Patio Garden Update

Patio Garden Update

I can’t believe the summer is almost over already! My husband and I are prepping for our big two week vacation in Maine, and I’ve been running around doing last minute house projects! I don’t know why I thought the two weeks before our vacation would be a good time to tackle a fireplace makeover project…but I did. We’ve successfully finished re-staining the mantel, and I am almost finished painting over our ugly dated tiles. I can’t wait to share more about this project when we get back! But in the meantime, I thought I would give a quick update on how our patio garden is doing!

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Master Bedroom Series: Neutral Mood Board and How to Combine Patterns

Master Bedroom Series: Neutral Mood Board and How to Combine Patterns

When my husband and I got married, I was so excited to start decorating our bedroom, however it also posed some new challenges. I wanted our bedroom to feel light, airy, and a bit feminine, BUT I also had to get my husband on board with this decorating scheme, so anything too girly was out of the question. Fortunately, my husband is pretty accommodating, so as long as my color scheme didn’t scream pink, I knew it would probably be ok. So, I settled on a light neutral palette, and I also incorporated black wood tones to add an element of contrast and lend a heavier more “masculine” touch to the room…

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New York City Apartment Refresh

New York City Apartment Refresh

Today I am really excited to share one of my most recent decorating projects, which has been a fun challenge and a real contrast from all the other projects that I have done so far. Last year my sister got married and moved into her husband’s 400 square foot apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, and this summer I worked with her to give this small space a big refresh! When I first visited her apartment, I could tell right away that it had two major problems: 1) some of the furniture pieces were too big and bulky for the space, and 2) the apartment felt very dark, due to the limited natural light, dark wood floors, and primarily dark furnishings…

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Dining Room Series: Final Reveal

Dining Room Series: Final Reveal

Since I’ve already discussed some elements of my dining room in previous posts, today I am finally sharing photos of the completed room in its entirety! In case you missed my earlier posts, please check them out to read more about the inspiration for my dining room, how to mix and match wood tones, and creating a tablescape that can be altered for each season. Since my dining room is the first room you see when you walk in our house, it was really important to me that it be beautiful and make a big statement. Fortunately, my mother-in-law’s incredible painting really has that “wow” factor, and it’s totally the star of the space! Here is a straight on shot of the dining room with her painting front and center…

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Decorating Dilemmas: Where to Put the TV?

Decorating Dilemmas: Where to Put the TV?

Deciding where to put the TV is one of those decorating dilemmas that people can get quite heated about. Some decorators will tell you not to put your TV in your living room, or if you do, make sure it isn’t the focal point—and most importantly, don’t hang it above your mantel! However, I think that our homes have to work for us, which means that ultimately, we can’t make decorating decisions based purely on aesthetics—our decor also has to be functional and practical. Before we renovated our basement, our living room was really the only place where it made sense to put the TV. Furthermore, the wall above our mantel was really the only logical spot for it, since we wanted to place it opposite the couch. If you are struggling with a similar issue in your home, here are some tips for decorating with a TV…

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My Pottery Barn Sectional and Tips for Buying a Sofa

My Pottery Barn Sectional and Tips for Buying a Sofa

Some of you may have noticed the sneak preview of my new Pottery Barn sectional in my basement update last week, so today I thought I would share some more details about it! First off though, here are some general tips about buying a new sofa/sectional based on my recent experience:

1) Decide on a budget. You could literally spend anywhere from $500 to $5,000 or above depending on your particular situation. The quality and options will obviously vary based on price (and I have read some very heated debates about buying an inexpensive sofa that might last a few years vs. a higher quality piece that will last much longer), but honestly, I think the most important thing is to buy a sofa that feels comfortable for your budget. Buy the best quality that you can afford but don’t go broke doing it…

