Boy's Room Before and After

Hey there! Haven't been around these parts in foreverrrr. I don't even know what to say or how to act. A little like that friend you lost touch with and you finally arrange plans to hang out and you don't know if it'll pick up right where you left off, or if there will be a lot of awkward silences.

I'm thinking I'll only really post when I have projects to share. Most of the time people only see the end results and while those are always pretty and rewarding, it's the process and all the behind the scenes stuff that doesn't get too much action. 'Cause who wants to hear about back-ordered items and vendors sending the wrong sized light fixture three times? The before pictures give designers credibility and sometimes even we stand back and are all like, holy transformation. The long process was totally worth it.

So here we go, a young boy's room who went from a more traditional style, to bright, colorful and a little cool.

j-before

jack_before2

They live near the beach so we wanted the room to have a casual California vibe with hints of mid century style to reflect the rest of the home's decor.

The boy is a collector and loves displaying his belongings so we had these built-ins installed to show off his personal items.

Not surprisingly, he's a Star Wars fan so we added this wallpaper as a bit of a nod as well as creating some contrast and dimension.

Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.
Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.

Halfway through the project, clients decided to rip out the carpet and add new wood floors, which really freshened up the room.

This rug is even better in person. Playful stripe with chunky loops to add some texture.

Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.
Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.

Orange lamp adds some height and picks up the color in the rug, tying in with the custom orange desk.

Bed and nightstand are from West Elm.

Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.
Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.

We refinished the existing dresser in a two toned effect to keep the room feeling youthful and fun.

His one request was a mirror, so we gave him this canvas wrapped/leather strap round mirror to introduce a new shape into the room.

Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.
Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.
Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.
Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.

Desk chair from All Modern.

Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.
Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Designstiles.

   They already owned the surfboard and couldn't have asked for a better accessory to pull off our beachy look.

So, shall we keep in touch?

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Chairish

Hey! Remember me? I've got a post for you today. I can't believe it's been a month since I stopped by here. I also can't believe Felix is almost one. ONE! And my mind will really be blown when he's 30. But for now, it's one. A whole, entire year. Amazing. Feeling so many feels. I'm going off on a tangent though. The real reason I'm checking in is because Chairish asked me to participate on a white to bright chair challenge, we'll call it.

And if you don't know Chairish they're like an ebay meets craigslist minus all the junk and poorly photographed pieces. It's a space for design and furniture lovers to buy and sell cool furniture, accessories and art. Rejoice!

The goal was for bloggers to pick a favorite chair off a list provided by Chairish and create a styleboard around this chair. It's supposed to express color and steer away from an all neutral scheme.

I picked a danish teak lounge chair upholstered in a hot pink raspberry tweed fabric. How bold. The masculine lines keep it from feeling super feminine. I got a sense of energy off the color and think it'd make a really cool accent chair. A chair to lounge in, hence the name, to sit and read. But knowing me, it's say you're gonna read and end up on your phone.

While the rest of the items in this reading vignette are fairly neutral, I picked accessories to offset and contrast the statement chair, leaving the chair the star of the show.

The pink sea urchin art, complements the hot pink chair without being matchy.

The dark blue pillow adds contrast and brings in some pattern while not competing with the geometirc pattern on the nuetral rug.

The brass floor lamps warms up the bright chair.

It's all about the balance.

Chairish

art :: books :: lamp :: server :: pillow :: vase :: rug :: chair

Anyone who has a hot pink chair in their home is eff yoo en FUN in my book.

Be sure to check out Chairish and load up on awesome and be sure to check out more of their accent chairs HERE. Something for everyone.

Happy Wednesday!


Lovett Kitchen Reveal

We've been enjoying our renovated kitchen for over a month now, I believe. Almost two, actually. Now that it's done even TH is like, I can't believe we didn't do it sooner. And I'm like, I told you so. We hang out in it a lot now and as tweeted here, it's even become my new favorite workspace. I work while he cooks, it's a sweet situation.

When I looked at the before pictures, I was reminded of what 1954 looked like. Time stopped in our kitchen. But now it's part of the modern era and I feel way better about having people hang out in the space.

Brace your eyes for the befores.

Before

We opened up the feel by knocking down that back wall and creating a counter for stools. Removed were also the peninsula and the upper cabinet. Kitchen now feels so much wider and we now have more counter space.

We got rid of the oven to allow for extra counter space on this side of the kitchen and replaced that lower space with drawers for pots and pans.

And now for the afters, as shot by my photographer/friend, Sabra.

Kitchen_after

Sink big enough for Felix to bathe in.

Kitchen_styling

IMG_5245

TH loves cooking now more than ever and he loves that I included a spice drawer to the left of the stove there for him.

IMG_5234

IMG_5279

Stools are from Serena and Lily.

Kitchen_chalkboard

By extending the counters, we no longer had room for a table in the space. I didn't want to deal with having to replace or move windows so I decided to fill the area with a built-in bookcase for Felix's toys and dogs bowls. And since this sort of creates a little play space for Felix, I went with chalkboard paint for the back of the counter cabinet doors. Chalkboard paint has been way done but felt it was really appropriate for this space.

