Monday, April 28, 2014

Moody Vintage Chic Office/Reading Room

We wrapped up the Habitat/ReStore house tours this past weekend, so time to share some photos of my Moody Vintage Chic Office/Reading Room.

A special thank you to Jill Schardt Photography for taking these photos for me.

I have so many little anecdotes to tell you about this room. For one, I'm in love with the animal print pillow that you see below. I wanted to keep the pattern to a minimum in the room but I knew I wanted a dose of animal print, so a pillow to jazz up the chaise was the perfect add. And trimming it out in an emerald green was the icing on the cake. A big thank you to Therese Marie Designs for the execution of this fabulous pillow cover (that I get to take home with me - weeeee!!!)


The painting that you'll see in the photo below was the basis for my color palette. And together the painting and the chaise were my starting points for this room. As soon as I saw the chaise I knew I wanted two main zones - a reading nook and a desk/work space.

The fabric on the chaise was a little mousy but it worked. And I used Rub N Buff on the frame of the floral painting to give it one continuous gold tone. Before it had a lot of black in it and appeared dated but the Rub N Buff really gave it the look I wanted.


I envisioned this space for a young female design professional. A space to relax and unwind, but also a room that she could work in and create.


After seeing how much light the room got in the afternoon, I dabbled with going really dark on the walls - specifically a dark blue. And dark walls I did. I'm SO glad I went dark - it was a key element to the room.


I love the fun details of the desk wall. I used a hanger from ReStore and sprayed it gold to hold fabric swatches. And I found a portable ironing board that I also sprayed gold and used mini clothespins to hang pieces of inspiration. The vintage lamp and milkglass vase are both my own.


The heart banner was made out of a music book that I found at ReStore. The mother who will be living here eventually mentioned how much her and her son loved music, so this was a nod to their favorite past-time (as well as the "Isn't She Lovely" print shown above that I made using leftover animal print fabric and a downloadable font).




The desk, chair, acrylic tray, letter holder, and small organizer were all ReStore items.

I have so many more photos and details to share with you, but I thought I'd share these photos that Jill took first since these are the best shots.

After wrapping up the open house on Saturday, I had time to reflect on the experience. Not only am I so proud of the space that I created, but I'm also pleased that I stuck to my design beliefs of creating a beautiful, personal space using items that you already own mixed with "new" items. This was a fun exercise in using my technical skills along with a lot of creativity.


Friday, April 25, 2014

A Quick Tour of Our Garden

We are fortunate to have beautiful perennial gardens, trees, and flowers that the prior owner planted so generously for future owners. I've been learning a lot and enjoy seeing what this spring brings (we weren't in our house until June of last year). I thought I'd share a few photos of what's blooming now.



(Mental note: mulch STAT)

The flowers/ground cover above have bloomed even more since this photo was taken (just a few days ago). Does anyone know the name of these? Are they mountain pinks?

On the horizon to bloom: lilacs, lily of the valley, rhododendron, azalea. Ahhhh...spring is here.

What's blooming around you? What are some of your favorites?

**I just got a very exciting email filled with photos taken of my room at the Habitat house. If all goes well I will plan on posting them on Monday for you to see.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

One Room Challenge Link-Up - Half Bath Progress

I completely flaked on last week's update but I can assure you that there has been progress on our half bath that I'm updating as part of the One Room Challenge Link Up.

Last time I checked in, I had the start of a plan with a new light fixture ordered, some mirrors I had on hand, and some hand towels.


The light was delivered and has been installed, and let me tell you it is gorgeous. It's a bummer that I can't get great photos of the half bath, but you'll get the idea.


Now, notice anything about what's happening above? Yep, mirror is too large now with the height of the new light fixture, so I'm either going to lower the mirror or replace it. Haven't decided yet.

I've also started to paint the vanity.


It's progress. I actually used Annie Sloan chalk paint to prime - goes on so easy, no sanding necessary. And I've picked out my wall color, so hopefully next week we will have color on the walls.

Here is a photo of the light fixture again (lights out - go figure I can get better photos with the light out).


Oh and that awesome window opposite the mirror/light. It's pretty bad but I plan on adding something there to make it not-so-ugly.

Be sure to check out how the rest of people linking up are doing, and be sure to check on the ORC participants as well - there is some major awesomeness happening. This has been an exciting week of progress.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

How I Made a Dreamcatcher for Under $5.00

I had mentioned in a previous post that I really let the creativity fly for the upcycle challenge - this is one example of that. I also needed to stretch my budget as well, so I wanted to use items that I already had on hand.

