So You Think You Can Decorate - Week 1 Challenge - Accessories~

Welcome to Week 1 of So You Think You Can Decorate! I'm so excited to be a part of this amazing competition!

This week's challenge is accessories. It's amazing what accessories can do for a room. Case in point, my little boy's room.

Because we are currently living in a rental home, we aren't able to paint. When I put my boys' beds in their room, it was just blah! Can you say, "BORING BEIGE"? I knew that accessories were going to play a major role in bringing some interest to the space.

But I needed inspiration. I have a collection of vintage sock monkeys that I inherited from my mother, and I knew that I wanted to use them in my little boys' room. So I chose a sock monkey as my inspiration accessory. I decided to use the colors found in the monkey as the color scheme for the room: chocolate brown, tan, and white with touches of red for an accent. In the photo below, you can see how I brought these colors into the room with the fabrics I used on the accent pillows.

Here's a pillow hint: King size pillows work well on twin size beds...They are the same width as the bed, so they are very substantial looking. (Compare the before picture above with the after pictures to get a real feel for what I mean.)

Then, in order to visually seperate the headboards from the wall (since both are essentially the same color) I decided to do two things.

First, I extended the curtain panels behind the headboards. I made the curtains using a tan and white ticking fabric that was both boyish and created visual texture. They were so simple to make. I had to sew two lengths of fabric together to create the width I wanted, but then, since I wasn't sewing a curtain rod pocket, all I did was hem the edges all the way around. And since I wasn't using them for light control, I didn't need to line them. Straight line sewing. Simple.

The second thing I did to create the visual separation was that I added a row of brown nailhead trim along the top of the headboard. This allowed me to create a sort of border between the headboards and the curtains behind, and to bring in more of the chocolate brown color.

And if you'd like to know how I made the headboards, I talk about it here.

In the photos below you can see that I chose to make the curtains stationary by suspending them from curtain rings and more brown nailheads. A circle motif is repeated in the rings, the nailhead trim on the headboard, and then in the accent pillows on the bed with a stitched circle pattern in the large brown pillow, and polkadots on the smaller budoir pillow.

I also added a personalized piece of art from one of my favorite online shops, Sarah and Abraham, above each of the boy's beds (the art features a silhouette with each boy's name). I made the art appear to be hanging from the curtain rings above by attaching a chocolate brown ribbon to the back and clipping it to the center ring above.

The dresser in the room is an heirloom piece that we inherited from the hubby's grandmother, so I wanted to take extra care how I accessorized it. I added another sock monkey, as well as a vintage shoe stay and a barn star tied to a lamp with red checked ribbon. I added an additional punch of red with the cute "giggle" sign, and finished off the grouping with a vintage-look world globe.

As I mentioned before, the room is shared by my two youngest boys (aka the toddler demolition team). I decided to accessorize each of the beds in the same way to create a sense of symmetry and add to the visual appeal of the space. But to add individuality, each of the beds has a monogram, and of course, the art above each bed is personalized as I mentioned previously.

Now here's a little bit of information that you probably won't care about at all, but which I think is very clever. Mr. Three's bed originally belonged to my oldest son. Now, the monograms (which are made from white felt) on the bed are attached with fabritac which is not nearly as easy to remove as hot glue. So, you may ask, how did I change the monogram? Luckily Mr. One's monogram is BHE and Mr. Three's is BHL...so I very carefully cut off the two horizontal lines at the top of the "E" to create an "L". Pretty quick thinkin' huh?

Overall, a great start to this room!! Can't wait to finish accessorizing the other three walls. ;-)

Shopping Resources:

Brown polka dot fabric on budoir pillow: Brown Dottie by Moda

Stripe fabric on accent pillow: Wanna be a Cowboy by Samantha Walker for Riley Blake

Brown circle and square accent pillow: Walmart

King Size pillow case: Better Homes and Gardens for Walmart

Osnaberg fabric on headboards: JoAnn's

Tan and white ticking fabric: Walmart (believe it or not, I scoured the internet to find this fabric to no avail, then happened upon it at my local Walmart for only $4/yd. Serendipitous, no?)
Personalized Silhouette prints: Sarah and Abraham

Hope you enjoyed this little project as much as I did. If you liked it, I would love to have your vote over at So You Think You Can Decorate!

