Category Archives: interior

The green, green grass of home

The kids started their new schools today, because it is the start of a new grading period. Meaning for the next couple of weeks we leave our current house at 6.20, drive to, through and past the city to get the high schooler to her school on time.
Then we have an hour and a half to find breakfast before the elementary school opens its doors for the other kids.
In the afternoon the roles are reversed, high schooler gets out an hour earlier than the younger ones.
This means house visits!

We’ve spied on the school bus, lounged on the hearth in front of the fireplace, and had breakfast at the kitchen island.

Here are some staged photos from the Parade of Homes.






This light will swap places with the one above the kitchen table.
Our dining table will live in the kitchen, and this area will be a reading nook.



Edited to Add: The Parade is over and the staged furniture and accessories were moved out on the 22nd of October.
All ready for touch ups that Friday, Cable guys on Saturday, Cleaning crew on Monday and our stuff on Tuesday!

shades hill october 17 2015

Front lawn is coming in nicely!
Much less work than the poor neighbours who seeded their lawns during summer.
Front yard October 17 2015

Our oak tree is changing color.
We also have our first weeds in the garden beds.


The final countdown

Timeline: Parade of homes deadline minus one week.
The craftsmen at the house today said they will finish in time as long as the builder stays away 😉
Mike-the-Builder has a really good report with them, and they have gone above and beyond when things have cropped up.
Such as instead of grouting the kitchen yesterday like planned they were cutting and installing more backsplash today.


Happy green =)
Also a first peek at the pendant lights over the kitchen island.


That BIG box is the dining table chandelier.

Kitchen cardboard

These even bigger boxes are the fridge and freezer, their trim kit is the long box on the floor. The dishwasher has the cooktop on top.
The right light in the wrong spot can also be seen here.


The laundry room boxes.


Speaking of lights, here is my favourite entry light turned on.

Sparkly and throwing cool shadows on the ceiling and walls.

And once again, I am so happy with how this turned out. I don’t think I will stencil these walls after all, the shadows are really neat.


The great room fireplace has been finished.


The master bedroom tray ceiling light in action.


Master bath has shiny new shower heads and controller thingies. Just missing the hand held.

The tub filler is still in its box, now in front of the tub.

stairs base board

Stained baseboard in place on the stair landing.

It looks so much better, or maybe I should say less ‘huh?’ than the white that was there previously.


Doug-The-Painter didn’t just stain the baseboard and continue the finish paint of the house. He also atomize sprayed the front mesh for our surround speakers, no more stark white rectangles on medium gray wall.
They look darker than the wall due to the black speaker behind, I can fix that and I think it looks much better already.

The checklist is now down to a few items.
One lighting fixture is in the wrong spot, and the one that should go where it hangs is still in its box.
The appliances are in cardboard boxes in their respective rooms, but we are waiting on the ovens.
The tub filler is still in its box in the master bathroom.
Mirrors, towel bars and tp holders are yet to be hung and shower doors installed.
Lastly, the built in bookshelf is being finished off site (funny!) but other than that, it looks pretty close to done!


Things look great outdoors as well.


front yard 2 front yard       IMG_2779

Waiting on even more dirt to shallow out the front and west side swale, so that part has not been seeded yet.

Everywhere else the landscaping is in and ready for mulch and rocks. The backyard and east side future lawn areas are covered in a layer of straw, to help the grass seed germinate.

We also had a fence company out to measure and give us a quote for a 3 rail split rail fence.

Workday visit

With a house showing, a truck full of dogs, and time to kill I went over to the house just after noon today.
Pulling up I noticed a lot of vehicles. A Chippewa Stone truck, a HVAC truck, a plumber truck and 7 other miscellaneous pickup trucks, cars.

And a dozer.

Inside there was a lot going on.
The trim carpenter and his crew were doing finish work, partly following the path left by the hardwood floor installers.
The lockers now look like this:

The lower section actually slides out, (or did before the front edge of trim was attached) so the flooring underneath is laid in full sections, like the rest of the floor.
!!! NB: Shoe space !!!

Looking UP.

garage foyer light

That is the garage entry foyer light.
Meaning one of the teams in the house were installing light fixtures.

The light looks a little on the small side, or maybe the ceiling is just big.


kitchen counters

Kitchen counters!
They are beautiful.
The installers were rolling on sealer and stepped out of the picture just as I took it. The granite is still wet in this photo.


Eric’s sink.


All the pieces fit, it is almost like they do this for a living.

This is the counter area closest to the pantry door.

Next stop: office.

office wainscoting and floor

The header for the paneling is in place, as is the shoe molding.

office fan

Bubble glass  office ceiling fan!
I wonder if the other side of the blades are darker. I think that might look better.

master showerShower!

master bath

Bathroom sconces and bathroom countertops. Sink mounting in progress.
Now I don’t have to wonder how they did it.
Worker count in here: 1.

master fan

Master bedroom ceiling fan.

master wall

Master bedroom wall colour in the corner meets floor. Got shoe moulding here too.

