After we mounted our laundry cabinetry, we waited weeks to finish trimming it out. Instead, we’d say, we have to go to the grocery store today! Or, let’s lay brick pavers instead! Or, want to map out our planter boxes? I think we were getting burned out on the laundry room. It’s been a long, winding, renovation road since last…
  • Carol - August 19, 2016 - 6:55 AM

    Love it! This is fantastic!ReplyCancel

  • Michelle Schreib - August 19, 2016 - 7:21 AM

    Thanks for the discount; I just ordered a bunch of samples! I can’t wait to redo my kitchen!

    Love the Laundry room!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 19, 2016 - 7:38 AM

      Scott and I often say that we wish we would have known about The RTA Store (.com) for our own kitchen remodel! While we love our cabinets, we couldn’t ‘splurge’ for things like soft close hinges, whereas they’re a standard for most cabinet styles at RTA. Best of luck! I love that the samples are entire doors, so you really can assess color and style in your own home!ReplyCancel

  • Casey - August 19, 2016 - 9:27 AM

    These look awesome! I’ve never heard of the RTA store but I will definitely check them out – I’ve always been frustrated with the standard cabinet options at my local hardware store. Now I’m totally inspired to give my laundry room a much needed update :)ReplyCancel

  • Amanda - August 19, 2016 - 11:49 AM

    Love the room! So nice Libby has her own space!! Can you share a photo of the inside of her cabinet sometime?ReplyCancel

    • Antonella - August 20, 2016 - 9:26 AM

      Yes, please! And also how you organize the inside of the cabinets! I’m in an organizing funk and need all of the pros’inspiration I can get my hands on :-)ReplyCancel

  • Kimberly - August 19, 2016 - 12:22 PM

    They came out great! I love the simple crown you guys used on these and your kitchen cabinets.

    I discovered the RTAstore through your first post about them and have been dreaming of a far off kitchen renovation since. I’m torn between the Aspen White and Frosted White cabinets, so many decisions! I may just have to order sample doors to caress while I wait… Is that too weird?! Haha!ReplyCancel

  • Lindsey - August 19, 2016 - 12:25 PM

    I love everything about this room but…will you be staining the counter? Maybe a richer dark color or closer to your floors? It’s a beautiful wood but I’m hopeful to see some contrast there.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 19, 2016 - 12:29 PM

      The counter isn’t done yet! I mentioned in the post that it’s still a work in progress – all we’ve done is cut it down. We’re debating on a finish, but we sort of love the light look. It will get sealed, which will darken it a bit, but we’re still on the fence for the actual finish.ReplyCancel

      • Alex - August 23, 2016 - 10:13 AM

        More questions about the butcher block countertop – did you install yourselves? We are waiting to finish out our laundry room with the same countertop, but now sure how we will do it since our walls aren’t exactly straight. Did you order an already cut down piece somewhere? (I’m in Chicago too so curious where your source is!) I’m scared to just buy a piece and have to figure out how to cut it…ReplyCancel

        • Kim - August 23, 2016 - 10:38 AM

          Hi Alex! We got the butcher block at Menards, and we cut it down ourselves. We will definitely be sharing that whole process once we finish it with the sink and faucet holes AND plumb everything, BUT to get the exact measurements against our crooked walls (crooked walls forever!), we cut out a template using a piece of foam board and used that as a stencil for our butcher block. Then we used a circular saw to carefully cut the two ‘crooked’ sides. In our case, we kept the front and right edge (along the washer/dryer) square.ReplyCancel

  • Hannah H - August 19, 2016 - 7:56 PM

    How is Miss Libby doing without her partner in crime? It’s been fun to see her on the blog/instagram a bit lately. We have two cats and a dog and love reading along with your pets adventures. Also – the laundry room looks amazing!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 20, 2016 - 8:58 AM

      You’re so kind for asking. She’s doing pretty good – being her snuggly, sweet self! I always worry so much about the others when we lose a pet! We’re always watching her to make sure she’s happy and content.ReplyCancel