Have a great day~


Serenity Now (and a couple of other important things)~

I've been having a bit of a stressful week. Actually that may be a bit of an understatement. I've been under so much stress that I gave myself the worst migraine I've had in ten years. Luckily, the hubby took the kids for the afternoon and I slept....for five hours....in the middle of the day....that NEVER happens.

So, I guess my point is, I need to relax. chill. veg out.

My decorating style isn't what one might call modern. I tend more toward cottage or traditional. But when I saw this beautiful modern home by Michael and Alexandra Misczynski in Veranda, it spoke to me. And you know what it said? Calm down. Isn't it serene? Lovely.

The tonal color palette.

The minimal accessories.

Very zen.

And uncomplicated.

Aaahhh. Serenity Now. (I miss Seinfeld, don't you?)

The winner of the Faded Prairie drawing is Brittany from The Dalomba Days. Congratulations Brittany!! Drop me an email and I'll get you set up with your lovely prize!!

Don't forget TOMORROW is the Frugal Friday Linky Party....MckLinky goes up at 12:00 MST for all you night owls. Get your Frugal OCD (Obsessively Consumed with Decorating) posts ready and come join the fun!

Oh, and just as important....So You Think You Can Decorate (SYTYCD) begins Sunday. I've been working really hard on this week's challenge...and I can't wait to share it with you!! But it has to remain a secret for now. I promise that after it appears on SYTYCD, I'll post it here in greater depth, so you can know everything there is to know about it. ;-) Please pop over and check out "reality blogivision" at its finest, and vote to save your favorite designer. (And if that vote should be for me, I won't argue!)

Have a great day!!


Splish. Splosh. Dirty-Dirt Squash~

Like my title? The kiddos used to have a Leap Frog toy that sang this mildly annoying song about washing vehicles..."Splish. Splosh. Dirty-Dirt Squash"...notice I said they "used" to have the toy. Interestingly enough, I don't know where it disappeared to ;-)

But I digress. I was reading my mother's copy of Family Circle the other day when I happened across this cute idea. It's one for the files...

A vintage metal wash stand that has been retrofitted to hold two galvanized basins as sinks. Clever. Clever. Now maybe someday when I have a real laundry room again, I can use this idea.

In other news:

I have my high school reunion coming up this year. I have 20 pounds to lose... yes 2-0. Sigh. That's what having 4 kids in 7 years will do to you. Actually, I was able to lose all that baby weight after each of the first three...it's just been this last time...and Mr. Three is almost 3 years old. Needless to say, something must be done. So, my dear readers, I hope you'll indulge me, as I check in with you now and then, and let you know how I am progressing. I need someone (or, in this case, many someones) to be accountable to besides myself. I start on my points system today! Wish me luck!!

And finally, don't forget the FRUGAL FRIDAY LINKY PARTY!! Can't wait to see all the Frugal OCD (Obsessively Consumed with Decorating) goodness you come up with this time!

Have a great day~


Monkey See, Monkey Do~

So I guess I'm calling myself a monkey in this scenario...

But I have seen this fun little website popping up on many of my favorite blogs, so I thought I'd give it a go...

Hop over here

...and you can ask me all of those burning questions that have been on your mind as you read my blog.

Oh, you don't have any burning questions? Well, come over anyway. Maybe you can ask me what I ate for breakfast. ;-)

And Now for a little Blog Housekeeping...

Don't forget the return of THE FRUGAL FRIDAY LINKY PARTY is this Friday! Get your posts ready. I'm so excited to see all your frugal creativity!!

And if you didn't get a chance to enter the FAB giveaway from Faded Prairie, scroll down to the next post. You have until tonight 11:59 MST.

Have a great day~


Design Consultation for Danna~

A few weeks back Shabby Nest reader Danna sent me this email...

