Navy Blue I Love You

Poor Henry. Poor us, lol. That kid shared a room with his parents for his first year of life and man am I ready for him to have his own pad here in the new house. See when we sold the house last fall, the babe was still sleeping in a pack and play – thinking we would only be in our new apartment a few months, we opted for a great location and a SMALL space. 1-bedroom. So, the baby slept with us.

Which was fine – until it wasn’t. The last month or two living in the apartment we slept on the living room floor so he would sleep through the night and not wake when we’d come in each night. Ahhh, the things you do for love – and a full night sleep.

So this is a long story – which has a happy ending. Mr H has his own room now and after a painting blitz a few weekends back with Behr Night Club, it’s now lovely and dark and dreamy and perfect for my little one. Literally, I think this may be the perfect navy blue paint for a room. Love. It.

Dark Blue Baby Room

It’s definitely not finished but it is DEFINITELY better than our starting point.

In all honesty, since the baby is a crazy monkey that pulls things out of their places and just want to run around generally anyway, we probably won’t add a ton more to the space. Right now it has a reading nook we use each night before bed.

Dark Blue Boys Room

Henry loves reading Little Blue Truck each night, lol. We ride bikes over here, so not sure where his love for this truck book came from. He must like all my highly authentic animal noises 😉

Dark Navy Baby Room

I love the way this little blanket looks draped over the side of his bed against the navy blue walls and it actually helps me to escape (most nights) unnoticed after we tuck him in. :)

Ikea Lenda Curtains

He had this book shelf in his last room. We still need to add some accessories to it, but for now, it’s a good placeholder for our night time reading books.

I’ve also had these Lenda curtains (from IKEA) stacked away for over a year. I’m so glad they finally have a home. Need to be hemmed still, but H loves using them for peek-a-boo whenever he gets the chance 😉

Inexpensive Linen Curtains

Items still on my short list for this room include getting a ceiling fan for his room. This 90’s builder grade classic is just not making my heart skip a beat – and let’s face it – if your light fixtures don’t make your heart go pitter patter, why have them. YOLO man.

Ceiling Fan in Child's Room

I also got this lamp base at my favorite local thrift shop. Still need to get a side table for next to the chair, but I think this will look really cute in the space once we have a shade and everything for it.

Thrift Store Lamps

Here is a close up of the sweet constellation photos we had up in his nursery, before we sold the last house. I LOVE these!! True story, my OCD self has a hard time when these get knocked around and slightly out of place though. Especially that bottom row that’s right at Henry’s reach level – ha ha!! Yep, they’re not straight very often.

Constellation Prints Childs Room

And a final view, from the hall with the navy blue walls up against the white trim. It’s a dark room man, but I love it! (Color is Behr Night Club, for anyone looking to recreate the look)

Night Club Behr Paint

 

 

 

Pale’s in Comparison

Our new house is pretty open concept. Much more so than past houses in the sense that one wall color, more or less, covers most of the downstairs area. I had my heart set on going really dark in the dining room this time,  but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that would clash with the Living Room wall it connects to a bit too much. Likewise, when thinking about the Living Room color, we had to pick something that would work nicely with the Dining Room.

We landed on Pale Oak (Benjamin Moore).

Open Concept Living Room

We used this color in our bathroom remodel in the last house and I knew I wanted to also use it in our next house. It’s a great color with a slight gray undertone.

You’re probably noticing some other changes in the room as well… Y’all – craigslist is my bff as of late. You’re looking at a Pottery Barn Sectional that I snagged for $450 right there. It’s in immaculate condition – like brand new. This thing retails for $3,500. SCORE.

Open Concept Living Room

It’s super comfortable and fit our room just right. I also splurged (for me) on a quality chair that was recovered in a restoration hardware velvet upholstery for $300 on craigslist.

Restoration Hardware Upholstered Chair

This guy is so comfortable! The cat I’m afraid loves it, so it’s normally covered in cat hair (hence the blanket, ha ha!)

It’s the perfect addition to this corner, since it helps us hide H’s toys a bit!

Restoration Hardware Club Chair

And the final new addition to this space, are some sweet pillows I scored on clearance at Target. I’d been eyeing these beauts for 6+ months, but couldn’t justify spending $25 each. Well low and behold, I found them on clearance last week and along with a cartwheel promotion, I got them for $5 each!

Threshold Throw Pillows

Here is one final view of the room – first a before shot:

Family Room off of the Kitchen

And … progress!

