Food + Beverage Shopping

Weekends are for Coffee with Breville’s Precision Brewer Glass

June 8, 2018

This post is in partnership with Breville who gifted me the Precision Brewer Glass. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links, if you make a purchase after clicking one of my links, I will be compensated.

Breville Precision Brewer Glass in Moody Coffee Nook

There’s something special about the ritual of making coffee. Even before I actually LIKED coffee, I loved the sound of it brewing away and the smell of the beans. Every morning when I hear Andy grind fresh beans for our coffee, I get a good feeling about the day head. And on weekends, it means we sit together in front of our tv, watching The Office and sipping on our coffee and smoothies. To me, that is everything.

I was so excited to partner with Breville for their release of their new Precision Brewer Glass because I love coffee but also because the Breville brand has been a staple in our kitchen – we use our compact Breville Smart Oven all the time and gifted my parents the fancy Smart Oven Pro Convection model. Andy typically makes coffee via Aeropress, but that is an intense practice which I have not attempted. This clever little brewer pays attention to temperature (something I’ve learned is important to making a good cup of coffee) and has special modes to make exactly the coffee you’re craving. You can even program in your own temperature, bloom time, and flow rate.

Breville Precision Brewer Brewing Modes Screen

This new brewer has 6 modes: Fast, Gold, Strong, Over Ice, My Brew, and Cold Brew. The Fast mode makes up to 12 cups in less than 7 minutes which is perfect for when we’ve got and the Gold mode is certified by the Specialty Coffee Association. Strong mode will automatically brew you a strong cup of coffee. Over Ice (my favorite!) brews up to 4 cups of a more highly concentrated coffee to be chilled and poured over ice. The stronger concentration takes into account how ice cubes melt into your brew and dilute it. And if you like a cold cup of coffee, you’ll be into the Cold Brew mode steeps coffee for 10-16 hours.

Fresh Iced Coffee

Set up of the machine was pretty painless and just required washing all the non-electronic components, setting the water hardness (test strip included) and running the brewer to flush through water for a full clean.

Spring and Summer are prime iced coffee time for me so I couldn’t wait to try the Over Ice mode first. It brewed 4 cups of concentrated coffee which I let rest to room temperature and then popped in the fridge for a few hours. I recommend brewing up a pot of Over Ice coffee after your morning coffee so that it’ll be chilled by the time you’re ready for that afternoon boost.

Iced Coffee With Cream

I don’t take sugar in my iced coffee but I loooove some coconut or almond milk in there. My favorite addition is So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Milk.

Ice Coffee Plain or with Cream

Andy likes his iced coffee plain, pure, and no fun. 8 scoops of freshly ground beans (we use this Bodem burr grinder because freshly ground beans are super important) made 4 normal sized cups of coffee or 2 large glasses.

I’ve had quite a week and am delighted to be rolling into the weekend ready for 2 days of Netflix binging fueled by bottomless iced coffee. Are you in for iced coffee season? How do you take your iced coffee?

Interiors Inspiration One Room Challenge

My One Room Challenge Spring 2018 Reveal Favorites

May 25, 2018

[Image from my One Room Challenge Spring 2018 Guest Bedroom Reveal]

Two weeks ago, the Spring 2018 One Room Challenge featured designers and guest participants (including me!) revealed their room transformations. I was so floored by everyone’s reveals – they are so gorgeous – and am so happy to be part of such a talented design community. The guest participants who will participate as featured designers next season were just announced, (congratulations to Nicole of Vestige Home and Erin Kestenbaum!) but I wanted to share with you some of my favorite reveals in case you missed them!

Guest Participant Reveals

Serene Green Nursery with Custom Day Bed | Vestige Home

Nicole of Vestige Home made the most serene nursery I’ve ever seen complete with a custom daybed. The two-tone walls are so subtly sweet and I am in love with the handmade ship mobile. Photographed by Rebecca McAlpin. Nicole was selected from the guest participants to be a featured designer next season!

Brass Hex Trellis with Velvet Channel Tufted Headboard Guest Room | Deuce Cities Hen House

Allison of Deuce Cities Hen House built a custom blue velvet tufted bed, brass trellis, AND her own sconces to transform her guest bedroom. She restored her windows and doors and gave them a fresh coat of black paint. She cleverly problem solved her way around a 10×10′ room with a radiator and large windows to make a tailored and bright space.

Glass door shower with marble tile, skirted toilet

Erin Kestenbaum put together the most stunning marble tile master bathroom. That shower is so incredible – that pencil tile! And I’ve never seen such a handsome toilet, it works so beautifully with the trim work and looks plain regal! Congrats also to Erin for being selected to be a featured designer next season! So well earned!

Jest Cafe - Spring 2018 One Room Challenge Reveal

Mila of Jest Cafe’s kitchen and dining room transformation is a colorful, bold oasis. She paired an unconventional cabinet color with a stunning hand-painted mural and boho-inspired accents to make a coral and pink dream.

Colorful living room with 80s modern accents and tiger wallpaper.

