Two Story Cottage

This Little Piggy went to Market

Dear Friends,

Yes, I just referred to myself as swine in a public forum.  I’m punchy because it is the end of another long week but for once Sunday can’t come fast enough.  I’m having the ultimate wish granted for a design junkie like myself.


 adorable painting from WaterInMyPaint

I’m heading to market.

Now if you have to ask what market I’m referring to, we might not be on the same wavelength. Because the High Point Market is the only market I know and I’m going this weekend!  You may be thinking I’ve wandered away from my design hobby because my posts have been few and far between.  However, quite the opposite has happened.  I’m knee deep in projects and have been so wrapped up that blogging got lost in the shuffle.

It happens.

Anyway, for me the furniture market is as good as it gets.   I’ve dreamed of browsing the endless array of vendors for years.  YEARS.  I’ve followed along on instagram and drooled over other people’s pictures with longing – knowing the furniture kingdom is less than two hours away.  A forbidden fruit scenario.

I know it is going to be loooong.  And tiring.  My purse will hurt my shoulder and my feet will feel like they are tied to cinder blocks.

But I’ll be smiling all the way through.

I can’t wait to share my very first experience with you guys.  And tell you about my new job…

Oops. Did I let that slip?






Designer Home Tour : HomeArama 2015

Dear Friends,

I had the pleasure of touring several HomeArama homes in Mint Hill, NC this summer.   It was magazine and tv worthy goodness that still has my creative juices flowing.  I just love a good home tour but barn doors, planked walls, and painted cabinets are surely the way to my heart.

Area designers teamed up with builders to create a just right home.  This particular home is a collaboration by the Ullman Group and designer Tammy Coulter. It was fairly neutral with rustic touches and a french country feel.  The details were amazing.  It happens to be my favorite so check it out…














How about that dining room?  The barrel ceiling is such a show stopper.   The kitchen and master bath were stunning as well.  I didn’t get pictures of everything but there was one more little surprise from the garage.


I think it is a dog or pet washing station but I could use a kid washing spot like that.  I’m a fan of anything that expedites the cleaning process.

My favorite spaces are functional and pretty and this home definitely hit the mark!




Genius Desk Ideas for a Non-Home-Office

Dear Friends,

I’m a browsing junkie when it comes to inspiration photos.  With my recent desk plan, I thought I’d look for fun ideas.  There are a ton of home office spaces, but I was looking for workspaces integrated into the home rather than a dedicated room.  I only have a corner to work with.

It turns out there are all kinds of ways to add a desk into the landscape!

Traditional Home Office – Marsh McCullough
My favorite was the second photo.  I’m a sucker for well-executed neutrals.   I love the idea of a desk in a family space.  I’m not sure I’d use one in the bedroom though.  I definitely used to use my desk in the kitchen at our last two homes.
Do you have a dedicated office space?  Or do you just have a corner somewhere?  I’m excited to have my own little spot to work!

Eye Candy Design {Breaking It Down}

Dear Friends,
I have made it pretty clear on here that I’m not a designer by trade; rather, I consider myself a student of design.  I soak it in wherever and whenever I can.  Whether it is a restaurant or a friend’s house, I’m always learning.  The backdrops of some of my favorite TV shows are great tools for this.  Revenge, anyone? Am I the only one that has noticed the Pottery Barn sofa on Parenthood?

As part of my journey, I have saved special pictures in a folder titled “Eye Candy.”  For me, these are the pictures that exemplify perfection in design.  These are the photos I study.  I started doing this before Pinterest and I still like having that folder on my hard drive.

So, eye candy.
What makes it just so right?
{thoughts from a non-expert}
If you’d like to pin the image, please do so from her site.  The link is here.

Our styles are different, but Emily A. Clark is one of my biggest sources of inspiration.  

Details that make this space extraordinary:

* The light is a bold, not-so-typical choice that makes an impact and creates a focal point.  It stands out  even with the busy bookcase behind it.  A typical chandelier would get lost in this room.

* The charcoal bookcase back creates a black hole for things like cords and supplies but provides a beautiful backdrop for the colorful books and accessories.

