5 Alternatives to Basic Window Coverings

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Hi all!

Today I am sharing 5 alternatives to basic window coverings.

There are so many different options when it comes to window coverings instead of taking the basic route! I am not one to opt for plain or basic decor when there are so many gorgeous options available if you know where to look.

My motto for the things that I buy is that I can only get something if I am obsessed with it. I really don't want anything in my house or closet that I don't love because that item just gets pushed to the side and takes up space. This principle applies to EVERYTHING in my house, even the window coverings!

 As I'm sure you have gathered from previous posts, I am passionate about home decor and design and feel life is too short to not be crazy about your space. One detail in a space that can make it cozy, airy, and inviting is the window covering. 

As some of you know (if you are signed up for my newsletter), Chay and I are moving once again (I'll explain for those of you who are new to my blog in a post very soon!)! After having been in Redondo Beach for a year and 3 months (but who's counting?), we realized we really wanted to be in LA again. However,  a couple months ago this option wasn't really on the table and I was getting really tired of our old school windows with ugly dust collecting white cardboard shades. I finally got around to ordering my dream black iron curtain rods with white linen drapes for the main rooms as well as bamboo roll down shades for the bedrooms . Of course, shortly thereafter an amazing home pops up that is perfect for us, but thankfully we can use these coverings in the new house. 

I can't tell you what a difference it made to have these gorgeous curtains and rods up. It seems silly to say but it made all the difference in the way the room felt. All of a sudden, it went from being a kinda quirky space to a polished and inviting one. I also learned a few tricks! Here are some tips I learned from my hunt for the perfect window coverings.

1. If you have the wall space above the window, hang the curtains from the highest point possible to make the windows feel bigger and the ceiling feel taller.

2. Have the drapes kiss the floor. Meaning, for a more streamlined home, dont allow them to drape or gather, or be visibly floating above the ground. 

3. Pottery Barn has gorgeous white linen drapes and curtain rods! I don't normally shop here but was so happy with their window covering game.

4. Bamboo shades are a really affordable option for stylish rooms that want some warmth but also feel light and airy.

5. Curtain rings really elevate a space and make the drapery feel that much more substantial. However, they are expensive and add up really fast. So these would be best if you're really planning on investing.

See below for 5 Window Covering Options I LOVE and why:

5 Window Covering options

 I love a simple and modern roll down shade for a sleek home. If you want a less traditional option, this is it. We had these types of shades at our last home and they are so clean looking. They roll down when you want less sun, and they roll up and virtually disappear when you don't!

I love a simple and modern roll down shade for a sleek home. If you want a less traditional option, this is it. We had these types of shades at our last home and they are so clean looking. They roll down when you want less sun, and they roll up and virtually disappear when you don't!

 I love the look and functionality of bamboo roll down shades behind beautiful linen drapes. Not only do the two materials look great paired together, they are also very efficient at controlling the amount of natural light you want. If it's just a little, you can do just bamboo! I think it looks so pretty!

I love the look and functionality of bamboo roll down shades behind beautiful linen drapes. Not only do the two materials look great paired together, they are also very efficient at controlling the amount of natural light you want. If it's just a little, you can do just bamboo! I think it looks so pretty!

 The  bamboo roll down shades alone are also gorgeous and let in such gorgeous twinkly light. It creates a great ambiance and softens the vibe of any room. I got these for our Redondo Beach home and love them!

The  bamboo roll down shades alone are also gorgeous and let in such gorgeous twinkly light. It creates a great ambiance and softens the vibe of any room. I got these for our Redondo Beach home and love them!

 I have been a huge fan of these modern ceiling track drapes. They make the room feel taller and bigger and feel very chic. I feel like these are drapes you would see in a very upscale hotel or in a super cool Hollywood Hills home. Also, see how they just kiss the floor?

I have been a huge fan of these modern ceiling track drapes. They make the room feel taller and bigger and feel very chic. I feel like these are drapes you would see in a very upscale hotel or in a super cool Hollywood Hills home. Also, see how they just kiss the floor?

 Ahhh Roman Shades. I love them. I think they instantly elevate the look of a room and add a huge sense of design. Roman shades also come in lots of fun patterns and fabrics too, so you can go all out or keep it more subdued. Either way, both options are gorgeous.

