Monday, November 29, 2010

Cyber Monday at Crate&Barrel

Crate&Barrel is offering 15% off on almost everything for Cyber Monday. I've had my eye on the Jepara Basket for a while now. It was already discounted and in their outlet, but the extra 15% off sealed the deal.
There are other items that I could have easily loaded into my cart to bring the total to $100, thus earning me free shipping as well. Alas, I am not in a position to blow $100 on non essentials at this time. The basket was pushing it, but it is so pretty and practical. Although many of my magazines arrive to me in digital form, I still get a few publications in paper, including catalogs. This basket will stylishly contain the clutter.

So go check out Crate&Barrel's Outlet if you haven't done so already. I always feel as though they have some of the best deals on their mark-downs.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

More Pictures of The House Book

I thought I'd share some more pictures with you and apologize for hitting the publish button on my posts before properly proof reading. When I'm blogging I have a tendency to start thinking about all the other things I should be doing, hence the trigger finger. On to the pictures...

As you can see, there's a lot of information packed into this book. I expect that I'll find something new each time I pick it up. Although the book was published over 35 years ago, much of the information remains relevant. So I guess you can tell that I give The House Book a big thumbs up!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Random Thoughts on Books and Related Subjects

Whew, what a wordy title for me!

What could have possibly sparked this tangent? For one thing, I ordered a couple of books from Crafter's Choice Book Club just a short while ago. They sent me an email offer of BYGO with free shipping. Logging on to the website I spotted the banner telling me that the weekend special was two books for $22, or three for $33, etc., also with free shipping. The Club is rather limited in selection, although I always manage to sustain a wish list from their available titles.

So I spent a bit of time perusing the selection and made a few choices. At first it seemed I was going to get the two for $22, but in the end I ended up getting the BYGO deal, causing me to reconsider the contents of my cart. The two books I settled on set me back $20.75. I keep telling myself that there are worse afflictions than a book addiction. I'm not sure how the Club manages to survive by selling two books for $10 with free shipping, but I'm hooked.

What did I order, you ask?

I can't wait to pour over the contents of both books. I follow Lisa Lam's excellent blog, U-handbag. She is author of The Bag Making Bible. This book is getting rave reviews, and I suspect that I'll be singing with the choir when I get my copy. As for Easy Concrete, who doesn't want to play with concrete? Given my love of sewing bags and my love of dirty projects, I don't expect to be disappointed with either book.

Crafter's Choice has a fair selection of decorating books as well, but  my most recent book acquisitions have been decorating related so I figured a couple of craft books would balance things out.

Which brings us to this picture that I spotted at Roseland Greene (via The Selby).

What, you ask, does this have to do with books? Because this picture could have been plucked from a vintage decorating book, and while I have several retro deco tomes, the one freshest in my collection is The House Book by Terence Conran. The House Book could be the decorating book for the ages. Iconic. I vividly remember the cover of this book from my teenage years. However, it took a mention by John Meyers to jog my memory. And being a devoted follower of Wary Meyers, how could I not invest in my own copy of The House Book? John Meyers insists that the first edition is the one to own. Could I argue? I have pictures of pictures so you will be defenseless too.

It seems I've hit a snag and isn't going to let me upload any more pictures. I hope I've piqued your interest. This is another $10 (incl. shipping) book I bought from an Amazon Marketplace Seller, the_book_escape.

John Meyers blogged a few weeks later about another book, High Tech, that I felt compelled to investigate. A fabulous book, but I'll have to save High Tech for another time.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


In spite of the title, I'm sure you weren't expecting me to bare my soul and think deep thoughts in this post. And if you were, you'll be relieved to find out I'm not.

This is all about glass. Namely, the giant-ass piece of glass I found several weeks ago. At the curb. At about the same time I found the mystery sign plywood letters. I had a run of good junking. Ahhhhh, the thrill!

It sat out on my front porch for a couple of weeks before I brought it in. There is no way in hell I can pick this thing up by myself. Although picking it up by two is very doable. It's actually an insulated window pane. So it is two layers of heavy glass. Amazing.

I would love to convert it to my dining table. My first plan was to take the top off of my current table and sit the glass on the base. I thought that would look pretty cool, as the old wooden base is kind of interesting in itself. However, when I went to remove the top, I quickly realized that there was some glue involved in the manufacturing process. So now I must decide whether or not to chance destroying a table in order to see my plan through. There would probably be a jig saw involved.

