Wednesday, June 29, 2016


Is anyone anxious to see some progress shots of the hallway bathroom renovation?!  In typical renovation style we are behind schedule, and costs are adding up.  It seems that each day there has been something unique pop up that we have had to stop, discuss and assess what we were going to do.  After today's conversation - I almost ended up with a new soffit in my living room?!  wtf - I know that is what you all are thinking, it is at least what I was thinking.  I know you are also thinking, what is this chick talking about...we were just discussing a bathroom, and how does the living room have anything to do with this...well, that is lesson 001 in home renovations.  The project always expands, and always reaches to areas of your home that have no relation to the 'real' project at hand.

Good news - I was home during the above conversation and nixed the soffit (insert praising hands emoji right now).

More good news is that we are almost ready to put the tub in.  This is huge folks - because even though it won't be tiled, there will be no vanity, lighting or a toilet - we will at least be able to shower at our own house!  whoop whoop.

Bad news is that I have received 2 cracked tubs now...which depleted the stock at the distributor that is close by, so now a tub from the manufacturer is being shipped to me in STL from it won't be here until Friday.  ugh....beyond frustrating...but what are you going to do.  I am crossing all of my fingers and toes that this third one gets here on Friday and is not cracked.  I have an unhealthy relationship right now with this tub, and while I keep showing it love, I am afraid I am going to be disappointed again.  But - back to thinking positive - it IS going to show up on Friday and it IS going to be perfect is what I keep repeating to myself.  Along with, it IS going to be installed on Friday, and I will be able to shower in my own bathroom this weekend.   Repeating this non-stop until then.

I have been having some major back and forth over using brass/champagne bronze fixtures.  I adore all of these bathrooms I see on instagram and pinterest that use the brass shower heads, mirrors, towel bars, etc.  BUT - when it came down to this bathroom, I was really wanting something a little more classic - more specifically an understated classy classic.  Does that make any sense?!  And not to sound cheap, but the brass is more expensive than the standard finishes, and while I totally would have pulled the trigger if I was 100% confident in the brass route...but, because of the overall classic feel I was going for - I was hesitant.  So, I have finally come to my plan - I ordered the shower/tub combo parts, wand, etc. in chrome (you can never go wrong with chrome).  These are also pieces of the bathroom that are not easily replaced in the future.  But I did decide to have the toilet paper holder and towel ring in the brass;) - and my mirror is the antique brass, and the light fixtures are chrome.  Way confusing I know, but the point is that I am doing a mix of chrome and brass/champagne bronze and am pretty excited about seeing how it all turns out.  Plus I can easily switch out the toilet paper holder and towel ring and won't be out too much extra money if I ever wanted/needed to.

Here are a few progress shots of where we are currently:

The rest of this week I need to order the vanity faucet.  I initially purchased this one from Home Depot - it was cheap and had the style I was wanting, but I really dislike that it is one unit.  I want three separate pieces, like this one.  Thinking of ordering this one.  Unfortunately, there isn't much room left in the budget for the faucet, so it has to be the look I am going for but also on point, price wise.

Alright friends, that is all I have for you now!  But, I promise to be back with more soon;).

Thank you all!xo

Monday, June 27, 2016


Because I always end up inadvertently spending half my weekend soaking up the latest home design images on Pinterest - I thought it would be fun to share my top pinned images this weekend that I loved and had to save.

Obsessed with this kitchen - love the shades of blues in the living room, and how the bright white pendants stand out in the background.  And that marble backsplash is a dream.

This living room has always been a favorite of mine, I can't believe I haven't pinned it until recently.  I have always wanted to incorporate this black and white rug into my day I will;).

This wall art has be all sorts of inspired.  These are the kinds of photos when I look at them, I instantly get inspired and want to start diy'ing art all over my house.

Because I have had bathroom on the brain - this weekend I was specifically looking online for turkish towels to add to our new bathroom.  I decided I want to have two robe hooks installed over the tile, at the end of the tub - and I think two turkish towels would look so inviting.  

