Dec 1, 2014

gift wrapping inspiration in blue + white

i have been busy the last couple of weeks! i was contracted to scheme up a design direction for a fun center...yep, a fin center. the kind with an arcade and party rooms and laser tag and a bowling alley! no worries---there won't be any crazy, psychedelic clown carpeting and primary colors anywhere in the space. i conjured up a muted yet whimsical color scheme, with just enough touches of metal, wood and concrete to make it feel grounded.  if you want a peek at the board that i pulled together, you can see it on my instagram feed!

anyway, the whole project got me thinking a bit "outside MY box". i tend to gravitate to neutral, dark color schemes with lots of texture and simple, classic lines, but i honestly find almost all interior decor styles appealing in their own way. when jennifer at the pink pagoda asked for participants to link up to her blue and white bash, i thought that it would be fun to pull together some inspiration for one of my favorite holiday activities---gift wrapping!

click here for all sources.

in case you need some wrapping inspiration, you can click here, or enjoy these:

to see more blue + white inspiration, head back to the pink pagoda blue + white bash to see what others have posted!

have a great monday,

Nov 17, 2014

design plan: neutral, mid-century traditional living/dining room

this client was a referral from a previous client. we worked on both her living room, and adjacent dining room in a single pinterest board + phone consultation. the living room was pretty much a blank slate, but she planned on keeping her dining table, chairs and an existing buffet in the dining room.

she already had some great art in her living room, and a pair or fabulous mid century wood lamps, and after 17 years, she was finally getting ready to say goodbye to her hunter green leather sofa and overstuffed recliner. whoo-hoo!!

after looking at her inspiration pictures, i knew that she was ready for a BIG change!
she totally jumped on board, and always picked the most modern of all the choices i presented to her. LOVE that!

here is the design plan i came up with:

have a space in your home that is still sporting a puffy hunter green leather sofa? 
lets chat about that.
email me at, and lets make some lovely changes in your home!
(and if that hunter green leather sofa HAS to stay, lets at least figure out a way to make it look....better!)

Nov 13, 2014

before + after: basement rec room (the power of an hour)

often, clients will contact me in the middle of a remodel. there is something about seeing those ripped apart/raw walls, that prompts many people to finally feel "ready" for some professional design guidance.

this particular client was at the beginning of finishing a basement rec room. this space was to function as a play/toy and game room, as well as a movie watching area for the family. she needed some guidance narrowing down ideas for finishes and furniture layout.

here are the before pictures:
typical unfinished basement stuff...

i created a pinterest board filled with ideas and possibilities, and we spent our hour long phone call talking about:

*creating a functional layout despite the structural columns, access door to hvac system, and bathroom.
* paint colors and wall treatments (stripes, stencil, pop of color in the small nook under the stairs) to bring life and whimsy to the space
*furniture layout + space planning of future kitchenette
*tile ideas for bathroom
*adding large,  frames with stylized movie posters

 simple ikea bookcases function as storage and a seating area. once a table added, this area will be a place for games and crafts.

the striped wall and custom wall letters add a sense of whimsy.

the birch wall stencil and carpet add texture.

the movie posters are just the right balance between fun and chic.

the space under the stairs was painted a kelly green, and gold dots were added. an inexpensive home depot light, and a bean bag chair were added to create a reading nook.

how cute did the bathroom turn out?

 a special thank you to my client, who never lost site of the vision of the finished basement, throughout the construction, and for sending me these great AFTER images!

interested in working tougher on a space in YOUR home?
email me at to get started!
you can see more spaces i have worked on here.

Nov 6, 2014

ORC finale: a teen bedroom in peach + mustard is reveal day for the linking participants in the one room challenge!
(thank you so much to linda at calling it home for hosting this incredible event. there are lots of rooms getting finished al over america because of this challenge! if you haven't already checked out the featured designers, you should do so! there are some INCREDIBLE rooms!)

i participated in the spring round of ORC with my mini office. this time, i opted to redesign my daughter charlottes bedroom.

you can see the progress here:
see more here:
week 1
week 2
week 3
week 4 
week 5

we have moved 3 times in the last 6 years. each time we moved, i would tell my daughter, charlotte, that i would decorate her room...and i never did.
something always got in the way. money, time, and the fact that we were renting made keeping my promise next to impossible.

when we moved into our new home about 17 months ago, i once again, promised charlotte that her room would be among the first rooms we worked on. i have since finished gradys bathroom, the girls upstairs bathroom, and my office,  and have received some "NUDGING" from charlotte that it was time to work on her room.

the timing for this project worked out perfectly too---since she is an official teenager as of last saturday! happy 13th birthday to my little cutie! thanks for your patience!

