Tag Archives: inspiration

Inspiration Board for a Cottage Bathroom

I posted last week about the small modifications we’ve made to our bathroom over the last several years to help us get by until we were ready to totally renovate this room – and I couldn’t be happier that the time is finally here!

Here’s what I am hoping this room ends up looking like:

bathroom-inspiration-board

As you can see, I am feeling drawn to whites, grays, and blues – light, airy spaces! It feels nice and clean, which is always a good feeling in a bathroom.

While we always make a big effort to do things as inexpensively as possible, we also have a strong interest in investing in pieces that last. Items in spaces like the kitchen or bathroom get a lot of traffic – and we have no desire to redo something in a several years because it couldn’t hold up!

For flooring: I have been drooling over this Carrara Hex Tile for a long while. I tried to convince my husband to put it in the powder room but couldn’t get him on board. He’s finally come around! I love the muted mix of grays and slightly vintage feel.


via For the Love of a House

For shower tile: While he came around on the floor tile, I’ve come around on the shower tile. I always pictured just a traditional white subway tile (like everyone else on the planet), but he’s convinced me to go with oversized matte-finish rectangular tiles. Bonus: less grout to get mildewy! (Still contemplating a penny tile accent wall.)


via Molly Frey Design

For lighting: We will add some recessed can lights, but over the vanity we both like the nautical touch of a galvanized steel vanity light.


via The Handmade Home

For the vanity: Since I would love to DIY either white beadboard or board and batten in this room, and the tile is all lighter shades of gray, we are both drawn to these dark gray vanities. We have a black vanity downstairs with white beadboard, and I like the contrast.


via Southern Living

For Storage: We have a few ideas when it comes to adding storage. We’ll add recessed tile shelves in the shower, and a cabinet above the toilet. I’d also love to recess the medicine cabinets to tie into the molding – similar to this photo.


via This Old House

For the sinks: While I’m not sure about the fixture (something stainless), we know we like rectangular undermount sinks like this one. I love my undermount kitchen sink. It makes the countertop feel more spacious and it’s easy to wipe down.

via Wayfair

For Personality: I’ve had this picture “pinned’ for ages and I’d love to make a sign just like it for our bathroom!


via Inspired Design

For a Whale of a Good time: We have the big old towel bars tiled into the wall. I can’t wait to get rid of them! I would love to have a long row of hooks for towels. I’m in love with these whale’s tail hooks!!


via Houzz

For artwork: If I see if every day while I’m brushing my teeth I want to adore it. Maybe something fresh and fun like an Alex Katz print or one of my local Rockport, MA favorites George Anderson. (OR maybe I’ll get some guts and paint my own!)

via George Anderson Gallery

As I mentioned, this is currently our only bathroom upstairs. It’s also pretty small. This isn’t uncommon with older homes, but we’d like to expand the size for our own use, as well as resale value. We plan to reconfigure two closets and move a wall between the bathroom and one of our guestrooms. This will give us a lot more space to work with.

Our “must” list when it comes to this renovation:

  • Get more square footage (thankfully we’ve figured out a way to make this happen)
  • Need to keep a tub (resale purposes)
  • More storage / countertop (we’d like to fit a double vanity)

Have you ever renovated a bathroom? Any recommendations?
What part of the bathroom would you spend the most time working on?

Inspiration: Board and Batten in the Hallway

For some reason, the DIY projects I always want to do the most are the ones we put off the longest. Probably because the projects I am most interested in are the frivolous ones.

Right now our hallway is BORING. It’s long and narrow and lacks any traces of personality at the moment. While we (briefly) toyed with opening it up, it’s just not worth the trouble. Instead we widened the door to the living room by a foot (as evidenced by the lack of trim boards).

hallway-inprogress

The hallway is too skinny for any type of console table. I’ve been imagining some nice architectural details in this space to make it a bit more interesting. There is no shortage of board and batten tutorials or inspiration photos online. The real question is… what type of board and batten? There are many ways to do it – different heights, widths, spacing.

Tall and Chunky:

via  Jenna Sue Design

Very Tall and Skinny:

via 6th Street Design School

Double Deckered:

via Storefront Life

Triple Deckered:

via Decor Chick

With Shelves:

via Casa de Lewis

Widely Set:

via Handmade Home

I’d like to continue going up our stairs like this too!

via Tiffany Ruda

After researching inspiration photos online, I think we’ve decided to go with the chunky, double-decker look.

Here’s a Photoshopped version of what I hope it will look like:

hallway-photoshopped

Then we will just need to get some color in there!!

That reminds me… that letter “C” on the wall is a DIY project I’ve been meaning to share.

Have any board and batten advice for me? I’m so excited!

Don Gorvett and Staying Inspired

This beautiful print is from the talented Dana Tanamachi and is for sale in her online shop found here.

Over the summer I met Don Gorvett, a printmaker in Portsmouth, N.H. We fell into a lengthy conversation about making time for art and, although a complete stranger, he was extremely encouraging to me as an artist and I left his studio quite inspired.

