color consultation, design consulting

|Gathered| A modern Mid-Century Color Palette

I recently received a call from a friend asking for help choosing paint colors for her new house.  She explained that her family’s house hunting experience had been rather long and tedious. They would be closing soon on a newer house in a great neighborhood. They were excited and knew that their new home would really work for their family, but she’d been hoping to snag an older Mid-Century Modern home in a more established neighborhood. Did I mention my friend is awesome?

Mid-Century style is in the spotlight right now, but my friend has been a long-time fan. She associates the style with the warmth and love of family. Her grandmother’s home and furnishings were Mid-Century, and she really wanted her new home to have that vintage vibe, but in an up-to-date, less “grandma’s house” way. Modern Mid-Century, if you will.

We set up a secret Pinterest board to share inspiration photos.  Here are a few she pinned. I’m loving the colors.

kroehler 1 kroehler 3

| source |

My friend already has several pieces of Mid-Century furniture that were passed down from relatives and purchased from antique shops over the past several years. After taking inventory of the pieces she owned and planned to use in the new house, talking with her about future furniture purchases, and looking through her inspiration photos, I had a good idea of what direction to go with the color palate for her new place. Light, peaceful, and modern colors will bring in current trends and fit the style of her more traditional home, while setting a comfortable background for her fabulous pieces of vintage furniture. The perfect mix of old and new for this busy young family who values spending time together at home.

Foyer/Family/Hall:  HGTV Home Gracious Greige (HGSW2456)
Dining: HGTV Home Indigo Batik (SW7602)
Kitchen and Breakfast Room: HGTV HomeWhite Batten (HGSW4003) or Country Beige (Olympic D18-1)
Kids’ Bedroom: Valspar Woodrow Wilson Putty (6006-1A)
Kids’ Bath: Valspar Asiago (6005-1A)
Playroom: HGTV Home White Gallery (HGSW4002)
Master Bedroom:  HGTV Home Sky House (HGSW3297)
Master Bath: Valspar Asiago (6005-1A)
Can you believe that we didn’t have to tweak any of these colors! They tried samples on every wall, waited 24 hours, decided they love them and went back to purchase paint. These colors are now on her walls and really turned out lovely.
We’ll be working on the rest of the project in stages, which works really well for this type of long-distance project. Stay tuned for some kid’s room inspiration and design boards!


Featured Vendor: Snow’s Antiques

This morning’s crisp and lovely autumn air is just the inspiration we needed to get back to the blog.  With the lazy days of summer gone and the new school year’s routines established, our creativity picks up the pace, fueled by a healthy mix of cotton fields ready for harvest, pumpkins of all shapes and sizes, open windows, front porch swings, flannel blankets and football fields.

Saturday mornings in the fall are lovely for antiquing. Snow’s is one of our favorite local spots on Rapides Avenue.  You’ll find an eclectic mix of industrial items, fine antiques, popular knick-knacks, and quirky statement pieces.   IMG_7209


The shop is owned by Steve Snow, who’s helpful, friendly, and always willing to make you a good deal.  Have a question about the provenance of a piece? Looking for something specific? Just ask and Steve will usually share what he knows about the object’s former location and use or dig out just what you’re looking for from the back room.  It’s always fun to know the history behind the antique and vintage pieces you bring home, and I’ve found that my guests usually love to know hear the stories behind each piece.


Here are a few pieces that caught my eye when I wandered the shop a few weeks back.  Most of them are quirky and would make fun accents in just the right space.


How cool (and heavy) is this rusty iron railroad crossing marker?


These vintage radiators would be fantastic grouped together on top of a shelf or in a store window display.


We snagged this longhorn for one of our clients! Reveal coming soon…


These bulldog andirons would be a perfectly fun addition to a classic living room fireplace.


Scales, scales, scales! All styles and ages.  Super fun for decorative kitchen accents or grouped as a display.


This vintage mint green gum ball machine is a personal favorite. It’s solid and sturdy with the original labeling, too.  This would be a fun addition to a playroom. Imagine it filled with colorful gum balls! My kids would go crazy!


These old concrete and metal playground pieces are a bit on the quirky side, but would be super fun in a vintage-industrial space.


This stack of trays came from the kitchen of a local eatery that recently closed after over 50 years as a beloved local bar and restaurant. They make a great statement stacked just as they are.  All they need is a large, sturdy shelf to call home.


We’re often asked what local antique stores and flea-markets we frequent.  Snow’s Antiques is on our short list.  Stop by the corner of Rapides Avenue and Prospect and spend some time hunting around inside.  The large inventory changes often and you’ll probably find something new to bring home each time you visit!

Happy hunting!


