street of dreams

Every year Portland hosts a *Street of Dreams* the month of August. It's one of my favorite family traditions. A neighborhood is chosen and 6-8 ginormous houses are designed, built, decorated and put on display before they're sold. The architecture and design are always the latest and greatest trends in both disciplines.

This year was unique though. The street of dreams didn't showcase houses, it showcased lofts. One of the trendier areas in Portland is the Pearl District, where once abandoned warehouses have been reclaimed as million-dollar lofts. Nine penthouse lofts in four buildings were available for touring. Needless to say, I was so excited to get a peek into these amazing structures.

Below are a few design ideas I gleaned from my touring.

Love, love, love this chair -- the color and the stripes. I'm not usually into animal skin anything, but I did like this rug with the stripes. It was an amazing textural juxtaposition.

LOVE the color. Orange and grey. Yes please. Love the headboard. Love the lamp. I'll take this bedroom please.

Favorite room of all nine lofts. Light and airy. Love the picture arrangement. Love the chair, the pillow and the amazing blue ceramic side table. This room is hugely inspirational for me.

Very cool reclaimed wood wine rack. And, to have space for all the wine? Again, yes please.

Really like this headboard. The lines and the upholstery make it regal and comfy at the same time. Not easy to pull off.

Bubble lights. A quirky and fun touch.

Oh. my. goodness. This might be my most favorite *stealable* idea. Paint tree directly onto wall. Add moss + wooden bird cutouts. So fun!

The entire back wall is upholstered. Interesting and super cozy.

Love the color combo. The bright pink is great.

A closet transformed into a small office space. I love this idea and have seen it in magazines. It's just as great in person. I just wish we had a closet to transform!

Really love this headboard. Oh, and the lamp is pretty lust-worthy as well.

I pretty much love completely love this living room. TONS of windows, great colors, beautiful couch and amazing lamps. Yep. Love. This. Room.


mmmm. summer harvest.

It doesn't get much better than this people.

The monster tomato bushes are not disappointing.



the pantry.

It started completely innocently. It was 4 pm on Saturday. I've been working on relining the kitchen cabinets with cork for about a month, and the pantry was next. Our kitchen, as you've seen, lacks cabinet space. So our food lives in a built-in located in the hall next to the kitchen.

I've been ignoring the pantry since I moved in. Painted the hallway a lovely shade of blue. Skipped the pantry. Painted the kitchen a cheery shade of yellow. Skipped the pantry. Why? In all honestly, because it has doors that can be closed.

So the pantry remained a very weird shade of pink/brown/violet:

As I was tearing out the old 80's contact paper, something hit. I couldn't ignore the pantry any longer. So I went and found the fullest gallon of paint we had. Golden yellow. Perfect.

And look: it's acro pure, so my food wouldn't come in contact with stinky chemicals. Even more perfect.

The difference is amazing! Oh, and I'm really digging the retro linoleum I found under the bottom-shelf contact paper.

And, the after:

Now our food has a sunny new home. Maybe Chris and I will be the only people to ever see it, but it'll make us smile. It's the little things people.

In all, the project took just over an hour. In fact, Chris left for Home Depot before I pulled out the paint, and it was all cleaned up by the time he got home! He scored points for opening the pantry and noticing it'd been painted.


inspired: random

I'm a little paralyzed by the thought of drapes. Not only have I never done it, but done incorrectly, drapes can make a room appear very heavy and dark. But done correctly? Oh, done correctly, drapes can make a room appear light and breezy and heavenly. And, even bigger.

My biggest obstacle has been color: what color drapes do I hang with a blue living room? I've been thinking cream would be drab, but then I stopped in my tracks at this room:

And, now I might be changing my mind.

On a completely unrelated note.
I love this room.

*photos via Colour me Happy*


Where I've been

I have yet to share with you our big summer project. It's huge.
It has turned my backyard into this:

I has turned my lovely-to-eat-in-during-the-hot-summer-ah-hem-porch into this:

We are rebuilding our garage. Um, maybe I can't say we. Chris, with the help of his Dad and his good contractor friend, are rebuilding our garage. And these guys need to eat, right?! So yes, I've played an important role.

We don't think the garage is original to the house. It's a two car garage, which was very rare in 1928. The sun room was clearly added later, and we think the garage was added at the same time.

It definitely hadn't held up as well as the house. The roof required a perma-tarp to keep the rain out and when the wind blew we were worried it would fall over. Here's before, earlier this summer, when I still had a yard:

So Chris gathered up help and set about fixing the garage. He never wanted to tear the entire structure down. Rebuilding required permits galore. So they started reinforcing the structure and tearing out dry rot.

They look like they know what they're doing, right? RIGHT?

And, it is looking better already. The building is secure and water tight. Yah!

So, before the rain sets in, they simply need to install a garage door, roof, shingle and paint. No problem, right?