Category Archives: No-waffles

Today’s No-Waffle: Summer Vacation

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Hi all,

The kids are almost done with school and we’re all getting excited about summer vacation. As a result, I’m going to be taking a summer hiatus from The Waffler.  But don’t worry — I won’t be taking a break from waffling.  I’ll store up all of my waffles and share them with you this upcoming school year.

Have a wonderful summer!


Today’s No-Waffle: Carriage Houses

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I snapped these pictures of carriage houses a few months back on a trip to Cambridge, MA.  As their name implies, carriage houses were the structures — some quite beautiful — used to house horse drawn carriages.  Modernized and renovated, many carriage houses are now the place where people call home.

Here’s one of my favorites.

The house to the right is where the family who owned the carriage house lived.

I love the arched wood door.

This one has been given quite the modern exterior.

I wonder how many carriages could fit in this one…

Have you ever been inside a converted carriage house? Would you like to live in one of the ones above?

PS — If you want to pin any of the above images to your Pinterest boards go ahead — you have my permission.

Do you have an idea for a no-waffle, fantasy waffle or just a regular old waffle? Click here to find out more about waffles or on the button below to contact me and get started.

Today’s No-Waffle: Turrets

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Unless you’re a Disney princess locked up in one, who doesn’t love a nice turret?



I took these pictures while taking a walk around Cambridge, Massachusetts on my quick visit there a few weeks ago.



If I could afford it, I’d snap up this last house in a heartbeat. Totally amazing turret.


What would do with a turret if you had one? Let the kids have it for an awesome playroom? Fill it with books and turn it into a library? Buy a fancy telescope and make it into an observatory? Or perhaps just stick a “keep out” sign on the door and make it your own private retreat…

Go ahead and pin these images to your Pinterest boards if you like: I grant thee my permission.

I’d love to feature your style dilemma on The Waffler! Click on the above button to get in touch.

Today’s No-Waffle: My Parents’ House

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I didn’t grow up in the house my parents currently live in so I don’t have a huge sentimental attachment to it. I do have a huge aesthetic attachment to it, however.

Built-ins, builti-in-bookcases, built-in-bookcases-living-room, large-built-ins

Take the built-ins in the living room. Or these in the guest bedroom.

Built-ins, builti-in-bookcases, built-in-bookcases-guest-room, large-built-ins

I’m a big fan of this cozy nook in the master.

settee, settee-in-master, chaise-lounge, chaise-lounge-in-master

I’m also partial to the window seat in “my” room,


this arched doorway,

arched-doorway, arch, door-arch

and this mantelpiece.

mantelpiece, white-mantelpiece, fireplace, fireplace-in-master, fireplace-with-white-mantel

But perhaps my favorite part of my parents’ house is this oval window above the sink in the master bath.

oval-window, oval-window-master-bath

Here’s the funny thing: there are so many lovely parts of my parents’ house, but whenever we all get together do you know where we congregate? The stairs. Go figure.

PS — If you want to pin any of the above images to your Pinterest boards go ahead — you have my (and my parents’) permission.

Do you have an idea for a no-waffle, fantasy waffle or just a regular old waffle? Click here to find out more about waffles or on the button below to contact me and get started.

Today’s No-waffle:No Cost Closet and Dress-up Organization

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Okay, so Tessa’s closet wasn’t terrible.

Tessa's messy closet

Well, her dress-up corner was pretty bad. Tessa could barely get into that side of the closet, let alone lift the bin that barely contained all of her dress-up outfits (thank you, older cousins).

Tessa's messy closet

I was also feeling so good about Tessa’s new ribbon table skirt and the progress of her room (you can read the full post here), that I wanted the inside of her closet to be just as nice.

ribbon table skirt, girl's room

I don’t have many “rules” about organization (magazine covers always seem to be touting the “10 Best Tips for Organizing Your….” but I do stick to one key principle: take everything out before you begin. Everything. Don’t cheat and pretend that that one hard-to-reach corner can be overlooked. Take everything out. So that’s what I did.  Then comes the sorting in which I:

  • figured out which of Will’s old books I had been storing in the closet were ready to go on the white bookshelf.
  • figured out what clothes could be donated, and which select few I wanted to keep for sentimental value (I have a special bin for that in the garage.  I’m sappy.  Don’t judge).
  • figured out which of the many, many paper crowns, garlands, and wands were too bent/destroyed to play with and could be (secretly) removed.