Hello! I am one of your blog readers! You are so talented and every time I see photos of your work I fall in LOVE! :) We are expecting our second baby! It's a girl!!! I'm due in about 6 weeks and I'm way behind on her room and wondering if you could help me. I need inspiration! I'm sort of stuck and having a hard time with the "vision". Our house is around 100 years old. It's a great home full of character. All original wood work and wood floors. I love all things old and eclectic. I would say my "style" is farm house/shabby chic.

I just love designing children's rooms and nurseries in particular, because I can let myself imagine!! And I was particularly excited to help Danna because she already has a great start.

Here is the bedding Danna has chosen for the nursery...Delilah by Cocalo Couture. It's absolutely fabulous!!

I just love the fact that it's not "traditional girly". No pink here folks. Don't get me wrong...I love pink for a baby girl's room...but I love a mom who isn't afraid of brown and blue in a baby girl's room!

Danna also has a gorgeous cherry crib and changing table, red accents and warm gold walls.

photo from Danna

photo from Danna

So let's get to it.

Danna needs help finding a lamp, a chandelier and a rug. She also wants a little bit of advice on what to do with some of her existing accessories.

I asked Danna if she wanted to go for the blue or downplay it...and Danna said to embrace it!! Awesome....

So here are two great ideas for rugs...

First, the Tempo Rug by Home Decorators ($199 for a 4x6)

This rug plays off of the damask/geometric feeling of the bedding with a bold oversized motif.

If Danna wants something a little more understated, the Grimsby Rug by Home Decorators($199 for a 4x6) does the same thing, in the same color story, but on a smaller scale.

Now since Danna has already chosen the bird mobile for above the bed, she'd like to play up that theme a little bit. So I ran with that. You all know how I love birds. ;-)

First up, the branch lamp base from Pottery Barn Kids. (Currently on sale for $39.99)

I would pair this base with a plane white barrel shade (easy to find at your local Tar-jay).

Next up, three chandelier choices...

I included this first choice because Danna mentioned that she liked a Shabby Chic aesthetic. This is a mini chandelier (29.99) so it is quite small, but the cream color would play nicely off the lamp base, and would contrast with the darker walls and bedding.

Second choice chrome and crystal (86.99). This choice is over-the-top bling. I love it. I think it would really create a girly statement of its own among the rest of the color choices going in the room.

Finally, to go along with the bird theme...this iron and crystal chandelier that reminds me of branches or twigs. (133.99). It would still add the bling, but in a more understated way, and the darker iron would blend with the brown in the bedding.

For a little bit of whimsy, I suggest these wonderful re-usable fabric wall decals from Mae. This set called Twitter for Girls (44.95) adds to the bird theme and would be perfect art above a crib or changing table.

Now for some of the accessories Danna already has that she asked about...

Danna wanted to get a birdcage to go along with the bird theme. I say definitely....and for a soft glow, fill it with twinkle lights...a perfect light to snuggle a tired baby in the middle of the night.

Danna found this oversize frame and painted it red, but isn't sure what to do with it...

photo by Danna

I would suggest running a single wire from side to side across the frame and then hanging the baby's christening gown (or a vintage gown of Danna's or Grandma's) on a pretty hanger from the wire.

Danna also had these two red shelves she wasn't sure if she should use.

I say, "use them!" I would hang both shelves near (not over) the changing table and use them for storage. On the longer shelf, find a pretty basket or other container to hold a few spare diapers or other changing needs.

For the "doorknob" shelf, borrow this fabulous idea from Martha and make an embroidery hoop hamper out of a pretty pillowcase to hang on the doorknob, and to catch all the inevitable baby laundry. (I had one of these for the Princess and adored it!!)

Well, Danna, I sure hope these ideas help!! Please send photos when your nursery is all done!

And now, my dear readers, an announcement...

Beginning next Friday, I'll be bringing back my Frugal Friday Linky Party! I'd love to turn this into a weekly event. What do you all think? Yes or no? Please weigh-in on your thoughts in the comments section!! THANKS!

