At Home with Morgan TrinkerCute wall artHairbrush and Bobby Pins Prints/Rifle Paper Co., Light Fixtures, Claw Foot Tub Fixtures, and Pedestal Sink/Home Depot .

Today we are excited to share Morgan Trinker's beautiful bungalow with you! We got our first peek at her space via Instagram and fell in love with the hand-stamped strawberry wall in her laundry room (so cute!!). Morgan and her husband, Jamie, renovated this home to make it super bright and inviting, and that's exactly what it is. :) Ready to see more? 

Love this light fixture!Dining Table and Chairs/Vintage, Light Fixture/West Elm, Flower Painting/Erin Gregory via One King's Lane.

Living room decorDIY shelvesDolly Parton"My husband, Jamie, and I purchased this 1925 bungalow in Birmingham, Alabama in 2013. When we first stepped foot inside this particular house, though, I was not completely sold. It was decorated nicely but just not in my taste—so many shades of brown, very dark walls, and a couple of 90s builder-grade renovations that had stripped the home of some of its original character. But what I was able to see was the incredible amount of windows and natural light coming in. So I tried to use a little imagination and think about how we could use what we had to make something more true to us. I liken my personal style goals to Dolly Parton—a little bit flashy and colorful and over the top on the surface, but full of Southern warmth and hospitality and true-to-selfness at heart. Everyone laughs at this metaphor, but I grew up in East Tennessee where Queen Dolly reigns supreme, and since there are some kindred spirits around here (yay!), it seemed as good a place as any to throw that out there. :) 

Morgan TrinkerSofa/IKEA Karlstad (dyed slipcover).

"My favorite room in the house is for sure the main living room because of the wall of windows that look out onto trees and receive the most glorious golden sunset light in the evening. There's no better spot for curling up with a good book and a cup of coffee and waving at neighbors walking their dogs or kids playing right outside. 

Birmingham"Within 18 months of living here, I had painted nearly every surface of this house, including, but not limited to, every wall, ceiling, beam, cabinet, trim, door, and, yes, even a light fixture or two. That alone made the whole space feel so much brighter, more open, and cheerful. I also became somewhat obsessed with shelving and adding built-in character, so I learned how to use power tools (thanks to our friend Will!) and actually constructed the wall of built-in bookshelves in the living and dining room by myself. I'm still kind of in disbelief that this actually happened, since I've never considered myself to be a particularly handy person. Lesson learned: there's a first time for everything, and we're capable of a lot more than we think we are most of the time. Emboldened by my newfound DIY prowess, I went on to construct shelves for my office and for the kitchen, as well as two picture ledges for all the framed photographs in the dining area. One can never have too many places to display one's treasures, after all. 

Bathroom decorBathroom shelfBeveled mirror/Target.

"One of the things that bummed me out the most about the house when we first bought it was the bathroom. It had clearly been remodeled sometime in the 90s, and every ounce of 1925 charm was replaced with beige tiles and a walk-in shower and contemporary fixtures. Determined to restore it to its original glory, we took it down to the studs and brought it back in classic finishes like the white hexagon tile floor, shiplap walls, a claw foot tub found on Craigslist and refinished, and schoolhouse fixtures. One of my favorite projects in the bathroom is actually the ledge I built to display pretty bottles of nail polish and hang towels to dry. All in all, the space is just so much brighter and happier! 

OfficeDesk/ DIY using IKEA Wood Table Top and Hairpin Legs found on eBay, "It's Nice to Have You in Birmingham" Print/Yellowhammer Creative.

Perfect gallery wall!Master bedroomBed/IKEA (painted green), Rug/Rugs USA, Bedside Lamps/IKEA Ranarp Clamp, Floating Nightstand Shelves/DIY.

"Even in our relatively short time in this house, there have definitely been lots of things that changed and that I had to figure out through trial and error along the way. For example, I clearly love color and am not afraid to use it, but with such open spaces and being able to see into many of the rooms of our home at once, I had to adopt more of a whole-house color palette and make sure that all the rooms played nicely with each other, which sometimes meant owning that I had made a mistake with a color choice and being willing to repaint or recover or swap it with something else. Also, because we had a lot of large white wall space to contend with, I had to learn about scale and how to fill space without causing visual clutter and chaos, which is how, after going through a couple of different gallery wall configurations in the main living area that just never looked quite right, I landed on the idea of the long ledges to display photographs of friends and family.

Mint cabinetsAppliances/GE Artistry Series, Cow Painting/Augusta Cole. 

Cute kitchen details"In the kitchen, we replaced hunter green laminate countertops with butcher block, painted the raw plywood cabinets a perfect shade of mint green, switched out the hardware, and removed a lot of the upper cabinets in favor of open shelving, subway tile, and clean white walls. 

Hand-stamped wall!Strawberry wallPendant light/Home Depot (painted green), Letterpress Prints/Pioneer House, Red Clock/ Home Depot.

"I think the thing that makes me so proud of this home is all of the love and manual labor that's been poured into it. From dyeing the white slipcovers on our IKEA Karlstad sectional a beautiful shade of turquoise to hand-stamping cheerful strawberries on the walls of our laundry room (using A Beautiful Mess's tutorial!) right down to the less glamorous updates like polishing and restoring the wood floors, I don't think there's an inch of our space that hasn't been touched and (hopefully!) improved upon during our time in this house. I hope that I continue to push myself to learn new skills and take risks and create spaces full of love and life and really, really good memories."

Thanks for sharing, Morgan! You can find more of her via Morgan Trinker Photography and on Instagram. xo.

Credits//Author: Morgan Trinker. Photography: Graham Yelton.

