August 2012

I do a lot of second hand shopping and every now and then I’ll spy a great dresser in a thrift store or on Craigslist and think to myself, “That would look fantastic in a bathroom!”  Traditionally designed for the bedroom to store clothing, dressers are rebelling and finding their way into spaces outside the boudoir.  

Clever homeowners are now adding character to their bathroom spaces by choosing dressers as vanities instead of standard cabinetry.  Often you must sacrifice the utility of the top drawer to make room for the sink bowl, but what you lose in functionality you gain in style.  Here’s a peek at this gallery of dressers transformed into vanities in bathrooms! 

A white solid surface countertop supports two sinks with reproduction vintage faucets in this elegant bathroom with a repurposed white dresser.

 

white dresser as bathroom vanity bhg

 

Gray paint and porcelain knobs turn this elevated dressing table into a functioning vanity in this serene bathroom filled with vintage touches. 

 

bathroom vanity bhg

 

Contemporary clean lines and pulls take the spotlight in this bathroom nook where a nine drawer dresser style vanity wears a marble top. 

 

modern dresser as vanity bhg

 

Curvy drawers coated in black paint coupled with vintage brass pulls equal drama in this sophisticated powder room.

 

dresser as vanity bathroom bhg

 

In the mood for fun and feisty?  Coat your second hand find with bright colored paint and add a modern towel bar to the side for a one of a kind pretty pink vanity. 

 

vivid pink vanity bathroom bhg

 

Clean and classic is the look in this bathroom where white paint and glass knobs share a timeless quality.  

 

white dresser as vanity in bathroom bhg

 

Converting a dresser into a vanity is simple when you follow these DIY instructions.

One final tip, pay attention to your height when shopping for a dresser to use as a vanity.  A standard vanity is 30” but many adults find that height to be too short, and prefer a more comfortable height between 32” – 36”.   Bring your tape measure with you and be sure to factor in the additional inches added from your chosen countertop.

Next week, we’ll take a look at how dressers are being used outside the bedroom in kitchens, entries, and living spaces, stay tuned!


Back-to-school days are here again, and as the mom of two kids in elementary school, it’s important for me to feel prepared on Day One.  I’m spending some time getting organized for the big day coming up next week, tackling the kitchen junk drawer and readying the family computer armoire that also functions as a study station.  

With homework and school projects looming, I started organizing school, home, and office supplies and in the process, compiled ten clever ways to corral all that small but oh-so-necessary stuff we need at home. 

1.  Ready and Waiting.   A colorful drink caddy serves up back-to-school readiness instead of refreshments when the glasses are used to store pens and office supplies.

 

drink caddy organizer bhg

 

2.  Mess-less Muffin Tins.   No need to bake with this clever solution to use a muffin tin as a drawer compartmentalizer to hold all those things that without it get lost at the bottom.

   

cupcake tin compartments

  

3.  Clever Caddy.    A shower organizer is easily reinvented as a creative storage solution for correspondence and wrapping supplies.  

 

shower caddy stationery supply bhg

 

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This week more than ever maps are front and center in my world as we travel on a family vacation to new cities we’ve never visited before.  Both maps and globes make fantastic home décor because they remind us of our past travels, or places we seek to visit when given the opportunity. 

Modern maps can be found in coffee table books or atlases, and a variety of framed prints are readily available online.  Old World maps are intriguing for their historical references, and vintage or limited edition maps are cherished by collectors.   Maps and globes are universally appealing in decorating, and one of the simplest ways to bring graphic, colorful art into your home. 

Here, a large scale wall map acts like a mural in a space designed to keep kids both organized and inspired.  

 

background wall map bhg

 

Suspend a map behind glass to add visual appeal to an entry door that has the added benefit of privacy when closed.  

 

 map french door bhg

 

Frame a map of a favorite place and pair it with complementary collectibles for a pulled together vignette. 

 

framed blue map bhg

 

 

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Every home is much improved when it’s filled with well loved books.  I admire any well styled bookcase that incorporates found objects and also smart, stylish bookends.  Not just for function, bookends are that fabulous opportunity to inject sophistication or whimsy, or to tell a story about travel adventures or place your personal style on display.  

