Wallpaper shelves (via abeautifulmess.com) Wallpaper shelves Thought I'd share a little peek into some of the decor updates I've been working on in my dining room. First off let me just say, I LOVE our dining room. It's not exactly a formal dining room in that it's not separated into its own space by walls and a door, but is rather part of a big open living area that has our kitchen, a living room, my office, and our dining room. Check out my empty home tour to get a better of idea if that doesn't make sense. 

I love that we can fit a large dining room table, seating 6 to 8 easily in this space. It's great for entertaining – I even hosted my family for Christmas this past year and LOVED having so much space to entertain in. I also love that it has a few large windows on one wall, making it feel bright and inviting (or vibe-y at night). And I love the shelves/extra counter space that we mostly use as a bar area and glass storage but could also become a small buffet counter for casseroles or other dishes at a big dinner event. 

Can you tell I'm excited to host in this space?!?Diningroom shelvesHere's a (blurry) photo of the dining room just after we bought the house. Although I loved the space, I wasn't in love with the black, distressed look of the cabinets. The upper cabinet doors weren't really my style, and the light fixture also wasn't exactly my taste either. 

First, we had all the cabinets painted white. We've done a lot of painting ourselves in the house, but I did hire a professional to paint our cabinets as they are much more labor intensive if you do them right (taking off all the doors and hardware, etc.). This made a HUGE difference to the space. But after living with it for a couple of months, I decided that I just didn't like the upper cabinet doors, mainly the arched glass. I thought about just getting new, plain cabinet doors or even having something made out of acrylic. But in the end I decided that open shelving was more my taste and worked better for us functionally because we store most of our "pretty" glassware here, and this makes it even easier for us or guests to find and grab and make  a drink. So, I had the doors taken off. The way they were installed meant losing some inside support beams, so we added support brackets under the shelves in similar colors. You can kind of see this behind me holding that birthday cake in the photo above. 

Trey and I really loved how the open shelving turned out. My only thought was that it felt a little plain. Many of our glasses and items on the shelves only took up about half of the height, so I thought about adding some kind of risers or something to create a better visual look. But then I got it in my head that I wanted to add wallpaper or some kind of painted design to the back of the shelves. 

Wallpaper shelves   It took me a while to finally commit to a wallpaper. The space we were covering wasn't large, so I wasn't super concerned about the cost. But I didn't want something too busy, or too colorful, or too trendy, or wait... maybe I do?! 

Yeah, choosing wallpaper is tough! I basically had about 10 I was considering, narrowed it down to 4, and then bought samples and taped them up in the shelves to try visualize what it would be like. 

In the end I chose Hands by Pottock that Laura also loves (see here). It is fairly busy in its design, but being black and white kind of works for our space as it helps to blend in with the white support brackets and works with all the glassware that is stored here (or at least I think so). 

Wallpaper shelvesI realized that buying a roll would leave me with quite a bit of extra paper. And I thought, waste not, want not....

Wallpaper backsplash Wallpaper backsplashSo I had the remaining wallpaper from the roll installed in the bar seating area of our kitchen – and I might like it even more than the shelves! 

Thanks for letting me share a little peek into our dining room decor. I'm still working on a few things in this space. One is I'm still trying to figure out how to best display our glassware on the shelves. Any tips? I'll share more as we finish it up, including my light fixture. :) xx. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

Make Your Own Pet Photo Pajamas! (click through for more!)           It's no secret that I love my cats. Like, love love them. Like one-whisker-shy-of-throwing-them-cat-birthday-parties kind of love if you know what I mean. They both sleep with me every night too, which is one of my favorite things in the world (Mac, the white guy, stays close to my chest, and Charlie, the grey gal, snoozes by my feet). Since I travel rather often to see my traveling husband, I always miss my little babes at nighttime the most. So I thought it would be fun to make a pair of pet PJs to help me feel like they are always with me!

Make Your Own Pet Photo Pajamas! (click through for more!)We teamed up on this post with our longtime supporters and friends over at Canon USA, who have just been so amazing to work with over the years. Specifically, we're using the Canon PIXMA MG7720 Photo Printer, which is perfect for crafts like this. It handles iron-on paper really well!

