Burning Question: Bonus Beans?

If you had an extra $100 laying around, how would you spend it to spruce up your house? Would you grab some gallons of paint and give a few rooms a totally new look? Would you splurge for some special accessory that you’ve had your eye on (like a fancy wall mirror or glass based lamp?). Would you snatch up a Craigslist table to transform with a bit of elbow grease? Would you put it towards some larger home-related purchase that you’ve been saving for? We’re itching to hear where that loot would end up.

We’ve Been Shot: The Double Whammie


It’s a crazy-but-we-wouldn’t-have-it-any-other-way day here at Casa Petersik. We actually have a photography crew from BHG here (!) to shoot our newly transformed nursery and our recently renovated bathroom for two different publications: Kitchen + Bath Makeovers and Do It Yourself magazine. Fun, right? We’re all geeked out about it. We’re super excited to watch the stylists work their propping magic (how do they make bottles of soap look so good?) and we actually know the photographer Erik Johnson since he shot the rest of our house a while back for a three-issue article in Do It Yourself (see them here, here, and here). In fact here we are with Erik and the crew from

Steals & Deals: Bottoms Up


Many of you know that I have a giant binder full of clear plastic sleeves where I shove a ton of tear sheets from magazines, catalogs and other places that inspire me (read more about how I organize that magical binder right here). And one ripped corner of a magazine that has been in my binder pretty much since its inception has been an image from Elle Decor with gorgeous vintage looking glasses in green, yellow, blue and pink with recessed designs on them that create a light and almost sea-glass-ish effect. They’re credited as being from this super swanky store (which doesn’t happen to have a shot of them on their site- boo) and

You Pillow Designer, You: Freebie Winners!


You guys had quite a wide range of dream product lines mentioned in this week’s giveaway from InMod.com. It should come as no surprise that when I asked Sherry what she’d love to design, she sheepishly admitted she’d create a line of white ceramic animals. But in reality she’d never sell any and would just end up hoarding them all to herself (and assigning them names and personalities) – so let’s all hope she sticks to blogging. And since we can only dish out two totally free pillows-designed-by-you this week, InMod.com has generously agreed to help the rest of you get your mitts on some custom pillows of your own for less. Through May 13th,

Kate’s Design Dilemma


Kate’s ready to totally transform her blank slate of a basement. Here’s her letter: I’m a long time reader of your site and I’m so excited that you’re working on our space. We (me, my husband, our 9 month old daughter Annabelle and our pooch Speedy) need help with our basement tv/rec room! It’s basically an unfinished white drywall box and we’re having trouble coming up with any inspiration. Our goal is to create a room where we watch tv and and also a playroom for Annabelle that has some flexibility to grow with her. We haven’t ever had water problems in the basement, but we don’t want to tempt fate with anything too precious

Reader Redesign: Cabinet Quick Change


When Emily sent us her amazing china cabinet makeover we just had to share her before & after pics. Here’s her letter: I’ve been following your blog and have been inspired to move away from a house full of dark furniture and lighten things up a bit! We had some dark $10 clearance dining chairs that we purchased last summer but we decided to give them an airy overhaul (we found discount fabric and payed a professional to paint and upholster the chairs and they still came in under $100 a piece!). We also had been on the lookout for a china cabinet to store all of our servingware (which was sadly being stored in

What If Baby P Was A He? Mood Board Ideas For A Boy Nursery


After last week’s big nursery reveal we got a bunch of emails and comments from people who wondered if the room could be adapted for a little boy… and the answer is a big screechy and overly enthusiastic yes! Thanks to many gender neutral decisions when it came to pretty much all of our major pieces (the wall and ceiling color, the dresser, the crib, the chair) it would just take a few accessory switcheroos (buh-bye floral curtains!) to easily change this room into something fitting of a little man. So just for fun we whipped up a quick mood board to toss out a handful of adaptation ideas for anyone who’s looking to boy

Reader Redesign: Stunning Scribble


When Liz sent her DIY art project our way we couldn’t wait to share the outcome with you guys. Here’s her letter: I know that you guys are always whipping up fab DIY art, so I thought your readers might enjoy this little art project that I did. We’ve had a wall in our den that has been blank for over a year. Finally I decided to spend an evening making a fun and funky little art series that has added some much-needed interest to that wall. The best part is that it couldn’t have been easier. If you can wield a paint pen, you can definitely take on this project! In short: I painted

Burning Question: Tub With A View?

This week we’re dying to get your pulse on windows in your shower or bath. Are they amazing thanks to all the soft light that they allow into your scrub space? Or are they awkward because even if they’re frosted or distorted you fear that your shape is still outlined for all to see as you get your clean on? Do you have one and wish you didn’t? Or do you not have one and wish you did? We’re itching to hear what what you prefer.