Master Bath Remodel…At Long Last

Since I was a very small child, I have had an obsession with claw foot tubs. They are so extraordinarily romantic. Synonymous with roses, candles, bubbles, and soft music, they seem to whisper, seductively, “Come on in, sweetheart. I’ll take excellent care of you.” They are therapeutic; step inside of one and all your troubles (pardon the pun) are washed away. While the other little girls dreamed of Barbie houses, I dreamed of having my own house one day. The most important detail within that house? My very own claw foot tub. It was so much more a need than a want–numero uno on the old bucket list.

It is with great pleasure and big smiles and a swelling, swooning heart that I announce that my dream has finally come true. A few months ago, demolition began on what was my final room in my home to renovate: the master bath.



What began as a hideously green, small closet-sized room that was no longer functional, soon became double the size with the breaking down of an exterior wall, expanding (and almost doubling) the square footage.



Then came the fun part! WALLS!! Sheetrock day is always my favorite of any remodel. The space finally is defined and bound, like a present that is wonderfully and beautifully wrapped. The jutting small portion of wall was a surprise. A giant plumbing pipe appeared with demo and threw me for a bit of a loop. Walling it up was the only option, which worried me at first, but it turned out to be a nice little feature, separating the tub from the rest of the space. I chose hexagonal tile for the floor because of its vintage look and cost efficiency.

The finished product is something that still wows me.

photo 1

photo 2

photo 3

That tub. MY (it is the most important adjective) glorious, romantic, seductive, beautiful tub. Purchased at a flea market at less-than-perfect condition, it was refinished and restored back to its former glory. Sometimes when I am soaking it all up (again, the puns…you must forgive), I wonder if there was another woman who once loved it as much as I, perhaps with the same struggles and worries needing to be forgotten, letting them all go as only such a tub allows. At first, I wanted to fashion my vanity from an old dresser, but could find nothing to fit the bill. I opted, instead, for a double-the-normal-size pedestal sink. I adore it. With a large Hobby Lobby basket with towels below and a framless, vintage mirror (thrown in FREE with my purchase of my tub at the flea market–yes, please!), it perfectly pairs with the tub. A simple stool, rug, and a few other small trinkets and do-dads here and there create a tranquil, relaxing sanctuary.

We all need a sanctuary. I feel like the luckiest lady in the world to finally have mine.


Farewell Crib, Hello Closet!

 A few weeks ago I was able to finish converting my youngest child’s nursery into a big boy room/guest room, suitable for a wildly independent two year old and the occasional houseguest.  The conversion has taken a bit longer than I planned, but that’s due more to my reluctance to admit that we’re ready to move the baby bed to the attic than the actual amount of work that was done in the room.

You all asked for additional photos of the vintage crib, so I’ll indulge both your curiosity and my sentimental heart with these final photos of a family heirloom that has nurtured three generations of sweet, sleeping infants.



This side latches and folds down making it easy for adults to get baby in and out of the bed, but nearly impossible for a toddler to unlatch both ends at the same time. Yes, that is screen between the wood frame.


This is the “lid” (for lack of a better word) that folds over the top and latches.  We never used it, but the idea of screening your child in their crib actually makes pretty good sense to this Southern Mama who enjoys the outdoors but detests mosquitos. Judging by the vintage advertisement below, that’s exactly what the Trimble Company was banking on.




As you can see, my child thought his crib was a pretty novel idea, too!

I will not lie, even after rearranging the room, I left the crib sitting awkwardly in the middle between the bed and the chair, obviously out of use and out of place, but not quite ready to store it away for good.  However, this past week, my husband finally hauled it up to the attic, and we decided to fully embrace the “little boy” years. He’s ready and so are we!


. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

I wanted to keep a hint of the “sweetness”of P’s nursery in his updated space.  He is a sweet child and a calm and pleasant room suits him well.  Like any good mother on a mission to clean up and clean out, I chose to tackle the closet first.

3-Hunt and Gather4

Cleaning out the baby things was the difficult part.  The actual conversion was simple. I simply lifted off the front half of the changing table that my husband installed, moved the hanging rod from the bottom bracket to the top, moved the baskets to the top shelves, and adjusted the side shelving to accomodate toys. Toys are kid-accessible and clothes are not.  You like how I planned that, no?



I lowered the adjustable shelves are repurposed baskets (oops! forgot to re-label) to make room for toys.


The center and right sides of the closet store larger toys that I’d rather not have displayed in the room.  He can actually play with his tools inside the closet!


Looking up to the top of the closet.  Plenty of room for several seasons of hanging clothes as well as two shelves of bins and baskets.

Having an organized and functional closet for my kids makes mornings easier and cleanup time bearable.  The little one is loving his new closet.  He feels like the big boy that he is by being able to choose his toys and put them back by himself.  I consider it a winning design when a closet can aid in teaching kids to have fun and be responsible for their things.

