One Credenza Four Ways

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sauder. The opinions and text are all mine.

Hey friends! Hope Mother’s Day was great for all you mama’s and mom’s-to-be! We took to the woods and spent a long weekend at Rock Island. It’s about my favorite thing in the world to do. Life has been extra busy lately so those few days was a gift in itself.

A few months back we styled and shot some of the pictures for the Sauder look-book and can finally share on the blog what we did! We were asked to focus n the versatility of the product we chose, and that was duper easy being we picked our most favorite piece a furniture, a credenza (Soft Modern Credenza to be exact).

We have a tiny house and three credenza’s and I still look at pretty credenza’s whenever we are at the flea market. It’s a sickness. Joey reminded me how I am inches away from being an actual hoarder, but I insist if you have proper storage and a plan, it’s totally fine. Which is why we said “OK” when Sauder sent us over this piece we got to pick out. It wound up fitting in our living room a bit better than the old credenza, so it’s still in the living room housing our TV, while the old one now resides in the dining room.

We styled this piece in the four ways we would actually use it beyond a stand for a TV. If you remember we are ditching our TV for a projector once we renovate the face of our home. Until then, this credenza will do what most credenza’s do and it will house a TV.

Look #1 (above) is an idea to use a credenza in a kids room or play room. It works for obvious reasons (storage, low enough kids can reach on and in it), but also because even if your kiddo is like my kiddo and slams the doors shut, you won’t be shocked by the bang. The doors are soft-close and it’s a good feature with a two year old around.

Look #2 is how we kept the credenza for a while before I finally caved and agreed to put the TV back in the living room. It will also return to this “look” once the projector is up and running after the renovation. The “foyer credenza” is certainly the most useful for me, because I need a dump zone the moment I walk in the door. Truth be told, we keep a bin of toys behind the door in this set up and the TV set up because it’s an awesome place to hide toys because they always seem to make it in the living room no matter how hard you try to keep them out.

Our #3 look was the office option. I see this behind you while you are sitting at your desk. For me a ton of storage is necessary for all the paint samples, fabric samples, books, swatches, and bins it takes to keep an interior designer organized.

Our final #4 look is how to use a credenza in your bedroom. Basically like a dresser on top with your jewelry, family photos, perfume, a decent light (and for me a record player) and the under parts could be laundry, extra sheets, or even shoes.

We had a ton of fun spending the day playing with the Sauder credenza in new ways and hope you all found some inspiration.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Sauder. The opinions and text are all mine.

Front Porch Fresh Up

Compensation for this post provided by T.J .Maxx via Mode Media, but all opinions expressed are solely the author’s.

Hello friends! Happy Spring. We were lucky enough to run off to Florida last week and soak in the good weather and then return to Nashville to be greeted by the beautiful spring breeze and sunshine. I realized something while “home” in Boca Raton; I miss plants. A lot. Living in New York, we failed a bunch at plants and even here in Nashville. You may remember we planted a tree when we bought our new home a year ago. Well, the weeping pussy willow is beyond tears and is dead now. Somehow every inch of Boca is covered in thriving, beautiful buds and I was eager to snatch that up and bring it back to Nashville with hopes of refreshing our very winter-looking porch. I front porch I making a house a home I front porch ideas I making a house a home

Besides Atlas’ chalk art and the Christmas lights I refuse to remove because they make me too happy, our porch is looking a little, well, eh. I florida plants I making a house a home

I rounded up a list of off-the-beaten-path nurseries between Miami and Boynton Beach, and I learned a lot about the place I was brought up in that I never knew before. There is an entire underground off-road world of Boca, and it’s pretty fascinating. The first stop was in Boynton at an easy-to-find place called Tropical World Nursery. The nursery is vast and loaded with so many amazing rare plants and a few chickens too. The picture above is Atlas in love with it all. He kept saying “leaf!”. Sadly the woman working wasn’t very interested in us being there, which made us rush a bit. But not before we snagged this photo and a few hanging plants for the house. I atlas loves plants I making a house a home

I basically had to go to a secret location in Delray off two dirt roads after calling a number to be given an undisclosed address to find a really kind husband and wife team to help me stock up on stag horn ferns and teach me a thing or two about mounting plants. I loaded as much as I could fit in a box and left filled with hope of not killing these gorgeous creatures. After picking some growth from my dad’s palm trees and getting them home to Nashville alive, I began practicing mounting at home, and I am addicted now. I mounted plants I making a house a home

Before I went plant crazy on the porch, we had to give it  a good cleaning and figure out what to do with the bare space. We headed over to T.J. Maxx and got a really great hand sweep and tray for $8 a pop. One is made in Germany, and the other in Italy, and they are both rad. I figure even utilitarian things should be beautiful, especially because it makes cleaning more fun. I tjmaxx cleaning supplies I making  a house a home