Another colorful transformation comes from Jewel of Jeweled Interiors who did a rental-friendly (!) living room makeover. This woman cannot be stopped. She reupholstered a sofa in terrazzo-print velvet and added fringe. She painted those armchairs. Just such incredible, bold work.

coastal bedroom with ikea pax hack closet

Sarah Gunn made over her master bedroom with a coastal vibe and majorly upgraded IKEA PAX wardrobes with light blue paint. Such a beautifully finished space with thoughtful details! And you know I love all IKEA hacks/upgrades.

bedroom with burl wood nightstands and modern lamps

I am extremely into this modern and playful makeover from Goldalamode. I have never been a fan of purple in decor, or fashion, or anything but DANG. I love those light purple walls and blush/dusty pink accents. And those vintage burl + brass nightstands! This room takes the best trends from the 80s and makes them current and fresh.

Bedroom with Nursery Corner Pink Curtains

Cathy and Garrett of The Grit and Polish created a space for their youngest daughter to grow into in their historic farmhouse. They found this charming canned bed on Craigslist for $0 and did their whole room for less than $500. It is feminine, charming, and cozy and you have to see the wallpapered crib nook!

Traditional Breakfast Room with Glass Door Cabinets

My traditional heart looooves this breakfast nook from Jess at Domicle37. She replaced the tile backsplash with clay subway tile that looks completely classic and totally made me think her house was way older than the 1950s! She also covered the countertops in concrete, adding warmth and texture. The vintage dining set is the perfect touch against the painted cabinets.

Vintage Accents in a Cozy Bedroom | Dream Green DIY

Carrie of Dream Green DIY added a DIY faux wood paneling accent wall, vintage furniture, and neutral accents to her master bedroom. The result is a cozy space that feels collected and suits her brick ranch home so well.

Featured Designer Reveals

Gray board and batten bedroom | The Gold Hive

Ashley K Goldman of The Gold Hive pulled off not just a One Room Challenge, but a one and a half room challenge. She redid her master bedroom, DIYing her board and batten to make a traditional and calming space. She also added a new door leading to her backyard and added new patio furniture.

Natasha Habermann ORC Livingroom Makeover

Natasha Habermann made over her living room and foyer for the Spring challenge. Her reveal photos and home look straight out of a profesh magazine and my traditional-home loving heard ate them up. There’s so much to talk about in her space but I am so into the molding she added to her walls from Metrie. It looks totally original to her gorgeous home.

So much inspiration! See all of the One Room Challenge Spring 2018 guest participants’ reveals here.

DIY One Room Challenge The Scenery House

One Room Challenge Week 6: Guest Bedroom Reveal!

May 9, 2018

Green guest room with bright bedding

It’s finally here! Today I’m sharing the reveal of our guest bedroom which got a fantastic makeover for the Spring 2018 One Room Challenge. This was my time first participating in the challenge and it was crazy but so satisfying. If you’re not familiar, the One Room Challenge is hosted by Calling it Home in partnership with House Beautiful and Home Love Network and is a 6 week challenge to makeover one room in your home. The challenge takes place twice a year in the spring and fall and is led by 20 featured designers. In addition to the 20 featured designers, the challenge is open to anyone with a blog who wants to challenge-along as a participant. That’s me! And over 200 other guest participants. 

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is where I should describe my style so I guess I’d say it’s something along the lines of traditional-modern which doesn’t sound like a real thing. I am glad you’re here.

For my first challenge, I decided to tackle our guest bedroom. Though I’m very used to taking on big projects to transform rooms in my house (check out my blush bathroom, my board and batten powder room, or my kitchen facelift) this was my first time sticking to a firm timeline and sharing my progress week by week. If you’re just joining in and want to see my posts for each week, check out week 1, week 2, week 3, week 4, and week 5!) 

For a refresher, let’s look at where it all started.

The Guest Bedroom Before

Listing Photo for Boys Room

This is what our guest bedroom looked like in the listing photos. The walls were bright green and the ceiling was a pale blue. There was even a glow-in-the-dark space light on the ceiling.

ORC-guestroom-before

And here is the room after we moved in.

ORC-guestroom-before

In June of last year, we decided it was time to get rid of that bright green and bring in something much moodier. 

One Room Challenge Spring 2018 Before One Room Challenge Spring 2018 Before

Here it is all painted and ready for its first One Room Challenge transformation. That deep moody green – Behr’s Black Evergreen – provides a great canvas and so much potential. You’ll recognize those scallop hem roller shades from the listing photo and I really can’t believe we held onto them for as long as we did. The room was definitely functioning fine as a guest room, but it could be so much better.

We decided to keep the bed frame and headboard (IKEA’s discontinued REDALEN) and the microdot rug we bought a few years ago from West Elm.

