Welcome!

My name is Bronwyn and I am so glad you have stopped by for a visit. I hope you find joy and inspiration in everything you see here. I live with my family in a new, builder-grade townhome in a small city, even though my dream home would be a century old farmhouse in the countryside. Daily I strive to add warmth, "age," and character to our little home. I love to knit, crochet, sew, decorate, bake and go thrift shopping. These are all a wonderful release after my three small children are off to bed each evening. Thankfully, I have a patient and understanding husband, Kevin, who allows me to bring all kinds of crazy things into our home in the the name of "creativity."

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Pastel Patchwork Table Runner

Happy October!! The beginning of another month.  September seemed to fly by, didn't it?  I think it will Christmas before we know it!!

Look what we bought this weekend:


Oh yeah.  I've been wanting one of these  for a couple of years now and this baby is OURS!!  It will sleep our family of 5 perfectly and be an excellent home away from home whenever we want to travel the countryside.  She is clean and well-maintained - the only changes I will make will be cosmetic.  So, next spring I'll have plenty of sewing and re-upholstering to do - but I am already looking forward to it!

Now onto a project I have already  done this fall...


I am not an expert quilter/patchworker.  I like to mix fabrics and try new patterns- so when I find something pretty or inspirational (I love you Pinterest!) I give it a go. I may not do it the conventional way, but quite often I like how it turns out.

I had been admiring some Tumbler Block quilts online and thought I'd give one a try.  I used 2 charmpacks of Butterscotch and Roses fabric and cut my 5" squares into the odd shape you see below.  

As you sew the pieces together you make straight rows that are sewn together to make the decorative "top" of your creation.
I used a thin batting and cream fabric for the underside.  Then I  machine "stitched in the ditch" to quilt the layers together.


I really like how the subtle colours go together.  

They go perfectly with the mellow colours in my living/dining room.
  

In fact, this year, I am not using any intense autumn colours in my fall decor. Instead I am using a mix of these pale blues, peaches, greens and pinks to create my vignettes throughout the room.
(I'll show you my dining table vignette later this week....)




Hubby said he liked the picture below the best.  My intention was to shoot a photo of the whole table runner and then crop out any extras (like my feet). But, as you can see, I decided to leave them in.   :)


My faux gourds are from Michaels.  They are 40% off this week.
And the hydrangeas? Dried - from my mother's garden.  I love the subtle green shade they have turned as they dried.....


Thanks for stopping by.  I'd love for you to leave a comment.....and please - become a FOLLOWER.  I have been stuck just under 200 for ages now!!

Hugs to all,

Bronwyn


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Pumpkins and Polka Dots

With this year's autumn decorating I decided to try something other than the typical orange/red/yellow leaves and super-sized orange pumpkins.  
On my fall mantel I used subdued creams and brown.
My outdoor decor ( that you will see in a few days) is done in grey, yellow and navy blue.  

And my kitchen decor??  What did I use there??


You'll not see any orange here - only the cutest little white pumpkins and my collection of red and white polka-dotted dishes!
I threw in some other  favourite red things too, including this mini-frames with little pictures of my munchkins.


I bought these fake white pumpkins-on-a-stick on my first visit to Hobby Lobby this past weekend.  Man- why did it take me so long to visit that place?  And the deals they were having! OMG.  I thought I'd died and gone to heaven!!


Polka-dotted friends sign??  Michaels - 1 dollar.  


This cookie jar is my latest spotty acquisition.  It looks really comfy along side my dotty mini-milk pitcher.  


More little pumpkins - balanced upon my shiny red candlesticks.


I love this jug.  My mother gave it to me for Christmas a few years ago.  I dolled it up with some fake red sunflowers from the craft store.


Here is a view of the middle 2 shelves.  
Oooohhh - those dots and pumpkins make me smile!


And here's the whole she-bang.    I tend to re-accessorize these shelves (built by my hubby's grandfather many moons ago) about 2 months.  I think they'll stay this way until the big changes for Christmas......




. . . . . . unless of course some Hallowe'en inspiration hits. . . . .

Cheers,

Bronwyn








Sunday, September 23, 2012

Style on the Bookshelf

Hello everyone! I hope you had a wonderful weekend.  
Saturday was busy here - Mom, my daughter and I took a trip across the border to the US to visit Target.  Spent way too much money there. 
 But the real treat was my first visit to a Hobby Lobby. 
 OMG. 
 That store  is heaven on earth for crafter/decorator like me.  I picked up a few fall and Hallowe'en items, but I can't wait to head back in a month or so and spend some big bucks on Christmas crafting and decorating.  

Now onto my bookshelves.......

My hubby and spent most of the summer finishing a big TV/playroom/office space in our basement.  We did all of the work ourselves  and we are so pleased with how it turned out. No full reveal yet - the dropped ceiling needs to go in still.  Hopefully we'll get that done in the next month or so. 
In the meantime, I have been keeping busy finishing smaller projects in this room.  
We moved the furniture back into the room in August, but I haven't had a chance to organize or decorate  yet.  
So, this what the big wooden bookcase has looked like for the last few weeks:


All of the decor accessories I was thinking of using in this room have been collecting (and collecting dust!) on the shelves in this messy, hap-hazard way.  
So this weekend, while the kids were happily watching the original "Muppet Movie" on the couch nearby, I set to work making these open shelves something pretty at which to look. 


Our basement room is decorated in  the neutral colours of black, tan and white with a few strong shots of red.  
So, to keep a cohesive look, all of the accessories I chose go with this colour theme.

