Wednesday, August 31, 2011

revisiting exteriors

Remember way back when we were discussing an exterior remodel?  That was pushed out with our sunroom addition, but it's become a regular topic of conversation again!

Our thoughts are pretty similar, although we're trying to be a lot a bit more budget conscious.  We're tossing around a project start date of the end of September, but still discussing all the financial considerations.  For now, here is what I'm envisioning...

Adding a front porch with a high roof to break up the straight lines of our long, one-story house:


{I love this idea of a full porch with an open arbor off to the side}

Replacing the two off-center and the two strange, small windows with pretty cottage windows:


Painting (yay!) the exterior in a shade of gray with white trim:



Painting the storm door a pretty Carolina blue and updating with fun house numbers:


 And, of course, lots of landscaping! Now to just get started...

Monday, August 29, 2011

the purple couch returns

One of our to-do list items for this weekend was to move the purple sofa out of the back bedroom.  This sofa has been shuffled around our house, listed on Craigslist and been the topic of much design discussion.

Bottom line:  I'm going back to my previous thought to include it in our sunroom.  Jeff & I set a goal to have the back bedroom cleaned out by this winter, as part of our overall goal to declutter the house.  And this room has plenty to declutter... The purple couch, campaign dresser, bookshelf, tv stand, dual recliner... basically everything but a bed.

Whether the sofa stays in the sunroom or gets listed on Craigslist for the third fourth time is to be decided. While we decide, I'm absolutely loving this inspiration for a purple & coral color palette...


If I go this route, I'm thinking a bright coral for the back of our bookshelf....

And some pretty pillows in a coral ikat pattern, like one of these...



For now (learning from my past mistakes), I'm just going to live awhile with the purple sofa. Do you want it for your house? What do you think?  Purple sofa for the sunroom or Craigslist?

*Update: Vote in our poll on what you think we should do with our purple sofa!

Friday, August 26, 2011


I am beyond excited to start out my weekend being featured as part of 'before & after' on Matters of Style today!  It has long been one of my favorite blogs, and I'm thrilled that our skirted console table project made their list!

Be sure to go over and check us out, along with all the other incredible before & after's featured... Because who doesn't like a good makeover?

We're picking up a bookcase from Craigslist this weekend (in need of a little love), and hopefully starting a few more projects to share soon...

Happy Weekend!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

dresser as a tv console?

Once I get an idea in my head, there is usually no turning back (much to Jeff's disappointment).  Lately I've been obsessed with using a pretty dresser as a tv console.

Because let's face it, there is not much attractive about a tv stand.

But using a beautiful dresser?  Much better...






I also love that the dresser would add valuable storage for toys and other odd & ends once we have some wee whittakers in the picture.  But for now, I think I'm already sold... And making plans to paint our $25 campaign dresser this weekend for it's upgrade to the living room!

What do you think? Would you use a dresser for your tv console? Or do you like the dedicated space for equipment in a tv stand?

Friday, August 19, 2011

a pinterest problem

I keep finding these incredible images on Pinterest that make me want to do things like order all new pillows for my living room...




... And so I did.

Friday, August 5, 2011


Although the weekend trip to Mary Jo's was a bust for me, we picked up some beautiful fabric for a little project at my sister Sarah's boyfriend's house (You can imagine how excited he is to have me and my sister on the prowl to decorate!)

Sarah had the great idea to take the fabric to an alterations shop.  She manages the family dry cleaning business, so she works with one frequently and was able to get a great deal on having two euro sham covers made.  Even if you don't have a relationship with one, I'd definitely suggest checking out an alterations shop as a more budget-friendly option for custom pillows or curtains.

We have a few more projects to work on, hopefully this weekend (pending boyfriend approval, of course).  But here is a quick glimpse:

It's so much fun to help Sarah with these projects, and I absolutely love how the shams came out!  Plus, now her boyfriend and my husband have one more thing to bond over... our love of and their dislike of our decorating (just kidding... I think!)

Happy weekend!

Thursday, August 4, 2011

repurposing frames

Over a year ago, I picked up this set of two botanical prints for a whopping $7 at a local estate sale.  I knew immediately that I wasn't going to keep these prints (although, in general, I do love botanicals), but the  frames had great shape & detail.

They took their place in my guest room closet, full of 'potential DIY' projects... For slightly longer than I'd like to admit.  After we completed our sunroom, I realized that our desk area could use some practical improvements.

Enter the frames... I decided to turn them into a chalkboard and bulletin board set.  The project was very much Jeff-approved (aka cheap), coming in at around $20 total, including the original cost of the frames.

I pulled off the backing and took out the artwork and glass.  Then lightly sanded the frames and spray painted them gray.

We purchased an Ikea bulletin board for $4.99, then Jeff used the old glass as a template to measure and cut the piece to fit in the frame.

For the chalkboard, I took the glass and very lightly sanded it, just enough to give it a rough texture.  Then I painted it with chalkboard spray paint (you can find it at Lowe's in the spray paint aisle)  It took about 3 coats, with plenty of drying time in between, to get it completely covered.

We lined the inside lip of both frames generously with superglue, then dropped in the bulletin board and chalkboard pieces.  After letting them dry (frame-side down) overnight, they were ready to hang!

Quick tip:  Per the instructions on the chalkboard spray can, I rubbed a layer of chalk over the entire surface before writing anything on it.  So far, it's held up very well.

This was a quick, cheap and easy project... Not to mention it pulled one more item out of my guest closet.  Doesn't get much better than that!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

o fabric where art thou

It's Wednesday, and I'm still recovering from my weekend heartbreak... I headed to Mary Jo's with my sister to scout out some fabric for my bedroom.  I hadn't really intended to even purchase anything, but just start with some ideas.

Then I found exactly what I was looking for... My perfect headboard fabric.

Neutral but with an incredible ikat pattern... just enough to keep you interested, without being overwhelming.

The problem?  The blot only had about 4 yards left on it, and I definitely need at least 6.  I thought I'd come home, google it, and have enough fabric ordered by lunchtime.

Only I  Can you make out the desperation in my tone?  (And ten points to anyone who got the cheesy reference to O Brother, Where Art Thou in my post title)

The fabric vendor is listed as Palette, with the style as Sausalito in the sand colorway.  Any idea on where I can order this from?

I seriously will love you, for like ever, if you know where I can find this...

Monday, August 1, 2011

master bedroom, round 3

If you follow me on Pinterest, you may have noticed a theme recently.  I've been pinning away bedroom inspiration.  You can see how our bedroom got to it's current state here & here.

But, as is usual around here, I like to make changes every year or so (sorry Jeff!)  I feel like with every tweak the house takes another big step towards our style.  And since I've cycled through the living room, new sunroom, and guest bath already...

Well, you get the picture.  So here are some of my absolute favorite inspiration images:

{via Lonny}

{via Lonny}




Notice a pattern?  I love neutral bedding, monogrammed pillows, and a burst of color or pattern in the headboard or even throw pillows.

Can't wait to get started with a fresh coat of paint in the bedroom.  For those of you keeping score, that will make 4 out of 7 rooms in our house to be repainted in two years.  Now to find a weekend when the hubs won't notice...