{my home style} Tips for Mixing Modern Decor & Life with Kids

Thursday, May 18, 2017

One of the design challenges many people face is finding a good balance between their style and that of their spouse. But somehow I managed to get lucky because Scott and I have very similar taste and typically see eye to eye when it comes to decorating our house. 

When my friend Stephanie, of Casa Watkins, recently invited me to participate in a blog hope all about mixing and matching different decorating styles, I initially declined because I feel like our style is pretty cohesive - modern, graphic, and colorful. 

But when I stopped to reflect more on how we decorate, I realized that over the past five years we've actually done quite a bit of mixing and matching in order to coordinate our modern style with the reality of life with kids!

{outdoor style} Planning a Treetop Retreat & Outdoor Movie Theater

Monday, May 15, 2017

This post is sponsored by Cost Plus World Market, which you know is one of my favorite places to shop! Thank you for supporting the brands that make this blog possible! As always, all ideas and opinions are my own. This post also contains affiliate links.

Over the past few years we've made a lot of changes to our backyard and it's become a really great space for entertaining and play... but we have another outdoor space that we've been pretty much ignoring. Until now, that is! I've been scheming up some plans for the space and I want to show you what I'm thinking and get your opinions!

Our house is built on three levels, with just our master bedroom/bathroom on the top floor. Off of the bedroom is a pretty good sized deck with treetop views. Before we had kids we used the space on occasion, but for the past five years, we've really barely stepped foot out there. Now that I think about it, I'm not even sure I've ever shared a photo of the deck on the blog. 

{one room challenge} Shared Boys' Bedroom Reveal

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

We're all jumping for joy over here because the boys' new room is finally finished! It's bright and fun and a little wild, just like Beckett and Cooper, and I am so excited to show it to you!

This is One Room Challenge number seven in the books. It's always a rush to the finish line, but once the room is done, it's so much fun to take a step back and see what we've created through the lens of the camera. The boys were very active participants in designing this shared bedroom over the past six weeks, and it makes me so happy to see how much pride they take in their new space!

{one room challenge} Week 5: We've Got Magic to Do

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

It's Week 5 of the One Room Challenge, which means we have just one week left to finish the boys' shared bedroom. Less than that really, because I need time to photograph it in order to share it with you on reveal day next Thursday. You'd think that by now, I'd have this six week makeover thing down to a science... that I'd be planning and allocating my time so well that I could maybe finish a day or two early rather than working right down to the wire... but no. It never seems to work out that way, and this will be another race to the finish.

{outdoor style} 6 Favorite Lawn Games for Young Kids

Spring can be pretty fickle in Denver... it swings between 70s and snow, with rain and hail mixed in between. As a result, we often prograsstinate on getting the yard ready for the season. But this spring, I've partnered with Roundup® For Lawns, and I'm telling the dandelions to "weed 'em and reap." As my boys are getting older, they want to spend more and more time outside, and they are starting to really enjoy playing lawn games. Their enthusiasm has me mowtivated to get the lawn looking good so that we can enjoy it every chance we get.{Ok, now that I have your attention, I'll stop with the bad puns already!}. 

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{diy with style} How to Create a Custom Door Label with Cricut

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

A year after completing the makeover of our master bathroom, the barn door on our closet remains one of my favorite details of the space! Based on your comments, it seems to be one of your favorite features as well. Over time, a lot of you have asked me how we added the "Dressing Room" label to the barn door, so today I wanted to share the easy DIY tutorial.

{one room challenge} Week 4: Getting Down to Business in the Boys' Room

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

It's week 4 of the One Room Challenge and I finally have some real progress to report! After waiting and waiting for stuff to arrive, we finally started moving stuff out of the nursery this week to make room for the new bunk beds. And just like that we've officially entered the "it get's worse before it get's better" phase of the ORC.

{diy with style} The Easiest Way to Deep Clean a BBQ

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Scrub Daddy. All opinions are 100% mine.

