Filed In: Decor

Living Room Update

When we moved into our house 4 years ago, I immediately went for the paint bucket to freshen up the icky yellow walls. My go to was Sherwin William’s Kilim Beige – a neutral that sat on the tan side of the trendy griege scale. It’s really amazing how quickly interior fads come and go – the traditional style that was all the rage 5-10 years ago has all of a sudden become dated. That beige now makes me cringe.

For our new kitchen, we went with the ever popular white-and-grey look, which only seems to highlight how old the rest of our house feels now. Today I’ve been looking for a barely-there grey or white to clean up our living room (that’s attached to the kitchen).  My current favorites are Benjamin Moore Classic Grey and Chantilly Lace (thank you for the rec, Molly Graham Designs!).

Along with paint, we’ve officially entered the baby proofing market – which means swapping out a few pieces for the sake of Jack’s saftey (dang!). The first to go is our sharp edged lucite coffee table. What I once adored now shouts “HAZARD!” every time I walk by. I love the idea of two big ottomans side by side that we can use as a table or extra seating…also conveniently perfect for infant furniture surfing :). For reference, we have a big beige sectional #beigeoverload.

For me, one of the hardest parts of redecorating is visualizing how everything will look once it’s finished. It makes decision making and big purchases difficult. That’s way I’ve started creating mood boards to help me get a better direction (which also helps in selling my ideas to Nick). Check out my latest ideas for our living room, below. What do you think!?

Click on the images above for more product information, and below for some added favorites.

I also might have gone down an ottoman rabbit hole – these are all baby surfing approved!

Rug Resources

Whenever I contemplate updating a room in our house, my first thought is to change out the rug and paint the walls (I know all the women in my family are nodding their heads right now – we all do it). Rugs can lighten a room or add weight and coziness. Paint is easy, cheap, and when paired with a new rug, you get maximum change for minimum investment.

Now I know what you’re thinking…rugs are expensive. And they are – but in comparison to an entire room overhaul, it’s the most economical option – trust me, I’ve done my fair share of research. I’ve spent hours pouring over websites and reading reviews to find quality rugs at affordable prices for our house, because if I’m being honest with myself I know any rug of ours is destined for a date with red wine at some point in it’s life. And there’s no point crying over spilled wine milk.

Whenever I’m in the market for a new rug, or contemplating a room update, this is my usual hit list. Some of these are ‘duh’ resources (i.e: Target), but a lot of times it’s what you search for that makes all the difference! Enjoy!

Area rugs, affordable rugs Target rugs, area rugs, chevron affordable rugs, rugs usa, discounts area rugs, sample sale, online, affordable rug outdoor rugs, stripe rugs, geometric rugs West elm, west elm rugs, area rugs

Ballard Designs: The best place to find outdoor rugs. If you’re looking for a rug you can spray down with a power hose, this is your place. We bought a large 7 x 10 rug for our patio a few years ago, and it’s still in great condition. Ballard is also a promotionally driven company, so there’s a big chance you’ll be able to score a hefty discount!

Target: Two of my favorite brands here are Safavieh and Threshold. Both make great basic, durable rugs with all the geometric patterns you could imagine. You can purchase Safavieh rugs through several online retailers, but I find Target’s search process much easier than most. With Target rugs, I’ll usually look for a soft wool rug or dhurrie that can stand the test of time – both of which these brands carry in extensive inventory.

Rugs USA: One word: overwhelming! You’ll definitely need to know exactly what you’re looking for when you go to Rugs USA. If you do – this is a great site for you. They carry several trendy patterns and beautiful orientals, all at prices that don’t require you to sacrifice your entire paycheck. They’re another heavily promotional company – the last rug I purchased here was 75% off! Also be sure to read reviews. I’ve dodged a few bullets from reading the extensive customer reviews, but I’ve been very pleased with the rugs we purchased here.

One Kings Lane: That’s right…another discount site! I love OKL for so many home items – rugs included. They carry great natural rugs and notable brand names. If you’re looking for a sisal rug – this is your place!

Dash and Albert: My love for Dash and Albert runs deep. If I had to name favorites here, this brand would win, hands down. Dash and Albert carries everything from indoor/outdoor rugs to kilims to cotton weaves. Their patterns are fresh with an updated twist that sets them apart from the standard geometric prints you see everywhere. Their prices are affordable (our 10 x 14 rug was under $1000), and the quality is evident. Beware if you’re looking for a large area size – they custom make these which can take several months!

West Elm:  Oldie but goodie – I love West Elm. Their kilim rugs are perfect to cover a large kitchen area, or anywhere with heavy traffic patterns. I love their casual designs and practical approach to floor coverage. You can’t go wrong here!

Kitchen Refresh On A Budget

Remember this kitchen disaster?  Well, we fixed it.

White Kitchen


At many one point, I didn’t think we’d be able to pull it off  – I don’t advise remodeling while 8 months pregnant, without a contractor. Scheduling was definitely a challenge, but I have to say I’m so pleased with the results! What started as a basic cabinet update turned in to a complete cosmetic overhaul – new counters, floors, backsplash, sink and fridge. Oops.

I’ve included more details and sourcing, below, but for now let’s enjoy some before and after pics, ya?

Before: had to dig into the archives from when we bought the house…

Kitchen Old

After: Still bright, but updated: 

DSC_0167White Kitchen DSC_0174 DSC_0171

and then these hams had to get in on the action

Counters: The only modification we made to the counter, was shorten the island to make more space for the walkway, and add an elevated bar. We found Vermont Danby marble from Arizona Tile here in the metroplex. Metroplex Granite helped us choose a slab, cut it based on my preferences with the pattern, and installed it seamlessly within a few weeks. We absolutely love the look, but I’ll be honest we’ve noticed some etching over time. I’m basically the counter-gustapo at all times, wiping and cleaning, wiping and cleaning. This should get interesting with a toddler…

Cabinets: We basically gutted the cabinets but kept the frames intact, and ordered new cabinet fronts and drawers from Cabinet Doors Depot. They arrived ready to drill flush hinges, which made installation a heck of a lot easier for us. We hired painters to come do a thorough sweep of all cabinets, doors, frames and fronts – I chose Simply White to keep things clean and crisp.

Floors: The floors took 4 full days of careful handiwork, but our guys did an amazing job. We ordered the porcelain tile from Home Depot, which turned out to be pretty easy to work with, and used light grey grout via this inspo pic.

Backsplash: Subway tile for the win! So easy, so economical, so clean. We extended the backsplash up behind the stove, which made the biggest difference (before we had a nasty spice rack). It made the whole room feel more cohesive.

DFW Steam Cleaning came out and sealed our counter tops and backsplash – which I highly recommend to protect your kitchen.

Happy remodeling!

Jack playing with Rudy's cup Jack and Rudy's Cup