Sharing My Article for Orange & Blue Magazine: “Beyond The Board – 8 Ways To Transform Any Space”
My new article is out in the University of Florida’s Orange & Blue Magazine. Check it out for tips to transform any space!
Thank you to the Orange & Blue staff for having me!
Building Our Dream Home – Pool Bath Reveal
Next up on the room reveals for our dream home is the Pool Bath! This bathroom is right off our pool so we wanted this to be super practical for both kids and adults to use.
Let’s dive deeper into the design of the Pool Bath. All of the info and products are linked below in a handy Pinterest-ready image.
*If you’re just joining us, this is another installment of a series documenting the building of our personal dream home. So far we’ve tackled: Inspiration | Floorplan | Location | Breaking Ground | Roofing | Windows | Insulation | Sheetrock & Plaster | Selecting Paint | Selecting Flooring | Selecting Bathtubs | Selecting Lighting | Selecting Fans | Selecting Cabinets | Powder Room Reveal | Selecting Countertops | Kitchen Reveal | Whole House Reveal | Master Bathroom Reveal
To kick off the design for the pool bathroom, I started with this beautiful wallpaper from Quadrille! I have seen this print before and LOVED it, but didn’t have the right space or project to use it for until now. The big and bold print of the wallpaper is the real showstopper in this bathroom as all the fixtures need to be practical and long lasting, so it was great to use this wallpaper! I kept all the other selections simple to support this wonderful wallpaper.
I wanted to keep the plumbing for the pool bath similar to the other areas of the house but slightly simpler in design. I chose the Bancroft series from Kohler so all the plumbing fixtures are still classic yet modern at the same time. The fixtures are practical for this bathroom while still being in keeping with the rest of the house’s plumbing too. I chose polished nickel as the finish for the plumbing in this bathroom (and most others).
For the shower, I went with the single handle temperature pressure shower head.
For the vanity unit I designed a smaller version of the furniture style vanities we have elsewhere in the house. It’s a simple two-door cabinet with furniture style detailing and it makes the room feel like it’s more than just a pool bath! I added simple polished nickel knobs to the doors too.
The finishes for the pool bath are similar to other areas of the house, although the plumbing is polished nickel and we have opted for cheaper finishes here.
The accessories here are understated compared to other areas of the house but considering the size of this bathroom, I love the choices made here!
Keeping with the same blue and white theme, the vase was a must-have to tie everything together.
I wanted to add an accent color to this room to give it its own personality. I found these pink Turkish towels and I instantly fell in love! They add a contrast to the space while still making it feel polished and well put together. I then added some pink roses to the vase to bring the whole scheme together.
I love this round mirror that has a slightly more coastal theme. The raw rattan detailing brings warmth to the space and I love how playful it makes the bathroom.
The main lighting for the pool bath is a lovely flush mount fixture from Hudson Valley Lighting called Rye! It pulls the other nickel finishes together to make the space feel cohesive, and this has then been supplemented with a recessed downlight.
I am so pleased with how the bathroom turned out! It’s fun and interesting and still works with the rest of the house.
I gathered up all of the info, complete with links, and put them in a Pinterest real board below. Be sure to “Pin It” for future reference.
Building Our Dream Home – Master Closet Reveal
What do you do when you REALLY want to create the closet of your dreams, but don’t have the budget for it? You know, the closet that you see in all of the magazines…fresh, bright, light…organized with tons of storage. Custom closets like this can easily cost over $30K. Well, I spent about a tenth of that and created my own perfect dream closet using IKEA and Walmart. Really!
In this reveal post I’m dissecting the design of my Master Closet so you can design and build something similar. Don’t worry, all of the links are below along with a handy-dandy image to pin on Pinterest for future reference. It’s all the way at the bottom of the post.
OK, so let’s walk through it together!
The Dream of a dream Closet
Most women have their vision of a dream closet, and I’m no different. I’ve dreamed of having my very own walk-in closet space for as long as I can remember, so designing this for the new dream house really is a dream come true.
where to begin
Instead of going down the custom cabinetry route, I decided to use a premed “system” and adapt it to what I wanted. I have seen a TON of different lines over the years, from Home Depot to The Container Store, to IKEA.
