Latest Obsessions 10.18

Besides being obsessed with fall and the month of October – because let’s face it, it’s one of the best months for the welcoming cool sweatshirt weather, luscious orange and white pumpkins, warm coffee, big sweaters, blue jeans and booties!
Latest Obsessions 10.18 - bee life blog
Buffalo Plaid.  I’d like to personally thank Marshall’s for this obsession, with some recent birthday present shopping – I’ve noticed that winter gear is in full force (and won’t last long.)  So I’ve been stocking up on a few pieces as I stop in, although these have all happen to be buffalo plaid!  Not only does it work for fall, but it’s the perfect transition into the holiday season.

Mustard Accents.   This turned into a little obsession when I started planning and designing out the finishing touches for our Basement Makeover. It started with looking for the perfect accent mustard colored blanket, but is slowly turning into clothes and other statement pieces.  There is something about it, that again feels like fall – but also from a decor perspective pulls in a modern vibe that I just love!

Layered Doormats.  I love this look and am in search of a larger, colorful mat to layer under a few of our funner/useful mats.  This look is great for adding in a seasonal flair, a pop of color or just a grand statement to welcome guests.  This post from Chris loves Julia has a great key to help you decide how to layer your doormats by mixing in some patterns for a strong base.

Everything Fall. Did I already mention this? But seriously, after this past weekend that seemed like a fall dream, I have been primping the house and our front porch with mums, pumpkins and gourds.  I love creating our own little fall paradise and making a statement for those who pass by and those who come up and visit!  This year I purchased pink pumpkins – yup, I think it might be my new thing.

What have you been obsessing over lately? Leave a comment below, I want to know!

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Latest Obsessions 09.18

This month’s latest obsessions is all about making a statement in your home, whether it’s in your bathroom, your bedroom, in a office or your main living space – there are easy ways to focus your efforts on creating a big visual impact and making a room feel special even if it is just your bedroom. Latest Obsessions 09.18 - bee life

The best part about making a statement is sometimes you only need to focus on one aspect of the room, or a finishing touch which could be furniture, paint or a orientate tile – so remember you don’t need to rack your brain to pull off a show stopping look, just keep it simple!

Painted Wood. This can really add for some drama in a study/office or even a dramatic wall in your master suite in place of a headboard.  Although this might not be for everyone, especially if you’re going a bit extreme with the purple study above – you

Patterned Bathroom Tiles.  It’s no secret I’m a huge fan of a good statement tile, and I think pulling it into your bathroom can be a really great way to add some flair to functional space.  Whether it’s on the floor or a whole wall in a glass shower – it’ll really impress, but remember with tiles you’re making a little more of a permanent commitment so make sure it’s something you’ll love or is a little more neutral and classic.

Modern Aesthetic.  I’ve been on a bit of a kick of pulling in a little more of a modern aesthetic, especially for our basement makeover.  If done correct you can really add some drama into your space with modern furniture pieces and accents.  A good way to accomplish this is with a great couch, I love West End 96″ Sofa in the Blue from Value City.

Statement Mirrors.  A good mirror can add some drama in any space, but a fun place to splurge a bit is with a vanity or make-up station.  Things to consider with statement mirrors is either buying a mirror that feels oversized for the space – to add that impact, or to buy a mirror with thick frame work and detail – this Amelie Wooden Arched Mirror from Arhaus is a stunner with a vintage twist.

Making a statement can be a fun project, but can also seem a little daunting depending on how bold you want to go! I’ve been on a kick of a modern pop for our basement makeover, which I’m excited to share with everyone soon!

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Image Sources: Bathroom | Statement Vanity | Painted Study | Modern Living 

6 Budget Friendly Ways to Upgrade Your Home

We were fortunate enough to find a home that didn’t require a lot of major renovations or immediate upgrades – for us a lot of it was taking out the 40-years of style, giving it a little bit of love with easy cosmetic updates.  And because of that we were able to make a huge impact with these budget friendly upgrades, without breaking the bank which allowed us to splurge on grown-up furniture and help cover those surprise homeowner expenses!
Budget Friendly Upgrades for Your Home - the bee life
So I wanted to share the wealth! Here are a few tips and ways you can upgrade your home without spending a ton of money.

Paint. A gallon of paint can work WONDERS!  We literally painted our entire house, including the ceilings ,and just alone from a paint perspective the house looks like a completely different place.  Another pro tip is working from a similar color palette which can help save costs and create a cohesive flow throughout your home.  Painting with lighter colors or even the ceiling can help make a room look bigger and brighter with just 40-bucks and a little bit of elbow grease.

