Thursday, October 16, 2014

ORC: Week 3. The Home Office Bookcase Tales

Linda was right. The halfway mark of the One Room Challenge - the online design challenge created by Linda of Calling It Home - is a rough place to be.
I came rolling out with loads of steam on Week 1 and Week 2.
Then kinda sputtered a bit by Week 3.
I mean, I got major things done:
Loveseat ordered and arrived! Yippeee
Rug ordered.
Curtain panels ordered
Desk ordered 
Cabinet pulls purchased. Need to be spray painted.
Throw pillows?In progress. 
Art: In progress
Chandelier. Yikes
Desk chair. Yikes.
*Side note: have I mentioned that I am my worst client ever? Agonized over every single one of those purchases. It was something manic. Seriously. Someone please fire me from myself.
Anyway, I'll need to order the chandelier and a desk chair by this weekend. The latter is the hardest because
A. Should you simply choose a fab chair that will be cute but not very comfy?



Or 
B. Choose comfort over style? 


Decisions, decisions. I struggle with this one often with design clients. In the real world, function usually wins.
So the major thing that happened around here this past week, is the making of a much needed drawer/filing cabinet to fill the gaping hole in the existing shelving unit. 
 
Remember, while we scored this for free from the previous owner of our home, we failed to realize that there would be a gaping hole if we rested the bookcase atop the media system.
I entrusted the help of carpenter Earl aka Mr. Barbados, aka the man who backed his truck over my mailbox. You read right. He was forgiven because the drawers, though unpainted, look great and because my mailman has apparently hated the old mailbox for over 15 years. He in fact knocked on our door to thank us for the new shiny mailbox. Thank you, brother Earl, for that small blessing.
So, back to the lecture at hand.
The new drawers are in place and then I noticed the unthinkable: in my haste to finalize the bookshelf system with Earl, the second drawer we added is now smack dab against my window and very much in the way of my already ordered curtains.
Lord Jesus it's a fire!

What to do? What's a girl to do people? Ditch the extra drawer or turn my fab curtains into a roman shade? IDK. Lemme sip some wine and think it through. Or holla at me and tell me how you'd solve this conundrum. 
Til then, lemme go see what the other ORC participants are up to. Please. Go check em out. The talent is kinda bananas.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

ORC Week 2: Hello Home Office Design Plan.

So it's only Week 2 of the One Room Challenge Linking Party and I am kinda hungover. I'm seriously in a daze, tipsy from just how freaking intense this ORC has been. I mean the pressure is real people.
To be honest, I have been my worst client. Hands down. Just ask my assistants. They'll spin the beans. Just offer them some of that squash soup from Panera Bread and they will sing a song in every tune.
So where are we since last week when we first showed you before pictures of my raggedy home office and this inspiration pic?

OK, love, love this room but as I caution most clients, these photos are for inspiration not duplication. I love the dark walls, but chose to do a dark blue/grey on my bookshelves not my wall. Love the etageres but have chosen to re-purpose an old bookshelf that will be styled just as exquisitely as these etageres. Love the urchin light fixture but they ain't cheap and I think it'd scare Xavier at night. Maybe even moi. *side note, there are 11 decorative urchins scattered throughout these two etageres. hmmm. strange?
While I love the sexy grown up vibe of this office, and even though I fancy myself as grown and sexy, I also have a toddler and want there to be a bit of fun and playfulness in this office, especially since he comes charging in there the minute he walks through the door from daycare. 
So the bold geometric rug will be an ode to my love of color, the need to make a bold statement in a room layered with shades of blue and grey and a nod that the space should not take itself so seriously.
Since the hubby will also use this office, the desk will need to seat two comfortably. 
Speaking of desks, that pretty little piece of white and gold hotness has been stalking my dreams, but it has a price tag that is kinda steep so the jury is still out on that decision. Yes, I clearly need to pull the trigger by next week if I plan to finish this challenge in 6 weeks. Duh.
But let me spill the beans about the biggest scandal to date of this ORC: The Battle of the Loveseats.


 Jeezus weez, who know we would agonize so much over a freaking loveseat (clients, I now forgive you for all the times you dragged your feet, agonizing over the options I sent your way. I truly, truly had no clue how gut wrenching these decisions can be. 
I definitely wanted extra seating in the office but can only fit a love seat no wider than 68" and only 31" deep. That was the main problem. Most loveseats are a standard 34" to 36" deep. Debbie and Amanda voted for the brown tweed with the white piping (too deep and too bulky). I voted for the pink loveseat from CB2 because I'm the only girl in this house and wanted a girly moment in the office. Sigh, the hubby balked. Well, let me be more clear, he gave me the silent glare/zero words. Translation: NO
Aarrgh
Now, I've vetoed that stare before, but I sensed over-riding him on this one would have led to some serious marital woes so I kissed my pink dreams goodbye (OK, truthfully it was the perfect depth but at 68" wide, it would have been a tad cramped in the space). Sigh. Sigh. 
In the end, the navy tufted sofa won the battle of the loveseats. It was a super steal at half the price of all the others I'd considered, but I'll likely change the legs to something more fun. That's it folks. A LOT went down this week for sure. Hope everyone else is hanging in there. Lemme go poke around and see how y'all are doing.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Jumping In: The ORC

