Finding Inspiration

It has been a while since I have been in touch with the blogging world, partially because I have been SO busy (which means I have so much to share with you all!) and partially because I have been SO uninspired.  Do you ever notice that when seasons start to change, stores become so bare and uninteresting?  It makes it so easy to get into a rut.  On the other hand, do you ever realize that maybe you are just looking in the wrong places?

Growing up is a really funny thing.  It's funny to look back and laugh at the past.  But I think the best part is living in the moment and realizing what the hell is going on.  My style is completely changing, which is really confusing, but at the same time it's really just funny.  I picked out a dresser for our "master bedroom" yesterday that I never thought in a million years I would like:

Yup.  It's large and dark and 6 months ago I would have hated it.  And now, I love it.  It's something I can grow with.  Weird right?  This whole growing up thing.. it's weird..  But anyway. when it comes to buying furniture I've realized you can't settle for the cheap stuff.  It falls apart and to be completely honest, in a few months it looks, well, cheap.  What you also need to think about when buying expensive furniture, is that expensive piece growing with your life.  You don't want to buy something like this expensive dresser above (which by the way is from Pottery Barn and can be found here)   and then move into a new house with more space and have to buy something completely different.  We're in a stage now where we can't fit an entire set in one room.  This is a piece that, hopefully, when we move we can buy the rest of the set.  Who knows if they will still have the exact set, but I have faith that Pottery Barn will still have something of a similiar color/style.  And matched up with our new bedding it will look fab (which should be here any day!):

See, change can be fun!  We may need to make bigger purchases that are not so fun as we get older but paired with the right accessories anything can be great.

So, what do I have in store for you in the next few months?  Well, a long overdue Mudroom Reveal (yes, finally), a Living Room reveal (yes, finally again) some Bathroom Inspiration, some Kitchen Inspiration & I am even going to throw in a Guest Post.  And we can't forget about the holidays! Because I love decorating for the holidays, best time of year by far!  Stay Tuned!.....

Times Are a Changin'

I went to my parents house last week to visit and we got to talking about decorating and how times are changing.  My mom showed me a huge folder filled with cut outs from when they bought their current house.  She would read magazine after magazine and tear out "ideas" and file them in a folder.  I was laughing because this is something you would never see now.  Now it's all about technology, a ton of magazines are electronic and rather than searching through magazines for ideas, we search through Internet sites.  I had to agree with her about one thing, there is nothing like flipping through a good magazine, no Nook, Kindle, iPad or other tablet can compete with that!

After I left their house I got to thinking about technology.  We have so many options out there and I haven't even explored them!  Sure I read blogs, but that's really the extent of it; I'm not old by any means but the technology these days is almost scary.  (Yes, I work in technology sales, ha go figure!)

With that said, I decided to take my first step toward becoming more "technologically inclined".  No, I didn't join Twitter, I'm not sure I will ever be able to get there! :)  I requested a membership to Pinterest.  And about 5 minutes after I requested the membership I had an invite in my mailbox (E-mailbox that is!)

I didn't know what I was missing!!  I can't quite tell you how to use Pinterest but I can tell you it is filled, filled with inspiration!  Within in minutes I got totally distracted with a "pin" to The Urban Barn.  This is one of the coolest sites I've ever seen and I can't believe it exists AND it's free!

This tool allows you to design your own room.  Again, I just found this today so I don't know all of the functionality included.  What I do know is that I was able to recreate our living/dining room area with the correct dimensions to make sure everything I've been buying fits in the room!

Awesome, I am beyond excited!  If you know me, you know I'm a planner and this is right up my alley!


Design Consultation

A very good friend of mine came to me recently and asked if I would mind making her a headboard.  I was thrilled!  We immediately dove into the details.  What color does she want?  A solid or a print?  What material? Will we do gold nailhead trim or silver?  The list went on.  Finally we came to the conclusion that the only things she really wants to keep in her current bedroom is her rug and her white dresser and it really just needs to match that.  So I asked her to send me a photo of the rug and I made her an inspiration board.

She's a young working girl living with 2 roommates in a New York City apartment.  Her rug is very beachy so I thought I would make her a very light, clean design; a pleasant escape from her busy city life.

