Bubble Lamp Splurge – George Nelson in the house!

I’ve alluded to my obsession with the George Nelson Bubble Lamp. Here’s a little spoiler alert: I bought one. Not for me…but for the nursery. Have you ever seen that episode of The Simpson’s where Homer Simpson buys a bowling ball for his wife Marge, and the ball is inscribed “Homer?” Ha! Well, it’s sorta like that. I’m a frugal gal, despite what my husband likes to think. I shop at Goodwill and Salvation Army and prefer to reuse instead of consuming new. However, my son will be covered in hand-me-downs for the next 4-5 years of his life; he will be sleeping in his brother’s old bed, playing with his brother’s old toys and reading his brother’s books. The aforementioned is how I’ve justified shooting my wad on a new light fixture for his room. Would I rather have it in my kitchen perfectly perched over my tulip table? Yes…but baby’s room lacks any kind of overhead lighting and I can not think of a cooler accessory for the newest member of our family.

This was delivered a couple weeks back...
This was delivered a couple of weeks back…

 

Wait for it....wait for it!!!
Wait for it….wait for it!!!
BAM!!!!!!!
BAM!!!!!!!

Totally Fantastic Medium Saucer Bubble Lamp by George Nelson – manufactured by Modernica!

Here’s a proper photo from YLighting, where I purchased this one:

YLiving
YLighting

In case you’re in the market for a bubble lamp, I ordered from YLighting because they seemed to offer the lowest price on new lamps out there, and they offered FREE shipping.

My mother tells me that my grandmother had a cigar lamp like one of these beauties…

Cigar Lamp

…Apparently fabulous taste runs in families. 🙂

Now I know you’re usually used to seeing them in living rooms and dining rooms, but rules are meant to be broken-especially when designing a mid-century modern nursery!

Here are a few shots of where you usually see these guys.

I do so love the clusters of lamps at different heights…but the practical part of me says “dear LORD, that’s a lot of money hanging from the ceiling.”

Found on midcenturymodernfreak.tumblr.com
Found on midcenturymodernfreak.tumblr.com
Found on midcenturia.tumblr.com
Found on midcenturia.tumblr.com

 

Found on johnlumarchitecture.com
Found on johnlumarchitecture.com
Found on nytimes.com
Found on nytimes.com
Found on dwr.com
Found on dwr.com

For more bubble eye candy….go to my original post on George Nelson Bubble Lamps.

 

 

This little addition to our little one’s room gets me even more excited to welcome him into the world! Hopefully he’ll find his room as cozy and welcoming as I’m trying to make it. If he doesn’t, I can always steal back the lamp…

 

 

 

 

 

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Hokey-Oak Bookcase Remake D-I-Y

It’s no secret: I’m having a baby, and we’re on a budget for the mid-century modern-inspired nursery. So far, I’ve repurposed and repainted my first born’s Ikea crib, reupholstered a vintage 50’s rocker found on Craigslist, and found a mid-century modern credenza at the Long Beach Flea to double as storage and a changing table. Wanting to knock out all the furniture-related needs asap, I jumped at the hokey-oak bookcase I found at Goodwill a few weeks ago.

Let it be said that I really dislike oak. You know, the honey-hued late 80’s and 90’s stuff with the moulding and rounded edges. Well, when I was at the Goodwill not too long ago, that’s exactly what I spotted. Just begging to be painted and repurposed, this solid wood baby was $30.

Solid Oak, custom corner cabinet...just waiting for a makeover.
Solid Oak, custom corner cabinet…just waiting for a makeover.

Here’s a re-cap of my inspiration board found on Pinterest. We’re working with a very small room for our babe-on-the-way so the corner cabinet fit the bill.

Here's the idea board found on Pinterest.
Here’s the idea board found on Pinterest.

I just loved the pop of color from the orange and white book case. So out to Home Depot I went and had a quick chat with the nice man in the paint department. He suggested I get the paint + primer. Wise counsel is never a bad thing. For $15, I had my hands on 1 quart of “Tart Orange” bookcase paint.

