Signing Off for Summer

I'm taking some time off to recharge, reboot, relax (you fill in the blank).  Time to stop and smell the roses for a bit.  If you would like to check in on my summer and any interior design finds, I will be on Instagram.    
I'll catch you on the other side of summer!  M.

Spring Series - Freshen Up Friday

The Reveal
Today is the final reveal of my daughter's tween room makeover!  I finally took the time to take a few pictures to show you the room in it's entirety.  I also wanted to share a few tips on pulling the room together.  Hopefully these will be helpful when tackling a room in your home.   First, here's the finished room.

The bed in it's new spot with fresh bed linens.  Notice the framed paper on the right to balance the oddly placed window on the left.

Now for the wall opposite the bed.  The dressing table is a family piece, and we really wanted to keep it in the space.  So, to make if feel more fun and unexpected, I paired it with a ghost chair.   The lacquered shelves are from IKEA and they give a modern feel that relates to the ghost chair.  They also bring in more of the teal color my daughter had been craving in the space.

Another trick I really like to use in children's bedrooms is to place any "clutter collectors" on the last wall you see when you enter the room. So, desks, bookshelves, vanity tables, etc. go on the door wall.  Then the bed and the fabrics can be the star of the room.

Here's a closer look of the reading nook we created by the window in the corner.

Lastly, the closet door wall. I have to show you a before to really appreciate the change.  Here's the before.

Now for the "after."  We painted the doors with a teal chalkboard paint. 

She's had a great time with writing only in certain sections of the door.  Also, notice the full length mirror from IKEA.  Hands down, this is the nicest piece I've ever purchased from IKEA.  It is super looking in person - beveled mirror and a silver leaf finish and very heavy - only $99.99.  My plan was to paint it gold, but when I saw it in person I decided to keep the finish.  We also liked how the mirror repeated the silver of the pouf ottoman paired with her upholstered chair. 

So, back to the doors.  It took three coats of paint and was super easy to do.   Thinking we need to work on our spelling a bit!  

This is the view as you enter her room.  The plates were in that same spot in her previous room.  They're the only thing that did not change following the makeover.

The Details
Since we started this project with a few items we needed to keep, fabric selection was tricky.  The drapery panels are a silk stria, fully lined and were expensive.  Also, I wanted to keep the upholstered chair which was very similar in color to the panels.   My daughter did not mind the pink tones but really wanted teal in the space.

So, here's the first trick/tip - Fabric can take you where you want to go!  Anytime you are starting with a few pieces that are dictating some of the color in the space, you need to find one really great new fabric that pulls in lots of other colors (i.e., aqua) while blending with the colors you want to keep in the room.  In our case, it was this very colorful back pillow for the bed. . .  I probably spent more time sourcing this fabric and any other item in the room.  I ordered lots and lots of swatches and we finally settled on this one.

Believer it or not, pinks can be very difficult to match in a room.  Some have cool undertones (a purple/ice pink) while others have warm undertones (think ballerina/peachy pink).  Our pink was a warm toned, so the oranges and yellows really tricked your eye into feeling like everything was selected together. 

Once we found the "tie it all together" fabric, this allowed me to pull in more of the teals/aquas and making these the star color and the pink the secondary color.  Here's another great fabric I found on Spoonflower with lots of colors in my palette.    My daughter did not like this fabric as much as the main fabric, so I used it as a lumbar pillow to break up the pink of the chair in the reading area. 

The bed skirt also gave me a challenge - I really wanted a velvet teal to give us one more color and to repeat the velvet of the chair.  Also, my daughter's bed has a trundle underneath it, so I was dealing with a non-standard height.  So, a ready made bedskirt was not an option.  Well, as luck would have it, I ran into these while on our first trip to IKEA - a pair of teal velvet drapery panels.  They were $69.99 for a pair.  

I took one panel and split it down the middle, finished off the cut side and used bed pins to create a custom length bed skirt.  The velvet was so thick I did not even need to line it. 

These bed pins screw into the top of the box spring and are sandwiched between the box and the mattress to hold them in place.  The other great thing is you can adjust the length of the skirt with these pins. 

I then used the second velvet drapery panel to make the smaller front bed pillow which I added some leftover tape from the drapery panels. 

Speaking of the drapery panels.  Here is the before panels with the traditional tassel trim. 

Now for the after on the drapery panels.  It's amazing how the tape completely transformed them into something more hip and chic. 

Last, but not least, I wanted to mention the duvet cover we added to the end of the bed.  I ran across it just before Christmas on Deny Designs and was totally smitten!  It is a hand dyed duvet cover which was made by an artist.    Around the same time, they had a sale and I jumped online and grabbed it.  I think the watercolor feel of the design adds more of the blending of colors the space needed.  

So, that's how it all came together.  She is thrilled with the transformation and I'm just glad it's finished! Happy weekend. M.

