Archive of ‘Decorating’ category

Bathroom remodel reveal: Part two!

Our home was built in 1989, and while the previous owners had done many upgrades, the bathrooms remained untouched. When we were touring the house before we purchased it, we loved the space in the master bath but I just was not feeling the almond and cornflower blue tile. And it was EVERYWHERE! So although the water damage was no fun to come home to, when they said we’d have to remodel both bathrooms I may have danced a little happy jig knowing the days of the almond tile were in short order.

Here are a few befores…so you can understand the depth of the 1980’s that it was rocking.

Before 2





And the after:

Joedy pic 2

I kept the footprint relatively the same, with the exception of removing the half wall in the shower area. The bathroom was laid out well and we saved a ton of money by not having to reroute plumbing.

I mentioned in the girls’ bathroom reveal that I was able to save quite a bit of money by purchasing a large slab of 3cm Cararra marble and having it split into two pieces for both bathrooms. I’m not a fan of the seam that you often get with a 2cm slab and glued lip, and the price difference was nominal, so 3cm it was! I love it.

Joedy pic 1

The cabinets are semi custom, the pulls are Grafton line, and knobs are the Round Glass knobs, both in polished nickel from Restoration hardware.



I did a lot of work to save money wherever I could, like on the tile and tub, but when it came to the faucets and sconces, I couldn’t help myself. These were statement pieces that would make the place sing. I fell in love with these Viaggio wide spread faucets by Rohl in polished nickel and knew they’d be perfect.

Joedy pic 3

Same goes for the Camille Long Sconces by Suzanne Kasler. Once I saw them I couldn’t get over how beautiful they were. The glass rods and polished nickel finish knocked me out and would set the tone for the pulls, knobs, and towel bar. They had to happen, no questions asked.

Joedy pic 4


Since I was so insistent on the faucets and the sconces, I had to be a tad more choosy about other things. I was able to save a ton on the tile for the floor and the shower by shopping at Floor and Decor. If you’ve never been to Floor and Decor and are contemplating any type of project needing tile work, definitely check them out. I was able to match pricier tile with nearly the exact same products at a fraction of the cost.

Joedy pic 5

If you’re in the Sacramento area and are needing glass work done, definitely check out Southgate glass. They were quick, professional, and had some nice choices for finishing options such as handles and clips.

shower stall

And take a look at my solution for shaving. Building a bench seat was costly and I wanted a seamless look with a full glass enclosure for the shower so I had the contractor build a foot box.

foot cut out

Another place I was able to save quite a bit was with the tub. We previously had a deck around the tub and I wanted a more open feel, so I looked specifically at free standing tubs. If you’ve ever looked at free standing tubs, you’re probably shaking your head knowing that they often are very pricey. The one I fell in love with was a Waterworks tub with a price tag of around $8k. Being that I couldn’t drive it to work, I knew that wasn’t going to happen so I did a ton of research and found a gem of a source.


Robert at Bathtubs Factory Direct is a sweetheart and his products and pricing are amazing! He’s able to keep the overhead low by having no storefront and shipping directly to you. Being on the second floor, I wanted an acrylic tub (MUCH easier to move and install) but was worried about the quality as it can vary widely. I found Robert’s website, but when I discovered he was in Olivehurst (about an hour away), I called and asked if I could come out to his warehouse and take a look. He was so sweet about letting me come visit, two kids in tow and all. I was incredibly impressed by the quality of the tubs and the fact that they come with a faucet was icing on the cake.

With all of the big choices made, I had only the finishing touches left. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve walked into my bathroom and Talking Heads begins playing in my ear, saying, “This is not my beautiful bathroom.” I seriously am in love with the way it all came together. There are a few things that are still up in the air (the pendant light is a little small for the space but I already had it and free is always a good price), so there may be some tweaking here and there, but overall I’m smitten with it.




I could not have done this without the efforts of my fabulous contractor, Joedy Zapara with JAZ Developments. They worked tirelessly to ensure a smooth process from start to finish. If you’re looking for a great general contractor in the Sacramento area, definitely check them out.

I hope you’ve enjoyed touring the new master bath as much as I enjoyed creating it. They say remodels can put you in the grave, but to me its an opportunity to redefine a space and make it as functional and beautiful as you can.

Now, if you’ll please excuse me. I’ve got a bath to go take.



*Nothing in this post is sponsored. All opinions of items and sources are mine alone…because they rock, and I like to talk about stuff that rocks. 