  • Rachel - August 22, 2016 - 11:11 AM

    I just used a very similar wall color in my bathroom makeover and I am in LOVE with it. Your blog is fantastic! Thanks!ReplyCancel


A few months ago, Julia asked me to change the way we think about photographing our homes. Let me explain – have you ever noticed that bloggers are always (always!) chasing that daylight? But what if we started pulling out the camera in the evening, after the sun has gone down? By mid-afternoon, I’m already…
  • Stacy @ Blake Hill House - August 17, 2016 - 5:30 AM

    The evening is the second shift around here. My people are coming and going. I often run in the evening or go to the gym. (I’m an avid long distance runner.) It takes every ounce of my willpower to do so after a full day. I drop into bed at around ten. One of my favorite feelings is being in my bed wrapped in a down comforter. My bed is my nook. In addition to my favorite comforter, I make sure the bed has clean sheets and lots of pillows.

    On the turntable: Fleetwood Mac or The Who. My taste in music varies wildly, but for some reason, our turntable only plays classic rock and roll. :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 17, 2016 - 8:13 PM

      Aw… sounds so NICE! I’d agree with you – nothing beats being wrapped in our cozy comforter, and we’re both out by 10, too!

      Also, excellent turntable selections. Rumors makes an almost weekly appearance around here!ReplyCancel

  • abby - August 17, 2016 - 9:31 AM

    Oh my goodness, I LOVE these nighttime photos! YES, while those blown-out, bright, all-white shots look great, it is so refreshing to see another “feel” to a photo. This looks COZY, and I want to be hanging out in that room right now. I love how CLJ does nighttime shots occasionally, so I am fully on this train and would love to see you occasionally post some more (even in the kitchen–I always love how our kitchen looks at night with soft lighting!).ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 17, 2016 - 7:37 PM

      Thanks, Abby! We love our kitchen at night too – we’ll have to shoot that room!ReplyCancel

  • Misty - August 17, 2016 - 5:36 PM

    I feel like the pups are aware that this whole photographing at night things is different… the look on both of their faces! lol
    love it though, so cozy and warm and adds a little something something that wasn’t there before. More intimate perhaps?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 17, 2016 - 7:38 PM

      Right?! They’re like, this is not the usual time mom takes our glamour shots…ReplyCancel

  • Gwen, The Makerista - August 18, 2016 - 10:24 AM

    I love the contrast in shape with your globe lights and it’s fun to see this space in a different light!ReplyCancel

  • Julia [Chris Loves Julia] - August 18, 2016 - 10:41 AM

    That gif wins! I love your home at night. Chicago, we’re coming for you!ReplyCancel

  • Staci @ My Friend Staci - August 18, 2016 - 11:10 AM

    I love this series. For many of us who work away from home all day, evening and night light are all we get (except for weekends). I do get “light and bright” house envy so this helps pull me back down to earth — you and the Marcums and Dana have evenings, too ;)ReplyCancel

  • Akiyo - August 18, 2016 - 12:39 PM

    Yay, another relevant post for us! :D We recently bought new light bulbs (went on the cheap side so they’re incandescent) with “white” light to replace a set of vanity lights in the bathroom. But they emit soooo much heat! We’re sweating as we brush our teeth. Haha! Do you have preferred lightbulbs you like using? I love how your lightbulbs aren’t yellowing the room.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 18, 2016 - 12:50 PM

      Even though LED bulbs are slightly more expensive than incandescents, they are 100% worth it! No heat, and the ‘soft white’ temperature of 2700 is so pretty. Old bulbs at that same color temperature used to be SO yellow. Bulbs have come a really long way! We’ve purchased from a few different brands of LEDs with great luck – Feit, Cree and Phillips. The only brand we haven’t loved is ‘EcoSmart,’ because they produce so much flickering if they’re set to dimmers and you want low light.ReplyCancel

      • Akiyo - August 19, 2016 - 11:14 AM

        Ooo, that makes total sense! We bought EcoSmart bulbs for one of our dimmer lights and it flickers like crazy. Thought it was all LEDs. Thank you so much for the reccs!!ReplyCancel


