From Humble Beginnings – To New Beginnings

I’ve been quite online lately, from blogging to twitter to instagram. Sometimes you just need a break, sometimes life just sends you on roller coaster. I’ve noticed when life gets awesome, you get caught up in the moment and forget … Continue reading

The problem with the new year.

So it’s April, we’re four months into 2013 and I’m complaining about new years.

It’s not so much a complaint but just something I find myself doing every year – maybe you can relate…

“New Year New You”

I’m a firm believer in this, almost to a fault. January 1st is always exciting, even more so when you’re one of the few people in the world not suffering from a post-new year party hang over. Anyway, I pile a lot on my plate – often more than I can chew – thinking to myself this is the year I will get stuff done! I will do some awesome crafting and DIY, I will get my portfolio up to date, I will take web design and revit classes… I will I will I will.

Surprise surprise – I didn’t. However, I have a few posts started and will have one up and ready soon.

Happy Crafting.

A little bit of life…

Maybe it’s because it’s still the beginning of 2013 and we all tend to be more ambition in the new year, or maybe it’s because Groupon provided an offer I just couldn’t refuse but I’ve officially signed up for a web design course (and already completed the first reading!). I’ve always loved school, and even though I can never quite pin point if I love it because I get to use new – and adorable – stationary or if it’s because I enjoy learning.
We will just say it’s a little bit of both.

So really, this is just one of those little life moments that I get terribly excited about and want to share. And when I get excited about things, it seems like my productivity goes up… which means more DIY!! As well as the odd update on the VERY slow process of cleaning The Trunk.

Any crafty plans for 2013?

The Trunk

Taking photo’s in my apartment is difficult, especially in the winter. There isn’t much ambient light, and The dreary days of winter in Canada don’t give much natural light for the two days a week I’m home during the day. So I truly do apologize for the lack of photos I did manage to get a few of the trunk today.

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The differences between the before and the progress are very subtle. Mostly due to the fact that there is little I can do for a 100 year old trunk, and cleaning the hardware is a very slow tedious job.

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Antiques & DIY

I am almost positive that we all have something in our homes that has been passed down from our parents or grandparents… Maybe even great great grandparents.┬áSome things may be tattered and torn, and may need a fresh coat of paint or be reupholstered. Some things however may just need some love.

Lesson of the day: Before you take that China cabinet, trunk, or chair, THINK!┬áThink… Is this something valuable that I am going to paint now and regret later?

Another thing that you could think about is restoring your antique item… Maybe not to it’s full glory, but there is a lot a damp cloth and some soap can do sometimes.

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Long story short, I was handed down a trunk from my grandmother that belonged to my great grandmother’s sister. Seeing as nobody really knows exactly when she got it, the guess is it’s about 100 years old. My grandparents stored it in their poorly if at all insulated garage in Montreal for probably about 40+ years. So to say the least it’s pretty beat up.

I was told by numerous people to go get it restored and it could look like it was brand new… but really who wants that? Then I’d really be afraid to use it as a coffee table (this makes people cringe usually but there are only two of us and we take care of our stuff.) ANYWAY… I decided to take it upon myself today – the day I was suppose to be reorganizing my closet – to clean up my poor beat up baby.

Here’s what I learned so far:

  1. Antiques just need some love. If the wood is dry wipe it with some gentle wood cleaner… it won’t fix it completely but it’ll look a lot better then it did before. And it will also make it last longer. (The same goes with a leather)
  2. NEVER underestimate the power of a damp cloth. Seriously, you will not believe how dirty your cloth will be even after you wipe it a few times. (Now I’m not talking scrub, just wipe and dry)
  3. Vinegar is awesome for cleaning brass. You wont get a spotless clean, but go at it with a Q-tip for a while and it’ll get off a lot of grimy dirt.

So we all may not have been handed down priceless trunks. Maybe it was old mismatched silverware, or a bicycle license from forever ago… Whatever it is just think before painting or throwing out. So many people want whats new and exciting. But the thing is that many pieces from the past were built pretty damn well, especially if they’re still standing today. Sure it may not look THAT amazing with layers of dust on it but clean it up and give it a chance… You may just surprise yourself!

Lastly, cleaning up hand me down antiques is something that your wallet will thank you for!

Think about it.
And Happy New Year!

Something to look forward to…

The humble home designs blog has been pretty quiet the past little while. Life gets crazy around the holidays, which I’m sure most anyone can agree with.

There will be a few posts coming up in the new year, as I’m currently working on a few projects over the weekends.

Hope the holidays are treating everyone well.
Happy Crafting.

Money saving tip

The thing about budgets is people often go over them, so it’s always a great idea to cut costs when you can.

This may not apply to places that don’t have winter but here in Canada, winter is coming. Which means it’s time to keep the warm in and the cold out!!

Now living in an apartment that was built in the 30’s and has rads for heating, keeping the cold out is a difficult task.

I’m going to skip all the environmental, and scientific speak and just go straight to what we all probably already know – most heat loss happens from drafts that come from windows and doors.

What I find works the best throughout the year – regardless of if it’s summer or winter – is drapes.

Aesthetically pleasing and functional – the best of both worlds.

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