This Lovely Home

Caitlin Wilson’s home, featured over on Design*Sponge, is just wonderful–part sophisticated chic and part youthfully quirky, the playful mix of colors and patterns all combine to make for one crazy beautiful space.

How amazing was that chalkboard wall with the framed art?? Such a dream house.

p.s. sorry for the lack of posts on my part up until now, guys! Let’s just say my 5-year-old laptop needed some fine-tuning these past few weeks…but all is well now and it’s good to be back. : )

Hammock Dreams

Me napping in a hammock at the Red Sea in Egypt

All my life I’ve loved hammocks. My all-time dream is to travel to a beachy destination that stays nice and warm through the night, sleep in a hammock right on the beach and then wake up in the morning, grab my surfboard and hit the waves! I’ve had some experiences pretty close to this in Egypt and Colombia, but so far, I’m still waiting for my full dream scenario to come true. In the meantime, I’ve decided that I need to quell my hammock obsession by taking a nap in one at some point this summer (thus Summer Bucket List item No. 18). But even that poses a bit of a challenge as my apartment, while nestled in a nice little courtyard, isn’t quite set up for a permanent hammock. And my other option – sneaking into a hammock display at the local World Market store – doesn’t sound too appealing or relaxing.

So I was very excited to see this DIY hammock idea from Design Sponge, which not only gives me an excuse to buy some of those fancy towel/blanket/things I’ve been seeing around lately but also a fun way to check No. 18 off my Summer Bucket List.

Top (Hat) of The Morning

DIYable: top hat lighting - Mr. Kate

I counted yesterday. I’ve technically been to London at least six times. “Been to” is a relative term, though. So far my longest stint in London was 13 hours … overnight … during a layover on my return from Egypt. I’ve even done some sightseeing. Once on a bus from London City Airport to Kings Cross tube station, I passed by Big Ben and the Eye of London — but it was more like a scene from the Griswalds’ European Vacation than an actual tour.

That said, during my last layover there, I had just enough time to see my sister’s new apartment, grab a pastry and a coffee and discover this amazing idea: top hat lighting fixtures! How adorable are these? I spotted them at this yummy little pastry shop in London’s Angel neighborhood. So naturally, I had to find a DIY. Here’s one from blog Mr. Kate that sounds pretty easy.

A perfect souvenir from another layover in London.

{Photos via Mr. Kate}

The Ups and Downs of Planting

DIY Project: Recycled Pallet Vertical Garden - Design Sponge

DIY Project: Recycled Pallet Vertical Garden - Design Sponge

 

I have what is likely the least green thumb on the planet. If any of you have been watching “New Girl” and saw that episode in which Nick finds out he can’t even care for a cactus, that’s me in a nutshell. Still, I always have high hopes for planting projects — especially this one from Design Sponge that seems like it requires relatively low effort for a beautiful result.

And it’s yet another great project you can create using recycled pallets!

{Photos via Design Sponge}

Books As Craft Projects?

The Repurposed Library by Lisa Occhipinti

While the idea of destroying a good book for the sake of style makes me sad, I’m a little more lenient about the practice when it comes to books that aren’t so “good.” I find plenty of these: old books that have a beautiful patina or cover, but a subject matter like “Carrot Farmers of the North Atlantic.” In these cases, I think it’s totally justified to make one of the fun and crafty items found in Lisa Occhipinti’s “The Repurposed Library: 33 Craft Projects That Give Old Books New Life.”

In fact, some of these projects just might serve to put these so-so books in the spotlight more than if they were just taking up room on a bookshelf. What do you guys think? Is it OK to turn a book into a craft project?

How To Be Money Saavy

I have to admit that I’m really bad with my money. I try to be reasonable about monthly expenditures and think through the big-ticket splurges, but besides that, I don’t know much about managing money. Investments, retirement savings, and taxes? Zilch. And my biggest nightmare of all? My student loans. Funding college and grad school = a bajillion different loans, passwords, due dates, interest rates, and accounts to take care of. Eek!

If you’re in the same shoes as me, don’t worry; check out LearnVest. I found this site through DailyCandy and it’s such a refreshing take on helping women manage their money. It’s free to become a member and there’s a ton you can do on the site: sign up for bootcamp sessions that walk you through investing and budgeting, link up all of your financial accounts (students loans, personal banking, etc.) and manage them in one place, get tips that are customized for where you are in life (recent grad, expecting a baby, trying to get out of debt) and more. There are a couple of features on the site that do cost a fee, such as personal financial planning with an adviser, but otherwise you can navigate the rest of the site for free and start organizing your spending habits so they reflect your future goals. It’s awesome! And, just in time for tax season. :)

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Have a great weekend, everyone! xx

{photos via here & here}

What Do You Wear To Bed?

I’ve been really into sleepwear lately. I used to think it was a waste of money (you’re just wearing it under your blankets!) and that baggy T-shirts and hot pink sweatpants from college was the best combo ever (it still kind of is). But lately, I’ve found that I feel so much better when I’m wearing something flattering to bed; lounging around the house all night becomes pretty fun, plus it just makes you feel clean and put-together, even if you are just bumming around. :) If you’re thinking about stocking up, Forever21 has a great sleepwear collection that’s cute and really, really affordable.

What do you guys like to wear to bed?

(photo via}