Monday, June 28, 2010

B&A, 1/2 WAY (again): the dining room

The dining room still lacks a lot of decorating, but we have the basics so I wanted to share the progress. We finally have somewhere to eat dinner. Our previous dining table tv trays were becoming a hassle and we started quoting The Bachelorette and Drop Dead Diva too much. Needless to say, we are really enjoying a true dining table.

I have all ready expressed my love and desire for a farmhouse table so that purchase should not be a big surprise to you. I bought the table through an antique store in Auburn and they use reclaimed wood (from old antique pieces) to reproduce new furniture. I saw a few pictures of the table and I was super excited. Here is the original table:
My friend Laurel-Dawn and I checked, and double checked, and even made a mock up of the table size with chairs at work, so I knew the size would be perfect for the dining room. And it was. I just assumed it would look worn, old, show character, have exposed layers of paint, etc. but it didn't. I was a little disappointed, but I was determined to make it look like the ones in my inspiration post. 

So, one day I sat down to coat it with layers of paint and sand away each one when I happened to look under the table. To my dismay I found the reclaimed wood! Here is what I found:

As you can see, I decided to un-screw all the boards and flip them over so the reclaimed wood would be the top. This really made my day. It wasn't that much work - the hardest and most painstaking part was all the sanding! I tried sanding the legs (too much white) but I think I need a hand sander for that! I applied a few coats of tung oil afterwards and here is the final table:
I love it and couldn't be happier! It took a little work, but it was well worth it in the end. I love how each board is different and exhibits its own characteristics. Remember my mismatch chair post? They finally all came together. Here is what we have so far in the dining room:

Not a whole lot! I love my great grandmother's buffet and can't wait to fill it with fun serving pieces. I especially like the dark color - I think it goes right along with my "industrial" theme. What do you think? I hope to put my straw hat inspiration to use above the buffet. More to come as we progress!


I believe every girl needs their own vanity. A place to pamper themselves while they get ready and display all their pretty jewels. Whether it sits against a wall in the master bedroom, or creates a pretty environment in the guest bedroom, or doubles as a nightstand, they will always be put to good use. 

For my future vanity, so far I have collected a mirrored jewelry box from Target and a silhouette painting I did of an Aubrey Hepburn type girl. I want a big mirror to sit on top of the dresser and lean against the wall. First, I need a dresser, but until then here are some of my favorite inspiration images.

Re-create this display with teacups and bowls from Anthropologie? [live creating yourself via 6th street design school]

I want that acrylic stool! [peacock feathers]

LOVE both of the following mirrors. Big and bold with a few accompanying items. 
[photographer atlanta bartlett]


Friday, June 25, 2010


Remember my post about Lonny mag and the awesome black bathroom? Well, the other day Design Sponge featured Lauren Bradshaw's house and she had a black nursery. It is fantastic and so inspiring! Black can really be used as a neutral - like cream or white - because so many colors can be used as accents. Check out these amazing images:

Love the clean lines of the subway tile and the contrasting white - that touch of mustard yellow is a nice addition! [Design Sponge]

I am probably not bold enough to do black for a bedroom, but I would love it in a smaller space like a bathroom. Maybe oneday?

Thursday, June 24, 2010


I know this is very minute, but it is exciting for me so I wanted to share. "the good stuff" stamps came in today and they are super cute. I can't wait to stamp some invitations! I ordered them from and they did such a good job - this is the second time I have used them and I would definitely recommend them. 
I ordered 3 different sizes and tested them out with a gray ink pad. I think for a more translucent look I will use a metallic silver pad on invitations. I don't want to over power the information!

P.S. check out my new "the good stuff" button on the tool bar - feel free to contact me for custom design work!

Monday, June 21, 2010

B&A, 1/2 WAY: KB's guest room

I finally have my desk area setup in one of the guest bedrooms and I wanted to share the progress. Remember my desk inspiration post? Well, it finally all came together and "the good stuff" is up and going! In the future, this room will house my grandmother's beautiful bedroom suit (that I currently use and have since college) and I will update you on those additions. But until then, this is the guest bedroom before:
As you can probably guess, this room previously belonged to a little girl - check out the hot pink fan too! And, if I am not mistaken this is just about the same exact color my room was when I was little - pepto bismol pink! Yikes! That color was quickly gone and replaced with Benjamin Moore's portland gray. It is a soft mauve with just enough gray for it not to look purple. I love it! I have to admit, after the first coat of tinted primer I was a little nervous, but I am completely happy now!

