Thursday, April 23, 2015

Project Rip Up the Carpets

A little less than 2 years later and we finally got around to tearing up the carpets on our main floor and second floor landing of our split level home. My SIL took the girls for an overnight so that we were limited on interruptions to get the job done ;)

We knew there were hardwood floors underneath, so it was just a matter of seeing what kind of condition they were in when we were finished.

Here is where we started - beige carpets.

Old beige carpets...this was a gallery wall that I was working on for this room a few months ago.

Here we go...I was so excited to get these gross old carpets outta here! While I was driving the girls out to my SIL's Steve made some great progress...

This particular photo below really got me itching to do more - new trim, new paint color, possibly painting or restaining the banisters....isn't it funny how one project leads to several more?

Buh-bye beige carpets. Here are some of the trusty tools we handyman also recommended a tack puller for getting the staples up but I didn't get a chance to pick one up.

Overall the floors were in pretty good shape. There are some obvious fade marks from where a prior owner must have had an area rug, and there are a few other questionable spots but overall they're good.

After we got all of the staples up, we swept and used a wet/dry vac to get the rest of the dirt, dust, etc up. Then we wiped everything down and mopped the floors with Murphy's. I know I've been told that Murphy's is a no-no on wood floors but it works for us and we have a ton of it. (another project to note - the fireplace)

And here are a few photos of the "after" - enjoying the fruits of our labor.

So satisfying. And the best part...FREE. :) Now the wheels are spinning even more as I strive to get this main living space into a bit more order. 

And the best part - actually putting my feet up and marveling in our shiny "new" floors. Sweat equity at its finest.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Living Room-Music Room Local Project

I feel like I haven't posted in forever and I have so much to catch you up on. I've been fortunate to pick up more local clients and have enjoyed a wide array of challenges with each project.

One of my local projects that I started on a few weeks ago was this Living Room/Music Room.

My clients enjoy hanging out in this room with coffee, listening to music (including playing this pretty piano that you see) and entertaining. They were not looking for a full redesign but rather a way to freshen things up a bit. They had recently purchased the two medallion print armchairs that you see here and a few of the other key pieces of furniture would stay but the rest of the room was ready for a makeover.

Have you taken note of the walls? They had a rag type texture application very popular in the early 90s and the colonial blue trim was also dating this room (I actually love a colonial blue in the right setting). Updating these walls would be HUGE.  Ready for this....

Look at the difference with just the walls and trim getting painted! I had gotten a text message from my client that she loved the color (whew!) but I was blown away when I got to see this in person. And just so you don't have to scroll up and down :)

The walls were painted BM Quiet Moments (1563) and it looks beautiful. It's a really nice blue-green and so complimentary to the entire room. It really makes not only the piano pop and really look stunning but the lighting even comes alive (which is hard to see in these photos).

It was a cloudy, dreary day so these photos are a bit dark. You'll see more photos soon. Now we're working on new window treatments, and we're also working on getting a console and art on the far wall (not pictured).

And you may remember a few months back, I did a preview of a combined Living Room/Play Room. The rug is in and we're waiting on the sofa and armchair to get delivered. The rug looks fantastic! While we're waiting on furniture to arrive, this bay window that you see below got an update.

Different angle, but you get the idea. I recommended a relaxed roman shade for the bay window and it came out really well. This window faces the front of the house so they wanted these are fully functional shades that they can move up and down. 

Well I hope to keep the updates coming more frequently. Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Simple Styling

It's no secret that I enjoy creating vignettes around my house. If the light is good and I have a cup of coffee then there's a high probability that I'll be tinkering with a shelf, mantel, or table.

My advice today is this...the most simple vignette can sometimes be the most beautiful and appealing.

I picked up a new seventy-nine cent basket about a month ago at one of my favorite thrift stores (interesting baskets really appeal to me) . It was an interesting shape and a pretty color so I knew I'd be able to make it work somewhere - either in my home or in a client's home.

I stacked a few books (on top of our laptop), placed my new ceramic vase on top, and then set my new sculptural basket next to it. Simple, easy, pretty vignette. I just like how all of this really works together yet still highlights my treasured framed photos of the girls on the wall :)

It's as easy as that. By varying the height and the textures, I've created an interesting look to this console table in our living room.

And speaking of styling, I've added a few of my styling photos to my Portfolio page. Check them out if you get a chance and let me know what you think. 

