Interview for a UK Blog

I had the honor of being a featured designer on a UK blog.  Check out my interview with them here.


The company creates hand-crafted, custom furniture.  Check out their products as well! 


Home Goes on the Market Soon! Full Tour Here!

**UPDATE 4/2/14:  Home is sold.**

Surprise!  We are moving again!  More details to come on where we are heading.  I wanted to share a full tour of our home with you guys, with the exterior and all!  I rarely share exterior shots.  But, these are some of the photos that will be going on the MLS soon.  (Pardon the dead grass, being it’s still winter.)


Here are the basics.

· 3855 Sq Ft
· 4 Bedrooms
· 3.5 Baths
· Office
· Media Room (only room not completely decorated)
· Game Room
· 3 Car Garage (tandem)
· Wood flooring
· 1.74 Acres












Family Room









Kitchen/ Breakfast







Master Bedroom








Top of Stairs



Game Room




Guest Room


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Guest Room-74


Craft Room



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Hope you enjoyed the full tour.  We adore this home and will miss it greatly.  Help us find some awesome buyers by sharing this post on FB, through email, etc.   It should go live on the MLS in the next week or two.  Email for updates.


Merry Christmas!

We probably aren’t going to decorate our house this year.  The very day that we were going to get out our gigantic tree and all of the accessories, my husband hurt his shoulder while pulling back on his bow.  Unfortunately, everything is too heavy and stored too high for me to handle it by myself. 

So, instead, I thought I’d show you a few photos from our Phoenix home which I don’t believe have appeared on my blog ever!   And, probably for good reason – they aren’t the best photos.  But, I thought I’d share them anyway.

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The ceiling in that house was 20 feet high, which is the same with our current foyer.  So, we ended up with a 12 feet tree that we got off of Craigslist.  That thing is a monster to put together, but was a lot of fun to have.  We really liked having the greenery and sparkle in the corner. 

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These photos were actually taken pre-blog with my old camera and not many turned out very well.  So, please overlook the photo quality.  Believe it or not, these are some of the better ones. 

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Lots of silver and blue. 


We have similar colors in our home in Austin, but more navy/ dark blue than turquoise.  However, I don’t mind blending the two.  Last year, the day after Christmas, I got a few packages of simple ball ornaments at Hobby Lobby’s after Christmas sale.  I was looking forward to using them to fill in the tree even more and to create an ornament garland for the fireplace.  Similar to what you see here.

I also hope to make some DIY ornaments and a DIY ruffled tree skirt for next year.  I am probably going to follow Miss Mustard Seed’s tree skirt tutorial.

I’ve already been on Pinterest getting ideas for next year’s ornaments.   If you haven’t, I definitely suggest that you hop on Pinterest and check things out. 


Do you make any of your ornaments?  Have you made a tree skirt?   I’ve always just used a sheet or blanket. 

What are your Christmas hacks/ tips/ tricks?  

Do you go all out with décor?  We usually just put up one tree, then sprinkle a few things around the house, like some ornaments in a bowl, a glittered deer on a shelf, maybe some greenery on the mantel.  Nothing huge, but enough to be festive. 

Do the over-achievers make you feel like you can’t get your crap together ever?   Does decorating for holidays stress you out?   Or, is it fun, no matter how busy things get?  I’m definitely not a huge holiday decorator.  Things just seem so temporary for the amount of work.  I have to remind myself that it’s okay to have a simple Christmas and not overdo it or have things be magazine ready.  The Nester had a great post on this here.


Isn’t her family room simple but gorgeous?   Wouldn’t that almost intimidate you?  Only, I love how she humbly panned out with her camera and posted photos that showed what she didn’t want you to see in photos – how the house wasn’t perfect.  So refreshing! 

If you are in the mood for seeing how others are decorating this year, there are a couple of good blog hops out there in blog land:

Just a Girl’s Series on Christmas Home Tours


Christmas Blogger Stylin’ Home Tours


Both should keep you busy for hours!  There are some awesome homes out there.  Enjoy!!  And, Merry Christmas.

What are your favorite Christmas traditions?  What do you do to remember the reason for the season?  


Home Tour – Join Me!

Today I’m over at It’s Overflowing taking everyone on a tour of our home!  Join me there.  Here is a sneak peak…

Though we had just gotten our Phoenix home almost all decorated, which you can see towards the bottom of the Home Tour page on my blog, it was fun finding a new home in Texas and decorating it.


We’ve been in this home for a year and a half, but it’s really still a work in progress.   But, isn’t that always the case for those of us who love to decorate?   No room is ever done.  We have decorated just about every room now, except the media room and workout room.

Well, come on in and let’s take a tour of our Austin home.   When you walk in, the first thing you see is a little entry area next to the stairs.

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You’ll see that I love an eclectic room that includes some pops of color, texture, items that are old and new.  I love to add a vintage piece or two just to have a sense of history in the space.  I think I love an eclectic space because I love so many design styles!  Mixing it up lets me have a piece of several styles.

