House Tour – Mansion on the Lake

Today’s house tour, unfortunately is not of my own, but a girl can dream right? This past weekend we were able to get a rare look inside a 1910 treasure. There was an estate sale over the course of four days in this mansion along the lake – so before I start gushing the impeccable details, let’s run through the quick specs, built in 1910, 12,280 sq. ft., 10-bedrooms, 7 full baths, 3 half baths, listed just under $5 million.
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Walking up to the property it was everything you’d expect from the pictures and more, although the pictures seemed like maybe it could be a dream.  The brick drive was still in immaculate condition with a grand entrance, stone steps lead into the house into a grand foyer with floor to ceiling wood paneled walls, grand staircase and a stunning fireplace. Walking in, you almost didn’t know where to start, straight into the Sun Room? Left into another great room? Or right another room equal size to the one on the left? We went right, from there we were led into the butler’s pantry with original cabinetry to the ceiling and then into the large kitchen with original gas stove.

Other standouts throughout the property were the ornate ceilings throughout and the windows with brass handles and original fixtures in every single room.  The wine cellar in the basement was a reasonable size for the house (kidding), and the 3rd floor – which was presumably the servants quarters at one point in time reminded be of the Titanic’s 3rd class – yet still incredible with the detail and just completely massive.  The wallpaper, although pretty prominent in the house in absence of wood panels, was mostly stunning and made a statement against the woodwork.
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A little history on the house, it was designed by Stanford White for industrialist Howard M. Hanna Jr.  It’s been registered on the National Register of Historic Places by the United States Department of Interior.   It’s hard to imagine living in a house of such grandeur and size, not to mention all the finishings and furniture needed to make it a home… but I’m sure if I was forced I could manage *smiles*

Although a lot of the pieces being sold at the estate sale were way out of our price range (like a $15k table, $18k rug…) there were a lot of unique pieces that were reasonable especially for those with an appreciation of antiques.  Although the expensive pieces were definitely swoon worthy with a few pieces dating to the 18th century.  I did buy two hanker chiefs that had embroidered ‘E’s  – there were a few dish sets with ‘E’s as well, so my guess is that was the previous families last name?  It was really fun being able to check out a home like this, I’m glad we went and I’m going to keep on dreaming.

House Tour – Easy Easter Dining Room

Since it’s officially spring, and Easter is just around the corner – I wanted to share my spring-ready dining room, with a touch of Easter flair! I kept it a bit low-key compared to last year. House Tour - Easy Easter Dining Room
With the cold weather lingering, I’ve consistently buying fresh flowers to help warm up our home.  The flowers seem to instantly brighten up the room and I love the added touch.  The foiled gold eggs add another pop of bright colors, along with the green boxwood wreath near the windows. All the colors and warmth bring spring inside, when outside is a bit cold and grey.

What I love most about Easter decor is it is fun, playful and full of life – after all that is what the holiday is truly about!  What elements do you like to incorporate into your Easter decor?

House Tour – Home Office

Our home office has been the latest room we’ve been putting the finishing touches on, it started preemptively this summer when we had a lot of visitors and needed to make this space more functional for overnight guests.  With two spare bedrooms and our office, there are times when all three of these rooms are occupied with guests! The old college (uncomfortable and brown) futon wasn’t cutting it anymore – we needed to get a more sleep friendly piece that also worked with the whole home office feel as well.
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Instead of adding a bed into our office – we opted for a pullout sofa that was functional in both ways and matured the space! We purchased the couch site unseen, it’s also super versatile not only with the pull out (queen bed) but with it’s switchable left or right extended ottoman, perfect if we ever need to rearrange the space! This of course led to needing a new rug with some flecks of color and a fun pattern.  Mainly I was trying to find a subtle way to bring PINK into the space, well any space in fact – but bringing in subtle tones of pink in the rug and accent pillows seemed more acceptable (with B) than painting the walls pink. *smiles*

Our office is the one space in our house for our sports memorabilia being a mix of Cleveland sports with some New York Yankees thrown in. I grew up watching them, and they’ll always have my heart. It’s also the perfect space for our race medals and photos, in addition to other accomplishments and fun keepsakes – like all the Cavs Championship bobbles we had to buy.
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My initial vision for this space was for it to first and foremost be a functional spare guest room, but also be a bit glam with a taste of sporty flare.  We had the initial framework with the bold accent wall, and pops of white with the floating shelves and desk – we just needed to finish the space with the functional and pops of pink! I know there will still be things we tweak and more sports memorabilia added, but for the most part it’s another room that is finally gotten a little more love and is functional for us.

