The Rule of 8-One Room Challenge Week Five

Hello! It’s week five of the One Room Challenge and I am so happy to say….I WILL FINISH!!!!!!!!! I seriously had my doubts I could pull this off while juggling a full time job with out of state travel, a design business, and the million personal things going on in our lives but I did….and I am proud of myself. Do you ever say that to yourself? I don’t too often, but we should!

Last week I shared our reupholstery project and shared some tips for getting reupholstery done on one of your pieces. This week I am sharing my “Go-To Formula” for almost any space. It’s definitely a consistent theme in our home but I can completely respect that everyone has their own style and may hate some of these below touches. I have seen various versions of this type of design theory over the years and mine has continued to change as my knowledge and experience grow.


Wood-The natural warmth that wood introduced to a room cannot be replaced with anything (IMO). Whether maple, oak, pine, or walnut, each grain is unique and adds not only warmth but texture to a space. If you are lucky to score a vintage piece of wood furniture (or even decor), you are in for such a special treat with your finished space.

Animal-Now, this one can be controversial but is a very broad category. I am a firm believer that every room needs a touch of “animal”. This can be in the literal sense: Animal Art, Horns on a wall, animal prints, etc. or it can be something a bit more subtle such as an angora throw, layered sheepskin rug, or a framed feather. Manufacturers have perfected the faux animal so this can be a very accessible and affordable item to add to any room.


Texture/Pattern-By now you have probably learned that I do no( use much color in my spaces. Even with clients, I try and create a neutral foundation first and then layer in color, if requested. Texture/Patterns are my preferred way to add interesting touches to a room. A simple woven bench or stool….a chunky pillow….a pattern on a rug….there are so many ways to add texture to a room and help create a space that does not fall flat.

Black-Every room needs a touch of black. I stand firm with that believe. This does not need to be a black wall or black sofa like we have in our home and can be as subtle as a stack of black books or a black sculpture. Black is a timeless and bold color and just the tiniest bit of it can enhance a space.

Nature (Plants or flowers)-Plants and flowers bring life into a space. While there is definitely a time for a good faux, I am an advocate for real plants and flowers. Trader Joes and your local grocery store should always have a nice assortment of fresh flowers to add to your room. Check out your local nurseries for houseplants and be sure to use the expertise of their staff if you have any questions on caring for your plants

Brass (or your choice of metal)- While I am a fan of brass (brushed, antique, and even the gaudy!), I know it isn’t for anyone. Adding a metal element adds either shine or a nice masculine touch to any space. This can be in a mirror, legs of a table/chair, or a unique wall sculpture, there are so many options.

Vintage-Find me a beautiful room that does not have a touch of vintage or antique included…I dare you…There has been such a shift in our culture to re-use and re-purpose that vintage and antique home decor finds are at an all time high in popularity. Notice how your local thrift and antique stores are suddenly much pricier than in the past? There you go! Each vintage piece tells a story and is unique. Find something that captures a piece of your soul and bring it into your home.

Modern-I used to be a gal all about Modern. As my design aesthetic evolved, I pulled away from it a bit but found that there was consistently at least one piece of modern furniture in every room I was drawn to. Look for classic and timeless lines so it can be versatile as you and your style change or evolve over the years

If you dig into each picture, almost all pictures are great examples of the Rule of 8.

Next week is REVEAL week and you will see how I incorporated my formula into our 150 sq ft of sunroom.

Thank you to our hosts Linda from Calling It Home and Media Partner Better Homes and Gardens. Be sure to swing by the ORC page to check out what is cookin’ with the other participants!


When Life Hands You Lemons, You Paint.....One Room Challenge, Week Three

Week Three. I can’t believe it. Time sure does seem to fly lately! If you are new to House Haus Home (HHH), welcome! If you are returning, thanks for coming back! If you have been following with our One Room Challenge Transformation, we have completed the walls, windows, and are onto the floors. If you haven’t checked out the progress be sure to take a peek at week one and two.

If you saw my stories last week, I shared our new plan for flooring. Originally we had planned to do a polished concrete slab….then we planned on tiling. As always, we seems to run into issues with contractors either not showing up or showing up and then never sending a quote (WHY ?!?!) I did get one quote from a really nice man who I may use for another project but life happened and we decided not to move forward with the tile.

