Office Renovation Progress Part 1

Long, long ago, I shared my inspiration for where I want to take our home office, and these “Before” photos – Beige walls, shaggy cat pee reeking carpet, and a hodgepodge of bookshelves, mismatched desks, and printers sitting on blue totes containing our files. 

Remember that? I’m glad it’s a distant memory now. One Saturday morning I awoke to a clatter, and when I came to the living room I discovered all of our office stuff crammed into the living and dining rooms, and the carpet ripped out. It was a bitter sweet surprise. On the one hand, I was excited that Brian took initiative to tear into the project, and on the other, I knew we didn’t even have new flooring purchased, and I dreaded having to eat on the couch and navigate the stacks of books for months on end.

Thankfully, we made good time. Brian repainted the room while I was traveling to a lovely light blue.

And after a few more weeks, we found matching bamboo flooring and a friend willing to spend a day helping lay it. Thanks Paul!


Then we moved the hodgepodge back inside the now bright and happy space.

But first, we put in “built-in” bookshelves. It took a few trips to Ikea, but we used the Billy bookshelves with height extensions and two of the half glass doors, along with bookcase lights. 

Yes, there’s a big gap in the middle of the wall, and there’s a reason for that. We planned to build a Murphy bed, you know, those ones that fold up into a cabinet? One of those was supposed to go there – before Edison was born, so the office could double as another guest room. Yeah, he’s a year 
old, and that bed still isn’t built. But maybe by the time he’s having sleepovers, it will be ready. In the meantime, it’s the perfect spot for the play pen!
On the other side of the room, we added navy curtains (also from Ikea) and a double curtain rod, so we could hang sheers and still let in plenty of light. I also moved my desk so that I could look out the window when working. 
Up next: I’ll show you how we upgraded our desks, and found a better storage solution for my craft supplies than the pile in the corner.
 We’re still putting on the finishing touches, like getting a nice rug, desk chairs, and a cool chalkboard/bulletin board/calendar situation. It remains to be seen!
And arranging the bookshelves. There’s always more to be done on that front.
Here’s the inspiration photos from this post. After all this time, I’m still torn on which color scheme I like better! 
While it’s been a loooong, gradual process, it’s amazing how much progress you can make a little bit at a time. This room has come a long way from it’s humble cat pee beginnings! 

6 Elements for a Master Bathroom Sanctuary

This year, I started a new habit. When the Sunday night blues start to creep over me as the sun sets, and the anxieties about facing the next week of work begin to rise, I retreat to our hallway bathroom for a bubble bath, magazine and candles in tow. 
It works wonders for my mood, and I always feel relaxed and recharged to face the next week. But of all the rooms in our house, we’ve spent the least attention on the bathrooms so far. Probably because they’re adequate. They all work, and other than the master bath, were painted normal colors. 
Yes, it’s painted brown. Not a great color for a bathroom. 

And the idea of tackling a bathroom remodel is more than a little intimidating. In addition to the brown walls, which we repainted a light aqua, the shower floor is a good two feet lower than the bathroom floor. The configuration of the shelves in the walk-in closet create a lot of wasted space. The sink has an actual hole in it, and the countertop is a weird tile. That’s why the hallway bathroom is my bubble bath destination – even if this is supposed to be a shower/tub combo, it’s just too weird.
Brian’s idea is to not do anything until we can tear everything out and start over, which somehow (inexplicably to me) includes moving some of the bedroom walls. My idea is to start small – a new light fixture, perhaps. Then a new sink and countertop, followed by flooring, and a new shower/bath situation. 
But Brian and I do share the same dream of a sliding barn door separating the master bathroom and closet from the rest of the bedroom. And I’ve noticed a few other reoccurring themes in my dreams for the perfect bathroom: 

1. Glass Shower

So, on our honeymoon, we stayed at the fanciest hotel we’d ever been to in our entire lives, and it had a glass shower, AND a bathtub. Since then, that’s symbolized the height of luxury to me. In the bathroom above, Glass, the Lucite support for the sink, and white marble tile and walls make a very small bathroom feel spacious. 

