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!

Lemon Grove Interiors | New Service!

One of my favorite things about blogging over the past year or so, has been all the unexpected connections I’ve made with people and ideas that have come up as a result. It’s so fun virtually get to know people, and to have y’all offer input and insights into the design process for our home. A metaphor for life, I guess, it’s better with friends along by your side :)

When I started offering boards a few months back, I literally had no idea how much interest there would be in affordable interior design services. I have had a blast working with each and every one of my clients, and I’m super excited to say that I’m starting to offer a few additional services, based on feedback from all of you!

First, inspired by our own kitchen renovation, I’ve decided to start offering kitchen design services.

Kitchen Design Services

I recently had a client approach me about helping her select some details for her kitchen renovation and for $25, I created the board above for her. Now she has finalized choices for her counter, flooring, cabinets, fixtures and back splash. Along with a paint recommendation and some art, too! :)

Since we’ve always purchased older homes, and have never built new, I also never thought to create builder packages for those looking to source all the little details that go into a finished home. So when Marie approached me about sourcing the lighting for her new home, I did a cartwheel, high fived my cat, and then said – OF COURSE! That sounds like so. much. fun!

So, working within her budget, I sourced all the lights she needed to give to her builder for her new construction home. Devil’s in the details, right?

Lemon Grove Interiors

Lemon Grove Interiors Lemon Grove Interiors

I told her that putting these boards together made me want to update all the lighting in our house, too!

Of course, in addition these fun, new services, I’m still offering my “normal” room design services. Here are a few rooms I’ve been working on in the past few weeks.

Like this entry way.

Entry Mood Board

 

And this cozy and eclectic TV room.

TV Room Mood Board

Or for clients that already have the furniture and are just looking to accessorize, I’ve put together a package for that too. This client just wanted artwork and other details sourced to compliment her existing furniture.

Living Room Mood Board

Here is a more traditional take on a Dining space – I love the way this formal Dining Room came out!

Dining Room Mood Board If you’re interested in getting design services for your home, I’d love to help you! Packages start as low as $25 per room, with multiple room discounts for 2 or more rooms :)

Get more information on design services here. Ready to order? You can do that here.

 

Living La Vida Loca

So now that I’ve officially got that big bad list up of all the things we hope to accomplish with this house, I wanted to hone in on each room in a bit more detail, to kind of show you what I hope each space will look and feel like. Putting together a room you love is a super iterative process, but if there’s one thing I’ve learned from creating boards for all of my design clients, is that it’s definitely helpful to get everything down in one space so you can develop a clear picture of how you want the room turn out in the end.

Right now, this is my inspiration picture for the new living room space.

Living Room Inspiration

Found it on pinterest, and I’m pretty sure it’s pulled right out of a magazine (old school, right?). Look at all that yumminess – what’s not to love! 😀

My favorite rooms are soft and neutral, and I really want this next home to have rooms that feel comfortable and lived in, as well as stylish. We’ve got a few staple pieces that we intend to incorporate, namely our big old olive colored velvet sofa. As far as comfort goes, this guy takes the cake. 😀

Deep Velvet Sofa

As I mentioned in the post yesterday, the room is pretty large, so there is a lot of space to get creative. I plan on making a few distinct sitting areas in this room to give us space to spread out a bit. All and all, this is what I think I’d like the room to flow like (at least for it’s first design iteration).

Living Room Layout Since we don’t have a separate TV room, I’m thinking that the TV will have to be directly above the fireplace. Not perfect, but at least that allows for lots of different angels for TV watching! 😀

Here is the mood board I’ve got started for the space, too. I know this will continue to evolve and change, but for now, I feel like it gives me a good starting place to help direct the types of items I’m looking for.

Living Room Mood Board

Much to Jay’s chagrin (since we have NO space in our apartment), I’ve been loading up on items I see on craigslist … when I see a good deal, it’s just so darn hard to pass it up! 😀

This is what the view from my “office desk” looks like right now. In the event of a fire, we’ve got a few obstacles in our path these days.

Moving From House to Apartment

Other than the $12 chairs that the orange tabby is peacefully slumbering away on (!), I also scored some beautiful vintage rattan chairs that I’m super pumped about adding into the mix in the new living room. I found a set of these that I plan to use to flank the back wall for additional seating. They’re pretty small, but very sturdy, so I think they’ll hold up well for the long haul.

