Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Dinning room chairs... finally!

After about 4 months the dinning room chairs are in from Arhaus!  Well... almost, one of the side chairs broke in transit, so I am waiting on a replacement.  I love the bench, it is my favorite piece!  I love how it is a little more eclectic.  It's casual yet formal with the bench and the wing chairs, and since we never eat at it we consider it our "formal" dinning space.

Greyson Bench and Greyson Chairs in custom fabric, Linen Natural, old gold finish nail heads and black legs
Side chairs are the Cadence in Black with chair pads in Antwerp Tan

And I want to wish all my blogger friends a Merry Christmas!  I hope it's a safe and happy holiday for everyone!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Ceiling woes and a bloody turkey....

I knew it was too good to be true, we haven't really had any major issues with our RH Venice, but the cracking in the joint of the ceiling and the walls in the master bathroom is getting on my last nerve!  When they came to fix them last, I thought it was just settelment, nothing out of the ordinary, but I guess they said it was just going to keep happening because there is something going on in the roof structure that is basically pulling on the cieling, hopefully it can be fixed... I'm out of my 1 yr but this is structural so hopefully I wont get a hassle about it!  I know I will though....

Here are some pics of the cracking... not fun to look at when you're brushing your teeth!  Anyone else have this same issue??

I also wanted to do a quick Thanksgiving post, I don't have the pics yet from my mom but will be posting those when I get them.  This year we host our first ever Thanksgiving dinner!  My parents came along with my husbands parents and 2 brothers, and also my family's good friends who I have known since I was bout 7 years old came with their youngest daughter, all in all, it was a great time!  I did cook a bloody turkey though!  I trusted my meat thermometer and stabbed that sucker in every spot to check the temp and it said it was overdone!  Well, needless to say hen we went to carve him he wasn't done at all... so we ate a little later than planed!  But I will day, DON'T put that bird back in if he's not done and you've rested him, just slice what you need, put it in a pan with some broth and cover with foil, it ended up turning out just fine!

Here's a pic of my table all set, I had 2 tables since we had 11 people, I'm getting out real dining room chairs/bench delivered from Arhaus here in the next few weeks just in time for Christmas, I'm thinking of hosting a friends dinner for the holidays and trying out some new recipes and pretending like i'm a chef on chopped, I've always wanted to make a "foam" or flambe something!

Oh an not to toot my own horn but.. TOOT TOOT!  I installed a dimmer switch by myself!  I was so proud... it was my first time doing anything electric work related and I didn't get zapped!  I did install it up-side-down though... so on is off and off is on... but hey it WORKS! :)

 I got the runner from Michael's, just a cheap-o burlap runner, it was 12.99 with a 40% off coupon, SCORE!!

Oh, and I just had to share the SWEET socks I got from my Aunt... she is a vegetarian which makes it more ironic I think!  She know I LOVE meat!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Let there be light!

I'm so thrilled with our new lighting and it's FINALLY UP!  I just have 2 holes in my ceiling now though from the old can lights :( they won't be able to come and repair the ceiling until after Thanksgiving, and I'm hosting this year for the first time!  I'm researching cooking a turkey like a mad woman online and trying to figure out the best way, to bag or not to bag? breast side up or down? baste no baste? It is all so conflicting!

But aside from the turkey drama, we had our Lydia mini chandeliers installed above the island and OMG they look AMAZBALLS!  They are like little earrings for my kitchen :)  I love how the Ballard Designs chandelier in the morning room goes perfect even though they are from 2 different stores, I think the simple elegance of the big chandelier helps to not overwhelm the space and it lets the Lydia's shine.  The light they cast is so beautiful!

We also had the whole downstairs painted in a Benjamin Moore color called Edgecomb grey but we had it done by Sherwin Williams in the Duration finish (which is totally scrub-able!) they actually have BM's color formulas so it is an exact match, it's very neutral but not beige it is a warm grey that will go with just about anything.  Our painters did an amazing job too, if you are in the Pittsburgh area, I recommend Freshcoat Painter of Cranberry, they did a FLAWLESS job.  It was about $2,200.00 to paint the downstairs, the upstairs hallway and stairway but it was well worth it, they were done in 2 days where as I would take 2 months and it would look like crap!

