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Avid DIY'ers, bargain hunters and style gurus bringing you real interior design that is fabulous, functional and frugal.

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    What a great, long weekend. While we enjoyed our BBQ's and retail sales, I hope you took a moment to reflect on the heroes that have paid the ultimate sacrifice, and the ones they left behind.

    The weekend's festivities got me thinking...about decorating, what else? Nothing says summertime like patriotic decor. OK, watermelon and flip-flops pretty much sum it up too but I'm trying to stay on topic here! And...Sorry I'm a couple days behind, but that's kind of the story of my life.  In all fairness, Jacki and I ARE hard at work on an ADORABLE playroom!

    Tablescapes like the one above are an EASY way to let out your inner patriot! Besides being patriotic, don't these three colors remind you of the beach and picnics and 150 degree NC summers? And, of course fun times spent with family and friends...near some sort of water.

    See, I told you...

    Another budget friendly update is pillows and accessories of course! If you have a room with a neutral palette, try adding a few little touches to celebrate the season and our great country! I bought one of these from World Market last year and stuck it in my chocolate chair in a room painted spa blue. It was just enough to be festive but not too much. They are carrying them again this year and at under $20, it won't break the bank. 

    World Market
    If you're not ready to go for a pillow, try something a little smaller like a candle holder. You can score some battery powered votives at the dollar store and not have to worry about the flame while you're entertaining.

    Sometimes, less really is more. Especially if the main color in your home is say, orange?! 

    Don't let a color clash dampen your patriotic spirit! Move the party outside. For many of you, that's actually possible. 

    Side note: I'm not talking to our NC readers. Ya'll just go back inside where the air condition is blasting, serve some cherry punch and call it a day. 

    For the rest of you, set a lovely table. It doesn't have to be elaborate. Some red and white layered tablecloths with blue, SOLO plates will do the trick (sorry Mom!). 

    Country Living
    If you decide you're just too pooped to go the distance for a full-fledged tablescape, head to the grocery store and grab some white flowers (note: NOT carnations, they are hideous) and adorn them with mini flags. How cute is that?

    Even though I'm a few days behind for Memorial Day, I'm WAYYYY ahead for summer and 4th of July. Consider this your reminder and get busy!

    Last but not least...


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    While shopping at my favorite boutique aka Goodwill, I came across a slightly beat up cocktail ottoman for $36. After snapping a quick picture in my driveway, I quickly unscrewed the top and began painting.

    After removing the cushion, I primed and painted the base with Benjamin Moore's White Dove. If you listen carefully, you can hear my disdain for my newly acquired coffee table. Turns out, those squares are a pain in the rump to paint. I told Catherine that the paint department requested a raise.

    After five hours of painting these grids, I was ready for a shopping trip. At Jo Ann's I found this fun aqua vinyl to recover the top. It was under $20 with their coupon. It's thick enough to completely hide the seamed, damaged, vinyl that was previously the brown, drab top.  It's going to look great in the playroom we are designing.

    After a couple of coats of paint and a shiny new top, this cocktail ottoman will be the perfect addition to our client's playroom. Now that's what I call, fun, frugal, and fabulous! (Note: after such hard work, this is no time for humility!) Stay tuned for the big reveal of the playroom project! WE.CAN'T.WAIT!

    Linking up with Creations by Kara!

    Creations by Kara

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    We had SO much fun this weekend installing a playroom for an AH-DORABLE little princess! Jacki & I (and the oh-so handy hubby, Patrick) went over Saturday morning and got to work. We kept some of the details secret so the reveal was extra special. If we had a film crew and producers, we could've had our own HGTV show for this one!

    We loved the room but we loved everyone's reaction to their new space the most!

    The room was being used as an office/guest room before we arrived on the scene.

    Our client wanted the room to function in several ways:
    • a playroom where multiple children could imagine and play
    • Ruby's arts and crafts area (creating, storing and displaying)
    • a place the family could watch tv
    • a place for overflow guests (when the guest room is full!)
    A few weeks ago we showed you our plan:

    Since it is a place the whole family will use AND Ruby is a sophisticated four year old, we didn't want it to come off as TOO juvenile. A room that will grow with Ruby as she does was essential. The trick was to design something that was bright, playful and FUNCTIONAL for everyone!

    Our budget was ample but we had a lot of ground to cover. It was a large room with multiple "zones".

    We started with paint. If you can do nothing else, PAINT! It makes a huge impact. We originally thought we would use two paint colors with one as an accent wall. With so many elements to fuse, it just ended up being easier to have one paint color and use accessories for dimension. The paint color we finally chose (after much hand wringing) was Benjamin Moore's Majestic Blue. Jacki is THE BEST at choosing paint colors and of course it turned out beautifully.

