Monday, January 31, 2011


My mind has been going non-stop on home projects lately... Add to that my recent find of Effortless Style, and... well, you can just feel sorry for my hubby.  A definite add to your blog roll, with tons of inspiration images & great DIY projects!

I saw this duvet with a Greek key border and immediately feel in love...

A quick Google search later and I found this beauty...

But the price tag of $358 for full/queen and $388 for king duvet left me a little a lot less giddy.  So I started thinking, could I get the same look with a solid white duvet and a little Greek key trim?

A 530 thread count plain white duvet from Overstock for $65 and Greek Key trim for $12 per yard.  Definitely much more cost effective, but would the look hold up?

I'm really tempted to try this out... Any thoughts?

Friday, January 28, 2011

Ellie's Room

We sometimes refer to the sunroom as 'Ellie's room' so it is only fitting that she receives a puppy-sized entry...

The verdict?  She loves it...

Many apologies for all the iPhone photos recently... We got rid of our old desk in preparation for sunroom rearranging, and all contents - including our camera cords - are stuffed into boxes!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Cork It

As I mentioned before, we've decided on cork flooring for our sunroom.  I have to give Jeff credit for this, and admit that it took me a while to get totally on board.  All I could picture was this...

Not my style!  But I've found that you can actually get the flooring in a wide variety of shades & colors and lay it in a variety of patterns.  Here are a few of my inspirations...

{images via}

I still can't believe that some of those are actually cork!  Plus the flooring has tons of benefits... Number one being that it is eco-friendly!  Not to mention that it is an ideal choice for kitchens and bathrooms, due to the water-resistant nature... and it's a great insulator (making it warmer and softer) for on top of our current cement floor in the sunroom.

I may just lobby to replace our manufactured hardwood flooring in the kitchen with this too... What do you think?  Would you try out cork flooring? 

Privacy, Please

Over the past few weeks, we really took notice of the view to be had from our sunroom addition.  In the summer, it would look out to an over-grown, green yard... Unkempt, but necessary to hide our neighbor's yard/house from view.  However, in the winter, bare trees just show...

Yep, a clear shot to our neighbor's home.  Jeff, in typical Whittaker fashion, started to scour Craig's List for privacy fencing.  He found exactly what we needed for free... with a little labor investment.  Jeff responded to a post offering free privacy fencing to anyone who would remove it (boards, posts & all) themselves.  The home owner won since they got rid of unwanted fencing with zero labor, and we saved a few hundred dollars!

Over the weekend, Jeff took a small break from sunroom work to install the fence with his brother (thanks, Michael!)

{progress... fencing up to the right}

And it makes all the difference in our sunroom view!


Now we'll be ready to clear out this over-grown mess, once we get some warmer days!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Too Soon?

I cannot help it... Young House Love is making me, almost downright forcing me, to repaint our house.

It has been a little over a year & a half since I stormed into Jeff's bachelor pad, paint brush in hand... Well, actually, he did the painting, so it was more like paint swatches in hand...  And we updated a house with entirely white walls to this:

 Note that the guest bedroom actually looks much more lavender than pink
& the 'below chair rail' looks much more dark brown.

Our current color scheme is pretty neutral, with what I would consider relatively traditional choices.  But I'm just dying over the moody colors from Young House Love's new home... 

{images via YHL}

Gray's, dark blue's & crisp white's... oh my!  But is approximately 18 months too soon to break the paint brush back out?  What is the shortest time frame you've repainted in? 

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Kitchen Storage

Hope everyone had a great long weekend!  Sorry for the silence lately, but not too much to share... Jeff did a few little projects around the house & took a trip up to the lake, and I headed to the beach!

In sunroom news, Jeff made some more progress on finishing the exterior, and we should have some picture updates later this week!  Eventually, we plan to change out the two large windows in front of our kitchen table for large pocket doors, like these...

{image via Young House Love}

After replacing those doors, we'll also seal-off the current entry from the sunroom.  With the extra space, I planned to add a small china cabinet for more storage.  Perhaps something like this...

