Our clients came to use with an unfinished basement space and 2000 square feet of bare canvas just ready to be styled. After getting to know our client and seeing the family lifestyle, we helped them analyze the needs for their family and introduced a great layout for their needs. Today we’re revealing the bar area, bathroom, and playroom.Read More
Photography Credit: Rebecca McAlpin
Today’s the day friends, it’s reveal day for the One Room Challenge and we have a completed bedroom! The last six weeks have been a blur since we purchased this house, put our other house on the market, sold it, moved, and worked on the room somewhere in between while keeping my interior design business afloat. It has been hard, and exhausting, and exhilarating, and I’m really glad this room is complete because it has taken many sleepless nights and early mornings to get to this place. I finished the room Monday afternoon and it seems almost like a dream that it is actually done! If you are just checking in and want to see more of the process, you can revisit the previous weeks here:
Ok, now I bet you’re ready to see this finished space, aren’t you? :) Here she is my friends!
My goal for this room was create a warm, layered space that embodies a sense of time and patina juxtaposed with modern elements. I always like a little before and after, shall we take a look?
A little bit of a change, eh? One of the things that jumps out to me is how you can see so much more of the detail on the fireplace with it being a bit of a lighter color. Now there are some shadows in the reliefs which really make them pop. I used Portola Paints lime wash in Vintage Black on the mantle, and while I had originally hoped it would be a darker black, this more slate-blue tone is kinda growing on me. It has a really nice patina to it so I decided to just let it be it’s own thing and not try and control the situation too much, sometimes that’s best you know. And of course, the walls are Portola Paints beautiful lime wash in North Woods, which is so perfectly soft and beautiful, I almost feel like I am wrapped in a cloud! The texture that it creates on the walls is incredible, almost like an old plaster. For the moldings, I wanted them to blend with the walls, so I painted them in Ben Moore’s Smoke Embers to flow seamlessly with the walls. I have always wanted black window sashes and these old windows were the perfect ones to take in that direction. I used the same color we painted the exterior of the windows, Ben Moore’s Onyx.
If you watched my Instagram stories you might have heard about the debacle with the ceiling light which was supposed to arrive Friday and never came because somehow it became missing from the box right before the delivery, so I frantically called France & Son telling them about this all out emergency (the photoshoot was in two days) and seeing if there was ANY way they could ship a replacement fixture overnight. They were amazing and totally came through for me on shipping another fixture that afternoon and saved the day because LOOK AT THAT CEILING FIXTURE! It totally makes the room, right? I have admired Serge Mouille’s work for years and always wanted this ceiling fixture in a room. It’s a big fixture though, and I never quite had the space, but this room was long enough that it just worked, and it’s delicate form doesn’t overwhelm the space, win-win!
The bed came together in the final week and I’m so pleased with how it turned out. I wanted to find something low enough to fit under the windows and this vintage headboard was a great shape and height. It was originally a stained wood, with a brown woven material in it. I cut out the old, woven material from the panels and used them as templates for the new caning. I painted the entire thing black and then reinserted the new caning with spray adhesive. I love how the black and caning contrast against the patina of the lime wash and gives a bit of a modern feel to the space. I used a simple platform base from Hayneedle that blended beautifully with the vintage headboard. Hayneedle was kind enough to offer 10% off to anyone clicking through on these pieces of theirs that I used in the room!
The lights are from our previous master bedroom that we ordered years ago from Schoolhouse Electric and the William Morris “Strawberry Thief” pillow is from Rejuvenation. I felt like the bed needed something a little old school and this patterned pillow was the perfect thing, plus, William Morris is one of my design heroes.
A sweet art vignette sits on the wall beside the bed including an abstract from my friend Angela Simeone, a portrait from Minted, and an etching of New York falls from the 1850’s from a recent trip out to Colorado. Although the pieces are quite different in styles, they are tied together in color palettes. The bedside stump is one I have been carrying around for years. We were getting ready to move from Monterey, California back in 2010 and were taking some trash to the drop off location before moving and someone had left the stump out by the dumpster. Of course I was in love with it at first sight :) and convinced Adam we should put it in the car and take it with us. We have moved it several times, from California, to Florida, where is sat on our porch, to Nebraska where I used it to hold a big pot of succulents, to our first house here in Philly where it was in the sunroom, and now to this home, where it made the perfect bedside table. Sometimes I get a little bit sentimental about these seemingly insignificant things that I have been toting around for years, but that is what makes them special, and makes your house a home. And the fact that I would have never thought it would end up at our bedside, but that it has, and it works beautifully makes it even more fun.
The rug was a lucky find at Home Sense, and adds a very soft and subtle pattern to this side of the room and blends nicely with the sitting area rug. A sprig of dogwood branches from our yard adds a fun splash of color. I ran out of time to get flowers before the shoot, so out to the yard it was and it ended up being the perfect thing to celebrate the season!
