Deckgate (Literally, How To Make A Deck Gate)


This isn’t “Deckgate” in the sense that there’s a scandal involving a deck (sorry Olivia Pope) but for anyone who might want to learn how to build a literal deck gate, well, this could help. Our previous method of deck “gating” could be considered a little… lacking. The nice weather has accentuated a shortcoming of our deck once again. Burger likes to sunbathe out there, but the temptation of a grassy yard full of bugs and fascinating smells often proves too great and he goes wandering. We don’t have a fence on our property, and he has gotten more brazen lately and may even wander into the neighbor’s yard. Hence the classy plywood barrier on

Fab Freebie: Art Show


We’ve been so thankful to have a few fantastic artists loan or donate their work to help fill the many blank walls in our Homearama Showhouse to benefit Habitat For Humanity. And we wanted to pay some of that forward to a lucky reader (from anywhere in the world!) so they can fill up some walls in their own home. First up is $250 to Help Ink, whose graphic posters, notecards, notebooks, and wood-mounted prints not only send a little inspirational boost your way, they also send $1 for every $5 spent on their site to a charity of your choosing. We also have Richmond-based painter Lindsay Cowles, whose colorful abstract paintings will be in

Sealing The Deal (And Our Concrete Counters)


Thanks for all the kind words on Teddy’s arrival last week. We’re home now and settling into life as parents to a newborn again (anyone have tips for getting one to sleep between the hours of 10pm and 4am?), so we’ll definitely be on a lighter schedule, but one project that we rushed to check off the to-do list around 48 hours before Teddy was born was finally sealing our kitchen’s recently Ardexed counters. We’ve shared a few other “how to seal” tutorials (like this one about de-hazing & sealing tile, this one about sealing grout, and this one about sealing cork) so here’s what we settled on for protecting our Ardex counters. We read

Fab Freebie: The Hook Up


HEADS UP! Since baby boy is scheduled to arrive tomorrow, we’re spending some special family time with Clara today. So we’re posting this week’s giveaway early, and hope to stop in later this week (maybe on Thursday?) to officially introduce our little man. But back to the freebie. This week we’re hooking three people from anywhere in the world up with a $500 Target gift card along with a complete set of our hooks (you can see them all here) in the finish of their choosing. I feel like this is the part where I should bust out an Oprah-esque “You get an octopus! You get an octopus!” but it just doesn’t have the same

It’s Bath Time


Continuing our showhouse-heavy week of reveals, we’re bringing you a bunch of after photos from three more spaces – the master bathroom, the atrium, and the master closet. We showed you the master bedroom on Tuesday (along with the office and the butler’s pantry) so it only felt natural to continue our virtual tour where we left off. The master bath and closet sit off a corner of the bedroom and are separated by a space that we’ve been lovingly calling the “atrium” (it’s really more of a vestibule) which you can see above on the right side. Here’s the floor plan for a clearer map of how that area is situated: The atrium features

Adding To Our Week Of Crazy…


To everyone who has said “go rest!” or “we understand if you have to catch your breath after this showhouse marathon and before this baby comes” we are SO APPRECIATIVE of the encouragement. We’re still over there every day shooting each remaining room for afters/source lists and are also hoping to record a video tour for you guys, but we fully intend to cash in on that whole sit-down-and-breathe-for-a-second thing as soon as we finish documenting everything. But amongst the last crazy week of showhouse stuff, another crazy thing happened that we just had to talk about for a second. We can’t begin to tell you how awesomely surreal it has been to see our

Business, Bedding, & Butlering


As of 5:30pm yesterday, our second big Homearama Showhouse deadline was hit. Phew. The builder was throwing a preview party at the house so everything had to be done, cleaned, and ready to be shown off to a whole slew of people (realtors, prospective buyers, generous local companies who donated furnishings/accessories to this cause, etc). Heck, the weather even cooperated in the final seconds and gave us this nice photo op. It was kinda weird yet exciting to have the place alive with people, music, and food. They brought in caterers to show off the kitchen/appliances, and Sherry and I pretty much gorged since we had been running around in hyper-drive all day. There were

The Show Must Go On


For the last few weeks we have eaten, slept, and breathed all things showhouse. We knew it was going to be a lot of work, but I’ll be the first to admit that we completely underestimated how much time, effort, and – well, shopping – it would take to turn a 3,500 square foot blank-ish slate into a lived-in-ish looking home. In two weeks, no less. So as you can imagine we’ve pretty much been camped out there. Or driving back and forth with a car full of stuff, unloading it, placing it on various surfaces, and repeating. We thought most of the major hurdles had been cleared after choosing fixtures and finishes over the

