It’s probably no secret I love to travel, and at the risk of sounding like a crazy person, I need to travel. Though that’s neither here nor there. Where was I going with this? Oh yeah, my traveling collection. It started 7 years ago when I bought two pencil sketches in London and Paris. One pencil print is a just one pencil print, but TWO pencil prints is a collection. Or at least, I decided it was so.

A couple of years later I got a pen drawing in New Orleans. Pens are adjacent to pencils so I let is slide into the collection. A few years after that I went to Switzerland for a month and thus began my somewhat desperate search for a pencil/pen drawing of some element of Switzerland. No dice. Though I did find a black and white fabric calendar. It’s great, I loved it instantly. The parameters of my collection opened up even more to allow in a black and white fabric calendar. (This weird tale is almost over, bear with me.) A few months ago I went to 5 countries in 11 days and only managed to find two black and white things for my collection. A watercolor of Amsterdam and a black and white decorative plate in Cologne. For weeks after I got home these sat on my bar cart, abandoned.

One day I finally got it together and framed the Amsterdam print. I also bought a plate hanger for the wall. Now, where to hang them? This is when I remembered I have no wall space left. I’m fresh out.

I also realized my little collection which has been spread out (London, Paris, and New Orleans in the bathroom, Switzerland in the bedroom, Amsterdam and Cologne with no home), now deserves it’s own space. I decided the black and white of the collection would look great on the bright blue walls of my bedroom.

This is a really drawn out of way of me saying, my bedroom wall once looked like this:


Now looks like this:



I think it looks awesome, and the best part is there is room to grow. I’m thinking Iceland next…

In other news, I’m very excited to say my house was featured in Apartment Therapy! I know, I was really surprised too! You can check out the post here.

Peace begone, bushes.

September 8, 2015 — Leave a comment

I took advantage of the long weekend to do something I’ve wanted to do for 3 years, 7 months, and 30 days – I pulled out the HIDEOUS bushes in front of my house. There aren’t enough negative words in my vocabulary to describe how much I hated those bushes, I mean, just look at them:

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For the past couple of years I’ve used electric trimmers to prune them back, but it was really hard to do because they were over 7 feet wide in places! You would be correct in assuming my wingspan isn’t quite that long, which made trimming these bushes extremely difficult/impossible.

Why then did it take me 3 years, 7 months, and 30 days to remove them? One reason: It’s not something I thought I could do alone. For one, I assumed I would have to dig them up by the roots. Secondly, I assumed I would have to plant something else in their place, meaning more digging. Mowing the yard is a stretch for me, so digging up roots and planting new things is well beyond my skill set/comfort zone.

So how did manage to remove the bushes without digging or replanting? Well, I borrowed a sawzall with a wood pruning blade and (after a tutorial from my Dad) I cut those suckers down to the stump and then mulched right over the stumps. When I put my mind to it, I can be a world class shortcutter.

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Not surprising, removing the bushes also created more work from me. There is a piece of trim missing from each of the supporting columns on the porch, and there are several places where the white paint needs touched up. I’ll also want to plant something new (and less ugly) at some point. I’ll get it all done eventually.

For now though, I’m thoroughly enjoying the spoils of my arduous labor. If you need me, I’ll just be over here icing my extremely sore muscles and sprained wrist.

Little Office Design

June 15, 2015 — 4 Comments

Well, hello blog. It’s been a long time.

While this blog may have been dormant, I certainly have not been. I’ve done a few projects around my house and hopefully I’ll catch a second wind one of these days and write about them, but for now here’s a project I did outside of my house.

The company I work for recently moved to a new building and I now have my very own office. I have a door! And windows! And a super random fireplace! As you can imagine, getting my own office is a big deal, not just because I got my own office, but because I got to decorate it as well. Considering I have this blog, you can imagine how exciting it is for me to have a new space to decorate.

Here’s my office pre-makeover. Well, technically I did already have some influence on the space prior to these photos. The owner was repainting anyway so I was able to choose the paint color, it’s Sherwin Williams Gauntlet Gray. It’s a great dark gray (grey???).

