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Apr 11, 2014

Small Home Big Style: Bliss At Home

Hi Everyone!

Happy Friday loves! Its been a whirlwind week over here guys. 

This week we've had the home appraisal, pest inspection, signed lots of docs, and have the home inspection today. It's been a lot to deal with emotionally, and there just aren't enough hours in the day! No excuses (because I don't believe in making them) I'm simply saying finding the time to sit down and write quality content has been difficult.  I miss writing, and I miss you.  I'm hoping you'll stick around.

Now other than the fact that its the start of the weekend, you wanna know why I love Fridays? Because I get to share another small home story, of course, and today my sweet blog friend Kristin is here dishing on how she lives and loves in her small home. Kristin is the creative mind behind the blog, Bliss At Home.  She's such a sweetheart, and her home is full of inspiring spaces. 







 

Where/What city do you live in?
 
I live in Rock Island, Illinois. It is one of 4 cities that make up an area called the Quad-Cities right on the Mississippi River in Northern Illinois. A bridge separates the Iowa side from the Illinois side.
 
Who do you share your home with? 

I live with my husband, Dave, and our two sons. Also, my daughter, I mean my puppy, Zoey.
 
Do you own or rent? 
 
We own our home. We bought it a few years ago and it is the home I grew up in.
 
How many sq ft is your home? 
 
1,350 sq. ft.
 
What do you love most about small space living?
 
I have always been a fan of smaller spaces. They feel cozier and more inviting to me. I also like that it breeds major creativity and you really think about how to use every inch in the most thoughtful way. 
 
What challenges have you faced?
 
Since our home was built in 1954, there are a lot of things to replace and update. Our home is definitely a fixer-upper, but it has been so fun to make it ours. We are just taking our time with it. 
Being a smaller space, we only have one bathroom at the moment that we are remodeling. Yikes, right?! We have plans to add a second one in when we finish off the basement, but for now one is all we have. So, there have been some interesting moments to say the least with two little boys.
We also have to be really smart and have spaces that multi-function. Our dining area is also my office and workspace. Our closets are all getting revamped and larger too so that has been a bit of a stress. 
 
What's your favorite room in your home?
 
My favorite room is our living room. Probably because it is the only room that feels finished at the moment. We added in Ikea BILLY bookcases and gave them a custom feel with molding and library lights. Our fireplace got a facelift with some paint and Carrara marble tile. We also added a mantel. This room also gets great light with a large picture window. It's full of our flea market treasures and exudes who we are and our style. 
 
Do you every wish you had more space?
 
I do wish we had a bigger backyard, but as far as the house goes not so much. We entertain here, have plenty of seating and have held large dinners. It works for us and no one has ever complained so I think we do a good job of making it all work.
 
Best piece of small space living advice?
 
Let your creativity flow and customize it to how you live. Our home changes as our kids grow. We did have our boys share a room and now they have separate rooms. I also had to add in a home office recently. I feel like our home is ever evolving. I think in a small space you have to be open to shared spaces and creative changes as your life takes shape
 
I couldn't agree more, Kristin.  Home is all about customizing it for the way you live, no matter what size it is.  Thank you so much for sharing your home with us today Kristin.  For even more of her beautiful home head over to  Bliss At Home.
 
We are headed out of town for Spring Break next week so Ill be away from the blog.  Ill be back next Friday with another inspiring feature, and in the meantime you can find me on IG (@ahomefullofcolor).  Its my jam! Have a wonderful weekend loves. Until next time.....
 
Xo-Shavonda
 
 

Apr 4, 2014

Small Home, Big Style: Hello Little Bungalow

Hi Everyone!

Happy Friday loves! Today I'm happy to be sharing the sweet little bungalow of my IG buddy, Jessica. The first time I saw a picture of her adorable house I was absolutely smitten. 


Picturesque, right!? I can only imagine how gorgeous it is in the Spring and Summer.  I was thrilled when Jessica agreed to let me share how she lives and loves in her small home.  Take it away Jessica:

Where/What city do you live in?
I live in downtown Weaverville, NC, nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, right outside of Asheville. Downtown Weaverville is like a quaint little Mayberry. Lots of older homes in a walkable community. We walk to coffee shops and restaurants. The neighborhood kids all play between our yards, and in the summer we rotate backyard movie nights. It's a true community in every sense of the word.
 
Who do you share your home with?
My husband, and our two young boys. Although in a small, tight knit community, where neighborhood children are always running through the house, and friends show up without any need of an invitation, it can feel like we share it with more than that. Which I love.
 
Do you own or rent?
We own our house. This April will be our third year here.
 
How many sq ft is your home?
Approximately 1650 sf. (650 of which is an upstairs attic conversion into a bathroom and play area)
 
What do you love most about small space living?
I like how it steers me towards living with less, which is something I really value. I can certainly get caught up in the desire for more from time to time, and living in a small space helps keep me focused on only bringing things into my home that serve a purpose, or have meaning to me.
 
