8 artful ideas for your laundry room

We don’t often put too much thought into beautifying these busy spaces but regardless of whether your washing machine and dryer are tucked away in a small nook or large mudroom it’s a spot we have no choice but to spend time in!  Why not add a little eye candy?   Here are a few artful ideas which are sure to add a little character to your laundry area.

1. PHOTOGRAPHY

2. TO THE POINT

3. FUN

http://0.tqn.com/d/laundry/1/0/C/C/-/-/OberneHosick-soap-395x500.jpg

clothespinmirror

Hot glue and some bright red clothespin can transform a frame-less photo (or even a mirror!) into a focal point.  Laundry/Work room via Laundry Room Redesign

via The Cranky Queen

Get creative with clip art and a photo of your pet! via The Cranky Queen

via Feathers & Sunshine

For details on how to DIY this sign visit Feathers & Sunshine

4. FASHION

If you’re into fashion how about requesting a high resolution photo of one of Sandra Backlund’s clothespin dresses?  (email : Office@1BeyoStudio.Se) – slip the pic into a frame and you have instant modern -and pretty cool, art!

5. 6. & 7. OFF THE WALL

Because art doesn’t have to hang on walls, how about putting wall decals right on your washer and dryer, buying a bright area rug or making your own DIY clothespin chandelier?

8. WALLPAPER

Often small rooms (like laundry rooms!) are the safest place to experiment and try something bold like a busy wallpaper!  Don’t have any wall space? -how about the ceiling?

Can’t commit to pricey wallpaper? Check out what Kristin over at the Hunted Interior did in her very recent laundry nook makeover: she lined the back of a shelving unit with dragon fly wrapping paper -so easy and inexpensive!  Cute-cute!

What’s hangin’ in your laundry room?  Feel free to share your comments below!

Pssst – looking for legitimate FREE art? click HERE.

*a version of this post was published on BOB VILA NATION, click here to view!

Julie

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why not use wrapping paper to line the back of your cabinet?

whynotwednesday6

Measure. Cut. Tape.

wrapping paper

Before committing to paint or wallpaper for that cabinet or open shelving that isn’t as colorful or interesting as you would like it to be, give wrapping paper a try.  Not only is it available in all sorts of fun patterns but it is also inexpensive.  Which makes this quick DIY a no-brainer!  If after a week you decide you no longer like the look, rip it out the way you would unwrap a gift!

Check out these two fantastic examples (below) from Old Beach Bungalow and In My Own Style.

This past weekend I got the urge to putter around the house and make some accessory changes and even moved furniture around (more on that to come!):  In my dining room I have this gorgeous vintage steel tanker bookcase (photo below).

Dining Room: Vintage Steel Lawyers Bookcase

I decided to move it to a different wall and restyle it, but because it’s no longer right across from the windows it is shaded and makes it hard to see anything displayed inside.  I figured this would be a great opportunity to give the wrapping paper idea a try. I had recently bought a nice roll of pale grey hounds-tooth wrapping paper.  It took me about 5 minutes to do, and I really like how it draws your eye in.  I’m still not 100% sure I will keep it this way forever, but it’s always fun to experiment and try something new.

vintage steel tanker bookcae

houdstooth wrapping paper lined cabinet

wine glasses displayed wrapping paper lined cabinet

Thanks for checking in,

-Julie

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Styling shelves

Styling shelves

My Dining Room

My Dining Room

Metal wall art: how to make the BAD look GOOD.

Recently I gave my master bedroom a mini makeover, you can read more on that HERE.

The moment I introduced the two new white dressers on either side of the daybed I knew that the dark console table (leading to the master bath) and it’s vignette had to go!

bedroom

am I right?

With my two existing night tables and now the new dressers, it just seemed like table-surface overload!  Plus, the decor suddenly clashed and seemed SO outdated.  I actually hesitated even mentioning this, because lately it has been pinning like crazy …still, totally not the direction I was going in anymore.  The abstract art (made by me) and table bought at Target are up for sale right now.

