Ways to get creative with your library.

Yesterday I had the pleasure of attending the 61st Annual VNSA Used Book Sale, a.k.a. heaven for a bibliophile like myself.

Photograph by Raelynn Pfaff who so kindly accompanied me to the sale

I went last year for my first time and splurged on a LOT of books. This year I had a little more discipline and managed to get 15 or so books for $13.

Still, my bookcase is already swollen with books and I wasn’t sure how I was going to fit in my new additions.  I scoured the web to help me get ideas, and I’m sharing some below. So if you also need some ideas on how to fit extra books into your library in an artistic, yet functional way, you’ve come to the right place!

BOOK ORIENTATION IN THE LIBRARY

Space can be maximized in a library simply by orientating the books differently. This photo shows book space maximized by alternating stacks of books horizontally and vertically. There is something very pleasing to the eye about effectively using every piece of precious space!

Another creative way to arrange your books is to stack them and tie with some twine. It is a great way to show the rest of the world how much of a gift books really are!

If you are seeking a more organized look but still want to get the most with your space, try keeping one row the same and mixing up books in another. Although the top row has books in different orientations, there is still a balance of symmetry.

ADDITIONAL DECOR IN THE LIBRARY

While this bookshelf also does a little mixing of the orientations of its books, I especially like the addition of a house plant to freshen things up.

This giant bookcase is composed of cubbyholes instead of uninterrupted horizontal shelves. I love how this designer takes advantage of the unique layout by adding decor items in between the books.

COLOR IN THE LIBRARY

Photograph by Amy at Matilda’s Bookshelf
Futhermore, it is not uncommon to organize books based on color. Amy has done this with her bookshelf and it has become a work of art!

Photograph by Caitlin at The Book Shire
In this “shelfie,” Caitlin really takes advantage of her books’ colors to design a beautiful library.  I am all for judging a book by it’s cover when it is done like this!

All in all, don’t be afraid to get creative with your library! There are plenty of different ways to design your reading space, and hopefully you were able to pick-up some inspiration with this post. I can’t wait to find a way to incorporate book orientation, decor, and color in my bookcase. Hopefully the design will help me fit in my extra goodies from this weekend as well. What does your library look like? How do you prefer to sort your books? I’d love to hear more from my readers! Let me know in the comments below.

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How to incorporate metallics in the home.

Hello and Happy Thursday! We are almost to the weekend and It’s nice to be back and bloggin’ after my mini vacation last week. Today I want to get into metallics and provide some good ideas on how to incorporate them around the home, but first let me tell you a little story. I was actually planning on finishing this post earlier in the week, however on Tuesday night I came home to a house full of feathers. I mean feathers EVERYWHERE! These little stinkers below completely obliterated one of my couch pillows.

Don’t let their angel faces fool you! There were so. many. feathers. I still haven’t cleaned them all up! Honestly, all I could do was laugh because it was so ridiculous. They are so dang lucky they are cute. So yeah, I was too exhausted from these two to get anything done that night. Then I gave blood last night and was feeling wiped out afterwards, so I didn’t get to finish the post at that time either. Well, time is flying and now we are at Thursday.

Any way, back to metallics. They are all over the place these days! From brushed nickel faucets, to brass cabinet pulls, to copper candle holders, to bronze lamps… the list goes on and on, which makes it very easy to add them to your home. No matter what your design preference is, metallics can add another dimension to any space, and it’s not limited solely to hardware. I’ve rounded up some examples of my favorite metallic decor below for some inspiration.

METALLICS IN THE KITCHEN

Photo from KristiMurphy.com
Metallics look great in the kitchen, and I am not just talking your typical stainless steel. A little copper can turn a simple appliance into a statement piece. Look how beautiful this copper KitchenAid mixer is! I am so in love. No need to hide this appliance in a cabinet.

Oven from Smeguk.com
Speaking of kitchen appliances, this is one of the first copper hob/ovens I have seen and it looks amazing. It has the character of an antique but the functionality of a modern hob and oven.  It’s like the best of both worlds!

Sink from Sinkology.com
Continuing with the copper theme, check out this farmhouse kitchen sink. The hand-hammered detail provides a great antique look.