Supplies:
-iron on transfer sheets (make sure to pick the ones for light or dark fabric based on your pajamas)
-iron
-plain pajamas (I used these)
-photo printer
-scissors
-Canon PIXMA MG7720 Photo Printer

Make Your Own Pet Photo Pajamas! (click through for more!) First you'll want to pick which pet photos you want on your PJs. I picked two photos of each cat that were slightly different for variation but still had them mostly facing forward. I cropped the pictures close around their faces, used the eraser tool a bit to erase more (which you don't have to do if you don't have that Photoshop skill, just crop close), and copy/pasted as many photos as I could fit onto another page. Make sure to reverse the page so they look right when transferred! Print your cat faces onto your iron on transfer sheets.

Make Your Own Pet Photo Pajamas! (click through for more!)  Use scissors to cut out your faces and place them onto your pajamas so you can see which faces you want in which spots. Flip the faces ink side down. Use your iron and follow the directions on the iron on transfer packaging to attach the faces to the material.

Make Your Own Pet Photo Pajamas! (click through for more!)   Once the faces are cool, carefully peel off the plastic backing and you're ready to wear your new pajamas!

Make Your Own Pet Photo Pajamas! (click through for more!)     Make Your Own Pet Photo Pajamas! (click through for more!)     Make Your Own Pet Photo Pajamas! (click through for more!)         How adorable are these pajamas (or should I say "PAW-jamas")??? They kind of have that kitschy feel of the shirts and leggings that have the celebrities plastered all over them (like Ryan Gosling and Justin Beiber) but in a much more personal way. Now I can keep my kitties with me when I travel or just double up on the cuteness factor when I'm snoozing at home. Either way, I think I'll sleep purrrr-fectly! xo. Laura

Credits // Author: Laura Gummerman. Photography: Laura Gummerman and Todd Gummerman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions

Yellow oversized chairThis is a mini progress report... brought to you by me overanalyzing everything about my living room. That tends to be my style of home decorating: overanalyzing. :) 

So I've been working on the living room in our new house. It's technically a second living room, as we have a kind of sitting area with a fireplace that functions as a living room as well (check my empty home tour video to see both). I call this the "TV living room" for short. :) And you might remember this awesome oversized blue armchair from our last living room:

Past living roomI love this chair (it's from Thrive). It's big! Sometimes Trey and I sit in it together. But it's also the perfect size to sit in and snuggle with one of our dogs during a favorite show. 

So the pros of this chair are great size, love the shape, and it's really a very nice piece of furniture. The cons: I wasn't in love with the blue anymore, and it had gotten quite dirty/worn from our last house. As you can see in the photo above, it was right by our backdoor (to our backyard) that also had a dog door. So the dogs would come in from outside and often immediately jump on this chair. It's a wonder it held up as well as it has these past 3+ years. 

Chair before and afterI thought about just getting it professionally deep cleaned, but that didn't solve my not loving the blue fabric in this space. 

I also thought about just donating it or selling it and getting a new chair. But I truly do love the size and shape, and it seemed a shame to get rid of a perfectly good chair when I might end up buying a cheaper (less well made) chair. 

The solution should have been obvious, but until my friend, Janae (you guys know Janae, she's smart about photography as well as home decor) suggested I get it reupholstered, I didn't even think about it. She pointed out that since the bones of the chair were so nice, spending the money to reupholster could mean I'd be spending the same or more on a new, but not as nice chair. This way I'd get to keep all the things I loved about this chair already. I also liked the idea of reusing something I already had instead of just buying something new. I'm not always the best at this, but I think it's a good practice for personal budget reasons as well as for the environment in general. 

So, I found someone who could reupholster it for a very reasonable price. I went shopping for fabric and came home with three options I had taken pictures of with my phone and showed them to Trey. I also did some price comparing. In the end I picked this yellow because I loved the color, the fabric was a great price for the quality, and I thought it might hide blonde dog hair well (which is a BIG issue at our house). I did (and do) worry that the lighter color might end up looking more dirty over time, but with this chair not being as close to our dog door as it was at our last house, the dogs don't sit on it as often. So I'm cautiously hopeful. 

Yellow armchairThe result: I LOVE the new color and our chair looks like new. We'll see how well it holds up over time, but at least I love the color now so I can always just get it professionally cleaned if needed in the coming years. 

Have you all ever had anything reupholstered (either DIY or professionally done)? If so, how did it go? Were you happy with the results? xx. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

DIY Fiber Art via A Beautiful Mess    I'm really excited to share today's post! The last time I shared photos of our bedroom it looked pretty rough, but these past few months, we've made a lot of progress. We decided to commit to a low-key, light, neutral vibe for the bedroom. Everything revolves around good sleep and positive vibes in this space. But I still want to decorate it in an interesting way using lots of texture!