I wanted to choose a color from this landscape painting that I did that was not too powerful or strong. It will hang above the bed so I think the subtle mauve will accent it nicely. I hope to also bring in lots of white and golden yellows. 

And here is the room after:

[click on all images to enlarge]

I waited to share the final setup because it took me forever to find a simple white upholstered chair! I finally found one at
Pier 1 and it is their Parson's slipcover chair bare. Such a good price too! A sweet friend, Sarah Robins, picked up the Ikea filing cabinet for me - gotta stay organized - and I purchased other desk accessories at Wal-Mart and Anthropologie

I am still deciding if I should do a shelf of framed pictures and prints like in my inspiration
post. I believe I would shorten my inspiration board and mount the shelf about the height of the boards now. What do you think? I will probably do a mock up first and share for you to examine...


My 25th birthday is coming up in 2 wks, July 2nd, and I know most of you are wondering, "what can I get Katie Beth for her birthday?" ;)

Just for fun, I have put together a wish list with some of my favorite current items in the retail world. Feel free to purchase any (or all) and ship to Melrose....or just lust after with me...
[click on image to enlarge]

Some of these items are not available online, but I saw them here in Birmingham. Maybe once you see them they will make it to your wish list as well!

Friday, June 18, 2010


Lately I have been noticing all the different "bed making" styles. I have been trying to decide on the perfect "make" for the master in Melrose. One of the first things I bought for Melrose was this lovely quilt + shams from Serena and Lily - I actually ordered it way on sale through One Kings Lane:
[the gold quilt only]

And I also purchased 2 of these small, cream pillows from Urban Outfitters - 1 side is velvet and the other is linen. The room has creamy-beige velvet curtains that puddle on the floor so the accent pillows help tie them them in to the room.

I also just ordered these gray stripe sheets and pillowcases from West Elm (I have been eyeing them for awhile and finally bit the bullet):

I am looking around for a natural linen bedskirt to go along with the accent pillows. The one I have found may or may not be on my bday wish list inspiration board on Monday. ;) Now, I am debating on what else the bed needs - euro shams, a throw, a fluffy duvet - so many options!
Here are some images of my favorite, delicious beds:

All tucked in? Love the simplicity in this room - I like the flat blanket folded under the mattress and light streamlined. [the city stage]

Pretty and neat? I like the euro shams against the wall as a makeshift headboard and the duvet folded at the foot. Laying the other pillows in front is an idea. [unknown]

Messy and comfy? [nest egg]

Adding a pop of color? Neutral color palette with the euro shams making a statement. [style at home magazine via made by girl]

Matchy matchy? LOVE this color scheme, by the way. [dwell]

Lots of pillows? [pink wallpaper]

Right now, I fold the sheet back and tuck all excess under the mattress, then I fold back the gold quilt mid way to expose the sheets but I leave it hanging over the mattress - can't wait to have the striped sheets for this reason! I stack all my pillows - smallest to, I guess I am in between all tucked in and comfy??? 

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Well, I finally did it! I created a "logo" for myself. No, I am not starting my own business, but I just wanted a little tag that I can use on invitations, personal stationary, thank you cards, etc. that I design. Some items, depending on the quantity, I can print at home my office ;) and I can simply print the logo on the piece, but on items I get printed, I will use a stamp to incorporate my logo. I just ordered the stamp in 3 different sizes so I can't wait to see it!

I thought about tying in Melrose to the logo but after a few attempts, I just decided it wasn't working so I moved on. I wanted to handwrite (and put my calligraphy classes to use) "the good stuff" so I just played around with the words until I found a format I liked. Here are some early sketches from my idea book:

[sorry for the quality, taken from my iphone]

Since I had the grass "squiggles" stemming from "good stuff" I thought a branch with a birdie would be the perfect accent. Here is the final logo in black/white and color:

What do you think? I will be creating a gadget on my sidebar with my information if you want to contact me for any personal design work. I am shooting some more of my pieces tomorrow so hopefully I can share some more of my recent projects. 

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

B&A: the STUDY

This room has been "done" for awhile now, but I just haven't taken the time to post after pictures. she is before:

This used to be Melrose's front porch and the previous owners closed it in to create more area. She still has brick floors and paneling on the walls. I think the brick really fits into the rustic theme of the house.

