Summer Essentials: Lace Shorts

SUMMER ESSENTIALS: Lace Shorts

Hey friends, it’s Grace here, back with three more summer looks to share! Lace shorts are a great asset to your wardrobe – their simple cream color makes them super versatile, and they go great with chambray, sandals, t-shirts (almost anything). You can dress them up or down, by layering with accessories and different shoes. My shorts were a total find at Target, but you can find them practically anywhere! Enjoy these fun summer looks.

SUMMER ESSENTIALS: Lace Shorts

A simple and chic everyday outfit featuring a chambray shirt.

SUMMER ESSENTIALS: Lace Shorts

A preppy pink and cream ensemble with pink oxford and gold belt.

SUMMER ESSENTIALS: Lace Shorts

A bright layered tank adds a neon pop for an evening out.

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Grace’s Bedroom Makeover: Phase One

Okay okay, I know it’s been months and I haven’t even revealed my own bedroom makeover (see here & here) on the blog, but I’m lingering on those finishing touches, and unfortunately won’t be home to share the whole reveal until I’m back from my semester in California this Winter. In the meantime, I’m doing a super quick room refresh for my little sister (Thou Swell’s very own style columnist)! Check out the inspiration below:

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(1, 2, 3, 4, 5)

So basically pink is the name of the game, and maybe some blue, yellow, gold thrown in as well. I’d love to swing a color-packed lumbar pillow on the bed. These images suggest a project much bigger than what we’re undertaking, but they just help to get those creative juices flowing in the right direction. I’ve learned how easy it is to sink your money into little decorative accents, so I’m trying to avoid that by re-purposing what is currently in her bedroom… But my cart at H&M Home is currently full so we’ll see how that goes! See the Before pictures and her new furniture layout after the jump.

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The purpose of her room refresh is to open up her room with a more efficient layout, and try to refresh the room with a simpler color palette. At our old house Grace’s bed was in an alcove and her custom canopy and headboard fit perfectly above her bed, but in this room they accentuate the lower ceilings and no longer fit with the overall room palette. Her rug is too big for the room and makes it feel crowded, and her great robin’s egg blue reading chair is squished in-between her dresser and doorway, making it look like it doesn’t belong. Check out my new plan for her room:

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Now I’m itching to rearrange the furniture! See you guys tomorrow with another Summer Essentials style post from Grace herself :)

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Well Born in Melbourne

A Fresh Look from Studio Four | Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

Studio Four, another young multidisciplinary design studio has wowed with their minimalist magic. They chose a Victorian on Albert Street in Melbourne to make their home, but strayed from traditional design and created a space that’s simple and serene, but with a hint of acknowledgment for the old bones of the house.

A Fresh Look from Studio Four | Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

Wide open spaces and the use of glass leave space for indoors and outdoors to meld together in a continuance of the kitchen and dining rooms’ entertaining function into the courtyard.

A Fresh Look from Studio Four | Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

I absolutely love the floor-to-ceiling built-in bookshelves in this room, which create a strong contrast between the living and dining room. Because there’s no door, the books create a visual barrier and add a lot of visual interest to the wall.

A Fresh Look from Studio Four | Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

The armchair features cream-colored cushions, which keep the simple living room furniture from being too stark.

A Fresh Look from Studio Four | Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

In this hallway is where the designers at Studio Four paid homage to the house’s traditional bones. The all-white woodwork makes a graceful transition from the clean lines of the living room to the ornate layers of the wood trim, all while keeping in the same simple palette as the rest of the house.

A Fresh Look from Studio Four | Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

(via Est Magazine, photography by Shannon McGrath)

The bedroom feels very Scandinavian, even a bit utilitarian with the exposed metal in the light fixture, but creams in the carpet, chaise, and wood side tables steer the bedroom towards a more welcoming palette.

I usually don’t share such minimal interiors, but this house was so well balanced, and has some great details that I thought made a deserving interiors entry. Have a great week, friends!

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Ikea Hack: DIY Lantern Terrarium

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

A couple months ago, my older sister and I were walking through Ikea and stumbled upon some fantastic (and inexpensive) white lanterns, and Julia immediately thought they would make good terrariums. Fast forward to today, and we finally got ourselves together and assembled it! Terrariums can be a bit tricky since they don’t have drainage or much air circulation, but with my sister’s research we found some helpful tips to prolong the life of your plants!