Light Fixtures & Ceiling Fans. This was a project we worked on updating throughout the house when we first moved it.  Updating old ceilings fans, to something a little more white and modern can help make the space look larger and blend more into the room vs. a bit eye soar.  One of my favorite updates was our dining room chandelier it always gets a ton of comments and looks almost original to the home.

Blinds & Curtains.  We had 1-inch blinds throughout the house when we first moved in and gradually updated all of the blinds to 2-inches.  They look that much more high-end and help with privacy and darkening the room.  Adding in some curtain shears overtop help to add dimension and also makes the room feel cozy and inviting.  You can also help make a statement with a fun patterned curtain in a room that might be more subtle and subdued – just be careful these can sneak up in price especially if you’re shopping for a new curtain rod.

Hardware.  Although this can add up quickly, it doesn’t compare to a whole new kitchen. Updating your hardware or plumbing fixtures can be easy and a more affordable way to make a statement in rooms that need a little extra love.  We updated our faucets in our kitchen and bathroom, and although we’re still waiting for the major reno for both these spaces – it helps!  Adding different knobs in our kitchen helped getting out the old and adding in some new.

Flooring.  Whether it’s ripping up some old dingy carpet to unveil beautiful hard wood floors or buying a nice statement rug for a room – these are other ways to pull the look and feel of your room together and add a more finished look. If you’re shopping right you can usually find a good deal or discount on a rug, too!

Pops of Color.  This can be accomplished with blankets, pillows, photos or a fun tabletop lamp.  Using pops of colors in accent pieces, decor or accent furniture can allow you to update a bit easier if you are ever in need to switch out seasonally or ready for an upgrade.  One of my favorite ways to do this is with H&M’s pillow covers.

It’s easy to want to go all out and make everything perfect when you first move into a new space/home – but it takes time and money!  Hopefully these tips can help you get your home into a better place as you continue to figure out and finish your space.

Questions? Comment below!

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Dog Inspired Home Decor

I’ll be the first to admit it, I am a dog lover – and I am mildly obsessed with our little puggle, Moz!  We’ve invested in a few custom portraits of her,  have attended Paint Your Pet classes and frame some super cute photos of her. And although I feel like our house is quickly becoming consumed with mini gallery walls, I can’t help but want to create a Moz gallery wall. And, it’s okay if you’re whispering ‘crazy dog lady’ or rolling your eyes at me, as you read this!

Needing some inspiration like me? Here are some super cute ways to incorporate DOGS into your home in a chic, playful, sophisticated and not so crazy way.  From a nursery, entrance, living space or even your bathroom, I hope you’re inspired like I was to see how these can pull off a high-end look while still satisfying that inner-love for dogs.

Illustrations are a great way to incorporate your pooch, as the simplicity brings that certain level of sophistication. Incorporating canvas’ with multiple pieces and parts also helps create more of a statement without all the gallery wall work and planning.  Whether it’s created in a DIY paint class or an option you sourced online – there are plenty of options to purchase/create your custom pup portrait.

Another fun way to pull in your love of dogs is with some bold wallpaper that could be used in a mud room.  Wanting to keep it simple? Get an entry rug that will welcome guests and instantly set the mood that furry friends await. Photography is another way to pull in those sweet pups, with a gallery wall of three large prints – I mean, how cute are those puppy photos for a nursery? or using a common thread of familiar frames or black and white photos helps tie everything together for a cohesive look in the space.

If you’re considering adding in your furry friends to your home decor, it’s also important to consider what spaces might be appropriate for this with the way your house functions.  A few starting points to consider might be your master bedroom or theming a guest room themed with dogs (there are so cute dog bedsheets you can score; like these ones from Cynthia Rowley). A guest bathroom or mudroom might be a good space to bring in your love of dogs.  Start small or in a dedicated space and make sure you bring through your love of dogs in a sophisticated and stylish way!

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Shop the Looks & Image Sources: Gallery wall with furry bench Frenchie Canvas Vintage Dogs Illustrated Wallpaper Three Puppies in a Nursery I hope you like dogs rug |Golden Gallery

Breakfast Nooks for Days

So now that we have our Front Landscape project wrapped up, I’m ready for the next and still dreaming of our someday kitchen makeover… One piece that I particularly want when we makeover our kitchen is an adorable, cozy and functional breakfast nook!
Breakfast Nook - the bee life
As I started looking for different breakfast nooks – I didn’t realize how many different options there would be! Traditionally you think of a galley style booth or a half circle of benches – but news flash! There are SO MANY other options! Let me walk you through the many considerations and options of a breakfast nook.

