A Simple Hack to Styling a Room

There is a thought process when trying to decide on how to style a room.  First, you want to understand its function so that you can style around whatever that may be.  Second, you will want to establish a mood, is it formal or casual?  This helps you to determine what colors, textures, and furniture you will need.  When you have determined all the above, try drawing out on graph paper where you will place each piece of furniture.  This will help to decide wall paint and accent walls.  Now it becomes easier to put your plans into action.  Once you have painted walls and placed furniture, it is my favorite time, time to style.

Many people get timid about this part, but you shouldn’t be.  This part of the decorating is all about you and your style.  This is your home so let it reflect your style.  There are many different styles out there such as bohemian, minimalist, farmhouse, contemporary, and so on.  Lucky for us there are also many quizzes online that can help you narrow down your style.  For me, I find that I can simply look at Pinterest, or magazines to get a feel for what my style is.  Another way is to look inside your closet and see what your wardrobe reflects.  My personal style would be a modern boho style if I had to pick.  Something free-spirited.  That’s what I want my style to portray, casual, fun, with a little unique or maybe weird.

Now that we have completed the initial design steps how to get started?  Well, start with each corner of the room, focusing on table tops, shelves, nooks, etc.  You will want to create little vignettes.  The definition of a vignette is as follows:

noun
  1. 1.
    a brief evocative description, account, or episode.
    “a classic vignette of embassy life”
  2. 2.
    a small illustration or portrait photograph which fades into its background without a definite border.
verb
  1. 1.
    portray (someone) in the style of a vignette.

So basically just have fun with this.  Try to keep within your color palette, mood, and style of the room but get a little funky.  You want to create little corners, shelves, and tabletops, that tell a small story about you or your family.  Something interesting and dear to you is always a must.  Maybe a cool collection of things found on vacation, or a flea market find.  Honestly, it is hard to go wrong here,  so turn up the music, relax and have fun.  It is all about putting little things together and standing back to see if it “feels” right and balanced.  There are really no hard rules here so if it feels good to you then it is on point!  Let me share with you a few vignettes of my own that I recently created after storing Easter decor away.

 

Here is my mantle.  I recently painted my stone fireplace (link here) white and painted the wood mantle black.  I am so happy that I made this decision as I love how it turned out.  I have created a little vignette on my mantle hoping to express my style of a modern boho feeling casual and fun.  For the shelf mantle, I have a simple rule of 3’s.  Three items all in varying height and size.  I love my artwork from Art.com, I feel that it is the weird and unique I was looking for.  I have a special wooden box up top acting as a shelf for two small glass vases with twigs and flowers.  This mantle is less cluttered because I wanted a clean feel.  You can always stagger on from here in other small groups of items spaced appropriately, which I have done before.  I just like having my focal point to be my rule of ‘3’.  On my stone hearth, I have placed two pillows to give a warm comfortable feel.  I also like the texture the pillows bring to this space.  I have another wooden box (I have a thing for wooden boxes) next to the pillows.  I placed a fun flea market purchase on top of the box.  It is a polished piece of rock from a special place dear to me, in a color that works in my palette.   On the opposite side of the hearth, I have placed my snake plant in a natural woven basket alongside a few candles in black and cream. I have draped a black shoulder throw (from my closet, I told you to look there) over the mantle to help deflect some negative space in the stone surface of the fireplace.  This is a unique look and a bold statement that brings a tremendous amount of texture. If you will notice all my items are in a color palette of a natural tan, black and white.  That is why this works so well.  They all share the same tone which brings harmony and balance.  All the while expressing my style.