Raise your hand if you're ready for summer grilling season. Me too!  I'm so eager to get our patio ready for family dinners and entertaining friends. We've uncovered the patio furniture, we'll plant flowers and tall grasses in our pots and planter bench soon, and the BBQ grill needed a thorough cleaning. This last one is a task I usually dread, but this year I found an easier method using America’s Favorite Sponge!

{diy with style} 10 Beautiful Painted Furniture Makeovers

Whether your making over an entire room or a piece of furniture, paint is one of the easiest and most cost effective ways to create a fresh new look! This month, the All Things Creative team has rounded up some of our very favorite furniture makeovers.

{decorating with style} A Sophisticated Superhero Bathroom Makeover

Monday, April 24, 2017

No one has ever accused me of being afraid of color! In the nine years that we've lived in our current home, I've painted nearly every color you can think of on our walls. Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, teal, gray... our house has seen it all. But there is one bold statement that I've always wanted to make that intimated even me. BLACK! Sure we have a skinny black chalkboard wall in our kitchen, but I'm talking a whole black room... all four walls. BOLD! 

Well, guess what? I finally went for it and I love it SO MUCH! I can't wait to show you all of the details! Thanks to my sponsor, Lowe's for helping to make this project a reality!

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You've probably heard me describe our style many times as Modern Graphic Family, and today I'm so excited to show you a recent weekend makeover that is a perfect example of we strike a balance between bold, stylish decor and life with kids. This "before" bathroom was perfectly fine, but it definitely didn't say "little boys live here."

Since this bathroom is attached to Cooper's bedroom {which the boys will soon be sharing}, I've been wanting to give it a fresh new look that better reflects the kids. But I was a bit stumped because this bathroom also has a second door that opens into the upstairs hallway, and it's positioned such that you look directly in at the toilet when you reach the top of the second floor stairs.

As a result, I really wanted to create an updated look for this bathroom that the boys wouldn't outgrow too quickly, and one that would also blend in with the rest of the house. That sounds like a tall order, but it turns out it was actually pretty easy to achieve.

I came up with an idea to create a sophisticated superhero themed bathroom. I envisioned black, white, silver and gold, rather than the standard primary colors that often come to mind for kids' spaces. As the plan started to come together, I hit up my local Lowe's in search of the perfect shade of black paint.

It's so nice to be able to look at several different brands of paint all in one store, and I wound up bringing home swatches from Sherwin Williams, Valspar, and Olympic. Sherwin Williams had the widest variety of black options, and while they may all look alike, in various lights they actually look quite different!

Choosing Black Paint

It can feel overwhelming trying to pick just the right color of paint. I always analyze the undertones and wonder how it will look once it's actually up on all of the walls. Thanks goodness for the Lowe's Love Your Paint Guarantee, which takes the stress out of picking a paint color! I wound up choosing Sherwin Williams Tricorn Black, and it's a perfect, true black. But if it had turned out not to be quite right, I could have simply returned the unused portion of the can to Lowe's within 30 days and they would have replaced it with a new color or refunded my money.

I originally planned to just paint the bathroom and add some new art, but I decided that if I was ever 
going to update the mirror and light, now was the time. I knew that any framed mirror I picked would end up being a bit smaller than the existing mirror, so it was much easier to remove the mirror now, sand the adhesive off of the wall, and paint the entire area behind where the new mirror would hang.

Once we had a totally blank palette, I was ready to start painting. I gathered up all of the paint supplies that I picked up at Lowe's, including a small 4-inch roller {perfect for the tight spaces in the small bathroom}, a disposable paint tray sized just right for the roller, an edging tool, and a paint can lid for pouring and storing.

