Kitchen Board and Batten continues

This weekend I finished caulking and painting this section of the board and batten in our kitchen.

The top and base trim still needs to be bought and added but we are really liking how it looks so far. I shared here my inspiration and plans to add some more architectural interest to our builder home.

Except for the top and base trim, both ends and the kitchen side of this wall are almost finished.
The wall colour is Benjamin Moore Stone House CC-120 and the trim colour is Benjamin Moore Snowfall White OC-118. Lighting for photos today is not the best. We are getting more snow! How appropriate that the paint colour I chose is called Snowfall White!

It has taken a long time to get to this point, but after almost a month of vertigo I now feel safe standing on a ladder to continue the caulking and painting of the soffit trim. We just bought a flat screen tv for the family room and I'm getting impatient to get started on the trim but I promised myself that I would finish the soffit above the cabinets before starting on the fireplace and tv side of the wall. Now if only I can get motivated after work one day this week.
Before (bad lighting):


The next part:

The caulking and painting takes more time than putting the boards up, but seeing it come together makes it worth the work.

I'm sharing this with SNS at Funky Junk Interiors.

I'm also joining in some DIY fun at The DIY Showoff.

I'm joining WOW at Savvy Southern Style too.

Also linking to Jennifer Rizzo's Pretty Up Your Plain Jane Home Party!


Slipcovers in White

 Slipcovers are a great way to give an older piece of furniture new life.

I've posted these photos before, but I'm sharing them today for the slipcover Saturday Night Special feature at Funky Junk Interiors.  I have made a few blue denim slipcovers in the past, but in the last two years I have used white denim or duck. This sofa slipcover is actually an IKEA slipcover that fits our custom made (and heavily patterned) family room sofa. I thought I would try it out before I spent all the money and time on making one. Lucky for me, it fit quite well!

I really like the pleated bottom on this ottoman slipcover I sewed for the family room. It looks even better and softer now that it has been washed several times.

This kind of pleat is easy if you iron the folds before sewing them in place. The chair slipcover is also one I made. I love the soft ruffled bottom. In the photo below, I had just ripped apart the living room after Christmas to make plans for new paint etc. I'll have to take some new photos, as the throw covers the nice curved back of the chair.

This small ottoman was free and blue velvet with french provincial legs before I made a simple white denim slipcover for it. Very sturdy and super easy to wash. One of my tricks is to put the slipcovers on while still damp.

My slipcovers are not perfect, but I think they get a bit better each time I make one. I hope you get a chance to stop by Donna's SNS. Just be warned, you will be there for awhile!


Pleated Poppy Giveaway at Funky Junk Interiors

If you love the designs at The Pleated Poppy as much as I do, you should stop by Donna's blog, Funky Junk Interiors, to enter the giveaway.

Donna did a great review on one of the zippered pouches and has several ways to enter to win a $30 credit for any Pleated Poppy item. FJI also has a code to save 15% at The Pleated Poppy shop this week.

NOVICA Gift Certificate Giveaway Winner

The NOVICA giveaway at Blue Clear Sky is now closed and the drawn winner is.....

 Loretta Fontaine of Apples and Rubies

APPLESandRUBIES: Loretta Fontaine\

Congratulations Loretta! Thanks to all those who entered the giveaway and a special thanks to NOVICA for making this giveaway possible. I value all my followers and readers and plan another giveaway coming up.
Have a great day!


Loving Letters

I love typography so these cute little notepaper holders had to come home with me from the Chapters/Indigo bookstore the other day.

The coolest part is that the pattern on each of the letters has been created using script too.

They will be very handy, and cute, on a desk or next to the phone. The magnetic lid snaps closed and keeps the papers handy for the next little note or list. I love the little 'NOTES' at the top of each slip of paper.

One is going to be a part of a birthday gift for my dear friend and co-worker of more than 20 years (I'm pretty sure she doesn't read my blog regularly.) She loves typography and is an avid reader. She also creates free hand lettering for classroom bulletin boards and signs so beautifully. In one of her many jobs over the years she trained as a typesetter, so I immediately thought of her when I saw these.

Of course, they were so cute I had to have one for our home too. What item with letters or numbers, in your home, is your favourite?

There is still time to enter my $75 NOVICA follower's giveaway. Leave a comment on the giveaway post, here.

Wishing my local friends a Happy Family Day!


