ORC – Spring 2021 – Reveal

Here we are at the final reveal for the One Room Challenge. As I’ve mentioned before, I love these challenges as motivation to complete a project with others working on theirs at the same time.

I set out to continue projects started in Spring 2020 which included exterior updates and in the vegetable garden.

Vegetable Garden

Here’s a look at where we started when we moved in July 2019 and where we are now almost two years later. The changes are mainly from changing paint/stain colours and adding furniture, plus fencing to protect the vegetable garden from deer.

Summer 2019
Summer 2021

The majority of this area was completed last year for the One Room Challenge. I painted the existing raised beds white, stained the hot tub taupe & built deer fencing to create a garden room.

Summer 2019

I added a couple of other raised beds this year and as well as an apple tree nearby and a nectarine tree.

We went crazy with the peas and now that I’ve harvested them all the beds look empty.

Front Porch Reading Area

The biggest change this year came from adding furniture to make a cozy reading area at the front of the house. Now we actually use this space.

I had foam cut and I sewed an outdoor bench cushion for this wicker loveseat. Since I couldn’t find a round table the right size and price I used a sturdy basket upside-down as a coffee table.

The cushions I made and the bright yellow one is from leftover linen I had from the masks I’ve made.

Since deer hang out in the shade next to the house too I’m not bothering with plants and instead clipped some branches from shrubs we have that I know deer don’t like. Bonus, no watering in this extreme heat.

To see what this space started like head to Week #1 ORC – Spring 2021 -Exterior Updates Week #1

To see what everyone else completed for this round of One Room Challenge check out the blog: www.oneroomchallenge.com/blog/orcspring2021wk8

ORC-Spring 2021- Vegetable Garden & Exterior Painting Progress -Weeks #6 & #7

The Spring 2021 One Room Challenge is wrapping up next post. I have slowly been working on these outdoor projects over the past 2 years.

The main focus was to:

  • Complete Exterior Trim & Garage Painting
  • Maximize Planting Space in Garden
  • Create Seating Area at Front of House

Exterior Trim & Garage Painting

Garage Door & Trim Painted

Our house started out with mustard trim and a beige garage door. I started the painting myself but eventually realized we needed to hire painters to do the upper portions that required ladder work.

Before – Perfect Candidate for Cosmetic Paint Changes

I did climb out the front window to paint back when my youngest used to nap but it was risky and realistically it would have probably taken me 5 years to finish at the rate I was going. Hiring painters was worth it.

Painting the Trim to change the colour & maintain the wood.
July 2019

Create More Planting Space

We were lucky that there was already a dedicated garden area off the back patio. It had irrigation installed too. The only downside was the deer are frequently in the yard so these raised beds needed some protection.

This fencing Spring 2020 has worked to keep deer out and there was still space for a couple of other raised beds.

Deer Fencing built Spring 2020
Still working on these new raised beds
So many shelling peas growing right now.
The newest garden bed tucked in along the fence
Work in Progress Still
Maybe we will have our first pears this year?
There are animals (I think they’re marmots) sneaking in and eating the lettuce. Now I’m figuring out more ways to cover the vegetable garden.

Front Porch Reading Area

We have been using this space, especially in the afternoons.

There was a shrub here that unfortunately wasn’t alive anymore and I had to remove it.
Foam & Fabric for Cushions

This is the foam and Sunbrella fabric I chose to make the base cushion. I decided on this black and beige irregular fabric so that any marks won’t be obvious. I am going to try out this stool as a side table too.

In the next 2 weeks I’m going to pull together the final details to complete the plan before the official start of summer.

To see what everyone else is doing here’s the link: https://www.oneroomchallenge.com/blog/orcspring2021wk7

ORC – Spring 2021 – Weeks #4 & #5 – Front Porch Reading Area

The weather is getting hot so now we are seeking those shady spots, like at the front of the house.

Last year we didn’t use this front shady area of the house because we had no furniture.

Originally we had thought of putting out a bistro set here like the prior owners had, but when I saw this outdoor wicker loveseat I changed my mind.

This was the colour the house originally was before painting it.

I tried a few different options for coffee tables and ended up using this sturdy woven basket upside-down.

