Tuesday, November 26, 2013

What's In Store: HomeGoods and Tuesday Morning

Thanksgiving is almost here, and I know you're probably busy getting ready for it. Perhaps you're feeling a bit overwhelmed or stressed out?

Maybe a little virtual retail therapy will help? I thought so :)

Here are a few things that caught my eye at HomeGoods the other day.

You will notice I photographed quite a few blue and white objects, as I was shopping with my mom's dining room in mind.

These tufted storage ottomans were available in red and brown, too.

That black and gold mirror was calling my name. I had to ignore him as part of my 12 step program for mirror addiction.

This was a pretty substantial ginger jar. I came home with two smaller ones. They don't have a large selection of them, but I've scored 4 in the past two weeks.

Sorry about the blurry iPhone pics. I'm sure someone must have been shoving me in the back with a cart when I snapped this one.

Another sleek, hip mirror.

These little ottomans looked fresh and fun.

If you need a plaid blanket, this is the time to get one. I searched for months when I needed one for my son's tween room. Now they are everywhere. So it goes.

Lest you think I only shop at HomeGoods, I also hit the local Tuesday Morning yesterday. I find it to be very hit-or-miss, but I have found a couple of items there lately that I am totally digging.

I didn't take a picture, but I bought two seagrass doormats for seven bucks each. Score!

Also, I was surprised and delighted to see these..

Kantha quilts for $39.99.

I've been searching high and low for a kantha, but sadly, central Indiana is not an international shopping mecca. It's hard to find vintage ethnic textiles. Who woulda thunk that Tuesday Morning would be so cutting edge?

I liked the pattern of these dog beds. I didn't get one though. Last time I brought home a new dog bed, Lucky peed all over it. This is my life, people.

Well, I hope that little shopping trip calmed your nerves. Now you can get back to your Thanksgiving preparations.

Hang in there! We'll be in a food coma soon enough :)

Friday, November 22, 2013

House Tour: Kitchen

I was on such a roll for awhile with my House Tour posts. I'd taken you through the foyer, the living room, the dining room, the sunroom and the family room.

Then I sort of pooped out. And, I've been feeling guilty and like a bad blogger.

So, today I'm alleviating my guilt and resurrecting the House Tour series with the next room, the kitchen.

This is how the kitchen looked when we bought our home six years ago...

It would have been a deal breaker if we didn't totally love the house.

At the time, we were living in a house where we had just made over the kitchen into a light, airy space with new appliances and granite countertops. So, dark wood, 20 year old appliances and floral wallpaper wasn't exactly on my wish list.

But I had fallen hard for this house, and knew that a few cosmetic changes would make a world of difference.

Here's what the kitchen looks like today...

I've written about our kitchen before, as it is a perfect example of the power of paint. The only changes we made to this room were removing the wallpaper and painting.

The walls were painted Sherwin Williams "Comfort Gray," and the wood trim was painted white to match the trim in the rest of the house.

We still have the dark wood cabinets, 20 year old appliances, and the barstools the previous owners left here :)

I've added a few accessories. I framed some of my favorite pics from my trip to Germany and France. I like to look at them while I'm cooking, and they serve a purpose of hiding wires… unless of course you're zooming in on them at eye-level to take a picture. Then they're not hiding the wires too well :)

I love having a table lamp on the kitchen counter. I picked this one up at Target. Our kitchen has about 800 canned lights, which is helpful for seeing what's on the stove or landing small aircraft, but sometimes I just want a soft light. If you don't have a lamp in your kitchen, I highly recommend it.

Maybe I'm strange, but the soft glow of lamplight makes me happy.

Our old farmhouse table stands up to all kinds of abuse. We've had it for more than 10 years, and it may have been the wisest investment ever. The kids have added lots of "character" to it over the years. If it ever starts looking too beat up, I lightly sand it and apply a little wax to the top and we're good to go for a few more years.

A new light fixture is on my wish list. I've never really been crazy about this one, but it hasn't been a priority.

We removed the carpet from the back stairway and stained the treads. We also painted the handrail black.

See that dinosaur in the island?...

Can't lie and say I love the stovetop. But, I have to say the Corian countertops have been a breeze to care for, and the simple white stands the test of time.

So, there's the kitchen for ya! A remodel will take place at some point in the future, but for now, it works for us. Even if it does take 30 minutes to boil a pot of water.

Thanks for coming along on the tour. I'll try to get the next room posted soon.

If you missed the other rooms in the House Tour, you can click on the links below:

Family Room
Dining Room
Living Room

Have a super fab weekend!!