Ahhh Roman Shades. I love them. I think they instantly elevate the look of a room and add a huge sense of design. Roman shades also come in lots of fun patterns and fabrics too, so you can go all out or keep it more subdued. Either way, both options are gorgeous.

Since Chay and I are moving, home decor and design is on my mind more than usual and this topic is front and center for me! These styles have caught my eye over and over again, so I thought I would post about my personal preferences for my own home. I think these styles also translate well into more traditional homes as well as modern homes. See below for some of my favorite options!

Comment below and let me know your favorite style and what you would use in your home!

xo, Kim

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Our Downtown LA Loft Revamp/Home Tour at The Eastern Columbia Lofts

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I don't know why it's taken me so long to do a post on our DTLA Loft revamp, except for the fact that I probably wanted to wait because there is always more to do, right? The projects are never done and it always feels "too soon" to put it out there, except it's not! Nothing is perfect and even though my creative juices are always flowing, those changes would take lots of time and cash, which we can't spend on this place. Since Chay and I buy these properties as future investments or rental properties, it doesn't make sense to pour too much time, energy, and money into them. But, of course we want them to look awesome and represent our style. So, with some fresh white paint, light fixtures, fun pieces of furniture and a few days, we updated our loft at The Eastern Columbia Building in DTLA! 

To be honest, since the building is awesome, it didn't need much help. This building is considered "the jewel of DTLA", and for good reason. It's ornate and completely unique. It was built in 1930 and used to be a department store, and only became lofts 12 years ago. Also, Kelly Wearstler did the interior design! So yes, pretty great to begin with, but our unit was a little dark and just a tad boring with the basic light fixtures. Whenever I approach a new project, whether it be a personal one Chay and I are doing for an investment property, or for a client, I always look to see if the space can be brightened up with some basic upgrades, most of them being decor! This is of course more cost effective, as the sky is the limit if you're willing to knock down walls, or frame out new rooms etc. But most don't want to do that! If you want to get the best bang for your buck, I created a downloadable checklist to focus on these 5 things to get a room to come alive with minimal work and money that you can download for free here:

Here are some before pics so you can see what we were working with:

Before

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With a few quick fixes, some different decor, and bright white paint. the loft really came to life! Check out the afters below:

After

 See how the light fixture, table, art, and paint color make such a huge difference?! I love this Pendant from West Elm. You can shop it below if you love!

See how the light fixture, table, art, and paint color make such a huge difference?! I love this Pendant from West Elm. You can shop it below if you love!

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 The photography is from Max Wanger.

The photography is from Max Wanger.

 Yes, these lights are from Christmas:) I love keeping them up!

Yes, these lights are from Christmas:) I love keeping them up!

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 This view of the ornate moulding across the way is my favorite. It reminds me of Soho.

This view of the ornate moulding across the way is my favorite. It reminds me of Soho.

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 I am in love with my Casper mattress and Parachute bedding. I linked it below in the Shop the post section!

I am in love with my Casper mattress and Parachute bedding. I linked it below in the Shop the post section!

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I just love how much brighter and more open it feels now! We wanted it to have a slightly less bohemian feel and have a more modern and streamlined vibe than our primary residence you guys have probably seen on instagram. I think Chay is over all of my colors and patterns haha.

Do you guys like the revamp and if so what part about it is your favorite change? I think the paint and lighting really did it for me! As always, thank you guys for reading and the love! I will see you again in a couple days!

xo, Kim

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9 Brass Hardware Options under $35

Hi all! Today I am sharing 9 Brass Hardware options under 35 dollars!

When it comes to revamping a space, there are a few things that I always focus on to really elevate the look and feel of a room. When you're  on a budget, these items can make a huge difference in the overall look of what could otherwise be a simple or even drab space. I am going to do a post on my " room revamp checklist", but for today, I really wanted to focus on one aspect I always focus on to amp up a space,  hardware. (Meaning the knobs or pulls for kitchen cabinets, for example) Great hardware can really make or break a space in my opinion. They are such a small physical detail, yet can make such a huge statement. 

