lombardi house

It’s been a while since I have updated any progress from The Lombardi House. Well , lawdy lawd knows I love some “before and afters” and I have some MAJOR ones to show off. First I must say that this project was definitely a labor of love. When I first walked in, the house was in quite a mess. There was random furniture everywhere, yucky lighting, un flattering paint colors, and just overall the inside was a total disconnect from the outside. The building was so charming and the whole property had such potential, I just knew it was going to take a lot to get it right and return the house to its original lovely self! Trying to design a Vacation rental friendly space, that doubles as an event space on a tight budget, was no easy task, but one I gladly took it on.

Luckily in the end, I couldn’t be happier with the way it all turned out.

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The house is split into 4 apartment units in the main house and then an incredible event space/barn in the back! There is NOTHING like this anywhere in Hollywood and I am so proud and honored to have had the opportunity to be involved!

:: BEFORE ::

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(before images taken by Emily Knecht)

:: AFTER ::

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( Images taken by Zeke Ruelas )

Styling and Art Direction by … Cleo Murnane and Kati Forner, Project M Plus)

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(above 2 images taken by Amber Lewis )

:: BEFORE ::

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(before images taken by Emily Knecht)

:: AFTER ::

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( Images taken by Zeke Ruelas )

Styling and Art Direction by … Cleo Murnane and Kati Forner, Project M Plus)

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(above 3 images taken by Amber Lewis )

:: BEFORE ::

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(before images taken by Emily Knecht)

:: AFTER ::

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(above 4 images taken by Amber Lewis )

:: BEFORE ::

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(before images taken by Emily Knecht)

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(above 3 images taken by Amber Lewis )

:: BEFORE ::

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(before images taken by Emily Knecht)

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:: AFTER ::

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( Images taken by Zeke Ruelas )

Styling and Art Direction by … Cleo Murnane and Kati Forner, Project M Plus)

Pretty fab right??

The house is officially renting out the space for rentals and events! Go to the website HERE to get more information on the property!! Make sure to tell them I sent ya!!

Thank you Cleo and Project M Plus and Zeke Ruelas for your combined creative genius with these beautiful pictures and website.

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Project: Cupcakes {living room}

Time for another little “Before and After” of Project:Cupcakes!! This little portion of the remodel was super fun!!We got to build a little and paint a lot, and Emily And Geoffrey got down with some fun patterns and colors.

I would say this space really reflected both of their wants, needs, and personalities pretty equally. It ended up being a fave place in the house to chill out and have a cocktail…In fact, let it be known that I may have overstayed my welcome a few times!

Sorry not sorry!!!

anyways, lets review

:BEFORE:

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a little dark, a lot of gold, and definitely in need of a fresh prospective.  And now…

:AFTER:

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 (image credit (Emily Schuman of Cupcakes and Cashmere)

Ta-dahhh!

So, what did we do??

Let’s discuss

PAINT: The space before was pretty dark and even though the ceilings are nice and high and the light streams in through the big window, the dark painted gold ceilings really shrunk the space and sucked up any light that came in. We lightened it all up by painting Faded Gray by Dunn Edwards in Satin on the walls and painted the once gold ceiling a bright white instead!

REMOVED WINDOW DISPLAY CABINET: The room originally felt very long and tall . One of the things we knew immediately was that the display cabinet thingy had to go because it only drew attention to the difficult shaped room. It was not quite centered on the room, and so it just made everything feel a little awkward and would have been hard to figure out the right furniture flow.So we framed it up and filled it in with drywall. Once it got painted, it really helped us have a better wall to put the sofa and seating area on and made the room feel a little more symmetrical.

BUILD BUILT-IN BOOKCASES: Em and G have a great collection of books, and G has a killer record player that they both love to listen to. We decided to build a giant bookcase with cabinetry for storage below and a shelf to put the record player on top. It ended up being really beautiful, and although originally Emily and Geoffrey were worried it may take up to much room in the space, it didn’t at all! It actually weirdly made the room feel larger. They were so pleased with the end results and so was I. My new modo is, when in doubt, build it out…can I make that a thing??no, yes?HA!

