Top Ten: Kitchen!

I love the kitchen! Theres nothing more fun than experimenting (and epically failing) with new recipes. I’ve got a lot of stuff that i just adore and would flip if I didn’t have it in the kitchen. Check out this list to find some of my favorites in the kitchen!

1. Court Dinnerware Set

What would we do without these!? Somehow we have yet to chip or break a single one in over six months! If you knew how clumsy i am, you’d be very surprised.  The bowls are the perfect size, the plates are the perfect size and the simple square shape is great! If you’re in need of some dinnerware, I highly suggest these! Purchase from Crate and Barrel here .

2. Chevron Dishtowels

I don’t know how long I went without a good set of dishtowels. These are just adorable! I love the texture and pattern so I might have bought a few sets of them. Purchased from Anthropologie over here.

3. Cuisinart 9 cup Food Processor

I wasn’t much of a cook before I got married so things like “food processors” were definitely foreign objects to me. Pretty much still are but this is the perfect size for 2 people or a small dinner party. If you have a family of 10, I’d suggest going up a size! Purchase this sucker over here.

4. Mixing Bowl Set

It might sound silly that mixing bowls might be one of my favorite things in the kitchen… but going from having 2 crappy bowls to six with so many sizes and adorable colors. It just makes me happy! They are also very well made – i beat these up a lot and theres not a single scratch on them.  From Crate and Barrel over here

5. Hammered Metal Flatware Set

Think about it. You use flatware constantly. Other than a pop tart, most food you eat with a fork or spoon so getting a good set is crucial.  I love these because I prefer the little forks and Kenny prefers the big forks (so weird how that works, right?) The large spoons are perfect for soup and cereal while the normal ones are good for everything else! I love the hammered metal look and of course, functionality! Since we registered on Crate and Barrel, a ton of our stuff came from here… so buy them here!

6. Mr. Coffee

So this is one of those items that i would take on a deserted island with me. If i had an unlimited power source and coffee beans grew on the island, of course. I’ve had this thing since… forever. Its probably about 10 years old but we still use it almost every day. I thought about getting one of those fancy Keurig doo hickies, but nothing beats a basic, delish cup o coffee. You can really just purchase these anywhere. Target, Walmart, etc.

7. Owl Measuring Cups

How flipping cute are these? A gift from my sweet sister, Erin, these are a decorative/functional necessity in my kitchen. If i could purchase everything at West Elm, I would. Pick them up here.

8. Mini salt & pepper Mills

So i have a basic large set of salt and pepper for all my cooking, but for the table (err.. coffee table for now) we use these! They are so cute and as weird as this sounds, its actually fun to use them. Somehow, we have only had to fill up the salt once in six months. They are, of course, Crate and Barrel over  here.

9. Yellow Rug

Ok this is one thing on this list i dont actually own.. but i want to! I actually got a carpet from Target that i use for cooking. Dang, my feet get tired on the hardwood without any rugs. So if we had the cash, i’d pick this one up! Grab it over  here.

10. Double Walled Glasses

Introducing: Kenny’s other love. These glasses are the bomb dot com. They are great for coffee – keeps it hot but doesnt burn your hand, and cold stuff is awesome – no condensation! And we have yet to break these either.. i might be jinxing myself. Get them (shocker) from Crate and Barrel right here.

11. BONUS! Modernist Bowls

I LOVE these bowls from West Elm. So cute! Since most of our dinnerware is simple white and square, i love the splash of color these beautiful bowls bring… they are also the perfect size for some ice cream! Still online but not sure how much longer, grab them over here.

Seriously… pick some of this stuff up. Its awesome. And eye candy.

-Rachel

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Porch: Completed

I’m going to officially say the porch is complete. For now. Theres a few things that need updating but for now…  I adore it. Maggie also wanted to model for you guys her usual chill spot. She likes to watch the runners and the other puppies. So cute!

Future updates:

– Carpet. Obviously. This carpet is an INDOOR carpet. Talk about eww. Its a good temporary but after i also dumped paint on it, its lookin pretty sketch town.

– Pillows. The pillows are all also indoor pillows which means they wont hold up for too long. The seat pillows were hand sewn with outdoor fabric and outdoor foam so those are going to hold up for years. Read my post here about how my mother and I tackled my first ever sewing project (pajama pants in 5th grade excluded). Someday I’ll save up the cash to sew maybe 6 large squishy pillows and maybe a few accent ones. Until then, we’ve got these succas.

Why, hello puppy!

-Rach

Decorating 101: Walls

So Ive had multiple people tell me this week that i need to come over and decorate. First off, heck yes! I love to decorate, especially when its with someone elses credit card. What I’m realizing is how hard it is to move into a house with horrible paint color… throw your furniture wherever it best fits and then to be overwhelmed with how the heck to start decorating. So i put together a few tips! The most important thing to know is that its going to take time. Its not going to change overnight unless you have the money to do so. Even then, its better to just gather pieces you love, pillows you adore and random crap to make your house (or apartment) a home!

So first up, we are talking about cho walls. This is the easiest way to change up the feel of the room. And sometimes drastically. You can add paint, wall paper, shelving, pictures or art… this is a great way to add some color and have a little fun!

Paint

My first advice is not to go too crazy. or too boring. I’ve been house hunting and some houses are completely white… not a single hint of color on a single wall. And theres other houses where you feel like you’re walking through a rainbow. And thats not a good thing. Feel free to go bold on one wall, but not 20. Not sure about what color you want? Check out My Colortopia! This is a great new website where you can import an image and it comes up with multiple corresponding colors for you. For example, i uploaded this image from Desire to Inspire.