anyway, enough blabbing. 
lets get to the amazing AFTER pictures, taken by the talented sara boulter!

 i worked with charlotte on every detail of her room....from the color scheme, to the accessories, to the sheets on the bed. i wanted the room to be a place filled with things that she loves. this room truly is a room that is HER...youthful, FUN, a bit whimsical and spirited, yet ordered.

the color scheme we chose was inspired from these still life paint by numbers that my grandmother gave me before she passed away. i was intrigued by the mix of neutral tones with splashes of coral and mustard. at first, i was planning on using coral with mustard as the main color scheme, but after looking at fabric samples, it was clear that charlotte gravitated towards softer, peachier tones.

charlotte is a jewelry freak. she loves her earrings and necklaces! the acrylic earring organizers, ceramic containers and metal jewelry tree give her a grown up, chic way to display her treasures.

new knobs and a fresh coat of paint freshen up this hand me down dresser that we have had for years.

 a favorite family phrase, coined by my husband was stenciled onto some plain mat board and put in an ikea ribba frame.

the acrylic cubes hold favorite souvenirs from trips to the beach.
the handprint was molded when charlotte was1 year old. (sniff* sniff*)

the oversize cork board was made with a $10 frame, some fabric and a sheet of sound board from the hardware store. (tutorial coming soon)

the desk is from target. i removed the legs and replaced them with some metal ones, and painted the drawer fronts. the chair is vintage, reupholstered in a velvet that i found on etsy.

the nightstand is from ikea. the robert abbey brass wall sconces were purchased on ebay for a fraction of the retail price.

the bed is the brimnes daybed from ikea. we added side boards and a headboard, with a pagoda-inspired headboard to totally transform it.
(and and when i say "we" i mean my husband allen---he jokingly suggested that i should rename the one room challenge the one room chaALLENge!)

the canopy was hung from the ceiling for maximum drama. "we" installed a cleat/board on the ceiling...the curtain hardware for the side panels was mounted to it, and the valance was velcro-ed on the front. the sheers are hung from a tension rod, mounted between the two side of the valance boards. (tutorial coming)

the tie backs were crafted from 3 hardware store elements..chain that was spray painted, a brass wall hook and a brass clasp.

this nightstand is the lack coffee table, also from ikea.

new adjustable pulls really help disguise the ikea daybed!

the bookcase was custom built, and hold a little surprise behind it. the painting above it was done by my mother.

it swings open to reveal a secret little hideout!

the metal birds add a whimsical touch.

hope you enjoyed the tour!

wall color: revere pewter, hc-172, benjamin moore

trim color: swiss coffee, lc-45, benjamin moore

ceiling color: winds breath, oc-24, benjamin moore

ceiling light: philipe ceiling light, ballard designs (no longer available)

bed: ikea brimnes daybed with side and back panels added. hardware-deltana adjustable pull

nightstands: ikea lack coffee table, ikea malm 2 drawer nightstand with pulls from chinese brass hardware added

desk: target threshold campaign desk in mid tone. drawers painted swiss coffee. legs: 3 pin steel hairpin legs from blue ridge metal works etsy shop

wall sconces: robert abbey articulating wall sconce, purchased on ebay

valance and canopy panels: fabric: judy linen in "bubblegum" from grey line linen, trim: vintage scalamadre; purchased on ebay, fabricated by K+R bedding.

sheers: ikea lil panels

dresser: already had-painted swiss coffee, knobs: anthopologie (no longer available), pulls: a look in the attic

duvet: seersucker duvet, target.

mirror: thrifted

paint by numbers: gift from grandmother

chair: vintage, given to me by friend. upholstery-same as bolsters

cream pillows with coral ribbon trim: custom made by th fabricate etsy shop

les touches pillow: beckwith textiles etsy shop

bolster pillows: ikea (no longer available) upholstered in a velvet from etsy, with a faux leather welting, purchased from joanns

bulletin board: DIY, frame: downeast outlet, fabric--lacefiend kai slub in apricot

tray on nightstand, cream fur pillows, shag rug, all frames, raffia tray on nightstand, wood box on night stand, bust on dresser, hashtag wall light, acrylic desk organizer: home goods

metal tree necklace: west elm

acrylic cubes: CB2 format cube

large frame: ikea ribba frame

coral/gold agate frame: joss and main

winged bookends: joss and main

metal birds: alice lane home collection

bookcase accessories: metal urchin, diamond glass terrarium: hobby lobby

head vase: etsy

woodland creatures ceramic container: wisteria (no longer available)

metal stools: restoration hardware (no longer available)