Friday, November 22, 2013

sleek-line trim

In my opinion trim work can make or break a house.  

And ours has been tricky because there are SOO many things you can do (as Pinterest and Houzz boast).  

But we wanted to be really careful to keep things as simple as could be since we are trying to go with a more sleek, simple, clean-line design.

We had a lot to work with for ideas.  All these pillars that could have been a breeding ground for all sorts of fancy trim:



We thought about doing this type of thing to still keep them looking simple: 
(Yes, that's outside, but you get the idea..imagine it smoother and without the brick...) 

But in the end we ended up going super simple because I like this even better for our house:

Isn't that ceiling beautifully simple and elegant?

I love this too:

At first we were going to do this simple trim for our coffered dining room ceiling:

But then ended up leaving it plain-jane simple:
(This is not painted/finished, but you get the idea.)

Next we had to decide how to finish off a bunch of the walls.  Oh boy do I ever love trim:
That's my friend Stacy's house that I adore.  (She's on the "pretty committee.")

I originally planned on doing that same thing in our living room because I loved it so much.  So I got it all taped/measured out:

But then came across this awesome picture in a West Elm catalog and fell in love with those walls:

See how there's a line in the drywall that makes it look all cool and stream-lined?

From there I asked everyone I came across how in the world to achieve that effect.  One guy I talked to on an airplane said he thought the look was achieved with leather panels painted.  Someone else said I could get it done with MDF boards.  Finally we talked to our drywall guy who said he would re-drywall that wall with these special "separator" things and we got all set to get it done.  

In the meantime we did Grace and Claire's room.  

At first I was thinking something along the lines of this:

But then I saw my friend's office (decorated with help from my "Pretty Committee" member Denise) and fell in love with the simplicity of the molding: 

So we did the girls' room like that.
(minus the middle chair rail bar to make it a little less formal)

Here it is half-way done: 

...and with primer:


For a minute I thought about painting it like this:


But then I decided on the beautiful simplicity of all white.   
Can't wait to see it when it's all painted and not just primed.  One of my favorite rooms.

As for Lucy's room, I thought long and hard about this little idea:
 ...but with smooth boards, not rough.

I liked this one too...

Then I came across this idea and liked it better:

Shoot...I can't find it!  It's from Serena & Lily and it just has low molding that goes down by the door to the bedroom...this is how ours looked super rough:

Imagine this a different color on one side of the molding...
Can't wait to see it all painted and finished up!

We thought about doing this in our bedroom:












But Dave told me if we did he figured he'd have to grow a beard and dress like a 70s guy, so I decided no after all ;)

We'll probably do some kind of grasscloth in there on one wall if I can figure that out.

We liked the girls' room so much (with the picture-frame molding) that we decided to forego the above
options and just do the same sort of thing in the living room.  Here are some other pictures that helped "talk me into" picture frame molding in there:


We still stayed really simple with it:
...but with flat more squared molding.
Picture that all white and all that messed up beam work all fixed :)  (More on the beams back HERE.)

Can't wait to see that done!

As far as actual trim goes, we decided to do these kind of baseboards in the living room:

...and super thin trim around the doors in there inspired by a few pics. on Houzz like this:
We'll see how it turns out!!

Friday, November 15, 2013

walnut love

I am in love with walnut.  We have only chosen it for a few spots in our home, but we love it so much we may look for more.  

With so much gray and white going on, the warmth it creates is so beautiful to me.

So far we chose to finish off the bench in front of our lockers with a big slab of it:


Here it is a little closer, but I need to take a picture with my real camera to do it justice.

Here's the piece they used (a veneer slab lined with real walnut) for the powder bath vanity:

Here's one box that will go in that powder room to the right below.
Can't wait to see how it all turns out.


cabinet installation

We celebrated the day last month when our cabinets started coming in. 

After months of this:

And this (paint color comparison):

And a lot of this:

...we got the real deal delivered into our house:

We have had weeks of hanging out with our installer while he put things together.






So far my favorite cabinets are the lockers in the mud room.

I think it's safe to say that's these girls' favorite part too.
Their eyes turned as big as saucers when they realized they each got their own.

