{before & after: breaking down the cage}

Ok, so I’m kinda doing things a little backwards here but remember how I mentioned in another before & after post how my recent home projects were motivated by the completion of a bigger project? Well this is it. It was a long time coming. Ever since I moved into my place I’ve hated these metal screens that close in my sleeping area. I felt like a caged animal and not to mention all the dust they collected. I’m pretty sure they were a DIY project from the first owners. Bless them and their DIY little hearts but those cages needed to come down. 

I had a few different ideas but they just seemed complicated so I decided to keep it really simple and do an impactful large chevron pattern with beautiful and naturally multi-coloured clear cedar. And voila!!! Thanks to an amazing contractor who brought my vision to life I couldn’t be more happier. For the first week I couldn’t even stop staring. It just completely changed the space..I can’t believe I didn’t do it sooner.  

Isn’t it great!? So that wraps up the before & afters from my own place – for now 🙂 I hope they provided some inspiration for you to take a another look at your space or finally get to a project on your ‘to do’ list. 


{before & after: patio beautification project}

I’m a lucky girl, I have a large rooftop patio all to myself. It’s wonderful but I don’t think it’s necessarily beautiful and cozy. After four summers of not wanting to invest in a space I could only use 3-4 months of the year I decided (with some motivation) it’s time to just suck it up, spend a little money, put in the hard work and get it done. I called it the Patio Beautification Project. And the results are in!

Here’s the before. I already sold my glass top Walmart patio set at this point but you get the idea. 

And the after! So, so, so, so, so, so much better. I now have a cozy & bright patio that’s calling my name. The couch was definitely the biggest investment but totally worth it. The dining table was sitting in a box from last summer, so happy it gets to see the light of day. Other than those two items, it was some DIY projects, some spray paint, lots of flowers, 2nd hand treasures and a little help from Ikea (white pots, white chairs, candles & sofa cushions). Even my old worn-out stuff looks like new with a new coat of spray paint. 

The table and chairs are from Ikea. Both very affordable.  The hanging lights used to be worn out looking dark brown metal and I gave them a fresh coat of gold spray paint and I love them 10x more. 

The colour pots are a successful DIY project I posted a few weeks ago – find the instructions here. The turtle pot and deer terrarium were both flea/thrift finds. 
The Blue Mountain inspired ashtray (yes people smoke, and a good hostess has an ashtray so they don’t end up in her garden!)and the peacocks (spray painted) are more thrift store finds. The pink chair is actually a hand-me-down designer chair that I gave a fresh coat of pink spraypaint. 


I really loved the idea of putting mirrors up. It’s taking an indoor element and bringing it outdoors – it really gives it the feel of an outdoor ‘room’. Both are from a thrift store. 

These chics and hen succulents were in a sad looking box on the ground (not seen in before pics) and my flower box was also very sad and falling apart. So with a hammer & nails I got my hands dirty and took all the sadness and turned into it something happy. I can tell they like it because they look super green & healthy compared to before.  

Here a cool 360 panoramic view.
And you have it! Time to enjoy a well deserved glass of ice-cold wine on the patio. 

{before & after: bedroom loft makeover}

I’m on a major roll here. Another one of my own before & after projects. So after I got my beautiful new railing it was time to take care of those other lingering projects. First up was what lies on the other side of the railing, my bedroom. It’s definitely the most awkward space in my loft. It has low ceiling and plywood floors. Up until recently it was just this cave-like area that I went to sleep but there was nothing cozy about it. Bedrooms should be cozy dont’ you think? 

The hard part was giving it a new coat of paint (did I mention the low ceilings?) and taking apart this clunky old tv unit. But after that is was all cosmetic with some colourful accessories and a string of clear lights – aka instant coziness. Doesn’t it look like a place you could curl up and watch movies in all day? Makeover success!

GET’EM HERE: 1/2/3a/3b/4/5/6/7/8

{before & after DIY: bold & gold}

Today I’m bringing you another one of my own DIY projects while I’m still riding this momentum of scratching of items from my To Do list that I started almost five years ago. Next on the list is a patio makeover. I’m calling it the Patio Beautification Project. The full story is coming but for now here’s a little sneak peak. My sad, sad looking pots needed a makeover.

