I’m Spilling It on Fess Up Friday

Hi all – today I’m over on Little Black Door spilling some way-embarrassing stuff as part of Elizabeth’s awesome Fess Up Friday series!


Have you ever wondered what’s hiding behind the mysterious closed door in our living room? Could you be the only other person who has my same bizarre unique language skills?  Come on over and read my Fess Up Friday confessions {here} to find out.

Driven by Decor - Living Room (with arrow)

And for those of you who aren’t already familiar with Elizabeth’s blog, you will want to stay and take a peek around – this girl has a vibrant style that I absolutely love! And obviously I’m not the only one because her amazing house has a huge feature in the current issue of Refresh magazine:

Refresh Magazine Little Black Door

Little Black Door in Refresh Magazine

She just wrote a great post sharing all of the inside deets of her photoshoot and some of the beautiful images from her home that you’ll find {here}. I just adore her daughters’ room:

Little Black Door Bedroom

Little Black Door | Photo by Alise O’Brien

and her beautiful living room:

Little Black Door | Photo by Alise O'Brien

Little Black Door | Photo by Alise O’Brien

and pretty much every other room in the rest of her house too. In fact, I would totally understand if you just wanted to just skip over my embarrassing post and head straight for her house tour to see more. Can we make that a plan??

Have a great weekend everyone! And don’t forget that you only have a few days left to design and win your Matouk dream bed (go {here} to learn more and enter). Using the uMatouk tool to design your dream bed is actually pretty fun and the prize is amazing – well over $1,000 of the luxury linens of your choice!! I’d love for one of my readers to win!


Stylish Fireplace Accessories

Cropped Accessories for a Stylish Fireplace (Fireplace Screens, Log Holders, & Tools)

Last winter was our first in New England and we went into it totally clueless – we had never heard of roof rakes or ice dams (but got a firsthand education in both), about died when we saw our first winter bill (oil heat = $$$), and couldn’t build a fire in either of our wood burning fireplaces because we didn’t own any tongs or other fireplace tools. We had gas fireplaces in our two previous homes and so the only tool we needed for those fireplaces was the remote control – click the gas fireplace on, click the gas fireplace off. So much simpler. But this year we’re going to be a little more prepared. We finally bought some fireplace tongs and since our kitchen fireplace has a built-in log holder and screen, that should be all we need to fire this baby up. I can’t wait – the kitchen fireplace was one of the charming little details that hooked […]

Start Putting Your Too-Pretty Placemats to Use (With This Little Tip)

Placemats rolled up and stored in nesting crate hung on kitchen wall

Decorating a home with kids and pets means balancing style with practicality. If having a gorgeous velvet sofa means that our dog can’t come snuggle up on the couch with us, it’s not worth buying. And if I find super cute placemats that are going to get ruined the first time my kids spill on them, they’re not worth buying either. Except, um, that’s exactly what I did. I fell for the cutest placemats at HomeGoods and bought them without giving much thought to how we would use them day-in and day-out without ruining them since they’re not exactly washable. So we’ve continued to use our old ratty placemats to keep the nice, new ones looking nice, all rolled up in one of the nesting crates in our kitchen. How ridiculous is that? My first thought was to buy some smaller washable black placemats to layer over the top of mine but […]

Sorry Microwave, But You’re Outta Here!

Driven by Decor - Our Kitchen

Not outta here as in getting rid of it  – I love my microwave way too much to do that. But outta here as in you’ve gotta get the heck out of my elbow space. Every time I do dishes, I’m wanting to elbow that sucker off the countertop. I tried switching the microwave to the other side of the sink (swapping spaces with the coffee pot and toaster) but that was even worse since the microwave door swings to the left, making it really hard to put your plate in. The problem is that I have no good place to put it. The cabinetry across the way with the butcher block countertop would be an ideal spot but the countertop depth is too shallow for it (my coffee pot is going to be finding a home there though!). So I’m thinking about building out a space for it on the end of the […]

