Friday Favs: Book Nooks

Ok… so it’s really more Saturday Favs today but we had family in town last night so I was little distracted. It won’t happen again.*

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It’s no secret that I’m a bit of a bibliophile… in fact I may even be a bit of a book hoarder. You’d think e-books would have made it easier, but I while I use my Kindle app occasionally (mostly when I travel) I still love books.  The feel, the smell, the joy of being in a book store… it’s all wonderful!  This is followed by a pressing need to store my hoard of books.

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Via Little Green Notebook

Floor to ceiling bookshelves and a library ladder?  Be still my heart!

 

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Via Domino

It’s pretty well accepted that technology in the bedroom can be disruptive to your sleep, but surrounding yourself with books?  That seems pretty dreamy to me.

 

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Via Habitually Chic

If a slightly moodier library feel is more your vibe (and you’re not blessed with super tall ceilings) you can frame out your wall ‘o books in a deep color.

 

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Via Desire to Inspire

Or you could opt for a brighter color for a funkier vibe.  I’m kind of in love with that daybed too.

 

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Image Credit: Unknown**

I’ve always been a sucker for attic spaces, but I think this wall of books is especially spectacular.

 

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Via Real Simple

Got a goofy little alcove?  You could turn it into your own personal mini-library.

 

*Actually, I’m pretty sure it will.

**I found this image on Pinterest, but it only seems to link back to Tumblr pages and other round up style posts so I have no idea what the original source is.  If you do, please let me know and I’ll update accordingly.

 

 

Friday Favs: PINK Rugs

I am ridiculously in love with the pink rug in our dining room!  It’s so fun and vibrant and adds a whole new level of dimension to the room.  I had originally planned on getting a neutral rug for the space (yaaaaawn) and then I stumbled across this article on Apartment Therapy talking about how pink is the perfect rug color for almost every room.  A slight exaggeration perhaps, but they had some fabulous examples and I was SOLD.

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If you’re ready to hop on the pink train here are some more rugs to consider–and all are under $300!

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1// Overstock $161 for an 8×10

Over-dyed seems to be big right now.  I think it looks awesome in the right space, but Matt thinks they look like someone took an eraser to them.  To each their own.

2// Anthropologie $248 for a 3×5

Ok, so this one’s not totally pink, but it’s got a solid pink pop and is still pretty spectacular

3// All Modern $150 for a 5×8

I love how this one is slightly reminiscent of a Moroccan pattern.  The bold pattern but more muted color is great if crazy hot pink isn’t for you.

4// Overstock $166 for a 5×7

So this was the rug I originally wanted for the dining room.  I love the balance of color so it doesn’t seem completely overwhelming.  Unfortunately it wasn’t available in the right size when I was actually ready to buy it, but my alternate worked out beautifully too!

 

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Bright not your thing?  No problem.  Pastels aren’t just for baby girls!

1// Overstock $270 for an 8×10

This rug would look uber chic in the right room.  Anyone else kinda dig the black-white-blush-gold palette? It’s hard to tell from the image, but the rug is super plush so it would provide a soft but textural base.

2// Wayfair $275 for an 8×10

A busier pattern, still in a soft color is a great way to add texture too.

3// Rugs USA $200 for a 3×5

This one’s a little bolder, but I think the earthier coral color is divine and it’s not overwhelming.

4// Overstock $250 for a 3×5

And of course, pastel with fringe!  Because fringe.

 

Friday Favs: IKEA Hacks

One of my favorite things about living in St Paul is that we’re about 20 minutes away from IKEA.  The good news for anyone who doesn’t live close to an IKEA is that they’ve started offering a lot more of their furniture for purchase online.

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IKEA has some great basic pieces, but sometimes they need a little extra oomf so your house doesn’t end up looking like an IKEA catalog.

 

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Via Young House Love

Young House Love turned an Expedit (now Kallax) into a stylish changing station for their baby, but this same look would make a great credenza or TV stand too.

 

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Via In My Own Style

Card Catalog style drawers + secretary desk?  I can hardly think of a better upgrade for a TARVA dresser.

 

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Via House of Hawkes

If paint is more your skill level it can still make a huge difference and transform a simple shelf into something a little more glam.  A VITTSJO unit was used here, but you could also ramp up a $15 HYLLIS too!

 

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Via Cleverly Simple

The RAST dresser is one of the most hacked IKEA pieces I’ve seen (I’ve hacked it myself too!).  I love how it’s been turned into a fabulous little nightstand here.

