Endless Inspiration…

With so many talented creatives producing such amazing work on a daily basis, I sometimes become overwhelmed with inspiration… Overwhelmed in a good way that is, considering the alternative.

And, with only so many hours in the day and the vastness of the web, it’s fantabulous to have websites that gather the best of the best and bring it all together in one pretty place.

Here are my top 5 go-to hubs for instant inspiration…

1. Pinterest

Pinterest is my first stop for inspiration as well as a reward for a hard days work. Because they have so many users, adding delightful pins all day long, Pinterest is bursting at the seams with goodness. Request an invitation and get pinning! You can organize your own pins onto different boards, making them easy to reference, repin others pins onto one of your boards, or simply “like” others pins (my fave option).

2. Nestfully

From the creators behind We Love Indie, Flairful & Wedfully came Nestfully. Curated from the Artesssen network of blogs, it brings the lastest home & lifestyle posts together in one lovely place. Click through to read entire articles and log in to “favorite” the posts that tickle your fancy.

3. Dwelling Gawker

A daily roundup of the best of the blogosphere. Dwelling Gawker hunts down the most inspiring posts relating to all things home & design and makes them easy to “heart”. If you have a great post to share, don’t just wait for it to be found, submit your post for review by their team! Feeling like you’d like to explore another subject matter? Check out Food Gawker, Wedding Gawker and Craft Gawker!

4. Fab

Fab is the new kid on the block. If you haven’t already signed up to be notified about their daily design sales, you really must! In fact, use this link to help me earn Fab credit. Once you’re a member you can click over to their inspiration page, adjust the thumbnails to suit your visual preferences, then go ahead and get inspired!

5. Instagram

If you’ve got an iPhone and you’re looking for inspiration on the go, you really need to download the Instagram app. Not only can you snap shots of your own world (and add fun, vintage filters to them), but you can also take a peek into the worlds of others by checking out what’s ranking high on the “popular” page. I use this app to snap shots of forsaken furniture in my travels so that I can blog about them later in my Thrifted Thoughts column.

Well, that’s my top five! Where to go for an instant inspiration fix?

Christie Antiques Show – Spring 2011

This past weekend we attended the Christie Spring Antiques Show. It was rainy, muddy and a little disappointing in the lamp department.

The show was good and I’m glad I wore my rubber booties. It was full of amazing furniture and vintage treasures, but I came home empty handed.

The lamps that I was expecting to see just weren’t there this year. There were however a some fabulous Sputnik ceiling fixtures that had me salivating…

The shape and style of these chairs were to-die-for but they weren’t in the best condition… Otherwise they’d be sitting in my dining room right now!

This painted glass door was remarkable. I wish I had a place for it because it’s definitely a one-of-a-kind find.

Each little triangle was hand painted. It’s so funny that this vintage find just happens to be so on-trend right now.

Both mine and my guys eyes lit up when we saw this turquoise Vespa… Our only argument would be who gets to drive and who has to ride on the back.

This turquoise dress form was so unique compared to the usual variety. It’s lovely on it’s own, but can you imagine it styled up and sitting pretty in your bedroom or dressing room (if you’re lucky enough to have one)?

Hmmm… I’m sensing a trend… A turquoise trend. We found this gem of an oven on our way home at Robert’s Gallery. His shop used to be located right around the corner from our old apartment and we loved poking our heads in and checking out his latest treasures. Now that he’s moved, it’s a little out of the way, but we always make a point of stopping by when we’re in the area.

So, that’s a wrap folks. I don’t even have any fab lamp photos to share with you. Wish me lamp luck for this weekends event… The Caledonia town-wide garage sale. It’s this little historic town about 45 minutes away from us and I’m betting that it’ll be full of fab lamps! I’ll keep you posted!

When To DIY & When To Buy

I like to DIY as much as the next girl, but our crafty culture seems to forget sometimes that not EVERYTHING is DIY-able by EVERYONE.

With the abundance of tutorials the web has to offer us, it sometimes seems like we can take on anything, but I beg the question…

When does quality come into play?

We each have different skill sets. We each have different strengths and weaknesses. If you value quality, sometimes the better option is to buy from someone who has already perfected their methods.

