bm intense white

My New Favorite Subtle Gray

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Like me, you may be struggling to find that perfect shade of super subtle gray. I know how very difficult this search can be. But search no more because I’ve sampled and identified two most excellent choices during planning of the Bennett kitchen project. I know how truly relieved you must feel now.  

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privacy fence on concrete

Out Riding Fences

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On a beautiful 60 degree day not that long ago when winter decided to take a break, I was sitting in my neighbor’s back yard and she asked “so what have y’all got going on over there at the house“. What she means is–have we got any improvement projects or renovations planned? I wish my answer was yes. I wish my answer was, “actually yeah, we’re gonna rip the second story off next week and go to town on a master suite, kitchen addition and we won’t stop until we’ve dormered the hell out of that second story. It will be absolutely dreamy.” My real answer was “Nah, not really, I think we’re going to put up a fence.” Dan and I have been round tabling some fence plans. One reason being, we fancy another dog. And then when we acquire the new dog we need to wrangle the dogs and the…

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indiana exterior after

Blue House Revolution

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What happens when you zero in on a great exterior color combination and end up with a great transformation like the Indiana house renovation?   You ignite a blue house revolution in your small NC town of Southern Pines and blue houses start popping up everywhere. #belikemike #darkbluehouse             And for a couple of bonus points, John & Sherry painted their show house dark blue too.  

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bennett kitchen drawing

Bennett Kitchen: Plan & Progress

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The Bennett kitchen renovation is in it’s 4th week. We should check in because things are really starting to move along now. What the crew has already completed: demo removed old hazardous electrical wiring underneath house installed new plumbing pipes and water lines replaced 3 exterior spigots, all leaking electrical rough-in replaced subfloor framed pocket door & new door opening drywall, mud & sanding trim out What I’ve scheduled for this week: floor tile install tankless water heater install painting Here’s one of the most exciting parts of the plan, the stove wall- We’ve got some sconce and reclaimed floating shelf action on tap which I’m particularly excited about as are you I’m sure. I think I’ve found some old timbers in our barn that I think will work but I haven’t ran those by Joseph yet, Joseph is the lead carpenter on the crew. This is my overall plan…

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pocket lime

Pretty Pantry Doors

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The door to the laundry room at the Bennett kitchen renovation is a newly installed pocket door. I’m thinking about painting it an accent color and I’m considering a bright, pacific blue like this fabric, Aqua is a big fan favorite as an accent color but I don’t think that’s right for this project. I want a more saturated, stand out color. Here’s the path that others have taken,   I really like this one,           This makes me want to go lime green,      

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Mt Vernon House

A Historic Renovation Introduction: The Mount Vernon House

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Everybody, meet the Mount Vernon house… Years ago when the real estate market didn’t have a monster face (remember those days?) and I had already cut my remodeling teeth on my own home, an old boarding house went up for sale. The Mount Vernon house is an imposing structure, built in the Queen Anne style at the turn of the century. It was originally a boarding house which actually served as a sanitarium called Pineshire Sanitorium. I’ve been told that the residents staying at the Pineshire would go up into the cupola where they had a clear view of the railroad station and could see when their friends and family arrived into town on the train.  Its unclear how long Mount Vernon was a boarding house but I understand that it was separated in to apartments sometime in the 1930s. The Mount Vernon house changed ownership a few times in 105 years and sometime in 2004…

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What I Want Etsy

Our Etsy Picks

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This round up from Etsy is making us all wanty.     Riven Studio Maple Serving Board/Moroccan Tribal Moroccan Cotton throw blanket/ Yao Cheng Tea Towel/ Blue Moon Lights industrial sconce/  Bazaarbayar multi-color rug/ Knot and Bow jumbo confetti balloon/ Emily Jeffords print “Sundown”/  

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Pillow Talk Accent and Anchor Pillows by The Estate of Things

Spring Hill: Choosing Banquette Pillows

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I gave my Spring Hill client a little roundup of some different fabrics I wanted her to choose from for pillows at the banquette. In keeping with a farmhouse industrial vibe, I chose these five combinations. Let’s think about grain sacks and a modern farmhouse and when block prints and burlap collide. With those kinds of vibes rippling through our minds, which set would you pick? How about if…once you tell me your pick in the comments, I’ll tell you which one the client chose OR if you care to guess I’m cool with that too.    

