Creating a Happy, Colorful, Handmade Home & life on the shores of lake superior

October 5, 2014

Lots of Happy News

It's been too long since I shared some happy news and fun happenings behind the scenes so today I'm spilling some of my beans.  I hinted at a camera crew crashing the lakehouse and here are the very limited details I can share: I've partnered with my good friends at Canadian Tire again, this time with a roster of talented bloggers, to help promote the launch of a new line of products.  I've signed a contract that prevents me from sharing any more details just yet, but let's just say you might be a bit surprised!  I can tell you that crafting, styling, and DIYing were involved.  When I was first approached to submit ideas, it was explained that once we had all submitted ideas, suitable projects would be given the green light and we would be shipped products, after which we could go ahead and produce the content.  Ideas that really tickled the creative team would be chosen for videos that would further highlight fun ideas/projects/styling.  I didn't really pay too close attention to that fine print because I really didn't think my ideas would dazzle so much.  To my surprise, some of them were a hit and a camera crew came here to film me yammering away.  I took some photos of the process and I'll be able to share the videos (unless I look too goofy), more behind the scenes gossip, and the projects soon.  The neat thing is that a few of the crew members were hired locally and I'm now wondering if any of them would help me create a lakehouse video tour...

Neat, right?  In other news, some townhouse and lakehouse projects have been popping up here and there.
Apartment Therapy has showered my with a lot of impromptu love.  It's always exciting when a project or room I submit is featured, but when they share photos of my space in an article or story without my having to beg "pick me, pick me," it's even better, although it's a super weird feeling to be munching my breakfast, scrolling through my morning blog reading, and then stumble across photos of my own home.  It has a twilight zone feel about it.  Anyway, our budget-friendly lakehouse bathroom was featured in a story on 6 ideas for making a boring bathroom more dramatic.  My DIY black and white painting was highlighted in particular:

Additionally, the dark grey fireplace was highlighted on Apartment Therapy in a story about 6 bold design details to try:

Bliss at Home also featured the living room (still sporting it's chrome lamp and black chair) in The Style Mix. More recently, Kristin also featured the turquoise kitchen (which might be getting a splash of orange and might just be featured in a book - details soon):

It was really interesting to read a Hungarian article about my turquoise kitchen update.  I think I read correctly that the translation for cabinet/furniture hardware (like drawer pulls) is "furniture buttons".  I can easily see why my kitchen makeover was appealing for the Hungarian blogger who featured it.  The average home there has a small kitchen and the economy isn't awesome, so working with what you have is really appealing to many Hungarians.  We say things like "budget-friendly," "thrifty," and "work with what you have," a lot in Canada but I have a friend in Hungary who literally didn't buy a single new (or used!) item of clothing for three years.  Three years!!  Never mind home decor items - she just didn't have any disposable income.  She wouldn't consider buying accessories on clearance from Target, or budgeting only $100 on seasonal decorating, "thrifty".  Actually, although our kitchen makeover was proposed as a budget-conscious option, the folks who left comments complained that it would be too costly - it's not thrifty enough.

I recently found out that Good Housekeeping featured my layered sheer curtains (from the townhouse) on their website!  That's an older post, but my Mom and I are still pretty proud of that idea.  I wonder if the new owners changed the draperies...writing this I'm feeling kind of sad about the possibility.  I might be visiting a friend in Ottawa soon and I'm hoping she'll drive me slowly by our old home so I can peer in the windows and hopefully not make eye contact with the new occupants.

Knock Off Decor featured the mod raised bowl stand Hubby and I made for Szuka (see the original tutorial here). 

Did you read about the Ikea Hackers controversy?  Hopefully Jules can keep her url - and keep making a profit from advertising - moving forward.  So far, so good it seemsIkea Hackers featured my floating credenza with DIY plywood top (before we added the shiny new grommets):

Speaking of the credenza, Apartment Therapy just gave it a little love tpo, in a round up of eight Ikea credenza-fauxdenza hacks.  I'm thinking about hacking some Ikea to build a long desk for two with storage in the office but I wonder if that's not a smidge too much Ikea...?

One last bit of news before I sign off to put the finishing touch on my latest DIY project: I'm thinking of having an Instagram sale this week - probably Thursday evening - to celebrate the Etsy shop re-opening (I hope to have it official open by next week).  Mom and I finally unpacked everything and we have SO many goodies that I've forgotten about - so many great gift ideas and fun things for holiday entertaining.  I'll share more details here and on Instagram soon.  In the meantime, tell me what you'd like to see in the sale: Pyrex?  Bakelite?  Dansk Enamel?  Mid-Century Pottery?  Iittala?  Lots of variety or a carefully curated selection hinged on a theme or colour?  I think I might limit it to 10-20 items and then do follow-up sales in the weeks to come if all goes well, with more concrete themes so you can decide whether to take a peek or pass.  I hate sitting through twenty listings of things I don't give a hoot about, waiting for the one thing I want to buy!  In the future, I might do just a Pyrex sale, maybe a vintage bar ware sale, one with textiles and linens...



  1. Amazing! You 'are' feeling the love! Congratulations, the canadian tire project sounds exciting. Can't wait to see what u cooked up.

    1. Thanks! I'm really excited to share the Canadian Tire projects, although I'm reticent about sharing the video...

  2. Way to go you! You are like an internet meme now :) Tanya every-dang-where!

    1. Haha, it is really neat to see where things get picked up - all the way around the globe, it seems. Mind-boggling!

  3. Awesome sauce! Must feel nice to get attention for all your hard work. As for the cost of the kitchen, everything is some (like me lol) it would still be a lot of money and to others it would be pocket change....but it still gives great ideas for every one to adapt to their own personal situation, as do all your projects.

    1. Cost definitely is relative!! You're so right. Don't worry - it felt like a good chunk of change for us too, it's just that it was really spread out over a pretty large period of time and we were really watching our budget and trying to trim money from other expenses (we gave up cable!). Also, it was way cheaper than a full-fledged reno. But like you said - there are ideas in projects like these and adapting just one or two can cost very little but still be effective.

  4. oh my gosh that is a lot of good news! well deserved :)

  5. Super congrats on all the successes and well deserved. And that puppy! I just can't get enough of her. Keep up the great work. Looking forward to the final 'reveals' on the new deal. :)


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