Arm Knitting - Cozy Large Throw Blanket

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I recently took a foray into arm knitting - my brother's girlfriend wanted an arm knitted blanket for their new apartment but was struggling to find one that was affordable and in the right color. She asked if I could make her one, so I took a look into it. The biggest struggle with this project turned out to be the yarn. The yarn needs to be custom and rather large/heavy weight. Not even chunky yarn will produce the same effect.

I bought yarn from Amazon - it still ended up being rather pricey, but I think that is really just the nature of the projects. Using my arms as knitting needles turned out to be incredibly awkward at first. I actually redid this blanket 4 times before getting it right on the fifth go. Thankfully, this really doesn't take long. I believe it probably took me 20 minutes for each go round - which is great because you are really hindered from doing much of anything when the yarn is just hanging around your arms.  In order to give some idea of scale, I wanted to share the picture below where I have it laid out on the bed - this blanket is meant to be a cozy throw for the couch so it is a bit smaller, but ultimately will provide a lot of warmth.

Arm Knitting Blanket - A Detailed Palette

It was actually quite a cool project and my brother's girlfriend LOVES how it turned out. I really do love the look of these blankets. The custom extra large yarn is ESSENTIAL for this look to be replicated. You may see a few tutorials that claim you can join three to for skeins of yarn together for the same look - but I was unable to do so, so I am very skeptical of the claim. Go with the larger custom yarn; even though it is pricier it will make the project easier and will give the look that you're going for.

Arm-Knitted Blanket - A Detailed Palette

Have a great Wednesday!
-Rachel

Trip to Prince Edward Island, Canada

Anne Series by LM Montgomery - A Detailed Palette

I have wanted to visit Prince Edward Island ever since reading Anne of Green Gables and all of the following books in the Anne Series by L. M. Montgomery  - so since around age 12 or 13. The books I am referring to are pictured above. With that background in mind, it is fitting to say that this trip had been a long time coming. One of the main reasons I was so intrigued to see the island for myself is how Montgomery describes it throughout the series - it's basically a character all its own and you can tell, by how she writes of the setting and the locale, that she just adored the small island. 

Andy and I drove from Bangor, Maine up to Canada - more on our time in Maine in another upcoming post. It was actually my first trip to Canada, despite living in Wisconsin for most of my life. My passport wasn't stamped, but it was a very easy trip overall, so there are no complaints. I actually love that we decided to take a rental car and drive. It allowed us to see more of Canada. It is such a beautiful place! We were also then able to see the Confederation Bridge in all of its mind-bending glory. This is a bridge that connects the island with the rest of Canada. It extends for about 8 miles.

It took us about 6-7 hours to drive from Bangor, Maine to the place we were staying in Prince Edward Island, an Airbnb aptly called Lilac Cottage. It was a small, simple, and clean cottage, with a view of the ocean and certainly did not lack for charm. We were only there for 2 nights, but the space was just perfect for us. A little breakfast nook from Lilac Cottage is pictured below - the whole place had lace curtains, like the ones pictured here - a detail that I personally loved.

Lilac Cottage - A Detailed Palette

The first item on our agenda was to see the Prince Edward Island National Park. It's actually split into three separate areas and is rather large when you consider all three portions and the rest of the island. From what we could tell, the Cavendish area of the park prominently features the red cliffs that the island is famous for. Most of the soil, though, shares its color with the red cliffs. This is due to the high iron-oxide content of the soil all across the island.

Prince Edward Island - red Cliffs - A Detailed Palette
Prince Edward Island - Red Cliffs - A Detailed Palette
Prince Edward Island - Red Cliffs - A Detailed Palette
Prince Edward Island - Red Soil - A Detailed Palette

The sand dunes make up another portion of the national park - you can see one below, next to a lighthouse on the national park. Something that we loved about the park and just Canada in general - entry to all of the national parks were free this year due to the Canadian Park Service celebrating 150 years. So if you're thinking about visiting some national parks in Canada, 2017 would be the year to do it! I wish we could say that we planned this perfectly, but it was more of lucky timing than anything else.

prince edward island lighthouse - A Detailed Palette

Of course, no trip to PEI would be complete without visiting the Anne of Green Gables locations. We spent a good portion of our time there visiting the Green Gables Heritage Site, the site of L.M. Montgomery's childhood home, and the L.M Montgomery National Historic Site.

Built to resemble Green Gables from the Anne series, the Green Gables Heritage Site was amazing as someone who has read all of the books. The attention to detail was outstanding and much appreciated. We toured the home - due to there being so many details that I loved/was inspired by, I plan on doing a separate post about the design found there. I found so many parallels to how people are living and decorating their space today - something I really was not expecting.