Now I’m sourcing foam to make a cushion and hopefully I’ll have some fabric in my stash that I can sew into a cushion cover.

Vegetable Garden

Meanwhile in the backyard the peas are flourishing.
Cedar Planter 3 Weeks ago
Last year I tried these containers but they got too hot & dried out quickly.
Current State of the Garden

Before

Before ORC 2020 – Painted Raised Beds & Staining Hot Tub

I was going to plant this nectarine tree but after the deer ate the apple tree I’m holding off and keeping it in the vegetable area until I can figure out how to protect it.

We love seeing the deer hanging out in the shade here, I just want to have some areas where they can’t eat the plants.

To see everyone else’s projects check out the One Room Challenge.

https://www.oneroomchallenge.com/blog/orcspring2021wk5

ORC – Spring 2021 – Easy DIY Woven Stools – Week #3

This week for my One Room Challenge I’m showing how I turned these chairs into stools to use outside.

For a few months I had been looking for secondhand chairs that had rush seats. I had looked into making my own stools and learning to weave the rush myself but this route was much simpler.

I bought these 3 ladder back chairs which had seats in pretty good condition. I sawed off the back with my hand saw to make them look like stools instead.

I decided to paint them using a greige paint I had leftover from painting our Kitchen Island.

These are now being used as seats for our kids at our outdoor table for the summer, and in the winter they will move inside to our foyer.

We have been having most of our meals outside and having a comfortable place to sit makes a big difference.

To see what everyone else is working on this week, the link is below.

https://www.oneroomchallenge.com/blog/orcspring2021wk3

ORC – Spring 2021 -Exterior Updates Week #1

It’s time for the Spring One Room Challenge, my favourite way to get motivated to work on a project. This year I’m going to continue with the exterior projects from last year.

  • Complete Exterior Trim & Garage Painting
  • Maximize Planting Space in Vegetable Garden
  • Create Seating Area at Front of House

The vegetable garden from last year gave us fresh greens for 4 solid months and I’m hoping to expand what we grow this year. Also, since we have to stay home I am focusing on creating more spaces to enjoy outside.

Exterior Trim & Garage Painting

This is our home in Kelowna. When we moved here almost 2 years ago I started to paint the yellow trim white. The fact that this wood trim needed maintenance in some areas already helped get my husband on board with this update.

If your home is in need of some paint touch ups anyway, why not change the colour?

Inspiration

I absolutely love this garage area by House of Jade Interiors. Eventually I’d love to add a pergola but for this year I’ll be sticking to paint and adding some garage handles.

House of Jade Interiors: https://www.instagram.com/p/B_keYAqlpqj/
Painting in Progress

Vegetable Garden & Deer Fencing

This was how the vegetable garden looked last spring, before the One Room Challenge project.

The vegetable garden last year.
Deer Fence from ORC Spring 2020

I am happy to report that the deer fencing I created stood up through the winter. During a windstorm our side gate and some other fence fell down but surprisingly this was totally fine.

The Garden this Year

Vegetable Garden May 2021

Having a designated area for growing food and being able to start the season earlier has been rewarding. There is so much to learn about seeds, soil, plants, composting etc.

This year I plan to maximize all of the space available here by adding more planters and trellises plus learn more about vegetable growing.

This is the pear tree that I planted last year – seeing it come back after winter and bloom makes me happy! Where we live there are orchards and vineyards everywhere and I want to try fruit trees in our yard too.

Seating Area at Front of House

One more project area is here by the front door. It is a shady spot that we don’t use because there is no furniture. Usually this is where piles of special sticks and pinecones the kids and I find get left.

Spring Last Year

I see that this could be a nice shady spot in the hot afternoon, perfect for reading. I plan to add seating and a coffee table here so that we use this area more often.

That’s the plan for the One Room Challenge this spring. To see what everyone else is doing the link is below. I suspect more people will be focusing on the outside this year.

https://www.oneroomchallenge.com/blog/orcspring2021wk1

ORC – Weeks 4 & 5 – Pillow Fabrics & Paint Choices

An update on the slow going basement project for One Room Challenge. Having furniture (who knew?!) has made a huge difference and now we use this space all the time. I finally started painting because I want it to be brighter down here but still cozy.

