diy

Christmas Home Tour {Part One} – and a $500 Giveaway!

Some affiliate links included. 

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! I seriously love Christmas, y’all. We decorated the house a little early this year and I’ve been listening to Christmas music for weeks. I’ve basically turned into Buddy the Elf. Our first Christmas with our baby girl is adding to the excitement for sure! 

Carrie from Lovely, etc. invited me to join in on her “A Very Merry Christmas Home Tour” this year, along with 24 other fabulous bloggers. Be sure to check out all of the other tours for more Christmas inspiration. Their links are at the bottom of this post…along with a $500 giveaway! HOLLA! 

Christmas Home Tour 2015 - Part OneI’ll be sharing the first half of our home all Christmas-ified today; our living room and kitchen. I’ll mostly just share photos with minimal dialogue. If you have any questions about sources, feel free to ask! 

Christmas Tree 2015

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This year, the tree was trimmed with a red & white checkered burlap ribbon and a felted ball garland. We opt for sentimental ornaments over a themed tree. Our tradition is to pick up an ornament on vacations or for any momentous occasion. This year we’ve added some sweet pink to the tree! :)

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christmas-tour-2015-18I really love the mantel this year. It’s fun and whimsical! I used my sparkly bottle brush trees again, but also added our little deer friend. 

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christmas-tour-2015-20Lucy’s adorable stocking came from TaDa! Creations on Etsy. I’m officially obsessed with this shop. 

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christmas-tour-2015-1Another tradition we’ve started in recent years is purchasing a new Christmas album to play on our record player. Among my favorites are A Christmas Gift for You and Merry Christmas by Bing Crosby. This year’s addition is the Beach Boys Christmas Album. So much fun!

christmas-tour-2015-23I loved our kitchen table centerpiece so much last year, I kept it the same. I love my thermi! ;)

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christmas-tour-2015-4The coffee bar got a little holiday touch, as well as a few Christmas vignettes throughout the kitchen. 

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christmas-tour-2015-10I’ll be back soon with the rest of our Christmas home tour. Until then, here’s a little sneak peek! 

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Don’t forget to visit the rest of the homes on the tour – there are some amazing homes here! Catch a sneak peak from the photos below and follow the links to see everyone’s homes.

Monday

Monday

Lovely Etc.

Thrifty and Chic

Bigger than the Three of Us

Tuesday

Tuesday

One Krieger Chick

All Things With Purpose

The Happy Housie

Blue I Style

Little Red Brick House

Wednesday

Wednesday

Southern State of Mind

Seeking Lavender Lane

Designing Vibes

The Tale of an Ugly House

Domicile 37

thursday

Thursday

Like a Saturday

It All Started With Paint

Little House of Four

Boxy Colonial

The Turquoise Home

Friday

Friday

A House Full of Sunshine

Making it in the Mountains

View from the Fridge

Casa Watkins

Shabby Grace Blog

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Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}

Ok – this is take 2 of this post {as those of you who subscribe may have noticed}. I started a draft while baby girl was napping, but didn’t get very far before she woke up. I came back to save what little I had written and Lucy girl decided it was good enough and hit publish. ha! ;) 

*some links are affiliates

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}I have another nursery project for you today! Now, this one is not earth shattering or new…but I love it! As a former preschool teacher, I’m a little bit obsessed with children’s books and instilling the love of reading in our kids. Studies show that having books in the home is directly linked to academic achievement. I use all of those statistics as my excuse for endless amounts of books. 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}Now, if you’re going to create your own little Einstein by having all of the books, you have to find some creative ways to store them and have them easily accessible. We have a cube bookcase that holds a majority of the books and toys, but why not have some of those beautiful books double as wall art? 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}When I started dreaming up ideas for decorating a nursery, I was always drawn to the look of book ledges. Children’s book covers are bright, beautiful and meant to be seen. I love the idea of having them on display not only to look pretty, but as a visual reminder to enjoy a good book. 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}I bought 5 of the Ikea Ribba shelves in white. They are just under 22 inches, which  the perfect size for the space we have. They are really easy to install, you just need to measure carefully so that the spacing is right and the edges are even. The ledges should be screwed directly into the studs or supported by wall anchors to be sure that they are secure. 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}I used the higher shelves to hold special books that we want to keep safe from being damaged. The lower shelves are great for books that you want your little ones to be able to easily grab. 

