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There are rooms in this house where we went in with a vision, and we worked on it until completion. Some were painless, quick and easy projects (the guest room!) and some were seemingly never ending, as we hit every road block possible (the kitchen!). Still, these rooms started at point A and, eventually, they found their way to point B.

Our funny little nook, though? We went from A to B, then C and D, and by now, we’ve worked our way through the whole alphabet, really! Although our intentions felt pretty clear in the beginning – just a cozy room that you’d want to curl up in – I think the problem was that, when it came down to it, we didn’t know what that really meant. In the very early days of demolition, we did widen the doorway and swap the closet to face the entryway (this used to be a very, very small bedroom). We painted the walls green, picked up a bookcase, found a pint-sized console for the record player, and then we promptly proceeded to swap in countless chairs and rugs, never quite hitting the mark.

And then we took a nice, long break, and we came back feeling refreshed. Like, crazy, excited, can we just get going already? refreshed! (Time away from home = good for the DIY soul.) We had ideas running through our heads so fast, we couldn’t wait to dive in and tackle them, and so, we kicked out our funny little nook once and for all! We re-painted the room a deeper, darker blue-green, Narragansett Green by Ben Moore (which really leans way more blue than green). We laid down a rug with no regrets. We hung a sconce that had been waiting for The Day.

Well, the day is here!

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It’s a really simple room, needing only a few things to make it that place we’d want to curl up in. After surprising ourselves by choosing a dusty lilac velvet for our Milo chair, we agreed that the she should remain the star of the show. Milo is highlighted only by a brassy Cedar & Moss sconce, an oversized art print and a small chrome table. We added an ottoman, too, which was thrifted a million moons ago, and I recovered it with leftover upholstery.

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The opposite side of the room, aside from the paint color, has stayed largely the same. Our IKEA Vittsjo hack holds all of our records, and I spent a few minutes re-organizing the upper shelves to display a few things we love, from framed photos to old letters – and our smudge stick, of course!

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At one point, we had convinced ourselves that the nook wasn’t worth repainting, but man, we are both thrilled that we did! Narragansett Green is a color that has our hearts; it’s sometimes navy, sometimes a deep forest.In the evenings, the corners look almost black, but as the natural light bounces around midday, it can read as a vibrant teal. The view in and out of the room connects so well to the other parts of our home, and so we remind ourselves once again – it’s just paint! Painting again might not be the most exciting way to spend a day, but it is always worth it when you feel like you’ve nailed it.

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We’re happy to call this room ‘done!’, and while we hang out between bigger projects, we’ve been brainstorming like crazy for the bathroom… and the bedroom and the laundry room! We’re riding the inspiration high, apparently!

PS… You might notice we also picked up a new-to-us vintage rug for the living room. It’s larger and fills the space a bit more, and we moved the other one upstairs!

NOOK SOURCES: Wall color: Narragansett Green by Benjamin Moore, color matched to Valspar Optimus // Chair: Milo Baughman, thrifted // Ottoman: thrifted and recovered // Rug: bound carpet remnant // End table: thrifted  //Bookcase: Vittsjo with DIY added shelves, IKEA // Record console: vintage // Ceiling pendant light: DIY //Sconce: Ridge, Cedar & Moss // Record catch-all: thrifted // Throw blanket: Crate & Barrel // White ceramic planter: CB2 // Candle: West Elm (heaven!) // Large art: Mexico #3, DIY Frame // Piglet art: Sharon Montrose // Pink horse: thrifted and painted // Subversive cross stitch: gifted // Gold owl: thrifted and painted // bunny: gifted

  • Breanna - October 20, 2015 - 8:19 AM

    Gosh I just LOVE the purple you chose for the Milo. What a daring and perfect shade.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 20, 2015 - 9:47 AM

      Very outside of our comfort zone, but we couldn’t love it more. Thank you!ReplyCancel

  • Liz - October 20, 2015 - 9:41 AM

    Naragansett Green for the win! I love the moodiness it brings to the nook. That is a space I want to curl up in. And the chair color is surprisingly perfect. Way to go guys!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 20, 2015 - 9:47 AM

      Hooray, mission accomplished!ReplyCancel

  • Chaney - October 20, 2015 - 11:35 AM

    Love it, guys! That wall color makes it feel so cozy!