I will be using a cotton/linen blend to make her headboard along with Pewter Nailhead trim.  The rest of the Inspiration Board is just that, inspiration!  Some of the things she will be purchasing but others we will try to find at the best price possible.  I will hopefully share a before and after once the room is complete!

To all you readers out there, if anyone would like a design consult like this please feel free to contact me :)

Living Room Inspiration

When working with a budget you have to be very open to change because, well, you just can't afford everything.  I came up with an inspiration board a few months ago for our living room.  I was really proud of it; the pillows were bright, the furniture was functional, and it really suited our style.  After our couch shopping expedition, (which you can find here along with my "old" inspiration board) I quickly realized I needed to go back to the drawing board and whip up something different.

Since currently we have a rather dark setup with darker couches and furniture, I decided that I wanted something lighter.  Something functional and comfortable, yet classy and beautiful at the same time.  I think one of the biggest mistakes people make is that they go for comfort and lose sight of what really looks good.  Here's what I came up with:

I'm going for simplicity.  I can't stand clutter, I want this room to be easy breezy and inviting.  I purchased the two tables instead of a coffee table from  They were on sale for $38 each and I found a 10% off coupon, plus free shipping, whoop!  They haven't arrived yet so I'm keeping my fingers crossed, but the reviews were amazing.  The body is stainless steel and the tray, which is actually detachable, is a smoky acrylic.  I want the rug to be the main point of interest so I was originally looking for 2 small glass tables.  To the eye, a glass table makes it appear as if nothing is there, making the room look larger.  These acrylic tables are even better because glass gives the "fragile" vibe which I am not going for at all.

Speaking of that rug; I wandered over to Target on Friday during lunch and discovered it on sale for $103; that's right!  I scooped that baby up so quick!  Well, as fast as my 5 foot tall self could :)  It's 5x8 and perfect for our living room.

I also picked up this perfectly large basket on my target trip:
I love how it has chalkboards on the sides!  This was a bit of a splurge but I figured it was between this large basket and a small piece of furniture to store the electronics you can currently find piled up in the corner.  The $39.99 was worth it, believe me. :) 

Now if only we could decide on a paint color...

Bean Bag Chairs

Yes, you read that title correctly.  Let's talk comfort.  Remember when you were a kid and had that oh so comfortable bean bag chair?  They were awesome.  Hideous, but awesome none the less.  (Okay, not hideous, I just so happened to love mine, but they weren't the most appealing)

I am happy to say they are back, and in a much more chic way.  When first looking for decor for our "new" living room I came across this one from Ballard Designs:
Le Pouf they call it; it even has a chic name!  It was love at first sight really.  It took me back to my little bean bag chair with my name embroidered on it (yup, that's right), granted mine was pink and possibly striped, I can't quite seem to recall ;)  There is something about Le Pouf that speaks to me.  It looks comfortable, fits in our living room, is quite functional since you can put a tray on top and use it as a table as well as an ottoman or a chair.

Why haven't I bought it yet?  Well, I keep asking myself the same thing.  The price is killing me.  It was originally $229; it is currently on sale for $179 and I have a coupon.  BUT, even with my 10% coupon it is still expensive.  Since it's large they add an additional $20 onto the already $20 shipping fee making the total with tax just over $200.  I keep trying to justify this; it's functional and adorable, but I just can't do it.  What if I have to return it?  I'll have lost $80 in shipping fees (them shipping to me then me shipping it back).

On a search I went and oh what I found:
These come in a variety of colors and Marimekko prints and start at $239 for Adult sized

West Elm; I wish they still sold these
unfortunately they hopped on this trend a couple of years
back and they are no longer available
I love this floor pouf; it is stil $98 though
Blood Orange Pouf $89.95
After searching and searching I think the most cost effective option is to make one of these bad boys myself.  All I need to purchase is bean bag filler which hopefully won't be too expensive.  I'm hoping to complete the project for under $50.  Still not sold?  See the inspiration photos below:

All three pictures are from  Don't these rooms look so inviting?  That second one is just absolutely amazing.

I'm so excited, I just can't hide it!

