The Pantry Project

When we moved into our first house last fall, it was painted some creative colours. The bathroom was bright aqua, the dining room electric celery, the living room bright mustard yellow, and the kitchen lime green with the same bright mustard in the pantry. Before we moved our things in, we took a week to paint every room in more soothing tones. The whole house looked bigger and more cohesive but it was a lot of work and some things, like the colour in the pantry, fell by the wayside while we eagerly moved in.

The Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster Blog The Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster BlogThe Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster Blog

I had been holding on to a plan in the back of my mind to use the two close blue colours I put in the living and dining rooms to paint the pantry cubbies with an ombre vibe to link them with the rest of the main floor, like the previous owners had tried to do. (I had more faith in my attempt with my all blues and whites colour scheme.) This week, I decided to finally try my idea!

The Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster BlogThe Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster Blog

I took the shelves out, painted the bottom two cubbies with the darker, living room blue, the top two with the lighter, dining room blue, and mixed the two 50/50 for the middle two. The effect was worryingly stark before I put the shelves back in, but after, almost disappointingly delicate. Still, every time I walk through the narrow doorway to the kitchen that contains the pantry, I feel quite content to not be assaulted by that colour anymore. It was definitely worth the quick four hours it took to prep and paint this small pantry project!

The Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster Blog The Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster Blog The Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster Blog The Pantry Project | Sophster-Toaster Blog

All photos by me.

Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt

Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Every fall, I tell myself I’m going to by a velvet dress or skirt but never do. I guess by the time I find the perfect piece, it’s already sold out – it seems I’m not the only person with this same plan. So this year, when I saw this “Many Moons” print on Spoonflower, around the same time they introduced their new velvet option, my first thought was how beautiful they would be together.

Initially, the warm, heavy weight and luxurious thickness of the fabric made me think it could really only be one thing: a vintage minded circle skirt, as the fabric would never allow for darts or gathers. Once I received the fabric and saw just how softly it draped and how beautifully the deep and full starts and moon phases print adapted to hanging on the bias, my mind was set. When the first skirt was finished, I hung it up and was immediately reminded of the opening credits to Bewitched by the print, colour and subtly 60’s cut. I knew it just had to be paired with my new Witch Tee for the listing photos!

Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog Night Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster BlogNight Skies and Lullabies Skirt | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Tee Sophster-Toaster
Skirt Sophster-Toaster
Tights Pretty Polly

All photos by me.

My Winter Hair Routine

My Winter Hair Routine | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Winter is still a few weeks away, but the air around here is already getting dry. Now that I’m growing my hair out and wearing it long, I’ve had to develop a routine to keep it healthy through the long, dry Canadian winter. I started prepping my hair for the new season by switching from washing it every other day to once every three days. To inspire myself to keep to this new schedule / punish myself for breaking it, I’ve also started pin-curling my hair on wash day. It’s more work on day one, but the controlled curls make styling a breeze for the next two.

My Winter Hair Routine | Sophster-Toaster Blog

On wash day, I wash my hair with shampoo and conditioner and lightly towel dry. I then work a few spritzes of lightweight argan oil in, paying close attention to the ends, and detangle with a wide tooth comb. After that, I use the comb to work my hair into the general shape I want for when it’s dry and work in a dollop of cute, whipped cream inspired mousse. When my hair is about half air-dried, I divide it into sections, smooth each with a boar hair brush, and roll it into pin curls and Velcro rollers. After waiting several hours for my hair to air dry in the pin curls (I work from home, so this is no problem), I take it down and smooth and shape with my boar hair brush. If my hair is frizzy, I smooth it with more argan oil. I usually wear it down on day one and try not to touch it again for the rest of the day. Before bed, I brush it gently with my boar hair brush to distribute the natural oils and sometimes add dry shampoo to the roots at my crown and around my face to work its magic overnight.

For the dry days, I brush my hair again with my boar hair brush to work out any overnight knots. If I shower, I wrap my hair in a loose bun to keep it dry and preserve the curls, then lightly reshape it with a wide tooth comb with I take it down. My hair on day two is not as neat and curled as on day one, so I will usually style it in a quick half up, half down fashion. Just as on day one, I brush it before bed, being sure to work the natural oils as far down the length of my hair as I can to moisturize it and prep for day three. By day three, there is usually no hope for my hair looking as perfectly perky and oil free as day one, because it simply isn’t. After brushing and shaping, I usually wear my hair up in braids or a mid-century inspired ponytail.

My Winter Hair Routine | Sophster-Toaster Blog My Winter Hair Routine | Sophster-Toaster Blog My Winter Hair Routine | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Romper ModCloth
Dressing Gown ModCloth
Slippers White Noise Maker
Ring family heirloom
Necklace gift

My Winter Hair Routine | Sophster-Toaster Blog My Winter Hair Routine | Sophster-Toaster Blog

There you have it. My hair can be a little difficult and oily by day three, but it is so worth it for how healthy and moisturized it looks and feels on wash day. I’m hoping to be able to stretch it to washing once every four days by the end of the winter.

All photos by me.

Blue Coat Girls

Blue Coat Girls | Sophster-Toaster Blog

I take Pepper to the park behind our house almost everyday. I can actually see a piece of it from my sewing room window, so it’s easy to tell if the grass is going to be too wet and muddy for a clumsy, high spirited puppy before we take our afternoon constitutional. I think we’ve both come to love our trips to the park where we can run, play, learn manners and practice tricks and obedience training. It’s a small park with a few mature trees, a small lawn, lots of sports infrastructure, and a big, ugly fence all around the perimeter. I frequently find myself standing in a spot in the park that looks lovely and quaint up close, only to focus my eyes a little farther away at the less than picturesque high fences, inadequately maintained basketball court and large area with it’s chipping paint. It’s a peaceful little park when the sun shines through the tall sycamores on a warm and lazy afternoon, but capturing that feeling on film appears almost impossible when I contemplate all the unsightly aspects of the area I will need to crop out.

Blue Coat Girls | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Feeling brave and ambitious yesterday, I prepped a loose plan to do some quick photos under a tree I had been specifically admiring, and hit the sidewalk with Pepper at my side. After burning off some post-nap puppy energy, I tied Pepper to a bench very close by and gave her a prime selection of sticks and pine cones to play with. This kept her busy only long enough for me to set up my tripod. Once I starting taking some test shots, she loudly insisted on being part of the photos. As with almost every other thing I try to do while raising a happy, healthy puppy, I had to quickly adapted the plan to include the little ham. Well, I’m glad I did because it wasn’t until after I had returned home and reviewed the photos that I noticed how her blue merle coat matched my favourite, old blue coat.

Blue Coat Girls | Sophster-Toaster Blog Blue Coat Girls | Sophster-Toaster Blog Blue Coat Girls | Sophster-Toaster Blog

Coat Old Navy
Sweatshirt Bluenotes
Dress ModCloth
Tights Pretty Polly
Shoes ModCloth
Gloves Danier
Dog Leash Petsmart

Blue Coat Girls | Sophster-Toaster Blog

All photos by me.