And because I am having such a hard time deciding on the finish outs for the accessories for the bathroom; should I do chrome accessories to match the shower and bath hardware?  Or do the antique brass look I love?  I really wanted to the bathroom to have a classic and modern feel, and felt like chrome is the perfect look for this vibe.  But....every time I see the antique brass in a bathroom I have some pretty heavy envy going on..... lol - so I thought why wouldn't I do the easily changeable items in the brass? Like the toilet paper holder, towel holder, shower rod and holders?!

I am also working on a new and exciting post(s) to share with you all!  It has to do with the bathroom and 'vlogging";).  Because the bathroom has turned into such a huge project, I really want to share it all with you guys and show you our route to having an updated bath in our 1940's pink and black tile nightmare!   Photos just don't do it justice...until next time...;).

Happy Monday friends - xxxx



Friday, June 24, 2016


It's FRI-YAY!  whoo whoo - we made it to the weekend.  For today's post (and in true Friday Favorites fashion), I thought it would be fun to round up "a few of my favorite things"...;).

First up - is this chalkboard wall in my kitchen.  It has my favorite all time - actually my entire family's favorite pancake recipe (modified version obviously;)).  My MIL visited New York a few years ago, and came back with the most amazing cook book, which contained the most amazing pancake recipe in it.  For those of you that are familiar with New York, I am sure you have been there and or heard of them - Clinton Street Baking Co.  One year, I was finally gifted a copy of their cookbook (here is a link to it on Amazon).  However, nothing tops their pancakes.

Madewell - one of my favorite stores to shop at is having a 30% off sale on select items.  Loving this little zip pouch -

West Elm is having an end of the season sale - and I would love to get my hands on two of these babies for my living room -


The latest news on the UK has my browser set on CNN today.

I am still on the hunt for a new pair of tennis shoes.  I wish I was one of those people that bought tennis shoes more often.  I wear them all the time now, and really need to get a new pair that is a little more intact, then the current ones on my feet;).  This pair is still high on my radar - I need to just jump on zappo's and order.

I started re-reading this book again, when a good friend of mine brought it back up to me.  It was good when I read it the first time, but there is a revised and updated version - I love this book; only wish I had more time to actually read a book...who has time for reading these days?!

This was my view yesterday morning of our bathroom - demo finally was able to get completed later yesterday afternoon!  whoohooo!  Those tiles were insane and not easy at all to take off.  We ended up filling 3 of the Bagsters - which also got picked up yesterday evening as well (double score to get those off of our yard in time for the weekend).

Crossing our fingers as each one was lifted.  Worried that we crammed too much weight in one and it would break as it was being lifted into the truck.

I will share more of the bathroom sources as we get closer to finishing and reveal time - but I definitely wanted to share one of them -  This is my first time working with this site, and they have been awesome.  I have been working with a lady named Julie via phone, and she was a huge help.  I told her how I was really wanting the Kohler Purist line, however, did not want to splurge for them in this project as this is most definitely not our 'forever' home.  She knew exactly what I was talking about and instantly had an option that is very similar to that cross handles, but still lots of similarities without the larger price tag;).  **I am editing this post as I have to mention some of the issues we have been having with  I was super impressed with their customer service when I placed my order, however, we are now on faulty part/item #5.  These faulty products have costed us so much extra time and money that I might as well of ordered the original Kohler products I wanted - we would have been even money.  I will share more of the details after the project is complete, but I did want to jump on and edit this comment because unfortunately (I am truly and honestly disappointed) I just can no longer recommend this site.**

Lastly, I saw these awesome shoes the other day when I was at Nordstrom's - are these not the cutest, most comfortable looking shoes ever?!  These weren't my size, but I you can buy them online, and they are on sale.


Happy Friday friends!  I hope you all have a wonderful weekend - thank you so much for your support and all of your positive messages about the blog - it really means a lot to me and my family.


Wednesday, June 22, 2016


Happy Wednesday Friends!  Can't believe this week is almost half way over...this bathroom project has had my mind all over the place.