Receipts Have BPA?! Here’s What We Learned…


When we recently heard that some receipts can release a lot more BPA than any plastic bottle on the market we had to know more. And while this subject might not be inherently DIY related, it can certainly factor into having a safe and happy home- especially on Earth Day. Plus we’re all about simplifying our lives (it was even my 2010 resolution) so the solution that we reached after reading up on this topic actually contributes to less daily clutter and chaos, which is always a good thing. Who doesn’t want to have a more organized wallet, purse, and home? Here’s the gist. Science News recently reported that some receipts are made with a

Ana’s Design Dilemma


Our good friend Ana over at Knock-Off Wood has an office that’s bursting with potential. And she’s totally up for transforming her space on a dime with some DIY magic. She actually plans to share her progress and keep us posted along the way, so we can all look forward to seeing how things evolve in there. Here’s her letter: Thanks so much for helping me with my office! I had a high maintenance newborn when the design decisions were made so I did what the experts say – stick to safe neutral colors. Now I’ve got a beige & brown office that’s less than inspiring. In fact, I can’t stand to be in this

Reader Redesign: Instant Office


When Jennifer sent over some pictures of her sitting nook turned office we just had to share the goods. Here’s her letter: Hey YHLers. I’m totally hooked on your blog and wanted to share my recent home office makeover. It went from a non-functional sitting room (it actually did function as a laundry dumping ground which was not very pleasing to the eyes, and really served no other purpose) to an extremely functional home office space. A lot of the major stuff was already owned, such as the chandelier and the desk (moved from another room in the house). We just dressed things up a bit by creating a homemade bulletin board, craft storage using

The Big Nursery Reveal: A Green & Blue Room For Our Girl


Woo to the hoo. We finally finished the nursery! And at just four weeks before the beanette’s estimated arrival (although we’re sure she’s gonna be late) we’re beyond excited to have a cheerful and functional room waiting for her. It definitely has come a long way from the blank canvas that we started with: And that closet. Let’s just say it was one of our major challenges when it came to storage space, function, organization and all that good stuff: Luckily we were able to introduce a ton of stash space thanks to a crib with a large built-in drawer, a generously sized double dresser (snagged on Craigslist for just $20), an already owned storage

Ashley’s Design Dilemma: Solved


When Ashley excitedly sent along her living room photos after our big mood board makeover we couldn’t wait to share them. Here’s her letter: Well here they are… our AFTER pictures! We love the mood board that you put together for us. It completely helped us in getting the look we wanted. We’re so happy that we replaced most of our hand-me-down furniture with more modern (yet inexpensive) pieces. We (and when I say “we” I really mean my hard-working husband!) repainted, installed new baseboards, had new floors put in, and used your help to bring our 1968 ranch up-to-date! We are excited to share the pictures with you and your readers! Hope you enjoy.

Budget Blooms: April Greenery


As most of you know, every month we like to enjoy one inexpensive- and sometimes 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 this month I just had to deviate from the plan when I saw this adorable leafy little guy complete with his own shiny turquoise ceramic pot for- get this- $2.50 from Walmart. Ringing in just as cheap (if not cheaper) than most of our monthly grocery store bouquets, I love that this splash of foliage livens up my desk and even comes with its own vase of sorts (well, planter) that I can use

Burning Question: Table Talk?

This week’s big q is all about personal preference. What kind of coffee table does it for you? Are you all about a wood table for the richness that it adds? Would you rather have a plush storage ottoman for the hidden stash space and the put-your-feet-up effect? Do you prefer glass to keep things open and airy? We’re itching to hear what kind of coffee table floats your boat. And what are your thoughts when it comes to shape: round vs. rectangular… or even square?

The Look For Less? Cheap Couches From Custom Sofa Design

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We recently saw a write up about designer-lookalike sofas by Custom Sofa Design on Little Green Notebook and were pretty astonished by the offerings and the prices. We’re talking about sofas that are dead ringers for spendy Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn, Room & Board and Anthropologie versions with prices that start around $599 (with many many options under $799). They even offer up chic designer-based upholstered beds at a serious markdown from the original versions. Apparently if you read the comments over on that post, lots of people have had a great experience with the company and rave about Don, the owner. And we were further surprised to learn that everything is manufactured right

Andy & Courtney’s Design Dilemma


Andy and Courtney are ready to transform their bedroom while adding some serene color and a splash of personality (along with a cozy and casual vibe). Here’s their letter: We would describe our style as casual. We’d like this room to mirror the rest of our home, which has a cottage feel (sorta beach cottage, definitely NOT country cottage). When it comes to the furniture stores that appeal to us, we like Pottery Barn but we’re also attracted to the home goods that are sold at Urban Outfitters and Anthropologie (but we like to stick to an Ikea and Target budget). We’re not married to anything in the room with the exception of the TV.