Messy House Tour 2014


Since you guys have enjoyed the past messy house tour videos that we’ve shared (like this one from our last house in 2011), we seized the opportunity to remind everyone that we’re not all carefully folded towels and meticulously placed pillows 24/7 (not even close). With our attention focused mostly on the showhouse & some last minute nursery updates, many of our other house projects have been put on hold (some are literally halfway done) and a handful of rooms have quickly devolved into chaos. And when your house is a mess, why not video tape it for the whole internet to see? A few notes: There is no rapping in this video. I am

Fab Freebie: Nature’s Pantry


This week NatureBox is hooking someone up with a 1-year Deluxe Snacker subscription and a $300 gift card to Home Depot. That means each month a box of nutritionist-approved snacks will arrive at the winner’s door without any high fructose corn syrup, trans fats, or artificial sweeteners – and they can whip their pantry or their kitchen cabinets into shape with some new shelves, organizing systems, containers, caddies, and more thanks to that $300 Home Depot gift card.  Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up below this paragraph). New customers can also get their first NatureBox at 50% off (that’s $9.95) with

And Now For A Household Crafting Challenge


The other night Sherry and I came up with the idea to challenge each other to craft something using objects around our house – the catch being that the OTHER person gets to choose the objects. It wasn’t necessarily a competition, but we still came up with some ground rules: You can use anything to make the craft, but the three chosen items must be incorporated in some way. The “challengee” may choose one of the items before seeing the other two chosen by the “challenger.” No money can be spent. The project will be shared on the blog, no matter how awful it turns out. We rock-paper-scissored and I lost, so I was up

I Like To Furnish, Furnish


At first I had typed the original “I like to move it, move it” lyrics but then I realized that I don’t really enjoy the moving process at all, so it was sort of an unpleasant deja vu moment when we started unloading furniture into the Homearama showhouse on Monday. But my glass half-full version of the situation is: we’re finally getting to the furnish the showhouse! Note: for anyone wondering what the heck this showhouse is, and how it benefits Habitat for Humanity, click here and here for more info. With almost everything done construction-wise in the house, we greeted a truck from Green Front Furniture (the local place loaning pieces to many of

Three Oversized Lantern Lights For The Hallway


From moment one of seeing this house, something about the view of a series of three lights all in a row(ish) in the upstairs hallway made us inexplicably excited. Just call it “the tri-light zone” effect. We just knew that arrangement had serious potential. You know, once we looked past the old carpeting and the blue trim. The existing lights were a little undersized for us (pictures don’t do it justice, but this is a 33 foot long hallway!), so although we considered spray painting them another color (oil-rubbed bronze? red? navy?), I worried it’d make them look a bit more gothic cathedral than we wanted. Plus, all three of them were crooked, one of

Fab Freebie: Stealing Home


The thrill of the hunt is one thing, but what about the thrill of the steal? Decor Steals serves ’em up daily in the form of sales events that promise vintage-inspired and industrial chic home accessories, lighting, and furniture at up to 80% off retail (you can be first in line thanks to their daily deal announcement). And this week someone will score $500 to spend there. Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up below this paragraph). This giveaway is available to residents of the United States & Canada. Click To View Rafflecopter Widget

Trying Our Hand At Ardex Concrete Counters


So we did it. We concrete’d our kitchen’s laminate counters. Sherry shared this quick peek at our first coat in Friday’s post, and we’re back with the final results, the details of how we got there, and an in-action video to hopefully help explain the process. We’re really happy with how they turned out. Pictures don’t do it justice, but the whole room feels a lot more updated and less laminate-y. It’s giving off kind of a stark/cold vibe in these photos, but after we add some colorful window treatments, stuff on the shelves/counters, and remedy that bad faux brick flooring (and that almond stove) we think it’ll feel like a whole new room. I’m

Hall Bathroom Happenings


The upstairs hall bathroom has pretty much been ignored for the past nine months, other than hanging a shower curtain after we moved in and occasionally cleaning the toilet. But these builder basic mirrors have been on our hit list from day one. It took us nearly two years to get around to updating the one in our last hall bathroom by framing it out, so we weren’t about to let these go as long. Sherry has been on the lookout for something with a more interesting shape (round? quatrefoil? Eminem’s face?) so framing these out wasn’t our plan this time. Instead, we glanced at whatever mirrors were around when we dropped in on thrift