Bathroom remodel reveal: Part One

They are done! Our working, functional, and probably more importantly, pretty, pretty bathrooms are complete. Actually, the construction has been done for about a month or so, but with work, kids, and well…life, it took me a little while to pull the finishing touches together. I’m still not completely sold on some of the choices (for instance, the pendant in our bathroom is a little too small but I already owned it and the budget was super tight at that point) but all together I’m thoroughly in love.

There’s a lot to share so I’m going to do this in two installments. Today’s will be the girls’ bathrooms. So let’s begin!

This is our before. Not terrible, but not us.


And the after:


We were able to salvage the tile floor but the rest is all new. To save money, we bought a large 3cm Carrara marble slab and was able to use it for both the girls’ bath and ours. The hardware is a mix and match of knobs from Martha Stewart at Home Depot and allen + roth pulls, from Lowes, both in polished nickel.

I found the faucets at Overstock. One came damaged, but they’ve got terrific customer service and had a new one out to me in no time at all.


The mirrors are antique. If you’ve followed my blog for any length of time, you’ll know I’m a big lover of the mix between modern and old. I feel like vintage and antique items bring an authenticity and complexity to a space that newly purchased things just can’t replicate.


Speaking of vintage items, these 1950’s watercolors were a perfect compliment to the Pink Prism Behr paint I chose for the walls.



The towel bar is from the Grafton line at Restoration Hardware. I loved it so much I installed the same one in our bathroom.

towel bar


When it came to the shower curtain, I couldn’t beat the styling and price of this one from the Threshold line at Target. Have I ever told you home much I love Target? But then again, who doesn’t?

shower curtain


And that’s a wrap. The girls love it just as much as I do. Make sure and keep an eye out for the grand reveal of our master bath later this week!


Bathroom Remodel

Let’s go back in time to last April. I was working late when I received a text from my husband. Usually they’re full of witty banter and innuendo, but this time the text was far more dire. And it included a picture of this:



I uttered a few choice expletives, knowing full well that something in the girls’ upstairs bathroom had broken. The husband, however, could not find the source of the leak. I figured, “it can’t be that hard!” not knowing that, yes, it can be. I also naively thought it looked rather small so it couldn’t be all that bad.

Oh, you naive fool.

I arrived home to my husband littering our dining area floor with buckets and pots and pans as the ceiling rained. And rained. Even with the water shut off to the house. Seems the water left in your pipes once you shut it off is a lot. And that was lesson number one in what would soon become “Plumbinggedon!”

The hubs found the source of the leak, a little drip coming from the valve under the girls’ vanity…right where it connected with the wall. If you like figuring out plot twists ahead of time, I’m sure you can see where this is going. The $150 fix by the plumber was the simple part. Because the leak was in the wall shared between both the girls’ bathroom AND our master bath this wasn’t going to be simple much longer.

Two bath remodels were now needed. TWO!

Now, this could go one of two ways, and together we had them covered. 1) We cry and shake our fists at the ceiling and yell, “WHY?” into the ether or 2) we cry tears of joy over the new opportunity to update the bathrooms which, let’s be real honest, were desperately needed. Guess who reacted which way?

With our remodel now in full effect, I’ve spent endless amounts of time figuring out what I wanted. I decided early on that I wanted both bathrooms to feel connected, so many of the choices echo each other. That being said, I wanted to do higher end finishes in our bathroom, so while they reflect the same modern traditional style I so love, they each have their own flavor. Here’s a preview into what we’re going for.

The Girls’ Bathroom

Girls' Bath

And the Master Bath

Master Bath

Here’s to leaky valves and new design opportunities!


It’s an Outlander Christmas Up In He’ya!

Most years I’d be knee deep in recipes having to do with brining and spatchcocking and stuffing balls around this time, but next week we’re heading to my sister-in-laws, who kindly is doing all of the heavy lifting instead, leaving me with an appetizer and pie to put together. Thank her kindhearted soul!

Not only does it take a load of stress off my shoulders, but I can wholeheartedly throw myself into Christmas inspiration and planning without the normal guilt I feel at decorating before the turkey’s been devoured.

You know, they say inspiration strikes anywhere, and let me tell you, strike it did! Like a lightening bolt.

Like Jaime Fraser (Sam Heughan) in Starz Original Series “Outlander” based on Diana Gabaldon’s books of the same name.

