Outdoor Console Refresh {A DIY Project}

Work continues on our back porch refresh, we're not ready for the reveal yet, but progress is being made so I thought I'd share a little DIY we recently completed for the space. 

back porch preview!!

back porch preview!!

Adding additional surface area for food, drinks and entertaining was high on my list of must-haves for our refreshed space. I wanted something that would coordinate and tie in our iron and stone dining table, but after lots of endless searching I wasn't finding anything I loved that was also in the budget. Typical, right? 

Enter this beauty.

Ok, so she's not much to look at now, but she does have iron legs (that have a certain European feel to them) which means she can obviously be outside - bonus. And she's fairly budget friendly - also a bonus. So let's see what we can do with a little creative thinking.

First a trip to the stone warehouse for the perfect remnant. 

Then a little coat of paint to tone down the gold.

Yes, I'm usually a fan of gold, but not on this table. Outside. On our porch. 

Voila! As they say...

With not much effort and a minimal extra cost I got the perfect console for our outdoor space. Yeah for progress! And porch weather. And wine on the porch. And just wine in general. 

More to come...

Porch Evolution {and what's next}

Spring has finally sprung in Charlotte and now that we're done with our most recent indoor project, it's time to shift our focus outside. Up first, the porch. We've made a lot of progress on the porch in the time that we have been here ... let's take a look back over the years.

In the beginning...

Of course, it looked a bit better than this when we purchased the house...but not much! The awning was on it's last leg and the lack of access to the back yard moved this project to the front of the line. 

We extended the porch and added a pergola ... then added a plexiglass roof, which leaked ... then added a metal roof. So, yeah, we learned that one that hard way but we ended up with a porch that's perfect for us. And probably one of the most used spaces in the house, especially for entertaining!

Once the structure was in place, it was time to get decorating. My fav part, obv.

Initially we utilized our whicker furniture from our screened-in porch in Chicago, which was super cute, but definitely not functional in the open elements. 

When my parents down sized, we were lucky enough to receive their wrought iron furniture (couch, loveseat, 5 bouncy chairs and a couple of accent tables). We immediately replaced the whicker and spruced up the space a little. But, of course, nothing lasts for long around here...something's always changing. 

We decided to build a patio at the foot of the porch.  And it was the perfect spot for all that wrought iron. A match made in heaven. 

But, it left us with a naked porch. A blank slate. A decorators dream. Of course, this was over a year ago but you know details, details. Some spaces take a lot of thought and research and time. 

It's finally starting to come together and I'm excited to share the process with you. 

More to come...

5 Chaise Lounge Under $500

Now that I have my inspiration down for our bonus room makeover, one of the elements I am most excited to add is a pair of side by side chaise lounges.

Check out how nice and cozy and comfy this looks...

Just imagine the amazing movie watching that can happen in this space...

Yup, double chaise lounge is the way forward. But, you know, double the chaise = double the price! Time to find some affordable options and lucky for you - I'm willing to share my findings!

1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5


Spoiler alert...I've already decided on my favorite and made a purchase. Sadly, I learned the hard way that the massive box didn't fit in my car, I'll be resorting to old fashioned delivery for the mate. Ugh, I'll miss the lack of instant gratification. 

The good news is that we're getting closer to finishing the space and closer to sharing it with you! 

More to come...

Bonus Room: Design Plan and Moodboard

Ok, so ... I'm excited.

After pouring over all my inspiration pictures I've come up with a plan for our bonus room. 


Here's the plan:

1. Cozy up the space by adding a vintage patterned rug, hanging drapery and incorporating lots of fun textural elements.

2. Increase seating by adding in a chaise or two (um, budgets!), beanbags and occasional chairs to the existing dining table. Might even bring back the kid chairs, TBD.

3. Shed a little extra light on the space by incorporating paper lanterns. 

4. Add some much needed greenery to give it a true lived in feel. 

5. Obviously already touched on the textural elements, but it's worth repeating, there will be loads of textural pillows and throws. 

I'm so excited - have I mentioned that? I've already started moving toys, actually using the toy closet (what? craziness!), and sourcing items. I can't wait to get started and show you what I've accomplished so far. 

I'm really hoping this is the change our family needs to actually use this space. Yeah!

More to come...


Next Up...

Ok, so here's the thing - every year when we put the Christmas decorations away (which are stored in our attic, accessed via the bonus room) I am drawn into what my husband refers to as "our annual bonus room reorganization". Hmmm...that does't sound good. 

I just can't seem to figure this room out! It is the biggest room in our home (and possibly the most awkward with half walls, dormer windows, and alcoves) and I want to utilize every inch. For all of us. That means play space for the kids and rec space for the adults. As a result, this space has seen a lot of changes over the last 3 years...

stage 1

stage 1

stage 1

stage 1

Our first go around had mostly toys, a bit of seating and a home office in the corner. 

Then we bought an IKEA fold out couch (shockingly, just after Christmas 2 years ago) and switched out the rugs. The couch made its way from the big alcove in front of the double windows...

stage 2

stage 2

stage 3

stage 3

to the far corner (sorry not proof of that one!), to the center of the room.

stage 3

stage 3

stage 3

stage 3

Somewhere along the line we moved the home office to the other alcove too. I mean, things were happening!

But, yet, it never felt right.

How is it possible that I haven't figured this space out? It's beyond my comprehension.

Stage 4 - how it looks today

Stage 4 - how it looks today

Over the course of the last year or so, we've moved the furniture again and finally believe the couch to be in the best possible spot - back in the far corner (figures) - and the TV has found it's long term home, too. All good things, but still not feeling finished...ugh!

Just when you think there can't possibly be any more changes, we decided that the seldom used home office should really be in our bedroom. Truthfully, it shouldn't be anywhere because no one uses it, but we love the desk and can't bare to part with it...so in our bedroom it has landed. I'm not sure how I feel about it yet! 

Of course all these changes have only made me feel like it's time to finally, once and for all, finish off this space. So I've been pinning my little heart out and this is your favorite image thus far...

Hard to believe this is even a bonus room - designed by Charlotte's own Amy Vermillion - this space looks as if if could be a spa or even a master retreat. I don't blame you for loving it! What's not to love?!?!

I have lots to think about! But mostly I'm excited (and hopeful) to finally sort out this space, incorporate it into our daily use, and make it as whole-family friendly as possible.

More to come...