    Check it out! We're full service...we even vacuum!
    We planned to do most of our shopping at IKEA but knew we still didn't have enough room in the budget for a sleeper sofa and decent coffee table. 

    Enter our resident Craigslist troll (aka Jacki). 

    BEFORE we even got the homeowner's permission, we scooped up one of these in like new condition for less than half the retail price:
    We knew she would love it!
    Then Jacki found this ugly duckling and saw its inner swan!

    You can read all about the cocktail ottoman makeover here.

    With the major furniture pieces out of the way, we headed to IKEA. They have a lot of goodies that didn't break the bank.  We chose the Trofast storage system for toy and art storage,

     the Janette curtains,

    What can I say? We got cRaZy at Ikea!

    the Linnmon table with Vika Kaj adjustable legs for room to grow,

    and for seating around the arts and crafts table: the marius stools. A great value and the color was almost an exact match to the Majestic Blue wall color.
    We tied the room's colors together with the catalina cove rug from Pier 1. Bonus: It's indoor/outdoor so spills will clean up nicely.

    It was important to our client that ALL the arts and crafts gear have a proper home. A peg board with  by-gel rails and baskets and the bygel container cups worked perfectly. Look at all the cute colors the cups come in:

    I'm in love with all this organization!
    A spot to display masterpieces and corral stuffed animals. Mr. Squirrel makes sure everything is put in its proper place.
    The arts and crafts display area might be my favorite thing in the room. It's simple 1x2's cut to size and giant binder clips screwed into them. We found the inspiration for this project on Pinterest:

    And last but certainly not least...the dress up area! The room had an over-sized closet that fit the bill. The mirror came from Craigslist and got a coat of Krylon Citrus green spray paint.

    Some cute little hooks from world market to hang up hats and purses make this space fit for a princess...even the tee-ball-playing type.

    BONUS: You can close the doors after a hectic day of being a princess!

    I love all the special details! The vinyl tree is awesome and the art Jacki created is super sweet!

    Yes, if you're four, bunnies and turtles CAN live in trees!

    Jacki and I REALLY enjoyed the entire process but the BEST part was mom and daughter's reaction(s) to the room. While Mom squealed with excitement, our smallest client gave her seal of approval by putting the room to use immediately!

    High praise indeed!
    We would love to help you with your project! We have packages starting at just $50. Email us today and let's get YOUR party started!

    We're showing the linky love today with Make It Pretty Monday at The Dedicated House! I'd say this playroom makeover definitely qualifies as making it pretty!

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    This month's Better Homes and Gardens features a beautiful deck-turned-screened-porch reno and the star of the show (imho) is the porch swing. 

    Yes, the pic I snapped of my magazine (with my phone) is crappy but I went to THE END of the internet and couldn't find the original so you'll have to deal with this one.

    Jacki has been dreaming of naps on the porch for some time. She's even researched it extensively. (read: spent hours on the internet)

    As you can see, there are a ton of options out there. You can build from scratch or order the whole thing online. Since Jacki is married to a contractor, we know which option she chose!

    Part 1 of how Jacki got her groove back:

    (note: this does not involve Taye Diggs)

    Her covered back porch is long and narrow and she was dreaming of a space she could lie down, snuggle in and take a nap. A traditional porch swing wouldn't accommodate any snuggling so she convinced Patrick to build a bed swing.

    Yes, that is a chin-up bar. Jacki is wAYYYY outnumbered at her house.

    Patrick's (the handy hubby) plans were based on a twin mattress with additional room for pillows (of course!).  The mattress was ordered from Foam For You.  It was important to use Dacron which is fast drying. The splurge was the Sunbrella custom made cover for the mattress. No need to worry about fading or water damage here.

    Twin mattress with an outdoor fabric cover.
    Don't mind the chin up bar in the foreground.
    Traditional Swing Detailing

    With a heavy frame and a load of loungers, this bed can be heavy! If you don't want your bed to come crashing down, you should hire a skilled carpenter to make sure the ceiling is up for the job before hanging and test driving. Jacki happened to have a carpenter with mad skillz on hand.

    It's very important to quality control your work.

    Patrick used 1" manila rope (about a buck a foot) and weaved eye splices in the ceiling end of the rope. The other end slips through slightly oversize holes in the arms and through the side of the base frame. This end is secured with a simple overhand knot under the frame. The ends can be dressed up with lashing or left to fray a bit.

    Now that it is secured to the ceiling, we can get busy decorating it!

    Friends, this is what $200 worth of pillows looks like!

    Most of the pillows and accessories came from World Market. You can see the collection here.

    I love this picture of Nathan resting his broken arm. Jacki's grandmother made that afghan in 1974 in case you couldn't tell.