With the paver patio complete, we were excited to dive into phase two of our backyard project – planter boxes! We’ve been talking about these boxes for months – over dinner, in the car, while walking the pups (you name it!) – and it felt so good to start knocking them out. In our minds, we…
  • Katie Richards - August 11, 2016 - 7:40 AM

    Forgive me for asking but today this post came truncated into my RSS reader. I don’t believe your posts were before. Is this something you plan to do into the future?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 8:27 AM

      Hi Katie, we’re working on a few formatting changes for the blog to keep it loading faster since our posts tend to get very long. Nothing is set in stone just yet. Can you tell me what reader you use? I’m not seeing it truncated on my end, and I use Bloglovin’. Thanks!ReplyCancel

      • Jen - August 11, 2016 - 8:36 AM

        I use feedly and it came through truncated. Not a big deal for me to click through but thought it might be helpful to let you know.ReplyCancel

      • Jess - August 11, 2016 - 8:37 AM

        I use Feedly and it happened for me too. Not that it matters, but I REALLY prefer the blogs that aren’t truncated. :)ReplyCancel

        • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 8:52 AM

          Thanks, guys! The reason I wasn’t seeing it is because I use Bloglovin’ to read up on favorites, and they always require a click over… something I actually prefer, since I like to read posts directly on the site. I appreciate the feedback!ReplyCancel

          • Allison Van Beek - August 11, 2016 - 11:36 AM

            Please don’t truncate! Pleeeeeaaaaseeee!ReplyCancel

          • bella - August 11, 2016 - 1:50 PM

            I use and it was truncated for me, too. I usually unsubscribe from blogs that truncate. Even if I love the blog, I just can’t. ha.ReplyCancel

            • Tiffany - August 13, 2016 - 12:22 AM

              I use bloglovin and it showed up truncated for me as well! Please don’t truncate! I’m super not a fan!ReplyCancel

      • Katie - August 11, 2016 - 11:49 AM

        I am also using FeedlyReplyCancel

      • Rebecca - August 11, 2016 - 5:27 PM

        I’m also using Feedly and it is truncated. Please change it back!!ReplyCancel

      • sadie - August 11, 2016 - 6:30 PM

        I use Feedly and it is truncated. I unsubscribe from blogs who truncate even though I typically click over to the site and read the post there if I find it interesting – truncation keeps me from figuring out whether I want to read the post or not.ReplyCancel

  • Kristin - August 11, 2016 - 7:54 AM

    I am really interested to read about the insulation process. This wouldn’t have occured to me until too late. We’ll be tackling our back yard renovation next spring and will be using many of your posts for guidance. Any chance you’ll be installing a rain barrel or two as well;) We have some drainage issues to tackle as well.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 8:25 AM

      It’s not something we thought to do either, but we met with a design consultant from a local nursery (which was surprisingly crazy affordable, by the way!), and she suggested it to keep perennials happy! We’ll share the details once we tackle that part!ReplyCancel

  • Kelly - August 11, 2016 - 8:08 AM

    Hi- I am disappointed that this post came through truncated. I have been a long time reader and huge fan (of your style and as a rescue dog mom) and I save and pin a large number of your posts after reading them in my RSS feed. I have also purchased a number of items through links in your posts. Please don’t make the decision to optimize towards getting more clicks on your content at the risk of alienating people who already are part of your fan base.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 8:29 AM

      Hi Kelly, thanks for your feedback. We’re working on a few formatting changes for the blog to keep it loading faster since our posts tend to get very long. Can you tell me what RSS reader you use?

