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CURIO CABINET ROUND-UP + A DIY

I think some people might see cabinets as purely vessels for storage, but I see them as beautiful additions to the styled your home. There are so many beautiful ones out there that can elevate the feeling of a room that you should never just settle with the first one that you find. Want one with glass doors so you can style the items in there? Done! Want something industrial, modern, rustic? So many options!

When I started this DIY I started looking for inspiration and ended up realizing how many amazing styles there are out there. I’ve included a bunch of those finds below, but also want to give some tips as to the best ways and places to use them.

SHORT

TALL

If you’re in a super small home or apartment, then obviously storage is probably a struggle, but I would reconsider a tall cabinet. If your ceilings aren’t that tall and a large piece of furniture will just enhance the smallness of your space, then I’d go with an alternative; something like short consoles or a sideboard. That can be easily disguised with beautiful artwork or table lamps so it just looks like something decorative, but in reality you’ve got that thing loaded with stuff you needed to put away.


This DIY was a labor of love, I mean, all of them are, but I absolutely loved this challenge! I got a small curio cabinet for $35 from Facebook Marketplace and immediately went to work. Here is a quick rundown of the steps I took to make it into the beauty it turned into!

  1. Took apart the top as much as possible and filled in any holes that weren’t needed (old hardware).

  2. Spray painted the hinges to match the new handle that I got and painted the outside black.

  3. I got beadboard panels from Home Depot to create a new backboard and painted it black.

  4. I built a sturdy base with these boards, painted them black, and connected them to the original cabinet. This is where you get to customize the size, but also could be creative to make the base sturdy. I was thinking of putting a shelf a few inches from the bottom to make it sturdier and give it a bit extra opportunity to style, but ended up not.

  5. Luckily the original cabinet already came with a pretty brass interior light, but you could always add if yours doesn’t! Maybe a pretty puck light or find a small portrait light?

Now style away!

SHOP THE PROJECT

 

Fashion

FOLLOWER FAVORITES | JANUARY

The start to this year was rough for all of us. And I know so many of us hoped that at 12:01 AM on Jan 1 things would immediately start to get better, but I have a feeling that this is like an injury; it’s only going to get worse before it gets better. And while I still find myself emotional and upset at the state of the world, I try and truck on with things that bring me a little joy. I kicked off the year with a new post on the books I plan on reading in 2021, and since that is one of the things people respond to most on social media, I thought I’d share that in my monthly round-up as well! As you scroll down you’ll now be able to see the books that I read this month and a quick snippet on what I thought about them.

I hope February brings us a little more positivity and a little less 2020 vibes…

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MY FAVORITE FINDS + PURCHASES OF THE MONTH


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BOOKS I READ



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Three Women

This wasn’t exactly what I expected from this book when I bought it, but it was still interesting. It follows three women’s stories through their relationships and struggles, and while it opens your eyes to the role of women in a way, it is a little much at times. If this particular topic isn’t one that you are super comfortable with, maybe skip it?



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Work In Progress

I love reading people’s stories like this, and especially those that are in my field of work! Leanne Ford is honestly one of my design icons and I knew that she and her brother were cool people, but to be honest, now I love them even more! It doesn’t just tell you their life story but it gives their perspective on so many aspects of life, creativity, business, and just putting yourself out there for the world! It is a great read as well as super inspiring for me considering she didn’t start working in interior design until after she was 30 too 🙂



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Why I’m No Longer Talking To White People About Race

I think literature like this is so freaking important. I am a huge proponent for learning as much as you can about the world around you, and the people in that world as possible to continue to evolve into a better human being. Books like this might be difficult to read, but that’s exactly why they are so necessary. I particularly loved the section about Feminism and how race is an often unconsidered factor in how people view and talk about it.



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Rising Strong

Give me all of Brene Brown’s books!!!! Well, actually I already have all of them, and read them all a well. I love this one because it talks a lot about particular conversation, how you see them and therefore before within them, and how to direct and correct them for the most efficient conversation possible! If you like Brene or this genre, read this one for sure!



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The Hunting Party

I read Foley’s other book The Guest List in one day because holy crap it was so good!! Once I finished I immediately bought this one and have been looking forward to reading it ever since. And OH my gosh this one was so good! I finished it in two days because on day two I couldn’t put it down. If you’re looking for a book to keep you in suspense, well, then you need this book right now!