    The project isn't finished but we couldn't wait to let you see our plans for outdoor summer fun! Stay tuned for more pics of the completed porch bed swing. We still need to add some side slats and paint it of course. I'm thinking a charcoal gray would be nice. We're also working on a sweet discount with our friends at The Original Charleston Bedswing!

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    source unknown
    As I mentioned...we sold our house. We closed last week and the day before we closed, we bought another house.'s not finished until August. So, we're crashing at my parent's lake house. Really, life is sooo hard! While this isn't THE dream house it is a pretty fine place to rest our heads for sure. It's really cool that we bought at the perfect stage of construction for me to get to make some selections for the home. And when I say cool, I totally mean only for me--not the builder, bless his heart!

    The home is nestled in some trees so it is pretty shady inside. The one room that has enough light to balance a dark paint choice is the office. It is CALLED the dining room, but I won't be not-ever-using-it-yet-obsessing-over-decorating-it-as-a-dining-room. It will be an office space for me and also a place for the kiddos to do homework. As the first room you see when you come in the front door, it needs to be great!

    Navy is a classic, go-to color that is sophisticated and svelte. I love it. But, I'm kinda skeered! I've been scouring the internet for courage inspiration. It is one of the hot color trends in home decor for Fall 2013.

    I've been WEARING navy for years. As my friends will's a staple of my closet.  Can I infuse it in my decor?

    There are all sorts of navy inspired rooms on the internet and pinterest.

    We even found navy cabinets:

    Of course there are many nautical inspired pieces in navy home decor.

    Beautiful light!

    Now this is cozy!

    I'm digging the navy floor & door!

    There will be navy accents throughout the rest of the home so it definitely could work...if I am brave enough. Jacki is really pressuring me encouraging me to paint that room navy. She is a paint picking genius so stay tuned! Not sure what paint color I'll go with in there but I think I found a desk for the room--on craigslist of course!

    Hope you guys have a great weekend! Don't forget to follow us on instagram and twitter. And we would LOVE for you to "follow" our blog. We won't spam you...we promise! You can click "join this site" on the right side of the blog!

    Linking up today with The Dedicated House and Liz Marie.

    Liz Marie Blog

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    Have you noticed these intricate, drum-shaped, often perforated stools in home decor shots? Well, they are ceramic Chinese garden stools, and they originated during the Ming Dynasty more than 1,000 years ago. Once quite an expensive antique purchase, new, more affordable versions are available at just about every home decor store out there.

    A while back I was obsessing over a little "tufted" garden stool I saw in HGTV magazine. I wanted it in GREEN for my front porch, but it was not to be. Fortunately, I found it in blue and being SO versatile, it was the perfect accent in my bedroom next the settee I never sit on.

    Here is the little blue beauty next to the settee I never sit on in my bedroom.

    Casa-Diseno blog did a nice piece on these little jewels. Read about it here.
    1. Safavieh Thailand Elephant Garden Stool, Wayfair 2. Button Tufting Design Ceramic Garden Stool, Pearl River 3. Lemon Palmer Stool, Z Gallerie 4. Warwick Garden Seat, Williams-Sonoma 5. Gnome Stool by Kartell 6.  18″ Ceramic Garden Stool B Green 7. Faceted Ceramic Stool, PLANTATION 8. Ceramic Double Coin Mix Orange Stool9. Porcelain Garden Stool Blue White

    If you like terra cotta, then this one from Wisteria is sure to woo you. Wouldn't this be great out on the patio for extra seating or to hold a cold beverage?

    If you are looking for a little garden stool accent table but don't want to spend a fortune, I LOVE how Myra turned a dated little yard-sale-find into this beauty:
    Read about the fab DIY here.
    Building Simple had a makeover of her own that turned out great!

    One of our favorite bloggers, Emily Clark used a little white garden stool as an end table in her family room. What a refreshing change from the typical end table.
    House Beautiful

    These little guys are so versatile! They make great accent tables for a pop of color or texture and can be moved around anywhere in a room.
    This one's from Anthropologie.


     The idea of a garden stool under a console table is pure genius. Pull it out when you want an extra seat or table, tuck it away when you don't need it. Look at the impact the green makes in this space. That's what I call fabulous.

    I would love one of these in my bathroom, but let's be honest. I would just throw my bra on it. For those of you who live a bit more tidy-than-I, go for it!
    And now for my all-time-favorite.....

    I'm thinking our client's music room, could use one of these babies.

    I can't wait to see where Catherine can use one of these in her new house! Have you joined the garden stool posse yet?

    Linking up with The Dedicated House today.