Sam Heughan as Jamie Fraser


If you are not familiar with Mrs. Gabaldon’s books or the television series, enjoy a few moments to bask in all it’s glory.

Shirtless Jamie

Oh my…

Oh, and there’s Clare, too.

Yeah, she’s pretty…If you like that chiseled, glowing, beautiful sort of thing.

But a third, and often forgotten “character” is the gorgeous Highland landscape of Scotland. I mean, it actually looks like the place fairies come from.

It’s like the land of FAIRIES, people!

Somewhere between Jamie’s sexy smirk, Clare’s…well, whatever Clare does, and the beautiful landscape, I decided this year Christmas would take on a decidedly Highlander-esque theme. And so I’ve been plotting and planning and searching for tartan like it’s on blue light special at KMart.

I’m inspired! Give me tartan, plaid, blue, and roses and let’s get Scottish up in here!

Scottish Christmas


What’s your Christmas style? Are you a “theme” person when it comes to your Christmas decor or do you keep it the same each year? There is something definitely to be said about keeping it the same; it nostalgic and reminds us of the memories we’ve built. But let me tell you, there’s also something to be said about Sam Heaughan in a kilt.

Happy inspiration!

Squeal! Design Featured with!

I was over the moon when informed me that my polka dot room update was the feature on their website! Seriously, the folks over there couldn’t be nicer, and as I mentioned in the post regarding the decals, they really are such good quality and so easy to work with. If you haven’t visited their site yet, do it now. There are so many choices you could customize every room. A big thank you to their team!



p.s. For those wondering, this is not a sponsored post. I was just highly impressed with the quality and ease with which it was working with their decals and wanted readers to know what a great, well-priced product they offer:)

Design Over Distance

Designing an interior space is an intimate process; getting to know your client and their needs, discussing style preferences, convincing them to trust you—with their space and their money—it’s a lot of design but also a lot of relationship building. So call me lucky when my wonderful friend Lizz at contacted me about giving her living room a new look. She not only trusted me but we could skip directly to the fun of decorating!

She recently inherited a beautiful antique Chinese writing desk, which spurred a couch and love seat purchased, which spurred, you guessed it, a desire for a totally new space. Together with her recent purchases/inheritance, she tasked me with blending old with new, and finding a tie to bind it all together. Using items she already had, along with some new purchases, we aimed for giving her family room an entirely new feel; a little traveled, a lot collected, with a nod to mid century.

What we’re starting with:


We started with a questionnaire and images of stuff already in the space. Using both as starting points, I sent her some room boards to get us started.

Main wall

Fireplace wall


TV wall

Now comes the fun part; the shopping. My next step is picking up items to pull it all together. Can’t wait to do a little shopping (and if I’m lucky, a little client-designer-lunching) with my fabulous friend. Stay tuned for the final room reveal!


DIY Polka Dot Walls


My littlest bean has long outgrown her crib, but other than it’s removal from her room and the addition of a bed, everything else has stayed exactly the same. A few months ago I thought it would be fun to do a little update and ordered some wall decals. In general I’m not a decal person, but these were just too darn cute to pass up.

But life sometimes gets in the way and by the time I remembered the decals six months had passed. I was worried that perhaps the extended time they’d spent rolled up would tragically warp them but bless those decals, they were perfect. And applying them couldn’t be easier.

Start with a clean wall. Your polka dot decals come in one long roll. Cut them into smaller sections as they are easier to handle that way.

cut smallerwm

I bought my set from Walls Need Love and not only were they exactly what I wanted but the instructions were cute (I appreciate humor wherever I can get it). I ordered the 2″ polka dots in gold. They send you a burnishing tool but I found for the size of my decals and the orange peel texture of my walls (why, oh why, do builders use this texture?!) my fingers worked perfectly for the job.



Peel the paper back from the decal as opposed to peeling the decal off. It saves you from inadvertently creasing your decals.


I knew I wanted a random pattern with a concentration of dots up high and more dispersed dots as they came down the wall. To achieve this look I applied the decals in sections, starting from the top and working my way down. This also helped me to check each section after I’d finished it to make sure the dots were evenly distributed and I wasn’t accidentally creating patterns as I worked. You’d be amazed at the brain…you’re going for random but the brain is built for patterns. If you don’t check your work along the way, you may find you accidentally have created patterns on your wall without trying.

section 1wm

section 2wm


section 3wm

The last step I did was to stand back and look for any gaps that look wrong. I kept a few dots to “fill in” these spots.

