Sunday, March 13, 2016

Pantry Makeover! Getting rid of those wire shelves with an Ikeahack

I've always loathed wire shelving in all it's forms... but I do understand why they are used. Lightweight, easy to install, and cost effective - they seem to be the shelving of choice for builders du jour. If you're stuck with unsightly wire shelving - I have the solution for you!

After trying to figure out a way to do built-ins on our own and without custom cabinetry, I turned to the trusted and faithful BILLY from Ikea. Billy comes in two depths (12 and 15 inches I believe), and by choosing the shallower of the two, I not only gave myself some extra space in our walk through pantry, but I avoided the "black hole" - where food items get lost and never used because they are way in the back. You'd never know these are budget bookcases - they look like they were designed to be in a pantry.

 This set up allows for two rows of jars or a bin which makes everything incredibly easy to locate and things don't get lost in Neverneverland. We trimmed out the bottom and the centre (where the two bookcases meet) with some simple baseboard trim to make it look like a single unit. Had we had more time in this house (oh, did I mention we are moving! Another post :) - I would have gone much further like some of the Billy built-ins I found on Pinterest and put crown on the top to really give it that built-in look. I also might have wallpapered or stenciled the back, but I was far too indecisive to settle on anything.

Before our pantry overhaul, my pantry sadly looked like this (can't believe I'm sharing this!).

Granted, I knew we were ripping it all out so I didn't invest any time in making it pretty - seriously, how big of a transformation is that?

Taking out the wire shelving, patching and painting was a bit of a task (the wire shelves were anchored with some pretty serious drywall screws) - but my husband and father-in law tackled it like pros.

I customized my shelf heights to the heights of my jars and was so happy how it all worked out - another big plus about this project is how easy it is to adjust shelf height to accommodate different sized items - something you can't do with wire shelves.

Despite the depth being absolutely perfect for this project, the width did not line up perfectly. I toyed with the idea of building in an extension so the pantry fit the entire width of the space - but instead opted for a chalkboard diy wine shelf (upcoming post!). The little gap (just less than a foot) was good for putting large Costco acquisitions before I had a chance to properly put away, but could also have used it to store a broom or a small foot stool.

While the pantry doesn't always look as clutter-free as these images, the reality is pretty darn close. I've found it really easy to maintain when you have a home for everything. I wanted to redo my labels prior to this post, but with the move ahead just didn't have the time. These labels are going on 2.5 years and still kicking - although some have definitely seen better days. I'm still amazed at how long they've held up though!

Have you ever used a Billy in a non-bookcase way? Do you have wire shelves you hate as much as I do?

Friday, November 13, 2015

Birth Announcements from Tiny Prints

Sure, by now family and friends are well aware that we welcomed Quinn into the world almost 7 weeks ago. But you can't save a phone call or a social media post - which is why I was wanting to send out physical birth announcements. It's a traditional thing to do (and I'm all about traditions!) and provides a great keepsake for family and friends.

Enter Tiny Prints which has an amazing selection of designer birth announcements, not to mention letterpress and foil (not just gold foil!). I opted for a rose gold foil and I absolutely love how they turned out! Shipping was fast (Canadians, expect to pay duty/brokerage/taxes) and the return addressed envelopes make mailing easier.

I love the design we chose which has a slight infographic feel to it!

Thanks to Tiny Prints for these amazing announcements! While they did provide these to me, I'm forever a fan and repeat customer.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

She's here! Introducing Quinn Isla

It's been a month since our lives changed forever in the best way possible. This little love came into the world on September 26 after a short 3 hour 46 minute labour. 7 lbs, 11 ounces and 19 inches long. It's been an adjustment, that's for sure, but we are loving every minute of having her around :)

Nursery pics and birth story to come as well as our birth announcements!

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Nursery Decor and Labels for Baby Girl

While I remain stumped on how to finish up the nursery decor, one thing I have not delayed on is getting some printables up! I figured the easiest way to jump start the nursery was to create some name wall art (I will share the actual photos of the name art once baby is here and the name is announced!) as well as some clothing labels and tags.

Baby girl's nursery has gone all-out girly and is as feminine and frilly as I could hope for. While I love the many mod nursery designs out there, I just had to indulge my girly side while I can (while I'm the one calling the decor shots and not a 3 year old into Frozen).

Using Photoshop, I've incorporated a watercolor effect on some of my favourite fonts as well as used some hand painted watercolor floral elements and am loving the look.

Looking for some affordable nursery art? I've just listed the clothing tags in the shop for $5 and the custom name art for $12. I'll be adding other labels for baby necessities like swaddles, receviing blankets, etc, very soon. See links below!

