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All Posts By Sarah

Carr Project: Introduction

Betsy and I started work on a great project in August. It’s an exterior and outdoor living makeover. Our new clients are fun people who want to maximize their time lounging and hanging out in their own backyard. They have open minds and are totally open to suggestions…so yeah they are dreamy clients.

We’re working on a plan that includes a fireplace, sheltered outdoor space and a bocce court! Before we get started on the outdoor living in the back of the house, we’re working on a new exterior color combo for a mini-facelift.

We want to take this ranch from kind of cottage to a sleeker, more modern home. Once our clients told us they wanted to paint the house, I went to work on trying to convince them to go bold and because they are so easy going it didn’t take very long.

 

We’re removing the shutters, repairing some of the original exterior trim and working on selecting a new front door. We’ll be adding some other small elements on the front of the house like a new mailbox, house numbers and a cedar window box. The homeowners also had a consult with local landscaper Sean Butler from Butler Constructs to work on some changes for the front path and some new trees, shrubs and plants.

Stick around because we’re going to move pretty quick, the family needs to be playing bocce at Thanksgiving!

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A Different Kind of Bathtub

In my house we have two 1940s (maybe older, maybe not) white cast iron tubs and one very average fiberglass tub. Our tubs see a decent amount of use from the adults and children in the household. Many people though, never get in their big old garden tub and it’s just a dust collector.

Talking about tubs, reminds me of that time when the neighbor at the Indiana project visited the project while I wasn’t there and proclaimed that I had made a big mistake by omitting the tub in the master bath. I disagreed, I was right and everything worked out great because so many people would rather have that space for things like a bigger shower etc.

If you have the dough a free-standing soaking tub is the ticket but here are some alternative or extraordinary tubs. So light a Boy Smells candle, put The Pretender on and grab a towel and let’s check these crazy and beautiful tubs out.

the cereal bowl tub looks fantastic,

imagine this,

This is the Viques bath by Agape, comes in dark grey and white. It is steel.

If you like galvanized steel stock tank pools then you’re really going to like the bathtub concept,

What is that? A basket tub? Ummm yeah, that’s what it appears to be.

Fancy barrel-style in Bette Midler’s apartment

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A Modern Cedar Shingled House

I have a soft place in my heart for cedar shakes or shingles on the exterior of a house. It’s prolific and classic in Cape Cod or in the Hamptons but it’s exciting to see cedar shakes in a different neck of the woods. And one with a modern spin, well I’m down.

I happened upon this Echo Park home designed by Space V&T recently and it really got my wheels spinning.

Pretty fresh color combo. I’m always thinking about using a pale hue on a door matched with cedar.

I spy African indigo textiles in the open living room below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

shiplap ceiling in the boys room

I often daydream about putting these kinds of built-ins in the hallway in the upstairs of my house to accommodate kid’s stuff. I love the idea of putting the hallway to work instead of just having a passage way. In my mind the built-ins look very close to this, the shiplap is a bonus.

trough sinks!

Fantastic outdoor shelter design, I love the chunky frame

And an outdoor shower for some icing on the cake

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Bathroom Mirrors Over Windows

Yep, you read that right, bathroom mirrors hung over the window. You’re thinking that sounds risky but don’t weigh in with heavy skepticism until you see the visual portion of my presentation.

One of my favorite bathrooms on my bath Pinterest board which btw contains lots of drool-worthy bathrooms uses this concept and its waaay cool.

 

Maybe you like a smaller, more subtle use of the decorative mirror over the window,

 

 

 

I think that’s an IKEA Grundtal mirror below and if I’m right I used the same mirror in a little bathroom redo in an office space and that $40 mirror worked out so perfectly there. And trough sinks well… they are just dreamy aren’t they. Move over apron front.

 

 

 

Care to comment on my observation?

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the Sidewalk Sale

By Posted on 0

We are busy preparing for the annual downtown Southern Pines Sidewalk Sale that’s happening this Saturday, July 29th.

Maybe it’s time to give your spot a little update before we settle in for Fall and what better possible time to do it but…at the Sidewalk Sale.

We’re going to have furniture floor samples, pillows, art, lighting, rugs, ceramics, accessories, dishes and lots of other special accent pieces. If it’s a little too steamy outside for you, you can always come and shop in the A/C in the shop… but if changing out of your pjs is just not an option, then we set up a local pickup option in our online shop and we’re gonna have some special stuff show up on Instagram. So stay dialed in for that.

Either way you shop, there are serious deals happening and here’s a little sneak peek at a few things that are going to make an appearance at the sale.

So let’s get the wheels spinning before you head out to the Sale on Saturday.

