Friday, August 29, 2014


I finished the big cabinetry project I've been working on the past few weeks. whew!

I faux finished kitchen cabinets and island, the kitchen desk, the living room built in's, a built in cabinetry piece in the living room, and a bathroom cabinet. 

Here's some of the project:

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We did a more traditional heavy antiquing on the exterior cabinets, and then the island was a special faux finish that was heavily distressed and aged looking with green. 

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Here's a lightened picture of the island, though it doesn't do it justice:

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and a photo of the bathroom vanity I painted:

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and the built in cabinet in the living room. The client is very into French country/heavy distress/etc. 

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fun stuff!

I love doing these types of heavy faux finishes. In this case, it was a combo of "make this piece look like this picture" and then also sort of making up my own finishes that match their descriptions.

Happy Friday, have a fun weekend everyone!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Life Lately

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This is what my bedroom currently looks like, and I really like it. It happened casually, basically with stuff I already had. I threw tons of pillows on the couch, and the rest just kind of happened. It's casual, bohemian, calm and serene. I like! I took down the curtain pole this weekend - I was trying to decide if I wanted to keep curtains, but decided against them. Those windows are so pretty, and I decided it felt warm enough without curtains. 

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This is a painting that is in the works at the studio. It's 48 by 48 - big. Only at the beginning stages, but I like it so far. 

this is a photo from the job site I'm currently working on. I have been doing faux finishes on all the kitchen cabinets, the kitchen island, the kitchen desk, the living room built in's, bathroom cabinet and another built in cabinet in the living room.

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This is in the bathroom. The house is being built now. This was a piece that was made specifically for me to paint. 

The hardware was installed last week, so I took a photo.

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This is the kitchen cabinets and the island that I'm distressing. It's really worn looking and old looking. It was fun to paint. I'm finishing the kitchen cabinets today, which are getting an antiqued look.

here's my sewing machine... that I've yet to sew anything on.

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I need to get some thread and read the directions. But glad to have it!

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I went to Ballard over on the west side yesterday, to see if I could find a rug there. No rug luck, but they did have lots of other things I loved! I found this little stool that I think my mom should use in her new living room design. I think two should go in front of the fireplace. Ballard is having a great great sale right now. It's 20% off all sale items, and the sale section is huge right now. I also found quite a few great things in the regularly priced section, of course. Including some pillow cases for my master that I am contemplating on. Do you guys thing King sized beds should have three Euro size pillows or are two ok? This is my conundrum.

lastly here is a snack I had yesterday that was pretty enough to snap a picture of.

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have a great Monday.

Friday, August 22, 2014

TGIF // new rug?

Thank goodness it's Friday. For real. I'm exhausted, and I woke up in the middle of the night, thinking about work. Argh. Glad it's the weekend! It's been a really busy week for me, and I'm happy to spend some time at home this weekend, hopefully working on some good home projects. I have come to a realization about something in my living room that's off - my rug is too small. It's a weird size - I bought it at Ross for cheap. It's like 7 by 8.6 or something. Anyway, it's a perfectly fine rug, it's just too small for my living room. I've been thinking and coming up with plans for the living room to finish it up (for now - it's never been completely finished since we moved in last June and I'd like to complete it by the end of the year.), and I think buying a 9 by 12 rug will do the job. I have been searching around my usual online spots for simple home items (overstock, amazon, ballard, home decorators), and come up with a few options. 

Here's the living room. 

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I really like jute or sisal rugs. They always fit my ever-changing tastes, because they're plain and match anything. I found this one at Ballard for $550 for a 9 by 12:

I like the one with the tan border. I don't love bordered rugs like this, BUT young Max the dog likes to chew on rugs and I don't think he'll be able to attack the edges of this one (the other knotted ones, he can tear apart, though he has kind of chilled out on this behavior with time). Plus, it's a defined edge, which is nice, and I like how light it is in color. The one in our bedroom is light like this and its so pretty. I thought about moving that one down stairs, but it's just really pretty up there. So this is a nice option. The only thing is that in the pics online, some of the photos show a version with a much darker contrast on the tan edge, so I can't tell which is correct. I think this pic is the correct version, but not positive. Going to have to investigate that before I order.

I was set on a jute rug until I came across these cute patterned options. Plus, they look super comfy! So this is why I need your help. 