SO OUT IT WENT.  All of it.  I decided I would rather fill that wall up with a piece of art, but wasn’t feeling the vibe for framed photos or a canvas if it was going to be all alone.  There is also a (white) plug and a light switch on that wall (you can’t see it in the photos) which means anything square or rectangular would just play that up (am I the only one who sees this as visually irritating?).

ORGANIC ART. It would have to be!  Something shapely, like a metal wall sculpture.  You see them pretty much everywhere now, from your neighbors house to the doctor’s office.

BAD. photo via TouchofClass.com $69.99

Tree Metal Wall Art

BAD. via Sears $89.99

TO BE HONEST. I kind of hate them.  Typically, I don’t really like mass produced art, it doesn’t mean I don’t have any!!  But, I try my best not to buy it.   There is so much great art out there that just doesn’t compare to the ‘made in china’ stuff at all.

GOOD. photo via decoist.com

Leafy-metal-wall-art

GOOD. Photo via Decoist.com

GOOD. via Atlanta House and Home

HOWEVER.  Because I live in the real world where I do have limited funds (and so do my clients!), sometimes you just gotta get creative and work within your budget.  But I never give in to the ‘BAD’ or the ugly!  Just because you don’t have the cash doesn’t mean you can’t have a unique piece of art!

THE THING IS.  You’ll notice that the ”GOOD’ metal wall art is large with a real presence in its space.  Hard to get that with the flimsy little pieces you see at your local home store!

Fetco Home Decor Brinley Wall Art

BAD.  But could be very GOOD if you had several hung all together.  Via Wayfair.com $35

HERE’S A THOUGHT.  Although tacky alone, imagine several of these ‘BAD’ pieces in a cluster hung closely together, to appear as one larger piece?!  (do you see it?).  Or imagine an entire wall covered -like 3d wallpaper.  So cool.  You could even spray paint them a different color!!  It may not be entirely custom art …but it would qualify as one of a kind, right?

Fetco Home Decor Ruth Abstract Circles Wall Art

BAD, but could be GOOD with three hung tightly together.  via Wayfair.com $21.49

NOT CONVINCED?  Check out (below) my new wall installation in place of where that outdated console and vignette once was. I was lucky to find two medium sized pieces that were similar (not identical) and on clearance at HomeSense/HomeGoods!  Not sure if I will spray paint them or not.  Right now I am simply enjoying the feeling of that small (yet significant) change.  What are you’re thoughts?

BEFORE

BEFORE.  Cluttered and outdated.

Do you like the BEFORE or AFTER better?

metalwallart6

AFTER.  Modern and airy.

metalwallart4

metalwallart2

metalwallart1

AFTER

Check back soon for more updates.  Actually, why don’t you just follow me on Facebook ?! I don’t just post blog updates but design inspirations too!

SHOW OFF.  Have you got a special metal art piece on your wall that you are loving and convinced it falls into the ‘GOOD’ category? I WANNA SEE IT!! Take a pic and post it on on my FB wall!

Thanks!

-Julie

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Master Bedroom Retreat

I’ve blogged about my master bedroom before (you can find that post HERE).  But I never mentioned anything about the large recessed wall across from the bed.  There was a television, complete with visible ugly wires and a small audio stand housing our digital video recorder (DVR).  Blah.

masterbedroomemptyrecessedwall

Several months ago we ditched the satellite dish for a tiny Apple TV unit (it sits just on top of the television), which meant “ba-bye” to the DVR and the awkward audio stand.  The hubs got to work opening a section of the wall and did a little electrical work to hide all the wires  Then he repaired the wall, mudded and sanded and I finished up with a coat of primer and two coats of leftover bedroom paint.  I must say we did a pretty good job -you can’t even tell!

daybed

Now we were left with a clean, empty slate.  At first I had visions of something custom built like bookcases or shelving.  But you always have to think about resale and if/when we sell this house, built-ins would mean one huge wall lost for bedroom furniture pieces like dressers or a vanity (we prefer storing all our clothes in our his and her walk-in closets).