I like how the white items on the shelves lighten and brighten the vignette.  This porcelain rose-covered finial has been all over my house - it adds so much pretty texture to any of my displays.  


I found 6 of these red tea light holders at a thrift store back in the summer. I originally thought of them as Christmas decor, but now I see they add a nice pop of red here.  

(Do you like the photo?  It was our Christmas card picture last year.  The kids had such fun wrapping themselves in garland for the photo shoot!)


This plate was a discount store find many years ago.  In fact, it hung in our first living room 10 years ago!

These finials were thrift store finds too.  However, when I picked them up they were a garish gold colour.  Now they wear "Cherry Red" spray paint and fit in much better with my home.


This photo is from that same pre-Christmas photo shoot.  Hubby noticed right away  that I used these photos because they matched my colour theme perfectly. 
Yep.  He's right - but I love them regardless of colour!


Did you notice my doggies?  They look like Staffordshire pooches, but alas, they are not.  They look equally as cute and regal, but cost me much, much less at the Goodwill Store!


And my red dragon.  I bought him at Cardiff Castle this summer while hubby and I were touring the UK.   The red dragon is the national symbol of Wales and appears on their flag.  I have no Welsh background but my first name, Bronwyn, is Welsh.  I have always felt a connection to this part of the world and I thought this  metal sculpture was the perfect souvenir of our  travels.  


Slowly our basement space is becoming cozier and prettier.  Adding these personal items has made it a more welcoming place.


Now if I could just get the kids to clean up their part of the  room after a day of play......



Thursday, September 20, 2012

Autumn on Our Brand New Fireplace

On the weekend, these boxes arrived addressed to ME!

Dear sweet hubby went to work right away putting all of the mocha-coloured hunks of wood together.  (I think he was as excited as me!)
And within a hour we had this:


A brand new electric fireplace complete with a expanse of mantel perfect for seasonal decor of every kind!!
The picture above shows how it was decorated for the first couple of days.  I placed on a few things to add some interest, but it was nothing special.

But yesterday, I cleared the whole thing off and........


...... got started on my first REAL mantelscape:



As you can see for the photo above, I began with a couple of shutters that I recently found in a local ReStore for $2.00 each.  What a steal! On top of that I layered two mirrors before adding all of my accessories.

For some height, I placed a metal can full of white silk flowers, sticks and rusted stars.  


I found this mercury glass owl at a discount decor store (Homesense) last week and I knew he would be perfect for my new mantel.  I like how he adds some sparkle to the layout.  

At the other end of the mantel, I added some neutral pumpkin action - a patchwork fabric pumpkin and some little white gourds.  


I love the metal leaves and wound-wire curli-cues on the plush pumpkin.


Using my Cricut, I cut four shapes out of neutral cardstock and layered together a string of cute little pennants to hang across my stacked mirrors.  


Over all I am very pleased with the finished look.  I like the layering I achieved and the mix of texture.  I was worried at first that my shorter mantel surround would leave a ton of blank extra space above. Adding the tall shutters filled this space perfectly!


The kids like what I've done so far on the mantel.  They say that this can serve as my "Thanksgiving" mantel. 

However, I'd better add some really spooky things for Hallowe'en, or in their words, "they'll be very sad!"

Don't worry A, B & C - the Hallowe'en mantel is already in the works!








Sunday, September 16, 2012

Polka-Dotted Kitchen Stools

Hi all.  How was your weekend?  We had a great one around here - the weather was very pleasant  and we spent lots of time outside.

On Saturday we attended a picnic for families whose children are brain tumour sufferers and/or survivours.  Luckily, our oldest son, Bryn, falls into the latter category and is very healthy 18 months after the removal of a orange-sized cystic tumour.  

Obviously, most of the children attending were between treatments or in remission. SO- that meant that there was plenty of opportunity for a great deal of fun.  

These pictures were my favourite from the event.  They feature Bryn and his neuro-surgeon, Dr. Singh, taking part in a  pretty mighty team tug-o-war.  

Dr. Singh calls Bryn "Sunshine" and she was more than pleased to join his team when he asked.  


Of course their team won, but the best part was seeing these 2 together - our healthy, strong boy and the heroic surgeon that saved his life.  

To anyone else, it's just a picture of 2 people with a rope. To me it's a photograph capturing the love and care that one incredibly talented woman can give to a boy that was once a complete stranger, but now sees her as a life-changing hero.  

Thank-you again, Dr. Singh!


Now onto the project of the day....


Below you will find the BEFORE.
Pretty plain, eh?  Functional and it matched with my black counter-tops.  But it's time for a shake-up!


How about "Red Awning" by Behr?  
(I used it recently on our Red Basement Door makeover found here.



Yeah.  I like them.  The kids like them and they added a bit more colour to our breakfast bar.


Then one day, walking through IKEA, I found  it - polka-dotted vinyl fabric.  Wipeable, durable - SOLD!!


I bought a metre and got to work.

I stretched the fabric around the circular stool tops and stapled down the fabric using my trusty staple gun.  (Luckily the stool tops just popped of their legs - this made the job so much easier!)

Oh Polka Dots! How I LOVE thee!


TA-DA!!


Pretty darn cute, eh?? 

They add so much whimsy to our little kitchen.  I wonder if there is anything else I can cover with dots in there??


Biggest boy was spending the day at Grandma's House, so my two littler ones received  the first lunch on the dotty stools.


Yessrrieeee! That's KD and hot dogs!  That's what they asked for.  Of course I threw in the apple slices - there had to be SOMETHING healthy involved!


Thanks for visiting today!  Come by a bit later in the week.  I'll be sharing my Autumn Mantel on our new fireplace!!