Vintage Rattan Chairs

I’ve also got a HomeGoods induced heartbreaker on my hands. See this jewel?

Slipcovered Dining Chair

I found it on clearance for $185 – I know, right!? Considering I’ve been eyeing a nearly identical one at Ballard Designs for $699, I was pretty excited about that price. The only trouble is that I really want two chairs, one to go on either side of the couch. Well, I definitely called the 40+ HomeGoods, TJMaxx and Marshall’s locations in our area and I came up completely empty handed. (Weeping in corner)

Here’s a side shot of this lovely little looker.

Slipcovered Dining Chair

Although it’s possible that they’ll bring in more inventory, I guessing that’s unlikely since it had a red tag on it :'( I’m going to hold onto it for at least a few weeks and see if I’m not able to find me another one (which would be the best luck EVER). #WishfulThinking

I know many of us, myself included, aren’t always able to just snap their fingers and have a room come into place. Although it would be nice to drive on over to Ethan Allen and go on a shopping spree – let’s face it – purchasing all new furniture for a room can be super expensive! With this house, I’m trying my darndest to get as much furniture as possible used (craigslist, thrift store, etc), but it can be pretty tricky to find just what you’re looking for. I guess all that extra work is worth it’s weight in gold when you pay pennies on the dollar for all your new duds, right?

And in closing, I couldn’t resist a cute little photo of the orange boy. 😀

Cute Orange Tabby

 

Fancyfing This Joint

Actually, there is very little fancyfing (fancy-fi-ing) 😀 going on in this specific joint, but by George, the rest of America is getting in on some of that action. I can’t even tell you how much my palms are twitching over here with all the design work I’ve been doing for the rest of y’all. Let’s just say my little brain is stirring with all sorts of ideas for our new space once we’ve well, got a new space to move in to. Oye. Patience Mary, patience… 😀

In the mean time, I thought it would be fun to swing in with my monthly round up of designs I’ve been busting out for clients. I can tell you one thing. Once I’ve got my own little home sweet home, you betta bet that I’m putting a mood board together to get my mojo going. In the past, I more or less had an idea of what I kinda sorta wanted to do in my head, but seeing everything down on paper and producing finished rooms for clients has me taking a whole new approach on how I plan to attack our new spaces once we get settled.

Probably my favorite room to design this month, was my very first mini human room. Not little tike room for the pre-schoolers getting their first big kid bed, nope, this was the fresh out of the womb, just pushed that wrinkly beast out, welcome to the world type of room. Yes siree, my very first nursery. SQUEEEE!!!

Nursery Mood Board

Have you guys seen the Sharon Montrose Animal Prints? I loved using these for this space and think all the art is adorbs. Like this little monkey print – so dang cute. I’m pretty smitten :)

Monkey Print Nursery

Another fun, and very different project for me for was designing a fancy little loo. Being the big picture lady that I am, I really take a darn long time to get around to nice little spaces like my b-room. I think I need to change that – look at all the fine details that got added in this room.

Bathroom Mood Board Not going to lie, this next client pretty much has the best set up EVER for her bedroom. It’s got a sunroom attached that was pretty much the size of my last bedroom. Oye. Jeal-ous. What I would DO with that much space, I can’t even begin to tell you.

Bedroom Layout

Crazy sauce amazingness, right?! This is what I came up with for her space.

Bedroom Mood Board

I rounded out the month with another living room design board. I’m a total sucker for the little details in a house and totally fell in love with the sweet bay window Kristen had in her living space – perfect for a quaint and peaceful sitting area. (She lives near the ocean (!) , swoon)

Living Room Layout

Although each design board comes out very different, and with it’s own unique twist, I think you can tell that I really like the white drapes with bamboo blinds look 😀 Especially on a beach house! 😉

Living Room Mood Board

As always, if you’re ever interested in designing a space you absolutely love – I offer 10% off to all my lovely readers! Just type in “THANKYOU” at checkout! 😀

Spring Fever

Now that we’re down in some warmer temps (wooo hooo!!) I’ve got a built-up shopping tick for cute/warm/summer clothes that I just can’t kick. Spring, my friends, has finally sprung. After living north of the wall this winter, I can’t even tell you how good 80 degrees felt last week. So, inspired by our new locale, and by the fact that old man winter seems to have finally left most of the good U.S. of A until next year comes knocking, I put together some pretty little numbers for all of us that are ready for summer sandals and breezy blouses.