I always have such a hard time pouring paint from the can into the roller tray without dripping everywhere. It's a job I always delegate to my husband because he has far superior pouring skills. I had never tried a Shur-Line paint can lid before, but it caught my eye when I was browsing the wide selection of painting supplies at Lowe's, and now it's my new favorite thing! You just snap it on to the top of the paint can and use the narrow spout to pour the paint. Then when you're done pouring, the spout folds down for storage. No more hammering a paint covered lid back in place and searching for a paint can key to open it again!

Favorite Painting Supplies

Before I got started, I did have a few concerns about whether painting the walls black would really be a big enough change from our existing gray bathroom walls. But as soon as I rolled those first strokes onto the wall, I could see that it was definitely going to be the dramatic difference I was hoping for!

This bathroom is quite small, with lots of very narrow sections of wall between door frames, above the tile, and below the counter. To make easy work of these compact spaces, I used the Shur-Line edging tool that allows you to get a nice crisp paint line around all of the edges. You'll notice that I did still use painter's tape as well. I suspected that it would be hard touch up the white trim paint over the black, so I wanted to be extra cautious.

Paint edger tool

I used Sherwin Williams Infinity paint from Lowe's, which is supposed to give good one coat coverage. I had to touch up just a few thin spots here and there, but there was no need for a full second coat, which was perfect for the one-weekend timeline that we allocated to this makeover!

Once the paint was dry, we removed the tape and started putting the bathroom back together. A few hours later, I was amazed at the transformation! 

All of the white tile and trim in the bathroom creates a great balance to the pure black walls. I just love the crispness of the contrast.

Sophisticated superhero bathroom with black walls

The boys love superheroes, so I created this super simple framed art to hang above the tub. It was a quick and easy DIY project, but I think that these streamlined gold and silver framed logos will stand the test of time. By making them a bit a more "sophisticated," I'm hopeful that the boys won't feel they've outgrown the look of this bathroom for a very long time.

On the tray on the back of the toilet, I added a framed photo of the boys in their Batman and Spiderman costumes from this past Halloween, because it really just doesn't get any cuter than that!

The counter top in this bathroom is quite narrow, so a standard-sized framed mirror was too wide. Fortunately, we were able to find a smaller-scale white frame mirror in the decorative mirror section at Lowe's and it fits the space perfectly. We also swapped out the aged-bronze and amber glass light fixture for a more modern pewter and clear glass version from the Lowe's lighting department. The new light has three bulbs instead of two, which provides just the right amount of added light in the room to counteract the darker walls.

Sophisticated Superhero Bathroom with Black Walls

We also swapped out the old faucet for a newer, more modern style that I found at Lowe's as well. I much prefer the straighter lines of this faucet over our old style, and I hope to eventually change out the faucets in all of the other bathrooms to match this one.

Sophisticated Superhero Bathroom with Black Walls

Did you notice the glasses on the counter? When my husband was the age that our boys are now, Superman was his favorite and he had would insist that he was Clark Kent {while donning the signature glasses}. Since our boys love playing dress up, we thought they now needed their own pair of Clark Kent glasses!

Beckett's favorite superhero is Batman, and Cooper's is Spiderman... so I couldn't believe my luck when I found these metal letters with their favorites on their initials!

Sophisticated Superhero Bathroom with Black Walls

The boys LOVE their new superhero bathroom, and I love how it now coordinates with the second floor hallway. If you're going to look right into a bathroom every time you come up the stairs, it might as well look coordinated, right?!

How to create a kids' bathroom that blends with the style of your home

The new black and white color scheme in the bathroom ties together perfectly with the black and white artwork in the hall...

How to Create a Kids' Bathroom that Blends with the Style of Your Home

And I just love the way it looks next to the black and white striped hall cabinet that we use as extra storage for bathroom towels and other items that don't fit in the small cabinet under the sink.

How to create a kids' bathroom that blends with the style of your home

I'm so glad that I went for it with the black paint in this small bathroom! I couldn't be happier with how it turned out! 

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Lowe’s, but as always, all opinions are my own.