Sunday, April 9, 2017

Adoption by Design

To raise funds for my sister and brother-in-law's adoption fund, I'm offering my interior design services through July for $25 an hour with proceeds (up to $50 per client) going toward bringing Baby Hayes home.

I can help you choose paint colors, pack or unpack for a move, decorate on a budget, purchase furniture, hang pictures, rearrange furniture, organize your junk room...if it has to do with your home, I can help!

Please re-post the below graphic on your social media outlets to get the word out!  Book your appointment by filing out the "contact me" section on the right side of this page.

Follow Abby and Nick's adoption journey at

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Shop Your Home

Why has it taken me this long to hear the phrase "shop your home"!?!?!  That's been my method for years but I now I have a name for it!

Because so many of my clients have small or non-existent budgets, shopping your own home is often a great solution!  And sometimes it helps to have an outsider (like myself!) to walk around your home and see it with fresh eyes.

Need to freshen up your home office?  Let's shop your garage for that piece of tin that can be used as a memo board.

Just because that one picture has hung in your dining room for 7 years, doesn't mean it can't be moved to a bedroom in great need.  Then let's hang mismatched plates in the dining room!

Remember that random collection in the attic that has no home?  Let's change up your boring hall bath.

My favorite part of shopping your home is finding unconventional pieces to decorate with- a chunk of an old fence, your grandmother's quilt, your kid's snowboard, a gigantic enlargement of a favorite recipe.

When you're ready to shop your home, give me a call!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Our New Home

Well, I say "Our New Home" but Chris and I moved into the home that Abby and I were living in before either of us married.  Plus, it's the home my parents bought when I was in college. But it's new to us as a married couple and it was a huge blessing to have a house to move into!  While in Jacksonville, we started affectionately calling it the Cul-de-Sac House but now we just call it home!

Some things might look the same to those who've visited before, but I was really conscience of making the home feel like "us" and not "me"- of course, all the wedding pictures help!  Our housewarming gift from Moma and Daddy (not to mention all the cleaning and prep they did in the months before we moved!) was a bright and shiny door can even see it from the road!

I'm still crazy about the living room color...a green that becomes an amazing compliment and neutral to everything in the room.

When decorating, it's important to repeat colors throughout the space.  As you can see I had no trouble repeating the reds and blues.  But I especially love how the black is repeated in the "C" and "K", "B", the trunk coffee table, the art above the piano and then our black and white wedding pictures buy the front door.  Repeating the black helps ground the space and helps the room feel balanced.

On one of my first trips to Jacksonville during our engagement, we found these red lamps at Kirklands.  I immediately loved them but Chris didn't so we left Kirkland' disappointed and Chris wondering what he was getting himself into!  He ended up surprising me with the lamps on my next trip to Jacksonville.  Needless to say,  the lamps have become a symbol of those first few months we basically moved them to Huntsville in our laps!

I still love those lamps and love how they pop against the wall color!

This is the wall immediately inside the front door and I think it might be my favorite!  Our first Christmas together, Abby and Nick gave us this metal piece with our marriage verse on it.  I'm normally a symmetrical kinda girl but this wall and pictures were begging for asymmetry!  What is amazing about asymmetry though is that you can still find balance.

You can see from this picture that the grouping is nearly floor to ceiling but it was the perfect solution since that space was too tight for a piece of furniture.

This piece of art has lived in many spots single girl rental home...this dining room a few years ago...our living room in Jacksonville...and now over the piano.  Chris bought the cotton stems for me in Savannah, GA and the jar they are in are from the shower that my dear friend Bethany had flowers in at my first wedding shower.  Bethany passed away about 18 months later so that mason jar means a lot.

I think Chris's favorite new thing about our home is the new lighting fixture in the dining room!  Its a modern mix of wood, metal and Edison bulbs.

I'm still crazy about all my pewter Wilton Armetale serving pieces we got for wedding gifts so those are on display on the dining room hutch.

 This church window has also known several homes and it is the right compliment for the metal and wood of the dining room light.

The highlight of our home is the screened porch that's off the dining room and on the second story.  As the Forester-Brooks family as a whole, we've hosted many a porch party here and Chris and I love having breakfast together out here most mornings.

It feels like a treehouse!

Back inside, down the hall, I hung our wedding vows to each other.  Of course we wrote our vows by ourselves but found out later they both have 250 words!  What are the chances of that?!!?

Possibly the most used room in our home is the basement...on the downstairs landing, I add our silhouettes from St. Augustine under a picture that says "Every person's life is a fairytale written by God's fingers" (a quote from Hans Christian Anderson).  I had that piece in the same spot before I met Chris and was so excited I had finally had silhouettes to match!

There's no way around the elephant in the room- Chris bought the largest (and most comfortable) couch when we was a bachelor!  If it were an inch bigger, it wouldn't have fit...but we are glad it did! Our basement is the best spot to watch tv and just veg.

Back upstairs, I made a few changes to the Heritage Room (our guest room).  The Heritage Room has Alabama and Huntsville-themed art, my collection of vintage children's books, my many scrapbooks, and pieces from both my grandparents' homes.

Every piece in here tells a story...the rocker was my Nanny's...the quilt was made by my Great Aunt Irene...

