Clothes vs Costumes

I can’t believe Halloween is upon us already! But that is the way with time. It just keeps going whether we like it or not.

Mason Cooley Clothes make a statement costumes tell a story quote motivation monday halloween

I found this fun quote and thought it would be perfect for Halloween week! When you get ready in the mornings are you putting on a costume or are you putting on clothes? Do you wish you were dressing differently for a job or purpose that you currently aren’t in?

Sometimes it’s fun to change the hat that you are wearing (or in this context the whole ensemble) and dress up for the job that you want, or just dress up for the fun you want to be having.

Are you dressing up for Halloween? I can’t wait to hear what costumes everyone will be wearing!!

Graphic on a background of Pitch Black by Farrow & Ball.

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Updating to a Classic Look | Farmhouse Bathroom Renovation In Process

TGIF y’all!! I wanted to celebrate that we made it through the week by sharing a bit about one of my current projects!

I started working with this client on their space several months ago (back when there was still snow on the ground). We sorted through all of the details of their space, worked out a plan, and started selecting our materials.

Farmhouse Bath Floor Plans

Orders were placed around March or April and then we waited. This is not that uncommon in the world of renovations. You have to wait for your contractor to fit you into their schedule, the town to approve your permits, and the materials to all arrive. All that said, we were ready to go in June, but couldn’t start until a few weeks ago due to many variables.

You can take a look at the planning process in this post (the first image shows me working through this space planning). And the plan above is the one that we ultimately went with. The idea was to bring in some more classic farmhouse elements to be true to the home’s character while not creating something that would easily feel dated.

We decided to choose materials that represented that classic farmhouse feeling with the wood look tile on the main floor, white subway on the walls (in an updated scale and finish), and accents of Carrera marble in the counters, shower floor and saddle pieces.

We went with a claw-foot tub centered in the bathroom space with a beautiful and classic tub filler to finish it off. This detail was the one sticking point for this client, we had to find a way to make a claw-foot fit in the space in addition to the shower, and ideally make it stand out as a centerpiece.

Farmhouse Bathroom Storage Cabinet Linen Tower Custom Amish Dining Room Hutch

For the cabinetry, we went with a simple style and a classic valance base that nods towards an Amish farm style cabinetry detail. The plan is to carry this theme through with custom corner cabinets to flank the tub and add storage in the space (we had to knock out the linen closet in the hallway to make everything fit in the space that we wanted). The corner cabinets would be a painted white finish with a valance base that would match that of the vanity cabinet, but for now they won’t be added due to budgeting restrictions (also very common in renovations), however they are all planned and ready to go whenever we are ready to add them. The vanity cabinet itself is a really pretty chestnut brown finish, which is a nice rich tone without the reddish undertones.

I can’t wait to see how this whole space comes together! Hopefully I can share more soon! Are you working on any projects at home? What renovations are on your list currently and what types of renovations do you want to see me share more of here?

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Busy Busy Tuesday

Happy Tuesday everyone! I have been to multiple job sites all over the state of New Jersey today, this state feels bigger to me every time I have a new client in a new town! A lot of my projects are in a busy state right now, so I might be MIA for a few days with sporadic posts so that I can attend to everything that needs to be done and make sure all my clients are happy.

I just wanted to pop in to let you know that Laura H won the Appleton Dress!! Hooray for Laura–Laura, I sent you an email, comment below if you didn’t get it!

Hope everyone is well and keeping busy sewing, crafting, or creating in whatever your medium is! I’m off to design the night away! What are you all working on this week??

A Word Of Advice From Judy Blume

The word exhausted doesn’t even begin to describe how I feel right now. But I’ve always been of the mindset that being busy is good.

But being so busy you feel crazy doesn’t often feel good, but it is so much better than having absolutely no work to be done and crying because you are bored and without work. So, I am in no way complaining, I’m just feeling a little tired is all.

Judy Blume on Benjamin Moore Caramel Latte

All that said, I found this word of advice from Judy Blume and I thought it was absolutely perfect for how I’ve been feeling these last few days. “Stay aware, listen carefully, and yell for help if you need it.” Well Judy, My ears are perked, I’m paying attention, and I’m just about ready to yell for help!!

In all reality though, things are going so well. I might be getting less sleep these days, but it is all for good reasons. I have a handful of amazing projects in the works right now and I’m excited to see them all come together. Fortunately for me, I really do feel passionately about what I do. Another thing that I’m thankful for? People to yell to for help when the load gets to heavy. A good support system is so key! Now if I could just get to yoga…

I know I owe you all an announcement on who won the Appleton Wrap Dress contest, but I haven’t had a minute to determine a winner yet, so just know that the contest is closed and I will announce a winner later on tonight or in tomorrow’s post, and I appreciate you baring with me on this one!

How was your weekend? Did you do anything fun? Or were you fortunate enough as I am to be bogged down with getting work done? Tell me what you’re up to!

(Quote shared on Benjamin Moore’s Caramel Latte, this color is perfect for fall!)

