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Thursday, July 31, 2014

The Other Side of Lillie and Lola's Old Fashioned New England Bedroom (and a New Canvas)

 

Last month I showed you one side of Lillie and Lola's room up here in New Hampshire. We've actually added a few finishing touches to that side (a rug, some trunks for the ends of the beds, and silhouettes above their bed) that I will share soon but for today I thought I would share the other side of their room seeing how I still on the hunt for the right little nightstand/dresser for between the beds. We have a temporary one there now but I am hoping to find the right piece although I am running out of time this trip. So, for now here are photos of the opposite wall. We painted a dresser from my grandfather's house with some Annie Sloan paint in graphite. I actually just quickly put one coat on during my last trip and ran out of time to add the second coat and wax it so figured I would get to it this trip. I've been working on a bunch of other projects though this trip and haven't gotten around to it so it may have to wait until next trip. So don't look too closely - ha!
 

 

 

 

 


I  really love this canvas we got from Easy Canvas Prints. It's one of my favorite photos and I love the quality of the canvas and they are great to work with.  And I am excited because we just listed this canvas in our shop.
http://www.dearlillie.com/product/tree-swing-24x36-black-and-white-canvas

Source List:

Paint Color - Soft Chamois by Benjamin Moore
Trim Color - Simply White by Benjamin Moore
Door Color - Simpley White right now but will eventually be Wrought Iron by Benjamin Moore like the rest of the house
Dresser - Passed down from my grandfather's house and painted in Annie Sloan's Graphite from Lady Butterbug
Canvas - Dear Lillie
Wire Basket - Little antique shop in Vermont
Clock - TJMaxx
Hat - J. Crew
Metal Pitcher - Joss and Main
Curtain Rods - Target
Drapery Panels - Ritva from IKEA
White Shelf - Target (six years ago)
Horseshoes - Little antique shop in Vermont
Cowboy Boots - Sheplers
Dresses - (From left to right) TJMaxx, Joyfolie, Chasing Fireflies
Beds - Passed down from my grandfather's house and painted in Annie Sloan's Graphite from Lady Butterbug
Striped Blanket at the End of Bed - IKEA (I plan on picking up a second one next time I am there)

 I hope you all have a fabulous day!

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Lots of Projects at Jason's...


We've spent the last couple of weeks hard at work on my brother, Jason's house, and things are FINALLY starting to come together. At first it was just lots and lots of painting and drilling and other not so fun things like that but finally in the last day or two we've been able to do the more fun part of decorating. We still have some things to finish up (we are waiting on a coffee table which hopefully will arrive this week, and a few other things) but hopefully next week or the week after I will have lots and lots of photos to share. We've made lots of progress in his kitchen and dining room earlier this year and now have made quite a bit of progress in the living room, office, hallway and have added most of the  finishing touches to the girls' room.

I'm really excited about this Restoration Hardware knock-off shelving system we built. I will have lots more pictures and details about it once we've gotten it completely finished.
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And the huge Notre Dame sign might be my favorite project! 




I hope you all have a fabulous Tuesday!

Friday, July 25, 2014

How Our IKEA Items are Holding Up (Review for more than 15 different items from IKEA)



We get a surprising number of e-mails asking about how our different IKEA pieces are holding up and if we would recommend them so we thought we would write up a full post going over each piece and answering  for each one:

Would we recommend it? 
Would we buy it again?

If you are wondering why both questions are necessary, you'll see in the first item that they both aren't always the same answer (although most of the time they are). 

First, though let me write a little bit about IKEA pieces in general and why we purchase them. Basically for us, it more often than not comes down to budget.We often mix in more affordable pieces (for instance in our living room the sofa is from IKEA and the chairs are from TJMaxx) with some other pieces (like the RH mirror and sconces that are in that same room). I think mixing and matching helps give a room a more layered look instead of  having it feel like everything is all from the same store.

(Oh and the photos used are all just randomly pulled from previous posts that best showed the item, so that's why if there are more than one photo of an item and the other items in the picture are different it was probably from a different post)


Okay so first up in our IKEA Karlstad Sectional (and warning - this has by far the most lengthy explanation because it's the item we get by far the most questions about):




Okay, so for the Karlstad Sectional:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

Would I buy the white cover again? YES
Would I recommend the white cover? NO

Now here's my long explanation about this. (Don't worry the rest of the items just have a sentence or two - haha!) When we moved in we immediately knew we were going to need a large sofa for this room. I wasn't thrilled at the idea of getting a sectional but we have a lot of people over at a time and knew it was probably a necessity for this room. Along with lots of family visiting, we also have the team over and well, we needed a lot of seating. After looking for quite a while before we moved I realized there were very very few options for sectionals in our price range. We loved some of the Pottery Barn ones but they were not even close to being in the price point we wanted to spend so pretty much IKEA was the only option we could find. We went back and forth between the Ektorp and the Karlstad. Although I liked the look better of the Ektorp the Karlstad was larger and we knew we needed that extra seating. Plus because it isn't a slipcover the cushions don't get nearly as wrinkly and really hold their shape. Although I certainly fluff the decorative pillows - I don't ever have to do anything with the sofa or the sofa cushions themselves at all! After having it for over a year now I would have to say I am thrilled with it. We can fit so many people on it and it's surprisingly comfortable. Plus it has held up really really well. So, if I was looking in this price point again I absolutely would buy it again and would definitely recommend it. 

