Thursday, December 20, 2012

Holiday Hiatus

Season's Greetings, readers!

I had plans to post a few entries this week, but unfortunately, the holiday season has crept up on me! This has turned out to be one busy week. I'll be away from blogging for the rest of 2012 as I will be traveling, spending time with my family, and seeing old friends.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

See you in the New Year....

Friday, December 14, 2012

Best of the Blogosphere: 12/14/12 Edition

Every Friday I feature a blog post in the following categories: Simple Living, Financial, DIY, Before & After, and Random. Here are this week's picks:

Best Simple Living: Sometimes we all need reminding that the holidays should be more about family and celebration and less about presents and the perfect party. Simple Family Finance offers 14 ways to simplify Christmas and enjoy the holidays. Bonus: Molasses cookie recipe!

Best Financial: Ninja over at Punch Debt in the Face does a great job showing how you really don't need to spend your entire income on such a huge home. Just because one CAN get a large loan doesn't mean one HAS to!

Best DIY: If I had a real Christmas tree, I'd take Apartment Therapy's advice and create cool things out of tree trimmings!
Best Before & After: Apartment Therapy showcased this reno earlier in the week. I'm truly amazed (as usual!) by the transformation of this Brooklyn studio featured on theSweeten.

Best Random: Thank you, Design Sponge, for creating a city guide to one of my favorite places in the US - Iowa City! Shout out to my alma-mater, Go Hawks!

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Shower Curtain Fun!

A few days ago, I debuted a new segment called Fifty Deco. In this new monthly post, I'll be showing you what I bought each month using my decorating budget of $50. As promised, today I'm going to show you the results of November's $50 purchase in action.

In November I spent my entire decorating budget of $50 on a new yellow and white shower curtain from West Elm. I put up the shower curtain yesterday, and I really do love the yellow theme I am starting to bring together in my bathroom. One slight problem - my bathroom is tiny and does not have windows, so the lighting in there is horrible for taking pictures. There is only so much Photoshop can do. Plus, I don't have a good wide-angle lens to help me get a larger perspective of the room. I did my best with these limitations, so here it goes:

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Fifty Deco: November 2012 Recap

This is the debut post in a new segment I like to call Fifty Deco. Crazy name, huh? Well, I can’t really come up with anything else to describe my $50 a-month decoration budget. The obvious ones are, well, OBVIOUS. Like “Decorating on a Budget” or “Frugal Design” or “Frugal anything.” Or I thought about “Monthly Decoration Money” because I will be writing about what I spend my $50 on in monthly intervals. So here is me trying to coin a new phrase. Fifty Deco. I kind of like sounds like a catchy radio phrase, “And stayed tuned for Fifty Deco after the break!”

Anyway...In this segment I will feature the item(s) I purchased this month on apartment decoration, organization, and miscellaneous DIY. I’ll tell you why I bought what I did, where I got it, and what I paid for it.

Why $50? That’s an easy answer. When I got done figuring my monthly budget for 2013, I realized I could only allot $50 to decorating each month. Even though I can now afford to live in my own studio in one of the most expensive cities in the US, I didn’t just all of a sudden become Miss Moneybags. I still have student loan debt that I’m paying off and I am not a shopper by nature. Some months I’ll only buy one item and other months I might skip buying anything in favor of saving for a larger purchase.

First up for November 2012: West Elm Shower Curtain

West Elm
Total = $49.82 ($39.00 + $10.82 in shipping)

I tried to purchase this in the West Elm store in Georgetown. Sadly, this particular store doesn't carry bath items! Grrr....

Items I’m considering for next month: mason jars, picture frames, and a shelf for the kitchen.

Stay tuned for a post later this week showing my shower curtain in use in my awesome pad!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Best of the Blogosphere: 12/7/12 Edition

Every Friday I feature a blog post in the following categories: Simple Living, Financial, DIY, Before & After, and Random. Here are this week's picks:

Best Simple Living: Ever feel like your emails don't achieve their purpose? Unclutterer describes four steps to uncluttered email communication.

Best Financial: I just want to say KUDOS to Little Miss Moneybags for paying off all of her students loans! Such a great accomplishment. I'll be there in a few years, hopefully.

Best DIY: When I was a kid I used to cross-stitch. I never thought about cross-stitching a chair, but how cool is this from Ikea Hackers?
Best Before & After: One of my new favorite blogs is called Better After. This blogger collects "Before and After" entries from all over the web. I love the second dresser refresher pictured here. It would go with my globes!

Best Random: Design Sponge features some of the best examples of decorating with family heirlooms. I really love incorporating meaningful pieces into my decorating scheme and hope to draw attention to fabulous pieces owned by my relatives.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Studio Before & After Teaser

Over the weekend I took a bunch of pictures of my new place. In the interest of not sharing the entire set of pictures I have of my new (and somewhat organized) apartment, I'm going to give you a little "before & after teaser" of my new place.

Let's refresh:

There is still work to be done, like hanging pictures, but I love the look so far!