In the next few days, I’ll post more about changes to the rest of the room, but here are few glimpses of the fun!


Can’t wait to show you more!


Featured Vendor: Ebenezer Estate Sales

The second in our series of featured vendors is of a different variety than the typical flea market or antique shop. Estate sales excite us so because of their intensity and the promise of a new crop of treasures. Because we lead such busy lives, it is often hard to keep up with when these are taking place in our area, but today’s feature makes this easy through their Facebook page, where posts and photos of upcoming sales tease and excite us! Ebenezer Estate Sales always promises to have a fabulous sale, filled with any and everything you could imagine–they are like garage sales on steroids! Here are some of our treasures from their last sale:

I love the kitchen scale I found to add to my growing collection and the sturdy brown basket provides perfect storage for paper and other art supplies for my children. Megan was especially excited about her matching floral chairs find! She’s been looking for a matching set of vintage chairs for her living room for quite some time now. These were not exactly what she had in mind, but as life often teaches us, sometimes the best things come to us that way. As you can see, they work beautifully, providing excellent design appeal with their fun and vibrant pattern and color.




Even I found a chair to work perfectly in my son’s room. At fifty bucks, this one was a steal:


Here’s Ebenezer’s history and mission:


This business is run by Debi Lee Upshaw of Alexandria, Louisiana. I have a dedicated staff of workers that I LOVE and could not do without! My sweet family has been on board to help since our first sale back in 1992 (Jacob and Hannah were 10 and 9 years old respectively). Grammaw and Paw Paw and Aunt Debbie have been loads of help too! We are from Central Louisiana but we have conducted sales in West Monroe, Nachitoches, Lecompte, Louisiana, as well as Jacksonville, Florida.


Ebenezer Estate Sales began in June of 1992. We are now operating in our 20th year!!! I began as an avid estate sale fan and regularly attended every estate sale I could find. I was a “picker” for local antique shops in the early 90’s. Then a friend asked if I could help her liquidate the contents of her father’s home. I had been to enough sales to know what I thought worked and what didn’t so I told her I would sure try! From that experience I began putting sales together for folks and got jobs from “word of mouth” advertising alone. I later decided to get my occupational license and the rest is history.

Sometimes the most successful and wonderful businesses get started that way!!

Each time we visit a new home liquidation, we always reflect on the sense of sadness we get, rummaging through someone’s life. There is a sacredness about an estate sale, a sense of closeness to a life you know nothing about, but also an idea that you can take their things and bring them new life and a new beginning. We try never to forget this as we scoop up our new treasures; they have a story to tell and we are honored to let our homes continue to tell these stories.

If you would like to visit Ebenezer’s next sale, where we PROMISE you will find something you can’t live without, just like their Facebook page: Tell ’em Brandie and Megan sent you!!



Life with Little Ones: Nursery + Guest bedroom

I’ve been reflecting this past week on the fact that my youngest will turn 2 in six short days.  I can hardly believe it.  My heart is full of joy at the beautiful child he is becoming, yet at the same time it aches for him to remain a precious babe just a little while longer.  Such is the wonderfully complex love of a mother’s heart.


The realization that the past two years have flown by even faster than I remember with my oldest son has made me want to slow down these last few  days of of my Sweet P’s second year of life just to make sure I have every little precious detail of his babyhood ingrained in my heart and mind so that I may ponder over them when I am old and gray.

So, bear with me this week as I sentimentally celebrate the life of my almost-two-year-old.  What better place for me to begin than by sharing photos of his nursery.


I have fond memories of creating this space especially for him.  Even though he is my second child, this was my first nursery to design.  (We were renting a small, four-room shotgun house when my first son was born and had practically no flexibility in space or paint color.) My desire was for this nursery to be sweet yet boyish with hints of vintage and modern elements.


I chose the wall color before I knew if le bebe would be a boy or a girl, intending to accent it with navy for a boy or coral for a girl. It’s been fun to find the perfect navy accents, mostly stripes and polka dots.  They give the room a playful air.

The small wardrobe dates to the 1950s and was originally used by my mother when she was a child. She even scribbled her name on one of the drawers in crayon.  My Grandmother handed it down to my mother, who handed it down to me.  It has now been used by three generations.

The sweet outfit and baby shoes framed above the wardrobe were my husband’s when he was a baby.  My Mother-In-Law thoughtfully passed them down to me when my first son was born.  A collection of 12 vintage and modern silver frames are ready to capture the sweet smiles of our little one as he grows so quickly his first year.

vintage crib

This crib has also been used by three generations:  my mother, myself, and my two boys.  It has been restored and repaired for each child and continues to hold up well.  I love that it rolls easily.  Should we have guests, it is takes little time and effort to roll the baby’s bed into our room for a few days.   Above the bed hangs a darling  print by Sarah Jane Studios. It reminds me of one of my favorite childhood movies, a short French film called The Red Balloon.


