Makeovers My Home

Desk Makeover

March 13, 2017

Hey guys !

So as promised last week, today I’m revealing some progress for my desk makeover !

A few weeks back I happened upon this gorgeous 60’s desk ! You may have spotted it on some other pictures in the meantime. I loved the shape, the feet (I die), and of course : the price. This baby was a mere 60$ and pretty close to home. It wasn’t in perfect condition but I had big plans for a makeover so I didn’t care.

So I dialed 555-Mathieu and we rescued it from boredom to give it a new, fabulous life. We did have a harder time than we thought, turns out it weighs a mega-ton (technical term) and I almost lost a finger putting it into the trunk. Almost is the important word here. A knight in shining armor did help us out of the blue in the middle of a Paris busy street and helped my much-stronger brother maneuver the desk while I stood back and contemplated my lack of muscles… Stereotypes busted : people in Paris are not always rude 🙂

It fit perfectly at home and all was well with the world, until I put my desk chair next to it. The opening between the drawers was too small for my chair. Damn. Now you could say that’s fine, change the chair and Bob’s your uncle. Well… I had big plans for that chair as well, so that’s not gonna work. And, being a small apartment dweller, well, a chair that goes all the way under a desk is a much needed space gain. So I waited and plotted for a while and finally decided the makeover was going to include some size changes as well !

We decided to remove the top and replace it with a larger slab of MDF, allowing us to push the drawers further apart. Sounds simple enough, right ? Unfortunately, the desk had other plans. After trying to pull apart the top we quickly realized its vintageness came with some fun obstacles : like very strong, 50 year old glue. Yup. So we spent quite a lot of time trying to pull apart a top glued to metal rails. I couldn’t quite capture that frustration with a picture so just imagine two very annoyed people with sore arms on the floor of a small, colorful, Parisian apartment. It’s quite poetic. But alas, we did vanquish the desk ! (It did lead to some minor damage but nothing I can’t fix)

  Here, the great warrior celebrates his victory by standing on his mighty opponent.

From here on out, piece of cake ! Mathieu just put some brackets at the top of the drawers and secured them to the top. The wood is very heavy so he assured me it would do most of the work in keeping it still.

Flipping it wasn’t that easy either, we removed one very heavy top to put in … well another.

And we’re off ! So as you can see, it looks pretty cool and my chair fits perfectly ! Now the chair is another issue, I’m trying to figure out how to best cover it but that is the fabric I’m going with. You should not be surprised by this.

So you ask, what’s next ? Well, I promised a fabulous makeover and fabulous it shall be. I’m just gonna give it to you straight : Green lacquer, Gold accents. Like this :

I’ve been saving this corner of the technicolor dream house for some green goodness and this is it ! I love, love, love green and I think the desk will make a big impact. It will also be very shiny, which as we all know makes things perfect. It will of course be mixed in with the rest of the room by adding some fun color combos. I made a small mock-up on Photoshop to show you what I mean :

I love the mix of pink and green in a room, as well as purple and green so I decided to mix them all and create a fantastic color threesome ! Throw some leopard and discoballs in there and we’re done !

Can’t wait to get started on the painting as well as hunting wild door handles to finish up this project ! I’ll keep you posted on the progress.

Meanwhile I’m still working on my Beetlejuice wall in the entryway, it’s looking really, really good. I ran out of tape so I’m waiting for my second order and I’ll probably have a full update by Friday, fingers crossed!

Next week I’ll be going to the great Foire de Chatou ! It’s a gigantic flea market outside of Paris. If you’re interested (and in Paris), it’s still going and will be until March 19th. I highly recommend it, it’s got great stuff for all prices, and great food ! Enjoy it while it’s still sunny !

Have a great week everybody !

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Makeovers My Home

Entryway Makeover

March 6, 2017

Hey guys, I’m back !

So while I was away I had some time to go thrifting (finally !). One thing led to another and I now have a thousand new projects in waiting, which is both very exciting and inevitably super stressful. I’ve been amazed by DIYs from Pinterest for years and have written down countless ones I’d love to try myself, all to be forgotten in a poor, tired notepad somewhere. But these recent thrift-store finds have renewed my interest in it and I’m ready to dive in more seriously. Of course I’m going from 0 to a 100 right away, and I’m looking up how to re-upholster sofas. Crazy lady. In trying to find a middle ground I’m going to start with the projects in my own home that have been kept waiting.

First off, I’m focusing on my itty-bitty entryway. I’m not kidding, look at the size of this thing :

Tiny, tiny, tiny…

Now these are pictures from the day I moved in, obviously. I’d love to share with you what it looks like now but trust me, you don’t want to see it. It’s basically a junk yard. I’ve got all the unused decor from my old place I haven’t sold yet, lots of leftover wood from different projects, shoes everywhere. It’s a mess, so let’s pretend we’re starting fresh.