As far at the white cover goes - well, that is a different story. Would I get it again - yes. But that's because I like the look of a white sofa and am willing to make that trade off for the fact that it needs upkeep. I think for this I need to explain a little bit about how and why it works for us. First, we are not picky about people eating on the sofa. To me I feel like a house should be lived in so it doesn't bother me at all when people spill on the sofa. I can just unzip the cover and wash it.  Although when it is just our family we eat all of our meals at the table or on the porch, but when we have the team over half of them end up eating over there (everything from wings to hot fudge sundaes) because there isn't enough room for them all. I kind of have a weird personality when it comes to things being in order. I like for everything to be in it's place. Messiness stresses me out - haha! Seriously, I almost never leave the house without all the beds made. But oddly enough spill, stains, dings, paint chipping off, etching, etc. and those kinds of things don't bother me at all. I figure they make a place feel lived in and add character. And trust me - we've had some spills - haha! 

So, that leads me to would I recommend a white cover - NO! The only reason I would say no to this is because this is NOT a slipcovered sofa and therefore it takes some effort to get the main part of the white cover off the frame, wash it and put it back on. (The seat and back cushions though are really easy to unzip and wash). If this were a true slipcovered sofa I would say yes. We have several white slipcovered pieces (for instance the chairs in the kitchen and in our den) and they are super easy to remove and wash. The Karlstad though is not a slipcovered sofa. So, although you definitely can remove the whole cover (and swith it to another color if you like) it takes a little bit of effort. I don't mind that at all becuase for me the look of the white sofa outweighs the fact that it's a little bit annoying to remove the white cover from the frame. But I think most people would find it a lot more annoying than I do and not think it's worth it.

We've actually pondered getting the gray cover for it and switching to that for a while but I'm not sure if we ever actually will do that. We definitely have considered it though and may somewhere down the road.

And next we have the IKEA Ingatorp Dining Table (at Jason's house)
For the Ingatorp Dining Table:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

For the price I think this is a great table and would both get it again and recommend it. My only complaint with this piece would be the finish scratches a bit easily. 


IKEA Ingolf Barstools


So for the Ingolf Barstools:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

These are really quite sturdy and feel like a nice quality stool. I would definitely recommend them. They are relatively heavy and I don't worry about them flipping over when the girls climb into them. (And quality-wise I would buy them again. However, looks-wise this wasn't quite the look I had in mind for this spot but I couldn't win Jason over the ones I wanted for this space) =) 


IKEA Ingolf Chairs
So for the Ingolf Barstools:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

For the price I think these are a great chair! Plus we have the kids sized ones too that sit a little higher. They wipe down really easily. My only complaint would be I have to tighten the screws every once in a while. 


Next we have the IKEA Henriksdal Chairs (in the picture above and below at the ends of the tables)
So for the Henriksdal Chairs:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

These are a great price for a slipcovered chair and they are extremely easy to just slip off the cover and throw it in the wash and then slide it back on. I would get these again in a heartbeat and definitely recommend them. My only complaint would be the same as the other chairs -  I have to tighten the screws every once in a while. 


IKEA Flytta Rolling Cart

 For the Flytta Rolling Cart:
Would I buy it again? NOT SURE
Would I recommend it? NOT SURE

So, this is probably the hardest one for me to answer. I am a little torn on it. From the very beginning it wasn't the exact look I wanted. Once we got it into our kitchen though I have to say I really enjoyed it - it was so easy unloading dishes right onto it and was lots of fun styling the top seasonally. However, it did cramp our kitchen a little more than I wanted to admit and I think practically speaking the sideboard I made fits better in our kitchen makes the kitchen feel a good bit larger in real life (I know it's hard to get a feel for that in photos). For the year we used it I did like it and probably would have recommended it. It started getting wobbly though right before we moved it out. I tightened up the screws a bit and that probably would have fixed it. And the little side rails started falling out if it got bumped. Basically, for the price I would say I liked it. And up until quite recently I would have said that I would recommend it. Once it started getting a little wobbly though that makes me a bit unsure if I would recommend it or not. I think I probably still would. But I would have someone stronger tighten all the screws.


IKEA Tarva. We did an IKEA hack on this. You can read about the whole process here.