The Reveal

DIY Art

I struggled with what to do with the long wall in the guest bedroom that serves as the main path through the room. I didn’t want to narrow that path by adding bookshelves but I was hesitant to add a gallery wall. And then I saw the Hovey sisters home tour and knew I needed to paint something myself for this space. I used my beloved iPad to sketch up some abstract art ideas, playing with colorways and moving shapes around for the right composition. I picked up 3 24×30” canvases and some budget paint at Jo Anns and got to work. If you follow me on Instagram and watch my stories (and if you aren’t, c’mon, look at what you’re missing out on) I struggled with painting things that didn’t somehow look like faces. My first painting looked very much like a face and in a very confident move to make the face go away, I totally made it look like a clown face. I still see faces in all of these. And a pickle enjoying the ocean. But I think that’s just how abstract art is. I love the paintings, I really enjoyed making them, and am so proud to have some of my own original art hanging in our home. 

I priced out canvas float frames and realized they weren’t in my budget and also weren’t going to ship in time for the reveal, so DIY it was. I sketched up plans in SketchUp, planning out the depth of the frames, the amount of space for the float, and how they’d be assembled and sent everything over to my dad. We spent a whole day together picking out materials – oak boards for the outside and pine for the backing – and raced to get them all done that same day. Many people requested a full tutorial for this so don’t worry, I’ll be sharing one soon once I’ve recovered from this sprint!

At the last minute (as of the night before and morning of my reveal photoshoot) I decided to whip up this brass kinetic sculpture (aka mobile) from a The Crafters Box I’ve been hoarding. It’s perfect. I was so unsure about what to do with this corner and I’m so glad this idea came to me just in time.

The Window Treatments

I wanted to solve for two different filtering and blocking situations in this room. I like to have a simple sheer roller blind to diffuse light and add privacy, the SKOGKSLOVER shades from IKEA fit our windows perfectly and we have them on nearly every window in our home. We added these but also wanted something with more opacity to block our exterior house lights that might bother guests. Picking the right blackout shades was something I struggled with (and mumbled endlessly about on my insta stories and polled everyone endlessly about) but it wasn’t until I had all the options in the room that I could make a choice. These pom pom curtains from PB Teen were a longstanding favorite of everyone following along but they were too much of an off white to go with the rug and white bedding. I went with the light green SANELA curtains from IKEA and they’re perfect. I didn’t like the grommet top they came with and they needed a good hem to be the right length for our windows, so I hemmed them and gave them a pinch pleat top using IKEA’s pleating tape and curtain hooks.

Because we’re dealing with baseboard heaters (my nemesis) I wanted to be mindful of the proper clearance between the heater and the long curtain. This meant I had to find a curtain rod and bracket set that stuck out from my wall far enough. I ended up with the 1.25” brass set from CB2. I wish the pole were thinner, the deeper brackets only come with this size. For what it’s worth, if you’re shopping for gorgeous brass curtain rods and don’t have the same constraints as me, this set from Crate and Barrel is really lovely – I have a set in my house that I still need to return.

Furniture

Originally, I hoped to come across the perfect vintage dresser for this room as I typically don’t think a room is really finished without at least one vintage, antique, or heirloom item. But when I saw this dresser I couldn’t get over it. I continued to search for the right vintage piece but when one didn’t turn up, I wasn’t sad to head to IKEA to pick up the BJÖRKSNÄS dresser. The light wood and leather pulls add modern contrast against the dark walls. 

I added a bench – another gem from IKEA, the STOCKHOLM coffee table – which will be great for guests to put luggage on. Definitely an upgrade from traditional luggage racks. Can there be too much rattan?

And that mirror. So perfect. It bounces light and makes the dresser a great get-ready station for guests.

The blanket ladder is a great solution for storing extra blankets out in the open so your guests don’t have to tell you they’re cold in your freezing house. Or they can hang bath towels on it to dry if they aren’t keen on hanging them in a shared bathroom. I guess I just assume all guests are as fussy as me.

If you’ve ever tried shopping for wooden nightstands of a particular size and look, you know they come dear. I was excited to spot this set (available at Allmodern and Amazon) which was just about the look I wanted and had USB charging tastefully built in AND came in at around $100 each. Previously, we had extension cords run up behind our vintage end tables acting as nightstands so guests could charge their devices. NOT THE LOOK. 

Overall I’m happy with these nightstands but needed to upgrade the pulls with a set of 3″ hex handles with backplates from CB2 to make them look classier. The quality of the wood isn’t bad for the price point but they are a redder hue than I had hoped.

I LOVE the nightstand lamps. I’ve never had a set of matching nightstands let alone matching lamps and I feel like I have really made it now. The lamps have a modern/midcentury shape and a fantastic texture.

The Linens

I knew I wanted to add the casual look and soft touch of a linen duvet cover going into this but wasn’t at all sure which to pick. I heard great things about the linen duvet set from H&M Home, as well as IKEA’s option. I ended up going with the Belgian Flax Linen Duvet from West Elm and it is lovely. The color is a brighter white and totally works with the other linens in the space. 

At the end of the bed I added a grid print throw from Target. It did make me ask myself how many grid patterns are too many grid patterns (we’ve got the leaded glass windows, the rug, the rattan headboard, the rattan bench…) and I’ve concluded that THE LIMIT DOES NOT EXIST. 