Pentagons, Polyhedrons, Hexes & X-es


Things are moving at warp speed these days at the Homearama Showhouse, so we have tons of updates to share since last week (especially since more fixtures, cabinets, and counters are now officially installed). Let’s start on the front porch, where the centerpiece of our rustic, vaulted ceiling has been added. It’s from Restoration Hardware, so it was definitely a splurge (our team joined their trade program to save 20%) but we think it’s an awesome thing to see up there before stepping into the house for the first time. As we snapped these photos yesterday, they were just beginning to pull up the protective floor coverings, but the hardwoods were still really dusty (they’re

Fab Freebie: Great Scott


A certain pregnant lady I know and love has a birthday this week, so we thought we’d mark it by giving the gift of one of Sherry’s favorite things to one of you: jewelry. Specifically, $500 to spend at Kendra Scott! Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up below this paragraph). This giveaway is available to the United States (but we’ve got a border-busting prize coming up for you next week). Click to View Rafflecopter Widget

Hook, Line, and Bullseye


It’s been nearly three years in the making, so it’s hard to believe that the day is finally here that we can share our longest-stretching side-gig to date. We’ve been designing a collection of products… and a bunch of them are now being sold exclusively at Target (!!!). Cue the sound effect of a cat sprinting out of a bag. We designed three or four dozen pieces before the final mix was chosen – and those designs, which are an assortment of wall storage and hooks, are available right now at and will be on endcaps in most US stores starting March 31st. You’ll be able to find them in the Home Improvement section

Paint, Light Fixtures, Doorknobs, & Green Vanities


I’m thinking we should post pictures of blue ceilings more often on Instagram, at least judging by the reaction we got to this pic from the Homearama Showhouse on Monday. Then again, it may have just been thanks to Sherry’s dancing girl emojis. As those high-steppin’ cartoon ladies indicated, we’re pretty psyched about how things are shaping up over there. The bold “Skydive” color that we chose for the office ceiling (by Benjamin Moore) came out better than we imagined, and we even got to use one of our favorite lights that we designed last year. But although there has been TONS of progress since our last update two weeks ago, it’s unfortunately not the

Apps And Zerts


Yes, that post title was a Tom Haverford reference, so you might want to grab your super water and sandoozles before we get into the nitty gritty. As I was trying out some new floor-planning apps to write last week’s post about our office floor plans, I took some screen shots and photos to share with you guys, and then that post felt full of enough graphics and words without them so I thought “eh, I’ll just skip that stuff.” Well, no less than a few dozen of you asked for more info on how the floor plans were made – and lo, this post was born. Like a phoenix rising from the ashes. We’ve

Using A Paint Sprayer For Trim Instead Of A Brush


Whilst discussing office plans last week, a few of your comments about the blue trim situation in that room were the push that we needed. We were fooling ourselves to think we should paint all that trim by hand (we’re talking baseboards, crown molding, and five windows totaling 66 individual panes). So we decided to bite the bullet, break out the paint sprayer, tape everything off, cross our fingers and toes that we didn’t get any bleed-through on those wood floors, and say hasta la vista to some more blue trim this weekend. We had painted all of the upstairs trim with the sprayer before we moved in and before the new floors went down,

Things We’ll Re-Do & Do New for Baby #2


This being our second trip to the baby rodeo hopefully means that we’re a bit wiser going in. We can cherry-pick from what worked well with Clara while trying to improve on some newborn and baby items, products, and methods that might need fine tuning. Of course every kid is different and what worked for baby #1 may not apply for #2 – so we’re just waiting for those curve balls to come flying towards us – but since you guys have been asking, here are five things we’re planning to redo (as in do again or use again) and five things that we’ll do new. And because they pair up nicely, we’ll look at

Office Floor Plans


It seems our excitement for the plans that we’ve been cooking up for the showhouse office has spilled over to our own office. Well, that and the fact that ours is looking pretty sad lately, having recently pilfered both its armchair and Expedit for the nursery. It doesn’t help that our chalkboard still says “Merry Christmas” on it. So basically, yeah, this office screams “I’ve got my ish together.” We’re excited to be thinking about the office because it’s one of our favorite full-of-raw-potential spaces in the house (so much space! so much light!). And with the baby’s impending arrival (six weeks!) we’re feeling the urge to consolidate our business life so it’s less likely