Custom Reupholstered Flair Arm Sofa

Pacific Striped Laundry Tote

Zoffany Wabi Sabi Polka Dot Pillows

Lapis Block Print Quilt

Yellow Ikat Lumbar Pillow

 

Upholstered Parsons Bench

Vintage African Indigo Pillow

Turkish zig zag towel

 

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the Coffee Bar

Have you noticed the addition of the coffee bar in a kitchen? I’ve recently been in to two renovated kitchens here in my little town of Southern Pines that both had a coffee station. A few years ago, I visited a local friend and during a tour of the house, saw a small coffee station upstairs in the hall just off the master, what a retreat.

Instead of just adding the coffee maker to the other countertop appliances and putting the mugs away in the cabinet with the rest of the glasses, it can have a dedicated space all it’s own. It’s a solid way to put an unused area in the kitchen to work. Maybe it’s trading the bar cart in for the coffee bar, maybe you have both.

 

I’m not sure about the Flavor Flav wall clock but I love that espresso machine and the warm wood of those cabinets.

A traditional coffee station with a pretty tiled backsplash, although there is a lot being stored here, there’s a good composition happening,

An iteration of the barn door, the sliding cabinet door would be a fantastic way to conceal your coffee bar or coffee supplies that maybe aren’t as good-looking as the mugs and shiny stainless espresso machine

My favorite example of the coffee bar is in Heather Bullard’s kitchen. It’s an area with open shelving to the right of that beautiful sub zero. BTW- Heather is a fantastic stylist and her site is chockfull of images that will make you go hmmmm.

Coffee bar elegance, velvety dove gray. The machinery takes center stage here.

Sleek and modern coffee station,

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Turkish Oushaks For All

I’m thinking that maybe you’ve picked up on the signals that a Turkish oushak rug is suitable for almost every spot in your home. That’s what you’ve been seeing all over your Pinterest feed. Beautiful, versatile, colorful…good stuff. Before we get in to the visual evidence, let’s take a moment to BRIEFLY educate ourselves on how to identify an oushak.

So now’s the time when if you don’t care to identify a Turkish oushak carpet and you just think they’re pretty then skip on down to the images.

Usak, Ushak or Oushak, pronounced “u-shak” carpets are wool rugs woven in Turkey. Named after a region in Turkey that historically was known as the weaving center for this type of rug. They are heavy at times depending on their age but most of the oushaks from the 1930s through 1960s have a relatively short pile and are not exceptionally thick. They will stay put with little problem but we still recommend a rug pad. The wool can be silky and some rugs are more luminous than others.

 

 

 

Percy oushak paired with blue/green cabinets

 

 

 

 

 

 

beautiful and subtle Mathieu rug in the bath

 

 

Gypsy oushak, bathin’ babies + Turkish rugs

 

 

Claus oushak, love the contrasting navy and dusty rose

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Office De-Lite

A friend of mine has recently been hitting me up for a little advice on her home office because she spends 40 hours+ a week in that space. Most recently, she was quizzing me on desks.

So it got me thinking about home offices.

I like a touch of ambiance when I find myself say… sorting and organizing receipts for hours in my office.

My advice is this–light a candle, surround yourself with inspiring art or images or a giant pinboard, get a comfortable chair, get the right lighting–multiple levels if possible.

Maybe include a rug that is a work of art on it’s own.

Put some music on and work it.

 

RUG | LETTER ORGANIZER | BASKET | VINTAGE DESK | DESK CHAIR | VANQUISH PRINT | HUGO ARMCHAIR | POWERPUFF GIRLS | DO IT ANYWAY PRINT| TOBACCO CANDLE

 

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Kitchen Decor Ideas: Pot Rails in Kitchen

Here’s an idea! Install kitchen pot rails.

Hanging pots, baskets and using S-hooks for ladles and servers provides a lovely yet utilitarian aspect to your kitchen shelving. Kitchen pot rails are where it’s at!

I really want to hang white shelving with a curved white brackets in mine, but it will block the line of sight through the kitchen.

So… I think the alternative is to install some rails to hang pots and other things on.

This will free up drawer space, utilize the wall space in a small kitchen lacking in storage and get a little splash of that industrial kitchen look all for a minimal investment.

So, I started digging around and looking for some ideas.

Not surprising, hanging pots happens a lot in small spaces and apartment kitchens. Here are a few that I found.

Kitchen Pot Rails small kitchen

Ikea has options that are worth a look.

Kitchen Pot Rails rail galley kitchen

A nice addition to a narrow galley kitchen.

 

Kitchen Pot Rails rail lots of pots

The mix of metals is nice.

