Sunday, April 25, 2010

On a mission

Even though we're not taking the plunge and creating a dining room out of our current library/reading room, I still want to make it over so it's more inviting and cozy.  Even if it doesn't have a new purpose, we need to use it more, and I hate it as it is.  It's cold and plain and cluttered...not a good combination.

Here's the plan to warm it up - cozy rug, wine storage/book shelves, cozy chair and ottoman, and accessories that will give it a 'collected over time' feel.  Warning - I'm not good at 'collected over time' unless that means over a 7 hour shopping trip.  I want it done NOW!

I found the bookshelves and wine storage solution - all in one piece!  This piece is from Crate and Barrel and is the perfect solution for our dual storage needs.  I know there are comparable shelving pieces out there, like this one from JCPenney, that are way cheaper, but none of them have the bonus wine storage of this one.  Having all of our wine bottles and accessories in one place will move clutter from the kitchen to this more organized space. 
Now, we need to find $519 to make it happen!

Last weekend, Bonnie and I went on a mission to find the perfect rug, along with a mirror to go over my new laptop desk.  The mirror was a lost cause - but after several stops, we found the perfect rug when we weren't really looking.  I initially wanted a natural fiber rug, but they're itchy and they fray, and I'm not sure it would make the room warm, just beachy.  I tried to stick to my guns even though I knew Bonnie was right when she said they didn't look comfortable or cozy.  I was about to give up and stop looking when we saw some very traditional rugs on the clearance rack.  We saw one with the color of our new paint, Behr's restful, along with red, navy, and tan.  It's the perfect color palette for the new design.

The only bad thing was that it didn't have a price sticker, which (I thought) meant they'd just make up a price and I wouldn't know if it was fair or not, since it was the only one of its kind on the rack.  There was a similar one, that was larger, for $54, so I was hoping for $40 or so.  "Gooby," as his name tag displayed, looked up the item number and called a manager over without saying a word.  He showed her his screen, they exchanged some jargon I didn't care to understand, and she said, "How about fifteen?"  Um, I thought for about half a second and said "SOLD."  As if I thought they didn't get my message, I then said "PLEASE AND THANK YOU" like a little kid who is buying a $1 piece of candy, while smuggling another $50 worth under my shirt.

After finding my perfect rug, my search yesterday was for accessories and inspiration on how I want to tie everything together.  I decided to make it a bargain shopping day - so I visited Marshall's, TJMaxx, Ross, Home Goods, then Marshall's again - I'll explain that part in a bit.  I found so much cool stuff, but only came home with 3 pieces, plus one for Bonnie.

Is anyone actually reading this?

First stop:  Marshall's.  I found a lot of cool stuff, none of which I bought,except for some dish towels Bonnie's been looking for, and this patriotic wreath:

These blown glass vases must be really popular now, because they were everywhere, in all colors and sizes.  I think John and Sherry have a few, if I'm not mistaken.  Doesn't fit my style, but they're very beachy.

They also had a ton of pillows with the colors I want, but none of them grabbed me.

How cool is this cake stand - you can change the ribbon to match any theme or party!

These fake pears are pretty cool and traditional, but I didn't bring them home with me.  I still want them, and might go back for them.  I can see them in a vintagey wood bowl acting as a bookend on one of the bookshelves.

I found a mirror that looked a lot like one Bonnie and I saw last weekend, only it's smaller and only $12.99!  I left it behind, because I thought I wanted a round mirror, and as I foreshadowed, I went back to Marshall's at the end of the day.  Could this be what I went back for?

Next up:  TJMaxx.  I was disciplined here, as well, and only bought a $5 vase with a map of France modge-podged on it.  Don't tell anyone, but until Dave corrected me, I thought it was a map of Spain.  :)  This piece will help me achieve my old world collected over time feel...

I also found some better pillows, but I only want 1 since we just have an over-sized comfy chair in there, and 2 pillows would be too much.  But at $20 for the pair, I wasn't sold.

I found another awesome mirror, but it's too big and frilly, and a classic lamp, but I haven't thought about lighting needs yet, so I left them both behind.

I really like both of these candle holders, but they were $10 each.  If they were $5 I would have snatched one of them up.

Wow, it's time for a shopping break.  I got a sammich from McD's, and read my book in the car for a while.  I know that's nerdy, but it relaxed me.

Next up is Ross.  This store is brand new, and I was put off by the fact that it smelled like dirty bleach and Windex.  Blech.  So my trip here was quick.  I found a cool vase, but it had too much aqua in it:

I found this cool bronze vase set that could be used as bookshelf separators, too.  I'm not a fan of just a line of books on a shelf.  I like accessories separating groups of books to break it up.

Last find was this awesome conch shell bowl.  You could use it as a key or change bowl, or as a ring holder while you're in the shower, if you have a beachy bathroom?

Walked out empty-handed.  Sad.

Last stop, other than my loop back to Marshall's, was Home Goods.  I love this store.  Here's why:

Doesn't that just make you happy?  Also, doesn't it make you want to be very careful while wheeling a cart down this aisle?  :)  I love these jars with chalkboard labels.  These could be cool in a craft room for stamps or glue sticks or ribbon?

I only bought 2 things here.  This ceramic apple, which I thought was the perfect mate for my pineapple:

...and some cupcake napkins, just because they're cute.

Yep, you guessed it - after Home Goods I trekked back to Marshall's to pick up the mirror I saw there.  I couldn't find anything else that was more perfect, and its proportions and style mirror a wedding portrait we have on a wall nearby, so I picked it up.

Here it is, along with my apple, France vase, and awesome $15 rug!

Next up, paint the room, get rid of a lot of books, pick up the shelving, and get to work!

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