Happy Friday + Links 5/19/17

Happy Friday!  How was your week?  With the garden planted, the office painted, and the entryway organized, I’d say my week was a success!  Neither of these indoor spaces are done yet but both are more functional and oh so much prettier.  The office design plan is dark and moody and perfect for this old farmhouse (in my humble opinion), while the entryway is light and fresh and super functional.  For those of you interested in my definition of ‘perfect for this old farmhouse’, keep an eye out for the office design plan here on the blog soon.  Needless to say, I’m itching to get these spaces finished, but this nesting mama is pretty darn content with the progress, at least for now ;-).  Speaking of nesting, we got to see our baby girl yesterday at an ultrasound appointment and goodness am I excited to be growing this sweetie – hiccups, rib kicks, and all!  I cannot wait to finally meet her.  But in the  meantime, I’m pretty excited buy those teeny tiny diapers and pull out our hanging crib and all those newborn PJs in storage.  Hopefully she likes snuggles and sleep as much as her mama does (side note: please don’t take after your eldest brother Wilder on that front, baby girl!).

Okay, enough about baby girl (for now).  I found lots of exciting things on the internet this week and it’s all right here.  So grab a cup of coffee and jump in!

Emily Henderson Patio

via Emily Henderson

Emily always does good work, but this patio…wow!  A big ol’ yes to those tiles and roses!

I have lots of goals to read books after baby girl arrives and here is an enviable list from A Cup of Jo.  I may be totally delusional, but it sounds nice doesn’t it?

A couple of favorites from the One Room Challenge: a master bedroom, a green closet, a moody room, a master bathroom (props to Brit for doing marble herringbone!), a sweet nursery for baby girl, and Bre’s bathroom.  Do you guys have any other favorite spaces?!

Speaking of the One Room Challenge, I loved this behind the scenes peek into the ORC on the CLJ podcast!

A letter to a new mama on Mother’s Day.

Coastal+Bohemian+Kids'+Bedroom Stuido McGee


I really love this simple kids bedroom by Studio McGee.  It feels like a sophisticated summer camp and I want to crawl into one of those beds and share stories with my sister all night.

Consider this a PSA: make this frosting immediately.  It’s like rich pudding with coconut and pecan mixed in and then smeared over chocolate cake.  I’m just stumped as to how I’ve survived 35 cake-loving years without ever making this frosting from scratch before.

Have a great weekend!



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Farmhouse Entryway // Welcoming, Historic, & Functional Goals


As I mentioned on Friday, I have a little case of pregnancy nesting going on.  Actually that’s a total lie.  I have a GIANT case of pregnancy nesting, and it’s getting worse everyday!  There’s not a room at the Farmhouse that I haven’t wanted to fix-up/clean-up/make-more-efficient.  Ahhh!  Thankfully Garrett is all patience and kindness towards his super-pregnant, hormonal wife and agreed to help make over our office and entryway.  Today I wanted to show you what I’m thinking for the entryway, because I have big goals to make this little space more inviting and functional, while highlighting the historic feel of our 115-year-old farmhouse.

The front entryway is the main entrance to our Farmhouse and gets a ton of use by our family and all our guests.  Getting two young kids ready and out the door without leaving a giant mess in our wake is struggle enough, so I can only imagine how challenging this will be after baby girl’s arrival this July.  With that in mind (and with my pregnancy nesting urges), my primary goal for this space was organization:  a place for putting on shoes, storage for those shoes and other kid treasures that always find their way into the entryway, hooks for hats and kids coats (we adults hang ours by the front door), and a place for keys and mail.