Next up will be the living room, we are ordering a sofa and love seat from Leathergroups.com it looks JUST like the RH Maxwell sofa but for WAY less and it's the same leather from the same tannery in Italy, and it's AMERICAN made, not from China!  They take 8-10 weeks but it's worth it.

Here's the sofa from Leathgroups.com we are getting it in the 108" and a 72" love seat

Here are my sparkly kitchen "earrings"!

Edgecomb Gray by Benjamin Moore

Friday, August 29, 2014

More kitchen pics! Everything is finished!

I am so happy how everything turned out with the kitchen, the island is amazing!  We just got the bar stools from Arhaus in yesterday and they are perfection!  I love the rustic element with the distressed finish, this way when they get beat up, they will look like they were meant to!  We also got chair pads for them, to which my husband thought was the worst $200.00 he spent, but they are very nice and washable, not the cheapy kind that wears through easily.  Sometimes, it's worth it to spend a little more for better quality.  The bar stool are the Cadence by Arhaus, they were on sale too at 159 ea for the counter height and 169 ea for the bar height, considering I saw many many MANY bar stool that were more expensive and looks cheap and ugly, I think that is a good price.

Now, if I could only make a decision on the dining chairs, rug, or anything else!  We are going to paint in the next month or so, I got a quote to pain the whole downstairs, the hallway upstairs and the stairwell, it cam in around $2,000.00 using SW Duration paint, they are a very reputable company and do exceptional work, but am I paying too much?  It comes to .71 cents per sq ft, which I read the average is 85 cents to 1.25 per sq ft, but my husband was shocked but I explained to him that is a ton of paint and a ton of taping off and masking, and neither of us are good painters, it's worth it to hire that out, I will never paint another room again!  I've done enough for 2 lifetimes already.

So here are the pics of the kitchen!
(and the grout did dry MUCH lighter which made my super happy)

Monday, August 18, 2014

Dream kitchen is almost complete!

So Ryan Homes came through and fixed my cabinets same day, and the counter top fabricators were able to come in on Thursday to complete the install and the tile guy finished up on Friday, now all that is left are the dry wall repairs!  We are also getting quotes for painting because I want that done before the end of the month if I can.  So here is how it all turned out, please note that the grout here is WET and it dried much much lighter so it's a soft light grey instead of the hard dark grey you see in the pics.  I'm still struggling with what counter stools to buy, I just can't make up my mind!  I don't want a ton of different chair styles in one big open space between the counter stools, the bar stools and the head chairs on the dinning and the side chairs, so I'm at a loss.  I'm having night bars about bar stools attacking me!  Our designer that we were going to hire has been MIA so I'm just assuming when I sent her my budget she didn't even want to bother because maybe it wasn't high enough for her?  I dunno, but I'm kind of pissed about that, I may do one of those online designers where they send you several looks with shopping lists and prices that will fit in your budget, anyone ever use one of those services before?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Murphy's law follows me where ever I go!

Well guys, yesterday was going to be the day... the long awaited day I get my BEAUTIFUL quartz counter tops!  Well, after they set the stone on the island and got me all excited, when they went to lay the stone on the counters they discovered my cabinets weren't level... like REALLY NOT LEVEL, as in off by 5/8"!  That is massive when it comes to counter tops... they couldn't even install them, I was in TEARS!  I called RH service line and they were very helpful, thank goodness that the contractor I hired works with RH as the "3rd times a charm" fixers, since they pay the foreign workers next to nothing, and that results sometimes in shotty work, well instead of pay the good guys the first time around, they pay them after the 3rd time around!  Anyways, thanks to my contractor having a working relationship with the local RH Service rep, they were out within 2 hours, said they'd pay for fixing the cabinets, and now I have the counter top guys coming back tomorrow... I'm made at RH for doing a shitty job in the first place, but I'm also PISSED at the counter tops fabricator... that's why they come to do a template people!  They check for level!!  So, both parties are equally to blame, I'm just happy that things only got pushed by a few days, so now the tile guy will be done on Monday with the back splash and then it will all be done!!  But here's some lovely pics of the cock-eyed installation illustrating that RH doesn't know how to use a laser level when installing cabinets!

 well, the island was good and is all installed bc my contractor did it, so it was perfect and level!  Just look at all that counter space!  It's about as big as an extra long twin mattress!  LOL I know this bc I got up and laid down on it...

 ummm... yeah, this is unacceptable... 3 shims???

just another view of that fabulous island!