The total cost for the decals was $22 and it took me about 35 minutes from start to finish. Money and time well spent when you consider the alternative…

And I have. I wanted to do polka dots of various colors and sizes in my girls’ bathroom. Only this was long ago, before I learned to love decals. I painstakingly drew each circle with a compass and then hand painted each polka dot with a little paint brushes. Total time=3 days. Total cost=$10. No question about it; the decals win.



So for a few bucks and a little decal action, we turned a blank wall into a bit of fabulousness!





Craigslist Revisited: The Amazing Dining Set

It’s that times folks, the time to bask in the glory of a great Craigslist find. I seriously squealed when I saw this dining set pop into view, and for $295 I had to *fight* the urge to buy it.

brass table (1)

salmon chairs

Those table legs are pretty cute, but it’s the salmon pink velvet chairs that did me over. I mean, those things…I die! I could see it immediately, although my husband thought I may be off my rocker a bit (have I mentioned he’s more on the traditional side?)…sexy and dark, a bit mid century, a bit modern with some great art. Give me some texture with grass cloth walls and some glam with brass and BAM! A glorious dining room in the making.OB-salmon dining tableI’d be willing to bet that even my hubby would love this room.



Halloween 2013 Decor

Gearing up for Halloween around here is always a last minute thing. It starts with grand plans and usually ends up being a piece meal affair. But those little steps add up, and by Halloween we’re set…to start taking down. However, in an attempt to get my act together a bit more this year, I aimed to be mostly done by the week before Halloween.

I decided to go with a witches theme this year. Nothing too extreme, just a little hat and cauldron action. There may be a broom in there for good measure.


Move in a little closer and you start to see all the little details that make this entry so much fun.




We even threw out a few grave markers, just enough to keep it spooky.



And my absolute favorite thing about the entry this year is the cauldron. On a small table covered with black cheese cloth I layered a wreath of grape vine followed by some orange tissue paper. Inside the paper I wrapped a cord of orange Halloween lights and then placed the cauldron on top. Lit up at night it gives the appearance of fire boiling the ingredients in the pot. I also added poly fill to make it look like steam bubbling inside.


Moving inside I stuck with my color palette of creams and blacks on the mantel. I started with an old bird cage I had and placed several crows and an owl around. I added two urns, each with a white pumpkin atop, and finished it off with a few old books, bottles, and a skull for good measure.




So that’s it. I’ve still got a couple of things to do around the house in preparation for our Halloween party this weekend, but overall I’m pretty happy with how it turned out. Now if only I could get someone to come and put all this stuff away next weekend.




Fall Update Reveal: Seeing Purple

After my last post about updating my family room for fall, and all of the wonderful feedback I received on the blog and my facebook page, I couldn’t help but choose the purple color wheel. I mean, what says fall more than purple? Okay, maybe orange…which was my other option…but the purple was unexpected and felt fresh.

The summer set up:

current living room

Armed with a rough plan for subtle seasonal updating, I started by shopping my house for items I could move from other rooms, wanting to buy as little as possible to make it happen. I moved the mauve drapes from my spare room into the living room. I also brought in a textile I use in the spare bedroom onto the chair in order to bring more shades of purple into the space.


I stuck with gray and shades of cream as the background to the purple and brought in hints of gold to amp up the glamour factor. While subtle, I feel like the overall effect is a richer, fresher version of the room.


I did, however, buy something (as if I could resist). See those pretty little pillows on my couch? I’m a sucker for suzani patterns, and when I saw this Waverly pattern called Solar Flair in Onyx and Lilac I was sold. Problem was, said fabric was on a bolt at Joann’s…and not on a pillow. But y’all know I’m a problem solver so I bought a yard with my snazzy 40% off coupon and made them instead. I even put in a hidden zipper (to the amazement of my husband…wait, why was he so amazed? I think this may have been an insult in disguise…). I’ll have a tutorial on that shortly. The fabric is currently on serious sale…a double bonus if you’re looking for something similar.


All in all, I’m pretty happy with the effect. I’m gearing up for bringing in Halloween decor shortly (I’m thinking about black and cream) and the subtle purple will work well with it and will transition nicely into the Thanksgiving holiday. Which is good, because I have enough decorating and crafts to keep me busy right now…at least until Christmas rolls around.


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