METALLICS IN THE HOME OFFICE

Designed by Megan at the Honey We’re Home blog
Metallics are also great for spicing up a home office space. Just take a look at how Megan’s chair, lamp, chandelier, and other accessories come together.

Photo from SayehPezeshki.com
I love how the gold finishes play with the patterns in this home office as well.

METALLICS IN THE LIVING AREA

Designed by Brittany at Oh My Dear blog
Metallics are also wonderful for updating pieces you might already have around your home. Brittany at Oh My Dear blog used gold leaf wrapping paper to beautify this bookshelf. So creative!

Clock from BeyondBright.com.au
Another simple way to add a little sparkle is to go with a metallic clock. I like this one from Beyond Bright. It’s very simple but really dresses up the grey wall.

METALLICS IN THE BATHROOM

Designed by Caitlin Wilson
Now metallics in bathroom are nothing new, but try mixing it up a little with some brass hardware like in this Caitlin Wilson bathroom.

Designed by Caitlin Wilson
Honestly my favorite hardware in this bathroom are the towel shelf and the toilet paper holder. We typically overlook these items, but when they are the same finish they tie everything together very well.

Designed by Caitlin Wilson
Additionally, the brass in this bathroom provides a clean white space with some character.

Designed by Caitlin Wilson
Finally, if you haven’t noticed already, I absolutely adore Caitlin Wilson and this is one of my favorite bathrooms. The brass hardware looks great overall, but the unique brass mirror is the real cherry on top.

 So there you have it. Just a few ideas to get your creative juices flowing! What is your favorite metallic finish? Do you keep it simple with just hardware and lighting? Or do you have other metallic decor that you favor? I’d love to hear about your experiences in the comments! In the meantime, I’ll still be busy cleaning up feathers…

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Wake up your wednesday–and your work space.

Good morning and happy Wednesday! Hopefully everyone is getting settled into their work week after a wonderful weekend. I am still fighting this cold/sinus infection/virus/whatever it is. Thankfully I am feeling much better but I currently do not have a voice so there’s that. It’s been a week since I’ve been sick and I’m praying that marks the end of it. My cousin came into town last night and we have fun plans all week including a Jake Owen concert, the Phoenix Open, and Sedona. So yeah, no time for this sick business!

However, it is time to get back to work and I’m back in the office like I’m sure most of you are. Sometimes it can be such a bummer returning to your office and/or desk. You come back from an exciting weekend to a boring work space. It’s almost as if all the bleak colors of office decor smack you back into the reality of the daily grind. For most, our desk decor is strictly the necessities: phone, paper clips, binder clips, pens, highlighters, post-its, notepads, computer, papers, and that’s about it.

Honestly, that’s currently what my office looks like. Boring white walls and the necessities. The most creative I get is a photo of my dogs and a few items of ASU memorabilia I have lying around. Don’t get me wrong, this is a good start. My dogs are the loves of my life and I’m an ASU alum and big ASU football fan, but my walls are just as depressing as ever. But hey, it doesn’t have to be that way. Work spaces do not have to be dull. In fact, it’s better that they’re not.  A space that we spend the majority of our time in, making important decisions and contributions, should be a place of motivation and inspiration.

ORGANIZATION IN THE WORK SPACE

Designed by B is for Bonnie Design
Let’s start with the obvious. Organization in the office can be beautiful in and of itself, but Bonnie Bakhtiari adds pops of gold and pink to a clean white look to liven up her work space. Also, I’m a little jealous of all the pink champagne in her office.

Designed by B is for Bonnie Design
This is just a closer look of Bonnie’s shelves. I love how the rose-colored mesh basket and the glass globe gently mix up all the white.

Designed by Jen at The House of Wood: The DIY Life of a Military Wife
It’s also great when you can get your hands on something that is practical yet chic. This acrylic wall calendar does just that. You can write everything you need to remember on a giant calendar, right in your line of sight. The best part? You can make it yourself! Just click on the link above and Jen will give you a step-by-step on how.  P.S. I’m also a big fan of the chalk board sign and the gold arrows.

DESKS IN THE WORK SPACE

Designed by B is for Bonnie Design
Now onto the desk, where we get down to the nitty-gritty. Coffee is essential, obviously, as are cute office supplies. How adorable are those bow-tie paper clips? I also want that gold stapler.