2. A Variety of Textures and Contrast

First of all, I like the the pendant lights in the bathroom above. Secondly, the cowhide rug is a surprise touch on the floor. I’ve read that they are easy to maintain, and I’m guessing water resistant maybe?
Fluffy towels and a robe = must haves. I’ve noticed that many of the images that caught my attention use black and white tubs, black and white flooring, or a black ceiling, or even further down in this post, a black wall. I like that the black and white contrast feels a little retro and yet, modern. Plus, it’s minimalist and simple, and allows the gold accents or pretty marble to really shine. 
This bathroom is a very different style than the traditional, retro, and romantic bathrooms I’ve included here, but I like the addition of the rustic wood ladder, stool, and shelf. 

3. Clawfoot Tub

Words cannot express how much I love clawfoot tubs! It’s a dream of mine to stumble upon a perfectly good clawfoot tub on the curb or in a junk heap, somehow haul it home, and give it a new life. 
I also love the simple white subway tile, herringbone patterned wood floor, and gold accents.
Also, rugs in bathrooms – thumbs up or down? I seem to gravitate toward pictures with interesting rugs, but how practical are they really?

4. Two sinks

Several weeks ago, I spent some time with some girls, one of whom was shopping for a first home, and one of her “must haves” was two sinks in the bathroom, because she’d never lived in a house that had only one, and wouldn’t know how to function. I realized that I’ve never lived in a house with two! Although I do know how to share a sink, having two in the master bathroom would be ideal.

5. Chandelier

There’s the black wall I mentioned earlier – and again, a black and white tub and floor. 
I don’t know how and I don’t know where, but somehow I want to make a chandelier happen. And I approve of the the herringbone tile pattern too.

6. A beverage and view of the Eiffel Tower.

A girl can dream, right? 

Friday Finds: Treasured Vintage Bazaar

For several years after moving to Arizona, I thought only one decor style existed: Southwestern. The only acceptable color scheme was brown, beige, gold, terra cotta, orange, and maybe olive green if you’re really adventurous. Basically, most homes and places of business were brown, light brown, yellow-shiny brown, red brown, bright red brown, and green-brown. You did have the choice between going more South of the Border Southwestern, Native American Southwestern, Elegant Spanish Southwestern, or Full-on-Cowboy Mode Southwestern, but there your options ended.
Then, thanks to Instagram, I discovered an entire community of vintage lovers in the valley. They made and sold everything from art to jewelry to home decor in styles like Shabby Chic, Victorian, French Country, Retro Modern, Mid-century Modern, and Full-on-Hipster-From-Portland.
So it was with much anticipation that Edison and I went to check out the Treasured Vintage Baazar hosted by Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market and Scottsdale Bible Church
Unfortunately, soon after arriving, we encountered a problem. There was no possible way I could fit the stroller into the booths. I could only peruse the very edges of the displays, and even then, there were so many people, I felt like I was blocking traffic. After a few laps around the building, looking longingly at all the cool things I couldn’t reach, Edison got cranky. As the crowds grew, so did his displeasure. Outside, he was fine, but as soon as we went indoors, he started crying. So, Brian ended up coming and rescuing him. Of course, he fell asleep just before Brian arrived.
Amazing “junk” from Junk in the Trunk.

Globes, dream catchers, and other awesomeness from Savannah Ashley Art.

I really, really want one of these log coffee tables. And the orb light fixtures.
In addition to shops, they also had fresh flowers from The Florette, a farmer’s market, and food trucks. Plus, the proceeds from the ticket cost went to the school in Tanzania that Scottsdale Bible founded and supports. 

Here’s what I did buy: 

I’ve found a home for everything – the frame and key are part of the new gallery wall soon to be revealed, the vintage books are on display, the plant stand is in place by the fireplace, the bowl and heart are on the mantle. I’ve worn my baseball tee maybe a little more than is socially acceptable, and while Edison’s might be a little big on him still, I’m very excited for us to be sort of matching. 

I discovered so many great vendors that I’m looking forward to visiting again! The future over here is definitely not looking brown – more like white, mint, and chipped, and maybe a little rusty.