IMG_7124_1024 IMG_7126_1024 Why yes that is a random fireplace in my office. This office was at one point an apartment so I got what, I can only assume, used to be the living room.  IMG_7129_1024 Here she is post me getting my grimy hands on it: thumb_IMG_8205_1024 Anyone else weirdly obsessed with taking pano photos on iPhone? They are so weird and useless and also look sort of distorted, but I still take them because sometimes you just can’t get the whole scene in a frame. thumb_IMG_8199_1024 I love the free ‘Dress Your Tech’ wallpapers from Design Love Fest, I highly recommend checking them out. thumb_IMG_8189_1024 The desk and rug are World Market. The desk is probably too small for an office desk, but I couldn’t handle the idea of having a big boring (albeit super functional) desk. Of course, lots of cords because, you know, it’s a functioning workspace. thumb_IMG_8058_1024 The painting is from an auction and I’m obsessed with it. Soooo beautiful. It’s by a local artist and was painted in the ’30s. I got it for $50! Chairs are from the Container Store.

IMG_7280_1024 2 Two boxes of Pantone postcards from Amazon and a lot of tape and I got this super cool (and super affordable) wall art. IMG_7186_1024 For my birthday last year my two best friends got me this awesome Rifle Paper travel calendar. When I was trying to come up with something to put on the walls in my new office, this calendar came to mind. Frames are from Hobby Lobby and I spray painted them gold (naturally). One of my brothers said it looks like a travel agent’s office, but I’m okay with that. The long white bookshelves in the background are actually metal ones I found on craigslist (obviously). $30 for both of them! They were a total b to paint though. I tried spray painting them but that got out of control so I used a roller to paint and seal them. A total hassle, but overall a very affordable solution. Most of the stuff on them is stolen from my house. It was kinda fun to “shop” my house for things to bring to my office.

I’m sure I’ll continue to tweak it because that’s just what I do, but for now I love it.

It’s been a while since I’ve painted something, and since I clearly have a painting problem, it was time for me to get out my paint again. A few months back when I went to IKEA I picked up a curtain rod and two Ritva curtain panels. In true IKEA fashion, these “white” curtains are actually quite off-white, but this actually worked in my favor for this particular project.

See I decided to add curtains to the window/wall in my entryway. Back when I moved in, I painted a stripe on the wall in loo of actually painting the whole entry. It was just a temporary solution until I could decide on a color I liked, but I ended up loving the stripe.


Which is a blessing and a curse considering the rest of the walls are sort of off-white and not that exciting. I’ve considered painting the walls and just repainting the stripe, but eh, not interested. All this to say… the off white curtains perfectly match the off white walls! Yay!

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Pretty crap pictures, but you get the gist. Pretty standard curtains, nothing exciting. But of course, my plan wasn’t to leave them this way (although it took me like four months to actually do anything about my plans).

My plan all along has been to paint a design on the curtains. I considered all kinds of designs. Stripes, polka dots, Dalmatian spots, but I finally settled on swiss crosses. Sure swiss crosses are currently very trendy, but I’m okay with that. I like them. I’m not worried about something being too trendy.

I used the same fabric medium I used for my painted fabric ottoman mixed with the black paint (Ace Hardware, Cannonball) from my kitchen.

Thankfully it is gift wrapping season around here so I taped gift wrap to the table as a buffer for the paint. It worked perfectly! Of course, per Jasmin-style I started to measure and create a template, but eh, I’m not much for patience. So I just freehanded the crosses. I did borrow two yardsticks from my Grandma (grandmas are the keepers of yardsticks after all) which helped give me at least a general idea of if my lines were straight so I think that helped, otherwise I could have easily gotten off course.

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I actually didn’t take long at all! Maybe two hours? Tops. It of course helped that I didn’t measure each and every line. I would say the crosses were around 4.5″ each way and I did a staggered row of 12 between two rows across the width of the panel.

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And there it is! I really really like them! Of course, I hoped I would, but you never know with DIY projects. I’m also genuinely surprised my lines are straight, I mean, that never happens. Yay, for project success!