I’m something of a minimalist when it comes to throw pillows (my husband will tell you this is a false statement) so I like the look of stacked bed pillows with a big lumbar body pillow in front. When I lost my sense of time, I thought I might sew one myself and even went shopping for the right fabric. When I came to my senses and realized time is something that was no longer on my side, I ended decided to order a giant pillow cover from Jenny Komeda’s Juniper Studio. The blush color linen is soft and there’s nothing like pink with the deep green of the walls. The cream corner tassels are such a nice touch. I used this body pillow insert which fit the pillow cover perfectly.

I have to say that this giant pillow was even more giant than I thought and I decided to break it up a little by adding a rust velvet throw pillow from West Elm. I also layered a pom pom throw on there as a tribute to the pom pom curtains that weren’t meant to be. <3

The sheets on the bed are some of my beloved Target sheets that I’ve had forever. They wash so well and don’t wrinkle AND they have little tags on the fitted sheet that tells you which end is the bottom and which is the side!

The wallhanging is one of my favorite Etsy finds from RUGbyGUR.

Gimme those side by sides

What a whirlwind. But like, the good kind. It was so much fun to do this challenge along with all the other guest participants – I made so many new friends! I am thankful for this whole project because it encouraged me to problem solve, stretch my brain, and bring out some of my old skills – I PAINTED again! I found my sewing machine in the attic and classed up those curtains. I crafted that mobile! And I have a new guest room that makes me smile and is now the nicest room in the whole house.

 

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

Be sure to check out the STUNNING reveals from the featured participants and I can’t wait to see all the guest reveals!

 

Hey heads up: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Interior Styling One Room Challenge

One Room Challenge Week 5: How to Style Textiles Like a Pro

May 2, 2018

Pom pom throw, rust velvet pillows, linen duvet in a pile.

[lamp | nightstandpink lumbar pillow | patterned throw | rust velvet pillows | blue pom pom throw]

OMG IT’S WEEK 5. This week is all about wrapping up the last details for next week’s One Room Challenge reveal. One of my big last tasks (of many other last tasks) is settling on bedding for our guest bedroom.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is where I should describe my style so I guess I’d say it’s something along the lines of traditional-modern which doesn’t sound like a real thing. I am glad you’re here.

Last week I asked for recommendations on a linen duvet – you were all so helpful! I heard great things about the linen duvets from H&M and also got a tip that IKEA has one that’s reasonably priced. I ended up going with the West Elm Belgian Flax Linen duvet cover. I was worried it would be too bright white until I realized that’s exactly what I needed to go with the lampshades.

Pictured above is a pile of linens and pillows n’ things I bought to see what would work best. Spoiler alert: I’m returning most of it! Both the patterned throw and blue stripe pom pom throw are so tiny and too small to properly drape along the sides of a bed.

Are you in need of a recap? Catch up on the previous weeks’ progress here:

I’ve got some advice for you, are you ready?

As I scramble to complete my list of tasks for the ORC reveal, I’ve been thinking a lot about how I’ll shoot my reveal and how I can help others show off their hard work. And one thing I’ve accepted about myself is that I can’t stop myself from giving unsolicited advice. I think this makes me fit right in on the internet but maybe not so much in real life and thus, as most things are, I am better on the internet.

I consider myself a professional dabbler and one of the things I’ve professionally dabbled in is being a bedding stylist for product and lifestyle photography. I’ve learned a few tricks for styling textiles as well as photographing interiors and I’m going to share them with you right now. This isn’t a guide on how to dress your bed (Studio McGee has a great foolproof bed dressing guide) to but how to make your well-dressed bed look its best.

How to make your bed look dang good in photos

how to style bedding like a pro - wrinkly before

If it’s a textile you need to steam it! 

Out of the package and even out of the dryer, textiles often have folds and creases that can ruin a good photo. This goes for bed linens, throw pillows, curtains, towels, all the things! A clothes steamer or iron will be your best friend in lifting out those sharp lines. Look at that big, beautiful lumbar pillow. Out of the bag, it has sharp creases and wrinkles. Linen, of course, is meant to have a lovely crinkle – but that doesn’t mean it should look creased.

Using a clothing steamer to remove wrinkles from a pillow.

With just a little steam magic you can see the harsh wrinkles falling out of the pillow cover.

Use a clothing steamer to make bedding look perfect.

It’s also totally fine to steam the pillowcase by itself, hanging clipped to a pant hanger rather than on a pillow insert while reaching the whole way across a bed.

How to style bedding like a pro - after.

Much better! The steamer pictured above is one from Rowenta, who I’ve always trusted for irons as well. I must say I don’t love the attached hanger on this one, as the clips underneath can be hard to get to. I prefer standing steamers to handheld ones because their tanks have a higher water capacity, you don’t have to hold the weight of a tank of water while you steam, and they double as a place to hang the thing you’re steaming.

Sad Pillow Corner Examples

Stuff your sad pillow corners. 

Pillowcase corners, especially the ones that go on standard pillows (the kind you actually put your head on to sleep at night) are often under-stuffed, sad and empty. Pillow inserts often don’t fill those corners (but you should buy pillow inserts that are larger than your pillow cases, btw) and you can make them look better by filling them with fiber fill stuffing.