For today's post, I really wanted to share a master bedroom reveal from a fellow blogger that I absolutely love and think is just beautiful.  Obviously, I just re-did my master so unfortunately, these photos are simply for visual inspiration, and I plan to tuck away in my design ideas folder for a future project;).

This bedroom belongs to a super talented and humble blogger - Jen over at withHEART.  She has been renovating her current (new) home and her master bedroom as been the latest finished project.

Before I bombard you all with the gorgeous photos - below is a quick before shot (gotta love that green!).  Jen also mentions that they did do a bump out of this space, which will explain why the after shots vary slightly from the before, as far as window style/placement goes.

Annnnddddd - the speechless after.  I can't get over the simplistic design and finishing touches in this room.

I simple, yet so stunning.

This window is all that is needed in my life....

All of the above photos are via Jen's blog, which can be found HERE.

I sourced a few items you could use to re-create this look -

1 // 2 // 3a  - amazing price and for two;) 3b // 4 - THE best sheets you will ever have // 5a  5b // 6 // 7

Monday, June 20, 2016


I have always loved off the shoulder styles - like always have loved.  I can remember back in college looking for an off the shoulder "going out" shirt;) lol.  So, I have been so excited to see them come back in the stores these past few months.  I especially am loving the swim suit versions - they are on my wish list...and keep creeping up toward the top.

I saw this top at Nordstrom's last week while I ran through on my way out of the mall.  I love love this top - the material is great, the part on the sleeves that sits on your shoulders is tight and stays on your shoulders really easily.  But my favorite part of this shirt is that under your arms, the shirt comes all of the way up to your under arm.  So if you were lifting your arms up, you wouldn't feel like you were flashing everyone some side boob;).  A lot of the off the shoulder tops recently have had that, and because I am a fan of not wearing a bra as much as possibly, especially with these kinds of tops - those always made me feel so self conscious.

I also loved the colors, and was a perfect shirt to dress up a pair of jeans.

I tagged this top HERE (I am wearing a 2) - but also included a few of my favorite off the shoulder looks below.

Anyone have any fun Monday plans?!  Our "official" bathroom renovation starts today - the guys should be here after I get home from dropping off the kids at their summer camps.  They will have to start on demo today - hoping it goes fast, and they can knock it out in 1 day.  Promise to give an update on Wednesday:).

All photos by Kelly Leavitt

Friday, June 17, 2016


Happy Friday!  This week has been a long one, especially with what has seemed like constant bad news in the media and down south.  As if one of those tragedies isn't horrific, there have been three so close to each other.  This most recent one about the alligator is just about one of the worst stories I have ever heard, and still can't believe what that family is going through right now.  I have made a personal decision on this blog to not get too political, as while this blog is my outlet;) - it is also something bigger - and that is your interior design resource:).

With that being said, today's post is all about bathroom lighting.  This post is focused solely on bathroom sconces, the ones that will anchor your mirrors and typically be hung above the mirror(s) or to the sides.  So....if you happen to be working on a bathroom project (like me;)) - then you are in luck!

Let me know what you guys think and if anyone ends up using any these! of these is going in our new bathroom (and they have become my new obsession in life, and I just realized I think I already shared these with you guys...ops! lol).

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 // 11 // 12 // 13 // 14 // 15 // 16

BATHROOM UPDATE:  The plan was to do a Friday post on the progress in the bathroom so far, along with some more photos...however, due to baseball practices, softball games, real life;), etc..... nothing has changed since Wednesday's post:(.  However, we did learn of a tool that is supposedly going to make the demo go so much faster.  We are hopefully able to get our hands on that baby this weekend so we can catch up a little bit before Monday.

Thank you for reading and following along:).  Happy Father's Day to all of the amazing rockstar Dad's out there.  xo

Wednesday, June 15, 2016


Photo: Amber Interiors
Persian/turkish rugs are everywhere right now - love love love them!  If you saw my bathroom post a few days/weeks ago, there was a persian rug in the plan;).  So, I have been on the hunt trying to find one that isn't uber expensive.  Fast forward to this past weekend - we were in Jeff City, and made a stop by a friends new home.  She told me about this amazing online rug source -

This site is amazing you guys - seriously inexpensive rugs.  A few of the 3x5 ones I am considering ordering for the bathroom are only $77!