 

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Via Money Saving Sisters

Another simple paint upgrade, this time with a SNILLE chair.

 

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Via The Makerista

I think these built in BILLY bookcases are one of the most divine things ever!  And the addition of a  library ladder?  To DIE for!

 

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Via Oliver & Rust

Need some extra storage for the kitchen?  This island looks fancy, but is really a pretty simple hack, needing just some paint and a new top.  This one used a BEKVAM kitchen cart, but if you want a little extra storage you could use a FORHOJA too.

 

Weekend Assemblage

We’re getting down to the wire now… not that we’re on any actual schedule, but I’m eager to get another room knocked off my list.

Our new light fixture arrived on Thursday and was breeze to put up since there was actually a properly installed electrical box AND modern wiring already in place.  Madness!  The only issue was the electrical box protruding out of the ceiling about 2-3 inches.  We just ran with it and added a collar to make it look a little more intentional.*

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I also tackled some IKEA assembly.  I picked up 2 BRUSALI cabinets to use as buffets flanking the window.  They were inexpensive, a good size, and provided useful storage for some of our extra kitchen gear.  Only problem?  They’re not actually white. WTF Ikea? You call them white, couldn’t you call them “distressed white” or some such thing so people don’t get a nasty shock?  Ugh.  I wish IKEA would keep it’s finishes more consistent, this is just as bad the Stockholm series that’s a funky dirty beige color.  Oh well, that’s what paint is for, right?

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It’s also what IKEA beer is for….**

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These are one of the more obnoxious IKEA I’ve ever put together, and to put that in perspective, I think the MALM dressers are pretty easy.  We managed to slightly damage both in the process, nothing (too) visible, but it wasn’t hard to do.  That and the fact that they’re fairly wibbly-wobbly does not make them one of my favorite IKEA pieces ever. Scale-wise they fit the room pretty well though and they were pretty darn cheap so ultimately I’m feeling pretty good.

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After I got them in place the distressed-ness of the finish wasn’t terribly obvious so I’m holding off on painting them for now.  I am on the hunt for some fancier hardware for them though… although I can’t find anything with the same hole spacing (and I’m sort of in love with these) so I may have to paint them just so I can the patch the holes…

What’s left now you may ask?  The final prettifying*** is yet to come.  I need to pick up some final accessories, our rug should arrive sometime this week and then it’s just styling and staging.  And the room’s not really done until it’s properly accessorized.  If all goes smoothly we should be done within the next  week!

 

 

 *Not gonna lie, the fact that the seam on the shade is on the most visible side ever drives me a little bonkers.

**Ok, so 1) It’s not really IKEA beer, they just styled the labeling as an IKEA spoof and 2) I’m not a beer drinker so wine was my comfort of choice.  It was too fun not to pass up!

***Whoa, spellcheck says this actually a word!  I thought I was making it up!

Friday Favs: Statement Ceilings

Were you inspired by our faux tin ceiling?  I hope you were!  Ceilings are an all too often neglected part of the room.  People spend their time picking out paint and wall coverings, choosing the perfect flooring and furniture…. and paint their ceilings the off-white color of the ceiling paint right out of the can…. why?  You should think of your ceilings as a 5th wall, just as deserving of attention as all your other walls.

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If you’re feeling like showing your ceilings a little love, here’s a roundup of inspiration.

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Via Dave Fox Design Build

The easiest option is to just consider the color of the ceiling. If your walls are more neutral a pop of color can be a fun accent.

 

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Via SF Girl by Bay

You can also bring the ceiling color down into the room bit.

 

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Via The Blog Deco

Or onto an entire wall

 

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Via Little Green Notebook

Maybe you’re not feeling the paint, but wallpaper doesn’t have to be be just for the vertical walls.  Julia Rothman’s Daydream is a pretty perfect pattern for a ceiling.

 

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Via Contemporist

If you’re not up for covering the entire ceiling you always just add a focal point.  This one has the added bonus of being an amazingly dramatic headboard too.

 

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Via Atlanta Homes

Not my normal aesthetic, but ceiling was too spectacular not to share!

Friday Favs: Paper Flowers

I have a weakness for paper flowers.  They’re beautiful in their own way without looking just like a fake flower.  With Easter right around the corner they seemed like a good Friday inspiration.  If you’ve got some time on Saturday you could even whip some up for centerpieces or get crafty with your kiddos.