Y’all ready for my spring look book?

Spring Style Guide

LOVE that pop of red. Found a similar blouse at TJ Maxx the other day, but it had a weird flair at the bottom, so I passed.

1) Blouse $19.99 | Target
2) Slacks $34 | Old Navy
3) Bag $29.99 | Target
4) Necklace $16.99 | Target
5) Earrings $6 | Charlotte Russe 
6) Shoes $19.99 | Target 

Looks for Spring

1) Blouse $17.95 | H & M
2) Slacks $34 | Old Navy
3) Bag $39.99 | Target
4) Watch $15.99 | Charlotte Russe
5) Earrings $6 | Charlotte Russe 
6) Shoes $19.99 | Target 

 

Spring Fashion

1) Blouse $19.95 | H & M
2) Skinny Jeans $29.50| Old Navy
3) Wallet $19 | Layla Grace
4) Watch $15.99 | Charlotte Russe
5) Earrings $6 | Charlotte Russe
6) Shoes $19.94 | Old Navy
7) Necklace $3.95 H & M

Spring Fashion 2014

1) Shirt $22.95 | Gap
2) Skinny Jeans $29.50| Old Navy
3) Necklace $16.99 | Target
4) Earrings $6 | Charlotte Russe
5) Shoes $15.95 | Target
6) Bag $14.95 | H & M

Swoon, right? Sign me up scotty cause I’m ready to buy every. single. item. in the mood boards above. Hold me back.

I’ve got to say, one of my absolute favorite things about the styles coming out this season are the accessories! I’m absolutely loving all the accessories, like this grouping of necklaces.

Inexpensive Bib Necklaces

Meow. 😀

From Top Clockwise Across

1) Green Bib Necklace $16.99 | Target
2) Glam Jade Necklace $12.80 | Forever 21
3) Geo Bib Necklace $11.80 | Forever 21
4) Silver and Green Statement Necklace $16.99 | Target
5) Shimmering Stone Necklace $10.80 | Forever 21

Client Redesign

I’m seriously in love with helping all y’all design some new snazzy spaces. I had an absolute blast helping Kelly, who’s setting up a new place to call home with her fiance, figure out a few final details to make her space that much nicer to come home to. I loved some of the items I sourced so much that I decided to snag them for myself! :) (Ongoing theme, I know) 😉

Here is what I came up with for her living room.

Living Room Design Board

One of my favorite looks for a living room is something nice and cozy, with everything snuggled up together, ideally around a fireplace. Lucky for Kelly, she’s got a room perfect for that configuration!

Kelly Design Layout

She lives in a beautiful home that’s totally a blank slate pre-move. In addition to putting together a sourced list for her living room, I helped put together a board for her bedroom as well.

Bedroom Design

Kelly’s bedroom had a big blank wall where I thought some nicely arranged art would help to make a statement. Can you tell I’m loving those water color botanicals?

TV Art Layout

I loved finding all these sweet details for Kelly’s home so much, that I started to think about some of my all time favorite looks for furniture pieces. Kelly had some great staple furniture, which made putting a room together for her that much more enjoyable!

Here are a few of my favorite finds for couches:

Best Affordable Couches

1) Bryant Sofa, Ethan Allen, $1,599

2) Lounge 93″ slipcover sofa, Crate and Barrel, $1,700

3) Fulham Sofa, Home Decorators Collection, $999

4) Monterey Skirted Sofa, Ethan Allen, $1,889

5) Chesterfield sofa, Design Studios, $649

And here are my favorites for living room chairs!

Best Living Room Chairs

1) Charles Armchair, Home Decorators Collection, $499

2) Aiden Accent Chair, Home Decorators Collection, $389

3) Voltaire Lounge Chair, Home Decorators Collection, $459

4) Flanders Accent Chair, Home Decorators Collection, $429

5) Stella Armchair, Home Decorators Collection, $299

If you’d like help creating a space that you adore, I’d love to work with you too!

