little colour-crazy? Should I jump in feet first and try lots of colour, or should I start with some subdued hues and work my way up to some of the more vibrant colours? The nice thing about paint is it`s a fairly easy thing to change – if I were to try some of the more vibrant colours above and they just didn`t work, it would only take a few hours to change it again. Let me know what you think – would you use any of the colours above, or maybe something completely different? I`d love to hear your thoughts!

Linked to: Chic on a Shoestring, Addicted 2 Decorating

Finally, a Dining Room I Can Use!

One of the first pieces of furniture I bought after I purchased my apartment was a dining room table. I was out exploring the antique and vintage stores on Queen street East when I spotted a mid-mod teak table that I liked. It didn’t come with chairs, but I figured I’d be able to find some easily enough somewhere else.

My Mid-Mod Dining Room Table

Fast forward more than a year, and I still hadn’t bought any chairs. If I wanted to use my table my seating choices were limited to my desk chair, or a small stool that I’m pretty sure my mom bought at Ikea when I was still in junior school (does that make it an antique?)

A Year Later, and These Were Still Your Only Seating Choices

It wasn’t that I couldn’t decide what style of chair I wanted, it was that I’m cheap, and my dream chairs are decidedly not cheap.

White Eames DSW Chair

My dream chair is the Eames DSW in white. Unfortunately at about $400 a chair it was miles out of my price range. I wanted the original fiberglass version – there are molded plastic knock-off versions available but I don’t like them nearly as much, and they’re still about $150 each which is too much for something you don’t love. I needed another plan…. 

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