 


I’m also keeping the DIY vibes going strong this year and have a ton of great ones planned for the future, but this month I was able to get this coffee table all done and SOLD! The how-to video is on my reels but the materials are really basic and can be found below. I did it without any major power tools so if you’re a beginner or in an apartment, then this is a totally doable project!

And don’t miss my pantry glow-up reels, beginning to end! It has reached over 1M views which is absolutely bonkers!

Next up? A great IKEA hack to save hundreds on a piece like this.

 

 

Bookclub

FOLLOWER FAVORITES | FEBRUARY

I’ve seen this quote floating around social media and I have to say, I’m really feeling it.

How can this month be March, when last month was also March?

And it is so freaking true. One year ago this week my husband and I were sitting in the basement of our hotel waiting out a tornado getting ready to get our keys to our new apartment. Fast forward and we’ve moved into another apartment, got into interior design and well, still confused that it isn’t still March 2020?

Luckily my reading is still going as strong as this time last year! Check out my most recent reads below and keep an eye out for a post reviewing the first 10 books of the year!

BESTSELLERS

 

 

BOOKS I READ

 

 

 

MY FAVORITES THIS MONTH

 

 

TOP POSTS OF THE MONTH

 

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PANTRY GLOW-UP

Oh my goodness I was so excited about this project! I absolutely love our pantry back home in MN so when I realized that the closet in our apartment just had several of those white wired shelves, I wasn’t insanely excited. But then I started doing some research and found some great ways to temporarily and affordably upgrade the space that wouldn’t hit our security deposit when we leave.

BEFORE

 


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I knew I wanted the space to be pretty + functional, so the first thing that I wanted to do was brighten the walls! And obviously being in an apartment that wasn’t really a possibility. So when I found Livette’s Wallpaper I was ecstatic! It is removable, peel & stick which is a renter’s dream come true. They had so many amazing designs that to be honest I had a hard time picking. Which, I guess is a great problem to have! Not only was it incredibly easy to use, but it totally made the closet feel brighter and immediately styled it up.

I still can’t get over how easy it will be to take it off when we leave either!

 



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Grey Foliage Print Removable Wallpaper

 


The second component are the DIY shelf covers, which I think are great for any ugly shelves. They look like reclaimed wood floating shelves and again, completely uplift the style of the space. And I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I always find that with the wire shelving, things fall into the grooves and tip over time to time, so this completely eliminates that issue. I used English Chestnut stain because the plywood that I got had an orange tint to it so any lighter stain wouldn’t come through that great. Maybe I’m just obsessed with his color after this side table or something, but I think they look great!.

 


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SHOP THE TOOLS


Now comes for the accessories, which any woman knows can be the most important part to an outfit.

  1. Not many closets have appropriate lighting so I found these from Home Depot and I’m so excited about them! They run on batteries and work on a remote so no worries about hardwiring. There are some great ones from IKEA as well, but those required a plug and we didn’t have a socket in the closet and didn’t want to deal with hiding the wire.

  2. Baskets are like, my jam! And if you don’t have many different storage spaces, you can use baskets to put some categories in the baskets and keep it from feeling disorganized. Things like paper towels, maybe extra boxes of trash bags, or other home items that might not traditionally be found in a pantry.

  3. Jars on jars on jars 😀 IKEA has some affordable jars that can upgrade your pantry, and sure you might think that it is a little extra to put your snacks etc into jars and take that extra step. But you know what? It is totally worth it to open up the pantry door, and know exactly what is where and not see a bajillion different plastic bags. And let’s not sleep on these labels! My goodness are they beautiful and again, organized!

 



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my picks!

  


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SHOP THE LOOK


AFTER

 

 

Fashion

SHACKET ROUND-UP

It seems to be the style of the season… or, seasons. I have always loved a shirt jacket because it feels like the perfect casual piece to keep you warm and act as a jacket but also add some style to any outfit. AND they tend to be super comfortable and great to wear all day long.

I recently got this one and absolutely love it! It’s got a little more jacket than shirt, but still in that genre. And since we’re going into the “is it still winter” months where your heart wishes that it should be warmer than it actually is, these styles could come in handy!

So check out this roundup of a ton of these styles below.

And you know me, I love to get as much use our of one style as possible! So I put together a ton of ways you can wear your new shacket!


Tap each of the images to be able to shop the whole look!


