Real Rooms: Lulubelle's Kitchen

Today's guest real room makeover is from another newbie blog, 2 seasons, written by a mother and daughter duo renovating their respective homes 500+ miles apart. How adorable is that? I'll let Janette share what she did in her kitchen but I'll warn you now that you just might fall in love with this kitchen's mascot, lulubelle.

Greetings, everyone. I am so excited to be a guest blogger today at Brooklyn Limestone. Even though I am old enough to be Stefanie's mother, we have some things in common. We both live in townhouses that we completely remodeled, and we are both avid world travelers.

After selling our family home in the burbs, my husband and I down-sized to a townhouse with 3,000 square feet. We were ready to experience life in the city (Lexington, KY) with the convenience of walking to many events. We hired an architect who worked with us to get the design that we wanted, and then our crew went to work in January. We moved in mid-May and are really enjoying the decorating and "making it ours" process.

Today I am going to give you a tour of our kitchen. I hope you enjoy it.

The first two are photos I took on the day we first looked at the place. The owner was a single gentleman who spent a lot of money on new granite and stainless appliances, but they just didn't speak to us. We were able to salvage the cabinets and move them to our new pantry. The wall on the left is now gone.

This is his kitchen eating area. Notice the red below the chair rail and the gold above it.

I took this photo after we had removed his Pergo floors but before the painters did their magic. The purple area is the pantry. I revealed the new/improved pantry in an entry here.
Welcome to our new kitchen.

This is the full view looking in from the hallway. Though the light isn't too good in this shot, you can see that we went with a bluish gray peninsula that is glazed white, a farmhouse kitchen sink, and carerra marble on all of the countertops.

We chose white cabinets, and the pennisula's glaze helps it blend with them. It has a lot of features I think you'll like.

For instance, I have shelves for my cookbooks. And the cabinet door there hides our candle storage.

Here is a close-up of the glazed door.

This is the side of the peninsula opposite the sink. The stools are from CSN.

There is a shelf area with glass doors to display some of my Hall's teapots. And there is a wine shelf. The door to the left provides more storage. This shot shows it without the stools.

This is our eating area. The cow? She's "Lulubelle". I ordered her from an artist named Roz Art on Etsy. She had me at moo hello. A local shop framed it for me, and she waited patiently for this remodel project to finish so we could move in and she could claim her spot of honor in the kitchen.

This shot shows our built-in hutch. Let's take a closer look.

I think the copper pots work great here. We used the same cabinet hardware in the kitchen, wet bar, laundry room, guest room built-in, and all of the bathrooms.

I've opened the door so you can get a better look. Some of the dishes are special, like my grandmother's flow blue, the meat platter I got when staying with some nomads in Mongolia, and our old iron stone, and other things are there because they are blue or white.

A lamp maker here in Lexington made this lamp for me out of an extra silver tea pot. I think it is so sweet.

My brother bought this hydrant at an auction years ago for $2.50. That was before I had it refurbished. Every time he sees it, he regrets that he gave it up. I think the kitchen is the perfect place for a fire hydrant. Don't you??!!??

This bench is very versatile. I like to move it around, but it works here for now. I bought the two silk floral pillows in Bangkok. They are by Jim Thompson, who revived the silk industry in Thailand and then mysteriously disappeared. The other two pillows were made by moi.

The rug is from Pottery Barn.

When we decided to sell our last house, my friends gasped because they knew how much I obsessed over enjoyed the six-burner Thermador stove I had. Well, luckily, I was able to get another, except this one has only four burners with a griddle. Empty-nesters don't need six burners! It has gas burners with an electric oven and griddle. L.O.V.E. it!

Remember that wall I showed you in the beginning? It is now open to the great room, which as you can tell, still has some unpacking waiting in it. This opening made a huge difference with the amount of light the kitchen gets and with the flow. The architect and I were in total agreement on this.

I am not really a fan of painted ceilings, (here) but I saw a kitchen in a magazine with white cabinets, carrara marble counter tops, creamy walls, and a light blue ceiling. I knew then our kitchen ceiling would be a soft blue. We really, really like it.

If you are ever in Lexington, stop in, and I'll make us a pot of tea (or maybe a mint julep). Take care.