Here are a few of my favorites in their respective sizes:

All of these above can be found on the esalerugs site, here.

While browsing the other night, I have noticed they don't have a ton of color variations/options in the 3x5 size range.  Not sure if this changes when looking at 8x10's, or 5x8's?

After learning of this site - I have been noticing a handful of my favorite instagrammers have sourced this site on their rugs - I feel so clueless for missing this amazing source.

One of my favorite nursery's:
Photo: Amber Interiors  
ESale Rug used in Chris Loves Julia's latest kitchen renovation:
Photo: Chris Loves Julia
See why I NEED one of these in my new bathroom project?!:

Photo: Studio McGee
If you guys check them - I would love to hear if you find anything!  I'm still mulling over which one to order for the bathroom and would love to see any good finds:).

PS.  Progress update on the bathroom:  Husband continued demo work last night...holy concrete!  There is concrete everywhere behind these tiles.  It is slow going, but we are getting there.  The goal is to have all of the wall tile down by the end of the week.  We will see where we get.


Monday, June 13, 2016


I love switching things up with my hair, however, lately for some reason I have been playing it the same for awhile...not really making any changes.  I did go a little more blond last summer, as well as went a little darker in the fall - but nothing dramatic.  I have been considering cutting my hair into a long "lob" - but I keep freaking out when it comes time to sit in that chair.  My hair is a part of me and who I am, and am worried about automatically becoming that stereo-typical "Mom" who has kids and has short hair.  Even though I have LOTS of beautiful friends who have cut their long hair off and it looks SO good - more mature, professional and just put together.  Sometimes with this long hair, it's hard to look "put together" unless I spend about 1.75 hours blow drying and then curling...which let's be honest, happens about once a month;).

I have been loving this lavender look for some time now - and have been secretly hoarding these types of photos;):

And then I came across this Pinterest page, and have been even more obsessed.....

So - I finally talked to my hair stylist about this lavender hair crush I was having for like the past 9 months, and she was so casual about it and was like, "oh totally we can do that - so simple - I just did it on a girl a few days ago - you could totally pull it off".  Whoohoo - just the encouragement I needed from my talented and amazing hair guru.

However, there are a few things I have learned after messing with non-traditional hair color - it is HARD to get the exact color you are wanting!  I thought it would be as simple as slapping in some lavender hair color from a bottle that says "If you want Lavender hair use me" - just like with blonde/brown highlights, and bam you have the color you want.  It is not that - the first time we did it, we played it super safe and just did a little, and only left the toner in for a short amount of time.  This looked awesome immediately after she did it, but was more pink than lavender.  And...washed out after about 3 washes.

This was on the drive home:

So, I went back and we tried again - this time a little more aggressive.  In order to get that lavender I was really wanting my hair colorist said that it might take a few times of doing this in order to get the color saturated in your hair - makes sense to me.  I also learned that you probably need to start off a little darker than the color you are actually envisioning, because it will fade so fast (comment above) - it will fade into the color you are wanting.  Which is awesome, but slightly disappointing because I only ended up with the color I was actually going for for about a week before it faded almost completely away.

Here I am at the salon:

Here it is the next day (a little too purp-ley, but still cool):

And here it is a few days later:

So...I am still working on this;) lol.  The second time it washed out in about 3 weeks:(.  Which honestly isn't a terrible thing.  Because while I think purple hair is cool - I do still have a day job and not sure if this really screams, "working professional" while in the office, haha.

Do you all have any tips/tricks you use when coloring your hair a color?!  I am obviously a complete newbie with this and could use any advice on how to get the color you want and how to get it from washing out so quickly.  In the meantime - I will continue obsessing over photos like these -


Happy Monday friends:)xo

Friday, June 10, 2016


For this Friday's post - I wanted to mull over some things I would change if I were able to re-do our kitchen.  Or...say, we bought a new house - the things I would do differently this time.  And just as I am typing this, I feel like I might have done a post like this in the past??;)....hmmmm - oh well.  Let's do it again.

