Posts Tagged ‘home decor’

Desk Refresh

Thursday, December 18th, 2014

Things have been tough at the old “day job” this year. I work for a large company that I really love, but there have been a lot of changes these past few months and not all of them were positive. For several weeks, I worried that I might be laid off and…well, to be honest, that was genuinely awful. I had six years’ worth of files and desk clutter plus some nervous energy to burn so one day I started to tidy up my desk. That led to purging emails, and that lead to cleaning out cabinets, which led to purging paper files and when I was done, I had an extremely empty desk. I slashed my stash of work documents down to the bare minimum and shuttled my personal items home to sit in a sad heap on my desk.

A few more weeks passed and I was not laid off (although some really amazing people I love were and that was unbearable). In the aftermath, I had to try to find some semblance of normal, but my desk was clinically sterile, morale was at an all time low and all of my creativity was sapped. That’s when I came across a bit of inspiration online entitled 54 Ways To Make Your Cubicle Suck Less. I felt like it was meant for me and I greedily devoured the ideas. Next I hit up Pinterest and compiled a page of inspired office spaces in black, gold and neutrals.

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I chose the color scheme because I liked it and because many of my desk accessories were already black from a prior attempt at improving the space. In addition, I’ve seen a lot of gold in decorating lately and I really like it. I figured with a little gold spray paint I could create some fun pieces to complete the look I was going for.

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First, I built the twine and clothespins photo holder featured in the article that inspired my desk revamp. For this project I simply picked up decorated clothespins and strung them on twine. This allows me to display photos and change them out easily. I have more pins if I want to add more photos and it lets me keep things fresh. One thing I noticed while shopping is that there are a finite number of choices in pre-decorated clothespins. If you find there aren’t any you like you can use washi tape over undecorated clothespins to customize your look.

The moment I saw the gold Nate Berkus stapler was love at first sight. I couldn’t stop thinking about it. My old stapler was a red Swingline and I loved it as well, but this new one was just so shiny. I couldn’t resist. While I was at Target I scored some gold and white washi tape. I used the tape on a great free printable by Nicole Joelle that I framed and then accessorized my pencil cup and tape dispenser with the same tape to tie the elements together.

I may have shared before that I’m a plant slayer. I can’t keep a green thing alive to save my own life…until I met the succulent on my desk. This little guy’s tenacity has earned him a permanent space and I promise to water him once in a while and try really hard to keep him alive. In order to make my hardy little plant fit in with the theme of my desk, I added a few gold touches. For this project, I used a small terra cotta pot (available for less than $1 at Home Depot) and taped off the rim. Terra cotta isn’t easy to paint because it tends to flake so I used three coats of Krylon gold spray paint and Krylon crystal clear as a clear coat sealant. So far, the paint is staying put and it looks fantastic.

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I am fortunate to work in an office that allows pets. Often people will come to visit my desk with their furry little business partners in tow and I like to have something to welcome them properly. To make this cute little treat jar I simply super-glued a miniature dog to a metal jar lid and spray painted over it. In fact, when I first made this a few months ago I used turquoise paint. To update and make the piece sync with my desk refresh, the turquoise paint served as a primer coat for the gold I sprayed over it. It turns out my favorite part of this desk makeover was actually another makeover. If you decide to make yourself a treat jar – think dinosaurs, race cars or other small toys for people treats – be sure to get a spray paint that works well with plastic and metal so that the paint on your figurine doesn’t stay sticky to the touch.

All in all, I spent less than 2 hours and $50 on the projects shown here. The result is a desk that I’m proud to call home for 40 hours a week. It’s clean, functional, and comfortable. Most of all, it has a few special touches that make it all mine. Do you have some favorite items that make your workspace feel a little more like home? We love to hear from you, so please weigh in below in the comments.

Laundry Room Inspiration

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

When we moved into our house in the fall of 2012, none of the walls were painted. The builder wanted to charge a few thousand dollars to paint the interior walls and ceilings. Rob & I were convinced it would be no big deal to do the painting ourselves. We might have underestimated the amount of work that was ahead of us. More than a year later, we still have a few rooms left to paint.

Originally a makeover for the laundry room was pretty low on our home project to-do list. It wasn’t until Rob installed the garage door opener a few weeks ago that it got bumped way up that list. We have to walk through the laundry room to get to the garage and now every morning I walk through that drab, vanilla colored room and think “this room needs color!”

This should be a quick and easy makeover. The room is small and it’s a utilitarian space so no tchotchkes allowed. Instead I’ll focus on adding color to the room through paint and framed art. To keep the room neat and tidy, I plan to add storage bins and hang cabinets. I’ve put together a board that includes the inspiration photos, colors, art and DIY projects that I’ll use to bring the room together.

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1. Make it Yours Print
2. DIY Laundry Soap Storage
3. Brushed Rose by Valspar
4. Plum & Bow Zooey Dot Rug
5. Locker Basket
6. Alabax Medium Light
7. White Penny Tile
8. Nova Trellis Wall Stencil
9. Black & White Wall Hook

I’ve just started this project and I’m planning to do a few update posts along the way as projects are completed. Here is my to-do list:

* empty out room
* paint walls & ceiling
* stencil wall
* hang cabinets
* buy rug
* change out light fixture
* buy new storage bins
* DIY laundry soap storage
* hang art & household organizer
* install tile

O Christmas Tree

Friday, December 13th, 2013

When it comes to Christmas, I’ve always been a traditional red & green kind of gal.

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This year I decided to do something a little different. I wanted to decorate a tree that would fit in well with the decor in our home and I knew that I wanted to buy a new tree, but struggled when trying to decide on a color and theme. I bounced back and forth between a retro themed pink tree filled with pink and blue vintage ornaments (like this) and a rustic, woodsy white tree filled with woodland creatures and metallic ornaments (like this). I chose a rustic, woodsy theme for my new white Christmas tree, mainly because I didn’t have time to search for affordable vintage ornaments and I knew that I could reuse a lot of the ornaments that I already had.

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The tree is from Treetopia, it’s their pre-lit 6′ Winter White Christmas tree. I made the garland using jute rope and strips of burlap. I Iove a full tree, so I added lots of gold, silver, white and chocolate brown bulbs and then filled in with silver icicles, wooden nutcrackers, snowflakes and fuzzy woodland creatures. Many of the ornaments came from Target; and I also picked up a few boxes of glass bulb ornaments from Michaels. The tree is filled with lots of ornaments that I’ve had for years. There’s a silver reindeer hanging out underneath the tree along with a vintage leather suitcase to keep the presents up and away from the puppies.

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I do wish I’d purchased a taller tree. The six foot tree is dwarfed by our 9′ ceilings. I knew it was too small after we’d unpacked the tree and set it up in the living room. Determined to find a creative solution that would add height to the tree, I decided to covert a tree stump into a tree stand. We purchased a stump off Craigslist for less than ten dollars. Then, Rob cut the stump down to a height of about fifteen inches and drilled a hole into the center using a spade bit. I love the new stand like crazy.

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I’m a little obsessed with our new tree; it’s still cozy but fits well with our decor, and it’s not fussy one bit. Mission accomplished.