We then snagged these two pillows for $16 a pop and they fit so perfectly with our jute rug and “outside” blanket. I outdoor pillows I making a house a home

This table runner was $12 and just happened to match perfectly despite being a totally different brand. The “Joey” head vintage planter made it outside. Yes, that’s a “Florida” plant. I patio runner I making a house a home

It’s silly but true. I about squealed when I came upon these clearance kitchen towels for $4 (for the pair). I bought them all. I plan to use them in the bathroom. Watch me break the rules. I tjmaxx turkish towel I making a house a home

For $50 in textiles and some fresh plants, the porch feels very ready for us now. We have already been hanging out and enjoying it every day since the spruce up. Here are some tips to get you inspired to freshen up your outdoor space:

Tips to make your outdoor space feel like an additional room!

  1. If you have a covered area, add some textiles. We love having pillows and blankets on the porch, they make it feel like an additional room of the house.
  2. Plants and planters may seem excessive when you are already outside, but it’s such a fun way to add color and life in a clean and curated way.
  3. Throw a huge rug down instead of a tiny mat to make the space feel more grounded
  4. Adding a runner to an outdoor table changes the vibe immediately from casual to intentional. Try it when you host your next gathering for a put together a BBQ or porch coffee gathering.


Guest Bathroom Progress and Plan

Hey friends! Did you get hit with this icy storm? In NYC we were use to a ton of snow, and here in Nashville it’s like an ice skating rink. Everything is covered in a coat of ice. It’s sort of magical and scary at the same time. Looking at the branches is beautiful, but makes me wonder how long it will take for them to snap on electrical cords and leave us with no power. Crossing fingers that’s just a theory.

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I have mentioned a lot that this blue was getting to me. We painted so many rooms already, but the staircase hallway, guest bathroom, kitchen, and master bedroom are driving me bananas. I know it’s not worth painting whats headed for demo and reconstruction, so I am just hanging back. This guess bathroom is one space that is staying put, so we were able to pull the trigger on a decision. Joey had surprised me with wallpapering our guest bathroom, and I couldn’t be more grateful for a husband that knows me so well. It was driving me mad, being all “country blue” for the past 11 months. We had some ideas, but never fleshed out a real plan until joey got the paper up.

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The plan in pretty simple.

Keep: Floor, tub, toilet

Replace: sink, faucet, lights, switches, toilet flush, towel bars, trash bin, toilet paper holder, shower curtain

Add: wallpaper, small table, shower shelf above towel bar

Remove: Stained glass

Edit: The feet of the tub will go black instead of silver.

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Restoration hardware is having an epic sale, so we figure now may be the time to snag that consule sink. It’s less than $800 for both the stand and the sink. If it looks familiar it’s because its from the same “Dutch” collection as our temporary Restoration Hardware dining table. What can I say? Creatures of habit we are.

The wallpaper (Hygge and West) that was a sweet surprise from Joey was intended to be hung in November, but you know how life goes.

The side table is on clearance sale at Target right now. I think it’s $50 if I am not mistaken.

The lights for above the vanity are also Restoration Hardware and are a little over $200, and are a solid back up if we can’t find a vintage treasure. We are looking for a vintage mirror and towel bars and will hopefully fine other soon once we can  get out of the house to go hunt them down.

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The light switch is finally being accompanied by a plug plate from the Legrand Adorne collection, respectfully in brass, and it looks perfect now!

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I love peeking in the bathroom and seeing we are a step closer to how we ultimately envision it. We have a lot of projects going on at once right now, which seems to make everything move a tad slower when it comes to personal goals, but this cheerful step has me on cloud nine.

We have been working on Unit B of the Rich Hippies House because Unit A is booking up so quickly we had to re-prioritize our own renovation. We also have a show house for Rich Hippies to finish along with a music studio for Joey and a few fun clients. We plan to finish this bathroom and our renovation at the same time over the next few months. If we ever get out from under this ice.


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The Big ‘Ol Gift Guide of 2014 : Kids

Shopping. It’s something I promise to get done every year before Halloween and in the past that was a super easy task, but since becoming a a mom that goal has gotten a bit harder to accomplish.  Atlas is pretty set with gifts, and our TOMS shopping at Target was a nice way to get a bunch of gifts in one trip. The hardest to shop for is Joey, by far. How’s your shopping going? Are you done, or do you wait for all the mega sales a starting today? Black Friday scares me to be honest. I found such amazing kids stuff this year and I am stoked to share! gift guide kids

robot blocksrainbow blocksstuffed dogzebra shirtbooks – crayonscubebot - monkey - shoes – lion mask 

Can’t wait to share other round up’s for our gift guide over the next few days!


Pretty Holiday Pies to Try!

Oh man, it’s pie season for two solid months. Here is a round up of some amazing selections from the Foodie page. I love the idea of the little pie fries for kids (so you can make sure they don’t go tooooo crazy with sugar) and that it also doubles as breakfast. If you have any great pie recipes, please direct me there – we have a few stops and I would like to have pie-in-hand.