Anne of Green Gables Heritage Site - A Detailed Palette

We walked from the Green Gables Heritage Place to the site of L.M. Montgomery's childhood home. The building itself was not preserved - but the site still remains.

L. M Montgomery Home Site - A Detailed Palette
Site of L. M. Montgomery's Childhood Home - A Detailed Palette

Avonlea, the fictional town in the series, was also recreated and brought to life. We stopped by for a quick visit.

Avonlea - Prince Edward Island - A Detailed Palette
Avonlea - Prince Edward Island - A Detailed Palette

Overall, I found the island itself is incredibly unique. The red cliffs were even more beautiful than I imagined or could fully capture. Prince Edward Island also had a different vibe from anywhere else I have visited before. It was incredibly rural, but also had the laid back nature that's found on most islands, with friendly people and stunning vistas. We both loved it, and I am so glad that I was finally able to make the trip a reality.

Prince Edward Island - Lupine - A Detailed Palette

July Edit: Some Favorite Things

A quick update before we begin as it has been some time since I've posted - we've decided to stay in our current place for yet another year! It was quite a tricky call yet again, as my daily commute takes about two hours round trip. While I have been getting more used to it, it still is a struggle on most days and just takes up so much time. That said, it was difficult to imagine leaving our place and the neighborhood we live in.  One of the top features of our apartment - and one that is unfortunately hard to find elsewhere - is all of the natural light. With all of the summer light streaming in to our living room/dining room area, the plants in our space have been thriving (all except for the hydrangea plant, to be honest) and it has been just lovely.

Living room - A Detailed Palette

We also just celebrated Reggie's fourth birthday - can't believe he is so old!
So grateful for this little dog in my life!

Reggie's Fourth Birthday - A Detailed Palette

A few favorites to share:

Glass Ice Cream Cone Dishes: I first saw something very similar to these from Food52 about a year ago - that said, they were so pricey that I just could not justify purchasing them as they really wouldn't get that much use. Enter these Ice cream cone dishes from Target that were $1 a piece. Now, I am sure that the Food52 versions have their benefits, but I am just fine with the equally adorable, budget friendly version.

Ice Cream Cone Dishes - A Detailed Palette

"Beer Bouquet" Print from James Steeno Gallery: I found this while at the Cedarburg Strawberry Festival and just had to get it. I am still trying to find the perfect place to hang it and still need a frame, but wanted to share it all the same. All of the beers featured are WI-based, something that Andy and I both liked.

James Steeno Print - A Detailed Palette

Anne of Green Gables Print by David Jay: I got this from the gift shop at the Green Gables Heritage Place, along with this autobiography of L.M. Montgomery, in Prince Edward Island. Similar to the print above, I still need a frame and the perfect place to put it, but I just love this souvenir. 

Anne of Green Gables Print -  A Detailed Palette

Mirrored Sunglasses from J Crew -  got these for my trip to Maine and Prince Edward Island, and I love them.
Here is a very similar pair.

J. Crew Mirrored Sunglasses - A Detailed Palette

Jan Marini Transformation Face Cream: My sister recommended this to me and so far I love it - it has been well worth the price. I had some nasty breakouts in the beginning of the summer and had to revamp my skin regiment. This lotion has helped so much.

Have a great Monday!
-xo, Rachel

June 2017 Home Edit

It's June, and I am so happy that summer is finally here! It took a while, but the weather has been beautiful and I am excited to get back into running after taking a week off after the half marathon. With the new month, it seemed like an ideal time to share some new home trends in a home edit for June.

While I am not sure how practical wallpaper is when it comes down to the details of application, removal, and resale, it's been seriously trending for a while. My new favorite is this white and blue de Gournay wallpaper spotted in the San Francisco Designer Show House in the room by @dinabandmaninteriors. de Gournay, I have determined, is literally everywhere - I have seen it in nearly every big designer show home recently and in so many photos across shelter magazines and social, especially Instagram.

Something about that blue and white combination is so classic, but also so fresh feeling. That seems to be contradictory, but it's true and something about the combination above just works.The wallpaper and color scheme aren't the only things that I love about the photo above. The space is incredibly functional - if I had a laundry room this beautiful, I think laundry itself would be much less of a chore. And can we talk about that little doggy rinse station? It's just all perfect and I love how dog-friendly this would make any home once this was applied.

Changing gears a bit and going back to the warm, summer weather - it so makes me wish that I had space for a patio. Such a perfect way to enjoy the weather while either reading or knitting.

A dream patio with some eclectic vibes: 

The best thing about the look above? It could probably be mostly thrifted and wouldn't be horribly expensive to recreate. The plants would most likely be the most costly items.

Have a great Monday!
-Rachel

Life Lately: May 2017

Based off my lack of posting during April and May, some of you may have assumed that life has gotten rather busy for me. If that was the case, it would not have been an incorrect assumption. April is always a really busy time historically, both personally (with so many birthday celebrations jam packed into one month) and professionally. 

