Thursday, April 25, 2013

Things I Love Thursday: Put A {Boat} On It

Welcome to a new weekly feature here at A Heartful Home-- Things I Love Thursday! This week, I'm swooning over the lovely nautical touch that a simple sailboat brings!

Is it just me, or are sailboats the new birds? You may have heard the saying, "if you want to sell it, put a bird on it". :) (And you know how much I love birds!) Well, lately I've been spotting sailboats everywhere!  Long the staples of beach houses and coastal cottages everywhere, these sleek model yachts bring an aura of distinction with them. But you don't have to own a summer home on Nantucket to enjoy the breath of sea air that these gleaming vessels bring! Take a look...

Source: Country Living

Source: Country Living
Source: The Inspired Room

Source: Country Living

Source: Veranda
Source: Coastal Living
As you can see, a sailboat blends easily with any style-- from cottage to loft, rustic to refined! So if you're looking to add a touch of fresh air to your decor, just PUT A BOAT ON IT!

What do you think? Are you ready to jump on the sailboat/nautical bandwagon? Or does it just not float your boat? ;)

Friday, April 5, 2013

What's Cooking in the Kitchen? A $15 Mini-Makeover!

Pin It!

Yes, it's true-- I just gave my kitchen a mini-makeover for only $15, and about 15 minutes of work! (If you don't count the 3 1/2 hours I spent scrubbing the myriads of spots, dried spills, and splotches that plague  light-colored cabinets... but that's another story!) And how, you ask? The answer: a simple hardware swap!

BEFORE: even from a distance, the  brass & porcelain handles look drab and dated (and if you looked closely, you'd see that the "brass" was corroded and brown-- hence the "wide-angle" shot)

AFTER: the smooth chrome is the perfect modern counterbalance to the traditional cabinetry!
Ahhhh, soooo much better! Sleek, shiny, and up-to-date! Wanna know a secret? I found them at Goodwill! (Shhhh...) Yep, a bag of 7 beautiful handles, exactly what I'd been looking for to replace my sad, corroded "brass & porcelain" handles that constantly looked grimy. And the whole bagful was only $1.49!!!

Unfortunately, I needed more than 7 handles-- I needed 10, to be exact, plus 4 drawer pulls. Fortunately, my local Menards happened to carry the exact same handles, so the extra ones only added up to $13! Bringing the grand total for my fabulous updated kitchen to $15-- well, $14.49, to be exact ;)

Of course, if I hadn't found that bagful of handles at the local thrift store, this makeover would have cost about $21 more, but the total makeover would still be a not-too-shabby $34! (Possible even less, depending on what hardware you chose!)

This update was especially important, because THIS is the view that you see as soon as you walk in the front door of our apartment:

(I'm still trying to figure out what to do to the front of the island, that won't detract from everything else.) Here's the other side:

Our kitchen cabinets were actually store displays, so my Superman took the two lower center ones (where the stove is now), and turned them into an island, flanked with open shelves! I sewed the curtains that cover the shelves out of a tablecloth about three years ago (back when I was into the floral, cottage-y style). I think I need to make a new set that match my new colors, & the stylin' new cabinet pulls! :)

Another thing I want to do very soon is put a backsplash up behind the stove area. I'd love to do glass tile, or even penny tile (*swoon*) but I'm afraid that's out of my budget right now (unless I find some at Goodwill!) But I might try my hand at some paint & stenciling!

A gratuitous flower shot... I never buy fresh flowers for myself, but a sweet friend got me these for my birthday! I love the "freshness" they bring!

As you can see, my kitchen is not very large, and it is (literally) the center of the house-- the living room is to the left, and the dining room is to the right (with bedrooms opening off of those). So this $15 update visually impacts the whole house! I'm so happy with the effect this simple change has!

So what do you think? Have you done any inexpensive updates that have a huge impact on your home? Any quick tweaks?

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Casual Coastal Inspiration + GIVEAWAY WINNER!

Hi folks! It snowed again here yesterday, so I needed a breath of fresh sea air! Pinterest to the rescue! Here are a few of my favorite "casual coastal" living areas!

Source: Pottery Barn

Source: The Inspired Room
Source: Country Living
Source: Woman's Day
Source: Country Living
Source: BHG
Source: Country Living
Source: Country Living
Ahhhhhhh, now that's more like it! Can't you just smell the warm, salty ocean breeze? Oh, and I know you're DYING to know who is the winner of the fantastic "Getting It Together" e-book giveaway! Drumroll please...

Thanks to, our winner is SHARON R!!! But don't be sad if you didn't win... you can still head over to Kayse Pratt's site, and "get it all together" for only $3.99! (Full disclosure: I will be receiving a small portion of the proceeds from each e-book sold via my blog.) Thanks everyone for entering, and stay tuned for a very special giveaway for my first blogiversary, coming up on May 10th!