While I was considering different options for an art piece above our bed, I originally wanted to do a big glittery heart marquee. But then, I was flipping through one of my Jonathan Adler books, and I saw this amazing tassel art!

InspirationIsn't it amazing?!

Next thing I knew, I was at the craft store buying tons of pretty yarn to make SO. MANY. TASSELS. 

Measure your spaceThe best thing about DIY art is that it can be customized to fit your space EXACTLY. I used some painter's tape to visually mark off how large I wanted it to be, then I just measured that space before I went shopping for supplies. It can be as small or as large as you want. 

Supplies NeededSupplies:
-wooden dowel rod a few inches larger than your desired width
-medium weight and super chunky yarn (How much you need is VERY much dependent on the size and how much you want to cover in tassels. I had to go back to the store for more! I think I used two of the chunky yarn and about six of the medium weight yarn)
-latch hook mat 
-scissors 
-sturdy neutral string to hang it (My yarn wasn't strong enough to hold the weight.) 

Step 1 make tasselsStep One: Make A LOT of tassels. After I had a few, I used them to try to estimate how many I would need, but I still had to make more later. I used about 70 tassels, each about 4 inches long. If you've never made tassels before (don't worry it's super easy), you can learn how here

It's up to you if you want them to be extremely uniform or more random/natural. I actually used two different types of yarn for mine (but pretty similar), and they came out a little bit more random due to that. 

The tassels are time consuming, but I found them to be a good project to do while I was watching TV (Laura helped me do some too while she was watching TV one night!). It's pretty mindless and kind of fun! 

Step 2 attach tassels Step 3 begin filling mesh Step Two: Cut the latch hook mat down to your measurements. Attach the tassels to the latch hook mat. I just tied them on with more yarn. 

Originally I intended to fill the entire piece with tassels. But halfway through I realized I really wanted to use this chunky yarn I had bought and that I could possibly just poke it through the latch hook mat to create something reminiscent of a weaving. Basically a no-weaving-skills weaving. Fun! 

Step Three: Use you fingers or a latch hook tool to poke pieces of the chunky yarn through the holes. Since my yarn was very thick, I skipped about every other hole. I just kind of poked it through in sections until it looked full, and if a spot looked sparse, I went back and added more. 

Step 3 filling meshThis is what it looks like as you're filling the mesh. It doesn't have to be perfect... just eyeball it! 

Step 4 pose with your fiber art in the dorkiest way possible Step Four: The final thing I did was hang my weaving and fill in any spots that looked a little sparse (both with more chunky yarn and more tassels). Then I trimmed my tassels just a little bit (getting those REALLY long stray pieces), but left them pretty random and natural. 

Step Five: Pose as absolutely awkwardly as you POSSIBLY can. (I think I nailed this step!) WOOHOO! I MADE A DIY! 

HangingHang it up and give yourself a GIANT pat on the back! Haha! There's something so satisfying about making something you really love for your home. 

DIY Fiber Art via A Beautiful Mess     DIY Fiber Art via A Beautiful Mess     DIY Fiber Art via A Beautiful Mess     DIY Fiber Art via A Beautiful Mess     DIY Fiber Art via A Beautiful Mess     DIY Fiber Art via A Beautiful Mess     DIY Fiber Art via A Beautiful Mess     Have an amazing day, you guys!!! Love, Elsie + Suki too! 

ps. My supplies were around $100 with no sales, but since every craft store has these magical 40% off coupons and frequent yarn sales, I think you could easily cut that down to $60 or less... it also depends on the size! 

Credits// Author: Elsie Larson. Photography: Elsie Larson and Jeremy Larson. Project Assistant: Laura Gummerman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

Favorite podcastsShortly after I started working from home (alone all day!), I started to get quite obsessed with podcasts. I can't listen to anything while I write: emails, book content, blog content, etc. Same thing with reading. I've had lots of coworkers over the years who are the exact opposite. Maybe you are too? They want to listen to music or anything all day while they work. For me, I can only listen to something while I cook, photograph, edit photos, wash dishes, etc. And about 1/3 of my time during the week is devoted to work that falls into these categories. So, I listen to podcasts or music depending on how much I want to listen in or just be surrounded by inspiring music. 

Oh, and I also listen to podcasts or music while I work out. Which is usually for about 30 minutes, three times a week, or at least that's my goal as of late. I'd like to up this goal in the future, but for now that's about where I'm at. 