Benjamin Moore Pale Oak

Organizing the Obsession

Ok, now that I know my little fetus has boy parts I’ve been a little gung ho in the clothes buying department. Like, every few days, I’m coming home with another bag full. Shamefully bad, I know.

BUT – my obsession thus far has been centered around a marvelous little thing called the goodwill quarter bin. Which is a bin, where you get baby clothes, for a quarter.

I know, right? 

How to Save on Baby Clothes

I mean, you have the look. A lot of it is stained, or ugly, or girl clothes. And don’t get me wrong, I’m so tempted to grab the super cute girl clothes, ya know – just in case I have a little lady some day. I mean – it’s a QUARTER!

But for now, I’ve trained my mind to focus only on polos and plaid, since I’m looking to stock up this little guy’s wardrobe on the cheap.

It’s really,  more or less, become a giant game for me to see the swaggest baby gear I can find for a 4th of one georgie porgie.

Buying Baby Clothes for Less

Your eyeballs are not deceiving you. That’s a Lacoste Shirt (retail value $40), some Tommy Trunks, and Polo board shorts. Man, Henry, you’ve got it made, kid.

Not that I’m really a huge name brand wanna be or anything, but ya know, I’ll take it!

Michigan Sleeper

Jaybird is a Umich grad, so when I spotted this sleeper, I had to add it to the bundle. Disclaimer: I’m NOT a Michigan fan (au contraire, GO GREEN!) so this was actually a sorta big deal. Made my man smile though, so I guess it was worth the twenty five pennies I spent 😉

So, as I’ve added to this collection, I’ve realized I need a way to organize the madness, and keep everything ready to go for when little boy gets here in Spring.

I came up with this system to organize all his clothes!

Organizing Baby Clothes

I just sorted out all the clothes I’d found by month. Nice and folded, laundered and ready for our little guy.

When it gets to be a few months out, I figure I’ll load up his closet with 0-6 months, so that everything is ready for him to wear. Depending on how big of a chunk he is, we’ll just rotate out to the new gear as he grows.

How to Save on Clothes

Mama’s first little guy really liked this activity. I think it had something to do with warm clothes out of the dryer and big boxy bins to jump into :)

Kitty Helper

Truth be told, I loved this activity so much, that I went out and bought another bag full :)

Buying Childrens Clothes

For now, the skyscraper of baby clothes sits in the corner of our room, just waiting for my next haul.

Organizing Baby Clothes

Any one else have any tips and tricks for finding little people clothes on the cheap? Do share!

Chandy Candy

Seriously, is there anything more chic than a chandelier? I mean, a pulling out all the stops, stop in your tracks and look at me chandelier.

Even though I know little Henry is most definitely a boy, I’m totally playing the “I’m the Mom” card and beautifying his nursery with some feminine touches 😀 I mean, it’s the age of the gender neutral baby, right? Sorry kid, no tonka truck borders in this room 😉

Which leads me to a chandelier I’ve been obsessing over. OBSESSING. This beauty is way the heck out of my price range, but my love for it goes to the bottom of the ocean and back. Doesn’t it just remind you of a fancy pantsy pair of chic earrings?

Favorite Chandelier

 

Chandelier // Earrings

I mean, of course, of course this chandelier is over $1,100. So, long story short, if I want it, or anything like it, to grace the halls of chateau de Sell anytime soon – it will have to be a DIY effort. Bummer dude.

But you better bet my wheels are already turning on how to get a look for less version rocking in this joint. Think this ceiling mount, and a craigslist chandelier spray painted go to along?

In the mean time, here are a few of my favorite chandy finds while on the hunt to light up our life a little more in the room of our little tot.

Best Brass Chandeliers

Eastview // Reina // Sofia // Elk Lighting // Ramona // Feiss

During my hunt for the perfect chandelier, I found a pretty stellar look for less, as well. I know I can’t be the only one obsessed with the Thomas O’Brien chandelier from Visual Comfort, right? Well check out this nearly identical one I found for $199!

Look for Less

 

Swedish Obsession

When we lived in Michigan, we were 15 minutes away from an IKEA. The things we take for granted mi amigos, the things we take for granted. See – now the closest IKEA is 2+ hours away. Did I still convince Jay that it was a good idea for us to cart our booties there last weekend? Why yes! Yes I did 😀

I had a specific checklist of baby room items I wanted and there was an added bonus. It was the spend more money than you should, and EAT FOR FREE day at IKEA! Never heard of it? Well those tricky little Swedish marketers came up with the idea that if they could persuade you to spend $100 or more on home furnishings, that you could eat all the swedish food your heart desired. To a knocked up women and a man that puts over a hundred miles a week on the open road burning calories on his bicycle – this sounded like a splendid way to spend a Saturday.