    Would you mind sharing the source of the ceiling fixture? (Of course I’m curious about the one item I didn’t see on the source list, ha!)ReplyCancel

  • Anni - October 20, 2015 - 11:40 AM

    Looks SO, SO nice and inviting. I love it. And the print next to the pink horse made me lol. I need one of those. :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 20, 2015 - 11:50 AM

      Haha! It’s basically our favorite, and so true.ReplyCancel

  • Kari - October 20, 2015 - 1:11 PM

    I love that this room is so speciality, so custom, so you. It is personal to your home, but isn’t obscure to the point of Pinterest meaninglessness. This is the joy room of your house and I wish I had a special spot just like it!ReplyCancel

  • qlkowa - October 20, 2015 - 1:52 PM

    It’s really cosy nook!ReplyCancel

  • Gretchen - October 20, 2015 - 1:58 PM

    Love how your new colors combined with the large photo really sing.

    And I especially love that living room rug! Super cool pattern and colors.ReplyCancel

  • Melanie - October 20, 2015 - 5:51 PM

    I LOVE that frame.For some reason the frame maker that made the frames for our professional photographs could not make something like that for us. What kind of frame maker is he anyway? Would have loved something like this instead we are stuck with a plain white frame.

    The nook looks beautiful, when are you coming to redecorate my place?ReplyCancel

  • Jenn - October 20, 2015 - 8:34 PM

    The room looks amazing. I want a nook of my own now! I’m also loving that lighter paint color in the adjoining rooms. can you share that wall color? Thanks!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 20, 2015 - 8:49 PM

      Thank you! The main room is Intense White by Ben Moore. It’s a suuuuper soft warm gray.ReplyCancel

  • Emma - October 21, 2015 - 7:33 AM

    Looks great! Especially from the adjacent room. Well done.ReplyCancel

  • Sarah @ onesuchlife - October 21, 2015 - 8:56 AM

    Gorgeous colors!ReplyCancel

  • Steph M. - October 21, 2015 - 10:49 AM

    It looks great! Love that light purple with the dark walls. On another note, do you notice your kitties having any draw towards the velvet on the chairs as scratching posts? We’re pretty lucky that they don’t like our couches at all, but we’re thinking of recovering a chair in velvet and I’ll be heartbroken if they touch it! HA!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 21, 2015 - 11:25 AM

      We’re pretty lucky that our girls aren’t big scratchers, but Maddie will often stretch and lounge all over the velvet upholstery, and from time to time, we can hear her claws puncturing the velvet. We like that velvet is a bit self-healing in a way, and the damage is SO INCREDIBLY minimal. To this point, our whole home is outfitted in either velvet or outdoor fabric, and we find that’s the perfect balance for our big pet family!ReplyCancel

      • Kim - October 21, 2015 - 11:27 AM

        Oh, one more thing: The best thing to clean velvet is a teeny bit of dish soap and warm water. We have a spray bottle that we keep on hand with a dab of dish soap and water that we can use whenever. It helps with doggy dribbles or any weird marks the velvet may accumulate over time!ReplyCancel

  • Trude - October 21, 2015 - 12:21 PM

    Absolutely gorgeous wall color. Really makes that chair pop! I can’t wait until I have a place that I can paint. :)ReplyCancel

  • ellen from ask away - October 22, 2015 - 6:27 AM

    YESSS! Thanks for the idea! i have this dark area of our living room and theres no space for a floor lamp and then i saw u had lamp plugged in to an outlet and mounted to the wall> BINGO! We are doing that now too! Thanks so much girl!
    XO Ellen from Ask Away



This seemingly simple story has been a long time in the making – 2 years, but who’s counting? – and we’ve just now finally nailed our living and dining room lighting. Well, not the fixtures (we’ve been content with those for a while!), but the actual bulbs!