How To Replace a Towel Bar With Fixed Ceramic Ends

Driven by Decor - Turkish towel

After posting my One Room Challenge bathroom remodel last week, I got a lot of questions but by far the most common one was “How did you replace your towel bar?”. Not questions about the stenciling or the mounting of the medicine cabinet or the artwork. Nope, the question most people wanted answered had to do with the towel bar. In some ways I was surprised because I figured there weren’t a ton of you who also have these lovely fixed end brackets glued onto ceramic tile (most of you guys have a typical towel bar screwed into drywall, right?). But in other ways I wasn’t so surprised, knowing how much Google searching and Amazon shopping it took me to figure my towel bar replacement out. This plastic white towel bar is the lovely one that I started with – it was both too short and small in diameter for my fixed towel bar brackets. The white glazing was also […]

Design & Win Your Dream Bed!

Matouk Paradiso cropped

For many of us, our bedrooms are among the most neglected, undecorated spaces in our homes. And if you saw my bedroom, it wouldn’t take you long to figure out that “many of us” includes me. Cloud blue faux finish walls, missing pillow shams (I stole them for our guest room), and a rug that’s begging to be replaced are a few of the highlights of this oh-so-heinous space that hasn’t been touched since we moved in. But there are two things about our bedroom that have made it livable while it’s awaiting its big makeover – it houses my all-time favorite chair and we have luxurious sheets on our bed that I look forward to snuggling into each night. If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that I don’t decorate with a lot of  high-end items, but I do invest in quality if it’s something that I’m expecting to be a “forever” piece (like my dining room table) […]

Weekend Inspiration

Pumpkin centerpiece for Thanksgiving

First of all, thanks so much for all of your sweet comments about my One Room Challenge bathroom reveal – I worked on that room for hours and hours this past week to get it finished and it was so gratifying to have an “after” that I was proud to share. With any free time being sucked up by my bathroom project, I haven’t had the time to read all of my favorite blogs like I usually do but I’ve still found some inspiring posts from around blogland and from October’s Best of the Nest link party to share with you as we go into the weekend. If you’d like to pin any of these images, please click the highlighted link and pin from the original site. Thanks! Shine Your Light: Thanksgiving Tablescape with Pumpkin Centerpiece I was at Terrain earlier this week and they had all of their pumpkins 75% up to make room for the holiday decor. […]

One Room Challenge: Bathroom Reveal!

Driven by Decor - Stenciled wall in Benjamin Moore Chelsea Gray

Have you entered the Matouk giveaway for over $1,000 of the luxurious bedding of your choice? You have until 11/25/14 to design and enter to win your dream bed! Learn more on the giveaway post {here}!  Over the past six weeks, I’ve been making over our powder room as part of the One Room Challenge. And let me tell you – this space has been a bear with unexpected hurdles and setbacks at every turn. If you haven’t been following along from the beginning and want to catch up on how things went down you can check out the first five weeks here: Week 1: The bathroom “before” & a plan Week 2: Choosing a medicine cabinet & sconces Week 3: A Tale of 3 Medicine Cabinets Week 4: #3 is Gonna Work Week 5: See Ya Later Yellow And now at week six, it’s the end of the challenge and I’m so excited to show you […]

My Thanksgiving Table & a Favorite Recipe

Driven by Decor - Homemade salt dough tags for Thanksgiving placesetting

Sometimes I find decorating inspiration in some pretty strange places. Like our Thanksgiving table this year – it was inspired by my daughter’s 3-D model of a human cell. What? Let me explain. She needed Playdoh to build her human cell model for school but the only Playdoh we had was rock hard. To keep from fighting the Walmart crowds on the weekend (and even more importantly, to be able to stay in my pajamas a little longer), I suggested that we make our own. One batch of salt dough later and her cell had all the mitochondria and ribosomes a cell could need but we still had a bunch of leftover dough. Since I had Thanksgiving on my mind, inspiration struck to use the salt dough to make place card tags. And so our Thanksgiving table decorations began… Once the place card tags were made and tied onto our little pumpkins the rest of the table came together pretty quickly: The […]