Fiber Fill to Stuff Pillow Corners

Yeah, it’s the stuff used to fill stuffed animals. I’ve even used paper towels in a pinch.

Stuffing pillow corners

Be careful not to overstuff, you want the corners to look like an extension of the pillow, not a party hat. Stuff all four corners.

Stuffed Pillow Corners before and after side by side

Perky pillow on the left (also steamed) and sad droopy pillow on the right.

No droopy ruffles - bedding styling tips

[photo source]

Support your pillow ruffles and flanges.

If your shams have a ruffle border or flange (flat, unfilled border beyond the pillow case’s seam) they aren’t going to stand up on their own. The answer is tape. If you want to get intense, you can use metal tape that you can bend to sculpt ruffles. For something less fussy, I’ve always used regular old masking tape. The picture above shows some very expertly styled pillow flange and there’s definitely tape back there.

To wrap up: My Top 3 Bedding Styling Tips

  • No folds, no wrinkles – If it’s a textile, you need to steam it.
  • No sad pillow corners – Use stuffing to perk them up.
  • No droopy ruffles – Use masking tape to get those ruffles to stand up straight.

And while I’m at it:

5 Tips for Better Interior Photos

  • Don’t go too high – it shouldn’t look like you took your photos while hovering in the corner of your room.
  • Something needs to be straight – Even in old houses, there is a nearly straight line somewhere. If you’re shooting into a corner, make sure that line is straight up and down. If you’re photographing a bed straight on, make sure the headboard is straight. You can rotate your pictures in photoshop to fix anything askew or if you’re using your phone, turn on the grid option in your photo app.
  • Watch your rooms to know when the light is best – Avoid bright, harsh light. You may love the look of light streaming in through your windows and falling dramatically onto your floors and walls, but it doesn’t make for great interior photos. Wait for a time when your room glows with even light throughout. On that subject, an overcast day is actually better for photography than a cloudless, sunny day.

If you made it this far, and I do mean both to week 5 and to the end of this post, I have a corgi reward for you.

Penelope the corgi

“I didn’t see you there. Welcome to elegance.”

This is the most expensive bedding in the whole house and you bet it’s not for me and Andy and you bet I put a corgi on it.

Corgi smile on a bed

SHE LOVES IT.

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to! I could not be more excited to see Allison‘s brass trellis and tufted bed (her new black doors are stunning) and I am in love with how Jewel and Mila are using bright, bold colors this season. Nicole is making an incredible day bed for a friend’s nursery and Erin is killing it DIYing the most luxurious bathroom ever.

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

Hey heads up: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

One Room Challenge The Scenery House

One Room Challenge Week 4: Guest Bedroom Progress

April 25, 2018

Nightstand with midcentury lamp and rattan headboard

Wow. Week 4 feels much different than the previous two weeks because it’s just now dawning on me that THERE’S NOT MUCH TIME LEFT. I need to make like the great Orlando Soria and GET IT TOGETHER <– PS if you haven’t purchased this book yet, get on that.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is where I should describe my style so I guess I’d say it’s something along the lines of traditional-modern which doesn’t sound like a real thing. I am glad you’re here.

I don’t have any fun diagrams for you this week, I just have a lot of lists and thoughts and hopefully moments of clarity while I type this at you.

Here’s what’s been done so far:

  • Week 1 – Planning!
  • Week 2 – Thinking about curtains!
  • Week 3 – Making my own art!
  • Week 4
    • Layout – This week Andy and his brother, Chris, moved all the furniture around to match my dream layout. The room is so much more inviting now and just feels perfect.
    • Rug Pad – We added an extra cushy new rug pad under the rug so stepping out of bed will feel extra luxurious for guests. The 9×12′ pad was cheaper than the 8×10′ so we got the bigger one and trimmed it. We always save the trimmings to patch together new rug pads for smaller rugs.
    • Nightstand + Lamp – Andy built one nightstand and one lamp, pictured at the top of this post. I wasn’t sure if the wooden pull that came with the nightstands would look good in person and it definitely doesn’t so I ordered something fancier to dress them up.
    • Blanket Ladder – This has been ordered, it arrived, it has been built, and is hanging out in the room ready for duty.
    • Curtains – I took all of the curtains out of their bags and draped them on all the things in the room. I looked at them in the daylight and I looked at them in the dusk light and I took pictures to see how they’d photograph. I think I’ve made my decision. I promise I won’t ask you to pick for me again.

One Room Challenge week 4 trimming the rug pad

Rug pad trimming professionals in action.

One Room Challenge Week 4 putting the bed in place

Here’s the bed frame being very precisely put into place. Seeing the new layout made me SO HAPPY. So did seeing the light from the window shine through the headboard.