I think this one is really cute! It's that Beni Ourain look and super comfy on the feet. Hmmm. It's from Overstock and it's $671 (weird price and I hate how they go up every time I go back and click on them). I thnk it would actually be pretty good at hiding stains (better than a solid), but would I get tired of it faster? I love the look of a light rug like this with white walls in our guest bedroom:

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And then I also found this one on overstock for around the same price as the others, though it's saying it's sold out now:

I guess in reviewing it's not my favorite - I like the other beni ourain one better. 

so, your thoughts? 

My idea is to order a new rug and that leather coffee table:

then deal with the side chairs issue. Still deciding on what to do about that, but I'll probably find a couple of thrift store chairs and have a slip cover made. Once I have a bigger rug and coffee table, I think i'll have room for two chairs in there. If not, I'll just do one big side chair. We'll see what I find! it's time to make something happen. 

have a great weekend! i'm excited to play with my new sewing machine.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

This & That

Remember when I did this kitchen match job? Well, my clients had some more cabinets put into the same kitchen, and I matched them, too. Always nice to go back and do more work for clients that like your previous work! They were so nice. They bought the house with this faux finish on the cabinets, and I had matched some work for them (they had a banquette built in, and some more shelves rearranged, so the new part needed a faux finish to match the old faux finish that was previously in the kitchen). This middle section was just display shelves when they bought the house, but they decided to make it into cabinets/drawers for more storage.

This is what it looked like when they had them installed and before I painted:
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And, after:

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 I love these jobs - it's a fun little challenge for me. 

In other design related news, things are going nicely at my mom's (I had mentioned we are redecorating her living room). She had this blue table before:

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and I suggested she get some brass up in that space! :) I thought a little sparkle would be pretty, and suggested we find something with clean lines. Her lines were all pretty heavy in there. Comfy (but pretty) chairs and sofa, and she needed some shine. So, I found this pretty table at west elm. 

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Sorry the photo is really blown out - it was one she sent me that I edited to make it brighter. Anyway, it does exactly what I thought it should do!

in other non work related news, I went on a girl's trip to Charleston this weekend. Look how beautiful our room's bathroom was:

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I loved it. Gorgeous, right?! It was at the Belmond hotel. They're in the middle of a renovation, and our room was beautiful. 

We had a great trip. Some how, I didn't take many pictures. We were only there for part of Friday and Saturday, then came home Sunday, so it was a little too short of a trip, but we did get some great food and drinks, and some nice rooftop pool and beach time. Charleston is a beautiful city! We walked around a little on Sunday and we found Moon and Lola which is a cute little boutique with accessories and home decor items. Check out their cool chandelier:

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Very neat! The whole store was bright white with pops of color, so you know I liked that. I posted this photo on my instagram account (@kristenfdavisdesigns). speaking of instagram, I saw these pillows recently posted:

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I thought they were so cute, and would make a great DIY. I bought a sewing machine last week (I'm really REALLY excited to sew stuff - but I have yet to take it out of the box since it came in the mail. Going to try and experiment with it this weekend), so I'm thinking that could be a pillow DIY for me. I figure pillows won't be too hard to make, and if I can build all this other stuff, I can probably do some sewing! I was online looking at all these cute kantha pillows made out of kantha blankets and thought... duh... get a sewing machine, and make your own stinking pillows! (Why are some pillows so expensive!?) So that's what Im going to do. I hope I have good luck with my sewing machine! 

OK, that's it for now - off to paint some cabinets (in the middle of a huge cabinet job right now - hence a little radio silence on my end! Makes for very long work days). 

Thursday, August 14, 2014


Life lately.

Apparently we are animal attractors. We found a chihuahua in our backyard a few weeks ago, very skinny and shaking. We have searched high and low for her original owners, to no avail. A neighbor has fostered her some, and we have kept her some, and we are all working together and my neighbor thinks he has found someone to adopt her. But, for the time being she is at our house. This is the scene form my lap while I was working a few days ago:

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madness. You can't really tell from this pic, but Max and the chihuahua are both in my lap here. Apparently little dogs just love to sit with you all the time? She is non stop trying to get in my lap, and Max gets SO jealous. He does not like another dog stealing his moms attention. Hah! Possessive.

And in other animal news, I am currently working out in the country, and there are two little kitties that live nearby and visit the job site (Which is basically still a construction site) all day. I was reviewing some work in my car the other day, and all the sudden there were two cats in there.

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talk about aggressive! Hah. They're really cute though. They keep trying to come inside the house we're working on (No one lives there yet). It's funny. One of the workers there said he thought I brought them with me. Bring your cats to work day. Um, no. ;) I have enough animals at home, I don't need to bring them to work with me.