Garrett and I got started on this space during an impromptu work day last week while the kids were with Nana.  We painted the walls and ceiling in my favorite white (BM Simply White), bought and retrofitted an entry table, and recycled the perfect antique bench from another one of our houses.  Here’s a sneak peak of how this space is looking.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Entry Progress 2

I’ll show you more next week, but basically we have all the major pieces in place.  Which means it’s time for me to start looking for decor (which will probably be a slow process since we have a lot of other projects going on at the Porch House still).  Let’s talk about my decor plans in here: add a large, brass mirror over the table, maybe some hat hooks or framed historic photos, a pretty new or vintage overhead light fixture, additional lighting over the bench, and someday, I’d like to replace that awful brown stair runner!  Here’s a roundup of what I’m dreaming of:

The Grit and Polish Farmhouse Entry Decor

paint / 1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8

The end goal is to have a welcoming, wood and white entry that looks reminiscent to these:

Made in Heaven inspiration


Lucy WIlliams Interiors Inspiration


Pretty, right?  And since any good transformation needs ‘before’ photos, here’s how the entryway looked when we first bought the Farmhouse.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Before Through Front DoorThe Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Before Living Rm

Next week, I’ll share all of the current photos of the entryway.  Hopefully you’ll like it as much as I do.  And in the meantime, if you have a lead on an antique-looking brass mirror that’s 60″ tall and 30″ plus wide, let me know!  Have a great week.



*disclaimer: hey guys, there are affiliate links in this post.  This means that if you click on my link and purchase the item, I will receive a small commission.  But rest assured that I only recommend products and services that I use personally or would love to use.  Affiliate links is one of the ways we keep this blog running, so thanks for supporting the Grit and Polish!


Happy Friday + Links 5/12/17

Happy Friday! How was your week? My week was pretty darn good…fabulous even, thanks to the excellent weather we’re finally getting!  To say that I love our country setting is a total understatement.  Sorry Seattle, but it turns out country life is definitely for me!  Every morning I wake up at our Farmhouse and look out the window and think, how did I get so lucky!  This little piece of earth of ours, with these little humans running around on it (and my big human too), is definitely a dream come true.

Of course our move to the country and switch to *retired* life (yes I’m writing that with a whole lot of irony considering we’re busier than ever with the Porch House reno, our Seattle rentals, ongoing Farmhouse projects, and the boys) has brought some challenges.  Mostly, it’s the lack of routine and organization that I have struggled with.  I’m one of those people who thrives on routine and structure, which coincidently is the complete opposite of my husband.  But as a compromise, Garrett has agreed to help me get our home office set up, so I can feel a wee bit more organized and, hopefully, productive.  And since baby girl’s July arrival is certain to put house projects on hold (temporarily, of course), I’m trying to sneak in a quick front entry makeover too.  I realize this is a lot to tackle with the Porch House reno still in full swing, not to mention me being 31-weeks pregnant, but nesting is REAL and it’s hitting me hard this pregnancy!

I hope your Mother’s Day cards are written and brunch planned out.  Garrett and I have one more day of work this weekend (turns out Airbnb rentals know nothing of work weeks), but then I’m all about pancakes and gardening over the Mother’s Day weekend.  I bought lots of seeds – lettuce greens and farm-to-mouth veggies mostly – plus some fun ones for the boys to watch grow a little longer like pumpkins and squash.  Fingers crossed the garden survives my less than green thumb this Summer!

It being Friday and all, I’ve scoured the internet for all it’s goodness.  There are some great links below so grab a cup of coffee and dig in!

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Master Bed Nightstand close

I shared this sneak peek of the Porch House master bedroom on Instagram on Monday (can you tell it’s killing me to hold onto all these photos until our HGTV pilot airs?!).  We painted it in BM Hale Navy and I couldn’t love it more!  So I’m thinking of using the same color for our Farmhouse office, although the wood trim would also look great with a deep blue/green wall.  Do you guys have any favorite moody blues or blue/greens I need to check out?

These sandals are on my summer wish list.  I’ve had this pair for a couple of years and LOVE them too.  For the record, despite living in the Pacific Northwest, I don’t wear them with socks 😉

One of our longtime readers pointed out that our Farmhouse master bedroom was featured in Apartment Therapy a couple of weeks back.  You can check it out here.

Sunset Kitchen 5.12.17

source // Irene Edwards kitchen via Sunset

This remodel of a 140-year-old Victorian is stunning!  I have a lot of heart-eyes for that kitchen (especially the ladder!) and their black-painted piano too.

