The Navy Bathroom

1 Jun

Remember the bathroom from this post? Well, this is our new navy bathroom and I think it’s rather classy. Classy or not, it is certainly a HUGE improvement over what we were dealing with before:

Ugh, right? Notice that fine masking tape color applied to everything from the walls to the door and trim and every last piece of hardware. Not even the towel bar had been spared. At some point, rather than repairing the plaster ceiling and right wall of the bathroom, the building owner covered both with wooden planks. Our landlord has a reputation of covering every wall and ceiling of entire apartments with this stuff, so I consider myself and this apartment quite lucky. I actually kind of like it, just here, just in moderation.

All the black border tiles were speckled with paint and covered in a gross film. The plaster walls were cracking where they meet the tile from years of moisture. I carefully scraped the paint and film from the tile and used Ready Patch and patience to smooth over and mend the damaged walls and then sealed the edge with caulk. The picture above shows a nice clean tile on the left and a gross neglected tile on the right.

I used the crockpot method to remove several layers of paint from the hardware. The little knob on the radiator cover door turned out to be glass. Seriously, who paints over a cute little glass knob like that? I gave all the metal hardware two coats of Rust-Oleum Rust Reformer recommended by Anna of Doorsixteen. Please just ignore the sea shell sink.

Like most renters, I’m not allowed to paint. But I did it anyway. I’ve spent a year and a half in this apartment and plan to spend at least another year and a half here. The walls made me sad every single day and I just wasn’t willing to deal with that anymore. And I figure if you’re going to break the rules, why not really break them? Why not paint the walls navy?

Andy switched out the existing (horrible) sconces for two of these from Home Depot. They’re not my dream sconces but at under $13.00 a piece, I like them well enough. I used Benjamin Moore Old Navy for the walls and Decorator’s White for the trim and door. You can find the Camilla Engman prints at Studio Violet, the frames are ÖDBY from IKEA.

Also pictured but not new are the towels from Martha Stewart’s Faux Bois line for Macy’s (no longer available), the toilet brush by Marna (no longer available), and wall clock from West Elm.


Happy Memorial Day

30 May

Happy Memorial Day. I hope yours was as wonderful as mine was sweaty.

Taco Thursday

26 May

I’m still here, guys. I’ve been laying low and catching up since getting back from New York last week. It’s been super hot here during the day but the evenings have been nice and cool between thunderstorms. Tonight I had the perfect little evening with some lovely ladies: Kristen, Marne, and Ashley. Kristen (the sweetest hostess ever) made some seriously amazing vegan tacos with tofu, veggie ground round, and roasted vegetables paired with chickpea salad, guacamole, and pink lemonade.

More nights like this one, please. I’ll even host sometime, I promise. Tempeh reubens, anyone?

These, Please: Summer Uniform

21 May

I want my whole summer to look like me wearing these things. “Too dark,” you say? “What are you, depressed?” you ask? Not possible and no. Wearing bright colors makes me uncomfortable.

Consider this a shopping list:
1. High Riser Jeans from Madewell
2. Aunt Bettie Boat Shoe from Madewell
3. Heather Platform Sandal from Nordstrom
4. Primer Time Tank from ModCloth
5. Olympia Flats from Zappos
6. Style Acumen Shoulder Bag from ModCloth
7. Style Takes Shape Shoulder Bag from ModCloth

ICFF 2011

16 May

[Right: A piece from Lladró Atelier‘s Metropolis.]

I am in New York until Tuesday this week attending ICFF and NSS. Both happen but once a year and this is my second year attending both. The shows happen at the same time on different floors of the Javits Center and attract rather different crowds. Allow me to generalize and stereotype for you: the ICFFers are the typical designy types, dressed in solid neutrals with carefully selected eyewear while the NSSers are dressed in bright colors and patterns, rolling little suitcases behind them while being distinctly middle aged. I have equal affection for both.

This year’s ICFF was less exciting than last year’s and although everything was certainly well designed, I didn’t really see anything especially innovative. I did, of course, see some things I liked (and would love to have in my apartment!) though not all of it was new for this year’s show.

[Wallpaper designs by Aimée Wilder.]

[Modo Chandelier by Roll & Hill.]

[Left: Bluff City Pendants from Roll & Hill. Right: Chairs from O&G Studio.]

[Baskets by Cordua Kehrelr for Areaware.]

[Volkswagen Concept Car: Bulli.]

Saturday in Pictures

9 May

I went outside this weekend. It was ok.

The Staircase

4 May

Stairs in progress
Stairs in progress
Under layers and layers of paint on the staircase of the house is beautiful oak. Four flights of stairs like these is why people hire other people to work on their houses. As one of the hired people, I’m grateful I’m not the one doing the sanding. For hours. And hours. Nor am I the one installing a new HVAC system and crawling into the upper recesses of the house, emerging like a miner covered head to toe and every eyelash in coal dust.

The plan up to now has been to simply repaint the stairs as removing the existing paint altogether and staining would have put us way over budget. I had no idea they’d be sanding down to the wood before painting but now that I’ve seen it, I’m wondering if we can save at least some of it from paint. I’m picturing white balusters and risers with black treads and a stained oak handrail. Nice, right?