Here’s a list of things that still need to happen:

  • Curtain rods – Ok. I am going to save you from the ramble I have about curtain rods (I hope you don’t run into me in person because I will corner you and talk at you about this for a full hour) and just tell you I have a lot of curtain rods in my house right now and I love none of them. I have forgotten how to return things and I need an assistant.
  • Sewing – No matter which curtains I chose (I am so mysterious) they need to be hemmed or altered to the correct length so I’m going to bring out (find) my sewing machine and get to it. I also contemplated making my own blush pink lumbar pillow but now that I understand how time works, I have ordered this beautiful rose lumbar pillow from Jenny Komeda’s Juniper Studio Home.
  • Painting – I started the first piece of art I am making for the room but have not finished it. I did buy more paint and an additional paint brush so things are headed in the right direction.
  • Floating Frames – When my paintings are done, they’ll need lovely frames to make them look extra lovely. Hollister Hovey recommended floating canvas frames from pictureframes.com to me (we talked via Insta comments and I feel like I met a famous person, like the time I met Alexis Bledel and talked to her like I didn’t know who she was and like I’m not a huge Gilmore Girls fan.) It is still my goal to make my own frames with my dad though to save cash and because I know what time is now and there is none of it. I sent him some SketchUp plans for the frames and my plan is to build those with him this weekend.
  • Bedding – I’d like to have a nice white linen duvet cover for the guest bed because I love the way linen wrinkles and adds texture. Do you have a linen duvet cover you recommend? Is the West Elm Belgian Flax Linen one great in person? I dreeaammm of the Blair from Pom Pom at Home.
  • Dresser – I am having some anxiety about the dresser because the room is missing a vintage piece and I’d love for that to be the dresser. I picked out an IKEA dresser that will work well in the room if I can’t find the right vintage piece, but a room never feels finished without the age and wear of something old.
  • Additional Art – My plan is to hang some stacked art near the corners of the room. I haven’t picked it yet though and need to get on that.
  • Mirror – I’m kind of waiting to see what dresser I go with before I order a mirror, I picked this one, which kind of looks vintage itself, so it may be a good choice no matter what.
  • Accessories – Adding accessories really finishes a room, and I can already tell this will be done in a mad rush as I style the room for the reveal.

Does this list soothe you or give you anxiety? Are you reading this and saying “EMILY. E M I L Y. What have you DONE to yourself?”  ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Dark green bedroom midcentury lamp nightstand

My fellow ORCers, this may be my first One Room Challenge but I have some advice for you. Week 4 is a rough one as it sinks in that there are only 2 weeks (1.5 really if you plan to shoot your reveal next weekend like me) and you may feel like a total mess. I know you’ve got some good things together, so arrange a little vignette that makes you feel good, style it up, make it cute, use stuff that won’t even be in your finished room and take a nice photo. It will make you feel like you’ve got this. You can do it, and it’s going to be cute.

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to!

 

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

 

Hey heads up: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Interiors Inspiration One Room Challenge The Scenery House

One Room Challenge Week 3: DIY Abstract Art

April 18, 2018

DIY Abstract Art

Welcome to week 3 of the One Room Challenge!

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is where I should describe my style so I guess I’d say it’s something along the lines of traditional-modern which doesn’t sound like a real thing. I am glad you’re here.

Be sure to check out week 1 and week 2 to see the plans and progress on my first One Room Challenge. I’m making over our moody green guest bedroom.

ORC Week 3 – All About DIY Art

While I wait for backordered curtain rods and watch boxes and boxes of things arrive at our front door (and grow a pile of items to return), I’m focusing this week on the things I can control – like art. Our guest room has a long, blank wall that I haven’t been sure what to do with. A gallery wall seemed like a good choice but I kept thinking I wanted something tidier. And then the internet blessed me, as it so often does, with just the inspiration I needed.

DIY Art Inspiration

Hovey Design Home Tour via Cup of Jo

[Hovey Design Home Tour on Cup of Jo | Photo by Julia Robbs]

The term “DIY art” seems weird because all art is a DIY right, BUT in this world, it applies to art done by non-professional artists. Sometimes I come across things on the internet that just speak to my soul and inspire me. This home tour did that. If you haven’t seen it, you need to. Sisters Hollister and Porter Hovey run Hovey Designs, an apartment staging and styling service in New York. Their taste in vintage (and IKEA, and everything) is impeccable. I’ve never considered myself a maximalist, but if this is maximalism, I’ve got to reassess.

The sisters create their own art to use in their homes and for their clients. They have a relaxed approach and offer this advice to anyone scared to try:

Hollister: Truly, don’t be afraid to try it out. You can do squares, circles on a canvas… I’m not a painter, never was, but you can mess around.

Porter: People can get so nervous about art. But look at what’s in museums! I love abstract expressionism, and I know those artists were the first to do it, etc., but it’s random! You’re not trying to sell a museum piece anyway, you just need something nice for your house. You could frame linen and it will look pretty.

Cup of Jo Hovey Home Tour

[Source: Hovey Design Home Tour on Cup of Jo | Photo by Juia Robbs ]

I mean, come on. SO good.

Those deep green walls, that pink, everything.

Color Palette Inspiration

Hawkins New York pillows and blanket

[Source: Hawkins New York]

I was tempted to go with the same color palette as the Hovey sisters but I decided I needed to lighten things up. The color palette in this photo from Hawkins New York is so perfect for bringing some brightness into the moody guest bedroom.  Actually, if I could just hang a giant version of this photo in the guest bedroom, I’d just do that and call it a day.