On the professional end of the spectrum, I traveled for work in April, visiting the Kips Bay Decorator Show House for 2017 in NYC, and again in May for the opening of a new store in New York City. It's always nice to travel a bit and break up the days in the office; that said, it didn't leave a lot of time for other things, unfortunately.  

On the personal side, from March through May I have been rather aggressively training (at least as much as work schedule will allow) for a half marathon (13.1 miles) that I would be running with my eldest sister. We actually JUST completed this on Sunday! My time wasn't impressive by any means (not a personal best), and I totally stopped to walk a few times, but I completed it. It is officially my FIFTH complete half marathon. Now that training is over, I'm going to attempt to rest up and get back into Orange Theory workouts - something that I've only recently discovered and really like. They are incredibly intense, but seem to be SO effective. In the meantime, though, rest is the key word. I think I may have developed some tendentious in my left heel. You can see my sister and I below - she is in the pink shirt and I am next to her in black with the pink headband. I LOVE running in Madison! The course is beautiful, and I get to see so many spots that mean so much to me after going to school there.

Madison Half Marathon

What I'm Reading

I just got the first three novels that are part of the Poldark series: Ross Poldark, Demelza Poldark and Jeremy Poldark. I really wanted to read the novels after spending a good two weekends binge watching the PBS show on Amazon prime. I've started the first and so far am really enjoying it. The show seems to have stayed mostly true to the books so far. I am well aware that the cover looks a little odd; one friend thought that it was a steamy romance novel and another thought that it was about a vampire. So far, it's neither and falls more into the realm of historical fiction. 

Poldark - What I am Reading - A Detailed Palette

I'm also reading The Last Wish by Andrzej Sapkowski - the first short story collection that introduced the Witcher. These are the books that have been turned into the Witcher video games. Since it seems like I will never get the final books for Game of Thrones/A Song of Ice and Fire, I decided another fantasy series was in order. So far, it's incredibly good, especially when you consider that it's a translation - the author is Polish, and I don't believe any of the books were originally written in English.

What I'm Working On

I'm currently knitting a blanket and will soon be taking on two more projects; an arm knit blanket and a Wool and the Gang sweater kit. I haven't done either before so I am excited for the supplies to arrive. I can't wait to show the final results from both - hopefully they are successful :)

I'm also attempting to get back into the groove of regularly blogging, now that work travel has slowed down and now that the half marathon training is over. 

Have a great Wednesday!
-Rachel

 

Thoughts on the 2017 Kips Bay Decorator Showhouse

I recently traveled to New York City for work, getting a chance to see the Kips Bay Decorator Showhouse in person. While I did travel due to my role at Kohler, I am not speaking in any official capacity or on behalf of the company in this post.

I do love getting to attend these showhomes though - not only because it's much easier from a social media perspective to do my job well when I'm in the midst of all the action, but it's also just really fun to see in person. As someone who is incredibly interested in design, even designs that may not be my exact cup of tea, It's always such a cool vibe to me - so many different designers, tastes, personalities - all in one one, albeit rather large, space.

There were 18 different designers this year. They each took on a room and made it their own. Every year, the home is open to the public and then sold, with all of the proceeds going to the Kips Bay Boys and Girls club.

I noticed a lot of big trends from room to room. Natural elements, like fossils and sand, were in more than a few rooms, something I found to be very intriguing. I don't consider it to be my style personally, but I found that the natural elements added a bit of depth and character to the rooms. Below, you can see an example of the sand I mentioned. It was a bright blue and actually made up part of the coffee table that's in the middle of the room. I took a closer shot as well.

Kips Bay Showhouse 2017 - A Detailed Palette
Kip Bay Designer Showhouse 2017 - A Detailed Palette

Wallpaper was almost a near constant, in some form or another, as you go room to room. I particularly loved seeing the stairway by Savage Designs, with the animals from Savage's home state of Tennessee on the walls.

Stairway to Savage - Kips Bay Showhouse 2017 - A Detailed Palette
Stairway to Savage - Kips Bay Showhouse 2017 - A Detailed Palette

 

The wallpaper in Ken Fulk's room was also stunning to see in person. I loved all of the zoo animals - especially the zebras. 

Ken Fulk's Dining Room - Kip Bay 2017
Ken Fulk - Kips Bay 2017 - A Detailed Palette

Ken Fulk's dining room really stood out to me - especially with the incredibly impressive flower arrangements - and all of the beautiful peonies!

Ken Fulk - Kips Bay 2017 A Detailed Palette
Ken Fulk - Kips Bay Showhouse 2017 - A Detailed Palette

I have barely touched the surface with these two rooms pictured - if you want to see more of the home, you should definitely check out the home tour.

