Saturday, November 30, 2013

Hanging Around the House and an Old Spice

I’ve spent the last few months taking care of some small projects around the house.  Even though I really want new floors and a new kitchen, these small decorating and organization updates settled down my need to update the house while costing just pennies in comparison.  Well, it didn’t really satisfy my need to redo the house, but I’m telling myself that it does.  After finishing these little projects I realized they all had something to do with hanging stuff on the wall. 

I’ve lived in this house for almost 9 years – 9 years next month actually.  Other than a couple of pictures I brought with me, my walls have been mostly bare.  After a couple of years of contemplating it, I finally pulled it together and utilized the pictures from my travels for the art on the walls.  Shortly after my first trip to Italy, I blew up a photo of Venice onto giclee and hung it in the dining area.  To add to that, I had three giclees printed for the staircase.  They are also of Italy – Venice, Burano, and Manarola. 

stuff 308 
In January of this year, I got this wild idea.  I found 12 of these great unpainted frames that I sprayed white.  I wanted to put some of my travel pictures in them and hang them in my guest room.  However, after going through the pictures I wanted to put up I had way more picture than frames.  So the project was put on hold until I figured out what to do.  I found the frames again and bought 12 more.  It took me until the summer to get the new ones painted and just as much time figuring out what pictures to put in them.  I had really wanted at least one of each place I’d been, but then some places, like South Africa and Italy, I couldn’t pick just one.  Anyhow, after enlarging some more in giclee, I finally narrowed it down.  BUT, the next obstacle was hanging these frames.  Being decorative there weren’t any straight lines to center and the thought of putting 24 nails into my wall didn’t sound good at all.  Then a miracle happened.  I found this picture hanging tape.  Holy cow! This stuff is brilliant!  So we laid out the frames on the landing, and I placed the pictures in where I wanted them.   
stuff 313
We blocked out a space on the wall and filled it in rather than lining up and centering these frames. 

stuff 314  stuff 329I think they turned out great.  There is enough room on either side for another column of pictures so I can add more as I travel.  

The guest bedroom which I had been working on since back in January is finally finished.  I added another giclee above the bed and a collage of Africa alone on one of the side walls. 
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Excuse the wonky picture – the panoramic feature on my phone kind of warped the middle of it.

After putting up shelving in the office, my next goal with that room is to get rid of those ugly plastic rolling carts.  One of those carts has 6 drawers and 4 of them were filled with punches that I use for card making.
stuff 318 stuff 319The drawers were full so finding what I was looking for when I needed it wasn’t easy.  Ikea makes these metal bars to be used for hanging things up in the kitchen.  Come to find out, they hold paper punches rather well also.  Now they are all in a single file line with easy access.  

stuff 321
For the exact same reason, I headed downstairs to the kitchen. The ingredient side of my pantry had become unruly, and the spices were partly to blame. 

stuff 309 stuff 311I had put up some little shelves and lazy-Lucy spinning wheels to have more room for the little spice bottles but I found myself frustrated when looking for something.  Half the time I couldn’t find what I needed even though I knew I had it.

I found this on Pinterest, 91594f12f35b28969b144253c3edf408and it said to use a mop holder to hang spices on cabinet doors.  I scoured the stores and the internet to find mop holders that looked like this with no luck.  I took some time off from looking and then about a month ago searched Amazon for door-hanging spice holders and found them!  stuff 332 They’re so cool!  I love that I can see all the spices in one fell swoop, plus it freed up some shelf space.
stuff 336I found a few spices that I had doubles of – most likely because I couldn’t find the one I had in the cupboard and bought a new one.  However, I also must have inherited some because I found this bottle of ginger. 
stuff 330 Based on the description of use, this spice seems to be old.  Using the term “Oriental” to describe Asian food is quite outdated.  I can’t remember the last time I heard that term.  I guess it’s time to throw out your spices when they’re old enough to contain racial slurs. 

It’s been nice getting things off the floor and shelves and out of drawers.  Making things easily accessible on the wall has been so convenient.  Plus it took my mind of new floors and kitchens while I was working on the projects.  Now that I’m done though, I’m back to obsessing about my floors I’m afraid.


  1. I love those frames what a great idea for the guest room. I like the idea of hanging spices, I always go to Ikea with DD1 and find the best stuff when I go to CA next month.

    1. Thank you. I was obsessed with these frames from the moment I saw them. Am glad it all hot figured out as there were a few times I thought I'd have to scrap the whole idea.
      IKEA is fun, especially the market place with all the gadgets and organizational goodies. :)

  2. You have a little palace, good on ya girl.

    I think you have enough in the guest room though. If you put more you'll have a gallery rather than a feature. And while a gallery is grand to browse it would be very busy as a place to sleep.
    At first I though you had made them into a headboard, it sorta the way the quilt merges and matches with the wall in that photo. And I thought that was inspired. But having them at the foot works really well too.