I am creating this art myself not because I don’t want to support artists or because I think original art is overpriced or not worth it but because I want to get back to making art. I grew up drawing and painting and I thought I would go to art school. I ended up pursuing studio arts and then art history and arts management at a university and got away from actually making art. One of my personal goals for this year is to art more, so I saw this as the perfect opportunity to get back at it.

Art Planning in Procreate

DIY abstract art concepts drawn with Procreate

I treated myself to an iPad Pro with an Apple Pencil for Christmas and I am in love with it. I used the iPad App called Procreate to mess around with blobs and lines. It’s so easy to sketch things out, move them around for balance, and adjust scale as you go. The app also makes it easy to try different colorways for indecisive people like me. Once I was happy enough with my sketches, I airdropped them to my laptop (you can export them as PSDs, JPEGs, PDFs whatever you need).

I’m not sure about the first and last drawings so I’d like to spend more time reworking those. I feel most confident about the middle drawing so I decided to start working on that one first.

Painting in Progress

I’ve tasked myself with creating 3 original paintings over the next few weeks. I mean, I could have just had my digital drawings printed, framed (I love Framebridge), and called it a day but that wouldn’t be the Emily way. My sweet Andy said to me just this morning in the middle of my first ORC meltdown “I’m trying not to add any stress to the stress you’ve already created for yourself.”

DIY abstract art process with ipad

My process so far is this: I sketch out shapes in pencil on my 24″ x 30″ canvas (I got mine at Jo Ann’s on sale for 60% off) and then start mixing paint. I picked up some Liquitex tubes and am also using some super cheap craft paint from my craft stash. I got richer tones out of the inexpensive paints by mixing a number of colors, adding white, adding gray, adding green, until I liked what I saw.

My very professional paint mixing palette is a cute Cheeky paper plate from Target.

I’m having trouble getting the right color for the big bottom blob. I started with a more teal blue, then a bright blue, and for now, it’s green. But not the right shade of green.

DIY Abstract Art

I’m adding texture with small brush strokes using a 1″ brush rather than a big big brush for the large areas. I’ve got some clean up to do, some extra coats, and I’ve gotta pick a color for that dot. But I’m pleased with my progress so far. It feels so good to paint again.

I’ll be making some wooden floating frames for these canvases to they’ll look extra polished up on the wall.

So where is all this art going to go?

Art Placement

arranging art around a door

This week’s dilemma is all about art placement. When the bedroom door is open, part of the wall is covered and depending on where the art is placed, some of the art would be partially hidden. We leave the bedroom door open all the time unless we have guests. I was thinking I could hang the art so that the left piece of art would be completely hidden by the open door, and then revealed as a fun surprise, but once I measured it out, the canvases would have to be hilariously far apart. So the options are:

Option 1:

Center the middle piece of art and cozily place the other two canvases on either side. When the door is closed, about half of the left art is covered.

Option 2:

Hang all the art in the space that is never obstructed by an open door but make guests live with the empty space behind the door.

HELP! Which would you do?

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to for week 3!

Hey heads up: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

One Room Challenge The Scenery House

One Room Challenge Week 2: All About Curtains

April 11, 2018

Green Guest Bedroom with Vase and Tassel Quilt

It’s week 2 of the One Room Challenge! Take a look back at Week 1 to for a refresh on my plans to makeover our guest bedroom.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is where I should describe my style so I guess I’d say it’s something along the lines of traditional-modern which doesn’t sound like a real thing. I am glad you’re here.

If you watch my stories, you know I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about curtains and shades for the guest room. I’ve done light filtering shades in most of the windows in our house, but this will be the first room to get curtains. And guess what? I’m overthinking it. Come with me on my overthinking-the-curtains-all-week journey.

Curtain Challenges

  • How high should you hang curtains if you’ve got an angled ceiling?
  • How do you hang long curtains when you have baseboard heaters and not burn your house down?
  • What if you want 2 different light filtering options?

How high to hang curtains with an angled ceiling

How to hang curtains with an angled ceiling

One of the greatest crimes against curtains is bad hanging. Hang too low or too narrow and you’ve made a mistake. The internet pretty much agrees (and you can’t swing a cat without hitting a curtain hanging diagram on Pinterest) that you need to hang those babies HIGH AND WIDE. I like to go by what the queen says (Emily Henderson, of course) and hang the rod 2/3 of the distance between the top of the window casing and the ceiling and extending 10-12″ on either side.

I’m dealing with walls with two different ceiling heights due to an angled ceiling line from the angle of our roof. On the long wall with the wider window, the angle starts just 9″ above the top of the window casing. Using the 2/3 rule, I’d need to hang that curtain rod about 6″ above the window. If I went by the ceiling height of the other wall, I’d be hanging the curtain rod 16″ above the window casing.

The curtain should match across the room so even though the ceiling is higher above the second set of windows, they’ll still need to be hung at the same height. To make the angled ceiling look as tall as possible, I’m going to hang the curtain rod as close to the beginning of the angle as possible, at close to 9″ above the window casing. The same will go for the other set of curtains.