 For the Tarva:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? DEPENDS

This answer is a little bit complicated too. I guess I would have to say of all the furniture we have bought from IKEA this piece was probably the worst quality. It think it's kind of lightweight and feels pretty inexpensive (which technically it is so it's hard to complain too much about that). Now, it probably seems crazy that after I just said that quality wasn't very good that I would buy it again. For me the reason I would buy it again would be if I was looking for an inexpensive option this size it's hard to beat. The simpleness of the design allows for it to be easily changed up a bit to fit just about any style of decor and it could work either as a nightstand for a tall bed or as a dresser. For us it was a great inexpensive option for now. I imagine in a few years when we've finished a bunch of other things way ahead of this on the list we will probably replace them with something of nicer quality. But for now they provide some nice storage and were the perfect size for next to our bed (which was something I had a REALLY hard time finding so I am really quite pleased with them!) 

Now that brings me to would I recommend them. Well, if you are looking for something long-term that gets a lot of use - probably not. But if they would get medium to light use and you are looking for an inexpensive option that you can make over to fit you style - then I would most definitely recommend them! (Although I have to say they were probably one of my least favorite pieces to put together).


 IKEA Kallax

 For the Kallax:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

A small piece of the veneer is peeling off in one spot which is kind of annoying but other than that it's a nice cubby storage system that works great for the girl's playroom so I would at this point get it again and would recommend it. We haven't had it all that long though (a few months)so if anything changes I'll update this. I also like the baskets. I've had most of them for a couple of years and they hold up quite well!


IKEA Sundvik Table and Agen Chairs
 For the Sundvik Table and Agen Chairs:
Would I buy them again? YES
Would I recommend them? YES

We haven't had these items all that long (a few months) but so far I would say I am very pleased with them and would buy them again and recommend them.  (If that changes at any point I will update this). 

IKEA Liatorp Desk 
 For the Liatorp Desk: 
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

This piece in my opinion is probably the nicest piece of IKEA furniture (well, that we own anyway). It is extremely heavy and feels like a much higher end piece in my opinion than IKEA. We have one in our Dear Lillie office up in NH and I recently got one for our guest room/home office. I would most definitely buy it again (in fact, I did - haha! We bought the Dear Lillie one about a year and a half ago and just recently bought the one for our house) and I would most definitely recommend it. 


IKEA Byholma Rattan Chairs

 For the Byholma Rattan Chairs:
Would I buy them again? YES
Would I recommend them? YES

For the price, I have to say I have been really pleased with these so far and would buy them again and would recommend them. I've had mine all that long but my sister has had some for quite a while and they've held up very well! 


IKEA Alina Bedspread

 For the Alina Bedspread:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

For the price I am really happy with this bedspread and would both buy it again and recommend it.


 IKEA VITFJÄRIL pillow and Eivor striped throw:
IKEA VITFJÄRIL pillow and Eivor striped throw:
Would I buy them again? YES
Would I recommend them? YES

I would most definitely buy them again! In fact, I have - both of them! I first bought the pillows for my house (you can see one in our master bedroom a couple photos above and we also have one in our gray guest room) and I loved them so much I got them for Jason's house for the girls' room. And I can see myself eventually getting a few more. It's such a pretty little pillow and the price is fabulous! I also love love love the striped throw and added a second one.


IKEA Hermine Throw:
For the Hermine Throw:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES

I love this throw and would both buy it again and recommend it. 





IKEA Emmie Ruta Pink Buffalo Check Duvet Cover:
For the Emmie Ruta Pink Buffalo Check Duvet Cover:
Would I buy them again? YES
Would I recommend them? YES

I would recommend these duvet covers and buy them again. My only complaint would be the fact that they get wrinkled looking pretty easily.
 
IKEA Fintorp Hanging System

We used these at our old house in the kitchen and bathroom and now one is in the girl's playroom and I just added the other one to Jason's kitchen (I should have updated photos soon!)

So, for the Fintorp Hanging System:
Would I buy it again? YES
Would I recommend it? YES


And that's it for all the main things I can think of. I also have quite a few little accessories like the pitcher shown below which I use all the time, little white lace vases, and gray dishes. I have been very happy with all of my smaller purchases and haven't had any issue with any of them. We also have the Ritva curtain panels in most of the rooms of our home and for the price have been very happy with them. Eventually I wouldn't mind switching them out for nicer ones but for now I really can't beat the $24.99 price!




Well, I think that's just about everything! Please keep in mind these are just my experiences with each item. I am sure there are plenty of people who have had completely different experiences or opinions on different items.

I hope you all have a fabulous weekend!







P.S. If you are new here you can find a full before and after tour of our home here in this post with details and links to paint colors and source lists for all of our items:
http://dearlillieblog.blogspot.com/2014/06/one-year-later.html

And you can also look under the our home tab for more info on our home and for more details and source info and paint colors on Jason's spaces click here.
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