Packages start at just $25. PLUS, I’ve decided to extend 10% off to all you lovely readers! Just type in “THANKYOU” in the promo code box at check out!

All I Want For Christmas | Made in America

Jay and I made a little pledge to ourselves that we are going to try and have a China free Christmas this year. Yes. Go ahead and burst out laughing since this feat is darn near impossible. I mean, have you taken inventory of the garb in your house? I know we have and I think like 95% of the stuff we buy new is from China. Ugghh – steep hill to climb, amigo.

Now, to not sound like a complete red-neck bigot (or blue-neck, or polkadot-neck, really … any type of bigot), I feel like I have to preface this little goal of ours a bit. I have absolutely, positively nothing against the fine craftsmen of China. But, I DO have a problem with our societies incessant race to the bottom, which I think has created a few less than ideal conditions (economically, environmentally, socially for everyone (consumer/producer/buyer/seller) involved. I’m not looking to get super political on it, but I am looking to start to change my lifestyle, in small, simple and meaningful ways. I guess we are just of the mentality that the more local we can buy something, the better.

Vintage American Flag

But until my neighbor starts making some of my needs and necessities (and want’s), I’ve set out on a little expedition to source as many things as possible from the good old stars and stripes. This week, I decided to focus on goodies for the ladies. Feast your eyes on some lovely American made loot.

American Made Christmas

1) Does it get any cuter than this? I fell hard for this sweet little tote (that also has tons of matching accessories)

2) Since was drooling over everything Stone and Cloth makes, I also had to include this wallet.

3) We’re big bike riders around here, and this handlebar bag had me at hello. Talk about some chic handlebars.

4) I think this case may win the award for cutest phone case ever, no? Love it.

5) One thing I’ve learned over time is that American made clothes are SO hard to find. Feast your eyes on this super cute blouse, 100% made in the good old U.S. of A. The shop had TONS of cute stuff, but you’ve got to be careful if you’re searching for only American made duds, since a lot of it was imported.

6) Another hard, hard thing to find for domestic products? Shoes! These cute little buggers fit the bill for me!

7) Usually all plastic stuff is imported (slight generalized but I’m prone to hyperbole), so I thought it was pretty cool that these insulated water bottles are made right here in the states.

8) Ok, confession. These earrings are from a super fancy boutique and they’re $52, which I think it crazy sauce. If you feel like splurging, be my guest, otherwise I’ve seen very similar handmade jewelry up on etsy for closer to $20, which is more my jam.

Feeling Moody | Giveaway!

Mood boards are one of my favorite ways to envision a space – it’s the best way to get my design mojo a going and my pinterest button a clicking.

For instance, when we were working on the downstairs bathroom remodel last winter (seriously, was that last winter?) I put this little guy together to keep track of some of the details I was hoping to incorporate into the space.

Marble bathroom, antique bronze, polished nickel And as a point of comparison, this is how our tiny water closet turned out.

Traditional Marble Bathroom

We went with the floors from the Tile Shop and LOVE them. They make me feel like tap dancing. Which I’d do if the room wasn’t like 2 feet x 3 feet. I tap dance in my head anyway.

White Painted bathroom threshold

And although I didn’t get all the gold accessories I was initially pegging for, I did spot this little antique painting at the resale shop, and I think that it adds some warmth into the room. Still working on some final details for the space, but it’s coming along.

Small Antique Frame

When I was looking to get all inspired to tackle our latest and greatest project up in the attic, I also popped some images together to get my vision aligned with reality. Now, were not nearly done with the attic, but I’m using this board as a general template to help guide us as we work on each component of the room.

Plus, it helps me to begin the sourcing process, which can be tedious at times when you’re having a hard time finding exactly the right item, in exactly the right price range. Actually it’s usually easy to find the right item, it’s that pesky budget that gets in the way. 😉

Master Attic Conversion Mood BoardAnd now that we’ve started working on the basement in a bit more earnest with the built-in, I also decided to throw it down into the mood board gauntlet and get all inspired for that space, too! Just looking at it makes me start fist pumping, which is exactly what an inspiration board should do, get ya all hyped to get that space purty.