    Those pesky little herb and spice jars are the bane of my existence. They swallow up space like I-don't-know-what. Putting them on the door is an excellent notion.
    As to the ginger, it could well be even older. Nice to see whomever got it was on message :-D. In 2007, the company started a new advertising campaign to encourage people to dispose of older packages of spices, by pointing out that any of their packages that list their address as "Baltimore, MD 21202" are over 15 years old.

    1. I would have liked to have used the pictures as more of a headboard but that blasted round window causes all sorts of decorating problems. It always seems to be in the way of whatever I'm trying to do in there.
      Is that true about the campaign?!?! I'm almost afraid to look through the rest. Recipes call for such small amounts, and I try to use fresh if I can, so I don't go through them very fast at all. They're not cheap either. If I have to buy 2-3 at a time, I've almost doubled my grocery budget for the week.
      But yes, having them on the door is great! I'm still not used to them being there so when I open the door expecting to see the mess of bottles I smile with surprise. :)

    2. You could get a coloured pane of glass and fit it over the round window. Just fit it about an inch away from the wall and the light will defuse to the edge. Sorta frame it. If you use a smoked glass you could pretty much ignore it while at the same time if you want to sell it wouldn't be any bother to remove it.
      Nutmeg here is about €3, $4 with you, for about 50 grams. But that's really the most costly and I have the nuts for I don't know 5 years. But they just don't go bad. Powder though I'd be more careful. But then it isn't so costly.

    3. I've never used fresh nutmeg. I would never have guessed it'd last so long. Nutmeg is a spice I like a lot. I bet it is GOOD freshly grated. I'll have to check at the store to see if I can find them.
      The window glass would definitely help the bright light shining through, but wouldn't change the fact that it's just in the way. It's in such a weird spot, not centered, but because of where it is doesn't let anything else center on the wall without looking off. There's no real use for it with the 2 giant windows on the other wall. It seems like a useless decorative accent that was typical in the 80s.

    4. You don't really need to use as much nutmeg when you have the nut.
      It's not good for guys to use too much nutmeg. :-) It was discovered that the English using it in huntingcups before a day out a few times a week lowered their (how do I put this) pizazz.

    5. Ha ha! Well, then it's only polite to go easy on the nutmeg. :)

  3. You came into my mind when I was halfway up the mountain this morning. I was thinking of nothing beyond the next breath and step when I stopped and when ,Huh, is that what she's on about'.
    Are you thinking about moving house. The sort of stuff that's biting you, floors and windows and the like, are pretty major changes. In a different category to the louvres or painting or even the spice racks.

    1. Oh no, not really, I just don't like my floors. Upstairs is CHEAP carpet that was just put in to replace the PINK carpet that was there when I bought the house. It looks bad and I'd like floor floors instead. The wood floors downstairs are terribly scratched (also from before moving in) and when I've inquired about having them refinished I was told that it's crap wood and wouldn't be worth the $$ to do so. So I've just been biding my time until I have the wherewithal to do something about them.
      That's the problem with vacation...I love having the time off, but that also means I have the time to obsess about my house. :)

    2. I did a lot of things in the six months of getting Jessy. Carpets, well I'd have been driven nuts. But in reality though, I was getting a bit house proud. Anywoo's I laid new wooden floors. Now while I'm pleased, I also think I'd be more so if I had tile. Then I could put a strategic rug here or there with that non slip backing. I've had a few radiator leaks and had to replace some this summer. I'm now awaiting to see if the flooring will dry out so I don't notice it I have all the tools to lay tile so I expect it wouldn't cost more than the materials.

    3. Yah tile is nice. I've got it in the bathrooms and kitchen. You've got to be careful with it in the living areas because, while nice and cool in the summer, it's rather chilly in the winter. Keeping the grout clean is a full time job too.
      It's nice that you've got the know-how and the tools to DIY.
      Wood floors are so nice. They add so much warmth to a place and make it look homey.

  4. Where do you print on that material? Where did you find your fames? Totally copying the spice rack idea. Everything looks great!

    1. Thank you! You can find the giclees at a lot of places. I like mpix best but I got these new ones at with 50% off coupons. Costco is always an option but with the coupons and free shipping the online sites are less expensive. The next time I get a coupon I'll email it to you.
      And the frames are from simplee madera although I've seen them on etsy too.

  5. lol.. racist spices..!
    the frames look great..