House Tour – Christmas Dining Room

One of my favorite rooms to decorate during the holidays and different seasons is our dining room.  We have a large custom table that is perfect for statement centerpieces and plenty of room for family and friends to gather around for a delicious meal, conversation and laughter.
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I love thinking of ways to transform this space each year and building upon pieces I already have or buying new… this year I kind of went the old/new route based off the color theme of gold and green, selfishly carrying our wedding color palette into the holiday season and our home!  I used some pieces from our wedding and ended up buying a new table runner and napkins to pull the look together for guests.

My goal this year was to keep the dining room intimate and cozy for a small group of six, candles mixed throughout with customized ornament place settings. I used glass ornaments, (I basically have plain glass bulbs stock-piled once the year end sales hit) and poured white paint inside of them to drizzle along the inside, so when I wrote names in gold on the outside they popped! Guests can take these home as a keepsake of the holiday memory to hang on their tree!
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The greens mixed in help bring that classic Christmas feel and were conveniently trimmed off our tree. I love entertaining and having friends and family in our home, celebrating, laughing and creating memories and with the perfect setting and people it makes it easy.

Cheers to new memories!

House Tour – Backyard Patio

If you’ve been reading along, you may have gotten hints of our latest home project/renovation… our backyard patio!  This project was 100% a want on B’s end, and maybe about a 55% want on my end.  Sure I’ve wanted and dreamed about a backyard patio in our blank slate of a yard, but we’ve gone this long, so why not wait some more? But once B started getting quotes and kept moving the project forward, I jumped on board and helped from an aesthetic perspective to help pull it all together and finish it off.

The space we picked is off the back of the house, and connects seamlessly to the driveway for a universal flow for expanded living space. We’ve got plans for the house in a few of these areas so we designed with that in mind. Last summer we were looking into doing a square paver patio, but after numerous chats with family/contractors, it didn’t seem like it’d last for the price we’d have to pay. Plus it was WAY more than we were expecting at the time.  So we started exploring stamped concrete this time around figuring out textures and colors we liked.   It all came together just how we envisioned it!
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Since we only had one piece of furniture, the dining table a hand-me-down from B’s aunt & uncle (2-years ago!), we went shopping for some pieces.  We had our eye on black iron chairs that matched the table pretty well and found a similar base for the umbrella, so we were able to use the table. The dining space works out perfectly and we’ve already had a few dinners out on the patio.  The conversation set was a find that I fell in love with thanks to Emily Henderson, but luckily we were able to take advantage of some Memorial Day sales and got a great price on everything!

The last finishing touch that really pulls the space together (besides the super comfortable wide chairs – that I am OBSESSED with) are the bistro lights!  I’d bought almost half of the lights we needed when they were on sale last season for a steal of $8 each compared to $24.99 *WOW* – moral of the story, always buy more than you think you’ll need, especially if they’re $8 and you don’t have a use for them at the time!

We’ve spent so much time outside in these last few weeks now that we have this additional living space.  It was definitely worth it and I’m glad B pushed for this, because we love how it turned out and having another space to entertain in!

// Want the look?
Dining Chairs; Lowes || Outdoor Fire Pit; Lowes || Table Umbrella; Target || Umbrella Base; Target || Bistro Lights; Target || Conversation Set & Chairs; Target 

House Tour – Easter Dining Room

Happy Easter, my friends… well almost! With the holiday quickly approaching, on this house tour I wanted to share our dinning room, all decorated and ready for a cozy Easter meal. It was nice to soften up the room with pastels and floral prints, our head-chairs aren’t enough some times! Not to mention the afternoon light was shining into the room so perfectly after a rainy morning – I couldn’t pass up a little photo shoot.
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I pulled this look together with a lot of existing pieces already in stock.  The only new additions were the white bunny with gold ears, her friend is on our mantle, and the Happy Easter napkins that I  snagged from Marshall’s. I wanted to keep this simple, classic and bright through the use of the pastels and then the white and gold to tie the whole look together.