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Big Girl Room Updates

Just about 2 years later and I'm still working on my oldest daughter's room...we're about 75% there until I can consider this one "done" and hopefully get it photographed properly.

I wanted to bring you up to speed on where we started and where we're at now.

Here is my inspiration board that I put together April 1st, 2013 (we were getting ready to move and I was pregnant with Allison) - I wanted to use blush pinks and soft blues. Both colors that are feminine but work well with neutrals.

My initial spark of inspiration was that bowl of ice cream, the wedding reception at the barn, and the Botany fabric by Thomas Paul for Duralee fabric shown at the top left.

I'm pleased to say that I've pretty much stuck to this game plan. A few tweaks here and there which is part of the design process but overall I'm really happy how things are shaping up.

Her bedding has been done for a while. I kept it really easy - I got the Jenny Lind-style headboard on Craig's List for $10.00 and the white patchwork coverlet is from Target (love this coverlet - it's worked so well but still very age appropriate) this one is similar. I also picked up a few of the pillows a while ago and recently added a new little pillow that I couldn't resist.

Isn't that house pillow cute? It was handmade by Tadpole Creations.  

And then a few weeks ago I decided to have the dresser and nightstand painted by Dana.

Here is a before photo of the dresser. This dresser was given to us by my sister-in-law and the size is just right for Sheila's room. It was my nephew's before they handed it over to us. I love the detail on the side of the dresser and you won't see it yet but it has a pretty curve at the base too.

You can see the old sports knobs on the left there next to the new knobs I got at Home Goods for a huge bargain. The 4-pack of knobs was $7.99!! I couldn't resist and they had 2 so it all worked out perfectly. And I was pleased to be able to bring it a little dose of black and white to the room. I got that cute elephant lamp at a thrift store for $10.00.

And here is a photo of the dresser that I snapped the day after Dana delivered it back to us.

Dana was really great to work with and made the process so easy for us. I can't wait to finish up the room and get some good photos taken to show you. It's coming together - stay tuned! :)

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

New Britain Project - Part 1

When I meet with new clients, I always like to get a tour of their home to gauge their color and design preferences. I also like to spend some time with them chatting about likes, dislikes, hobbies, wants, needs, etc, etc.  I also take my notes in a profile form like you'll see below, so I figured I'd go with it for this post :)

New Britain Project Profile

Family of 4 with 2 young children (a girl and a boy) and a dog and cat

Spending time at the beach in the nice weather, playing games, crafting, coaching, music, cooking/dining, having coffee, entertaining. Color preferences are blues, greens, and earth tones. They also like stripes, plaids, paisley patterns.

This family struggles with what I find to hear a lot...they know what they like but they're just not sure how to pull it all together or where to start. We're starting with their living room/play room and dining room (since the living room/play room flows into the dining room). They use this area to entertain especially around the holidays when they have both families over to their house. They need additional seating but they also need the pieces to be moveable/flexible so that they can be interchanged when the need arises. They also needed a color plan, meaning that the color plan I come up with will help them with other rooms throughout their home to create color flow.

Additional seating
New rug
Window treatments
New sofa (to replace existing)
New armchair (to replace hand-me-down glider)
Additional lighting

Overview of Rooms

This is the living room/play room as you walk in. Right now, the room is mainly used for the kids to play in but the adults also like to hang out in here as well - read, drink coffee. So we're going to create a nice balance for them.

You can also see the big bay window that is in need of window treatments - roman shade, blinds, something to soften it up a bit but also create privacy as well.

When they moved into the house, they had their floors redone and most of the rooms painted. This room and the dining room are painted SW 7683 Buff. It looks yellow in these photos but it's actually very creamy and a really nice color to work with so no need for repainting. 

Below is the dining room that is adjacent to the living room. We're going to be replacing the existing panels with longer, lighter panels to brighten up this room. I also suggested removing the tablecloth and doing placemats or a runner.

The Plan

I had the pillows situated on the sofa for presentation purposes but moved them to the sides so that my clients could also see the sofa - and I never moved them back :) This is design plan A where I used a colorful rug to set the mood of the room. We're going for rustic/contemporary with a touch of beachy - if that makes any sense.

And here is design plan B...pillows are situated on this sofa and look SO GOOD.

This plan is a bit more neutral, mostly due to the rug, but you can see how the look we are going for is still being accomplished through those pretty pillows and ottomans that can be moved together or apart depending upon what they're doing that day.