Anyway, maybe your podcast obsessed too? Or maybe you'd like to be, but you don't know what to listen to? Well, here are a few of the podcasts I'm currently enjoying. I've divided them up into categories as I tend to listen to a wide/weird range of things. :)

Educational / Business related

These are podcasts that I listen to, to learn. I usually like to be doing a task that allows me to jot down a few notes while I listen if possible. 

Smart Passive Income – I love Pat Flynn and the brand he's created through his site and podcasts. He's got a super friendly approach, but his podcast is also SUPER full of information. This is most useful for online entrepreneurs and business owners, but he's covered all sorts of subjects over the years so there's lots to choose from.

Elise Gets Crafty – I guess I'm a bit biased as I am friends with Elise and she has also been kind enough to invite me on her show before. But that said, this podcast is geared toward lots of different kinds of business owners and creative people who work in a similar industry that I'm in (blogging, online entrepreneur, crafty products, etc.). So I learn lots of little tidbits and often hear friends or people I'm somewhat familiar with on the show. 

Jess Lively – Similar to Elise's podcast, Jess has built an excellent show geared around online creative business owners and other entrepreneurs. Her brand is also, um, how do I describe it? Friendly and approachable everyday inspiration maybe? I find her to be very encouraging I guess is what I'm trying to say. :)

Financial Mentor – I forget where I first learned about Todd Tresidder, but I've been a fan for a while. His website and podcast are all about financial planning. Some topics are way over my head, but I love that Todd always does his best to break things down and try to make financial topics easier to understand. I've been interested in money management since high school when I read my first Dave Ramsey and Suze Orman books that I checked out from the public library. I'm always interested in learning more as personal finances are something we all have to deal with no matter what our income level, debt history is, etc. We're all on a financial journey even if the topic seems totally intimidating or boring, so it's important to try to continue to educate ourselves unless you're an expert (which I am NOT). 

Inspirational

These are podcasts that I listen to when I want to be inspired. Most of them do offer some information as well, but for the most part, these are what I listen to when I need a podcast pep talk. :) 

Magic Lessons – I started listening to Liz's podcast back when I was painting our house, just before we moved in. I downloaded her book, Big Magic, shortly after and really enjoyed that as well. This is a great podcast for anyone who loves creative activities and needs some inspiration to keep making!

Happier with Gretchen Rubin – Loved the book The Happiness Project and Gretchen's goal to always improving and making her life better. She's got an analytical approach that makes SO much sense to me and how my brain works. I mentioned that an episode of her podcast helped me crack the code on how to finally stop biting my nails, which I'm still sticking to so far! So yeah, maybe this podcast is life changing? I guess that's somewhat accurate for me to say. :) 

Girlboss Radio – Sophia Amoruso is one rad lady, and I love what she's created with the #Girlboss book, and now I guess it's kind of turning into its own brand. In each episode, she interviews someone cool, that's pretty much it. Simple concept, but the result is often pretty inspiring. 

Entertainment

I'm not saying I haven't "learned" anything from these podcasts, but I'm calling this category entertainment because that is the main reason I listen to these. These are usually what I turn to on days I feel like my brain can't process anymore information, or just because I want to. :)

Criminal – I started listening to this because I had seen it recommended for Serial lovers. Which I most definitely am. If you never listened to the first or second season of Serial, I would recommend that too, but it's fairly well known. So I didn't figure it needed to be on this list. After the first season of Serial, I also listened to Undisclosed. Anyway, that's a whole different topic and I've got to stop myself before I start going off about that, Making a Murderer, and even the new O.J. Simpson series. We can talk all that when we meet for coffee. :) Criminal is a series of short, usually around 15-30 minute episodes that center around some kind of, well, criminal activity. Some episodes are quite graphic and heavy, while others border on comical. If you're interested in true-crime stories, you'll probably like this podcast. 

WTF with Marc Maron – Honestly, this one is so famous it probably goes without saying, but I really love it. So I'm saying it anyway. :) I usually only listen to this with Trey, so mostly on road trips, as he's a fan of Marc too. Maron is SUCH a great interviewer. You've got to give it a listen if you haven't already. He even had the president on his show once. 

Limetown – Loved the first season of this, but I have't kept up with it since. I was just looking at their site to link it here, and I'm not sure they've released or are still doing a second season. Does anyone know? Leave it in the comments if you do. But I'd still recommend listening to the first season, as it's really fun in a sort of creepy, X-Files kind of way. 

That's about it for me. I'd LOOOOOVE it if you all have other recommendations if you'd leave them in the comments so I can check them out. I'm always looking for new podcasts to enjoy! xx. Emma

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