simple is beautiful

A Mood Board Comes To Life

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Does anyone remember the mood board I gave away way back when?  Lisa, from the blog A Vintage Vine was the lucky recipient and she wanted help with her game room.  Her style is mostly vintage ecclectic and she is quite the diy yourself maven.  Lisa wanted help with the shelves and general clutter control.  The sectional sofa and chair were to remain in the room.  I made a few recommendations on wall color as well as a new color for the background of the shelves and provided Lisa with some ideas for accessories.

Before I show the final result, you need to see the before picture.

And now for the after...

The walls were painted Benjamin Moore Decorator's White.  The background of the shelves is Benjamin Moore Rock Quarry to balance out the heavy warm tones in the sofa.  I recommended a low cost solution to hide the electronics by hanging a curtain rod and simple fabric on the bottom portion of the shelves.  Lisa executed this perfectly!  Baskets were added to contain dvds, etc.  To fill in the shelves, Lisa shopped the house, used spray paint, and found items on clearance at Target - again proving that you do not need to spend a lot to make huge improvements in your home.

Thanks for letting me share Lisa!  To read more about the transformation, go here.

Do you need help with a room?  Email me to learn more.

Could You Help Me Pick a Pic?

Friday, June 22, 2012

I have been invited to write an article on raising boys and need to supply a photograph to go with the article. I'm having trouble choosing and would love your feedback.

Do I go with:




Just a reminder - today is the last day to enter the giveaway.  Winner to be announced tomorrow.  Have a great weekend!

Skirted Tables: Client Inspiration

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A new client of mine is looking for ways to inject freshness into her living room.  Most of the furniture/decor is neutral.  She currently has a skirted round table between to loveseats and I think this would be a great place to have a little fun.
These tables are super cheap.  You can find them at Bed, Bath, & Beyond for under $20.  And there must be a million and twelve different ways to trick them out with fabric & trim.  Just use your imagination.

Hang 'Em High & Wide

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

When it comes to hanging curtains, high and wide is almost always the way to go.  As you can see below, option 2 makes the window AND room appear more finished.

Of course there are always windows that are better off with little or no window treatment such as this example from BDG Style.  Love her blog, by the way.

However, if you do have larger windows that call for curtains, I almost always recommend hanging the rod just under the crown moulding and to either side of the window so that the majority of the window (minus the casing) is exposed.  This allows maximum natural light to enter the room and it just looks better.

Here are a few examples...

 Ashley Whittaker via

Are you convinced?

Contrast Piping and a Funny Story

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

The other day I was down town having lunch and saw this great chair in the window at Design Archives.  How great is the contrast piping?  Do I dare say that it makes the chair?!

I have a somewhat similar chair that has been in line to be recovered for some time now.  This chair might just be the inspiration I needed.  Painted white, flax linen, coral or blue piping.  Yums.

And now for the funny story...

"didn't do it.  I swear."

If any of you have a Weimaraner, then you know there is always a story.

  The other night, Mattie Gray was looking out of the sunroom window while we were saying good-bye to the boys.  Somehow she became tangled in the cord of the Roman shade and managed to pull this chair across the room.  Then another chair joined the pile on. 

This is what it looked like by the time she came out of the sunroom as if being chased by a monster.   Crazy dog.  Anyway, my question to you is, wouldn't that chair (the brown one) look great painted white with linen fabric and contrast trim.  Can't you picture it?  Yes you can girl, yes you can ;)

Happy day!

P.S.  Did you check out the giveaway?

Happy Father's Day!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

 Williamsburg 2012

 Our garden

Happy Father's Day to all of the men who have made a difference in our lives!  Sometimes fathers are more than family.  They are friends or mentors who took the time to care for someone else.  Today, I celebrate you!  Thank you for being you!

Many of you know that I lost my father when he was 46.  Not a day goes by that I do not think of him.  I am blessed to have a wonderful stepfather who has loved us as much as anyone possibly could.  Happy Father's Day Darrell!  We love you!

P.S. To my dear friends who left sweet messages Friday, thank you!  We had a ball!

P.P. S.  Stop by tomorrow for a new giveaway.

A Special Weekend

Friday, June 15, 2012

Rick and I have been counting the days leading up to this weekend.  We are going away, just the two of us, for the first time in quite a while.  It will be so nice to get away from the crazy schedule and fully enjoy each other for a couple of days.  We treasure our time together so much, but as many of you know, being part of a busy family often means romantic getaways do not come around very often.  Now if you'll excuse me, I must go pack.

Happy weekend sweeties!

Images 1

My New Favorite Ikea Hack

Thursday, June 14, 2012

This may very well be my new favorite Ikea hack.

The shelves are part of the Vittsjo collection from Ikea. 

Take one $70 shelving unit...

plus gold Rust-oleum.