And so … off we went … on our Saturday adventure, where this happened.

Eat for Free at IKEA day

Yep, that’s food for just the two of us, well the three of us, if you’re getting technical. I think Jay likes to pretend he’s growing a baby too, since his spread out paced mine by a few sides.

I’ve gotta say, between the food (oh, the food!) and the splendid array of wonderment that lay before my eyes, this was one fun IKEA trip.

Best IKEA Furniture

My favorite item – BY FAR – was this little sofa that was just way too chic for it’s own good. And by it’s own good, I mean mine, because I’ve obviously got to make it mine.

IKEA Stocksund Sofa

As much as I lovey dove IKEA, I’m not usually a furniture shopper there, since the swedish lines are a bit more modern than I typically jam with. I’ve got a house chock full of their baskets and picture frames, but this sofa man, that really stopped my heart a beating for a quick second.

It’s even got a matching ottoman, to boot! Want, neeeed, must haveee ittt allll.

IKEA Stocksund Ottoman

They’ve actually got an entire collection (of armchair and sofas) so you better bet I’m saving my simolians to buy one of those beauties down the line.

Here are some of my favorite new picks I spotted on our most recent trip. I can’t wait to show you what we picked out for the nursery! (we’ve even got a paint color up in there!)

Best Things From IKEA

Stocksund Sofa // Dorthy Pillow // Pjas Basket // Himalayamix Plants // Graslok Planter // Stocksund Ottoman // Ryssby Table // Magga Basket // Ribba Picture Frame

Farmer Jack

First off, can I start off by saying that I love the fall. Like want it for breakfast, lunch and dinner can’t get my fill – bring. it. on. Something about 70 degrees and sunshine down here is just too much for me to take some days. Perfection.

So, adding to the list of things this lady finds perfect – y’all – check out this farmhouse table Jay built. Disclaimer – online it said this plan would take you 8-12 hours, it took us like 8-12 days. Now it really wasn’t that hard, it was just tedious. And had lots of steps. And my husband liked it a little too much – ya know – like he would go out there and tinker for an entire evening and I would be all like, awesome!! so, it’s ready for stain tomorrow, right? And he’d be all, well actually no, I cut a board and sanded it. What can I say, the man found some peace and solitude out in the garage and now he’s a bonafide table maker. Our neighbors even stopped by and asked Jay to make them one!! Ha ha (that went right to his ego)…

DIY Farmhouse Table

This table, makes this wifey, very happy. See, we’ve been sorta slumming it in the dining room category. We, eeerr I, made an executive decision that the old table just wasn’t working in the space so I went and sold it on craigslist. I figured, sell the table, pay for the supplies on the next one, right?

DIY Farmhouse Table

The thing that makes me the happiest about this table is that we can sit six people at it! That’s legit entertaining category right there, y’all!

Up close, it’s got a super nice, subtle stain on it. After some failed attempts, we landed up going with minwax golden oak.

Golden Oak Minwax Stain

It’s the stain we used on the floors in our first house and ever since, I’ve had a soft spot in my heart for it.

Now the arrangement is nestled to the right of the room (as you look at it from the kitchen) so the chandelier needs some … reconfiguring. I’m also thinking it needs some spray can action.

Moving Chanelier

I got super excited about styling up this room so I decided to add in a few more accessories.

I’ve actually been having some fun rearranging our living room (more on that later this week), so I grabbed the bamboo chairs we had in there previously and added them to either side of the doorway. Lil’ cuties.

IKAT Pillows

We’re also artless in this corner of the house, so I grabbed some of our dollar finds from thrift stores up in the mitten and popped them right in.

It’s a lady, and a pig. I may or may not have made up a song to accompany these two fine fellas for serenading every time I pass them 😀

Folk Artwork

So overall, we’re chalking up this DIY as a big fat win. I’ll have a play by play post on building the table up soon!

Here’s another close up shot of the beauty to feast your eyeballs on in the mean time. If you’re looking for me, I’ll be doing some crazy hair waving head banging. It’s feels good to be back in the dining room business.

Farmhouse Table

Lamp Looker

If I had to break down the numbers on the doors we use most often in this abode it would be:

Front Door: 3%
Kitchen Door: 12%
Side Door: Whatevers left percent, aka A LOT.