House Tour added to Pages

I would like to thank those who have stopped by to enter the NOVICA giveaway. The giveaway continues and I just wanted to thank everyone for their kind comments.

source: unknown

I also wanted to welcome new followers to Blue Clear Sky. For new followers, and for those who would like to see photos of our home all in one location, I have added a home tour page to my pages area (above under the header.) Like many of yours, our home is a work in progress. We have too many lots of projects on the go and I will update the photos as changes are made.

I hope you are enjoying your weekend. We have been busy with hockey and I have been selling a few things this weekend on kijiji, to stream line my decor and make some extra cash for a laptop (?) or a KitchenAid mixer (?) If you haven't already, please stop by my follower's giveaway for a $75 gift certificate to NOVICA. Be sure I can reach you through your blog or leave an email address in case you are the winner.


Country is Cool!

Country is cool again, but then I always thought it was!

I love getting my Country Living magazine in the mail each month. In Redefining Rustic, The Country Living March 2011 issue shares 25 Reasons Why Country is Chic Right Now.  

The feature discusses how popular designers and famous chefs are incorporating country rustic into modern design and restaurant fare. From recycling materials for new products, to Etsy (what they call "an online arts-and-crafts renaissance"), to quilting, to fancy restaurants cooking with rabbit, the interest in homegrown and homemade is making a comeback.

Organic farming, sustainability, and greener thinking are still hot topics and continue to grow in popularity. Anyone who reads blogs knows that home canning and local farm to table are becoming more and more common, and in many cases being both small and big businesses. I think it is refreshing to see country rustic, for many years scorned in the design world, become more popular. I also love seeing more and more people move towards greener living and sustainability and I think 'home arts' make this more possible.

Not surprisingly, many of the blogs and bloggers I follow are once again way ahead of the times, as we have been seeing all these things in the blogging world for some time now.

Country and rustic style design is still my favourite. It was back then, and it still is now. I'm trying to freshen things up in our home, especially by taking away some of the visual clutter, but I will always have some kind of country rustic style. Things like quilting, needlework, making jam and baking are an important part of my life. We dream of a simple farm life in the country one day, but we're doing pretty well enjoying some country lifestyle here in the 'burbs.

So maybe I'm a little bit 'in style' once again.

all images above: countryliving.com

If you are interested in a chance to win a $75 gift certificate to NOVICA, click here to go to the giveaway post. They have a huge selection of ethically made and sustainable items.


Winter Fire Pit and Giveaway

Somewhere under the piles of snow in our backyard is our firepit.

Just two weeks ago our boys had a winter fire, bundled in their hoodies and winter coats. Since then we have had more snow and now we can't even see the firepit. Our snow has melted a bit, but the snowbanks are still high. Remington is now 7 months old and she loves bounding through the snow.

It is challenging to get good photos of a puppy who rarely stands still, especially on a day full of so many shadows! I'm going to have to keep practicing.

We are really looking forward to some early spring weather, like this time last May, when we can once again enjoy an evening fire.

What spring or summer outdoor activities are you looking forward to? Happy Valentine's Day!

 If you haven't entered my followers giveaway for a $75 gift certificate for NOVICA, click here to enter.


Farm Friend Friday~and a giveaway

We live in a home in a suburban neighbourhood, but our family spends lots of time with farm friends. I'm joining Farm Friend Friday at Verde Farm this week.

It is amazing how quickly our little ones grow. My little boys, above with a pair of Grandpa's horses only a few years ago, are now tall young teens and love caring for farm animals.
One of their most favourite places to be is a relative's dairy farm. They go every chance they get.  

K saved his money and bought his first calf, above. Spring in a barn yard! This would be why I hate not having a mudroom in our suburban home. Their barn clothes and boots come home with them!
Our oldest son K, shows 4-H Dairy
 and 4-H Beef.
He also shows his Californian rabbit, Callie, in 4-H Rabbit Club. The skills they learn in both 4-H and in caring for their animals are lessons they will carry with them for the rest of their lives. 
With only a little planning help from mom, K built Callie's home for our backyard. He now has a Californian buck and plans to breed the pair in spring (she lost her first litter.) He is hoping to have a rabbit for his brother, J, to show this year.
Seven short months ago our boys got their first dog, Remington, a female registered chocolate Lab. We are still learning! So while we live in a suburban home, in a small town very near major cities, we do spend a great deal of time with our farm friends. And dream of our own farm and more friends one day.
 I'm joining Farm Friend Friday at Verde Farm. Be sure to stop by to see lots of great farm friends!

If you haven't had a chance to enter my giveaway for a $75 gift certificate from NOVICA, be sure to enter on this post.