Jul 18, 2014

random friday ramblings

its friday. 
how did THAT happen? (and while you are at it, please explain to me how july is almost half way over.)

i just wanted to share a few snippets of the last few weeks...

i finally made it to the "new" location of the overstock outlet store. for those of you that don't know---SLC is the headquarters of overstock.com, and they have an outlet store. it used to be located in sandy, but is now closer to their headquarters, near the airport.
anyway, i wasn't blown away, but i do have to say that there were a lot of chairs. if you are looking for a pair of dining chairs or a sinlge upholserted chair, this would be a great place to look!
it is only open thursday, friday and saturday.

i am gearing up to decorate charlottes room. for her nightstands, i am considering an ikea hack with some simple 2 or 3 drawer dressers, with some acrylic side panels added. i am not 100% i can pull it off right now, but if i can, i think it could look amazing!

i have been in love with this nina campbell cypress wallpaper forever. i always planned on using it in my powder room, but i am considering using another wall covering in there, and using this in the toilet closet in the master. 
this project is pretty far down on my to do list. but its always nice to cream.

speaking of TO DO projects, i can't wait to add more storage and functionality to my laundry room!
right now, it is literally just sheetrock and tile, with the washer and dryer sitting in the room. my plan is to add a countertop, cabinets above the washer/dryer, shallow hooks on the back wall to hang clothes, a window treatment, and possibly some wallpaper. oh, and a new light fixture! the one that is in there currently was a $5 one that i grabbed from lowes.

i have a things for round mirrors, and have grown quite a collection of them. my husband is very certain i own one of every single round mirror made, EVER. well, i had seen things online about this cute little martha stewart mirror and home depot, and when i saw it, i knew it really, really, really wanted to come live with me in my house! it is a happy addition to the other round mirrors i have!

yes, i know. this picture is UG-LY. i just thought the wood trim detail was fun...the slight inverted scallop and the hanging tassels. a more modern interpretation of this would look amazing in a kids room or powder room!
(this was taken at the zermatt resort in midway, at the tea room)

a few weeks ago i bought the smitten kitchen cookbook, and made the smores cake.
it was super yummy and worth the time and effort.

current cooking obsession: this cookbook!

it is chock full of healthy, simple, flavorful recipes that are DO-able...you know, for those times when you don't feel like shopping at three different stores for ingredients and don't have 4 hours to prepare dinner.
last night i made this recipe, and i was blown away! my husband, who normally doesn't LOVE tilapia, had two servings, and my notoriously picky 10 year old son ate it happily and quickly.

i am in love with this ceramic tray that i bought at target!
it does such a great job of corralling the items on my countertop, and i love having a collection of fresh herbs here as well.

when we visited my brother and his family in boise a few weeks ago, we went swimming...the sun was setting and the light was so beautiful, and i was taking a few pictures of the kids and the setting, and after i took this picture, i noticed the little bird that was captured, mid-flight.
i thought it was pretty magical.

lacrosse has taken over our lives...but in a good way. (aren't heard up little lacrosse boys the cutest?)

about a year ago, my son was begging for a new butt-end for his lacrosse stick. when my husband and son looked at the available butt-ends, they didn't see any that they could customize...or that were available in the colors he wanted. my son came up with an idea to made a butt end that had a removable piece that you could pop off of the actual butt end (leaving it taped/attached to the stick), and change it out! after some research, phone calls, designing, and scheming, my sons idea, (which has become quite the hobby for my husband!) is available!
yep---that little red "tag" in the middle pops out, and you can trade it out for another color and design!

i have never been witness to the process that brings a product from an idea to production, so this has been a fun journey to watch!

anyway, if someone you know plays lacrosse, be sure to check out their website! there will be more colors and designs available over the coming months, AND if you want something to be custom made for your team, just contact them and they can make it happen!

happy weekend everyone!!

Jul 16, 2014

neutral, masculine nursery, week 3: updating a vintage dresser

well, it has been a few weeks. again...eeek! 
if this summer were a theme park ride, it would be the fastest, curviest, craziest roller coaster of the bunch!  if you want any other explanations for my gross negligence, click here and here.

ok, where were we?
oh! thats right--the neutral, masculine nursery. 
(see our week 1 and week 2 progress!)

this week, i wanted to share a really wonderful way to update any vintage dresser and give it a clean, modern look.

my client had this dresser that was in her room growing up, and she wanted to use it in the nursery.

it was in great shape, and i knew that it could look amazing with just a few minor tweaks. 
first up: removing the hardware. 
the current hardware just wasn't cutting it.

i found this inspiration picture, and we both loved the simple, clean look of the wood dresser with the painted drawers.

 after about 3 seconds of contemplation, i picked my favorite white, benjamin moore's swiss coffee for the drawers. i also had my client fill in the knob holes on the cabinet doors so that we could install some ring pulls on the face of the door.

this is a peek after the first coat of paint:

after the second coat...

we took a while to find some hardware that we liked, and that fit the 6" spread of the previous hardware (NOT an easy task!). we ended up with some simple chrome pulls for the drawers:

and these for the cabinet doors: (i also used these in my master bathroom)

and---here is a look at the AFTER:

the room is looking fantastic! i cannot wait to share the rest of our progress with you...and i PROMISE that you will not have to wait another three weeks for the next update!