Honestly I just want to hang out in this spot all day. These beautiful, moss green chairs from Article are definitely a star in the room. Their low arms and curves keep this area from feeling too cluttered and the green velvet is just luscious!! Article also offers free 30-day returns, so if you find that the piece doesn’t end up working for your space, you can always send it back, which is a great option for a big piece of furniture. The Girard Lamp from Hudson Valley Lighting brings in a bit of a traditional element, and I love the way the brass looks with the moss green. A place to put our feet up is going to be essential with hanging out in this spot, so I chose this sturdy coffee table from Hayneedle. The oblong shape keeps a nice flow to this area and it has a really lovely woodgrain to it that adds some subtle texture. The handwoven rug has the perfect faded feel that I was looking for and unable to find in the right color in a vintage version. The soft pinks and blues are calming and tie in with the vintage tile on the fireplace. The little wooden stool (fondly dubbed the “Mimi Stool” in our house) has been with us for several years. It’s handmade, and wonky and had to be repaired once when Adam tried to use it for a step stool and it split in half-haha! It’s the perfect little spot to set your coffee while reading.
I decided to paint the doors in the room (and will likely continue throughout the entire house) black. It’s the same black as the widows, Ben Moore Onyx. The doors are original 5-panel doors with glass doorknobs and they seem to have so much more presence when painted black, we did this in our last house too and I’m just not over it :)
The mirror is from Lamps Plus (yes, they sell more than lighting) and I love how it feels like a cool, modern touch above this uber traditional mantle. In all honesty, I never really liked the center relief of the floral swag on the mantle, but the shape of the mirror sort of mimics that and I feel like it could kinda be growing on me now.
I built some simple, oak shelves in the 11th hour and I love how they have a minimalist vibe next to the fireplace and provide a spot to display a few precious things and a spot to tuck in a basket for wood.
Loving, loving the lime washed patina on the mantle. I used two coats of their sealer so that the surface is cleanable. Here’s a closer detail of the mirror as well. Another, simple branch from the Japanese maple in our yard gives some drama to the mantle.
Our old, walnut dresser found it’s new home in our bedroom again and I’m loving the modern form of the Piper Lamp from Mitzi contrasted with the traditional dresser. I sourced this gorgeous art piece from Minted from artist Kelly Money. She is a local artist, painting fantastic clouded pieces which I have sourced for client projects before. I loved this piece in particular because of the greens and yellows which I felt tied in so perfectly to the other parts of the room. I also thought it would be the most wonderful thing to wake up to in the morning since we can see it from our bed. Minted offers this in a gallery wrapped canvas which really makes it feel like the original painting, and the printing quality is fantastic, you can see so many of Kelly’s original brushstrokes, it is a great way to get more of that original artwork feel for a lower cost. You can also request commissions from various artists through Minted, which has definitely got my wheels turning for future projects!
Here’s another shot of the bay window and the beautiful Japanese maple outside.
And here’s another shot of the bedroom from the other side. For those of you wondering, here’s a peek at the Hayneedle platform bed as well.
Ok friends! That’s a wrap! I’ll be sharing a walkthrough of the space this afternoon on Instagram Stories if you want to hop over (and the whole project is saved in my highlights). Thank you so, so much for following along, for your comments, so many of your reached out and offered your encouragement and excitement for the project. Thank you to Linda from Calling it Home for organizing this for all of us and to Better Homes and Gardens for providing media sponsorship, all of the generous sponsors who donated products for this space, my husband, Adam who took care of so many of the things in our personal lives while I tried my best to keep up on this project and work, and my photographer Rebecca McAlpin who moved the shoot to Monday to give me every available minute to finish the project. It feels so good to have at least one room in our house not in complete chaos after our move and we’ll rest easy after these long days of work now.
Alright, now go check out all the other incredible featured designers (linked below) and guest participants too (they’ll be sharing their reveals tomorrow). Everyone has been working, so, so hard to get the finish line on this. Thank you!!!!
It’s week four of the One Room Challenge and a few things happened this week that are making this room start to feel like a real room. Still so much to do and feeling horribly behind though! We moved into the house officially this week and have spent the last four days hauling small loads of our personal items to the house in our SUV, and the furniture movers came yesterday to move the big stuff. We still have a few more small loads to bring over, and our furniture movers need to come back Thursday morning for a few more things that wouldn’t fit on the truck #hoarder. But Friday we’re closing and it’s gonna all be over from that end, so there IS a light at the end of the tunnel :) And I am so, so excited to spend some time this weekend doing more painting and getting the final details together!
OK, so let’s get into it, shall we? The first exciting progress of the week includes finishing the second coat of primer on the walls and diving into the first coat of lime wash. We went with Portola Paints lime wash in North Woods and had the great guys at our local Ben Moore store, Riccardi Brothers color match a grey to the lime wash that we’ll be using on the trim, so it will blend really well, but still be durable for cleaning and holding up to all the pretty things I will be setting in the windowsills. My husband, Adam helped with some of the trim painting Saturday night, despite the fact that he really hates painting (the things we do for love) :)
I have received a few inquiries about applying the lime wash. It is easy to apply with a wide, straight brush, moving in a bit of a cross-hatch pattern (or you can do up and down, depending on the effect you want). Portola Paints has a great video on their website showing the application, and I plan on doing a more detailed post on the product later this fall.