What challenges have you faced?
 Sifting through clutter has always been a challenge. In a smaller home, I feel it gets out of hand a lot quicker, and I have yet to find a great system that works for our whole family. I also admittedly have an itty-bitty, tiny galley kitchen. Surprisingly, the space hasn't bothered me as much as the need to make it feel more open, and less cut off from the dining area. I think having a good, open flow in smaller homes really helps everything feel more cohesive and connected, so I'm itching to tear down that kitchen wall and make a more open space!
 
Any unique storage solutions?
Storage can be an issue in a smaller home. You have to be really intentional with what takes up space. Furniture that serves multiple purposes is key. We recently bought the IKEA Moheda sectional pull-out sofa for our upstairs den space. It serves as both a sofa and a guest bed, and has an amazing full-length storage area underneath. Likewise, our buffet holds everything from cloth napkins to art supplies. Storage ottomans are also perfect for hiding toys in our smaller living room.
 
What's your favorite room in your home?
Inside, I would say our living room. It feels cozy and inviting, and gets great afternoon light. I tend to think of our front porch as a room as well, since we spend so much time on it in warmer weather (and it's actually larger than most of our interior rooms anyway). It's the main place we congregate with friends, sip wine on summer evenings, and watch the kids run. It's a very social neighborhood, so choosing to be on your front porch and engage with everyone walking by is important to us.
 
Do you every wish you had more space?
From time to time, yes. I imagine as we raise two teenage boys in this house that we may need to think of some creative, small-scale addition options (they currently share a room). However, we really want to keep with the style and intention of the house. It's easy to get swept up in wanting more space, but ultimately, living small really suits the value's of my family.
 
Best piece of small space living advice?
Surround yourself with intentional things that serve a purpose. Since there is less room for "stuff", I think it's easier to create a room that you really enjoy the look of, with just a few key pieces. Make sure those pieces work for your family's lifestyle. And be creative; smaller homes can really showcase unique features and elements easily. Make your home yours!


I love that she optimizes on space by treating her porch as an extra room.  I imagine North Carolina summers must be perfect for porch culture.  Porches aren't very common here and its one of the major things I miss about the south, well that and sweet tea and shrimp n grits.

Jessica just launched her blog this week so make sure you pop in and say hi. To see more pictures of her bungalow head over to her IG (@hellolittlebungalow).  Thank you so much for hanging out with me today Jessica.

Have a happy weekends loves.  Until next time....

Xo-Shavonda



Apr 3, 2014

Sale Pending

Hi Everyone!!

Crickets.

That's pretty much what y'all have been hearing from the blog for the past few day. I know, I know. Bad blogger.  I'm sorry loves, but I have a really good reason for my absence. 


We've got a buyer!! Two and a half weeks, and multiple offers after listing we are officially in escrow with a close date of Apr 30! We are incredibly happy and a bit shocked at how fast it all went down. Now the hard part begins, at least in my opinion. We have to get through appraisals and inspections and all the other little things that make the real estate world go round.

Not gonna lie guys: I have fears. I think I have the typical worries most sellers have, though. What if something goes wrong at inspection? What if there's an issue during appraisal? What if the buyer changers their mind and walks? I know for the most part these fears are irrational, but things have been known to happen. 

With this being said: Ish just got real loves!  Its go time and by go I mean packing, finding a temporary place in the interim (most likely and apartment), finding a new home, going through the buying process, and moving again.  Oh and we will be taking a break for a week during spring break so that's even less time we have to get stuff done. Phew!

Our goals to downsize our home and upsize our lives are well under way and we could be happier.  I'm so glad you all are here to share in it with us. My motto of the year is in full effect: here's to new adventures!  I'll be sure to keep you all posted.

Tomorrow I've got a great Small Home Big Style feature to share.  Until then.....

Xo-Shavonda

Mar 28, 2014

Small Home Big Style: Cabin Fever

Hi Everyone!

Guess what day it is!!!? No its not Hump Day, but I was thinking...why isn't there a super awesome commercial for Friday?  I mean, isn't that the whole hype about Wednesday? That its the segway into the last leg of the week before we reach the weekend?  I say Friday gets its own talking animal commercial and I say the mascot be a giraffe. Sound good?!

Happy Friday loves. By now you all know of my torrid love affair with small space living.  I get out right giddy over well designed humble homes and cleverly executed storage solutions, but when is "small" a little too small? Is there such a thing?

For a while now I've been captivated by the concept of the "Tiny House Movement".  Its fascinating what can be done with next to no space at all. When we first started discussing the idea of downsizing I thought of all the tiny house dwellers and I just imagined,  My gah, a family of 5 living comfortably in 600 sqft? I don't know, guys...how could this possibly be? Somehow people are doing it everyday and its just plain incredible. There's one lovely lady and her family, in particular, who absolutely blow my mind. 

If you guys aren't aware of who Carmella is, she's nothing short of amazing.  I discovered her blog long ago and have been pretty much obsessed since.  Her family's story of how they came to live in their tiny cabin is inspiring and so is her beautiful home.  Guys, she has 3 boys and a dog, and they make life happen in a mere 665 sqft!! She's my hero.

