I basically brought home a bounty of beautiful things from our visit to Nick’s parents’ house this weekend. My mother in law Alden gave me a lovely armchair, a set of twin beds, and two silver platters after she’d read here on my blog that I was looking for one. I originally thought that I wanted something rectangular in shape and 18″-24″ wide and she had a platter that fit the bill perfectly, but as soon as I saw the larger oval platter I was in love. I took them both home with the plan to see which one worked over the stove and return the one that didn’t. Spoiler: the oval platter was perfection.

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It was gifted to her great-grandfather upon his retirement from a New Orleans jewelry store; can you imagine working at the same place for 65 years? That’s longer than most marriages! My mind is blown that he started working there in 1899. He must’ve been a teenager.

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I couldn’t find a wire plate hanger large enough for it so I mounted it with two large Command strips. I’ve used them several times in the past and been really happy with them. So far so good!

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I love it. It’s everything I’d hoped and dreamed of.

silver platter over range

Looking at these photos I’m now convinced that my stove is OMG such an eyesore but no way am I replacing it a day before it dies. I’ve had my fill of appliance drama recently. But I can’t keep hating on the stove for long because that silver platter is so gorgeous. I love it and it’s so special that it belonged to Nick’s great-great grandfather.

I intentionally designed Jack’s nursery so that it could easily transition to a “big boy” room someday. I can’t believe that he will be two this summer. Time flies!

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I’m really in no hurry to get him out of the crib, but he is a climber and after seeing him put his foot on top of the rail a few times I asked my mother in law if her offer still stood to gift us a pair of twin beds that she purchased in the early 90′s. They’re solid wood and can be used as bunk beds or side by side. Since they can be bunk beds they also include a set of matching guardrails that we will try installing on both sides of one bed to make it more toddler-friendly; or maybe we’ll push the bed into a corner so that we only need one rail. Regardless, the pieces are currently piled in our junk room, I mean guest room, while I take my time sourcing linens and a mattress.

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I know people hate when you paint wood blah blah blah but I’m gonna do it. I’ve been dying to paint a bed kelly green ever since I saw this photo and I think it’ll look so cute in Jack’s room. In addition to the painted bed, I’m envisioning a fun patterned pillowcase, basic white sheets (bleachable!), and a lightweight comforter. There’s lots of color going on and some additional pattern on the nearby rocking chair so I don’t want to go crazy with big patterns. I’d also like to avoid getting locked into a “theme” that he’s likely to outgrow.

boys bedroom inspiration

1. Classic Gray by Benjamin Moore (wall color) 2. Ball Game by Allen + Roth 3. Geometric Squared fabric 4. basic white sheets 5. Circo Basic Quilt Set – Green

I’d love to put both beds in there, but he can’t be trusted with a ladder so that rules out bunk beds and I’m not sure there’s enough room to put both beds on the floor. It’s the smallest room in our house and the layout is limited by several architectural elements (our baby has a fireplace in his room, like that’s not weird at all). I’m not in a hurry to move him but it does make me feel better to know that we at least have the bed. That way if I come in after naptime to find him playing on the floor I can just go ahead and get a mattress right away. I’m just so nervous that I’ll hear a thump followed by wailing instead! I know that every kid is different and there’s no magic age to move them out of the crib–you just have to use your judgement based on your child’s development–but I was expecting to have a while longer. Next thing I know he’ll be asking to borrow the car!

Remember these craIgslist chairs that I reupholstered with dyed canvas drop cloths?

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I still love the color and the lines, and in fact felt totally validated when I saw this photo from BHG recently, but my first major upholstery project left quite a bit to be desired and they are, literally, coming apart art the seams. Also I never finished the backside of one of them.

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My mother in law, Alden, loves history and is very sentimental. Almost every piece of furniture in her home was built to last and passed down through the family. Her father recently moved out of his home and several family pieces have migrated to her house. While rearranging things to make room she asked me if I’d like to take a chair that had once belonged to a wonderful friend of the family that everyone called Aunt Kathleen. All the kids adored her, maybe because from what I hear she brought over homemade sugar cookies all the time! As much as I liked the gray canvas wing chairs no way could I pass up a chair that was much higher quality and had sentimental value. I suppose I could have kept the gray chairs and put this new/old chair elsewhere in the house, but honestly I think it’s beautiful and fits really well in here. The gray chairs will go to craigslist for someone else to reupholster properly.

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With only one chair here there’s now room for a wider table or maybe even a credenza below the window. I’ll be keeping my eyes peeled for something solid wood so as not to embarrass the stately chair.

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Someday when we no longer have small children and naughty cats in our midst I’ll pay to have it professionally upholstered. For now I actually kind of love the floral print. It’s totally granny chic.

One of the reasons I was really excited to replace the bifold doors on my pantry was so that I could add some storage to the inside of the doors for spices, medications, foil and plastic wrap, etc. I worked on these on and off over a week or two and I don’t feel like my pictures do a great job of explaining the process, but I was heavily influenced by this and this from Shanty-2-Chic so if you want to see how someone who actually knows what she’s doing made something similar you can click over there.

So I started with some 1×3 boards that I already had (they used to be slats for a bed that we no longer have, but I pried out the staples and saved the wood).

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The boards were 30″ long so I cut them down into a bunch of 10″ pieces (to fit nicely on our 13″ wide doors). Then I used a 1/2″ spade bit to drill two holes in eight of the pieces. I clamped them together and drilled several simultaneously both to save time and because the exit hole seemed to always get torn up really badly. By clamping them together I had fewer boards with a lot of damage to sand down.

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See how the top board on this stack is kind of messy but the one lower down has a nice clean hole? That’s why I clamped them together. Also in this photo you can see a 1/2″ wood cap (sold near the dowels at Lowe’s) that I later used to cover each hole.

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To assemble each unit, I put two drilled pieces perpendicular to the ends of a piece that had not been drilled, then secured it with nails and glue. Unfortunately the boards were too thick for the 3/4″ brads in my brad gun so I had to hammer them, which was kind of hard.

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Then I put a 1/2″ dowel that I’d cut to length through each set of holes and finished each end with a bit of glue and a wood cap. The piece pictured below was for foil/plastic wrap, but for the spice racks I added an additional shelf.

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I primed them, painted them, then attached some painted pieces of 1/4″ plywood (also from my scrap stash) to the back with more nails and glue. I also drilled two holes in the back of each for hanging.

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I attached them to the pantry doors with a screw through each of those holes I’d just drilled. It took some adjustment to get the positioning right so that they wouldn’t bump into each other while opening and closing, but once I had them in just the right spot my celebration was short-lived because I wasn’t pleased with the rough edge of the plywood.

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I couldn’t find any trim that was small enough at Lowe’s, so I picked up these wood sticks at the craft store and cut them using a pair of wire snips.

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I used them to trim out the edge of the plywood, attaching them with glue and the occasional nail and then applying wood filler to the edges.

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Then I just used a small brush to paint the trim and voila! My new pantry storage!

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I went through my spices as I moved them and ended up throwing most of them away because they were expired by a year or more. That’s okay because now we’re down to just the ones we use the most and it freed up room for some medications/vitamins that we take daily.

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Moving all of this stuff to the pantry doors was part of my master plan to make room for the cutting boards under the area where we actually prep food and to pave the way for the microwave in the pantry. I’ve still got a couple more projects to do in there, including possibly starting from scratch with the door hinges because the one on the left is still not closing properly–I guess the reason why doors come prehung is because it can be hard to get right!