Let there be light

I've always loved the look of under cabinet lighting. However, there is no 'lip' on the bottom of our kitchen cabinets, meaning that any light we installed under our cabinets would be visible. So, I started researching over cabinet lighting. I didn't know much about the project but knew that I wanted to keep cost and amount of work low. After cruising the aisles at Home Depot and finding some options that were all more $ than I wanted to spend, I ended up purchasing 2 sets of rope lights for $6 each. I then took out all of the plates/cups/random items in our cabinets. Since we had no outlets on top of our cabinets, J drilled holes from the top, through each shelf and the bottom of the cabinet. I plugged in the lights and fed them up the cabinet, where the rope light lays straight across the top of the cabinet.

For under $20 and about 10 minutes of time, we have great accent lighting in the kitchen. It looks great in the evening, with the rest of the kitchen lights turned off. Please forgive my terrible cell phone pictures below-

You get the idea...

The actual rope lighting on top of the cabinet.

The only visible evidence of our over cabinet lighting.
Gotta love easy and cheap DIY projects. -S


Tackling it Tuesday

Wow, the Spring has proven to be busy thus far. With 2 bridal showers, 1 baby shower, 1 wedding, 3 birthday parties, 1 Crawl for Cancer (which I'm a team captain) and 2 visitors crashing at my house, May is going to be super crazy too. I promise to be more diligent in posting though.

For now, here's a bit of what I've been doing this past week-
Happy Hour aka Thirsty Thursdays with some of my favorite girls.

Spending time with my favorite boys too.

And of course, the DIFFA Event

As a Kansas City native, I couldn't agree more:)

This Tiffany inspired room was my favorite. Perfect for a bridal luncheon.
This was my 2nd favorite. The shades of lavender used were fresh and beautiful.
The glass centerpiece details were incredible.
How fabulous for a Sweet Sixteen or girly baby shower?
Though the real grass table runner was a festive touch. The wood place mats were as well. A perfect backdrop for a summer bar-b-que.
And some tables were out of this world, ha:)
This was one of the best events that I've attended in Kansas City. All of the 25+ tables were unique and inspiring. The food was divine, as were the martinis and wine (Saturday was a rough morning) and it's for a great cause. PLEASE look up DIFFA and see if this great event is coming to your city. I promise that you will love it!!!! George and I have already started planning a table for next year.
Hope you're enjoying the sunshine-S


Table Hop

For any design/decor lovers in Kansas City this weekend, check out DIFFA's Dining by Design Event. DIFFA (Design Industries Foundation Fighting AIDS) hosts an annual event where local designers/artists/event planners each decorate a table scape. Friday is the Table Hop and Taste (this is what George and I will be attending). Saturday is open to the public in the morning and then there is a formal dinner Saturday evening. I'm not sure if picture taking is permitted, but if so I'll share pics this weekend.
For now, enjoy these pics of DIFFA event tables from 2008 -

Click Here for more info.
Aren't they gorgeous?!? I can't wait!


Earth Day 2009

In honor of Earth Day, I thought I'd showcase some local 'green' Kansans.

1. Dan Rockhill, founder of Studio 804
Rockhill, a professor at my Alma Mater KU, and a group of 22 design students worked to build/design a completely green space in the tornado-ridden town of Greensburg, KS. The new building not only aided in rebuilding the entire town and community, but offered an amazing example of green design at it's best.

'Constructed in seven 12-foot sections using wood salvaged from a local ammunition factory, the entire structure is encased in a curtain of donated energy-efficient glass. A 38-foot-wide hydraulic airplane-hangar door folds up so that the gallery, which has already become an essential community meeting space, can spill out into the street. Powered by a geothermal-heat pump, wind turbines, and photovoltaic cells, the building dovetails with a city-council resolution last year that all publicly funded city buildings greater than 4,000 square feet meet LEED Platinum standards.' -Stephen Zacks of Metropolis Mag

*photo credit: Studio 804
For the full story, click here. For a direct link to Studio 804's website, click here.
For an article on a different but still amazing Studio 804 project, click here.

2. Cafe Seed
A cute cafe that features a 100% vegan menu. It's located at 29th & Cherry in Kansas City, MO. The staff continue to add to an already impressive menu, providing healthy, tasty and animal product-free dishes. FYI-My friend George was really impressed with their veggie burger.
* photo credit: The Pitch
3. Elements of Green, found here.
A local company/website that provides info on green design, materials and benefits. The info on the website is thorough, detailed and easy to follow. However for more detailed info or to schedule installation etc, you can make an appointment at their office at 19th & Wyandotte.