FLOORS: The floors also played a big part in making the space feel much darker. We sanded the floors back to the original white oak wood and put on a light walnut stain. The stain kept the vibe of the original house, but added a little more of a clean modern spin.

CHANGE OUT THE FIREPLACE SCONCES: The sconces that were there, felt a little dated. We added 2 bright new brass fixtures that brought in the finish of the hardware on the built-ins and throughout the kitchen and house. Every fireplace needs a library arm sconce in my book!

PAINT THE FIREPLACE: The red brick fireplace was a little too traditional for the new updated vibe we were going for.  High gloss black was what we painted the brick and it sure did make a hell of a fancy impact!!

ADD SEAT CUSHIONS: We learned that those cute little built-in seats next to the fireplace were called an “inglenook”. Talk about charming! Em and G wanted to keep the charm, but funk it up a little, so we did just that. Recently the couple went to Mexico and Emily scored a gorgeous Ottomi embroidered blanket. She really loved the idea of bringing it into the living room, and so it ended up in the inglenook! I mean Ottomi cushions in the inglenook..obvs!

FURNITURE & DECOR: The room screamed that it needed a little leather (lethaa) and so we got the BEST SOFA from Restoration Hardware , added a splash of color with these cute chairs from Crate and Barrel , plonked a killer Beni Ourani style rug on the floor for cozy texture, found the perfect Coffee Table (similar HERE) , added some amazing artwork from über talent Gray Malin and topped it all off with some pillows from the Shoppe, These and These.

And thats all for now lovers. Hope you likey! Head over to Emily’s blog to hear a bit more about the process!

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Lets Paint!!

I love when a a brand does something really helpful for its consumers. For example when a car company lets you test drive a car before you buy,  or when See’s candy lets you come in and taste test every single piece of chocolate in the shop before you commit to your destined choice. Ya know what I am talking about?? It’s serious business choosing both cars and chocolates,  so being able to test them both is equally as crucial. Same goes for paint my friends. Paint for us “non-commmitals” is a tough one because just HOW do you know its right for you?? Well, Benjamin Moore just really upped their already impossibly high, designer street cred by introducing a new Kick Ass paint selection tool called Design by What Matters  . It answers just HOW you choose the right color for you. It’s all the fun questions of a personality quiz, but more design and color centric that at the end pairs you with a personalized perfect color match!!  Plus it allows you to virtually paint the walls in the space the color you are matched with, giving a visual for those of us that have a hard time imagining the real thing. It’s rad!!! Bridgid, my Design Assistant, just recently got a super cute little apartment that had mad potential but needed a bit of a refresh. We decided to give the Design by What Matters test a try and  painted her living room based on the color chosen in the test. This is no hocus pocus friends. It was pretty dead on when matching the color for Bridgid and the end results were just the right amount of change.

Here’s a look at the Quiz process as well as the before and afters of her space!!

Quiz Results copy The test recommended “classic gray, 1548″ in an eggshell sheen for her living room. At first I was secretly a little nervous thinking that Bridgid might have a wild side I didn’t know about, and her test results may have come back with “Fire Engine Red” or ” Electric Day-glo Green”. All fine colors for some….but ya know, kinda hard to design around. Especially since, this is indeed a rental, so mellow colors were the preferred choice. The test came back in our favor and so we gave it  go. Once we slapped a little “Classic Gray”  on the walls, we noticed although not much of the dramatic change some may have expected, it gave us the perfect shade based on the answers to the quiz.  We got rid of the creamy , dingy, beige and pumped up the jam with a very light but super neutral color.

 Here’s a look at the befores..

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andddddd thennnnnn the afters:

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It’s the palest of grays, but it’s crisp and bright and made the space feel just a shade happier. Also the gray was a great contrast between the white architectural details already in the room, such as the ceiling beams and the built-in bookshelves.  Not a bad result for a fun little quiz!