Breaking the 2 hour barrier.  Insanity!  I ran cross country and track in college and afterwards tried my hand at two marathons.  In the hundred or so races I’ve ran, those marathons were hands down my least favorite.  I hated almost every single mile of them (or at least every mile in the the second half).  Needless to say, my respect is high for these guys!

Just in time for Mother’s Day…the joy of having boys.

Saving money while still living a great life.  I love when big blogs shed light on finances because they are such an important part of our daily lives and yet rarely talked about.  Kudos!



p.s. I know you guys probably already realize that I use affiliate links (I mentioned that here) but I’m toying with the idea of using disclaimers at the bottom of the post they’re in just to be triple sure it’s obvious and make sure I’m up on all things FTC.  Thoughts?  Here’s my affiliate link disclaimer:

disclaimer: hey guys, there are affiliate links in this post.  This means that if you click on my link and purchase the item, I will receive a small commission.  But rest assured that I only recommend products and services that I use personally or would love to use.  Affiliate links is one of the ways we keep this blog running, so thanks for supporting the Grit and Polish!


The Prettiest Old Farmhouse // Star Bright Farms


Do I ever have a treat for you guys today!  I found the most amazing old farm via Pinterest recently and immediately reached out to the owners to see if I could feature their home here on the Grit and Polish.  Thankfully Helen said yes, and we got to chat about the 2 renovations she and her husband, Mark, have undertaken over the past 23 years.  I cannot express in words how beautiful their farmhouse and surrounding farm is, so let’s have a look at the photos (these stunning photos are all taken by Helen!).


Star Bright Farms has it all.  An 1850s farmhouse, a barn/shop turned guest house, a milk house turned garden shed and office, a renovated barn turned party space, and a soon-to-be lavender field.  But it didn’t always looks this perfect.  When Helen was 7 months pregnant with her second child, she toured a very different, very dilapidated 130 acre farm with 7 outbuildings, all beautifully situated, but falling down.


Helen credits the windows in the 1850 farmhouse with selling her on the property.  The plaster-over-stone construction made for 12″ deep window wells that featured curved returns and drawers in the sils.  She was smitten. But can you just imagine moving into that space with a toddler and another one on the way?!  Sounds like something I would do 😉

Since that fateful day decades ago, the farmhouse has undergone 2 extensive renovations, including one major addition.  It’s finally done, and picture perfect!

Norman_10019SBF_063_master_webBetter Homes & Gardens "My Favorite Room" Helen Norman Garden Room



Garden Room Makeover, designed by Caroline Saunier Better Homes & Gardens

StarBright Farm Interior Scout


Better Homes & Gardens "My Favorite Room" Helen Norman Garden Room


Helen and her builder went to great lengths during remodel #2 to keep the new kitchen looking original.  Cabinets were built on site and painted by brush after installation (so they would look less than spray-finish perfect).  A stone fireplace was also built to match the original stone exterior of the home.


The above photo was one of the images I used as inspiration for our Porch House kitchen.  I love the simple marble countertops with short backsplash and open shelving!  Helen really did an amazing job designing this kitchen!

05022CH_Kitch_001_master_web05022CH_Kitch_004_master_web05022CH_Kitch_005_master_webStarBright Farm Interior Scout

It’s stunning, right?!  Did you see the vintage sink and faucets?  Oh my!  It may be hard to believe, but there’s lots more.  Check out Star Bright’s website for photos of their other buildings, including the most amazing guest space, and Instagram for current going-ons.  Helen and her family are in the middle of a kick-starter campaign to raise funds for a lavender field.  Here is the link if you’d like to help.

all photos by Helen Norman | Helen Norman Photography




Happy Friday! + Links 5/5/17 (Mother’s Day Edition!)

Happy Friday and Cinco de Mayo to you!  I hope you have black beans boiling on the stove and ripe avocados on the counters.  Mexican food is a THING at our Farmhouse so you can bet that we’ll be mashing our beans and salting our pico tonight!  Or if the day runs long, we’ll be stopping by our favorite taco truck.