Since the space is so small I’m going high impact ! You know it’s my “year of being bold” so I have but one word for you : Beetlejuice.
(For those of you who don’t know me, it’s really not that weird, I own a pair of pants AND a jacket with Beetlejuice stripes. Too much? I think not!)

So here’s what I’m thinking : Striped black & white walls. Vintage oversized pink lamp. Gallery wall with Baroque frames. Chinese cabinet. Boom.

While I was away I found this scrumptious Victorian lampshade. It was 10$, Gigantic (I mean it, look at that G), and like all my favorite things : with fringe. The only issue is the color. I’m not crazy about the old yellow vibe. So like any rational person I decided to buy it and learn how to change the fabric myself. (cue record-scratch)

Yup. So I’m either gonna make a giant mess of this or actually pull it off. I know I want to go pink but I might end up getting jiggy with it and get some fancy designer fabric. While I was doing some research on “how the hell am I gonna do this” (don’t type that into Google, you’re gonna regret it) I happened upon this amazing shop called Wild Lampshade Designs which totally inspired me. Check these out :

   Yes.

Yes.

Yes.

Also, yes.

Okay so I’m a bit obsessed, I get it. If you are too though, you can follow them on Instagram or check out the ebay store : WildLampshadeDesigns and go crazy.

What I truly love is the high contrast. A bold choices of fabric and fringe. This is double-take design my friends ! (And pick-you-jaw-off-the-floor design too in my case).
I think this love might spread to my living room actually because some of these shapes are too awesome for words.

It just so happens that next week I’m going to a huge designer fabric discount event where I intend to stock pile some crazy cool fabrics so I’m just gonna have to find a perfect pink one for this beauty. I’m also on the lookout for fabrics to cover poufs, throw pillows, and any kind of furniture I can get my hands on (for the aforementioned insane desire to reupholster stuff).

Alright, moving on to the rest of the room. I’ve been looking for a Chinese stair cabinet for a while. I had two very very cheap ones pass me by a few months ago and since then I can’t seem to find what I’m looking for, so I weep for them in the dark. The space for furniture is very limited because of the door opening, so the three-stairs version of the cabinet is the perfect size to fit with the door open. It’s a small piece so I’m thinking of adding some interesting legs to it to heighten it a bit, and I’ll probably customize the pulls as well. For now I’ll stick with original wood because I think it looks great, but I’ve seen some red lacquered ones I’m really into so maybe it’ll change over time. (Can’t stop, won’t stop!)

Gallery wall wise I don’t know what art I’ll be putting up yet but I intend to fill up the main wall. Since I can’t put all the art in the living room I’ll be using the entryway as well that way I can switch up things more easily. I do have that Josh Homme portrait, it’s painted on velvet, and it’s weird and perfect.

Now final item : the stripes themselves. I’m trusting my Pinterest instinct on this one and trying out Washi Tape ! You know I’m pretty mindful of my renter’s walls in this place (see my home-made temporary wallpaper). Paint is no biggie, I can cover that, but wallpapers can ruin walls (and lives probably) so I ain’t down with that, and I wanted to try something a little different. There’s this wider washi tape made for home decor that’s been out for a while and I’m dying to try it, it’s called MT CASA.
I went with 4″ wide black tape and I’m just gonna wrestle with it. It’ll probably be a bloodbath. Math is not my friends you guys.

I worked up a little mock-up on Photoshop to give you an idea of “look” as well as the actual size of the lamp (’cause it’s a biggie!).

View from the living room

View from front door

So here you go ! I am super excited about this project it’s going to be bananaaaas ! I hope you enjoyed this little sneak peek, I can’t wait to get starteeeeed. (Why I am Oprah all of a sudden?)

Next up in my DIY makeover frenzy is going to be my desk so more on that next week. Have a good one !

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Inspiration

Life in Pink – A Valentine’s Day Special

February 14, 2017

Happy Valentine’s Day everyone !

To honor all the ladies today, from married- to cat-, I decided against doing a post about setting the perfect table for V-Day or DIY-ing an adorable box of chocolate (they don’t last long around here anyway !). There’s already a lot of great ones online if you need some help and inspiration.
Instead, I thought I’d stay in decor mode and do a full inspiration post about using the color PINK in your home!
I have pink accents all over my home and it’s an essential part of my Boho-Glam-Rock look. It can be girly, exotic, and even rock n’ roll.
Whatever your palette, there’s many cool ways to mix in pink, from walls to pillows, indoors and outdoors, it all depends on your comfort level.