Designed by B is for Bonnie Design
Another great item to add to your desk is a candle, or a diffuser if you prefer something that doesn’t burn. Not only are they decorative like this gold, textured candle, but they keep your work space smelling clean and fresh. Very important for a space you spend most of your time in! I am also very fond of adding flowers to just about anything. Flowers instantly make the world (and your desk) a better place.

Designed by Kristin at The Fancy Things
I adore the clean look of this white desk with the gold framing. Additionally the patterned rug gives this work space a really nice touch.

 CHAIRS IN THE WORK SPACE

Photographed by Jen Kay
Most of us sit at our desks, so chairs are a pretty important piece of the office. Comfort goes without saying, but they can also be stylish. The designer for this office went with a black chair with gold accents and draped a fur throw over the back to mix up the textures. I love how it also coincides with the art on the gallery wall.

Designed by Charmaine at Love, Charmaine
This chair is more of a traditional style, but I’m fond of the metal bulleting and the distressed wood.

Designed by Lauren Ashley at The Fashionista’s Diary
Again with the metals, I absolutely love them! I want this white and gold chair in my office.

ART IN THE WORKSPACE

Designed by Sarah at Mommy Suite
It’s also a great idea to add some inspiring art to the walls. I love the one Sarah has in her office!

These fabulous offices are just so motivating! I think it’s about time to get my butt in gear and get creative in my own work space. What about you? Have you already decorated your desk and/or office? Or is it pretty much just the basics like mine? Let me know in the comments below!

Also, taking a little break to enjoy the time with my cousin while she is in town. So I will see you guys next week!

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Flower power.

So it’s been particularly cold ’round these here parts, and truth be told, I haven’t been feeling well. I caught some type of cold and it sucks. Winter has finally hit Arizona, if only briefly. Despite the cold weather, beautiful flowers have been popping up all over instagram recently and it’s cheering me up! Spring has finally sprung, even if mother nature doesn’t know it yet. Fresh flowers, silk flowers, and paper flowers have all shown their lovely, colorful faces after a long winter.

I have always been a big fan of flowers. You can instantly tell just by walking in my house. There are flowers in almost every room. A pop of floral color has the amazing ability to brighten up any space. SO anyway, in an effort to spread the love, I wanted to share some of that flower power with you all!

FRESH FLOWERS

Ahh… who doesn’t like going to the farmers market or your local grocery store to pick out a fresh arrangement?

And you can never go wrong with pink peonies. Just place some fresh ones in a vase and those babies will light up any space you place them in.

Also, big, beautiful window boxes are something I’ve always wanted. Look at these beauties! Talk about instant curb appeal!

SILK FLOWERS

Additionally, I thought I’d include a little something from my own house. I created this arrangement after I put all my Christmas stuff away and I fell in love with how it looked on my side table. The flowers even fit perfectly around the lamp!

PAPER FLOWERS

Yes, you read that right. These are flowers made out of paper. Aren’t they incredible? They look so real.

The paper looks just as delicate as real flower petals. One day I would love to try to create my own!

If you really want to see some gorgeous paper flowers, check out The Lovely Ave. Margie Keates is unbelievably creative and I highly recommend following her on instagram. I am obsessed!

 What are your favorite ways to use flowers around the house? Do you use fresh flowers or silk flowers? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

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A perfectionist’s dream: the bullet journal.

Ok, has anyone else heard of this relatively new, amazing thing called a bullet journal (bujo for short)? I initially stumbled upon them on pinterest and it was pretty much love at first sight. The beautiful, clean, neat pages were a perfectionist’s dream. Any way, they are really hard to explain but basically it is a planner, journal, list keeper, art project, and so much more! I have heard wonderful stories of organization as a result of these bullet journals and it drew me in.

I even ventured to Hobby Lobby to buy my own blank journal and take a stab at it, and I’m excited to share what I have so far with you guys, but I’m going to save that for later. For now, I want to show you some bujo pages from the experts to get you just as excited as I was, and give you resources to do more browsing later.

WEEKLY SPREADS

First off, I truly believe the core reason people start a bujo is because they can’t find a pre-made planner at the store to fit all their needs. I can totally relate to this. Although I could usually find some really pretty planners, most of the time I felt like I only used half of the planner, and then had to use a blank notebook for more of my lists and other miscellaneous items I wanted to keep track of that I could not find an appropriate place for. So let me ease you in by showing you some of the weekly spread examples as that is what we typically associate with a planner.

