10 Ways To Do Subway Tiles

Subway tiles are at the top of the tile game right now, and for good reason! But don’t corner this backsplash option to one look. You can now find a subway tile to personalize every kitchen.



It’s no wonder the classic subway look has made such a comeback. It’s as clean and simple as it is affordable.


Image Source: Homedit


2. Vintage

The same basic subway tiles can be given a vintage feel with dark grout lines. The tile stands out more and has the look that has been seen in decades past.


Image Source: Decoholic


3. Beveled Edge

I love the modern, textured look a beveled subway tile brings. Light bounces off these tiles more than the traditional flat ones.


Image Source: The Every Girl


4. Smoke Glass

Many are trading in the traditional white for this smokey grey glass. It’s a great alternative, while still creating a neutral backdrop.


Image Source: Liz Marie Blog

5. Green Glass

If you want a little color in your backsplash, look at the green glass subway tile. Clean lines and a soft green color make for a fresh take on this classic look.


Image Source: Kylie M Interiors

6. Herringbone Pattern

This classic pattern can be seen making a comeback in tile design. You can lay the herringbone tile vertically or horizontally for a unique take on a simple tile.


Image Source: Adore Magazine


7. Dark

Who said backsplashes had to blend in? Subway tiles can be found in a variety of darker hues, creating a dramatic look.


8. Colored

For those people who want to stand out, you can get the simplicity and affordable of a subway tile in a fun color! So let your personality show through!


Image Source: Popsugar


9. Stainless Steel

With kitchen design turning an industrial corner, stainless steel subway tiles are a sleek, modern option.


Image Source: HGTV


10. Mirrored Glass

I love the effect these mirrored glass tiles have in this wet bar. Mirrors are a great way to bring light and space to a small kitchen.

Introducing Life Into A Tired Room

Have you ever walked into someone’s house for the first time and you LOVED it? The whole space just called out to you and you found your attention pulled from one fantastic piece to the next? That’s visual interest and it’s the key to creating a space entirely your own.

Here are my tips on creating visual interest and avoiding a boring room. First, here’s what you should do;

  1. Color


Image Source: Brit + Co


Image Source:Brit + Co


It seems like a no-brainer that a room would require color, but many are terrified of being too colorful or not colorful enough. Introducing color to your space doesn’t mean it has to look like a crayon box. If you’re a color novice, try finding a pattern you’re drawn to and pick colors out of it to use in the room. You want to avoid just one color and a neutral; it starts looking like a certain furniture showroom where rooms are made ready to go… And don’t be afraid to choose bold colors in small areas.


2. Pattern

living room 2 .jpg.jpg

Image Source: 11 Magnolia Lane


Image Source: Cuded

Patterns are subject to personal taste but whether you love colors or neutrals, florals or geometrics, every space gains visual interest with the addition of patterns. In any space, try for 3 or more patterns of varying sizes and styles. Mixing patterns can be difficult and overwhelming at times but with practice (and courage) you can mix patterns like a pro (future blog post on it’s way!).


3. Texture


Image Source: Binti Home Blog

Just like color and pattern before it, texture is all about achieving a balanced mix. The room shown above has a variety of textures adding to the visual interest; the fur throw-blanket, the brick wall, the glass table, even the plants add texture to the room. Avoid everything in the room having the same texture; for example a matching set of leather sofas, chair, and ottoman.


What NOT To Do:

The word “match” is forbidden in the world of interest design. Matching is best left to card games and pant suits, not your house.


What’s wrong with this room (besides everything)? Everything matches! Matching couches with matching pillows. Curtains that match each other, while matching the pillows that match each other. Candles that match the curtains that match the pillows that match….you get the idea. The space is entirely void of any personality. I can’t learn anything about the people who live here by this room, except that they probably aren’t very interesting.

Introducing color, pattern, and texture into any space will give it interest and personality- YOUR personality. Let your own tastes and passions shape the house you live in. Create a space that is as interesting and different as you are!


Image Source: Beneath My Heart


Keep designing!



Let’s Live Smaller, Happier Lives

When the Tiny House movement came into the spotlight sometime last year, I was fascinated. I sat in a corner at Barnes and Noble reading an entire book about it. I started a Pinterest board about it. I even sketched some floor plans of my own tiny house.