usingdogbedpillowsondaybedsofa

With our kids getting older and taking over more of our home’s entertaining spaces for themselves and their friends, I wanted to create a quite, lounging, retreat feeling in our bedroom.  I decided to incorporate the existing day bed we already had and buy cabinets to place on either end so I could have a surface where I could put a small coffee pot and sparkling water (boutique hotel inspired much?!).  The cabinets were tricky to find because I needed a specific size for a snug, custom-like fit between the (recessed) wall and the daybed. After several months I did find two identical cabinets in the perfect size that needed a little DIY! (you can read all about that HERE).

masterbedroomretreat3

The accessories however were fun to shop for, and I was definitely looking to inject some touches of silver and gold for a little glamour like the gorgeous antique crystal and silver pitcher – it weighs a ton and I am in serious love with it!  Or the cute lamp with gold sequins shade I picked up at HomenSense/HomeGoods.  As well as a couple of hits of coral pink, like the stunning vintage vase I scored and the cashmere blanket I already had (from my mom) tucked away in the back of my linen closet.

masterbedroomretreat8

sparkingwaterpeony

daybedcoffeeloungemasterbedroom

The three round abstract art pieces were a made by me, to find out more on the art DIY click HERE.  The art resting near the coffee maker is an original by a talented friend Susan B. Landis, you can browse her work and get more info on her blog HERE.

masterbedroomcoffee

masterbedroomtouchesofpink

masterbedroomretreat2

masterbedroomretreat11

masterbedroompillowsdaybed

I did a lot of shopping in my own house, which I always try and do first before going out and spending.  Not only does it save money but by moving things around to different rooms in your home, you get to enjoy your stuff in a new way.

The mask on the floor is from a vacation to Mexico and I plan on hanging it eventually but it is SUPER HEAVY and definitely a two person, with power tools, kind of job.  Although I am starting to like it resting there on the floor!  The stainless tray and coffee pot is by Everyday Essential from Loblaws.  The container that the plant is in is actually a storage basket I picked up at HomeSense/HomeGood

masterbedroomretreat1

All of the throw pillows I already had (some made by me, others purchased) except for the two large back pillows which are in fact, dog beds! You can read all about that HERE as well as the sparkly sequins teal pillow or as I like to call it The Tube Dress Throw Pillow Skirt (you can read about that HERE).

masterbedroompillows

masterbedroomretreat7

vignette: decorating master bedroom

More to come soon …thanks for stopping by!

-Julie

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Why not spruce up your sofa with Dog Beds?!

“watch out pooch, dog beds are not just for the dogs!”

dog bed pillows

Even if you don’t have a four legged best friend, you have to admit that there are some cute dog beds popping up these days at places like Target and even Costco.  They come in a variety of fabrics and patterns and are very reasonably priced considering the massive size of the “throw pillow”.  That’s right, when you really stop to think about it, a dog bed is nothing but a huge throw pillow.  Which got me thinking… for those with a daybed or who have an old sofa that needs a little oomph, why not add/replace the large back pillows with large dog beds?!  An easy, super budget friendly solution!

Dog Bed Throw Pillows/Pet Beds

Not convinced?  I recently did a mini-make-over in my own master bedroom.  I had a daybed from West Elm, which I had bought for the sitting room at our last house.  In this house, I placed it in the bedroom but wanted to put it up against the wall under the TV and have it be more of a reading, lounging sofa, but still be used as a “mommmm I’m sick/had a bad dream” emergency bed.  Throw pillows are fine… but for real comfort you need an actual proper padded back.  I looked into sewing and DIY-ing something -until I was browsing a HomeSense store (also known as HomeGoods depending on where you live) and it hit me: DOG BEDS!!!  The right size and cheaper than anything I could make.  Not to mention, available in all sorts of cute prints and colors.

dog bed throw pillows on day bed

usingdogbedpillowsondaybedsofa

Are you sold?  Would you use a dog bed as a throw pillow? Let me know what you think!