Designed by: Sandra at Wundertastisch.com
I love Sandra’s template for the week because it has a good sized area for tasks and goals, but enough space under each day to add tasks specific to that day. Furthermore, the handwriting is beautiful and I love the motivational quote at the top. She also has a ton of other layouts and articles on bullet journaling. I highly recommend checking out her website for more bujo inspiration!


Designed by: Whitney at BulletEverything.com
This weekly template includes a few random, but fun items to the usual spread. Whitney does a tracker in the bottom right hand corner that allows you to track everything from sleep to water intake, and from food to energy! She also incorporates a song of the week, and a weather and mood tracker to the left. This is in addition to a box for notes, reminders, and day specific boxes. Giving you some real bang for your buck , this layout takes up almost all available space on both pages, but leaves you enough room for a fancy written date title.


Designed by Whitney at BulletEverything.com
Whitney does a really great job again with this weekly spread. She incorporates almost everything that was on the first template, but in another creative way. I love the triangles because they are unique but still functional.


Designed by Whitney at BulletEverything.com
Here’s another weekly template of Whitney’s. Again, it’s just an alternate way to integrate the same idea. The variety of options really give you a good opportunity to figure out which template works best for you, or better yet, gives you the ability to mix it up every week. Make sure to follow her on instagram so that you can inspired on a daily basis!

GOALS

Another great thing to keep track of in your bujo are your goals. In fact, it’s even said that goals that are not written down are just wishes. So start writing down those goals so you can changes your wishes into achievements! Sometimes weekly goals are included in the weekly templates, but of course there are goals that require more than a week to accomplish. For those, it can be nice to have at least one page dedicated to goals. I’ve collected a few examples of goal templates below.

Designed by Yu at BlueLahe
How pretty is this goals page? I just adore those little leaves all over the page. Yu also presents a great way to list goals and then be able to elaborate on them more to the right.


Designed by Jennifer Trafton at JenniferTrafton.com
Jennifer is a beautiful artist and really goes above and beyond on her goals page.

Designed by Melissa at studenting.tumblr.com
However, have no fear! If you are not the greatest artist in the world, there are simple templates that can look pretty too. Melissa does a great job with this 2017 goals spread. I actually used this template for my own bujo and it turned out really well!

Weekly spreads and goals are just the beginning. There are fitness trackers, finance trackers, tv series trackers,  reading lists, movie lists, and so much more. I really could go on and on with great ideas I’ve stumbled upon for bullet journals, but I want to let you do a little bit of your own search as well. Where to get started? See some links below.

How Do I Start Bullet Journaling?

23 Bullet Journal Ideas That Are Borderline Genius

20 BULLET JOURNAL INSTAGRAMS YOU SHOULD BE FOLLOWING

So, are you as excited about bullet journaling as I am? Do you think you’ll give it a try? I’d love to hear in the comments below!

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Make your laundry room fun again.

Well we are coming up on the weekend, and I’m sure a lot of us will be spending time in the laundry room, catching up on wash.  I know, I know. It sounds pretty boring, but it’s necessary. You want to know what’s not necessary? A boring laundry room! While the laundry room is often viewed as a practical space, and is commonly over-looked as a room to decorate, it’s time to flip the script. Why not make it just as beautiful as every other room in your house? To get your creative juices flowing, I’ve collected some wonderful examples below.

LAUNDRY ROOM INSPIRATION:

I love the paint color in this laundry room, especially with the flowers. It really brightens up the space, and the white cabinets give it a nice, clean look. All those beautiful windows certainly don’t hurt either.


My favorite thing about this laundry room is just how neat and organized it is. The sorting baskets below the folding table, the jars containing detergent, and the fold-up ironing board are all very pleasing to this perfectionist. Additionally, the flowers provide a lovely finishing touch.


Designed by: Erin Gates Design
Wallpaper is on the rise again and that’s a good thing. The wallpaper in this laundry room really lends a lot of character to the space. Furthermore, the light blue color of the ceiling leaves an open, airy feeling. To finish off, the linen window shade and the bouquet of flowers tie it all together for a classic look.


