Thursday, July 31, 2008

Living Room- During

Today I know two things for sure.
One- I need a wide angle lens so that I can properly photograph my rooms.
And two- My living room is in desperate need of the stuff I call "spice".
I am stuck in that yucky "my-room-is-a-blank-canvas-because-funds-are-tight-right-now" phase.
Not to mention, I haven't decided which accent color(s) I'm going to use in here.
The Kitchen and Dining Rooms, which are open to the Living Room, are going to be accented with green. The Reading Room and Guest Bedroom, which are just a few steps away, are accented with blue. I can't decide if I should go blue, green, a combination of both colors (to tie the two sides of the house together), or do something else entirely. Maybe red? What do you all think? I LOVE reading your comments, and welcome all suggestions! :-)





I should mention, the entertainment unit has not, I repeat, NOT been accessorized yet. I just threw some things on, and in it, for the time being. Also, I plan to get a new coffee table, and replace the giant mirror with three, vertical ones, hung a foot or so apart.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Estate Sale Dresser

This darling dresser came from an estate sale just down the street.
I love it, except that it's knobless. (Is that a word?)
So, let me ask you all, what kind of knobs would YOU put on it?
There's two places for knobs in the skinny drawer on top, and two places for knobs on the big drawer on the bottom.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Living Room Accessories

The Living Room is slowly, but surely, coming together. Here are some things I've got going on so far:

My blinds:

My chocolatey drapes, from Lowes:

And a chair I got at Eastbrook Flea Market for $35. I'm going to have it upholstered in something creamy-white. Not sure about the pattern, I can't wait to shop for fabric though! I'm a fabric junkie. :-)

I'm working on lots of Lettered Olive product this week. So excited! We plan on launching the website October 1st, and setting up a booth at a festival in Seaside, Florida on October 4th. Please come say hello to my Mom and I if you're in the area!

Ciao for now...Layla

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Fireplace Re-do

When we moved in last October, our fireplace mantle was orange and laquery. (And, yes, "lacquery" is now officially a word in my vocabulary) Not to mention, waaaay to puny. Take a look:

So I went out and bought a 1x8 pine board and stained it my favorite color- Walnut!

(Insert the sound of screeching brakes here) Wait. Back up. FIRST, before I stained it, I hit it with a chain and a hammer. Scratched it up with a utility knife and a screwdriver, and poked some holes in it with a nail. THEN I stained it.

So in the end, it turned out like this:

Then we attached it to the existing mantle, and voila!

As for the brick, I'm thinking of covering it with 2x2" tumbled travertine tiles. Like the ones on the left, OBVIOUSLY!

I am going to remove the firebox insert thingy, and tile the inside, outside and even the hearth. There a gas line hook up in there, so we'll have that hooked up one day. Hopefully before gas reaches $7.00 a gallon.

Now, here's where ya'll come in. I'd LOVE to hear your ideas on what I should put on my mantle. It's so LOOOONG! I've just got that picture propped up there now because I haven't painted our Master Bedroom yet, and I think it's going to go in there. Don't quote me on that though. :-)

Thursday, July 24, 2008

First Day of the Rest of My Life

Today is the BIG day.

My LAST day at the job I have worked at since August of 2005. I can't believe it's finally arrived- and that I'll be able to create Lettered Olive, full-time.
What a cool feeling. :-)
In honor of this special day, I have created a Blog Award.
It's the "My Blog Inspired Someone Today" Award. "Meeting" all of you creative ladies and reading your blogs has really inspired me to be creative and to pursue my dreams over the past few months.

So here it is:

The person I'd like to award it to first is: Rhoda at Southern Hospitality.
I admire her drive and am inspired by her blog on a regular basis. I visited her blog yesterday, and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I CAN start my own business, and be successful. She's proof! :-) So, if you haven't see it, definitely check it out. She is a remarkable lady! The definition of the word INSPIRATIONAL.

Rhoda, there are no rules with this award, just pass it on if you are inspired by someone and really want to tell them. :-)


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Kitchen Cabinetry

I've had a lot of people email about and comment on my black kitchen cabinets.
I always considered myself more of a white cabinet kind of girl.
But when I learned (the hard way) that polyurethane painted on top of white paint, turns yellow...I knew I would never be happy with the durability level un-polyed white cabinetry had to offer. So that's when I researched my other color options.
I am a Gemini. And let me just tell you, we are a spontaneous, indecisive and imaginative bunch. And that is why I was basically forced to paint them black. If I had picked any other color, I would have wanted to change it within 48 hours. I knew that black was a great, solid, classic color and that I could change out my accent color whenever I pleased. (Please excuse the lack of a backsplash and the unfinished trim in this photo)

That being said, I ADORE brightly-colored kitchen cabinetry. I am SO envious of those of you who's kitchens are graced with red or green or yellow cupboards!
But for us Palmers, the color will have to come in the form of dishes and artwork, and that sort of thing. :-)

I have also received a lot of comments asking about the trim we added to the top of the cabinets to make them look taller. You can see in the before picture above, they used to be pretty short and plain. Here's how Kevin and I did it:

We used the decorative trim to cover the seam between the top of the existing cabinetry and the newly added 1x6. Pretty nifty huh? :-)

And, I'm not sure if you noticed in the video I posted a while back, that I attached mirrors to the backs of the open cabinets. I just took the measurements and had a local frame shop cut them for me. Total was around $60.00, and it really opened up the space. There is, after all, only ONE tiny window in our Kitchen. :-( (Mental note: take a picture of the mirrors sometime in the near future)

And here's a picture of what is on the top of the fridge today:

I got the birdcage from a little shop here in Prattville called "Main Street Interiors". The rust-colored bird was a gift from my Mom. It's actually a tealight candle holder. The candle rests in a shallow hole in its back. The book, called "Give Us Our Dream" was purchased at "Eastbrook Flea Market" in Montgomery, Alabama. Three floors of booth after booth filled with goodies galore! What a fun place that is to shop- highly recommend it! And, last but not least, the topiaries came from Marshalls, a long, long time ago.