Real Rooms: A Joi-full kitchen

Another real room today from Joi of Nuestra Vida Dulce. I was completely hooked years ago (she had me at hello with her amazing use of ceiling medallions in her already gorgeous living room) and now she is here to share how she madeover her drab kitchen into something beautiful and bright. Let's take a peek...

Hey everybody! I'm Joi from Nuestra Vida Dulce and I am honored to be sharing some before and afters with you all today!


One of my personal favorite rooms in our humble sized home is our kitchen. It started out pretty bleak but it's come a long way.

We moved into our 1100 square foot ranch-style home 6 years ago. Our kitchen looked like this when we first laid eyes on it.


Yikes, right?

One of the first DIY projects that my husband and I dove into was painting our cabinets. I am so happy we did because it updated the space immediately. While we were at it, we replaced the old hardware as well.


Over the years we have replaced the green laminate countertop for a more modern Corian countertop in the Sandalwood colorway.

Photobucket Photobucket

Additionally, we replaced our white appliances with stainless steel upgrades and I painted the walls a deep gray-brown.

Two of my most prized possessions are my kitchen island and dining room table that my father-in-law built for us. He's the best!


I still would like to add a tile back splash and replace the floors, but who knows when that will happen! It's definitely a marathon and not a sprint.

Thanks for reading and thanks for having me, S!

Real Rooms: Charm + Thrift Living Room

Today's guest blogger is the amazingly talented Miss Mustard Seed. I read a lot of blogs but this one is so packed with fabulous hand crafted projects, it takes my breath away. Case in point this Union Jack dresser which just might be my favorite furniture paint treatment evah. (She is also one of the artisans who sells at Lucketts.) So its no surprise that her home is filled with charming pieces she made with her own hands. I'll let her tell you all about it.


I am so honored that Mrs. Limestone herself asked me to share a before and after with you of one of the rooms in my home. Her style is so amazing and refined. It's a treat to be here.

My entire home (built in the 1940's with a modern addition) has undergone a lot of change since we first moved in almost five years ago. Most of those changes have included paint, hard work, and yard sale/thrift store/flea market finds. I am all about creating a beautiful, custom look on a realistic DIY budget.

This is what the living room looked like before we moved in. I snapped this picture during the home inspection. It was dark, dreary and suffered from a bit of an identity crisis. With the addition of a modern family room, this living room/parlor became a glorified foyer.

The first thing we did was rip up the carpet. We closed on the house and then ripped up the carpet that same day. Seriously. I just couldn't handle having stinky, stained Berber carpet over hard wood floors. I didn't care what the condition was. We also painted the ceiling Dove White by Valspar and the walls Blue Stone by Eddie Bauer. After much thought and debate, I painted the original pine trim white. I was very limited by budget (which was $0), so I put a room together with mostly free furniture, a carpet remnant found in the basement and about $20 in fabric for curtains. I knew this room would hold me over until I had a some more money to spend.

And here it is today...

Although I love Blue Stone, it was just too dark and overwhelming for this small, poorly lit space. It was also too heavy with the dark walnut floors, which look extremely dusty in these pictures! My apologies! I opted for soft, creamy walls that would provide a neutral backdrop and reflect light. While I had more flexibility with my budget, I still spent less than $1000 on everything, including refinishing the hardwood floors. Almost all of my furniture was given to me for free or purchased inexpensively at yard sales. The antique sofa is slip covered in drop cloth fabric and the curtains are made out of indoor/outdoor fabric, which was a quarter of the cost of its indoor home decor fabric counterpart.

I don't think I'm ever really "done" with a space, but I'm really happy with the bones of this room and can change up the accessories when I'm getting the itch for a new look. For now, it's one of my favorite rooms for photo shoots and to go when I need some quiet.

Visit my blog, Miss Mustard Seed, to see more of my home or get other budget-friendly decorating ideas.

Real Rooms: Clean & Quirky Laundry Room

Kicking off a full week of beautiful real room makeovers is Emily of Go, Haus, Go! She is a fellow 'midnight hustler' (love that term!) who blogs at night after slaving a full day away in some other profession. Her blog is only a few months old but is already full of inspiration. Just take a look at the whimsy she injected in to her laundry room. Take it away Emily.


