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

Built In DIY Closets

Man – ladies, gotta come out and say it – I’ve got quite the catch :) He went up a solid 10 points in my book after he helped to bust out a built in DIY closet from heaven. See, old house = small closets = hair brained pregnant woman without enough places to store baby stuff. Why do baby’s come with so much stuff – it’s sorta ridiculous.

So one afternoon, I started sketching up some built in closet solutions for our Master Bedroom. A whole lotta work, and more money than desired later – we now have this!

Built_In_Armoire

AND this!

Closet_Armoire

Which equals a whole lotta storage! Here are the insides of our built in DIY closet project. One side just for Jay.

Closet_Storage

And one side just for me!

Built_In_Armoire_Storage

Although it’s not much space (and it’s pretty high up) there is also a shelf at the top of the built in closet that I’ll get some baskets for down the line. I figure it’s a great spot for seasonal stuff I don’t need on a daily basis.

Basket_Storage_In_Closet

In other news – my life is pretty much complete now that these little beehive handles have made their way into my house :)

Martha_Stewart_Hardware

Nothing like adding some more storage to make me happy as a fool on a warm summer’s day. Here is a final view of our built in DIY closet project. Love the storage, y’all!!

Built_In_Closet_Storage

Constellation Nursery Art

Well, our little one is mere weeks away, so Jay and I have been trying (trying) to get some things beautified over here. At the top of that list is the little man’s nursery. I keep telling Jay that before I pop this human out, I want the house to (as much as possible) feel done, serene and like a peaceful place to bring baby back to. That’s my goal. Some days I feel closer to it than others – we’re a work in progress over here.

So a few weekends back, Jay and I (and my sister, too) tackled some constellation nursery art arranging in Henry’s room.

Constellation Artwork

For a galaxy inspired nursery, I can’t think of a much nicer addition than some constellation nursery art charts for our little guy.

We hit up IKEA a month or so ago to get the frames and I found some free archived constellation prints online (here) that we just took them to Kinkos and paid $20 to have them cut to size, and printed on nice heavy cardstock. Not too shabby.

Constellation Art

Notice another addition in this shot?

Constellation Nursery Theme

When we were at habitat scoring the $11 sink for our bathroom, I also spotted a nice little chandy sitting in the lighting section. After our steal of a deal on the sink, the $20 I spent on it felt a bit steep, but heck – still not bad!

Wooden Chandelier

I love how the constellation nursery art looks up in the space and I think it adds the perfect focal point for this main (previously empty) wall in the room. A few final details and this space will be ready for baby!

Constellation Artwork

If y’all haven’t noticed – I’ve been recalibrating a bit over here the past month or so. As I look ahead to motherhood, and to raising our family, I really want to be actively present for my kids. I want them to know that mom is always here for them, and that I’m never too busy and can always make time for them. I don’t want to miss the details of my life. I want to see each moment, cherish each second, for the beautiful gift that it is.

I think in our modern day, technology driven world, that it’s very easy to become distracted from truly living and embracing our day to day and I’m feeling the need to put blogging in a space that it belongs for me in my life – and daily logging of our renos and home life just felt like a bit much. I’ll still be here – just a bit less! :)

After all, before you know it, April will be here and we’re going to have another human in the house – crazy sauce!

Constellation Nursery

Built In Shelf DIY

Whew! It’s been a busy week over here. We’re well into our bathroom renovation and I’m so excited with how it’s coming along! We’ll have some progress photos of the space up later this week for you all to check out (get excited!). (for those new to the blog – you can see the before and after shots, here)

In addition to demoing and rebuilding our upstairs loo, I took 30 seconds this week to do a first round of accessorizing on our newly refurbished built-in.

Remember this built in shelf DIY from last week?

Vintage Built In

That turned into this guy?

Adding Shelves to Builtin

Well I decided there’s no time better than the present and snooped around the abode for some accessories to add into the space.

It’s most definitely not finished, and it’s leaning a bit too traditional for me right now, but hey – it’s better than an empty cabinet, right?

Built in Bookcase

It was fun to be reunited with lots of the little treasures we still had packed away.

I love, love, love these little bookends I found thrifting a while back.

Marble Bookends

They are the perfect bookends for the (imperfect) books we found stashed away in our attic when we moved in.

Antique Books

They’ve got some water damage on them, but from a distance, it’s hard to tell 😀

Our little happy pig found a new happy home. Fitting that he overlooks our Dining Room where this preggo lady pigs out quite often.

How to Accesorize Bookcase

Right now, these little gold guys serve no function other than ornamental, but when we add in a little bar on the bottom shelf, I plan on using these for stashing some mixer essentials.

Accessorizing Bookcase

And above it all, Honest Abe sits looking pretty. Another fun thrifting find. :)

Abe Lincoln Bookend

What were you all up to this weekend? Anybody else renovating a bathroom?

Best Affordable Gifts for Ladies

Well we got the men covered on Monday, so I’m back with some of the best affordable gifts for the ladies in your life. Your sister, your wife, your mumzie or your bestie – we’ve got something for them all.

Again, everything is made in the USA!! Woot!!