We’ve been working to trouble shoot that little area of ours, things like adding our armoire for storage and, well I guess that’s pretty much all we’ve done to date 😀 He he, got over ambitious there for a second thinking we were all speedy Gonzales round here.

Coat Storage At Door

Another thing we’ve been wanting to update around our entry, is our lighting situation.

Which currently looks like, this:

Lamp on Floor

See our Living Room is sans overhead light. Being that the house is circa 1939, I guess we should be pretty happy this is the only room that is missing this crucial detail.

I’ve been wanting to get our Living Room more livable, so I’m currently sleuthing around for a nice, tall, floor lamp to position right behind the chair as you walk in (since that’s the switch we reach for when you walk in the door).

Here’s my shopping list, so far!

Adesso Floor Lamp

Adesso Floor Lamp

Stella Floor Lamp

Stella Floor Lamp

Grayson Floor Lamp

Grayson Floor Lamp

Now, in my heart of hearts, I’m just dying to find something similar on my good friend the list. I mean – srrriously, who wants to drop $200 on a lamp? Not this lady.

But if there is one thing I’m realizing about pregnant Mary, it’s that she likes to knock out the list even more than non-pregnant Mary. Truth be told, didn’t know that was possible. This women wants things done, and she wants them down now. #BlessingandaCurse

For now, we’ve decided to at least move a foot in the right direction, by popping in the lamps in a new home.

Olive Green Sofa

Better, right?

My next game plan is to add in some artwork, above the sofa. Perhaps build a sofa table for behind the couch as well (eventually) and get rid of the side tables? They’re feeling a smidge too traditional for me these days.

Artwork Behind Sofa

We also added in our friend Helmut (Jay’s brain child there), who faithfully watches over our door. Good egg. Along with Bully Bull to hold onto our keys.

Artwork By Door

Who’s the Boss

A few weeks ago, I had Jay bring up the last of the boxes from our basement and I was delighted to find all our artwork in mystery box #1. Between all our moving around and life re-configuring, I think I forgot that I own artwork – a decent amount of it actually. Remember how I lamented that our house was feeling sorta non-homey, well I thought our artwork hanging would be a good place to start to get things feeling a bit more cozy and lived in.

When you walked into the office before, it was feeling a bit bare. In need of some wall adorning, wouldn’t you agree?

How to Decorate Office

So I mixed and matched and tried to find the prints that would look best – but everything I found felt too empty in the room, like it just wasn’t taking up enough wall space.

I finally found a grouping of (6) botanicals, which we had in our dinging room in the last house.

Dining_Room_Botanical_Art_Collage

I loved the idea of grouping (4) on each side – alas if you do the math, that leaves me two short … bummer dude.

But THEN, I remembered that I had two more, that we had in our loo in the last house. Remember these guys?

Botanical Art Work in Bathroom

So I crossed my fingers and headed over to Michaels, where we purchased the initial (6) frames. It was a generic(ish) white frame, but I obviously needed it to match exactly if I was going to group everything together.

And yaknowwhat?? They had the frames and they were only $5.99 each! Huzzaah!! Now that’s what I call a success :)

Inexpensive Frame Locations

While Jay was getting the tools he would need to pop up the prints, I took a quick second to arrange them so he could just grab each one and put it up.

Arranging Artwork

Although the room definitely still needs some accessorizing, I think the artwork definitely helps to make things look a bit more finished.

If I could actually keep fiddle leaf fig trees alive, one would look splendid in the corner of the office, no? 😉

Office Artwork

And another shot of the space, to the right of the computer and desk.

Botanical Art

Since we already had the art and most of the frames on hand, our total cost was around $13, which makes this little momma one happy camper :)

One more before:

Decorating Office

and after!

Botanical Art in Office

Blinded

Jay and I went for an evening walk the other night and we were chatting about where the house is, and where we’d like it to be. Being the planner I am, this naturally led me to start thinking that we have 29 weeks to go until our little monkey is here, as well. I know the house doesn’t have to be perfect by then, but I do want it to feel like home. I want it to feel homey and like home and be cozy and comfy and ready for a miniature human.

Our Living Room, for instance – it feels like a pass through room right now. Not cozy and not homey.

For a quick second it looked nice and cozy, but then I started making executive decisions like getting rid of rugs and selling chairs. Once we get a rug back in here, I do like the idea of going back to something cozy, like this.

Living Room Furniture Arrangement

So in the name of getting this room back in action, I made a little bucket list of things I’d like to see.

