From a old wood burner to a chic brick wall



Well, we have made some HUGE progress with our new house and our renovations.  HUGE.  And I am THRILLED to say that we are finally to the point that we are moved in and enjoying the space!  AND I can finally start showing you some great before and after photos!!!  Starting with the changes we made to our wood burner fireplace that is now a chic brick accent wall in our home!

When we moved in we had not one but TWO wood burning stoves that are great for heating a space BUT not great on the eyes.  Naturally my husband feel in love with them.  He loved the idea of their function and did not notice their lack of design.  So we compromised (for now) and we took one out and left one.  We have a long term plan for our kitchen, so “for now” being the words we use often, we decided to keep the brick behind the wood-burner—and my goal was to make take them from rustic to chic.

Here is where we started:


ohhhhh YUCK right?!

But I am happy that I now have a unique brick wall as part of my space… sooo in the end I AM thankful for the brick behind the old wood burner!


Now it took me awhile to decide what it was about the brick and ultimately I realized that it was the dark grout and brick colors so I  got out my handy Pure White Annie Sloan Chalk Paint and watered it down and white washed the bricks and the grout to achieve a much more subdued chic look.

Next we had to fill in the hole where the wood burner vented to the chimney.  We used a saw and then used calk to fully seal the space, because it is important that if you are using the existing chimney for other things that there is no back-flow into the room.

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Then I had my husband use a concrete drill bit and concrete anchor screw to secure a place for my frames!


isn’t he just too cute?!

AND he is helping me decorate!!!  EVEN better!


Much better right?!


And now that it is official and we are moved in and decorating… there will be A TON of posts about our house and the FINAL looks for each of the spaces!!!  Yayyyyy!!!!


Hello bloggin friends!

It is SUCH an exciting day!

I FINALLY have the first {of many} official room reveals here at my new house!

Just in case you are new here or need a recap—I posted the Awful before photos {here} and talked about my official HATE of wallpaper…. {removal at least}.

But here is the second part of this room renovation story…

the part where thing get better and there is a bit of a happy ending…


a happy ending where I can have people come and stay at my little lake house….


and rest comfortably.

not surrounded by horrific wood walls and wallpaper galore…


no, my new space is a place where rustic, and shabby and chic come together…


and create an inviting space…


{albeit a space without a door…. but HEY I am working on that}


but I like to think that my space is officially a perfectly imperfect space full of chippy furniture, chic lamps…

and lake inspired decor.


along with a zebra rug,

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that all make you want to come and stay over at my place.



but please don’t be fooled by my ONE finished space… we are STILL hard at work…

and getting closer and closer to an end product everyday….

but with ONE finished room…. I feel hopeful.


that the rest of my newly renovated spaces will come together equally as well and make me just as happy.

Oh and….


I really MUST share one final detail of my guest bedroom—-
the most important space… the spot that your pup can rest his or her head after a long day of swimming in the lake….
so please please please—-will you be my guest?!


Okay guys—-yesterday we learned 10 great tips from the Haven blogging conference and today Karah from the space between offered to share her personal experiences with us!  I feel SO lucky to have such great blogging friends—-and if you don’t already know Karah ohhhh get ready to be inspired!!!

Okay Karah I will let you take it away!!!


Hi hi, Crafty Scrappy Happiers! My name is Karah and I blog at the space between and I am soooo happy to be here. Isn’t Jamie just the craftiest?!? Love her. And what better way to help a friend out who is in the midst of a HUGE little new house madness than to give a fun recap of my recent trip to a blog conference? Probably removing some wallpaper or helping with some painting. ;)

Now, I am not really your squealing, easily excitable kind of girl. I’m much more the roll-my-eyes-at-all-those-squealing-fools type. So, I really had no idea what to expect from a blog conference, but believe you me, It. Was. Awesome!

Now, I’m not one to blog about blogging so I put together a little round-up of my overall experiencethat I hope will be fun for all. I present to you: The Haven Lists of 3.

3 Most Relatable Speakers

1 – Beckie from Infarrantly Creative – Let me just tell you, if you ever have the opportunity to hear this gal speak DO IT! She spoke about revolutionary ideas regarding advertising on the blog and she was inspiring, motivating, liberating and so passionate I almost she couldn’t stay in her seat. And, at the risk of sounding just a teensy bit creepy, she is a total babe!!
2 – Sherry and John from Young House Love – They were the key-note speakers to open the conference and they were fun, funny and full of life. They play well off each other, aren’t afraid of a little self deprecating humor and every bit the sweethearts that we imagine them to be when we envision sitting around their new kitchen peninsula chit chatting away about our next projects. Oh, wait … we don’t do that? Guess that’s just me. ;) (Apparently John and Clara weren’t as into this photo op as I was.)


3 – Sarah from Thrifty Decor Chick – She spoke about tips on growing your blog as well as advertising and she came across as my kind of gal. And, I practically tackled her after a session we were attending together (because I do that, attend ‘sessions’ with Thrifty Decor Chick) to let her know that she was the very first blog I read and that I used to live in Indy (because I could tell she was dying to know that info) and she was very down-to-earth, real, no frills, say what you mean and mean what you say and then blog about type of personality.

3 Smartest Travel Decisions

1 – Meeting someone at the airport – It was so nice to not have to walk into the somewhat overwhelming opening reception room for the first time all by my lonesome. A HUGE thank you to Jessica from Decor Adventures for waiting at the airport for my delayed flight to arrive. (And for all of the awesome blog talk at the end of the day!)
2 – Taking the train from the airport to the hotel – $6 round trip vs $120 round trip for a cab. YES Please!!! And sorry to all of you a little lighter in the wallet because of the cab ride, I heard the traffic was a be-ach. ;)
3 – Wearing my everyday clothes – I’m a casual kind of gal and I’m so glad I didn’t put any pressure on myself to try to cute-it-up for the masses. It wouldn’t have worked, for one, and, two, I didn’t have to worry about if my new pencil skirt was tight in all the wrong places or if I was going to fall off my heels since I wore my fave flip flops.