I had mentioned how I took a printmaking class in college and how much I enjoyed/missed it. He said that artists often don’t give themselves time to create because they don’t feel it’s a “valuable” use of their time when there are so many things “to do” – when it’s actually invaluable.

By the end of our conversation he and my husband were discussing the specs of my artist studio shed. (Is this not the ultimate dream of every writer/artist?!?)

I have another friend who constantly asks me what I am working on. (Hi Audrey!) And I keep having to say nothing! I’ve been thinking a lot about reincorporating the arts into my free time again. I haven’t dedicated time to art since school. The same was true of writing until I ran into another old friend, and since then I’ve been writing here. Who knows where this push will take me?

On another note, Don Gorvett is an incredible woodcut printmaker whose pieces often feature New England landscapes. Maybe one day one of his pieces will grace our home.

via Don Gorvett Gallery

Between my design work, photo editing and all my DIYing it feels like I’m in my creating world a lot – but that’s not necessarily true.

Another thing that Don said to me that has stayed with me is that if I’m not pursuing my art, I’m leaving a part of myself behind. He encouraged my husband to make me stick with it as well.

Now about that artist shed… Ummm yup, I think I could make do in something like this:

photo via William Wright Photography

Whether I’d be inclined to let paint fly in a beautiful shed like that is another story.

What personal passions have you been ignoring? How do you make time for them?

Someday My (Patio) Will Come

patio inspirationvia

Dinner al fresco. Ice cream among twinkling fireflies.  Morning coffee and a magazine.

All that comes to mind when I’m dreaming up our someday patio! (I do love to imagine the end result, don’t I?)

Today I’m talking patio inspiration.

The current area where we will be putting a patio tucks into a corner of the back of our house. When we bought this house, there was a considerable amount of water damage to the concrete foundation – which we have fixed. To help prevent any more water issues, we will be grading the yard away from the house, and also putting in a patio to help. (If the Moose says we “have” to install a patio, I don’t ask questions.)

There are three things I’m looking for in a patio:

1. Budget friendly
2. Organic feeling
3. Low maintenance

It’s been surprisingly difficult to find realistic patio inspiration ideas. There are a lot of “builder basic” patios out there online. And the photos I’ve found on Pinterest and Houzz are glamazon outdoor living rooms.

This is a collection of images I’ve saved all with features I’d like to consider when we’re ready to do our patio:

patio inspirationvia

We’ve discussed creating our patio using three different methods: 1. brick, 2. pavers, 3. stampcrete (or stamped concrete).

We have yet to price everything out, but generally brick and pavers are more expensive (and very DIY labor intensive), and concrete is less expensive. Concrete will also give us more protection from the water issues our home has experienced in the past.

I really like the pattern in the image above – hard to believe it’s concrete! You can also stain concrete. But, I think we’re leaning towards the natural gray you see above.

patio inspirationvia

I like how this patio has a decorative border around it. It’s a nice finishing detail that really makes the stonework sing.

A lot of patios have a small stone walls, or raised planters to add privacy and designate the patio space. But I tend to like the more organic feeling patios that feel like they grew there themselves! A border is a nice way of making that distinction while still staying ground level.

patio inspirationvia

Glory Cottage, that’s right! I would love to sit on this patio all day long!

I like the abundance of potted plants on this patio.

Maybe a potted herb garden will be in order?

patio inspirationvia

There is just something lovely and romantic about pergolas.

I like how this pergola makes the patio feel so connected to the house. Since our patio will be tucked into a corner (kind of like this patio), it’s creates a cozy little nook.

patio inspirationvia

Again, we’re thinking of lots of ways we can better connect the patio to the house.

We have a walk-out basement, which will lead to the patio. But that means we have exposed concrete bricks where our (supposed-to-be-nice-and-pretty) patio will go. We’ve talked about a number of ways to cheer it up, and one of them is ivy.

There’s something so New England about ivy. We would, however, install vertical trellises so the ivy grows on that instead of creating problems with the roots weakening the concrete foundation.

patio inspiration
There are two things I love about this patio.
One: if the pergola is too much of an investment, I like the mini-pergolas over the doors. That’s another way to add character without breaking the bank.
Two: I love the shutters! Too often shutters are only on the front of the house, but adding shutters to the back windows on the patio is another way to make the outdoor space feel united to the rest of your house.
Plus, I’ve never been one for outdoor artwork.
patio inspiration
Again with the pergolas. If we don’t want to do a full-fledged pergola, this modified pergola is a great way to get partial shade and still having a patio open to the skies.
Plus it’s an excellent place for hanging plants!
patio inspiration
As if I needed to add more fuel to my pergola fire.
This could be a great way to add a porch swing to your patio. (We currently have one sitting in the basement waiting for some TLC. It was going to go on the front porch… but maybe the patio would be a better place for it?
Such tough decisions. :p

It looks like I have a lot of research work cut out for me!

Do you have a patio or outdoor living space?

What’s your favorite part about it? Any recommendations?