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“Modern” Line Home Decorators Collection by Behr. Color: Tart Orange

Here’s what you’ll need to prep your piece:

Prybar & Hammer (to remove hideous moulding)

Krud Kutter (to remove excess wood glue)

Electric Sander (because it’s just plain fun to use power tools)

Putty Knife (for jimmying off excess wood)

Fine Sandpaper (to scuff up your surface)

Painters Tape

Toooooolzzzzzz
Toooooolzzzzzz

I had a couple “Oh Sh*t” moments during this project. The first was that the custom cabinet makers did such a good job of gluing the molding at top and bottom of the piece that the wood splintered and wouldn’t come completely off.

In stepped the Krud Kutter. When that did it’s work, we still had some wood and glue residue left over. (They REALLY didn’t want that moulding to come off)

After the Krud Kutter dried, I enlisted the help of Mr. Power Sander and Mr. Putty Knife (Wearing “safety aviators” and a Michael Jackson mask, of course!)

A rather un flattering photo of me courtesy of my 5 year old. Thanks buddy.
A rather unflattering photo of me courtesy of my 5 year old. Thanks buddy.

After sanding, and chipping away, then sanding and chipping away again, and again, I was over it….and this is what I decided was going to be good enough for a friggin’ kid’s room. Don’t anger the pregnant lady.

See the glue line?
See the glue line?

I wiped the mess away using Murphy Oil Soap. (All of these items-except the paint were in my arsenal already, keeping the cost of the project minimal. It was allllll labor on this one.)

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So after removing the molding, scuffing up the shelves and sanding down the excess wood and glue, I gave this piece a nice wipe down with Murphy’s. And it’s paint time, baby!

Dear Lord...
Dear Lord…

This was my second “Oh Sh*t” moment. As in, “Oh sh*t, I’m going to have to paint each shelf 5 times.” As it turned out, the magic number was 4….but my quart of paint was plenty enough to cover the challenge.

Let’s skip ahead here…

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4 coats and about 4 days later, we’re ready for the white! I grabbed some Rustoleum ready-made latex paint (Semi-Gloss in White) and started rolling the edges.

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A few days after that….I gave the piece a clear coating using some clear spray paint I had in the garage. At this point, I was so tired of the project, that petroleum jelly could have done. I was over it.

Could I have gone to Ikea, and bought a Billy Bookcase for $99? Yes. I could have, but I much prefer re-using and recycling if possible. I got to rescue a piece of furniture that was otherwise unwanted. In the end, my project cost less than 1/2 what a new bookcase would have AND I got solid wood, versus particle board.

Billy Bookcase from Ikea
Billy Bookcase from Ikea

The end result?

010 (2)

Up the stairs to the nursery she went….and my 5-year-old son lovingly placed his old baby toys and books on the shelf for his brother-to-be. That sight made all the work worth it.

 

 

 

 

Outdoor Projects – Lawn-Free Landscapes

I live in Southern California, and don’t get me wrong- I love the sun, but I am OVER trying to keep my lawn green. We happen to have a HUGE parcel, and I think it’s a terrible waste of resources and time, laboring over lawn. It’s been on ongoing issue for our family – the cost of keeping it watered, and the labor it requires- and we only achieve sub par results. I’ve been itching to have someone design a landscape featuring drought-tolerant plants and shrubs for the front yard and hill. Knowing it’s not in the budget, I’ll have to dream for now. Sunset Magazine must have been thinking the same thing, because they did a Lawn-Free feature this week that was delivered straight to my inbox. Eye candy awaits you. First, let me torture you with my personal struggles.

This is MY “after” photo. I’ve been planting drought tolerant, crappy-soil resistant plants that will grow and hopefully spread….and THIS is MY end result. See what I mean? Pathetic. It’s frustrating beyond words.

Sad. But.True
Sad. But.True
Fugly Front Hill. I won't even bother with the grass.
Fugly Front Hill. I won’t even bother with the grass.

After you stop laughing, we’ll move on to the dream yards.

Here’s a few teaser pics…..

Credit: Sunset.com
Credit: Sunset.com

 

carefree-0510-overview-l
ChoreFree backyard. Credit: Sunset.com

To see the article, go here….

http://www.sunset.com/garden/earth-friendly/lose-the-lawn-low-water-landscaping

There are 21 delicious ideas for your yard. I’m in love and inspired by so many of them.

Have you had any landscaping success stories? If you have, please share!