One of the biggest challenges I run into when decorating a room is choosing Art.  Everything looks the same, nothing is original and the walls end up staying bare forever.  I am happy to say the era of bare walls is coming to an end, and I am so excited (I just can't hide itttt)! 

I came across Rodney White's prints quite some time ago and fell instantly in love.  My sister actually has a huge print of his hanging over her kitchen table and it's absolutely fabulous.  I immediately came to the conclusion that it was so awesome that I wouldn't be able to afford it.  Sadness.  I erased Rodney White from my memory and never looked back.

Until now that is!  As you know, we are completely redecorating our living room.  We are literally starting from scratch so I decided to overcome my fear of art and find something perfect.  At first I thought a movie theme would be great.  I mean, let's be serious, I know you don't ever see television's and technology in Better Homes and Gardens and Elle Decor magazines, but it exists, and it really is the center of attention for any common space.  (Nothing against Better Homes and Elle Decor, I literally drool over their magazines on a daily basis!)  That being said, I thought movie reels across the wall would be so original:

Awesome right?  And at a price of $49.95 for the larger one and $39.95 for the smaller one AND a 20% off coupon I got in the mail, I figured I couldn't beat it. $72 for all the art for our tiny living room.

I thought it was so original.. until we went couch shopping and every store I went to had them hanging on the wall!  Granted they were about 5 times the price there, I was still a little bummed.  I figured I would keep them in mind and if I couldn't find anything else I would buy them.

I continued on my search for something perfect.  Over the past year there has been so much "stuff" I have tried to put in that room and nothing felt right, I refuse to buy things that I don't love just to fill a space.  My search is finally over.  I realized that Rodney White's prints come in poster form (this entire time I thought they were really expesnive canvas prints!)  Here are a few prints of Rodney White's that I am totally loving:

And the two that I will be purchasing!!
This one will look perfect over the couch!

I'm thinking this will be great right next to the front door

I just adore the wording and the colors, they are amazing.  They come in many different sizes which obviously changes the price.  I am purchasing them from (25% off coupon code is TAKE25 if you're interested!) and then getting them framed, which will hopefully not cost an arm and a leg.  I can't wait to share the final look!

Couch Shopping

There's nothing better than coming home from vacation to a serious coupon in your mailbox.  That's right.  We got home around 2 o'clock in the morning and were deliriously checking the mail when we came across a Mealey's Furniture mailer.  Typically this is something we would just throw in the trash immediately but this time was different. 

A scratch off!? I'm so in.. to our liking, we scored a 42% discount.  Picture myself jumping for joy at 2 o'clock in the morning. HA.

The next day we went to Mealey's super excited.  (well at least I was super excited!)  On a mission to find the perfect couch at the perfect price.  I had already made an inspiration board for our newly designed living room so I knew exactly what I was looking for:

Within 10 minutes of being in the store I knew this was going to be harder than I thought. (and realized we weren't so special when they didn't ask to see our coupon and offered up the 42% discount without hesitation)  After hours of contemplating a design for our small room (staring at the most perfect couch) and remembering our budget, we left empty handed.  And back to the drawing board I went.  The next day while the bf was at work I went to 4 other furniture stores.  That's right, F-O-U-R.  And I found nothing.  So disappointing.  Nothing was comfortable, everything had to be special ordered for an additional $300 at least, I was at a total loss.  I went home and put on my best "I'm sad take me back to Mealey's" face.  We had to make a decision, keep our way-too-big-for-our-house couch or go back to the one we loved and beg and plead for a larger discount.  Mealey's it was :)

We ended up purchasing 2 pieces, a light taupe sofa with a chaise (which is much smaller than our current 9 foot monster couch) and an oversized leather chair.

Just a peak at our living room now:

This picture was taken 1 year ago, since then I've added new pillows and put art on the wall to try to brighten the room and nothing really worked.  It's so ... dark.  Hence the new smaller couch in a lighter color.  This room is really tough and is proving to be even more difficult as I try to redecorate it.  The wall to the left is a working fireplace which we use quite often so the tv can't be placed there and the couch definitely can't sit against it.  And as you can see, there's no wall where I am standing taking the picture and there's no wall to the right.

