Change the look of your living room in an afternoon

The fireplace mantel in my living room was feeling a little bland. It was in need of a refresh. So, I now had a project for Saturday afternoon. I hit Moss on the Danforth in search of accent pieces.

I found these two stainless steel lanterns. They’re modern looking, but evoke the feeling you get during of a seaside vacation. Just what I was looking for. I added two white candles to finish the look.

Coastal Lanterns
Coastal Lanterns

I headed home. No need to spend any more money. I have a kitchen shelf full of vases. I pull out three similar glass vases. These will do just fine. Now, I’m on a mission for seashells and rocks to keep with the modern coastal design. I know I have both from a trip down south years ago.

Seashells
Seashells

I fill the vases and add them to the mantel. I stumble across more filler in the dining room credenza. (You just never know where you’ll find filler.) I head back to the kitchen where I keep my tea lights and candle holders. I grab two of each.

Tea Lights
Tea Lights

 

I add each of the items to the mantel, but something is still missing. I make my way up to my home office. A quick scan of the room and I spot a small, silver clock and a white, dove figurine. They’re the finishing touches I was looking for. I think I’m all set.

 

Small Clock
Small Clock

 

After rearranging the items a few times, I step back and exam the display. I call up my husband from the basement, where he was watching TV, to give me his opinion. And there you have it. I spent very little money and two hours on a Saturday afternoon to change the look of my fireplace mantel.

Fireplace Mantel Display
Fireplace Mantel Display

 

What do you think? Any other quick and inexpensive home projects you can do in one afternoon?

Highlights from the International Design Show in Toronto

Wandering through the display kitchens and bathrooms, flipping through fabric swatches and paint chips at the International Design Show is an annual tradition for me. I’m always looking for ‘inspiration’ and that one unique piece for my place.

This year’s show featured beautifully, hand-crafted, wooden furniture perfect for your summer home (if you’re lucky enough to have one).

Wooden furniture
Wooden furniture

Sticking with the cottage theme, Urban Barn showed off its beach and nautical inspired pillows, throws and accessories for your living room, bedroom or home office.

Anchor pillow
Anchor pillow

If ‘anchors’ aren’t your thing, there were also plenty of ‘Canadiana’ cottage accessories on display.

Canadiana cottage
Canadiana cottage

I don’t know about you, but I sure am ready for summer. So too, are the designers at the show. A touch of outdoors was brought indoors for those already shopping for patio furniture.

Miniature greenhouse
Miniature greenhouse

Before I was done strolling up and down the aisles, I came across this napkin and thought to myself, ‘this is why I come to the design show.’ Where do you find your inspiration?

Where do you find inspiration?
Where do you find inspiration?