Category Archives: Decorating Dilemmas

Fabric Field Trip

Yesterday I went on a highly dreaded fabric field trip. Why would I torture myself in this way you might ask? When you’re fed up with your living room curtains/pillow combo, you resort to drastic measures.
I started at Hancock Fabrics because I had a coupon and knew they were having a blow-out sale. Then I ventured to a local fabric store called Discount Fabrics which was recommended by a friend and finished up at Pier 1.


Here’s a sampling of some fabrics I was drawn to. Now, if only I had a designer friend who could help me figure out my style and how to put this all together! It’s hard for me to envision the final product.

Anyone else have a case of the fabric blues? How did you figure out your design style? Who likes brainstorming, but hates shopping?

Living Room Refresher

I’ve been eyeballing our living room lately. Not like you would ogle at Ryan Gosling, but more like if someone has a tag sticking out of their shirt. This is the first room I tackled when I started this blog and I’m ready for a change! I love the soft gray walls + hardwood floors combo, so my focus will be accessorizing.
One of the first projects I tackled was making these curtains out of tablecloths. They were an awesome solution at the time, but I’d like to find some fabric that speaks to me and redo these babies. I’m thinking something like this…I’m leaning towards light and airy because I want these rooms to have a fresh vibe. We spend a lot of time in this main area reading, writing, and brainstorming about our businesses, so this needs to be a creative space!
Another easy, but impactful, change would be adding more pillows to the couch and chair. I really love these West Elm pillows I got for a steal at a house sale, but I’ve never found the perfect accent pillows to go with them.
The new curtains would extend to the dining room as well. I’d also like to add some ribbon around the lampshade I attached to our ceiling fan awhile back.
Thanks to my avid blog reader, Denise, I balanced out the pops of color on our frame wall – great tip! This wall makes me smile every time I look at it. Oh, and look who finally found a non-reflective camera angle – Oh Happy Day!

Just writing this post makes me want to sprint to the fabric store! Who else has a bee in their bonnet about a room in their home? Should I attempt pillow making for the first time (gasp)? Do you have a thing for paisley too?

Curtain image found here (they’re no longer on etsy.com).

Shutters, Doors and Paint Colors… Oh My!

I feel like our house has had a broken arm coming up on a year now. Last spring we had a doozy of a windstorm that demolished one of our front shutters. That is until this weekend when my sassing finally paid off and Ben replaced it…
The original plan was to hang the missing shutter, wash off the others on Saturday, and then paint them on Sunday. I ended up being paralyzed with fear about picking the wrong paint color in a hurry, so (to the horror of our neighbors) this mismatched look is what’s going on right now.
My initial thought was to paint the shutters a neutral color (like muddy brown or gray) and then paint the front door a fun pop of color. I like the muted yellow.
If we went red again, I would want something more like this fire engine red. I’m not sure if it would work with the muted red stones on our house though.
I’ve also been drawn to blues a lot in my Pinterest searching. I think it would be a nice complimentary color for the stone.
I’m also keeping in mind that it would be nice not to have to repaint when we put it on the market someday. I could go with more of a muted tone of a color I like such as this soft turquoise – love it! I think ultimately I’m going to have to paint the porch a neutral color as well so it doesn’t clash with my vision.

So what do y’all think? This could make or break our curb appeal (no pressure)!

Door images found here.

Dining Room Art Take 2

I must admit that Ben and I have been letting the sun go down on our anger (a.k.a. disagreeing on dining room art). This is what it looks like today after I recently purchased a print and used a frame I already had.
After living with this option for a few weeks, I’m not loving it. I emailed this pic to Ben asking him what he thought about hanging multiple white frames on that wall with B&W pics and mementos that mean things to us.
His response was that we would be putting a lot of holes in the wall and personalizing our home. I’ve taught my man well in recognizing the difference between staging and personalizing, but I’ve been pouting ever since.
I wonder what Mr. Holes in the Wall would think about this colorful plate art display? I heart it!
This might be a compromise to hang floating shelves with frames leaning on them and only a few hanging on the wall.
I’m always a sucker for a good tree mural. I love how the chair rail height shelf breaks it up while adding display space.

The root of our argument was really whether we should be personalizing our home (since we’ll be staying in Memphis for awhile) or keep it neutral to sell (since we want to end up in OK). Gotta love being married to a therapist!