• some old (or new) pots
• spray paint in your favourite colours & gold
• painters tape
• plastic bags to cut up
• drop sheet
• (optional but helpful) some sort of pedestal or table that you don’t mind getting painted

First – pick up a few of your favourite colours of spray paint as well as a bottle of gold. 

Set up your drop cloth and start spraying. I suggest a calm day with no wind. You’ll likely need at least two coats to cover nicely. 

Give them some time to dry (I left them for a day) then use your painters tape and cut up plastic bags to tape off your geometric shapes. I stuck with triangles. 

Once you have them all taped up it’s time for a little gold to make them look rich. You’ll end up with something like this. Give them two coats for good coverage. Then let them dry to the touch but not overnight because that green tape can end up taking some paint off with it if you leave it on too long.

Then comes the best part – carefully remove the tape and check out your new, modern, geometric, colourful and awesome pots!
Now they just need to be filled with some beautiful flowers. 

{before & after: bathroom door}

Another before & after from my own space. I’ve made my loft very cozy and eclectic and the metal sliding bathroom door that came with the place just didn’t do it for me. 

I was super excited when I found an amazing door at the Habitat for Humanity ReStore centre. It’s perfect for a bathroom! It has a full length mirror and even the paint colour matches perfectly AND it was the right size (and right price)! 

Out with the old and in with the (new) old. 

I found this great vintage looking sign, just so people don’t get confused. 

I found this vintage door key hole & handle at the Aberfoyle Antique market. A must Sunday visit on your summer weekend list. 

{before & after: curtain makeover}

Get ready for a series of before & afters’s from my very own little corner of the world. When I moved into my loft over 4 years ago it was the ultimate bachelor pad and the colour palette on the walls was beige, dark green & maroon.(gross)

There is no better motivation than hosting a New Years Eve party to get the place set up in the first three months but the truth is I haven’t done much since then. I recently made one pretty dramatic change (project to come) and that really motivated me to get some of those other things checked off my ‘to do’ list. 

First up is a curtain makeover. And by makeover, I mean brand new & totally different curtains. I’ve hated these dark brown velvet curtains since the day I moved in but because of the light/size/height issue I haven’t done anything. Until now. 

I went all out DIY on this and made my own curtains (!!!!). The truth is it was hard to find anything 120″ long and what I found was pretty ugly. I was very inspired by these curtains and decided to try and make them myself. 

First step – go to the fabric store. Thanks King’s Textile in Toronto who have any possible fabric you can think of. Lucky me I found pretty much the exact turquoise gauze-like material in the clearance bin for $3.99. What are the chances?!

Then the hard part – measuring, pinning, ironing & hemming. It wasn’t necessarily that hard but dealing with this amount of fabric could be tricky. But if you take your time and do it properly it makes the sewing part easy peasy. 
In my case, I also had to install curtain rods because I didn’t have any. This ended up being quite the workout since I’m very forgetful and went up and down the 10ft ladder many times. But it was worth it…

The final reveal! Love it. Love the colour. They just freshen up the whole place. I also got roller blinds installed so the job of these guys is to just look pretty hanging out on the side. Job well done I say. 

…now to fill up those blank frames. 

{thrifting 101: milk glass treasures}

I love hunting for vintage. It’s pretty much a past time. There’s nothing better than finding a great find for pennies at a thrift shop or garage sale. My place is full of it. That’s kinda the problem, I’m running out of space! But that’s a problem for another day (etsy vintage store in the near future?).  

Friends often make comments about when they go to a thrift shop all they see is junk. They ask me ‘how did you think of that?’ or ‘what will you do with that?’ or when it comes to fashion finds ‘how did do you make it look modern?’. So I’m starting this series called Thrifting 101 with lots of thrifting before & afters and tips to inspire you next time you’re in a thrift shop. You’ll never look at junk the same again. Promise. 

First up are these cute milk glass dessert cups that I found for $2 each. 

And voila! now it’s a super cute mini planter. I chose a succulent because they are nice & small and don’t need a ton of soil or watering. How great would this be as a hostess gift? 

Add it to a few other treasures for a collection (try to stick to odd numbers in groupings…it just looks better) Here I have another milk glass favourite find and a candle made from an old mason jar. The candle was a gift from the fabulous vintage find & inspired store in Almonte, Ontario called Tin Barn Market. Definitely worth the visit if you’re anywhere in the Ottawa area.