Happy Easter!

House Tour – Our Christmas

Eleven more days until Christmas! Our house is full decked out and ready for the holidays, it’s cozy and festive… I may be a bit biased, but I’m in love.

With this being the third Christmas at our house (wow!), I’ve definitely continued to perfect the finishing touches but also try a few new things! This year I took to Pinterest for some new ideas, specifically for our front door and dining room centerpiece. I looked for ideas that I could use preexisting pieces/decor but also be able to put my finishing touches on them!

Front Door: We amped up the front door to really make a statement, now that we have a full glass storm door, we can fully utilize all the real estate.  I’ve mentioned this many times, but your exterior of your home is the first impression guests receive, so why not make a statement?

My hack was to use wire to connect the three wreaths together, and then wrap the ribbon around to cover it up.  I probably spent $10 for the berries to add into the greens and the ribbon (sale at Joann’s!). I already had the wreaths, door hanger and wire.  I just hot glued the ribbon on the door hanger to make the ribbon look continuous! I love how the red pops on our blue door.
front-door_3front-door_1Dining Room Centerpiece: I wanted to switch up the centerpiece, since as much as I loved last year’s centerpiece it wasn’t conducive for entertaining with friends and family.  I often had to move it for space or take certain parts out of it.  I needed something a little more low maintenance, less intrusive and easy to move. I saw some inspiration on pinterest with a wooden box and since we found one when we first moved in (under our front porch of course), it was the perfect idea.  I used greens from the Christmas tree farm and just had to buy the candles. I added in some color and it’s completely portable if we need to move for a game night, dinner or cookie baking!
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dining-room_2I definitely got my “Martha Stewart” on and love the way these two spaces turned out! Everything I got too can be reused or altered next year – which would be my second hack for all of you is to think of DIY/Pinterest solutions that work multiple years, aren’t too trendy.

Our Master Reveal

The time is finally here!! Our master bedroom reveal!

For those who didn’t follow along on my 8-months worth of updates throughout last year… It all started with our attic, even though it was a ‘finished’ space, it was poorly done.  It’s open feel, large bright windows, closet space and size made this an instant dream master retreat.  Since B is so tall, we ended up raising the ceiling 6-inches, but that basically became a complete gut job down to the studs. This wasn’t part of the original plan – but we ended up doing new electric, new insulation, new drywall, new blinds, closet doors, new everything – and B did 97.9% of it! This was definitely our biggest house project to date.

So without further ado here is our awesome master retreat including the seating area and my two closets, yes two, one for clothes, one for accessories. *grins* We’ve tried to DIY and make as much as possible, including the headboard, curtain rods, barn door, DIY night stands and reading table, painted and redid the dresser and shopped smart for other accessories but splurged on a few items like the fireplace, rugs and our chairs.

master-reveal-the-bee-life-10master-reveal-the-bee-life-6The black frames next to the bed hold the love letter B wrote and proposed to me with. It’s the perfect addition to the room and show casing that instead of hiding it in a box somewhere. We also tried to keep some of the original wood work, especially on the stair railing coming up, but opened it to give an open feel.

I had full intentions of sharing the closet space with B, but he insisted I use both of the closets upstairs (don’t worry he has two-closets on the second floor). So I kindly thanked him and told him he was creating a monster and then proceeded to work on creating my dream <organized> closets.

We would both be lying if we didn’t say we were proud of the way this turned out. It was everything we imagined and more and I love having our own little getaway from the rest of the house and world (Moz really loves it too!)

Go Us!

House Tour – Front Porch

One of my favorite parts of our house is our front porch.  I love dressing it up for the different seasons, but especially the fall! Filling it with mums, pumpkins and other warm and welcoming elements to highlight our home (and blue door)! The front door and porch are the first impression of the house; so although a lot of the pieces have been a work in progress and the patio furniture isn’t up to (my) snuff it’s a place where I like to focus time and effort to create a warm impression! fullsizerenderimg_7334fullsizerender-1This year I went for whites and purples for my mums and mixed in some white pumpkins with a lot of bright oranges ones! The pumpkins and mums line the pathway leading to the front door and the large wooden Welcome sign. I just love how the wooden sign turned out with the rest of the fall decor.

Share your front porch decor with me; tag me on instagram @mmariebee. 

Thanks for visiting!