Farm Fresh

Jacinda is the mother of five young children, and all she wanted is what every busy mother wants: a nap and a massage. The ability to jump on a trampoline again. Abs. Ok, I’m projecting here.  What she really wanted was a restful retreat – neutral farmhouse style, if we’re being specific.

Her former bedroom was heavy on the beige, filled with mismatched furniture, and simply didn’t scream “RELAX AND REJUVENATE HERE!” And it was so un-farmhouse-y, Chip and Joanna Gaines were probably already circling the block.

But unfortunately, feeding a family of seven doesn’t leave a huge budget for bedroom beautification. Too bad. So sad. I guess she’ll just have to live with it, right?




Of course not, but you knew that. You’re so smart.

And so is Jacinda. She transformed her room into the serene farmhouse retreat she had always imagined and pinched plenty of pennies along the way. For example: she built the headboard using leftover boards from a fencing project. The bedding was found on clearance. She printed and framed the artwork herself. The blanket ladder was a curbside find. The biggest splurge was the whitewashed brick wallpaper, but it was well worth the huge impact it made.

I also love that she used king-size quilt even though it’s a queen-sized mattress, another smart choice. It looks that much fuller covering the bed, and also helps if you’re a blanket-hog. I personally know nothing about that. But I will steal your pillows.

Much more to see from Jacinda on her blog The Northern Nester.

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Spouse In the Pool House

When April moved to Oklahoma, she told her realtor that she definitely wanted to build a new home. And even though a lot of homes in her area came with pools, she did NOT want a pool.

So, naturally, she ended up buying an old home with a pool. There’s really no explanation, other than the obvious: we ladies are entitled to change our minds often and on a whim. Right? Shania Twain said so, so it must be true.

April fell in love hard with this artist-designed out-of-the-ordinary home and all the quirks that came with it. One of those quirks was a cute but run-down little pool house, you know, to go with that pool. Since her husband works from home often, they decided it would be a perfect office space.

After painting, tiling, replacing light fixtures and scraping the popcorn ceiling (ugh, my least favorite job ever) (I’ve never actually done it before, but I just know I’d hate it), it looks like this today …





It has such an energetic vibe now. You couldn’t help but be productive in an office like that, amIright? I would definitely NOT check Facebook/scroll through Pinterest/download new music/buy random Korean skincare item on Amazon because it had good reviews/check Facebook again/read a useless article on Buzzfeed/wander to the kitchen and eat a bowl of cereal/go online shopping and put stuff in my cart but never buy it/look up the lyrics to a 90s song I just remembered/text my sister a picture of a mole, does this look weird to you?/check Facebook again. Like at all.




Did I mention April built that U-shaped desk herself? Because she did! I like that the back side is a bit longer than the front, just a nice little touch to add interest. Check out her blog Uncookie Cutter to get the rundown.

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Homemade Suede

Have you ever wondered how suede is made? I can tell you. No, I can’t. But I can tell you how to fake suede! A suede charade, let’s say.

First, start with a homely old chair. This one comes from an era when we all thought beige, brown, and rust were a striking color combination. Personally, this is the only time I prefer those colors together, but if a desert camo colorway is your thing, you do you my friend.

If not, take your homely chair outside and paint it!




Yep, that’s paint, and it feels as soft as it looks. I know plenty of people have tried painting upholstery, to varying degrees of success. Some stunning, some … less so. The secret is the type of paint you use. I’ve painted a chair with latex paint, and that results in a smooth vinyl-like feel. But for a supple, suede-like finish, chalk paint is the answer.

That’s what The Shabby Bride used here, and she said “When done correctly (i.e. thin, non-saturating coats of chalk paint followed up with wax to protect), it will NOT crack, it will clean nicely with a damp cloth, and it will feel like soft leather!”

Check out all her tips and tricks in her step-by-step tutorial over at All Things Thrifty.

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Lakehouse Love

The more I stare at this before picture, the more that far wall begins to look like the face of a bewildered pig. Right? You totally see it too.

The pig was all like “Whoa guys. What is going on in this room? Someone please explain this rug. And what is UP with all the itty bitty art? Those valances look like offensive eyebrows. Oh, is that pleather??? I would close my eyes if I could, but they seem to be frozen open in endless horror.”

I’m sorry. Please excuse Bewildered Pig, he gets over-dramatic sometimes. It wasn’t that bad.  It basically looks like a budget vacation rental, and it very well could have been since this house sits on the shore of Lake Superior.

But Tanya knew this tired lakehouse had the potential to become her dream home. She moved in and brought along her mid-century inspired aesthetic and completely transformed it.


lakehouse living room redesign


lakehouse living room redesign after

Such a dramatic change! She struggled at first with furniture placement until she decided on this sectional which offers tons of seating without compromising the view from the (now blessedly unadorned) windows. Painting the entire wall black including the brass vents and fireplace doors was another smart update.  It required zero demo to achieve this much more cohesive, streamlined, and swine-free look.

Much more to see on her blog Dans Le Lakehouse!

Plus check out her kitchen makeover from a couple years back, it’s still one of my favorites!


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