For the last few weeks, I have been helping consult on a huge project for my girlfriend Lauren, who is completely gutting her midcentury modern home. She has a vision of how she wants the home to feel overall, but I am helping narrow down the options and get specific on what they are doing throughout the house. Since the entire home is going to be remodeled, you can imagine that would be costly, so I am making sure to only send her options that are affordable while still being chic, and accomplishing the look we are going for. I have eclectic taste in general but love a modernized version of vintage style. Lauren loves classic and more simple vibes but is totally willing to do some fun details like BRASS HARDWARE in the kitchen and powder room! I was so excited to hear her say that but knew the hardware I have been coveting is outrageously priced since its Waterworks, (the place where all of my dreams live) an amazing place for inspiration but super costly. 

I wanted to find hardware that maintained a similar chic and modernized aesthetic but like 99% less expensive! I found some great options that I would use in a heartbeat in my own home, but more than that, fit the simple and clean look Lauren is going for. Check out the options I found below:

Affordable Brass Hardware Options Under $35

(and most under $10!)

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I love how all of these are simple but also pretty and really clean looking. They aren't going to take over a space at all, but will definitely elevate it. We are going to use brass hardware in the kitchen and powder room for a pop and then use stainless steel in the other bathrooms for a less trendy look throughout the house. 

I will keep you updated on design ideas and plans as they come as well as before and afters when the majority of the remodel is complete. Do you guys like brass hardware? If so, which one is your fave? I LOVE it and think it's timeless if you choose a substantial option that feels quality. Comment below on your thoughts!

xo, Kim

10 statement Tile Options (That I'm currently debating over for our own remodel)

 I love the look of marble subway tile paired with brass inlay to glam up a backsplash, wall, or even a floor. How gorgeous would this look in a chevron pattern with a flat inlay as a bathroom floor? 

I love the look of marble subway tile paired with brass inlay to glam up a backsplash, wall, or even a floor. How gorgeous would this look in a chevron pattern with a flat inlay as a bathroom floor? 

 I am OBSESSED with this pattern and the colors in this cement tile option from one of my favorite online shops,  Cle Tile .  The colors are muted but still statement and would look great in a California modern home or a midcentury style. I would love to do this as either a powder room floor or the siding tile to a kitchen island. It's so fun, and I definitely believe in making your home happy and fun with pops of color and pattern. Staying safe with neutrals is fine but I want my home to be a representation of me uniquely. There are so many simple homes with carrera marble and white cabinets, so why not spice it up?

I am OBSESSED with this pattern and the colors in this cement tile option from one of my favorite online shops, Cle Tile.  The colors are muted but still statement and would look great in a California modern home or a midcentury style. I would love to do this as either a powder room floor or the siding tile to a kitchen island. It's so fun, and I definitely believe in making your home happy and fun with pops of color and pattern. Staying safe with neutrals is fine but I want my home to be a representation of me uniquely. There are so many simple homes with carrera marble and white cabinets, so why not spice it up?

 Terrazzo flooring is EVERYTHING to me right now! I am OBSESSED with this throwback flooring option for a Midcentury home or even a bohemian bungalow with a mix of different interior styles. There are tons of benefits to this type of floor. It's long lasting, durable, non-porous ( so no dirt can accumulate), and it looks sooo cool!

Terrazzo flooring is EVERYTHING to me right now! I am OBSESSED with this throwback flooring option for a Midcentury home or even a bohemian bungalow with a mix of different interior styles. There are tons of benefits to this type of floor. It's long lasting, durable, non-porous ( so no dirt can accumulate), and it looks sooo cool!

 As much as I love statement tiles that are fun and colorful, I also love the idea of a simple glazed ceramic tile. The glaze makes it more of a show stopper while the lack of pattern still allows it to be a great option for tiled wall or backsplash. I am loving this kitchen and its simplistic yet chic style. I would definitely do a patterned tile on the floor in this kitchen to mix it up.

As much as I love statement tiles that are fun and colorful, I also love the idea of a simple glazed ceramic tile. The glaze makes it more of a show stopper while the lack of pattern still allows it to be a great option for tiled wall or backsplash. I am loving this kitchen and its simplistic yet chic style. I would definitely do a patterned tile on the floor in this kitchen to mix it up.

 I cannot get enough of this fun green and blue circular tile. It is such a statement and is so playful. I have seen this tile done as a backsplash in a kitchen and as flooring like this photo. I would love to use this an an outdoor patio tile or statement tile in the shower. It's soooo me!

