I’m so excited to be sharing the before & after’s of the Upland Project Kitchen today! We started with their Family Room and are slowly making over the rest of the rooms in their house. Their style is eclectic and transitional, and my goal has been to marry the traditional bones of their home with their love of luxe and rustic touches…Read More
Over the years of running my own interior design business, I’ve refined a process for my client work that includes making Inspiration Collages. I find they are a great tool for communicating my preliminary visions for the project and making sure designer and client are on the same page from the get go…Read More
If you’ve never worked with a professional interior designer before, you may be wondering how the whole process works. While each designer has their own methods, I want to share the steps my full-service projects go through, from start to finish in completing a room makeover…Read More
I’m super excited to introduce the Upland Project to you guys! Since last fall, I’ve been working with an awesome family here in York to design their home. When I first met with them they had recently painted their family room and purchased new furniture but needed some help to finish the room…Read More
As an interior designer, I like to be experimental with my own home. When we first bought our house, I painted our front doors chartreuse, because I wanted a really bold and unexpected accent color to stand out from our white siding and black shutters. I really liked that look, but now that's it's been a few years I'm ready for something different. My personal style is always evolving but lately, I've been drawn to classic simplicity. And what's more timeless than a black door? Inspired by this color change, I've pulled together some classic front door decor inspiration - basically my wishlist for everything I want to do for our home!
1. Paint Color - For the black, I chose Sherwin Williams Caviar in Resilience Exterior Satin. One quart will be more than enough to paint a door! I love the richness of this shade of black, especially in the satin finish.
2. Tea Leaf Wreaths - We actually have two front doors, plus the kitchen door which is the one we mainly use. I love wreaths, but it's expensive to buy 3 for every season let alone storing that many! I have been looking for two simple, high quality wreaths I can leave up all year round on the front doors and I found the perfect ones from Silk Plants Direct. These are their 18" Tea Leaf Wreaths. They come in a pack of 2 and they are comparable in price to what I've seen at my local Target & Michaels stores but so much higher quality and more realistic. These are faux, not preserved so they will hold up better over time. I might add a bow at Christmas time, but regardless I think these work for every season. Now I can just change the wreath on the kitchen door out whenever I want to and it will be much more affordable since I won't be multiplying the cost times 3 every time. Silk Plants Direct has a ton of beautiful wreaths and faux florals to choose from. I reached out to them about a coupon code for you guys, and they are offering 10% off your order with the code BLOGGER10!
3. "Please Ring" Doorbell - I ordered two of these doorbells from Rejuvenation when they were on sale a few months ago. I got the antique brass, but they also come nickel, bronze and lacquered brass. Right now we just have a white doorbell on the white siding, so it's not very noticeable. In fact, I think my brother is the only one who ever rings our doorbell! Hopefully that will change once we get these installed.
4. Door hardware - I've locked myself out too many times to count, so a keyless front door lock set is definitely in our future. I like that the finish of this one coordinates with the door bell and will pop off the black paint. Also, if you look closely the black numbers on the white buttons give a bit of a vintage vibe which I like. The convenience of modern technology with a look that fits out 1903 fixer upper - a win win!
5. Outdoor Wall Sconces - This is the outdoor version of the ceiling lights I chose for our hallways. I like the idea of bringing a little indoor/outdoor continuity to the house and the schoolhouse look of these Eddystone Wall Fixtures is so timeless. And seriously, at $20 a pop - you can't beat these!
6. Layered Door Mats - I think Studio McGee might be the mastermind behind the layered doormat trend and I love their Eucalyptus Bundle Doormat. It's a little pricey but the design is so gorgeous. I would layer it with this charcoal stripe indoor/outdoor rug in a 3' x 5'.
7. Faux Concrete Planter - Another thing I've been searching for are affordable urns for our front porch. These are cheaper than what I've seen at the garden centers and I like the warm, aged concrete finish. They also come in a browner color and a dark gray.
Disclosure: This post includes some affiliate links, meaning if you shop using the links in this post, I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for supporting brands that support this blog!
Every item in this photo is a secondhand find with the exception of our dining chairs.