I'm sure the next time I post pictures of the kitchen, the top of the fridge will look different. You know us Gemini's. :-)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Vacation Location

I am in the mood for a vacation!
Thursday is my last day at work. So, of course, time is moving ULTRA slow this week. :-)

But, anyways, speaking of vacations...
For all of those in, or around, northern Alabama- you should check this place out:

Kevin and I have stayed here three times in the past four years, and let me just tell you- it's SOOOO relaxing! We always stay in Cabin #1. It's the smallest of their cabins, and was "reconstructed from an 1850's cabin and moved to a quiet secluded spot on pictorial Lookout Mountain adjoining Little River Canyon National Preserve". It's a little out of the way (okay, quite a bit out of the way, to be honest) but if you're looking for some peace and quiet...this is the place!

We also visited Cathedral Cavern while staying there once.

It's the largest cave opening in the world, and is home to one of the world's largest stalagmites, frozen waterfalls, flow stone walls, stalagmite forests and other incredible formations. It's about 4000 feet long, and takes approximately an hour and a half to walk all the way in, and all the way back out.

Here's what the opening looks like-

Outside looking In:

Inside looking Out:

Click here to watch a short video of the inside of the cave.

If anyone is interested, here is their contact info:

637 Cave Rd.
Woodville, AL 35776
256-728-8193 (fax)

Anyone have any new vacation location ideas for Kevin and I?
I'd love to gather ideas and links!

Ciao for now!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Reading Room - Sneak Peek

I wanted to give you a few sneak peeks at the room I'm calling the "Reading Room".
It used to be a bathroom, but when we moved in, there was no toilet, no sink, no vanity. Nothing. Just a plywood floor and one window. It's only six feet wide by six feet long. Hmmmm....the perfect size for a twin size bed! So we opened up the wall that had the door on it, and that's how the Reading Room was born. We haven't laid the flooring down yet, or installed a cute little chandelier, or accessorized, but I have started pulling the bedding together, and I did paint the walls. Take a look:

I found the table at Home Goods in Birmingham. It was a reddish-orange wood, and the legs were gold. I used a rusting kit on the legs, and painted the top the same two colors I painted the walls with. I've got a ways to go, but I'll keep posting photos as the room transforms.

Here's a break down of the cost so far:

Table - $39.00 (HOMEGOODS)
"Medici" Euro Shams (in Bran) - $24.99 and $21.99 (EBAY)
"Pick-Stitch" Euro Shams (in White) - $19.99 each (POTTERY BARN OUTLET - GEORGIA)
"Medici" Bedskirt (in Bran) - $12.99 (EBAY)
Sheet Set - $29.99 (TJ MAXX)
Basket - $7.99 (WALMART)

So, I've spent about 150 bucks so far. Not bad considering I sort of got an extra bedroom out of an old bathroom! Ha! :-)

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Guest Room Bedding

I got my pillow!
It came in the mail yesterday, and I couldn't get to the mailbox fast enough.
I swear, I RAN across the front yard. :-)
Here's what the Guest Room Bedding is looking like today.

I think I may put two big Euro Pillows behind the Standard ones. Just to make it super luxurious for when my Momma comes to visit. :-)
Matter of fact, I'm going to go look on Ebay right now!

Friday, July 18, 2008

My First Blog Award

Thanks to Katy Lin at Honest and Lasting , Rechelle at Walnuthaven Cottage and Jill at Forever and Ever House for nominating me for my 1st Blog Award! Apparently there are some rules that go along with this award. The recipient must-

1. Display the logo proudly on your blog.

2. Add a link to the person(s) who awarded you.

3. Nominate seven other deserving bloggers.

4. Add links to their blogs on your blog.

5. Leave a message for your nominees on their blogs.

These are the seven people I'd like to nominate for the Brillant Weblog Award:
Check out Susie's blog for gorgeous, handmade tassels and loads of inspiring ideas for your home. It's a beautiful blog, that I visit every day! :-)
Visit this sensational blog for peeks at a beautiful home filled with LOTS of wonderful decorating ideas!
Kim's blog over at One Woman's Cottage life is always full of great ideas and fabulous photos. She is directly responsible for inspiring me to create a blog myself!
Chris over at "Just a Girl" is probably the funniest blogger I "know", and she's always posting great photos and ideas too. If you haven't seen her blog, you MUST check it out. Daily. :-)
Linda has the most gorgeous eye candy posted on her blog EVERY time I visit. And since I'm a typography nut, I even enjoy the way she types things. Check it out, you'll see what I mean. :-)
This blog is fun, fresh and always a pleasure to visit. It's chock full of photos and entertaining commentary, I love it!
And last, but not least, I'd like to nominate "Modern Country" because it is such a treat to draw inspiration from the photos on this blog. Pretty, pretty!