So are you Team Monica or Team Ben (we’re considering making t-shirts)? Anyone else second guess an art decision? Which option is your favorite?

Images found here, here, and here.

Dining Room Art Take 2

I must admit that Ben and I have been letting the sun go down on our anger (a.k.a. disagreeing on dining room art). This is what it looks like today after I recently purchased a print and used a frame I already had.
After living with this option for a few weeks, I’m not loving it. I emailed this pic to Ben asking him what he thought about hanging multiple white frames on that wall with B&W pics and mementos that mean things to us.
His response was that we would be putting a lot of holes in the wall and personalizing our home. I’ve taught my man well in recognizing the difference between staging and personalizing, but I’ve been pouting ever since.
I wonder what Mr. Holes in the Wall would think about this colorful plate art display? I heart it!
This might be a compromise to hang floating shelves with frames leaning on them and only a few hanging on the wall.
I’m always a sucker for a good tree mural. I love how the chair rail height shelf breaks it up while adding display space.

The root of our argument was really whether we should be personalizing our home (since we’ll be staying in Memphis for awhile) or keep it neutral to sell (since we want to end up in OK). Gotta love being married to a therapist!

So are you Team Monica or Team Ben (we’re considering making t-shirts)? Anyone else second guess an art decision? Which option is your favorite?

Images found here, here, and here.

Our Walls Are a Canvas

I picked up a paint sample yesterday at Lowe’s (Olympic no-voc) of the color I thought I wanted to paint our master bedroom. This unleashed the pinned up artist in Ben and our bedroom walls became his canvas.
Apparently, it was on his bucket list to draw on walls with a paint brush so who was I to deny him of this dream?
He began with this impressive tree, sun and air duct turned cloud.
Then he moved on to the other side of the room creating a window and a beautiful flower with a special heart-felt message – so sweet!
This was my favorite! Ben found a branch in our backyard and had me hold it up while he sketched it. I’ve always wanted a tree wall mural (as I mentioned in this post) and I love how it turned out! I’m kind of sad that it’s only temporary.
Somehow I pried the paintbrush out of Ben’s hand to paint a square so that we could adequately access the color (Sherwin Williams Anew Gray SW7030).
Although the color is a bit darker than our living/dining room, it’s a very similar light gray. We decided that the master needs a bit richer, more beige color. That makes that $3 paint sample worth every penny! I’ve made the mistake of picking a paint color on impulse way too many times.
Cali has adapted to sleeping in another room even though occasionally she rebels and spends the night behind the bed in the old bedroom. We call it her happy place. With those puppy eyes, she pretty much does whatever she wants.

I’m hoping to successfully pick a paint color that we heart by this weekend. What are some of your favorite go-to neutral paint colors? Anyone else a firm believer in paint samples before taking the plunge?

New Guest Room Meanderings

Lately I feel like we’ve been playing musical chairs bedrooms. By the way, I think it’s super nice of Rihanna to write a song specifically for us and our new bed.
Since the California King Bed would only fit in the other bedroom and we ditched our Full size bed, our old bedroom has become the new guest bedroom. This is strange because now our old guest bedroom that I recently redid only has a twin bed. Confused yet? I know I am.
Here is our sad, abandoned new guest bedroom now. Don’t get me wrong, I am very excited to have a comfortable queen bed for our guests rather than a full. In fact, this weekend some of our good friends from The Shire New Hampshire are visiting. I’ve been scrambling around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to repurpose this room into a guest room and make it feel comfortable.
For instance, our friends probably don’t want to stare at that giant wedding pic of us while they’re sleeping. The laundry basket in the corner obviously has to go as well – nothing like airing your dirty laundry. I also need to temporarily relocate all my shoes and clothes hanging in that closet to another room so they can hang their stuff. Ahhh, the joys of having teeny tiny closets in old houses!

I’ve also been trying to come up with a bedding solution. Since we haven’t bought bedding for the new bed, we’ve been using the too small queen bedding from our old bed. Since budget-conscious Ben probably won’t be in favor of getting new bedding before Friday, I’ll have to play around with what we’ve got. Speaking of the new bedroom, here’s a sneak peak of a project in the works.
Anyone else out there like testing fate by picking curtains before bedding or a paint color? What can I say, I like to live life on the edge! What small touches do you add to your guest room to make your peeps feel at home?