A Kitchen Problem {Not Quite Solved}

So I wrote MONTHS (ugh, how does time fly) ago about our dishwasher debacle and how stressful just switching appliances had been. We did, eventually, get our brand new LG dishwasher in and I wanted to make sure to give … Continue reading

Flea Market Finds with Matthew Mead {Book Review}

Hey all,

Now that the summer is winding down, I’m trying to quickly tackle all of my design books before I return to the daily grind of teaching. This week’s read was Flea Market Finds with Matthew Mead. He’s written several holiday decor themed books, but Flea Market Finds presents more as a bookazine than an actual decor book. It contains work completed by Matthew himself, but also his designer friends. Though there are not many fleshed out DIY projects within the pages, there is plenty of eye candy to fawn over.

 

The cover even pulls you in. Look at that milk glass and the greens/blues. Aren't you already in love?

The cover even pulls you in. Look at that milk glass and the greens/blues. Aren’t you already in love?

Each tip is given as a vignette, explaining different ideas and color schemes that work well in rooms. Each section has a main theme (like Mid-Century Matthew) and includes some description of what you’re looking at in the pictures. He also includes tips for how to place different pieces and collections to showcase their true beauty. Here are some of my favorites from the book:

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Okay, so brass and gold are slowly returning to my repertoire. I’ve always been leery of using it in different rooms, but this spread explains how to use gold leaf.

 

Shock of the century? I picked the page that is all green and blue. Plus, who can really say no to a vintage globe. That set of drawers was a thrifting find that was painted and updated!

Shock of the century? I picked the page that is all green and blue. Plus, who can really say no to a vintage globe. That set of drawers was a thrifting find that was painted and updated!

 

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Is that coral? WHY YES IT IS. See? It doesn’t have to be overtly beachy but can still have a relaxing vibe. I love the monochromatic tans and browns. But really, keeping that room clean seems nearly impossible. I do adore all the seaside finds though…

 

So, this book was great for a quick look through, a wetting of the palette you could say. It only gives you basic ideas for your own DIY. I would consider this more of an inspiration board type of book, rather than a how-to guide. I loved the ideas and the colors, but it wasn’t completely what I expected. However, if you need some inspiration or just want to oogle some lovely interior pictures, pick this sucker up!

 

XOXO,

Ashley

Bye Bye Builder’s Beige {Hello Dynamic Greys}

Hey all,

It’s happened. The living and dining rooms are no longer builder’s beige. And before you start laughing, I have to tell you: I am not kidding! Several posts ago, I wasn’t sure I could even complete this task. And let’s be real with each other for a second, I barely made it. With all the trim and special little nooks, it was so much more time consuming than I expected. Not only did it take way longer than expected, it also required way more paint than anticipated. Lowes became my second home, and embarassingly enough, it was the same paint department guy and cashier each of the (THREE) times I went. It would have been a lot easier if I went in for different paint each time, unfortunately that wasn’t the case. But anyway, let’s get to the nitty gritty of the project.

Samples, samples, samples. I pulled from one color chip but ended up avoiding the lightest of the pallet. It turned out a cool-blue white, not nearly as grey as I needed.

Samples, samples, samples. I pulled from one color chip but ended up avoiding the lightest of the pallet. It turned out a cool-blue white, not nearly as grey as I needed.

 

Supplies I used for the dining room:

One full roll of blue painter’s tape (not the delicate version, just traditional)

One “mini” or half sized roller

One 2 inch angled brush

One quart AND one Sample (half-pint) of Granite Dust by Valspar

One paint tray

Total Cost: about $30

 

Supplies I used for the living room: 

One full roll of blue painter’s tape (not the delicate version, just traditional)

One roller brush

One 2 inch angled brush

One gallon, one quart AND one sample (half-pint) of Notre Dame by Valspar

One paint tray liner

Total Cost: about $65

So at almost $100, this is a slightly more expensive project than I typically tackle. But let’s be honest, it was completely necessary. The builder’s beige was a neutral, but oh so boring. . Plus, once I got going, I realized how poorly the details of the job were done the first time! Lots of missed spots, dirty drywall, and plenty of inherited dings. So I decided to go two-toned, a darker shade in the dining room and lighter in the living room. The differences are definitely subtle, but at certain times during the day, the light really strikes the contrast and makes the colors quite dynamic. Ah, anyways, enough talking, more proof!

 

Here's a quick before. Poor thing, those walls just look so sad now.

Here’s a quick before. Poor thing, those walls just look so sad now.

 

And: the after. The contrast really brings out the bright white of the wainscoting.

And: the after. The contrast really brings out the bright white of the wainscoting.

 

Another dining room shot. I was worried about how the green/blue scheme would play with the gray. After a bit of nerves, I love the pop and differences between the neutral gray and the perky colors.

Another dining room shot. I was worried about how the green/blue scheme would play with the gray. After a bit of nerves, I love the pop and differences between the neutral gray and the perky colors.

 

The black and white frames really play well with the new wall color.

The black and white frames really play well with the new wall color.

 

So, what do you think? I’m so happy with it. I made Scott come in and ooh and ahhh just to make me feel better. I think my body has finally recovered from all the random twists and turns I’ve had to do to get all those hard-to-reach corners, though it may have needed a couple naps to feel better. Now, if only I could find a new tv stand with way more storage in a mid-century modern style…

XOXO,

Ashley

All Tied Up {Curtain Tie Backs}

Why hello there!

If you remember, many many weeks ago, I added our bedroom curtains to our living room. There they hung, a bit forgotten and incomplete. I realized during this project that I only ever had four panels, not the six I expected. So, assuming I would quickly head back to IKEA for another set, I left them alone until today. As I was cleaning and rearranging my office, I stumbled upon the pretty tie backs that the curtain packages included. We’ve never used them because the curtains have been closed for most of their time with us. I decided that using tie backs would make them a bit more polished and at least remind me to get my behind moving in buying the other pair.

Before: Just hanging around.

Before: Just hanging around.

After: Ahhhh, it's almost like the windows frame our gorgeous greenery outside. Definitely a perk of the neighborhood.

After: Ahhhh, it’s almost like the windows frame our gorgeous greenery outside. Definitely a perk of the neighborhood.

So this project cost about $8 for the hooks and mounting materials (found them all at Bed Bath and Beyond). Now I just need to get moving and pick up that last pair of curtains! I’ll let you know when this little, never ending project, is finally complete!

XOXO,

Ashley