Thanks to Benjamin Moore Paint for collaborating with us and sponsoring this post.

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Nona’s cottage outdoor overhaul!

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For the past two months we have been spending the majority of our days off, weekends, and nights building and revamping the yard of my Mom’s new little house. We partnered with the Father of All home improvement stores Lowe’s to take this drab and unused space and make it usable and cute as can be. Because the space was for my Mom, I sat down with her and got some inspiration for what she wanted the end result to look like. The house is a tiny little thing, so she wanted it to feel cozy, and warm and like a little cottage. She wanted an herb garden where she could plant some herbs and maybe veggies, and she really wanted a place where me and my siblings and her grandkids could come to eat, chill out, and feel like they were at home.

Here are some of the pics my Mom loved.

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The vibe is pretty monochromatic, with pops of color on the landscaping and extremely quaint. Now here is some before shots of the nightmare we had to work with.

Brace yourself for some seriously CRAPPY “before’s”

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sooooo. yep, that’s a whole lotta “Fug” in 5 pictures. As you can see, there was really a lot more of the low down and dirty work that needed to be done. Moving brick, ripping out stuff, re-routing pipes, and building building building. Or as I liked to say “less pretty more gritty”. We turned to the lovely folks at Lowe’s for all of the hard questions that needed answers and I can’t say enough about how helpful they were.

Anyways, here is where we ended up.

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Literally I could have posted 200 more pictures, but I’ll spare showing you my sweaty self 10 feet up on a ladder painting trim.

Here was the process and a bit of what we did:

 We began by ripping out the old landscaping (or lack thereof) including the old bamboo fence that was tired and worn. We replaced it with a cedar dog eared fence and painted it with Valspar “White” paint. I had to enlist some muscle during this part because digging 20 post holes and setting them with Quikrete was no easy feat.

 We built 2 gates. 1 to the side yard to allow for easy access and the second gate at the back to hide the ugly part of the house, as well as a place to hide tools and a small storage shed. My mom really wanted an herb garden so we took the pieces from the busted up concrete and used it to wall off the herb garden. It was a cute little way to recycle the concrete pieces that would have just gone in the trash otherwise. Saving money and recycling FOR THE WIN!

The fence was a whole lotta white without any greenery or pretty plants to break it up. So we kept it simple and made a small planter bed and filled in with Iceberg Roses, and some Purple Fountain Grass, then finished it with some dark brown mulch nuggets. OH and did I mention we ordered 8 tons of pea gravel?? Well we did, and I am pretty sure the Duck pulled a hammy moving it wheel barrow load by wheel barrow load to the back yard. Pshhht, whatever I gave birth!!

The house got a quick lick of paint and I am pretty stoked with the color. We used Valspar’s “Subtle Taupe” and painted the trim out in Valspar “White” . The porch got Valspar “Mountain Smoke” and its my new FAVE porch color. The windows on the house are sad, so we added black pre-finished shutters to the windows to finish the facade and give it a little more interest and dimension, plus I love that the black grounded the otherwise really light exterior.

On the side of the house, we wanted to open up the space to make it feel larger and did so by demo-ing the back railing and adding a set of stairs down to the outdoor sitting area. We also added a purple bougainvillea for a pop of color against the light house. We couldn’t find a pot we were jiving on and in our budget, so we settled on making a box with cedar fence posts (same as fence) that we planted in a cedar planter that we painted to match the trim and fencing. The lighting before was horrendous  so we swapped them out for this cute barn light. We shushed up the space with cute outdoor decor by Lowe’s allen + roth line: gray and white throw pillows, created a sitting area using simple adirondack chairs, paired my mom’s existing dining table with some cute teak folding chairs, and added a few lanterns and a succulent arrangement.

The result was a much needed improvement that all of our family can now enjoy together!