 

 

Bookclub

THE FIRST 21 BOOKS IN 2021

I had such a strong year of reading in 2020. That was one of my New Years Resolutions and I put a specific goal of 40 – 50 books on it and I am happy to report I read 45! I didn’t end the year on the strongest note, but I’m still pretty happy with it. I’m going to try and get back into the flow of it for the beginning of this year and I have some amazing books sitting on my nightstand waiting for me!

Throughout the year though I found some amazing sources for these book recommendations! I now follow @bookofthemonth and @reesesbookclub and love both of their recommendations! But I also love reading everyone else’s recommendations! The New Yorker wrote an article about the books they read in 2020 that I took some notes from, and Refinery 29 writes a lot about reading more, ways to read more, and the books that they have read so I would recommend following them on social and checking their site every now and then!

Now, if you’re like me you love reading, when the reading is good. But when I start a book that isn’t good, I have such a hard time continuing to read. I hate just putting a book down and giving up on it, but I also could go weeks without reading anything at all because of that book. Sooooo I want to make sure that if a book isn’t really all that great, but the reviews and everything say different, that I share that with you all! Now, my opinion obviously isn’t law. But if you were on the fence about a book, then maybe that’ll help your decision. So you can check out some of my posts on the books that I have read that include their reviews and my thoughts, but I also do a quick review the second I finish a book in my stories as well!

Now check out some of the books that I have on my list to read this coming year! Unfortunately some of them are books that I didn’t get around to reading this year, so I’m going to tackle those first so I don’t have them hanging over my head. But either way, I’m super excited about diving into all of them!

Lifestyle

MY THOUGHTS ON 2020

Well, I think we’ve all been waiting for 2021 more than we ever thought we would. Not like our problems will all of a sudden disappear with the change fo the New Year, but there seems to be a hope for better days, because, well, 2020 was a bit of a b*%^h.

We’ve lost icons, hundreds of thousands of loved one, jobs, businesses, and whatever semblance of unity we had. We have fought for our lives, jobs, beliefs and justice. People stood up for their beliefs, and some sat silent. We added “zoom” to our everyday vernacular like it is a living being. And things will likely never be the same.

And I’m not saying we’ll wear masks forever or that it’s a bad thing. Certain things have been discussed and brought up that have been silent or stagnant for far too long. The state of our country and its treatment of all its people had to look at itself in the mirror, and it was found to be unjust. I think this year taught a lot of people about their place in this country and their innate privileges. It also showed us that in some cases, no matter what is said or proven, some people just won’t listen.

I’m not gonna lie, I’ve broken down so many times this year it’s hard to count. And I’ve been extremely lucky. My husband and my livelihood has not changed, and our health has been steady. But I think a lot of people felt helpless this year, maybe angry, and just overall emotional about everything throughout the last 12 months. But maybe it’s my ignorant hope that we only take the positive things into the New Year with us: the lessons, the priorities. I truly hope that when everything goes back “to normal” that we won’t revert back and forget; forget about how important our time is with our families, how fragile our time is.

Well, maybe we can forget the TikTok dances. That would actually be great.

On a different note I think that there are certain resourceful people out there who used this time to find new talents, maybe learn a new skill or simply just use their time in a different way! I was lucky enough that I had the time to do that seeing it was just me and Jon in the house, but after a few weeks of sitting in quarantine I realized I needed to get up. Doing the same thing over and over (and by the ‘same thing’, I mean nothing) wasn’t the answer for me. I actually thoroughly enjoyed getting into DIY projects this past Summer! I never knew I could love it so much and probably never would have tried had I not been sequestered to the house. I also used my time to take online courses at NYSID. That’s something that we forget sometimes, we have access to so much information and there is so much to learn!! You can do basically anything from home, even if you don’t get to go out for a drink afterwards.

Unfortunately I do think that there are some people who are waking up today, January 1st, a bit discouraged. I think a lot of people have been saying, “in the new year…”, “starting January 1st…”, and here we are! Now for the follow-through. Now I’m not one to put down the Jan 1 outlook or New Year’s Resolutions at all! I think that it has a lot of prospect, as long as there’s follow-through. Which is true of any goal! We can say the goal out loud all we want, but that won’t make it come true.