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Craving A Little Fall Decor

I know, I know, I heavily pushed back the fall season when it was new and people were celebrating it the day after Labor Day. I was all #SummerForever! But let’s be real, we would all die if there was really summer forever (die or move to a desert state). Fall is a very welcome season of fresh air, but because I so heavily pushed back on the season, and because life has been a little hectic on the to-do list side of things, my house doesn’t seem ready for fall at all!

I am really wanting to spice up our space! So here are some fall spaces I’m inspired by right now… maybe this weekend I can find some ways to implement some fall flavor into our home.

Fall Decor Inspo Neutral

Inspo from the Liz Marie Blog.

Fall Decor Inspo Neutral

Inspo from A Diamond In The Stuff.

Fall Decor Inspo Neutral

Inspo from Opulent Cottage.

Fall Decor Inspo Neutral

Inspo from Sarah Hearts.

Fall Decor Inspo Neutral

Inspo from Dear Lillie.

I think I see a pattern in the fall decor I’m liking… lots of neutrals and whites and words of thanks. All of the inspiration pictures are linked with where I found them and they are all worth a visit if you have time to check them out, the spaces they are shared with are all quite lovely and you might just find some fall decor ideas of your own to run with!

What are you up to this weekend? Are you all decked out for fall yet?

Cashmerette’s Appleton Dress | The Joys of Having a Mom Who Sews |Contest

Many of you know, and some of you don’t, that my mama is a sewing blogger. She has been sewing for my whole life and probably longer, and has been blogging for at least a decade over at GMarieSews.

Cashmerette Appleton Wrap Dress

When I was little, my mom made us clothes until we got to that middle school or high school age where it became so embarassing to not have the same style/type/brand of clothes that everyone else had. So I missed out on hand made goodies for a good stretch of time, but in the last several years, my mom-made wardrobe has been increasing.

When we were back in Seattle visiting over the summer, my mom had me try on a few things she had been working on and I came home with not one, but two(!) Appleton Wrap Dresses! If you are well immersed in the sewing blogging world, then you are likely familiar with Cashmerette and her fabulous and fun blog, that is fun to read even if you don’t sew. She just launched her first pattern, the Appleton Dress, and I am so glad that I got to be one of the first to be wearing it!

Of all of the things I have that are mom-made, I don’t think that I have received more compliments than I have on these dresses. I love how they fit and they are quite flattering where the wrap hits. I don’t know much about sewing and all the things that the sewing blogosphere looks for in a pattern (you can head over to GMarie’s blog for info on the pattern and process), but I can tell you that this pattern is so easy to wear and from what I’ve seen so far from Cashmerette and all the people who’ve sewn it up already, the Appleton wrap looks good in so many different patterns and styles! (Jenny even has a little mood board for inspiration over on her page.) Of my two prints in this dress, I love the versatility. The dress easily goes from brunch on the weekends to work on the weekdays, On Monday I wore the graphic print with a pale pink blazer to a client presentation to look a bit more professional. I can’t say enough good things about wearing this dress.

It’s times like these that I wish the things my mom has made for me were available off the racks so that everyone I knew could go buy the dress! The good news, though, if you or anyone else in your life is a sewer, get excited because I’ve teamed up with GMarie to give away a digital pattern for the Appleton Wrap dress! All you have to do to enter is follow DBK on Bloglovin and leave a comment on this post letting me know if you sew and what types of projects are your favorite to work on? When I do sew, I work on home dec types of things, but i haven’t made a thing requiring sewing in years! I have a few projects on my list though!

What projects inspire you to begin a new craft or hobby? Are you a secret fashionista desperate to start sewing?? Cashmerette and GMarie are two great bloggers to follow if so, and through them you will be linked over to many, I have a few more favorites, but I won’t bore you.

This contest is not sponsored, simply inspired by this sweet dress and made possible by the support of Jenny, who has agreed so generously to donate the digital pattern, and my mama, who whipped up these beauties. Please make sure you do leave a comment below with your contact info so that we can get in touch with the winner. Contest closes Sunday night at 11:59pm Eastern, winner will be announced on Monday morning, so check back to see who wins!

Traditional | Warm | White | Kitchen

This kitchen renovation took a lot of planning, but it was so worth it. You can see what it looked like before and in process here, but let’s take a look at all that storage and counter space in the after below!
Warm White Kitchen 1

One of the things that I really love about this new space is the new windows. Both of the windows in the kitchen space were replaced, the one over the sink was moved (it’s worth checking the before post to see the old window placement). The previous window was close to the corner of the room nearest the front door, it was large and low and took up a bulk of the usable space. For a kitchen though it is so nice to have natural light streaming in, it was better in this kitchen to recover that space for storage and counters and upgrade to a smaller window centered over the sink.

We centered the window in the interior space, so if you look closely at the exterior shots, you will notice it is slightly off centered between the door and the edge of the home, but it isn’t super obvious and the bigger concern was that it would look puny compared to the large window on the living room side of the home. Once we applied the siding and shutters it seemed to really blend in and balance out on the front of the house, and there are always landscaping tricks you can do if this is something that ends up changing in your space as well.

