One Room Challenge Week One

Hi all,

Peeking in from the throws of mommy hood to try out the One Room Challenge Linking Challenge.  I’ve always had great fun watching the One Room Challenge from afar but I thought it was time to pony up and give this challenge a try.



To find out what the One Room Challenge created by Linda of Calling it Home is all about, check it out here.

So here we go.  Who is my lucky little client?  That would be the Kakerator.  My mama.


My sweet mother has volunteered  given in to my begging to redo her pool house.  So hold on to your horses while this room gets a refresh…



The upholstery is stained and tired and it’s just not the bright functional space it once was.  However, it’s time for glory days again for most of these pieces of furniture with some new hipper clothes (fabrics) on.  The space will also get repainted to go with the new scheme.

We are going for a pumped up palm beach chic color frenzy look.  A la this fab place done by Ruthie Sommers…


Lucky for me this little client of mine isn’t afraid of pattern or bold pieces.  Case in point, take a look at her sofa in her living room…


Isn’t her sofa rad?  It’s always been a love of mine, as my mom knows.  And then, the vintage Clarence House print showed up in this years Design Showcase in SF.  Mom – you are so trendy right now.


So there you have it.  I hope you stick around for the next six weeks.  I promise we’ve got some fun in store.  Hope to see you back here next week for a progress update.


October 2, 2014 at 5:34 AM 9 comments

Nursery Reveal

Thanks for your patience as I try to figure out the juggle of being a mommy to two.  My heart is so full and I’m crazy in love with my girls.  I’ve relished in the moments when Josie giggles with a full belly laugh or Grace looks up at me with her newborn eyes taking in her momma.  I’ve handled the moments when both children are crying and I can’t immediately meet all their needs, let alone my own.  I have to say, so far, it’s better than I expected. But, to date, I have had a lot of help.  I’m easing my way into doing this whole mommy to two under two…as much as I can ease into it.  I’m also taking my Aunt’s great advice, “in case of emergency, break chocolate”  I’ve been breaking open plenty of chocolate bars.  Post pregnancy diet be damned.

Speaking of chocolate, I do have a long awaited tasty treat for you.  Thanks for your patience with the nursery reveal.  I’m so pleased that I got pictures done by the very talented Liz Perryman.

Here is the real estate shot of the nursery when we moved in…

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And here it is from the same angle today…


Two big changes to the room were ripping out the old stained carpet and putting in wall to wall jute and then also adding an overhead light with the Palm Beach chic faux bamboo pendant I found off of ETSY.

The bed frame was given to me from the previous owner but the bedding, lighting and artwork is all new…



Love this pic Liz snuck in of me trying to fluff the finishing touches with ten day old Grace in tow.

The previous owner also gave me the matching side table to the bed set.  I originally wanted to paint it but then decided the natural color gave a softness that the room needed with all the red and navy blue in the room.


Next to the side table is the glider where I spend a lot of time; I pretty much live here at night.



Next to the glider, is the bassinet with the little sheep watching over Grace in those moments when I’m sleeping.



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I took advantage of a built in desk area to make into the changing table; here it was before -

changing table

I put up grasscloth wallpaper, added some art, Graham painted the desk white and my lovely MIL made a skirt for the desk with fabric from Ikea.  Here it is today…



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And there you have it, the single completed room in the house.  I do have to say it takes a village to get the nursery completely finished and photo ready by the time Grace was ten days old.  Thanks to Graham for painting the desk and spray painting the chandelier, to my MIL for making the skirt at the changing table, to my SIL for monogramming Grace’s pillow (I brought the pillow to the hospital to have it monogrammed as soon as she was born), to my mother for running errands and helping with raising the bed up five inches, and to my cousin for the wonderful styling and finishing touches.  And I was able to show off the room in the best light because of the talented photographer, Liz Perryman.  Now, that’s how you finish a nursery with a ten day old…a village.

 Once the commotion slows down, I’ll be back to working on my home and have some more reveals coming your way.  In the meantime, I hope you’ll put up with occasional posts on my girls and inspiration decor shots as I turn to my blog as my little respite spot far away from dirty diapers and unnecessary tears.  If you don’t hear from me, that’s because I’m busy getting snuggles and kisses before my girls grow up way too fast.

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September 5, 2014 at 5:28 AM 11 comments

Welcome to the World, Grace Katharine

Today, I’m honored to introduce you to our brand new baby girl, Grace Katharine.  Grace was born Thursday, August 7th at 2:34 PM, weighing 7 lbs 1oz and 19 inches long.

She has been our amazing Grace and our hearts are full welcoming another girl into our family.

I keep saying to Graham how wonderful it is to have another baby and to have two children.  We love this sweet, beautiful, precious little one and the strong bond she is already forming with her big sister.


I thought I’d share with you how we picked the name Grace.  Back when I was twenty weeks pregnant, we went in for a routine ultra sound where they found something that required extra testing.  As any mother and father would be, we were nervous and frightened for our baby’s health, even though the odds were in our favor.  While waiting for the test results to come back, I wanted to go to a church to say some prayers for our little girl.  I decided that we should go to the Grace Cathedral in San Francisco as they also had an art installation by Anne Patterson that I wanted to see.


The moment Graham, Josie and I walked through the cathedral’s doors, we felt at peace.  We took in the glory of the art and the cathedral.  It was a calm and peaceful Sunday afternoon and there weren’t that many people in the church.  It was quiet, allowing for reflection, prayer and faith to build that all would be okay with our baby.  We walked the labyrinth twice; Graham carried Josie and I had my hand on my belly.  We then walked around the cathedral and lit a candle at every spot where there were candles to light.  We stopped at each candle and prayed together as a family for our baby.  Finally, we sat in a pew and had some quiet reflection.  We left feeling faithful and much of our worries were put at ease in the sacred space.  It was one of the most meaningful moments I’ve ever had in a church and it brought me closer to my family in ways I can’t describe.