Baby Girl Clothing Labels 

Custom Watercolor Name Art

I haven't listed this gold monogram yet - but what do you think? 

Saturday, July 25, 2015

Peach and Mint Gender Reveal Party

Sorry for photo overload but I just had to share them all! Less than two months ago we flew home for a very quick visit and decided that this trip would be the perfect opportunity to find out if this babe inside of me is a he or she. Kevin really would have preferred a surprise on "labour day", however I have zero patience and really wanted to know. We met somewhere in the middle and found out at about the 24 week mark (about 8 weeks later than we could have had we really wanted to) with all of our family and friends around us to share in the excitement.

It was a fabulous way to find out, especially since we are living out of town and don't get to share much of this pregnancy with our loved ones. Popping the big balloon to reveal pink confetti was absolutely thrilling (and a complete shock as I was so sure I was carrying a little guy!).

Planning the party from afar was a bit of a task, but the most amazing party planner I know and one of my good friends back home helped pull together an amazing day. Scroll down to see the boy and girl pins she crafted - they are literally the cutest ever. Boy jerseys with custom vinyl name bars and girl dresses with crinoline - she is seriously too much! She has also just started a blog chronicling all the parties she plans (for fun, not work!), that I certainly suggest you check out! Visit Kristin over at

Scroll down for (many) photos, and more details!

The most delectable macarons you ever did taste by the talented Janet of Pete's Sister Creative Gifts. 

Geronimo balls from Shop Sweet Lulu. Frills made by moi.

Baby balloons from local balloon store.

Cake and macs from Pete's Sister Creative Gifts.

Printables by me (working on putting together a printable package for the shop).

Most of these beautiful photos by Larissa Addison of Luxe Photography

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Coming Soon!

Despite lots of things I could blog about with the new house, we've been busy building something else. We are so excited to be expanding our family (this time with a non-furry addition!) this September.

And, in house news, we just sent my father-in-law home after two weeks of house projects, so hopefully I will now get to some new house blog posts!

Any baby/pregnancy things I absolutely need? Let me know your suggestions!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Almost there! And a floor plan

We are three weeks into the New Year and the new house, and slowly chipping away at the to do list. I wish I could wave my magic wand and instantly have the entire house decorated and ready to go! Wouldn't that be nice? I am excited to share photos but wanted to wait until the place came together a BIT more, and we are almost there. Backsplash was installed yesterday
, grout tomorrow, roman shades should be arriving soon - so other than final accessorizing, hanging art, and some larger, future projects, we will be mostly settled in very soon.

I would still like to do a version with furniture placement, but here is the main floor floor plan. I can say that so far, this is the perfect amount of space for us. It feels spacious but not cavernous. The open layout is just what we were hoping it would feel like and we are so glad we added the extra bump out in the dining room in order to flip the island 90 degrees to face the living room.


The space in the front was originally an open den which we had absolutely no use for. I thought long and hard about what to do with it, and the only thing that just felt right was to put the laundry there (moved it from the right side of the mudroom). First of all, why would I want my laundry in a small(ish) mudroom. Not only is there no space for hampers and and ironing board and drying rack, but it's a MUDroom. And in Winnipeg, where 6 months of the year are in mucky boots or snowy boots that turn to muck, a mudroom really is just that. Do people seem to think it's strange to have the laundry there? A little. But I'm adding cabinetry and features to make it fabulous (and double frosted french doors), and I can tell you that having a REAL full-size laundry room has been awesome so far. I also have my desk in there for now and eventually plan on making a craft area, but that is further down the list.

So far, my only one big regret is not squaring off the corner pantry. Long story short, it wasn't until close to the deadline that I learned that we could really customize the builder's plans and move things majorly around. And had we had more time, I would have somehow figured out how to put that pantry on a 90. It would have made for a smaller pantry and it would have affected our fridge and pantry wall, but I'm sure we could have made it work. I am not devastated by the corner pantry at all - I still love the kitchen, and the space and walk through feature is amazing - I just know IF I were to do it again, it would have been nice to know earlier!

On that same note, we also never knew it was an option add square footage to the plan (in the dining room). We really thought the builders plans were mostly set less minor alterations, and I was really struggling between two plans (a smaller version that had the island layout I wanted and now have, and this plan which I loved but didn't like the island orientation). It wasn't until someone unrelated to our purchase suggested the option that I even knew it was a possibility - and I am so glad I did!

I remember when we started building/planning I googled everywhere trying to find someone else's building experience and found very little - perhaps it's worth doing a post or two on what I learned during the process, if only so I can remember myself if we ever decide to do this again!

Okay, that's all for now. I hope to take some pics and post this weekend, as well as to share the upstairs floor plan and furniture placements!