Now, I’m not about to sell my furniture and live in a 200 sqft house-on-wheels (with three cats). But that doesn’t mean these tiny houses and the people that live in them don’t inspire me. They show us how we can turn our focus from our things, to our lives.

When people are house-hunting, they’re often concerned about having enough room for their things; sofa, bed, desk, etc. Why are we so concerned for a sofa’s wellbeing? Shouldn’t we first ask if there is enough room for us, the people, to live happily? Yes, we need somewhere to sit, sleep, and work, but maybe our priorities are backwards.

The focus of the Tiny House movement is to live with less so you can live your life. Sometimes people want to spend all their time outdoors or traveling. Sometimes it’s the financial decision to live debt-free. Whatever the motivation, these tiny homeowners have made the tough decision to part with their things for a simpler lifestyle.

I live in a 500 sqft apartment with one closet. Let me say that again- one closet. Not only is my little abode small, I have one place to store everything. Thankfully, my Tetris skills are top-notch and I have a well organized and functional closet that serves me well. But it was a challenge to look at all my “stuff” and decide if it was worth shoving into this singular closet of mine.


I love how they created a clever, and attractive, way to store and showcase regularly used items in this kitchen! Image Source: Apartment Therapy


I follow two, firm rules when it comes to stuff in my home;

  1. Do I need it?
  2. Do I love it?

You’d be surprised how much JUNK doesn’t fit into either criteria! Obviously, I need sheets, towels, a couch, etc. On the other hand, do I need 30+ coffee mugs? Or these shoes that are too uncomfortable to wear but I have to justify buying them?

And I never pressure myself to get rid of what I love; things that bring my joy or have sentimental meaning. I just find an organized way to keep them (see my post Less Stuff, More Style for decluttering your life!).

Beautiful spaces can be overshadowed by the things we fill them with. I, personally, can enjoy my little home more because there is less stuff in it. I’ve created a comfortable space to come home to without “needing” more square-footage or things to buy. Remember, life can be simple AND beautiful!

Keep Designing,






Less Stuff, More Style

It’s January! This means our cars are filled with thrift store donations that we will drop off on our way to the gym, right? Well, at least most of us try to start the year off right by getting our homes in working order. It’s important to evaluate the “stuff” in your house, whether it be a New Years resolution or just an “I’ve had enough” Saturday.

Clutter is often disguised as things you “love”, “might need someday”, or “have had forever and could never possibly get rid of”. Now, I’m not suggesting we purge everything that isn’t nailed down, but here are my tips and insights to simplifying your home in 2016.

1.) Style Your Clutter


Image source: The Every Girl


Who says clutter can’t be chic? There are countless items we use daily that can create clutter. Vanity trays can give a put-together look for your make-up collection, lotions and soaps, or perfumes. Keep these items within reach on a bathroom vanity or dresser without it looking ‘messy’. It’s a functional way to accessorize your personal space.



Image Source: Harper’s Bazaar


2.) Organize the Sentimental

“I need it!”

“Why do you need it?”

“Well….I want to keep it!”

I’ve had this conversation with a friend more than once. It’s a wonder people keep asking me to help organize their homes! In the end they’re always happy with their newly organized space, but it is a struggle at times. Sometimes you have to challenge yourself and ask why you’re keeping something. Often that discussion leads to a decision to toss it. Other times it must be kept and I completely understand.

My solution: organize them! For smaller sentimental pieces I love photo boxes.


Image Source: Tater Tots and Jello

You can find these boxes and any craft store and they come in a variety of styles. I have a few designated for cards, pictures, and keepsakes from the fiancé. Fun patterns make for a pop of color on a bookcase or they stack neatly on a closet shelf.


There are bigger boxes for bigger things, but be careful not to let everything pass the test! Is it one-of-a-kind? Is it invaluable? Then keep it. Otherwise get familiar with your local thrift store.

3.) Have A Place For Everything, and Everything In It’s Place

Whether it’s a well-organized closet, a home office, or command center, create a place for everything. This makes it easier to keep clutter out of your house completely. If something isn’t worth creating space for, then it probably isn’t worth keeping.



Image Source: A Cultivated Nest


Image Source: Apartment Therapy


Image Source: Making Home Base


My last bit of advice is to purge before you start organizing. There is no point in filing away things you don’t need, only to go through them again later. I know it can be overwhelming, but start small. It’s so encouraging to see the benefits of a spotless guest room or organized closet! So fill those donation bags and start organizing!