 

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Via Project Nursery

Tissue paper dahlias are probably the most basic option, but they look pretty spectacular as a backdrop.

 

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Via Design*Sponge

Daffodils are possibly the quintessential spring flower, but these you could keep year round.

 

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Via Smile Mercantile

Go big or go home right? If you have an over-sized floor vase this would be the perfect spring addition.

 

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Via DRI

The instructions are in Spanish, but the pictures are pretty easy to follow to make fun watercolor mums.

 

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Via Martha Stewart Weddings

Mmm… Magnolias!  They’re one of my favs, but we’re nowhere near their natural range.  These might be my own weekend craft.

 

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Via Oh Happy Day

This flower garland doesn’t have to accessorize a giant egg (although it is pretty cute).  You could also use it a runner for a centerpiece at Easter dinner (or your next springy brunch!).

Friday Favs: Perfect Porches

The weather (up until this past week anyway) was absolutely gorgeous for March.   Even though today it went back to 30’s and snow flurries, it still got me thinking about spring.

One of my favorite things of the nicer weather is having a huge (screened!) front porch. Ours in need of a little TLC though and since I’m sure I’m not alone I though I’d put my Pinterest Daydreaming to work!

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Via HGTV

I absolutely adore how fun and colorful this space is while still being bright and airy.   Plus, those chairs!

 

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Via Martha Stewart

This one’s positively dreamy if you’re a sucker for a porch swing.  The primarily black and white palate looks oh-so sophisticated and makes the plants really pop.

 

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Via McGrath II

This one’s a little more formal, but you could definitely tone it a bit with some more casual plants and accessories.  It’s definitely the kind of space where you could curl up with a book or chillax with your friends and a bottle of wine.

 

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Via Zillow

I love the relaxed style going for this one.  It’s informal but still sophisticated.

 

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Via Brit+Co

Pops of bold color, Panton chairs, and a raw-edged table?  Yes please!  I’m a sucker for some good eclectic styling.

 

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Via Tumblr

… and I love me a touch of Boho too!  Vibrant colors and loads of texture–it’s like tropical paradise even if you live in the Upper Midwest.

 

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Via Decorating Your Small Space

Short on space?  No problem.  This tiny balcony is still a fantastic little retreat.

AT January Cure Week 4

This was a really light week for me since most of it was addressed when we moved over the summer.

Monday: Media Fast

Ugh, I HATE the media fast.  I tried.  I did.  I spent and hour measuring and hanging curtains in our dining room, I did dishes in a timely fashion… and then I went back the the computer.  Fail.

Tuesday: Lighten up the Living Room

The focus on this one was paring down your accessories… which we did when we moved.  Our decorative objects sat packed away for months after we moved so I was able to be a little more objective when I unpacked and placed them.

Wednesday: Cabinet Clean-out

Again, done during moving.  Nothing makes you more willing to throw stuff out than the prospect of packing it up and hauling it with you.

Thursday: Look Through Your Linens

My closet clean-out choice was our linen closet… but we don’t tend to collect linens anyway so there wasn’t much that needed to be done.

Weekend: Flowers + Bathroom

Wow… I failed at the weekend…or won the weekend… I’m not sure which.  Friday night We decided to try and get into to the concert at Paisley Park.  It was announced on Twitter, tickets were only at the door, and there was no mention of whether or not Prince would be preforming (but I guess sometimes he just randomly does).  But it was funk night with Pho and Graham Central Station so Matt really wanted go.  Participating in a party at Paisley Park with a possibility of a Prince performance is just one of those things you should try and do if you live in the Twin Cities.

So we went, we got in, we danced, and Matt even saw Prince wandering around*.  We left around 1:30 because my feet were killing me** (and it was after the scheduled bands were done) so we didn’t get home until after 2.  As far as we can tell we didn’t miss an impromptu Prince performance, so I don’t feel too bad about being the one to make Matt leave.

Why am I mentioning this all when I should be talking about Cure progress?  Because I usually go to bed around 10 so this was a crazy late night for me.*** I woke up on Saturday feeling mildly hungover, and I had only had wine with dinner the night before.  I then proceeded to accomplish absolutely nothing on Saturday.  After dinner Matt suggested a trip to the hardware store to pick up outlets so we could try and fix that fiasco on Sunday, but I declined because then I would have to put on real pants.