As you can see, it goes one really dark and then lightens up as it dries. Even with just the first coat down it’s already looking soo soft and pretty! I love the way the light dances across this finish, it has so much depth.
Now that we’re actually living at the house I’m hoping that stealing away for bits of progress on the painting will be a little easier instead of having to drive back and forth.
Some special deliveries arrived this week as well! First off, a couple beautiful lighting pieces from Mitzi and Hudson Valley Lighting. I have used both these brands in several of my design projects prior to this and have found them to be stylish and well constructed. I chose a traditional pharmacy style lamp, the Girard Lamp for over in the seating area.
Both pieces have a beautiful brass finish, which ties them together. They are heavy with all metal construction and anything that threads together feels nice and tight. I have come across my share of poorly produced lighting in years past and these two pieces feel solid, I will be able to have them in my home for years to come.
The second very exciting addition to the room are the two Article Embrace chairs. I chose of soft moss green velvet and I am thrilled with how beautiful they look.
The velvet reminds me of the hiking through our beautiful Fairmount Park here in Philly and seeing all the lush plant life and moss growing on huge rocks along the way. Having not been able to sit in them prior to ordering, I wasn’t sure how comfortable they would be but the curved arms and back fit you in all the right places and the seats are deep to keep you relaxed and big enough to curl your legs up into. The arms are a bit lower which will help give some nice flow to the sitting area and the curves also give them some softness. I am SO excited for some quiet coffee mornings in these chairs!
One thing I really like about Article is that they offer a flat shipping fee of of $49 (or $19 for small shipments) for most orders, no matter how large. AND Article offers a 30-day satisfaction guarantee so you can try out your new furniture in your home. If you’re not completely happy, they’ll pick up the furniture and provide a refund, minus the delivery and pickup charges which is $49 in most cases. Seems like low-risk way to try out some great pieces, especially if you don’t have a ton of time to peruse furniture stores.
Alright friends, that’s it for now! Stay tuned for some fun progress on the headboard, finishing up on painting and more fun details coming in like lighting, rugs, and artwork. I’ll be giving lots of behind the scenes in my Instagram Stories if you aren’t already following along. And thank you all for your heartfelt comments and cheering me on to the finish line, it means so much to me!
Be sure to check out what all the other featured designers are planning for their spaces by following the links below. And check out the guest participants too, there is so much talent and creative inspiration to be seen!
Hello friends! Welcome to another round of the One Room Challenge! If you are new around here, the One Room Challenge is a bi-annual event hosted by Linda Weinstein of Calling it Home and Better Homes and Gardens. Over the next six weeks, myself and other featured designers across the internet will be transforming a room in six weeks and blogging about it every week so you can follow along! In addition to the featured designers (linked at the end of this post), there are over 200 guest participants that are working on rooms as well, so much inspiration!
It seems like such a short while ago I was starting my first ORC space as a guest participant a year ago, transforming an unused bedroom in our house into a cozy guest room/office. Then, this spring, I worked with friends to transform a spare bedroom in to a serene nursery to welcome their new son, Oliver into the world. I am so honored to have been selected as a featured designer for this year’s challenge, there are so many talented people this round and I hope you’ll click through at the bottom of the page and check out their projects as well!
As I am writing this, I’m thinking how even crazier things seem with the fact that I am going to be leaving that first ORC space I worked on in just a year ago because…..WE BOUGHT A HOUSE! It’s bittersweet, we love our house that we’ve been in for the past few years since moving to Philadelphia. Over the past three years I have had the opportunity to work on most every room in the house, even if it was just with paint. The house had been renovated previously, so making major transformations like redoing the kitchen never made sense for us. But we did what we could using paint, and wallpaper, updating lighting and building a faux fireplace, it has been so much fun. We have lot to look forward to in our new house though, and soo many chances to make it a reflection of our family and hopefully tie in to some fun parts of vestige HOME as a business, I’m so excited!
If you’re still reading my rambling thoughts you might be wondering, what room I’m going to be working on this round and as luck would have it, I am going to be working on our master bedroom in our new place. We thought that updating the master bedroom first could be beneficial (to our sanity) since most of the projects around the house are going to be long term, and we wanted to be able to have a finished space that we can relax in at the end of our often long workdays. Here’s a shot of the space as it currently stands (with some remnants of the previous owners furniture).
As you can see, this room is HUGE, at least by old house standards, and definitely for us as homeowners. We didn’t look for a house with a master this large, but I have to say that I have always dreamed of having a fireplace in my bedroom to fall asleep to, like, since I was a kid. Dreams do come true :)
The alcove to the left of the fireplace is providing me some inspiration, I’d like to create some kind of storage/display space because there really isn’t much with all the windows in the space.
