25 February 2015

top 15 ways to repurpose maps as wall art

Since I love repurposing and love maps, this is a natural fit for me. Finding inspiration for the best ways to use maps, especially vintage ones, has been a feast for the eyes. I've been seeing some nice old maps at my local antique markets lately...I'm getting very tempted. Here are my top 15 picks for repurposing maps as a beautiful way to decorate your walls.

top 15 ways to repurpose maps as wall art
source
repurposed black and white vintage map as headboard
source
vintage framed map as artwork in entryway
via
green map as dining room art
via
large map as headboard for boys room
via
repurposed map as stacked artwork
source
framed black and white maps for gallery wall
via
small maps hung as wallpaper in entry
via
vintage map as art
via
pink map as dining room wall mural
source
corner vignette using map
source
large vintage framed map as bathroom wall art
via
bedroom wall map art
source
framed antique maps hung as art in bedroom
via
Top 15 DIY ways to use maps on walls
via


12 February 2015

top 8 no-VOC paints by price and accessibility

Clients and friends all seem to be painting these days. Whether it's a kitchen makeover or full-on home renovation, many are looking for advice on paint colour and types. Regardless of colour or finish, for interior paint jobs I always strongly recommend no-VOC paint in order to reduce harmful toxins being emitted into your beautifully updated home. I mean, you want to feel comfortable and healthy, right?

eco-friendly paints by price; where to find zero-VOC paint

So I want to share with you the resource list I've compiled on all of the fairly easy-to-find no-VOC paints, along with a price list for comparison. All are zero VOC (before colourant), good coverage, long-wearing and scrubbable. Some have built-in primer and some don't. They are listed by price in CND$ per gallon.

Behr Premium Plus (at Home Depot) - $26.97

CIL Premium (at Home Depot) - $29.97

Valspar Ultra (at Lowes - not in every all cities across Canada) - $36.97

Beauti-Tone Natura (at Home Hardware) - $42.99

Sico Evolution (at Rona, Kent, and other retailers across Canada) - $52.99

Dulux Lifemaster (at Dulux outlets across Canada)- $64.99

Sherwin Williams Harmony (at Sherwin Williams outlets; not in all Canadian cities)- $64.99

Benjamin Moore Natura (at Benjamin Moore outlets across Canada) - $79.99

I personally like Behr, CIL and Beauti-Tone as they have good coverage at a reasonable price. CIL and Beauti-Tone take two coats, unlike some of the other brands with a primer included, but I actually think that coverage is more even with two coats of any paint.

Note- none of these brands are affiliated with me in any way and I have not been paid for any listings here. I simply needed to do my own research for projects, and thought this may help those of you who are seeking to refresh your own homes without adding toxins to the environment. 

This is certainly not an exhaustive list, but covers the paint brands I've found to be easy to access and come from reputable companies. Please comment below if  you've used other options, and/or the ones you like the best. I'd love to hear your reviews. Happy painting! 

9 February 2015

tea organization

I've jumped on the tea craze train. I have to say I love trying new combinations of flavours and herbal concoctions. It's also been a good way for me to curb snacking at night, since I can sip away on a flavourful mug of goodness instead. I recently ordered a couple of flavours from the Oh She Glows Organic Tea Shoppe - my favourite is African Mint.

clarity tea

But having so many different teas, that come in different containers, and need a bunch a tools and accessories, can mean a lot of clutter. It also took up too much room in the cupboards of my small condo kitchen. So now all my tea and coffee trappings have come out onto the countertop corralled in a wooden tray as the centrepiece of an organized drink station. You can see that I still drink coffee sometimes as well, and I also love my SodaStream for carbonated water. 

tea organization

I put all the teas into either mason jars or the tall containers that some came in, and covered them with black and white polka dot craft paper and washii tape. I also painted the lids in chalk paint so I can label them and change up as needed. 

chalk paint tea organization; diy tea station

I hung some of the measuring spoons and tea strainers onto a hook on the wall, and tools like wood spoons, cinnamon sticks and more strainers go into a pretty mug. The vintage paddle is handy for cutting lemon slices. 

organized tea station

I ordered a beautifully handmade honey pot from Riverware Pottery Nort -  I love it for an easy way to add a little sweetness to some of the tea blends. 

home made honey pot, etsy

I also just received 2 of these gorgeous mugs from Christe Ahee - love her work!

handmade coffee mug

So has anyone else become a tea lover? How do you organize your tea paraphernalia? 

6 February 2015

simple, sustainable homemade valentine's gifts

I live far away from my nephew and nieces so I like to send them a little box of treats on Valentine's Day. I know I always loved getting something in the mail when I was a kid (ok, I still do) so I imagine they enjoy opening up the box to see what goodies are inside.

sustainable holiday treats; simple gifts; homemade gifts

This year, I went with simple, semi-healthy treats in mason jars, and a box filled with little cut-out hearts from scrap bits of craft paper (I still make them the old fashioned way by folding in the middle!). Filling jars (which are both pretty and re-usable) with dark-chocolate covered pretzels, trail mixes, popcorn, or even dark chocolate chips is an easy and yummy treat - the Bulk Barn has lots of options at decent prices. Grown ups might like a new tea or coffee blend, and some cinnamon sticks. I used some chalkboard paint on the tops and wrapped waashi tape around the lids.

DIY Valentine's Day

simple handmade Valentines Day

Anyone have any more ideas for simple Valentine's Day treats?