How to hang long curtains with baseboard heaters

I was pretty worried about hanging long curtains in front of baseboard heaters. I definitely did not want shorter curtains that would fall above the heaters because that’s just not my look. I searched the internet and found these general guidelines:

How to Safely Hang Long Curtains with Baseboard Heaters

When hanging curtains in front of baseboard heaters, the curtains should fall 1″ from the floor and hang 2-3″ from the edge of the heater.

For me, that means that my curtain length shortens by 1 inch and curtain rod brackets become an issue. I know that my baseboard heaters stick out about 2 3/8″ from the wall. Add 2 inches to that, and I need brackets that are at least 4 3/8″ long from where they mount to the wall to the middle of the part that holds the actual rod, where the curtains hang. I ordered brass curtain rods from Crate and Barrel without knowing the brackets were only 3 1/8″ long end-to-end, so they will be going back. I’m eyeing up a similar set from CB2 that are listed as 4.5″ deep but I think that might be cutting it close. I may have to go with a double rod set, which would have brackets with a depth of 6.5″.

Two options for filtering and blocking light

This room has a general need for some light filtering and privacy, so we decided to go with the simple (and perfect) IKEA roller blinds we have in the rest of the house. The challenge comes in the form of an outdoor light that shines into the guest room at night. We want our guests to be comfortable, and I know wouldn’t be able to sleep with a light shining on me, so we decided blackout or room darkening shades would be the best pick to make our guests sleep well.

If you remember from last week’s post, the previous owners used blackout roller blinds in this space and we’ve kept them up (despite their scallop shape) since we bought the house.

Removing old window blinds

Goodbye scallop edge roller shades! Andy popped the old roller blinds out of each window and then unscrewed and removed the new hardware.

To install the new IKEA SKOGSKLOVER roller blinds, Andy marked the placement of the two hanging brackets along the top of the window and used the holes to mark the new drill locations with a pencil. He then drilled into the frame around the window and secured the hanging brackets with the included screws. The main shade piece then rocks/snaps onto the brackets.

Just a note to everyone on why you don’t see me in these pictures doing this work – I pride myself on being a seasoned home DIY-er but I have been struggling with a shoulder injury since October and have had to take it easy. Andy has been sweet and kind in taking over doing a lot of the labor on our projects that I otherwise would help with – so that’s why you see him and not me!

one room challenge ikea skogslover roller blinds

one room challenge ikea skogslover roller blinds

one room challenge ikea skogslover roller blinds

What I love about the SKOGSKLOVER roller blinds is that they fit our windows perfectly, they filter light beautifully, they have built-in stopping points so you can match their length along multiple windows, and they roll up smoothly with one little tug – like some kind of machine magic.

Blackout curtain options

I have been going back and forth on different blackout drapes for this room. I’ve been bugging everyone on Instagram about it and I’m here to bug you about it in this blog post. My first instinct was to brighten the room with white or off-white curtains. And then I remembered how much I’m into tonal looks and thought maybe a matching green or lighter shade of green could work.

I am a visual person and too impatient to wait for all the curtains to arrive to see everything all together. I took some photos of the room, patched two of them together in Photoshop, and threw in some items from the mood board from my One Room Challenge Week 1 post.

Option 1: White Pom Pom Blackout Curtains

orc-guest-bedroom-mockup-dark-curtains

[Option 1: curtains | lamps | nightstands]

I put these pom pom blackout curtains in my week 1 mood board. I was worried that pom pom curtains are for kids and teens – these specific curtains are, in fact, from PBteen. I like how the white curtains add brightness against the dark walls, but I am worried that there will be too much white and too much high contrast when white bedding is added. What do you think?

Great tip for those looking for blackout curtains – check teen and kid stores! I am not a parent myself, but I have learned that parents love having blackout curtains to get their kids to nap when they need them to.

Option 2: Light Green Velvet Light Blocking Curtains

orc-guest-bedroom-mockup-dark-curtains

[Option 2: curtains | lamps | nightstands]

These SANELA curtains in gray-green are the first of the two green velvet curtain options, both from IKEA. They are not lined, but I think the dark velvet will do a good enough job blocking out the light. At 98″, they are longer than I need them to be, but I’d want to take out the grommets and sew in tabs instead anyway, so hemming away the extra length won’t be a problem.

I’m really liking these as an in-between option. The lighter green looks great with the pink accents I want to include and ties together the dark walls and light bedding really well.

Option 3: Dark Green Velvet Light Blocking Curtains

orc-guest-bedroom-mockup-dark-curtains

[Option 3: curtains | lamps | nightstands]

The drama! These SENELA curtains in dark green from IKEA almost perfectly match the walls. The sheen from the velvet would add just enough interest but let the dark green walls really be the star of the show. I think these curtains are the coziest option but I wonder if they make the whole room feel too intense.

Leave a comment and tell me which curtains you’d pick! PLEASE.

 

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to for week2!

Hey heads up: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.