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I have to take a second and give thanks. Let’s first start by pointing out the obvious. Living in SoCal can be about as hot as the surface of the sun in the summer. It was probably the worst time to take on a remodel of an outside project being as that most (read all) days would be spent outside in the 95 degree weather. My Mom is basically the toughest lady I know, and she would start the day around 7:30am and bust her hump till 7:30pm to get this done and I can’t thank her enough. I also had the muscle of my “Papa” (Grandpa.. Yeah he’s 82 and is a flipping champion) and the Duck, as well as my Grandma, Chris, Uncle Kevin, Auntie, and G. It was a family affair and the experience was rad. I also wanted to thank Lowe’s Home Improvement for sponsoring this project and post.

**This post was written in sponsorship with Lowe’s**

Lowe's Logo

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Big Girl Decisions

Hi there friends! Happy Monday. Hope you guys had a fabulous weekend and if you are a Mama, have a mama, want to be a mama, or are a mama to your fur babies, then HAPPY BELATED MOMS DAY!!

I have 7 days left until we go to Mexico!!!!!!!!!!!!

I literally CANNOT wait but I am also petrified that I will be so stressed out that I won’t be able to let it all go and have a good ole time. As you saw the other day, I have a ton of projects that I will be bailing out on for 7 days and although I know all of my clients want me to have a good time and relax…..I am pretty positive that it will take great restraint to not check in everyday and worry about the “what if’s” of it all. What if what if what if??

Do you all ever get like that? Get crazy on all the “what if’s” of life?  I sure as shit do! When do these go away? Do they ever go away? Do they get worse with age??  Lets just talk about that for a minute..

Anyways, Besides my Vacay and pending close of my office for a week  some other big stuff has been going on. I have taken on 2 full-time employees!! This is the most amazing thing in the world!!  I feel so very lucky to be working with such talented and sweet girls. I truly feel like they are my kids and can’t wait to finally have the opportunity to really efficiently grow my business. Not gonna lie,  Its super scary that I will be responsible for now 3 Salaries (including my own), but I am very excited and proud that I made a big girl decision and am determined to become the business I know we can be!

Soon, I will formally introduce these two babes to you all, and you will for sure see them around here on the bloggy much more. Part of the new job description includes helping me with my blog content as well as focus on the growth of Amber Interiors INC. I realize fully that I cannot do it all on my own, and If I have more help with all aspects of my biz, I can focus on the bigger picture, instead of stressing the small stuff.

Wanna know what else is awesome??? I get to re-design my office to fit another desk! Sooooo I have been pulling some maje office inspo and here is what I have going on so far.

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I also need ways to infuse light into the space. We have AWFUL lighting, and the office gets no natural light…Its a cave.

so, I think I want to layer a bunch of Beni Ourain rugs down and use white desks etc to add a false send of brightness!!!

Stay tuned for updates…and maybe a mood board

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: Desk Diaries : 5/6/14 :

We are in full design mode over here on quite a few ridiculously awesome projects. I say design mode because a little known fact is that this job of interior design, is 1 part creative and designing and 10 trillion parts billing, paperwork, project management, phone calls, scheduling, being a stressed out basket case, and just general boringness. It’s only the beginning of a project and the installation of said project that I look forward to, if I am keeping it real. The rest of it I just kind of handle because I love my job, but I secretly wanna keep my new project list really unmanageably full so that I can always just be in design mode and delegate the rest of the boring part. This is clearly never going to happen, but ya know…maybe if I say it out loud and secret that shit, miracles will occur!

Anyways, Here are some snippets of whats going on during design mode as we start a bunch of new projects, and almost wrap up some older ones!

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Client : SANTA MONICA CANYON :

the scope: we are furnishing the entire house, remodeling the master suite and bathroom, making a gorgeous home office library, vaulting a nursery ceiling and adding a loft.

vibe: neutral tones, vintage furniture, amazing finishes and tiles, eclectic furniture, and kick ass rugs/textiles.

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: Client : SIERRA BONITA :

The scope: We are furnishing and shushing the entire house, and building some built-ins.

The vibe: neutral, with lots of vintage furniture, amazing rugs, custom upholstery and an army green stonewashed canvas sofa thats to die for!