It's pretty common knowledge at this point that I love shopping secondhand. Most items in our house were found at a thrift store, yard sale or online classifieds like Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace. There are many reasons to love thrifting; whether it's the thrill of the hunt, trying to be mindful of consumption in regards to sustainability and the environment, or as an affordable way to outfit yourself and your home. My reason for thrifting is a combination of all three plus I love to decorate my home with unique items that no one else has. I've been a thrifter since high school and I am often asked how I find such good stuff secondhand. I wrote this post to share what I've learned over the years and my best tips for thrifting housewares and home decor items.
Where to Shop
For smaller home decor items and housewares, I find that thrift stores and yard sales are really the best place to shop. For bigger items, I'm a fan of Facebook Marketplace and Craiglist (I'll be sharing my tips for shopping on those sites soon!) but in my experience the best prices and selection on smaller home goods aren't going to be found online. Familiarize yourself with the secondhand shops in your area and go frequently. People have told me that they would love to thrift but just don't have the time. Thrifting doesn't have to be super time consuming! After you've been to all your local spots once, you'll know which ones are worth making return trips to. I try to squeeze in a little thrifting if I'm out running errands and I'm going to be nearby one of my favorite shops. I don't spend hours shopping or look through every section every time I go. I've decided on certain parameters for myself that help narrow down what I'm looking for to save me time and make it more manageable to find what I'm looking for.
Have a "Wishlist"
So you can't really go to a thrift store once with a list and expect to find exactly what you're looking for. But I do recommend having an idea of what you might need or want for your house ahead of time for the simple reason that thrift stores are crowded and you won't see what you aren't looking for. Every time I think of something I could use for the house, I put it on a note in my phone. Right now on my list are new cereal bowls and wooden peg racks for our kitchen and laundry room. In addition to making it more likely that I'll find what I'm looking for, this list also helps keep me focused on buying things I could actually use. When items are priced at $0.99 it's tempting to just throw everything in your cart, but I'm still trying to be intentional about what I bring into our house from a clutter standpoint. And also, you're not really saving money if you're buying something you weren't planning to already, you know? That being said, there are some items that I always keep my eye out for because they are versatile for decorating and/or have some practical or organizational use. Pin this list to refer to the next time you're out thrifting!
Know Your Style
Another way I save time at the thrift store is by really knowing my style and the types of materials, patterns and colors I want to include in my home decor. I prefer natural materials like wood, wicker, ceramic, stone, leather, linen and cotton so I keep my eye out for those materials whenever I'm out thrifting. I like classic patterns, like stripes, plaids, gingham and vintage florals. I also have narrowed down the color palette I buy for my own house, sticking to mostly neutrals like white, cream, tan, brown and black with some blues and greens. For wood, wicker and leather I stick with medium red-brown finishes. For metals, I mostly buy brass and black. For you, it might be light/blonde wood finishes, warm colors, and copper metallics. Whatever your style is, coming up with a palette that you stick within for your home will make it easier to narrow down the selection while shopping secondhand and will also help your house feel more cohesive, and not like a thrift store itself!
Thrift shopping has become a big hobby for me. In addition to being an affordable and environmentally friendly choice, shopping secondhand for home decor has helped me to refine my personal style and create a look for our home that's collected, eclectic and feels unique to us. If you've never tried thrifting before, I hope this post inspires you to hit up your local stores! And if you are into thrifting already, I hope my tips help you find more of what you're looking for.
Do you have any thrifting tips to share? What's your favorite thing you found at the thrift store lately? Comment below or join the conversation on Instagram.
As promised, I'm back with the sources and budget breakdown for our spring 2018 One Room Challenge project. We completed our daughter's nursery in just about 6 weeks (we got a little bit of a head start with the painting) and on a budget of about $600 by using items we already had, adding nursery items to our baby shower registry and shopping secondhand as much as we could. Read on for our project budget broken down by what we purchased new (with sources linked) and vintage/secondhand.