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Dining Room Project

One of the easiest ways to update a dining area is to re-cover dining room seats with new fabric. All you need is fabric, scissors, a staple gun and a couple of hours. Oh… and patience. Especially if you are a perfectionist and you're working with a patterned fabric :)

My mother wants to make some updates to her home, and we're starting in the dining room. Dining nook might be a more appropriate term, as their home has an open concept floor plan.

Here is what we started with…

Not bad, but not earth-shatteringly exciting either. The walls are painted a pale green that doesn't do much for a room that is lacking natural light.

We decided to make over the room in blue and white.

Just changing the seat fabric has considerably lightened and brightened the space. We added some ginger jars to the top of the buffet. I spotted them at HomeGoods, and even though I really wanted to keep them for myself, I knew they'd be perfect for my mom's room.

This is just the first step. Those green walls will soon be history. I'll be back to show you our progress.

Oh, and in other news….

My neighbor's mudroom is well under way. The tile is being laid today, and I'm going to put some paint samples on the wall this afternoon. I'll snap some pics while I'm there.

And an update on my silk drapes…  I have sent them back to the workroom to have them shortened so that they only have a 3-4 inch puddle. I think that will allow me to leave them hanging freely, but not feel like I'm living in a ballroom (or a circus tent!). 

Unfortunately, I won't have them back until Christmas (hopefully!).  So much for decorating the dining room right after Thanksgiving :(

Happy Hump Day!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Mudroom Design Board

I'm so excited to be working on a mudroom design for our good friends. They live a few doors down from us, and have decided to add a mudroom to meet the needs of their busy family of five.

We decided to use space from the garage, knock down a wall in the current laundry room, and connect the two spaces into a combined mudroom/laundry room.

This layout was the most practical, as they were only using the cabinets to store paint, and the refrigerator can easily be moved to another part of the garage. They'll have access to the garage and to the backyard from the new mudroom.

This is the design board I put together ...

We decided on Restauri Porpora ceramic tile for the floor. We will use just the 6 x 20 tiles in a  brickwork pattern.

For a look that is similar to this…


We chose the tile because it was the only one in the entire store that the homeowner liked. Let's just say that shopping is not her favorite pastime. So when she actually showed an interest in this tile, I figured it was a sign :)

Most of her house is decorated in reds and golds, so she obviously is drawn to a warm color palette. I think the tile will blend nicely with the hardwood floors that lead to the mudroom, and it will also hide dirt … which is pretty key in a mudroom!

I'll keep you posted as the project progresses.

Have a great day!!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Pink Silk Drapes… A Sneak Peak

Good Monday morning!! Hope your week is off to a great start.

My dining room window treatments were installed last week, and I thought I'd give you a sneak peek at them.

The windows had been naked for way too long. Which may have caused some dinner guests to be blinded by the sun.

I chose to finally dress them in bamboo blinds and pink silk with a greek key trim on the leading edge.

They're not ready for a full reveal yet. Some of the rings were backordered, so we had to make do with temporary ones that don't quite match.

Also, I haven't decided exactly how I want to "arrange" them. They were perfectly pleated when they arrived, but that wasn't the look I wanted. Right now they puddle quite a lot, and I'm debating about having them shortened to "trouser kick" length.  Not sure if I want to have them free-flowing or pulled back. So, I'm still messing around with them.

I like both of these looks...

Just need to live with mine for a bit, and see which look better fits the room.

Have you ever had silk drapes? What do you think… pull 'em back or let 'em loose?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Styling A Media Console

Chances are you've got a television in your house. And, chances are that if you live with a man, you've got a BIG TV.

That may be a gross generalization.

However, I have noticed that most men think bigger is better (ha ha). Apparently, when watching sports they need to feel that they are actually on the field with the team.

I live with men. Therefore, I live with a big box on my wall. Do I love it? I'll admit that when I'm watching TV, I enjoy seeing what I'm watching. From a design perspective, I can't say I'm particularly fond of it. I've tried to take the focus off the TV by styling the media console with things that are a bit more pleasing to the eye.

Our TV floats on the wall above the console, and decorating that little bit of space between the two can be challenging.

Shopping my house, I gathered some items that weren't too tall or too busy. I used my favorite West Elm vases.

I think my poor succulent could use a little water :)

The box in the middle holds remotes, DVDs, and other odds and ends that I might find on the floor and need to stash away quickly. I just looked inside and found 2 decks of cards, a lego shark, a mini-football and a plastic Easter egg. All the normal things you'd expect :)

It helps to pause the Travel Channel on a beautiful beach scene. Much better than a black box.

I'd like to pretend that TVs are unnecessary, but then how else would I watch my favorite shows? (R.I.P. Breaking Bad).

Is your TV in a cabinet or wall-mounted? How have you decorated around it??