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  • 06/20/13--05:44: A Second Chance to Shine

  • Sometimes Patrick stops at the Habitat Reuse Center on his lunch hour and occasionally, he scores some kind of awesome find. This time, he brought home this enormous iron carriage light that he thought was going to hang over the kitchen table. (That's why I'm the designer and he's the installer :)

    Um, yeah, did you see the size of this thing? For $65, it might be worth more than that in scrap metal. Seriously.

    Wrong shape for over the table, but I DID have an idea of where we could hang it.... the STAIRWELL!

    See these cheetah chairs? Yep, a Habitat find! $65. That seems to be a fabulous, functional, FRUGAL theme.

    The stairwell seemed to be the perfect place for the iron giant.

    I think it looks awesome, don't you?

    Today we're linking up with the following adorable bloggers:


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  • 06/21/13--05:34: A New Space to Decorate!

  • TGIF people! T-G-I-F! I'm happy the weekend is here! Well, almost. Hubby is on his way home from a week long business trip and I am SO ready to "let him spend some quality time with his kids". Not to mention I kinda missed him too!

    Before too much time passes I want you all to know that while we are homeless today, we have a home in the works! We sold our beautiful-yet-way-too-big-for-us home earlier this month and are spending the summer at my parents' lake house.

    Um, yea.

    Now before you start feeling too sorry for me, I will tell you our "homeless lake adventure" will come to a screeching halt when school starts at the beginning of August. Hopefully our new home will be finished and I can feed my kids something other than pop tarts from the back of the mini-van on their first day of school!

    As you can imagine, I have approximately 4,327 ideas swirling in my head on how I'm going to decorate the new place! I keep trying to talk to Jacki about my plans but she keeps droning on about the paying customers--how rude! Equally unfortunate...I am fresh out of storage space so I'm pinning ideas like crazy and saving my pennies. Of course I sold a bunch of stuff on craigslist so I've padded the home decor budget nicely. And, as soon as I unload the three storage units we have, I will sell some more stuff.

    While I will be reusing a lot of my stuff, we will need some new goodies because we are moving from a house with 10-foot ceilings to a house with 9-foot ceilings. And as we said earlier, decorating for 10 foot ceilings is a horse of a different color than decorating for 8 or 9 foot ceilings.

    We ended up making an offer when the window for making changes to finishes and options was just about to close. LUCKY ME! So, I did get to make a few changes. As the summer progresses, I'll go through room by room and dish the deets on what is already in place and my tentative plans for the spaces.

    For now, here is the floorplan:



    • I'm going to miss my first floor master dearly.
    • The master bedroom is ALOT smaller than my last master so I'll be ditching ALL my old bedroom furniture for an upholstered headboard

    Third floor:

    This space will be unfinished when we move in but we plan on finishing it soon so my hubby can have his office up there.

    So there you have it. Stay tuned for all my diabolical decorating plans....MWAHAHA!!! I hope everyone enjoys their weekend!

    We're linking up with Liz Marie, Recreate & Decorate, What's Shakin and The Dedicated House today.

    Liz Marie Blog

    Recreate and Decorate

    Shaken Together

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    We were recently invited to help a couple make their home office work as hard as they do. The space was one of the first things you see when you come in the front door so it has to be fabulous AND functional. They definitely called the right folks! The homeowners felt like they could implement the plan themselves but just needed a little help getting started. They chose our most popular package, where we design the room and you take the steps we suggest and make it happen.

    Let's look at the "before". You can see we had a large room with great bones: hardwood floors, decorative molding and two windows.

    The homeowners had a few inspiration pics that helped guide the design.

    Calm, cool colors of soft gray-blue, with pops of teal.


    They also wanted to incorporate these prints into the design:

    While working on a project for another client, we were inspired by this model home! We really liked the chairs in front of the windows. 


    Without further ado, here is the proposed layout:

    And, a close-up of the back wall area:

     Some of the elements included in the design:

    It all starts with a fresh coat of paint. If you have $30, you can paint. It will change your life. OK, I *may* exaggerate. But, it's the single most impactful thing you can do for a space. For these clients we chose Sherwin Williams Rock Candy. We discovered this fab paint while working on Catherine's new home.

    Once you've painted, start from the bottom and go up. This rug will come in next to ground the space and give it a cozy feel. 

    Mirrors flanking the message board over credenza. These were added because the room doesn't get a ton of natural light. The mirrors will reflect the light that is coming into the room to brighten the space.

    Another infusion of light on the back wall is this geometric beauty. This exact lamp was pretty pricy but our goal was the overall look of the lamp. This style is on trend right now so it shouldn't be too hard to find a more "frugal" version.

    Centered on the back wall is this credenza from Craigslist. Our suggestion is to have it lacquered for a modern look with a vintage vibe.

    Since this will be a his and hers office, two work spaces are needed. While a long desk with two spots for working is popular,  we didn't want them facing the wall (read: Jacki insisted they will NOT face the wall). This L-shaped desk configuration is fabulous, functional and it's IKEA so you know it's frugal.

