what I do

what I do

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween

I'm not a huge fan of Halloween decorating, especially the really scary ones (that's just me ... no offense to anyone else). Did you know that according to the Huffington Post, Americans spend around 8 BILLION dollars on Halloween. Yikes. Now that is really scary.

I did get kind of into it this year though... I brought out the paint.

Happy Halloween everyone!!! I hope whatever you do today, it is filled with childlike fun.  :D

Monday, October 14, 2013

Playing with wallpaper

One of my favorite wallpapers is Hygge & West's Petal Pusher in almost white and gold ...

I used it in a gorgeous nursery that was finished last year and although I have not had time to go up and take the final photographs, I have a few that were taken on install day ...

 I love what Emily Henderson said about the pattern:
"What's so great about this paper is how the gold and ivory becomes a neutral when put up on the wall. It's reflective and strangely quiet for a wallpaper."
I have to agree.  

When I was cleaning out my office last week, I came across the wallpaper sample. I thought it might make a fun drawer liner ...

I was right ... it is a little bit of sunshine every time I open the drawer.
Happy Monday everyone!

Sunday, October 13, 2013


My friend Stephanie from Cre8tive Designs blogged a beautiful post last month about missing her children and her sweet grandchildren (one, a newborn) who had just moved to Milwaukee, and she was feeling a little "blue", she said. And then she saw this quote: 

In her words, "So I decided I needed to aim my arrow towards Milwaukee and stay focused." As a reminder, she made herself a sign. Stephanie is an amazing DIYer - she attempts things I would never even think about trying ... like this headboard, for example:

Amazing, right? It is one of my favorite things she has made. You can click here to see the before photos and how she did it! Okay ... back to the sign:

I love the arrow art she made and I love the symbolism behind it.  I could relate so much to what she said ... not only to missing having our children live close by (and our sweet granddaughter) but also the importance of having a reminder to stay focused on the good and keep aiming for what is important. I asked her if she would make me one too.

And she did! I put mine in a frame that I had (I actually just covered up something that was a temporary placeholder) and I love how the arrow is pointing towards the word, LOVE.

Love more. Focus on what is good. Practice gratitude. Set my priorities on what is really important. Thank you Stephanie for the beautiful reminder!

"Keep my eyes from gazing upon worthless things,
    and give me true life according to Your plans."
-Psalm 119:37

Monday, October 7, 2013

A family room inspiration

Today I am working on a new family room for a lovely couple who live in a beautiful house on the water. A couple of years ago we remodeled the kitchen and dining room (I posted about it here and here and here) and now they want to turn their current pool table room into a family room where they can relax as a family and watch TV.  

When we did the previous remodel I used a lot of blue to bring in the view from outside:

And I would like to do the same in the new family room ...

A few ideas for the new room...

It is an interesting room and there are a few features that make this project a bit challenging. One side of the room has wood paneling wainscoting (that thankfully we painted white when we did the kitchen remodel - it was so dark before). The ceiling makes the room look "ship-like" and there are wood "corbels" that protrude onto the wall. 

I think the ceiling is really interesting and I am 100% for leaving it as is. But it is the other side of the room that challenges me.

The fireplace wall on the opposite side of the room is floor-to-ceiling brick. And not just "brick" but brick with a lot of "character". I tried to talk the clients into doing something with the brick on the other side of this wall (paint it white, I said!) when we remodeled the kitchen, but they wanted to keep it as is. They would like to mount their TV above the fireplace and they would also like some bookshelves. 

Something like this would be ideal ... but I am not getting my hopes up. I will be meeting with them this week to present my ideas and take them shopping for the key pieces of furniture. 

My inspiration board

The inspiration board is an easy way to give them an idea of what the room will look like (especially since my rendering skills are close to non existent!). 

It is always exciting to start a new project and I am looking forward to hearing what the client's input are when they see my initial ideas. 

Sunday, October 6, 2013

How this grace thing works

Roll away your stone, I'll roll away mine
Together we can see what we will find
Don't leave me alone at this time.
For I'm afraid of what I will discover inside

'Cause you told me that I would find a hole,
Within the fragile substance of my soul
And I have filled this void with things unreal,
And while my character it steals

Darkness is a harsh term, don't you think?
And yet it dominates the things I see

It seems that all my bridges have been burned,
But you say, "That's exactly how this grace thing works"
It's not the long walk home that will change this heart,
But the welcome I receive with every start

-Roll Away Your Stone | Mumford and Sons

Isn't that how we all want to be loved? Not all that deserving but loved just the same? Truly loved. Broken and imperfect and yet it doesn't even matter. Ah... Grace. 
"But God demonstrates His own love towards us, 
in that while we were still sinners, 
Christ died for us."
-Romans 5:8

Friday, October 4, 2013

Fall is in the air and a new rug

I am sure enjoying the burst of Fall color in my yard ...

I am enjoying it inside my house too ...

A little bit of sunshine to brighten up the day.

Oh, and did you notice my new area rug? I bought it on Overstock and I am thrilled with the way it looks and feels. It was the one thing that was unfinished from our kitchen remodel. This room is right off the kitchen and it took me a while to find a rug that worked and wasn't too expensive.

Do you have a nice weekend planned? It is almost here!

Happy Friday Everyone!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

A few small changes brings great results

The family room in this beautiful coastal home didn't need much. The client wanted to replace the area rug and the side lamps. But the first thing I noticed when I came into the room was that just outside the windows is a gorgeous pool yard. I wanted the room to reflect that the house sits near the ocean and to also bring in the beauty of the pool. 

Here is what the room looked like before:

The rug was too small and the colors felt wrong. The first thing we did was replace the light blue pillows for some that had a little more color and contrast to them. We also replaced the too small rug with a Dash and Albert indoor | outdoor rug that would hold up to the foot traffic and the dogs that like to lounge in this room. 

Diamond Black and Ivory Rug | Dash and Albert

The lamps were replaced with a couple that I had in storage; bringing in the polished silver brightened up the room:

The existing artwork wasn't working with the new color scheme and so I commissioned my sister to take a photograph of the ocean. We started with a simple photograph of the Huntington Beach pier but it felt too plain. And so we selected one that had a bit more life to it. 

It came out beautiful ... 

And the result is perfect!



By adding a few new pillows, the new artwork, a little editing and some updated accessories the room has a completely different feel.