...the sign above the closet was on Popall's mailbox...Nanny's jewelry boxes are on the chest of drawers...This room just makes me feel loved and thankful!

The room that's gone through the most transformation is our master bedroom.  We both decided we wanted a navy and coral room and we LOVE it!  I used our current bedspread since it was neutral and just added accent pillows (on clearance at Steinmart).  I found the coral curtains on sale at Kirklands. I love the height they add to the room!

After we had our navy and coral scheme planned, I started seeing it all over Pinterest!  I also saw how gold was a great accent to it so instead of rehanging the dresser mirror, I used a gold one that belonged to my grandparents.  Not only does it add sparkle to the room, it feels more updated that hanging the matching mirror.

On the corner of the dresser, I have my wedding bouquet that I put in a lantern.  I remember as a young girl seeing a friend persevere her bouquet under a cloche and I couldn't wait to display mine!  

In this view you can see what I hung on the far side of the bed- a bright floral print with a gold frame I also found at Kirklands.  On either side are gold mirror candle holders.

Next to the closet, I put Chris's valet and finally had a place to hang my wedding jewelry shadow box that I made with my wedding hair combs, earrings and my purity ring I got when I was 13 years old.  Above that is the "Mrs. Brooks" hanger Moma gave me for my wedding dress.   

I was slightly afraid that painting an average sized bedroom a dark color would make the space feel small but it doesn't!  It makes it feel cozy and romantic!  I also love how it makes the cherry finish of our furniture look so much richer!

I had a decorating epiphany this morning!  I was looking around the house and thinking of my passion to help families with little or no budget beautify their homes and I realized...I'm my own client!   Our home has been decorated over time with things that were hand-me downs, on sale, up-cycled or saved for.

I agree with Jane Austen when she wrote, "There is nothing like saying at home for real comfort" and it thrills my soul to create a place of comfort for us and anyone else that will let me!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Corporate Office Makeover

{I originally posted this at a few months ago.  This is the office space I worked when we lived in Jacksonville}

I work for an accountant and our offices are at one of our clients' corporate office. This client happens to be a successful restauranteur who owns a couple fine dining restaurants and a local chain of popular burger places.

Our client realized I loved decorating so when it was time to redecorate the lobby, he gave me free reign! 

My inspiration for the space was the rustic vibe of the burger restaurants.  The first decision was to paint the curved wall orange (the restaurant's signature color) including a strip for a chalkboard artist to draw our logos. The artist hasn't come yet, but I love the orange!  

The very first item I bought was this cow art piece I'm in love with- just $150 at Kirklands.  A few week after that, I found these gigantic cow heads at Steinmart. They were exactly what the space needed! 

I purposefully wanted to repeat the bright colors and this colorful cow grounds that side of the lobby and helps the orange make sense. 

BTW- Chris gets brownie points for hauling them through the store!

I found these great squares of reclaimed wood at Target and they were perfect over the bench.  Plus, I found them when Abby was here for a visit and it was fun shopping together!

I found two burlap message boards on clearance that will serve as a place to post upcoming events. I bought cute clothes pins in the scrapbook section at Hobby Lobby and they clip to the twine on the boards.

For our outgoing mail, I found a galvanized tray in the garden section at Target- it's those little details that I love!

One of my favorite finds was this double in-box that I hung from an antique looking nozzle. How cute is this??

With the new carpet and fresh paint (I chose Sherwin Williams Requisite Gray), the space is so welcoming, warm and professional!

I was glad to have a creative outlet in the middle of my accounting job!

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Abby & Nick's New Home

{I originally posted this on last summer but wanted to share here to show the transformation.  Abby's actually add more pretties and personal touches since these pics but here's the original post...}

One of the highlights of our Huntsville visit over Memoral Day was decorating Abby and Nick's new place!  Their journey to buy their new home was a challenging one, making it all the more sweet to finally see them settled.

I've been helping friends, family and clients decorate their homes for about six years and I can honestly say I think Abby and Nick's is the most beautiful! Not only are the bones of their house great, but they've made great decisions for paint colors, furniture and finishes.  We were able to use a mixture of items they each had as singles, items they've bought since marriage and then some new things they bought just for their new home.

Here are the before & after pics...


Notice how red and turquoise are repeated in the main living areas.  I've always said buy what you love and it will go together and Abby's house is proof of this- the way the red and turquoise repeated naturally through the main living areas was perfect!



Green carpet is being replaced with tile this summer...


How amazing is this backsplash!?!?

{Dining Room}


Abby is in love with her red dining room! She used Nanny's china cabinet and bought a new farm table and chairs. 

{hall & baths}
My trick for walls with lots of extra boxes (alarm, doorbell, etc.) is to work with them and make them flow with the decor. With this collage, you barely notice them. Pictures for the empties on our their way!

Master bath with Abby's Alaska pic...

Guest bath with Nick's NYC pic, new mirror, shower curtain, light fixture...

{master bedroom}

Over-the-bed art...a combo of treasures we found at Hobby Lobby and Kirkland's.

I'm already having separation anxiety from the house- it is just that beautiful! I hope the pictures capture the essence. Abby and Nick love their new home plus we got Honey Bunch's stamp of approval!