Have a great Monday / start to your week!

DIY Knitted Dog Blanket - Free Pattern

My dog Reggie is actually quite small, weighing in at a whopping 13 pounds. I only clarify it because he actually photographs much larger, something that more than one person has remarked upon. People who see photos of him and then see him in person are usually quite surprised. Even though I am not sure it's directly related to his size, he does always seem to be cold in the winter. He will usually just hang out in his bed or underneath a chair - two spots that are right next to the heating vents. Since he loves the green blanket I knitted, I decided to knit him dog blanket to go with his dog bed.

Small Knitted Dog Blanket - DIY

I used the seed stitch for this blanket because it adds some texture and is so easy to do. While I am not sure this size blanket would fit every dog, this has worked perfectly for Reggie. Sizing it up wouldn't be too difficult either. As it stands, this blanket is incredibly easy to complete.

Pattern Details:
Knitting needles size 13 with chunky yarn (I used Lion Brand Chunky Yarn in Wheat)
Cast on 100 stitches.
Row 1: K1, P1, K1, P1 - continue until row is complete
Row 2: P1, K1, P1, K1 - continue until row is complete
Row 3: K1, P1, K1, P1 - continue until row is complete
Row 4:  P1, K1, P1, K1 - continue until row is complete
Continue Row 1-4 until you reach row 70
Use row 70 to cast off.

Note: for a larger dog, just increase the size. Cast on more stitches and go past row 70 before casting off.

The good news: Reggie seems to really like it!

DIY Knitting - Small Dog Knitted Blanket - Free Pattern - A Detailed Palette

Apartment Transformations: The Bedroom

You know how in mystery novels or maybe even dramatic-thriller type movies, there's that often repeated line of "things aren't always as they seem"? Of course, that isn't the only variation that's used, but I think it's been done quite a lot throughout the years. That's honestly how I feel about the internet sometimes. I am not writing anything new, as we all know that most people share only their curated "highlight reel" on social media. I know that I myself tend to do this, and I think it's really only natural. That said, I think it can be really easy to look past that knowledge when it comes to interior design. To me, it seems that many people who I follow decorate and redecorate at almost a lightening-like speed. It seems to all come together so quickly and I am left feeling inspired, but also desperately wishing that my own pace could follow suite.

After asking a few accounts about how long it took them to get to where they are, I found that I was completely mistaken. Most replied with "years!" and I was reminded that it's never actually completed as quickly as it may appear from the outside looking in. I then found myself wondering if that's what people think about the things I share - that this all happened essentially overnight or that I somehow quickly decorated when in fact, it's been quite the opposite. So I wanted to share some of the biggest transformations that my apartment has overcome throughout the three years we have now lived here. Since there have been quite a few, I decided to first share the bedroom today and to share the rest later on throughout the month.

The Bedroom

What I started with - wood floors that had seen better days, awkward windows, and stark white walls.

Bedroom - A Detailed Palette

The very first iteration - we used what we had and even at the time I was not over the moon about this set up. In fact, I really hated it, but had to put up with it for a while. I wanted better curtains and a more restful space overall, but not only had to find the right pieces but also had to work within the confines of my budget.

Bedroom - A Detailed Palette
Bedroom Dresser - A Detailed Palette

I really loved yellow and gray and updated the space accordingly. The duvet cover really helped to make the space more soft and restful overall, and I think it was one of the best purchases I've made for the bedroom when it comes to how impactful the color change really was.

Bedroom - A Detailed Palette

We grew a bit sick of the yellow and changed things up a bit yet again, this time with just a touch of the color. I still wanted to update the curtains and really wanted a tufted headboard to replace the old and rather beat up one that we had. Unfortunately, these headboards were incredibly expensive and every DIY I looked into for tufted headboards seemed much too complicated.

Bedroom - A Detailed Palette
Bedroom - A Detailed Palette

Then I finally found one on sale and made the purchase. It inspired some new styling overall and it completely changed the look of the room. Longer curtains were finally added as well.

Bedroom - A Detailed Palette
Bedroom - A Detailed Palette

I finally painted the dresser as well, keeping with the gray color palette and bringing about more of a soft feel to the overall space.

Bedroom - A Detailed Palette

An update to the living room brought the old TV and shelf into the bedroom. The cube shelf was also painted the same gray to keep things consistent and harmonious. 

Bedroom - A Detailed Palette
A Detailed Palette - Bedroom

Which brings us to the most recent version of the space.

Bedroom - A Detailed Palette
A Detailed Palette - Bedroom
Bedroom Transformation - A Detailed Palette

It certainly has come a long way - but all of this took quite some time. Time is necessary, I think, for you to find just what you're looking for. It's something I need to remind myself of often as I am not the most patient person in the world. Still, I am so proud of all the work I've been able to tackle in this small space all while working within a pretty limited budget.