And as always, keep designing!



Trends: Fashion and Decor

I’m not a fashionista (is that a real word?) so I don’t regularly follow fashion trends. My wardrobe is a somewhat thoughtless collection of things I like and things that I look good in. Trends in the “design world” seem to be connected, as artists and designers are constantly being inspired by each other.

I found this Comprehensive Guide to Spring 2016 Fashion Trends from Elle.com. Some of the trends stood out to me.

1.) Suede


Image from Elle.com

Yes suede, a fabric worn heavily in the seventies, has made it’s comeback! While I’m not convinced I’ll be joining in on this particular fashion statement, I do like what I see in home decor.


I’m in love with this space and could easily go on and on about it, but I’ll focus on the gorgeous suede couch. The original article can be found here, at Apartment Therapy.com (a personal favorite of mine). Suede is given a new life in this deep blue couch. The affect is a soft, luxurious look that gives more interest and dimension then standard upholstery. The couch feels expensive and fabulous, while the surrounding choices and gallery wall lend to a more causal feel. It’s a wonderful combination.

2.) Spanish Influences


Image from Elle.com

I love this bold, romantic style in any form it takes. This current revival of Spanish style gives me the opportunity to write about one of my absolute favorite kitchen designs EVER.


I know, right? This is a design by the genius and always fabulous Emily Henderson (click link for full kitchen transformation) that features traditional Spanish elements in a modern kitchen. I’m obsessed with blue cabinets lately and the butcher block countertops bring a warmth that feels like home. The focal point of this kitchen is the gorgeous rug. It sits on Spanish tile that is reflected again in the backsplash. To summarize: It’s amazing. I want it.

3.) Orange


Image from Elle.com

Admittedly my least favorite color in the color wheel. Sorry! It will be a long time before you see me wear orange. On the other hand, expert designers are making me consider the use of this bold color in decor.


Image found at Homedit.com

This room is begging me to fall in love with orange. I can’t resist a dark wall and graphic pattern. The use of orange in the room brightens up an otherwise dark color palette and introduces a touch of playfulness into this professional workspace. I, for one, wish I were working from there right now!

It’s clear designers and artists inspire each other, whether its fashion or furniture. And while I may not be willing to wear a suede dress, I love seeing these trends play out in beautiful spaces.


Keep Designing!



Dreams and Detours

Design is a genetic passion of mine. My dad is a residential designer (we can’t say architect for lack of degree, not lack of skill) and I’ve been surrounded by home design my entire life. I was drawing “blue prints” when I was 8 and made scaled drawings of my bedroom to determine the best furniture layout (around age 13). Being the only child at home and a daddy’s girl meant that I spent a lot of my childhood on construction sites.

I loved architecture and design. I watched This Old House with my dad and dreamed of attending Savannah College of Art and Design. I told everyone that would listen that I would be an architect.

For reasons I’m still not entirely sure of, I graduated from college with a degree in Education and spent 4 years as a middle/high school math teacher. Yup…that’s right. High school made me much more cautious than my previously carefree self. I chose a “safe” career over one that would challenge me. I’m a practical person who likes a degree of control over her life and a career in an artistic field felt haphazard. What if I was no good? What if I was never hired? Instead of taking a chance on myself I stayed home for college, got my degree, and started teaching. I was good at it, occasionally great, but never passionate. After 4 years of feeling out of place and struggling to enjoy my 9-to-5, I finally gave that little carefree girl a shot.


Now I’m 26 and following my dream, as cliche as that sounds. I quit my job teaching and will start my second semester of design school this year. It took a leap of faith in myself to make such a change but my first semester showed me I was right where I belonged. I couldn’t have done it without my fiancé, Tim. The decision was scary and uncomfortable. He had faith in me to succeed when I didn’t (which is more often than I like to admit).

Design school is the most wonderful challenge. Assignments don’t feel like work because I care about the outcome. I have something to prove to myself and everyone that this is where I belong. Being a design student is the beginning of my career and I want to create designs that I am proud of.

Of course, I wish I had the courage to pursue a career in interior design right out of high school. But like everything else in life, I can’t regret what got me here now. I’m probably more suited for this career now. I’m definitely more grateful for the opportunity. And I owe it to that little girl to have her dreams come true.