So let’s dive in and start off with some inspiration from these too-cool-for-school looks from famous designers :

Inès de la Fressange

Miles Redd

David Hicks

Sketch London

Let’s break it down.
A great way to infuse happy pink into your home, is by using the color outdoors and letting nature create the perfect color combos. It always works, whatever the shade !
It can be on the walls :

H&M Home Collection

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Rosas & Xocolate Hotel

Or you can wow with a single pop of color, like a door or a staircase :

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Indoors, once again the walls are the perfect stage. You can use fabulous wallpapers, like these :

This classic flamingo pattern (Source)

This fun modern stencil (Source)

Or this over-the-top goodness from Matthew Williamson (Source)

Or play with paint, like this refreshing bedroom :

Source

Or even use tiles for a retro bathroom :

Source

If you’re not ready for the full look, you can bring in an appliance or a piece of furniture :

Like this awesome Smeg fridge (Source)

This linen sofa in a black & white home (Source)

This cute velvet chair (Source)

This cool loft entryway locker (Source)

This boho console (Source)

Or this glamourous modern dresser (Source)

And if it’s still too much for you, no worries, check out these affordable smaller accents (with links!) :

Pillows, left to right : Mongolian Fur // Hmong // Linen // Ikat

Rugs : Left : RugsUSA // Right : UrbanOutfitters (sold out)

Upper row : For Like Ever // Waffles // Black&Pink // Space

Lower row : Pink&Orange // Cat // FairyDust

 

Of course, this round-up wouldn’t be complete without neon ! Here’s some of my (very appropriate) faves from Pinterest :I’m working on my own neon sign above the bar, but until then, I got this 15$ pink neon tube above my bed that’s doing a pretty good job of making me happy  !

As you can see, pink can work with many styles, from modern, to spanish homes, and from california cool to glam maximalist interiors !
So go find your shade and don’t be afraid to bring some pink into your home !

Until next time, have a fun Valentine’s day, and you know the rules:
whether you’re single or taken, today is a gym-free, chocolate and champagne day ! So treat yo’ self !

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Makeovers My Home

Art Round Up (with links!)

February 6, 2017

Hello, hello !

Welcome back, mostly to me, after the great Norwegian adventure ! I came back fully rested and full of ideas … Ah ! Just kidding I never wanted to leave and I’m already exhausted.

But, such is the way of the vacation and I’m afraid real life will always take back its place. So it took a while, but I finally managed to get my act together and today I’m sharing a lot of art inspiration and resources, yay !

First of all, here’s a little “blue wall appreciation”. The paint was done very last minute before I left so I finally got to enjoy its magical healing power of blue happiness full-time and it really works. You just can’t be sad next to this wall, it’s like black magic or something !

I started *somewhat* styling, so here are some vignettes for your enjoyment :

This is playing around with what I already have, I want to get some more colorful glasses and maybe look around for some interesting accessories, but it’s not a priority right now, since the house is already overflowing ! #maximalistproblems

So that was the easy part ! As happy as I am that the shelves are styled and good enough for company, the main story is still the gallery wall.
If you haven’t taken a look at my «Gallery Wall Inspiration» board on Pinterest, well. You should. It’s got cool stuff.
If your parents don’t want you to, well, stick with me kiddo and keep reading !
I wanted to plan out the gallery wall before buying the art but turns out it’s literally impossible ! These are the tasks for much better men and women than me.
I started playing around on a photoshop version of the wall – easy peasy – but ended up ripping most of the hair off my scalp so I decided to stop.
It was like a giant puzzle : too many options for prints, too many of the available sizes didn’t fit what I envisioned, or go together very well, and it’s an explosion of colour, so I couldn’t seem to find the right balance. (Sooo much pink…)
Instead I needed to let it go, and go with the floooow.
So I removed half the layers on photoshop and started over ! The only real way Photoshop helps me right now is figuring out which wall is better for which print. I have a bright blue wall, a white wall, and brick wall, and a buttload of colorful prints. So I can try and see which one will look better on blue, or white, or reddish-brown.

For that, it’s very very good.
For the rest, it’s completely evil and I spent a full day going crazy staring at Photoshop and now have a broken back to show for it !

The main problem was I love too many prints, and don’t have enough space and money to buy them all, and I couldn’t seem to focus enough to whittle it down. After being overwhelmed by it for a looong while, I finally decided to take a breath and try again.
So I’m tackling small spaces first, kinda like a puzzle you know the old saying : start with the corners or you will go insane and/or blind.

( By the way, if you like spoilers or can’t wait until Mondays to see all this stuff, follow my on Instagram to get the scoop !)

So wall, by wall, here we go ! On the right side of the window, I already printed out two cool pieces I bought on Etsy and it looks pretty good ! Also, yesssss I added some more discoballs !