Crib | Wayfair - $199 (gifted)
Crib skirt | Bed Bath & Beyond - $29.99 (gifted)
Goldenrod Pillow Cover | IKEA - $8
Floral Pillow Cover | H&M - $12.99
Striped Pillow Cover | H&M - $3.99
Tassel Pillow | AtHome - $19.99
Dresser | IKEA - $249.99 (purchased in 2014)
Changing tray | Wayfair - $45 (gifted)
Changing pad cover | Target - $16.39 (gifted)
"Edelweiss" Print | Emily Jeffords - 5x7 no longer available, 8x10 - $35
Wall sconce | Target - $24.99 (on clearance)
Woven-wood shades | Lowe's - 2 for $79.94
Curtains | H&M - 2 panels for $16 (on clearance)
Diaper pail | Target - $79.99
White Bookshelf | Target - $27.99 (on clearance)
Toy basket | HomeGoods - $16.99
Mural | Custom made by Walls Republic - sponsored (details in reveal post)
Trim | Lowe's - $7.78/8 ft piece x 6 pieces - $46.68
Total Spent = $407.55 (Not including gifted items and the dresser which we already had)
Karastan Rug | Facebook Marketplace -$50
Black Ceramic Lamp | Friend's yard sale - $5
Art & Frames | Various thrift stores - $15
Velvet Settee | Rinely Yard Sale (2016) - $30
Round mirror | Facebook Marketplace - $40
End table | Downtown York Economy Store - $12
Rocker | Facebook Marketplace - $30
Accessories | Vintage books, wooden toys, vases, etc. - approx. $25
Total Spent = $207
So all in all, we spent a total of about $615 to create our dream nursery by including nursery items on our baby registry and shopping secondhand as much as we could. If we were buying every single item on our own and brand new, this nursery easily could have cost upwards of $2,000. We are very lucky and grateful for the items that were gifted to us! I wanted to break down the budget this way to show that if you get a little creative, plan your nursery design before you register for your baby shower and are ok with not having everything brand new for your little one, you can have a nursery that's truly unique. That being said, babies don't need very much and there's nothing wrong with having a simple or minimalistic nursery. But being an interior designer and first-time mama, it was really important to me to create a beautiful room for our little girl (that also has longevity for future Storck babies!) and shopping smart and secondhand was how we were able to do it on a budget. This is the same approach we take with the rest of our home design projects and I hope by sharing our process, we can inspire others to know that you don't need a huge budget to have a well-decorated home!
We did it! Our daughter's nursery is officially complete and ready for her arrival in approximately 3 more weeks. It's Week 6 and reveal day for the Spring 2018 One Room Challenge. I can't wait to show you around!
If you're just joining in now, Hi! I'm Stevie. I'm an interior designer and soon-to-be mama from York County, Pennsylvania. For the past six weeks, my husband Anthony and I have been making over a spare bedroom into a dream nursery for our little girl due at the end of this month! We're old home lovers, thrift store enthusiasts and semi-confident DIY'ers. You can see more of our house here, or catch up on our ORC posts below:
We didn't have a theme that we were going for with the nursery; more of a color palette and a "vibe". Our house was built in 1903, but sadly the upstairs had been completely renovated and lost all of it's original character. My biggest goal with the nursery was to create a historic-inspired space that felt like it had always been there. I love eclectic interiors that have that "collected over time" look, mixing styles and eras of furniture to create a room that feels truly unique. But before I get too far into the design, let's take a quick peek at what the room looked like in it's previous life as a spare bedroom/hodge-podge of all our leftover furniture:
The starting point was definitely the crib. I had my sights on either a vintage style crib and once I saw this oil-rubbed bronze beauty, I knew it had to be the one. I love that it looks like it could be antique, but is still pretty simple. The single row of decorative balls feels like a modern take on the traditional ornate styling of wrought iron cribs. I wanted the crib wall to really become the main feature of the room and got the idea that a black and white wallpaper mural would be just the way to do that.
I'm thrilled to have partnered with Walls Republic for the One Room Challenge on this stunning custom wallpaper mural! Walls Republic is a great resource with thousands of modern, stylish wallpapers and murals to choose from. They also offer a "Create Your Own" mural option, where you can have any image from Shutterstock made into a custom sized wallpaper mural. Anthony and I chose this beautiful 19th century engraving because of the gorgeous details and the little storks wading in the water. Ok, they might be herons, but our last name is Storck so it just felt too perfect! Through Walls Republic I was able to customize the size to fit our room and have it printed in greyscale (the original image had some slight sepia tones) onto high quality non-woven paper.
