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Monday, August 17

Those two stunners up above are the boyfriend's sister and new brother-in-law (and my good friends), as captured by the super talented Chelle Wootten Photography (who is also responsible for all the stunning photos in this post). They got married in June in the most perfect, hilarious, and intimate wedding. The dinner was held in the private dining room of an amazing little restaurant here in Halifax. The food was unbelievable. Like, so good. But the natural d├ęcor of the dining room, although classy, was very traditional and not entirely the bride or groom’s style. So we came up with a few little details to help the room feel a little more special for such an important day. This was our inspiration board:

And this is how it all came together:

The real stars of the show were several beautiful floral arrangements by the talented Chelsea Lee, so we did our best to complement them with a few subtle details: a grey-green linen table runner, grey ticking stripe napkins, grey-blue watercolour place cards in corks, white taper candles in brass candlesticks, and white taper candles in clear wine bottles. 

The groom is a pretty avid wine-maker, so I thought the cork place card holders and wine bottle candle holders were a subtle (but not cheesy) nod to his interests. The bride is often clad in shades of grey and blue (check out her gorgeous wedding dress!), so the colour pallet was an easy choice – especially after seeing which flowers Chelsea planned to use in the arrangements.

This was a super simple look to put together – the only remotely time consuming part was sewing the napkins, and even that was only a few hours (largely because I’m not the most skilled seamstress). 

Most of this needs no instruction but here’s how I made the runner and place cards:

LINEN TABLE RUNNER: I LOVE linen. It’s the perfect fabric to work with. Know why? It rips in a straight line. AND those rips actually make really beautiful rough edges. This is important because it DRAMATICALLY reduces your work load because you don’t need to hem the sides to make the edges straight. I chose to make the table runner 1/3 the width of the table (13” wide in my case), with an overhang of about a foot on either end (168” for our long table). Then, I cut a little slit about an inch in from the side of the fabric (parallel to where the fabric store cut it– it won’t rip the other way), and started to rip. You want to do this first to ensure that there’s a rough edge on each side of the runner (otherwise, you’ll have one piece with the weird “I cut with scissors” look on one side and all other sides ripped). Then, I just measured 13” segments, made a little slice with scissors and ripped the piece apart. Once  I had enough pieces, I ironed them to flatten the slightly-curled edges (from being ripped), pinned the short ends together, and used my sewing machine to sew all the strips in one long line. Then I flattened out the seams with my iron, hemmed the ends, and it was done. The whole project took under an hour!

WATERCOLOUR PLACE CARDS: These were also super simple. I simply cut out rectangles of watercolour paper in the size I wanted, used my paint brush to paint a swath of water onto the card, and then mixed a combo of mostly white and a little grey watercolour paint together and swiped that over top of the area I had just painted with water. Depending on how it looked, I sometimes added a few extra droplets of water on top to get the super wavy look. Then, I let them dry for a little over 12 hours, and printed on each person’s name (using Emily’s faux calligraphy trick). The bride helped with the cork holders by cutting a slice into the top of each cork for the place card and cutting a segment off the bottom of each cork so they would sit flat. She noted that it was actually a bit easier to cut the corks using a sawing motion with the knife – FYI. Again, the actual watercolour work was maybe 30 minutes (plus drying time). Super easy but a really pretty effect.

And that's it! A few really simple steps to help the space reflect the beauty of the day. What do you think?


Friday, August 7

We've had a pretty sentimental addition to our living room... This trunk.

It came from my grandfather's house. Grumpy, as he was affectionally known, passed away in February at the impressive age of 100 years old. We're not sure if the trunk came from his side of the family, my grandmother's, or my step-grandmother's, as they all had last names that  began with B. Wherever it came from, it means a lot to me to have it now.

It's not in peak condition - one of the leather handles is torn and there is some water damage on the top but none of that matters to me. Every time I look at it, I feel nostalgic and happy. And that's how homes should be - full of things that are beautiful or functional or just plain make you happy. 

I looked in to having it repaired but the guy seemed less than interested in doing the job... and basically just told me to buy a new trunk. He seemed to have difficulty understanding that I didn't just want a trunk; I wanted this trunk for sentimental reasons.

Given that a fix doesn't seem in the cards, I'm using a scrap of leftover linen to cover the majority of the water damage, and we picked up this fantastic new lamp from Wicker Emporium to place on top. We're also hoping to replace the bannister in behind with a built-in bookcase (like this) sometime soon. For now, I'll enjoy a little burst of happiness and sentimentality every time I look to this corner.