    Drawer bases on either end of the desk for storage. 

    Trestle desk leg in the center of the structure for added design interest. 

    For additional storage and display space, several of these floating shelves above the desk will work nicely. The magazine holders (as seen in one of the inspiration pics) bring a clean, organized feel to the space.

    Now for that pop of color...accessories!!

    Of course we must "treat" the windows. With geometric patterns in other places in the room, a solid panel will do nicely!

    Another way to have light bounce: clear, glass finials on the curtain rod.

    The original plan called for two of these in front of the window. BONUS: They were in like new condition on craigslist. Unfortunately, some other lucky duck got to them before we did. Fortunately, Jacki is an internet troll guru and she found them on overstock. Not for the seriously discounted price but with the same, great style!

    And, every room needs a fab light! I love this modern find from Home Depot.
    Last, but not least... we suggested a french door for the opening. Without blocking any natural light, it keeps the kiddos corralled. 

    We can't wait to see this design implemented. It is going to be fabulous!!! What do you think?

    You may have noticed something like this on the side of our blog:

    It's a new way we're trying to spread the word about our little design shop and blog. We would really appreciate it if you would click on it. One click = one vote and you can vote once/day! The more votes we have, the more prominently our blog is displayed on their site. So, vote today and tomorrow and the next day too!

    Today we're linking up with the The Time Warp Wife. 

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    When the full face-lift is too much, try a little botox on the situation.

    These homeowners needed just that--a little freshening. Their kitchen got an updated new look. Here's a kitchen that our expert tilers spruced up over the weekend! 

    Ceramic tile is an excellent choice for durability and longevity, is impervious to moisture, can withstand hot and cold, doesn't rust and is rigid and durable. Sounds like the perfect material for kitchens and bathrooms; especially floors!

    Home Depot Lamosa Ceramic Tile, Beige 12 x 12.

    Can we see that before picture one more time?

    It's a neat little kitchen, it just needed a little upgrade.

     It has to get worse before it can get better. Here, the vinyl was removed and the floor prepped.

    Our installers like to use a commercial grade under-layment that creates a barrier between the tile and the sub floor. This prevents cracks in the concrete slab from causing the tile to crack. This client isn't going to have to worry about any cracked tiles. It's an extra step that will pay off in the long run. As they say, the devil is in the details.

    It's not quite as pretty without the grout, but still a major improvement.

    Could your kitchen or bathroom use some freshening? We'd be happy to give you a consultation and estimate. We look forward to hearing from you soon!

    Today we're linking up with The House of Hepworths. Head on over there and check out all the neat ideas being linked up!


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    Today we're celebrating our 100th post with a Homegoods picture frame giveaway! First of all, thank you. Thank you for following us and reading our crazy posts and commenting and encouraging us! We REALLY appreciate it and are enjoying all our friends, old and new!

    We thought we'd mark this milestone by celebrating one of 2013's hottest home decor trends--geometric patterns. 

    In all of our mad home decor shopping, we were at Homegoods this week and couldn't help but notice that geometric patterns were every way we turned! 

    Look at this fab interlocking chainlink chair! 

    At $249, that's a steal.

    There were towels, 

    and a ton of sheets!

    Country Living even has this DIY tutorial  for dressing up a plain, round mirror! 

    Phillip Jefferies Chain Wallpaper...if you're brave enough!

    And, it comes in NAVY!!

    If you're loving the chainlink but can't commit to wallpaper, try a stencil like this one.

    Today we're linking up with Liz Marie, a fellow North Carolinian and super-DIYer. Swing on over and check out all the goodies from across the blogosphere.

    Liz Marie Blog

    Last but not least, here's how to enter our giveaway for the cool HomeGoods frame:

    We're trying out a new way to enter our contest. We're *hoping* it's super easy; you'll have to let us know! There are multiple ways to enter so get clicking! The contest closes at midnight, July 3. 

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  • 07/02/13--05:00: An Office Space to Adore!

  • Happy Holiday Folks! So glad I live in this great nation and excited to have a few days with the fam to celebrate later this week! Before we go total R & R, let's discuss my latest obsession passion--putting together a few options for my new home.

    It's coming along nicely and I think we're about 5 weeks from the big day! Here are a few pics I snapped on a recent pop-in:

    Shoe Bench in the back entryway-LOVEEEEE!!

    Screened porch = my new bestie!
    Of course there are more pics but I'm holding out on you...for now.

    In my last post about the new hacienda, I mentioned that I won't use the dining room in the traditional sense, but will put it to work as an office. Jacki finally gave in to my nagging was nice enough to whip up this mood board for me.

