Reader Redesign: Positively Sweet Studio

Psst- We did it. We survived hosting our very first Christmas dinner at our house. So of course Sherry’s hyper and giddy about sharing all of the photos and details next week (we’re spending the rest of the week with the family, but we’re dropping in with a little post today and another one for you tomorrow too). Hope you’re all enjoying the holiday!

When it comes to Reader Redesign submissions, sometimes it’s the room pictures that really get me, sometimes it’s the story behind the room, and sometimes it’s both. That’s why we loved the tale Julia and Chris’s studio tells… and the result is pretty sweet too. Here’s her letter: Hey John and Sherry, I wanted to share the studio we finished in our home. When our little family of three moved into our house last April, we had plans to turn the third upstairs bedroom (a seriously creepy and outdated nursery) into a second nursery for a second child. 

After over a year and a half of no-such-luck in the baby department, we decided to open the door to the stale room and turn the room into a useable space that we could enjoy right now–a studio for me with room for our little girl, Greta, to “work” in too.

Over the course of a month and a half, we painted the walls a crisp white and the ceiling a lively turquoise. We changed the light fixture and the floor covering and the window treatments (which are actually two tapestries from Urban Outfitters) to inject life into this room.

What used to be a sad reminder of what we were wanting in our lives, became a beyond happy and exciting experience for our little family and the friends who cheered us on. One of the last projects I did was DIY a 3D quote on the wall that encompassed what this room represented, and our new mantra: “Be Open To Whatever Comes Next.”  

Next on our agenda is having a picnic lunch right on the floor in here–we love it that much. Thanks for all that you do and your constant and daily inspiration! -Julia

I don’t say this very often about a room – but I think my favorite things about it are the ceiling and the floor. The color on the ceiling turns the whole space happy while the FLOR tiles below feel downright cozy. If you want more info on Chris & Julia’s makeover, hit up their blog for extra photos, sources, and links to the various DIY projects involved. And a big thanks to them for sending the inspiration our way! What about you guys? Do you have any favorite parts?


  1. says

    I loved watching them do the room makeover on their blog. Best part was they had their readers help pick out many of the pieces. Totally love the bright colors and it has inspired me to paint a ceiling a fun color in my next house!

  2. Val says

    This is gorgeous and so crazy simple! These were all totally easy updates and it made such a huge impact. I love how she hung those curtains across the entire wall — I never would have thought to do that and it looks amazing. And I am crazy about that 3D, low-contrast quote. Again, never would have thought of it and now I’m trying to pick out a wall in my house that needs this right now.

    Great room and great story. Sometimes you have to make room for good things to come into your life, even if they aren’t always the good things you were expecting.

  3. Amy E says

    Love this room and love the story behind it. Way to turn something painful into something inspiring! Thanks for the ideas!!

  4. Stephanie says

    I saw this space earlier this year. I immediately bought the tapestry from Urban Outfitters. They are so vibrant and awesome! I did end up dividing the 2 I bought into 4 panels to cover 2 windows and hung them high and wide. Thanks for featuring them on your Reader Redesign! Awesome job!

  5. Erika Milo says

    I always wondered if you could paint a textured ceiling and if it would work okay…looks great…good to know that with the right color combo it could change the room-positively. Very nice!

  6. Gabrielle Martin says

    Thank you so much for responding to my email about the number of people at your book signings! I just wanted to let you know that I received it without clogging up your inbox further. We will make hotel arrangements and see you next month! I’m so excited :)

  7. Kate says

    I love love love the curtains. They got in such bright colors and bold patterns without overwhelming the room. I love this room, and the story behind it.

    • Betsy says

      What a beautiful room and a beautiful attitude. And though I’m sure you know this, there’s nothing wrong with having an only child! I am an only and I can thank that for a lot of blessings I’ve had in my life, not least of which is my extremely close relationship with my parents. And my parents did ultimately get a son one day – my husband. Life is a funny thing and it’s wonderful to see you embrace its quirks and make such a gorgeous visual reminder.

  8. says

    Love! I adore that quote wall. Having the letters the same shade as the wall packs a surprising amount of visual punch. And that curtain is fantastic.

  9. Meredith says

    This has nothing to do with the room (which is lovely), but the “We’re Digging” totally prompted me to read “Gone Girl”. And by ‘read’, I mean devour in 2 days. An excellent book for a snow day (Iowa got walloped with 12 inches in 12 hours last week, and I was quite cozy in my sweats, book in hand). Thanks for the rec!

  10. says

    Love the room redo that serves as an inspiration, too! Kudos to them for making the present count instead of just planning for an uncertain future. I’m a new addict to their blog.

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