Permanent & Functional. This is a great idea if you’re truly committed to having a breakfast nook. With a permanent bench you can also be sure to build in extra storage so it’s functional in more than one way.

Movable Furniture Pieces. Mind blown? Yup, mine was. And I think this might be one of the ways we end up going.  Whether using a Settee or this awesome customizable piece from the Home Depot.

Square vs. Round Table.  This is another piece that can make a huge difference depending on the base you’re working with.  A square/rectangular table could work for a larger space or a foldable one could work for a smaller space.  A round table is just another perfect option that can work in an L-shape bench layout or your half-circle nook.

Accents Chairs. Depending on the route you go, the accent chairs opposite of the bench are just as much of a statement as the rest of the set-up.  These can be industrial, warm and cozy or traditional.

Bold Colors vs. Classic Neutrals.  Either way you decide to do it, you can either start with a bold footprint with your main bench, or add in pops of color with wall art and pillows. Neutrals can play on each other bringing in deep wood grains from your floor or table can really pull a neutral look together with your other pieces.

Working with a Window? Don’t be afraid to build your bench in front of your window.  No window? That’s okay – breakfast nooks work either way, whether it’s behind a half-wall or in a corner of a room don’t let one or the other hold you up from creating your space. We only have windows on one side, so we’ll be able to have a little bit of light and fun with our space.

Pillows & Cushions, Cushions & Pillows.  One of the parts I love about breakfast nooks is they’re so warm and inviting, and one of the reasons is because of all the pillows and possibilities of bench cushions!  It is no secret I have a slight pillow addiction.

All Shapes & Sizes. Whether you’re working with a tight space, or have a 12-foot wall to fill with your breakfast nook, this is once piece that can work in any kind of space, especially if you decide the non-permanent route! So don’t feel like you can’t fit in your breakfast nook if you have limited space!  On the contrary, if you have extra dead space this might be a great way to fill it or make up for a lack of a dining room.

Lighting.  Depending on your overall style of your breakfast nook, you can either play it down or create a bold statement with a chandelier.  Not ready to commit to a chandelier?  Consider wall sconces to book end your space or light the way.

I was always dreaming over our breakfast nook as super traditional with a built in bench with storage, circular table and calling it a day with some pillows.  But now that I see all these different options and all the fun color options I am wide-eyed and drooling over the possibilities.   I mean that pink sectional and shell chandelier directly above is Oh. Em. Gee. Swoon worthy.  And I think we’ll probably end up going with the less permanent, yet cozy route with a great Settee or baller sectional.

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Image Sources: Top Left | Top Right | Settee Neutral | Corner with Red Chandelier | Black & Gold | Mustard Bench | Classic U-Shape | Pink Rectangular Swoon 

DIY – Upcycle Skinny Dresser

You guys, I’ve been so excited to share this DIY with you all.  We first picked up this piece in the winter on a curb, it was calling my name – although banged up with multiple broken drawers, I saw the potential.  I didn’t even have a space for it at first, but I just needed to take it and make it over – and I wanted to pull out the stops to make this a show stopper.

First we had to assess the situation, three of the six drawers were busted up, one significantly cut that needed a little extra TLC (still a work in progress).  With a little bit of wood glue and updating, B helped put these back to life.  The old handles really dated this piece, so we removed those and got to work sanding down the surfaces.  Surprise, surprise we went with an off white color that we had from the house and painted this piece instead of spray painting, which is usually my go-to.  Painting was surprisingly really easy, and covered the piece well with only a couple of coats needed.
DIY -- Upcycle Skinny Dresser - the bee life
Let’s talk finishing touches. I wanted to splurge a bit on the finishes and was really hoping to indulge in some hardware from Anthropologie, as mentioned in my Latest Obsessions.  But I didn’t want to order them online, the store near me was SUPER picked over and I couldn’t talk myself into spending $8 or $10 per knob, when I needed six!  So I stopped at Pat Catans on a whim, and found some knobs I kind of liked ($2.99 each) – the first knobs I bought didn’t do much on the drawers, they were small – I need something more… bold. I went back and traded the pink blah knobs for these chunky stunning silver ones.  These still might get switched out one day…

Inside of the drawers was another place I wanted to find something a bit more fun and fancy.  Just as I was about to compromise on some typical contact paper from Target, I ended up getting distracted, swooning over some Opalhouse when too my surprise noticed the wallpaper was 50% off! Light bulb! I put down the gross contact paper and bought this elegant peel and stick wallpaper! For $15, I was leaving with my show stopping piece I wanted to help finish off this piece – not to mention the peel and stick was super easy to work with and customize per drawer.