On Sunday we actually Got Shit Done.  Some shit at least.  We went to the hardware store, got new outlets, found a new light fixture for our pantry, and picked up so extra storage bins for the basement.  We also picked up another sheer panel for the dining room and weekend flowers while we were at Target.  I got 3 different vases out of these $5 spray roses and the greenery left over from week 1.  Pretty sweet, huh?

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Matt attempted to replace the kitchen outlets and then we discovered that they’re on the one breaker in our house that’s a 20 amp instead of a 15.  Doh! This might explain some of the earlier issues.  We’re just so goddamn brilliant sometimes. We didn’t want to head back out so Matt tackled the pantry light instead.  We had to convert a wall mounted lamp to add a pull chain and there was success all around!

We also got some assorted crap moved out of the living room, did a general clean of the bathrooms (no deep clean needed since we did that as we did the makeover) and tried to corral the paperwork that has a tendency to accumulate in the dining room… so it’s not like I completely slacked off this weekend.  I also worked on a couple mini-projects that will be putting an appearance later.

Oh, and because it’s bathroom weekend (and I clearly haven’t rambled on enough yet…) here’s my current though for the micro-bath.

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*I saw the silhouette of a short guy with a big afro with his back to me, so I guess I did too?

**Matt is under strict orders to never let me wear those shoes again if we’re doing any significant amounts of standing/walking.

***Yes, I know, I’m old.

Bathroom Sources

Liked the bathroom reveal? Wondering where to get any of the things we used? Wonder no more–here’s our source list.

Paint

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Wainscoting + trim: Benjamin Moore Simply White (BM Advance, satin)

Walls: Benjamin Moore Opal Essence (Behr, eggshell)

Vanity cabinet + tub base: Benjamin Moore  French Beret (BM Advance, satin)

Tub feet: Martha Stewart Titanium (craft paint)

Fixtures

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Vanity: Lowes

Faucet: Kingston Brass

Knobs: Anthropologie

Light fixture: West Elm

 

Accessories

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Window panel: IKEA + a little DIY

Shower curtain: Urban Outfitters (no longer available)

Bathmat: IKEA

Towel Hooks: IKEA

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Wall Shelves: Home Depot

Hamper:  Home Goods (not available online)

Print: Flying Mouse 365 (this print no longer seems to be available)

 

 

 

Up Next: The Dining Room

So we’ve tackled the Kitchen and the Bathroom, now it’s time to move on.  I was pretty sure I was going to end up working on the bedroom or living room next, but I kept waffling over which one to pick.  During a discussion with my mother-in-law I realized that my ideas for both those rooms hadn’t fully gelled yet, but I did have a good idea of what I wanted to do with the dining room.  Problem solved!

So, the dining room.  It’s…. functional.

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It also probably wasn’t designed to be the dining room, hence the built-in bookshelves. They’re not functional for a dining room (too narrow for good storage, too tall for a buffet).  This room also has a very unfortunate acoustic tile ceiling.  That will need to go, along with yet another unattractive light fixture.

Now for the plan:

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The fugly ceiling tile will get covered up with faux tin panels. This not only add some visual interest to the ceiling, but it also means we won’t have to worry about the state of the ceiling under the existing tiles.

We’ll also switch out yet another questionable light fixture. The bookshelves will also get demo-ed and replaced with free-standing buffets (not necessarily the one shown, but the plan is for something similar). One of them we’re pretty sure is basically free-standing, but the other is definitely more attached and doesn’t have plaster all the way behind it so that will be a joy to patch.  After the bookshelves come out we’ll then have to replace all the baseboard molding since I think it will be near impossible to find a perfect match to patch it with.

For the walls I’m thinking of going dark–the same color I used on the kitchen cabinets.  The room gets a lot of natural light and will also get with trim, white buffets, and white curtains so it should end up dramatic but not overwhelming.  Or I’ll regret it all and repaint immediately.  Sometime you just need to take a chance with bold.

Our existing dining table (a simple black shaker-style) will be staying for now, but I would lovelovelove to replace it with a parsons table some day. I am however hoping to swap out our cheap IKEA chairs with some Eames shell chairs.

I’d like to add a rug in the dining room as well, mostly because it’s the one room where the wood floor isn’t looking so hot so I’d like to draw some attention away from the wood.

The artwork is still up in the air, but I found these prints at IKEA awhile back and really like the colors and abstract-y fruit/foliage pattern.  I have an idea to spruce it up a little bit too… but I need to see how the rest of the room starts coming together first.