Our friend and neighbor Janie Reeves of Design2Finish generously installed it for us and with Anthony's help they had it up in under an hour. If you're local to PA, MD or northern VA and in need of a fantastic painter and wallpaper hanger, she's your woman! A big thank you to both Walls Republic and Janie, the mural is truly a showstopper and our favorite part of the room!
In addition to framing the mural out with simple chair rail moulding, we continued the same moulding around the perimeter of the room as a faux picture rail for a little architectural interest. Anthony had never done and finish carpentry before, but he figured it out quickly and got it done in just a couple of evenings last week. And he said he had fun doing it too, so maybe there'll be some more decorative moulding projects to come at the Storck Home! We painted all the trim, baseboards and the interior of the door the same color as the walls - Farrow & Ball's French Gray - to give the room a really cozy, cocoon-like feel.
For the main storage piece in this room, we reused an IKEA dresser that we had bought for our last apartment. Instead of a separate changing table, we topped it with a wooden changing tray and pad insert. I was originally thinking of a white tray, but I'm glad I went with the wood for a little warmth and contrast on this side of the room!
Over the course of my pregnancy, I had slowly been collecting artwork for the nursery. Everything is vintage except for the Emily Jeffords print on the far right - I love her work! The small piece in the brass frame is a page from a vintage book of Whittier poetry that was falling apart. I actually used a floral illustration from the same book to decorate the shelves on the other side of the room. Instead of making the gallery wall cohesive with matching frames, I decided to keep the eclectic look going by taking a list of the sizes I needed to Salvation Army and seeing what I could find. I came home with a mix of wood, black and brass frames, none of which cost most than 99 cents!
I know I said the mural was my favorite part of the room, but really we have so many favorite parts of this room it's hard to just pick one! This vintage velvet settee was a yard sale find a few years ago, and actually Anthony was the one who spotted it! Despite it's petite size, it is so so comfortable. Even our boxer, Chloe loves it! I imagine spending a lot of time between this settee and our rocker, cuddled up with our little girl. The antique mirror above it was another lucky secondhand find.
The closet in this room is pretty funky. It's kind of like a long and narrow walk-in, with 3 big "steps" that cover the slant of the stairwell ceiling below. There was no rod or shelving when we moved in and we decided to install the storage on the very back wall to make the best use of all the space back there. You can see a progress photo of the closet organization here. I had always planned on hanging a bookshelf on this shallow side wall of the closet, but on Sunday Anthony suggested that we remove the closet door and paint the interior of the closet to feel like an extension of the room. I'm so glad he did because I love this little nook so much more now!
On the fourth wall, we built simple shelves using primed MDF boards and pine brackets from Lowe's. We painted them the same color as the walls and trim because I wanted the items on the shelves to be the focus. I styled them out with a collection of vintage finds, a couple photos (including my nearly complete polaroid baby bump pictures!) and an adorable handmade elephant doll gifted to use by a friend. Next to the shelves, we hung a plug in wall sconce for reading bed time stories and late night nursing sessions.
The rocker was a $30 Facebook Marketplace find, that was originally purchased as a placeholder but since has really grown on us! It's a little dated, but the high back makes it super comfy and we don't plan to replace it anytime soon. I've already spent a lot of mornings rocking in this chair and thinking about what it will be like when our baby girl is here!
Designing and creating this room has really been a dream come true! Anthony and I both love spending time in here and we're so glad we hopped on board with the One Room Challenge this go round. It feels so good to have a beautiful room prepared just for our little one. We are so looking forward to all the time we'll be spending in here as a family in just a few short weeks!
I'll be sharing a post next week with sources for all the items (that aren't vintage at least!), but in the meantime feel free to ask me any questions on Instagram! I'll also be doing a video room tour on stories so we should definitely be friends over there ;)
There are so many amazing One Room Challenge room reveals to see! The 20 featured bloggers are linked below and you can browse the 200+ guest participant room reveals right here. Thanks for following along!
Apartment 34 | Beginning in the Middle | Coco & Jack | The English Room | The Gold Hive | Gray Malin | Jenna Sue Design | Jojotastic | Kelly Rogers Int. | Linda Holt | Marcus Design | Michelle Gage | Natasha Habermann | The Painted House | Rambling Renovators | Sacramento Street| Shannon Claire | Sketch 42 | Stephanie Kraus | Style Me Pretty Living
I remember when we lived in an apartment, I would dream about having a real guest bedroom to decorate someday. Then, when we bought our first home a few years ago, we ended up with three! One is being turned into a nursery very soon, but since we have ample room we find ourselves hosting overnight guests on a pretty regular basis. As such, I decided my 2014 post on 7 Guest Bedroom Essentials was in for a little update! Read on to see my new list of tips for how to put together a welcoming guest bedroom.