Um, hi. I’m still alive. Just realized I haven’t blogged since OCTOBER. What. Can’t even believe it’s been so long. Good news is, I’m back to blogging and projecting. Maybe not quite on my old schedule, I don’t even know how I managed to do five posts a week before, but maybe I’ll share once a week from now on. Maybe. Don’t hold your breath or anything! So back to the projects!

As I shared in Part 1 (one million years ago), I moved my CB2 laptop table to the other side of the room. The other change I made, is less of a rearranging thing, but more of an addition-and-shift thing.


Ever since I got this bar cart this lamp has been on it. I’ve never had any complaints about it until I found something better to go there. It all started with a trip to the wonderful IKEA. I haven’t been to IKEA in about two years so I was really excited to make trip out there a few weeks ago. I got a few items, but my favorite thing I got was a fiddle leaf fig. I’ve been wanting one for sooo long, but the are 1) hard to find and 2) very expensive. Thankfully, IKEA is the king of the cheap and cool. This plant was only $12!


I already had this pot, but it was a weird yellow color so I went with my go-to gold color. I actually had a hard time deciding between white and gold but went with gold since I was already doing the little plant stands in gold. I usually use Rustoleum Metallic spray paint, but when I couldn’t find it at the store I took a risk and bought Krylon Metallic.


Turns out it was a good risk because I love this spray paint even better! Here’s a comparison:

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Yalls just gonna hafta ignore the super blurry photo, ain’t nobody got time to retake photos. It’s my Buddha lamp if you can’t manage to see that. Anyway, I spray painted the Buddha lamp with the Rustoleum spray paint and the plant stand with the Krylon. I like how the Krylon one is a warmer tone and is more matte. I kind of what to redo the lamp now…

Back to the living room, here’s a pulled out view of my new fiddle leaf fig and the little plant stands.

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Happy plant house!

Like I mentioned earlier this week, I have an end table problem. Since my living room is such an interesting shape and I have a lot of seating, I naturally need more table space to make it function properly.

Sooo I actually added two more end tables. Yeah, I know, who needs five end tables? Apparently me. Although, I don’t technically have five end tables, I do have five table surfaces (sofa table I built, bar cart, CB2 laptop desk, and the two new end tables which I’m about to get to).

I should clarify, these two end tables aren’t “new”. They are actually two tables I’ve had for a very long time. In fact, besides the dresser I refinished that lives in the guest room, these are the only other pieces of furniture I’ve kept since high school. I had the decorating bug even back then because I can clearly remember driving down a busy road, seeing a yard sale across the road, spotting these tables, and making an abrupt u-turn to go get them. At the time they were silver, and I spray painted them black (remember how black used to be so in? I wanted all my furniture to be black, now I only want white!).

In this house these tables have floated between the front porch and the guest room.

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I love the art deco-y vibe of them, but they aren’t great end tables because they are too short. So I’ve struggled to find a true place for them. Then… I got lazy (shocker!).


I started using these little tables as my own personal spray paint station during the winter when it was too cold and snowy to spray paint in the yard. Besides being a generally bad idea to spray paint on a covered porch, it also ruined the tables.

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Gotta love when lazy-you of the past creates more work for present-you. Oh well. I was recently inspired to make these little tables into plant stands so cleaning them up became a priority. My first step was to clean off the glass, and all I needed was a $1 paint scraper. While it was messy work, it was easy and sort of cathartic to clean all the paint off.


Next, I decided they should be gold because gold is awesome. I usually use Rustoleum Metallic spray paint but the store didn’t have this brand, so I decided to take a risk and use a different brand, Krylon Metallic.


The finished product is amazing!

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I love these little tables even more now! There isn’t a pulled-out shot of these because I also did another change in this area which I will reveal in another post soon.

Oh, and a note about the spray paint brand change – I LOVE the Krylon Metallic spray paint! It has a really nice matte finish which I appreciate. I did another project with this spray paint and it’s easier to see the finish on that project so I’ll wait and do a further analysis of it then.

I love that these little tables have gotten a new lease on life 12 years after I found them!

