Author Archive

Stairway To Heaven

We’d love to claim these before and afters as our own, but most of you know that our house is a one story ranch by now. Bummer.

Anyway, this is what the stairway at my best friend’s Washington DC townhouse looked like this morning:

Stairs before

And this afternoon:

Stairs after

Let’s give the girl a hand! Amazing transformation. I’m never one to endorse covering up gorgeous wood flooring- and this gleaming staircase is no exception. Doesn’t it look much better naked?

Of course she has some painting to do on those toe-kicks, but that’ll be quick and painless. The good news is that no sanding and restaining of the once-covered floorboards is necessary. Gotta love it when carpet comes up without a hitch.



Stark Raving Mad

While the majority of America seems to love hoarding and clutter, John and I are lone mice. Or whatever the opposite of a pack rat would be. But there’s a fine line between clean, uncluttered spaces and cold, stark rooms. It’s not an easy assessment to make on your own. But I was able to make an honest evaluation by photographing each of our rooms and then comparing each room in our house to rooms in decorating magazines and favorite furniture catalogs like Pottery Barn, Crate & Barrel and Ballard Designs.

I quickly realized that while our rooms were clean and simple, they were severely lacking in the design department. So of course I was spurred to action. I feverishly began to move furniture around. And when the dust cleared, I had a good idea of what was working, and what I needed to add to my wish list. The main shift occurred in the den, a room that’s always been tricky due to its long narrow layout. Another chair, an end table and a slew of rotated accessories really did make a big difference. Here’s the ho-hum before:

Final Den

And the warmer and more welcoming after:

After Den

Seems less bare and boring, right? Plus there’s one more place to sit (and rest a drink). Total bonus. The crazy part is that the side table was salvaged from our basement’s garage sale pile. So nice to have a little “store” in our basement to raid for extra pieces.