This was a good start.  But the real progress came when I replaced the dress-up bin with this bedside table we no longer needed.  And voila! Three separate storage areas.

dress-up storage

I also found some extra Command Strip hooks we had and hung up the purses and beaded necklaces. I’m partial to these hooks because they come off of the wall so easily.

hooks for dress-up area

The top of the former nightstand is now home to Tessa’s jewelry box, wands and clutch.  Every girl needs a clutch, right?

dress-up closet organization

I also moved the bureau over a foot to the left so Tessa can actually get into the closet and access her dress-up clothes. The green and yellow bins that had been in the nightstand became perfect for extra storage on the wire shelf.

organized closet and dress-up area

So I didn’t solve world peace or figure out how to make eating-dark-chocolate-followed-by-a-siesta part of national policy, but when I was done I did feel a big sense of accomplishment, silly as that may sound.

What about you? Have you been spring cleaning lately? Do you have an organization project on your to-do list? Are you with me on the whole dark-chocolate thing??

Today’s No-waffle: Ribbon Table Skirt

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Okay, cue the champagne and confetti: I recently wrote my 100th post for The Waffler.

Okay, maybe no champagne. But short of eating a hunk of dark chocolate, I can’t think of a better way of celebrating than to share some of the progress I have made with my daughter Tessa’s room. More specifically, the transformation of this non-descript Ikea sidetable…

…into this lovely ribboned nightstand.

ribbon bedskirt table, ribbon table skirt girls room

It’s amazing what a little fabric and ribbon can do.

ribbon table skirt girls room

I wish I could take the credit for making the tableskirt, but it’s the handiwork of my friend, Sarah, and her crafty mother, Kathy. I actually had every intention of learning the ropes (threads?) of how to sew this table skirt, but when I arrived at Sarah’s house with the table and materials, I chickened out. Okay, it was even worse than that: I ended eating most of the giant cookie I had brought for them.

ribbon table skirt girls room

Well, all of Sarah and Kathy’s hard work made for one very happy five-year-old. Tessa loves the table skirt, especially what she calls the “double ribbons.”

And me? I am also thrilled with the skirt. It might not be in her room in three years, but Tessa is in a particularly girly stage right now — a girly-girl who also plays soccer, wrestles with her brother, and plays a mean game of ninja warrior, but a girly-girl none-the-less.

I’m also thrilled with how far Tessa’s room has come since November.  This is what it looked like a few months ago:

But then I posted a waffle about which of four bed frames I should buy (you can read that post here) and readers encouraged me to go for Land of Nod’s Simple Bed. Then I posted a waffle about where to position the bed, and the clear winner was across from the window rather than under it (read here). Finally, I asked readers which of several nightstands to use, and the majority voted for trying to make a ribboned table skirt for the Ikea table (read about it here).

Here’s Tessa’s room now:

ribbon table skirt, girl's room

Okay, okay, so I know that the room is crying out for something on the walls. We’ll get to that in a future waffle. For now I just want to thank all of my readers for helping to resolve my waffles, as well as those of all the other wafflers who have written in. You guys rock!

Everyone has a fashion or design dilemma…what’s yours? Just click on the button below to get in touch.

Today’s no-waffle: fall cardigan update

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You may remember this fall when I shared with you my desire to think outside my usual black cardigan sweater.

knitwear, cardigan, women's clothing, fashion, sweater, fashion dilemma, women's top

In an attempt to try something new, I posted a waffle letting readers vote their favorite cardigan (see it here). This Old Navy Open Front Crochet sweater came in first with 52% of the vote.

I liked it too — but the reviews about its’ ill-fit and baggyness ultimately scared me off.  Well you know me, I’m lightning fast when it comes to making decisions. It only took a mere four months to find another one; this time I actually bought it — PrAna’s Parissa jacket.

Parissa jacket Parna

The large buttons, visible seams and tighter fit are a definite departure for me.  Here I am wearing it over a black dress for a girls’ night out last week.

It’s comfortable, pretty, and versatile so I’m happy with my better-late-than-never purchase. And here’s the funny thing. That dress? I bought it a month or so ago — in a different store — and it’s also by PrAna, their Nadia dress.  It’s cute.  And on sale.  I’m just sayin…

Nadia dress Prana

Do you have an idea for a no-waffle, fantasy waffle or just a regular old waffle? Click here to find out more about waffles or on the button below to contact me and get started.