* Books can make a bookcase.  Look at how artfully these are arranged.  There are dozens of different ways to stack books.

*The lamp and the orchid are the same scale which makes it pleasing to the eye.  Symmetry using two different objects rather than two of the same.

*The chairs complement the color of the bookcase back.  The metal brings an industrial vibe to the look which gives it that dose of the unexpected.

*The tufted chair anchors the other side of the table.  The style suits the classy space.

*The orange rug is bold and stylish without being trendy.  It adds the perfect pop of color.

*The white paint in the room doesn’t distract from the bookcase.  It really serves to make it stand out while unifying the walls and the built-in.

* Details, details, details.  Sometimes that says it all.

Do you have any thoughts on what makes this design picture-perfect? Please share.  

Timeless Big and Little Girl Bedroom

Dear Friends,
    I hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving!  We spent it with my in-laws in South Carolina.  They moved this summer for the first time in 30+ years so we were very excited to see the new house.

I don’t have a full tour for you today but I thought I’d share the bedroom where the grandchildren stay.  This is girls only but there is another space for boys.

The majority of the decorating in this bedroom was done by my mother-in-law and a designer over thirty years ago.  The bedding, headboards, curtains, table cover, pillows, and paint color are straight from my sister-in-law’s bedroom growing up. I feel like this is a great example of how decor can be timeless.  We live in a society where we are all changing our furnishings on a whim but there is something to be said for classic design, don’t you think?

I have always liked that butterfly fabric.  It could transition from nursery to adult.  I’m also a fan of using blue in a girl’s room, especially when paired with more female tones.  

My in-laws added the painting after the move to change things up a little and I think it makes me love it even more.  What a great place for the girl cousins to sleep!

T.G.I.F.  Have a great weekend!

Curtain Inspiration {No Windows Allowed}

Dear Friends,

   Thank you for all the sweet notes and comments regarding our dog, K.C.  I can’t express my appreciation enough.  My readers are the best!  We are staying busy so that the house doesn’t seem so empty.
Last week, I showed you part of the foyer with a curtain framing the entrance to the study.  It got me thinking about all the ways to hang curtains without windows.
There are so many reasons to use curtains in areas where you might not think of it!  They make great partitions.  They can add height to a space which was necessary in our case.  They might create a nook like we did in Lacey’s old bedroom.  Or frame a door like in her current room.   I like the variety that an unexpected curtain adds.
Check out the inspiration pics below.
Covering the loft beds
Creating Smaller Areas in A Large Space/ Framing An Outdoor Room

Framing French Doors
Are you windows-only when it comes to curtains or do you like a little variety?  Do you have a space like this in your home?  Feel free to add a link in the comments.  🙂

Adding Interest with Moulding {Inspirational Photos}

Dear Friends,
     I’m a big fan of the architectural interest that moulding provides.   Maybe it is because I grew up with a trim-loving Dad.  Or perhaps it is my affinity for cottage style.  Either way, I’m hooked on decorative millwork.
Below are photos from my ideabook involving unique uses of moulding.
So many of the photos get my wheels turning.  I’m drawn to the flat panel moulding.  That oversized dentil moulding from Eclectic Room Design is unreal.  

Any favorites?  


Coral & Turquoise in the Kitchen

Dear Friends,
    After Lacey’s birthday bash, we had a set of balloons floating from room to room.  The balloons that wouldn’t die.  The balloons with a lifespan longer than most goldfish.

Well, the balloons found a home in the corner of the kitchen.  They caught my eye in the light.  The pink and orange “popped”{insert balloon joke here} with the Hazy Skies backdrop.

It got me thinking.  Maybe I could add a couple of coral-ish accents in the kitchen.  Which would tie in to the family room.

I’m contemplating this terracotta rug from Ballard Designs for under the kitchen table.  It is a “Bring Home Ballard” special and I’m really drawn to it.  The latest catalog shows it full size and it appears to have a strong coral hue.

$19-179 depending on the size
Examples of coral and turquoise that I found browsing Pinterest…
For Traditional Home by Tobi Fairley

I haven’t made any decisions yet but the coral fever might be spreading.  Watch out! 🙂

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