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Tag: one room challenge spring 2016

one room challenge, week 6: the petite patio makeover reveal

Well butter my butt and call me a biscuit! The patio is done and my derriere couldn’t be happier about it. After cleaning up and planting a small herb garden in week 3, buying chairs in week 4, accidentally lugging around five extra cinderblocks and building a bench in week 5, week 6 was just about layering on some accessories, pouring a drink, and enjoying this thing.

ORC spring 2016 petite patio reveal

Finn helped, of course.

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I mentioned in week 3 that I was going for neutral furniture pieces with interesting, colorful, patterned accessories. And that is what we did. All of the sources will be listed at the bottom of this incredibly picture-heavy post. For now I will just say: flamingo pillow. Iiii mean.

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What patio would be complete without a freshly cracked bottle of cold Topo Chico? I added a marble cheese tray on top of the copper-painted aluminum side table so that the drink actually stays cool. Also, fun styling tip: make sure the “Made in Taiwan” sticker is clearly visible on the bottom of your bottle opener! ūüėČ

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This planter was a very unexpected, yet very welcome (and well-timed), birthday present! Somebody figured out that I have a blog where I write about things I like on a monthly basis. Makes gift-giving a little easier.

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Orange, blue, and pink has long been a favorite color combo of mine. This decor is a¬†little louder than what I would normally do in the house, but something about being outside makes it easier to say “SCREW IT!” and buy the flamingo pillow. (Just making sure I write “flamingo pillow” a minimum of like…seven times in this blog post.)

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Flamingo pillow. Heh.

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This wee table has proven to be just the right size for two drinks + a citronella candle at night. On that note: mosquito problems are real here in Austin and they loveee me. Anyone have any repellent recommendations that aren’t sticky/don’t stink?

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I bought cheap outdoor chair cushions to help protect the chairs from the intense sun. They also keep our butts comfy.

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MOAR COLOR. MOAR PATTERN. p.s. Please no one freak out. I plan to bring in the Persian rug + seersucker blanket when it rains. The orange rug is outdoor aka made of plastic, so it’s good to go. Which leads me to my new pet peeve that I didn’t previously know existed: why do people think “indoor/outdoor” rugs are a thing? Those only seem to be good for “outdoor” spaces that are completely covered. Which might as well be indoor.¬†¬Į\_(„ÉĄ)_/¬Į

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Oh…I also brought Leif (our fiddle leaf fig) indoors after I took these photos. That spot gets pretty intense sun and I read that fiddle leaf fig leaves (FLFL?) can scorch easily, so I’m not risking it. Finn would be so upset if I killed his brother.

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A few things have changed in the tiny herb garden since week 3: the little rectangular planters I got for the herbs were too small, and the herbs started to get root bound. I used some larger planters I had from Ikea to re-pot some of them, and grabbed some inexpensive terra cotta and concrete ones to fill in the gaps. Then the rectangular planters were sad and empty, so I picked up some super small succulents to fill them up. Now it’s like a wee little jungle that helps me forget that the highway is on the other side of that fence.

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The flowers bloomed on this purslane plant the day I took these photos. Not mad about how that worked out. This plant is supposed to be super heat tolerant and it’s in the spot that gets the most sun, so I hope it stays this pretty!

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Finn wants to know what in the Sam Hill is going on out here.

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He’s not sure what in the Sam Hill is going on over there, either.

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“MUDDER STOP. Don’t you have some before/after photos to show?” Well yes…yes I do. Isn’t that why we’re all here, anyway? Scroll down for that sweet, sweet hit of before/after goodness.

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I’ve had this blog for two years and I don’t think I’ve ever done a true side by side before and after. Just one more reason (besides a fully finished patio that I’ve already begun to enjoy) that I’m so glad to have joined the One Room Challenge! For more full reveals, check out the other guest participants here.

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Finn is just glad this whole thing is over. Watching it happen as he laid on the couch was a very grueling process for him. Thank you all for helping him through this difficult time, and thank you for sticking with us through what I think is the most photos I’ve ever posted in one sitting. Whew! Full source list is below.




Planters & Pots



one room challenge week 5: i’m a bench

I’m laughing to myself at the title of this post. When my sister was little, she didn’t know the words to Meredith Brook’s song,¬†Bitch, so she would sing “I’m a bench, I’m a lover, I’m a child, I’m a mother…” She was, and is, totally adorable and the best little sister in all of the lands.¬†Now that she’s older and a soon-to-be college graduate, she earns her “best sister” status not by sweetly singing the wrong words to pop radio, but by dragging her hungover butt to Home Depot with me to help me build a bench for my patio. FULL CIRCLE!