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

Supplies

- Ikea BORBY lantern

- Kwik Seal adhesive sealant (waterproof)

- fern and/or other small shade-dwelling plants

- live moss

- potting soil

- approx. 8 inch square of screen

- pea gravel

- spray bottle or mister

- charcoal for decoration (optional)

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

Instructions

1. Assemble BORBY lantern. Follow instructions on sealant to prepare surface and sealant, then squeeze sealant into the gaps at the bottom of the lantern, and a little up the sides of the corners. Use a small plastic spatula to smooth sealant into a flat edge on the outside of the lantern. If any sealant gets on the glass, wait until it dries to scrape it off. Refer to sealant packaging for wait time before assembling the rest of the terrarium.

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

2. Lay down a thick, flat layer of gravel (up to the door frame), then cover the gravel with the 8 inch square of screen, making sure that the screen is slightly smaller than the lantern to prevent it from being seen.

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

3. Pour a thin layer of dirt on top of the screen and gravel, then after knocking out as much dirt as possible from plant roots, place all plants except for the moss inside, away from the door. Mound the dirt around these plants, keeping it from piling too high near the door (to prevent it from spilling out when the door is opened).

Ikea Hack: #DIY Lantern Terrarium on Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

4. Cover the entire area with moss, breaking it apart to fit together. Then place any decorative rocks or charcoal on top. Mist your lantern thoroughly, and place in a cool spot in your home, out of direct sunlight. Enjoy your new terrarium!

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Guest Post on Stripes & Peonies: Lively Scandi Style

Today I’m popping over to Stripes and Peonies to share some interior inspiration while Gracey is on vacation. This bright apartment belonging to Pelle Lundquist is up for sale and it showcases Pelle’s contemporary aesthetic quite nicely. I can appreciate some solid Scandinavian design, but rarely have I loved it as much as I have in this apartment – with bright pops of color and unexpected design elements to break up the monochromatic palette. Don’t you just love this floral print ottoman?

A monochromatic palette is broken up by unexpected design elements | Thou Swell on Stripes & Peonies

A monochromatic palette is broken up by unexpected design elements | Thou Swell on Stripes & Peonies

Check out the full tour over on Stripes & Peonies…

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Plywood and Sunlight

This cheery LA family home is simple but warm, with large windows letting in the sunlight and plywood used throughout the house. The effect is comforting and inviting. It looks like it has lots of skylights and even an expanse of glass above the beautiful chevron wood front door. I would love to see the house from a bit farther away and see how those skylights work. Back to that fantastic front door though…

Plywood and Sunlight | Thou SwellPlywood and Sunlight | Thou SwellPlywood and Sunlight | Thou SwellPlywood and Sunlight | Thou Swell

The kitchen boasts impressive slabs of marble as the counter and backsplash, and I’m absolutely in love with the way the counter continues flush the floor without any molding or detailing. It’s simple and straightforward, and very striking.

Plywood and Sunlight | Thou SwellPlywood and Sunlight | Thou SwellPlywood and Sunlight | Thou Swell

This little balcony is heavenly – the tiles are beautiful and those chairs look pretty comfortable. Just two chairs and a little tree, with a view of the hills.

Plywood and Sunlight | Thou Swell

(via Martha Stewart, photographed by Matthew Williams)

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Summer Essentials: Heeled Sandals

This summer Grace and I have collaborated on a series of style posts, each post featuring a summer essential that’s a must-have in your summer wardrobe. For each item, Grace has styled it with three different outfits to showcase its versatility in your closet. First up: heeled sandals. Hope you enjoy the series!

SUMMER ESSENTIALS: Heeled Sandals | Thou Swell Hey friends, it’s Grace here (remember me?). I’m excited to be back with this summer style series… This first item, heeled sandals, takes a simple and obvious essential – and adding a heel makes for a whole different story! Sandals, heeled or not, are a no-brainer for summer, though sometimes it’s hard to find the right pair. If you do land on the perfect ones, they can be super versatile – their neutral color matches anything, and you can dress them up or down. Heeled sandals are an excellent item to have in your closet and I’ve barely stopped wearing mine since I got them!