Jun 25, 2014

design plans: neutral residence with touches of green, blue + a hint of modern

sometimes, it can be a smart move to tackle several spaces in your home at the same time. usually, i suggest working on 1-2 spaces at a time (it can get overwhelming for your brain and your budget if you bite off more than you can chew!), but there are instances when working on everything at once is the way to go! 

this particular client had already endured a major remodel on the main floor of her historic home, and had made some beautiful choices. she was looking for some guidance on taking the decor to the next level...adding texture, color, and loved the idea of mixing in a few modern elements with her existing traditional pieces.
we worked together on a "super-sized" pinterest board + phone consultation (she also opted to add design boards) that included her entry, family room, breakfast room as well as a hallway and powder room. 

she was drawn to a neutral, texture rich palette with pops of kelly green and navy blue, and i love that she was willing to "go a little crazy" with the light fixtures! whenever i am pinning ideas for a client, i always try to gather an array of styles, whether it is a chair or a light fixture. some are very safe and traditional, and others are meant to "stretch" a persons design sensibilities...introduce them to something that they may never have otherwise considered. this client was right on board with some of my more "funky" choices, and i think the finished rooms will benefit greatly from her willingness to take a risk.

here are the design boards:

 the new lighting in these rooms will add an updated vibe and help make the spaces feel unique.
adding small, interesting vignettes can take a table from feeling dull... to layered and full of texture and interest!

this was a large living room, with a fireplace, french doors going to a porch, an entry from the entry hall, an entry to the kitchen, as well as several windows. rooms like these can be challenging to lay out. we discussed layout options, and the one we both agreed would work the best created three different ZONES in the room---the main seating area, a reading/bookcase zone, and an office area.

my summer is nearly booked, but i still have some spaces left in august! feel free to email me at autumnclemons@yahoo.com to set up a consultation!
you can read about my services here.

now offering:
* the pinterest board can now be modified to fit needs in SEVERAL rooms! for instance...you may need a new light fixture and drapes in your dining room, need paint suggestions and new hardware for your kitchen, and some new pillow and art ideas for your living room! (minor needs, but several rooms)  email me for more information if you are considering this option.

Jun 23, 2014

neutral masculine nursery: week 2. wallpapering the ceiling + choosing paint

after seeing my clients inspirations pictures, i knew that we needed to turn up the volume on the textures in this neutral nursery. (click here to see the original design board)

we were on a tight budget, but decided that using some faux wood paneling wallpaper on the ceiling, was worth a bit of a splurge. (my client and her husband hung it themselves to save some money!)

we found lots of really great options for the wood paneled wallpaper, but it seemed like as soon as we locked in on something we liked, we found out it was discontinued. hello wallpaper people! please update your books more often to decrease headache and heartache!! gheesh.
this was our original choice. (discontinued)

 and another choice. (we decided this didn't provide enough contrast.)

this was the choice we settled one, found on EBAY, of all places!
(you can also find similar paper here)

and.....the finished wallpaper on the ceiling:
 i was so pleased with the way it turned out! doesn't it look great?

next, we had to decide on paint for the walls. we knew we wanted a soft white color.
we tried 4 samples....all benjamin moore.

we ended up choosing benjamin moore's gray mist: (CC-80)

  let the painting begin!

 a peek at the finished walls and wallpapered ceiling!
i will be back next week with a dresser makeover and a peek at the new rocking chair!

Jun 18, 2014

affordable find: iron "x" lantern

i am kinda on vacation this week--my parents are in town from tennessee and are staying in a condo in park city and we are joining them. park city is one of our favorite "quick getaway" destinations...it is only about 40 minuted from our home, but feels like another world. yesterday it REALLY felt like another world...because it SNOWED! yah. snowed. in june. (if you follow me on instagram you saw some pictures that i posted!) UGH. i mean, i love a good summer storm, but not when it comes with SNOW. in june. did i mention it is june? yah. i know. its blowing my mind too.

anyway, i have been wanting to post this baby forever....ENJOY!

riviera iron lantern

josie iron chandelier with paper shade
(this is actually on sale right now for $102!! i just bought it! i am planning on decorating the powered room on my main floor, and i think this light will be the perfect addition.)

happy shopping!

Jun 13, 2014

neutral, masculine nursery: week 1 (before pics and design plan)

when i found out that a good friend of mine was expecting her first baby, i was secretly hoping she would ask me to help her design the nursery. 
i was thrilled when she told me she was expecting a boy, and that she indeed wanted my help to design a special place for her new little guy.
as i started brainstorming, i looked over her pinterest board (as i do with all of my clients!) she had pinned a fair number of nurseries, and i definitely noticed a consistent theme of neutral, textures spaces with a hint of modern and an element of quirkiness. 

this is the design plan i came up with:

here are some BEFORE pictures:
as you can see, the room is a blank slate.
the only items that my client currently has are this alpaca rug and a vintage dresser. (see below)
the walls will be painted white, so that the textures will play center stage.

the dresser will be placed on this wall, with a gallery wall above it.

the wall will feature the crib, a wall lamp and a chair.

we are using the dresser on the design board as inspiration to transform this vintage piece:
my client has had it since she was a little girl. we are replacing the hardware and painting the drawers a creamy white.

i will be trying to post about this project once a week until it is completed, which should be in the next 4-5 weeks.

happy weekend!

