A Bug in a Rug

By Thursday, October 23, 2014 7 No tags Permalink 0

It’s been a while since I’ve gotten to wax lyrical about a rug. Probably since we bought the one for the kitchen? Right? Yes. I bring this up because I recently did some poking around on Chairish, a site for buying and selling cool vintage wares, and found A RUG. It even fits with the pink streak I’ve been on lately, which is funny. Since this is clearly where my brain is going now, I thought I’d go ahead and build a room around it–mainly to practice for the inevitable moment when the hue creeps into our decor. (We have literally zero pink things right now.) Let’s take a gander!

retro breakfast nook

table  //  chairs  //  pendant  //  rug  //  credenza  //  planters  //  curtains  //  paint

>> Now THAT is a floor covering. Since it’s so bold, I knew I wanted to do a couple of things right off the bat: keep the furniture sleek and minimal, and focus on a simple color scheme. I also imagined it going into a little space, not just because the actual rug is only 42″, but because I think something like this works better on a smaller scale.

>> Okay, that furniture. I love all of it. The tulip table above is IKEA, but similar ones are easy to find in other sizes (if needed) if you google around. I like the look of white and wood together, so I nodded to all of the warm colors in the rug with the chairs and credenza. If you’re using something dramatic like I am, go ahead and use said thing as the launching pad for all of your other colors. It will make your life easier.

>> The rug is the star here, but I wanted one more pattern in the space for balance. The West Elm curtains relate to the blue chairs and the darker neutrals in the rug, which makes them blend a little more instead of being like, “HEY GUYS I’M THE CURTAINS.” It’s okay to have them call your name a little, but you don’t want them screaming in your face.

>> The snazzy light fixture and brass plant holders repeat the circular theme we get from the table and rug (which I know is an octagon, but it’s round enough). If you have eclectic taste like I do, a trick to make things feel cohesive is to repeat the same shape several times. Repeating colors works the same way, hence the blue and wood tones popping up a lot here.

If I’ve said it once I’ve said it 100 times: I hope midcentury modern is a trend that never dies. I know it will, and I’ll cry bitter tears on that dark day, but if I could be in charge of design in the universe MCM would never be uncool. Tapered legs 4eva. So how do you feel about working some pink into your house? Or tossing a bold rug onto the floor? Have you ever been caught off guard by something unexpectedly appealing to you? (Of course you have. Was it also pink?)

This post was done in cooperation with Chairish.

Party All the Time

By Wednesday, October 22, 2014 5 No tags Permalink 0

We might not be hosting a Halloween get-together this year (we actually have to choose between two costume parties on the same night because they’re an hour away from each other–I guess we’ll draw straws?) but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been looking at decor and food ideas, anyway. Some of these would be pretty dope even if you’re not having a bunch of people over. Who doesn’t like to be festive?

Halloween Party Ideas

drink labels  //  wall art  //  bloody martinis  //  spider eggs  //  haunted village  //  place card

How awesome are those martinis with the drippy red cake gel? And let’s give a shout out to the oysters in the background; that’s actually a pretty clever way to add some slime/guts to your shindig without being gross. While we’re talking about food, those “spider eggs” are donut holes and plastic rings. (And speaking as a person who occasionally encounters the real thing in the basement, those are creepily accurate.) As for the decor, I’m loving the haunted village idea. This example is just a bunch of bird houses painted black and that is BRILLIANT. The ominous looking embroidery hoop art is also pretty easy to make, since those are pictures from the Graphics Fairy printed onto fabric instead of paper. (Here’s a tutorial for that if you’ve never tried.)

All I’ve done to get into the Halloween spirit is paint a few little pumpkins and now I want to up my game. The more I look at the haunted village, the more I want to make one for the top of the piano. Are you throwing a Halloween party this year? What spooky decor do you have around the house? Do you plan to make any creepy food?

Shop Update: Craft Show Edition

By Monday, October 20, 2014 20 No tags Permalink 0

A couple of months ago I chatted about getting more inventory into the Etsy shop. I had a pile of fabric, including some holiday colors, and things were lookin’ good. I even made a bunch of stuff, but if you’ve poked around the shop lately you know there’s not anything new. So what’s my deal?

I got accepted to three craft shows! And since these are the first events I’ve done since I hung up the ol’ jewelry-making tools, I had to start building THAT inventory from scratch. I only had four weeks to prep for the first one (which is November 1st!) so this has pretty much taken over my life. I’m not complaining, though; it’s been fun to spend a chunk of most workdays making new products. I’ve shared a couple of things on Instagram already, but today I have a better preview of what’s to come. SO EXCITED.

Reversible Cloth Napkins

Aside from the pillows, I’ve been busting out reversible cloth napkins. I have a lot of patterns, including some pretty red and green for Christmas, but the rather dramatic one-of-a-kind set above is my FAVORITE. It wouldn’t be so limited if I had my way, but it looks like the chevrons are out of stock in that color and I don’t know when they’ll be back. Womp, womp.

