a lovely living

Monthly Archives for October 2021

Stunning Kitchen Renovation

It’s been a bit since I’ve been able to document and share a design project on here, so for those of you that enjoy some good before and afters, this is for you. In all honesty the ‘before’ of this renovation wasn’t awful, but it was certainly in need of some updating. We took it from one pretty white kitchen to a much more functional and updated, not to mention stunning, space.

Being the color specialist that I am, I have to add a disclaimer and mention that I wasn’t always able to capture the true colors (re: undertones) of the walls and tiling in every image due to the light and shadows playing games on this unprofessional-photographer. So you can just trust that I paid very close attention to the tile and existing wall color to make sure that they worked perfectly together. And in person it’s just beautiful.

Since you already got a glimpse of the end result, let’s backtrack a bit and see where we began…

As I said, this wasn’t a horrific kitchen to say the least. But the odd shaped peninsula and lack of a true island was inhibiting this room from functioning to its fullest potential. Once they had a layout in mind, Steve Hackman Builders brought me on to the project to help pull all of the finishes together.

The homeowners are a fun couple that love to entertain, so a large island was a must for them. With room for prep work as well as seating, they now have a ton of functional space. They found a quartz counter that they both agreed on (this can be no small task) which worked well with the wall color (which wasn’t changing), so this became the element that dictated the rest of our selections in terms of color. SW Pure White, which is a slightly off-white, was the white that I selected to pair with the counters. And then you can see that the backsplash tile we selected pulls from the quartz as well. It’s as though it was all intentional ;)

The floors throughout the main level were sanded down and stained to a beautiful warm brown. Another element that updated the space while keeping with the classic and traditional style of the home.

I love the glass subway tile that we landed on. We went back and forth on a few different options, but eventually decided that this one had a classic yet updated vibe that worked well with the rest of the home.

The windows are to die for and despite their large presence there is still more than enough cabinet space that the owners will never be lacking on storage! To ensure that, the cabinetry was taken to the ceiling to fill in the previous dust-collecting gap.

Here’s another look at the before…

And then after…

The fridge was relocated with pantry space surrounding it and by shifting some walls around (easy for me to say), a bar area was created. I’m telling you, it’s an entertainers dream! I wanted sizable pendants that would fit the scale of the room but we also didn’t want them to obstruct any views. These large glass pendants were the perfect compromise.

Just off of the kitchen is a dining area that was eager for a few updates as well.

The wall of windows above was replaced by a gorgeous set of sliding doors that continues to add to the functionality of the room, creating easy access to the deck. A new table, chairs and light fixture and this area is now magazine worthy.

I feel honored to have been able to be a part of this project, helping to bring a whole new life to a space that this couple will enjoy for years to come!


Contractor: Steve Hackman Builders
Kitchen design/Installation: Shunk’s Kitchens
Counter: Cambria, Bellingham Quartz
Tile: Riva Glass in Beige
Pendants: Savoy House
Chandelier: Visual Comfort
Sconces: Generation Lighting
Table: Ballard Designs
Chairs: Ballard Designs
Cabinetry color: SW Pure White
Wall color: Color matched to existing wall color

Denim + Denim

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, autumn is my favorite season to style outfits. I love the way that layers can add both warmth and personality to a look. Denim on denim may feel tricky when you are playing around with various shades of blue, but when you break it up with a faded black for example, it makes things fairly fool-proof.

I’ve shared this Able jacket before as it’s gotten a ton of wear. It has an oversized yet flattering fit with just a touch of distressing. And these Levi jeans in the wedgie fit (I know, catchy name) continue to be a favorite. And I promise, no wedgie, just a flattering rear ;) This particular style offers two lengths, so if you are in the 5’7″ or above range, you may want to go with the longer length as I did here.

Finally, these sneakers. The corduroy with a touch of sparkle in the perfect fall shade….not to mention they are comfy! A high-top look with a low-top feel in a great neutral shade. They will be my fall go-to, for sure!

jacket / jeans / sweater (see similar below) / sunglasses / sneakers / bracelets (code Lovely20 for 20% off)

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JCrew 40% off Sale

JCrew is currently having their fall event, offering 40% off of most of the site with code GOBIG. Not only that, but should you be a JCrew cardholder, you get an extra 20% off of your purchase through the month of October. This is the time that I take advantage of these discounts and start stocking my (and my family’s) fall wardrobe.

JCrew is one retailer that I tend to turn to for those classic closet staples. Their sweaters (and sweater jackets) are always a go-to for me. Not to mention their coats, which are my all-time favorites. I still have one or two in my closet from around the time I started having children….and my oldest is currently twelve! One of those is a mint green color that is close to retirement, so when I laid my eyes on this one, I was hopeful it would become a replacement. We shall see! Their flannel shirts are another favorite of mine and I also own a top very similar to this one with the tie neck that I wear time and time again. I also grabbed a few things for the kids. The girls especially were excited to see this leopard coat and quite literally screamed with excitement! The sale runs through the weekend if you’re looking to take advantage of this great discount.

Shop the JCrew Sale:

Fields of Sunflowers

We’ve been doing our best to not only take advantage of the beautiful fall weather lately, but also making sure to get out and explore the fall events that are happening all around us. A friend of ours owns a farm, Rooted Farmstead, and she’s basically a Joanna Gaines in the making. She pulled together the most fabulous fall market full of local vendors amidst a field of sunflowers that made the most gorgeous backdrop. I love being around creative people that have an eye to make anything beautiful, they are such an inspiration to me!

Despite threatening rain, I wore these mules and made it out unscathed! I’m glad because they paired perfectly with this midi dress. I love the feminine style of it that works well alone or layered under a jacket or cardigan as well. It would be a great choice for family photos too! You’ve seen me in this Able jacket before and I just adore the fit. Relaxed but done in a flattering way with a great cut to it. If you like the distressed look, you can’t go wrong with this one!

dress / jacket / sunglasses / mules