My living room is not only an odd shape but it also has no obvious focal point which makes arranging furniture in here difficult. I’ve done a good job of arranging the large pieces of furniture, but I still struggle with the little pieces like end tables. End tables are basically the bane of my existence. Thankfully, I finally found a solution for one of the side tables that has been moving around my living room for the last three years. Jasmin-+0017-2771952115-O

See that white table on the right side of the couch? P1130218

And here again on the left side of the other couch?

I can’t find a picture of it, but for the majority of this past year this table has been on the right side of this couch in front of the window.

This a laptop desk from CB2 that I got when I first moved into this house. I really like it but for whatever reason I haven’t been able to find the right spot for it. That’s is until now! P1130842

This wall has changed quite a bit since I first moved in (the TV used to be on this wall), and more recently it housed the harp and a reading lamp. Then I moved those two pieces to other rooms, and it was looking pretty sparse over there (not pictured).

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But I really like this new arrangement. It makes the chairs seem more purposeful.

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So that’s it, just a little change, but one that helped solve a three year frustration. So why the Part 1? Because Part 2 involves solving another end table problem I’ve been struggling with. Coming soon!

Mixin’ it up in the bedroom

September 17, 2014 — 2 Comments

I now realize that title could get weird… but nothing weird going on here! Just some regular old re-decorating. I swear.

The main wall of my bedroom that is visible from the door has been through a lot. Other than painting my bedroom blue, the room has basically remained the same since I first moved in. That is except for this one wall. It’s taken the brunt of my decorating whimsies. Take a walk with me through the evolution of le wall.

In the beginning the wall was cream and housed my old black bookcase.

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Then things got blue.


Then the bookcase went bye-bye, but the books remained behind.


Then my books got a new home in the dining room and the wall got a Switzerland consolation prize.


Then there was the purchase of a cheap craigslist desk.


With the purchase of the desk the wall was finally starting to take shape as a pretty and functional space. But then I just kind of stopped. I had a vague idea of doing something with cork boards, but I got a new job with a big cork board at my desk and it satisfies all of my cork board desires (I mean, it wasn’t hard to do).

When I cleaned out my closet I moved all my extra decorating stuff to the basement – only one tub worth though because I’m attempting to nip any hoarding tendencies in the bud – but 5 photo frames didn’t fit in the tub. So for whatever reason I set them on my desk… aaaand they remained there for at least a month. Why? Who freaking knows.


It’s five matching wood frames I got from Pier 1 several years ago (on the back wall it’s the one with the photo of the Brooklyn Bridge). The frames were previously hanging in my dining room before the big paint extravaganza. Side note: seeing this old photo makes me really miss my green dining room. It looks so pretty! I like how light the new dining room is (plus the bookshelves, obvs), but the green was really wonderful also. 

Back to the frames, I’m really dragging out this story unnecessarily – I hung them on the blank wall. That’s what all this is leading to if you hadn’t already gotten there yourself.

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This actually includes two updates, first the frames and secondly the suitcase. So I was driving through a neighborhood on my way home from the art museum one day when I saw this sweet old couple stacking stuff on their curb with a sign that said “Free”. Well, that is my magic word so I obviously stopped. I love this suitcase. It doesn’t have a handle which doesn’t really matter since I would never use it as an actual suitcase. The invention of the rolling suitcase is the greatest invention of recent time (basically) so there is no way I’m going back to the dark ages of carrying a suitcase, please. This suitcase was just too cute to pass up though. I actually think it would be fun to use around Christmastime but for now it looks pretty cool under this desk. I put the chair that was at this desk back in the dining room because I don’t use this desk as a place to sit. I actually never intended it for that reason, I’d much rather sit in my big sunny dining room to work, but I wanted a desk in my room more for organization than as a workspace.

I’m still debating painting the frames white, but I thought I’d at least hang them first before I made a decision. If you are curious, this is major progress for me since like to make rash decisions. Go me!

My porch has come a very long way.

From a blank slate in January of 2012:


To a few $15 craigslist chairs and… some other junk in 2013.