The other thing we did to help make this space feel larger was open it up to the formal living room. We weren’t able to open it up completely due to structural requirements and budget constraints, but we opened it as much as possible, extending the counters through to the living room side of the column to create a breakfast nook and keep the sight lines as expansive as possible.

Lastly, we grouped all of the food storage together anchoring the far corner of the room creating ample storage while still leaving the eat-in kitchen capabilities.

Another favorite feature of this kitchen is the white sink. Believe it or not, it is a white granite composite sink, and the homeowner has reported that it is holding up very well and they are quite pleased with it. With the cabinets and sink being white, we balanced it out with a warm counter, paint and flooring to really get a warm feeling in the space overall. This is also why we steered clear of stainless appliances. The white appliances keep the space feeling more open and don’t add the cool stainless feeling to the overall warm space. All of the hardware is in a brushed nickel which is also a very warm finish.

What do you think of this finished space? A lot of people right now are doing all white kitchens with white details on everything except for the appliances and hardware, so I’m interested to see what the feedback will be on this space with the white balancing out with warmer, softer details, but at the end of the day and at the end of the design what matters most is the homeowner and it is safe to say that they are really pleased with not only the visual of the space, but also with the new functionality they have here!

Layering Our Bedding for Fall

When it starts to get a bit cooler at night, we call that good sleeping weather: weather in which you can open the windows, maybe add another layer to your bedding and really cozy in and get a good night’s sleep. I wanted to share with you how we transition our bed for fall.

Fall Bedding with White Sheets Quilted Layers and Neutrals

I change the sheets and the shams, keeping a good balance between the colors and textures by adding the quilted euro shams and a thin quilted layer, a favorite made by my mom. It is reversible and the sunflower side is perfect for the fall, not to mention that the blues and greens work perfectly in our bedroom color scheme. I keep the plush down comforter with the crisp white and greige cover folded at the end of the beds for when the nights get a bit too chilly and you need to pull up another layer to keep cozy.

This bed is so cozy and inviting that I never want to leave it in the morning to go to work!! How do you transition your linens in the fall? Do you add more cozy and quilted layers like we do, or maybe switch up the color of your sheets or duvet cover? I always love to see and hear what others are doing to keep cozy as the seasons change and the temps begin to drop.

Motivation for Adventure on Columbus Day

Whether or not Columbus was the first to discover America (what era did you go to school in?) we still celebrate his explorations on Columbus Day. I like to think that Columbus had an adventurous spirit, and I hope that is what people think about me when I’m gone.

Daring Adventure Quote by Helen Keller for Columbus Day

I hope I have time and the ability (mentally, physically, financially) to do all of the worldly exploring that I dream of, but in the meantime, in honor of Columbus Day, I thought I would share this Helen Keller quote on adventure (background color is Farrow & Ball Pitch Blue). She’s right ya know… you either take the chance and make the adventures happen, or you are really doing nothing.

What kinds of adventures are you doing lately? Do you find that yours are more of the Christopher Columbus world explorer variety? Or more of the staying local but getting out of your comfort zone and doing things a little differently variety?

Gluten-Free Bacon Scones

Commence drooling. Gluten Free Bacon Scones-fresh from the oven

A few weeks back, my sister shared on Instagram that she was having a bacon scone, and it’s times like those when I start to really hate having a gluten sensitivity. Then that feeling is immediately followed by the determination to make my own gluten-free variation of that tasty treat.

Wholesome Chow Gluten Free Scone Mix

I happened to walk into a store the next day (literally one day after my sister shared the post) and found Wholesome Chow‘s gluten-free vegan (if you don’t add bacon) scone mix, and I scooped it up!

Then when we had to cancel our little getaway due to the weather, I knew I had to make it for our anniversary weekend. What better way to show you care than with baked goods and bacon? (Talk about love!)

These were the easiest things to make too. I put some bacon in the oven while I was getting the ingredients together. I followed the instructions on the packaging, swapping out the oil for bacon grease (again, droooool…), and then I took some of the crispy slices of bacon out of the oven (I used four slices of bacon for eight scones) and used kitchen scissors to snip them into little bits, mixed them into the dough and then scooped them onto the baking sheet (which I also greased with the excess bacon grease. (I might have gotten a bit excited about the whole bacon experience.

I baked as recommended on the packaging and then plated them with, yep you guessed it, more bacon! While I cooked, P made us espresso, and then we settled in with our delectable breakfast.

Chalk Lots Chalkboard Placemat Anniversary Chalk Board

I plated them on our Crate & Barrel plates that were a wedding gift and served them on a Chalk Lots chalkboard place mat, which I won a few weeks back and when I received them in the mail this sweet message was on the top place mat. I don’t even know how Leslie knew that we were newlyweds, but she did her research and somehow sent us this sweet note that really made my day and made serving this breakfast on our anniversary weekend extra special!

What recipes have you been drooling over lately? Do you ever have to try and reinvent recipes to accommodate your dietary restrictions? I’m getting pretty good with swapping out ingredients and making things gluten free!