If you’ve been with us since we bought our home in 2013, you might remember that the first thing we did was tear down the ceiling to install a proper support beam. While we were at it, we centered the overhead lights in both the living and dining rooms, and at the suggestion of our contractor, we decided to add 4 recessed lights per room (so 8 in all) and install a dimmer switch for extra ambient lighting. I remember the day that Scott and I went to the store to purchase bulbs and being completely overwhelmed. Thinking we were being very smart, we left the store with 8 CFL floods at a color temperature of 5000K, also labeled as ‘daylight’. We thought, well, we want the colors to feel very natural! Daylight it is.

As soon as they were in, we hated them. They were very, very blue, and so we did what any person would do who doesn’t want to go back to the store, and we never turned them on. Like, ever. We finally unloaded them at a yard sale, went back to the store and picked up 8 more CFLs at a color temperature of 2700K, which was not only much more pleasant, but it had us turning on the lights for the first time since they were installed!

It wasn’t long until we decided, we hate these too! CFL bulbs have a longer warm up time, so once we flipped the switch, the room would get brighter and brighter to the point that we’d say, did you turn up the dimmer? One of us would attempt to turn them down, but if we got too low, they’d switch off completely and/or create an irritating humming noise. Not good. Again, we stopped using the recessed lighting altogether.

Luckily, we have a happy ending! This month, we’re working with the Ace Hardware team to completely transform a room by using nothing but LED light bulbs, and we could not be more happy! The second time we purchased CFL bulbs, LEDs were hovering around a price point that was still too high for our liking, but they’ve since come down to a place that makes them a tough contender against CFLs. Not to mention, they’re really the biggest money saver in the long run; this article really digs deep, and it’s good to know that the best bulbs out there are also the best for our wallets.


We decided on a 6 pack of these Feit LED bulbs that boasted the ability to dim and light up instantly. Yes and yes! As soon as we took them out of the box, we loved that the frosted glass was already much more attractive than our old CFs. Below, the LED is on the left, and the CFL is on the right:


We swapped out every last CFL for the Feit LED bulbs (our dining room, kitchen and nook lights were all also upgraded to this 60 watt equivalent), and we were thrilled to see that with a flick of a switch, they really did turn on right away! They even dimmed down to the lowest setting without a hint of a flicker, and at 2700K, it feels soft but not overly yellow. It’s just a clean, inviting light, much more white than an incandescent bulb with the same color temperature.


The lighting aisle can be tricky – it’s no joke! – but we are 100% satisfied now that we’re on the LED train and we’ve found the color temperature that we find the most pleasing in our home. As we continue to update fixtures around the house (upstairs, you’ve been so neglected!), we’ll be nixing every last incandescent and CFL in our home.

If you’re looking to transition towards LED lighting (hello, money savings), visit your participating neighborhood Ace Hardware this weekend, October 16-18, and take advantage of the Buy 2 Get 1 Free LED light bulb sale! Buy two select FEIT LED bulbs and get one of equal or lesser value free. There’s no limit, so you can mix and match to get the bulbs you need to re-light your entire house!*


We’re excited to be collaborating with Ace Hardware as a part of their Ace Blogger Panel! Ace has provided us with compensation and the materials necessary to complete this project (hey, thanks, Ace!), and all opinions are our own. See all the blogger projects on the Ace Pinterest page.

*While supplies last. Store stock only. See store for details.

  • Alana in Canada - October 16, 2015 - 9:09 AM

    I’m just waiting for the last of the CFL’s to die so we can switch to LED, too. The Canadian government has banned incandescent bulbs (all be “specialty bulbs, like appliance bulbs). In addition to CLFs, and LEDs, we have halogen bulbs available to us.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 16, 2015 - 9:13 AM

      Yup, incandescents are being phased out here, too. Good riddance!ReplyCancel

  • Kristin - October 16, 2015 - 10:02 AM

    We did this recently and oh my goodness, such a difference.ReplyCancel

  • Rita - October 16, 2015 - 10:05 AM

    Kim, do you think these LED light would make our kitchen brighter?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 16, 2015 - 10:10 AM