I uploaded the image and then it asked me to select a part of the room that i love in particular. It came up with a few selections of colors. Pick each of those colors and it comes up with a full color palate for you. This is a great option when you have no clue or maybe you like one rug or accessory in particular but youre not sure what colors would go great as paint colors. So definitely check it out, its a great resource!

A coat of paint can do wonders to a space. West Elm turned this boring office into a cozy space with a great deep ocean blue.

Your color choice always determines the mood of the room. If you want a calm, relaxing “spa-like” environment, go for lighter colors like sea green.

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Also dont be afraid to try some crazy colors. Maybe a bold yellow, green or even purple. I wouldnt suggest your whole house be eggplant, but one accent wall in the bathroom would bring out a nice relaxing space to come home to.

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Wallpaper

How about some wallpaper? Theres a ton of really great new modern wall paper like what MadebyGirl used in her office over at Graham and Brown. Isnt this so cute?!

Stencils

What about stenciling? I love the look of a high glossed stencil over a matte paint color. Does this look classy or what!? I’ve heard it takes a while but its always worth it. Image from Cutting Edge Stencils.

I love everything about this shot. Such a pretty wall!

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How about a chevron accent wall? How can you not love this!? Adorbs.

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Shelving

The best way to keep your house from feeling like your home is to have big blank walls. I know that you’ve got a ton of really cute pictures that need to be printed and framed. How about a cute mirror to add some depth. Even an old poster could be spruced up by throwin a fancy frame on it. Put up some floating shelves and add some decor, frames and accessories.

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Frames

Over at Young House Love they snagged some inexpensive frames from ikea that are huge and square. Then they simply added colored paper! Its really that easy to get a fun pop of color.

You can always change it later to polaroids or photos.

Art

You dont have to be a millionaire to have some great art. Etsy has really made some incredible art accessible. If you know me, you know i love Mae Chevrette. As must as I’d love an original piece, you can grab a high quality, archival print for less than 50 bucks (depending on what size you get!) $42 bucks for a 16 x 20 of this “Always” print would look just lovely on my walls.

How about 42 bucks for a large 18 x 22 print of this Boston skyline:

And one of my favorite “Bloom” paintings:

All four images above are by Mae Chevrette!

Just get on Etsy and dig around. You can find tons of amazing artists selling either originals or inexpensive prints! Go find YOUR favorite artist!

DIY Art

You could also always make your own art! I am no painter. Read here and you know i just like to push around paint… its more fun than anything for me. But just sometimes i come up with something i enjoy enough to put up on my walls. In this case, my best friend’s wall:

Or these recent fun, small little paintings that add a great splash of color to my office:

Or this piece that i put up in our bedroom. Love maps? Paint one! What do you love? What colors do you love? Its definitely the cheapest way to bring some art into your home.

I’ve even got a piece in my kitchen. If you cant paint walls while in an apartment, a large blue painting is a great way to add some color:

Wall Decor

Theres also other things you can put on your wall other than just paintings. I love adding dimension. Like these wall sculptures that are remarkable affordable bring nature inside and add a lot of fun depth to your walls:

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I also love these antique wall tiles i found for  a few bucks a piece at the City Wide Garage Sale. Just find fun things like this that are interesting or pretty to you and throw them up on the wall. I love the texture and interest those two tiles create.

How about just throw some freakin plants on the wall like here from West Elm. Just make sure you have a ton of light in this space or else you’ll have a lot of dead plants on your wall.

How about a chalkboard and 3D letters. I love this space because the walls are covered… but somehow its still not too much. Love it!

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So get to it! Go grab a bucket of paint and add a little character to your walls.

Also coming up, I’ll be posting Decor 101: Furniture and Decor 101: Accessories. Stay tuned!

-Rachel

Paintings – for the floor

Im really digging bright rugs these days. Especially in an apartment where you cant paint the walls, the best way to throw a gallon of color into a room: rugs!

This anthro rug is one of my favs… so bright! But at 400 bucks for a 5 X 7 rug, its definitely not in this broke artists budget.

This bright yellow West Elm rug has such a fun intricate pattern.. at 200 bucks for a 5 X 8, its more reasonable but still out of my price range.

So what about this beauty from ikea?

Oh man… those colors and patters! So gorge…. wait a sec… nope. This one is fugly. But at 39.99 bucks thats MUCH more in my price range! Especially as a dog owner, its much easier to spend 40 bucks on a rug rather than 400! But then again youre stuck with an ugly white boring rug. Unless you throw some paint on it like these guys:

Before:

After:Oh yea… thats the same $40 ikea blah rug… dont you love it?! Check out what Bird House Blog did here. Want some more eye candy? Try this one out:

Oh yea… same rug! Crazy right? Check out the step by step how to on her blog right here.

Man… so anyone in Austin want to make a trip out to Ikea with me to pick one up and get to painting!? Love it!

-Rachel

Grey + Yellow Office

I adore the combo. So, of course… I’m redoing my art studio and office in yellow + grey! Here is my “dream setup” and gives you an idea of whats goin on in my mind brain.

A. Hand build desk similar to this guy by West Elm, Ana White shows you step by step instructions on how to build your own for MUCH cheaper here.

B. Rug by West Elm

C. Sabertooth Scull from ZGallerie. Why? Because everyone needs a sabertooth tiger scull in their art studio…

D. Bookshelf from Overstock

E. cleaver Bookend from CB2

F. Manhattan office chair from Overstock (though you can see my craigslist find here)

G. Filing cabinet from CB2 or find an old one and spray paint! (saves $100+ that way!)

H. Pillow from Target

Considering i have a ton of built in shelving and really dont need a sabertooth scull (though i think it would REALLY help me get inspired… somehow) this is just fun inspiration. Hopefully i’ll be able to post the before and afters soon!

-Rachel