The dresser was a honey wood color before I painted it blue.  The antlers represent my husband’s love for hunting.  The succulent reminds us of Arizona.  And, the railroad crossing sign is authentic, full of bullet holes and all.  I figured it would add a touch of whimsy to the space.  What do we keep in these drawers?  Paint!  Lots and lots of samples.

From here, we’ll head to the right into the dining room.

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We continued the blue theme in here.  It’s the only room in the home with a saturated color on the wall.  We wanted to emphasize the coffered ceiling and chair rail details.  The table is a custom built table that a local artisan made.  We adore the table.  The chairs are IKEA lucite chairs.  The modern lines of the chairs juxtapose the rustic feel of the table.   The rug adds texture to an otherwise fairly smooth space.  The metal details on the table and the light fixture add industrial elements.

Now to the not-quite-finished part.  The frames that line the walls are currently place holders.  My goal is to take some photos of the local area and have them printed for the frames.  I haven’t yet found a great printer for a 12×12 size though.  But, first things first!  I need to take those photos.  So, that’s on the old to-do list.

From here, we’ll head into the kitchen.  You get a glimpse of it in the second photo above.

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For the rest, head over to It’s Overflowing!


Five Things

1.  Office art.  My husband needed something that “fit” him on the wall across from the giant blue dry erase board in his office, above two chairs.   We finally decided to tackle that.

I ordered these Tesla blueprints from an Etsy shop.   They came as electronic files which we printed at Wal-Mart.   They are perfect for my husband because he loves science, and the blueprints keep with the blue theme.


I put them in six black frames that we already had on hand and tada, a new wall of art.  If you can’t find a piece large enough, don’t forget to consider several smaller pieces places close enough together that they act as one (this is about as far apart as you want them).


2.  Stone wall.  We had this sloped drop off where our backyard grass ends and the rest of the “natural” yard begins.  Chris, my husband, never liked it so he had a guy with a bulldozer or something like that (I don’t know one tractor from another) come in and scoop the slope out to make it a drop off.  It’s about a three foot drop off.

We don’t want it to erode, so we needed to build a retaining wall.  On our evenings we are working on that a lot of the time.  Chris has graded the area, installed drainage and most recently, we’ve been in a rock gathering mode and back-filling-with-dirt mode.  Believe it or not, we’ve found most of these rocks in our own yard or adjacent lots just before they were throwing them out.

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It has been exhausting.  These photos are from about a week ago, so there has been more progress since.  We have the top rocks to put on which may need mortar unlike the rest of the stacked stone, just to make sure they are secure and steps to build!  See those gigantic rocks?  Well, we hope to be able to lift them and get them on the top ledge!

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3.  Client Kitchen.  A client and friend sent me these wonderful before and after photos of her kitchen makeover.  I thought I’d share the awesome results!

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The cabinets were painted, the island moved, wood flooring put down, a backsplash and new lighting added and the walls were painted.  Looks like a new kitchen!  See the after photos below.

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4.  Map.  Okay, the photos below suck.  That’s why I haven’t shared them.  It’s my half bath which is in a hallway with no windows.  So, between lighting and space, it’s tough to photograph.  But, we found a huge Texas map from a local courthouse on Craigslist for the wall!  The map is framed and is five feet by five feet!  We had to bring it home on top of my car!!

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It’s one of my favorite pieces in our home now.

5.  Chair.  I bought this chair on Craigslist.


I painted it and recovered the cushion.    I love it!

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And, yep, that’s the painted chair behind it.  It’s still alive and well.

There you have it, five quick things!


Family Room Changes

We have moved some things around and added a new piece!


Not sure if you remember, but I found a great campaign style dresser on Craigslist a few months ago and we placed it in the family room.   You can see it below on the right.  We had planned to add shelves over it.


However, I never really loved it in that spot.  My husband did, though, so I let it go.  Ever compromise like that?  We do all the time!

One day this past week, however, I decided to just ask him to help me move some things around to see what he thought.  He is the type of person who really just needs to see things.

We moved the campaign dresser to the laundry room.  He loved it there and it gave us more storage and a place to put keys and all.


We hung some old art (from the former craft room in our Phoenix home) and an organizer that we’ve had for a while above the chest of drawers.   It’s not a master piece, but we are dealing with what we had on hand.

This set up did sort of prevent us from hanging anything long on that rod.  So across the room, on the right, I put some coat hooks on the wall to replace that functionality.   In this room is also a dry erase calendar, a freezer and a few upper cabinets that you see a hint of above.

So, then, the space where the campaign dresser was felt a little blank.  What to do?  There are light switches on the right of that small wall, so that limits the width of anything.  The walkway must remain wide enough, so that limits the depth of anything.  And, the ceilings are 12 feet high so that means we need something tall.

Do you know how hard it is to find a piece that is about 7 feet tall, 30-36  inches wide, and 15-17 inches deep?  Well, let me tell you, hard!

I searched online and then visited 7 stores.  I finally found it!

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It was the exact measurements I needed – 7 feet tall by 32 wide by 16 deep.  Yay!!  And, we need something to hold plants and books.  This will work well.