Here's a little sampling of what I'm doing there. I'm doing lots of faux finishes on the cabinetry, and started off with this built in cabinet, and with a powder room vanity. The built in and the vanity were both built brand new, and I'm painting them to match some furniture my client and the designer had seen. 

Before of the built in:

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Then I painted it, and then I destroyed it with my sander. :)

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and what it looks like now!

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Looks like it should be in Anthropologie, huh? I kept thinking it looked like an Anthro display case. 

Here's the other piece:
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It was also just solid wood before (Forgot to take an after pic of it)

I took this picture, because the designer had asked me to darken the white bevels. This client is a huge fan of distressed, french country, etc. So the more glaze the better. The top drawer here had not gotten the extra glaze yet, which you can tell. I will take a better pic of this once it's finished. 

lastly, on a different note, here is a photo of a painting that I did with spray paint, for the client that's hanging all 13 pieces of art in the condo building. 

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I thought it turned out really cool! I almost see a cityscape in the black, which was not intentional. 


happy thursday. 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Leather Ottomon From Overstock

My friend just bought this ottoman from Overstock, and I'm thinking about totally copying her. It's very cute, and a GREAT price. Right at $200.

Our acrylic coffee table from CB2 is too small for our living room, and I've been on the hunt for a new one ever since we moved in. I like that this one is large enough and square, as opposed to rectangular. It fits the size of the living room way better. I need a couple of other things for the room, too, like a chair to replace that white one. And, of course I love that it's tufted caramel leather and the modern legs are a big winner. 

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see what I mean about our coffee table? I do love the acrylic look in there, but it's definitely too small.

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This is the chair that might need replacing. it's a cheap one I got from someone off of Craigslist, and it's from IKEA originally. Max sits in it all the time, so it's nice that the cover is a slipcover and washable. But, it's really small and not great for this spot. I didn't buy it for this house - I bought it for the studio, before the studio became nothing but a work-zone. :) 

Anyway... I love this coffee table - thinking about ordering it soon!

Friday, August 8, 2014

Plant Life

Lately, I've really been into buying plants. All spring and summer. I did a lot of gardening this summer (front yard looks great - my tomato and herb garden? terrible), and I find myself popping into Lowe's garden section a few times per week! Why is it so much fun?!

I've bought a few more houseplants lately, and I love them. My mother and grandmother always have had lots of houseplants, so I guess it kind of rubs off on you. Our old condo didn't really get proper light for keeping plants, so it is nice to have a house where I can keep them and they don't need more sunlight than what they are getting. Lots of sunlight at this house! I just thought I would share my happy plants with you guys today, since they make me smile so often.

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in our bedroom, I have several plants on this bamboo stand. I bought the sticky plant on the top left from Lowe's and the other bright green plant was a gift. I recently found this little succulent plant at Lowe's and love it! I got three - I gave one to a friend. They are so cute, and I love the little planter!

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I have another one in my living room:

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(also - I recently got that blue and white ceramic vase from Ross. They have lots of ginger jars, cute vases, and really cute owl umbrella stands in this style if you are looking for some, FYI!)

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on my dresser. What are these plants called? I don't know, but I have a lot of them in the house. A favorite for sure. I think they like being houseplants though - I put one outside and it did not seem to love the harsh sun. I brought it back in, and it's happy again. 

lastly, I recently (like, this week) got a fiddle leaf fig from Home Depot. How are they so trendy? I guess they're just nice to look at, and everyone agrees? Either way, I love it.

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So pretty and thankfully Mika doesn't try and eat it! whew. 

PS - good news for you cat lovers and people that were concerned about Mika (our cat) when we got a dog back in December. We bought a baby gate and put it at the bottom of the stairs. Max gets the downstairs domain, and Mika gets the upstairs domain. It works great! Mika is loving life again. He sleeps with us at night now, and lies about on the couch and our bed all day. Happy boy! And it makes me really happy that he is happy again (he may have been perfectly content downstairs all the time, who knows. I just felt guilty that he sat only on the top of the table or on a dining chair ALL DAY LONG to be "higher" than Max).


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TGIF, folks! Have a great weekend.

