Thursday, March 31, 2011

Cake Pops Tutorial

I see these cute cake pops all over great blogs such as Amy Atlas, Bakerella, and a personal favorite, Couture Parties by Stephanie Grimm, and trust me many, many more... but when Stephanie shared her cake pop recipe and then asked her readers to share their attempts, I decided "why not?". I had a little extra time on my hands this past weekend (who are we kidding?) and a fondue pot in the attic that was getting a little dusty. I thought that this would make for a great day activity with the kids, and by day, yes we mean all day! It was great because the kids are able to participate in little spurts, so when they get bored they run off to play, and then join in the for the next step when called upon. Alright ladies, and gents... pull up you your sleeves because you are about to get dirty! 

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Office Renovations... have begun!

I know that I can honestly say that we are all really excited for the office remodeling to begin! Here is a re-cap... I am taking my 15'x23' attic space which is partially redone, and making into a fabulous office space for LovelyGirls to collaborate amongst each other and offer it as a meeting space for clients until we decide to open up shop; One where all of the home decor bloggers will be drooling over once the space is finished!

The winding staircase would be more functional  if it boasted a wider entrance than the 2.5 feet wide dimensions, but 2.5ft could even be stretching it! There will be very little assembled furniture headed up the staircase, more like boxes and boxes of Ikea and target furniture. I have managed to fit a desk up into the office that I plan on breathing a little bit of life into.

But imagine, a nice fresh clean coat of white paint on the side walls and on the underneath of the steps. The wood grains will shine through on the top of the step with a deep, dark black walnut stain (just like the rest of our home). The eventual plan will to have a frosted glass door at the base of the steps for some privacy. In the mean time, a fresh coat of paint will have to do on the current door that is original to our 1937 colonial duplex home. I have thought long and hard, and have decided that for the time being, the wood banister at the top will stay, some minor changes, but it will keep with the rustic aspects of the original wide plank flooring that that we plan to refinish.

If I had to answer what my favorite part of the remodel would be after it is all finished, I would have to admit, my little nook near the window which I plan on wallpapering and hanging a pendant lamp over my desk. The big debate is to face my desk at the window and enjoy the natural sunlight, or have my desk face the room taking in all of the beautiful hard work and decor geniusness after it is all finished. Here is a list of some of the projects that are on the "honey-do" list:

  • paint all walls and ceiling white, keeping the original red brick on the wall
  • re-do trim around new windows.
  • wall paper little nook with floral wallpaper around windows
  • pendant lamp in nook over desk
  • trim all around the floor base
  • refinish wide plank flooring
  • solution for attic doors (still at a loss)
  • replace hideous ceiling fan with track lighting
  • replace all outlets and outlet covers
  • buy new furniture (ummm... yay!)
  • ... TBD. I'll have to let you know!
I would say half of the battle was to cleaning  out the cross space areas in the attic which were cluttered with old metal mini blinds, huge mirrors, and soccer pads from the previous owner. <-- Yes Really! Then we went through and organized all of the apothecary jars, vases, pictures frames, cupcake stands, vase fillers, and etc. for LovelyGirls into one corner. The other corners, well they are a mix of Steelers memorabilia, miscellaneous furniture pieces, pillows, and yes, sad to say, a brand new box of Calphalon pots and pans that we haven't used yet. Its bitter sweet!

Here is the proposed layout that I designed with the Ikea Planner services for offices (I can now only find kitchen + wardrobe planners now). I did this over a year ago, so some of our furniture selections have changed in the mean time! We will of course have a meeting area, desk space, a media area for fax machines, paper, and printers, and then the Ikea Expedit bookcase for files and to display some featured rental pieces.

We can't wait to share the before and afters. In the mean time, enjoy some of the "before" pictures of the space! It is going to be so great, and we really cannot wait to showcase it! :)

Below is the small corner in the attic that I am currently working out of. Trust me, it is better than being in the dining room and living room at times, and it allows me to focus on clients and completing tasks that I have set aside for myself. The desk below is the desk that I plan on refinishing, and once painted white, I think it is going to look great against the dark walnut stained original plan flooring. This is also the area where I plan on locating our media station. In the mean time, I've got some painting to do this week... make sure to stop back by and monitor the progress!

nicole brennan  .  302.545.0412  .  . wilmington

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

guest blogger: Sparkles + Bling

Since we have been a little MIA on the blogging scene (renovations being completed), we reached out to bride, Christina Cameron, and asked her to share a DIY tutorial on the completely encrusted Swarovski crystal bridal shoes that she just completed in 16 hrs (if you do that math, that is four friday nights out with the girls you would be missing!). Completely worth it though... how amazing are they?

From Christina:

"I love sparkles and bling, so of course I had to incorporate that into my wedding theme! After seeing numerous celebrities like Beyonce' and Sarah Jessica Parker in their Christian Louboutins, I became obsessed! Unfortunately, Christian Louboutins come with a price tag of about $3,000.00 which is a tad over my wedding budget to say the least! After searching store after store for the perfect bridal shoes and coming up empty handed every time, I decided that if I couldn't find what I was looking for I would just make it! I did some research online, and found an awesome website to order supplies. From there I began the process of creating my dream wedding shoe."
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