 

Kitchen Pot Rails schoolhousevia Schoolhouse Electric Brass Rail

We like it in brass.

Kitchen Pot Rails - nice faucet

Hey lady, way to choose a faucet!

Kitchen Pot Rails- mix brass

Kitchen Pot Rails - onions

Now this is a workable idea, produce in hanging wire baskets. I like the combination of a little basket, some cook ware, maybe an oven mit or a colander

Kitchen Pot Rails ikeaIKEA Fintorp Rail

Kitchen Pot Rails ultimate pots

But then there’s the ultimate, lots o’ pots over the sink and in front of the window–which I love just as much

Kitchen Pot Rails - over sink

 

 

We stock some very serious brass S-hooks from one of our favorite vendors, SIR|MADAM. These hooks will help to achieve this utilitarian aspect in your kitchen with some beauty.

[shopify embed_type=”product” shop=”the-estate-of-things.myshopify.com” product_handle=”s-hooks-brass” show=”all”]

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Market Watch

I check local real estate listings on a daily basis because its my job and who knows when you might need to pick up and move to the house next door or the house across town? Truly, I check them because I love houses and real estate and something might come along that I can’t resist, my dream house listing might pop up any day. Although at this point I’m 99% convinced that doesn’t exist–not for me.

I was driving through town and I started to think back about all of the houses that we’ve toured in this county and it’s a lot. Crazy houses that were falling in or that were rambling and had no end, that had vegetation growing through the windows, some that were time capsules and some that just needed a new coat of paint.

I’m often asked what I see on the local MLS that is exciting. So here’s what I think is hot in the local Southern Pines, Pinehurst and beyond real estate market.

I’ve got modern on the brain so let’s kick it off with 630 South Valley.

southern pines real estate market-valley

 

southern pines real estate modern

Why I like it –  I like the neighborhood, the large wooded lot, ample circular driveway and THE PRICE. The price gives us flexibility to renovate and the wooded lot gives us a green view when we look out of our big modern windows.

What I don’t like – All of the work that it needs, it really needs a new kitchen, new bathrooms and the addition of a third bedroom.

Potential? – Yes, quite a bit. Close in the carport to enlarge the footprint because it’s only a two bedroom and take care of that unfortunate 1970s living room window/fireplace situation. Add more windows where there are long, blank runs of siding. Do the kitchen for now, a paint update on your bathrooms and then do those later. Re-think the deck, maybe drop it down to a big patio with a fire pit.

630 South Valley is a close match to Michelle Steinback’s house featured in the September issue of Martha Stewart Living, tell me you see it!

valley-steinback-comparison


360 New Hampshire
is as American as apple pie.

I loved it so much a couple of years ago when it was on the market. I was in my “I want a colonial” phase.

360-new-hampshire

Why I like it – It’s in the heart of our charming downtown Southern Pines, walk to eyerthang in SoPi. On a half acre lot and bonus round — a detached guest cottage! Mom can move down and take care of the kids or you can rent it out to supplement the mortgage. It has a layout, despite it’s age, that would suit our way of living now. The deck addition on the back is good as well.

What I don’t like – Although the kitchen has been renovated it appears to be a 100% IKEA kitchen, I could be wrong and I’ll be happy to correct this if I find out I am. I’ve got zero problem with IKEA kitchens but I don’t like to see 100% use of their products in a room. The kitchen gets too contemporary and the house needed a little something different.

Potential? – Of course, really almost every house has it. Without going inside, I’m thinking there’s some kind of reconfiguration of the connection between the dining room and the sunroom and maybe the kitchen too, maybe opening up. There also may be an opportunity with some shifting around that the office or sunroom could have different uses, perhaps as a 4th bedroom. The kitchen needs to be addressed again but there’s freedom to make that change down the road. The exterior of the guest cottage could use some fixing and we really don’t know what we’re dealing with in the bathrooms.

 

My third property in SoPi is 215 Daffodil and I’m a little surprised it has been on the market for as long as it has, I’m sure I’d understand more if I could go inside.

market-daffodil

Why I like it? – Large lot 1.34 acres in an established neighborhood called Knollwood Heights, traditional architecture and another detached guest cottage–I’m a fan because they are really useful.

What I don’t like – I’m a little concerned with how the single story addition with the bay window adjoins to the two story portion (I’m pretty sure I can forgive)

Potential? – It’s traditional, straight forward layout could make for a simple update. The kitchen is ready for a renovation and a more open floor plan could be achieved.

Let’s head over to neighboring Pinehurst, I think I’ll surprise you with some picks here.

485 Lake Dornoch is an interesting property located in an exclusive neighborhood that is meticulously maintained and is gated.