UPDATE: Full reveal of my master bedroom mini-makeover HERE!

-Julie

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when your photo is too small for your picture frame

withlimitationscomescreativity

Sure.  You could simply have your photo enlarged.  But it’s when you lack the time or patience that you sometimes come up with a creative, original and more personal idea!

vintage porcelaine frame / night table vignette

I got the vintage off-white (trimmed in gold) porcelain picture frame for $2 at NOVA a couple of months back.  I had it hiding in the “when I finally do a mini-makeover to my bedroom” pile in my closet!

photo corners / vintage procelaine frame

I chose the photo I wanted to use (photo of the hubs on our honeymoon), but when I put it in the frame I realized the photo needed to be 5×7, not 4×6.  I remembered I had kept the unused pieces of an art project and figured it would be perfect to experiment with (for more on that click HERE).

hang jewelry on phot frame for added color and eclectic feel

night table vignette

I cut out a rectangle slightly larger than 5×7 and using white photo corners which I already had (purchased for a different project!) I  centered the photo on the art scrap.  I wasn’t sure about it until I slipped it back into the picture frame.  But I love the little bit of the pale aqua art peaking out from behind!  I think it helps to further enforce the room’s new color accent and I prefer my night table’s softer vignette.

vintage steel tanker bookcase re-purposed as night tables with storage and accessorized with items I already had

BEFORE

night table vignette aqua blue & white

AFTER

Don’t have any art scraps hanging around?  Try newspaper, wrapping or craft paper!

-Julie

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The Tube Dress Throw Pillow Skirt

sequins tube dress FOREVER 21

I have teenagers.  Which means I often shop in places like Urban Planet, Forever 21 and American Eagle.  Sometimes, I’ll even come home with a little something for myself.  No, I am not the mom who goes to Pilates wearing leggings with “SASSY” written across her behind, nor am I running to the grocery store in daisy dukes and cropped flouncy tops.  However, when it comes to inexpensive jewelry, scarves or a pair of polka dot flip flops -I’m in!

tube dress

Sometime back in February, I was checking out the clearance racks, looking for deals for the kids when I spotted some really nice holiday tube dresses or should I say tube tops?! (side note: I mean, is it just me or are some of these dresses designed for young women under 4 feet tall!) Anyways, I had a great idea …and for the price, I felt it was worth testing out my little experiment…

sequins aqua tube dress

Once home I made a small cut to the dress liner (using fabric scissors) and removed the built-in bra cups.

cutting the bra cups from tube dress

Next, I grabbed a rectangle (not square) pillow and inserted it to the middle part of the dress and folded the sides inward… and that’s it.  A no sew pillow in an instant!

tube dress turned pillow

Now, obviously this is the kind of throw pillow you don’t have on your TV watching sofa, or on a chair that gets tons of use, because aside from not being comfortable to snuggle with, it isn’t made to be handled: the pillow will eventually work it’s way loose and out of the dress.  However, on a daybed, tucked in a sea of other pillows, in my bedroom -it’s perfect!

tube dress turned pillow

Why don’t I just make a proper DIY pillow and sew it up you ask?  Well this is the best part:  Because for the once a year (if that) where I wish I had a sparkly party skirt, I can have that too -also, in an instant.  Yup, these form-fitting-20-something-club-hopping-tube-dresses, make for a sweet twist on the just above the knee or of the moment midi skirt! (tip:be sure to keep the shirt and shoes simple).

tube dress turned skirt

This past Saturday night, when my daughter started to rummage in my closet to help me choose an outfit for my friends 40th surprise birthday party, I told her that I had it under control and whipped the pillow out of the Tube-Dress-Throw-Pillow-Skirt and slipped it on.  Despite sighing and calling me a mermaid (isn’t that a good thing?) I know she was secretly impressed.

TUTORIAL: The-Tube-Dress-Throw-Pillow-Skirt

So, what do you think?  Any of you have a DIY story of a dress or skirt turned something else?  Feel free to share!

tube dress turned skirt

-Julie

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