Then a few weeks ago I hit the motherload when I got this amazeballs vintage couch and rattan coffee table (plus two other pieces of furniture) for $100:


I would have been happy to leave the porch like this for a while, considering what a vast improvement it was, but then I had brilliant idea. I love the look of draped cafe lights, and it occurred to me I could probably do that look on this porch. It took me a while to pull the trigger but when I saw string lights on clearance, I went for it. I’m super glad I did! Party porch is on!


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I bought simple screw-in hooks, drilled pilot holes into the wood trim (and in one case the ceiling) and then screwed the hooks in by hand. It was super simple! The only big issue with this whole lights on the porch project is that I have no electrical outlets outside so the cord has to be draped through the screen door and the front door. My Dad came over and made a face about it, but then I convinced him it was totally fine to jam electrical wires through a door that is opened and close multiple times a day. What could possibly go wrong????

You may also have noticed my new wreath. There was already a nail on that very spot so I’ve known for a while I wanted to get something for there but could never really come up with anything cool. I figured a standard twig wreath is pretty classic. I’m still considering adding or doing something to the wreath. I just hung it up there to see if I liked it and to contemplate my next move. Dip-die? Ombre? Stripes? We’ll see what happens!

Even though I think the porch looks extra awesome right now, nothing is every really completely finished around here. I still have my crazy pipe dream of screening in this crappy little porch, but you know, I have my limits. I can only do so much and screening in the porch has proved to be a little beyond my skill set. But maybe some day!

The last thing I want to do in here is to get a big outdoor rug to cover the floor. When this house was painted a few years ago the painter painted the floor of the porch, but unlike the rest of the house this floor has not held up very well. Also, I’m terrible and have definitely spray painted a few too many things out there so not only is the paint chipping off but it’s covered in black, gold, and white spray paint marks. Oops!

But for this summer, I’d call this porch makeover a success! IMG_5443

Ah, I love craigslist. Not news by any means, but it’s still good to reiterate occasionally.

My front porch (and let’s be honest my yard) is not the most attractive part of my house. The outside of my house itself is adorable but the yard and porch haven’t gotten nearly as much attention as the inside has. I have big plans for the porch and the landscaping in the front, but big plans generally equal big money.

Let’s talk about porch furniture for a second. It is stupid expensive. Like what the??? You want me to pay how many thousands of dollars for an outdoor chair??? Hard pass.

Two years ago I finally bought two chairs to put on the porch. They were only $15 for the pair on craiglist! Paired with an old sidetable, the porch remained this way for uh a very long time.


Unsightly? Yeah. Functional? Sure!

When the home tour rolled around the next year I borrowed two outdoor chairs from my parents to upgrade the look a little.


A few days months later I returned the borrowed chairs and my porch returned to it’s sad state.

Over the past few years I’ve checked craigslist sporadically for affordable and unique patio furniture and I can honestly say I’ve never seen anything remotely good enough. Which is saying a lot since I love craigslist and have had great success in the past. Because of this my idea transitioned into putting a day bed out there, which would be awesome, but would also require thick screens to protect it from the elements. Unfortunately, screening in the porch has become my DIY version of a pipe dream.

So when I saw this listing on craigslist I was intrigued to say the least:

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Depending on how you feel about vintage furniture you either think this is the best thing you’ve ever seen or the ugliest thing you’ve every seen. I love it.

At seven feet long and about three feet wide it’s the perfect size to fit next to the front door. And for $100 I got the couch, a glass and rattan coffee table, and a rattan lounger with footstool. Such a great deal!!

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It wasn’t until I got both pieces on the porch that I realized the rattan on the couch and on the coffee table isn’t the same color but oh well. I doesn’t change my love for this crazy couch. Does it look like the patio furniture of a granny in a Florida retirement community? Absolutely! That’s why I love it!

Also, because of naps. So many naps happening on this couch lately.

As for the rattan lounger and footstool they are too big to fit on this tiny 7’x11′ porch so they are currently awaiting their fate in the second bedroom (where old furniture goes to die in this house). I’m debating between selling them and just moving them to the basement.

So I’m back in love with craigslist. It may have taken two years but I got a full four piece patio set for only $100 which is like a $17,000 savings.