Thursday, February 27, 2014

I'd like to thank...

If you haven't noticed, I don't like to "talk" too much about myself or personal life on this blog.
I prefer to just post some pictures and write as little as possible to avoid any grammar mistakes and/or embarrassing over-sharing!

When Sarah from Sarah's Daybook (she is also the little sister of a friend of a friend) nominated me for a Liebster Award though (a chain-like award for smaller blogs), I thought, "why not?"
I think it's so cute that Sarah (who is only 15!) is going for it and starting a blog of her own. It's not easy to put yourself out there, especially during the high school years.

So, thanks Sarah for reading The Picket Fence Projects and for the nomination!
Below are my answers to Sarah's questions:

1. Why did you start blogging and would you re-name your blog if you could go back?
I started this blog when we purchased our house in an effort to document the progress we made on it and in hopes to inspire others when it comes to decorating their homes since I get so much inspiration from others. I still like the blog name so I don't think I would re-name it!

2. What is one pet peeve of yours?
It's ridiculous but when the silverware in the dishwasher is all mixed up, it bugs me! Those that have lived with me know that the dirty forks must be loaded with the other dirty forks, the knives with the knives, etc. I think it makes unloading the dishwasher easier! Does this make me A-type?

3. Are you a Windows or Apple person?
I used to be a Windows person but when I started at my new job and was forced to use Apple, I became addicted to it. Chris also got me a Mac Book for Christmas and I love it.

4. What is your favorite thing about blogging?
I guess it would be having the projects and things we do around the house documented so that I can go back and look at how much we've accomplished so far. Also, it's a nice way for me to share what we do around the house with friends and family that don't live very close.

5. What are your favorite pair of shoes?
For winter, I have a pair of heeled brown leather J. Crew boots that I bought about 5 years ago. They're comfortable and the leather looks better now all worn in than when I first bought them. Since they are so old, they're no longer available at the store but I found them on eBay here in size 8. For fall/spring, I have lots of flats so it's hard to pick a favorite. My latest purchase are these ones from H&M. In the summer, I live in these Old Navy flip flops.

6. If there was a movie made about you, who would you cast as yourself?
Hmm...maybe Kate Hudson?

7. What is your favorite thing about yourself?
Well, I guess it's kind of lame but I pride myself on being organized!

8. What kind of camera do you own?
I own a Canon Rebel. Chris bought it for me two years ago and I really like it and use it all the time for pictures on the blog.

9. Do you think you would ever get your own domain name if your blog got really popular?
Sure, why not?

10. Would you pay to get your blog designed?
Depends on the price! Actually, my sister designed the blog header and we have talked about re-doing it. But I do think it would be cool to have the whole website done so that it looked really professional.

11. If you had to change one thing about your house, what would it be?
Easy! I would plop it right next to the beach. But, my brother and sister-in-law are building an unbelievable house on the water so that is the next best thing!

Thanks for reading :)

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Refreshing rearranging

When I walk by the same things that have been in the same place in my home for too long, it starts to bug me (something I've adopted from my mom).
So, I'm constantly rearranging things in order to keep it feeling fresh.
Below are three examples of rearranging and changing of accessories that I made this weekend.

In our dining room, we have had this red polka dot runner and white pitchers on the table since Christmas. 
After seeing it this way for the past two months, I was ready for a change. 

So, I put down this runner that I picked up from Home Goods for less than $15 and switched out the white vases for a wooden tray and a glass vase filled with hydrangeas. 

I think this look is refreshing and says,
"don't worry, spring is coming!"

I also switched out our kitchen utensil holder.

We've had this same one for about four years.
There's nothing wrong with it. In fact, you can buy it here from Crate and Barrel.
But I'm just tired of looking at the same thing.

So, I switched it out for this white planter that I picked up at a garage sale for three bucks.

It might be an insignificant change to some, but to me it goes a long way.

My final rearrangement this weekend was with some of the accessories on our bathroom counter.
Here's the before...

And here's the after...

I was getting tired of looking at that piece of coral and replaced it with these fresh flowers in a glass and wooden votive holder.

One more look at the changes...


I hope you enjoy the rest of your Sunday!

- Caitlin

Friday, February 21, 2014

Friday fashion fix: suit yourself!

If you know me, it's no surprise that I don't like paying too much for anything! 
I am a huge sale and bargain shopper and that couldn't be more true when it comes to buying bathing suits. I can't rationalize spending lots of money on something I wear only a few months out of the year.

So, I usually turn to stores like Forever 21 when it comes to buying them because
a) the price is right and b) believe it or not the quality usually holds up just fine.

On our recent "babymoon", I took this bikini with me.
It fits great, held up through sand and sun, and has washed well.
You can't beat the price either!

(Click on the caption below each picture to be directed to the website.)

Top $12.80

Bottom $10.80

Here are a couple others from the store that I think are cute and affordable:

Top $14.80

Bottom $10.80

Top $14.80
Bottom $12.80

Buying bathing suits makes summer seem that much closer, no?

Have a great weekend!
- Caitlin

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Project nursery: the blueprints

Thank goodness for Pinterest!
Over these last 6 months, I have been able to keep my nursery ideas organized while preparing for baby's arrival.
Below is a collage to give an idea of what the nursery will look like:

(From top, left to right)

I think this pendant light, a gift from some family members (thank you!), will make a statement when you walk into the nursery. It also helps that we have an electrician in the family that will install it for free. Well...maybe for a six pack. 