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: client : YOU’LL NEVER SEE THE END RESULT :

So the saddest thing to ever happen is when a client won’t let you show off her killer house!!! Its like winning the lottery and not telling anyone, or having your best friend be Beyonce and you can’t say a word. It’s pure torture but I respect my lovely clients wishes and will not show any before or afters of her actual home, but I will fill you in on the design ideas and process. This house is one of the RADDEST houses I have seen with my own 2 eyes and hopefully you can use your imagination.  (BTW I am determined to have her let me break the rules a little, so I’ll keep you posted on that..wink wink)

The scope: Furnish entire house including outdoor

The vibe: hollywood glam, mid-century, eclectic….trust me, it can all happen in the same house.

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also because its funny…our client lives in a far away land and flies us to and from her place. The flight is easy, but it’s what is waiting for us at the other end that really is worth all the travel..  This car is how we get from point A to point B, and we laugh/ feel like general 1994 ballers. Who would have thought that my job would land me traveling  through countryside in a white stretch limo with a top hat wearing female chauffeur named Irene. At least I can check this off the bucket list.

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: client : LOMBARDI HOUSE 

we are coming to the grand finale of this little/huge project!! We are now on the final lap, which is completing the “Barn”. It’s a fact that this will be the prettiest and sweetest event space I have ever seen.  Who wouldn’t want to get married in an all white barn in the middle of Historic Hollywood??

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: client : NONA COTTAGE :

The scope: Update my Mom’s backyard. I am working with Lowe’s Home Improvement on this one and its gonna be rad!

The Vibe: Build a giant fence, add a pea gravel BBQ and entertaining area, and build a wrap around deck.

Inspiration:

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and here are the “before’s”

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we are also signing on to work on two other gorgeous homes this week, joined up with a builder to help him speck out the homes he flips AND i have some big news to share. If you follow me on Instagram, you may have already kinda gathered what my big news is… so stay tuned for those updates as well!!

Hope you enjoyed your little peek behind the scenes at AID.

Happy Hump Day Lovers!

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: Before & After : Guest Bathroom Remodel

Remember a looooong while back when I talked about THIS little bathroom remodel we were working on?? Well we have officially wrapped it up!  It took a damn century, but it’s finally ready for its tiny debut. Let’s review…

The “before” bathroom was dull and lifeless. The vanity was just plain 80′s oak and the size was all wrong. The giant mirror looked a little dated, and the tiles and finishes were just a big bag of lame-balls..  My clients had fallen in love with these tiles, and knew immediately they wanted to use them in their guest bathroom.  I wanted a clean all white space but with all the pow to be in the tiles without it feeling overwhelming.  At first I was afraid that if I kept it flat white walls and kept a giant fugly mirror, we wouldn’t be gaining much, so I used tongue and groove wall panelling to give it a little more depth and used a medicine cabinet as the only mirror to keep the focus on the panelling, tiles, and the sconces etc…  If you don’t remember, here is the

:BEFORE:

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:NOW THE AFTER:

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Ahh much better and brighter, and makes the space feel 9 thousand times larger.

Hope you’re diggin it!!

 

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+ 1 room 3 looks +

So, thinking back to when I first started my blog almost 4 years ago, I remembered one of my first blog posts was

“1 room 3 looks”.

It was a cute idea then, so I figured why not give it another try now!

I screwed around with G’s room this time..and got real fancy and created a Gif to show the process…

(thats right I is so fancy and growns up, that I create gif’s now)

Here is Look 1:

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and

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here is the all mighty gif.

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Look 2

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and

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now…the fancy pants gif

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and finally Look 3

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and the final ggggiiiiffff

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ok so I need to work on my gif skills a little…..dont judge..