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Bullard kitchen

A Notable Kitchen

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One of Country Living’s Contributing Editors Heather Bullard designed her own 600 square foot kitchen along with the rest of her house. It’s a great melding of functionality and rustic modern beauty by the orange grove. You’re gonna be jealous of the dish pantry and the coffee bar and the lady got herself a lineup of sconces over the sink, remember our love for that. She gives you the process play by play which I both enjoy and appreciate. Like me, I’m sure you find a space that you love but have no idea where the pendant came from or the source for the bar stools cause the designer ain’t telling. If you can’t find the info you want in her posts, the answer is probably in the comments because Heather also manages to respond to all comments and I think she’s pretty much answered every question readers asked. This…

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open shelves kitchen18

Styling Open Shelves in the Kitchen

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Open shelving in the kitchen is everywhere these days.  It’s time to get inspired in how to style those shelves whether they were installed by a custom cabinet maker or your husband. Maybe you went totally progressive and installed shelving with no upper cabinets or maybe you just added some floating shelves in with your cabinets, either way the job isn’t done until they’ve been properly arranged. Get your ‘scape on.   It doesn’t take long to realize that its all about white dishes and how you balance it out from there,         Add some art in to mix things up and to make the shelving both functional and artistic, just lean it.               Turning the corner,   I love this look, installing shelves over the window,    

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sliding doors3

Sliding Door Makeover

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While I was painting the white washed paneling in my kitchen and waving anxiously goodbye to the 90s, it occurred to me that I could quickly makeover the ugly sliding doors on our little kitchen pantry. They slide on a track and pass over one another and they are solid wood slabs probably from the 1970s or 80s with circular plastic recessed pulls. I thought some hardware and some chalkboard paint might serve them well and I could do it all for peanuts. MyKnobs Amerock Rochdale   Lowe’s Valspar Chalkboard Paint At first the plan was to add some thin molding to the faces of the doors to beef them up a bit. But I realized that they were on a single track and there wasn’t enough space for them to pass over one another with the addition of even the thinnest molding. It’s dissapointing because they would’ve been awesome had…

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Spring Hill kitchen plan

Spring Hill: Working Plan

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This is the plan I’ve worked up for the Spring Hill kitchen project. Its a general conception of the classic white kitchen with a farmhouse and industrial influence.   We’re using some classic elements that you probably see a lot and that’s because they work and they look great for a long time. Some of the elements that make for a timeless kitchen are: white shaker style kitchen cabinets hardwood flooring in kitchen white subway tile backsplashes bin pulls subtle wall color Something that’s missing from this design concept that also stands the test of time is marble countertops. We love marble but we’ll save that expense in this project.  

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Bennett Kitchen Sconces

Bennett Kitchen: Sconces

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Every time I start a remodel project I do an initial walk through with Chuck the electrician before rough-in. He always says (use southern accent) “have you got sum fixtures you wanna design the house around”. Lighting is so absolutely important and easy to get wrong, whether you choose a fixture that’s the wrong scale for the room or you don’t have enough. The plan at the Bennett kitchen calls for sconces on either side of our custom range hood. It’s time to start thinking about the right pair of fixtures. Here’s the roundup,   1 Hudson Valley heirloom old bronze  2 Schoolhouse Electric Princeton junior factory shade  3 Schoolhouse Electric Princeton freshman  4 Cedar & Moss Tilt Cone  5 Rejuvenation Carson L-Arm  6 Shades of Light vintage traditions  7 Barn Light Electric Garden City  8 Schoolhouse Electric Princeton junior

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