I wish I would have splurged for the white apron front porcelain sink, versus the stainless.  While I do really love our stainless, it has gotten scratched up, and while I love the look it brings to the kitchen - you just can't go wrong with the classic vibe a white porcelain apron front brings.  But you will pay for it;).

Next up would be the pendant lights above our island.  This was one of the dead last items I purchased for the kitchen, and I needed them here asap for the electrician.  I had lost all inspiration at this moment, and jumped on Pottery Barn and ordered something basic and cheap.  Again - this was one of the last purchases and our budget was toast at this point.  Next house will have my dream pendants - here.

I did spend a ton of time debating over what paint colors to do the cabinets and island.  I knew I wanted a darker island color with white cabinetry.  I selected this color by Benjamin Moore - however, it turned out waaaaaayyy different when it was sprayed on by our cabinet makers, than when I had it sampled on an old cabinet in the garage.  It turned out very green/sage-ey...which honestly doesn't look bad.  But, it wasn't what I was envisioning.  I remember the night after it was installed - I kind of had a freak out moment.  My husband was kind enough to tell me to sit on it for a night, and if I still hated it in the morning, he would re-paint it by hand that weekend.  Wow - right?!  lol - I was 8.75 months pregnant at the time;).  If I had to do it again, I think I would do a grey/black - or what I would really do is have a marble waterfall island - and probably just paint the cabinet fronts white.  

Hands down - I would not even need to think twice - I would not do white cabinets again.  They look gorgeous when completely cleaned up, however, I am constantly wiping them down from kiddos dirty hand prints.  I realize I was caught up in the white kitchen look, and I have to admit I still am - but I would love to do a dark cabinet and not stress over the white getting dirty, marked up, Gwen riding a princess cart across one leaving a red/pink mark that I can not get off, etc.  

I wanted to include this next one, but this isn't something I would necessarily change in our current kitchen - because I still love the ones we have.  However, I would do brass hardware, with brass sink faucet.  

This last one I am doing strictly for the marble haters out there.  I had Carrara Marble installed on our counter tops and counter surrounds.  However, chose to do butcher block on the island (I knew this would be a heavy-heavy traffic area - and it is).  It is not honed either.....I wanted that shiny true marble look.  Here is the truth - are they somewhat stressful - absolutely.  Does it make me sound like a crazy person when people use my kitchen and I instruct them on what they can and can not do on the countertops?  Certainly.  Have they patina'd and have some water marks and stains?  Yep.  Do I love them and would I change them out if money were not an option?  HELL NO.  I have a slight love affair with my marble countertops and would not change a thing.  Now would I do them again, if we were to move and build a new kitchen?  Possibly not - I think I might try a quartzite instead.  But, if I had the chance to install Calcutta Gold Marble - I would cry with happiness and simply be sure to have them honed first.  It would also depend on if I was building a new house.  My house was built in the 40's and while the kitchen was completely gutted, it still has the bones of a 1940's house.  My house will never be perfect, it will always have cracks somewhere in the plaster or drywall, etc.  For me, the small areas of patina on the marble add character to the house and kitchen; similar to the fact that my house has character given it is not a new build.  

Because I feel like I should end on a positive note - I have been so happy with this super large bulletin board.  It was another one of those game changer, the heavens opened up - finds at Restoration Hardware Outlet.  It is perfect.  I love that it houses all of our calendars, kids artwork and random mail.  

Before ending, I also want to mention that after re-reading this post I realize that the majority of the items I would change would be to spend more money and splurge on items I really wanted to do.  Well, truth is, that is not always an option, nor is that always necessary to do.  Important thing is to stay within your budget and choose items that are similar to the high dollar ones you really want.  Nothing is worth being stressed out financially.

Cheers to you all and this weekend;) -



design + development by kelly christine studio