 

Yikes!
After years of sitting on the sidelines and being riveted to the manic pace of One Room Challenge, the genius brainchild of Linda at Calling it Home, I've decided to dive in head first this time around and participate.
That means, I'll have a deadline people. A dedicated date and time to complete a room in my home and it's about damn time. We moved into our home in July amid a major renovation and you guessed it, simply ran out of steam. Sure the major renovation work is complete - Amen to that - but there isn't a single room in this house that is done, finito, complete and it's time to do something about it or face the continued wrath and disdain of the hubs. 
So with much shame, trepidation and some excitement, I've decided to finally complete our home office. Why? Well, cause we both work from home and it would be nice to work in a space that's I dunno, finished? Not to mention a space that deserves to be kinda fab. 
Here's what the office looked like when we purchased our home back in May.

Arrgh right? Nothing sexy at all. It was in fact the dining room, but we have another space that works much better as such and so it made sense to make this the office/den/chill zone.
To do so we framed it in, added some pocket doors so the space could be private when needed but open up to the rest of the house to chat with friends and family.


The one gem the previous owner left behind was this book shelf system. It was destined for the junk yard. I balked, seeing visions of a beautiful home for my dizzying collection of books (yes, tangible books people, no E-reading for moi) and a dedicated hiding space for our printer and office supplies.   
Since then we've installed hardwood floors, framed in the walls to create the office, added the frosted sliding doors and even painted the bookshelves. 


See that hole underneath that cabinet? yep, there's a piece missing for this shelving system something we never realized til now! we'll be figuring out a creative solution for that hole during this challenge as well as making the piece look as custom as possible.
So here's my inspiration:




Next week we'll reveal the design plan and share any progress, which should entail my fabulous intern Amanda at The Home Body Interiors, cracking the whip and helping to get the office somewhat organized so it won't be a hot beaughetto mess once it's all dolled up. See y'all next week.



Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Hooray, The ORC is Back!



The One Room Challenge, my favorite online design show addiction, starring non other than design bloggers, is back in full force today. 
Yes, the ORC, the brainchild of blogger Linda of Calling it Home, is my official design drug of choice.
This time around I'm not only staying riveted each week to see how these 20 designers transform their spaces, I'll be jumping in via the Linking party every Thursday.
Daunting? Hell yeah. I barely got time to scratch my extra large booty, but I'm a sucker for the pressure of a deadline, and a deadline is what I needs to get me cracking on designing each room in our new purchased and heavily renovated house.
Stay tuned for all the details tomorrow as I dive right in. 
It will be nothing short of nail-biting, if not hilarious as I try to juggle a jampacked roster of clients and tackle my own home. I guess I won't be sleeping for the next 6 weeks. 
Coffee? Yes. Please.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Mood Changing Colors: The Boldness of Orange and Teal

Holly Hollingsworth Phillips - living rooms - Carved Wood Coffee Table, blue and orange rooms, blue and orange living rooms, turquoise rooms, orange and turquoise rooms, orange and turquoise living rooms, orange curtains, orange drapes, bone inlay mirror, bone inlaid mirror, black and white mirror, fireplace mirrors, white lanterns, fireplace lanterns, white and orange chairs, trellis chairs, imperial trellis chairs, orange chairs, orange trellis chairs, carved wood coffee table, round coffee table, gold pouf, gold moroccan pouf, mother of pearl mirror, black and white mother of pearl mirror,
via


If you've followed me over the years, then you know that orange is pretty much my favorite color and shockingly, pops up on occasion in some of our design projects. We love the bold and dramatic statement it makes and see it as a color that stands strong throughout the year, and not just for Fall. 
So we were thrilled when the folks at Chairish the leading marketplace for beautiful vintage and used furniture and home decor, asked us to share a post on color pairings we love. The request falls in line with their recent post on Color Couples along with a great infographic they created to help readers experiment with the pairing of bold color combos.


We loved the concept of course and decided to pair Orange (beloved for its energetic and happy vibe), with Teal (beloved for it's calming influence). 


The orange and blue hues create a complementary room. The room feels energetic because of the high intensity of the colors.
via
The two strike a perfect harmony in this bedroom design where a teal headboard with a nailhead detail creates a dramatic yet calming focal point, and the orange nightstands adds just the punch of fun energy you want to bring to the boudoir no?  

Mixing Patterns: Living room in teal, orange and white
via
The living room is a great place to fully embrace the dramatic influence of these two colors via this orange patterned wall, teal pattered ottoman and patterned pillows that infuse both color combos.


