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office progress, new colors & bedroom fabric


I’ve still been busily working on my house.  It’s been so therapeutic for me.  I’m even getting on top of the laundry and keeping my counters cleaned.  I’ve been specifically working on my office (again, I know) and my bedroom.  I’ve reorganized my office a lot and I have gotten rid of a lot of stuff, but I was still trying to fit 10 lbs of flour into a 5 lb sack.  I needed to get rid of a lot more.  So, I was ruthless and got rid of things I might need to use, but probably never would and things that were really nice, but I didn’t need.  I passed the entire lot along to a fellow blogger for $20.  I see it as a way to get rid of things and also to pass something along to someone else who can use it.

So, here’s how things are shaping up…



The banner is canvas painted in my Milk Paint colors.  I have more pennants and I just need to make one more banner.  I found the large frame at a barn sale and plan to paint it and make a chalkboard insert for it.



I’ve had this chair for months, but I think I’m finally going to take the time to slipcover it.


The gold isn’t bad and actually works with my Dash & Albert rug, but it’s a little tired and stained.  I have some white cotton twill just waiting for a date with me and the chair.


I brought one of my French chairs in and a drop leaf table from the basement to use as a work surface until I find something better.


My dad fixed up the tole chandelier I bought from Kristen when I was in Raleigh.  $55, ladies.  I actually said, “Oh, give me that!” when I saw the price.


It needed to be rewired and a few parts needed to be replaced, so I gave it to my dad and he tinkered around with it.  He made sure I knew that he would not be a part of a chandelier refurbishing business, in case I was thinking of that.  I assured him this wouldn’t be a regular thing.


Here are some shots of my organizational efforts…





There are still some piles of things, but it’s mostly stuff for tutorials that I need to use and clear out.  I suppose there are always going to be piles of some sort, but I am trying to minimize that.


In addition to working on my house, I’m stepping things up with the Milk Paint business.  The workshops have been very successful and I’d like to start working on more education, more support for my customers and retailers and more products.  I’ve had conversations over the past couple of weeks about brushes, stencils, how-to booklets and more.  It’s exciting.

I am working on four new colors for the line, which involves a lot of measuring, stirring and high-tech tools like paper plates.



 Lastly, here’s a look at the fabric I just ordered for my bedroom.  I love it!  It reminds me so much of a fabric that would be on a feather duvet in a German Gasthaus.  I put together the look in Photoshop, so I could see how they worked together…



I can’t wait to start working with it.  This does mean, though, that I will most likely be returning the rug to HomeGoods and I’ll look for another.  I love that rug, but it’s been hard to work around and I know I want the room to be blue and white.  I’m afraid the greens and rusts in the rug will overwhelm that.  Hopefully I can find another one that’s a bit quieter.

Oh!  And I did get permission to take down the bedroom ceiling fan!!  Can I get an AMEN from all of the ladies who have fought the ceiling fan battle?  We will have a standing fan in the room, but I can get my chandelier.  Victory!

It occurred to me yesterday that I didn’t share my goals and plans for 2013, so I will do that this week.  It’s already looking like an exciting year…

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  1. Can’t wait to see your bedroom when it’s complete! I love the fabric you’ve selected. Interested to see what you do with the chair…would love to see another slip cover tutorial this year:) Or a fun pillow tutorial:)

  2. Ginger says:

    I am new to your blog, so I had to get your book and read it over the weekend. I must say it’s the first decorating book I have actually read from cover to cover. ( instead of just looking at pictures) Really enjoyed it and found it down to earth and inspiring. Which I really appreciate. Keep it up, I am enjoying this little lift to my spirits of your daily blog. Thanks so much!

  3. Hi! I’ve enjoyed your blog for quite awhile, thanks for all you share of your home and ideas! I would love to know about the blue fabric you chose and where to get it. Truly beautiful. Thanks, ej

  4. Oh, I love how your house is coming together. Your gorgeous organizational efforts make me want to go do some organizing right now! I can’t wait to see your bedroom. Can you believe I actually contributed to the purchase of our bedroom ceiling fan? Yes, I know… I can’t either… I blame it on the fact that I was 8 months pregnant at the time and it was a hot June! :-)

  5. It looks amazing–and I absolutely can’t wait to see what the new year holds for you (and us all!)

  6. Marion,

    I have to say, I just read your entire book today….cover to cover….and absolutely LOVED it! I feel like I know you now! I’ve read your blog for years, but your book really tied everything together for me. What was so different about your book vs. decor magazines and other decorating books, is when I finished it, I didn’t leave it feeling like my house was “less than” or discouraged because it wasn’t magazine worthy (like I normally do with other books). In fact…it was the opposite….I feel totally encouraged and “inspired” and ready to tackle some projects to really make my home feel more like the way the story I want it to tell. I know I can do this in small steps that aren’t overwhelming, and in small ways so that I don’t break the bank. We currently live in a rental house and I often feel like I can’t truly make it a home until we live in our own home….but your book reminded me that it just isn’t so. God has us here right now for a reason…and He can use me and my talents to create a home that is inviting and beautiful….while at the same time focusing on what’s really important. Your book was a wonderful balance of reminding readers that while stuff is just “stuff”….it can be used for a much more worthy purpose….the strengthening of family, friends and your faith.



  7. Hillary Johnson says:

    I am a huge fan and have a crazy question. The picture you took of your office of the items in a corner that you need for your future HGTV tutorials I see some small preserved boxwood wreaths. Could you tell me where you got those? I bought one at a boutique last year but have been looking for more ever since. I have only found cheap looking fake ones that I don’t like, and I am desperate for more of the nice ones like you have shown there with the ribbon. Do you remember where you got those?

    • Debbie says:

      Hi Marian,
      I agree with Hillary :). Thanks for always allowing us to live through you, sorta :)!! I can’t wait for your daily blog everyday. I feel like we’re related somehow.
      Anyway, when I took down my Christmas wreath this year (we moved to our new house in October) our front door seemed so sad and empty. I’ve been looking for a really nice boxwood wreath that I could adorn with a little bit of ribbon and maybe some rusty cutouts of some kind. I have a rusty bell at the entry so thought it would tie in nicely.
      Thanks again chick!

  8. teresa says:

    I hope you’re going to wait before deciding on the rug.
    Sometimes things look so different when they’re actually in place and the bits of green and rust might add another layer that would be missing in with just blue and white. The floors look great…what a lovely surprise. I did that for my BF last year, only I had to refinish them.

  9. Laurie says:

    I will never win the ceiling fan battle. :(

  10. Marilyn says:

    I’ve been looking at your website for hours! I saw pictures of a chandelier and thought my husband would not want me to take down the ceiling fan. And then I read your blog! I’m going to show him what you said, and maybe that will convince him to let me do it! Now I just have to find a great looking standing fan.

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