November 29, 2009

Visions of Sugar-Plums… (or “The Best Way to Avoid Your Homework”)

If you’re visiting from Susan’s blog “Rooms that Work” – Welcome!

It’s a Holiday Inspiration blog party and DesignTies is participating!! Why not participate yourself? Just head to Susan’s place :-)

I hope you enjoy the images I’ve pulled together (below).

While you’re here, be sure to enter our giveaway – we’re giving away a Christmas gift mystery prize!! How do you enter? You’ll find all the information you need HERE… but it’s simple, really. Just read my blog partner Kelly’s post “Compromise sucks, but you do what you gotta do” and guess which paint colour she and her husband have decided on for her kitchen cabinets. Everyone who chooses the correct colour will be entered in a random draw for the mystery prize!!

Maybe that person will be you!! Be sure to enter!!


Now… a little Holiday Inspiration!


I have so much homework to do!!

Yet all I can think about on this sleepy Sunday – apart from Patti’s bathroom remodel and ALL THE THINGS I have to do before we start demolition next Thursday!!!! – is Christmas decorating! Twinkling lights, wreaths for the doors, stars, bells & sparkly ornaments along with my much-loved heirloom fruit garland in the tree, boughs and bows on the mantle, and beautiful angels everywhere… I love decorating for Christmas!

[07.12.24] Fireplace 9

HAHA! Okay… not like this!

This was how we spent the first Christmas in our little house. We’d started the remodel of our fireplace (I’d tiled), but we were waiting for the millworker to deliver our beautiful mantle.

Hey! I TRIED to decorate!! :-)

Last year was so much better, don’t-cha think?!!

Xmas 2008 5

So… true to my homework-procrastinating self (sorry Maria [from Colour me Happy, my Colour Theory instructor]!!), I talked my fella Brian into helping me hang exterior lights on the house!

DSCF0118What a trooper my guy is! Of course I only had the use of my handy man until 3:00pm because that’s when the Grey Cup game started. For our non-Canadian readers, the Grey Cup is the Super Bowl of Canada; the two best CFL football teams vying for the ultimate prize!! Our favourite team didn’t make it to the big game, so we’re rooting for Saskatchewan… Go Green!! Go RoughRiders!!

Enough football. My guy’s pass-times are taking over my life!!

But that’s okay - ‘cause my love of home remodelling is taking over HIS life!! Poor man!

Let’s get back to the topic at hand… and NO I don’t mean my homework!!

Over the last week so many of my favourite blogs have been posting beautifully and festively decorated homes. No wonder the idea of creating some holiday spirit in MY home is so prevalent in my mind!! I won’t be pulling the decorations down from the attic until next weekend, but I can temporarily avoid my homework by sharing some wonderful photos I found that are influencing some of my decorating plans…






BHG 11

BHG 17 BHG 1





So… Have you started your Holiday decorating yet?

Getting back to my homework now… really!!


November 26, 2009

Fuzzy Wuzzy was a bear

Fuzzy Wuzzy had no hair — because it was all shaved off to make this blanket and these cushions!!

furry bed the design diva blog

I love the feeling of soft faux fur. I love the fluffy white faux lambskin rug in my office. I have some fluffy faux animal print cushions too. But I wouldn’t want to sleep under this massive (I hope faux) fur blanket. It would feel like being smothered by a bear, don’t you think??

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November 25, 2009

It’s not a mirrored disco ball trophy

kreativ_blog It’s not the mirrored disco ball trophy that Donny won on DWTS last night, but it’s almost as good… Pam at GardenDesigns+more gave us the Kreativ Blogger award!! Thanks Pam!!

Luckily, we don’t have to do the Jive and the Foxtrot and the Quickstep and the Tango before accepting the prize ;-) We just need to tell you seven things about us that you might not know, and then we have to pass the award on to seven other bloggers.

So here we go… Seven Things You May Not Know About Kelly & Victoria:

1. We’re both married to Brian. Kinky, eh?! No, no, they’re two different Brians :-) Although coincidentally, they’re both pretty good at building stuff and doing home renos. Except Victoria’s Brian actually gets his stuff done, while my Brian spends way too much time thinking about what he’s going to do…

thinking_hats loose tooth

2. We “met” on the Canadian House & Home forum. We’ve only met in real life once.

3. Victoria always saves her homework till the last minute. I work diligently away at mine days before it’s due, because I’m a brown-noser ;-)

contrast of hue colour chips

4. Neither of us gets why anyone would pay $1,500 for a shiny yellow plastic-looking purse at Holt Renfrew.

yellow purse fashion me fabulous

5. Victoria doesn’t like chocolate. How is that possible??! Chocolate is essential to life!!! But we both agree that Farm Cottage Bakery in New Westminster, BC makes the BEST cinnamon buns!! Victoria introduced me to them when I was visiting BC. One time, just for the heck of it, she MAILED a half dozen to me. Cinnamon buns traveling via Canada Post right across the country -- how cool is that!?

cinnamon bun flickr

6. Victoria loves Star Trek. I can’t stand Star Trek. Beam me outta here, dude!!

star trek big hollywood breitbart

7. We look EXACTLY like the caricatures in our blog header in real life. Really!! ;-)


divider line

And now we’d like to pass the Kreativ Blogger award along to:

1. Donna at dh designs for giving new life to old furniture.

2. Puna at Life Signatures for her entertaining posts and lovely pictures. And because we seem to have been the same person in a previous life ;-)

3. Deb at Dumbwit Teller for her fun and creative blog posts. The ball is gonna rock!!

4. Kelly at Color Sizzle for being colourful :-)

5. Vitania at Verdigris Vie for sharing so many beautiful rooms with us.

6. Diane at Life’s Sweet Ordinary for her astounding photographs and camera encouragement.

7. Christy at A Lil’ Welsh Rarebit for the Foo!!

And an eighth blogger, because we can :-)

8. Gayle at Planet M Files for Timmy & Polly & the guinea pigs :-)

And what the heck, one more!!