Here are a few corners of my living room.  The first picture is a corner styled with function in mind.  It is the shoe drop off in my household.  It is right around the corner from my front door and a total drop off spot.  My kids and their friends immediately head here to sit and take their shoes off.  So placing a bench next to a catch-all basket works well for us.  To style it I placed a soft comfy blanket as extra cushion for your tush, using a back pillow for more support.  To tell a story of this space, I placed my beloved and well-used rainboots next to the bench opposite side my flea market wicker purse draped over the arm.  The idea is to hopefully influence my guests to get comfortable and leave their belongings at the door.  Again here my color palette is natural tan, white and black, with a few fun bright pops of color from my daughter’s art project. The second picture shows my reading nook.  My favorite blue retro reading chair with my vintage light fixture behind it to allow for proper reading light.  The window right next to the best seat in the house is a plus!  A side table with a few knick knacks in the natural tones and textures compliments the colors used throughout the room.  The blue tone in my son’s school art project really pops the blue color of my chair.  For a feeling of comfortable and fun.

So what are you waiting for, pour your favorite beverage, get your jam on and start playing/styling.  Remember not to take it too serious, just have fun.  Try out a bunch of looks, stand back and see how it feels, if it feels good then you nailed it!

 

Happy Styling!

 

Best,

Jen

DIY Table Square

I know what you are thinking…. what is a table square?  Well, it is as it sounds, not a table runner but a table square.  I put this one together today in no time flat and LOVE it.  I am digging that it isn’t your typical runner and the best thing is it is one of a kind.  I will list all the steps to complete this project so that you can refresh your table with this unique piece as well.

What you will need:

  1. 1-yard fabric
  2. twine or jute rope
  3. thread/needle or sewing machine
  4. not a seamstress, no problem just grab some fabric glue

 

  • First, you will need to pin off the fabric to form a large pillowcase shape.  Essentially this is just like making that pillowcase back in home economics if you can still remember that.  Flipped inside out, folded and pinned together on the edges, sew or glue your hems together.  Sew/glue all around the rectangle shape leaving just a small opening so that you may flip the right side up when finished.  You will then sew/glue the small opening together using the hidden hem stitch method.
  • Next up the tassels.  Take your twine rope and wrap around your four fingers about 20-25 times. Cut a small piece of twine to tie around the top of your four-fingered wrapped twine. Wrapping the piece around 5-10 times then tie off.  Trim off excess ends.  Next cut the bottom of the four-fingered wrapped twine and trim ends.  Now you have a tassel.
  • The last step is to tie your tassels on the corners of your table square.  You will need four tassels in all.  Simply stitch the tassels on any way you see fit, I am not enough of a seamstress to know how to correctly stitch these on.  I just used my thread and needle and made a few passes in and out to attach the tassels.

 

I think this will be so cute as a simple table square, but better yet I think it will be so cute placed under appetizer spread.  Just gives it that styled touch that we all crave.  That extra step above for your cheese boards.

This project was so simple and quick, give it a try and share your table squares.  This was a minimalist one you can totally jazz them up more and I want to see your creativity!!

 

Happy DIY Sunday!

Best,

Jen

 

4 tips for your outdoor oasis

Hey, there happy weekend!!  We have literally been outside all day today as it was a perfect Saturday!!  My favorite way to spend the weekend is out in our backyard as a family hanging out.  We did some yard work followed by sprucing up our patio and ending with a delicious meal outside. While being outside today I have discovered a few good tricks to really bring out the best in your outdoor oasis.

This is such a good idea and fun way to style a bench.  Using a blanket or even an old rug, as my favorite stylist Emily Henderson, has done in the picture above.  It adds such warmth and texture to any space.  This will also be so much more comfortable to sit on for time spent eating and sharing.

A fun and unique way to liven up your outdoor space is to add a festive umbrella.  I love the first picture up top with the fringed umbrella from Anthropologie.  If spending $$ on an umbrella isn’t an option, try buying an umbrella second hand from Craigslist or your local thrift shop.  Purchase some fringe at your local fabric or craft store and sew on your fringe.  If sewing isn’t your jam you could try using fabric glue.  The second picture gives you an idea of how amazing it can look to add some light at twilight under your umbrella.  Gives so much warmth and would be fabulous for a romantic dinner.

