The 411 on New Construction

Of all of the dream houses I might have, the one type of property that’s never really on my wish list is new construction. It’s not because there’s anything wrong with new construction, it can be a great option, I’m just the type of person who will always want to be doing the updating myself. I’m pretty particular for one, and I just love the design process, and to be the one transforming a space. It’s a thrill and complete joy for me. But what’s the 411 on new construction? What are the pro’s, what are the cons, and what…

At the end of the day, it’s not ‘ours’… and what that feels like

I’m talking about our apartment. Lately we’ve been in a wee bit of a rut my manfriend and I… one of us, I won’t say who {totally him} is a bit way more messy than the other, and it’s caused some friction, to say the least. While we might only be in this space for a shorter time, I still want to make it nice and have it feel as much like ‘home’ as we can. My manfriend is more of the mindset that it’s just a temporary space so what does it matter if it’s messy? And as we’ve trudged…

Design 101: Listening to the language of your house

So how do you create a great design? There are many many rules of thumb and practical tips… and you can always pay lots of money to go and get a formal education to have all of the official answers for yourself… But maybe one of the most basic things that everyone should remember, and one of the most helpful, above {and before} everything else is to listen to the language of your house. What does that even mean anyway… A while back we helped a couple buy a mid 90’s frame house that was a contemporary style. Pretty clean lines,…

Recipe for a Spectacular Outdoor Space

Happy Holiday week! Hopefully you have some time off this week to enjoy the summer weather and some good company. Maybe you’ve got a bbq on a great rooftop planned? We’re going to be heading out for a lazy rooftop morning on Wednesday before we head out to the suburbs to spend the afternoon celebrating with friends… Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about great outdoor space, mainly how much I miss it and want it! It’s been a long time since I’ve had anything close to amazing outdoor space and man, am I seriously longing for it lately. In Chicago…

Bye bye subway backsplash… a new trend is in town.

Subway tiles are classic, and ~ if done right ~ are timeless. But they’ve been so popular for enough years now that even these are starting to feel a little tired and overdone. I’ll always love them, but I will admit, there’s another approach to backsplashes that’s been a rare sighting for a long time, but is getting a little more attention these days, and I couldn’t be more excited. The slab as backsplash. Personally I’ve been head over heels in love with this look for a long time. It doesn’t really get more sophisticated than this. And if anything is more…

Where have all the medicine cabinets gone?!

As I pack up, and purge, and daydream about our ‘forever’ {for a reno at least} home… I randomly starting thinking about the strangest part of a house ~ medicine cabinets. Has anyone else noticed that medicine cabinets seem to be disappearing from bathrooms everywhere? what. the. heck?! Does it really even matter if there’s a medicine cabinet in the bathroom? Am I just getting stuck in old thinking about storage and being practical? I don’t have a medicine cabinet in my bathroom now, or any other {built-in} storage for that matter. And maybe that’s why this is weirdly on…

Sofa Dreams

Since we’re doing this sublet through the end of the year that means no big designing and no big furniture purchases for about nine more months, until we find our permanent place. But that hasn’t stopped me from becoming really pre-occupied with what sofa I want in our next living room. I haven’t even really started imagining too specifically what our next space will look like design-wise overall, because we want to be open to different types of spaces and buildings that could work as far as fixer-uppers. I think once we get moved into our immediate next space I’ll…

Logan Square Cottage gets a big facelift!

Yesterday was picture day at Carla and Andrew’s sweet Logan Square house, as we get ready to go on the market there soon. {if you want to see more about how they transformed the interior, click here} While they did a lot of work on the interior of their house, one of the simplest, but biggest impact, projects they did was replacing the siding on the exterior. The house looked okay with it’s original grey siding, but didn’t really stand out. And when you got closer than just looking at a photograph, you could tell that it had ‘been around…

Brick & terra cotta ~ you’ve stolen my heart

I love a good vintage space. And I love finishes that aren’t necessarily the ‘hottest’ or ‘trendiest’, but are beautiful, classic, timeless or even just unexpected but make a space really stand out. One thing I’ve been seeing pop up here and there a bit lately is brick and terra cotta flooring, and I’m in love. It’s not super trendy {and that’s one thing I love about it}, but it’s beautiful, and moreover, it’s timeless. So a house that has 40 year old {or more} brick or terra cotta flooring is suddenly in again, without changing a thing! I love…

Rethinking {upper} kitchen cabinets

Would you ever go sans upper cabinets in your kitchen? Did you just think to yourself ~ what is this chick talking about?! But  really, think about it, it’s a string of boxes hanging on the wall, floating over that precious counter space… and those top shelves are always so hard to reach! You don’t see a lot of kitchens without upper cabinets, but I’m totally in love with this look and can’t wait to have a space that I can design this way. It might be a little tough to go this design route if you are tight on space, and using vertical…