On one of my first visits to ReStore, I picked up 5 of these drapery rings. I wasn't really sure how I was going to use them or what I would do with them, but I thought I could do something with them (they were 70 cents a piece).


I came home and looked through some craft supplies that I had in a box, and I came across this fabric wire (that looks like twine but is stiffer). I just started wrapping it around some of the rings in the hopes of being inspired, and I liked the look of whatever was happening. 

I varied up the way I wrapped the twine, and then I also decided to add a different type of texture by using a neutral color yarn as well (that was $2.00).

I popped a doily into an embroidery hoop, attached the rings to the hoop at different lengths for interest, and here is the finished project displayed in my Moody Vintage Chic office/reading room.



You can see the varying texture of the yarn versus the twine in this photo, and how I tried to change up the technique I used in wrapping them around the rings.

When I show you more photos of the room, you'll see how the shape of this dreamcatcher was perfect for this wall too. It needed some roundness to it and this was the perfect addition.

Quick, easy, pretty, and all for under $5.00!

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Upcycle Challenge Open House - 4/19 and 4/26

I can't believe we're in the final stretch of the Restore Montco/Habitat for Humanity Upcycle Challenge.

If you're local, come on out this Saturday to vote for your favorite room. Open houses are 4/19 from 11-2pm or if you can't make that there is another open house the following Saturday, 4/26 also from 11-2pm. Address is:  140 Penn Street in Hatfield. I promise you will not be disappointed. There are 5 different designers with 5 completely different visions.

To think that I started with a plain white room and turned it into a #moodyvintagechic office/sitting room using only $500.00 and items from ReStore is quite the accomplishment.


To date, I've only used $254.00 of my $500.00 budget. I'm impressed. That leaves me some wiggle room for finishing touches.

I've found some really awesome pieces of furniture and accessories to layer into the room. Because I decided to go with an office/sitting room, I wanted to have a defined lounge area and a defined office/desk area.

This desk from ReStore will be brought in with this desk chair.


Are excited to see how I've transformed them? I'm excited to see the entire room all come together.

I've also got some fun accessories picked out and ready to style.

 This stapler was $1.50 and I taped up the dated faux wood and spray painted it gold to give it a more glam look.


**I want to go on the record by saying that I do not consider myself a DIY'er at all. I'm a designer who sees the potential in items and can use them in an interesting way. This challenge has taught me a lot about myself and has pushed my creativity to new limits. The items that I've upcycled may not seem involved at all and that's okay, but they sure will pack more bang for the buck.

Take for instance these drapery rings that I found at ReStore for $.70 a piece...are you curious how I've used them? It might be one of my favorite projects in the room, but you'll have to wait until next week to see how they've been used.



 I've got lots of other surprises to share with you and can't wait to share the full reveal with you. I'll be hard at work this week finishing up, but will be sure to come back with some updates for you.

Thanks so much for sticking with me and reading along.

Clover Market

It was a beautiful day for Clover Market on Sunday. We ran up to Chestnut Hill in the morning to check it out (all 4 of us - phew!) It was great though...Allison and I scurried around and checked out all of the vendors, and Steve and Sheila headed over to the food trucks. Priorities, priorities.

I wanted to share something that I picked up that I really love. A few years ago I had seen Recycled Rowhouse at Clover Market in Ardmore and was really drawn to their birdhouses. Yesterday when I saw this candlestick, I knew I had to take one home.


I knew the colors would be great on my mantle and it's right at home with my Taylor Ceramics vase and vintage basket from my Mom. **Locals - Cara Taylor is going to be at Art Star Craft Bazaar down at Penn's Landing in May - be sure to check out her amazing ceramics.

I also ran into Dana and Phoebe yesterday at Clover as well and got to catch up with them. It is so fun to run into local artisans and connect in person after connecting through social media.

And just a quick thought on my photo above...more and more I'm seeing my style come out in our home. I truly love pieces with age and pieces that tell a story, and of course my love for ceramics. Do you often see patterns or consistency when observing your home in photos?

Thursday, April 10, 2014

One Room Challenge Link Up - Week 2 - The Elements

Week 2 of Linda's One Room Challenge! And remember I'm a linking participant.


Last week I introduced the sad state of our half bath and the plans that I had discussed for it. In case you missed it here is what I'm working with:


Wow, not too difficult to improve on this one! Paint, art, lighting, accessories, and I should be good to go.