    I am in LOVE. We told you earlier this year about the pantone of the year, EMERALD. I am totally digging it. And you know I love NAVY! They were meant to be together, don't you think?

    Jacki was bugging me encouraging me to paint the front room/dining room/home office navy, Benjamin Moore Hale Navy to be exact. But man, that is A LOT of dark wall space. I think I feel a little better with a neutral wall paint and major POPS of color!


    I think I'm just going to mull this fab mood board over for a bit but I have to say, I REALLY like it. I'd love to know your thoughts...

    Today we're linking up with Not Just a Housewife.

    And don't forget to enter to win our HomeGoods giveaway. There's only one day left. It's such a cute little frame and totally on trend with its geometric pattern!


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    Love your things, but just can't find a way to make them all work together? An interior redesign may be just what you need! One of our design services, an interior redesign, works with your existing furnishings and accessories, but we place them in a way that is right for your room.

    Last week we got to play around in this wonderful, light filled, sun room. Using the client's own furniture and accessories, we were able to make the room realize its full potential.  It just needed a little rearranging and some finesse in accessorizing.

    The owner hasn't lived in the home too long. When they moved, she just wanted to get the pieces IN the house and then became overwhelmed with furniture arrangement and decorating an ENTIRE house so she left it.

    While this isn't the best "before" pic, you get the idea. The furniture was along the walls and its position didn't invite folks to sit and stay for a glass of tea (notice I said glass, not cup--it's the south people!)

    Before the moving and shaking commenced, there were several guidelines we were asked to remember:

    • the main furniture pieces had to stay
    • many of the accessories had sentimental value 
    • the homeowners wanted clear, open walkways
    • the homeowner's hubby enjoys sitting in the room with his morning coffee and seeing their beautiful backyard (if there's one thing every woman knows about decorating, its to keep the man of the house happy!)
    This was a great project because we weren't starting from scratch, we were using what the homeowner already had and rearranging it in a fun, fresh layout. It never ceases to amaze me what a difference a fresh perspective can have on a space.

    We began by clearing the room. This was helpful because our visual field wasn't cluttered by what WAS in the space and gave us a bit of a clean slate to get started.

    The chest pictured below was sitting to the left of the end table. That meant it was the first thing you came to when you walked in the space. Therefore it blocked your initial view of the room and the yard. So we relocated it to the other end of the sofa.

    Originally, it had some books and other memorabilia in it. 

    Here's what it looked like after we moved it and filled it again!

    Our client had an amazing collection of hobnail glass. Some pieces belonged to her mother and others held special meaning as gifts or mementos from travels. With a piece here and there throughout her home, they were beautiful but together they are simply stunning!

    At one point we discussed painting the inside of the cabinet but we decided that wasn't necessary since these brilliant, blue pieces made the cabinet come to life!

    While we used the items that were in the room for most of our makeover, we did do a little shopping too. 

    The pictures over the sofa were too small for the long wall with 10 foot ceilings:

    We found this great peacock print at HomeGoods and paired it with a wrought iron piece the client already owned. 

    Now the whole vignette flows nicely. We selected a rug for the homeowner to purchase to tie it all together. 

    We also found this terrarium at HomeGoods and knew it would be perfect for a sunny spot brimming with plants!

    The love seat is angled toward the larger sofa to encourage conversation. When you enter this room, you know you're there for a visit! Note the walkway. We even measured to make sure you weren't squeezing through between the love seat and coffee table. The path is wider than the doorway so we were feeling pretty good about it!

    In addition to the peacock print, we added some powder blue pillows to bring out the blue in the cushion's floral print. We only had two pillows (four would've been nice but hey! It's HomeGoods, you get what you get and you make it work!) and a throw.

    Since the hubby of the home sits in this spot, we made sure the view was spectacular AND he had a place to sit his tasty beverage!

    May I hold your drink sir? Ribbit! Ribbit!

    After we finished rearranging her things and adding two pillows, a throw and a drink serving frog, we brought in the homeowner. She adores the space and so do we!

    If you need a fresh perspective at your place, give us a call! We'd love to help you adore your space too!

    Today we're linking up with The Dedicated House!

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  • 07/09/13--18:16: Under Construction!
  • Our site is under construction! Please bear with us as we make it more adorable!

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    While a lone tea cup or one piece of pottery may not say much, these inexpensive objects add up to a powerful statement en masse. While perusing Craigslist (a daily habit of mine), I came across a stack of Ford Magazines from the 1960's. I remembered seeing a magazine article with a grouping of framed "New Yorker" magazines and thought, "I can do that". 

    Ollie's had a closeout on 11x14 frames matted to 5x7 which was exactly what I needed. I think they were about $8 a piece bringing the total for 12 to under $100. If you don't have an Ollie's near you, I've found another good place for inexpensive frames is Big Lots.

