The To Do List – Updated!

making plans, writing lists, keeping goals - The Learner Observer

So exactly one year ago I posted this list of all of the things we want to get done in our house, and I figured a year is long enough to go without an update! So here it is!   Main Floor FRONT ENTRANCE (7% complete) 2% increase. So... basically nothing happened here! make a coat rack We didn't make one, but I did buy a small one. It gets the job done for now! replace tile flooring paint a chalkboard wall - wanna see? paint all trim paint front door do something about the mirror paint walls and potentially do something fun like this on … [Read more...]

DIY Tufted Leather Headboard [& Giveaway!]

DIY Tufted Leather Headboard

Hello lovelies! Today I'm coming at you with a few details on my brand spankin new DIY tufted leather headboard, brought to you by the awesomeness of the Leather Hide Store! This is no perfect step by step detailed tutorial because most of the time I spent making this thing I was by myself, it was some sort of post-dinner after dark time of night, and I'm a bad blogger who used her phone to take pictures because my bedroom was in complete disarray with missing floorboards and half-painted furniture. Does that sounds like an excuse? Well, it kind of is! That all being said, you may have … [Read more...]

One Room Challenge 2014: The Finale

The Learner Observer One Room Challenge Master Bedroom Makeover

So this is it! I'm not going to bore you with too many words because it's all about the pictures. Just know this: The One Room Challenge is hard, it's stressful, exhausting, and I am SO GLAD I DID IT! Having a room finished in just 6 weeks seemed impossible, but Alex and I made it happen. We both lost sleep over it, worked hard, missed out on a Halloween party, and are totally proud of ourselves for making it all come together. Wanna see? So if you remember, this was the inspiration I posted a few weeks ago: A few things changed, a few stayed the same. I opted to leave the rug … [Read more...]

One Room Challenge 2014: Week 5

grey dresser

Ok I'm freaking out a little. Our floors are still not done, you guys. It's been a crazy few weeks for Alex and he hasn't had much time to work on them, and I'm afraid if I try to do it myself I'll just mess it up, and I would be required to use a jigsaw. Casey from Waffling can attest that I am not really great with those!  Anyway, there has been some minor work done this week. More dresser painting and hardware purchasing and the headboard is well underway. Here are the handles I'll be using on one of the dressers. They're just replacing the bottom 3 because one was missing. I … [Read more...]

One Room Challenge 2014: Week 4


So this post is a day late, but it's been a weird week. I can't even explain it... it's just one of those weeks where time seems to slip away from you and next thing you know it's Friday and you have no idea how. Anywho, let's see what happened this week, shall we? Note this is a picture heavy post! The dresser is allllllmost finished. The big stuff is done - it's been stripped and repainted! These drawers needed a LOT of help, and it took FOREVER to strip the paint off of them.    The blue came off so easily - no idea why! It just melted right off, which made … [Read more...]

One Room Challenge 2014: Week 3


The One Room Challenge continues, and let me tell you something... WE HAVE PROGRESS!!!! I mean, serious progress, people! Have you been keeping up with my Instagram updates? Because that's where all the good stuff is. For realsies. That's not the progress... but this is how the room started. Ugly dresser to be made over all alone, yellow walls, plywood floors! I taped some paint chips to the wall and finally made a decision. We ended up choosing Para Paints Network Access [P5222-24]. The dresser will be getting some Paris Grey, so i think they'll work really well … [Read more...]

One Room Challenge 2014: Week 2


You guys. I am the worst. I did so stinkin little this week, that I'm not sure this whole One Room Challenge thing was a good idea. I mean it! Wanna know what I did? Ok... so we moved the bed out of the room and into the (previously) empty guest room upstairs. We have also started to clear out the closet and other clothing from the room. Here is what the room was like last week: And now this week: The art on the walls is also gone and I've been brainstorming a paint colour for the room, which is the next step we'll be taking - actually painting! Serious contenders … [Read more...]

Master Bedroom Plans [#ORC]

One Room Challenge Master Bedroom

So this morning I announced that I'll be participating in the One Room Challenge this year and I showed you a bunch of inspiration images, right? Well today I thought you needed some before photos! This is the sad state of the master bedroom. Don't worry, I usually have bed sheets on the bed...  The dresser and headboard are already gone. They just weren't working in there. Also notice the plywood floor? Yeah...classy! Here's another angle so you can really see the special situation we have here. Also, I decided to actually build my own inspiration … [Read more...]

