Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

Friday, July 15, 2016

Y'all.  This is a not a drill.  Every year, Nordstrom gives their customers an opportunity to shop new fall merchandise at extremely discounted prices before it's available to the public--and the time has come.  The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale kicks off on July 22nd and runs through August 7th, however Early Access is now open for all Nordstrom cardholders.  In addition to amazing handbags, boots, and clothing [which I've already stocked up on...whoops!], Nordstrom also has some insanely great deals on home goods, too!  I've rounded up my picks below to make navigating the sale a little easier.  Happy #NSale shopping!

DIY: Ave Home Campaign Dressers

Friday, July 8, 2016

In addition to my marble-top tulip table, white campaign nightstands have been on my 'bucket list.'  For the past year, I scoured every antique show, flea market, vintage store and Craigslist post to no avail.  They were always either way out of my budget, required too much TLC, or weren't the right size.  My bed is on the taller side, so I wanted something in the 28" - 30" range.  I felt like the Little Red Riding Hood of nightstands! I couldn't find anything that was just right.  Enter Ave Home

Ave Home reproduces classic furniture pieces from various design periods ranging from French Louis XV to Mid Century Modern.  Their AVE RAW line "focuses on a range of styles that speak to the DIYer or Designer who want high quality furniture for their own hand applied finishes at an affordable price." Um, are they speaking directly to me!?!?  As I started scrolling through their RAW collection, I spotted the Small Harper Campaign Dresser and basically about a died.  It was the exact size I wanted, the exact price range I wanted, AND I could customize it however I wanted! It was almost too good to be true. But it was true, and now the dressers are mine. 

They arrived a couple of weeks later, and I couldn't have been more excited to rip the boxes open. They were as perfect as I had imagined!  They're made out of unfinished mango wood and are pre-primed, which makes them perfect for DIY'ing.  I planned to paint them a high-gloss white, and while in the picture above they already look white, you can still see a little of the woodgrain through the very matte primer, and they definitely needed a couple of coats of paint to achieve a glossier look.  So, I got to painting! 

- Oil-based paint
- Paint Thinner
- Screwdriver (Phillips head)

First, we removed all of the brass hardware and set it aside.  I put everything in separate plastic baggies to keep it all together and to make sure I didn't lose anything.  
Next, was the trickier part.  While I like to think that I've mastered the art of spray painting, admittedly, I'm not all too familiar with using a paint sprayer.  I found this one online, and it seemed to do the trick -- after a little practice, that is!  I knew I wanted a glossier finish, and the fine people at Sherwin Williams assured me that a semi-gloss oil-based paint would give me the finish I wanted and would stand up to the wear and tear of daily use. 

With a sprayer and oil-based paint, it's important (and I didn't know this!) to dilute the paint a bit with paint thinner to ensure an even spray.  This took some testing, so I suggest having a piece of scrap wood nearby to practice on before spraying the real deal. 

Once I got my sprayer and paint at the right consistency, I sprayed a couple of coats on the dressers and let them dry for a full 24-hours before handling.  Oil-based paint takes about a week to fully "cure," so I moved the dressers into my guest room, out of the way, so that they could completely dry.  After a week, I replaced all of the brass hardware and moved them to their final destination -- the master bedroom!

While these campaign beauties are pretty enough on their own, I couldn't wait to style them!  When styling night stands (or coffee tables, or bookshelves...), I like to include the following:

- Lamp
- Stacked Books
- Something green
- Candle
- Tray or trinket box (perfect for holding matches!)
- Artwork + Framed Photo
- Decorative Object 

I tried to make the beau's side a little more masculine, while keeping my side a little more girly and fun, but keeping the same number of elements on each for a balanced look. And that's it!  What do you think?!  I'd love to hear your comments!  Oh, and stay tuned for an updated full bedroom tour!

Cocktail: Frosé

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Frozen rosé, or "frosé," seems to be popping up everywhere this summer, and rightfully so--it's freakin' delicious and extremely refreshing.  In Austin, the heat index is close to 110°, and a slushy cocktail is the perfect thing to take your mind off of the fact you're basically melting.  Over the weekend, I put my own spin on what I've now deemed "the cocktail of the summer," and this little frozen concoction is Spray Paint & Chardonnay tested and highly approved. Cheers!