But after seeing these open shelves on Pink Wallpaper, I'm considering another idea...

I could get the storage I wanted from a china cabinet, and the open kitchen shelving I've been drooling over... Any thoughts?  I think I might be in love...

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Kitchen Rug Love

It's no secret that I love rugs... In fact, I have an extra 8x10 oriental rug rolled up in our bedroom right now (long story).  Like all other home items that I love and have extra of, I can't stop myself from browsing...

Overstock is a great resource for rugs, and here are a few of my current favorites (which all happen to be in the running for the spot in front of our kitchen sink):

I also can't stop thinking about this rug from Rugs Direct (as featured on Copy Cat Chic)...

Which one gets your vote?  I'm leaning towards the second one from Overstock... It looks like it needs to come live with me.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Nursery Ideas

After the baby shower this weekend, I couldn't help myself.  I had to browse baby items on Etsy.  Lindsey picked out the cutest brown & green bedding for Baby V's nursery.  I love the gender-neutral color scheme, since they're going to be surprised when the baby is born!

I thought these would look lovely in any nursery...

Or these sweet prints to hang on the wall...

Grouping of this, this & these

Lastly, I couldn't help but remember this post from Jenny on a gorgeous nursery glider.  The Luxe Glider from Jennifer Delonge is a little bit of a splurge, but as Jenny points out, it can be easily moved to your living room after the baby gets older!

{glider shown in living room}

Monday, January 10, 2011

Baby Shower & Snow Day

Happy Snow Day!  For those of us in Charlotte, it is a rare one... A snow day with snow that actually covers the grass!

Hubby's office is closed for the day, so he snapped a few pictures and has taken the pup out in the elements (which she loves!)

{further proof of why our next project is remodeling the front of our little ranch house}

Backing up to the weekend, the weather fortunately held off long enough to make the trip to Durham for my college roommate's baby shower.  Lindsey is the first one of us to take the plunge into parenthood, and she was absolutely glowing!  Her and her husband's happiness and excitement is so fun to see...  Not to mention all of the other roomies' excitement over the next generation of Tarheels!

The group of girls who threw the shower did such an incredible job!  The food & decorations were perfect, and I should have snapped pictures of the hostess' home... I'm still talking about how perfectly decorated it was (in lots of neutrals with antiques and modern furniture mixed together... total goodness)

More importantly, I feel so blessed to be able to celebrate Baby V!

{all shower pictures shamelessly stolen from Kaylie}

Now to shake off this recent bout of baby fever...

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Small Request

So, for today, I am lobbying to pack up all of our friends, moms, dads, sisters, brothers, nephews & my grandparents... and move. To New Orleans.

And live here:

{Garden District via CocoCozy}

Which would probably look something like this inside, obvs...

Or here would work too...

Or just insert me & the hubby's faces here...

{images above via}

Whether or not you decide to move with us, be sure to check out the incredible design of New Orleans at The Bayou Contessa blog... It will pack your bag for you.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Attitude Adjustment

I love a quote I recently read on Twitter: “I don’t believe in resolutions, only to-do lists."

For the first time, I'm making a 2011 to-do list, instead of resolutions. With one exception… I am giving myself a break this year.  Meaning my resolution is not to do it all (or think that everyone else does, or feel bad that I don’t). 

If our sweet dog tracks in leaves and sawdust from the sunroom addition, I am not a bad housekeeper if I don’t clean it up right away.  If we eat frozen pizzas, breakfast for dinner, and Chinese take-out in one week for dinner, I am not a bad wife.  If I have a guest room closet full of half-finished home projects, I am not a bad person.

This will be my year to focus on school and not worry about the rest. 

So, to make a long story short, my to-do list for 2011 looks like this:
  • Celebrate. Breathe deep. Repeat.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Rustic Inspiration

I've been loving 'rustic' room looks lately, and these images are definitely serving as inspiration for our sunroom... And even adding some touches to the rest of the house too...

{via Two Ellie}

{via unknown}

{via Elle Decor}

What do you think?  The sunroom from Elle Decor makes me swoon... I want a house with windows like that!