My 3 New BFFs (not that they know it)

1 and 2 – The East Coast Creative girls, Jess and Monica. These girls could not have been more approachable, informative and just down right pleasant to be around if they wanted to. And, I swear, it is a total coincidence that I kept running into you guys around the hotel, and on the vendor walk, and in the conference rooms, AND across the street from the hotel. Seriously! :)


3 – Anna from Directions Not Included. We share a tendency toward potty mouth, a love of drinking wine and we have uniquely similar, yet totally different love stories. What’s not to love? :)

3 Most Embarrassing Moments

1 – Having to explain to Every. Flippen. Sponsor. that I didn’t put my name on my DIY business cards. #DIYfail
2 – Trying to give the super sweet Jennifer from Celebrating Everyday Life my card twice. I think I was just on “introduction overload”. Luckily she took it in stride and never made me feel like more of a moron that I already did. Thank you for that, Jennifer!
3 – Now, this picture really needs no explanation. It was all I could do to not go back all creepy-stalker-lady-like and say ‘hey model Layla from The Lettered Cottage, would you mind redoing that picture we just took … and could you not smile so cute, and have your hair so perfect and look so awesome and maybe this time I’ll foof my hair before the pic and open my eyes a little so I have a chance of not looking like a total wig nut next to you? thanks’.


3 Fun Brand Conversations

1 – I was so happy to meet Miriam from in person. She has been so supportive and helpful as I familiarize myself with the website which, by the way, is such a great resource for all things you might want to talk about your home. Thank you for your time, Miriam!
2 – Being in the Caribbean I don’t have easy access to Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint so I was very intrigued by my conversation with Lisa from Annie Sloan Unfolded. I am chomping at the bit to use my sample pot of paint!!
3 – Kate from Centsational Girl – OK, so I know Kate is a blogger and Centsational Girl is a blog, but our blog is our brand, right?!?! And, can I just tell you that she let me totally interrupt her personal time so we could talk blog and blog conference for a few and I felt like I could have been sipping homemade Pinot Noir in her patio cabana.

(Clearly I make myself right at home in other bloggers’ homes in my own mind.)

How’s that for a little blog conference synopsis … there really was so much to learn, so if you are a blogger and want some session deets please just email me … I’m happy to share it all. :)

Now, if you’d like to read about things like the 3 Swaggiest Swag Items, 3 Cool Business Card Ideas3 Biggest Surprises and 3 Post Blog Conference Confessions please click here.

Thank you so much to Jamie for letting me crash her place today, and thanks to you all for hanging in to the end. Come over to the space between and say Hi! when you get a chance, it’d be great to meet you.:)


Seriously Karah you have SUCH a GREAT way of making me feel like I would have SO much fun hanging out and getting to know everyone.

It sounds like you learn a lot at the conference while having a blast!  I am SOOOO going next year!!!!

Who is with me on that one?!?



Hello blog friends!  I am here to share with you what may be my most favorite guest post EVER.

I asked a couple of my blog friends and idols to share a little about their blog conference experience atHaven just because honestly I don’t know all that much about “proper blogging” or rules and such, let alone blogging conferences…

Kirby from Kirb Appeal and Debbie from reFresh reStyle BLEW me AWAY with this post!

I can honestly say that I am SO excited to read {and share} what they learned with you.

AND, seriously like I said these gals know how to make me feel like I want to go and reserve my room for next years conference like RIGHT NOW!

{largely because these ladies are so sweet, and because I would just love to hang out with ALL of my blog friends in real life}

So here they are with all of their great advice and sweetness


Hi this is Kirby from Kirb Appeal and Debbie from reFresh reStyle reporting back to Jaime from Haven.

Content: Kirby Photos: Debbie

Ten things I learned at Haven:

1. Content is King. And all I could think about was the
really high first soprano parts in the “Hallelujah Chorus.” You
know the one I mean: King of Kings! And Lord of
Lords! The one with the notes I used to be able to
hit? Anyway, content is important. (My question is what if
I WANT to be random? Is there a blogging group for that?
The answer is no. So it’s time for Kirby to focus.)


2. There are fifty-skillion ways to advertise. They
involve a lot of really fancy-schmancy computer stuff like Google
Analytics and other mathy things. My guess is if you build it,
they will come. Or not.


3. That there is a right way and a wrong way to teach upholstery
and slip covering.


4. Thrift stores can be yuckky. Be prepared to get down
and dirty.

5. Unscrupulous people will try to steal your blogging
mojo. Don’t link too much to other folks’ sites or write posts
for folks you don’t know and love. Apparently, that’s a way
for them to take away from your mathy things.


6. I need to picmonkey myself, which sounds vaguely pornographic
(like Laura!), but there you have it.


7. Don’t put url in your comments; it might read as spam.


8. A beautiful young woman in skin-tight jeans and four-inch
heels wielding a power tool is someone I need to keep my husband away


9. Atlanta can be steamy in the summertime.


10. There is an entire community of wonderful, supportive,
funny, interesting women in this band of DIY bloggers. It is
amazing that, although we didn’t know each other in real life, we knew
each other right away.


Next year’s Haven Conference should include a workshop entitled
“Taking Over the World.” Our theme song should include a
lot of high notes.


what did I tell you?!?

Great advice, sweet gals and a conference that I shall start looking forward to right now!

Stay tuned for more good advice from another great blogging friend this evening!!!!!