I found this idea from yet again Emily Henderson.  I seriously have such a style crush on her.  In the picture above she hangs a pendant from a tree.  If you have all your ducks in a row and can hang a pendant from a tree and have wiring capabilities then this idea is PERFECT for you.  If you don’t have any electricity nearby then try using a pendant with burning candles to give you your evening glow.

DIY an outdoor fireplace for those chilly nights.  The possibilities are endless, anything that is safe to withstand heat a.k.a. fire is a potential candidate.  Maybe an old iron cauldron like the second picture above.  Have you recently cut down a tree?  Hollow it out and line with metal for your next firepit.  Having a unique centerpiece such as a DIY fireplace really sets you apart from the rest.  A definite conversation starter.

 

Do you have any fun, unique ideas that bring out the best in your outdoor space?  If so please share!  Happy outdoor living!!

 

Best,

Jen

 

 

DIY Wooden Bead Garland

Ok, so I am crushing hard on the latest home accessory.  The wooden bead garland is a must!  So organic and simple yet eye-catching and looks great wherever it “plops” down.  I love this one used by Emily Henderson.  The different shapes of this particular garland are very playful and casual on this patio oasis.  In preparing my own patio oasis I decided I needed this hot accessory.  The best part is I can DIY this and I dig a fun and easy project.

Items needed:

  1. Jute string
  2. Wooden beads (any variety you choose)
  3. Siccors
  4. Tassels (can be made as well)

 

Steps:

  1. Start by taping the end of your jute string so that it doesn’t fray when you string your beads.
  2. Start stringing your beads in any pattern and/or shape of your desire.
  3. String as many beads as you would like until the garland is your preferred length.
  4. Leaving a little length on each end of the garland (about 2″) trim your string from the spool.
  5. Next, your possibilities are endless. You can either tie off each end with a knot, leaving it as is.  Or you can tie on tassels to each end or even just to one end.  I will choose to tie on two tassels, one on each end. You can also thread little charms or tags to each end with secure knots as well.
  6. Since I am choosing to do tassels I will explain how to make them.  You can also purchase premade tassels just about anywhere that sells craft supplies.  To make the tassel, wrap the jute around your hand until you reach your desired thickness (about 15-20 times).  Cut the end of the jute and carefully slip it off your hand.  Make sure both end pieces are hanging down from the top of your bundle.  Then take another piece of jute and wrap it around the top of your tassel (about 1/4″ from the top) to create a neck. Wrap as thick as you’d like it then tie it off and cut the ends.  Cut the loop on the opposite end of the tassel and trim the ends.
  7. Now all that’s left is to tie on the tassel with the excess string on the ends of the garland.  Trim excess off the ends.

 

There you have it, in no time at all a one of a kind home accessory that will be a show-stopper!  I can’t wait to get started on mine and I have a feeling I’ll be making more than one.  Share your DIY home accessories with me to inspire more authentic creativity.

Happy DIY Wednesday!

Best,

Jen

Disclosure: Some of the links on this page may be affiliate links meaning I could make a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

My Office Water Cooler

Happy Tuesday!!  Today I wanted to share with you my office water cooler.  With the weather warming up, spring in full swing, I decided my new office is going to be my beautiful backyard.  Every office needs a water cooler, right?  So in lieu of yesterday’s article of living green and eco-friendly, I decided to purchase and share this piece from Craigslist. I chose to buy second hand as this seemed to be perfect for the job and wouldn’t go to waste. It was a solid piece of wood that I knew would stand the test of time and wasn’t synthetic.  And let’s be honest the price fit well within budget.  It was extremely dusty and dirty but nothing a quick wipe down with warm soap and water couldn’t’ help.  When I brought home my prized piece with excitement (like my cat does with her dead mouse) to show my husband he thought I was crazy!!  I have to admit I wondered what the heck I was thinking as well but I had a vision and was going to stick to it.  After a quick clean up, I applied a seal over the wood to help protect against the outside elements.  Choosing a clear sealant, that was fast and easy to apply, made the wood look more conditioned and really brought it back to life. I am thrilled that I gave this piece a new home with a new purpose.  I love the character of the well-used wood with all its bolts and glory on display.