Just like we can hope that all of this ends in 2021 and soon, but that won’t manifest out of thin air. So if you don’t like the way that you spent your time in the Fall, or if you did have hopes for the beginning of the New Year, well let’s get to it! You’ve got this! You can make a change. You can find a new hobby. You can read all of those books that have been sitting on your nightstand since 2014 😀 I’m actually looking forward to continuing all these new loves that I have found; reading more, more DIY projects, and continuing to take online courses!

I think that we all have a lot to look forward to in 2021, most of all hope; hope that this all might go away, that we all might be able to hug soon, that we will get to a point that this chapter just be a memory. I, personally, am going to hold onto that hope while trying to manage this beast of a situation as best I can. And yes, that will likely include more IKEA hack DIY projects 😀

So cheers to 2021! Cheers to the New Year! Cheers to hope.

Lifestyle

FOLLOWER FAVORITES | DECEMBER

This month is always a crazy one for purchasing, whether it’s gifts or food, there is always something arriving at my door! I think this year was a little funny because we knew we wouldn’t be with the people that we usually would be, so gifts just felt different. My family for sure didn’t do much. This year taught us that we have more than enough.

BESTSELLERS

HOME

FASHION

MY FAVORITE FINDS + PURCHASES OF THE MONTH

 

TOP POSTS OF THE MONTH

JACKET | BOOTIES | TURTLENECK

SWEATER | MUG (SIMILAR LINKED) | PLANNER

Fashion

LOUNGEWEAR ROUND-UP

I didn’t buy new loungewear when the quarantine hit. Maybe a pair of joggers, but I think that’s it! So now, eight months later I have worn through just about every piece that I have and am ready for a refreshing new set of options. I have also found that most of my loungewear pieces before were the kinds that you don’t even let your neighbors see you wear. So I thought that since this is almost all that I’m wearing I would find a few pieces that are actually public-appropriate. Or, that I could wear all day without feeling like I’ve just been in my pajamas.

I’ve found some great pieces from H&M and they tend to be neutrals which is my jam. Also, very affordable so win-win. I have also found that Mango has some great comfy pieces too that you could pair with a pair of jeans or a jacket and look totally public-appropriate. They are also in the neutrals game. Swoon. I think a lot of retailers are catching on, and they are putting out a “matching sets” category. I think this time of year is perfect for a matching set of sweats then add a contrasting color wool coat, puffer coat, or a vest and you’re set!

Bottom line, with winter in full swing in most some areas, and with lock-downs in and out, I don’t think my loungewear is going to be packed away any time soon! So check out some of my finds below and some categories that I think will up your loungewear game.

MATCHING SETS

JOGGERS

CARDIGANS

ALL OTHERS

Fashion

WEEKEND SALES

Check out a ton of different sales going on now and through the weekend! Don’t forget that tons of retailers are delayed in shipping things out so I would get your gifts purchased this weekend for guaranteed delivery.

 

THIS SWEATER IS ON SALE FOR $36!

 

J.CREW

60% OFF SELECT STYLES

POTTERY BARN

THE LAST WEEKEND FOR UP TO 30% OFF GIFTS

ABERCROMBIE & FITCH

UP TO 50% OFF + THE LAST DAY FOR AN EXTRA 25% OFF SELECT STYLES

TARGET

UP TO 25% OFF SELECT FURNITURE

LOFT

70% OFF ONE FULL-PRICED ITEM, 55% OFF ALMOST EVERYTHING ELSE

ANTHROPOLOGIE

40% OFF ALL CLOTHING | 30% OFF ACCESSORIES & SHOES

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HOW TO PICK A COFFEE TABLE

It may seem like easy enough of a task, but actually when you get down to it there are a lot of components to picking the right coffee table for your space. Not that it’s incredibly difficult to do, but if these factors aren’t considered then you could end up with a room feeling off or not looking the way that you want it to.

SIZE + PROPORTIONS

The first thing you should think about is the shape of your room and the space that your coffee table needs to fill. Among those measurements is the height. Believe it or not, not all coffee table’s heights are created equal. Just like the height of every sofa and chair is not the same, so go for a coffee table that is the same height or and inch or two below the height of your sofa. If it’s too low then it will get lost in the space or feel more like a floor cushion. But make sure it isn’t too high as well! Too high and it will dwarf all the other furniture and feel awkward to look at as well as to use.

You also need to pay attention to the proportions in regards to your sofa. The general rule of thumb is that your coffee table should be 2/3 the length of your largest sofa. While I don’t think that this is a hard-fast rule, if you do have a longer/rectangular space you might want to keep this in mind. Any shorter and there will be loads of open space, too long and it will take over the space and feel cluttered.

