New House Color!!

We just passed the one year mark here in Arizona. What a year it's been! There, for sure, have been some hard moments, and we miss parts of living in the city like crazy, but overall, we're so happy and grateful for this past year. Mostly, it has been wonderful to live so close to family and of course I've loved getting to turn this house upside down! I can't believe how much has changed since last July. The exterior was the most recent big change and I'm so happy with how it turned out!

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Benjamin Moore, a company I love and support whole-heartedly, saw that we were planning to paint our house and reached out about donating the paint. What an AMAZING help that was! The house needed a ton of prep work before the paint, and we made some big changes to the exterior structures with a contractor, so the labor alone ended up taking most of our exterior budget. Getting to work with Benjamin Moore on the paint was a dream come true! :) But I'll get to that in a minute. Here's the story of how the exterior of our house has changed this year, and a few plans for finishing up.

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Remember when the house looked like this? Gingerbread everywhere. Cream body and brown trim. Black, scary sun shades on all the windows (which are helpful for keeping out the sun, but man, are they UGLY!).

New Favorites at Target

I think I'm not alone in my love for every line in the Target home section! (Sometimes I feel like half of my instagrams are #targetdoesitagain!). The products are all affordable and really good - a dangerously exciting combo for me! Their designers do a great job of staying ahead of trends, but nothing feels too trendy.

Target invited me to preview the new line for their extra affordable Room Essentials line and here are a few of my favorites!

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Pillow  //  Sheets  //  Floor Lamp  //  Quilt  

I use the frames from this line all the time. I LOVE how they are super thin and the matting is extra wide. And how ADORABLE are those black floral outdoor bolsters? We just finished redoing our back porch and I think those pillows would be a perfect addition to the space!

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Frame  //  Floral Pillows

I have a major thing for little stools and side tables, which means I need at least two of these little gray guys below! With a few of them pushed together, they could be a coffee table or a foot-of-the-bed bench, and when pulled apart, they are great for extra seating in a pinch.

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What are you loving at Target right now? I'm dying to grab one of those Scholar floor lamps before they're sold out. I especially love the Caribbean aqua color for the enamel shade. It looks so school house vintage with the wood pole, don't you think?

This post is sponsored by Target. Shop Room Essentials to make modern life easier.

DIY Yellow Curtains for the Playroom

There are only two bedrooms on the main floor of our house, the master bedroom and a large-ish room at the front of the house. For the first few months that we lived here, I used it as my office space, but it just didn't really work for some reason. Then I had the idea to move my office to the big space above our garage on the other side of the house and make the old office our playroom.

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I had been a little worried that toys would end up migrating all over the house with this set up, where the playroom is right by the living spaces, but really, it's been so great. I love both the studio space and this playroom, which we only very recently decided to quickly decorate in time for the Domino shoot. We had been planning on doing Evie's room as the kid's space in the spread, but the playroom ended up being the easier space to photograph in the end, so we threw this room together in about seven crazy days! These yellow curtains were our jumping off point.

On LED Bulbs (and a Home Depot Give Away!)

Thank you to the locals that stopped by the lighting DIY Workshop that I partnered with the Home Deport on last weekend! I LOVED meeting you and it was great to get tips from the on-site lighting expert about how to increase lighting energy efficiency. It's a topic I've been sadly pretty ignorant about until recently. We have a lot of CFLs in our house, but the Home Depot guy encouraged me to look at their LED offerings while I was at the store on Saturday.

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I think it sort of stinks to have to drop $8-16 on just a single bulb, but how crazy is it that LED bulbs last for literally 20 years and they use a fraction of the wattage that an incandescent bulb uses?!

I picked up a pretty expensive (almost $16!) Cree bulb that has a new technology that's supposed to help colors read more correctly, which has been my main complaint about LED in the past. I also bought this Ecosmart two-pack as a cheaper comparison that brought the price-per-bulb down to about $8. And I threw in to the test group an incandescent I already owned for good measure, just because I was curious. All of the bulbs were Soft White in tone and 60 watts or equivalent.

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I'm sure there are some in-between option too. I just picked up what jumped out to me. (What have you tried and liked?)

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Well, here are the results of my extremely technical and super scientific light test results! ;)

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I actually really liked the tone of the most expensive LED bulb (surprise, surprise), but really the Ecosmart brand wasn't bad at all. I'd probably use it in bedrooms or for fixtures we use a little less. And actually I've read that it's a good idea to switch over to the more expensive bulbs over time to help spread out the initial expense, but that you should put the new bulbs in your most frequently used fixtures so you can start the energy savings right away.

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As a part of the workshop last weekend, Home Depot gave me a $100 gift card to give away today! Maybe you'll want to spend the gift card on a dozen or so new LEDs? :) To enter, leave a comment here on this post. I'd love to hear about what bulbs you're using and loving.

Contest ends next Thursday at midnight. Winner will be emailed. Good luck!

PS Home Depot has lots of great (free!) DIY workshops coming up! To see what your local store has to offer, check out the registration page here!


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