It was actually a no brainer no use the IKEA PAX system. It is relatively cheap (or at least cost effective compared to custom cabinetry) and there are lots of bells and whistles you can add on to fully customize it.
IKEA's pax system
The IKEA website really walks you through the process. The basic PAX system is comprised of empty bookcase-style units, called wardrobes, that are available in 3 widths, 2 depths and 2 heights. You can create a floorpan easily there and play around with all of the configurations.
I created my room and played around with the configurations. A few slight tweaks were made to this, but this is the basic layout. It leaves the corners of the room unused and that’s fine with me. I hate having things fall into corners where you can’t reach. The PAX system has units that extend into the corners, if you’d like to use them.
I knew we would be adding “fillers” with wood to make it all look seamless, so I didn’t worry about the gaps either.
Once you have it all set, it spits out a plan with instructions and a product list for you. It even tells you which holes to count up to and use. I ordered everything online and had it delivered. Done and done!
and a few additions
Finishing off the top of the PAX system was crucial to the success of this closet design. My husband built a platform on the ground all of the way around, along with a top rise and crown to make the whole run of storage areas appear taller and to get the crown up and over the window frame.
For the window area we built in a window seat which has become a fabulous space to either put shoes on or sit and relax before starting the day. This built in window seat has been made with the same detailing as other parts of the PAX add-ons we did so everything looks cohesive.
Now, let’s talk about the $1 secret to the whole closet! See my cute little sidekick? He’s putting in 3200 of these little plug-ins to cover the holes for the adjustable shelves. I actually paid him, along with my daughter’s best friend, to put these in. (Thanks Grace!) This is the key…believe me when I tell you that this is what makes the closet look complete and finished. They were 100 for a $1 and they made the whole closet look seamless. See below for the info. Total game changer!
I am beyond pleased with how this came together! It’s bright, fresh, clean, organized…everything I wanted!
All the details
All the fun trays, pull outs and details are what made this closet so special. Let’s take a look!
- Use white cabinetry. It looks rich and it’s easy to add color matched trim
- Glass shelves are your friend! Use them wherever you can
- Pick one hanger and stick with it. Buy extras for future use
- Find a basket or storage solution you like and repeat it
- Fill in the holes where the adjustable shelves go
- Use valet rods wherever you can
- Have mirrors cut to back your open bookshelves
- Line your drawers with paper that smells amazing!
Something that made a HUGE difference was selecting a key piece to repeat throughout. The Container Store Hamptons basket is repeated throughout the closet so it keeps the whole space looking and feeling clean.
To soften the large window, I added a linen fixed roman shade with an automated roller shade behind for privacy. Layering window treatments in this way allows you to have the flexibility you need for privacy while always maintaining a polished and finished look.
To keep the closet feeling light and fresh we used glasswork shelves throughout to help keep things open. We also backed the open shelves with mirrors to reflect more light around the room, and to make it appear more luxurious. Adding valet rods where needed throughout too.
A key element of the master closet that is a non-negotiable finishing touch is the hangers. Gone are the days of using mixed hangers! I’ve chosen one style of hanger only, and stuck with it for everything. This one, seemingly small detail makes the world of difference to the final look of any closet.
I had always dreamt of having a built-in island in my closet, but honestly it just seemed too big and invasive. I added an inexpensive round table in the center to make an island instead. I always make sure this is topped with fresh flowers or a plant.
ALL the links
So what do you think? I’d love to hear! I you have any questions about the IKEA PAX system, let me know! I’m happy to share my product list or help you in any way I can.
Building Our Dream Home – Master Bathroom Reveal
As one of my favorite rooms of the new house, the next room I’m revealing is the Master Bathroom! A beautiful oasis and sanctuary away from the living areas, and a room I love to get ready in every morning. It’s perfect and I hope you love it just as much as me!
Let’s get into the details of the Master Bath!