      Update: I’m seeing it in Feedly, is that right?ReplyCancel

      • Valerie - August 11, 2016 - 8:34 AM

        I use Feedly and they’re coming through truncated for me on there.ReplyCancel

      • Stephanie - August 11, 2016 - 8:56 AM

        I use Digg Reader and it’s showing up truncated as well. Like Kelly, I’m a longtime reader, and often purchase items using links in yours posts. I would prefer that you not truncate posts in RSS readers as it does effect my decision to continue reading your blog.ReplyCancel

      • Ginger - August 11, 2016 - 11:16 AM

        I’m seeing it truncated in The Old Reader as well. I know I’m so much more likely to read posts when I don’t have to click away, or even if it’s truncated, but with a photo. I need that visual to remind me what I’m following a blog for!ReplyCancel

  • Hannah Christensen - August 11, 2016 - 8:43 AM

    oh my gosh, guys, now you are making me rethink keeping the boring little flowerbed in front of our newly re-sided garage — the idea of two giant planters + a cute bench is blowing my little chicago brain! plus my raised beds are cedar and i loooove the weathered color they’ve taken on after this rainy sunny summer — thinking a version of these planters with that would look amazing :-oReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 8:54 AM

      Oooh, that WOULD look amazing! Perhaps you could give it a go in another area and see how you like it? They had cedar at Lowe’s in the same dimensions as the pressure treated we used, and it was stunning.ReplyCancel

  • Robyn - August 11, 2016 - 9:02 AM

    I use feedspot and had to click over which I hate! Please change it back! I love you guys but I just don’t have time to click over to every single blog I read!

    Also- planter boxes and fireplace are awesome. Can’t wait to see them filled with plants. It’s gonna be rad.ReplyCancel

  • Jane Schaefer - August 11, 2016 - 9:11 AM

    I have that same fireplace, can’t wait to see how you fit it in your plan.ReplyCancel

  • Emily R - August 11, 2016 - 9:37 AM

    Did you guys talk about why you went for planters rather than just planting in the ground? Planters looks great – but I’m always nervous about the cost of so much soil, keeping them watered and keeping them warm in the winter. All things that are eliminated if you plant directly in the soil. Just curious!


    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 10:04 AM

      Good question! We wanted them to be up and away from dogs/children, and we personally just love the look that warm wood planters bring to a space. We’ll be staining these a dark walnut color (which should add a lot of contrast back here), and our hope is that the more structured boxes will look really nice against wild, overflowing plants!ReplyCancel

  • Courtney @ Foxwood Forest - August 11, 2016 - 9:57 AM

    Oh my goodness, you guys! These are so great! We just finished building a new staircase ourselves, so we can relate to measuring, doing math, cutting precisely, and all those fun wood things. :) You must be so, so happy with this project!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 10:04 AM

      So. Much. MATH! But worth it. Can’t wait to finish them up soon!ReplyCancel

  • Haley - August 11, 2016 - 10:51 AM

    How will this work around the bottom of the planters? Will the dirt and stuff ooze out?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 11:07 AM

      Nope! These guys are heavy, and they sit nice and firm on the ground. We’ll also be filling the surrounding area with prettier gravel (we still need to choose it though!).ReplyCancel

  • Julia [Chris Loves Julia] - August 11, 2016 - 12:28 PM

    Ooo!!! We wanted to do a few raised planters, but this! This is so amazing! I can’t wait to see them finished. What a powerful statement they will make.ReplyCancel

  • angela - August 11, 2016 - 1:35 PM

    OMG!! This makes me want to get off my butt and finally, FINALLY start building those planter boxes my husband and I keep talking about for our yard! I’m thinking I’m going to use the same plans that you used (but with the sizes customized for my yard of course) and will go with a black stain. I’m super into black stain recently for some reason. What do you think? Too much?! The back of our fence is white vinyl lattice while the rest of the fence around the yard is cedar and scalloped.ReplyCancel

  • Mags - August 11, 2016 - 5:39 PM

    I loooove the planters! Are you going to fill with something light or inexpensive before putting the dirt in?