Thanks for following along my bedroom decorating journey today. Hopefully this inspired you, but also made you realize that everything takes time even if it may not seem so - especially when it comes to decorating!  Have a wonderful Wednesday!
-Rachel

Ideas for Shoe Storage

With our current space being pretty limited on closet space and having limited room for any sort of entryway, we seem to be drowning in shoes quite a bit. In my attempts to find a solution, I've found a few shoe storage ideas that I love. While not all of these are ever possible for me, I thought they were quite chic and clever and therefore also share-worthy.  

I am thinking that whatever I get will have to be pretty simple. I really like the option below as it's streamlined and effective, while still looking quite cute overall.

IMAGE VIA OVERSTOCK

IMAGE VIA OVERSTOCK

This idea is a tad more rustic, but I love the overall use of the wall space to create a small, but efficient entrywall.

IMAGE VIA

IMAGE VIA

Love the idea below. A pile of shoes is rather unappealing to me and I think I would like the ability to be able to tuck them away when they aren't in use.

IMAGE VIA

IMAGE VIA

I'm hoping to find a solution to our abundance of shoes rather quickly and inexpensively. I will be sharing more soon!

Have a great Monday and start to your week!
-xo, Rachel

How I Styled My Home Office Desk

Desk Styling - A Detailed Palette

I believe that we often underestimate how much of an impact styling, organization, and design can have on how we behave in certain environments. A really good example of how design can drive behavior is the way a grocery store is designed and organized; it's literally organized in a way to drive sales and make you spend as much money as possible (i.e. impulse buys near the checkout). It's incredibly interesting, of course, but can also be applied practically. I think a great example of designing to drive behavior is your desk surface, and since I was recently told by a friend who was visiting how much they loved the "home office" portion of the apartment, I thought I would share how I approached styling the area. I have outlined the styling approach and the items I have found to be essential in keeping my desk space tidy and a driver of both inspiration and productivity.

Task Lighting: I know it's a bit obvious, but there is a reason why every desk ever has a task light. I wanted one that was stylish, but would still get the job done, so I went with this gold task lamp from Target. Task lighting is so important because good lighting in general is important so that you can actually get stuff done. Natural light is recommended in terms of productivity, but even if you don't have an office with a window, task lighting can help.

Practical Easy Reach Items: Pens, pencils, scissors, rulers, notebook, planner, headphones - these are practical items that I typically leave on the desk surface. To me, these items are necessary to have within easy reach - I don't want them buried away in a drawer. Consider the items you use all the time and consider their placement. Maybe for you it's a pile of reference books, a calculator, and pens. Whatever the case may be, having these items within easy rach ultimately just saves time. It's not clutter when it's useful.

Creative Storage/Layout: Since I had the space (my desk surface is rather large, which is lovely), I sort of split my desk by halves. When looking at it, you can see that the left hand side is more focused on everyday items, while the right-hand side has more of a focus on creative items I use often enough to have them on the desk, but not every day. I like having it broken up this way and think it gives a little bit more flow and organization to the desk as a whole.

Sparks of Inspiration: The small gallery wall above the desk, along with some of the decor like the fresh flowers, fox candle, and miniature Eames chair, not only help to give the space more personality, but also help to serve as sparks of inspiration. The corkboard that I customized features two of my favorite color palettes, photos I took in England, a photo of Reggie, and a picture of the home where one of my favorite authors, Jane Austen, wrote many of her novels. The other images around the center corkboard include a photo I took of the Eiffel Tower, a certificate of achievement from work, sketch of Reggie completed by Andy's mom, and a quote. While some of these things may seem a little stereotypical, they are honestly things that I find really inspiring and that's why I added them to the space. Yes, I totally get that quotes especially can come off cheesy and so many people have photos of the Eiffel Tower, but I picked these items because of the personal stories and the personal sentiments they hold for me and encourage you to do the same when it comes creating your own sparks of inspiration.

Storage: This is vital for actually keeping your desk surface clean. Thankfully, this desk has six drawers and I use each and everyone of them to stow away items that I need, but only once in a while, such as paperwork, calligraphy supplies, charging cords, etc.

Have a great Monday and for those interested, a shop the look section is below.

SHOP THE LOOK
These are not the exact pieces (as some items were found and others are now sold out), but these items can still be used to capture a similar look.

2017 Vol. 2: Life Updates and Travels

Minneahaha Falls - A Detailed Palette

Firstly, I have some rather exciting news - I have recently gotten a promotion at work! As my job is something that demands quite a lot of my time and focuses on two of my main passions (interior design and social media), this promotion comes as a huge milestone to me, and I am incredibly excited about it.