Here's what I'm working with now:

I have 8 weeks until it will be delivered, which means 8 weeks to get that wall painted, and find some new decor.  I'm thinking "cozy chic" if you will, I can't wait to share my finds with you!


Maxin', Relaxin'

Sorry you won't be hearing from me this week; I am currently waking up to this every morning:

taken last year in Wells, ME

And eating a ton of this:

Ahh vacation how I love you!

Until next week ;)

My favorite things

There's nothing like a unique accessory to liven up your house!  Here are a few things that I am loving right now:

Vintage Fans are a great way to cool down a room in style.  Isn't this little one adorable!?  Could be perfect in my kitchen!  These range in price and are all over Etsy, you can find this one here.

I love French details, they're so unique.  Both of these rugs are from Ballard Design.  The top one is a comfort mat for your kitchen and can be found here.  The second comes in many sizes/colors and can be found here.

As I'm sure you all know by now, I'm a sucker for stripes.  Totally won over by this Striped Bar Tool set from ZGallerie! 

I don't measure my food, not even when I bake.  But a pile of fruit looks glorious on this Kitchen Scale!  And the price tag is nice too at $33.89 from, you can find this here.

Ahh the magic of mirrors.  The way they open up a small room is amazing.  I've been eyeing this mirror from ZGallerie (found here) for months now.  I initially wanted it in white and then slowly decided that this color was best.  Unfortunately this mirror is $199 plus shipping; enough said.

Last weekend I decided to run over to HomeGoods just to see what they had and ohhh there is a reason I love HomeGoods!  When I say they had the exact mirror I mean they had the EXACT mirror.  I picked up that bad boy so quickly and ran to the register, as fast as one could run holding a huge 25 pound mirror of course, and bought it immediately.  It was only $69, woohoo! I'll have to share a picture of the room with you as soon as I get it hung on the wall, it totally gives the room a bohemian chic vibe.  Pictures are so decieving, this mirror is giant and I definitely cannot hang it by myself!

What makes you jump for joy in the middle of a store?

DIY: Painting Stripes

I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July!  I was hard at work all weekend and the mudroom is starting to look great! 

As seen in this post, the walls started out blue.  I first had to paint the walls with a white base coat.  I used Behr Premium Plus Ultra Paint + Primer in One in the color Ultra Pure White.  For both paint colors I used an eggshell finish so the walls aren't glossy but they aren't flat leaving hand prints etc, and the walls can still be wiped if need be.  I figured it would take 1 coat to get rid of the Blue color since it was a pale blue.  And I was so wrong.  It took 3 coats and really could have used a 4th but I was way too excited for my stripes!

This is the best picture I took of the white.  After 3 coats I let that dry for about a day.  Then came the taping.  This was probably the most frustrating/time-consuming part of this project.  Just like the floor isn't level, either are the walls! 

Before taping you first need to measure your wall and decide how many stripes you want.  I decided I wanted the top stripe and the bottom stripe to be white so I didn't have to tape off the ceiling and floor.  The total height of the room is 82 inches and I wanted 4 tan stripes + 5 white stripes totalling 9 stripes.  82 inches divided by 9 stripes is 9.11 inches per stripe.  I used Frogtape from Home Depot to tape off my stripes as this is specifically for a project like this so the paint won't seep under the tape, therefore leaving clean lines.  If you don't have tape like this I would recommend first painting over your tape with your first color, in my case white.  Or painting over it with a clear coat.

Your walls should look something like this:

The larger spaces is where I will paint the tan color, I used Behr Premium Plus Ultra Paint + Primer in One in the color Wax Sculpture.  I painted two coats and then snapped a quick picture:

When you finish your last coat you need to rip of the tape immediately to insure you do not chip the paint.  If you wait until it is dry it will for sure peel up.  This was my result:

I'm in love.  After a few little touch ups it looks perfect.  I want to live in this little room!  We even replaced the ugly 80's tile that was in the room and put in laminate flooring that looks like hardwood.  (Big shout out to my wonderful brother for helping me all weekend!)  Hopefully we will have the curtains, bench, shelf and hooks in this week!  I can't wait to show you all the rest!