We aren't building a changing table from scratch like this Ana White one but we are turning a piece of furniture that we already have (which looks very similar to the one pictured above) into one. All we need to do is paint it (it is currently green), change some of the hardware, and have Chris build a changing topper. Piece of cake.

I don't want the nursery to be overly nautical, but I think one or two statement pieces like this whale art will look great. The Restoration Hardware one is a little pricey and is actually too large for the space where we would hang it. So, I am contemplating purchasing this less expensive version from Etsy. They look so similar!

We got this thanks to a family member that split the cost with us and a sale that was going on at the time! It shipped so quick and the delivery guys even assembled it. It appears to be sold out in white but is available and on sale here in gray.

I found this fabric from Calico Corners and I'm considering having my mom (aka Patti the pillow maker) make window treatments in this style for the nursery.

I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who has become frustrated finding a rocker that a) is reasonably priced and b) not hideous. So, when my cousin showed me this blog post on how to turn an armchair into a swivel rocker, I got super excited. We already own the Ikea Ektorb chair with a white slipcover and have since ordered the parts to turn it into a swivel rocker. I can't wait to try this project out and share it with you!

Crib skirt:
I'm a sucker for ticking stripe anything and have chosen this crib skirt for the nursery. A family member has since purchased it for us (thank you!) and it looks great with the antique-style crib.

Knit cotton pouf:
Also a gift, we are going to use this pouf instead of a traditional ottoman to go with our DIY swivel rocker.

I can't wait to get this room started and share it with you!

Happy hump day :)
- Caitlin

Monday, February 17, 2014

Patti the pillow maker

I've said it before and I'll say it again:
I need to learn to sew!!

My mom is excellent at it and is constantly making drapes, hemming clothes for us, and making pillows. Such a good skill to have!

Recently, she's been making over different parts of their house including the living room in which she painted the walls, had some furniture re-upholstered, and added some handmade pillows in these fresh prints:

I kind of love this blue and white fabric and want to try to incorporate it in my bedroom or the baby's nursery.

These potted succulents tie into the blue and white theme on the couch.

I apologize for the late post today! 
I'm getting over a stomach bug that has had me out for the count for the past day. 

- Caitlin

Saturday, February 15, 2014

A sucker for a steal

I've come across a new website that I have never heard about called
It is sort of like the websites and that I posted about a while back except it features sale events on things purely for the home.

Today's steal is this vintage inspired rotating wall hook:

I would use it in a laundry room to hang shirts or delicates that need to dry.
I also like the idea mentioned above of using it in a kitchen to hold aprons or dish towels.

If you subscribe to the site, they will alert you via e-mail of each sale event!
I'm looking forward to seeing what else will be offered.

Enjoy your weekend :)
- Caitlin

Thursday, February 13, 2014

So nice we went twice!

I'm taking a break from the computer to soak up some sun and enjoy the rest of our "babymoon" in Tulum, which got extended an extra day thanks to Winter Storm Pax and a cancelled flight home.
I'm so not complaining!
We went last year (I took the picture below during our last visit) and loved it so much, we decided to go back for one last hurrah before the baby arrives.
When we get home, it'll be time to really start working on the nursery, which I will share.

Wishing everyone a Happy Valentine's Day tomorrow!
Stay safe & warm if you are buried in all this snow!
- Caitlin

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Good things come to those who wait (in line at garage sales)

A couple of weekends ago, my mom, sister-in-law, and I went to this annual church garage sale in NJ.
My mom, whose motto is "the early bird catches the worm", made sure we got there early as there is usually a wait to get in long before the sale even starts.

And wait we did, for about 45 minutes. Outside. In the cold. In February. Brrrr. 
But it was well worth the wait as I found some art that is perfect for our master bedroom.

The set of four, which miraculously was not chipped or damaged in any way, is by Two's Company.
I paid $60 for all four, which is not a bad price considering that according to this website, the set retails at $295!

Oh, in case you were wondering what bedding I decided on for our bedroom, the winner was....
the Pottery Barn paisley, which is currently on sale.

The Ballard Designs one I thought I would love did not turn out looking like I thought it would so I returned it.
I'm happy with my decision, and so is Chris, who confirmed that he liked this PB one.

 Thank you for stopping by!
- Caitlin

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Meet Melissa: part 3 the upstairs

It's hard moving into a house and tackling every room at once. 
I'm dealing with it, and my friend Melissa, whose house I have so far posted about here and here, is experiencing the same. 

Nonetheless, Melissa has made some great progress on the upstairs of their house even if she says it's not done at all. Take for example their guest bedroom:

Melissa made this headboard using some plywood, batting, a staple gun, and this fun fabric.

Even upon inspecting it up close, I would have never known it was a DIY project!

She also spray painted this once white mirror navy to coordinate with the room:

As it has been the case with our master bedroom, their master is under construction as well. 
However I'm sure when this room is complete, it will look amazing.

Just like the guest bedroom, Melissa made their headboard as well!

She modeled it after this Pottery Barn one
As for the fabric, would you believe it is drop cloth from Home Depot? Believe it!

Both Melissa and I are expecting baby boys in May and she and her husband have been working on getting the nursery together. 

So far, they have added board and batten to the walls...

...and picked out fabric for the bedding.
I can't wait to see the final product!

Thank you Melissa for allowing me to brag about your house for a week straight!
- Caitlin