Okay, this news is majorly overdue… but… (drum roll please)… WE BOUGHT OUR CONDO!!!
That’s right, I am now a proud home owner. And it’s still sinking in. You know what’s kind of crazy? I haven’t lived in one place for more than 11 months at a time in over seven years. What a relief to finally feel settled! But we now have little things like, you know, a MORTGAGE to worry about every month (not to mention HOA dues, insurance and taxes.)
We closed on our unit December 28th, right before the start of the new year. This was a really big deal for Carter and me and I’m so excited to finally share it with you guys!
I thought I’d take this opportunity to show you a few more photos of our place, and tell you a little bit about how we’re planning to improve it now that we’re homeowners.
You may remember seeing a few photos of our living room about a year or two ago. Well, it’s changed quite a bit since then and this is what it looks like now.
Couch: Macy’s. Coffee table: Macy’s. Lamps: Lamps Plus & Z Gallarie. Rug: Fred Meyer. Stools: Home Goods. Chairs: Hand-me-downs from my mom. Wood side table: Cost Plus World Market. Gold side table: Cost Plus World Market. Pillows: Home Goods. Art: Burlington Coat Factory. Throw blanket: Target. Lantern: Pottery Barn. Faux plant: Home Goods. Horn vase: Cost Plus World Market. Gold star: Pier 1.
Let me preface this by saying that this is the happiest I’ve ever been with this room. I think we’re finally establishing some sort of style. But we’ve had this color scheme for a while now and I think we’re ready to add a few splashes of bright color… But I’ll get to that later in this post.
Because we purchased the condo we’d been renting, thus committing to living here for at least a few more years, we decided it was appropriate to fix the little things that bugged us about the place (instead of, you know, totally redecorating). We wanted to make it as comfortable and livable as possible.
First of all, we re-painted our bedroom. This project took pretty much the entire weekend because: a) Carter’s such a perfectionist – so the paint job is flawless and b) we were painting over such a dark color. But we both agree that it was totally worth it because the room is now a nice, light and friendly color.
I wish I had a Before photo to show you – but instead, I’ll just have describe how it used to look. Our room was DARK RED. You can’t really tell from the After photo below, but we don’t get a lot of natural light in this room. So dark walls + very little light = majorly depressing. Seriously, it was pretty terrible.
When we first moved in, we got the idea to paint our walls red from our old apartment’s bedroom (seen in this post). But the thing is, our old apartment’s bedroom got incredible light – so it looked awesome with the contrast of a dark wall. But dark red just didn’t work in our new place. Now that we’ve re-painted, our room is much more inviting (not that I’m inviting you into our bedroom…) and pleasant to sleep in. See?
Bed: Overstock.com. Bedding: Macy’s. Night stands: Ikea. Lamps: Ikea. Art: From the Palm Springs Saturday Market.
The most major (and expensive) thing we’ve done since purchasing our place is installing some built-ins (actually, Portland Closet installed them) in our laundry/ storage/ pantry room a few weeks ago. I wish I had a Before photo so you could see what a difference this made, but all I have is this After photo which will have to do… (For those of you familiar with our place, this was the room where we had all the metal shelves, also known as Winston’s room.)
SO MUCH STORAGE!!!! Yippie!! It’s the little things in life…
The bedroom paint job and the built-ins in the storage room are the only immediate changes we’re making to our place, but I can’t help but continue to dream up other options for our decor. As I said, our living room is always a work in progress and I’m constantly getting new ideas for what I want the room to look like.
Luckily, my decorator friend Adi turned me on to the idea of using Polyvore inspiration boards to plan my home decor. I’ve been using Polyvore to make clothing colleges for as long as I can remember (all the collages you’ve seen through the years on my site have been created using Polyvore, before being moved over to InDesign). But I’ve never thought to use it for decorating, until Adi inspired me.
Polyvore has been really helpful because I’ve been able to pretty much re-create my exact living room, as it is right now, and then virtually add and subtract accent pieces to see how they fit with the rest of my decor. Genius!
Because my tastes are constantly changing, I don’t want to rush into anything drastic. That’s why I love accent pieces like throw pillows and table accessories: they’re easily switched out, generally inexpensive and really MAKE a room.
These are some idea boards I put together to test how some of my decor ideas might look in our existing living room. As you saw above, we already own the couch, coffee table, end table, gold stool (or at least one of them), arc lamp, etc.
This is probably my favorite collage I’ve made so far…
But I’ve got lots of other ideas too…
And a pile of other accent pieces I’m admiring… (If you want to know where you can buy any of these pieces, specifically, just ask!)
And taking it a different direction…
As you can see, I’m still playing around and haven’t officially decided on anything yet. (The rug is what’s really throwing me off! Our current one is too small for the room – but buying a new one is SUCH a commitment.) One thing Carter and I have both decided on is that we’d like to add some blue to the room – because it looks so nice with the yellow walls and brown couch. So I think I’m going to have my much-craftier-than-I-am friend Stacey paint some canvases a glossy blue with gold – for above our couch (similar to what’s in the collages I threw together). And then we’ll get some throw pillows to compliment that.
As far as our bedroom goes, I’d really like to get some larger nightstands that aren’t from Ikea. I’d also like to get some more interesting bedside lamps. Otherwise, I’m okay with keeping that room pretty neutral.
Phew! What a long-winded post. I’m sure you’re exhausted and as sick of talking about this as I am by now. Thanks for reading! If you have any more energy left in you after reading this…
Please tell me… What have you been doing to your home lately? And where do you like to shop for home decor? I’m ALWAYS on the lookout for new places that are affordable and have a variety of options!