Mother’s Day weekend is only a week away…are you ready?!  This year Garrett and I invited our mothers over for brunch and a day of gardening at the Farmhouse.  I’m hoping to spend all day with my little loves and the grandmas and also get a vegetable garden planted.  Win/win 😉

Being that I’m pregnant this Mother’s Day (with my third child…how did that happen?!!!), I’ve been feeling nostalgic about it.   I remember my first Mother’s Day present.  I was 37 weeks pregnant with Wilder, and walked into a hospital in Portland on Mother’s Day (turning down a wheelchair from the attendant who thought I was there to give birth myself) to find the room where my sister was laboring with her second child.  After a long and slow afternoon, a perfect little baby was born, and they named her Gweneth Catherine…after me.  No Mother’s Day gift can compare to that (except for my sister who got to take that sweet baby bundle home), but I’ve done my best curating a gift guide for all you home lovers out there.  My only criteria was finding gifts that I’d love to bring home myself.  Hopefully every dada or kiddo can find something their mama/grandma/aunties/friends would love in here.  I asked Garrett and the boys for #4 plus a day of gardening 😉

The Grit and Polish - Mothers Day Gift Guide 2017

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6 // 7 // 8 // 9 // 10 // 11 // 12 // 13

And since it’s Friday, here are a few more links to fill your morning.  Grab a cup of coffee and dig in!

Baking celebratory cakes is a big hobby of mine so I’m eagerly planning our Mother’s Day cake. My mom’s favorite cake is a hazelnut torte and my mother-in-law’s is an angel food cake and I’m not really sure there’s any way to combine those, so I’m thinking about this.

A few mama’s share how they work from home with kiddos.  I’m always curious how other moms and dads find that elusive balance, especially when they’re home with kids and have outside work commitments.  But I’m learning that balance isn’t really a thing when parenthood is involved.

I just found this Insta account last week and this post brought me to tears – happy mama tears – and made me so grateful for the joy of motherhood in my own life.

Have you guys been following the One Room Challenge this Spring?  Check it out if you haven’t yet!  I can’t wait to see how everyone’s room turns out in 2 short weeks!

Happy Friday everyone!



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Farmhouse // Moving the Boys into a Shared Bedroom (and how it’s going)


A couple of weekends ago, we rearranged Wilder’s bedroom and moved Brooks in with him.  The transition hasn’t been without a few hiccups, but it’s going soooo much better than I ever expected.  The room has become so much cozier with the two of them in here, and somehow I love the space even more than I did when it was just Wilder’s room (you can see what that looked like here).  So today I wanted to show you what the boys setup looks like now.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom 2The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom Wilders Bed 2The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom bed closeupThe Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom stuffies

sources: overhead light // drapes // roman shade // rug (similar) // rug pad // comforter // duvet cover // striped throw // plant hanger // stuffed animals //dinosaur backpack (no longer available, cute option here) // plaid blankets // table lamp // ukulele //dinosaur figurines // crib // animal heads (no longer available, cute options here)

As I mentioned on Friday, moving the boys into one room was one of those things that I had worked up in my head as a huge deal.  We had tried this transition once before when we first moved to the Farmhouse but failed after a couple of nights.  Looking back, I think we failed because Garrett and I were busy and tired with moving so didn’t have the bandwidth to deal with it.  We knew that we would try again at some point but we kept putting it off and putting it off.  Then last Saturday, Garrett and I were Spring cleaning and one of us said, ‘hey, let’s put Brooks’ crib in Wilder’s room’, and that was that.  A couple of hours later, the boys had one shared bedroom.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom both beds

Both of the beds are now pushed against walls, which should limit any falling out of bed.  Wilder is a very active sleeper and every once in a while he’ll just kind of tumble out of bed.  Just last week it happened, and I found him laying on the floor still totally asleep.  Ahh to sleep that hard!