9. Angela at Angela’s Peony Patch for making cool tassels :-)



November 24, 2009

DWTS: My guilty pleasure

We all have it — that guilty pleasure that we hate to admit to. Mine is Dancing With the Stars. Every week after Drafting class, I crank up the PVR and watch DWTS till midnight.


I don’t really have a favourite couple, but I COULD NOT STAND Joanna Krupa & Derek. Joanna’s constant kiss-blowing to the audience and the judges grated on my nerves. Plus she’s totally lacking in the charisma department. Even though I’ve been rooting for Kelly Osbourne, I’m surprised she made it as far as the finals. You go, girl!!

DWTS kelly

And I’ve been rooting for Donny too. He was my first celebrity crush… I remember kissing his face on the TV screen during the Donny & Maria show. Hehehe!! I was definitely a little bit rock & roll!! I even had the Donny & Marie dolls and Donny & Marie albums. And hey, the guy wears purple socks, how can you not love that?! ;-)


You gotta admire a guy who’s over 50 and can keep up with performers who are half his age…

So tonight is the big DWTS finale. The mirrored disco ball trophy will go to either Kelly, Donny, or Mya. I have a feeling Donny will be hoisting the trophy. I’m sure he has a huge fan base voting for him, plus let’s face it, the guy is a born entertainer. I think Mya will come in second, and Kelly third.

What’s your DWTS prediction??

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DWTS pics from

November 22, 2009

Patti’s Bathroom-Reno Update

What fun!!!

My client Patti and I hit the plumbing store yesterday where we found the perfect sink, a deep tub and (possibly) a sleek toilet for her new, renovated bathroom!


I suppose it doesn’t look like much, but this under-mount sink will be perfect for the vanity I’ve designed for Patti’s bathroom. We thought seriously about a stylish basin or bowl style sink but in the end we both agreed that combined with the beautiful quartz counter, an under-mount sink would look slick and contemporary. Besides, the tiles that we’ve chosen for above the vanity will be all the eye candy needed!!

And here’s the tub that we’ll purchase to replace the sad almond-coloured one currently in Patti’s bathroom. It’s a simple tub with clean lines… and it’s nice and deep. Patti didn’t want jets in the tub, but she loved the idea of soaking up to her neck in this baby!





And a quick boo at the toilet we’re considering. Jury is still out… but we’ll have to make a decision very soon!





Now… how about some bling?!


Three different types of 1x1” glass, stainless steel and marble, this is the mosaic tile we’ve chosen for over the vanity… it’ll be set from counter all the way to the ceiling!

Patti loves it!!

In the photo above I’ve set the mosaic tiles next to the matte white 4x12” subway tiles we’ll use around the bathtub… we’ll also take a row of three of these mosaics tiles, sandwich them DSCF0062between these (right) fantastic listello tiles I originally showed you in my earlier Patti’s Bathroom (planning) post, and place a row about eye level around the tub surround.

I think it’ll be absolutely fantastic!! What do you think??

Finally… the floor tile.




We originally chose this terrific porcelain tile that looks like cork – it would have been great in the space, really grounding the almost all white room but unfortunately it doesn’t come in the size that we want.



So now we’re back on the search for a floor tile. Patti likes the idea of a white slate. Definitely a possibility – with the dark wood cabinetry and everything else in white… could look good! BUT… I’m already having difficulty finding it. I’ll keep looking, though…


Graydon – our builder – starts in early December with a complete gut of the bathroom… and we’re aiming for 90% completion of the project on December 20th. I’ll be sure to share photos of you as the project progresses!!

Be sure to come back for updates!!


November 21, 2009

Our much-loved new addition!

Last month – for my birthday – my husband and I purchased one of my favourite types of trees for planting into our front yard ~ a Japanese Bloodgood Maple.


We love our little tree!

This photo was taken on the day we brought our little wee lovely home. She still had some of her beautiful red leaves on her, but her upper-most branches were already bare. Darned autumn!! ;-)

We planted her a few days later…

Even though our front yard isn’t ready for other plantings, we knew that fall was the best time to plant a tree. Next spring we’ll bring in some great soil for planting our lawn… and while our wonderful maple is blooming with vibrant new leaves, our ground will be a lovely, delicate fresh green!


She may be a small tree, but she needed a BIG hole!!

Our pup Simon HAD to investigate – but don’t worry, he didn’t claim her as his own!!


Nature has taken most of her leaves, but she looks great in her new home!!


PLEASE IGNORE the base of the stairs (we’re cladding it in a faux stone next summer) and the unfinished retaining wall (we need to rent a special saw to finish the caps)…

But I think you get the idea… our wonderful little tree will be stunning as it fills out!!

We love it!!

I hope you come back to DesignTies on Sunday… I’ll be sharing some updates on my client Patti’s bathroom remodel. We’ve made some beautiful tile choices that I’m excited to show you, and tomorrow afternoon we’re going sink shopping!! And yes… I’m bringing my camera! So much to share!!