Design

Is it done yet?

Pretty sure my husband said “is it done yet” 10x in the past few years as I added, tweaked and worked to make our living room complete! What I learned during the process…live in your house before you make it your home.  Don’t rush it.  Buy pieces (furniture and accessories) that will make it feel like a home.

The mistake I made with our living room was rushing to buy a couch before the living room was finished during the build process.  It’s not that the couch doesn’t work or that I don’t like the color/ fabric but we didn’t have a chance to “live” in the space to figure out the best way to lay out the room.  So, I have worked around the couch and made it all work together to be part of our home.  I am sitting on that very couch tonight writing this post.  Looking around the room tonight it makes me happy (design happy).  It’s a room we spend most of our time in as a family so I made sure it is comfortable but also brought in the various elements of color and design that I love.

As I work through my posts I will share my rooms that are complete and some that are still a work-in-progress (yes, even 3-years after moving in).  People say that there is always something to do with a house once you are a home owner.  Is it bad that I love the never-ending projects?  I do.  Home projects make me happy and keep me up a night brainstorming new ideas.

I can’t wait to share all of my ideas and projects with you on btb Style and Design and I hope to inspire all of the little or big projects you are taking on.

Living Room Details

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This bamboo chair for Ballard is the best
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Great table from Rue La La- lightweight and easy to move around
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Ceiling fan = must for all living rooms
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These lamps are EVERYTHING!
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I probably re-style these shelves 1x a month
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I will always show you what it looks like in “real life” – so lots of pictures of my family!
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Close-up…trays make everything look better
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The couch – love the deep navy color
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Representing my home town- Long Island and my new home- South Shore!
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One of my favorite items in our Living Room- a tide clock (we use it every beach day in the summer!)
Building, Design

From plaster to paint- plus my 3 tips for selecting a paint color

Before I get into my next post I wanted to take a minute to say thank you to all of you who asked about the blog and missed my posts! The feedback was encouraging and has motivated me to open up my laptop and dive into Building the Bennett’s again. I don’t know what the future has in store for Building the Bennett’s but I know that it is something I enjoy doing. So thank you again for your support!

The next few posts are going to show how our house being completed over a period of about 4-weeks. We learned a lot during this process but it was really amazing to see what can get done in the last 4-6 weeks of your build. You have to know there are going to be delays, hiccups to the process and sometimes sacrifices but at the end you have a wonderful home.

When the interior paint was completed I had a few days of panic. Your house goes from all white to color in a matter of 2-days and if you use any bold colors (as we did) it can feel overwhelming. We were close to even re-painting two of the rooms as we doubted our selection. But we waited, and our “vision” came to life once the rooms were complete and furniture was delivered.

I learned a lot from this process and would have done a few things the same and a few things differently. Based on my learnings I think everyone should have these three tips when selecting a paint color:

1) Test the paint color(s)! Go to your local paint store and buy test paint. There are less brands that actually sell the small test jars so you have to invest a little more $ to buy the small paint jar but it is worth it. Next, test the paint on a piece of white board and bring it to your house and the room you are painting. Hold it up to the wall in different lights so you can get a sense of what it will really look like. And make sure you have enough of the paint (use two coats when testing) on the cardboard to really see the color.

2) Narrow down your color choices buy using a color fan deck and looking at it against fabrics or furniture you have in the room. One of the first things I purchased during the building process was the color wheel from Benjamin Moore Paints– you can get it at your paint store, hardware store or online. I brought the fan deck everywhere! Having the paint swatches allowed me to narrow down thousands of colors to around 20 to make our final choices.

3) Remember that your paint will always be brighter than a paint swatch- always! This might seem like a simple tip but one you should not forget!

With our painting experience both our Master Bedroom and Bath paint selections had us second guessing our choices when we first saw them. I was ready to change the bathroom, but felt like we would live with the bedroom. We decided to keep both as is and now we love both colors. Looking back, I would have paid more attention to tip #3 and happy that we followed tip #1 and #2. Good news is for anyone painting you can always change it- but why not make sure you love your first choice!

From Plaster to Paint-

Front Hall- Benjamin Moore Metro Grey
Front Hall- Benjamin Moore Metro Grey

Front Hall- Benjamin Moore Metro Grey
Front Hall- Benjamin Moore Metro Grey
Great Room- Benjamin Moore Metro Grey
Great Room- Benjamin Moore Metro Grey

Dining Room- Benjamin Moore Nob Hill Sage
Dining Room- Benjamin Moore Nob Hill Sage

Den- Benjamin Moore Smokey Taupe
Den- Benjamin Moore Smokey Taupe

Nursery- Benjamin Moore Palatial Skies
Nursery- Benjamin Moore Palatial Skies
Nursery- Benjamin Moore Palatial Skies
Nursery- Benjamin Moore Palatial Skies

Master Bedroom- Benjamin Moore Lazy Sunday
Master Bedroom- Benjamin Moore Lazy Sunday

Master Bedroom- Benjamin Moore Lazy Sunday
Master Bedroom- Benjamin Moore Lazy Sunday
Master Bath- Benjamin Moore Morning Glory
Master Bath- Benjamin Moore Morning Glory

Master Bath- Benjamin Moore Morning Glory
Master Bath- Benjamin Moore Morning Glory

Building, Design, Shopping

Make the best of what you have! Key tips to getting your house furnished.