I am using mystery paint from Restore. Usually I’m picky about my colours but in this case these shades of what seem to be warm and light grey/beige should work. I’m not done yet but it is already feeling brighter in these back corners.

The colour is a smoother transition to the downstairs bathroom.

This wall will be a slightly darker greige and I’ve mapped out the picture frame moulding here that I will install eventually. I decided to do moulding that would be manageable with my limited tools – hello handsaw, plastic mitre box and tiny hammer. Below is our last home where I installed this Metrie moulding behind our banquette.

Picture frame moulding I installed in our last home.

This mirror is now finally hung up to maximize the light coming in from the window. It is one of the few decor pieces I brought in the move.

Pillow: Shibang Designs – www.shibangdesigns.com

There will be lots of pillows on the large sectional so I will be using my own pillows and will add some other basics to go with them.

This lamp was from Restore and was exactly what I had in mind.

This is a sketch of how I planned to make the cabinets into a unit and add moulding, it’s slowly starting to come together. The plywood was cut at Home Depot and still needs some more finishing details.

To see what everyone else is working on here is the link below:

https://www.oneroomchallenge.com/blog/orcguestss20wk1-khx3f-955p7-bj33w-24pb8-kfs9p

ORC – Weeks 2 & 3 – Quick Update for Oak

The One Room Challenge has been slow going lately and I’m totally fine with that. I’m looking for the easiest way to make some updates with secondhand items.

This media console we bought used with our kitchen table and I believe they’re originally from Pottery Barn.

While refinishing a dining table is worthwhile I just don’t have the energy or interest in making a big mess right now. For the media console I did a technique I’ve used on oak mirrors to emphasize the grain.

Over the years I’ve used name brand Chalk Paint and it’s been good but I now make my own using Plaster of Paris mixed with common housepaint and water. That’s what I have used for this project. It works the same in this application and is a fraction of the cost.

The key is to use a stiff (aka ruined ) brush and push the paint into the grain. Then you wipe away the paint almost immediately.

These are other mirrors I’ve done in this style.

We had a lot of snow fall on Friday and we’ve been so cozy indoors that I didn’t get too far into the basement makeover. It’s comfortable with a couch now and we have so many library books to read.

I have planned the moulding now which will be something manageable to complete with my handsaw and mitre box.

I also found the perfect coffee table a couple of weeks back. I had been looking into how to make a trunk but came across this one at Restore that was in excellent condition and the perfect size – it also locks so that helps keep little brother out of the Lego while the older one is at school.

Here is the link to the One Room Challenge and everyone else’s progress:

One Room Challenge – Fall 2020- Week#1

Time for the Fall One Room Challenge – The best motivation to finish up projects!
Welcome to our basement. When we moved here over one year ago the only furniture we brought were our beds, couch and coffee table. This room has stayed basically unfurnished for the past year so now is the time to make it cozy to stay home this winter!
I prefer to use secondhand furniture as much as possible – for the environment, the quality is often better as is the price. This console we bought with our kitchen table, the TV used to be my Nana’s and the lamp is from the last house.
Last year I added curtains to the window. I bought new sheets and sewed them into curtains.
These cabinets I bought at Restore with plans to paint them and make them into a storage bench similar to our last home.
Here is the room (and the kids 😉 ) in a space overrun with toys. Despite the full size windows, it is dark so I will be painting the walls lighter and adding mirrors.
For months I have been looking for a secondhand sectional couch – finally I found one!


We bought our leather living room couch used in Montreal 8 years ago and it has withstood the use and abuse from kids and pets and still looks good. I had hoped to find something used again rather than buying new but was having trouble finding one. I started to look for a new one and asking my Aunt and friends when I saw this one used online. We hired a local person – Your Friend with a Truck – to bring it to us.
Here is step one of the Fall One Room Challenge to make the room cozier – what a difference furniture makes!
Photo: Heidi Lau Photography

In our last home adding moulding throughout the house was a priority to add character. I haven’t done any yet in our current home but I brought this mirror from our last dining room which I plan to finally put up.

photo: Heidi Lau Photography

This was our last basement where I added this board and batten. I have some ideas for the wall treatment in our current home to give the space more character…they are quite finalized yet.