The only thing that I've purchased so far is a new light fixture. I was going to work with what I had but I really don't like it. You can't really see it in this photo but trust me it's bad. And as much as I'm on a thrifting and upcycling kick lately, I just don't have the energy (or to be honest want to) do anything with this light fixture. In fact I'll probably donate it.

But here is the new light fixture that I'll be replacing the old, dated one with:


Seagull Lighting Driscoll light fixture

I originally found this on Home Depot's website, but then ended up finding it on Amazon for $20.00 cheaper. Woo hoo!

I'm hoping this is going to be the only element that I purchase aside from the paint. One of my goals for this challenge is to use what I have around the house without coming out of pocket too much. So far so good.

Here is the light fixture with other elements that I pulled together:


The navy and white towels I had purchased from Lands End last year. They are really thick and nice quality and so versatile. And then the floral towel I had seen at Home Goods a few weeks ago. They caught my eye so I picked up 2 of those and figured I could return them if I didn't use them.

The mirrors are also from Home Goods and I've had those for a while. I had actually thought about getting rid of them but I'm so glad I hung onto them. You never know when you can make use of something, so I think those could work well in here. And have you ever realized how mirrors bounce light around a space? Especially small spaces!

That's it for this week friends. I've pulled together a few elements that I'll be using and next week I will hopefully show you some updates in the paint color department (I tend to choose paint last - usually, not always).

Be sure to check out what the 20 designers are up to this week as well.






Thursday, April 3, 2014

Powder Room Makeover - Linking to One Room Challenge

While I've got the momentum, I thought I would use Linda's One Room Challenge to jump start our house plans. There are 20 interior design bloggers who are participating, and then Linda is also introducing the opportunity for others to link up too which is so fun.

I'll be using this image as a linking participant.


You can catch up on what the fabulous crew has done in Week 1.

Week 1 is typically a hi, here's my space, let's keep it real kind of deal. So let's keep it real, shall we?

We moved into our house last June. It was about 5 weeks before I delivered Allison, so needless to say things were crazy for a while. I finally feel like I'm at a place where I don't feel strapped to Allison at all times, so it feels good to start getting stuff done (if you know what I mean).

I'm starting small here with our powder room. We live in a split level home and our half bath is on the bottom floor off of our family room. Here is the half bath in all its glory...


It needs a makeover...badly. Thank you Linda.
We haven't done anything to it. I added the towels which we had used in the old house, but other than a new jar of soap every month or two this tiny little bath is BEGGING for a makeover.

And may I reiterate this bathroom is tiny. Like tiny I can't really take full on photos, but here are a few more.


Here are some definite plans:

- Paint - the wall color right now is a beige/yellow - definitely need new color on the walls since I'm on a painting kick. Paint the mirror and the vanity. It's a gross brown color and can be improved upon.

- Art/Personality - bring in colors and art that speak to us and make us happy. We don't spend a ton of time in this bathroom, and honestly I try not to use it at all. But I want that to change. I want it to be nice. (do you see the hooks hanging on the wall? yikes)

- Floors - Yikes. Not really in the budget right now but we can do something about that.

- Lighting - See that yellow ball of brightness in the photo above? That's our light fixture. Yikes again. Would really love to see that replaced.


- New window treatment - The blinds on this window are gross and scary. Those are coming down and I'll probably whip something up. Maybe a cafe style curtain...we'll see. The window faces out to our rarely used (for now) sunroom, so there's not a huge privacy issue but it still needs to be covered.

- Accessories - This goes along with color and art, but I'd like to spruce up that ledge there and bring in the pretty.

I'm really going to try to use things that we have and stick to a budget.

Stay tuned and come back next week to see what I tackle first. And if you have some time, be sure to check out what the fabulous 20 are doing and all of the warriors who are linking up too.

And how many times did I say yikes? That's when you know it's time for a makeover.

Come back next Thursday to see what I have planned for this little bath. 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

A Color Transformation

The other day I had shown you my color palette for the Restore upcycle challenge, and today I wanted to show you a quick before and after of the color in the room because the transformation already is incredible. And all because of a couple of cans of paint :)

After peeking in each of the rooms, I know that my wall color is definitely the darkest. I really love how rich and surprisingly warm the color is on the walls. It's like it wraps you up in a warm towel just out of the dryer.

Here it is...the room as I saw it the first day previewing the house and as we left it this past Saturday.



As a reminder, the wall color is Sherwin Williams Rainstorm (6290). Add it to your dark color favorites list because it's a keeper and I've really enjoyed working with it and using it as a segway into the rest of the design for this room.

Hope you enjoyed the quick before and after as much as I do.

Less than 3 weeks to go until the first open house!