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All the pillows are from the Shoppe

All the rugs are from the Shoppe

All Blankets from Shoppe

Woven Stools: Here

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:: Before and After :: Master Bedroom

If you are not new around here, then you know we are currently renting our home. Its been difficult and weird to say the least, and most days I ask myself if I will make it through the whole lease without loosing it and buying a motor home and traveling from city to city! I house hunt every single day, and I dream about what our next home will be like, ALL THE TIME! Knowing that I am stuck in this lease for another year, I am slowly just trying to embrace it, live with it, and stop my moaning!!!!! I finally got around to trying to make our bedroom pretty. Of course I changed my mind like 9,000 times but kept going back to my obsession with what artist Sally England created for the Ace Hotel in Portland.  So…. I decided that this was my look and I was gonna make it happen.

BEFORE 

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The carpet alone is enough to make you want to jump off of a bridge!

and, here is what it looks like now..

AFTER

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you likey?

The headboard is actually a curtain that I bought from urban outfitters. I just tacked it up on the wall and called it a day. The paint color is called “Peppercorn”  from Sherwin Williams. It’s the perfect dark slate gray. The duvet cover is from West Elm and all the indigo pillows are from Shoppe. The side tables are vintage but you can score a similar style here, table lamps are old ones from anthropologie (but West elm sells similar here) and the rug is a hoarded vintage treasure that I will never let go of…ever!

I am pretty happy with the way it’s looking. I still have to style my dresser, add some art, and I have a killer vintage leather chair that needs to live in this room as well. Ill keep you up to date on the progress, but so far so good.

Happy Monday loverz!

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Project: Cupcakes { powder bath }

 OH MY GAWWWWWD!!!

Just like with Project Cupcakes Kitchen, I have had to wait an eternity to show you the most beauteous of beautiful powder baths you ever did see.  We are talkin’ Dalai Lama level patience to not show everyone and anyone pictures of this beautiful little jewel box of a bathroom. I am so glad the time has finally come for the big reveal, and lets just say this little powder bath is maybe (positively ) the best little powder bath I ever did see.

( in my humble opinion )

check it….

PowderRoomUpdatebefore

PowderRoomAfter2 PowderRoomAfter3 PowderRoomCloseup

All images shot by Emily Schuman of Cupcakes and Cashmere

Talk about a Before and After!

Here is a short and sweet description of what we did and why….

WALLPAPER: Em and G really wanted to make a statement in this perfect little powder bath. We searched for wallpapers that would be as impactful as possible and not something we may have already seen before. Because Pinterest is a magical unicorn, and has the power to unlock even the most buried of treasures, we were able to stumble onto this wallpaper…and the rest was history. Is it possible to even say that the pictures don’t do it justice??  In the flesh it looks like an oil painting… its “Bonkers Good” for lack of a better phrase.

VANITY & FAUCET: Well you saw the kitchen and its dose of purty brass hardware!  Since we were so stoked with how that turned out and because this little powder bath happens to be right off the kitchen, we decided to stick with the brass finishes in this room as well!!!  We wanted to stick to a budget and finding antique brass, marble top vanities for our price point was literally impossible.  We decided to go the plating route again for the vanity legs and faucet. We headed to Restoration Hardware and purchased the “Gramercy” vanity and the “Sutton” faucet since we loved the shape. We took it to our local plating company and specified the finish to be the same as what we used in the kitchen. The end result was just fabulous. I think doing any other metal other than brass on this dark and saturated paper would have been doing it a disservice.

LIGHTING: School House Electric is a “go-to” lighting source for me. I have used them numerous times in the past, including my own bathroom remodel.  I wanted the lighting to feel a little traditional, but a little retro as well…so we chose the “Princeton” (traditional) and the “Isaac” (retro). The combination makes me happy!

I am pretty pumped as you can see and am so pleased with the result. It’s just so fancy!!!

more pics on Cupcakes and Cashmere blog

:SOURCE LIST:

Wallpaper: Ellie Cashman “Dark Floral” HERE

Mirror: CB2 “Tork” mirror HERE 

Lighting: Schoolhouse Electric HERE + HERE

Customized Restoration Hardware “Gramercy”  Vanity with dipped brass legs

Faucet: Restoration Hardware’s “Sutton” Collection

Vase: Johnathan Adler HERE

Toilet Paper Holder: House of Antique Hardware HERE

 

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