photo Whaling-City-Cottage-8-2015_zpsoygeotsf.jpg

our kitchen remodel inspiration

I’m trying to hone my vision for our kitchen remodel….



 Sources can be found HERE 

 What you don’t see above are black windows, painted horizontal plank backsplash and our gray Tabouret stools from Overstock.  I’m also debating whether to do laminate marble on the island or dark stained butcher block.

The exact color of the wall and backsplash are still up for debate but I’m pretty set on Sherwin Williams Rosemary for the island.  And the Ballard Design Piedmont lantern over the island is a must!!!

Recall that this is essentially what we’re starting with….


We’ve since added the open shelving between the windows, which I love!!!  That will stay, for sure.  I tend to change my mind a lot about design details but I think we’re on the right track with plans for the kitchen.  It’s warm and inviting, yet still classic and sophisticated.  It’s been very challenging to balance my expensive taste with what’s appropriate for our neighborhood.  Trying to be smart about things, where to splurge and save.  And yes, a $250 pendant is a splurge to me.

What do you guys think?  Any ideas, tips or pointers?




upping my mood board game

I didn’t go to design school so trying to dive into this field without any experience with design software is a little daunting.  Should I take a continuing education class at RISD to learn Photoshop or Sketch up?  Should I try online tutorials for those programs?  Then I found Dana from House Tweaking’s tutorial on making mood boards in Polyvore and figured I’d give it a go.

I’m helping a friend furnish and style the den in her old house.  The space is lined with shoulder-height dark wood bookcases with glass doors and very subtle nautical map wallpaper above.   (These two features won’t be changed).  Below is one of the design ideas I’ve been playing with….

Rachel's den #2



I’m still getting the hang of it of course and realizing I need to label the items in Clipper a little better but overall I’m happy with the upgrade from Powerpoint.  What are your thoughts on the best software for mood boards and the best way to learn?



business up front. party in the back

It’s interesting to see how your style evolves over time.  As I get older, my taste is leaning towards more traditional spaces, like these classic modern foyers.

438a5f5b750a32436ffcc52f340cdc8dcensational girl

1bf8dcede382254d983fa34fef361f07tobi fairley via a passion for home

foyercountryliving_thumb[1]country living

 entryway-lsouthern living

 But….I’m really drawn to the idea of going bold on a back staircase.  Like the stairwell off the kitchen we’ll have in our next house.  🙂  This photo by Carol McReynolds on Instagram stopped me in my tracks.  Yes, it’s decrepit and abandoned but the basic design elements still rock.  The painted woodwork, the stand-out door, the patterned wallpaper.


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mood board for big girl room

June’s big girl room is, like, Number 27 on the list of projects that need to get done around here.  (A much higher number if you ask my husband).  But 5 years of wear are starting to show….and damn this is fun.

june mood board

Starting with a wingback chair upholstered in Premier Prints Titan Birch Zig Zag that we already have….

Healing Aloe by Benjamin Moore
Roman shades in Aztec Wisteria fabric by Honey + Fitz for Spoonflower
Canterbury Rug by RugsUSA
Mint border sham by Biscuit Home
Gray tufted headboard
Ghost chair
White desk
Bold lamp
Quirky art – definitely something from The Black Apple and some Paint By Number
Gold or brass accents

And every girl needs a vintage 70’s marine mammal poster.