Idylwyld Project Guest Bedroom
1. Layered blankets
No matter what season it is, give your guests a variety of blankets to choose from. My go-to bed bedding combination is a duvet, a lightweight quilt and a throw blanket. Similarly, it's a good idea to have two sets of pillows to layer on a bed -- two on the softer side and two slightly firmer. I do the same thing on our bed because I like a soft pillow whereas my husband prefers something firmer. Give your guests some options to make them feel right at home!
2. Wifi password
One of the first things I want to do after spending long hours on the road is to plug my electronics in and check my email. Make it easy for your guests by sharing your home's wifi password with this cute printable I designed! It's kind of crazy, but this little printable has been repinned over 100K times on Pinterest. Can you believe it? Grab your copy below or shop my other printable designs here.
Click the buttons below to download your copy of my wifi password art print. I’m providing this digital print completely free, no email sign up required.
But if you like what we’ve created here and want to see more, I encourage you to check out my new free workbook, “My Secret to Inspired Productivity”, available as a free download exclusively for SSDC email list subscribers. Click here to learn more.
3. Cozy chair
If you have the space, it's always great to add some comfortable seating to your guest bedroom! We have a small settee across from the foot of the bed in ours, but an upholstered chair in a corner is a great option too. It gives guests a place to sit other than the bed and makes the whole room feel warmer and more inviting.
4. Spare set of house keys
We've hosted a lot of guests in the two and a half years we've owned our house. For guests staying for a longer visit or just crashing while they are in town for an event, we like to leave out a spare key. It gives our guests a little more autonomy with coming and going as they need to and just makes things easier! We have ours on a pretty leather tassel keychain I made so it's easy to spot!
5. Fresh towels
This one seems obvious, but there's nothing worse than realizing you forgot to do that load of laundry right when your guest wants to take a shower. Unfortunately, I know this from experience-- sorry, Ella! In the bustle of getting ready for houseguests, it's easy to forget something but make sure you have a couple nice, freshly laundered towels ready for when they arrive! I usually stack them in a pile on the foot of the bed or on the chair/settee.
I always like to have some snack food at the ready when I have guests coming. My guests are always welcome to what's in the refrigerator, but guests feel more comfortable helping themselves to snacks that are already out and ready for munching. I keep a bowl of granola bars and crackers stocked in our kitchen but if you really want to make a good impression, a small tray with a carafe, drinking glass and a few snacks right in the guest bedroom is a really nice detail!
7. Reading material
I always have a supply of magazines like Southern Living and Better Homes and Gardens, and I will usually leave a few of the current issues out when I know guests are coming over. I use hardcover and vintage books all around our house for styling, but I recently started keeping my collection of paperbacks in our guest bedroom too. This gives guests something to do if you are busy milling about the house preparing for a family gathering or celebration!
Confession, we don't currently have a waste basket in our guest room but it's something I keep meaning to add to my shopping list! There's a lot of small trash that can be created when you're traveling and it's always more convenient when your guests don't have to go looking for a spot to throw something away. I like decorative wastebaskets with removable liners, like this one.
We used to have a mirror in our guest room, but things in our house are always moving around and now I'm on the hunt for a nice, affordable floor mirror to put next to the closet. Yes, there's the bathroom but it's a nice touch to give guests a spot to check their outfit or touch up their makeup before they leave the room. Plus, a pretty mirror can add so much light and energy to a space! Hang a smaller one over a dresser or desk, or lean a tall mirror up against the wall like I plan to do.
10. Scented linen spray
In addition to washing all the bedding before I'm expecting a house guest, I like to add an extra boost of freshness when I'm making the bed with a naturally scented linen spray. You can definitely buy a premade spray, but I've started incorporating essential oils into my wellness and housekeeping routines over the last year or so and room sprays are so easy to whip up! I keep one in our room too to add some extra freshness to our bedding in between washes. I'll be sharing the DIY later this week!