 

bookends in living room bhg

bookends bhg

small green bookcase bhg

 

Bookshelves make themselves at home in so many spaces from living and family rooms, to offices and even dining rooms, so why not give them a dose of style with unique and decorative bookends that blend with your décor.  Here’s a roundup of bookends from fun to fabulous to consider for your bookcases at home.   

 best of bookends

From top left:    Glass Jar Bookends, Generate, $59; Gear bookend, Graphic Spaces Wood on Etsy, $55; Knowledge bookends, Shop Horne, $200; Silver Books, set of 8 by Z Gallerie, $159; Adler Dachshunds, Barnes & Noble, $40; Deer Bookends, Shop Ten 25, $90; Gold pigs, CB2, $30; Metal Oranges, Design Atelier Article, 34€; Blue Agate Bookends, Higher Heart, $40; Wide Eyed Owl, Amazon, $37; Bicycle bookends, Shine on Sporty Girl on Etsy, $35;Brass Foo Dogs, Chic Shop LA, $175;  Book End bookends, A Place for Everything; 18£; Iron Ships; The White Pepper on Etsy, $38; The End bookend, CB2, $15

 

Do you have a pair of special or unique bookends in your home? 

 

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What does the word cottage mean to most of us?  Homey.  Cozy.  Relaxed.  Inviting.  Modern cottage style isn’t a cluttered country cabin, the current definition of cottage style is clean, simple, and light, and now captured inside the pages of the latest publication compiled by the experts at Better Homes and Gardens.

 

new cottage style bhg

 

Completely updated, New Cottage Style brings together a medley of welcoming homes showcasing fresh interpretations of cottage style retreats that reside on the coast, in the city, the suburbs, and the country too.   Inside, you’ll see the classic choices of seagrass carpet and relaxed slipcovers mixed with punchy pillows and modern art. 

 

  cottage style living room bhg

 

The homes within feature spaces in classic palettes that, in true cottage style, play with layers of texture. 

 

cottage style family room bhg

 

Painted pieces, vintage accessories, and detailed trim are abundant plus you’ll find plenty of fresh white paint applied to walls, floors, furniture, and cabinetry.   Classic details meet with modern silhouettes in family friendly spaces where a playful attitude and casual comfort are the focus. 

 

cottage kitchen bhg

 

Pared down spaces are still packed with plenty of style in this new hybrid definition of "cottage" that mixes elements of modern, traditional, and coastal too.  Create harmony and simplicity with so many tips for keeping your home current yet still comfortable.

 

cottage dining room bhg

 

New Cottage Style also includes dozens of favorite porches, organized offices, streamlined mud rooms, and stylish hobby spaces to inspire. 

 

mudroom with striped baskets bhg

 

Look for New Cottage Style at your local bookstore or buy a copy online, it’s a new favorite on my bookshelf.  You’ll love all the fresh inspiration inside the pages!

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There’s a big trend going on right now in retail and among the do-it-yourself crowd, and it’s the two tone dipped paint treatment in furniture and accessories.  The technique is referred to around the design community as “dipped” or “dip dye” and it combines the best of both worlds in home decorating – wood tones and pretty paint colors.

 

dip dye chairs bhg

 

This trend is a cousin of the ombre fad and the enthusiasm for using colored dye to dip textiles or clothing.  The dipped look for furniture is a simple DIY treatment involving two ingredients: painter’s tape and your vibrant paint color of choice.  

To get the look, simply choose the point where you want to stop the paint color and keep the wood exposed.   Choose one-third or halfway up as your starting point where you want the paint to stop and apply the tape.  Next, simply paint the chair or table legs for a fun dose of color.   

The same treatment works on console tables, stools, and home accessories as well, and brings a fun two tone look to a store bought furniture or decor. 

 

dipped chair legs

 

Looking for retail options instead?  Here is a roundup of dipped furniture and accessories available for the home!

 dipped accessories

From top left: Bread Board, Terrain, $228; Spice Cellar, Leif, $45; Dipped Wood Knife Block, Terrain, $20; Dipped Servers, Ladies & Gentlemen Studio, $38; Candleholders, Bo Concept, $19 each; Dip Dyed Stool, Serena & Lily, $68; Blue Vases, West Elm, $24-89; Perette Container, Woonwinkel, $168; Windsor Love Seat, Anthropologie, $1,498;  Milking Stool, Um Project;

 

Are you a fan of this creative and fun two tone dip dye trend?   

 

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