  • Window Treatments (bamboo blinds and curtains)
  • Rug (large, at least 10×14)
  • Artwork
  • Additional seating to fill in side of room
  • New coffee table option(s)

Since I love me some JCPenney roman shades, and I found a stellar steal of a deal, I decided to jump on the first part, of the first bullet. Window treatments.

Bamboo Roman Shades

They’re cordless, just like the one’s we popped in our bedroom, but bamboo instead of linen. I wanted to add some texture to the room and later, once I pinch a few more pennies, we’ll add in some drapes, too. Swanky.

Just like our lest roman shade extravaganza, we had to retrofit the windows a wee bit to make the shades fit. Old house problems.

Modifying Window for Shades

We just notched out the sides of the windows (since you can’t see it at all, once the window treatments are in). Ugly before you get the shades in for sure though!

Removing Part of Window Sill

Here is a side profile of the shade, so you can see how the panel was able to just slide in to the little divet that Jay made. Perfect fit.

Installing Bamboo Blinds

All the windows in our living room are pretty large, this was the smallest side window. It ate up Jay there pretty quick. 😉

The blinds are a bit lighter than we thought they’d be and I’m not crazy sauce about the wood bar along the bottom (which is what you pull to adjust them, since they’re cordless), but overall, I do like them for the price!

JCPenney Bamboo Blind

Here are a few shots of the shades after they’re up and installed. It’s nice to have something in the windows (finally). This is a side angle shot of the smaller window.

JCPenney Roman Shade

For the two larger flanking windows, we’ll eventually pop in some pinch pleat drapes to swank things up a bit and soften the walls some more.

Cordless Roman Shade

In the name of adding a bit of character to our walls, we also picked up this beastly dude at HomeGoods. We do live in Bull City, after all! Since I’m a serial key loser, it helps to have a designated spot where we pop these.

Bull Key Holder

Oh, and so y’all can see the travesty that is our fiddle leaf fig plant, this is all that remains. I think it might be dead. 😉

Fiddle Leaf Fig Tree

When in Rome

You know when you find something that fits the bill in the most perfect way, and it’s, like, a steal of a deal to boot. Is there anything better? Folks, I’ve gotta share that JCP, as in JCPenney has the best roman shades known to man. And they’re cheap, y’all. So, so cheap.

Truth be told, we’ve been buying blinds from penneys since our first house, and although I was impressed with the price on our first set from them, the quality didn’t bowl me over. I mean – it was absolutely fine – just not custom quality or anything like that. And for the twenty bucks a pop we spent – you can’t really lay much blame there, right? Here are some of the bamboo shades we had in house numero uno.

Lenda Curtains

Our second house actually had custom blinds installed in all the windows on move-in day, and even though the style wasn’t my favorite, the quality was solid, so we didn’t even think about replacing them.

Enter our current house, with – not a single functional window treatment on a single window – and let’s just say we were back in the business of window shade shopping. 😉

For the vast majority of the house, we’ve settled on these guys.

JCPenny Roman Shade Classy, understated, super easy to use and starting at $30 a pop, I couldn’t resist! Plus, I can tell you that after comparing these to our custom shades in the last house – that the quality is nearly identical. Sa-weetness.

Low and behold, since our house was built in 1939, and has not a single standard window size (that should be fun when we got to replace them), we had to get creative after our new window treatments arrived.

Remember this guy, that we used for our little door detail demo?

Using a Dremmel

Our $20 tool came in for the win again, this time to notch out a small piece of the window frame so that we could get our abnormally shaped windows some shades.

Installing Roman Shades

Once we took a small section out of the window, we were able to slide those babies right on in. After a few screws, we had some fine looking window covers.
White Sheets on Bed

The roman shades have the nicest folds in them when they’re open, and they’re blackout shades, so when they’re down the room is quite dark.

JCPenney Roman Shade

Now, if you look closely at our windows you’d notice that they’re not quite there yet. This room was a creamy dream when we moved in (aka not white trim), and I guess the pictures tell the story on how far we’ve gotten on that front 😉

Cordless Roman Shade

One of these weekends, it’s going to happen!

Since these shades are cordless, they’ve also got a handy little handle/cover that you place over the fabric, to keep them from getting soiled by dirty paws as you grab them to bring the shade down at night.

Roman Shades from JCP

To keep our costs more manageable, we’re doing one room at a time. For under $100 though, I’m pretty pumped to have some chic window shades in our bedroom. Heck, I’m pretty happy to have any window treatments in our room!