Electric outlets and switches, and the lighting in the tray ceiling are the only thing missing in this room now!

stair handrail

Stairs were also being worked on while I was there.
Notice the moulding at the bottom of the pillar.  I think that looks nicer than the crown on top.


Worker count in this area: 2 (3?).

floor dining corner

This is the same corner I took a photograph of yesterday. With more floor and trim.
The floor is gorgeous in daylight!

I think the reveal of the last of the Big Unknowns that were decided before we even signed the contract to buy the house turned out to be a nice one. It has character.

powder room chandy

Peeking into the dark powder room, there was sparkle!

The hole in the ceiling behind it is for a fan. The light might sparkle, but like every room in this house, it is actually meant to be used.
Do not like superfluous spaces. (Remembering the house hunt this spring with the countless formal living and formal dining room of so many colonials.)

powder room
This is where one of the plumbers were working.

boys bathroom vanity with counter

The boys’ bathroom vanity counter is in place and so are their two sinks. The granite is very pretty.

I am not a big fan of Jack&Jill bathrooms in general (this is a T&C bathroom). But the boys do brush their teeth at the same time, and I have witnessed enough space squabbling with accompanying toothpaste leakage to think this might work very well for them.

Two people were installing wood floors in Ts bedroom, to the left, and another was assembling a ceiling fan in C’s bedroom to the right.


M’s countertop and sink. Hers will likely be messier than the boys’. On the other hand, the toilet will be a lot cleaner.

There were a few people in the unfinished part of the basement too.

One was moving the window screens from the area under the stairs where they have been stowed.

Another was doing something with red and blue pipe.

hot water heater Also, we now have a water heater!

Total worker count, no idea, they kept moving around, but maybe around 13. Plus Mike-the-Builder who was showing a couple around, discussing their future house.
Point is, it wasn’t crowded.

slope from driveway

Closing with the view from the concrete pad outside the garage, looking north. I want a split rail fence going from the side of the house here curving right and away into the trees and straight back to the far side of the septic mound. I estimate it will be 6-700 feet. *gulp

This is where the landscapers will install sandstone steps leading down to the backyard and patio.

Next week!


Edited to add:

west side

This photo was taken on September 18th (the day after the others), just to show where we are at, dirt wise.

More dirt is scheduled to arrive early next week, so lawn installation has been pushed to Wednesday.

Primed and proper

First things to get investigated today were the porch pillars. The 4x4s got dressed up!front porch pillar

The porch ceiling is finished, as are the arches and the outside trim, apart from the top part of the pillars and the shutters.

porch ceiling

We walked along the outside of the house, following the stone wrap all the way to the back. The exterior really is finished all the way around!
Also, as a nice surprise: the deck is in place and so are the deck stairs.

This is mostly a picture of our natural drain (green pipe, red flag by lower left corner. You just happen to see a part of the deck as well.
deck natural drain deck

More deck, and future railing in boxes.

rec room floorBasement rec area has floor. Of sorts. =D

master tray

Master bedroom tray ceiling. Urbane Bronze has a warmer tone than the photo shows and doesn’t come off quite as dark in real life.

Here is a corner detail, because I liked how it looked… It’s in the office where a built in bookshelf will live once the trimmers are primed

master bath tub area
The master tub area, with Kerdi board in the shower to the right.IMG_2264

kids bathroom tileThe kids’ bathroom floor tiles were patiently waiting their turn. The tilers were doing the laundry room when we visited so no pictures of that since they were busy and we didn’t want to interrupt.

IMG_2267On the way out we saw, and used, the shiny new garage entry stairs!


This is today’s front elevation view.
Front steps, shutters and pillar uppers missing.
Simply add tons of dirt, literally, and it will look done!

Paint it Black!

Paint selections happened today!.
As with all the interior decisions, we were meeting with Katie at the Interior Design Studio.

stamped concrete
I like gray.
I have plenty of gray walls now.
I like it.
We’re going with Sherwin Williams Stamped Concrete in the foyer, hallways, formal dining room, the great rom and the kitchen.

This is the kitchen cabinet white, above samples of the backsplash (Pratt&Larson Watercolors W42, 43 & 45) and next to the Stamped Concrete paint

The trim throughout the house will be the same colour as our kitchen cabinets, classic white.

And these are the rest of the paint colours.
Wheat Grass will go in the office, with white board and batten wainscoting.
Copper Harbor will brighten up the east wall in the rec room in the basement, with Stamped Concrete on the other walls.

aloof gray
M picked Aloof Gray, as a green tinted gray for her room and bathroom. Since she’s the basement dweller, and her window is located beneath the deck, it will be dark in there.
She wants some swirly patterns on an accent wall, right now she’s leaning towards a sagey green. It will be a winter project.