The fireplace has the prettiest vintage tile surround, with soft pinks and a little blue with that perfect crackle that accompanies old ceramics. The gloss black paint on the mantle is a little strong for me, so look forward to something that will soften the look of this a bit.
Another thing that I’ve always been attracted to in old homes are windows…and this room has LOTS of them. Several singles, a row of three and a big bay window that looks out onto the front yard. Eventually we’ll be restoring each one of the original windows in the house (there are lots of panes of cracked glass), but until then, I’ve got some ideas of how to make them pop even more.
I’m envisioning a cozy seating area over by the bay window. I thought for a second about putting the bed closer to that area so the bed could be close to the fireplace, but the way that the room is laid out would block the view of most of the fireplace unless you were actually laying in the bed, not ideal. So a seating area it is!
The house is stone on the exterior and we have lots of deep sills to hold plant babies galore!
The other side of the room has the entrance to the room from the hallway, as well as a teeny closet that the previous owners used as shoe storage. There is a shallow walk in closet that runs almost the entire length of the back of the room (from the entrance to the corner). It’s the largest closet we’ve ever had in our lives and we feel totally spoiled.
That’s it for the initial tour of the space! I’ll be sharing more detailed design plans for the room next week so be sure to check back here on the blog. I’ll also be sharing lots of live progress on Instagram and Instagram stories throughout the next six weeks, so be sure to follow along there!
You can see what all the other featured designers are going to be getting into by following the links below. Thanks so much for all your kind words throughout this process, I’m excited your following along!!!
Whew, can anyone tell me where the year has gone? It seems that not so long ago I was finishing up that big green beauty of an office space that was the last One Room Challenge and here we are again kicking off the next one! So not only is it exciting times with springtime and warm weather on it's way (at least that's what we're telling ourselves), I'm starting on another room design that you are going to see progressing over the next six weeks in real time, so hold on to your hats folks, here we go!
For those of you who may not know me, my name is Nicole and I'm and interior designer and sometimes woodworker living in Philadelphia. You can learn a little bit more about my creative journey here. This is my second One Room Challenge as a guest participant and I can't be more excited! Last season my room was selected by House Beautiful's editor Sophie Dow as one of the finalists for the guest participants, an absolute honor! I'm looking forward to stretching my creative muscles this round and creating an entirely new kind of space.
This spring, I'm working with some great friends of mine who are welcoming their first child into the world, and as such, this little guy is gonna need a room! So NURSERY it is! I'm taking a bit of a different approach and creating a space that doesn't feel too "baby" and can hopefully grow with them as their family grows. For the first few years these parents may be spending just as much time in the space as their kiddos are, so I'm designing a space that will feel just as welcoming and chic to the adults as the kids.
Ian and Jessica bought their house about two years ago and have been using this front bedroom primarily as an office with overflow for guests .
The room is south facing and has TONS of incredible light and those deep windows that you see so often in Philly (also, the perfect place for plants). There are two closets in the room that bump out into the space, which creates this nook area where there is currently a daybed.
The plan includes using the nook created by the closets to create a cozy area with something that utilizes the space a bit more efficiently and can grow with their family. There are hardwood floors in the room, which is a plus. Also, check out the beautiful hardware on the door handles (!!!) gosh I love old houses...
Ian and Jessica cleared out the room this week so we can get going on the painting, which is going to begin tomorrow, here's a couple snaps of what the room currently looks like.
So much potential here right!? Can you feel it?
All I'm thinking is bye-bye beige.....
Next week I'll be revealing more about the details of the design plan, layout, etc. A little sneak peek of what I'm planning is below. Until then, stay tuned for some sneak peeks on Instagram and Instagram stories and if you're a parent I'd love any input on what has worked for you in a nursery/child's space, what are your must haves in terms of functionality/design? Let me know in the comments below!
As an essential, everyday use kinda space, bathrooms can be tough when it comes to renovations. Especially when you're in a home where there is only one bathroom for showering. In addition to finding alternative showering locations, complete bathroom renovations can be messy, dusty, expensive, and long. This bathroom in particular had been partially updated by the previous owners with new floor tile, vanity, toilet and fixtures. Unfortunately, the original wall tile had been painted with some sort of tile paint that may have covered up the original peach color but has proven to be less than durable in the shower area. But despite these misgivings, it's not currently an option to do a complete tearout of the space. Instead, we focused on increasing the functionality of the space and giving it a bit more character with some new fixtures and finishes to spice up the builder-basic renovation that was previously completed.
Below was the state of the bathroom when the home was purchased, while clean and maintained looking it was Boring with a capital B.
The first steps were to install a ventilation fan, because we knew that we were going to be installing wallpaper and also, it's just a darn good thing to do, because despite having a window, you really don't want to be opening that during a shower when your neighbors windows are directly across from yours (!). The next step was to make space for a new medicine cabinet that we picked up at Restoration Hardware Outlet for a great price. The traditional style of the cabinet is probably close to what would have originally been installed in this space.