Living Room Mood Board

So, are ya wondering what the giveaway is? 😉 Kept ya hanging, didn’t I. 

Since I’m such a mood board maven, I thought I’d holla at all my buddies out in the blog land and offer a free mood board to (3) random readers! Got a room you’ve been dying to tackle? Just comment below and tell me, what room is giving you the blues? Why do you want to revamp it?

Here’s the scoop on the details: I’ll contact the (3) random winners a week from today (10/23)  and get crack a lackin’ on a designed space just for you, which will include sourced materials so you can hunt down all the specifics after! I’ll announce the winners at the bottom of this post, and the bottom of my 10/23 post, too! Good luck!

Making Some Grand Attic Plans

One of my favorite things about moving into a new house is the complete unknown of new spaces, and new rooms. Making each area into your own and learning about the homes full potential. This attic renovation has kind of been like finding a space in our house and rediscovering a new room, like when you just move in. Sure, we knew the attic was up there, but we’ve left the door shut to the space for the past year, so opening this room up has just got me thinking about all the possibilities.

Here is the overall layout of the space.

Attic Layout

Pretty basic room, lots of potential. Initially, we were thinking about bumping out the back wall a putting in a dormer. But the more we thought about it, the more we became content with the layout just as it was.

We interviewed (3) contractors about a potential dormer, and in complete honesty, we just were not crazy about any of them. Each one had their own perspective on how to go about the changes, and it just felt overwhelming and like we would be giving up all control of the project to someone that might not have the same vision for the space that we did. Plus, it was going to cost money, and we like to keep money in our pocket as much as possible. So the more we pondered about it, the more we started leaning toward just working with the space we had. Done.

  Master Attic Conversion Mood Board

1. Since our attic is chock full of knee wall space that would otherwise go unutilized (and will be totally accessible after the spray foam install), clever storage is the name of the game in our attic. The entire wall to the left of the steps as you walk up the hall will be closet space. A legit his and hers closet. Yours and mine, no ours. :) With Jay booted to the guest room the second we moved into this joint, it’s going to be fan-freaking-tastic to have all our clothes and booties in one place. Wootie Tootie, all our bootie’s.

2. Ooommmeerrggaaauuuddd. Like look at this little light o’ mine. To say I dream of these little candelabras that could every night is an understatement. They must be mine. ALL MINNNEEE.

3. Oh, and these little sconces. Ain’t dey cuties?? I’m thinking we’ll have these flank the bed. Classy.

Attic Conversion

4. Since the pink stairs are u-g-l-y, I think we’re going to channel our basement wainscoting stairway and pop up some beautiful trim work. I also think that the stairs will provide a nice transition between the upstairs and downstairs. Wooden treads with a runner that matches the carpet upstairs. I think that might just fit the bill.

5. Well look at that. I forgot a 5 in my little purty graphic. 5 can just stand for a mysterious unknown element. Spicy. Wait and see, my friends. 😉

6. We wanted to find a door that fit the rest of the house, and when I saw this little dude chilling at the Depot, I pretty much signed on the dotted line. We’ll be installing a pocket door off the bath in the Master Suite, so we unfortunately couldn’t reuse a door (that matched) that was already in the attic since it will have a big old hole where the knob was. Shucks. Can’t win em’ all.

White painted paneled door

7. Although I love our dark hardwood floors, I’ve already mentioned they’re kinda high maintenance. 😉 For the upstairs I wanted something that was soft and inviting, and also something I could rake a vacuum and not worry about scratching the heck up. We’ve been hunting for carpet the last few weeks (just for fun, ya know, since this will be the absolute LAST thing we do in the space) and this loopy stuff is like cashmere. I just want to pet it all day long. So soft.

8. We’re a big fan of light colors in our house, but for the upstairs I wanted to just go a hair darker. Something to warm the place up. Like a mocha frappe latte.

9. Upholstered beds. I love em. Problem is, the orange tabby loves them, too. Darn cat claws the helllooo dolly out of these things. Still. I can’t resist.

10. Built-ins. Have I mentioned they’re going to be a big part of the space? On the wall opposite the closets, we plan on popping in even more store. Practical and pretty. Winning!