I’m also introducing some non-fabric goodies that I whipped up for stocking stuffers. Ever since I made those epic napkins I’ve been in a pink zone, so I busted out some coordinating paint and dipped the ends of wooden spoons. So far they’re available in five other colors, too, including gold:

Paint Dipped Wooden Spoons

Also in the stocking stuffer category are glittery clothespins for hanging pictures or holiday cards (a bit o’ pink here, too):

Glitter Clothespins

And some non-sparkly options for those among us who don’t feel like blingin’ it up:

Patterned Clothespins

I will be getting everything online in the next week-ish (for real this time!) but if you’re local you can eyeball everything in person at one of the shows:

Vendor and Craft Fall Bazaar
Saturday, November 1st
Joliet Catholic Academy

TJ Vendor and Craft Holiday Bazaar
Saturday, November 15th
Thomas Jefferson Elementary School (Plainfield)

Holiday Arts Extravaganza
Saturday, December 6th
Streamwood High School

Have you been making holiday inventory yet? Do you have any shows coming up? Even if you’re not a maker, do you know of any awesome shows in your area? Who else can’t believe it’s time for this already?

Pinterest Picks

By Friday, October 17, 2014 12 No tags Permalink 1

Happy Friday! It doesn’t happen very often, but I have Pinterest Picks for you two weeks in a row. Normally I try to spread them out a little, lest I fly to close to the sun and ruin a good thing, but I just kept finding cool stuff and didn’t want to wait.

First of all:

As If Print


I had some delicious baked crab rangoon last weekend at happy hour and was lamenting my lack of knowledge for making them myself when the universe did me a solid and popped these onto my feed. This version has avocado and I think my brain is going to explode:

Crab and Avocado Wontons


Her side ponytail makes me with I didn’t chop off all of my hair. Also, that’s a great blouse.

Black Outfit


I just can’t quit you, tulip table. (Hilariously, this picture is actually from a product listing for the starburst mirror, which is ALSO lovely, but I didn’t even notice it up there until I clicked through. Ha ha.)

Tulip Table


This is a DIY cocktail kit as a groomsman gift, but I think it would work for a lot of other occasions, too. Tired of bringing a bottle of wine to housewarming parties? Boom. Have a hard-to-buy-for dude in your life? Problem solved. Do you like booze and snack foods? Treat yo’self.

DIY Cocktail Kit


I can’t stop laughing at the As If print. I want that for the family room but I’m running out of walls down there. DECISIONS. So what are you doing this weekend? We’re heading to my parents’ house to celebrate Mom’s birthday, visiting my grandma, and doing the usual football watching on Sunday. It’s been raining all week here (which makes me le tired), so I’m hoping we can catch some sun on the drive downstate. I’ll be back again on Monday with a shop/craft show/new stuff I’ve been making update. There’s been more glitter.

Our #1 (Ceiling) Fan

By Wednesday, October 15, 2014 11 No tags Permalink 0

We made another teensy bit of progress in our room! That’s two projects in a row! (We can’t really say we ignore the upper half of the house anymore, can we?) Say hello to our snazzy new ceiling fan:

Modern Ceiling Fan

Ignore that tan blob around the mounting plate. Now we know the color of the original ceiling.

I should warn you up front that this isn’t an instructional post. Mr. Fan had 900 little parts to assemble first and it got dark before Hubsey finally attached him to the ceiling, which meant I had to hold the flashlight instead of the camera. The instructions in the box were good, though, so if you end up getting one of these attractive specimens for yourself, you’ll be fine.

Let’s take a gander at the old fan we inherited from the previous owners. Note the chippy paint on the end of the blades and flower-shaped light covers:

ceiling fan before

It’s rare that something about the house bugs Hubsey more than it bugs me, but that fan was one of them. I didn’t love the thing, but I was able to ignore it after a while. Maybe because they painted it white? I don’t know. For some reason my brain was like, “Meh, not a priority.” But now that we have the new one up there lookin’ all cute, I’m glad he was annoyed enough to get the ball rolling. I could’ve easily pretended it wasn’t there for another year.

Modern Ceiling Fan

There’s not a ton of contrast in our room (yet) so I’m glad to get something a little darker in the mix. Now that we’ve settled on the big stuff–wall color, bedding, this fan–I want to get into some real decorating. Most of the artwork is stuff I just threw up there because I was tired of looking at nothing, so now I want to do it right. I wouldn’t mind finding some accessories for the dresser, either.

Modern Ceiling Fan

Oh yeah, and we have to paint the ceiling. Can’t leave that ring o’ tan around the cover plate! Maybe we’ll flip a coin: one person has to paint the ceiling and the other can rake leaves. That sounds equally terrible, right?

Have you ever installed a ceiling fan? Do you even have them in your house? (Stylistically I’d prefer something else, but it gets enough here that we need them.) What quirk about your house can you magically ignore?