At Home with Amy Howard

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At Home with Amy Howard: If you follow me on IG, you may have noticed I have been talking quite a bit about Amy Howard Home.  Well, I recently was invited (along with 13 other bloggers) to attend an Amy Howard Home Painting Workshop in Memphis to learn all the painting techniques, which I can’t wait to share with you in the coming months.  One night, we were invited to dinner at Amy and Gene Howard’s Home.  Every corner of her house was impressively decorated, and I love how she incorporated traditional pieces with a touch of modern.

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The first thing that caught my eye and made my mouth drop in admiration was her white painted hard wood floors.  I really wish I captured better lighting but it was at night, so these are the best I could do.  Amy and her team are currently developing a paint for floors that are strong enough to handle the wear and abuse from children, dogs and husbands too!  Her white floors looked amazing, and I saw no marks on the floor.  How gorgeous is that dark oriental rug against the white?  I love the Restoration Hardware  milk globe light fixture against her traditional pieces.

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White painted floors!  How beautiful!  One of the things I came to really appreciate while browsing around Amy’s home is that most of her furniture pieces were rescued and refinished.  But you wouldn’t have thought!  Her paints do an amazing job making them look real or as though you bought it at a high-end furniture store.  They just looked so perfect and new.  Her farmhouse dining table and mismatch chairs and antique chandelier were a gorgeous surprise to her elegant home.

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The little girl’s room was probably my favorite room!  Schumacher navy blue wallpaper against pink curtains was a darling combination.  The beds are restored and reupholstered in a velvet blue fabric.  The restored lamps were laquered in pink, similar to my lacquer lamp.

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Kitchen and bathroom shot of at home with Amy Howard.  The acrylic bar stools with cow hide were custom made.  And her bathroom floors were marble tile that she had placed in a herringbone pattern to give it a richer look.  Sea grass wallpaper in the bathroom and the abstract painting gives the right amount of color to the room.  I always love a good kitchen and bathroom!

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The last bedroom was so impressive!  The room’s walls were completely covered in a Schumacher damask fabric!  The bed was restored using Amy’s toscana paints and then upholstered in the same fabric.  The lamb fur benches give the room a touch of modern.

Amy and Gene were so gracious to open up their beautiful home to us!  It was quite a treat !

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DIY Tassel Pillow

diy tassel pillow, anthropologie inspired, ikea hack, pillow tassel, bohemian
DIY Tassel Pillow
Cost: $15 (includes pillow insert)
Project Time: about 1.5 hours
I’ve become obsessed with tassels and making them is so easy!  So sticking with the tassel theme, I am showing how to make a DIY tassel pillow that would look good on a sofa or bed.  This pillow is inspired by this Anthropologie pillow and less than half the price.
I cut out about 32 tassels, and made most of them while listening to my 1st grader read for his daily 20 minutes of reading.  Multi-tasking ladies!
Materials:
embroidery thread (multiple colors).  For a 20×20 pillow you will need about 16 threads
scissors
pins
sewing machine
white thread
pillow cover (I used Ikea Gurli pillow cover)
pillow insert (I used Ikea Fjadrar pillow insert)
Instructions:
Follow these instructions to make the tassels.  Some modifications are that you won’t fold over the embroidery thread.  You will just make one tassel on each end of the embroidery thread (so 2 tassels for 1 embroidery).  I used the same thread color to tie the tassels.  No need to put a jump ring on it.  You will sew it instead.  I cut my tassels about 2 inches.
So for a 20×20 pillow I made 32 tassels (8 tassels for each side).  Once you finish making your tassels, lay out the tassels evenly along the edge of the pillow.  The ikea pillow cover I bought was a flange pillow so I made a little cut between the seam and wiggled the tassel in between so it looked like it was sewn into the pillow cover.  If your cover doesn’t have that, then you can just sew it on the outside and keep that side of the pillow against the sofa.

