Phuong’s Second Design Dilemma


We couldn’t have been more excited when Phuong and her husband Jeff came back for another mood board after we made over their bedroom (see those photos here). Here’s their letter: We are once again in need of your help! As for what styles appeal to us, our overall taste is simple and understated focusing on comfort and timeless design (clean lines and contemporary style). In order of preference, we like to shop at Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams, Room & Board, Crate & Barrel, and West Elm. We don’t use the dining room (too far from kitchen & we have a dining area next to kitchen) so we would be very interested in repurposing

How We Stay Debt Free & Save Up For Purchases And Projects


Q: You really should consider posting about how you two budget and save for your purchases and DIY. I’m constantly amazed at how you seem to never charge anything and how you consistently mention saving up for things. Now just tell us how you do it!! What about making the decision to replace something that still works? Is that a hard call for you guys? I never know when to live with something, replace it with something semi-cheap for the interim or save up for the big thing I actually want and go right to buying that instead of putting money towards a placeholder while I save. I’d love to know more about how you

Reader Redesign: One Seriously Swanky Kitchen


When Totty and Dave sent us their latest room makeover we had to share the goods. After all, everyone loved their amazing bathroom overhaul so much that we knew their kitchen would be a hit too. Here’s their letter: Dave and I have another Reader Redesign for ya. Our kitchen has been undergoing a facelift for the past six months. What started as a simple “let’s move the cabinets around a bit” turned into a full blown kitchen renovation. We relocated all of the upper cabinets, built floating shelves, got new cabinet doors and hardware, new appliances, tiled the backsplash, and discovered hardwood floors hiding under ugly orange tile! Shew- I think I covered it

How To Make A Sweet Flowery Mobile For The Nursery


Remember how we mentioned in our Charlotte window shopping post that we found inspiration for our nursery mobile at a charming little shop called Lucy & Co? Well, after talking to the incredibly inspiring designer of the yellow butterfly mobiles we learned that all it took to whip them up was some floral wire, some yellow fabric butterflies, and some glue. Sounds doable, right? But instead of butterflies we decided to brainstorm a few other “things” that could appear to be swarming around in a ball above our baby girl’s head. John kept harping on bees because they were on our homemade wedding invitations… … but I thought that might be a bit terrifying. Bees

Budget Blooms: My Birthday Bounty

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As most of you know, every month we like to enjoy one inexpensive (and even free) bouquet to keep things feeling fresh around here (the idea actually stemmed from a super sweet Christmas present from the hubs a while back). But somehow I actually ended up with two months of blooms overlapping here at Casa Petersik this month. Remember when I shared February’s $5 blooms? Well those suckers are still alive. Well into March. All of them. Gotta love carnations. And I’m not doing anything special (just changing the water every week or so and reclipping the stems at an angle every two weeks or so). Crazy, huh? But that didn’t stop my favorite/only hubby

Stealing Color Palettes From Pretty Packaging


Inspiration really is everywhere, so when John and I were picking up a friend at the spa (we’re that fancy, we loiter in spas without actually getting massages) I couldn’t help but snap a few photos of some gorgeous packaging with some pretty amazing color schemes. Yeah I was that girl, taking pictures of the soap and candle display in the lobby. It was all in the name of decor though, so it was time well spent. Anyway, the point is that it’s so easy to find everyday objects that you love (like a favorite painting, a meaningful necklace – even a scented candle) and design an entire room- heck, an entire house- with that

Wendy’s Design Dilemma


Wendy’s ready to spiff up her living room in a major way. Here’s her letter: Thanks so much for your help with our family room- we definitely need it! We like clean, fresh, traditional/contemporary looks. The cream TV cabinet and the leather recliners need to stay. We’d like to replace the couch and have toyed with a sectional because we could use the seating space. Everything else can go. We’re open to wall color suggestions. We like the green in the kitchen (it’s from the previous owner), but we’re not sure it works with the more natural colors we’d like to see in the rest of the house. We like earth tones & natural colors

House Crashing: Luxe & Lovely (Part Two)


You guys remember Stacie, right? She lives downtown in a gorgeous home that we actually got to help her decorate. And we even got the chance to House Crash her a while back (check out all those details right here). Maybe the befores of her bedroom will jog your memory. It used to look like this: And then we whipped up one of our first mood boards ever for her… which helped her transform it into this: And we also got to help Stacie revamp her dining room for a big party that she was throwing a few months back. Here’s how the room started out: And here are the lovely afters pics (click over

Reader Redesign: A Cheap-o Kitchen Overhaul


When Jessica sent us her before and after kitchen photos we couldn’t believe she and her hubby stretched their $400 budget so far. Here’s her letter: I’m always inspired by what I see going on at your pad! My husband Josh and I recently took on a cheap-o kitchen makeover and found that $400 goes a very long way toward bringing an 80’s kitchen into 2010. That budget covered paint, an electric sander, a jig saw, hardware, primer, Liquid Nails, “real” nails, and beadboard- which is all it took to really transform the space. The “before” picture was from before we moved in, so please excuse the terrible light fixture and furniture. We really hated