The boy’s bedroom and the master bath will be painted Gray Clouds.

gray clouds
Large-Stencil-modernT wants a red and black accent wall, with ‘circle things’. After some browsing I showed him this picture of ‘funky wheel’ stenciling (Cutting Edge Stencils) and he loved it. In caps.

We’ll see how that decision evolves from now until the time comes to make it happen.

C is leaning towards different width chevron stripes in turquoise, blue and chartreuse.

Sounds like a painter’s tape job.

foggy day
The boy’s bathroom and the powder room (with white bead board) will get the darker Foggy Day colour. I see some silver or pearly iridescent stenciling happening in the powder room at some point.

urbane bronze

Finally the master bedroom.

Right now our bedroom is a submarine gray and we really like it. We’re going even darker in the new house with Urbane Bronze.

I use antlers in all of my decorating ♫♩♬

Aka: Lighting revisited.

We had picked out all the lights, except the entry fixture since Whitmer’s did not have one that fit my preconceived notion of what I wanted.
We went quite a bit over our lighting budget.

Quite a bit as in double. >.<

Which would be OK if we actually cared a lot about lights.

We don’t.
Since we were happy with many of the fixtures, we’re just adjusting the big ticket choices.
This is the light we had picked out for the dining room. first dining room option

It looks neat. Combines some industrial vibe with glass that is not crystal but still sparkles.
(Eric has a thing about crystal being ‘old people lights’ I guess it complements purple hair.)
However, it is not $800 worth of pure awesomeness.

We decided to switch it out to this instead.


Similar concept, if busier and more random. It is a lot prettier to look up at, considering the formal dining room will be a reading nook. And a little less expensive.

We will do dark/bronze’ish fixtures throughout the living areas. The one shown above is chrome with clear crystals whereas the bronze version comes with amber crystals.
I don’t know how that will turn out. Either warm and cozy, or like someone covered everything in the room with a thick layer of nicotine grime. It will be exciting to find out!


Here is the bronze & amber version, but in a size smaller than we will get.

Another change of heart and a complete change of direction, style wise: The snot lights will not happen. Not just because of the price.
I saw these cute pendants at Pottery Barn, more like old helmets than mucus.

kitchen island pendant catalog

And Whitmer’s carries something similar enough that I can live with it. Maybe.

The size we want will not have the vertical bands, not as helmety. I still like the restoration vibe. But it gives me another problem.
It is really tough to settle on an ‘over the dining table light’, to go with the little helmet wannabes. They will share the same big cathedral ceiling space.
Something with classic white glass would work, but sounds awfully boring. Any number of dark/bronze chandeliers could work, but it is really difficult zoning in on something.
It would be simpler if we just picked a theme and stuck to it, like Gaston’s antlers in Beauty and the Beast.

Here is a photo of our outdoor lights that I managed to not get pictures of on lighting day. I think it’s a happy medium between traditional and contemporary. And as a bonus it has bubble glass.


And here is the master bath sconce, x 4.

master bath sconce

Finally, the entry light.
Even though I want to make one, I realistically don’t have the time to commit to it right now.
I prefer this one over the tons of other orb lights out there due to the arrangement of straps and the shape of the chandy in the center.

Shake, shake, shake!

Today’s stop let us see shake progress!
That it let us SEE the shakes was really cool in an of itself. The little chip we had still left us wondering how it would look like irl. Now we know.
It’s in the same colour family as the siding, just a little darker. It feels pretty safe and not very crazy. The white trim boards really help make everything feel less bland.
We’re really curious about the stone now!

The east exterior is DONE! 1 / 4, check. The rear is nearly finished, area wise. The outside of the great room and master bedroom is left. The area with crazy many windows, so lots of cuts to hang the siding.

Also new today: soffits! fascia boards! and LOCKS!!!
Meaning the front door was locked, the inner garage door was locked, with a master lock key box for the subs.
The rear sliding door was also locked but the ‘dog door’ wasn’t!
So we went into stealth mode and sneaked into our own house.

First off I have to mention that the light flowing into the house in the late afternoon is really nice!

As for the walls, the drywall has a first layer of tape and mud and the drywall crew has really cleaned up inside! Only a few cut off pieces laying around today by the cutting station in the great room. And the prerequisite layer of drywall dust is now present. Everywhere.

The deck ceiling looks great, so does the very purple drywall in the splash zones in the master bath. The actual shower will have cement board backing.

dining room

Finishing off with a photo of the mixing station. The dining room has got a bunch of joint compound boxes, the green is regular and the ‘lite blue’ for the corner bead.

There were more boxes lining the wall to the left out of picture but two pictures of boxes seemed like overkill.