GET [ THE ] LOOK: CLEA'S LIVING ROOM

After revamping the kids playroom upstairs, I was eager to start on my next house project. Call it an occupational hazard… So when GABBY asked if we wanted to partner on a room makeover, I jumped at the chance to reconstruct my living room and reclaim it as an adult space. It’s not like the kids are welcome to hang-out downstairs from time to time...I just strongly encourage them to sit on their own couch and leave my brand new one nice and pristine.

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Turns out no one in my house listens to me and they sprawl all over it anyway. I was able to customize the layout for my Abbott Sectional so that it perfectly fits the room and provides so much extra seating for my whole entire family to watch TV even though that wasn’t really the intention. I decided to go with an armless chair on the left side to create a chaise, and then I placed a matching ottoman on the right side to give some flexibility for extend seating anywhere on the couch. The good news is that the fabric I selected (in Rush Smoke), is standing up well to all the daily wear from my kids, house guests, husband, and dog.

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To compliment the couch, and to add extra conversational seating, I added two Monroe club chairs. Since the couch is a velvety material, I thought the chairs should be leather to add some textural differences to the room. Both the couch and chairs have metal rivets that tie them together, without making them too matchy-matchy. That’s the technical term, right?

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Coordinating throw pillows can be tough in my house because the palette consists of black, white, and 500 shades of gray. So true to form, I went with that color scheme and tried to mix up the fabrics, materials, and shapes of the pillows so that they aren’t all identical. I ended up making some great custom GABBY throw pillows in the Lina Mercury fabric which added some silky textures to the variety. I promise I’m not afraid of color...I just don’t do accent colors. It’s either black and white, or full rainbow. I don’t really know how to do a random green pillow.

Bottom line: My living room looks great and is now even more comfortable. So naturally it’s going to be the favorite spot in the house for all of us. And as long as no one eats, drinks, spills, jumps, soils it… then everyone is welcome.

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BACK-TO-SCHOOL MAKEOVER

I was so excited for back-to-school (or more accurately, mom-summer) to begin, that I spent the last month working with The Container Store to turn our playroom into a study station for the kids. Stella is officially a second grader and has *actual* homework now (thank goodness for google because I literally do not know how to help her with math - WHY DID THEY CHANGE HOW TO DO MATH) and she needs a proper place to sit and concentrate. Sutton is only in Pre-K, but...

1) he will be learning unnecessarily complicated math problems before I know it

2) he needs to do everything his older sister does or he panics and

3) it would throw the room off to only have ONE desk unit, and let’s be honest this is the most important reason.

Since I’m more than a little familiar with all that The Container Store has to offer, I knew the Elfa system was the way to go. I could customize it to fit the playroom perfectly, and add shelves, drawers, and utility boards to my heart’s content. Which I did. And then some.

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My goals for the space was to have enough accessible shelving to hold the current school year’s projects, classroom art, and memory boxes - but also enough upper shelving to hold past years as well. As kids get older you collect less and less (they don't make Thanksgiving Turkeys with your kids hand print in the 8th grade…) so eventually your storage boxes can span a few years instead of a single one.

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I also wanted to make sure to have several drawers for notebooks, coloring books, and the endless stacks of white and color paper used for art. Mission accomplished and now I don’t need to look at them on the desktop!

Last but not least, I wanted a setup that inspired creativity, was visually beautiful, and of course - served the core function of holding supplies. The Elfa utility board system allowed me to hang, clip, hold all sorts of things, but most importantly, a tray of pens, pencils, markers, and more. And I obviously was not going to pass-up a rainbow moment, so I used these colorful boxes to hold everything. Why the rainbow you ask? Because it always looks pretty, it keeps all the items contained within a system, and Stella can always find the color she needs and knows exactly where it goes when she’s done.

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Now for the best news, The Container Store’s Shelving Sale is going on now through 10/14, and Elfa is 25% off! I think I'm going to need to make myself a desk now since I'm guessing my kids won't let me work at theirs...

PRODUCT LIST

Elfa shelving solutions
Document storage boxes
File storage box
Rainbow boxes
Poppin desktop sorter
Poppin desktop pencil cup
Poppin calculator
Poppin scissors
Poppin notebooks
Glass jars
Desk chair

xo, Clea

GET [ THE ] LOOK: JOANNA'S PORCH

My family moved and settled into our brand new house just in time for summer! This is the first house that I've ever had the (very fortunate) opportunity to build and select every finish, tile, knob... And, with this new house, I couldn't help but spring for some new furniture too. Obviously, some of my furniture moved with me from my last home. But, for the outdoor areas, my last house didn't have a screened in patio, or a very large front porch, like the new house. And... the new house told me, very loudly, that it NEEDED to be beautifully furnished. And so I did what any responsible, obedient, house owner does, and listened to its clear message - "buy beautiful furniture for your new outdoor spaces". 