We were expecting to receive the results in three to four days following our visit to the Grace Cathedral.  However, unexpectedly, I received a call the next morning.  The results came back negative and all was in the clear with our baby.  We were having a healthy baby girl.

Grace at home

Graham and I had made a pact to not discuss names while we were waiting for the test results.  When the happy news came back, we were both eager to discuss names.  Graham came home from work that day and said that he had a name in mind; I said that I did too but I was really hooked on it and I was hoping he would like my name.  Graham wanted us to say our names at the same time but I chickened out (biggest regret ever).  So I said the name that I was thinking of first; it was Grace, the exact name Graham had in mind, for the exact same reason.


She is our amazing Grace.  She is a wonderful miracle who we are incredibly blessed to have.  Our hearts are full and we are so grateful our prayers were answered.

Grace has also popped up in other moments before she was even known to be in our lives.  When my dad was in hospice, he was very confused with cancer in his brain.  He continually tried to get out of bed but he was too weak to walk so my mom and I tirelessly tried to keep him in bed or put him back to bed.  One day, I decided to sing him his favorite church song that he said his mother sang famously at their church growing up; it was Amazing Grace.  I sat at the edge of his bed and sang it in repeat; it had this beautiful calming effect on him and he stayed in bed while I sang.

Thinking of my dad, and wanting the continuity of one of his favorite songs passed down to our children, I sing “Amazing Grace” to Josie when she is upset crying at night or she’s had a big fall and she just needs to be held and sung too.  By the second verse, Josie has almost always settled into my chest, gulped down her tears and begins to find peace again.

We chose the middle name Katharine after a growing line of Katharine’s in my family.  I have always been proud to be a Katharine, as is my mother and my Great Grandmother.  I hope that Grace  shares the pride that I do to be named after such strong, beautiful women.


Grace has brought all of this peaceful joy into our lives.  She is calm the moment she lies on my chest and she does remarkably well with her sister’s “helping” hands poking and prodding at her.

Above all else, I can’t wait to see all that Grace grows to be.  We are forever thankful to have her here.

August 20, 2014 at 5:00 AM 14 comments

Bassinet Bedding

As I’ve mentioned, we don’t have a crib in the nursery.  We’re just going to wait it out and see if Josie transitions to a big girl bed before the baby needs a crib; otherwise, we’ll take a trip to Ikea one day and buy a second crib in a hurry.  In the meantime, I have this absolutely beautiful hand me down bassinet.

I wanted to do a custom bassinet sheet since I didn’t get to put together bedding for a crib.  Last year, I got some remnant fabric from Rikshaw Design sample sale and I had that made into a bassinet sheet.  I just picked it up yesterday and I’m so excited about it…

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If you don’t know about Rikshaw Design, then I’m happy to introduce you.  It’s one of the all time cutest shops and a fantastic place for some mommy and me looks (which I’m all about).  Rikshaw Design is a local company, based out of Marine, and Katherine, the owner, is the nicest ever.

They are currently having a major summer sale so act fast…




For the wee ones…





All items available here.

Happy Friday!

August 1, 2014 at 5:43 AM 4 comments

Breakfast Nook Wishes

Our breakfast room would be so much better utilized if it had an L shaped breakfast built in nook.  Here is the real estate shot of our breakfast nook (with previous owners furniture)


I would like a booth similar to this one that I did for a client last year…



In keeping with the style of our Spanish style home, I would like to do a camel faux leather tufted on the back and not tufted for the seat.  I’m thinking somewhere along these lines for the fabric -


We already have the chandelier that’ll go over the table, it’s a very fun chandelier from Stray Dog Designs but mine was one they did for Anthropologie (no longer sold at the store).


I would love to get a custom table made that would fit perfectly in the space with a base like this but powder coated white:



Finally, we would have space on the other side of the table for chairs (once the high chairs are gone), in which case I would go for these Serena and Lily chairs:


There you have it!  My design plan.  But, like all good things, they take time and for now, I’ll just ruminate on the design.

July 30, 2014 at 5:18 AM 2 comments

Bahama Chic

My family is on vacation; Graham’s parents just returned from Hawaii and his sister is in the Bahamas.  I’m due to give birth very, very soon; for once, I actually lack an itch to be on their vacations.  BUT, if I weren’t so pregnant, I would be chomping at the bit to ride along in their suitcases.  One place that I’d love to be is at this Bahama house designed by Alessandra Branca and featured in Lonny.










You know I’m feeling the various shades of pinks, the geometric patterns and the crisp white walls.  This house has officially fallen into number 1 dream beach house.

July 29, 2014 at 5:48 AM 1 comment


I’m not much of a DIYer.  More of a DIFM.  Why do it yourself when I can have some Do It For Me?  This is a trait I inherited from my father.  I highly recommend it.

Despite this theory, I broke out my DIY skills for the nursery art.  I took hair bows and smashed them between Ikea Malm frames at about the center of the frame.  Ta Da…

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I even tried to hang them myself but I’m really bad at getting them hung in a straight line.  I’m hoping I can find someone to DIFM (do it for me)…any takers?

Happy Friday, everyone!  We’ll be laying low and finishing up some touches on the nursery, doing laundry, installing car seats, setting up massive contraptions to get the new baby to sleep and be happy – oh and hanging bow art in a straight line.

July 25, 2014 at 5:00 AM 2 comments

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