Arc Realty Contributor

I'm very excited about contributing to Arc Realty's new blog series.  I'll be featured on Mondays as "Monday's Musings" and will be sharing lots of tips on staging, and interior design related tips for making your house a home!  Very fun. Click here for more Info.  

Arc is an amazing real estate company here in Birmingham, and they've just launched a brand new website and blog.  So, lots of interesting reads are sure to come from their new blog!  Also, if you are looking for a home in the Birmingham area, their new website is super easy to navigate when doing house searches!  Check it out

Happy Hump Day! M.

Hot Weather Finds

OK, I think it's safe to say the cold weather is gone.  We had 80 degree temps all last week, so I'm suddenly in the more for summer!  Here are my favorite summer finds.  I few I've already ordered - others I'm simply drooling over. 

I had one of these Friday night.  My hubby and I celebrated our 16th anniversary, and we started the evening at a fun local place where I ordered a John Daly (the mock version would be an Arnold Palmer).  It was so yummy.  It included sweet tea infused vodka (I like the firefly brand) and homemade lemonade!  A total summer cocktail.  Now you can pretend you're in the South too. 

I love this bag.  You can just throw what you need in and go.  Perfect for summer.

Craving simple salads.  Is it just me or does a salad always taste better when someone else makes it?  Same with coffee, for sure. 

The peonies are in full bloom here in Birmingham.  I adore this flower.  I tried to grow them one summer and the plant did not make it.  Some neighbors have them and I just wish I could grow them. 

I love entertaining outdoors.  This image just makes me want to lounge around with good friends and a glass of wine. 

So thrilled the farmer's market is back at Pepper Place.  I've also heard that starting the first week in June there will be one in Crestline village on Wednesday afternoons.  Will be super convenient for me!  There is nothing like a meal made with super fresh produce.  Love coming home with my bounty, turning on the tunes, opening the french doors to our back patio and cooking up something simple and delicious. 

Love the look of this outfit for a summer cocktail party. 

"But if I fall for you, I'll never recover. If I fall for you, I'll never be the same." - Maroon 5

"But if I fall for you, I'll never recover. If I fall for you, I'll never be the same." - Maroon 5 by theslaura featuring a yellow purse

I also love the idea of the outfit for an evening out after a full day at the beach.  Totally smitten with the dress and shoes.
Hot afternoon

Hot afternoon by fivana featuring a rainbow dress

I'm really wanting one of these to fill with water and cucumber slices to keep in the frig.  So refreshing.

Boy do I love a pretty cuff.  This website has a wonderful story too. 

Enjoy your Monday.  Summer is almost here. M.

What I've been up to this week

As the end of school quickly approaches (13 days left! yikes!), my goal has been to finish up several projects by the end of May.   I'm going to be taking the months of June and July off to spend time with my kiddos.   Last year, I made a conscience decision to do this, and it worked out great.  With the time I have left with them at home seemingly melting away,  I don't want to wake up when they're in college and wonder what happened!  So, if you are waiting on a design plan from me, it's coming!  

In the meantime, I wanted to show you the results of a redesign I did earlier this week.  As many of you know, a redesign is when a client calls me to come and help them rethink the layout of their spaces.  When you live in a space, it tends to be more difficult to think about the furniture in a different arrangement (or even a different room).  This client has a lovely home and beautiful furnishings.  She did not want to purchase anything new; rather, she just wanted the space to feel fresh.  So a couple of weeks ago we completed a redesign for her family room.  We moved a very large furniture piece from this wall (in the below image) to the wall on the left (sorry I don't have a picture of it) to balance her fireplace (which is on the wall to the right).  This left a large bare wall in the space.  This alone can paralyze some homeowners from rearranging their furnishings!  The key is to walk around and shop your own furnishings.  I spotted a fabulous grouping of 9 framed quilt squares in the kitchen on a smaller wall.  My client mentioned having more of these, so I recommend she have a few additional ones framed for a larger grouping on this wall.  

Once the additional pieces were framed, we came back and rehung them.  Talk about a statement wall.  

Here's a close up of one of the quilt squares.  Love how much texture it adds to the space! 

One more thing - the door to the left leads to the front foyer, so having something in this spot with a low profile is perfect for giving you an open airy feel.  Also, when you hang a grouping low on the wall, it doesn't feel like you need a piece of furniture under it.  This is a great tip when you are not ready to buy a large casement piece.  Simply hang your artwork lower on the wall.

I have to say redesigns are my favorite part of this job.  There is nothing like transforming a client's home simply by taking what a homeowner already has in their space, changing the furniture layout, rehanging the artwork and styling the room with accessories.  In just a few hours a room can be transformed into something that feels completely different.   Every time we complete one of these, I say the same thing, "I feel like I've been shopping."  Redesigns give me the same thrill as a day of shopping with friends!  No idea why, but it makes me totally happy. 

Hope you have a marvelous day! M.