Here’s some of the materials I’ve been slowly collecting over the past year – paint mis-tints, some leftover Advance paint from the island cabinets and door architraves. I am also excited to sew some new cushion covers for the sectional couch.

To see what else everyone has planned check out the One Room Challenge page linked below:

ORC Spring 2020 Reveal – Vegetable Garden & Deer Fencing

Here is the completed vegetable garden & deer fencing I was working on for the One Room Challenge. I’m glad that the deadline was extended because it took me so long to finish. Thinking about the design for the deer fencing was holding me back.

In the end I spent more time thinking about it than actually making it.The fencing ended up being inspired by a combination of a modern deer proof structure by Lauri Kranz of Edible Farms LA and the casual & coastal feeling of Malibu Farm – yes I’m on a California theme now that we’re living on the West Coast.

Inspiration:

Lauri Kranz – Edible Gardens LA

Malibu Farm

Here’s a reminder of what this area looked like last year – in need of some TLC. Now we can maximize our use of this designated vegetable garden area without the deer eating everything.

I started with staining the hot tub and painting the existing raised beds & house trim white (photos link to the process in Week #2)

The Finished Exterior Refresh & Vegetable Garden

These are photos from around the vegetable garden and a look at what we have growing.

Zucchini Growing in a Container

Intercropping Cucumber, Garlic, Spinach

Lettuce, Kale & Lettuce Seeds Sowed 10 days ago.

Snow Peas

 

Deer Fencing Solution

Instead of digging fence posts that may have ruined our irrigation (not to mention our car isn’t big enough to transport large posts) I built boxes to support the chicken wire fencing. I had the cedar 2×4’s cut at Home Depot and then the rest of the cutting I did with my little hand saw and plastic mitre box. I’m not going to do a tutorial on the process until I see how my idea holds up to a snowy winter.

Winterbor & Dwarf Kale

Containers- Cherry Tomatoes & Zucchini

  

There’s a small pear tree that’s in the back along the fence side too as well as two blueberry bushes in the white box beside the side fence. The Okanagan has incredible fruits & wineries and I hope that we have some success with fruit too.

In the past 3 months we have learned so much about gardening and are excited to continue growing more of our own food. Using seeds was new for us and now we are ready to get our beets, swiss chard, arugula and lettuce seeds in the ground for the fall. And now with the deer fencing we shouldn’t have to worry about the deer eating everything.

To see everyone else’s projects check out the page for the Spring One Room Challenge Reveal here.

 

 

 

ORC Week # 7

It’s almost the end of the One Room Challenge, next week is the final reveal. This vegetable garden project didn’t quite get to where I had hoped it would in terms of building an additional pergola but we have had tons of leafy greens so that part was a success.

Everyday, we go out and fill this colander with swiss chard, baby greens, kale and some herbs. I’ve been taking photos to show what we’ve harvested because it is so exciting for us!

Sometimes we pick the Swiss Chard when the leaves are almost full size like this and I slice them into ribbons for a salad.

We make lots of kale chips because that is the only way the kids will eat it.

I’m glad that I bought the Swiss Chard and Kale as seedlings in May because it gave us a head start. The seeds we grew have worked but are way smaller still.

Sometimes we pick the greens in baby size too like the mixes that we usually get from the grocery store.

This is the Candy Cane Swiss chard that I got from the nursery and I love the colour of these stems!

Now we have lavender blooming in another area of the yard thanks to the former owner – what a treat! We have been garnishing drinks with it, adding it to desserts, and enjoying the scent of it inside.

I had been procrastinating with the deer fencing plan…that was until the deer started hanging out in our yard again. I went to get cedar 2×4’s cut and some deer mesh and starting building the structure. Getting these materials definitely reminded me of this ORC from 2017 that was featured on Apartment Therapy.

Staining the wood black was tons of extra labour but was worth it. I’m not sure if I’ll do white or the same taupe as the hot tub this time.

Our Kelowna yard with a frequent visitor.

When summer is so short in Canada we are enjoying making the most of it and I’m learning which seeds to get ready for fall planting (carrots, beets, garlic). Cooking and eating salads is way more interesting with lettuce and edible flowers straight from the garden!

 

Have a look at where everyone else is as the end of the One Room Challenge here.