Jun 11, 2014

guess who's back? (with my new zebra ottomans and a side of ranting and raving)

ah, well.
as i have stated before, it is good for my soul to disconnect from the cyber world every once in a while. sometimes these breaks are planned, and sometimes (like the last two + weeks), the break is just a result of a busier than normal time in my life.

as you know, i have three kids, and if you have kids, you know that the end of the school year can get CRAZY! like, "the-week-before-christmas" type of crazy. parties, library books to hunt for, graduations, gifts to buy teachers, notes to write, field trips to attend, concerts, recitals...throw in a few lacrosse tournaments, orientations, terrible internet connection, plenty of e-design work, the stomach flu, a broken arm, a road trip, and family in town from tennessee, and the result is...well, a neglected blog.

but i don't feel guilty. 
is that bad? 
i don't blog for a living. i write this blog because i WANT to. because i LIKE sharing what i have learned, as well as tips that i feel can help you make your home a place you LOVE. sure, because of the blog, i have a small and thriving design business, and there are a few occasional perks that i get to enjoy (giveaways, sponsored posts), but overall, i am NOT a professional blogger. and honestly, i have no desire to make bajillions of dollars selling you stuff and bloggingposting/tweeting/instagramming about the free crap i am getting and how you should go and buy it even though i am getting it for nothing.
whew! was that too harsh?!
frankly, i am thrilled that some people can make a living blogging. i actually think it is fantastic!  but i appreciate those blogs that have meaningful and personal content. and yes, there are some "professional" bloggers who do a tremendous job at this, and i LOVE their blogs. but there are a whole lot of others who seem to be like yapping dogs, vying for my attention, always tweeting and posting and instgramming about....nothing
it's just noise.
visual and verbal noise. 
i have slowly stopped looking at blogs that i feel are  there for pure commercial profit. that care more about 'getting a post up' and selling me stuff than in a personal connection with their readers and in creating content that is relevant and original and inspiring.  (am i alone in feeling this way? are there blogs out there that you just tune out because they are too commercial?)

ANYWAY, i suppose that is enough of the philosophical mumbo jumbo.

lets talk zebra, shall we?
as you may know, i like animal prints. a lot.
(check out an older post about zebra print here. it has some killer picture that i scanned from old-ish magazines. other posts that show some zebra love are here, here and here.)

but, i like my animal prints them in controlled and sophisticated doses. i know, i know. some of you might be thinking "oh--so slathering leopard wallpaper all over your girls bathroom is CONTROLLED?" well, in a way, yes.
the print is small and rather monochromatic.

if the wallpaper had been strictly black and white it might have been overwhelming, but it has a softness to it and contains several taupe and gray tones that mute the pattern and make it read as a neutral.

NOW, that being said. (holy cow, i am really ON ONE today, aren't i??)
let me tell you about my transformed ottomans!

i bought these ottomans from jc penney about 4 years ago. i am so glad that i snagged them when i did, as they are no longer available.

they came with a beige micofiber top, which i recovered in  houndstooth shortly after i purchased them.

i have always dreamed of having some hide on hair ottomans in my house, but they are SO expensive! i knew that i could come up with a more affordable way to get that high-end look i was after.
after a couple months of hunting, i was able to find a new zebra printed cowhide from safavieh that had a small imperfection for $160. that isn't SUPER cheap, i realize, but if you have ever priced cow hide rugs (especially zebra ones) then you know that this is less than half of what they normally retail for.

(as you can see, the houndstooth top was showing some signs of wear and tear...)

ahhh, yeah! something good is about to happen!

because the cow hide is so thick, there is no way i would attempt this as a diy project! the cow hide would never run through my sewing machine. (plus, who am i kidding? i HATE sewing.) i took the tops and the rug to my upholstery shop and had them redo them and replace the foam with much thicker foam. each cushion with all the labor and the new foam cost about $45 each.
so, aside from the original cost of the ottomans, this redo cost me about $130 per ottoman. not too bad!

 i painted the frames with gold spray paint, which really brightened them up!

here is the finished product, which i am thrilled with!

the thicker foam makes the cushions look much more expensive...little changes like this can yield BIG results!

my living room refresh is almost complete!
you can see where i started here, and read about my progress here.
(hopefully in the next year i can replace this sofa. i am SO ready for something a little more streamlined and simple!)

anyway, it is good to be back!
i will be posting about a local nursery project soon, and give weekly updates on our progress, and i have some fun and easy projects to share in the coming weeks...so, stay tuned.