Cheery Warm Dining Room and Pattern Play with “Art Deco Swans” by Kate Rhees

A lot of people groan when they think about moving, and while I plan to stay put for many years to come, I actually love the excitement and challenge of arranging a new space. I’ve had a lot of fun … Continue reading

Dining Chair Makeover – Sewing New Box Cushion Covers

We moved twice in the last two years, and in the process, I gave away a lot of things. I feel like the universe has decided to reward me by sending me two great finds. First, I found this vintage … Continue reading

Design Crush – Lucy Interiors

Oh wow, I am in love with the work of Lucy Penfield of Lucy Interior Design! She can execute a beautiful modern or bohemian room, but what I’m particularly smitten with is her ability to create space that has the perfect blend of classic and contemporary, casual and elegant, all full of whimsy and personality. This balance is what I am striving for in our home, and I am soaking up all the inspiration!

Here are my favorite elements of her designs:

  • A warm neutral base with walls, ceiling, and trim in a warm white, leaving lots of open space
  • Architectural details like beams and arches, and window seats
  • Black accents, such as hardware or black window and door frames
  • Natural mid-tone wood floors and other natural materials like rattan and bamboo
  • Bright jewel-tone accents in navy, teal, pinks, kelly green, yellow, and orange
  • Color is introduced through art, wallpaper, throw pillows, and patterned rugs
  • Vintage pieces from my favorite styles like mid-century modern and Hollywood glam
  • Fresh flowers and plants

This style is exemplified by her Highland Park Bungalow and Romantic Urban projects, as well as the Lake Cottage. I would happily move into any of these gorgeous spaces! Here are some of my favorite inspiration pics that capture that beautiful and unique blend of styles.

A simple classic foyer, with a fun patterned stair runner and brightly-colored accents
You know my passion for faux bamboo and blue. The green accents are inspiration!
The architectural details painted out in a warm white are making me swoon, all with just the right amount of pink and blue accents!
Here’s a close-up of that same dining room ❤
Lots of warm white, but the teal at the back of the cubbies, paired with the teal chair, with the touches of pink in the art and flowers… you can see why I am in love! Definitely office goals!
Speaking of teal, this accent wall with the white bamboo headboard are perfect!
I put a faux sheepskin on our piano bench, too – I am in good company!
Kitchen inspo – classic white cabinets with that stunning wallpaper lining the cabinets and the complementary tile!
More kitchen love – keeping the cabinets and island classic white, but the pink pantry door and the teal buffet, the natural chairs… swoon!
Cutest laundry room ever. I would love to have a laundry room. Is that weird?
I love these dark built-ins to ground all the color from the toys. Thinking of something like this for J’s room!

Isn’t this all fabulous?! I have always wondered if my blend of styles might be too scattered, but I love seeing how it is possible to bring together traditional and contemporary elements to create beautiful spaces. So inspired!

Julie AKA “Jewels”

Elegant Patio Chair Makeovers

I am so excited for our new patio space and have already enjoyed time out here eating lunch, reading, or catching up on some work. I started looking for some lounge chairs, but I couldn’t quite find what I wanted – or more accurately, what I wanted was way too $$$. But this story has an happy ending! I found these used chairs and made them over for $ to complete our patio space!

It’s no secret that I love anything with the look of cane or faux bamboo and also that I have a weakness for Craigslist finds! I spotted this set on Craigslist for $50, and when I showed up, the woman said I could have it for free. She also let me take the chairs without the table, so my karma of giving things away when we moved last year came back to me! I also picked up the chairs near my old neighborhood hardware store, so I stopped by to get some supplies and painting tips.

Here’s how to do it:

  • I started by cleaning off as much rust as possible. I used an old screwdriver, sandpaper, and steel wool
  • I prepped the chairs with deglosser and metal primer
  • I then finished them off with white gloss spray paint
  • The cushions were in decent condition, just faded, so I found these new slipcovers to freshen them up!

Here are some more pictures of our “new” chairs.

I feel they came pretty close to my inspiration pics, and all with the satisfaction with saving some money and a good DIY!

Everyone loves a good before and after pic:

I look forward to many more hours enjoyed out here with friends, family, or curled up with a good book!

Julie AKA “Jewels”

A Boy’s Room in Blue Full of DIY Treasures

Sometimes, milestones are measured in unusual ways. I know my kids are getting big, because it’s finally possible to take a picture of JJ’s room that is not a total disaster! We (I) were focused on finding a new house … Continue reading

DIY Posts for Hanging Patio String Lights

I have been in love with patio string lights for so long. Unfortunately, our last house didn’t really have a respectable outdoor entertaining space, but our rental house last year and our new house both have great patio spaces! I have been waiting to do this project creating posts to hang our lights, and I am so excited that we finally did it! It’s not hard (you do need some muscles!), and I am excited to share the how-to and our results!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • String lights: I love these solar-powered lights
  • String light hanging hardware kit
  • 8′ Wood posts – I used cedar landscaping lumber that I found at the hardware store. I found them easier to handle than fence posts
  • Planters – I used these square plastic planters I already had
  • cement mix – I used Quickcrete, which is fast-setting and very easy to use. I used 1.5 bags per planter, but your quantity will depend on the planter that you use
  • gravel
  • soil
  • plants
  • Tools: drill, screwdriver, wire cutters, spirit level
  • Optional: exterior paint

Here’s how to do it:

  • Attach the hanging hardware to the top of your posts
  • Place a post in the center of an empty planter
  • Pour in the concrete mix and add water according to the instructions
  • Use the spirit level to check your post is vertical
  • With the fast-setting Quickcrete, we didn’t have to use any extra supports for the post. We did check the level a few times as it set, but it pretty much held in place on its own
  • Repeat for the other posts
  • I painted my posts black to blend into our patio decor
  • Drill drainage holes in the planters just above the line of the concrete
  • Add gravel, soil, and plants
  • Install the patio lights according to the instructions with your hanging kit

Of course, we had a warm spell last week and it’s cooled off again, so we’ll have to wait a bit longer to hang out here!

Julie AKA “Jewels”

Favorite Fall Decorating Ideas

Between the start of school, two boys’ birthdays, and Halloween costumes, I’ll confess that many years I skip right over any fall decorating. This year, we are in the middle of moving, so I’m not sure how much decorating I’ll do.

But when I do decorate for fall, I’ve found you can create a lot of atmosphere with a few changes. I set the mood with some pumpkins and candles, creating something neutral yet festive.

Here are some of favorite pictures from years past. Projects seen in this post include

Here’s to crisp fall days!

Julie aka “Jewels”

Cozy Sweater Pillow Covers

I’ve channeling all the cozy winter feels for this holiday season (even if the California weather has other ideas!) To create a comfy atmosphere, my first project of the season was sewing these pillow covers from old sweaters. (More on … Continue reading

Valentine’s Day Pennant Banner

I’m not usually a big Valentine’s Day person, but then again, a holiday built around chocolate can’t be all bad! Anyway, a couple of weekends ago, I got the urge to make something – anything! – and I put together … Continue reading