Wick Witch Candle & Bath Co.

This past weekend we had some really lovely warm weather [what a concept!] so we visited a few towns outside of Ottawa; Kemptville, Smiths Falls and Carleton Place, but in between those was Merrickville. It came recommended to me by my Work Wife and she was pretty on point. Merrickville is full of the most gorgeous houses, yard sales and sweetest of shops. We first had lunch then wandered along St. Lawrence Street and as soon as I saw the window for Wick Witch Candle & Bath Co., there was no way I wasn’t going in.

As soon as I walked in the door, I felt seen. This shop was incredible. First of all, it was a shop within a shop, which just added to the magic of it all and reminded me so much of my dream bedroom when I was younger – a tiny house within my bedroom. Windows, doors, siding and stairs included.

Oh god, the candles. I realize this will sound over the top, but I loved every single one of them. Case in point – I spent easily 45 minutes going from candle to candle, swilling them around under my nose. When Robert and Cora eventually found me in the shop, I started to panic because I knew it meant I had to leave soon. How was I supposed to pick just one, or even two candles? I couldn’t handle the pressure. Me going around the store smelling each candle for the eighth time reminded me of that time Patsy and Eddie visited that vineyard in France and couldn’t decide what which to buy so they bought all of them:

Have you ever smelt something and it immediately reminded you of something else you thought you had long forgotten? I bought their Ginger Nutmeg candle, which nearly made me cry the moment I smelled it [it reminds me of autumn and winter so much from when I was younger] as well as their Love Potion candle, which has a light and fresh summery smell.

Every detail was so perfect. The display cabinets, the excellently named candles [Whore Island and Fuck Off Mosquitoes to name a few], the crystals, crows and spiders around the store, and the ‘kitchen’ you can look in on. For such a small space, so much is packed into it.

I will be back, Witches.

How to spot-clean velvet furniture

We’ve had our sleek velvet Sven Sectional Sofa from Article for almost a year. It’s still as beautiful as the day we got it, but on occasion I’ve had to spot-clean it. The first time we were in such a situation was on Christmas morning; Cora was so excited about Santa that she forgot she desperately needed to pee, so she peed on the couch. It wasn’t her fault as she was new to potty training and we were all so excited on Christmas morning that bladders were the furthest thing from all of our minds.

After uttering some expletives under my breath, with some quick moves I was able to avoid the pee issue from getting out of control. I’ve since had to spot-clean our couch a few times and now that I’m more confident about cleaning it and have learned first hand what to do and not to do, my next immediate thought was how much SEO I could get from such a blog post and how any clicks I could get via Pinterest because I’m a heartless blogger.

Above is an example of a few typical stains our couch can get on occasion. Are those stains from a drooly cat? A momentary carefree coffee break? A toddlers runny nose? A late night Netflix marathoning spilled drink? A toddler who broke free from the dinner table without being properly wiped and dove face-first into the couch? Or the tears of a parent who just wants 20 minutes of peace and quiet? God knows because I don’t. I’m realistic about owning a velvet couch and it’s something you should also be aware of. SPOILER ALERT: IT’S GOING TO GET DIRTY. But it doesn’t have to stay dirty. Here is how I spot-clean our couch …

Mix the following ingredients in a bowl:
– 1 tiny drop of dish soap. I mean miniscule. So small there’s barely a drip
– 1 teaspoon of vinegar
– 1 cup of warm water
– a cloth to spot clean

An important step is to find out what direction your velvet runs. The velvet on our sofa runs from left to right. Meaning, when I run my hand from left to right along the couch, that is the direction the velvet is running the smoothest. When I’m cleaning our sofa, I clean against that grain. Meaning, I clean up and down to agitate the stain out of the fabric.

Using your cloth, dab it in the cleaning solution and clean your velvet by brushing perpendicular to whichever way your velvet runs. If you’re nervous, it’s best to clean lightly at first, and if needs be, get more rigorous. It may take a few minutes, but as soon as the stain has lifted, it’s important that you finish your cleaning by running the cloth with the grain of the velvet so the velvet dries in the same direction as the rest of the velvet. I for example, finished the cleaning process by wiping the cloth from left to right to smooth out the velvet.

You can see a smoothed clean version below:

REMEMBER: when your velvet dries you will see a bit of an outline of where you cleaned it. This is okay. Try not to panic. You just need to wear-in the velvet a bit to bring it back to its normal self. Use your furniture like you normally would [ie – smoosh your butt around on it] and within a day or two, the patch you cleaned will blend right in with the rest of the velvet and will return to normal.

It’s that simple. Just remember, you’ve got to …

8 home DIY projects with TheJournal.ie

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of speaking with Hannah from TheJournal.ie on contributing to an article of theirs as a DIY expert. The feature came out this week called 8 Home DIY Projects You Definitely Don’t Need to Hire a Professional For.

I share my thoughts along with Sen McCarthy of DIYnewb.ie, Darren Heaney of Old Victorian New, Eimear Hutchinson of The Two Darlings and Saoirse Findlay of @shinnyscaf on simple and impactful DIY updates everyone can make to their homes.

It’s a fantastic little feature including a wide variety of projects and ideas for every room in a house. Thank you again TheJournal.ie for including me with such a talented group of people!