    I’m a loyal reader and loyal feedly user and I really wish I could have read this in the reader!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 5:43 PM

      No, I think it’s going to be all dirt so that our perennials can grow down and into the ground if their roots feel the need! We’ll share the details on the dirt once that happens, hopefully in the next week or two. :DReplyCancel

  • Heather - August 11, 2016 - 6:07 PM

    I agree with others on the truncated posts. I may love a blog but will stop reading if truncated!ReplyCancel

  • Chuck - August 11, 2016 - 9:04 PM

    These look great. How wet were the pressure treated boards? I don’t think they will take the stain well until they dry out some. Also, last year I had an issue with stain spontaneously combusting on a rag I used to wipe off the excess so be careful.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 11, 2016 - 10:37 PM

      Yikes!! What brand of stain did you use? Our boards are a little wet, and I know we should wait a little longer, but the heat has been helping them dry out much faster! I think we’re going to cross our fingers and hope for the best…ReplyCancel

  • Akiyo - August 12, 2016 - 11:17 AM

    So pretty! Can’t wait to see the next step! I wish we waited to build our planter box last month~! HahaReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 12, 2016 - 12:49 PM

      Nice! Did you guys DIY them!?ReplyCancel

      • Akiyo - August 18, 2016 - 12:33 PM

        We did! :) But ours look a little sad compared to yours. Haha! I can’t wait to see what you plant too! My thumbs are turning greener. :DReplyCancel

        • Kim - August 18, 2016 - 12:48 PM

          That’s so awesome!! Go, you!ReplyCancel

  • Marti | Project Palermo - August 12, 2016 - 12:09 PM

    This looks amazing! Awesome work, and super inspiring – I just stepped onto our back porch so I could scan the yard and think where I might be able to do something similar. Looking forward to hearing details about plants and stain!ReplyCancel

  • Michelle DuPuis - August 15, 2016 - 3:27 PM

    They look awesome. I’m excited to see what you plant!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 16, 2016 - 6:00 PM

      So are we, haha! We still don’t know.ReplyCancel

  • Staci @ My Friend Staci - August 15, 2016 - 5:14 PM

    Doing a mini version of these would look dynamite on my condo patio. Maybe even staining them black like one of the other commenters suggested?ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 16, 2016 - 5:59 PM

      You can’t go wrong with black stain!ReplyCancel

  • […] A Chicago DIY’ing duo with some serious skills. I mean can you even believe these amazing planters?! […]ReplyCancel


See Part I right here! I couldn’t shake that something felt ‘off’ in our living room. We spend a lot of our time in there, rubbing the dogs’ bellies, marathon-ing our way through Netflix, brainstorming upcoming projects and, of course, lots and lots of lounging. At first, I felt like maybe things were a little cramped.…
  • AnnMarie - August 4, 2016 - 8:39 AM

    It does give the living room such a wonderful, relaxing vibe! And I’m dying for the ottoman.ReplyCancel

  • Bethany - August 4, 2016 - 10:14 AM

    So cozy, and so PRETTY. Love it! I’m a newer follower of your blog and I just want to make myself right at home in your living room. <3 plus your pets seem very lovable.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 4, 2016 - 10:21 AM

      They are the MOST lovable. So happy you found us!ReplyCancel

  • Lindsay - August 4, 2016 - 11:26 AM

    What about the source for the side table?

    Also, I wasn’t a blog reader in 2014 so didn’t know you had that couch recovered yourself. LOVE everything about it. My husband has always wanted a chesterfield, and I’ve been thinking we need a navy couch…so basically what you guys have is exactly what we want :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 4, 2016 - 11:32 AM

      Hi, Lindsay! both of our side tables were found secondhand on Craigslist. We love them SO much, but they’re basically marble topped pedestal tables (the perfect height for the couch arms!). Definitely try a search in your area for ‘marble pedestal table.’ Good luck!ReplyCancel

  • Kristin - August 4, 2016 - 9:08 PM

    I loved rug #2, but the room really loves the new rug. It really works with all the other spcea open to it. The entry tile looks killer with it as does your reading chair in the readig room behind the tv.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 5, 2016 - 9:52 AM