There are typically a lot of wonderful 1960s houses that haven’t been altered in this neighborhood and I think you’ll see once you spin through the images why I like it.

market-dornoch

 

market-dornoch2

Why I like it? – High, open ceilings with exposed beams and they go a long way in this house. The square footage and number of bedrooms is great, plenty of space for everyone. Does the vintage pool table convey?

What I don’t like – To some the exclusivity of this neighborhood is great, there are perks, the club and golf memberships that all cost additional money– but I don’t need that stuff. The exterior is pretty modest, there aren’t any interesting architectural angles and it doesn’t share the same cool, modern appeal as the interior.

Potential? – Absolutely, open up the living space to the kitchen which is closed off and a little tight compared to the living area. Get some fresh white on the walls and some other modern hues, update the bathrooms, remove all the carpet and you’re in business.

175 Linden is a rare and incredible opportunity that someone is really going to enjoy!

If we drive in to Old Town Pinehurst or the Village as some call it, we find this grand but neglected estate at 175 Linden, built in 1935 on what is considered today to be an enormous lot, more than 3 acres. A rarity for sure.

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market-linden2

Why I like It? The sheer presence and size. The unusually large lot size that is park-like, the kitchen both Part I & II, the fact that you can walk in to the front door in to a wide hall and walk clear to the back and right out on to the back patio area, party ready! The history.

What I don’t like – That there is no HVAC system in the house and there are miles and miles of unsexy work that must be done before it gets fun.

Potential? Of course there is. Someone commented on TEOT Instagram that it would be a great B&B and I agree but the best fantasy is a single residence.

If you are planning a move to the Southern Pines/Pinehurst area, Sarah can help you find a fixer or a house that’s ready to decorate because she’s a licensed real estate agent, hit her up for house hunting and selling here.

 

 

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Today’s Modern Home

This week Betsy and I took a little time off from the store and met with our one and only local Southern Pines real estate agent Sarah O’Brien and viewed a gem.

hayes stones

 

Modern round stones lead to this dreamboat.

 

Hayes screen porch

Designed by FAIA Architect Thomas T. Hayes Jr. for his family in 1958. Minimalist on the exterior and painted a deep pine green, the house folds in to the landscape of longleaf pines.

The main floor plan is fantastic and open in the way that we want to live today. The first highlight of the tour comes rounding the corner in to the living room.

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hayes living Sarahs window

 

hayes living

 

hayes porch doors

 

hayes laney

 

The living room has a wall with full glass and a pretty view on to the best part of the lot, which is 1.14 acres. Sitting or standing in the living room you get the sensation that you are floating over the grass and you can’t deny that is pretty special.

The end wall in the living area is occupied by built-ins to house media, toys– they can handle whatever it is that you need to stow with ease. The interior wall in the living area is occupied by a large brick fireplace with a floating stone hearth and a modern slab mantle that is installed in 85% of home renovations today.

 

hayes hearth

Sliding closure of bottom part of built-ins,

hayes stereo

 

The living area is open to the dining area which grabs part of the glass view from the wall of windows.

 

hayes dining

 

Shimmy around the free-standing dining room wall and you find what can be described as a bar and entertaining area where you can mix up a pitcher of martini’s, store dinnerware and serving pieces. I saw Betty Draper standing there pouring cocktails.

You could eliminate the wall between this bar area and the dining area and make a more expansive dining room and sitting area space. The bar area itself is still large enough to put a small table. Are we having fun yet? Clearly I am.

 

hayes butler

 

From the bar we head in to a butler’s pantry with a large and original wall oven and paneled sub zero fridge with more storage space.

And then the second highlight of the tour is a very special kitchen that fell right from the pages of Dwell magazine. There are no upper cabinets in here, a very happening trend and it’s almost entirely glass from counter level up. The appliances are original except for maybe the dishwasher added in the 1980s and the sub zero likely replaced an even older fridge. You have a down draft slide in range with a small oven for daily casseroles, laminate countertops, original cabinets and wood flooring and the potential is seemingly infinite.

 

hayes kitchen

 

hayes kitchen2

 

hayes kitchen3

 

There’s a breakfast nook and a screened porch that adjoins the master bedroom and kitchen that was added in the 1980s.

 

hayes back screened porch

 

So we’re drooling now walking out of the kitchen and we go to the bedrooms. There are three on the main level, a master suite and two smaller bedrooms.