IMG_5331

You might remember from this post about the pineapple wallpaper. TH was just not going to go for it and the more I thought about it, the more I realized maybe he was right about me potentially getting tired of it. I still think it's super cute but it also wasn't right for this space. I wanted something really clean and open.

The second I sent him this butterfly art though, he said yes! I feel it balances all the white and ties in with my ebay-found rug.

Also from that post was the pendant debate. Although I didn't go with any of the options, I decided to go with a different glass one to tie in the glass cabinet doors on either side of the sink. Love the way the brass pics up the brass from the fixture over the sink.

 Ta-da. Dinner at our place.

Happy Thursday!


Tio's: update

Remember when I mentioned working on this project? Well it's so close to opening I can practically taste the tacos.

I've been sharing updates periodically on twitter (#tioseastvale) but when it came to the blog, I just bailed on you guys. I made note of it and never opened up the discussion again.

I like instant gratification and am a huge fan of straight forward before and afters. Some people, I realize, prefer to be taken through the journey and like knowing the thought process of the project. I'm more like, just show me the pretty pictures.

Today I'm extra terrible because I don't exactly have pretty pictures for you. Just a bunch of iphone pictures depicting how far it's come. It's always a little bittersweet. At first you're excited and you think you can't wait until it's finished, you see the progress and before you know it, it's complete. And it makes you a little sad because you get attached.

But good thing it's family cause I could stop in anytime.

One the left here you see the space was an office of some sort, and to the right it was a Hawaiian fast food joint. The shared wall was opened up to create one space. The left is now the casual dining area and the right is still the ordering area, modified to Tio's specifications.

Tios_before

Then it was this big construction zone.

construction

And day by day things progressed. I just noticed the before place also had a half-painted wall. Appropriately enough, ours is Sherwin Williams Jalapeño.

half_paintedwall

nichewall

and progressed.

lighting

The ladies bathroom

bathroom

art was hung.

art

And now it's almost open!

art_installation

Imagine if all projects moved along as fast as my narration.

Hopefully I won't disappoint in sharing professional photos.

Happy Thursday!


Lovett Kitchen Update

We're on week two of our kitchen renovation and we're three days behind schedule. Gah. I don't mind eating Sharky's for dinner most nights but washing dishes in the tub got old quick. We try to keep the dirty dishes down to a minimum but somehow they keep finding their way in there. Total firstworldproblems, right? I mean, some people don't even have tubs. Joke.

I'm seeing the big picture though and can pretty much visualize it all in my head but TH still needs some cajoling, specifically toward the pineapple wallpaper I love. But they're pineapples, I say. And he looks at me like, that's why. I guess it's the equivalent of him showing me baseball cards.

Even though cabinets aren't yet painted and it's still dusty everywhere, I think it's coming along. My idea was to share before pictures and maybe some during pictures but by the time I get to sit down at night and write a blog post, the only thing I want to do is watch Housewives. And Ladies of London (!!!), which is basically just Housewives of London with etiquette. But that's a whole other blog post. That someone else needs to write.

So picture this, black trim windows. White cabinetry. White subway tile backsplash. Brass sconce over farm sink with polished nickel faucet. Mixing metals is still a thing. Quartzite countertops, maybe wallpaper. And black hardware to contrast the white cabinetry and coordinate with the black trim windows. I want to keep it simple and fresh because it's a small space but other times I feel like I'm mixing too much. And I'm not talking about my alcohol this time.

 I'm stuck on which pendants to purchase to hang over counter where stools will go. Oh jeez, which reminds me, I need to find stools too.

Focus. Here's a quick visual.

 .  Lovett_Kitchen2

Which pendant?

Lovett_kitchenlighting

TH likes two but I'm not sold. I like four but think it might be too industrial. Then I for sure thought one but thought it'd be white overload with the cabinetry.  I like the shape of three but the half exposed bulb of one and four. And I love the brass accents of each, tying in with the brass sconce. They're also a great price.

Every time I think I know the one, I change my mind. I could just buy one of each to test and return the rest?

#designerproblems

 They're all from restoration hardware and they have the best customer service.

Happy Thursday.

PS - There's a little designer insights interview I was featured on. So if you have time to read what I said about TH, check it here!


Anatomy of a Picnic Guide

Sweet, it's picnic season and this summer a picnic gathering is definitely on the list. Whether for an outdoor concert, or at a lake, or a  park, I've grown to think they're pretty fun, actually. Thank the cheese. But really the wine.

And since TH has been cooking up a storm and his current style is casual, simple summer, I think he'd pack a darn good meal. So he's for sure invited. You can check out his food blog here.

That leaves me to gathering the picnic basics. So when Red Envelope contacted me to participate in their Anatomy of A Picnic Guide, I thought it was the ideal fit to show my picnic style. I mean, stile.

Anatomy of a picnic

1. // 2. // 3. //  4. // 5.  // 6. //  7. //  8.

In lieu of a traditional picnic basket, I chose a woven tote which can be used for the pool or beach. Plus, it's on sale.