I cannot get enough of this fun green and blue circular tile. It is such a statement and is so playful. I have seen this tile done as a backsplash in a kitchen and as flooring like this photo. I would love to use this an an outdoor patio tile or statement tile in the shower. It's soooo me!

 Another trend I am loving more than anything are these oversized subway tiles cut from super detailed black, cream, yellow, and pink marble.  The way it's laid makes all the difference! I would die to have this as the floor in a small room in my future home, however, I don't know if it would blend well if I decided on some of the statement cement tiles. This is more glam and the others are more California Modern meets Boho Luxe. Regardless, this is a fave!

Another trend I am loving more than anything are these oversized subway tiles cut from super detailed black, cream, yellow, and pink marble.  The way it's laid makes all the difference! I would die to have this as the floor in a small room in my future home, however, I don't know if it would blend well if I decided on some of the statement cement tiles. This is more glam and the others are more California Modern meets Boho Luxe. Regardless, this is a fave!

 This geometric pattern in this powder blue cement tile has been a go-to fave for a long time. I really feel like I will use this somewhere at some point soon because it's fun but not too busy. The pattern reminds me of a starburst without the literal star pattern (which I also love!).  

This geometric pattern in this powder blue cement tile has been a go-to fave for a long time. I really feel like I will use this somewhere at some point soon because it's fun but not too busy. The pattern reminds me of a starburst without the literal star pattern (which I also love!).  

 Can I just have a house with 10 rooms so I can tile it all? I loooove this pattern! Confession: I have a rug in this same pattern under our dining table in our DTLA loft. I love it, mostly because it's a temporary fix to my obsession with geometric tiles. I truly can't figure out if I would love this tile for years to come or if I would get over it, so for now, it's in the inspo pile.

Can I just have a house with 10 rooms so I can tile it all? I loooove this pattern! Confession: I have a rug in this same pattern under our dining table in our DTLA loft. I love it, mostly because it's a temporary fix to my obsession with geometric tiles. I truly can't figure out if I would love this tile for years to come or if I would get over it, so for now, it's in the inspo pile.

 As you can see, the glossy ceramic subway tile mixed with a patterned cement tile floor is a showstopper! I think this might be the magical combo. I always go back to this amazing bathroom. Ceramic glazed tiles are definitely in my future!

As you can see, the glossy ceramic subway tile mixed with a patterned cement tile floor is a showstopper! I think this might be the magical combo. I always go back to this amazing bathroom. Ceramic glazed tiles are definitely in my future!

 This bright blue statement tile is one I have loved for years! Many of you will recognize it from the hip LA coffee shop,  Intelligentsia . This is the tile used for their flooring from indoor to outdoor at the Silver Lake location and is pure FUN. You gotta comitt if you're gonna use this tile! 

This bright blue statement tile is one I have loved for years! Many of you will recognize it from the hip LA coffee shop, Intelligentsia. This is the tile used for their flooring from indoor to outdoor at the Silver Lake location and is pure FUN. You gotta comitt if you're gonna use this tile! 

Get The Look

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I love all of these tiles and have even more on my Pinterest here (follow along to get updates on all my style inspo and home decor ideas). These 10 above are my go to's for remodel options or update options if Chay and I stay in our Redondo Beach home, or sell and update another home. I will keep you guys posted on what we decide to do, I don't even know yet! Hahaha who knows what we will do next, but you guys will be the first to know.

I'd love to know what you guys are thinking about these tiles. Do you love? I am obsessed! Please let me know in the comments below!

xo, Kim

Dream Eclectic/ Midcentury Modern Kitchen Remodel-Before and After

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Today is the day! I have posted bits and pieces of this insane remodel when it was still in the process of being finished, so of course, couldn't give away toooo much. It was so good I wanted the full reveal to be a surprise because it's that AMAZING. 

My brother is a general contractor and my sister in law is the most creative person with super fun and eclectic taste. One amazing thing about the two of them together is that Jeff and Kelli are inspired by many of the same things and are into interiors with lots of character that are anything but typical. You can understand why I am so obsessed with their taste and this new remodel! I love modernized versions of eclectic and retro styles. The modern lines paired with eclectic details like colorful marble tiles, unique lighting, and brass details, for example, create an artistic and unique interior that still feels updated and hip.