In addition to the good career news, I recently ventured to Minneapolis/St. Paul for a friend's wedding a few weekends ago, and Andy and I made a stop at Minneahaha Falls. Due to the unseasonably warm weather, the waterfall was actually flowing, although some portions were still frozen. It was really beautiful!

Minneahaha Falls - A Detailed Palette

For Valentine's Day, I got my dream bag. It's by Henri Bendel... and it's convertible. It transitions from a crossbody bag to a the chicest backpack ever. I travel quite a bit, including both personal trips and work trips, and this bag works wonderfully for both professional and more casual settings. 

Henri Bendel - A Detailed Palette

Last weekend, a few friends were in town, so we made a stop at the Milwaukee Art Museum, I haven't been in some time, and I was delighted by some of the new exhibits and installations. The modern design space was my absolute favorite. I loved seeing some Eames, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Wegner designs in the museum space.

Milwaukee Art Museum - A Detailed Palette
Art Museum - A Detailed Palette
Milwaukee Art Museum - A Detailed Palette

Hope you all have a great weekend!

Chair Crush: Vintage Channel Back

I have yet to purchase anything from EBTH, but I can say I spend quite a lot of time browsing the site and their official Instagram account. They recently shared this chair on Instagram, and it stopped me in my tracks. 

Channel Back Chair - A Detailed Palette

I have developed a love for channel back chairs. Channel back refers to the rivets on the chair - the design reminds me of a pleated skirt, something that is quite the rage in fashion right now. The channel back gives off a more vintage vibe, especially the case with this chair, as it is also armless and asymmetrical.  

IMAGE VIA

IMAGE VIA

These chairs also have a decidedly art deco vibe, but without going too overboard - something that I really appreciate as it makes it easier to mix these armchairs with other design styles.

Have a great Monday!
-Rachel

Four Years in Milwaukee

Four Years In Milwaukee

"I live in Milwaukee." "I'm sorry." 

The line from Bridesmaids isn't too much of a stretch for how people often react to Milwaukee. In fact, I used to be one of those people.  

Of course, I now feel differently. It's a bit crazy that I have already been in Milwaukee for four years and while it was definitely an adjustment when I first moved, as I imagine every move is for a recent grad, I'm really glad that life brought me to this city. I'm taking a look back and sharing some of the big changes and life milestones that have taken place during my time in Milwaukee. 

Found Employment

So many things have changed since first moving here. Firstly, it was October 2012. Secondly, I was desperately looking for an entry level position after my internship ended. While I had a part-time role proofreading, something I had maintained during my internship, it was definitely not a great situation. Think more of "a living paycheck to to days before a paycheck" situation. The idea of being able to pay off my student loans was laughable. It was honestly a pretty dark time filled with a lot of anxiety and uncertainty and bad interviews followed by a lot of rejection - something I am sure many recent grads can identify with.  After struggling for about four months to find a full time job (a time-frame that definitely felt longer as I was experiencing it), I finally landed a contract role at Kohl's Corporate. It was short lived, due to the nature of the contract role, but it helped me finally get my foot in the door, gain the ever elusive experience and led me to my first full time role, my first "big girl" job with benefits at a mid-grade office furniture retailer. I honestly will never forget the relief I felt on getting that official job offer or how amazing my experience there was. Of course, no job is perfect, and it was not the exception, but working for a smaller company allowed me to wear many hats, the people were so incredible, and it ultimately led me to discover my passion for interiors and design. Plus, struggling through those four months really gave me an appreciation for and positivity about my new job - something I'd like to think is still present and notable in the role I am in to this very day. 

Adopted Reggie

I had desperately wanted a dog as soon as I had graduated, but knew it would be impossible and irresponsible to adopt one when my situation was so precarious. But after two months into my full time role and living with Andy for quite some time, I couldn't wait anymore and decided to seriously look into getting a dog. Of course, we thought it best for me to take on all the financial responsibility for the dog just in case anything happened. The last thing we wanted to happen was to break up and fight over who got to keep the dog.

Andy found Reggie a few days after and we went to visit him with the intention of only to meeting him. Of course, as soon as I saw his sweet little face, I knew he was the dog for me. I adopted him that very day. And we immediately stopped at the pet store to buy everything we needed after the adoption was complete.

Reggie - A Detailed Palette

Launched This Blog  

As I stated earlier, my first real job was about content creation for a mid-grade office furniture retailer, I was exposed more to the whole world of interior design and learned more about furniture in general. I almost immediately developed an appreciation for the beauty and detail that design showcased; that appreciation soon turned into a passion. I became engrossed and soon followed so many interiors brands and bloggers on Instagram who inspired me every day. After playing around with my own personal style in my first apartment, a move to a second larger space with Andy prompted me to launch this blog as a way of categorizing the progress of my space and evolution of my style. It's been a passion project for sure, but one that has evolved to include more personal and lifestyle items, along with the interiors focus. I also think that this blog has helped me showcase my passion for interiors and home decor in such an accessible way - something that few other things could showcase so easily. This, of course, was a factor in landing my current role at Kohler. Passion for Interior Design was part of the job description, and I could easily show just how much I cared and loved the topic.