Dining Room Dreams

Monday, June 27, 2016

 Rug  //  Dining Table  //  Dining Chairs  //  Sideboard  //  Lamps  //  Mirror  //  Chandelier

A couple of weeks ago I shared my dining room as the beginning of this year's home tour, however, it's a room that has long been a source of 'design discontent,' and I partially blame it on my "If You Like It, Buy It" decorating mentality I've employed over the past few years.  At the time of purchase, I loved every piece in my dining room, I just never fully thought out how everything would look together, and after a few years I felt like a design schizophrenic.

If you recall, this time last year, my dining room looked like this:

This past December, I finally pulled the trigger on a bucket-list item--a marble-top tulip table--which kickstarted what has now become a complete dining room overhaul.  In addition to my "If You Like It, Buy It" ways, I've also fallen victim to what I like to call my "Give a Mouse a Cookie" decorating mindset.  [Background: Remember the children's book "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie..." then he's going to want some milk?  If you give him some milk, then he's going to want some...well, you get the point.]  If I got a marble-top table, then I was going to need new chairs.  If I got new chairs, I was obviously going to need a new rug.  And now here we are, fully enthralled into this vicious cycle.

My dining table is 48" around, so I felt like I only had room for four chairs, as opposed to the six I used to have.  I chose these wishbone chairs in white, as I felt like they best complimented the table and would achieve the look I was going for.  Never being one to stray from a good P.O.C. (Pop of Color), I decided on a deep pink, over-dyed rug.  

And that leaves us here, the current dining room situation:

As darling as I thought it was when I found it in Round Top years ago, the turquoise buffet has got to go.  It's served a good life here, but it's high time for something more functional and streamlined.  And while we're on the topic of things that have got to go:  The gray china cabinet was never my first choice, but I found it in Round Top the same day as I found the buffet, and knew I needed a storage solution for my hoard of vintage glassware. And it fit in the Tahoe.  For months I've been on the hunt for one piece that would serve both purposes--a sideboard with tons of storage--and this sideboard from LuxeDecor fits the bill perfectly! At 79" long, it's got plenty of space to hold everything I need it to, and the white high gloss finish keeps the room looking open and fresh. 

After the additions of some new table lamps and a few new accessories, the dining room will be well on its way to looking less schizophrenic!  I'll continue to keep y'all updated on the progress! 

DIY: Ombré Drink Dispenser

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Summer is the ideal time to sit back, kick your feet up and relax with friends and family -- making it the perfect opportunity for some outdoor entertaining.  From backyard barbecues to parties on the patio, make your summer gathering one to remember with this quick and easy drink dispenser DIY!  Plus, this project includes two of my favorite things: spray paint and cocktails.

- Krylon 'Stained Glass' Spray Paint in Soft Blue (available at your nearest Hobby Lobby!)
- Krylon 'Stained Glass' Spray Paint in Cobalt Blue
- Glass Drink Dispenser
- Painter's Tape

First, remove the spigot from the drink dispenser [it should easily unscrew from the inside], and set it aside.  With a small piece of painter's or masking tape, cover the spigot opening from the inside of the dispenser to prevent any paint from getting in.

Tip: It's important that you're working with a clean surface, so you might want to wipe down the dispenser with some glass cleaner before you start painting.  

Shake each can of spray paint for about a minute to ensure an even spray.  In a well ventilated area, start with your darkest color and spray along the bottom of the dispenser, stopping at about one-third of the way up.  With the stained glass paint, (which I was so excited to try, thanks to Krylon!) it's important to do multiple thin layers so you can achieve an even color.  You might start to feel like it's going to be too opaque after a number of coats, but I promise it will dry translucent to get that "stained glass" effect!

After a few thin layers of the cobalt blue, I then switched to the lighter, soft blue.  As I mentioned, I stopped at about one-third of the way up the dispenser so I could start creating the ombré effect. Starting at just above the cobalt blue, I repeated the process with the soft blue, stopping at about the two-third mark of the dispenser.

Once I was finished with the soft blue, I went back with a few light swipes with the cobalt blue to blend the two colors together.  This is the best way to get that perfect ombré!  You might need to go back with the soft blue as well, so that your colors are evenly blended.  Total paint time only takes about 15 minutes!  Once finished, I let the dispenser dry for about 24 hours before handling.  This is mainly due to the fact that it's been so humid and rainy in Texas, so if you're in a drier climate, it's likely safer to handle after five or six hours. When you're certain it's dry, remove the tape from the inside and replace the spigot.  Make sure it's screwed in tightly to prevent any leaks!

The final step? Fill with your favorite summer-time beverage (boozy or not!), invite your friends over, and wait for them to oooh and ahhh over your fancy new dispenser!  Cheers! 