They were pretty excited about Lucy's window seat too.  
So fun to see the best laid plans finally coming together!!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

how I keep track of things and a flooring decision

I am obviously very organized.
I made my last flooring decisions today (THANK YOU so much for the great input!)

After driving pretty much everyone around me nuts with all my indecisiveness, I decided we are going with Provenza Fossil Stone.  I'm listing my reasons here so that I can come back and read them when I start second-guessing.  HA!

1) The last thing I want with five kids and a neighborhood of their friends traipsing through our house is to be all crazy-worried-freaky about my floors.  I want us to LIVE in that house.  The knots are going to help out a ton on that.  Scratches and dents (which will happen whether I like it or not) are going to be a lot less noticeable.

2)  I looked up approximately 3,497 pictures of contemporary homes with "knotty" wood floors on Houzz that looked amazing.

3)  I don't want this house to be sterile/contemporary.  I just want it to be clean-line, simple.  This floor will add some great character to the home.

4)  I love the color.  Every other floor I looked at was too warm for what I'm going for in this house.

5)  I want our house to be more casual than formal.

6)  I love the feel of this wood.  The "Weathered Ash" and the "Aged Alabaster" were beautiful, but neither felt as "real" to me as the "Fossil Stone."

7)  A very sweet blog reader sent me pictures and personal experience with her own "Fossil Stone" flooring she installed recently.  There's nothing like another "personal" five-star review to help make a big decision.

8)  All our flooring people were starting to look at me like I had a serious screw loose, which I certainly do. :)

So, I'm celebrating getting that big decision under my belt by going to bed and hoping that I won't wake up all night worrying about dumb floors like I have been for the last few weeks:)  Dumbest thing ever.  SOo many more important things to worry about in life!!

Thanks again for the help on that one.

Love, Shawni

Friday, November 8, 2013

flooring---please help!

I have more pictures like this on my phone than I ever care to admit:
This picking-out-wood-flooring has been killing me for the last month.

What's trickiest is that I have a lot of requirements:
  • not too light or too dark (easy maintenance)
  • not yellowy or orange-ish...I want cooler colors
  • I don't want to be too trendy and end up being sick of it in five years
  • I want it to be more contemporary, clean-lined, so I'm having a hard time with too many knots
Yeah, shouldn't be too hard, right?  Ha!


There's a super expensive brand that I love ("Du Chateau") that we cannot afford. I think this is so beautiful, don't you?

So I've found this flooring that has a lot of similar finishes to that.  It's called Provenza.

I pretty much decided on the "Fossil Stone"color forever ago, but for some reason I cannot bring myself to pull the trigger.

The one on the left below is Provenza Old World "Fossil Stone" and the one on the right is called Provenza "Heirloom Liverpool" and it is apparently the exact same floor but cheaper because the planks are slightly thinner and not as long.

I have two friends who have very similar floors and they love them, and I love them too.  But for some reason I think the knots are what worry me.  Here's a picture the rep sent me with the Fossil Stone:

SO pretty, but since we're going for a more contemporary look something like these floors seem to fit the bill better:
 This one may be too yellow for me, but it's still so pretty:

This one may be too rustic:

You can't see this one all that well, but I LOVE that it is so plain-grained:

Same floor as above but in different lighting:

This one is cool too:

And this one...

Maybe to orange here, but pretty beautiful:

The problem with all those, although they are all listed on Houzz (in my houzz profile on the left in my "flooring" idea book), no one tells the exact specifics of what wood it is.  They all say something to the effect of "white oak" or "quarter-sawn" yada yada yada, but I need details, people!

And even when I do have details like I do for the flooring below (also from Houzz...it is Provenza "Weathered Ash"), I feel like pictures can't do flooring justice.  I need to see it somehow!  (Which I know isn't possible, dang it!)

So, my pleading question of the day is does anyone know some great flooring names that can help me out?  If I go with one of these two below, which one would you pick??

The one in the pictures above (Weathered Ash),

This "Fossil Stone:"

Or this smaller-plank Provenza "Liverpool"

Am I going to be bugged by all those knots down the road or will what I chose for furnishings compliment it perfectly?  

Here's our house with the "Weathered Ash" option added in as well:

(Take that front one out of the running because it's too expensive.)

Send ideas or advice if you have any!