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Finished Basement Update

Finished Basement Update

My husband and I had some extra time off over the July 4th holiday, so we thought that would be a perfect time to tackle painting our newly finished basement. Neither of us had any previous wall painting experience, but we both rose to the challenge and basically worked non-stop for five days on it. Although, it’s not completely finished (we still have to paint the trim and doors), our basement already feels completely transformed! I’m so excited about the space that I just can’t help sharing a few photos of it, even though it’s not 100% done yet. So, without further adieu, here’s our new basement in all it’s glory…

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Dining Room Series: Tablescapes for Each Season

Dining Room Series: Tablescapes for Each Season

If you’ve spent enough time on Pinterest, you might have heard of the term “tablescape” and wondered what on earth they were talking about. A tablescape is basically just a beautiful arrangement of objects on a table. The dining table is obviously one of the main focal points in a dining room, and so it follows that it should receive some special decorating attention. And yet, particularly when dining tables are actually used frequently, they often get a little neglected and can become cluttered with the paraphernalia of everyday life. On the flip side, if you create a gorgeous and elaborate tablescape that actually prevents anyone from eating at the dining table, then you’ve defeated the whole point.

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Decorating with Cats

Decorating with Cats

I’ve gotten a number of comments from friends who have admired my home, and then asked “But wait, how do you keep your cats from destroying everything?” It’s been an issue that I have really wrestled with, and so I thought it was high time to do a post about a product I discovered which turned out to be a complete game-changer for decorating with cats—Soft Claws. For those who knows me well, I am a total cat-lover. I adore my two little fur babies, and when I first brought them home, I genuinely didn’t have any nice furniture to speak of, so when my cats clawed my used IKEA chairs, I didn’t really worry about it. But after I moved into our townhome in 2016 and began buyer nicer pieces, I quickly realized this was becoming a major problem…

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Dining Room Series: Mixing and Matching Wood Tones

Dining Room Series: Mixing and Matching Wood Tones

In the world of home decor, the days of perfectly matching furniture sets have definitely past, and the look of carefully curating one’s home over time is more the norm. While there are many advantages to this “natural” or “eclectic” approach to decorating, it also poses some real challenges. Mixing and matching unique pieces of furniture is not always easy, particularly when it comes to combining different wood tones. I discovered this first hand when decorating my dining room last year, so I thought I would share a little bit about my experience as well as some general tips that I learned for how to mix and match different wood tones.

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Starting Your Own Home Bar and a Cocktail Recipe

Starting Your Own Home Bar and a Cocktail Recipe

My husband and I have often talked about trying to set up a mini home bar, so that we could make our own cocktails, but it always felt a little intimidating and overwhelming to get started with it. But this year, I decided to surprise my husband by gifting him with all the various accoutrements for his birthday! In case anyone else is interested in trying to make their own cocktails at home, I thought I’d share some of the resources I found along with the various liquors and tools that that I ended up purchasing…

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Balancing Art and Life

Balancing Art and Life

It’s been a few months since I started this blog, and I felt like maybe it was time to share a little bit about why I started it in the first place (other than the obvious—because I like trying to make my home look pretty!). Truthfully, it’s only been hitting me recently that I really started this blog because of a dilemma that I have been wrestling with more and more over the last few years—how to balance “art” and “life”…

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Creating an Outdoor Oasis

Creating an Outdoor Oasis

I’m sorry I have been a little quiet on here lately! I’ve been keeping very busy with a number of projects—finishing the prep work for a new painting, advising my parents on furnishings for their Maine home, ordering a new sectional for our basement (more on that soon!), and getting our little patio ready for the season! I thought I would share some photos of that last project today, along with links to all my sources. Our patio is one of the many things that I really love about our townhome—it is right off the back of the kitchen and it’s cleverly designed with a brick wall on one side and our living room on the other, so that we have total privacy from our neighbors…

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My Parents' Summer Home: Dining Room Progress