I could go on and on but I think you just really need to see these before and after pictures because that's why you're here. It truly is nothing short of DREAM INTERIOR AMAZINGNESS!

BEFORE

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My brother and sister bought this house from my grandparents and up until this point, this is how it's always looked. Super old school lay out with old appliances and basic finishes. I honestly couldn't even imagine or comprehend how gorgeous and different it could look. 

My brother has this special gift of being able to imagine any layout and really come to conclusions fast about what layouts will look and function best. He has a contractors eye and on top of that, he has impeccable taste and truly is a rennaisance man! He knows how to do EVERYTHING from electrical to tile cutting to furniture building. Every womans dream when it comes to getting crap done around the house, am I right? (Does it sound weird that I am saying that about my brother....I just mean he's super handy to have around!) He did the entire remodel himself and didn't hire any subs (sub contractors) except for the cabinet maker.  My sister in law/ bestie for life designed all the details (not to mention took care of their 3 kids under 5 without a kitchen for two months while Jeff worked day and night!) with him and together they have created the most gorgeous, dreamy, and unique kitchen I have ever seen in person. I know they spent a fraction of the price because Jeff cut his own tile and did so much himself, so if you're thinking this kitchen looks expensive, it would be for you and I!  I'm so impressed with their resourcefulness and drive to get their dream kitchen without shelling out a ton of money. 

Okay, enough talking. Let's see the full reveal!

Drumroll please.....

AFTER

 I am loving all this colored marble paired with flat panel wood cabinets that are a modern take on the midcentury cabinets of the past. The brass hardware is so warm and luxe and I'm just dying over the wall of black marble with white veins throughout.

I am loving all this colored marble paired with flat panel wood cabinets that are a modern take on the midcentury cabinets of the past. The brass hardware is so warm and luxe and I'm just dying over the wall of black marble with white veins throughout.

 My brother paneled the fridge to match the cabinets. I looooove a paneled refrigerator.

My brother paneled the fridge to match the cabinets. I looooove a paneled refrigerator.

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 YES, just yes.

YES, just yes.

 WINDOW SILL GOALS....I am dying over the attention to detail. So Kelly Wearstler! I just love so much!

WINDOW SILL GOALS....I am dying over the attention to detail. So Kelly Wearstler! I just love so much!

Do you guys see what I mean now when I say it's just GORGEOUS? It is just perfection to me because its so unique and J&K weren't afraid to take risks. There is nothing boring about this kitchen but it's also not all over the place. It is completely styled with a point of view and recurring colors and patterns to pull everything together cohesively. I. LOVE.IT.

I'd love to know what you guys think. Let me know what your thoughts are in the comments below! And, if you have questions or want to contact Jeff for projects, email me for his info. Thanks guys and see you Wednesday!

xo,Kim

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Brittany Meadth! Congrats Brittany! Your name was drawn for this awesome giveway! Yay! You will love the products!!!

My Midcentury Modern Home Exterior Revamp

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Happy Friday all!

As many of you know if you follow along on Instagram, Chay and I have moved around quite a bit over the last 3 years. We love to change things up and before we have kids we are trying to be intentional about exploring places that we may want to settle down in and our most recent move brought us to Redondo Beach.

Why Redondo? I am from The Southbay, specifically Palos Verdes, and this is home for us and where most of my family lives. It's also very close to Chay's office. We moved from Echo Park, where we lived in our first home for just shy of a year! We loved it so much but saw a great opportunity to get a great deal on a home in a beautiful (albeit quiet and maybe a bit slow paced for my taste) beach town that will be a great investment whether or not we decide to sell or stay. It is minutes from family and friends and felt like a good idea to try and see how we like it!

Well, as many of you know if you are looking into purchasing a home,  beach cities don't give you quite the same bang for your buck as cities more inland. We knew if we bought this house we needed to do some work on the aesthetics like finishes, floors, and cabinetry etc, but the bones and layout are great!

It's a midcentury open floor plan with a flat roofline and beamed ceilings. The inside needs a good amount of updating, but we thought why not give the exterior a quick and affordable makeover as we wait for the right time to remodel or sell! I know we just moved here, but were not really the type that feels tied to any home/decision if we're not in love with it. Sooo we're just giving it some time to see if it's a home that we want to pour our time/energy/hearts into, or if another area is where we would rather be. We knew we would be adding some value for minimal cost, and knew the refacing and actual future exterior wouldn't make any sense to do now and pour money into just yet.