Designed by: Ashley Winn Design
Then there is this colorful oasis. I am so fond of this design. The barn door really separates this laundry room from the others. More over, the color of the door and the color of the cabinets looks so fresh! Just as laundry should be. This room even incorporates open shelving, along with woven baskets, to keep things looking pulled together. However, my favorite thing about this room has got to be the tile, both the patterned tile on the floor and the subway tile as the backsplash. Love, love, love! The wood beam and pendant lights certainly add charm as well.

What are your must-haves in your laundry room? Do you have to have front-loading machines? A folding table? A sink? Sorting baskets? Do you crave organization like I do? I’d love to hear in the comments below! Also, don’t forget to follow me on pinterest for more home inspiration.

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Grey skies, grey kitchens.

We’ve had a lot of cloudy days lately, which is a nice change for Arizona. Grey skies potentially means rain, something we could always use! All this grey has got me dreaming about incorporating grey in the home, and specifically in the kitchen. In fact, I hope to add a little grey to my kitchen someday. If you need a reason why, let me present you with some grey kitchen inspiration below.


Designed by: Mary Jo Fiorella, follow her on instagram here.
The grey comes in the form of subway tiles in this kitchen. It pairs so well with the clean white cabinets and the  beautiful marble counter tops. I am totally in love!

Photographed professionally by: Mark Lohman Photography, Designed by: Cynthia Marks – Interiors
In this kitchen we see the grey on the cabinets instead, which really pulls together the silver lighting and, again, the beautiful marble counter tops. I have a thing for marble counter tops if you can’t tell…


Photographed professionally by: Valerie Wilcox, Designed by: Feasby & Bleeks Design, follow them on instagram here.
And then there is this kitchen. I WANT THIS KITCHEN! The grey chevron tile, the blue-ish grey cabinets, just everything about this kitchen makes me fall in love. I am a sucker for mixing the traditional with the unexpected, such as the window shade and the chevron backsplash. Sprinkle a few flowers in there, an oriental rug, some beautiful hardware, and BOOM. Magic.

What are your favorite grey kitchens? If you added a little grey to your kitchen, where would you add it? The backsplash? The cabinets? The floor? Let me know if the comments! I’d love to hear your ideas.

Those are just some of my favorite kitchens, but if you want more, be sure to follow me on pinterest! I’m always pinning new inspiration.

Also, please don’t hesitate to check out the designers of these kitchens! They are constantly producing some really great inspiration of their own!

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Prepare for spring and bring some green indoors.

People are searching the internet for house plants more than ever these days, and for good reason! Indoor plants can be easy to care for and provide significant health benefits. They absorb carbon dioxide as well as other toxins, and multiple studies have shown benefits such as decreasing fatigue and increasing alertness. Sign me up!

So what are the easiest plants to care for? I’ve compiled a list of a few below.

YUCCA

Yucca 2

Water once every ten days. More likely to be killed by excessive watering than not watering enough. Likes light, so stick it by a window if you can. Very adaptable though, so a window is not necessary if not available.

 

CAST-IRON PLANT

I actually read somewhere that it practically thrives on neglect. Make sure soil is completely dried out before watering. Can be placed anywhere in the home as it can survive in all types of lighting (even lack there of).

 

SNAKE PLANT

File:Snake plant.jpg

Water once every few weeks. Better to under water than over water (I’m detecting a theme here..). Similar to the Yucca in that it would prefer a window with some light, but can survive anywhere.

 

AIR PLANT

Ok, first of all.. this plant doesn’t need soil. I didn’t even know that was a thing! Spray it with a water bottle about once a week. Then once every 3 to 4 weeks, water it by soaking the roots for 20-30 minutes and let it sit on a paper towel before putting it back in its place.

 

MINT

Image result for mint plant

Find a nice sunny window for this guy and just make sure the soil stays moist and you’ll be enjoying a fresh cocktail in no time!

 

SUCCULENTS

Photo by: Christopher Michel via Flickr

File:Incredible succulents pt 2. (14857217026).jpg

Water once a week, but make sure soil dries out in-between watering. They also love the sun, so try to place them next to a window.

While I’ve only listed a few here, there are plenty of wonderful plants that can be grown indoors. However, my favorite is definitely the succulents. Look how many beautiful colors they come in! What is your favorite plant to keep indoors? Have any good tips on keeping them alive and well? Please share in the comments!

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