I am excited to get the season kicked off and to show this drink bar an eventful summer.

 

Enough water cooler talk for now.  Enjoy!

 

Best,

Jen

Happy Earth Day

Hey everyone Happy Earth Day!!  In honor of mother nature, I am writing about sustainable furniture today.  It is crucial that we all start taking better care of our home; Earth, as she has taken such good care of us.  If we continue to want to see her beauty and all she has to offer we need to be more mindful.  Mindful in just about everything we do every day all day.  Things like can you ride your bike instead of drive the car to work today? Or can you use and consume less?  The options are endless.

So today I want to choose the subject of sustainable furniture.  Choosing eco-friendly furniture is just one of many ways you can show love for Mother Earth.  I am sharing a list of companies with not only eco-friendly furniture, some of them finding ways to give back.

 

First I think I have to mention that re-using or recycling a piece of furniture is always a good way to go green.  By not wasting the furniture and then consuming more you are giving it and mother nature a second chance.  Another way to recycle or upcycle a piece of furniture is from your local thrift shop or flea market.  There are usually amazing deals to be found, and sometimes with a little DIY and creativity, they are better than before.  Great and easy suggestions for simply living eco-friendly

Now on to the sustainable brands:

  • Joybird: Eco-friendly, made-to-order, fair wages and health benefits for craftspeople, no harsh chemicals or flame retardants is what’s behind this brand. Plus, for each item sold, Joybird plants more trees than were used in the manufacturing of that item in an effort to help preserve the rainforests. Online store only.
  • VivaTerre: upholds sustainability and integrity throughout the design and manufacturing process of their truly globally-inspired, modern furniture. Online store only.
  • Stem: Eco-friendly, made in the USA, upcycled and organic materials, customizable. Their responsible manufacturing process takes place in the USA, cutting down on carbon emissions. Online store only.
  • ABC Home: Eco-friendly, ethically and sustainably sourced, fair-trade.  Online store only. 
  • West Elm: FSC-certified, made in the USA, Fair-Trade, eco-friendly. Online and instore. 
  • Crate and Barrel: Dining & home office collections featuring eco-friendly, FSC-certified, reclaimed wood, and sustainable bamboo. Online and instore. 

Inmod: Bedroom, lighting, storage, and children’s featuring eco-friendly, made in the USA. Online store.

My goal is to strive to do a few green things every day.  Little steps to make a big difference.  Happy Monday and Happy Earth Day!!

Best,

Jen

 

A Simple Exterior Refresh

Oh, the daunting task of painting the exterior of your home.  Whether from a maintenance standpoint or a whole new look the thought of this makes me want to take a nap.  I would love to paint my exterior (not actually me but rather hire a company) today however it is just not in the budget.  There are just far too many other house projects that need doing first and to be honest the condition of my painted exterior is in top notch condition.  So while the color of the house exterior is not my favorite it is here to stay (for a bit).

So I have come up with a refresh that is far less expensive and on a smaller scale.  Refreshing your front door.  Give your front step a pop of that spring color.  Approaching this next season with an updated exterior, without having to break the bank (or your back) is on my spring checklist.  It is truly amazing how a fresh coat of paint on your front door can really change the look.  So I am over here formulating a plan and gathering inspiration for my next (one of many next’s) spring refresh project.  Honestly, I have been doing a lot of planning for projects because here in Boise we have nothing but rainy days with teaser weather in small increments.  When you get that one day full of sunshine you don’t want to do anything but soak it up.  So until the April showers turn into May flowers and the sun stays for more than two days, I am stuck indoors planning and making lists.

