What I’ve Bought Lately


Makena pendant necklace: This is my new favorite accessory. I don’t do tons of clothes shopping these days, but a good necklace always makes me feel better about my wardrobe. . . for a while.

Black cocktail dress: My husband and I went to a black tie event a couple of weeks ago, and I didn’t have a clue what I was going to wear. I found this one online and loved it. It was completely comfortable for this fairly modest girl. (No tugging or pulling up all night—which drives me crazy.) And, it has pockets. I love a dress with pockets. Here’s a pic I posted on Instagram of me in the dress. (It also comes in navy.)

Nude patent pump: And, once you find the dress, you have to find the shoes. I chose these simple platform pumps. Plus, they say nude elongates the leg—right? (Side note: it does not make winter legs look any more tan. . . )

For the Right Reasons by Sean Lowe: Yeah, yeah. I bought it, read it and loved it. Say what you will, but this was such a fun (quick) read. I think he’s a great guy, and I loved the behind-the-scenes 411 about The Bachelor/Bachelorette.

SodaStream Starter Kit: I actually bought one of these a while ago, but wanted to make sure I liked it before I shared. I have always struggled with being a water drinker. I can drink my weight in Diet Cokes, though, because I’m addicted to carbonation! This has made it so much easier for me to drink lots of water. You can buy the flavoring, too, but I’ve never tried it. I just need the bubbles :)


Affiliate links used.

A Patio Decorating Project With Lowe’s

Last week, I spent a couple of days at the Lowe’s Home Improvement headquarters (which isn’t too far from me) with six other bloggers, learning about new products and seeing one of their newly redesigned stores. Part of our time there also consisted of a style challenge where they paired us up, assigned us a space to design and gave us free rein to shop the store for one hour. Picture one of those frantic shopping trips on HGTV’s Design Star, where you have to come up with your idea and products in a very short amount of time.

garden accessories


I teamed up with Caroline of House of Harper to create an outdoor vignette. We were all given one tall wall and one short wall, displayed at the corporate offices.

patio design project

 Where we started that morning.


We decided on a Nantucket-inspired patio with a nautical feel. This is how it turned out:

nautical inspired outdoor patio space


The rug shows up a little darker in the pictures, but it’s actually a pretty shade of midnight blue. (It’s not outdoor, by the way—but we dreamed this was a covered patio. Because we could.) Although not overly red, white and blue, it still ended up with a really all-American, summer feel.





(Those red garden stools are less than $40 and come in other colors.)


Here are the other products we used for the challenge—in case you have Spring fever as bad as I do:


mirror  //  rug  //  chair  //  striped pillow  //  glass & rope vase

red planter  //  ottoman  //  red garden stool  //  white ceramic planter

Find more outdoor decorating ideas here.


Also, a reminder that I’ll be at the Huntersville, NC, store this Saturday. More details in this post. Hope to see you there!

The Saturday 6


#1 Big color inspiration.




#2 Whites are hard. Top designers share their white paint picks.




#3 West Elm clearance is an additional 20% off right now! Use code: EXTRA20

(These throws are less than $10.)




#4 High-impact updates that you can do in an hour—or less.

(image: Lonny)




#5 Sofa shopping tips + 8 affordable options.




#6 Julie’s fresh colonial home tour.