The room is large and doubles as a guest bedroom, so it also has a double bed.  My husband helped me cut plywood to form the headboard frame. I found the blue and white stripe fabric on the remnant table at the fabric store and knew it would be perfect for the room.   The quilt at the end of the bed belonged to my husband’s great-grandmother. It is soft, perfectly warm, and introduces a bit of color into the room.  The navy polk dot crib sheets pick up the same hundred-year-old pattern on the quilt.


    We had recently relocated the original wood shutter closet doors to the exterior of our home.  Because I knew we’d be using the closet often, I chose to hang simple white curtains at the opening to make the closet easier to access.


My husband built the cornice and I covered it using leftover fabric from the headboard project.  He also added the removable countertop and lower hanging rack.  We use the countertop as a changing table and baby clothes are neatly hung below.  Two rows of shelving hung along the top of the closet, along with four shelves  tucked neatly on the left side, give us plenty of room to  store everything from diapers to socks to outgrown clothing in neatly labeled navy cloth bins.

As children grow and change, their rooms must change to suit their needs.  Soon, the closet will be converted from a changing station to a toy rack,  the baby bed will move to the attic, and framed hand-me-downs will be packed back in a box.  Of course, I have plans for tweaking and updating this space, but before I begin, I felt it only appropriate to document the space that nurtured my little one during the first precious years of his life.


Christmas Eve Gift

My mother’s extended family has a tradition of trying to be the first one to say,”Christmas Eve Gift!” to other family members on Christmas Eve.  I’m not sure how far this tradition goes back in her family or from where it originated, but I do know that it’s a tradition that I love and am doing my best to pass on to my kids.  With cell phones, caller id, text, and modern technology in general, the game has lost a bit of its excitement and intrigue. I remember timidly answering the rotary phone with, “Christmas Eve Gift!” every time it rang and being slightly embarrassed when the caller, a non-family member, responded with a confused, “Excuse me?”  But, when the caller was a family member, it was fun to “get” them! I think the person who never got caught was awarded with a gift to open on Christmas Eve.  Apparently, that was not me!


For most of us, Christmastime is full of traditions, and it is difficult not to add more and more each year. This season, I’ve tried hard not to busy our family with too many activities, but to focus on a select few ,time-honored family traditions.  Like many mothers who have gone before me, I’m learning the art of embracing tradition in a  simple and meaningful way, rather than filling up everyday on our calendar with a holiday activity.

This year I left most of the Christmas decorations in the box, pulling out only those I really love.  The only decorations I purchased were a Christmas tree and cedar garland for the mantle. I’m always surprised that year after year, just by varying their placement, the same decorations feel new.

HGH _Christmas Entry

While I admire all the beautiful themed homes that I see in magazines and on other blogs, I just can’t bring myself to decorate our tree in anything other than family ornaments. Each tells a story that I love sharing with my oldest son as we hang them on the tree. We almost opted for white lights this year, a first ever for our family, but my boys insisted on old-school colored bulbs.

HGH_tree and cat

One of my most favorite things to hang is a strand of vintage Christmas postcards from the 1930s that I found several years ago at a flea market.  Each card has such a charming illustration and contains a note written in the most beautiful cursive script. Since our home was built in the late 20s, I like to imagine that many cards just like these passed through our door.

HGH_vintage cards

We’ve started our own tradition with Christmas cards that we receive during the season.  We hang them in the hallway (and often leave them up all year) so that we are daily reminded of the blessing of sharing life with friends far and near.


Our stockings find a new location every year.  This year, they chose the old chest of drawers-turned-tv console.  They don’t match, but they do coordinate.  I like that each stocking reflects a bit of its owners’ personality.


My kitchen is always a bit more whimsically decorated than the rest of the house.  It is where I display the boys’ handmade gifts and keepsakes. The boys decorated their little white trees with colorful, shiny garland.  A vintage santa cookie jar found its spot next to my coffee mugs, and the boys’ growing collection of Nutcrackers stationed themselves on the kitchen scale.

HGH_Kids tree



Decorating for Christmas helps us share the peace, hope, and joy of the season with our family and friends. What I love is that everyone shares the season in a different and unique way.  There is not right or wrong way to decorate a tree or display your Christmas cards.  Decorate as much or as little as you like.  Continue traditions and start new ones.  Sincerely sharing peace, hope, joy, and love is what Christmas is all about.