The master has a wall dedicated to built-in storage and it’s good size and it gives you a good starting point. Remove the carpet, update the lighting, paint the walls, replace doors leading on to screened porch and spruce up the built-ins a bit.

hayes master

 

The master bathroom is fun from a novelty perspective but it needs to be re-worked. Larger vanity, new tile, shower expansion, lighting, paint and elimination of the hotel sink. Somewhere in between the master bathroom and the tiny kitchen pantry there’s a laundry space in there.

 

hayes master bath sink

 

master bath shower

 

hayes master bath2

Hotel sink,

hayes hotel sink

 

Two smaller bedrooms need carpet removal, paint, lighting and a spruce up in the closets but they are perfect for kids or guests. They each have a triple set of casement windows.

 

hayes bed1

 

hayes bed1 closet

 

The hall bath that the two kids/guest rooms use needs some updating but doesn’t need a plumbing move, meaning the layout can stay which saves some money.

 

hayes hall bath

 

hayes hall bath2

Here’s something worth mentioning there are two sets of hall closets amping the storage even more. There is major storage in this house.

Let’s head downstairs to the basement which is partially finished and is a walkout. I think we were a little surprised that the basement wasn’t more finished than it was. The basement has a large living area with another fireplace and french doors on to a patio that desperately wants to be a beautiful zen garden with some sort of water happening there.

hayes basement

 

hayes basement hearth

 

The floors are concrete down here and there is one additional bedroom and tiny bathroom down here. They feel a bit dank and slightly raw so you would need to invest some money down here, allowing more light in and putting some different flooring down and changing the finishes and of course beautifying that little patio which by the way, the guest bedroom has its own little view of that patio as well.

 

hayes basement phone

 

The mechanicals are down here as well as the laundry which I think needs to be relocated upstairs.

 

hayes exterior side

 

Walk the grounds and realize that the house is cantilevered over the foundation on large beams, that its private and quiet, in a great neighborhood and that a little trimming and some landscape addition and this place could be absolutely amazing! I know you see a lot of brown and dark corridors but fresh white paint goes a long way and some finish upgrades, we’re in business.

Love this house but have no idea where to start? Call or write to us we’d love to consult, learn more about our Design Services.

Modern is not cold and it’s not the Jetsons I can assure you of that. It’s eclectic, functional and collected. Here’s a bit of inspiration of what the Hayes home could be-

modern2

Note floating stone bench at hearth,

modern

 

One of my favorite bits of inspiration was this LA ranch feature from the June issue of Martha Stewart Living.

 

modern8

 

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Mi Favorito

There’s lots to love…always, as you well know.

 

mi fav17

You know what I noticed in a lot of these images, that pool blue color seems to be following me around a bit. You can see it above in the pendants. It’s fun paired with a bunch of different colors but there’s something about pairing it with cherry red.

mi fav16

 

mi fav15

 

mi fav14

 

mi fav13

 

mi fav12

 

mi fav11

 

mi fav10

 

mi fav9

Walls in the nursery painted black sweetens the softer accent hues even more.

mi fav8

 

mi fav7

 

mi fav6

I almost fainted upon the discovery of this floor tile.

mi fav5

 

 

 

mi fav4

Reusing Diptyque candle jars as pencil cups, chic and green.

mi fav3

 

mi fav2

 

 

 

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Hold Me Closer Tiny Bedroom

How to style a tiny bedroom on a tiny budget

Maximize space in your small bedroom

Make a tiny bedroom live large, this afternoon!

10 tiny bedrooms that don’t feel cramped at all

You’ve seen these articles, posts and pins right? I love to click on these features, in fact anything that says “small [insert room]” I’m on it. I’m sure there’s a twinkle in my eye when I pull the monthly House Beautiful from the mailbox and the feature is “Small Spaces”.

I want to see how everyone “lives large in a tiny space” because that usually means either maximalism (heavily collected & decorated) or there’s going to be some sort of innovative organizational tips. I keep thinking I’m going to stumble on some sort of genius way to convince someone & myself that we have a luxe space fit for a sitting area instead of the 10×12 bedroom that they (I) actually have.

nick olsen bedroom

 

When I think about the best plans for tiny bedrooms, it seems the best course of action is to ensure that the bed takes center stage because that’s all you are really going to be able to do in there–bed down.

tiny bedroom OKL

 

Some of my favorite small bedrooms focus on maximizing the wall space, whether it be for art or shelving.

tiny bedroom dunham

 

tiny bedroom2

 

Canopies are a good idea in small bedrooms because they make the bed feel like a private retreat and they add dimension to a box that doesn’t have architectural character.

tiny bedroom3

 

Wallpapered feature walls or the entire room can make a small space feel special.

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tiny bedroom3

 

tiny bedroom5

 

tiny bedroom

 

tiny bedroom2

 

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