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Posted by on Mar 4, 2014 | 1 comment

Heidi’s Blue Painted Piano

Heidi’s Blue Painted Piano

Would you have the nerve to paint your piano? Heidi did and to wonderful results. If you hang out at St. Elmo’s coffee pub in Del Ray, you may remember seeing a piano there a few years ago.  This is the very one. “I’ve always wanted a piano,” she says, “so when I saw a notice about a piano for sale in St. Elmo’s, I called right away and had a piano in my living room the day after.” She didn’t like the dark, brown wood though and thought she might like to paint it. After searching online and finding so many beautifully painted pianos — red, yellow, green, blue, and purple — there was no turning back. “They all looked so much better in color,” she recalls. For her piano, Heidi decided to use the same grey-glue shade of Benjamin Moore semi-gloss paint as she used on a secretary in the same room. The project took about three hours. She first sanded the wood and primed it before...

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Posted by on Feb 28, 2014 | 1 comment

DIY Kitchen Backsplash: Part 2

DIY Kitchen Backsplash: Part 2

It took a couple more weekends to finish my kitchen backsplash project. In part 1, my intrepid hands-on consultant Danielle helped me scope out the job, measure the walls, and envision the layout of the tiles. For part 2, we used a wet saw borrowed from a neighbor to cut many, many tiles — skinny tiles, L shaped tiles, and the most challenging of all, U shaped tiles to go around the outlets. In addition to the wet saw, we also used premixed mastic and the following supplies: Trowels, straight and  notched Tape measure Chisel 1/8 inch spacers Level Painters tape and a pencil Rubber mallet Grout spreader Sponges Setting the Tiles We started placing the tiles on the short wall from the bottom up, first spreading about an 1/8 inch of the mastic and then scrapping it with the notched trowel to allow the tile to stick evenly. After each row, we tapped the tiles lightly with the rubber mallet. After a few rows, it became apparent that our...

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Posted by on Feb 26, 2014 | 5 comments

A Bungalow Designed for Art and Play

A Bungalow Designed for Art and Play

Last week we showed you Kay’s creative and serene home office where she runs her holistic interior design business, Oikasa. Before that, we featured the fabulous wallpaper she installed on her stairway. And today, we bring you the rest of her house which she shares with her husband Stefan and their two active young children. In every room of their home, we see Kay’s design sensibility at play — simplicity, uplifting colors, handmade and natural elements, and an organized and efficient use of space. In the middle of the front room, a child’s-sized grand piano atop a green shag rug was the last thing I expected to see. But, given that Kay teaches music lessons to young children, a room dedicated to musical instruments makes perfect sense. Next to the front door. you can see an illuminated canvas Kay made. She painted the leaf design on a stretched canvas and then poked Christmas lights through holes into the canvas. She says that her youngest music students love to gaze at...

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Posted by on Feb 21, 2014 | 0 comments

Touring Kay’s Creative and Serene Home Office

Touring Kay’s Creative and Serene Home Office

We’ve glimpsed some of Kay Sidahmed’s 1940s renovated bungalow when we featured her unique, stylish, and clever use of wallpaper in her home.  Today, we’re touring Kay’s cheerful home office. A set of French doors in the living room leads into the bright, welcoming space just off the main living room. Kay runs her interior holistic design business, Oikasa, from her home office and the space embodies what Kay would bring to her clients — simplicity, uplifting colors, handmade and natural elements, and an organized and efficient use of space. In her office, we see several examples of Kay’s creative handiwork. As an elegant solution for keeping a clunky printer and other office appliances and cords out of plain sight, Kay hung these screen panels from The Container Store. In the bright afternoon sunlight, the pattern echoes on the walls. She painted this chair with chalk paint and reupholstered the seat with a bright, graphic print from IKEA. And in one corner, she covered two cork “mood boards” with a...

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Posted by on Feb 18, 2014 | 0 comments

Making April’s Vitamin and Mineral Rich Bone Stock

Making April’s Vitamin and Mineral Rich Bone Stock

April Scripps, owner of the Vintage Gourmet in Del Ray, hosted our second DIY Del Ray demo (of many to come) in her recently remodeled kitchen, where she taught participants how to make gelatin-rich bone stock. April’s business specializes in “traditional wisdom for the modern kitchen.” Last spring, she held hands-on workshops on making kombucha, fermented fruits and vegetables, and cultured dairy. In the demo, April first explained the subtle differences in what are largely interchangeable terms: stock and broth. Stock, as opposed to broth, is a neutral base, for soups, sauces, pasta, risotto, and other dishes. Broth, on the other hand, is strained and clear and highly seasoned, with salt, spices and maybe wine, with a much higher ratio of seasoning to liquid. Stock is the result of cooking down all of the bones and cartilage completely, leading to a gelatinous, rich end result, chock full of vitamins and minerals. As April likes to say, citing an Old World adage, “good stock will raise the dead.” Stock is a nutritional powerhouse —...

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