Any ideas on what plan they decided on??

I'll be back tomorrow with Part 2 of this project overview and some more info on what I presented.

I'd love to hear what you think of this plan that I presented to this fun family.

Thanks for reading as always!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Holly's Favorite Finds

If you follow me on Instagram, then you know that I've started a hashtag #HollysFavoriteFinds to tag those things that I see and want to share because it's just too good not to share with all of you.

I'm bringing that over to the blog - sharing those items that catch my eye that I think you might love too.

As you may know, one of my passions is supporting independent artists and local artists whenever I can. The time, talent, effort, love, joy, pain that goes into an item is really quite special. I know that we all have our own taste in art, accessories, decor, but the items below are ones that caught my eye and maybe one (or more than one) will strike a chord with you as well.

Clockwise from top right:

Therese Marie is just rocking and rolling out there in Kalamazoo. I love the creativity that goes into every pillow she makes. Classic stripes, grommets, and a whimsical fabric = FUN! I love that Therese builds in multiple looks to her pillows. You can style this pillow on the side, or you could turn it to have the stripes at the top or the bottom - it's up to you. And that is what I call a great buy. Nice work Therese.

I had discovered Shannon's shop over the holidays and loved all of the stationery and note cards she had listed. There's nothing quite like getting a card or note in the mailbox. I thought these "Hello" notecards were really pretty and I loved the vine detail Shannon included in the design.

Susan introduced these brass wall hangings to her shop and they are so unique and so pretty. I've added one of these to my wishlist for someday along with a pillow and a throw as well. Susan's use of pattern and texture are so unique.

Katrina's shop, Salt and Ginger, has become one of my favorite Etsy vintage shops. I usually browse once a week or so to see if there is anything new. I thought this ceramic fish was really cool and would be a fun object to add to a stack of books or on a shelf.

And the pretty peach birds print is by Amber Alexander, whose work I've featured on the blog before. Amber captures nature beautifully and I love how she gives personality to some of the creatures that she paints.

Hope you enjoyed this round up!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Local Family Room Refresh

I've picked up more local work lately which is really exciting. A family that we are friendly with in our neighborhood asked for my assistance with their family room. This family has great style and knows what they like, but just needed an extra set of eyes to guide them in their decision-making. And they are super motivated so there has been a lot of progress in the past few weeks.

If you follow me on Instagram, then you may have seen a few of these but this post will give more detail for you and will allow me to document the process a little more for me and for them.

You will also note the difference in the lighting and quality of the next few photos. The first photo below is my iPhone photo taken at night and the two photos below were taken by the homeowner who is a really great photographer (bonus!).

The walls, wood panel ceiling, and all the trim are all getting painted (including all windows and doors). The room has a stone wall that you can see in the photo above that is a really nice feature that adds some natural texture. The floors are a pinky-beige ceramic tile that are being replaced by hardwood floors. The wood that was chosen will transition nicely with the wood that you see there that leads into the kitchen. 

The photos above and below give you a good idea of the elements that are staying and what is going to be changed out. Like I mentioned above, the walls, ceiling, windows and doors are all getting painted. The leather recliner that you see above has been given the boot already and a new sofa with chaise is going to be replacing the sofa and chair that you see above.

The doors leading to the patio have been painted and we decided that it looked great (and much more open) without the grids so they are going.

The fireplace is getting a makeover as well. It has been painted and the tile that was on the surround matched the tile on the floor - these motivated homeowners have already chiseled that off and are excited to get that changed out (decision still needs to be made on what will go in there).

Here is a progress photo of the new paint color and a preview of how GREAT the trim looks painted.

And just so you don't have to scroll up/down/up/down - here they are next to one another...AMAZING the difference already. 

Fist pumps right?! They are doing an awesome job. Look at how the trim pops now and that built-in shelf there was screaming for some attention - looks fantastic. And in case you were wondering, window treatments are going to be added as well - just still need to make some decisions.

I had stopped over the other day to see the progress and I had to snap this one before I left...this is the view from the dining room into the family room - look at THAT!!!  Looks so good and it's not even done yet. Not to mention the house has beautiful natural light throughout the day.

And how fun is their dining room chandy?

I hope you've enjoyed the progress and will post more updates soon.

I also had an EPIC thrifting/antiquing run the other day. I went to 2 new-to-me spots that did not disappoint and were filled with treasures - will post on that soon as well.

Have a Happy New Year!