My Parents' Summer Home: Dining Room Progress

This past week my husband and I got to take a little time off from work to spend a few days up in New England, visiting my in-laws and attending my sister’s baby shower. We also managed to sneak up to Maine for just a bit, which meant that I got to see the progress on my parents’ summer home there! A few months ago, I shared in this post that I have been helping them to decorate the house, beginning with the dining room, and today I am excited to share a brief update on that space! I am thrilled with how the room is starting to come together! They did choose to purchase the dining table that I had helped them pick out from Ballard Designs, and it looks gorgeous in their dining room…

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5 Low-Maintenance, Pet-Friendly Houseplants

5 Low-Maintenance, Pet-Friendly Houseplants

I don’t know about you, but I do not have a naturally green thumb (although my dad and mother-in-law are both avid gardeners, so I really have no excuse). My dad gave me a fern about five years ago, which I hung from the ceiling in my old apartment, and while I loved the life and color that it added to the space, I didn’t love watering it, and it died within a few months (or weeks). But after reading enough decorating books and home bloggers, I have finally jumped on the bandwagon of keeping indoor houseplants, because it’s literally one of the most inexpensive ways to make a huge impact in your home!

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Basement Renovation: Next Steps

Basement Renovation: Next Steps

Now that the work on our basement is officially done, it’s time to start painting and furnishing it! Obviously, the painting has to come first, so the next step is figuring out what color to paint the walls. There are an infinite number of directions that we could go in for the wall color, but I always knew I wanted to keep it very light (since it’s a windowless basement), and once we picked the built-ins from Pottery Barn, it just made sense to me to paint the walls the same color, so that they would blend seamlessly in (and hopefully look more like real built-ins that way!). I wasn’t sure if I should go with a slightly different white, or try to match the cabinets as close as possible, but I read this helpful post by Kyle M. Interiors, who is a paint color expert, and she advised NOT mixing and matching whites too much, since one white can easily make another look dirty/warm/cool, etc.

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Dining Room Series: Artwork as Inspiration

Dining Room Series: Artwork as Inspiration

Now that I’ve finished my series on the living room, I’m excited to share about our dining room, which was the next space I chose to focus on (and it’s now one of my favorite rooms in the house!). Since I had already developed my concept for the living room, I liked the idea of having a slightly contrasting theme for the dining room, so that they felt like two distinct spaces. Since the living room palette was dark, warm, and rich, I thought it might be nice to keep the dining room light, cool, and airy. However, I also wanted to find an “inspiration piece,” which would help dictate the concept for the room and add some personality. One of the challenges of living in a 1980s townhome is that it tends to be pretty bland and lacking in character, so I’ve been trying to add more personality through furnishings and décor wherever possible…

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Basement Renovation Reveal!

Basement Renovation Reveal!

I am so excited to finally be able to share the photos of our finished basement! First off, a disclaimer—you will probably notice that it obviously isn’t actually finished yet, since it still needs to be painted! We opted not to pay for them to paint it; instead, we used that money towards having the crew assemble and install the media center into the wall, so that it looks more like a custom built-in. We knew we could do the painting ourselves (even if it may take us a while), so I think this was a much better use of our money. It does make the “reveal” a little less exciting at the moment, but I promise I will post more photos as soon as it’s 100% finished.

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Living Room Series: Future Plans

Living Room Series: Future Plans

Since I showed some images of my “finished” living room in my last post, I thought I would follow up with sharing the plans I have for continuing to work on the space in the next few months/years. These are slightly more long-term plans, but I think it’s always good to be thinking ahead to the next steps, even while we are very much enjoying our living room in it’s current state. So, here are some of my future projects for this room…

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Living Room Series: Final Reveal

Living Room Series: Final Reveal

Over the past few months, I have been sharing a series of posts about my decorating process for our living room, and today I am very pleased to finally be able to show you the finished product!!! Having said that, I have to add the caveat that I believe a house evolves organically over time, so I’m not sure a room is ever really “finished”. There are already so many more things that I want to do to our living room (and I will share more about that in a future post), however, it is at least “finished” enough at this stage, that I am finally ready to share it with you!

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