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Archive for March, 2009

Frame-less shower glass looks beautiful but it’s tough to keep it free of streaks and water stains, even if you have a water softener.  Here’s what we do after each shower to keep it looking crystal clear.

Buy a small squeegee from Target, Lowe’s or Walmart along with a small suction cup that you can attach to the glass or tile to hang it on.  If you don’t have an inconspicuous place to hang it, just rest it in the corner of your shower, out of the way.

After each shower, squeegee the entire glass starting top to bottom and shake off the excess water between strokes.  Then use a towel to wipe down the remaining water.  Your glass shower will stay water-stain free between regular cleanings!

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About two months ago I purchased two simple chandeliers at Lowe’s for about $60 each.  (We received 20% off that day so saved a little on each one which are regularly priced at $79 apiece).    I had a vision of hanging them in the entry to add some interest when you first enter our home but wasn’t sure how it would all come together.  After painting the wall with the metallic paint it really ended up working well and the paint glistens at night when the lights reflect off of it.

Our home is decorated simply and I was a little concerned these might be too dressy.  But the basic wrought iron look and minimal crystals ended up adding just the right flair I was hoping to achieve.  So here’s proof that even in a home that doesn’t have a lot of drama in its bone structure (like soaring ceilings or expansive rooms), you can add well-placed fixtures to give you that little decorating edge!

(Now I need to relocate the Shell lamp to a new space…..)

Simple chandeliers add interest to this entry

Simple chandeliers add interest to this entry

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The 2009 Ahwatukee Home Tour and Remodel Expo is almost here!  Mark your calendar for Saturday, April 4, 2009 9 am – 5 pm.

Nyla Simone Home, along with the Emerald Design Center, are hosting the second annual ‘Tukee Home Tour and Remodel Expo.  You can grab something to eat, participate in the 50/50 raffle and then board the trolley to visit the selected homes!

Ollie the Trolley will take attendees on a six home tour in the Ahwatukee area and return them to the Emerald Design Center parking lot which is adjacent to Ikea.

Proceeds benefit Gabriel’s Angels, http://www.gabrielsangels.org/ , an Ahwatukee based, non-profit organization dedicated to delivering healing pet therapy to abused, neglected and at-risk children.  Check out their website for amazing stories and photos of the children who are helped by this exemplary organization.

Tickets are available in the Nyla Simone showroom or through the Chamber of Commerce at http://www.ahwatukeechamber.com/

My cozy home will be on the tour featuring BC Coatings who did the stained concrete floors, Arizona Accents who were a part of last summer’s landscape remodel & Copeland Development for the master bath remodel of a couple years ago.  If you browse through my archived posts you’ll find a write up about each of these projects.  I’ll also be on-hand to talk about plenty of do-it-yourself ideas that we’ve tried around our home.  The purpose of having a smaller home like mine in the tour is to include a variety of price points and show a home that’s focused on using all your space to create a family-centric home.

We hope you’ll join us for this year’s Tukee Home Tour!  Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 the day of the event.

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OK, so  it took me a week to paint one (very small!) wall but I finally finished!  See the last post to get the full story if you didn’t yet; I was experimenting with a line of paint called “Brilliant Metals” from Valspar on the entry wall in my home. 

The goal was to add an effect of strong color as you enter our home without overdoing it.  A standard paint didn’t seem like the way to go, it all just looked so flat.  Since I needed to do it on my own (cost savings) and I’m not good with applying the cool faux effects that are out there I was hopeful when I came across the “Brilliant Metals” line.  All said and done, I’m really pleased with the results!

The color I chose is called “Copper Gleam”.  The line requires a basecoat of a regular paint with a topcoat of the metal paint.  The basecoat for getting the Copper Gleam color is called “Tawny Bluff” and went on like any standard paint. The metal paint, however, is a little trickier to work with and I had to go over it three times to get the  right consistency and eliminate the lines between roller strokes.

When applying the metal paint you first use a brush to work around all the trim and edges.  Don’t skimp on the brush, your edges are very important.  Even when you tape off with painter’s paint, you need to be careful not to load too much paint on because the texture of most walls doesn’t allow the tape to lie perfectly flat and you can get drips behind the tape, especially on your baseboards.  The brush I use is a 2.5″ 100% dyed nylon by Purdy.  They are more expensive, I think about $12 a pop if I recall correctly, but worth the investment.  I’ve had the same two brushes for five years.  If you take good care of them and rinse them properly they’ll last that long.  And I’ve done a TON of painting with those brushes! 

After working around your trim and edges let it dry. Then use a roller to apply the rest.  I went ahead and bought the roller sold by Valspar supposedly just for metallic paint.  You may be able to use a standard texture roller but I didn’t want to chance it.  When applying the paint you need to make long strokes and never roll side-to-side, only up and down.  Try to apply with an even hand.  When I pushed harder in one area than another I ended up with big streaks between strokes and had to go back to even it out. 

Here are the after photos of the wall.  I thought there was a before shot but the only one I can find is with the original tile (before we ripped them out and went to acid stained concrete) so it’s not a fair comparison photo.    I really like the depth of the color due to the metallic effect.  Again, I would limit the places you use a finish like this but in the right spot it can really dress up a room!

Entry wall in "Copper Gleam"

Entry wall in "Copper Gleam"

Close up of brilliant metal paint in "Copper Gleam"

Close up of brilliant metal paint in "Copper Gleam"

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Shimmering paints

Today I’m trying out a new paint from the Earth Elements collection by Valspar.  They have a collection of colors they categorize under Earth, Fire, Wind and Water.

There are two applications you can choose from that add a shimmering quality to  your walls; Brilliant Metals & Granite.  The best applications for both are in an area that receives a lot of natural light so you can actually see the shimmer effect.  I’ve selected the Brilliant metals which adds what they call a ‘vibrant metallic sheen’ to wall.

I’ve selected an accent wall in the entry of our home that has a skylight above it and a color that will tie in a unique painting on the dining room wall that you can see at the same time as the accent wall when you walk in to our home.  We’re guaranteed lots of natural light due to the skylight and because the metal will add a dressy effect I figured the entry would be a good place for it; I plan to hang a couple of simple chandeliers, too. 

The color I chose is “Copper Gleam”.  First you apply a basecoat of a color in the same family then apply the Brilliant Metal color over the top of it once it’s dried thoroughly.   There is a specific application process so I’ll let you know how it goes and will be sure to include before and after photos once it’s complete!

For more on the Earth Elements collection, go to www.valspar.com The granite application looks very interesting, too but I got attached to the Copper Gleam color so opted for Brilliant Metals instead.

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