kriselkeeper: June 2011

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Pipe Coat Rack

A couple months ago I saw this coat rack on Ohdeedoh. I think it's perfect for a boy's room. The company, Nick Fraser Designs, is in England and it seems like they don't ship to the US. That's a bummer but it looks like a pretty straight forward DIY project....not that I have a boy's room to decorate or anything.  I asked Dave if he would like this in our house somewhere and he said no. It would remind him of all the plumbing projects we still have to do in the house.  He may have a point. But I still like it. 

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Saturday, June 18, 2011

The front yard DG pathway!

Holy Moses!  We finally finished phase one of our front yard landscaping project.  We started this back on Mother's Day and now it's finished, the day before Father's Day.  Kind of ironic.  

The task was to tear out the front grass/weed area, place borders, install a drip irrigation system and create a pathway out of decomposed granite.  Mission accomplished!  We hired a crew to do the entire job and it cost us about $1200.  $500 of it labor.  I'm very happy I didn't do all the back breaking work myself but I was frustrated with the amount of micro-managing I had to do, much of it this week as I was prepping for Dave's birthday celebration/Father's Day weekend.  Oh well, I guess you get what you pay for. 

Turns out the crew had never laid down dg. In fact they didn't even know what it looked like.  This was not revealed to me until the day before I needed to order it. Nice! So, I got my research cap on and learned a bit about dg. Just like any other project there are many ways to skin this cat.  We had about 1000 square feet of area to cover.  We ordered 6 cubic yards of dg to fill the space with a 2" height.  I was told 2" is the minimum height you should have when working with the stuff.  It compresses itself the more you lay it on.  

Decomposed granite comes with or without stabilizer.  I read about it online and then asked every person I got a quote from on the process and difference of using stabilizer vs not.  Stabilizer helps the dg get compact and not erode away as fast.  I was told without stabilizer you could end up refilling about every 6 months vs every few years with it.  Stabilizer comes mixed in the dg or you can also get it in liquid form and it's sprayed on as the last coat.  An alternative to liquid stabilizer is concrete powder.  It can also be sprinkled as a top coat.  One company told me they had a liquid stabilizer that become impermeable.  That didn't seem like what I wanted.  

The dg needs to be compressed as each inch of it is laid down. We used a sod roller to compress the dg.  I was told to use a plate compressor. It would have a better effect.  However, our crew wasn't very eager to use the plate compressor so we ordered a roller.  Had we been doing a drive way or an area with a lot of traffic then we would have had to go with a compressor.  Our soil is clay which is hard and compact to begin with. I conceded to what made the crew comfortable and hoped the job would be well done. Fortunately, it all turned out ok but I won't call upon this crew again.  They kept stepping on the succulents and lavenders I recently planted! How can you call yourself a gardner/landscaper if you crush plants? 

At least the job is finished and now I can get to phase two: filling in the perimeter with lovely drought tolerant plants. My irrigation is set and ready to go. Dave and I are over the moon! Our front yard is moving in the right direction and the house is looking less ghetto. 

This is how the last transition went:
 Weed barrier was laid down under the dg. I was told there is no need to if you lay down a good 3" of dg down.  Plants can't grow through it.
I went with for the dg. They were the kindest, most informative and lowest priced of the 5 companies I called.  I'll probably go with them again if I need any other landscaping materials.

 The sod roller or lawn roller we used.  It's a $15 daily rental at Home Depot. The crew was going to charge me $80 for the day!!! I know there's markups in this line of work but that's just crazy!

And now I need to start making the whole space much much greener! It's like much like a desert at the moment.


Thursday, June 16, 2011

Bunk Beds

We've been hunting for a new bed for P. She's three and a half and her toddler bed is quickly becoming too small. There's a couple things I'm taking into consideration. Even though we only have one child we would like to get a bunk bed. Sleep overs are in our not too distant future and I'd like P's friends to have a comfortable place to stay. Also we are still hoping to have a second child. I'm praying the second bunk will eventually get daily use.

My top choice has always been Room & Boards Moda bunk. It's $1700. Pricey but all stylish bunks are in that range. It's benefits are that it's not only sleek and beautiful it can also convert into two twins. The negatives: it's pricey, the ends are one solid piece making the room feel smaller. The reviews all warn that the bed is really tough to make. We saw the bed in the store and P didn't like it because it was too hard to climb up. She was quite uninterested in it period.

Ikea's bunks are...well cheap and seen in just about every kids room. However, they are in the $150-170 range. P of course loves the one that is a full on the bottom and a twin on top. Out of the Ikea choices this is my favorite one because of it's simplicity and the full size bed at the bottom. There are many nights when I end up falling asleep reading to P. I'd like to be comfortable to. Again, thinking of a possible second child, I've heard from many of my friends that siblings quite often sleep together. With a full bed everyone is comfy and safe from falling out.

The other Ikea choice is the wood one. If we got this one I'd paint it white or multi-colored. In fact there is a white designer version of this bed that's in the $800 range and you can't even tell the difference. P doesn't like this one very much. I do like that all their beds are quite open on the bottom bunk which gives the whole room more open-ness.

Oeuf has a beautiful bunk I love. It's $1500. I haven't seen it in person. I'm quite curious about it.

I'm thinking about how long this purchase will last us. I calculate P will be about 13 when she's going to want a different kind of room design all together. At three and a half she doesn't care much about the style of the bed and actually likes the Ikea ones the best so far. So, I'm not sure getting a $1500-1800 bed is worth it. Especially when we need to get the house painted and re-stuccoed.

Were going to wait to go the Dwell show at the end of the month before we make a final decision.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Ferdig Files 02

We were in Palm Springs again for the weekend. I am thrilled and shocked to report that we did nothing but lay by the pool. It's a first for Dave and me. We're the adventurous types but after three and a half years of being parents were now moving at a different pace.  A poolside cabana is our new idea of fun. 

Just being in Palm Springs gets me thinking about our home and how to make it better.  I was looking through some of Dave's files.  This is a home in Encino. Again, I don't know who lives there or where the home is exactly. All I know is that they're open to filming and I like what they've done with the place. 

 Images courtesy  David S. Ferdig Photography  copyright 2011

 I like the hanging lights and the clean white kitchen. Man this makes me want to demo ours.

 Love this lamp to!

 Floor to ceiling windows and then a skylight! Just too cool!

 I can't believe it's just those two bars holding up that cabinet!

 I know Dave took this picture for me because he knows I love details and cleanliness.  Or maybe he took this picture for himself to remember to buy paper towels on the way home!

 This hallway is just perfect: wood, light, tree and books!

Love this door! 


Monday, June 6, 2011

Hoop Chairs!

I've had a dream.....three hoop chairs and one Acapulco rocker for the back yard.  This is what I've been wanting. I've seen other very cool retro patio furniture come and go on ebay, thrift stores and Craigs list.  I've held onto my dream even though it's price tag is about $1200. Then the Palm Springs design fairies granted me half of my dream: three Hoop chairs for $200!!! I'm still doing cart wheels over this find!!!

Here they are in the backyard.  And as always one purchase begets another....  I think we need an umbrella and a low table for this little grouping. Getting these babies set up prompted me to set up our Butterfly Chairs.  They need new covers. I bought the one in the middle a year ago and it's worn terribly.  It was under $30, I went cheap.  The next time I make this purchase I'm spending more for better quality which is essential for outdoors. 

I just realized Innit Designs makes baby Acapulco chairs!!!! Holy Moses P can have her very own! Wait, maybe not, they're $350...

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