Thursday, August 28, 2014

How buying a rug saved me thousands of dollars!

Yes, you read the title right...thousands of dollars! You see, the lack of rug in our living room was a huge contributor to the extreme lack of comfort in this space. I was so frustrated with being uncomfortable in our living room that I was ready to pour out thousands of dollars on a new sofa. I thought that'd be the fix, but luckily, before that purchase was made I FINALLY found a rug (I've been on the hunt for over a year!).

Suddenly, the amount of available seating seemed to quadruple! The first evening we shoved the coffee table out of the way and 3 out of 4 of us were laying on the ground. I had forgotten how much we "use" floor space as seating in our family. Without a comfy rug, there was only one spot to lay down so we all fought over who got the 'good' spot.
The rug has a thick pile so I was going to save some pennies and skip out on buying a rug pad. Well, it only took a few days before I realized that was a bad, bad idea! I couldn't keep it in place and if you have a 10 y.o. boy living in your house then you know they don't gingerly sit down on the couch. It's more like a running leap that pushes everything back about 2 feet in the process.
As I looked into rug pad options, I realized that it would not only save my hardwoods but also add a little extra comfort at the same time. Score! I ended up using the Eco-Cushion Organic Rug Pad from
I was anticipating being able to feel an added amount of comfort underfoot since the the 'cushion' score on this particular pad was a 4 out of 5, but honestly my rug is so thick already that the extra 'cushion' is hardly noticeable. That's okay though because remember that 10 y.o. I mentioned earlier?...he's still able to be his rambunctious self and my rug doesn't budge!

If you're in the market for a rug pad that's eco-friendly and worth your pennies, hop on over and check out They were gracious enough to offer this pad for me to review. All opinions expressed are my own.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Reclaimed brick

It's been a fun week of on-site work at the restaurant. While we pester the city wait patiently for building permits, design choices are being finalized and ridiculously great purchases are being made...

Feast your eyes on this 150 y.o. firebrick. It's being delivered today. So excited. The color variation is stunning, from red to blue to yellow to white. These colors are more prominent when the bricks are placed lengthwise.

I stumbled upon these while searching for shiplap on Craigslist. I was chatting with the seller about his shiplap and he casually mentioned he had 'loads of firebrick' if I was interested. He knocks down old chimneys and claims the 'guts.' These bricks are a refractory ceramic material used to line fireplaces. I asked him to send me a picture and I was sold hook, line and sinker!

The plan is to use the brick on the back wall. By the way, for those of you who think the life of a designer is beautiful and glamourous, this picture is definitely a better representation of reality...dusty and dirty! (Love every minute of it. Wouldn't have it any other way.)

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Frank Lloyd Wright influenced...

Wow! That's all I have to say. (well, not really, but...) My friend recently began selling real estate in Austin and when this house popped up on his facebook page I stopped in my tracks. It's so unique and amazing.

The listing description says it best...
Living Sculpture-a true sanctuary for those seeking solitude, beauty & totally unique home. Designed by a protege of Frank Lloyd Wright this magnificent structure flows with ease into the landscape. Glass facade in every room blends the outdoors with the indoors as if there are no boundaries. Slick, chic remodeled kitchen open to the dramatic vaulted family/dining. Master down with exercise area over looking pool in canyon & woods. Study/office down. Greenhouse, pond & extra gated parking.

Click here to see the listing and more pictures. If you looking in the Austin area and need an agent, give Mike a call. 

Monday, August 4, 2014

The anatomy of a reading nook

Modern Raspberry chair via Chairish
Black and white chevron footstool via One King's Lane

Wouldn't this eclectic little space make a happy place to plop down and crack open a book? A pink chair...could you dare? Sometimes our houses have a "dead space." You know, an area that seems a tad bare and you simply can't figure out what it 'needs'. Next time you catch yourself wondering, think reading nook!

It's simple to take a dull, uninviting corner and quickly turn it into one of your favorite spots in the house. Let's break it down, shall we? 

First, find a comfy chair. I'm totally a 'legs up' kind of reader so there has to be enough room to curl up or a great footstool available. Don't these two play nice together? Love the juxtaposition! Don't be afraid to mix styles, it adds great character. Antique malls and thrift stores are my favorite places to shop for footstools.

Second, surround yourself with art or photos. The goal is to create a cozy feel so hang pictures/art that 'speak' to you. Your reading nook doesn't always have to be used for reading. Quiet time is important too. Photographs will take your mind wandering down memory lane and can remind you of your blessings.

Third, good lighting is essential. A side table would serve as the perfect spot for a lamp but if space is limited, floor lamps are great too. Here are a handful from Chairish that would complete my reading nook perfectly.

                                Tripod Brass Table Lamp                        Brass Urn Lamp   

                            Danish Modern Teak & Brass             Mid-Century Brass Octagon

Last, but not least, don't forget a good book...duh, that one's pretty obvious isn't it?! I just finished William Landay's, Defending Jacob, a legal thriller that keeps you guessing until the very last page.

Your you have a reading nook? Awesome book we need to read? Have you ever made a purchase from Chairish? (not a sponsored post, btw)
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