      YES! What kind of lights do you have in your kitchen now? I’m trying to remember (it’s been a while since I’ve seen them). I’d recommend sticking with a soft white LED so it doesn’t feel too “cold”.ReplyCancel

  • Sarah @ onesuchlife - October 16, 2015 - 10:07 AM

    I find LED to be so much brighter than CFL. We’re slowing transition to LED and our light fixtures with multiple bulbs make me laugh because you can clearly tell which ones are the LED bulbs. They do emit great light!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 16, 2015 - 10:11 AM

      It’s true! I was worried that a color temp of 2700K would look the same as a 2700K incandescent, but my goodness, it’s so much more clean!ReplyCancel

  • Linda @ It All Started With Paint - October 16, 2015 - 10:23 AM

    That gif is awesome!!! I just keep watching and watching and watching!!!

    :) LindaReplyCancel

  • Liz - October 16, 2015 - 10:37 AM

    I recently bought 60watt equivalent LEDs for a dining room light fixture but they still seemed too white even though they were listed at 2700k. I wonder if we will ever see LED lights that will help give a warm ambient glow for rooms that need more mood lighting than task lighting.

    If they already exist, please help me find them! I never turn on my amazing West Elm dining chandelier because the room, even with the dimmer feels too “cold” :(ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 16, 2015 - 11:17 AM

      Hi Liz! I don’t think that all brands are created equal – that’s another thing. I would suggest trying a lower wattage for your chandelier (does it have multiple bulbs or just one?), and switching brands to see if that makes a difference.ReplyCancel

  • Alexandra @ Vandy Vagabonds - October 16, 2015 - 6:36 PM

    I came and I stay because of your awesome home design content but those dogs? Those dogs are giant friggin cherries on top of this delicious eye candy sundae of all things home. I keep rewatching that gif just to watch the pups!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 16, 2015 - 9:09 PM

      Thank you, Alexandra! No doubt they steal the show – ALWAYS. :DReplyCancel

  • Kara - October 17, 2015 - 11:00 AM

    The GIF gives a fun view of the awesome way your renos are all coming together – love how bright and open the new kitchen doorway and door/windows to the outside make it feel. The blues from the couch and window treatments add such a fun punch of color and cohesive feel to the space. What a great overall feel you’ve accomplished in your home!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 17, 2015 - 12:02 PM

      So sweet, Kara, thank you!ReplyCancel

  • Brynne@TheGatheredHome - October 18, 2015 - 9:00 AM

    Aw, I love the gif! It’s brilliant and so fun – I can’t stop watching it! :)ReplyCancel

  • David Easter - October 21, 2015 - 6:40 AM

    I’ve had the same trouble with daylight lamps. The trouble with daylight is that there is northern daylight and southern daylight. What most people don’t realize is that daylight lamps tend to be the southern type. They tend to be a ‘tropical blue’ rather than a natural white.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 21, 2015 - 1:13 PM

      So true! It definitely felt “tropical blue” in our home with the 5000K!ReplyCancel

  • Christine - October 21, 2015 - 10:59 AM

    Ace should thank you for this post! Based on your blog, I went to Ace this weekend and redid almost every light in our house. It was so worth it. Finally we have the light we wanted in our house after trying to figure out a million different combos of soft white and bright white.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 21, 2015 - 11:24 AM

      Awesome!! Lighting makes all the difference in your mood too, doesn’t it? Did you end up with soft or bright white with the LEDs?ReplyCancel

  • Trude - October 21, 2015 - 11:34 AM

    Thanks for this! I’ve been thinking about making the switch everywhere, just wasn’t sure where to start. Especially when I don’t want anything going to yellow or blue and making it harder to WB my photos! (When I’m too lazy to get out the ExpoDisc anyway.) ;)ReplyCancel


Our funny little nook off of the living room has been in constant transition since the day we chose a paint color. Every now and then, we’d swap in a different chair, stack (and re-stack) the books, fuss with plants on the window sill and, as it would seem, rotate rugs in and out that we were never fully happy with – until now! Hooray!