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}

Ikea Book Ledges {and some of our favorite books}I love it, and I have to say that Lucy seems to love it as well! There has been lots of smiling and reaching towards her favorite books. :) 

There are so many children’s books out there, it’s hard to know which ones are great! Here are some of our favorites for toddlers and preschoolers:

Baby Lit Books {We have several Little Miss Austen books *cough cough, early brainwashing*, The Jungle Book, and The Secret Garden. These are great board book primers, plus the illustrations are lovely!}.

Sandra Boynton Books {We especially love Doggies}

Eric Carl (The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Brown Bear, Brown Bear What do you see?

Anything Dr. Seuss

The Jesus Storybook Bible

The Beginner’s Bible

Skippy Jon Jones

Maisy Books

Llama Llama Red Pajamas

Pete the Cat

What are some of your favorite children’s books? 

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Two-Tone Nursery Dresser Makeover

I’m still working on finishing up baby girl’s nursery, but I’m getting so close to done! One of the first projects I tackled for her room was a dresser makeover. I actually started it in December and I think I finally got it done in January. It was by far the hardest furniture makeover I have ever done! 

Two-Tone Nursery Dresser MakeoverI had been searching for the perfect dresser to makeover and double as a changing table for a few months. I finally found this 1960’s Drexel in French provincial style on a local Facebook garage sale group. I got it for a steal, and I knew it was going to need some lovin’….I just had no idea how much!

Two-Tone Nursery Dresser MakeoverClearly it had seen better days, but since I was planning on chalk painting, I didn’t think much of it. First things first… I bought a lead test kit at the hardware store to make sure we weren’t dealing with any dangerous paint. No lead was detected, so I was in the clear! The top of the dresser had some chipped paint and I had just planned to sand the top a bit to smooth out the finish before painting. However…the paint started peeling off in sheets. So, I kept sanding the body of the dresser until it was completely smooth…which meant I was down to the wood. Not an easy task.

Two-Tone Nursery Dresser MakeoverBy the time I got to the drawers, I finally had my “ah-hah”, “duh” moment and I pulled out the Citri-strip. This stuff is a miracle in a jug. I used gloves to apply the stripper on all of the paint and let it sit for about 30 minutes or so, then I came and scraped off the paint with a paint scraper. It came off so easily! It took me maybe an hour to finish all 6 drawers (including the time I waited for the Citri-strip to work).

Two-Tone Nursery Dresser MakeoverAll that was left to do was paint and wax! I’ve been in love with the two-tone look for dressers and wanted to try it out on this piece. I painted the body of the dresser with Simply White by Cece Caldwell, and the drawers were done with Carolina Sun Yellow. I have to say, out of all of the chalk paint brands I have tried so far, Annie Sloan is still my favorite. It is so easy to apply and goes on very smooth. I had to add a lot of water to the CCC paint and it still wasn’t as smooth as the ASCP. However, Cece Caldwell has more color options and I love that yellow! It’s so sunshine-y and happy! :)

I still had a ton of Annie Sloan clear wax on hand, so I finished with that. I love the wax from the ASCP line as well. 

Two-Tone Nursery Dresser Makeover

Two-Tone Nursery Dresser MakeoverI had the opportunity to get matching hardware for the drawers that were without, but decided to find something that was a bit more simple. I really wanted to find some clear acrylic drawer pulls, but I was working with a less common hardware size. I could have filled the wholes and started from scratch, but I really didn’t want to have to do that. I found these lovely bronze pulls from D. Lawless Hardware and I am so happy with them! They were very affordable and I think they look great on the dresser. 

Two-Tone Nursery Dresser Makeover

I can’t wait to show you more of baby girl’s colorful room! It’s pretty much our new favorite space in the house. :) 

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Two-Tone Nursery Dresser Makeover