You may remember that when we moved into our beach house last year, it looked like this:
After months of using the end of the dining table to perch my laptop, I added a simple white desk beneath the mirror to create a makeshift study nook off the dining room. With the big table pulled back, there was heaps of room, and finally I had a place where I could plug in without kids tripping over my cord on their way out the back door, and somewhere to perch a printer.
But my little work area lacked any sort of personality. I missed my pretty study nook from our previous house. I wanted to make this space mine, without overwhelming the rest of the open-plan living area with too much detail. After a few simple changes, here’s where we ended up!
The star of this show is the faux “wallpaper” which I created using… yep… a $3 gold paint pen. It was definitely the easiest and one of the most effective wall treatments I’ve ever done. I love the modern simplicity of the geometric lines. It adds a little bit of luxe without being too girly, and it’s totally pared-back and subtle too. You can find the easy tutorial right here!
A few other simple details made the space mine. A crystal monogram paperweight from my Grandma that I’ve cherished for years. Some pretty notebooks…
A peace lily in a pot (let’s see how long I can keep this one alive!) Small gold bowl from Target.
For my pens, I used a candle holder from Pillow Talk. With it’s simple white geometric lines, it was exactly what I was looking for. Who says you can’t repurpose objects for different uses?
I bought my hourglass from Target. I love flipping that thing over and racing against the sand to see what I can accomplish in an hour. It’s a great visual incentive! Plus it just looks pretty.
I dressed up my IKEA Alex drawers by spray-painting some Martha Stewart label holders gold and adding printed labels. (Font is “Intrique Script.”)
One thing I wanted in this space was lots of greenery to bring it to life. Nothing breathes life into a blank or sterile space so much as a bit of green. The large potted plant is an Aspidistra, which likes the shade, so it’s an ideal indoor plant. The kind people at the nursery assured me it’s very hardy. We’ll see about that… muhaha. #plantkiller
Recognise that glam gold drum stool? No? That’s because it used to be bright red. I bought it from the Reject Shop for $40 and it used to live in my son’s bedroom before we moved. It doesn’t fit in the boys’ new room, so I gave it a spray of gold paint and now it has a completely new look. Looks pretty upmarket for a cheapie, right?
Nothing was safe from my gold spray paint, including the geometric wire waste paper basket I bought from Target. It was previously white, but looked a bit lost against the wall. An easy 2-minute fix to bring it into harmony with the rest of the decor.
Lastly I created some personalised desktop wallpaper so I have something pretty and inspiring to look at every day. I created three watercolour designs which I’ll be sharing soon for you to download for free – stay tuned!
I’d be lost without my planner, but despite trying just about every product on the market, I’ve yet to find one that suits my needs perfectly. So… I decided to make my own! It’s been such a fun process – I’m thrilled with it, and I know it’s going to be the perfect planner for so many others as well. I’ll be releasing the planner for sale in the coming weeks – I can’t wait to share it with you! (And no, it’s not the one in the picture, just in case you’re wondering!) (UPDATE: you can find out all about the 2016 Dreams by Design Planner right here!)
All in all, I couldn’t be happier with how this little study nook turned out. One last look….
On a personal note, I want to say a huge and heartfelt THANK YOU to all of you for the beautiful comments, notes and emails that flooded in after my last post. I read and cherished every single word, and felt so uplifted by the kindness in this community. Words are such powerful things, and yours touched my heart very deeply. Please forgive me that I was unable to respond personally to every comment and email. It was a very overwhelming time for me in general, but please know that your words mattered. They mattered to me a lot.
And now I wish we could all just have a big group hug. Seriously, guys… you are the best.
As you know if you’re a regular reader, it’s been a tough year for me personally, but things are looking up in a big way. I have some pretty cool personal updates to share and I can’t wait to let you know all about what’s been going on in our world. Stay tuned!
Until next time, wishing you a house full of sunshine!