*If you’re just joining us, this is another installment of a series documenting the building of our personal dream home. So far we’ve tackled: Inspiration | Floorplan | Location | Breaking Ground | Roofing | Windows | Insulation | Sheetrock & Plaster | Selecting Paint | Selecting Flooring | Selecting Bathtubs | Selecting Lighting | Selecting Fans | Selecting Cabinets | Powder Room Reveal | Selecting Countertops | Kitchen Reveal | Whole House Reveal
The Start of the Design
The design for the master bathroom started with the main floor tile. I chose a hexagonal Calcutta marble mosaic that features a central square in each tile. It was quarantined in Italy for 6 months but we happily moved into our dream home with bare concrete floors until it all arrived.
To make up for the floor tile expense, we kept the shower tile inexpensive but made it more interesting and premium looking by adding a marble crown and base. I chose these hexagonal mosaic tiles for the shower flooring to create a more slip resistant surface.
A Show-Stopping Feature
The freestanding bath is from MTI – it’s luxurious and the highlight of the master bath. Everything was then chosen to reinforce its sculptural beauty. For example, we added wainscotting behind the tub to set the stage for it to really shine.
For the plumbing in the master bath we kept the fixtures traditional and chose the Kohler Artifacts line in polished nickel. Nickel is a warmer tone that works better with the wood finishes and marble than a chrome finish would.
As always, we worked with Carson’s Cabinetry in Florida for our custom cabinets. They were made to look like furniture with a more “dining room sideboard” look. For storage it has a few inches less than your standard vanity unit because of the elongated legs, but it’s all drawers and they’re super functional. In fact – I have more space than I need
To dress the vanity units, I added actual furniture hardware from House of Antique Hardware to it so it keeps with the furniture feel. The center area is bumped out to give the cabinets more visual interest and character. This central area detail really gives a more traditional feel while the rest of the room is more modern and sleek.
Vanity unit hardware is from House of Antique Hardware.
For the countertops we used the same Calcutta gold marble as the kitchen as the slabs were just stunning at the stone yard!
Above the vanity units, a large inset framed mirror simplifies the wall and finishes the silhouette off beautifully. The mirrors also allow for the wall sconces to shine through too. We added a makeup mirror in polished nickel to add extra functionality.
I added a fixed roman shade to the window that features an automatic roller shade behind for privacy. This way, the window always looks good!
Next to the bathtub we framed out a mirror to the left to mimic the glass graces in the shower. I love symmetry so this was the perfect addition! Plus is reflects light and opens up the bathtub area even more.
Within the shower we added builtin niches and shelves. I actually brought my shampoo bottles to site one day to make sure the shelf sizes were *just right*! And I made sure to measure and test out the lower builtin ledge for my foot to shave my legs. Being able to measure these practical things on site is a huge advantage because it takes all the guessing out of it!
If you needed any more proof that mixing metals is definitely okay – my new master bathroom is the perfect example! Using bronze doorknobs, Antigua bronze cabinet hardware, polished nickel plumbing and sconces, finished off with a brushed gold chandelier. We couldn’t have used any more metals in this bathroom if we tried!
Thanksgiving Table With Nothing Over $10
This year, while we’re building our “Dream Home”, we are in a rental that won’t hold our 14+ crowd for Thanksgiving. I’ve decided to take it outside and create a casual, but chic table right on the property. I love how it turned out and I spent NO MORE THAN $10 ON ANYTHING! Let’s take a look…every single item is linked below.
Click on the numbers above… or let’s walk through it together.
Flatware in champagne gold. Each piece came in at $1.31 (on sale)
Water goblets $4 each (now on sale for even less!)
Tablecloths from Tablecloth Factory at under $6 each
Burlap runner $7.99
Wood-look charger plates $1.99 each
Lamb’s ear garland $9.99 each
White plates $2.99 (on sale)
Gray fabric napkins $2 each (on sale)
Gold pumpkins on each plate $2.50 each
Glass bubble vase $3.99 each
Gold mercury candleholder $5.99
White candles $3 each
Acorn filler $2.99
Farm chairs rented for $8 each from PRE Events
Soup tureen used for centerpiece $9.99 (from TJMaxx)
Candleholders were on Facebook Marketplace for $8 each! You can find the originals on WSHome.
Here’s a handy dandy chart for your Pinterest board.
So, what do you think? I’d love to hear!