    Don't they look great? The paint color is from Ace Hardware and is called Woodlawn. It's a soft gray blue.

     This formerly blank wall in my powder bath now makes a huge statement!

    Just like these magazine covers, our customer's vast collection of Fenton Glass (blue hobnail glass pieces) were special dispersed throughout her home, but gathered together, they created one stunning statement. 

    No matter your passion, tiny treasures or oversize artifacts, get those collections out so that they can gather compliments, not dust!

    Today we're linking up with House of Hepworths and the Whatever Goes Wednesday at Someday Crafts! Head on over and check out all the cool projects and crafts folks from around the blogosphere are showing off!
    Check out the ideas at The Shabby Creek Cottage too!


    Mom On Timeout

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    I've had crushes before, but it's rare that I fall, madly, deeply, stupidly (is that a word?) in love. Even rarer is falling in love with a can of spray paint. 

    When we were working on our client's playroom, we fell in love with Krylon's Citrus Green spray paint. It was REALLY hard to find and when I did score some (ignore the drug reference; but it IS like a drug), I bought all that they had.

    Note to Amazon: I love thee madly, but when I need a freakin' can of spray paint, you let me down!

    I was spray painting anything that wasn't nailed down like this giant whiteboard

    and this adorable mirror!

    This lead me on a hunt for another client that would allow me to use this wonderful bold color in their home. (Still looking in case you are interested!)
    I am bold enough to try it...

    This nightstand, which also serves as a magazine rack, in my beach cottage bedroom is chartreuse and it makes me smile every time I see it. If you'd like to see the whole house tour just follow the link. It was a gift from my cousin Stephanie who has a great knack for vintage style.

    The hunted interior's console table diy thrilled me to no end. Kristin has a fun design approach and you should hop on over to her blog and check it out. 

    Pinterest, chartreuse wedding tablescape.

    I don't know why, but I really want to plan a wedding. Of course, that would only be if the bride would let me use chartreuse. This palette of basil green, chartreuse green/yellow, blue and white is just drool-worthy. It reminds me of my other love, the Ikea Janette curtains.

    I am not a huge fan of pink; okay; I actually hate pink and do not own one single thing that is pink, however, I CAN appreciate a good pink, especially if it's raspberry pink. And paired with a chartreuse Smeg fridge? Um, yes, please. 

    What's your color crush?

    Today is my 40th birthday! Yes, I know, I don't look a day over 25, but really, I am 40. In honor of my birthday, we are linking up with The Dedicated House, Skip to my Lou, Sumo's Sweet Stuff, CraftoManiac Monday, Motivate Me Monday at Keeping it Simple and Mom 4 Real!

    Skip To My Lou Sumo's Sweet Stuff  Keeping It Simple

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  • 07/17/13--04:06: Playroom Update: Lighting

  • We brought you this crazy, awesome playroom design last month. We were so excited to design the room and absolutely thrilled about Mommy and daughter's reactions to the new space. We also discovered our secret love--chartreuse

    No matter how carefully you plan, there are some things that just seem perfect on (graph) paper and don't cut it in real life. This Maskros light was one of those instances. 

    Because the room was so large, we just knew that the 32" Maskros light was the ticket. However, once we got in the space with the giant orb, we knew it was too big. Thankfully, there was a 22" version of this lighting phenomenon. The takeaway is this: a) save your receipts and b) if you're buying from thrift stores or craigslist, measure twice!

    So, we headed back to Ikea and swapped it out. I think it works a lot better when you don't have to side step the light fixture to get from one half of the room to the other.

    Clearly, the adorable, art section is being put to good (read: frequent) use!

    I think the addition of the light fixture makes the room even more adorable!

    On a TOTALLY unrelated side note: I love their dog!
    Heidi, the giant schnauzer!

    Check out the size of those paws! The "paw" on the left is Patrick's and he's 6'3".

    Today we're linking up with Emily A Clark. How appropriate! She's doing a $500 Pottery Barn Kids gift card giveaway! Head on over and check out all the great kids spaces that have already linked up and enter for your chance to win!

    Kids Space Link Up

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    Whether your passion is tiny figurines or extra large old metal road signs, group them together and make a statement.

    When I saw this display of vintage swimsuits I actually squealed out loud. I MUST have them for my beach cottage built in 1960.

    Translation: I will ignore my children, obsess on ebay, not fix dinner, debate where to hang them, and generally do nothing else until my quest to find some is fulfilled. 

    A lone tea cup or solitary pottery piece may not say much, but en masse these objects add up to a powerful statement. 

    Vintage Milk Glass collection grouped together on a silver tray. Ahhh-May-Zing!

    Our client had several pieces of this incredible Fenton glass in various rooms throughout the house. When we gathered it all up and placed it in this open cupboard; POW!

