I was 21 when C and I completed construction on our home. Getting that head start was one of the greatest blessings of my life; I count my lucky stars every day for our little hacienda, and if I have my way, we’ll have many more years there.
I didn’t know the first thing about interior design back then (and there was no such thing as Pinterest, if you can even imagine) so I went the safe neutral route: white burber carpet, cream walls, and cream couches from Rooms to Go. We were really young and really broke, so there wasn’t extra cash lying around for accoutrements: besides the red and brown throw pillows that came with the couches and a few matching candleholders from Pier 1, the first several years were bland, y’all.
Over time, we slowly made improvements as we could afford them, including replacing the white carpet that puppy-Doak destroyed with laminate flooring and picking up accessories here and there. Those neutral couches worked in my favor: I could easily switch up the feel of the living room with some new throw pillows and an inexpensive rug.
Now eight years later, our home is an eclectic mix of the first pieces we purchased, some well loved hand-me-downs, lots of bargain finds, and a few special family heirlooms (my grandmother’s cedar chest of drawers is the media console in our living room).
After all that time spent living in floor-to-ceiling beige, I can’t get enough color in our space. Last year we painted a few accent walls in a cornflower blue — which terrified me at first, but now I love it — and started layering in some vibrant greens and golds, bright reds, and small pops of orange.
The trick is finding a balance that makes both of us comfortable — fresh and bright, but not too fussy or feminine — and works with our budget and lifestyle. I just can’t get on board with spending $60 on a throw pillow that C is going to nap on and smoosh (no matter how many times I tell him they’re for decoration) or splurge on an area rug that we’re almost guaranteed to spill on because I’m a big klutz and can’t handle my wine.
While I’m still no expert, I’d like to start sharing some of my favorite home stuff on A Pretty Penny: DIY projects, design inspiration, and peeks at my space. With a budget-friendly focus, of course, because that’s how I roll.
It seemed appropriate to kick things off by sharing some spaces that inspire me: cozy and colorful happy homes that make you want to stay a while.