Upon opening up the wall we could tell that there had previously been a medicine cabinet in the space, something bit smaller, but the remnants of the spot were there. We also found a signature on the wall stud with the year dated 1925, the year the home was built-so cool!
We had the electricians swing by and install an outlet in the medicine cabinet. I encourage all of my clients to do this (and we've done it in several of our own homes), it's a great place to plug in toothbrushes and other personal care necessities that you may not want out in the open. The electricians made the line a little longer since we hadn't yet done the wallpapering, that way we could remove the cabinet for the wallpapering rather than try and cut the paper perfectly around it.
We also wired up the new light fixtures and primed the walls in preparation for the wallpaper.
And now for the reveal...we added a couple kokedamas for plant life and swapped out the handles on the vanity for some more interesting and substantial pulls.
The new brass sconces really pop against the patterned wallpaper
Kokedama's add life to the space, I like to think of them as suspended art, and they just require a once a week soak in the sink.
I added in a curved rod to make the shower area feel more spacious and the shower curtain is a subtle grey stripe fabric, because stripes pair so nicely with just about every other pattern. A vintage wonky legged stool holds some spare towels, a glass of wine during the bath, or magazines on the daily.
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this refresh. Would you attempt something similar? You can find more of my work in my portfolio, or more before and afters here. xo, Nicole
Earlier this month over 200 guest participants and 20 featured bloggers revamped spaces in just seven weeks during the One Room Challenge. As part of the challenge, I finished up my Office/Guest Room that had sat relatively empty for almost two years and there were so many great rooms I thought I'd share a few of my favorites.
This master bath renovation from The Grit & Polish has such a great mix of traditional and modern design elements. I love the bench near the shower area, it always gives an extra bit of luxury when you are able to have a piece of furniture in a bathroom.
This narrow sunroom turned breakfast nook has my heart skipping a beat. First of all, THOSE WINDOWS!!! Secondly, stenciled floors! After living in the south a blue ceiling always catches my eye. I admire the clever use of this narrow space off the kitchen as a breakfast nook and I wouldn't mind enjoying a cup of coffee and croissant while gazing out those windows on a quiet morning.
For you fellow mural lovers out there, Ashley's office makeover included this incredible mural that she hand painted over most of the seven weeks of the challenge. I'm digging the graphic look against the traditional wood craftsman trim in her San Diego home. Ashley also put together some great Ikea hacks and offered some smart solutions for office storage.
Coco & Jack's ultra cozy living room makeover complete with fireplace feels just perfect for this upcoming winter season. The white oak built ins flanking the fireplace are minimalist, yet warm, and the shiplap peeking from behind adds the perfect amount of texture. I'm swooning over the Triplo sofa from Article and am pinning it for future client projects.
The bold blue walls and teal furnishings in Old Home Love's living room space make for a rich and inviting feel. They carried the bold blue into their kitchen as well and I love how it pops against the original finishes and textures of their old home.
Megan always has a great eye for eclectic design and I'm constantly eating up everything she puts out into the world hoping that I'll absorb some of her good eye for style. She purchased a lodge in upstate New York earlier this year and took on the task of renovating the living space for the ORC. One of my favorite parts of the design was her solution for this simple record storage, and I'm always a sucker for a Windsor chair.
Another blue-hued beauty of a room. Kirsten from Simply Grove made over her in-laws living space. Her use of a partial wall of paneling on the walls add some interest and detail without overwhelming the room in blue and her choice of furnishings and accessories add richness and texture to the space.
Today's the day, it's finally here, the guest room/office space that I've been working on the past six weeks for the One Room Challenge is complete! I'm so excited to finally have a space that is functional, cozy and inviting. We've already dubbed it the "upstairs living room" and have had two guests stay in the space, one this past weekend and currently my brother. If you remember waaaaay back in the beginning the room was pretty much a boring white box....
The room had good bones and nice details, but it was definitely lacking personality and style. Looking back at these pictures this room doesn't even feel like the same space. What a difference color, some fun fixtures, and layering of great pieces can make! So without further ado, let's get to the pretty pictures.
And here's the completed space! The last layers of details and accessories make it feel so cozy. I can't say enough about Benjamin Moore's Rainy Afternoon, the perfect moody green that shifts throughout the day and is so soothing.
The Anewall mural is the perfect backdrop with the green walls. To bring some additional color into the room I added a smattering of pillows in various colors and textures, as well as a little pop of pattern. The lamp is a vintage find from my friend Tara over at Scout & Annie. I love it's simple swoop and textured rectangular shade for a bit of interest. It's a great reading light for the other side of the seating area.
I was so excited to finally have the right project to use one of Made of Cloth's gorgeous screen printed pillows on a project! I chose the Splotches pattern with Silver on Oyster and I love how it mixes so effortlessly with everything else in the room. A cozy wool throw in soft colors is perfect for snuggling up with on these cold days ahead.