So for anybody in the same boat as me wishing to change and update the look of your exterior, read along and gather ideas.  This may be the whole new look you were hoping to achieve.

Let’s start first with a natural wood door.  So pretty, so natural and so striking.  What I love most about going with a natural wood door is that is foolproof.  This door can go with just about any color scheme.  It is equally striking when used with a dark exterior or a light exterior.  I especially love the ones with added glass.  I love letting the outdoors in at any chance.  This one is my pick and what I plan to do but this is just all a very loose plan taking form so anything can change.

Pinks!!  If this doesn’t say spring has sprung then I don’t know what does.  I love how modernized the pinks can look especially in the first two pictures.  Such a unique refresh and if you want some added curb appeal that will get noticed, this is it!

50 shades of green.  With green being the new “it” color this one is definitely second runner up for me.  My favorite being the first picture as it feels clean, crisp and modern.  Very striking!

Last but certainly not least.  The traditional colors that can stand the test of time.  Black, red and navy blue doors are always stunning.  These colors are always trending so you can’t go wrong.

Well, what are you waiting for (the rain to stop)?  Give your home the “aw” factor by refreshing your front door.  I think you will be pleasantly surprised what a new fresh coat of paint or sanding can do for your overall curb appeal.  If you want to take it a step further stay tuned for some DIY updates for your garage doors.

 

Happy Saturday and happy painting!

 

 

Tips and Tricks for Showstopper Planters

Spring is here and it is the perfect time to start thinking about planting your pots outside.  Whether for added curb appeal or a quiet retreat to your patio or deck, I have you covered with all the tips you’ll need.  Gone are the days of simpling picking out a few red Geraniums or pink Begonias.  The pressure is on to have your planters on point!  So in prep for getting my hands dirty this weekend (literally) I have done a little research on just what to do.  I always show up to the garden stores wandering isles, picking pretty plants and flowers, not knowing exactly what I was doing and hoping for the best.  Instead of holding my breath and praying it all turns out, I have made lists and armed myself with the knowledge to knock this project out of the park.  Check out all I have dug up so that you too can have sensational planters this season.

 

 

    1. Instead of filling your large planter with soil try filling your pot with some recyclable items first. This will help with cost as less soil is needed.  Making sure there is a hole in the bottom of the pot, along with using a “filler” (recyclable item) 1/4 to 1/3 of the way up, will ensure the weight of the soil doesn’t compress and compact, affecting drainage and root growth.  Other items to use besides your plastic containers would be soda cans or really just about anything you can recycle.

    Here is the secret recipe: a planter should have three things. A thriller, a filler, and a spiller. In this picture you have a Golden Sword Yucca as your thriller, typically thrillers are vertical. Your Filler would be the pink Geranium and purple Petunias as they are a weaving plant that can “fill” in. The spiller in this picture is the Creeping Jenny as it flows off the edge and down the side “spilling” over. When making your list, take into account the overall growth structure when they are full grown.  Combine plants that need the same amount of moisture and sun otherwise they can’t live together in harmony. Make sure to include enough texture and color into your overall design.

Here is a list of Thrillers, Spillers, and Fillers.

THRILLERS

    • Agave
    • Angelonia
    • Bamboo
    • Banana
    • Canna
    • Corydalis
    • Dahlia (upright varieties)
    • Dracena
    • Elephant ear (taro)
    • Fuchsia (upright varieties)
    • Grasses
    • Hibiscus
    • Millet
    • Papyrus
    • Phormium (New Zealand flax)

FILLERS

    • Argyranthemum (Marguerite daisy)
    • Begonia
    • Caladium
    • Coleus
    • Diascia (twinspur)
    • Euphorbia (especially Diamond Frost)
    • Impatiens
    • Nasturtium (mounding types)
    • Nemesia
    • Osteospermum (African daisy osteospermum)
    • Pelargonium (geranium)
    • Petunia
    • Salvia (small-flowered types)
    • Verbena

 

SPILLERS

    • Callibrachoa
    • Dichondra
    • Helichrysum (licorice plant)
    • Ipomoea (sweet potato vine)
    • Lobelia
    • Torenia (wishbone flower)

 

Here is a bit of inspiration along with what is used.  I always like a little visual stimulation to get a project going.