 


 

 

 

Amazing. That is all.  I almost died when I learned her black counter tops is just chalkboard painted plywood sealed with a couple coats of wax.  Freakin genius!  They look like soapstone to me. And don't even get me started on the boys bedroom loft...again, genius.

How can you not imagine the possibilities with inspiration like this?  This just solidifies my belief of Less House, More Home.  Though I'm about 99.99% sure Naomi would never approve of a home quite this small, it's really great to see. 

So tell me...could you live in a tiny house?  Do you think its just plain crazy?  I think I might be somewhere in the middle. Until next time loves....

Xo-Shavonda

*All images via assortment blog.

Mar 26, 2014

Patio Style Challenge

Hi Everyone!

I'm a little behind  on this announcement guys, but I'm so so excited about it.  I'll be participating in this years Home Depot Style Challenge!

 
Eeek!  I mean...HELLO! Do you see that participant list!  So much talent, right.  I literally almost died when it was revealed and I saw that I was alongside so many people that I've been stalking, er, reading for years. Justina has been such a ridiculous source of inspiration for me.  Her Jungalow is pretty much a little slice of heaven. 

When I was invited to participate I was incredibly shocked and elated, and soon started putting together a design plan.  Y'all know I've got a few challenges I'm faced with on this one. First there's the space restraints.  My patio space is like postage stamp size, so I'll definitely be focusing the design around maximizing space and infusing as much style as possible into a limited footprint.  The other challenge I'm faced with is that I can't really make any permanent changes to the space, so I kinda put myself in the position of a renter and really challenged my self to find creative solutions to some issues non homeowners face. 

Last year's Patio Challenge spaces were so so good and they definitely set the bar high.






Guess I should get on that! I'm looking forward to sharing my space with guys.  Until next time....

Xo-Shavonda

Mar 24, 2014

A Colorful Spring

Hi Everyone!

Happy Monday loves!  I hope you all had an awesome weekend.  The weather was perfect here which made the first weekend of Spring wonderful.

I've got a bit of a treat for you guys today.  Myself and a slew of other awesome bloggers are sharing some fresh Spring decorating with you and there's a great giveaway to boot!


 
 
Recently I shared a few things I scored that triggered a Spring refresh around the house. There was no way I could stop at a pouf and a basket, ya'll!
 
When I think of Spring I immediately think of bright pops of color, (is anyone really surprised by this?...didn't think so!)  and I knew I wanted to incorporate some into our family room. One of my favorite sources for fresh, Spring décor is World Market. I love their selection of colorful accessories and I knew they would have just the thing to help give the space a bit of a face lift for the warmer season.
 
I found some great new pieces and headed to the coupons.com website to check out the available World Market coupon codes. They have literally thousands of coupon codes from tons of online retailers to choose from. I was able to redeem an awesome coupon which scored me 30% off my purchase! A new lampshadeterrarium, and a few pillows later and our room is Spring ready and infused with happy pops of color.
 


 
 
Of course I couldn't help but feed into my slight succulent obsession!  I swear I'll stop soon.....#maybe.
 
Have you started decorating for Spring yet? Coupons.com is offering up a chance to win a $150 gift card to either West Elm or Target to get your Spring decorating underway! That'll go a long way to help you bring some fresh Spring color into your home, my friends. 
 
Make sure you head over and check out how these other fab bloggers are adding Spring touches into their spaces.
 

 
Good Luck my loves, and Happy Spring!  Until next time....
 
 
Xo-Shavonda
 
 
a Rafflecopter giveaway

*This post has been in collaboration with coupons.com. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Mar 21, 2014

Small Home Big Style: Hand Grown in New Hampshire

Hi Everyone!

Happy Friday and Happy Spring my dears.  Its been busy around these parts this week, so I stepped away from the blog to get some things done.  On top of a few upcoming deadlines, this was parent-teacher conference week at my son's school so that means half days for my 6 year old.  While I love having my little guy around, that meant a change in my usual daily schedule.

So, I came across this great house tour on Country Living's website and just HAD to share it with you guys.  This humble home is a mere 1000 sq ft, but it is full of color, and life, and beautiful simplicity.  While the style isn't necessarily one I'm typically drawn to, I love that its filled with charm and the homeowners unique tastes. Set off the beaten path and surrounded by acres of beautiful landscape, the interior is highly influenced by the gardens grown by the homeowner. There's so much to love about this home, so lets take a look:




 


 
From the terracotta floors, to the golden toned trim, to the daybed nook, to the avocado hued cabinets, its all just so good.  I love that he added a copper plate to the back of the stove since its exposed.  Great idea, right!? I bet the patina is just gorgeous.  He even runs a small business selling fresh veggies and flowers from his gardens.  Just plop your cash in a coffee jar and grab your bag o' veggies or bouquet on your way out.:)



 I love it so much. Head over the CL website for the full story and to see more. 

Have a great weekend my friends.  I'll be busy working on a few DIY's for this years Home Depot  Style Challenge. I'm really excited about it and will be sharing more with you guys next week:)  Until next time loves.....

Xo-Shavonda

*All images via Country Living