DIY patio bench

(If you need to catch up: I started the One Room Challenge on week 3 with a mission to overhaul the patio. In week 4, I pulled the trigger on some chairs and a side table, this week (week 5) I built this bench, and next week is the full reveal!)

There she is, in all of her incredibly simple glory. Eh, glory is probably a strong word, but it’s a word I get to use after bumbling through Home Depot and sweating through hoisting nine cinderblocks into my car and onto my patio. Hey guys: cinderblocks are HEAVY. My sister can attest to this. Did I mention she was hungover?

DIY patio bench

Nine cinderblocks, you say? But there are only four cinderblocks used in the bench? Yah, I had some grand plans for this thing. They looked much better on paper. The final product was…so, so bad. Tim Gunn would call it “overworked.” So, we lugged around five more cinderblocks than we actually needed. And for whatever reason, my sister hasn’t shaved my eyebrows off in my sleep or burned my apartment down. Like I said, she’s the best.

DIY patio bench

I’m putting some of the extras to use as a plant stand, as you can see, so it’s not a total waste. Bench details are as follows: One 2″ x 12″ piece of pressure treated pine cut to 4.5 feet, plunked on top of four 8″ x 16″ cinderblocks. That’s it! All sources for the accessories that you see will be shared in next week’s reveal, so yall¬†come on back now, ya hear?

DIY patio bench

I’m pretty much done at this point…just need to grab some more plants and pots, style it up, and take some pics for next week’s reveal. The bench was definitely the hardest part of this makeover if sweat level is the main unit of measurement, which I think means this was a pretty freaking easy room. Lots of the other participants are doing much tougher work–if you’re interested, check them out here!

DIY patio bench

We’ve already started using the patio (I’m writing this post from it tonight!) and it’s so awesome having¬†essentially an entire new room in our apartment.¬†I’m kicking myself for not doing this sooner. Much like my sister was probably kicking herself for agreeing to go to Home Depot with me. Big ups to her for being The Numero Uno Sister and to the One Room Challenge for motivating me to finally get this space together. Onward to the full reveal!


one room challenge, week 4: rest on one’s laurels

I believe it was Shakespeare that wrote,

Player 1: Come on guys, we can’t just rest on our laurels.
Player 2: Why does everyone say that? Maybe a laurel is a good place to rest.

Oops¬†I’m wrong, that quote is from the equally critically-acclaimed classic Bring It On, of early 2000s cheer-movie fame. The quote really makes you think…what’s wrong with some good old-fashioned butt-sitting every now and again? Isn’t that really, ultimately, what butts (and patios) are for? Ya know what, let’s actually not go down that path.

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Last week, I jumped into the ORC ready to tackle my patio. I cleaned it up, planted some herbs, and shopped for chairs (Hence all the butt talk. Sorry guys.) This week, I thought it’d be helpful to lay out a floor plan to help you guys see what we’re¬†working with. The patio is not tiny, but it’s awkward- very long and skinny. The current plan is¬†to put two chairs and a small table on one end as seen above, and to use a bench to add some seating on the long wall (more on this next week!) About those chairs…

ORC spring 2016 week 4 patio chairs

I knew I wanted something round with cool lines as I was inspired by my dream chair- the Acapulco chair. I was not inspired by the¬†prices of Acapulco chairs. (You can see some options here, here, and this is the cheapest one I’ve found.) I had seen these Target chairs in the store and on the interwebz and thought they were so cute…I even blogged about wanting them for the patio in February’s currently post. *Technically* they aren’t outdoor chairs, but they have¬†a lacquered rattan seat with an iron frame, which are definitely outdoor-friendly materials. I figure I’ll pull them in if the weather gets nuts.

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I really, really like them. They are comfortable for the laurel-resting, pretty, they fit the space well, and I can see using them inside or out wherever we end up next year. I also picked up the copper side table from Target, which is the perfect size and oooooo it’s shiny. Last week I mentioned that I was hoping to go for neutral furniture¬†and then to layer on interesting and colorful accessories, and so far that plan is working. ¬†Plus, I got it all 15% off during a home sale, so that doesn’t suck!

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Next week, I’ll be posting about a bench project I’m working on that could be a major win or a spectacular fail.¬†Then, the next week will be the final reveal! BENCH OR NO BENCH. The show must go on. If you’re interested in following along, you can click here to check out¬†the other ORC participants this week. Happy browsing!