Tip: Be sure to hand wash your dispenser after use, so that you can preserve all of your hard work! 

2016 Home Tour: Dining Room

Monday, June 13, 2016

It's been quite some time since my last home tour, and I've made a number of changes since then, so an updated tour is definitely in order.  Up first, the dining room!  I'm still not completely finished with this room, but it's coming along, and is much better & brighter (IMO) than it's previous state.  Be sure to stay tuned to see what I have planned for it!  Scroll down to shop the look and for a full source list.  Questions, comments, concerns?  I'd love to hear from you!  Enjoy! 




Full Source List: 
"Just Keep Going" Print: Ampersand Design Studio
Bar Cart: Round Top
Pineapple Wine Glasses: HomeGoods
Martini Shaker: Neiman Marcus for Target
Buffet: Round Top
Lamps: HomeGoods
Coral on Lucite: HomeGoods
Orchid: At Home (painted pot)
Books: Amazon
Mirror: HomeGoods
China Cabinet: Round Top
Blue & White China: Vintage + HomeGoods
Planter: West Elm
Faux Fiddle Leaf Fig: HomeGoods
Rug: West Elm 
Chairs: Walmart
Dining Table: Chairish
Faux Succulent: HomeGoods
Light Fixture: West Elm
Curtains: West Elm

My Paint Color

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

The living room "situation" has changed since this photo was taken, so stay tuned for update posts! 
One of the questions I get the most is "What's that paint color?"

I've owned my home for six and a half years, and over those six and half years, my walls have been somewhat of a technicolor dream coat.  From 'Peacock Feather' in the master bedroom to 'Pale Shrimp' in the guest bath (which is going away this weekend, mind you...), my beloved painter, Bruno, has spent countless hours painting and re-painting my walls, color after color.  My house has a very open floor plan, as the dining room, living room and kitchen are all technically one big space, so a few years ago I thought it would be best to paint the whole house the same color for a bit more 'cohesion.'  And as someone who loves a good pop of color, settling on just one was quite the daunting task.

I finally decided that I wanted a very subtle, neutral gray, and after what seemed like countless hours of going back and forth from Home Depot and Lowe's--and basically robbing them of every paint chip they had--I landed on Martha Stewart's 'Chinchilla.'  Bruno always suggests that I go to Sherwin Williams to have my paint mixed, so there I went with chip in hand.  While they don't carry Martha Stewart's line, they were able to match the formula for me.  I took it home to 'test' and it was literally baby blue...I tried it in every room, and looked at it in every type of light.  In a panic, I rushed back to Sherwin Williams and had them adjust the formula to make it less blue.  Round two.  I came back home and tested yet another swatch, and while it still wasn't as gray as I wanted, I went with it.  NEVER DO THAT.  It doesn't cost you anything to adjust the color, so if you're not 100% happy with it, try and try again until you get exactly what you want!  However, here we are years later, and I'm still living with my blue-gray walls.  I'm not saying I hate them, I'm just saying if I had the time, money, and patience, I'd do it differently. :) Just don't come over to my house and ask, "Hey, what color blue is this?"  Because...don't.

This post is likely coming way too late, as I just discovered that Home Depot no longer carries Martha Stewart's paint collection or this color, but lucky for you, I've got the formula!  This can be taken to any paint store and they should be able to match.  Keep in mind, that you can adjust it (less blue, more blue, darker, lighter, etc...) to your heart's content!

I'll be sure to document good ol' 'Pale Shrimp' in the guest bath, before it goes the way of the rest of the house this weekend!  It's the end of a colorful era...*sigh*

Pay no mind to the fact that 'Chinchilla' is spelled wrong. 

+ Paint a test swatch in every room, and look at it throughout the day to see how it looks in different light.  Paint in natural daylight will look completely different at night.

+ Any paint store can mix any color in any finish.  If you find a color you like at Home Depot, you can take it to Lowe's and they can match it, etc...

+ Personalize your paint! If you don't love the paint out of the can, adjust it so it's perfect.  Make it lighter, darker, adjust hues, etc...Don't settle!

+ After you're finished painting, keep some extra paint--or have a small pint mixed--to have on hand for touch ups.

+ If you're going to use an old can of paint to finish a project (i.e. I have 1/3 of a gallon left of "Chinchilla" but I'll need more than that to finish my guest bathroom this weekend) Take in your old paint and have them shake it really well when you're buying more. That way, they'll both be mixed evenly. Keep in mind that different cans can sometime not match exactly.