 

 

After you pin all the tassels along all 4 sides of the pillow, sew a straight stitch right along the edge.  Be careful if you have a zipper that you don’t sew the opening shut!  Once done, put the pillow insert in and enjoy!
diy tassel pillow, anthropologie inspired, tassel pillow, ikea hack, bohemian

 

Here are some options if you don’t want to make one:

 

Vintage Dresser Re-do with a touch of Modern

diy, staining, vintage dresser, renovation, refinishing
Mirror: Ballard Designs style Atoll (sold out) (similar) || Lamp: West Elm || Dresser Handles: Amazon
Repainted Vintage Dresser: We found this vintage dresser hanging out in the front yard of an abandon house.  It was going to be junked so we snatched it.  This is very much out of my element (grabbing random furniture off the side of the road), but we saw potential in the piece, and it was solid wood and very well made.  They don’t make furniture like they used to!  We cleaned it and kept it in the garage for a while.  Then one weekend we got the urge to finally refinish and stain it. My husband spent a full day sanding, taking off the decorative items and filling any cracks.  Here are the befores:

 

After sanding, we stain the piece with Varathane sun-bleached.  The color is beautiful, but I will say that it’s more gray than brown.  Once we stain the entire piece I was thinking it looked a little too gray and flat.  We have gray walls so I didn’t want the piece blending with the walls.
After it dried, I then did light sanding and applied one quick layer of Miniwax Special Walnut wood stain.  I let it dried and then touched up with Amy Howard’s One paint in Java, which I applied only a little bit to create more variation and texture.  With Amy Howard one paints you have to finish it off with a wax.  My local store that sells her products were all out of the wax and because of timing I decided to reapply a quick coat of stain to seal the paint.  Afterward I felt satisfied!  I like how you can still see the sunbleached peeking through, and the other colors giving it more depth and texture.  I am wondering if instead I started the base with special walnut and then added the sunbleached over if it would give it a different look.  We bought new handles and kept the hole width from the previous handles. Overall I think the vintage dresser came out good.

 

 

 

To make the vintage dresser look a little more modern, I styled it with a modern pillar lamp from West Elm and a white-framed mirror from Ballard Designs.  The decorative vases and tray are items I had around my house.

Don’t want to DIY and just want to buy it?  Here are some options:

White Leather Modern Chairs

white leather modern chairs with chrome | leatherette , modern chairs
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White Leather Modern Chairs: Under $500. White leatherette and modern chrome create an edgy lounge chair.  These chairs have a minimalist tone, but can work with any room decor.  This is a great way to bring in a modern style and pair it with a traditional sofa, similar to the image below.
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The ones listed above are all under $500.  I just ordered two of the Rialto Bonded Leather chairs for an office room I’m helping with decorating.  They look so good and comfortable to sit in.  Now we just need a rug and decorating accessories.

 

Guest Bathroom

Guest Bathroom: Before + After.  We bought our southern house about two years ago from a builder.  It was a spec home, which means it was a new build but not custom (we couldn’t pick any of the finishes out) and everything inside was builder grade.  We have been slowly making changing throughout the house, especially with the light fixtures.  The house was all brown when we bought it–outside, inside and all the details.  As my Dad would say…’cum on builders!  Get with the program!  And I would finish that off with…that’s SO 1998.  Well, first thing we did was paint the entire house a soft gray, switching out the brown paint color. We added wallpaper to many rooms.  One was the guest bathroom.  And we just finally switched out the light fixture and mirror in the guest bathroom.

Here are the before “progressing” pictures.  I didn’t get a picture of the bathroom right after we moved in without the wallpaper, but you get the idea.  We never painted this room but instead just added wallpaper.

 

Here is the “after”.  Just a few minor changes can make a big impact.  I wanted to keep the southern feel of the house, so I didn’t want to go too modern.  But the light fixture has a traditional contemporary look.  The light fixture is suppose to face down but because of the mirror size, I had to flip it facing up.  It works because of the height of the ceiling and still adds a ton of light.  I will say that to update the house I’ve been going with a chrome finish on fixtures regardless that the faucets and door handles are brown antique bronze.  I think it is OKAY to mix metals in a room.  All the links and resources are below.
guest bathroom, powder room, venetian mirror

 

guest bathroom, powder room, wallpaper, venetian mirror, bathroom with window

 

guest bathroom, powder room, wallpaper, window

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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