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Chairish Finds

Many of you have probably heard of Chairish from other bloggers by now - the curated online market place for vintage furniture. I could go nuts adding things to my cart on their site. So many good finds, and it's great that it's already curated (unlike Craigslist - yikes! Does any one else feel like CL has gotten a little too sketchy?!). Chairish asked me to partner up with them and create a moodboard based on taking a simple white room (As you guys know, I have no problem with that!) and pump up the color with a bold chair. Chairish has many wonderful accent chairs - here is a link to many of them. I found lots and lots of awesome pieces, so here we go...

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Tuesday, August 5, 2014

A Little Design Work

I don't generally do design work, per se, but I have found myself doing it every now and then, for friends and family. It's something I obviously enjoy, so it's fun to help people out with it sometimes. 

My mom and I have been slowly making over her house. I think her and my stepfather have been there for 7 years or so? Maybe longer. Anyway, we have been redesigning the house from a very traditional look, to a little more casual/simple/beachy/Ballard designs vibe. We started out with her bedroom a few years ago, then we did the kitchen last year, and are working on the living/dining spaces now. 

Here's the kitchen refresh:


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(the tile had already been replaced here. Before this, it was boring builder beige tile:))


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(you can kind of get a feel for the more traditional/formal look she had going in the dining room, through the door in the kitchen in this photo)

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And actually, these photos are old. We have since replaced the kitchen stools, accessorized the kitchen counters, and she has a cute farmhouse table with upholstered chairs. It turned out great! So now, we're moving onto the living room.

Her whole living area (Actually, the whole house) was painted that butter yellow that builders in the early 2000's used (just like our condo!). It worked for her for a while, but she was ready for a change. I tried to get her to do an off white in her space, but she wanted to stick with gray (see? I guess I've been on the off white kick...). We actually sampled lots of grays before picking one. We kept finding that all the grays looked blue when we did samples on the wall. 

so, here's the before photo of the living room:
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to be fair, she was just starting to experiment with moving the furniture around, so it's not always like this. You can see the butter yellow walls, and her old heavy leather furniture. I had always suggested having built in cabinets made around the fireplace. She found some huge bookcases at the Ballard outlet, and I told her to measure out how large they were (to make sure they were substantial), and maybe they could work instead of built in's. So, she was obedient and did what I said:


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nice and big! I gave her the go ahead to get the bookshelves. She bought them, brought them home and had them painted the same color as the kitchen cabinets (a soft white). She also had the fire place painted white. 

Then it was time to pick the gray for the walls. 

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see how all the samples looked blue? This always happens on yellow walls and it frustrates my clients to no end. It's a great idea to find a small spot in the room where you can single out the paint color against your trim and really have no other part of the wall in your view, so you get a true idea of what the color looks like. Mom found a spot on a column in her dining room that was perfect for this. We chose a browner gray (no cool blue in it) that was perfect. I can't remember the name of it, but I know she'll see this and leave it in the comments section!! 

It turned out great:

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She also had dark hardwoods put in throughout the house, to replace the blonde ones/carpet that the builders had put in. That made a HUGE difference, too.

so here is where we are right now. She bought a new sofa from Pottery Barn, and two side chairs from Lazyboy (I think it's Lazyboy!). She also got an attractive leather recliner for my stepdad, from Lazyboy. 

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She found the rug at Ballard as well. I had picked out a different one from there for her, but she loved this one, so I told her to go for it. It looks good with the other design elements, and I like that it still reads as neutral.

I picked out the fabric for those chairs and I love them! So cute. What a statement, too, because this is your view when you walk into the house. 

We still have to get a coffee table, probably some little x-benches for in front of the fireplace, maybe a new end table(?), and accessoriiiiiize. 

I think the coffee table will be round, to mix up some shapes. I want to get some brass in here, too. We'll see if I can convince mom.

She did this little entry way table area all by herself and its cute!

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I love the mirror. I think her Lazyboy design consultant found it for her.

I can't wait to buy accessories for the bookshelves. Mom did a good job of styling them, though, until  then! 

Fun stuff. 

Another friend recently moved in down the street, and I went over the day to hang stuff on her walls for her. 

We started out with the kids' bedroom. This gallery wall is a great idea for a kids room, since they bring home so much art. It's colorful and takes up a lot of space, on these huge walls in this old house. 
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They are buying a cute modern dresser from IKEA that will go below the blue square tape and replace those two dressers. The tape off spot is where a big mirror will go. I tried to sort of hang the artwork/photos in an oval-y shape, to give it some sort of sense of shape. 

I'll be sure and update when she gets the dresser and mirror. 

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For now, I'll leave you with her entry way, which she did on her own and it's so cute.

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turquoise and red - can't go wrong.