 And now you have a very high end look for under $80.  Brilliant!

Rules, Cleaning, and Flowers

Monday, June 11, 2012

You may have already noticed that my posts are going up a little later now that school is out.  We are taking advantage of the new schedule by sleeping a little later and hitting the gym later.  It is pure bliss.  So tell me, those of you with school aged children, have you adjusted to the new routine?  It always takes us a week or two to get used to it.  Honestly it already feels like Snack Fest 2012 if you want to know the truth.  We are trying to lay some ground rules about dirty dishes, laundry, etc., but I would love your feedback.  Do you have house rules?  What chores are your kids responsible for?  Leave a comment or email me and I will include it in a future post. 

What I am about to say is putting me at risk of being the most boring person on the planet, but I really like a clean house.  Yes, I said it.  Fridays are my cleaning days and I actually look forward to it.  There is something luxurious about have a clean house on the weekend.  Clean sheets, fresh towels, wood floors that feel good under bare feet.  Check, check, and check.  After I get everything cleaned the way I want it, I cut a few flowers to place around the house.  It makes me feel good.  So, last Friday I snapped a few pictures after my ritual...

What about you - clean house, yay or nay?

A Stair Runner Tutorial...sort of

Thursday, June 7, 2012

As promised, here is the stair runner tutorial.  The installers said it was fine for me to take pictures while they worked, but I was afraid of wearing out my welcome with questions.  So, I kept those to a minimum.  Hopefully this tutorial will give you at least a good overview of what they did. 

In our home, the stairs are the first thing you see when you enter the front door.  As you can see, they are always riddled with scuff marks no matter how I try to keep them clean.  I wanted this area to look more "finished" and decided to add a runner.  At first, my husband and I considered a diy project, but decided to leave this one to the professionals.  After watching the process, I think it would be pretty easy to do.  Notice the lovely "boob" light at the top of the stairs.  It will soon be replaced with something better - stay tuned.

I ordered three runners from Ballard to cover the stairs.  They were on sale for $35 each, bargain!

The first step was to nail this strip across the back of the tread.

Next came the padding cut to fit perfectly in front of the stripping and ending just shy of the width of the runner.  Normally a runner is one continuous piece, but in this case it was three separate pieces.  So, the installers started in the center of the stairs and worked there way up and down to hide the ends.
 Finally, the runner was secured with 3/8" staples starting at the back of each tread and then just under each tread at the top of the riser.  This job took just over an hour start to finish.

The vents on the stairs have always bothered me.  At one time we had pretty wooden ones there, but boys with big shoes accidentally kicked them and they broke.  So, we decided to go with something more durable.  Before the runner was installed, the vents were white.  To make them more seamless, I gave them a quick coat of black spray paint. 

If any of you live in the Greensboro/Winston Salem area, I highly recommend these guys.  Email me for the contact information if you are interested.

A Client's Dining Room

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I apologize in advance for the quality of the images.  

I wanted to share a couple of images with you from one of my favorite clients. Kate found me through Living Social and we have worked together collaborating over several changes in her home. FYI, she really doesn't need me.  Her home is gorgeous and she has a great sense of style all on her own.

When we first met, we discussed a few changes.  Then a few weeks later Kate and her husband decided to go forward with a kitchen renovation.   Sorry, I don't have pictures of the kitchen, but trust me, it is beautiful.

This is the new and improved dining room.  The walls received a fresh coat of gray paint and a new drum pendant.  The vintage table was a score from a local store.  The chairs came from Stuff: Vintage.  They were originally white and had snaps going up the back to secure back cushions.  Melissa from Stuff did her thing with Sherwin Williams, Urbane Bronze and a beautiful gold fretwork fabric.  Kate did all the styling in this room herself.  See what I mean - she doesn't need me at all.

Here is another sneakity peek of the den which underwent several changes.  One of which was getting rid of a large tv console and mounting the flat screen tv above the fireplace.  The campaign cabinet, also from Stuff, sits to the left of the fireplace to house the media components. 

Happy Monday!

Monday, June 4, 2012

Cassie, me
I hope that everybody had a great weekend!  Thank you for sending positive stair runner energy my way.  The installers came Friday and did the job in an hour.  If you follow me on twitter, you may have already seen a picture of the stairs. I'm going to post a tutorial because I really believe anyone could do this.  So, look for that later this week.  Can I just say, big improvement.

Yesterday, my husband and I had breakfast with my blogging friend Cassie and her husband Chris.  I have always thought Cassie was pretty in pictures and super buff (in addition to her furniture business, she is also a fitness instructor), but she is even more beautiful in person.  She is also very sweet and one of the most thoughtful blogging friends.  So, getting to finally meet her was a thrill.  Thanks for a great time Cassie!

***Be sure to stop back by later this afternoon for a pillow giveaway from a new sponsor.***

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