Cost Breakdown:

  • Knobs: $18
  • Stick Wallpaper: $15 (on sale)
  • Paint: $0 (already had it)
  • Sandpaper: $5
  • TOTAL COST: $38

We have this piece in our dining room for now, and aired out a few other pieces to make this work.  Worst case I will put it in my walk in closet and use it to organize my clothes (bummer!)  But it was a fun piece to update and bring back some new life too.  The drawers still aren’t perfect – but you’d never know!

House Tour – Sunroom Makeover

Our sunroom got an impromptu mini makeover this spring, as we have finally been able to enjoy it with the weather warming up.  This space started out pretty drab with a stunning yellow and brown color palette, we quickly figured out a cost effective solution to repurpose our old apartment furniture making this space functional, bright and colorful.

This past summer we bought an oversized love seat and ottoman, that matches our main living room furniture – it was time to get rid of that over worn leather sofa for something a bit nicer.  The curtains that were once bright and sunny (and really expensive) were now faded after a few summers in the sun – plus the windows in that room aren’t the greatest (already on the future project list).  So I went with more affordable shears ($5 each) that accented the room nicely.
House Tour - Sunroom Makeover - the bee life
I reused a few other pieces that were throughout the house, the rug was extra that had been in the basement and worked perfectly with the new furniture color.  I also pulled in the white TV stand from a guest room to pull the space together, making it a cozy spot to curl up and watch a movie on a summer night or cool afternoon.  The window table was a DIY that is now a helpful side table, styled with a framed quote from our wedding and a table top lamp that was sitting sadly in the basement waiting for it’s perfect spot.

The only other piece I bought besides the new curtains, was the white tray ($20) to use on the other side of the chair for a bit more function.  I covered a few colorful pillows I had with white pillow cases from H&M that had ended up in the linen closet, the bright colors just weren’t working with the new darker gray chair.  I really loved freshening this space up without spending an arm and a leg – which goes back to my main decorating tip and rule of thumb, buy pieces that can work in multiple spaces!
14Sunroom Makeover - the bee life13Sunroom Makeover - the bee life
We love having the door open in the summer to this welcoming and warm space, and now it just has another elevated feel of this little retreat in our home.  It’s the perfect spot for an afterwork nap (that’s when it’s the warmest with sun shining in) and so bright.  Although this space was complete before, it feels even more so now with this little upgrade!

 

Shop the Look: H&M Pillow Covers | White Target Tray | Oversized Chair | Shear Curtain Panels | TV Stand Cube Bench 

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.
8House Tour - Mansion - the bee life
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.
9House Tour - Mansion - the bee life
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.

DIY Dresser Makeover Inspiration

It seems like my DIY project list keeps growing, but I haven’t gotten started on any of it yet! To help get inspired – I wanted to pull some looks for a project that should be easy to check off the list, refinishing two dressers in one of our spare bedrooms.  These guys already had a face lift, which was a huge improvement, but the room has a lot of different shades of gray and I want to event that out – and these guys will be a good starting point.
DIY - Dresser Inspo - the bee life
We originally kept the handles to save on costs, but this time we will be switching out those dated handles for something a bit more sleek and modern.  I’ve got my eyes on something like these gold handles after some shopping around since hardware adds up quick, and we need 20 of these!

So now that the hardware is somewhat figured out, what color? My first inclination is to paint these white. All white everything ❤ but upon searching for some inspiration I love the subtle pops of color with the white or the mix of natural wood and white.  The room has a fun statement wall of horizontal stripes, and the headboard inspiration is also on the DIY docket to-do list, so working to keep everything consistent and complimentary is key when updating these.

Next steps are to order those knobs, then finalize the color and get to work! They’re going to need a good sanding across the board but once that is all set these will be a nice and easy makeover for this guest room – I just need it to warm up a little so I can work in our garage!

 

 

Image Sources: Top Image | Left Bottom Image | Right Bottom Image