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom from Door

I’ve gotten a lot of questions about our matching twin bed frames since finding them on Craigslist last year.  I don’t know the story behind them, but they’re definitely antique, a wee-bit on the narrow side for a modern twin mattress (we have to sort-of squeeze the mattress into the frame when we put sheets on), and have a lovely dark stain on them that looks nearly black.  I always planned to put them in one room not only because I love the look of side-by-side antique beds but also because we hoped that Wilder and Brooks would share a room by the time that Brooks was ready for a big-boy bed.  And from the looks of it, we’re just about there!

As I mentioned earlier, we’ve had a couple of hiccups since moving the boys into one room.  The first being that Brooks has almost completely refused his crib since making the transition to a shared room.  I’m not entirely sure why that is, but after 20 minutes of crying on Saturday night (in my arms and in his crib), I finally laid him down in his big boy bed and he was instantly quiet.  So I tucked a blanket over him and watched from the door as he dozed off.  We hadn’t planned on having him in a big boy bed at night so young (Wilder made the switch at 2, and I thought we’d repeat that), but if he keeps sleeping through the night then he can sleep wherever he likes!

The second hiccup is that bedtime now takes a good hour plus.  Both boys are so excited to look across the room and see each other, and there are giggles and squirms for way too long.  Of course, I find it soooo sweet, so even if it means an extra hour at bedtime right now, so be it.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom both bedsThe Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom Blackout 1

For the Spring we have light comforters and duvet covers from Ikea on the beds.  Garrett and I are really careful to keep fire retardants out of the boys bedding and PJs, so natural linen duvet covers were an easy choice, even if they’re a little more expensive.  Of course Wilder already got green marker on his duvet cover, but thankfully they are are two sided so we’ll just have a ‘bad side’ for everyday and a ‘good side’ for photographs and guests 😉   I also bought these summer throws for the boys’ beds during West Elm’s one day sale a few weeks ago (and they’re still on sale!).  I’m not sure they’ll be heavy enough to have on here with a sheet alone, but Wilder runs hot (soooo hot…and soooo the opposite of his mama) that it’ll probably be enough for him.  If not, I’ll layer them with a simple white cotton blanket.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom books

Probably my favorite part of finally having a shared bedroom is shared story time.  When the boys were in separate rooms, we read stories to each of them separately before tucking them in.  But now we shut the blackout blinds (an essential with these longer Spring days), snuggle up in one bed and read a couple of stories before tucking the boys in their own beds.  And I love it!  There is something so special about spending this time together, and it makes this mama’s heart very happy.  I know there will be nights when one of the boys is not happy, and I’m tired and this whole situation is totally exhausting, but right now it’s everything.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom cribThe Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom stuffies 2The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom

For the record, I hung that plant up for the shoot.  I’m going to have Garrett relocate the hook over the nightstand so the plant is not over a bed (because it’s heavy and plus I don’t want to risk water draining onto a bed).  I’m on the hunt for an alphabet poster or paper tiles for the space as well.  Wilder is finally getting into letters, so it’d be fun to have a spot for him to see them!  I haven’t found one that I love yet, but I’m looking…any suggestions?!

The closet is probably both of the boys’ favorite space in this room, so I wanted to give you a peek.  I’ve mentioned before, but this space has been basically a storage ground for Wilder’s collection of ‘stuff’.  We finally hung up costumes and boxed up a lot of Wilder’s stuff so this space is at least a step above an eye sore now.  Someday I’d like to turn the far end of this closet into a kid hangout spot with cushions and pillows and everything comfy but for now there are a few boxes and stacks of books back there and that’s just fine.

The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom Closet 1 The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom closet 3 The Grit and Polish - Farmhouse Shared Bedroom closet 2

So that’s our experience thus far with our two boys sharing a room.  I’d love to hear any tips or stories you guys have about shared bedrooms….seriously!  Growing up I shared a bedroom with my twin sister until high school, and I still have fond memories of laughing the night away.  Sure there were plenty of arguments but I think it taught me a lot about compromise and living with others.  At least, I’d like to think so 😉

The one thing I haven’t mentioned yet (and have been dying to!) is that the nursery is now empty!!!  I’m chomping at the bit to get started transforming that space for baby girl.  But since she’s not due until July (and will sleep with us for a few months afterwards), I’m trying to keep my focus on thePorch House since we still need to finish that renovaiton and sell it, hopefully before baby girl arrives.  Honestly I’m trying not to even think about the nursery, but somehow that hasn’t stopped me from buying plenty of things for that space 😉



p.s. how we deal with Wilder not sleeping through the night.  Wilder’s room at the Ravenna House and his room at the Dexter House.  The latter was also featured on coco+kelley last year.