Have a great weekend!



Yes, this blog is primarily a home design blog...but every once in a while I have to get my craft on, and then I have to share my creations with you!! When I saw this fabulous project in the February issue of Martha Stewart Living, I knew I was going to have to try my hand at it.

Photo from Martha Stewart Living

Now, I personally adore the size and sparkle-overload of the brooches, as well as the pale pink ribbon (yum!), that MS Living used for their version of the necklace, but I aim to use what I have - or can get my hands on for free at my mom's house - so for my version I used buttons. Yep, buttons...sparkly, rhinestone-covered buttons. And grey ribbon...because I'm a grey girl.

So, here is my interpretation.

And since no one can give a tutorial like Martha...here's the link.

Edited to add: I've had questions about how to attach the jump rings to the buttons...Martha explains it in her tutorial, but they have to have openwork around the edges. You can't tell that well in this photo, but each of the buttons has open areas around the edge that I could thread the jump rings through. ;-)

Have a great day~


Art on the Cheap (again)~

Look at these fabulous prints I just added to our main bathroom!

Where did I get them, you ask? At my local fabric store. (JoAnn's to be exact.)

Yes, these lovely pieces of art are actually pieces of fabric. I have to tell you all a little secret...I have a little bit of a fabric infatuation. I have been scouring fabric stores lately...our new home is in dire need of pillows, curtains, etc. etc. And although on this particular trip I had no luck finding any fabric for the things I need, this lovely bird print caught my eye. I immediately thought that it would look good on my bathroom walls...yes I did...and I bought me half a yard. Now, because this is a quilting fabric...it is very lightweight...I personally wouldn't use it for a pillow or for curtains. But it was perfect for framing...and it was on sale. For half a yard I only paid $3.50 or so.

I had the 11x14 frames already. (Here's a hint...when you find yourself at W*lmart, always check their cheap $5 frames...a lot of them look really cheap, but occasionally they have good looking frames. When they do, buy a few....then when you need a frame, you'll have one, and you won't break the bank. Just remember...be picky...only buy the frames that don't look like they cost $5...know what I mean?)

I just wrapped the fabric around the backing cardboard and taped it with blue painter's tape to the back (removes easily, leaves no residue). I popped the cardboard back in the frame and had me some pretty prints for less than $7 each including the frames!

Check out other Art on the Cheap ideas I blogged about here , here and here.

Have a great Wednesday~



The Princess is turning 7 in a couple of weeks. 7 years?!!?! When did that happen? She decided that a Barbie birthday party was in order, and I have been turning that over in my head. I thought it would be fun to go with a little more of a vintage flavor. We decided that a color scheme of hot pink, black and white would be perfect, and the current Barbie logo with it's vintage silhouette was just right!

I found a free download of the Barbie logo and printed a few out....then I simply cut some circles out of black and white dot scrapbook paper and layered the logo on top.

I also found some fabulous hot pink ribbon with black stitching down the center. I glued it on the cards in a vertical stripe down the center then simply glued the logo circle on top about 2/3 of the way down the page. I then added a bow above that and voila...custom invites on a dime!!

The party information is printed inside the card in hot pink and black of course! I have one excited soon-to-be-7-year-old on my hands, I tell ya!

Coming up this week...
  • Inexpensive Art

  • A Martha-Inspired Project

  • A Nursery Design Consultation

Linking to DIY day at ASPTL

Have a great day~

Exciting News~

Good Monday Morning to you!! And Happy President's Day!!

Today I have some fun news to share with you! I am involved in a couple of new ventures that have me excited.

First up, I am now a guest columnist at BlackdressRedwagon.com.

This is the online version of the magazine Little Black Dress/ Little Red Wagon. It's a local magazine in Georgia that celebrates women and mothers. I'm so excited to be a part of it!

And next, you may have noticed this button on my sidebar...