There is nothing worse than choosing to DIY instead of buying and ending up with something that looks cheap, poorly constructed and sloppy.

Know your limits when it comes to skills, resources and equipment. If you can’t produce something that looks beautifully handmade then pay someone who can. Otherwise your interior will suffer the consequences.

Sure, there are loads of easy DIY’s that just about anyone can master. Sure, anyone can learn to do anything they set their minds to if they put in the time, the effort and the practice required to be great. But, sometimes it’s easier and more feasible to buy from someone who has already put in the time, effort and practice.

Consider also what you really enjoy doing and what you don’t. I see no value in spending your time on a craft you don’t really love.

A great example of this, for me anyway, is upholstery. I thought I would love it. I thought I had the skills to be great at it. I didn’t and I don’t.

Sure, I can handle recovering the occasional chair seat and even a slipcover here and there, but reupholstering an entire chair or sofa… No way! I now know better and leave that job to the pro’s.

By re-evaluating your limitations and your preferences, how could you better support our crafty community through buying from someone whose already perfected their methods?

Haaave You Met… Ginger?

Named after Miss Rogers herself, Ginger was one of the pieces I scored at a movie prop warehouse sale, back in the Spring.

I wish I could tell you which movie she’s from, but I bought over 25 lamps from the seller and in the whirlwind of the moment, we couldn’t keep track of which piece was from which production.

I must say, she was rather unattractive before. From the ugly, square, wood base that sat below her round, metal one (which I promptly removed) to her colouring (dark brown with flecks of gold & orange), she left a lot to be desired. But, just look at her now! A Cinderella story if ever I’ve seen one.

Her mid-section was recoloured in bright, bold, persimmon, which pops against her wood top & golden bottom. Her texture was to-die-for and graciously accepted the new, splashy hue.

Her shade was in perfect condition, shape wise, but in dire need of an update. Now outfitted in a super-luxe, deep brown fabric, boasting flecks of metallic fibres throughout, she looks like a million bucks.

The road to riches was long and winding for Ginger, but maintaining her vintage character, while transforming her into a show stopping, one-of-a-kind statement piece, was well worth the time and effort!

Her presence in your living room would most certainly fetch you some serious style status among jealous onlookers.

Mod Pieces Are Now Available At Freedom Clothing Collective

I’m so excited to announce that you can now find a small selection of Mod Pieces lamps at Freedom Clothing Collective in Toronto!

These are a few shots of the interior which is full of cool clothing & products from other indie designers. You’ll notice Jelena’s pieces sitting pretty in the 2nd shot. I couldn’t resist buying a little something for a friend while I was there!

This is their back garden. They brought in a graffiti artist to create this uber-colourful wall mural for them to brighten up the patio. It is just so fantastic!

Be on the lookout for more photos… I’ll be sharing shots of my lamps as they get incorporated into the store’s displays!

Have you stopped by Mod Pieces lately? There are loads of new (vintage) goodies in store! Don’t forget… Each piece is one-of-a-kind and I never repeat a design, so if you see something you like, snatch it up!

FREE E-Book! Restyling 101: Insider Tips From The Pros

It’s finally here!

If you missed our blog series the first time around, don’t fret!

I’ve compiled each of the value-packed posts from our pros into one convenient book!

We cover everything from distressing wood furniture to reupholstering a quirky piece to freehand painting projects to stencilling & spray painting. If you’re taking on a makeover job, we’ve got you covered.

There are so many styling tips & tricks inside that I know you’ll refer back to it over and over again!

When “Me” Becomes “We”

Have you heard?

My first e-book, When “Me” Becomes “We”, is now available for sale!

If you and your partner have a bunch of disconnected ideas and differing opinions on how to proceed with the design or decorating of your home, this book can help.

It’s a manual that will arm you with the tools you need to achieve a cohesive blend between your two individual styles.

It doesn’t focus on specific decorating advice. If that’s what you’re looking for, you should subscribe to have blog posts and weekly decorating tips delivered to your inbox.

It’s a short, sweet and simple guide that will walk you through some valuable exercises and tasks that will help you clue in to what your joint decorating style might look like.