Happy Friday + Links 4/28/17

Happy Friday!  It feels like an extra happy Friday at our Farmhouse since we got our Spring cleaning and organizing out of the way last weekend.  There’s nothing better than waking up to a clean house.  Okay, maybe waking up to a clean house, rested kiddos, and homemade pancakes.  A girl can dream after all 😉

Speaking of kiddos, we made a big change last weekend…we moved Brooks into Wilder’s bedroom!  It’s something I’ve talked about doing for a long time.  I had hyped the transition up in my mind to a gargantuan deal, but it turned out to be one of those ‘hey lets move Brooks’ crib into Wilder’s room’ kind of no-big-deal tasks on Saturday.  For the record, I’m so happy we finally did it!  The room feels cozier with both boys in it and they seem so happy to look across the room and see each other as they’re settling down – even though that means an extra hour of giggling, squirming, tossing and more laughing.  That part hasn’t been ideal, but nonetheless it makes my mama heart very happy.  I’ll share more on their bedroom next week, but in the meantime, do you have any suggestions for nighttime routines in a shared bedroom?

Well it’s Friday again, and I’ve scoured the internet for great links.  So grab a cup of coffee and dig in!

Three kids in one New York City bedroom.

Sara Parsons Photography San Juan Island Master

source // Sara Parsons Photography

A lovely master suite in the San Juan Islands.  What a great use of an unfinished attic!  For the record, I’m dying for that mirror.  Wouldn’t it look amazing in baby girl’s nursery at the Farmhouse?!

Wondering whether to paint your room in a light or dark color?  This post is definitely worth a read before you get to the paint store.

The blackout drapes in Wilder and Brooks’ room are on sale! I get a lot of questions about these…we have the Navy ones and yes, we absolutely love them!

I’d like to add something like this to the powder room door.  Cute, right?!

Molly Yeh Rose Cake 4.24.17


This cake blew me away.  But who could ever eat something so beautiful?!  Okay, totally kidding because I could, but not before I took a million photos of it and framed them for my mantle.

I just bought this book and it’ll probably take me a year of bedtimes to get through it, but I’m pretty darn excited to get started!




Porch House // Powder Bath Design


You were probably expecting to see the ‘after’ photos of the Porch House exterior today, but I’ve been asked to wait on publishing photos until after our pilot airs, so that you can see the transformation first on HGTV!  In the meantime, I’ll be sharing my inspiration for the designs you’ll get to see on HGTV as well as the spaces that we’re still renovating at the Porch House and a few going ons at the Farmhouse.  Thanks for your patience!

The Porch House is getting a powder bathroom, and I’m pretty darn excited about it!  Powder rooms are a great place to go a little darker, take a bigger risk, and be a little bolder – at least that’s my philosophy – so I’ll be doing just that.  Within the confines of a 1900s home, anyway.

We carved out 40sf for the powder room from the original front bedroom, accessed off the front entry.  I should mention that this house had 5 bedrooms (2 down, 3 up) and 2 bathrooms when we bought it, and seeing as it’s only 2,000sf, we felt confident that swapping a bedroom to create a master suite and a powder room would be a win for the home’s future owners.