My big-haired lady that I've been toting around since we lived Jacksonville finally found her home above the pegboard I built using the custom hooks made by my brother, Omnitasker Design. Hanging it above the rail draws your eye up in a room that doesn't have particularly tall ceilings and the asymmetrical placement adds a bit of unexpectedness in a room that could start feeling a bit formal and stuffy. And can we talk about THAT WEAVING??!!! I feel so grateful to have an original piece from my friend Sara of The Forest Fern hanging in a space that will serve as a creative workspace for me. I love the texture and subtle colors that complement the overall vibe in the room.
I hadn't originally planned to add pegboard to this side of the wall, but I felt that it needed it to draw the eye completely across the room and also offers a little spot to hang a mirror for guests to check their hair/makeup. The mirror is from my little vintage stash and I used a piece of the fabric twill tape that the rugs were rolled up with to hang it from the hook (cheers to improvising!) My favorite way to elevate a simple planter to something special is with a stool and I was able to find this yellow-green vintage piece that perfectly complemented the other colors in the room. The soft, silver grey of the Senecio plant pops against the green walls and its soft texture catches the light from the window magically...
The 1940's secretary that I searched months for and ended up finding at one of my favorite shopping haunts seems almost radiant against these green walls! A vintage Hoffman armchair slung with a cozy sheepskin is the perfect spot to sit at my computer or do some writing in the morning. The white pottery on the top of the secretary is a collection of vintage, new/mass market, and handmade pieces that I've been collecting. I recently purchased the remaining pieces to create a simple vignette that stands in contrast against the wall color and traditional style of the secretary.
A close up of the display space in the secretary. I have a feeling I am going to be adding to this over time, but some of my favorite design and art books made their way in, a notecard with one of my favorite quotes by J. R. R. Tolkein that reads "Little by little, one travels far", and a dried fern frond from our garden.
I left the wall over by the desk blank so that I could use it for inspiration, design boards, etc. Simple wasabi tape makes things easy to pin up and take down without damaging the walls.
Here'a a couple more views of the space.
And this ingenious VALLENTUNA pullout bed from Ikea.
And now it's time to get down into snuggling and relaxing and creating more great rooms for clients in this space! Thank you guys so, so much for all your kind words and encouragement along the way. I heard from many of you who told me you were inspired to undertake your own makeovers in your spaces and that is so thrilling because that is what this is ALL about! Since this is my first year participating I'd love to hear what you think about the blog posts, did you find them helpful? Was there something more you wanted to know about? Were the photos sufficient? I would appreciate any feedback you have.
Thank you to Linda from Calling It Home for creating and hosting this design challenge for so many years and to House Beautiful for sponsoring the event. I hope to be able to participate again next spring, so stay tuned for more! And don't forget to hope over to the other guest participants pages and see what their final reveals look like and you can also check out the great group of featured designers as well. So much juicy design goodness folks! And if you're interested in seeing more of my interior design work, you can find it here. xo, nicole
RUG: west elm
SPLOTCHES PILLOW: Made of Cloth
SOFA BED: Ikea
PINK SILK PILLOW: west elm
BLUE & GREEN VELVET PILLOWS: Ikea
WOOL THROW: Home Goods
ARC LAMP: vintage, Scout & Annie
SIDE TABLE: vintage/repurposed
STICK STOOL/FOOTREST: Home Goods
WEAVING: The Forest Fern
ROLLER SHADES: Blindsmax.com SOLARVUE ROLLER SHADES - R-SERIES
CEILING LIGHT: west elm (from a few years back)
PAINT COLOR: Rainy Afternoon from Benjamin Moore
We're almost to the finish line at week six of the One Room Challenge! Thank goodness for an extra week to pull everything together. In all honesty, the room is pretty much done as I had to have it complete for my awesome photographer to come and capture the space earlier this week. If you're just checking in your can see the progression via week one, week two, week three, week four, and week five. This week I'm sharing those last major pieces to go into the room before all the finishing pretty touches are added for the reveal...
First up was getting the new Ikea VALLENTUNA piece into the room. Since we are going to use this space as a multifunctional room, I thought this was a versatile piece that could function as a nice lounging piece or a bed for guests. It's a modular system that is slipcovered, so all the parts can be easily washed and it comes apart in smaller pieces, which was also important since we're in an older home with smaller staircases and doorways.
I chose the light grey slipcover that complemented the mural well and also looks great against the green walls. I love the modern lines of the piece, they add a little tension against some of the more traditional elements in the room. The piece went together easily and seems really sturdy. I've already been snuggling myself into those high arms. And of course Shelby thinks that we're just doing the whole room up for her :)
The bottom portions of the sofa slide out like a drawer to reveal a support that the cushion then unfolds on to create the bed. This simple design is ingenious!
Down came the boob light and up went and older West Elm fixture that we've moved from two other houses...we've typically have had it in our dining room, but I thought it would be fun to have it in this room. It adds more of the modern element that I want to infuse into the space. The fixture didn't always have the gold interior shades, I got a wild hair years ago when I first bought it and gold leafed the insides of the shades for some contrast.