      Good point. The entryway tile LOVES the new rug, too!ReplyCancel

  • Bernadette - August 4, 2016 - 9:15 PM

    If anyone is considering the Baxter rug you linked, BUY IT! And get the thick padding for under it. Cushy happy feet goodness! I’ve had mine for 2+ years and it still looks brand new even with high traffic and being a doggie play space. When we moved, it was looking like we needed to buy a bigger rug (I have the 8×10), but I just couldn’t part with the Baxter and buying another of the same if seemed crazy, so we rearranged the furniture to make it work :)ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 5, 2016 - 9:53 AM

      Thanks for the feedback, and we couldn’t agree more! We have the Baxter rug in our bedroom with a thick rug pad, and my goodness. It is the best. There is the slightest variation in the coloring that doesn’t show up as well online. Even though we have one already, we were considering it for down in the living room, too! That’s how good it is. It’s such a GREAT rug!ReplyCancel

  • HMB - August 5, 2016 - 6:47 AM

    Great blog related to living room decor!

    I also love decorating my home but also asked some ideas and advise from experts at

  • Dakwerken - August 5, 2016 - 6:53 AM

    Wow! The room looks so pretty. Moreover the room has a very cozy and relaxing vibe.ReplyCancel

  • Sarah - August 6, 2016 - 6:05 AM

    I think this post just saved us a lot of money. I’m also drawn to the crazy rugs in inspiration photos, but I’m really not sure I could wake up to it everyday. Thank you for sharing this!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 9, 2016 - 9:40 AM

      Sometimes it takes us a few years to figure these things out! We love the vintage runners in our kitchen and bedroom, and we think the first Persian will look pretty in another bedroom upstairs, but it was just a bit too overwhelming in a room where we like to wind down. :)ReplyCancel

  • Grondwerken - August 9, 2016 - 6:49 AM

    Wow! Looks amazing. Cool colors and a peaceful look. ReplyCancel

  • Daniel @ Manhattan Nest - August 9, 2016 - 11:46 AM

    I KNEW something about you living room looked different! Which makes my whole Jack-jumped-up-and-my-iced-coffee-spilled-everywhere incident make me feel OH SO GREAT. I’M SORRY NEW RUG!!! But I think it survived unscathed somehow so I’m gonna forget it ever happened. Hugggssssss.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 9, 2016 - 11:54 AM

      I completely forgot that even happened! Jack was extra careful to make sure it only spilled on the floor so he could get every last sip. Come back!!ReplyCancel

  • Ash - September 7, 2016 - 6:14 AM

    Another nice rug choice guys.
    If you need any others, please reach out to me at https://sfrugs.comReplyCancel


Try, try again. Sometimes, we get so excited about an idea that we jump in with both feet and don’t look back. As an over-researcher of pretty much everything, it can feel so liberating to just make a decision and run with it! No more Googling, no more questioning. But sometimes, after that initial thrill, we’ll step back and…
  • Carol - August 3, 2016 - 8:55 AM

    The paint color is nice, but how did I not know about that domino? LOVE IT.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 3, 2016 - 9:15 AM

      Definitely one of our favorite little surprises. :DReplyCancel

  • Steph M. - August 3, 2016 - 2:25 PM

    The lavender color is so pretty. We just painted the living room and entry a nice white this past weekend. I totally forgot about the entry closet. I’m loving the idea of a fun color in there!ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 3, 2016 - 2:31 PM

      Totally! Just not TOO fun… haha!ReplyCancel

  • Rebecca - August 6, 2016 - 10:08 AM

    I really like that color. Years ago, when I first moved into my condo, I painted my bathroom lavender (BM Lavender Lipstick) and I still like it; however, I’ve been contemplating redoing my bathroom. I’d like to retile it with white subway tile, swap out my cherry wood vanity for a smaller white one, and paint the walls a white with perhaps just the smallest hint of purple or green. Though, I’m thinking it may be just too white. This could be the color I’m looking for — a little subtler than the color I have, but enough to go with the white. Thanks for the suggestion.ReplyCancel

    • Kim - August 9, 2016 - 9:39 AM

      Rebecca, it’s SO subtle, but definitely pink-lavender. It’s really pretty, we can’t recommend it highly enough!ReplyCancel