Well, I have been invited along with 9 other design blogs to participate in this exciting event hosted by Alchemy Junk. They're calling it "Reality Blogivision". Over 10 weeks there will be 10 different decorating challenges presented, and each week, you, the readers, will have the opportunity to vote and save your favorite designers from elimination!!

I'm really excited ( a little nervous) and proud to be part of "Season 1" of this genius idea!
And I'm in good company. Here's a list of the other participants...

The competition should be stiff! I hope you all will join me over at SYTYCD weekly beginning February 28th. And if you want to vote for me too, I won't complain. ;-)

Have a great day~


Last Minute Valentine's Project~

With everything going on this week, I just realized that TOMORROW is Valentine's Day and I have yet to post my one and only Valentine's project I did this year. (Like I said, a lot going on right now.)

A couple of weeks back, I saw this darling PB Kids Valentine's pocket on this fabulous blog.

Photo from Blonde Design Blog

I decided that would be my Valentine's project for this year. But when I sat down to sew them up I discovered that my sewing machine needle was broken...and get this...I didn't have a spare. Nope. Nada. Sigh. What's a crafty mom in a time crunch to do? Enter big blue. My glue gun, that is.

I just hot glued them together. They didn't have any of the decorative stitching I had planned on, but they turned out cute just the same. And they literally took me 10 minutes each...including all the prep work. So even though I'm posting them the day before Valentine's day, you can still finish them in time. Really.

What do I plan to do with these? Well, I plan on having the family write love notes to one another and we'll stuff them in the envelope, and then read them at dinner on Valentine's day.

My sister and her family are here from California, so I made an one for them as well.

I sense the start of a nice Valentine's day tradition.

Happy Valentine's Day~


21 things your house needs (part 2)~

So how did you all fare with the first 11 things that Traditional Home says you NEED in your house? I'm doing okay....not everything, but a good percentage.

Without further ado (is that how you spell it?) here are the remaining 10 items...

12. a hang out bed...
Hmmm....my bed isn't necessarily as pretty as I'd like it to be - although if you read this post you know it's going to get there...but my king size bed sure is comfy.

13. mirror mirror....
Oh yeah!! My house is filled with mirrors. Love them for bouncing light around.

14. a french connection...
I love all things French. Love toile. Vintage French images on pillows. Etc.

15. a place to put your feet up...
I like what they say in the Ballard's catalog about this, "If the slipper chair is the little black dress of home furnishings, then the ottoman would be the perfect pair of pumps." I agree.
There is an ottoman in front of this leather chair...I promise.

16. a truly comfortable sofa...
Our living room sofa is a slipcovered EKTORP from Ikea. It's surprisingly comfortable...although I don't know if I'd say "truly comfortable." But I love the slipcovers...I have this white one, and a tan one too...nice to change them out. (ignore the wrinkles please.)

17. a pillow wardrobe....
Um, have you been to my Etsy? This is definitely NOT a problem in my house. Lots of pillows...maybe too many. Can anyone actually ever have too many pillows?

18. eye-catching accessories...
I try, oh yes I do. I have a small infatuation with birds. But I make sure that my bird accessories aren't overkill. Don't want people walking in and thinking they're at the local aviary. (Don't make the mistake of letting your "themes" become overwhelming. When I was in college I liked cows...I know, I know, it was just a phase, I promise...pretty soon everyone I knew was giving me cow stuff...I was sick of it looooong before people finally caught on and quit gifting me with black and white cow print everything.)

19. patterns that make a statement...
I am infatuated with trellis patterns right now. Graphic. Pretty.

20. a touch of modern...
Not a lot in the way of modern furnishings going on in my house, but my art? That's tres moderne...in a good way.
I realize that for many people modern art can be an acuired taste, but I like to mix it with traditional pieces and photography. It gives my house a sense of sophistication without being overwhelming.

And last but not least...

21. a well-adjusted dining table...
I love my dining table. It's from PB and it has two leaves, so that we can seat a few or a lot! With 4 kiddos we have to keep one in at all times...but I love the fact that we have the option!

I had a lot of fun with this! Hope you did too!!

Have a great day~