Hello there! I'm Emily from Go, Haus, Go! I'm so happy and honored to be here on Brooklyn Limestone sharing a recent project of mine with you. For those of you unfamiliar with Go, Haus, Go! my home is a 900 square foot 1914 brick cottage in a little neighborhood just south of Cincinnati in Covington, Kentucky. I've just started on my home (and blogging!) so lots of things to make pretty and share with you all.

Now for the fun stuff. My laundry room makeover! It's a very small space at about 28 square feet, but with it located right off the kitchen and viewable to everyone, it was important it looked nice. It also needed to satisfy a couple of needs - functional decor, flow with the adjacent black and white kitchen and last but not least, the design needed to cover up my not-so-lovely washer and dryer hook-ups. I'm all about doing things inexpensively in my home so I knew I would be warming up my crafting muscles and DIY-ing something(s).

Here's how the room looked when I started. Yikes. I didn't clean up prior to taking this photo or even use the good camera. Chalk it up to ugly room syndrome.

And then after working through (and not liking) a couple of design plans (like this and this) I decided to ditch the Photoshop and the planning and go with it. Risky, I know. I went with the design elements I loved (and would work with my kitchen), like a smokey grey paint color and glossy white cabinets and ended up with this:

Emily Snuffer

There you have it! Some quick details on the room:

-The paint is Martha Stewart Living Bedford Gray

-The stripey curtain was DIY'ed using a white tie-up curtain. Details on that project here.

-The fabric panel (I just used No-Sew to finish the edges and create a rod pocket for a tension rod) is from Ikea (it's older - don't know the name!) and matches the covers on my stools in my kitchen

-Cabinet paint is Behr's Ultra Pure White in semi-gloss

And because I was all about adding function with the decor, the mirror (from Pottery Barn Teen) doubles as a hook for drying tank tops and bras. The Polaroid wire (from Ikea) morphs into a convenient clothesline when guests (or cameras) are not around. I'm very happy so far!

To follow the laundry room makeover adventure from start to finish (seriously, it was like four posts) scroll to the end of this post.

Thanks again Mrs. Limestone!

Party time: Link up to your Real Room makeovers

I love glossy home decor porn as much as the next blogger but there is nothing I appreciate more than seeing real life makeovers from real people with realistic budgets.

So why am I am I telling you this? It's because next week I'm kicking off a guest series titled Real Rooms (OK, not a very creative title but I couldn't think of anything snappier!) that feature 7 room redos from bloggers of all types. From perennial favorites to new to me, each have injected personality and style into their spaces and will share their before and afters. I hope you'll enjoy seeing what they did as much as I appreciate them sharing it with me. Huge thanks to these lovely ladies - visit all their blogs to see more of each of their style.

Miss Mustard Seed ** Savour Fare ** First Time Fancy ** 2 Seasons**
** Nuestra Vida Dulce ** Modern Country Style ** Go Haus Go **

Do you have your own Real Room makeover that you'd like to share? I'd love to see them all. Just link to the blog post with your before and afters below,

Freebie: Moving Announcements Download

There seems to be something in the air lately. Almost every day this week I've seen moving trucks with sweaty new neighbors hauling their wares up stairs and into their new digs. So in honor of new homes everywhere, I've whipped up some moving announcements for your downloading pleasure. There are four splashy color combos so hopefully you find something that strikes a chord with your inner palette. Just add your own deets and print.

{ Download them here.}

Happy Housewarming!

And yes, I'm totally obsessed with chesterfield sofas. Even my doodles are decor related ;)

Summer Snaps

If I could stow it in my pocket, I would love to carry my camera everywhere, everyday. But now that I have joined the 20th century and have a smart phone, I can do the next best thing. Here are a few snaps of the past few weeks.

Rainy sunset from cab windowYoga in times square?Verrazano Bridge Under CloudsRain rain, go away
top row: manhattan skyline from a taxi; yoga in times square
bottom row: verrazano bridge under clouds; raindrops keep falling on my head

All photos via iphone instagram app (my user name is mrs. stefanie)

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