Oh, and here is our new Amish build table, with both leaves in that sucker fills up the whole room!  I don't like the refinished chairs though with it :( so I'm going to get distressed black painted ones either made for it, or maybe I can get a good craigslist find and paint them myself, I think that a black distressed x-back chair would really go nicely, these are just too formal for the space.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Finally starting to have fun buying stuff for the house!

Sometimes when I walk through the door, I feel like we just moved in.  The lack of furniture, pictures, decorations, etc. makes it looks like we are either squatters or we just bought the house that week!  It's been a fast year though since we've moved in, and through my husband's diligent budgeting and savings, we are starting to put things together.  I posted before about the island/counter tops etc, that's still in process, I'm just waiting to hear back from the fabricators for a installation date, I bought our back splash (over budget) and we purchased a chandelier (under budget) and bar stools (also under budget).  I still can't find for the life of me a sideboard/buffet that I like that's $700 or less, I'm planning a trip to Bordman OH to check out the furniture stores there, surprisingly, there isn't much in Pittsburgh.  Levin's sucks, everything is about 90% western PA 90's style (no offense! it's just the way things are here, people are very slowly warming up to the cottage chic/industrial cool vibe). And Value City just has nothing, and I'm really looking for a solid hardwood piece, so I'm going to also check out the used furniture stores and see if I can't find something I can paint!

Here's the bar stools/counter stools we bought from Restoration Hardware (I looove this store but can't afford most things in it, but these babies were only about $159.00 each after tax and delivery which is good for a bar stool, and it's solid wood) We bought 4 counter stools for the new island and 3 bar for the overhang into the morning room.  The color is called "burnt oak" which will look nice against the dark floors and cabinets and not be too harsh of a contrast.

Here's our chandelier, which my husband actually picked out!  He loved it, which I was afraid he wasn't going to!  I can't wait to see it in person, it's being delivered Friday, it was an overstock.com find and I had a coupon!  It was very affordable and has that Restoration Hardware vibe, but the chrome finish gives it a more modern glam look and less visual weight.

And here is our back splash, it's just a simple honed marble brick pattern, but I'm going to do a dove grey grout to give it some contrast!  I can't wait to see it all together and to post pics!  I really think after it's all done, our kitchen will be unique and look more custom, and I did it for less than I would have if we had gone with Ryan's optional upgrades.  Still wishing I could have gone with white cabinets though... sigh... maybe someday

Monday, July 14, 2014

The island is coming along... and things are starting to get done!

Well folks, it's been a year, can't believe it!  We just got back from a trip to Jamaica to celebrate our 4 year wedding anniversary and we also have our island installed... well, semi installed!  Just the cabinet bases and the electric are completed, we also bought our sink and faucet, and the quartz is now on order, they just did the template last week!  We totally forgot to order our sink too before we left for vacation, so we had to buy our sink online while in Jamaica! lol, never thought I'd be shopping for home improvement items while relaxing on a beach!  I have a pic of the island so far (the doors are missing from the middle cabinet) and HOLY CRAP, this this is HUGE!!!!  I guess I didn't realize how big 8ft was... well, go big or go home!  We also bought our Amish table which will be in mid August, all hand crafted and solid wood, I'm hoping it will become a family heirloom that we can pass on for generations to come!

Here's our giant island!  Still needs the trim and doors on and the back piece, oh and the counter top!

Here's the sink and faucet, we got he sink on Overstock, it's the same as the one on HD's site but we got it on sale + a 10% coupon, so we saved 75 bucks!

And just for fun, here's some pics from our trip to Secrets, Montego Bay, Jamaica!

And one more, because I feel bad I've left my hubby out of all the pics!

Monday, May 12, 2014

We bought an island!

The island purchase is complete!  We now have to wait 4 weeks for the special order and then we can have a contractor install the new 8ft x 3ft island!  I'm so excited for all that work space, AND for the pot drawers!!  We also went to home depot to check out their quartz selection and they came back with a phenomenal price... $4,600 and NO TAX!  That's for all new quartz counters, the color is called Cortina but looks like Carrera marble, it is simply stunning with our espresso cabinets and dark floors, it really will brighten things up!  We haven't bought the counters yet though since we wanted to get a few more quotes, I don't think anyone can beat that price though for quartz but I'm a littler leery of going through HD, I've read some bad reviews... anyone use HD for counters or other projects where they send out subs??  I'm just worried that by saving money we're sacrificing quality...

