a bright & fun home

Even though most of the walls are white in this renovated ranch, the home is not neutral.  Our clients are fun & bold and open to a green kitchen and to having their master bath vanities smack dab in front of two windows  (the blinds go all the way down, btw!)

We still aren’t done.  Today is our third install day.  We you are designing an entire home there is a lot to do and so many details.

Yet, like usual, I can’t wait until it’s completely done to share what’s complete so far.  Anisa and I think it’s such a fun space!


This great room is most likely where they will spend most of their time.  We broke it into sections:  banquette/ breakfast nook area, kitchen, game/homework table area, and living/family (tv) room.  The window on the left side of the picture below overlooks the 2nd hole of the neighborhood’s golf course and the pool.  Kinda dreamy, methinks.


capiz flower pendant & brass picture light….



The appliances (white Viking!!) aren’t installed yet, but these floating barnwood shelves are.  We thought it best to keep them “raw”–they only have a wax sealant on them.  (Daniel, our contractor, must stalk all barns north of Atlanta.  He always finds the best wood!)

A view of the game table, kitchen & banquette: (if you squint you can make out the SMEG fridge, too:)



The rug under the table is Dash & Albert’s indoor/outdoor diamond rug.  The couple have four children under four, so they needed something underfoot they can scrub and hose off!


The view from the banquette:

(before furniture)photo-27

(after furniture)

Here is the view from the sofa in the family room:

(We slipcovered the leather ottoman the family already owned to update it and add some pattern.  Fabric is smoke from Lee Industries.)

The slipcovered Dominique sofa is from Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams.  It is SUCH a great sofa!  We love that it’s slipcovered (thus, washable), yet boasts clean, modern lines.  Might be our new go-to sofa.



our colors for the home?  indigo, teal, chartreuse & pink.



It’s so difficult to get a great picture of a bathroom, but here is the powder room near the kitchen:

The sconce is the satellite in brass from schoolhouse electric co.  I know it’s hard to make out.


The “art” is framed vintage horse fabric.


Beware when buying a pedestal sink.  We ordered three or four of these!  (hard to keep track).  The legs always arrive broken.  Seems like they would pack them better–what an expensive problem.


The laundry room makes us happy, too!


Here is the new master bathroom (formerly a master bedroom):




Not your neighbor’s bathroom, right? :)



And we couldn’t have the bathroom completely void of color–they needed a blue barn (closet) door:


It’s all in the details:

photo-66We hope you have a great day!



Julie & Anisa

okay, IKEA is growing on me

You know, one pet peeve I have about the entire design field is the snobbery that shows up from time to time.  Luckily, I am paired with a partner who shares my belief that good design can exist in all budgets.

Unfortunately, not all who work in design feel the same.  Some feel that it is not good if it is not exclusive, expensive, and one-of-a-kind.

We totally disagree.  Sometimes we view a room that has been designed from head-to-toe with the best textiles, custom-designed and hand-crafted furniture, and antique Persian rugs that cost a small fortune to travel from their origin to their final (mansion) destination.

These rooms do not appeal to me and I doubt they ever will.  On the rare chance that the homowner purchased these items and hired a designer because they truly love and admire each piece, well–I can understand and respect that.

What I see more is a homeowner will hire a designer with “a name” and spend loads of money, for lack of a better term, to show off.  My mom reared us with an innate knowledge that style is about mixing and not about name brands.  Ever.

Even after our parents divorced in the ’80s and we were living on a shoestring, my mom would still truck down to Lenox and Phipps Plaza (two of our fancier shopping destinations in Atlanta).  She would go to their backrooms and hit the sale rack.  She would only do this once a year, maybe twice if she made a little more that year decorating model homes and condos.

Let’s see if I recall the brands that meant quality in those years–Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, Halston still in the early part of the decade?  I can’t remember them all.  What I do remember is she would buy two or three solid outfits:  cream blazers that fit her like a glove (with shoulder pads no less), black crepe dresses that would transition from day to night, to church or a funeral or a wedding with a pretty cream shawl, cream wool pants with a perfet drape and seasonless quality.  It always seemed a fortune at the time, but she was smart.

She would effortlessly pair these with tanks from Marshalls and off-season clogs from Loehman’s.  Her few pieces of pearl and/or gold jewelry would fit most occasions, and she would switch her bag as the occasion required:  robin’s egg leather blue satchel for a lunch meeting with builders, a large yellow tote at her kids’ football game, a woven shoulder number for the beach.  She had “it” without even trying.  And, I think I learned from her via osmosis, style isn’t found automatically with money and a huge house on Riverside drive, style is confidence, knowing who you are, trusting your instincts, and mixing classic, well-made pieces with something fun, light & affordable.

Regardless of what blessings God may or may not bestow upon our family, I know I will always live this way.  Anisa and I love “junkin” and the hunt too much—yard sales, antique stores, Target, Hobby Lobby, and, yes, IKEA.

Woo, that was a long introduction.

I just wanted to share how this IKEA hater has learned to appreciate it.  Usually, when our projects require a trip to IKEA (and most do), I beg Anisa to knock out that part of the list and I’ll do something she may dislike.  However, I have slowly and begrudgingly learned how to shop in Swedish-style, and here are some of our faves:


a great little mod table lamp


modern hardware (we paired with anthro knobs on the cabinet uppers)

Jennifer Kesler Photography

great Stockholm rug

a great knock-off tulip table

we used it here (Christina Wedge photo)

And in one of my all-time faves.

IKEA has some great bedding….

Loving the gingham in our boys’ room

I am still in love with this vintage-look floral from IKEA

Sometimes you have to break down and buy an IKEA sofa (not the most comfortable, but great for 5-8 year sofa IMO)

Here in Anisa’s living room (Jennifer Kesler photo)

an inexpensive baroque mirror from IKEA

Anisa recently painted one and placed it in her entry:

Another classic mirror from IKEA

We had a tight budget for this bathroom, so it was a perfect choice!

I own this throw below, and I love that it is soft & stretchy

One of my top 10 bedrooms of all-time.

a great source for inexpensive shelving…as seen below in Anisa’s nook:

Jennifer Kesler photo

and our always-go-to-Ribba-frames

farmhouse table



We love our “fur babies”–bad name we’ve given them

infatuated with their gingham rugs!

A few more new things I’m digging…

petticoat pendant

their cowhides–always a good idea

getting this metal cart for my bathroom this week–need it!

They are always sold out.

what a great chair!

Can you deal with IKEA?  My husband cannot!

What is your fave?

Is this post long enough?

Have a great week….


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