The Grit and Polish - Porch Powder Framing 2The Grit and Polish - Porch Powder Room Framing

In the picture above, the new powder room is in front of the 2×4 wall, and everything behind it will be a future master bathroom (another project I’m REALLY excited about and will share soon!).  The powder bathroom is long and narrow – essentially a 4’x10′ rectangle – so we were limited with the layout, but I was very careful to position the toilet and sink outside of the sightline of the front door since the powder room is visible from it.  Like very visible…

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Powder from Front Door The Grit and Polish - Porch House Powder from Front Door 2

If the powder bathroom door is open like in that second picture, you will only see the beautiful wallpaper and board and wainscot I have planned.  The toilet will be hidden behind the door to the right and the sink will be to the left.  Admittedly the location of the powder bathroom door is not ideal, but hopefully the fact that you can’t see any plumbing fixtures from outside of the bathroom mitigates the issue.

One other ‘issue’ with this room is that there is no natural light.  The one window in the original bedroom that we’re carving up will be located in the new master bath, but I suppose that if I had to pick one room to be windowless, it would definitely be the powder room.  To deal with the lack of natural light, I’ve designed a space that is darker, cozier, and glitzier than the bright, historic farmhouse vibe going on in the rest of the house.  I want this room to feel like a little jewel box and make the low light feel intentional.

The Grit and Polish - Porch House Powder Bath Design text

wallpaper // paint color // mirror // white oak floors // accent light // toilet // faucet // pedestal sink // basket

The wallpaper is definitely the main design element in this space and a big splurge at $230/roll.  It’s from Farrow & Ball and a pattern that I’ve been eyeing for quite some time.  I only managed to sneak the wallpaper into the budget by adding board and batten wainscot on the bottom 5′ of wall.  This means we should only need 2 rolls of wallpaper instead of 4.  I’m planning to paint the board and batten in C2’s Vex, the same color as on the trim in the entry and living room.  This should help the spaces feel more cohesive and give the bathroom a warmer look.  The navy background of the wallpaper should also play nicely off of the exterior color of the home, BM Hale Navy.

Although I LOVE the mirror in the design board, I’ll likely use a brass-framed vintage one that I found last month at an antique store.  It’s a little chunkier than the pretty one pictured, but at one-fifth the cost, I’m calling it pretty enough.  I’m really not set on the lighting in here, either.  We’ll probably put a pendant or sconce by the vanity and an overhead fixture.  But this space is so small, I’m not convinced it even needs two lights.  As long as a potty-training toddler can see what they’re doing, I’ll be satisfied it’s bright enough.  Mama standards definitely rule in this case 😉

The inspiration for this powder bathroom is tucked in my head since I haven’t found any images that relay exactly what I’m thinking, but here are two images of the wallpaper in vintage homes that I love!

Jersey Ice Cream Co wallpaper Inspiration


Farrow and Ball wallpaper inspiration


This bathroom won’t be complete for a couple of months, so I’ll be bouncing around on the blog between projects a bit.  In the meantime, we’re hard at work on the other 2 bathrooms, dining room, mudroom, and upstairs bedrooms.  It’s going to be a fun couple of months!




Happy Friday + Links 4/21/17

Somehow April is half over and we’re here at another Friday. Thank goodness because I’m ready for the weekend!  Tomorrow we have no plans which means pancakes, picking daffodils, and a family hike if the weather holds out.  My kind of day!

bathroom my domaine

source: My Domaine

We’ve been getting ready to tackle the bathrooms (all three of them!) at the Porch House, so I’ve got tile and claw foot tubs on my brain.  Anyone in the Ellensburg area know of or have a claw foot tub they want to part with?  There is something so soothing about taking a bath in an cast iron tub, don’t you think?  Or is it just me?  Garrett wants to buy a new free standing tub, but I’m looking for a vintage claw foot one first because this beautiful old house could really use a beautiful old tub.

Star bright farm bathroom

source: Star Bright Farm

I’ve got lots of links for you.  So grab a cup of coffee and dig in.

A pretty tudor renovation from Studio McGee.  I’m a little sad about the moldings but what a beautiful home!

All the bathrooms I love in one spot.

A cheery entryway.  I’m certain this wallpaper would make me smile every time I walked in the front door!

Garrett and I have a Mother’s Day planned at the Farmhouse this year with the boys and our moms.  I proposed brunch, but really that’s a ploy to feed them before we get them to help us plant our summer garden 😉  And speaking of Mother’s Day, I asked for this which just so happens to be on sale right now!