Of course there are options. Ikea has a good selection of trestles, but I would be limited to desk use if I go that route, as my Winsor chairs won't work with most. Then, if I had a giant-ass piece of glass desk, I would have to find a new home for the enormous dining table, my current desk.

Why is everything so complicated?

Monday, November 15, 2010

Weekend Projects

Continually inspired by the DIY dynamo Morgan at The Brick House, I made a terrarium.

Finally, after switching out my media credenza weeks ago, I decided it was time to reconnect the a/v components. The new cabinet was missing its shelf and had no output holes when I brought it home. I had the missing elements to bring it up to par, but the project kept getting pushed back. This happens frequently when I know there's going to be a lot of dusty work involved. I finally got motivated to do something about it after an uncomfortable Saturday night movie. I still have some loose ends to take care of, such as mounting the power strip on the back of the cabinet, but it's getting there.

Next, I need to face the mounds of leaves in my back yard...

Friday, November 12, 2010


I didn't find what I was looking for, an architect's lamp, but I did spot a few interesting fixtures in my search. 

Thursday, November 11, 2010


By the extraordinary talent of the maker.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Lamp Love Story

Another beauty of a Goodwill specimen. I found the lamp askew on its pedestal, but not broken. Fixing it required little more that a few turns of a wrench and some eyeballing for levelness. It's ceramic with crazing in the gold/bronze glaze. Perhaps someone thought it a lost cause. Their loss, my gain.

The shade that was on the lamp was not salvageable, but I knew that I had a shade at home that would fit. If I'm out and about shopping and I spot a simple white lampshade on clearance or cheap, I grab it. The general rule is a lampshade's bottom width should be the same measurement as the height of the lamp itself measuring to just under the light socket. Even though the measurements were close enough, in swapping out the shades I noticed the new shade sat too low and obscured the top of the lamp. The harp needed to be just a bit longer. I decided that I could cannibalize a harp from one of the lamps that I have in storage. I also grabbed a couple of finials. The lamp came home with a plane jane brass nub of a finial.

Can you spot the difference between the two pictures below?

I went with the simple ball on top, which I think is better suited to the casual and eclectic decor of the room.

I'm in love with a lamp.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


I spotted the tile coffee table at the Salvation Army on Tuesday and returned to purchase it yesterday. It's hand made and weighs a ton. The wood is beautiful. At first I wasn't too keen on the tiles, but after sleeping on it I realized that it was perfect. That no one else snagged it I took as a sign. I would have been crushed if it had not been there when I returned to the store. Ordinarily I don't get too worked up about missing out on a thrift store item, but that little internal blinding light went off as I awoke yesterday, and in a panic back to the store I rushed. I had been scouring craiglist and the thrift stores for weeks in an attempt to find the right table, and I have two misfires to show for it. Even so, the three tables I ended up purchasing came in way less than any new table that I was remotely interested in. I will admit, however, that I have got to start listening to the little voice that tells me when a piece isn't quite right for the space. Every time I deny that voice an audience I almost surely regret it. Patience, Noel, patience.

The pictures are kind of dark because I took them late yesterday afternoon in available light. That and I intentionally wanted them to be a bit grainy so as not to reveal too much (dirt and the mess just outside the frame). The room is still unfinished, but I believe most of the major elements to be in place.

  Below is a picture of what my living room looked like earlier this year.

Yeah, I think the new version is improved. I'll try to get some more pictures up this week.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Craigslist Love

All of the above items: SOLD! They came for the picture and left with the mirror and floating shelves as well. No, the shelves were not mounted. I took them down several weeks ago when I found a cool steel barrister case for the books. I listed the shelves at the time I took them down and had some interest but no takers. The mirror I listed at the same time as the picture, which was yesterday.

I was over the picture long ago. I liked it when I got it, but now, meh. The mirror was huge, and has been leaning after a couple of failed attempts at hanging it. I bought it with the intention of painting it, but that never happened. It needed to go where it could be loved. Same with the shelves.  I just don't have a place to store the excess. It feels so good to purge. Clearly I need to be more mindful of the items I purchase. But I think I did ok on selling them, especially if you take into consideration that I did get my share of use out of them.