Multifunctional Storage Ideas

We have an open floor plan in our home. I love it, but we don't have much storage as a result. One thing that we desperately want is storage for our kids' toys. They are in an old Ikea unit right now, but you can see the toys and the daily mess from every angle of our first floor. So, we've been planning to build some simple storage and functional seating with some good 'ole inspiration from Pinterest. 

1 // I love this example from Domino Magazine of storage being functional and beautiful at the same time. The lucite handles are particularly enticing to me, as well as the indigo pillows. 

2// This built-in storage bench showcases exactly what we hope to do with our toys. The cut-out handles are a modern solution to pulls and could possibly bring the cost down.

3// This traditional example of a storage bench intrigues me because they have painted theirs with a pop of color. Since all of our walls are white this might be something to consider.

4// Such a sweet nook for a kid's room, and the leather handles on these storage bins are on point. A casual DIY idea that would fit well in our home. (source unknown).

Stay tuned to see what we do next, and if you have anymore storage solution ideas I would love to hear them.

GUEST ROOM MAKEOVER & CONTEST

One of the best things about our new home is that it has plenty of space to host friends and family. I've always dreamed of creating a hotel-worthy guest room that made our guests feel welcome and rested. Living Spaces helped make my dream a reality with some of the most beautiful and affordable furniture around, and I'm excited to share it with you (P.S. you can win this whole space).

We all know that pineapples are a pin-worthy subject lately, but did you know that the pineapple is a symbol of hospitality that dates back to Christopher Columbus (see more here)? Well, as a woman that loves a good dark wall and one that loves pineapples, when I saw this Hygge & West ebony pineapple wallpaper I knew that this was perfect for my guest room and source of inspiration for the rest of the room.

The color palette was set by this wallpaper, but to avoid it feeling too matchy, matchy I wanted to introduce some natural textures, grays and other patterns. I selected a full sized, gray upholstered bed. It was only $370, and looks like it costs over one thousand. A crisp white duvet is always something you find in hotels these days, but these black and white accent pillows accompanied by a soft black throw made the bed feel even more luxurious.

I then picked an area rug to anchor the space, and I fell in love with this jute rug with black lines. Other elements that added this natural quality were an outdoor rope stool doubled as a side table and a woven basket used as a planter.

When I think about the different elements that make up a comfortable hotel room a cozy reading chair always comes to mind. This black, brass studded, leather chair is so classic in design and the perfect reading chair for my guests. I added a brass reading lamp next to it that could also be turned if someone decided to read in bed. Of course, being able to put your feet up and relax is important and this printed ottoman called my name.

The room is 11 ft wide and 8 ft deep, so I didn't have too much room for side tables. Instead, I opted for the small rope stool on one side and a brass and marble bookshelf for the other. I decorated the shelves with elements that you would often find in a hotel room such as a clock, books, bottled water, wash cloths and flowers (or in this case palm leaves to continue the tropical flair). You'll also always want a mirror for your guests to check their hair and makeup without having to go down the hall to the bathroom. I love this 44 inch gray mirror. It has an island feel to it and the color softens the room.

Last, but not least, I made sure there was a tray of welcome gifts and small design accents to make the space feel homey. A pitcher, a notebook for messages, a good smelling candle, wrapped soaps to enjoy, lavender body lotion and even brass keys to make it really feel like a hotel. I even had my friend Katie Sterbenz design a sign for the room showing wear to go to enter the oasis. On the right, the guest room, and on the left, Elle's room.

I hope you love the room as much as I do. I'm considering inviting all tired moms who need some sleep to come and use it. haha! But seriously, if you love this room you can WIN it. Living Spaces is doing a Pinterest contest where you can win a $2,500 gift card to shop this room or buy other elements that make up your dream space. Click here to enter. Be sure to check out their 4th of July sale to find amazing deals too!

To shop the space be sure to visit my Pinterest board with all of the items. 

Photos by Rennai Hoefer

BACKYARD MAKEOVER WITH HAYNEEDLE

Even though it's a record 120 degrees in Phoenix, we still enjoy being outside and living in our pool all summer. This is the first summer in our new suburban home, and it's the first time we have been ready to invest in some outdoor furniture. I was delighted to get to partner with Hayneedle to create a modern, comfortable outdoor living space. They offer all different design styles at affordable prices. Do you want to see how it turned out?

Because our suburban home has a traditional style of architecture, I wanted to honor that and insert some modern, clean lines that are true to my style. I think it's important to try and balance the integrity of the exterior space because all modern would have stuck out like a sore thumb.

The color palette was kept simple with off-white, wood and pops of blue thrown in. I picked blue because of the bright blue skies and blue water from the pool. 

On our furniture wish-list was a big dinner table that could seat our whole family, as well as different areas we could lounge outside and watch the kids swim and play. Hayneedle offered so many modern conversation sets. It was really easy to find what we wanted.

Coley and Lindsey, stylists and founders of Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market, helped me put the final touches on the makeover project. You can see more of the design process and reveal photos on Hayneedle's blog. Click here to check it out. Shop the entire space here.

Also, be sure to check out Coley's boho outdoor spot and Lindsey's industrial modern makeover with Hayneedle on their blog. Here's a little peek below.

Lindsey's backyard is amazing! This hammock looks so dreamy!

Lindsey's backyard is amazing! This hammock looks so dreamy!

Coley's backyard is a boho oasis. I love how she combines old vintage pieces with new furniture.

Coley's backyard is a boho oasis. I love how she combines old vintage pieces with new furniture.

Photos by Rennai Hoefer

5 TIPS FOR STYLING A COZY HOUSE FOR THE HOLIDAYS

This post is sponsored by Coca Cola.

I wish that this was my real house, but the same rules and elements of creating a warm and inviting space shown here apply to mine. What we have here is a gorgeous exposed Rafter House styled by Coley and Lindsey of Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market. The house was our set for a holiday movie night with Coca-Cola licensed merchandise. Coley and Lindsey did an amazing job bringing my vision to life.

Want to make your home feel just as cozy as this? See below for five must-haves to create your holiday gathering space:

PLENTY OF THROWS - Soft fuzzy textures automatically bring a the level of cozy up 100%. Try layering a mixture of faux fur and knit throws. You can drape them across your sofa or fold them up in a basket by the fireplace. NOTE: Try not to make the blankets look too perfect. You want to make a lived-in feeling, so let the ends of the blankets drape over the basket and let wrinkles lay where they may.

KNIT PILLOWS - Though my husband doesn't always love a ton of throw pillows on a couch they sure do make a space more full and inviting. You can also lay some on the floor by the fireplace to create an invitation to come, sit and stay awhile too. You can find this Vintage Coca-Cola Graphic pillow here.

CANDLES - There's nothing like the warmth of candlelight. Placing candles throughout your home is always a great way to make someone feel at home.

BRING THE OUTDOORS IN - Fresh pine, evergreen and burning firewood -those are the smells of winter. Bring those comforting scents indoors by placing fresh evergreen and pine in vases. 

STICK WITH WARM, NEUTRAL COLORS - A lot of color can be fun, but not all colors make you feel relaxed. In fact, color theory suggests that red, yellow and orange tones can make people feel more energetic. Of course, around the holidays we want to have some red in the mix, so try to use it as an accent to brown, ivory and gray.

Photos by Melissa Jill, Art Direction AVE Styles; Prop styling by Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market; House courtesy of Rafter House; Hand-written art by Katie Sterbenz.