First, Brandon and I primed the walls - it took a few coats to cover up that green! 

Remember my stripe inspiration post? Well, it was put into use here! I wanted to use the white from the den and the beige from the dining room (the 2 rooms splitting the study) and paint 6" vertical stripes. Due to the uneven paneling grooves, I just had to ignore them and measure off the distances myself. This was pretty time consuming but well worth it. 

And here is the final...

[click on all pictures to elarge]

I wanted to point out the patterned texture on the ceiling because I really love it. Some people probably hate it and think it is odd and I not sure the goal of it, but it is so discreet you barely notice it, but when you do it is a nice little surprise. I like that the pattern is simple and conservative, nothing too ornate or floral. I wonder why the previous owners chose to put wallpaper on the ceiling? 

I am still not sure on how I want to decorate or furnish the study, but I am thinking a long bench under the double window and a ladder shelf in the corner between the 2 windows??? I am still trying to collect framed pieces for the collage above the desk. So far, all I have is my Auburn University diploma (Brandon has his hanging in his office). Any suggestions?


Isn't this a cool take on using an old, rustic ladder in your home? My dad has a really cool wooden ladder with lots of paint splatters that was his dad's that I have been eyeing lately. Unfortunately, he actually still uses the ladder so I will just have to wait til a rung breaks - or maybe I should replace it with a sturdier metal one and then he could part with it?

I just thought it would be neat opened up in a corner (similar to this picture) in the striped study with books stacked horizontal and vertical. The only problem would be it needs to be an area without a lot of traffic flow since the opened legs will take up a lot of room. 

I am also intrigued by 1-leg  ladders propped against a wall with items hanging over the rungs. I like how this picture has newspapers draped over the rails.

I thought a ladder like this would also be a good storage solution for light blankets. I have an open wall next to the front door and I am debating on what to put there. I have considered leaning a ladder (like the picture above) and hanging an umbrella, scarves, and jackets strategically over the rungs. I also thought about hammering in a few nails along the vertical leg to hang keys on??? What do you think? Could jackets get too messy on there? It wouldn't be a ton because the coat closet is next to the wall as well. Just something to consider...

Friday, June 11, 2010

LONNY MAG: june/july edition

The new Lonny Mag came out yesterday and it is just as beautiful as ever. If you are not familiar with Lonny then welcome to the future of magazines. It is an online magazine that comes out every two months. You literally flip the pages and are able to click on any picture to take you to its corresponding link online. I love looking for new shopping sites.

Remember my post about Rubie Green? Well, the founder of Rubie Green, Michelle Adams,  also created Lonny + photographer Patrick Cline. Together, their design sense is amazing and their photo styling is breathtaking. I obsess over every house/room they feature. In this mag, my favorite is Manhattan's couple Ethan Feirstein and Ari Heckman's bathroom. They painted it a glossy black temporarily, but fell in love with it - and so have I.  Here are some pictures of the New York men's club inspired bathroom:

[love the extendable shaving mirror & white flower - great contrast against the black]

"The glossy black walls really make the cleanness of the subway-tile shower and hexagonal white tile floors explode." - Feirstein [taken from bottom right excerpt]

Lonny features lots of designers - upcoming and established - and I love to read about their design aesthetics and style. I created a collage of some of my favorite quotes from this issue and I must say, I share a lot of the same opinions! Hope you love it as much as I do - enjoy! 
[click on all images to enlarge]

Thursday, June 10, 2010


I just ordered this book and this one. Neither have come in yet, but they will immediately be on display in the den. I am trying to stay up on the trends in the design world and keep all forms of inspiration around me. Lately I have been drawn to a lot of "poster-style" block prints and layered screen prints. Here are some of my recent favs:

[all images Right Brain Terrain]

I have been trying to collect inspiration for an array of framed photography and prints in Melrose. I like a mix of beautiful photography, black and white high contrast pictures, and art prints. Rather than hanging the frames on the wall in a collage, I have been drawn to staggering the frames on shelves. Here are some inspiration images:

But, of course I am still a fan of a hanging collage:

[scanned from house beautiful]

I love all combinations: black frames, gold frames, white frames, matt, no matt, round, square, rectangle, big, small - everything! I even like how this last picture is not symmetrical. I am thinking a photo "shelf" above my desk in the guest bedroom and a photo "collage" above Brandon's desk in the study...but we shall see!