Orange and blue are complementary colors because they are directly accross from each other on the colors wheel. So even with brown added to this room, they still compliment each other. Color scheme for laundry room?
via



If you're still apprehensive about using orange in your home, then this foyer should change your mind. The dark brown wallpaper and white frames, help to soothe the brightness of the orange matted artwork.  The teal ottomans stand regal with their Greek key trim, tucked below a white foyer table which also serves as a moment of pause between the two contrasting colors. 

Below are some great selections from Chairish that will help on your journey to trying this pairing.  



1/2/3/4/5/6

**This a partnered post with Charish. However, LiveLaughDecorate received no compensation and the thoughts expressed are our own.**

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

A Vintage Tub + Modern Shower = A Swanky New Bathroom


This little gem of a guest bathroom belongs to my dearest clients Pat and Oscar B, clients whose home we have spent years renovating room by room. This bathroom once looked like this:


Sure it had been functional over the years and offered loads of storage, but after we'd tackled every other room in the house included here and here it was time to finally work some magic on this space. We had noticed issues with this bathroom long before i.e. a leak through the tile into the adjoining master bedroom, which came as no surprise when we opened the wall and discovered that the crew who had built this bathroom had been drinking up a storm on the job. A shocking yet hilarious discovery, though we are thankful they remained sober enough to complete the job. Anywho, as you can see, the challenge with this space is it's a very long bathroom (12 ft) but very narrow (5 ft). You can see peeks of the demolition here and here.

 

Pat had always wanted a vintage styled tub, but Oscar also wanted to maintain a shower so the challenge was merging those two requests. To accommodate both wishes, we would need to take 12" of space from the adjoining master bedroom to widen the bathroom a bit and give the tub a little elbow room.

The wave tile and accent tile, which kinda mimics the movement of bubbles, were the easiest selections made for this project! That stylish grab bar to the left serves as wash cloth holder now, but will prove more functional over the years for added ease in and out of the tub.


The shower and overflow/splashes from the tub would need to share a drain, so we decided to do this with a special integrated drain system that blended well into the tile. Since there would be no shower ledge to separate the shower doors from the rest of the bathroom floor, the floors had to be perfectly pitched so water would never seep into the adjoining space. Translation: the plumber and tile installer must work in harmony to make this a flawless installation.

 
We relocated the toilet to right to gain additional space for the shower, since there was plenty of room to the right to do so. Since this was a guest bathroom, we decided a 36" floating vanity would offer just enough storage for guest essentials.  


Since we replaced the original door with a pocket door (of course I did!) we now have extra room in this cozy corner for a little stool/table or for a basket for guests to toss used towels.  


Psst.  Y'all know how I feel about fake plants and flowers so of course these were removed on day one of demolition!
We also used an integrated medicine cabinet to provide additional storage within the walls, without compromising the contemporary feel of the space.

 
Pat is an orchid lover, so we added new matting and re-framed her original orchid prints.  

Yes, that's a television in the bathroom. Our clients love to stay connected so I think there's a television in just about every room of this house. And that's it folks. One of the most technically challenging bathrooms of my career, and one that was even more complicated as we worked through the design and plumbing challenges with my clients while they were on vacation in South Africa. But I think it's safe to say they are happy with the way our final project (well, sort of) for this home has turned out. A huge thanks to Pat and Oscar for being major supporters of NWD and we're eternally grateful for their continuous stream of referrals.  


Source Guide
 

Main Tile  and Accent wall USA Tile and Marble I Faucet, Tub Filler, Hand Held Shower: Ferguson | Tub: Wayfair I Artwork: Clients Original | Medicine Cabinet: Signature Hardware | Floating Vanity: Wayfair I Lighting: Lumens

 

































Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Gold, Brass + Brushed Nickel, Chrome = Yes Please!


I'm always surprised to find that clients, and followers who message me on Instagram are still so scared to mix metals! I mix gold and silver all the time in fashion, and apply the same "break them rules" principle in my design. 
The sources in the above "Metals Mashup" were from this powder room reveal. 

Gold stripes were the bold choice in the space, paired with brushed nickel hardware on the vanity and faucet, and a chrome finish on the wall sconces.


The pairing works because the silver notes help balance the boldness of the gold on the walls and the gold of the mirror. 
If you're still scared to mix metals, then start with something simple and inexpensive to "test the waters". Brushed nickel pulls like the ones on this vanity average about $2 and won't break the bank if you change your mind.
The opposite principle also applies. If you had silver tones throughout a space like a powder room, then consider adding a brass faucet to add a wow factor to your very own metal mashup.
The bottom line: take a chance when designing. There's nothing worse than living a life of regrets. Happy mixing! Let us know how/if you've mixed metals and send us a link so we can go check it out. 

Source Guide
Vanity: Bathroom Place | Faucet: Home Depot | Gold Metallic Paint: Martha Stewart Paints for Home Depot | Bathroom Mat: West Elm | Artwork: West Elm | Mirror and Towels: Home Goods | Sconces: Lumens Lighting| 







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