Snippets of Our Holiday Home

I can’t believe Christmas is only a few days away! As always, this time of year is busy and fun. I didn’t get around to posting an entire holiday home tour, but wanted to show you little pieces of our home, decked out for Christmas. I like to keep things simple and add little doses of cheer around the house. Whether it’s one ornament on top of a book stack or Christmas beads placed in a dish- it’s all about the little unexpected surprises (and minimal pick up in January!) 😉 Truly, I just love to slow down and spend time with family at this time of year. That’s what it is all about! Enjoy!

 

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Nutcrackers- Target Last year

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Nutcracker collection- Target, Christmas Tree Shop, Dollar Store

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Marble & Wood Star Bookend- Target last year

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Happy Holidays to you all! See you in 2017!

Our Living Room Plan

Since we have lived in this home, our living room has sat pretty much empty. We do have our secretary desk, ottoman and a chest of drawers, but there has never been any seating in the space. The kids loved using this room as an open play area and took full advantage of our vaulted ceilings for those high three pointers. Now that we have our basement finished and use that as the primary open play space, it’s time to refocus this room and plan for a seating area! The perks of waiting so long to decide on furniture, is that I have overthought this room for many years, have decided against some design trends and now have a plan to stick with! I decided to go with a grouping of four chairs, as opposed to a sofa. I have gone back and forth with this idea and I am now certain this is what I want to do!

our living room plan

This is the quick floor plan rendering I came up with for our living room. This is the first room off of the foyer, so it makes the initial impression of our home. With it’s high ceilings, I went with a dark brown, almost black paint color {Mink by Benjamin Moore}. I will stick with that wall color for now. This space also opens up to our dining room, so I want the decor to flow well from there. Here are the two spaces, as they are now:

 

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my dining room

All Images by Sarah Heppell Photography

We will take out the chest of drawers and table lamps and move that vignette to the dining room. This will free up some square footage and I will add two floor lamps to the back wall. That round mirror above the chest of drawers will be replaced with oversized art work. The small black accent table and lamp off of the foyer will relocate and be replaced with a leaning mirror. The more I see this four chair layout, the more I love it! I picture family game nights in this area and just time to sit and read for hours. Here are some of my favorite inspiration images…

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Lauren Liess

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Melanie Turner

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Southern Living

I am not sure about my center table yet, but I know I want it to be round. I have settled on a chair… the Stocksund from IKEA in the blue and white stripe.

stocksund chair ikea

I like that you can select the leg finish, so I will go with black for contrast. I can’t wait to find four matching throw blankets and pillows to add to the chairs. Ooooo- maybe in a buffalo check or plaid!! I have been back and forth about using four chairs, as opposed to a sofa and small accent chairs. The truth is, we have sofas in our basement and family room, so I want to go a bit different in here. Also, these chairs have depth and width, so it can still be comfortable to curl up in these chairs. I will keep you posted as we move along in here. There needs to be some touch up painting first, so baby steps. But now that there’s a plan in writing- it feels more permanent!

 

Project Design Now Reveal!!

The time is here… the reveal of two different spring mantels for Project Design!! You may have seen several of us bloggers hinting on social media {#ProjectDesignNow} about our spring mantels. We have styled them two ways and today is reveal day!! I want to thank Mary Ann of Classic Casual Home and Cindy of Rough Luxe Lifestyle for including me in this fabulous group!

 

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Our mantel is located in our family room and it’s always fun to make some changes and switch it up every now and then. Here is a full look at Option 1…

Spring Mantel Option 1…

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All Photos above by Sarah Heppell Photography

For mantel option 1, I went with a mixture of vintage and new and meaningful pieces with modern accessories. Starting from the right side, the “B” signifies the first letter in our last name. That is placed in front of a special print from the etsy shop, Pretty Smitten. The print says Be Smitten Every Day. I love its message and that pretty rose quartz background! I like to layer and add texture on mantels, so this beaded jar adds some interesting pattern and is unique. I also like to add round shapes to a mantel, so the clock was an old Target find and does just that. The mini windsor bench holds a special place in my heart, as I found it at an antique market when Mike and I lived in Germany. I will never part with it! And good old Zeus is next to the windsor bench. My kids named him and he is a great find from Target. I often put real ferns and small plants inside, but today- it’s one of the faux succulents that Target carries. {I am seeing a pattern here, that I shop at Target often!} :)

Spring Mantel Option 2…

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For mantel option 2, I also went with a mix of vintage and new. Starting with the right side again, I included the same “B” accessory from the first mantel. That is the only thing I kept for this option. I layered it in front of a spotted print I found at Target. I was so glad I scooped that up when I did, as about a week later, it was gone! I have always loved a hint of animal print somewhere, and this reminded me of cheetah spots. I found a green glass buoy from Home Goods. I like that it reminds me of the water and spring and summer activities. The rope detail adds some texture and interest. The ’round’ element that I love to add to mantels is now seen in both the buoy and this Federal mirror, which was a Christmas gift from my mom. It is the Ken Fulk Federal mirror from Pottery Barn and I love the vintage vibe it brings to the space. Not to mention that stunning aged brass! Adding a mirror to the mantel has been fun, as it reflects our ceiling pendant. The blue and white urns were antique shop finds. I decided to put a faux palm leaf from Pottery Barn inside the smaller urn, to bring a touch of nature to the mantel. I could also switch it out for fresh flowers, if I could remember to keep fresh water inside!

So there you have it! My spring mantel styled two ways! Which option would you choose???

Here are some tips to changing up your mantel for spring, or any time of the year:

Mantel Styling Tips

Add meaningful pieces and a mix of vintage and new to bring a collected over time style to your mantel

Layer pieces in front of each other and stand back every now and then to access what you have and what you need to add

Add different shapes, such as a round mirror, clock and mix that with a square or rectangle frame

I hope this got you ready to add some spring touches to your mantel! Now it’s the fun part… let’s check out the amazing bloggers who have transformed their mantels! They are such a talented group of ladies and I have been thrilled to be a part of this with them. Show these ladies some love:

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Add Some Flowers!

Just when we thought spring weather was around the corner over here, it started snowing today! It doesn’t show any sign of letting up, so I thought it would be fun to bring spring inside. The best way I know how to do that, is with a vase of fresh flowers. Flowers instantly warm up a room, any time of year. I am always drawn to the flower section of our grocery store, because I know what an impact they make to any room in your home. When I had our home and Project Vintage Gem photographed, I added some fresh flowers to most of the spaces. Boy did that make a difference! That and the wonderful photography talents of Sarah Heppell. :) So, here’s a round up of rooms that bring that spring time vibe, even if it’s freezing cold where you are!!

Our Home

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{hydrangeas and tulips are always my go to flowers of choice!!}

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Project Vintage Gem

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Amber B Design, Photos by Sarah Heppell

So if you are in need of some spring or you just want a cheerful change, add some fresh flowers today!!