Selecting furniture for these outdoor spaces was one of my favorite "new house projects", because I could already envision the ways that I wanted to use these new spaces. So, I teamed up with Summer Classics to design these perfect porch spots!

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Obviously, I wanted to use these spaces to function in traditional ways, entertaining family and friends on warm days and nights. But, additionally, since our entire The Home Edit team, aside from me, lives in Nashville (proper), I also wanted a space in my home to host team meetings and gatherings, when we have jobs close to me (in Franklin). 

Always loving the look of classic teak wood - I knew right away that I wanted to lean into this material for the bulk of my new outdoor furniture. For me, the teak furniture, with white cushions and charcoal piping, sitting on my new red brick porches allowed each item to live its absolute best life! Then, for the pillows (ohhh how I love pillows), I used strategic restraint to not go overboard and interfere with any valuable seating space. I landed on using 2 pillows for the couch and 1 complimenting pillow for each chair. 

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For the front porch, it will likely come as no surprise that I also had a very clear vision. In my mind this space (too) needed to stay classic all the way, but in a different way. I selected 2 white Adirondack chairs, matching ottomans and a cute, little side table in between. Simple and timeless - everything a southern, brick porch ever wanted.

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This week I was able to have part of our team over for some mid-job snacks and a quick meeting. I was thrilled to finally have this spot to host our team. If only every work day felt like a sweet summer escape...

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XO, Joanna

GET [ THE ] LOOK: CLEA'S PANTRY MAKEOVER

Some people like to do yoga or read a book to relax. I personally prefer pantry organization. There is something so satisfying about cleaning everything out, purging old items, and making sure opened items are properly stored (to each their own, folks). So when Rubbermaid asked if we wanted to partner on a pantry project, the answer was clearly YES, WHEN CAN WE START (*This is a paid partnership with Rubbermaid; all opinions remain 100% our own). So now we’re going to show YOU how to assemble the perfect pinterest-worthy pantry using the Rubbermaid BRILLIANCE canisters combined with some of our favorite bins and supplies. These canisters are a pantry game-changer since they are crystal clear, leak-proof, air tight, and completely modular.

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STEP 1: We’ve said it before and we will say it 100000 more times - you need to take it all out. No cheating! Don’t leave a single thing on the shelf.

STEP 2: Create groupings out of your items. In my pantry, my groupings are Baking, Cooking, Dinner, Breakfast, Cereal, Snacks, Snacks, Snacks…..and snacks. Also, wet ingredients like oils, condiments, and sauces.

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STEP 3: Figure out what belongs in bins and what deserves a canister. Your favorite nuts, dried fruit, and dry ingredients are great canister candidates. Boxes of crackers, bags of chips, and cereal your children talked you into getting “just this once,” are better off being stored in a bin so they can be easily swapped out.

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STEP 4: Pick the canisters that appropriately fit your items, and leave you a little bit of room for refills as needed. I particularly love the small (1.3 cup) size because it doubles as a snack cup for my kids. A canister cup combo is the kind of efficient storage that organizers get really excited about. The largest sizes work perfectly for everyday cereals, flour, and sugar; and the smaller sizes are great for dried fruit, nuts and grains. You can even integrate the BRILLIANCE lunch containers to hold snacks you plan on taking to go. Lastly, in order to maximize the height of each shelf, stack vertically or line-up front to back to take advantage of the depth.

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STEP 5: Add a label! I used a Sharpie paint marker, but EXPO Dry-Erase Markers work just as well and offer less permanent options. Similar to how you choose categories based on staple items versus one-off items, you want to assign your labels in the same way. I always have pistachios on-hand so I created a specific label, but I don’t want to commit to walnuts so I chose a generic “nuts” instead.

STEP 6: Make the rest of your family move out so they don’t touch a thing. Kidding! Unless of course they are willing to, and then you might want to consider it as an option. Alternatively, you can walk-through your carefully thought out systems with anyone who lives in your house so that they can take part in the on-going maintenance

You’ll notice my pantry is fully rainbowed out, but that is optional… It personally makes me happy, and my kids can easily find the snack they’re looking for without tearing everything apart.

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