Today’s no-waffle: SoHo loft pin party

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Take a look at this SoHo loft. If you could decorate this space, would you go ultra modern, industrial country, vintage, eclectic, or something entirely different?

SoHo loft, brick wall soho loft, open loft space, unfurnished living room, pinterest party, pin party

Are you thinking a cozy sectional? Bright colors or lots of neutrals? And what do you do with that odd corner under the stairs??

Unfortunately, we can’t all fly to NYC to take measurements and visit the local furniture stores, but we can design this loft through the magic of Pinterest. Yep, I’ve created a collaborative pinboard called the SoHo Loft Project that we can all contribute to. So look through your pins– what couches, rugs, art, lighting or color schemes do you want to see here? What new pins can you find to liven up this space?

Here’s how to join the pin party:

  1. Let me know your Pinterest username/handle by leaving it in a comment to this post or by sending me an email here; I will add your name to the SoHo Loft Board.
  2. Start pinning or repinning! You can use the “comment” button to point out a particular item you would use from an image or describe where you would put it.
  3. Invite some fellow pinners if you think they would enjoy collaborating.  Just pass along my contact info or a link to The Waffler so I can add them to the list.

Now what are you going to add?   This 3 bedroom, 3 bath loft with a private terrace costs $15,000 month to rent (see the listing here), but we can enjoy designing it for free!

Here are some of the awesome bloggers who have already joined the pin party and started the mood board going…

Kelly from refresheddesigns
Suzy from Worthing Court
Lorraine from Bread and Buttercups
Keridwyn from Seattle Pockets
Kelly from Restyling Home by Kelly
Amy from Blogging with Amy
Carol from TheDesignPages
Ange from The Blooming Hydrangea

Oh, and if this is your first time to The Waffler, make yourself at home! There are lots of fun waffles to look at under the Categories section on the right sidebar; you can also subscribe to The Waffler via email, sign up to follow me via Facebook, Twitter, or RSS Feed, and of course follow my other pins.

Today’s no-waffle: a visit from grandma

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Six years ago when we still lived in Boston a trip to my parents’ house was not a big deal because we lived about 15 minutes away from them.  Now that we’re in Seattle, a visit from grandma is a Very Big Deal.  In fact the entire week she was here Will and Tessa were in a heightened state of excitement — for much of the time I think only the neighborhood dogs could hear Tessa’s voice it was so high pitched.

But mom was patient with them. She told the kids Little Joey stories (Little Joey being the rascally boy who is the star of stories mom has been telling since my sister and I were kids), played endless car games with them on our road trip to Portland, and didn’t bat an eye when Will and Tessa yelled and fought vigorously disagreed with each other.

I hear from the grapevine that grandma-ing is a pretty good gig. You can heap tons of love and attention on your grandkids but then when they’ve fully exhausted you, you get to return home to peace, quiet, and a lego-free living room.  Well being a good grandma might be easy, but my kids are lucky enough to have a truly great one.

Do you have an idea for a no-waffle? Do you love classic white kitchens, a particular brand of shoes, or a current design trend? You can also share a regular old waffle or fantasy waffle idea with me — click here to learn more or on the button below to get started.

Today’s no-waffle: yarn bombing

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My mother is visiting from Boston this week and as we were doing some sitesseeing in downtown Seattle, these bright bolts of color caught our eyes and made us gasp:

yarn bombing suzanne tidwell Seattle

And there were more of them:

yarn bombing suzanne tidwell Seattle

We just had to get out of the car and look up close.  The kids had a blast running around and exploring these tree sweaters.

yarn bombing suzanne tidwell Seattle

After doing some research when we got back home I discovered that this ‘knit graffiti’ is part of a national movement called Yarn Bombing, which is the activity of covering things in public places (lamposts, trees, statues, etc.) with knitted material. The trees above were knit bombed by local fiber artist Suzanne Tidwell.  Check out these pics that I found of other yarn bombed items:

closeupcrab pole yarn bombing

yarn bombing subway seat

I think my favorite are the trees, though. The bright burst of colors are just so happy and a wonderful balm against the gray winter sky.

yarn bombing tree

Have you seen any knit graffiti where you live? What do you think about it?

Do you have an idea for a no-waffle, fantasy waffle or just a regular old waffle? Click here to find out more about waffles or on the button below to contact me and get started.

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