Guest Bathroom Renovation- Before and After

One of the my favorite things about owning an old home is I get to make it 100% ours. We get to choose what fixtures I want, what color tiles, what paint, even if I want a new toilet, ha. We wanted an older home to restore with the goal of making it look like the time period, but without the mold and asbestos. I wish I took before photos of all the renovation, but I only found a couple in between painting the walls and bringing in the (original!!!) claw foot tub. 

Before

After

We used a black VOC-free high gloss paint, added matching industrial inspired fixtures (from Lowes), the Star Wars towels from Think Geek, and the rustic ladder book shelf was once used for cameras in our apartment but now houses our towels. Our rug is from West Elm (no longer available though). Our Bob Dylan painting was from an artist we found on eBay and Scott's grandpa added the wooden frame for us.  I'm also a little paranoid about germs- I have this system of using small clean towels for every time to dry hands and put them in a basket below. Friends, family, even handymen use our bathroom and I don't want to share a dirty towel with them. This helps cut down on spending on paper towels. As for the folding and laundry, it's not that bad. It takes 15 minutes to do that, once a week, and if it's enough to save my sanity, it's worth it. The penny tiles are also easy to sanitize with a steam mop. 

It was risky using black paint for such a small space but because there is so much light, it works. 

Fall Flowers

Never underestimate the power of a good bouquet. it can light up a room, enhance decorations, and bring a new form of life in a room. My favorite flowers are from Bouqs, I got the Dawn, perfect for cozy autumn. Aline also sent me Harvest Moon, thank you Aline! 

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Bouqs contacted me to work together, it's a company I've been using to send flowers and they are always a hit. The flowers come from a farm near a volcano, hence the "volcano flowers" term. They're a responsible company environmentally and treat their employees as such. I've yet to read of another flower corporation to offer on-site child daycare, competitive healthcare, high living wages, and pay for adult education. I love knowing that's where my money is going when I buy a bouquet. Plus they look beautiful, even when they are on the last days. 

Bouqs on ourcitylights
Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses
— Alphonse Karr

Halloween at Home

It was only last year we began decorating for Halloween. I never thought I had the "right" home for Halloween- pink just isn't spooky and ghoulish, unless you are absolutely terrified of the color. I didn't want color to determine whether or not I should celebrate, so why not! Let's make it a kawaii (cute!) Halloween! 

Halloween details- Pink Jack-o-lantern’s from Daiso, Hello Kitty inflatable (alternative here), bat vinyl sticker from walltowalldecals, Jack-o-lantern vinyl sticker from supervinyldecal, pink faux pumpkins from a craft store, pink candle from Candelles, mantel banner from Angela BianchiCuts, fresh fall flowers flowers from The Bouqs (thanks, Aline!)

I'm looking forward to what else I'll be adding this month. 

Fall Bedroom Before and After

I found some older photos of my house before it was decorated. It's surreal to see it so empty. Everything from the fixtures to floors have been replaced. The decor is the same as it was since I took the "after" photos and for good reason- it's a classic color and I've yet to get sick of it. 

Now, we've made it our own. My bedroom will never be as clean as it was when I first began decorating it. It's been featured here and here on my thoughts on one of my favorite rooms, and I always think of these photos when I bring out the autumn-inspired comforters. I've never featured my own photos on my blog so I'd love to have this in the archive when I look back at what we've done to the house. We've added a treadmill, installed a walk-in closet, it was a nursery at one point, and I've decorated my vanity area. These photos are Pinterest-worthy, but trust me, it's a mess at the moment. 

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Most of the time, I have an all-white comforter set. I love all white for one reason- it's low maintenance. If something needs to get replaced, instead of searching for a matching set, I just replace it with anything else that's white. Plus regardless of the color, we wash our comforter and sheets once a week. We love texture with it, it adds depth to monotone color. We got our set from Macy's and they're on clearance right now- I may pick up a couple more pieces, they're my favorite so far. The lamps are from Crate and Barrel. I've had them for three years and I'm not getting sick of them anytime soon. The bedding is from zgallerie, but I can't find this particular style. 