Ultimately I think I'll have to have a smaller down rod made for it as it hangs a tad lower than I'd like it to (we only have 8' ceilings). At 6 feet tall I can walk under it ok, but anyone much taller might bump their head...good thing this is not a high traffic space!
I also made some progress on this little side table. It's an old bubble gum stand that I've had for years, I think I bought it for $20 at an antique festival in Florida. I gave it a fresh coat of matte black paint and bought a pre-made top at Lowes (don't judge) that I gave a quick whitewash treatment to.
We also installed a dimmer control switch in the space. Whenever possible I think it's a little luxury to add a dimmer to a space so that the lighting can be controlled throughout the day. We ended up going with Lutron's Caseta dimmer which can be controlled via a remote as well as smart devices like iPhones or even the Alexa device. We primarily did this so that we can control the lights when we are out of town instead of adding timers to our outlets, but it will also be nice to be able to adjust the lighting without having to get up every time. Plus, our guest can use the remote (or their iPhones) for turning off the lights without having to get out of bed. A little luxury that will hopefully go a long way in the space. We hope to add more of these switches to other rooms as time goes by.
All the little details for the room are coming together as well, here's a little sneak peek of some of the pieces coming in....
Beautiful weaving from my friend Sara of The Forest Fern.
Some midcentury glass goodness from Scout and Annie
All the cozy pillows...including the beautiful printed one from fellow artist Made of Cloth.
And of course....plants :)
A wallpapering we'll go! That was the focus of this week. As someone who hasn't wallpapered but only once before with a product that is *slightly* different than true wallpaper, I wanted to tackle the wallpaper project for the room as soon as possible. As I mentioned in the post from the second week I knew that I wanted to go with a mural for the room, but floated around to several different options before settling on Anewall's Clouded Mural. I've been pinning wallpaper in general for the last few months (you can see my "stash" here), there are so many good options! Anewall had excellent customer service. Since their papers are from Canada, I wasn't sure that it would arrive in time to support the One Room Challenge, so I sent them an email and they replied promptly with timelines (that would work-yay!) and also sent over some great samples so that I could choose a paint before the full mural arrived.
Since I was doing full length walls in this room, I thought it would be a good idea to have a second set of hands so I had my studio assistant come in from the woodshop for the day and help me out with the papering. It was so great to have another person to help move those wet, drippy sheets of wallpaper and maneuver the paper in place to line up the pattern. Here's the progress after the first couple panels went up.
We had a slight snafu on that second panel that required a bit of quick, slightly panic thinking. I had painted a couple of the dark green samples on that wall....I am not really sure why, because I always planned to put a mural on it, but when we put that second piece up over the paint sample swatch IT SHOWED THROUGH THE PAPER (!!!!!) I'm not sure why I didn't think to prime over it...I was so diligent about priming over the walls in the bathroom wallpapering project....I blame it on having a lot of irons in the fire right now. But at any rate, this was a problem, it looked really bad. Now we had this wet wallpaper that we had started hanging, heck, mostly smoothing it on the wall and it had something bad behind it....yikes!
Luckily, I already had a wet primer roller stored at the ready from some other projects and we quickly (and gently) removed the strip of wallpaper from the wall, wetted it a little more with a sprayer and re-booked it to keep it from drying out. I then rolled out the painted sections with the primer and Caira took the hairdryer to them to quickly dry each coat...as we were doing this, I kept checking in on the paper and giving it light spritzes of water wherever I saw it starting to dry out.
After three coats of primer it looked like we had covered most of the dark green paint and we gently repositioned that second piece back into place. It seemed like it was behaving a little different that it had before, but after some deep, calming breaths, and slowly and gently working it into place, all seemed fine. I'm happy to report after being up on the wall almost a week, the paper seems just as secure as the others! Whew!
We continued hanging the remaining panels, moving across the wall. Below is a quick snapshot of the booking process. After soaking the panels in a tub of water for about 15 seconds, we would unroll the panels and then fold them adhesive sides together to let the paper "relax" for about a minute before hanging it on the wall.
Getting closer! I love how the clouds have a luminosity about them, we could start to see the colors shifting and changing throughout the day....so pretty!
And then one more panel and around the corner of the wall....and done!
Instead of trying to cut the edge on that corner by the door, which would probably seem really awkward, I decided to wrap it around the corner to meet the doorframe. This would also allow for a peek of the paper from the hallway which I thought was a pretty touch and would encourage the eye around the corner since the mural is not on a wall facing the doorway.
The print quality on the paper is a really nice, watercolor feel.
I'm loving how it works with the green walls...
Beyond the wallpaper I didn't accomplish much else this week except for ordering a few more items that we need. But I have a couple ideas brewing for details in the room....this green charcoal portrait that I picked up when I lived in Jacksonville, FL four years ago has yet to find a spot in this house....I think she'd be lovely in here...