Check out Pretty Holiday Pies

by Lana Migliore Katsaros at

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And it was all white

I’m gonna let you in on a little secret. Kids love to reek havoc on walls. In particular, our little whirlwind, Atlas, is adept at scraping and dragging things along the wall as he either attempts to avoid a diaper change or just see if his Duplo block can pass through the drywall at breakneck speed. We’ve done a lot of painting lately so let me show you how the Olympic One paint has held up so far.

Olympic Paint, Olympic One

Here’s Atlas’ room. All pretty and and idealized. Take a look at the changing mat. Pretty close to that vintage car pic and the “It’s OK” banner, right? Atlas thought so too. This is what it looks like when a black picture frame gets dragged across a white wall about 70 times a day.

Olympic Paint, Olympic One

On the flip side we can look at it as a lesson for Atlas in creating perfect circles. And although the damage looked substantial to us, it wiped right away. Lana applied mild elbow grease and a Magic Eraser and it was taken care of. I’m sure it’ll be replaced by new skid marks soon, but that is the price we pay for form over function in a toddlers room.

Olympic Paint, Olympic One

The living room has held up really well. I made some fun scuffs on the wall when installing these floating shelves.

Olympic Paint, Olympic One

Once again, a little Magic Eraser and all was right in the world. It’s also worth mentioning that Lana agonizes over shades of white. The living room and mud room got Olympic One “Delicate White” which I really like. The dining room got a white called “Snowy Mount” which actually has a bit of lavender color in it (especially evident during sundown) which we weren’t expecting, but has grown on us. Atlas’ room is “Horseradish”. 3 coats of Olympic One on each room without a needing a separate primer layer got the job done quickly. Let’s peek at our apparently slightly controversial mudroom.

Olympic Paint, Olympic One

This room has been a joy to walk into everyday. Lana and I love it. A bit labor intensive. More of those black spots are hand done than not.

Olympic Paint, Olympic One

Flowers never hurt a room either.

Olympic Paint, Olympic One

The dining room paint has held up well. Admittedly it doesn’t see the high traffic of the other spaces, but the walls still look great and await some picture hanging decisions from us.

All in all, Olympic One paint has been #uptothetest. There are only a handful of strange humans out there that truly enjoy painting walls, but if you gotta do it you might as well have quality product on your roller.


How you like me now?

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This motion switch went in the  bathroom.

Bathroom Motion Light, Adorne Motion Light, Adorne, Legrand That switch on the right has saved me from an early grave. It’s a motion sensor switch by Legrand from their Adorne line. We’ve been outfitting our house with them so this probably isn’t the first time you’ve seen them on the page, but this one deserves some special attention. You see, Our bathroom has an engineering issue. Bathroom Motion Light, Adorne Motion Light, Adorne, Legrand See the light switch? Well, neither can we. You have to come into the bathroom and shut the door before you can turn the light or the fan on. You’re probably thinking, “big deal”. After about a month, it was a big deal. The motion sensor switch eliminated the problem and it looks great doing it. Lemme show you what we had before. Bathroom Motion Light, Adorne Motion Light, Adorne, Legrand Switches on the left controlled the fan and the fan light separately (for some reason) and the one on the right did the main lights. It’s your run of the mill switch plate that we just won’t stand for anymore, mismatched screws and all. She’s a beauty. I almost thought about hesitating for a second before throwing it away. Installation of the new switch is covered in an earlier post so I’ll let you click here if you’d like to read about how insanely simple it is. The only difference here is that I combined the switched for the fan into the Adorne touch switch. Bathroom Motion Light, Adorne Motion Light, Adorne, Legrand

Location hasn’t changed, but my headaches have gone away. Coincidence?

Bathroom Motion Light, Adorne Motion Light, Adorne, Legrand Adorne also has power outlet options which will eventually take the place of the tired old outlet that lives there now. One thing at a time though. So, what switch goes where? For us, we have been taking this question pretty seriously and here is what we came up with. making a house a home I Adorne Lights I We outfitted our home with wave, touch, and motion switches. We picked the dining room for the wave location because you just need a little motion right in front for the light to pop on. This is great when your hands are full. What makes it different than the bathroom motion switch is that the bathroom knows when a person is in the room. It’s kind of creepy how great the technology works. The light doesn’t turn on with any ‘ol movement – it needs a person to be in the room. It’s way more sensitive and perfect for our unique light switch displacement situation. Adorne Wave Light Switch We used the touch switches in the high traffic areas, like the living room (what you walk into when you come in the front door), the switch that’s on the wall that’s between the living and dining room, and the wall shared between the mudroom and kitchen. We have a few more light switches to share after we get some painting done. These things are gorgous guys. Like serious wall beautification.


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