What do you do to prep for house guests?
Comment below or on Instagram to share your tips! I love hosting friends and family in our home and I'm always looking for new ways to make things special for their visit!
In the two plus years we've owned our house, we've hosted a mother's day brunch, family dinners, birthday parties, Easter, Thanksgivings and Christmases and plenty of game nights. So this dining room has gotten plenty of action! It was one of the first rooms we painted (Pearl Gray from Sherwin Williams' historic collection) and after a couple years of collecting and rearranging, I really love the way it's come together!
If you read my recent living room progress post, you know that I decorate my own home mostly with thrifted, antique and second-hand finds. In this room, the only things that were purchased new were the molded plastic chairs, the curtains, faux sheepskin and the black lamp on the piano. The midcentury walnut table belonged to my great-aunt Bea and we got the antique upright grand piano for free from a local church that was undergoing renovations. The little blue chair, I picked up off the street in Bloomfield back when we lived in Pittsburgh and the rest of the art and decor were local thrift store finds.
My little collection features a plate of the historic landmarks in downtown York, funny Pennsylvania Dutch sayings (I grew up on a dairy farm with plenty of Amish neighbors) and a commemorative plate I found of the church we were married in. I picked these all up at local thrift shops and antique stores. Collections like this are my favorite because they are inexpensive, pretty & meaningful.
So if you made it to the end of this post, I have a little secret for you. These photos were taken over the summer and the dining room already doesn't look like this anymore! With the growth my business has had in the last year, we've decided to swap my office with the larger dining room. I'm sad to see this room dismantled, but I'm excited to put together our new, cozier dining room across the hallway. And I'm very excited to have a larger office with more space to work and store client order, with a door I can close at the end of the day! We're working on uncovering and refinishing the hardwood floors in the new office and then we'll be able to get both rooms back in working order -hopefully by Christmas!
Anthony and I have owned our house for two years now, and while it still feels like a major work in progress, it's about time I start sharing what we've accomplished so far! Of all the rooms in our house, I think the living room is the one that feels the most complete. My goal was to create a room that felt warm and cozy but with enough edge to bring our 1903 colonial/farmhouse into the 21st century. Here's what the space looked like back in 2015, right after we moved in.
Then in November of 2015, I shared a living room progress update after we had painted the walls black and gotten our new couch. If you saw my 2015 or 2016 Christmas House tours, you saw some small tweaks we made. The only real changes I've made to the living room this year are swapping the black and white wedding photo over our couch for a vintage Van Gogh reproduction, changing the pillow covers and adding our new distressed leather arm chair (aka my favorite craigslist find EVER). But just these couple of changes have made me so much happier with the living room design! I experimented with a lot of different colors and patterns in the living room over the last two years, but this latest quieted-down rendition just feels right. For the first time, the living room really feels like US.
I didn't design this room like a typical client project. Everything you see was collected over time. The sofa, rug, coffee table, pillow covers and lampshades were bought new but everything else is a second hand find, either from Craigslist, local thrift stores or consignment shops. If I had to put words to the inspiration of our living room, I would call it a modern take on English Country style. It's definitely traditional but there's an eclectic mix of old and new that keeps it feeling fresh. There are a few modern elements, like the midcentury styling of the leather chair, the clean lined coffee table and the simple art shelves that contrast the Charles-of-London sofa, antique French wingbacks and walnut chest we use as our television stand. It strikes a balance between peaceful and bold, collected and simple, elegant and casual.
We installed these art shelves in 2016 and they might just be my favorite detail of the room! Surprisingly, I've barely changed the styling since we put them up. I wanted something to balance out the television but I didn't want another heavy piece of furniture, especially because one of our two front doors opens into the living room, just to the right of this photo. These shelves were an inexpensive and easy DIY that was the perfect solution for this spot.
There are still a bunch of projects I want to finish in this room but I'm so happy with the progress we've made so far. I speak for Anthony and Chloe too when I say we love being in this room!
Stevie Storck Design Co. is a boutique residential interior design firm that specializes in elegant, eclectic style on mid-range budgets. We are based in York County, PA and serve local clients with consultation and full-service interior design and offer E-Design services for clients nationwide. To request more information about booking your next home design project with us, click here.