One Room Challenge 2014: The Master Bedroom

One Room Challenge

It's October 1st. For the last two years, October first has only meant one thing to me: anxiety about the amount of work I have just signed myself up for because of the 31-Day Series! This year is different for one reason - I'm not writing for 31 days straight, but I am still experiencing the anxiety over how much work I have just signed up for!Have you heard of the One Room Challenge? It's a 6-week challenge to start and (hopefully) finish decorating a room in your home. Calling it Home started it, and she's kind of my hero for doing this. Check out this post about what the challenge is and … [Read more...]

Decorating 101 with Penney & Company

The Art of Mixing Old & New with Penney & Co.

Hey friends! Last week you may have noticed a photo of a fabulously awesome green chair I posted on Instagram.  This fabulous piece is one of the seats at the first ever Decorating 101 Class hosted by Penney & Co. at Pineapple Street. Are you familiar with these names? Good. Then you know how awesome Michael Penney's stores are. Not from the Durham Region in Ontario? Well then I feel sad for you because you're missing out on some of Downtown Whitby's best independent shops!  I'm going to share a little recap of the best bits of info shared by Michael, and also show you … [Read more...]

For The Love of Lavender! + Laundry Soap Recipe Update

Lavender scented projects for the home

  So a few months ago I shared with you a lavender-scented laundry soap recipe, and I'm here to tell you that I LOVE it. I love it so much, and even my mom loves it, which must mean I've done something right because she's a stickler for things that smell good and clean well, so I'm feeling like I accomplished something pretty spectacular here!  The best part about this soap is that it has lasted SO long! I use about 1 tablespoon per load (2 if it's an extra dirty one, like towels used to clean Luther's paws!), which means the soap is extremely inexpensive at $.25 … [Read more...]

DIY: Geometric Jewelry Trays

Jewelry trays made using thrifted pieces and electrical tape!

Ladies, this one's for you because if you're anything like me, you struggle with jewelry organization sometimes. Ok, for me, that's all the time! I swear, Alex must go nuts with all my necklaces and earrings lying around. Not to mention hair ties, oh and have I said bobby pins yet? Ok include those in there too! The thing with jewelry organization though, is that it needs to be easy to access, and you also want it to be pretty, am  right? I think I found an easy (and super inexpensive) way to help us all achieve that!  This was such an easy project that I want to make 100 … [Read more...]

DIY: Driftwood Candleholder

A quick and easy tutorial on how to make a candleholder out of pieces of driftwood. #DIY #dirftwood #candleholder

Earlier this week we talked about cottages and how adding a little white and warm wood tones can give you the feel of a beachy cottage without you actually being at one (though the latter would be preferred every time).  A few weeks ago my parents and I went to spend a day in Wasaga Beach, and at the end of the day my mom and I collected a bunch of driftwood. My dad wasn't surprised at all when we showed up back at the car with hands full of sandy sticks! Typical Thalita behaviour... I knew exactly what I wanted to do with them so I got home and started picking out sticks! Fun, eh? … [Read more...]

Cottage Dreaming & Giveaway Winner!

Cottage bedroom

Good day friends! So it's about that time of the year when I start feeling like Summer is over and Back to School supplies are taking over and the sun sets a whole lot earlier than it used to! Am I right? I don't know about you, but we've had a less than stellar Summer in terms of weather, too, so it's making me daydream a little more about lazy Summer days spent in the sun complaining about the heat, because let's face it - that's exactly what we all do! I've been craving a little cottage feel in my own house to create that Summery feel, and wanted to share some of my faves with you, … [Read more...]

The L.O. Turns TWO!

two 2

Good morning friends of the internet! Do you notice something different about the blog today? Something a little more blush and more gold, perhaps? It's true... The Learner Observer has a new look. Going into year 3 of blogging called for a look that's a lot more subdued, less busy and more me! What do you think? I still have a few kinks to work out, but this is pretty much it! So I missed my own Blogging Anniversary... sort of intentionally. It was yesterday! I wanted to post something short, but I figured I'd save it and make one wordy post today, because we wouldn't have it any … [Read more...]