Learned to Knit

To keep myself sane during those 4 months where I was only part-time employed proofreading, I actually taught myself how to knit by watching youtube videos. Since funds were so limited, I couldn't go out much or spend much, but I did want to stay creative. Four years later, I knit nearly every day, a little bit here and there - although the weeks definitely vary. It has been a life-changing hobby in all actuality and is something that I not only thoroughly love, but allows me to be creative in a unique way.

Knitting - A Detailed Palette

 

 

For the Dream Home: Volume One

For My Dream Home - A Detailed Palette

I have decided to start a new series to keep track of all of the things that inspire me/items that I would like to keep earmarked for my dream home. While I am not sure I would ever build a home, and I am a huge fan of working with what you have, there are some things that are worth adding in first and building around.

Ceiling Medallions

While I generally gravitate towards eclectic styling and modern furniture, I really love classic architectural details; ceiling medallions of course fit into this category. I'd love to have at least a few of these in my future home, especially with some spectacular light fixtures.  

IMAGE VIA

IMAGE VIA

IMAGE VIA

IMAGE VIA

The Briolette Sink from Kohler

Disclaimer: I work at Kohler, but I am not writing in official capacity- this is not being written on behalf of the company. All opinions below are my own. 

With all of that out of the way, there is only so long you can stare at beautiful photos of sinks before you become personally invested and one of them makes it onto your "must have in my future home" list. I LOVE this Briolette Artist Editions sink. It is honestly nothing short of stunning in person. I think that having this in a master bath or even a powder room would be just so amazing.  

The Briolette Sink - A Detailed Palette
IMAGES VIA KOHLER

IMAGES VIA KOHLER

I especially adore this faucet paired with the Briolette sink and consider both as serious contenders for my future dream home.

 

2017 Vol. 1: Discoveries Worth Sharing

2017 Discoveries - A Detailed Palette

I am hoping for 2017 to be a big year, and I am really looking forward to crossing some items off of the bucket list. Ultimately, though, I am aiming for making the most of the day to day as well. In effort to streamline and just improve, there are a few discoveries I wanted to share.

Tone It Up Member

Tone It Up - A Detailed Palette

I became an official Tone It Up member at the end of 2016 in effort to be prepared for 2017 and the goals I wanted to accomplish. Tone It Up has become a much larger priority for me, as my health and fitness goals have become something I really want to focus on. I have been working towards following their nutrition guide and really changing and adapting my lifestyle overall into one that is more healthy and embraces alternative options to the not-so-nutritious options I am usually faced with. It actually hasn't been too hard, which is amazing. It really just requires more planning. I now meal plan and meal prep on Sundays. It has been SUCH a game changer.  It actually ends up saving me more time later on in the week and makes staying on track so much easier. Meal planning and prepping has definitely given me a different perspective on eating healthier and if anyone out there is struggling with the goal of being healthier, I highly recommend both Tone It Up and meal planning with the recipes that they have as part of their nutrition plan. Most of the recipes are easy and delicious... and I am an extremely picky eater, so that means a lot coming from me. 

Wireless Headphones  

Beats Headphones - A Detailed Palette

I got the Beats Solo3 wireless headphones for Christmas in rose gold, and it has been a total game changer. I never thought that it would impact my daily life as much as it has, but between working at my desk and working out, it has been so nice to have wireless headphones. Working out especially - I never realized how freeing it would be and how much better my workouts would be because of that. If you're running, doing HIIT, or any other workouts while listening to music, I highly recommend looking into getting pair of wireless headphones. 

Passion Planner

Passion Planner 2017 - A Detailed Palette

I had a Passion Planner in 2015 after winning an Instagram giveaway. I'm 2016, I had a different planner and really missed the Passion Planner layout. So for 2017, I purchased a Passion Planner, and it's just as amazing as I had remembered it to be. If you are looking for something to help you stay organized, you can actually test drive the Passion Planner layout for yourself. by printing it off from their site. I love the 30 min breakdown layout and the extra space of "infinite possibility". Plus, this is one planner that I find really supports and has the space available for goal setting and journaling. It's a really great set up overall.  

Hope you all have a great start to the week!

 

 

Bedroom Update: Full Length Mirror

The mirror has arrived and it has been added to the bedroom, right next to the dresser. I am still debating on whether or not this is the final placement, as the original idea was to have it on the wall in the bedroom where a stud could support it, but I am no longer sure, as I really like the look of this mirror as it is.