I wanted to add some color and pattern so pink cocktail napkins and coordinating disposable cups show the cute side of my stile.

For color contrast, I went for yellow plates to coordinate with the wooden forks. Also disposable.

For an evening picnic, an insect repellent candle will keep you from having to share your food with bugs and add some glow if you're on a romantic one. Don't forget the matches to light it up.

Tying it all together is the beautiful honeycomb throw, a great backdrop for all the delicious food.

Happy Thursday!


Splurge vs Save

Our kitchen remodel starts on Monday. I've never been more excited to see something get torn down.

As much as you try to save where you can, there just isn't any escaping how pricey kitchens are to renovate. Labor, materials and appliances, it adds up and it adds up fast. Which is why we've waited so long to take the plunge.

And like I mentioned before, this isn't our forever home so we are trying to make some budget-conscience decisions because we're financially responsible like that.

So as much as TH fell for the Aga stove, it would be a stupid decision to put something that pricey into a home we would eventually move from. Doubtful any home buyer would appreciate its beauty as much as TH.

As part of the Splurge vs. Save campaign Credit Card Insider asked me to be a part of, I thought I'd share another kitchen item we're saving on.

I love the look of farmer/apron sinks but those too can get pricey. So I came across one that looks like a long lost twin that married rich. It's three times as much. You'd think it'd wash the dishes for you. And we already have an actual dishwasher, so save it is.

Farm_sink

splurge // save

Um, I'll take three saves please.

Happy savings!


DIY with Glidden Paint

Dip dyed anything is still going strong and decided I'd join the party and try it myself.

Today I'm sharing a super easy DIY brought to you by Glidden® paint.

Glidden_paintvase

By partially painting, it's a great way to give an existing vase or vessel an extra layer of depth and more interest. I wanted to go bold and went with Glidden paint - onyx black, a perfect contrast against the antique brass color of the vase.

Glidden_paint _edited-1

things you need: any existing vase or vessel, Glidden paint, pencil, paint brush, ruler, tape.

Step one: with pencil and ruler, mark how high you'd like your paint line to go. Make mark with pencil and repeat all around.

Glidden_paint2

Step two: use tape to connect each pencil mark.

Step three: with paint brush, paint entire portion below the tape line.

Step four: wait at least an hour to dry before applying another coat of Glidden paint.

Step five: peel tape and fill with pretty flowers.

Glidden_vase

I'm not much of a DIY-er but Glidden paint made it super easy to take some inspiration and create something on trend, a quick dramatic difference for something I already had.

Plus, with their simplified palette, I wasn't overwhelmed by the plethora of color options which made my decision less time consuming.

disclosure: this post was sponsored by Glidden paint through their partnership with POPSUGAR select.

While I was compensated to write a post about Glidden paint, all opinions are my own.

Happy Monday!


Swim Date

The other day we had an impromptu day in a little kiddy pool with Felix after going to Target and buying a swim diaper and bucket hat I couldn't resist.

Sometimes clothes and hats are just so-so then you see them on your kid and you go nuts with the pictures. And you swear your kid is just the cutest. Ever.

Parenthood. I get it now.

Felix just recently started to really get a kick out of water and bath time and we're looking into swim lessons. It's great to get him prepared because the furthest I came to swimming was laying out. So maybe I'll just be on the sidelines cheering him on taking video and pictures, shedding a few proud tears. Thinking, he's obviously going to the Olympics one day.

Until he's signed up though, a few more swim dates in the kiddy pool will do.

mom_and_son

mom : swimsuit  //  hat  // sunglasses   //  towel  // sandals

son: hat  // towel  // sandals  // radio  // swim diaper

Happy Thursday!


Lovett Kitchen Reno

We're getting close to a kitchen renovation. Haaaallelujah. Hallelujah. Hallelujah. I've been patiently waiting for this since we moved in.

I'm not trying to do anything groundbreaking here. I just want some classic updates that will make the kitchen feel brighter and less dated. Less sad, basically. We lack serious counter space, so they'll be some tweaks with the layout that will hopefully not be too costly. This isn't our forever house so we don't want to install too many high-end materials but just want something fresh and new.

And with the amount of cooking TH does, this is sure to be a great investment.

Here are some kitchens I'm inspired by.

. counter

I love the look of an open floor plan. I was thinking of partially knocking down the wall that adjoins the dining room to allow for that open, brighter feel.

bookshelf

I like the idea of a shelf designated just for cookbooks.

microwaveoverstove

I thought the painted glass cabinet trim was a creative way to add just a small amount of color and depth.

butcherblock

butcher block countertops add durability and organic feel.

Screen shot 2014-06-03 at 12.28.00 PM

subway tile is a bit of a no-brainer. I'm leaning towards dark grout to coordinate with our existing slate floor tile.

And just because I'm hoping to get the ball rolling on this, I've already rounded up some items.

Kitchen_renovation _edited-2

light fixture // subway tile // faucet // sink  // hardware // butcher block // runner

I'm ready to demo!