Nursery Progress: How To Make A No Sew Crib Skirt


Some of you may remember that we wanted to make an adaptation of a crib skirt (a fitted band of fabric that would hide the view under the bean’s mattress and into her storage drawer below) so we’re back to share the simple step by step process. And if you guys know me at all you’ll fully anticipate that I didn’t even pick up a needle and thread. Yup, I used my favorite iron on hem tape along with scissors, a tape measure and an iron. About forty short minutes later I had a custom fitted crib skirt (that’s removable and washable too). Here’s how it all went down: First, I measured the vertical space

How To Freshen Up Your House With Spring Decor


Who wants to make like Will Smith and get springy with it? Q: Hey guys. I’m so not in the mood to work this morning so I thought I’d ask you a question. With the seasons changing, what are some of your must haves for spring? Like, are there certain décor switches you make to get things feeling a little sunnier and fresher? Are there any tips you have or things people can do regardless of their color scheme or current décor that would instantly transform a room from winter to spring? Do you keep specific décor items on hand specifically for spring? Thanks! -Jennifer There’s nothing better than when spring is finally in the

Reader Redesign: Headboard Ambiance


When Karen sent us the DIY headboard that she whipped up, we couldn’t wait to share her amazing results. Here’s her letter: I just wanted to show you how I used your tutorial to make a headboard for our bed. The only difference was that I used 1 X 2’s cut to size from my home improvement store (I attached them with L brackets which only cost me $5!). I did use designer fabric by Patricia Bravo but I got a great deal on that on Etsy so the whole project was really affordable. Thanks for the tips! As you see our Min Pin likes it too! -Karen Didn’t Karen do a great job? We

Burning Question: Furniture Finishes?

From rich espresso tables and chairs to glossy white painted chests, which furniture finishes do you think have the most staying power? Are there any that you think are undeniably timeless? Which do you think are already dated? And which ones do you predict will be totally “out” in a decade, even if they’re extremely popular right now? Feel free to weigh in. In fact we whipped up this handy little poll to keep everything tabulated… but we’d also love to hear more about what you love (and what you predict will be oh-so out) in the comment section.

Phuong’s Design Dilemma: Solved


When Phuong and her husband Jeff sent over their Design Dilemma after pictures we couldn’t wait to share the goods. We know that many of you are chomping at the bit to see how our mood boards turn out (believe me, we are too) so we’re always thrilled to see how those spaces transform after each homeowner gets down to business. You may remember that we whipped up this custom mood board for Phuong and Jeff a while back when they came to us for help turning their bare and basic bedroom into an inviting and cozy place to unwind after a long day. Here are the before pictures to refresh your memory: And here’s

Bonnie’s Design Dilemma


Bonnie’s ready to give her living room a light and beachy look with a dose of glam worked in. Here’s her letter: I can’t even tell you how excited I am to have your help. We’re looking for a beach inspired space with touches of glam. I love crystal, mirror and silver. The only pieces I really want to stay are the two Pier 1 side chairs. The cream leather sofa can stay or go, as I believe I am drawn to slip-covered white sofas more (but if you can work in the sofa, that’s fine). We need a new rug, and I like sisal and jute. We are open to anything really! We are

Window Shopping: More Target Trolling


We’re back with our it’s-almost-spring installment of window shopping at Target. We recently found ourselves ogling so many things that we knew it was time for another post… so here it is. First we have what is quite possibly our favorite collection of bath stuff that we’ve seen yet. The circle towels are actually pretty reminiscent of the TJ Maxx ones that we snagged for our big bathroom renovation, and we love how easily mixed and matched everything on these shelves can be. You could grab the bamboo shower mat along with those circle towels and a few of those green ceramic accessories on the top shelf and have a totally fresh look in your

Reader Redesign: Light & Lovely Loo


When Grace sent over her gorgeous bathroom renovation pics we just had to share them- especially since she and her husband did all of the work themselves (all while on a super tight timeline). Here’s her letter: Greetings from sunny San Diego! We recently renovated our bathroom (and did it all in under a month just like you guys). My husband Collin did all of the work himself (with a little help from yours truly) and we really love how it turned out. We especially like the glass tile that we chose for the tub, the lighter look of two pedestal sinks (over our previously bulky vanity) and the nickel fixtures that finish everything off.

Painting, Upgrading, And Organizing The Nursery Closet


As you may remember, our nursery closet left a lot to be desired. Yup, this tiny nook (which can’t be expanded thanks to ductwork on the left and the back of our living room fireplace on the right) was in need of a serious upgrade. But we were determined not to spend over thirty-ish bucks to take it from terrible to sweet and organized. What? We’re cheap. First my smart (and surprisingly design savvy) hubby suggested that we paint it the same soft aqua color as the ceiling to make it a bit more fun- especially since we removed the door because it constantly banged up against the main door to the room (check out