Though the color was nice, it wasn’t the color we needed for the room.  So, we painted it.  I started with a coat of paint in the color that we have in the dining room.   Then, followed it up with dark wax which deepened the color and added a hint of green.  It ended up being a deep navy that looked very dark blue in some lights and like it had a slight gray tint in other lights (which I think these photos depict).


We also replaced the hardware with hardware that I found on ebay.

How does it work with the room as a whole?


And, here it is a little closer up with the plants inside.


Much better!  I’m loving this new addition to the family room.    Now I feel like we may need something to go under the sunburst and light switches on the right, though.  So, I’m keeping my eyes peeled for that just right item.


Client Project – Kitchen/ Living

A past client of mine is buying a new (new to them) home, set to close very soon.  They plan to renovate it.  She asked for my help with designing those renovations.  Here is a drawing of what we came up with.   She wanted the kitchen updated, timeless and with a bit of rustic charm.


The drawing was done in Photoshop since we didn’t need a 3d version in order to look at all angles.

What was the kitchen like before?  Check it out below.  Pretty builder grade and out dated.



That’s a big transformation awaiting them, huh?

Changes include:
- Painting the cabinets ivory.
- Installing a granite countertop on all but the island.
- Installing a custom made live edge wood countertop on the island.
- Extending the island countertop and adding legs to create a more custom look.
- Installing a kick plate on the island to insure that the feet of the kiddos don’t scuff the ivory paint job too much.
- Installing bronze industrial style pendant lights over the island.
- Installing a tumbled travertine subway tile for the backsplash.
- Installing stainless steel appliances.
- Getting rid of the yellow walls and painting them a medium greige, probably Copely Gray by Ben Moore.
- Installing dark stained cement flooring.  This gives a look of wood, but is much more cost effective.
- Adding cabinets over the fridge for a more finished look.
- Diy-ing blue cornice boards.
- Painting chairs blue – Boca Raton Blue by Ben Moore.

Here is the end drawing again, showing those changes.


Oh yeah, and she’s only getting three chairs at the table.  Just kidding.  I just didn’t want to cram the drawing too full of stuff.  I just needed to get the point across.

Well, after working on the kitchen, that meant I could not just leave the adjacent room alone, right?  Here is the before.


Below is our drawing for how we want to change it, again, so you don’t have to scroll up.

We’d add built in shelving next to the fireplace and add molding around he existing fireplace so that it all works together.  The backs of the shelves would be painted the same blue (Boca Raton Blue) that is in the kitchen area which is within eye site of this room.  This creates consistency.

The rug pictures is one that they already own.  So, is the sofa.

I threw this drawing (below) together just to give them an idea of how it could be transformed.


Note:  This is a high level look at a design for the space.  The furniture placement will not be how it’s shown above.  At all.  That was just to get the point across of how’d it look with some of the furnishings that she will be bringing to the house. It’s sort of like a storyboard.  We’ll deal with furniture placement later on.

The built-ins add character while the paint on the backing of the shelves brings a pop of color.  The dark cement floors mimic rustic wood tones for a touch of rustic.

The built in image that I used is from Just a Girl.  She used IKEA bookshelves to create a custom built-in effect.The shelves look crooked in the image above – they won’t be in real life.  Ha!

And, now to see the two future rooms side by side.  Check them out below.   First, let’s see it before.

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Now after.

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The changes really bring the house up to date, add character and bring in a timeless look that should last them many years and should they ever need to sell, it should make it easy.

Then, we get to check out accessories that would look great in the space such as this fabulous horse print at Home Decorators.  And, some antlers… and a sunburst and other elegant and rustic touches for an eclectic rustic elegant look.

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I’m looking forward to seeing these drawings come alive!


Meet Our Guest Room

I haven’t shared this room yet even though it was the first finished room in this house because it’s tough to photograph well.  But, here goes!  This is our guest room.

Guest Room-66

One day we may do somewhat of a gallery wall on that big blank wall.  I’m not quite sure yet.  In person it doesn’t feel so blank.  But, photos definitely read a little differently.

The room shares a jack-and-jill bathroom with the workout room, so essentially, guests have their own full bath when they visit.

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This room is mostly comprised of things we already had.  Don’t you love to shop your own house?  I sure do.  Anytime you need something, make sure you don’t already have it first!

Perhaps you recognize the cowhide (faux cowhide) rug.  it was previously in our master bedroom at our home in Phoenix.

The bed is the same from our last guest room.  The sunburst mirror and curtains are from the master as well and the pillows, night stand, and art are from the family room in our last home.

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The only new items are the HUGE television, dresser and bedding.

We got the television from our neighbors when they moved and the dresser came from a local etsy shop owner.   See a close up of the dresser below.  I love all of the drawers and gold hardware.

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Here are a few more angles of the room.

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Below is the view across from the bed.  The door on the right is to the bathroom.

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And, from the door of the room, here it is again.

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Do you have a guest room?  Does it get used often?  Does it feel worthwhile or have you given it up and used the space for something else?