I love how so many local companies are jumping on the green bandwagon and are working towards a better world for us and future generations. The mid-west, especially Kansas, is not really known for our green lifestyle, however thanks to the folks listed above and a great deal of many others, Kansas City is on it's way to bettering the earth.
Hope you're enjoying the beautiful earth today. -S


Going Gray

Gray is often used to describe dreary winter days, dull color and otherwise boring items. However, gray can be a terrific warm neutral, allowing black or bright color to pop against it. It's also an ideal choice for any room in your home and when used correctly, it's anything but ordinary.

Living Rooms-

How terrific is the molding and light fixture in the room above? (credit RMS ColorTHEORY)

Two of my favorite design aspects-clean lines and a fabulous chandelier. (credit La Dolce Vita)

Another great chandelier and photo arrangement (credit Desire to Inspire)

(credit DecorPad)

Dining Rooms-
(credit RMS jrunde1)

Love the picture rail (credit La Dolce Vita)


(credit House Beautiful)

This room is simply perfection. (credit GrannySmithGreen)

(credit HGTV)
Hope everyone is enjoying their weekend. -S


Friday Freebies

Because everyone loves free stuff, here are some deals:)

April 19 Only -Earth Day 1 Million CFL Light Bulb Giveaway The Home Depot will be giving away 1 million CFL bulbs in support of our environment on Earth Day 2009. Receive a free EcoSmart 14w CFL bulb from participating The Home Depot stores on April 19, 2009. Quantities may vary by store. Limit one per customer while quantities last. No purchase necessary. Offer cannot be combined with any other promotional offer or discount.

Tuesday, April 21st is Free Cone Day at Ben & Jerry’s, and you know what that means... free ice cream for you!
As a way to thank our customers for their support and to celebrate 31 years of scooping the chunkiest, funkiest ice cream, frozen yogurt and sorbet, Ben & Jerry’s scoop shops are happily giving it away!
While the next item isn't free, it's still a good deal. I'm trying to gather up the energy and motivation to paint this weekend and will be taking advantage of Behr's April discounts.


Impromptu Dinner Party

Since it's finally Spring,

and J convinced me we *needed* a new

so we could cook lots of

this summer. I figured I'd go along with it, since smokers are sloooow cooking, giving me lots of time to consume

while spending time with some of my favorite people

which brought us to this evening...and an impromptu dinner party at my place.

Can't think of a better way to spend a sunny Tuesday night than with friends, wine and bar-b-que.

Essere una buona! (enjoy your meal in Italian) -S


Gold is the new Green

Remember when I posted about buying this shiny, gold, tacky serving tray from TJ Maxx?

Well, here was my inspiration-

West Elm tray $59

Pottery Barn tray $99

I refused to spend over $20, so I took my $6.99 tray from Tj's and bought a $2 can of spray paint and ended up with this-

Close up of the bright green color-

I loved how it turned out and how it brings a pop of color to our Great Room. Now, I keep my current design mags handy and our numerous remotes look much more organized when they're not spread all over the coffee table. Not bad for $10.

Happy Friday! -S


Perfect Square

I'd been eyeing Crate & Barrel's Dubois mirrors for quite some time, but the $89.95 price for each was a little steep for me.

Don't they look gorgeous hung in a bunch over this sofa?

Luckily, the wonderful and oh so talented Mrspaz, one of my favorite Nesties, found some great knock-offs at Michael's and best of all they were on clearance. I took the last 3 remaining mirrors.

Here they are in my dining room. Best part about it was they were on clearance for $15 each. However, one of them had a very tiny crack. I asked if they would discount the damaged one. The teenage cashier said fine and actually ended up giving me a 40% discount on all three of them. So, I walked out with the 3 great mirrors for under $30.

I was really happy with them but wished that I had been able to get a 4th and hang them squarely. The space just needed something with a little more height.

As I was rummaging through some Spring decor at Old Time Pottery, I happened on a stack of the same identical mirrors! I couldn't believe my luck. I bought one and came straight home to change up the display.

*Disclaimer-I'm still camera-less, so these pics are from my camera phone. I apologize that they are not as clear. The mirrors are also straight, this pic just makes them look a tad off.
One more close up to compare: