Our secondhand 1900’s solid wood cradle [and an announcement]

Trigger warning: this blog post mentions a previous miscarriage.

Today we collected quite possibly the most exciting secondhand find I’ve found in a long time. Our newest secondhand addition is for our upcoming newest addition …

We’ve been keeping a little secret this past while. Though, a not so little secret if you saw my midriff right now.

At the end of March we had a miscarriage when I was 12 weeks pregnant. When we found out in August that we were pregnant again, we kept it to ourselves for a long time. Entirely out of nerves and fear. We didn’t tell anyone, especially our families, until two weeks ago after my 20-week scan.

Way back in the beginning of 2020 when we were pregnant the first time, I was on the lookout for a crib / cradle for the downstairs of our house. I checked out my usual online secondhand sites and bookmarked loads of pieces, but never ended up contacting anyone because of our miscarriage. It was only this week that I started nervously looking for cribs and cradles again.

I returned to Kijiji and Facebook Marketplace to look for secondhand cribs when I noticed on Facebook Marketplace that one of the cribs I saved from earlier this year was still available. I contacted the owner this morning to see if it was still available and if so, we could collect it today. It amazingly was still available so we drove to view it*. Trust me when I say the photos of this crib do not do it justice. I feel I need to take more pictures of it in the morning in better lighting. It is huge and solid and gorgeous. The owner explained that they used it with their kids, that he was in it when he was a baby [he was in his mid-60’s] and previous to that, his mother was in it when she was a baby. It’s easily an Edwardian piece, possibly Victorian, but I think that would be a bit of a stretch. It is so gorgeous and huge and I am so happy it will now be part of our home.

The cradle was online for a year before I contacted the owner. A year! It was originally priced at $150, but was reduced to $75 earlier this year. I took a chance and offered $50 and the owner accepted [side note: they were the nicest most genuine couple, which just adds to how amazing this cradle is. They offered to bring us snowmobiling once it’s safe to do so – insert hormonal ugly crying face here].

For anyone wondering, no I will not be painting it. I’ve been thinking about adding a small monogram to each end of the cradle base, but that’s as far as I’d go with ‘updating’ it. I think it would be an absolute insult to paint just for the sake of it as it’s way too beautiful.

p.s. I’ve been so nervous to buy anything in preparation of baby’s arrival that I’ve only bought one tiny hat and a onesie so far, and now this cradle. I know this is common with couples who have previously suffered a miscarriage, but I never realized how much of a mental minefield it is. I’m scared to buy baby clothes and I’m scared every time I go to the bathroom. I almost don’t want to talk about it as I feel I’m jinxing something. But I’m also excited and so happy I could cry. Oh, and let’s not forget the hormonal guilt; by keeping it quiet I’m not celebrating this baby as much as I did with Cora [hormones should be illegal]. I want to be excited and I want to get carried away preparing for our baby. As I’m writing this I can feel her kicking away, reminding me to go to the bathroom. We have 4 months until her arrival [we’re due May 2nd!], so I’m choosing to let myself get carried away with baby stuff now 🖤

*We’re in a lock down here in Ontario and therefore took all the necessary precautions when viewing the cradle. We all met outside, all wore masks and kept very far apart from one another. As soon as we got home with the cradle I disinfected it entirely and we washed our hands thoroughly. We didn’t travel far to view the cradle either so were not visiting a city.

Repurposing Christmas decorations as dollhouse furniture

There is almost always a tab open in my brain to keep an eye out for appropriately sized dollhouse things, and this time of year in particular can bring some gems.

Last month I was in our local Canadian Tire hardware store when I saw these gold chair Christmas ornaments and I immediately thought they’d be perfect for my dollhouse. I bought one to see if it would be to scale. I tried it out in Cora’s dollhouse and it was a perfect 1:12 scale! The next time I was in our local store I bought 4 more [that had since been reduced in price as it was just ahead of Christmas]; one to keep as an actual Christmas decoration on our tree and four to use in my dollhouse.