Mirror Update - A Detailed Palette
Mirror Update - A Detailed Palette

I chose this mirror with the idea that it would really complement the artwork we already have in the room, and I think it really does! I also really love the juxtaposition of the straight lines of the mirror and the curved, a bit more traditional lines of the bottom of the dresser and the hardware..

Mirror Update - A Detailed Palette

And of course, I had to share a little selfie with Reggie and me. :)

mirror-selfie.jpg

Have a great Monday!
-xo, Rachel

Sleeping Better in 2017 with SmartWake

This post is sponsored by Verlo. All opinions are my own.

Sleeping Better in 2017 - A Detailed Palette

You may remember that one of my goals for 2017 was to get more sleep and better sleep each night. It's been a huge priority for me this year - so much so that I have even begun setting bedtime alarms to help me stay on track. I also was introduced to the SmartWake by Verlo - an alarm and sleep monitor. It's actually an incredible cool concept - it's designed to actually wake you up at the best time in your sleep cycle i.e. when you are not in deep sleep. Due to the sensor being able to pick up on this, it makes waking up easier, something I can totally get behind because waking up is hard.

SmartWake - A Detailed Palette

I have been using the SmartWake alarm and monitor for over 2 weeks now, and I think it along with going to bed earlier has really helped to make waking up much less of a challenge. The nice thing, too, is that you don't have to worry about oversleeping - you simply set a range of time and the SmartWake alarm and monitor chooses the optimal time in that range to wake you up.

Sleeping Better with SmartWake - A Detailed Palette

So far, unlike my goal to blog on a more timely schedule, my goal to get better sleep in 2017, yet wake up earlier is off to a really great start. I've also been thinking about cutting back on caffeine, but I am not quite sure I can do that just yet! :) I just love coffee far too much.

 

Top Mirrors - Round Up

So I admittedly have been quite behind posting here and not staying true to my update schedule at all. I am determined to be better about this overall. Even though it is technically off schedule, I wanted to share a much needed update that I am looking to add to the bedroom - a new mirror!

The one I currently have was $20 from Target, is not quite large enough to be floor length, and has definitely seen better days. The top portion is a bit warped and it's certainly not the sturdiest thing in the world. It's an overdue update - so that I can actually see my full outfit before heading into work.

A few of my absolute favorites mirrors are below.

One of the craziest thing about mirrors is the varying price points - I tried to round up a good variation of budget-friendly options and splurge options.

I ultimately decided I wanted a true floor length mirror, one that had clean lines, simple elegance, and one that came in gold in order to complement the rest of the bedroom. This is the mirror that made the final cut, due to the fact that it met all the aforementioned criteria and was totally affordable. While the first shipment did arrive damaged, Wayfair has the loveliest customer service team EVER, and they easily sent me another which I am eagerly awaiting. I can't wait to see how it looks in the space.

IMAGE VIA WAYFAIR

IMAGE VIA WAYFAIR

Ideally, this new mirror will go in the space below to the left of the dresser.

Mirror update - A Detailed Palette
Mirror Update - A Detailed Palette

I will be updating as soon as I get the mirror!
Have a great Thursday!
-xo, Rachel

Trip to Harry Potter World

Travel - Harry Potter World - A Detailed Palette

I am so glad that I finally made it to Harry Potter World - it is so nice to be able to cross this off the bucket list. It totally lived up to all the hype and the expectations. I do have to say, though, that there was one negative with the butterbeer - it was delicious, but just SO sweet. I wasn't able to finish a full glass. But, with that said, that's hardly a negative. I so appreciated all of the details that were added in and that stayed true to the world the books created.

Harry Potter World - A Detailed Palette
Harry Potter World - A Detailed Palette

I absolutely loved the whole experience - and even got Professor Lupin's wand. They had interactive spots throughout the park where you could use the wand to cast spells. It was all in all an amazing experience and well worth the price.

Trending Now: Rose Gold

I am traveling for work this week in order to attend KBIS - the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show. The tradeshow is for interior designers, builders, and other kitchen and bath professionals and while I am insanely busy, I did want to stay true to my new years resolutions and my new posting schedule. So here is today's post - a post all about a trend that I can confirm (after seeing KBIS firsthand) is still very much going strong.

IMAGE VIA SOURCE

IMAGE VIA SOURCE

While the metallics trend has been here for quite sometime, the appearance and sweeping popularity of rose gold is more new. While similar to copper, there is something a bit softer and more, well, "rosey" about rose gold. While its pink tones definitely give it a feminine air, the metallic sheen provides a colder edge. I love this juxtaposition between color and texture, and I think it's ultimately just that that makes rose gold so appealing to so many, whether its related to fashion, interiors, or even your headphones.

Here are some favorite rose gold pieces for your home:

Do you love rose gold, too? Have an amazing Wednesday!
-xo, Rachel