As many of you know, we have been working through some fertility challenges for over a year. Long story short, we were about to start IVF when our insurance company (our plan does cover IVF) caused a giant hiccup and that is still not resolved. We may have to pay for all the fertility drugs out of pocket (goodbye money) so I needed to reserve our tile fund for baby making and look for an alternative.

I was in bed and couldn’t sleep and was playing on good ole instagram when I was watching a story by the amazing artist William McClure. William is not only known for his beautiful works of art, but also creating clean and organic interiors. His signature white floors always looks beautiful but when I watched the transformation of the flooring in his new home, a lightbulb went off. Why not just paint them?

image via William McClure

image via William McClure

I was initially hesitant to paint them given we have four dogs, but after some research, I saw many pet owners have white painted floors. Yes, this could be disastrous, but it’s just paint. I came across a tutorial by Vintage Revivals and used it as guidance. She recommends a top coat for easier cleaning so I researched this and it appears to be a product with great reviews.

The process was pretty easy for us. Once the tile was removed (nice use of an entire weekend), we cleaned and cleaned and cleaned and cleaned. Did I mention we cleaned? When we thought we were done cleaning, we cleaned some more.

Our base floors were not perfect. There were some hairline cracks and dings. I used this product that I picked up from Lowes and basically patched it exactly like you would patch a hole in the wall. It’s self leveling and really easy to use. If you have a deeper hole, you can fill it with sand first or add multiple layers of this product. The instructions on the bottle were pretty easy to follow.


One all the holes were patched, I vacuumed a few more times and then the painting began. Painting is the DIY home task I despise the most. I put on some jams and started the floors exactly like I would a wall-cutting in. Since I still had to touch up the last two inches of brick, I wasn’t overly concerned with it being perfect. Once that was done, I literally poured paint on the floor in sections and painted myself out the door. SW recommends waiting 4 hours between coats, but I waited 24 hours.


In all, I painted three coats of paint on the floor. I used our Dyson cordless very gently each day I painted a new coat to minimize any debris that would be carried in with my clothes.

After the paint had cured, it was time for the top coat…….that is when everything when my hard work went down the drain. DO NOT USE A TOP COAT OVER THE SHERWIN WILLIAMS PORCH PAINT.

If you follow my stories, I shared that the porch paint and top coat had a chemical reaction causing both a ripple effect and cracking (remember that 90s faux finish? Barf.) I called my local SW store and the manager had major concerns that one of her staff advised me to use it. I shared with her where I got the information and she was like “umm no”. Maybe it works for some people-it definitely didn’t work for us.


After a ton of sanding and re-cleaning, I added one more coat. Is it perfect? Absolutely not. It definitely helped but the only way to have gotten it perfect was to chemically remove the finish. Since I was putting a larger rug down, I decided that we can accept the imperfections as it is part of our ORC story.

In any event, this was the week one of the tedious weeks but I am excited because now that the floors are done, the fun part can start! Thank you to Linda from Calling It Home and Media Sponsor, Better Homes and Garden for this event. Be sure to check out what the other guest participants are up to over on the ORC Blog!

From the the Wall, One Room Challenge Week Two-Spring 2019

Random fact. I am obsessed with the above titled song and sing it with waaaaaaay too much enthusiasm when I hear it. Another random fact, I googled the lyrics and was taken to Urban Dictionary and I am really disappointed to read what it allegedly means.

Back to the topic at hand, welcome to week two of the One Room Challenge. This week we are talking about all things walls and windows. Our sunroom does not really have much “wall”. We have a beautiful room surrounded by three “walls” of windows. One “wall” has an original sliding MCM door that was painted black many moons ago.

Whenever I go to my local Benjamin Moore store (FYI for you local peeps-I highly recommend Everyday Paint and Wallpaper in Nora, really great people with tons of knowledge!), he asks me what projects I am working on. I am pretty sure he thought I was bats—t cray-zay when I said the black paint I ordered was for a SUNroom.

I always like to add a bit of unexpected to a room. While most people would never dream to paint a sunroom black, dark walls can create a moody and inviting space. Given the room is more or less is surrounded by windows, we are constantly getting beautiful (though mainly indirect) light coming through the floor to ceiling windows.


Black paint was added to add a dramatic effect and tie the colors into the main floor of the house. Even the ceiling was painted black!


Part of renovating is the reality that things do not always go as you plan. You will notice that there is a 2-3 inch line across the bottom of the wall that is not painted. We painted BEFORE we realized we are going to have to demo the floors due to a change in plans (hey, life happens). There will be lots of repainting and cleaning of that bottom area. If you have demo’d anything before you probably understand the mess that creates. Lots and lots of dust.

