Friday, May 30, 2008

Around the house

If you were to wander around my house today, you would find...

some handquilting going on. This is my very first attempt ever at handquilting, and yipes, it is not as easy as I thought it would be. Those darn size 10 needles are so incredibly little to work with, and when you have ultra-sweaty hands like myself (I've actually been diagnosed with "hyperhydrosis", aka ultra-sweaty hands) it is just even that bit harder. I am, however, enjoying the relaxing rhythm of the needle going in and out, and I think my stitches are improving as I go. Putting a thimble on one finger helped a lot, so I think I might go to the store tomorrow to get another one for my other hand. I am very grateful to the ladies at the local quilt shop for showing me how to hand quilt when I dropped in a few weeks ago to buy a quilting hoop. They taught me how to do the stitches, how to tie a quilter's knot and how to hide the knot within the quilt, all in a matter of minutes.

In the living room you might find a few squirrely Italian greyhounds, sitting on the red velvet sofa that they really aren't supposed to be lounging on. They do it anyway, taking my commands as mere optional suggestions. Thank goodness that red velvet somehow stands the test of time with so many dogs hopping up and down off of it.

Around the corner you would find the phone nook! Because it is tucked into a little space off the hallway, it is next to near impossible to photograph, so this is the best I could get. I love the phone nook, even if it doesn't get used very much. So far I painted the inside wall that deep marine blue color. I purchased the red velvet drape from Target since the one I wanted at Pottery Barn was almost five times the cost, and then I sewed on a panel of paisley fabric at the bottom and made the holdback from the excess velvet fabric that had been cut off. I bought the chair at a little antiques store, and one of these days it will get a trip to the upholsterer to be restuffed and reupholstered in the same paisley fabric. I would also like to add some cool pictures in there, something vintage, but I have no idea what I will do yet.

If you were brave you could venture into the nursery where you would find this lampshade I recently purchased:

My grandmother had the exact same United States puzzle at her house, and I used to love shaking all the cardboard states out and reassembling it over and over. Now that my son is three, I guess I should probably stop calling it the nursery, but I still like the way it sounds.

And here is my breakfast nook -- I had to take a picture of it since it was so clean! Usually I tend to let things like mail, magazines, and my son's little kitchen toys pile up on the table, so it is rare that it is all picked up like this. The padded benches and corner seat are from Ballard Designs. I saved up my money and ordered it a few years back, and wouldn't you know, a mere few weeks after it arrived they came out with a slipcovered version! That would have been nice, to be able to take off the covers to wash them. At least we seat my son in his booster on one of the chairs for now, so that helps to keep the spills off the benches. Our dogs love the benches, claiming them as their own personal lounging sofas while I work in the kitchen. The "EAT" letters are from Anthropologie a long time ago, as are several of the smaller plates on the wall, two of which you can't see in the picture because they are on the right side of the framed elephant print. My mom and I made the window valance, inspired by an Anthropologie skirt I have with several layers of ruffles at the bottom. I ordered the chandelier online a few years back -- I love it because it has a sweet little bird perched on one of the metal branches (you might not be able to see him in the picture) and the whole thing looks like it is made out of twigs. The tablecloth was a bargain in the sale section at Anthropologie a few years ago, as were the seat cushions. See? I wasn't lying when I said I LOVE all things Anthropologie.

Y'all come back now, ya' hear?

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