These print are actually downloadable prints from Etsy, you can find them both at the CityGirlStationery shop. This is the most affordable option for cheap art ever. I payed 12$ for both prints, yessir, downloaded them right away after buying and brought them to a printer in Paris where I payed under 10$ for the printing. It’s a total steal ! I might have to spend a pretty penny on some of my art, but I balance it out with very cheap options like this so I can still afford to you know, eat !

So above Kate here, I want to put up two 19″x27″ horizontal frames, one of them I bought already but the other one eludes me so far. It will look something like this :

The one I bought is from Desenio which by the way has beautiful, more classical prints, for way cheap as well. It’s a great resource if you’re looking to add some color or depth to your interior through art without breaking bank. I particularly like their landscape and nature selections, and would suggest it to clients so check them out !

This is “Street Women

I also purchased this gorgeous “Ink Cloud” from them but have no idea where to put it yet…

Moving on ! Above the desk, I framed my gorgeous Italian marble paper (see below for details). It gave me a full 70s-futuristic disco vibe so I decided to go with that.
Here’s how it looks right now (ignore the messy corkboard!):

In a totally serendipitous moment, I happened upon a fantastic vintage poster for Barbarella, and after trying it on every surface like an idiot… It obviously needs to be put up here, duh ! The desk will be shiny and bright green so I love the contrast it would create with all pink art.

Awesome !

So that’s kind of figured out so far. And then yesterday, I bought quite a few other pieces from, you guessed it, Society6, mostly for the blue wall, to help things along, albeit very, very slowly. God help me when it’s all delivered and I need to make a decision…

I bought a pretty big version of this great abstract print from Matthew Korbel-Bowers and it may become the central piece on the blue wall.

Melty lips is my faaaaave. From @slimesunday.

This great mystic print from MilesToGo.

I also bought a pretty big version of this one from Adam Priester, and might use it on the left side of the window (brick wall again), to balance out the two prints on the right. I couldn’t work out a good enough picture of the wall to photoshop it though, sorry, so we’ll have to use our imagination !

I also got some more downloadable prints for cheap while I was at it. The other major bonus with this kind of print is that you can choose to make it any size you want. In this case, I got three prints from the great HoneyMoonHotel shop, and I’m planning on peppering them into the gallery. I’ve got bigger and colorful pieces coming and these black and white font prints are going to help the eye rest in all the madness and create some interesting layers in the process !
So I can make them as small or big as I go, as the wall fills up, which might save my sanity.

The important thing with downloaded prints if to have bring them to a good printer. Thankfully I live close by to the best in Paris : Négatif+. These guys are awesome and each print cost me under 10$. Scooore.

And finally, I looked into intricate and interesting papers, once again to create some interest in the wall.
There are many many materials you can frame as art.

Scarves, like this great Hermès piece from one of my favorites on Instagram : James Kivior.

Dried flowers and leaves, like this display from LoveMaegan.

and Wallpaper, like in this great inspiration from SimplyFramed.

I started looking around on Etsy because I went a little kookoo crazy for marbled paper. Well of course I found my bliss… twice! Now full disclosure, I tried to do this myself once and it was … not good. The process totally works but the result was a very very very faded version of the initial color. I may need to do some more research on the paint needed because it’s actually really fun to do yourself.
This is the one you’ve seen up above, it’s a piece of vintage italian marble paper. If I found this in a wallpaper I would cover my walls so fast it’d make your head spin. Swoon.

From the CarteVenezia shop.

And the second one is a much more intricate marbling technique and I just fell in love with the color mix. It gives me butterflies…

From the RedCottage shop.

I also found these beautiful waves I think I might buy soon, because I cannot resist pretty things. Ever.

From the HimalDesign shop.

So here’s where I am today with all this art business ! I’ve got lots more to get through before my blue wall is full and perfect so it’s gonna take a while until I can take a proper picture … In the meantime I hope filling the adjacent walls will help guide me a little. It ain’t easy having a rainbow house let me tell ya !

I also had the fantastic adventure of a lifetime : going to Ikea with the free Ikea shuttle ! I’m fake smiling of course as it was a nightmare. I went to buy close to 90$ in frames for all these beauties, so if you have no money, that’s not a great start. What’s that ? How heavy is 90$ of frames ? Glad you asked. It was unbearably heavy for 2 ikea bags and no arm strength, no car. Oh, and I had a 30$ voucher I forgot to use. (Insert internal scream). And waited in the rain. It was terrible. I am not a smart person.

But, at least I got to frame stuff when I got home so all was not lost! I love that blue wall but it’s hard to see it empty so I’m glad it’s getting some friends !

Next week I’ll get into my plans for the entryway, the « stay creative » motto is going a little too well and I’m going be running out of walls very soon…

I hope this post inspired you to look for some cool art for yourself and your home ! Have a great week

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