SUMMER ESSENTIALS: Heeled Sandals | Thou Swell

All white ensemble featuring a shear layered tank and white jeans.

SUMMER ESSENTIALS: Heeled Sandals | Thou Swell

Casual day outfit with striped mint shorts and white henley t-shirt.

SUMMER ESSENTIALS: Heeled Sandals | Thou Swell

An simple outfit for going out with a cream trapeze top and skinny jeans.

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Thinking Outside the Saltbox

Thinking Outside the Saltbox

This past week I’ve been in Boston, enjoying some cooler weather than Atlanta’s muggy 90 degree regular, and interning at a very cool architecture firm. I’m staying with my aunt and uncle, who’s house I love for it’s unusual Mediterranean vibe and vine-covered walls. New England is famous for it’s traditional saltbox style architecture which makes my aunt and uncle’s stucco house a bit special. I’m excited to share some snapshots I captured this morning in and around the house…

Thinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the SaltboxThinking Outside the Saltbox

(photographed by Yours Truly)

Enjoy your 4th of July weekends!

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The Rub of the Green

The rub of the green, being a British phrase meaning to have good luck fits this simple beach house well because it is lucky that green foliage rubs up against the house on all sides! The house seems to be decorated to highlight this feature, for it’s minimal neutral and white decor set the stage for the emerald views out the windows. The overall feeling of the space sums up summer, with it’s laid-back simplicity and leafy-green backdrop.

Minimal neutral and white decor set the stage for emerald views out the window. | Thou Swell

The dining room might be my favorite room. It almost feels like it is outside, or that it’s open-air on the left side thanks to the huge floor to ceiling window. The window and pendant light also accentuate the tall ceilings, and the little accents on the shelving keep things beachy.

In the vignette below, I am in love the the photograph at the top. I also dig the wicker theme continuation from the dining room to this scene, which is consistently bringing a warm tan to the palette of the house.

Minimal neutral and white decor set the stage for emerald views out the window. | Thou Swell

Minimal neutral and white decor set the stage for emerald views out the window. | Thou Swell

Minimal neutral and white decor set the stage for emerald views out the window. | Thou Swell

The kitchen might be the greatest display of green scenery in the whole house, with that same floor to ceiling window that we got a peek of in the dining room, combined with a window above the sink. The white kitchen cabinetry disappears into the walls and floor, creating a seamless transition from white to green.

Minimal neutral and white decor set the stage for emerald views out the window. | Thou Swell

(via Home Life, photography by Prue Ruscoe)

The bedroom has a bit more punch to it, with some blue and yellow added to the scheme. Another fabulous photograph adorns the wall and these copper pendants are the bomb-diggity. Happy Monday!

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DIY Gilded Agate Coasters

DIY Gilded Agate Coasters from Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/DIY Gilded Agate Coasters from Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

I’ve been seeing Agate coasters everyone – gilded, plain, in all sorts of colors, but all expensive for a mere set of four (or even for just one!). I set out to find my own, and ended up adding gold to their edges to create my own glam agate coaster set (of six) for under $30!

To source the coasters, I searched for wholesale agate slices and found 3”-4” non-drilled slices from Crystal River Gems for just $4.25 each (for a set of six). The great thing about wholesale is that the more you buy, the lower the unit price for each slice is, so if you want to buy more for gifts or just to have extras, the unit price could be as low as $2.00. I picked blue coasters, but there were also red, pink, teal, black and natural available.

DIY Gilded Agate Coasters from Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

The project itself is super easy – all you need are some coasters and gold nail polish (or a gilding kit, and in that case just follow the directions that come with the kit). Make sure the nail polish you choose is a nice warm gold, as close as possible to the color of gold leaf, and avoid glittery polish. The nail polish we had is actually not very warm so I may re-paint these coasters at a later time. The sides of the coasters are very rough, so make sure to dab the polish and get it into all the cracks and crannies. The great thing about nail polish is that you can go back with nail polish remover and wipe away any extra polish that got onto the front or back of the coaster. It’s very simple, just paint the edges and enjoy your new gilded coasters!

DIY Gilded Agate Coasters from Thou Swell http://thouswell.co/

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