If you are moving into a new space (whether it be a house or apartment) it can be overwhelming to think about furnishing the new space. I have learned a few key things in getting ready to decorate our new house and wanted to share them with you.

Key tips to getting your house furnished

1) Salvage something old and make it new with a little work and paint. Look at what you own now (or perhaps something stored in your parents attic!) and think about what you would want it to be. Whether you want to take on a project yourself or find someone local to refurbish a piece of furniture it could change the look and feel of something you already own. If you end up finding someone to do it shop around and get a few bids- its important to find someone who gets your style/ taste and you have confidence in the finished product. If you take it on yourself, do your research before diving in. Between Pinterest, Houzz and Design Magazines there are plenty of guides out there to get you started.

2) Sell what you don’t need! Whether it be on eBay, Craigslist or posting around your neighborhood selling furniture is a great way to create more cash for purchasing the pieces you really want. Make sure your price it well- higher than the lowest price you are willing to go but low enough to make it move. I recommend Craigslist as it helps to find buyers near you and allows for an easier process of pick up for your larger furniture items.

Both of these tips are one’s that we are using for our own house. Yesterday we dropped off two dressers to be refurbished that Jarret’s parents have had in their basement for a few years. They are both well made and with a little paint and some new hardware they will be the perfect pieces for one of our Guest Rooms. Instead of spending close to $1,000 for two dressers we will probably come out of this paying around $400 for two refurbished dressers that are painted in our ideal color and have the hardware we selected. For these dressers, we are going bold and selected a deep blue/ navy to go with the quilt and shams I bought this summer. We are working with Neatly Nested Decor in South Boston– Danielle (the owner) is amazing to work with (and her store is a must visit). These dressers will be the first of a few pieces I have her work on for the house.
Here is a little peak below…finished product to come in a few weeks! In the meantime, check out the inspiration for these dressers on my pinterest page and below

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dresserinspiration 3

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Building, Design

House Update 2/23/2014- Walls are up!

I know I keep saying this every week, but it is really starting to feel like a house. This week they got all of the blue board up. Now they can start the plastering, trim and paint and right behind that is the cabinet installation. Jarret and I won’t be down till a week from Tuesday to check out the progress but that additional wait time will give us a lot more to see.
In heading to the house this weekend we prepared ourselves for the rooms to feel smaller than expected. Our contractor warned us that during the point of the blue board the rooms can feel smaller. Good news is, it didn’t feel small at all! Maybe it was just that we were so excited to see something other than the framing but we felt really good about the space in each room. Looking forward to seeing our paint selections come to life in the next week!

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Great Room
Great Room

Kitchen & Eating Area
Kitchen & Eating Area
Dining room
Dining room
Guest Bath
Guest Bath
Office
Office
Guest Bedroom
Guest Bedroom
Upstairs Hallway
Upstairs Hallway
Master Bedroom
Master Bedroom
Master Shower
Master Shower
Master bathroom
Master bathroom
Building, Design

Final paint selection and My Tips for selecting paint colors

Selecting your paint colors for an entire house can be overwhelming! We took it one room/ one paint at a time and narrowed down to our final choices this weekend. It was important to keep consistency of the color palette throughout the house. While we wanted variation in color you want all of the colors to work back to each other. After working through this process I have put together some key tips on how to work through selecting Paint Colors.

Tips for Selecting Paint Colors
1) Buy the test paint and try it out. Looking at swatches online and in person helps but until you actually see it on a board to test it you don’t really see the full color (use 2 coats when testing).
2) Look at your test boards in the daylight in the rooms you are going to paint. Lighting is key, if you look at it in a different room or with different lighting it can change the look and feel of the color.
3) Use different design elements and swatches to help you narrow down your choices. Grey is so popular but there are so many different shades of grey to choose from. It helped us by having our cabinet samples, countertop, trim color and sectional fabric to narrow down on the right shade of grey for our interior.
4) Use the paint brand website. Fortunately our builders only use Benjamin Moore– their site is so helpful in providing recommendations and narrowing down the options (there are 1,000’s!)

These tips helped us narrow down the color wheel and land on what we think is a strong selection of colors that will help our house become a home!

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Uncategorized

Master Bedroom Decorating- Duvet Cover

You may remember I was debating over a few different options for our duvet cover in the Master Bedroom. I ended up finding one of our top choices on Rue La La the other week and made the purchase. This Mataveri Collection duvet cover from Bliss Living will work perfectly for the overall design in the master bedroom. I love the different shades of blue and the grey color, it will work back well to our paint selection in the bedroom and bath. I am going to have fun adding decorative pillows and a quilt to this bed. I should get it in the mail in the next few days- at which point I will be on the hunt for the different pieces to pull this bed together. More to come this week on ideas for our bedroom design!

BlissLivingDuvet

Building, Design

House Update 2/17/2014

Countdown is on- we are at about 8-weeks till move in. Things continue to move fast. Right now the insulation is complete, inspection is complete and they started putting up the Blue Board today. We are on track to plaster this week- after plaster comes the garage doors, painting and then before you know it cabinet insulation!

Here are a few quick images from the house this weekend…with the 8-weeks out time to get shopping and start ordering our furniture!

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