The room is an odd size with nooks within the nook, and our whole goal has always been to make this space feel like a mini escape from the rest of the home. It has so many names – the music room, the sun room, the reading room, and of course, The Nook. The hope was to keep it slightly masculine – with its matte black Vittsjo, and why yes, we did repaint it a darker color! – but with softness underfoot and a cozy chair to curl up in.

With the chair finally checked off, we’d been struggling with a rug that would fit the room’s odd shape. A 4×6 was too small; a 5×8 was too large. Square shaped rugs in 6×6 would have been fine, albeit a bit undersized, but stepping up to a 7×7 would have been oversized. We considered these FLOR tiles for the freedom they give in shape, but I was determined to find something extra, extra soft. We’ve learned from experience that inexpensive shags aren’t exactly pet friendly, but more money doesn’t necessarily mean less shedding, either. I mean, I’m driving myself crazy with how ridiculous this must read, am I right? (Ha!)

But as you know, there’s a happy ending! For years, we’d been driving past an old warehouse with a crumbling sign that read: Olympia Carpets. The warehouse has since been torn down, but a quick Google search showed multiple locations not too far away, and Yelp reviews boasted their ability to turn carpet remnants into perfectly sized area rugs. We actually popped in much earlier this year, but we only recently went back in to make a decision, finally landing on a super thick, super plush soft gray remnant for $100! Note to Chicago locals: The Pulaski location is closed, so go to Diversey. It. Is. Massive!


While we always knew this could be an option, I suppose we always had this thought that carpet remnants would look like that – a carpet remnant. What we really received, however, was a ridiculously durable 6′ x 7.5′ rug that fits the nook perfectly! With binding and tax, we were out the door for $160. Additionally, we layered the rug with this carpet pad, giving it a ridiculous amount of softness that is so good.

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We couldn’t be happier with this simple (affordable!) solution. We’ve had it in our home for a couple of weeks, and it hasn’t shed at all – which makes sense, considering you wouldn’t want your carpet to shed all over, you know? Because it’s original intent is for carpeting your home, it’s also stain resistant (time will tell!) and easy to vacuum and maintain. More importantly, the pets love it, as they’ve shown by never, ever leaving the room.

There are a couple of things to add before we can call the nook done, but this time, (I think) we really mean it.

  • Sarah @ onesuchlife - October 14, 2015 - 10:49 AM

    What an interesting and affordable solution! Most of our house is hardwood and area rugs can be such a headache to shop for sometimes.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 14, 2015 - 12:27 PM

      Especially larger ones or odd sizes! I feel like this would be great for really large cozy rugs under a bed.ReplyCancel

  • Anni - October 14, 2015 - 10:57 AM

    I so have to remember this as an affordable alternative when my kids are a little bit older. Right now, with three young ones, we are ALL about the Flor tiles. I love that they let me be a patient and compassionate mom whenever there is an accident rather than totally freaking out over an expensive rug being ruined. :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - October 14, 2015 - 1:34 PM

      We love FLOR too, absolutely, but most carpets have a stain repellent built in, as they’re meant to stand up to wear and tear! Something to think about. ;)ReplyCancel

  • Josh | The Kentucky Gent - October 14, 2015 - 12:35 PM

    There’s an old carpet warehouse in my hometown, and I never thought about doing this! I definitely have some spaces on our main floor that could use some love with area rugs.

    Josh | The Kentucky Gent

    • Kim - October 14, 2015 - 1:35 PM

      And so, so affordable! The old warehouses are the best. It’s like thrifting – but for new carpets. Ha!ReplyCancel

  • Julia@Cukoo4Design - October 14, 2015 - 4:12 PM

    I did the same thing already and we had the rug for many many years.ReplyCancel

  • Ellen from Ask Away - October 15, 2015 - 6:59 AM

    Great idea !!! we actually were going to do this for a basement once its finished eventually!
    XO Ellen from Ask Away

  • rachael - October 15, 2015 - 8:08 AM

    We have pretty much the same rug in our living room. Went to a flooring store and looked at their carpet remnants, and got it binded and sized, and it was $87. It’s a 7×8. I love knowing when it gets gross I can rent a carpet cleaner to freshen it up.ReplyCancel

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