Let’s start with the under $20 group.

Gift Guide Under $20

 

Maison Blanc Tin Candle $8 // Rachel Rhinestone $8 // Rifle Paper Pocket Notebook $10 // Kiehls Lip Balm $8 // The Balm Highlighter $20 // Let’s Get Lost $18

Ah sisters, where would the world be without them. Sister-less, what a horrific proposition. Well if you still are giftless for that sister in your life, look no further my friends, look no further.

Gift Guide for Sisters

Gold Foil Pocket Notebook $10 // Repurposed Wall Art $24 // Embroidered IKAT pillow $19 // Cocktail Maker Kit $30 // Almond Lip Balm $5 // Smooth Infusion Hair Treatment $26

And we can’t forget the mommas of the world :) Here are some of the best affordable gift ideas for the mumzies.

Gift Guide for Moms

Pink Peony Votive $25 // Kiehls Helping Hand Essentials $28 // Lab Magnets $22 // State Tablet Holder $38 // Burt’s Bees Shea Butter $20

Happy shopping!

The Best Gifts for Men

Oh December. How I love thee. How I love thee infinity more now that I live in a climate with 70 degree December days. 😀 As Christmas get’s closer, I wanted to put a few fun posts together for holiday gift giving.

Added bonus – every single item sourced below is made in the U S of A. We’re all about supporting our local economy as much as possible, so domestic is always our holiday shopping preference! Today’s post focuses on the men in our lives :) Here are some of the best gifts for men that I’ve rounded up.

Shop on!!

Gift Guide for Dad

Old School Men’s Bi-fold Wallet // Woven Silk Tie $49 // Frye Leather Conditioning Cream $9 // Field Note Portfolio $42 // Wood Flask $23 // Fullsteam Beer $4

Normally my list of best gifts for men (or my man) would circle around bike stuff, but after 3-years of getting him bike lights for Christmas, I thought it would be fun to switch it up with some new goodies :)

Gift Guide for Your Man

Wigwam Rebel Fusion Socks $13 // Steiners Slim Fit Tee $18 // Kiehls Essentials for Him $31 // Essential Shoe Cleaning Kit $16 // Beer Making Kit $40

What’s on your Christmas list? I’m starting to get a jolt to my system to finish up our shopping – I can’t believe it’s only a few weeks away!

DIY Built-In Bookcase

When we were in escrow with our little abode, I remember showing people photos on our phones of the new joint and they would almost always comment on the little built-in we have in the Dining Room.

And sure, it was nice. But it was also a lot less nice up close in personal than it was in those photographs. Which is why we decided to do a little DIY built-in bookcase action over here.

Vintage Built In

It was old, and the door stuck, and it was our official junk collection spot for things we didn’t know what to do with in the kitchen. A little bit of this, a little bit of that.

Plus, now that I’m all in hyper mama bear mode, I also started to think to myself that every time we opened those sticky, reluctant glass doors, we were probably risking exposure to lead paint and the likes.

Lead Paint on Built In

Anywhoo … I just didn’t want to risk it. Plus, the doors were a bit too kitchy for my taste. So one night over dinner, I said to Jay – let’s give that baby a makeover.

I wanted everything to look more built-in, so we decided to scrap the glass shelves that were in here before, and swap them out for solid wood shelves instead to create this little built-in bookcase.

Adding Shelves to Built-in

The good news was that we already had brackets mounted on the cabinet sides from the previous shelving, so it was easy peasy to get the new shelf in. We just measured, cut, and messed around with some different height options for a bit.

Since there were doors mounted to the sides of the built-in previously, we also had to come back through and add some putty into those gaps before we did our final round of fresh paint. Here it is, waiting to get a quick sand down in between coats of putty (I think we put on 2 coats, total).

Filling in Gaps with Join Compound

I can tell you, I’m already loving how simple this looks compared to the rather busy built-in view before. The panes of glass and everything, it made that corner of the Dining Room just look overly busy to me.

Here is a shot of it after we added a coat of Benjamin Moore Simply White.

Adding Shelves to Builtin

I’m really excited to accessorize this built-in bookcase now! I already found this fun serving tray at the thrift store for a few bucks last weekend. I think it would look awesome along with a little mini bar on that bottom shelf.

Brass Bamboo Tray

When everything is said and done, I see the built-in bookcase looking something like this! Stock that liquor shelf up, babbbbeeyy.

How_To_Style_a_Bookcase

MMMMMM – T-minus 4-months until this mama can get her hands back on a Margarita. That excites me more than it should. 😉

Black Friday | Get Em While Their Hot

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday with your families! To celebrate Black Friday (who doesn’t love a deal) I’ve got an extra special promotion going on at Lemon Grove Interiors.

Black Friday Sale

Through Sunday (11/30) – snag 30% all design services for any space in your home! Just type in BLACKFRIDAY at checkout!

Whether you’d like to update your Master:

Bedroom Mood Board

Or your Living Space:

Living Room Mood Board

I’d love to help transform your house into a space you love coming home to.

Order here, with discount code BLACKFRIDAY through Sunday.

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