So lets check out the before photos!

BEFORE

 notice the cypress trees to the far left of the photo. There were 2o at 50 feet high! Ugh!

notice the cypress trees to the far left of the photo. There were 2o at 50 feet high! Ugh!

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So not into the color scheme here! Its fine and cute and way better than it used to be even a few years prior, but still just kinda blah and like its trying too hard to look "midcentury".

We decided to just paint the bright white glossy trim (that I hated) a charcoal black color to have a more modern feeling with the dark grey color of the house as a way to be monochromatic and less "beachy". Our front door was a bright neon orange as an attempt from the previous realtors to make the house look stereotypical Midcentury but it wasn't the right orange color for a statement front door! We painted that charcoal as well as the basic factory garage door. WHAT A DIFFERENCE!!

To really spice things up we tore out the 20(!!!!) 50 foot tall Cypress trees (you know the really skinny and tall pine tree looking trees with spiders and rats living inside?), some small random tree with red berries on it, a ton of grass and random landscape the previous owners slapped on the lawn before they sold. 

I wanted easy to maintain desert landscape in all monochromatic greens and blues. I love being in The Desert and love how clean and chic desert landscape looks in front of a midcentury home. I picked about 5 types of succulents without going too crazy because that can end up looking over the top and almost dirty with too many variations (do you know what I mean? Like the people with a thousand types of plants in their yard with no theme at all or plan, just a crazy mess of plants and weeds). We added some modern pavers with black Mexican beach rock in between and called it a day! (Well it took two weeks hahaha but you know what I am saying!)

Now for the after pics!

after

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With a little paint in a more modern color  (we used Farrow and Balls "Railings" and color matched it!) and new landscape, I think the house looks more clean and polished than it did when we moved in. I'm super happy with the results to buy us some time to figure out what we wanna do! Do you guys have any tips for afforable curb appeal? Id love to know. Leave a comment with your ideas!

xo, Kim

 

 

 

 

The 5 Things You Need to Host A Successful Party

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Hi Everyone!

So something you may not know about me unless you are one of my friends is that I love to host get-togethers. It can be a girls night with just a couple friends, or a birthday party with 20-30 people. I am no expert on event planning, but I love to welcome people into my home and create a comforting and warm atmosphere so that everyone feels comfortable and has fun.

I also think holding get-togethers (do I sound old saying get- togethers?) or inviting people over is also a great excuse to get those projects for your house or apartment that you have been putting off into action! Just sayin'. Maybe throw a party and you'll finally get those pictures hung or floors redone!

Anyways,I know for many, the idea of hosting something can seem daunting because you might not innately be interested in decor or cooking or presentation. I list these things because we all know someone in our circle that seems to do all of these things well! My twin sister is so good at all the details that it takes to throw a gorgeous and welcoming event. No pressure! Lol. She has taught me so much!

I thought I'd share my little cheat sheet on the short list I created for myself to make things look good, taste good, while still being easy on the prep side as well as share the other aspects like decor that I always go back to to make things easy. Also, I left off alcohol because everyone has their preference. But I have to say, if you love cocktails, Pinterest a fresh cocktail recipe and prep in advance. If you are into wine, a few reds and whites should cover it. I always count on two glasses per person and do the math on how many bottles I need because some people drink more and some don't drink at all. Always have a little more for good measure and if you live in LA, K&L Wines and Silverlake Wine has amazing selections! 

5 things you need to throw a good party:

1. A (Beautiful) Cheeseboard- It goes a long way and if you assemble with care and add a few cute touches like dried fruits, rosemary sprigs, and display on some sort of pretty tray or rustic cheeseboard, it can be a centerpiece to the table! We make huge ones for our parties and I have copied pictures from pinterest and it ends up looking great! My sister is Queen of the cheeseboard. We go to Trader Joes a lot of the time and get all the ingredients there! Sometimes I go to Whole Foods if I want it to be extra fancy but for the most part, Trader Joes or a quality store will have all you need.