I’ve shared a lot of the updates I made to Cora’s Lower Town Dollhouse over the past 3 years [see all the exterior updates I made to it ahead of giving it to Cora as a Christmas present in 2018], and soon into decorating Cora’s dollhouse, I immediately wanted to have a dollhouse of my own. In May of 2019 I found the perfect secondhand dollhouse, except it was completely unassembled. It’s taken me this long to get around to it, but I’m hoping to get a huge part of the dollhouse assembled over our Christmas holidays this year [since we’re in another heavy lockdown and are home all the time] ahead of returning to work on January 4th.

I’m really excited to start, and even more excited to make it my own and decorate it with my new golden chairs [which I’m undecided if I’ll paint in some way]. I will of course post updates as soon as I’ve made them! Hold me accountable!

One Room Challenge Spring 2020 – Week Eight!

It’s here! I’m finished! Holy shit. On one hand I don’t think I’ve fully realized I’m finished my One Room Challenge, but on the other hand, I’m looking forward to being horizontal on a couch / lawnchair / bed / under the dining room table / random sidewalk / literally anywhere and not working on any projects in my spare time … for at least a week.

I really am almost overwhelmed at trying to put into words how much this project has meant. At the end of March I miscarried at 12 weeks pregnant. I took 4.5 days off work and then threw myself back into things and wanted to work on something big. Maybe to prove to myself I can finish something and that I’m not entirely useless. For anyone who has been following along with my project will know, I really tore up from the floor up this room as I demolished four layers of ceiling, almost three layers of wall [in places], ripped everything back to the beams, built two stud walls, drywalled, painted, crafted cabinets and finished it off with a thin layer of tears. By myself. No trades people were hired and Robert only helped me drywall the ceiling.

I have really enjoyed sourcing about 90% of this room secondhand. It’s much more of a challenge to find exactly what you have in mind secondhand online, in the colour you want, within a sane budget, during a pandemic, but I tend to like making things exponentially more difficult for myself so why not?

I cannot believe this is what this room looked like just 4 weeks ago:

I’m going to skip immediately back to sharing the now photos as that picture above is giving my anxiety as it reminds me of how much work it took to get to now.

I would strongly encourage you to check all the final Guest Participant reveals here as it is a page exploding with amazing makeovers. We’ve all done incredible work over the past 8[+] weeks from all around the world.

I also want to sneak in one more huge thank you to Bin There Dump That and for their dumpster for my ORC. I 100% would not have taken on such a project if it wasn’t for being able to throw all the demolition drama into a dumpster and completely forget about it.

I ended up going much darker than I had originally planned for my ORC [seen below in my Week One mock-up], but I knew I wanted to have a dark room so I think it’s more of a case that I wasn’t as bold as I’d like to have been in my mock-up vs. the room not turning out how I had planned.

The couch / rug combination very much fed off of each other so depending on the colour of couch I chose, I would either get a pink rug [above] or a gray one [as seen in the final room]. How can you not know what couch you were going to get? That is one of the many joys of sourcing things secondhand! It is unpredictable and you never know what you’re going to get. You plan for things to look a certain way and then the Thrifting Gods laugh in the face of your plans.

My final thoughts on this project; yes, it will be a while before I take on another project of this caliber but I’ve enjoyed pushing myself and proving to myself that I can do it. I also enjoy that this project is now behind me and I don’t have to work on it tonight after dinner until I collapse from exhaustion.

Until the next One Room Challenge.

S O U R C E L I S T :
Wall paint – Onyx, Benjamin Moore
Fireplace – secondhand via Kijiji
Fireplace paint – Coal Black, Fusion Mineral Paint
Gold candle sconces – thrifted by a friend 🖤
Cat portraits – DIY by me, blog post coming soon
Pink Victorian-style couch – secondhand via Kijiji
Gray velvet pillowHay Design
Rug – Dark gray Graham rug, Rugs.ca
Large built-in cabinets – DIYed, blog post coming soon
Pink globeChapters Indigo
Burgundy curtain – discontinued IKEA
Literally everything else – thrifted, secondhand, found etc.

Week One – Week Two – Week Three – Week Four – Week Five – Week Six
Week Seven – Week Eight