    This is what the cabinet looked like before our interior re-design.
    I have a few of these vintage tole trays in my home, but nothing like these collections.

    My cousin, Stephanie used all black in her dining room and I'm crazy about them against the red backdrop. 

    Check out this great idea from Tim Melideo showcasing his passion for photography.

    Why didn't I think of this vintage brooch bouquet for my own wedding? Dang! 

    What kinds of collections do you have in your home? We'd love to hear about them, or better yet, see the photos! Post your photos on our Facebook page. 

    We're so thrilled to have been featured!

    We're also linking up with The Dedicated House and Shaken Together.

    Shaken Together

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    Summer is a time to shed the layers--clothing and home decor. Try these five, easy summer updates for a breath of fresh air in your home.

    When you were a kid, did your mom ever tell you to "think cool thoughts" as you complained of being hot?  One way to start is with your decor. Since we're at the end of summer (in retail-speak only) there are a ton of sales so now is a great time to make some updates without breaking the bank.

    One of the first things I would suggest for an adaptable interior is a neutral canvas. It is going to be difficult to blend your "pops" of summer or seasonal color with a crazy couch and wall paint! So, IF you're in to tasteful, seasonal decorating and you have one of everything in your favorite color (chartreuse??), you may want to start toning it down. Assuming you have that under control, here are our 5 picks for easy, summer updates!

    1.  Seasonal Curb Appeal:

    Try some cute potted plants or flowers and/or hanging baskets on your front porch (or stoop). They will instantly draw your eye to the front door! Fully shaded front porch? No worries, check out this awesome shade loving potted plant I just saw on pinterest! Don't forget to water, water, water in this heat. Dead plants are not fabulous! Trust me on this one.

    2.  A Welcoming Front Door:

    Choose a wonderful color like this yellow:

    That will keep you happy all year long!

    3. A Wreath & A Welcome Mat:

    As your guests are waiting for you to answer their knock, they're looking around and getting their first sense of your style.  I suggest keeping a wreath on your door. I think that *may* be a southern thing since a friend of mine from the midwest told me they only do that when someone dies. While that is a depressing thought, a nice wreath can keep you and your guests happy, without anyone dying! You can make your own or go somewhere like Michael's or AC Moore where floral designers can assist!

    Check out the one Jacki made for me for Valentines Day. I think she loves me!!

    Fact: no one feels welcome on a faded/worn out/half chewed by the dog door mat! Seriously, you can get one at Target (for you Frenchies, its pronounced Tar-jay) for less than $15. If yours fits into the above category, skip lunch out with your girlfriends and go get one. Like now. 

    4: Slipcovers

    White matches with almost anything. Add a couple of white slipcovered chairs to your dining space for instant brightening! 

    Check out this sweet spot from the 2008 HGTV Green Home:

    *Bonus: You can add pillows that will invite your guests to linger long after the meal is over!

    **Double bonus: You can throw them in the wash when your kids get crazy on enchilada night.

    5. Matelasse Coverlet:

    Heavy, dark, damask is for winter. Lighten up! If you have a heavier comforter or duvet, add a light, matelasse coverlet and some matching pillows. My personal style is to fold the heavier bed covering at the foot of the bed for layering and interest!

    Catherine's bed
    We go into more detail in our post on how to make an adorable bed.

    I hope these tips have inspired you to make some frugal, summertime updates around your place! Try to stay cool!

    Today, we're linking up with our peeps at The Dedicated House, Skip to my Lou, Sumo's Sweet Stuff, CraftoManiac Monday, Motivate Me Monday at Keeping it Simple and Mom 4 Real! Swing on over and check out all the cool ideas posted at these link parties!

    Skip To My Lou Sumo's Sweet Stuff  Keeping It Simple

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    Have a cramped dining space? A banquette can be your space savvy solution! It can be used as a casual dining spot, homework station, or a resting spot for reading the paper while sipping your morning coffee.

    From Pinterest

    When there's limited space to move a chair in and out, a stationary seat is the better option. This banquette fits snugly here, but doesn't appear cramped, as chairs most certainly would.

    I have an old headboard in my garage that I've been debating turning into a bench for my farm table. I love this one that I found on the Freddy and Petunia blog


    I especially like the look of a corner seating area with a round table. How cozy!

    This was the inspiration for Catherine's kitchen nook:

    And this is how it turned out:

    In case you can't commit to a true built in piece, there are other options. Like this curved, free standing piece from Overcourt.

    World Market also has a nice option; the Hayden bench:

    Whatever your size parameters, a built in banquette can be the answer to your decorating dilemma. 

    From: Style Carrot
    Hooking up with:

    The Girl Creative
    The Girl Creative

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