This arrangement with a neutral tone and texture brings out its natural beauty. Boasting String of Pearls with all its drama through its unique shape all the while purple Calibrachoa and blue Ageratum add just the right dose of brightness to add depth to this subtle arrangement.
Loving this evergreen arrangement. Living in the North West you can’t get away from an authentic evergreen. Having that as a base choose something like a cast-iron plant, and then add in some Caladiums, some Impatiens, and even a creeping Fig.
Succulents are both heat and drought tolerant, so they’ll look great all summer long. There are many ways to plant succulent containers, particularly since they are so resilient. They also share a desert color palette with succulents, making the two appear as if they were always intended to go together. Making sure to water carefully and selectively.
We will all be planting window boxes everywhere you can once you see how beautiful and simple this arrangement is. ‘Aaron’ Caladium, Holly Fern, ‘Key Lime Pie’ Heuchera, ‘White Nancy’ Lamium, Ivy, and light pink Periwinkle come together in this eye-catching window box. This arrangement adds depth and color and lives in harmony where shade permits.

There you have it, enough information that you can head to the garden store isles with a list and idea of what you are doing.  I am excited to start this project as planting pots is one of my favorites!  Happy planting!!

Please share any of your spring plantings with me as I am always eager to learn and see more tips and tricks for my yard.

9 Ways to decorate Easter Eggs

Hello!  I have found some really cute and adorable ways to decorate your Easter Eggs this year.  Instead of the same old boring, jazz it up a bit into something fun and different.  So here we go:

 

This is definitely something we will be doing at our house this Easter.  I can totally see this being my son’s jam. Thanks, Brit and Co.
How beautiful are these!! Something I definitely will want to do. To pretty to eat or throw away so maybe I will have to do this on keepsake wood eggs. Thanks for this design Say Yes.
Going right along with the foliage theme above. Love this! Thanks, Delia Creates.
For the artist with a steady hand. So creative. Thanks for the inspiration Ernest Home Co.
So ADORABLE!! Can’t wait to try this out. Bitte.
So pretty and mess free. No paint and such so this is right up our ally. Thanks, Oh Joy.
Now this one is another version of the one above, however, this one uses paint. The picture is so great though it makes me want to try it out. Awesome job Let’s Mingle.
Now, this is a bit of the same old same old, but they do it so well and pretty. I want to try this fun out for sure! Love it Oh Joy!
I saved my favorite for last. So on trend and matching my mostly black and white decor. This is going to be a MUST to try! Thanks, Alice and Lois.

There ya have it some unique and creative ways to jazz up your eggs this year.  Happy decorating!!

Shower Eye Candy

I have been doing some “intense” research on some current shower trends (hard work I know) and have come up with inspiration for my master bath reno project.  I am currently in the process of planning out my ideal master bath.  I have found some beautiful looks that I would love to share with you and hopefully, you can help me decide by commenting below if you like or dislike these trends.  Again being in the planning process of this master bath I am keeping an open mind and would love to hear your thoughts and comments on any shower trends that have caught your fancy.  Here are the ones that caught my eye and why:

Loving the play on pattern and texture with this bathroom. The tile floor matching the shower shelf backdrop and the blue horizontal stripe pairing nicely in the same tonal color.  Love the idea of some plants in the shower….you will never forget to water!

 

 

Digging the wood buddies here. The stool, ceiling and vanity shelf complement the black and white tones of this minimalist bathroom.
The seamless flow in this shower/bath.

 

This is truly an amazing way to shower. You would feel right outdoors in this shower. Bathed in daylight!