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2. Candles- I always like to set a mood at my home because I want people to walk in and feel at ease. I do this in the most simple way by lighting candles in the bathrooms, entry, and main room where people will be hanging out. In the entry and bath, I use scented candles (Anthropologie, Diptyque, Trapp, or P.F. Candle Co.  are my faves and are made with good quaity wax so they dont smell too much and give me a headache). I always try and use white non scented near the food or in the main area so the soft light sets a nice mood without overpowering the smell of the food.

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3. Music- A party without music just tends to feel boring and awkward. I hate to say it because everyone can be having a great time without it, but having the background music creates an atmosphere that feels special, festive, creats fluidity. I sometimes feel stuck in a conversation if its too quiet, even if the conversation has taken its course and ended naturally. For some reason it just makes it or awkward to move on. Music is a welcomed distraction and soundtrack in social settings, so I always love to have it on low in the background. My favorites are Bossa Nova, Classical Jazz, or in the rare occasion people are wanting to get rowdy (which never happens), a playlist of something modern and new from pop artists.

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4. Decor- This area tends to be the easiest for me because I love interior design and have eclectic style, so my house usually has some design to it already. When I throw a party though, I like to add twinkly lights for atmosphere, greenery and flowers to soften things and make the house feel finished and pulled together. I literally go to Trader Joes (again) and buy their flowers and greenery to spread across my table, consoles, and put flowers in a few vases. I prefer all green monochromatic plants if possible to look more wild and lush. 

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5. Entree Salad- Okay this might seem strange to make this a must, but I swear by entree salads to go a long way when it comes to feeding your guests. I am the QUEEN of salad making. I have been eating healthy for years because I have always wanted to stay in shape for modeling, so I had to get creative. Salads are also easy to make, take very little time and feed lots of people. I always include filling ingredients that have lots of flavor as well so people think they are eating something unhealthy and rich when in reality most of the ingredients are clean and nutritious. Put the salad in a beautiful big bowl, I use a large low and wide white bowl from Crate and barrel with pretty salad utensils to make it look that much prettier.

 P.S. I have a formula for always making popular salads again and again with different ingredients. For that Cheat sheet and grocery list example, just subscribe to the blog below and the pdf. will be sent to your inbox!

 

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I really focus on this clear and easy  list to make any party I hold seem doable and less stressful. As long as I can focus on small tasks, I wont get overwhelmed when I have people over. I hope this helps make hosting a party a little bit easier for you, and if you have any suggestions, I would love to know. Leave them in the comments below! 

xo, Kim

 

 

9 black homes that will make you rethink the all white trend

It's Tuesday people! So what better way to ring in the day after Monday then to talk about my favorite new trend. This week (and for the last few months really...) I have been dreaming about and searching for homes with black or charcoal exteriors. I have also noticed interior designers and architects like Barbara Bestor and Amber Interiors loving and posting projects with black exteriors as well! They are getting more and more attention and for good reason.They are edgy, fun, modern, and they truly stand out, yet are also neutral at the same time.

My last house in Echo Park was black and I absolutely loved it. It was super cool and I was so proud of it (although it was a new build so I had no input, I just felt cool because we were the owners lol) ! Up until this point, when I dreamed about my future home, I always thought I wanted a white house with black trim (and of course I will always love that classic and popular combination because it is stunning and sleek). After living in it for the short year we were there, I fell in love and really wanted our next home to eventually have that dark and modern feel. We moved into our new house in Redondo Beach (because my husbands job was much closer to this home) which unfortunately is nothing like Echo Park in design or sleekness. It's a grey mid century home with white trim that is close to the beach but far from style. I don't know if I sound like a brat but I really don't care. Facts are facts. This house needs work! (I will be posting more on the transformation as we get closer) One of the main things I cannot wait for is for the house to be re-stuccoed and painted black, but for now we are going to stick with monochrome colors since the house is already dark grey. We plan on giving it a face lift with new plants and painting the white trim (which comes off as beachy and traditional, not my thing) a dark charcoal. As I have been researching colors, I have compiled my favorite black homes that are popping up all over Pinterest for my own Inspo! Take a look at these gorgeous black homes!

 All images taken from my  Pinterest  

All images taken from my Pinterest 

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How pretty are these homes? Are you a believer yet? I just LOVE how the plants POP! against the black backdrop. So gorgeous! I cannot wait to paint our home and see how it all comes together! What do you guys think about a black exterior? Super Sleek or a little too dark for your taste? Let me know in the comments below!

xo,

Kim