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I should also note, my bed is rarely made. A beautiful white pile of linens is much more cozier. 

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Grow Part 2

We have tomatoes! They were planted in spring, along with other veggies and fruits, and they are growing faster than we can eat them. Each day we pick a handful. Thankfully I love tomatoes, and my favorite way to eat them is just plain with some kosher salt and pepper. I'll admit food tastes better when you grow it yourself. Maybe it's the humble brag that gives it that extra flavor. Seriously though, gardening has saved my sanity, the more each plant bears veggie or fruits, the more I can see my heart bearing a little more hope. Yes, this post came with extra cheese apparently. 


Grow

We're growing our own organic garden this year and hoping it'll cut back on our grocery bill next spring. The herbs and romaine I planted last year can't stop growing and are giving me so much, I've made herbs de provence with almost every dinner, and it's saved me money on my daily GG smoothies. So far we have mint, thyme, cilantro, rosemary, sage, and tarragon. I placed a couple of the herbs in their containers and kept forgetting to plant them but overtime, they grew roots on their own, and broke through the bottom of the container. In our dirt pods, we've planted cucumber, spinach, corn, beets, squash, cantaloupe, watermelon, and goji berries. We have a greenhouse (a small one we found on amazon and it works great), some dirt, seeds, and a little time and motivation, and we're hoping to reap the benefits next year. 


Disposable Decor

This is my own organic post but it's promoted by Kleenex. They're turning 90 and I was invited to be a part of their birthday campaign. Thanks for the support, Kleenex

In my house we're passionate about reusing what we can to save money and the environment- cotton dish towels, cloth napkins, even using old tshirts as cleaning cloths. Two things I will never reuse- tissues and toilet paper. Those are a bit fat NOPE. With allergy season coming, and re-watching Friday Night Lights, I need some Kleenex nearby. Kleenex boxes match each vignette and every corner decorated, you can check out what they have for spring in their new line of designs. 

I just picked up my first succulent. I put in the warmest part of the house and it thrives on the heat. 

I also keep a box in my office, along with my three favorite people- Scott, Johnny and Hello Kitty. Just an FYI, I use this wall mount for my iMac, it saves me space and I can add a huge box of tissues. 

I also keep the pocket sized ones by the couch. The designs go with everything in the house. I found neutral, a more traditional, and even a brighter fun colorful kind. 

Thanks again, Kleenex! 

Pseudo Nursery

We are in the process of making one of our bedrooms a nursery. It's not as messy as it has been since we started, but it's not picture-ready either. In the meantime, I don't think I'm going to want to walk across the house to the crib. I am planning on breastfeeding, and I want baby next to me when I'm barely able to zombie crawl out of bed like a new mom. 

This is what our bedroom looked like before  

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This is what it looks like after- that small space on the side will be the loudest part of the house for a few weeks, and I'd like to make it as serene as possible. 

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I fell in love with this modern bassinet from Monte Designs. Whether it's for a girl or boy, it looks so sleek. I also tried out Monte chairs and I loved how comfortable the Grazia glider is, it's a rocker and glider and swiveler (?) at once. I'm far from petite and most nursery chairs felt like I was eating them alive. This chair is big, comfortable but not so large it takes up space. The best part of the glider was having it custom made to the colors and fabric I wanted, so it'll look great in the living room years after Max is done with it. 

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Details; Furniture was purchased at Bel Bambini but you can buy the bassinet and chair both from Monte Designs. The organic blanket and ottoman are both from Target (the ottoman looks white online but I swear it's a heather gray). The poster is from Luke Beard, it's my favorite Mad Men quote when Don is lecturing Peggy on her insecurities. It's a pivotal point in their relationship and I can relate to that scene so well. I know it's not appropriate for baby, but this is still our bedroom and this definitely won't go in the nursery. 

He's got a place to crash for the first few weeks and it's another thing crossed off my list.