Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Memorial Weekend Pics and My Next Room Project!

Ugh.  It's been hard getting back into the normal swing of things at work after a great four day weekend with our family here visiting.  As you can imagine, we didn't get to much on the house or other DIY'ing but I thought I'd share some pics of all the action from our memorable Memorial weekend- and when I say action I mean it!
We packed in a lot of fun in four days which included barbecuing, back alley kickball, sand+sun at the beach, the Walker Sculpture Garden, water gun fights, horse races, Valleyfair, restaurant visits, and the oh-so necessary Mall of America visit (my nephew could live in that Lego store :) here's a look! 
Random Power Tower fun fact- I had a one month "carnie" run operating the ride at Cedar Point Ohio, no joke! 

Man, I am impressed we (or maybe just me?) had the energy for all that, LOL!  

Anyone else still pooped from the long weekend?
Or is it the summer weather that makes it hard to sit in an office all day?! (Remember winter?!)

I know it's been a while since we've had any project action going on, so are you ready for what's next?! I'm getting started on something in our sunroom tonight!

Stay tuned for updated pics on this space, woo-hoo!  It's not going to look so "blarty-blar" anymore! 
PS- Blarty-blar is just more fun than blah :) 

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Feeling Some Retro Wanderlust

It's been a while since I've been able to get out and do some vintage/antique shopping but I got a chance to over the weekend and found a FANTASTIC local shop called Retro Wanderlust in Hopkins, MN.   I had heard about Retro Wanderlust back when I went antiquing in Hopkins with a few co-workers but the shop was closed the day that we were there.  After checking it out, I wish I hadn't waited a WHOLE year to get back there and take a look, the place is AWESOME!

The store's main focus is on 1950's, 60's, and 70's furniture, decor, lighting, and vintage clothes.  Here's a look at some of the goods!

Fun stuff right?  

I couldn't believe they had so many Curtis Jere brutalist sculptures but they were still pretty spendy.  The only items I purchased (surprisingly) were a couple vintage dresses, one of them being the yellow one shown in the above photo minus the white beaded stuff.  I have to alter it a bit but thought it was a cute little steal for $15!  Other than that, I LOVED that campaign desk with gold hardware and that little family of gold armadillos- so cute and quirky!

Which items were your favorites?
Would you go back to get the armadillo family?!  I keep thinking about it, ha!

Friday, May 16, 2014

Authentic Turkish Patchwork & Overdyed Rugs Arrive at Ikea... (Yes- Ikea!)

Earlier today, I took an evil but necessary trip to Ikea to pick up a couple things I needed for an upcoming project.  Thankfully my Ikea experience wasn't pure misery like the last one, mid-day during the week is the way to go if you have to endure Ikea I tell ya!  But that isn't my point for this post, I have to tell you what I found in Ikea's little maze like marketplace- Turkish Patchwork & Overdyed rugs.  Yes, at IKEA!
I dropped my big ol' yellow Ikea shopping bag when my eyes met that gorgeous mountain of authentic, aged, antique Turkish rugs and I zig-zagged my way towards them through sheepskin & slow moving people to get a closer look.

Each one was unique and beautiful for different reasons- The color combinations, the patchwork layout, the faded vs. overdyed look, etc., UH!  They all looked stunning!  I still couldn't believe Ikea had mountains of these things, MOUNTAINS I tell ya!!!!
Sorry for the iPhone pics, I know they aren't the best for showing detail!
Now before you get too geeked and excited, I have to tell you that the prices weren't your typical Ikea cheap.  The range was $79 for a 2'x3', $499 for a 5'x7', and then waaaay up all the way to $2,500 - $4,500 for the largest (I think?).  Considering that they are antiques, I imagine the prices are as low as they can be and it seemed to be pretty fair especially when you consider the prices for some of the other rugs Ikea sells in the same space.  I tried to look them up online but it doesn't appear that they offer them on their website (yet?).

Anyway... I just HAD to share this new development in rugs with you :)  maybe I am being a weirdo, but I thought it was so crazy to see something like this at Ikea!  It's so un-Ikea like right?!

What do you think of Ikea's treasure trove of Turkish rugs?

Would you endure a weekend trip to Ikea to pick one up?

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Can You Guess What's Behind Old House Style Door #1 and #2?

A couple weeks ago I shared new photos of our Dining Room along with a view of the room looking into the kitchen and living room.  This was a view I haven't shared photos of before on our blog and I think it cleared up some questions we've gotten regarding the layout/floor plan of our home- but that led to a new question...

What's behind that skinny white door and what's in that smaller white door halfway up the wall?

Here's a look at the full question that Dayna wrote in the post comments:

What a great question!!!  I can't believe I've never talked about those little quirky details in our old house!  So glad you were curious about them Dayna!  Of course I'll share details about those mystery doors, thank you for the fun post idea!

Let's start with the quirkier of the two- the small door halfway up the wall.  Any guesses?!?
If you guess laundry chute, then you WIN!  That little door halfway up the wall is the laundry chute door on the main floor of our house.  I guess it's convenient if you have lots of dirty kitchen towels or table linens to deal with?

I guess we get more use out of the other laundry chute door that is on the upstairs level of our home which sits between the doors to our guest room and office Alex's winter cycling training room...
Because that is where all the wardrobe changes occur, take it off and send it down the chute!

Now back down to the dining room!
Any guesses what's behind that tall narrow door next to our staircase?  If you guessed the actual laundry chute then you WIN - well - you half win because it's also our coat closet.  Ahem, mini and kinda icky coat closet.  It's an odd space, so nothing too fancy about it.
Coats, two-tier shoe rack, wall mounted mail & sunglass storage, and upper shelf for bike helmets & hats, gloves, etc.
As you can see, the chute takes up a good chunk of what could have been (or still could be?) extra storage space for coats and shoes near our front entry.... but who cares!  (sarcasm font)  It's the high-speed highway down to our electric washer and garment wringer in the basement!
Never had taken a photo looking down the chute, so dark & dramatic, sort of like wearing sunglasses while doing laundry?!
Had to make a little joke with that one :) I can't lie, it is a total pain going up and down two floors several times on laundry day - BUT - I don't think I'd ever have the heart to tear out the old school laundry chute since it is an original feature in our little 1924 Dutch Colonial.  I'll just try to look at the upside- I'm doing loads of stairs along with several loads of laundry which seems like efficient multitasking!  

So there you have it, no more mysteries behind those quirky old house doors! What'd ya think?!

Did you guess that little door was a laundry chute?
What about the coat closet?  Waste of space?  
How would you improve the closet without changing the overall small/awkward storage space?

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Planting Pretty Things

It's been a gorgeous weekend here in Minneapolis so I was able to start working on some of my outdoor projects/ideas!  Nothing huge yet, just got some pretty flowers & greenery to plant around our deck and in a few planters...
Did you catch Sadie's camouflage action? She getting really good at those "Where's Waldo" moments! 

The little green touches are already making it feel a bit cozier!  I'm just hoping I can help make them grow faster, especially the mandevilla vine, we'll see!  I think my gardening skills are getting better at least considering I used to just kill everything :)  If you have any tips for the mandevilla vine growth let me know!

Did you do any gardening this weekend? 
What did you plant?