The last measurement you need to note is the clearance. There are a few spatial rules when it comes to design that I find are rules for a functional reason:

  1. 12 to 18 inches away from the sofa – I stay closer to 16 – 18. I find 12 inches to be just too close.

  2. between 24 – 30 inches away from tv stand or fireplace

  3. 3 feet of clearance in the major walkways (this rule of thumb is for any piece of furniture)

The first rule is to ensure that you can use the table! Meaning if you are sitting on a sofa or chair, that when you lean forward you can actually reach the table to set something on it. If you have a rather large living space, then the third rule definitely comes into play. The second rule is definitely a good place to start if you aren’t sure what size or shape to get! But if you have a larger room don’t shy away from putting ottomans or a bench in front of the fireplace to finish up the space. That would mean you could forego the second rule but it could also change the shape of your table. If you’re having a hard time finding the right table because you have a larger space, maybe consider the ottomans! Extra seating and it shapes your room.


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COFFEE TABLE | RUG | COFFEE TABLE BOOK | WOODEN LINKS | FAUX FUR MULES | CARDIGAN | JEANS

SHAPE

Don’t just go with whatever shape you see first. This is where you can really bring your space to life! I tend to keep the rule that if it’s a smaller space for the coffee table, you should keep to round edges. And that can include an oval table. But make sure that the oval table is large enough to appropriately fill the space. Some can be fairly narrow and will feel too small. But I love oval tables for formal sitting areas with parallel sofa’s. Square and large circular tables/ottomans are great for living rooms almost completely surrounded by furniture. Meaning on at least three sides of the rug you have a sofa, chairs, bench, etc. I absolutely love a large upholstered ottoman for a coffee table. It feels so comfortable when done well.

Our living room in our apartment is very long. We actually have the tv at one of the short ends of the rug because it all wouldn’t fit otherwise and we wanted to maximize the space. I had thought about an oval table, however because we have an 8 x 10 rug it would have had to be such a large table to appropriately fill the space. So I went with a iron rectangular coffee table with a glass top and solid shelf at the bottom. I’m so excited that it’s finally here and that I can decorate it with my coffee table books and antique store finds!

MATERIAL + WEIGHT

When picking your coffee table you want to think about the balance of the room. Does it compliment the space and make it feel proportional? Meaning if you have a couch that has skinny or exposed legs, then I would go with a solid table, one that goes all the way to the ground. Similar to the opposite! If you have a slipcovered couch that doesn’t show the legs, then you could go with a leggy table. My general rule of thumb is if there is any accent furniture with exposed legs to go with a heavier or more solid table. I read once that a living room that is “leggy” won’t feel grounded. I tend to agree.

Next is the function of the room; is it a heavily used living room or a more formal sitting space? Are you going to be using the table and setting things on it? Are there kids that will be using the space and needs to be friendly to their uses? Reclaimed wood tables are great for heavily used rooms because it already have scratches and imperfections. So another one or two won’t stand out. I also love them with lighter/neutral sofa’s because it balances the colors. If you have a darker couch you could opt for a lighter material, especially if you already have wood floors. Too much wood in one area or too many types of wood in one area tend to clash and not go well together.

I know it all seems overwhelming, but I PROMISE the perfect table is out there for you. Maybe even one of the above!? If you need a step 1, measure the space! Literally get your measuring tape out and measure the distance between your furniture and what’s empty in the middle of your living room. And if you find it just impossible, shoot me an email or schedule a call and I’ll be happy to help you out.

Fashion

CYBER WEEK CONTINUES

While I don’t necessarily have a long list of things that I want from these cyber week sales, I did find a few different pieces from the sales. I think there are some amazing savings out there, especially on the home front! If you are like me and you have been trying or wanting to upgrade a few parts of your home… since that’s all you’ve seen for the last eight months, then now is the time to do it!

When it comes to fashion retail, my favorites right now are Madewell and Mango. You can find those and so many other finds below! I’ve also been considering upgrading my loungewear lately. I’ve been wearing it out a lot lately and been thinking about getting some higher end loungewear that’ll last longer. Maybe that’ll be a post soon? Hmmm…

MADEWELL

NORDSTROM

J.CREW

MANGO

MARK & GRAHAM

POTTERY BARN