Summer is coming, and though you might not find this pregnant lady in a swimsuit (mostly because I’d have to buy a maternity one…and getting to a store is tough these days), the mama in me loves a one piece.  Here are some great ones!

Some great crib sheets in case you have a baby girl on the way 😉




Porch House // Introductions & the Exterior


**update: I got a little ahead of myself in sharing the exterior transformation of the Porch House with you guys.  I’ve been asked to wait to publish the photos until after our pilot airs so that you guys can see the transformation first on HGTV!  Thanks for your patience 🙂

The camera crews have gone home and life has *almost* returned to normal around here.  Even now, we’re still catching up on sleep and family time from all those looong days.  Filming a pilot for HGTV was a whirlwind!  Exciting and exhausting but soooo much fun.  Our whole town seemed to find out about the pilot, and excitement was palpable in the community.  While we felt so lucky to be in the talented hands of our film crew, production company, HGTV exec, and contractor, I wouldn’t have minded a couple more days in our 16-day filming/renovation schedule just to cut down on all the late, late nights and to eat dinner sitting down once or twice.  If this pilot airs and you notice that I look a little disheveled, know that I was in do-makeup-in-the-car mode, was up at night a lot with a sick kiddo, and I fully admit that you’re seeing 8-day hair with plenty of renovation dust in it (don’t worry, I did shower every night).  Ha!

HGTV pilot aside, I wanted to introduce you guys to the Porch House because it is an awesome house in its own right.  I’ll be sharing more of the renovation that we completed in front of the cameras if/once the pilot airs, including the kitchen/sunroom, living room, and master bedroom.  You may have gathered by now that we didn’t actually complete the whole house renovation in those 16 days, so we’ll be continuing the renovation over the next 2 (ish) months at a more reasonable pace while we prepare the house for sale.

The Porch House was an off-market property, meaning it wasn’t listed for sale, but our realtors had an inside scoop that the owner might be interested in selling.  The house had been a rental for many years and was in a bit of disrepair.  Thankfully lots of the original charm was in tact like moldings, windows, tall ceilings (except where they had been dropped), and a wrap-around porch.  The home was built in 1900 but the history is a bit of a mystery.  We’ve heard from previous owners and neighbors that the home was actually built somewhere else in Ellensburg and moved here in the early 1900s by oxen cart.  The house definitely has the look of a farmhouse, so I wouldn’t be surprised if it was originally built in the country, but one neighbor thought it was built in the historic district by the university, which is where I grew up.

With this renovaiton, my goal for the exterior was to highlight the farmhouse charm and historic feel of the home.  What that meant was improving the landscaping, replacing anything that had been updated in the 70s (i.e. the front door and the upstairs windows), and giving the color a drastic change.  The original wood siding was in okay shape, but blown-in insulation holes, cracks, and general wear over the years had left it in less than ideal condition.  Garrett had the great idea of painting the body of the house in a dark, matte color to hide some of the wear, which I liked because it would also serve to give the HGTV cameras a big ‘before and after’ transformation without us having to do a ton of big changes.  Turns out the painters and pressure washer did such a nice job prepping the siding for paint that we wouldn’t have needed the dark color, but I’m so glad we did because the end result is stunning (if I do say so myself)!

The landscaping also went through a big change.  We are lucky to have some great friends who are killer landscapers (you may remember Julia and Garrett from their kitchen renovation last year).  Julia and I designed the landscaping to fit in the space and use what was available locally at this time of year.  Julia and Garrett put in some loooong days with us, and by the time they left, the landscaping was done!

Soon I’ll show you guys how the exterior turned out (spoiler: it’s SO good!).  In the meantime, here’s a look at the colors and materials I selected.

the Grit and Polish - Exterior Inspiration Collage

sources: porch light | metal basket | mailbox | corbels (similar to our’s)

I’m planning to be back on my Tuesday/Friday post schedule so stay tuned for that, at least until baby arrives and we’re back to turmoil 😉



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