Here is a sample of the Cortina quartz along with some paint color options (the darker is for the morning room and the lighter is the main living/kitchen).

I am also looking for zero radius sinks and the industrial commercial pull down sprayer faucets.  I also need a backsplash and lighting!  So much to get!  I'm so hesitant on buying these things online though, I know with lighting I can find great deals, but I need to see it in person, I hate shipping that stuff back and forth, not to mention the expense of the shipping!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

10 month inspection

So yesterday was our 10 month inspection, and honestly, I felt like I barely had anything on my list.  I only had 2 rooms with any nails pops, the RH service rep said that our side of the street, the lots are pretty much solid bedrock underneath, so many people didn't have many pops or cracks because the settling is so minimal, so that made me happy to know we are on super solid ground!

The main issue I had was with the yard, and our service rep, Matt (who was awesome btw!) he said he was already out at out lot and discusses with the PM what needed done, there was no hesitation that they will come in, re-grade, re-seed and add a drain too to help with the water accumulation in our yard.  It will be done within the next 2-3 weeks, so we shall see if they keep their promise!  I told them I don't want any rock soil, and he assured it's screened topsoil when they come back to do the yard work after the 10 months, so I will hold him to his word!

Other than a few floor squeaks and a few settling cracks, we have been very pleased with our Ryan Home, now, if they can only sell the empty lot next to us!  That this will NOT sell!  I think it's cursed....

On another positive note, it's going to be freaking HOT this week, FINALLY!  This Pittsburgh winter has been rough, it did test the limits of our furnace and insulation, both of which we were very pleased with, our house stayed nice and toasted, but our skin suffered, and nose bleeds every morning!  Not to mention our poor hardwood contracting, but they are all back to normal now that the humidity levels are rising!  Hopefully we won't see another winter like that EVER again!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Long over due post, it's been almost a year since we closed!

How time flies!  Sorry I haven't posted, but I really haven't had anything "post worthy" however, that will soon change.  We are finally at the point where we can start on projects, and buying new furniture.  We are doing 1 room per month, and next month is the kitchen!!!  I'm soooo excited, we are putting in an 8 ft. island quartz or granite counters (haven't decided yet) new pendents over the island, new zero radius sink, back splash... phew!  I didn't like RH's granite or the shape of the island, so the one we are putting in is just a big straight rectangle that will fit 4 LARGE counter height chairs and will become out main eating/gathering place in the kitchen.  Our total budget for the kitchen is $7,500.00, which i think is great considering how much the RH's island and granite and back splash would have been, not to mention I would have been settling for something that I wasn't totally in love with.  I was also happy to find that 84 Lumber sells Timberlake cabinets so I was able to match my Scottsdale Maple Espresso exactly!

Here is a pic of what I want the counters to look like, it's a quartz that looks like marble, but i'm not 100% sold on the grey, I feel it may limit me to only use cooler colors, so I'm still on the fence!

We have also completed a small project, repainting/re-covering my husband's granny's dining room chairs.  These will initially be for the morning room.  We are going to get a custom made farm house table from the Amish furniture place by us and these will serve as the chairs until we can afford to purchase new ones, then they will migrate into the formal dining room and I will get a white table to go with them.  It took sooo much longer that I though, about 12 hours total to do 6 chairs.  I used chalk paint from Home Depot (not chalk board, but CHALK paint!) and it's great, it really gives that vintage cottage feel and NO SANDING NEEDED!  These chairs were a paint though with all the little nooks and creases!  I'm happy though how they turned out, all in all, it was about 65 bucks to repaint and re-do the chair covers, not a bad deal!

Here is the before...

Here is the after!

In other news, we have our 10 month (more like 11 month) scheduled for May 5th, so I will report back on how that goes!  Mostly just little fixes, and our dishwasher NEVER DRIES! UGH!  Anyone else have the problem?  GE is coming out that day too to take a look, hopefully we can get a new one, I hear that model has numerous complaints online about not drying the dishes.  Our yard sucks too, it's HORRIBLE, so many sunken in spots, giant tree roots, rocks... there is a huge "bowl" in the back yard, nothing will grow there and it's a swamp!  Our side yard barely has grass, it's just rocks and dirt pretty much!