I've also had this old bubblegum machine base that I picked up years ago #hoarder and I'm toying around with the idea of making a wood top for it as a side table to the loveseat/pullout bed...I'll likely change the color of the base to something that jives better with the colors in the room. I love the old-fashioned details on this piece and I think it would provide a nice contrast to the more modern lines of the loveseat.
That's it for this weeks progress! We also received word that due to the storms and fires that have plagued so many over the last month and a half and their impact on timelines, scheduling, shipping, etc, the One Room Challenge is being extended a week so that everyone can finish strong! The new reveal date will be Thursday, November 16th.
Thanks again for following along! Your kind words mean so much to me. I'd love to hear your thoughts and ideas on wallpaper or anything else, I so enjoy hearing what everyone else has been up to.
Check out what the other guest participants have been up to here, there are so many great transformations going on, it's a great way to get inspired! And if you missed the previous weeks posts, you can can up here. xo, Nicole
Hey guys! Ever have that feeling like you're just not where you'd hoped to be on a project? That's been my week with the One Room Challenge guest room/office space. Between photoshoots for other interiors projects, planning for holiday and workshops, filling orders and getting ready for a show on Saturday it felt like I was working at a snails pace. After the dramatic push to get the space painted, working on a bunch of small stuff this week felt a little less dramatic. But nonetheless important, 'cause it's all in the details, right!? So let's dive in!
I'm apparently having a little early American moment, maybe it's the fact I'm surrounded by so may influences here in Philly, I'm nostalgic for my childhood (I grew up with lots of early American style pieces), or I just wanted a cool desk with all sorts of nooks and crannies to stash my treasures. I've been thinking about getting an antique secretary for a while. I'd actually seen a really cool one when I was down in Fredericksburg last December and I've wistfully thought about how I should have bought it at the time these last months. Perhaps they might still have it? I almost made the 10-hour round trip drive to check #obsessed. So I turned to my resources Craigslist and Ebay and trolled them for MONTHS searching for the perfect old secretary. I don't have a lot of time to go shopping in person, so I like to check out these sites in the evening when I am looking for vintage/antique furniture. After months of searching, nothing. I was trying not to get discouraged because you can't rush a good vintage piece, but the One Room Challenge was quickly approaching and I was feeling a little bummed that I wouldn't have THE PIECE.
On a whim one afternoon after swinging by one of my favorite nurseries, I stopped by a great vintage/junk shop a few doors down. I have found a few things here and there before and just wanted to pop in to see what they had going on. I never expected to find a secretary, but there it was, buried behind frames, mirrors, and an old sled. My heart skipped a beat and I quickly pulled the items away from it to get a closer look. "Good lines, yes...oh, I like those little spindle legs...and no ornate details at the top...good, very good" I thought to myself. The color was a little more orange-y than I preferred, but I could look past that because the form was the closest to what I was wanting. Sold.
She's missing a little hardware but that's an easy fix. I spent some time earlier this week cleaning off years of grime with Murphy's Oil Soap. The color still wasn't quite to my liking and I thought about using a refinishing product to darken the color a bit but after talking to some other folks and thinking about it a little more I'm gonna keep it as is. I don't want to loose the wonderful patina it's developed over the years, plus with the dark green walls I think it might get lost if it was too much darker.
Here's a closer look at the lovely interior....I'm imagining I'll be super organized with those little drawers and cubbies-ha! A girl can dream....
I really love buying older furniture because a lot of times it is more well made than new, and oftentimes at a much better price. Check out these dovetailed drawers! The case of the piece is solid maple (SO HEAVY!) and the sides of the drawers are sycamore. Also, the wall looks aqua in this photo, it's not that color at all...what can I say, I'm lazy and use my iPhone for these shots...
The piece is stamped with a Conant Ball Makers Mark. At the shop where I bought it they told me that it was likely manufactured in the 1940's. Conant Ball was established in the late 1800's in Gardner, Massachusetts and specialized in crafting Colonial furniture reproductions and cane seat chairs. Russel Wright was a designer for Conant Ball and designed many of their most popular furniture items, I wasn't really able to find anything in my brief search on this particular secretary but I wonder if Mr. Wright had a hand in it's design.
Since some of that hardware is missing and I think it could be modernized a bit anyway, I'm planning on replacing the drawer hardware and knobs. I'm still waiting on one more option to be delivered, but I'm liking the way these are bin pulls are looking.
Ok, I've definitely drawn out the story of this secretary long enough. One to a couple other things. I removed all the hardware from the closet and bedroom doors and followed Manhattan Nests magical formula to remove those old layers of paint to reveal the brassy layers beneath as seen on the back side of this hinge.
Here's the before:
I started a bit of work on the hook rail that is going to run along the wall where the closet is located. It'll be a great spot for guest to hang things and also to display a couple special pieces. My brother fabricated the hooks and I've been working on getting the limed ash prepped for hanging, here's a sample of the general look.
Next up, the wallpaper mural, it just arrived this afternoon and I'm planning on installing it tomorrow-Eeeeep! Thanks for following along guys! Don't forget to check out the progress being made by the other guest participants right here. xo, nicole