Also added this week, are black sheer curtains from wall to wall. These were super affordable and purchased here. The curtain rods were hung up soon after we moved in and were placed as close to the ceiling as possible. Unfortunately they are sold out, but these Umbra ones are super similar. I am a sucker for simple curtain rods with clean lines. The curtains are a couple of inches longer than the floor kissing length I like but given the sunroom vibe is more laid back, I am keeping them as is.


There will be a lot of paint touching up prior to reveal day but for now, I am super pleased with the direction things are going. Next week, I HOPE to be sharing information on the floors. Fingers Crossed!!!

In the meantime, please head over to the One Room Challenge Blog page and check out both the guest and featured designers. Thank you so Linda from Calling it Home and Media Partner Better Homes and Gardens for hosting yet another great round of this event!


Spring 2019 One Room Challenge-Moody Sunroom Retreat

Life is funny. You have grand plans and then life intervenes and forces you to change the path you started. I hit the “duplicate” button on my one and only fall ORC post. It started with an intro on how I left my company and was starting with a new one….how happy I was…..and how I felt like myself again. My goal was to focus more on the blog but life had other plans. I quickly dropped out of the fall ORC for a couple of reasons. First, the fabric I wanted for my chairs was on backorder (and just arrived a few weeks ago!) and second (and more importantly), last fall was the start of non-stop health issues for my two oldest chihuahuas as well as the next steps in our (in)fertility journey. Guess what? 5-6 months later and nothing has changed on either front but I realized that I can’t stop living so here I am.

This will be my second time as a guest participant. I participated previously and transformed my home office space.

This time around, we are working on sunroom. This room is off of our living/dining room and is our main access to the back yard. Having four dogs means we are going in and out of this room multiple times a day. With my husband being OBSESSED with his yard, that also means lots of muddy shoes coming through this space.

Below are a couple of pictures from the MLS listing. The sunroom is right off the dining area and separated by original metal MCM sliding doors.


A Mid Century purist would probably cringe at the fact that I hate these floors, but I hate them. Our house is a split level MCM style but it isn’t too “mid century’ so I do not feel bad eliminating them.



COLOR: Black. Black. Black. The room was inspired by the kitchen area of The Handmaid’s Tale. While most people seem to love bright white, open, and airy spaces, I crave darkness. I find comfort and peace with moody spaces. So while it may seem counterintuitive to paint a sunroom black, I believe this will create a inviting and warm space for us to relax in. Because I value my privacy, all the windows will be covered in flowing sheer black drapery. It will still allow light to filter in but not let our neighbor peek in.

NATURE: Our sunroom has three walls of windows and is north facing. We have a fairly wooded lot so we do not get a ton of bright light but we do get enough to be a thriving place for certain types of plants. The room will have several plants introduced the space. Despite the fact it does not get a ton of direct sun, plants have historically thrived in this room. The one obstacle is watering them in the winter as that has resulted in the sudden unfortunate deaths of several plans due to freezing roots.

FLOORING: Now this is one of the most important aspects of the room due to heavy foot traffic. Two humans + four dogs + a cat who thinks planters are his bed= need durable flooring. Candidly, I do not know what the plan is for flooring. Life and time will determine what we will do. We have funds set aside for the floor but may need it for IVF medicine (thanks insurance) so we will have to wait and see.

FURNITURE: I have sourced a few pieces since the last attempt of the ORC. Two beautiful vintage Alky chairs will be transformed with the above ochre velvet fabric. Every room needs some wood and this room is no exception. A vintage desk will be welcomed into the space and will probably serve as the station for preserving and pressing flowers (my new obsession). I scored a gorgeous black marble plinth coffee table off good ole Marketplace. I still need to determine some additional seating, a rug, and minimal decor.

LIGHTING: We currently have two recessed LED lights in the room. They are bright and harsh. we never use them. I would love to covert these lights into pendants and find some type of textural pendant light (woven, rattan, etc.) Hello Leanne Ford for Target?!? We will see.

Candidly, I am winging this guys! As a last minute registration and a mind full of ideas, who knows what we will end up with. Hopefully you guys will fall along on the journey during the next 6 weeks and see what each week will bring! Be sure to go look at all the other great projects that are happening over at the ORC Blog!