Sunday, July 24, 2011

lamp makeover #2

Here is my second lamp makeover. After the first (see Feb 20th blog) success, I’m become maybe a little bit obsessed with doing lamp makeovers.

I found this beauty-in-disguise at Value Village for $9.99 a few months ago. Luckily, I could see past the early 1980’s soft pink glass and gold combo and really appreciate it for its design, shape and size.

I knew I was going to have to put some furniture in my new addition, so I scooped it up and it’s been sitting in “the pile” in my living room, just waiting patiently for a little lovin’.

Finally, with just a few easy steps, it now looks fresh and modern and is a one-of-a-kind.

What you need:

1 can of Tremclad spray paint (gloss white) -- $10 (Canadian Tire)
1 new lamp shade -- $9.95 (Canadian Tire)
Small piece of sandpaper
Painters tape or masking tape

Here are the steps:

1. Clean thoroughly with damp cloth. Then clean it again!
2. Use painters tape to cover the metal bracket for the shade, the light socket and the electrical cord.
3. Lightly sand the entire glass base to remove some of the existing gloss finish. Wipe clean with damp cloth.
4. Carefully and slowly spray the ceramic base, starting at the top and working your way around and down to the bottom until entire lamp base is covered.
5. Wait to dry and spray on another coat. Repeat until you’ve got a good coat of a nice, even, full paint coverage.
6. Let dry overnight. Remove tape and attach new lamp shade.

Remember these handy tips:

Spray paint is hard to control and if you hit it with too much paint, you will get runs. Be patient and add paint in layers and you will get a wonderful glossy finish of rich color you are looking for!

And, please use spray paint in a well ventilated area. Preferably outside, but not when it’s windy. This stuff gets EVERYWHERE….I’d recommend using a mask as well, because it’s hard to do any type of spray paint project without breathing some of it in (yikes).

Again, I’m thrilled with the results of my second lamp makeover. Total cost of this project was $30…you just can’t buy new large, solid, lovely lamps for that price.

I’m 2 for 2 on the lamp makeovers…and I think I’ve run out of places for new lamps in my own place, but I know you might have a place for one.

Don’t be afraid…this is a really easy DIY project you can tackle for a small amout of money and a short amount of time that has big pay off.

Go ahead. Try it!

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/

Sunday, July 17, 2011

laundry room / mud room -- take a look!

So…here it is!

After many months of savings, a long and frustrating permit and variance process, 2 ½ months without the ability to do laundry, a gazillion days of rain, 11 inspections and a whole bunch of other things….I’m ready to show you the inside of my new laundry / mud room. Here are a few highlights (some of which I’ll post further blogs about!):

• upcycled – vintage dressing table, vintage tulip chair, old wood door and a Value Village lamp.
• an amazing set of custom-made sliding doors on an industrial track
• new washer/dryer (Samsung, Future Shop)
• customizable shelving unit that gives me lots of storage space (Rubbermaid, Rona)
• a cool black utility sink and a DIY backsplash (Smart tiles, Home Depot)
• black silk curtains hung from the ceiling that beautifully disguise lots of hooks and shoe & purse storage snuggled up behind the door (Bouclair Home / Rona)
• a black and white floor with vintage charm (Kent)
• black walls (Black Iron, Benjamin Moore) and trim (Jet Black, Benjamin Moore)

I am very happy with the end result. It turned out even better than I had been picturing it all this time! I love it when something in your head finally all falls into place.

Believe me when I tell you that I never thought I’d enjoy doing laundry, but today, I do.

And I love coming home, opening the door and seeing this room. I’m not used to it yet…the last bits just got finished yesterday.

Actually, if I’m being truthful, there may be still a couple of little things to finish up but it’s so close to being done, I couldn’t wait another week to show you.

Hope you enjoy...I'm going to take a little rest now!

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/

Monday, July 11, 2011

wonderful contractor revealed!

After 25 blogs about my renovation (there are still more to come…namely the totally decorated laundry/mud room reveal), I’d like to tell you more about my contractor.

Up until now, I’ve only referred to him as “wonderful contractor”. As many of you have asked…and I can only guess…some of you have wondered, who is this wonderful contractor? Does he really exist?Of course he does!

Wonderful contractor is Mike Burns of MRB Contracting (

And I really can’t say enough good things about them. Really, I can't.

Mike, owner/operator, truly is fantastic -- experienced beyond his years (you’d be making a big mistake to judge him based on his age), conscientious, honest and straight-up.

Mike discussed everything with me…as little or as much as I wanted to know. I was updated every step of the way and there was a discussion each time there was a variation from what we agreed on. I always knew and understood all my options and felt very comfortable taking his advice and making decisions.

He’s a perfectionist (so am I!) and his standards of quality are high. He set the same expectation for his crew, and his subs, and his suppliers. And he delivered it from beginning to end.

And he’s got a wonderful sense of design and style, too. We were ALWAYS on the same page (one small exception here with some good, healthy debate). How exciting is that?!?

The crew at MRB Contracting are also top-notch. They showed up on time, worked hard, worked smart, kept a clean work site, were polite, respectful, and even seemed to have a bit of fun while they worked.

It was an absolute pleasure to have them around (in fact, I miss them quite a bit!).

Obviously, I won’t hesitate to recommend them to anyone for any kind of job – big or small. And they will be the very first call I make if I ever do anything to my home again. And who I'll recommend through rouge.

But don’t wait too long if you are looking for a wonderful contractor…if MRB Contracting is not already one of the most sought-after contractors in the city known for excellent quality, experience, approach and outstanding finished product, I have no doubt they will be. And soon.

Tell them "suzanne at rouge" sent you!

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/

Sunday, July 3, 2011

reno chronicles #25

WOOHOO…It’s done!!!

Well…mostly done. Just a few tiny, little things for wonderful contractor to finish up.

So much happened this week…but the finished product is so exciting, I can barely remember!

Lots and lots of painting, the old door was installed (no small feat!), the washer and dryer were delivered, crushed granite covers the driveway, the side "landscaping" is back in order, and the plumbing was finished…even the kitchen sink got fixed!

The overall effect is awesome. And it’s even more spectacular at night. And the deck. Oh, the deck. As it happened, wonderful contractor worked some magic and got a great deal on cedar. So, now I have an incredible cedar deck. It smells divine…like breathing deep in the woods.

Impressively stylish in the design from both sides, it’s also comfy and inviting during the day. And even better, complete with chillin’ out lighting, at night.

I’ve spent a lot of time here over the weekend already…and I don’t expect that to change for a long, long time. Inviting, cozy, private and secure. And oh, how I’ve missed you, barbeque!

Whether it’s getting a bit of sun (I’ve missed you too!), firing up the grill, reading in the shade, enjoying the company of friends, and having a cold bevie or a nice glass of wine, this is my place.

This is my vacation.

Basic, clean line furniture won’t go out of style. Lots of cushions in patterned and solid outdoor fabric add a punch of personality to the space. Two chairs and a love seat offer a great conversation area around a coffee table / footstool.

The large lounger just beckons on a sunny day, but can also lay flat, be pushed up against the side, and be dressed as a large bench for lots of extra seating, if the occasion calls for it.

Until next week…I'll be taking a few more moments to reflect on why I love Canada.

And why I love summer!

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/