Iceland via A Beautiful MessHey, friends! We had such an incredible time in Iceland, and today we just wanted to share a few photos from our trip with you. 

Iceland via A Beautiful Mess  Iceland via A Beautiful Mess  Iceland via A Beautiful Mess  Iceland via A Beautiful Mess  The Blue Lagoon did not disappoint. It was absolutely stunning in person and by FAR the warmest thing we did in Iceland (haha!), which I loved. The color is absolutely incredible. I highly recommend it and will do it again next time we visit. 

If you're curious how we were able to get so many photos in the water at the Blue Lagoon, you can check out our underwater camera gear here

Iceland via A Beautiful Mess      The next day, we took a tour of the Golden Circle with the Mountaineers of Iceland. They have all sorts of different tours available (we did the Pearl tour), and we had a great experience! 

Iceland via A Beautiful Mess       Iceland via A Beautiful Mess       Iceland via A Beautiful Mess       Iceland via A Beautiful Mess       It was SO beautiful everywhere you looked.

Iceland via A Beautiful Mess       Also, SO cold. Brrrrrr. In mid October, when we went, the weather was in the high 40s (Fahrenheit), so we tried to bundle up as best we could and make the most of it!

Iceland via A Beautiful Mess              Haha! I'm glad we got a pic together, but I can kind of see the pain on our faces. Haha! Oh well—it was SO pretty and right after this photo, we had soup! 

Iceland via A Beautiful Mess               Iceland via A Beautiful Mess               Iceland via A Beautiful Mess               Iceland via A Beautiful Mess                   Iceland via A Beautiful Mess                   Iceland via A Beautiful Mess                      What a view. (Part of the tour we went on included snowmobiling on a glacier...whoa.)

Iceland via A Beautiful Mess                    Iceland via A Beautiful Mess                       Iceland via A Beautiful Mess                       This little courtyard made our day! It was such a fun thing to run into on our walk to lunch. 

Iceland The Kex Hostel. We grabbed lunch here and loved it. One of the best meals we had on our trip, actually, and such a cute spot! 

Iceland  ♥♥♥♥♥

Iceland   We fell in love with the pizza place with no name. SO good. We got the potato pizza and the spicy fries...twice. 

Iceland   This is the church where you can go up to the top to get pics of the colorful roofs.

Like this—

Iceland via A Beautiful MessSee that extra tiny rainbow! Magic!

Iceland       I love you, Iceland. We'll be back soon! xx- Elsie 

Credits// Author: Elsie Larson, Photography: Elsie Larson, Emma Chapman, and Trey George. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess Actions. If you haven't tried our custom actions yet you really need to—they really make your photos pop! 

4 solutions for fixing black spots on vintage mirrors (click through for more) Sometimes it's easy to know exactly how to bring new life to an old piece of furniture. Often all it takes is a fresh coat of paint or new hardware on a worn looking item and you can end up with a restored version of what once looked drab and dull. Some categories are a little more tricky though, and the solutions may not be quite as obvious. From time to time I've spotted a great vintage mirror at a flea market or thrift shop, but if the mirror had dark spots on the glass, well, I've just left it there because I didn't really know how to fix the problem. I saw this really cool geometric mirror for a great price at the thrift store the other week, and instead of running from my "black spot fear", I decided to face it head on and figure it out instead. It turns out there are a few tricks you can use to either totally repair, minimize, or conceal the damage that was caused from moisture on the silver backing of the mirror. 

4 solutions for fixing black spots on vintage mirrors (click through for more)       If you have a mirror you'd like to fix, you'll notice that there are two types of black spots: some of the spots are opaque areas of damage on the reflective coating and others are actually where the backing has been scraped or eaten away so you can see through past the back of the mirror (in other words, if you put your finger over that spot on the back of the mirror you would see your finger through the front of the glass). Depending on the type, placement, and severity of spot, here are your options to help give your mirror a second life:

Resilver the mirror: OK, this is definitely the most involved option to resolve the problem. Resilvering is basically removing the protective, silver backing of the mirror and reapplying those layers again on the back of the glass. It is a more technical process (see a full tutorial here), and I think the larger the mirror, the harder it would be for a first timer. But it is an option if your mirror's black spots are overwhelming and totally beyond any other repair (and actually, I think it looks like fun to try!).

4 solutions for fixing black spots on vintage mirrors (click through for more)      Use aluminum foil: Say what?? Yep, this trick works really well if you have the kind of spots where the backing has been scraped off and you can see through to the other side of the glass. All you need to do is smooth out small pieces of aluminum foil and tape them with clear tape to the back of the mirror. The reflective foil is seen from the front and is much less noticeable when you hang it back up again. Since you probably already have tape and foil on hand, this is an easy solution for a few trouble spots.

4 solutions for fixing black spots on vintage mirrors (click through for more)     Mirror-like spray paint: This is a similar option to the aluminum foil (this is what I used) and essentially does the same thing if you have the clear spot issue. If you have a bunch of small areas all over your mirror, it's probably more efficient to just spray the whole back so any little spots get covered and you don't have to foil 20 different areas.

4 solutions for fixing black spots on vintage mirrors (click through for more)    Paint a frame to conceal trouble spots: A lot of times old mirrors will have the most spots around the very edge of the mirror because that's where water got splashed or steam from a bathroom would creep behind the mirror over the years. While you can use the above tricks to fix or minimize damage on the edges, you can also tape off a border or design, use a few coats of spray paint, and create a new frame that covers up the spots instead! I've found that most spray paints will hold up just fine when cleaning the mirror with glass cleaner, but you can always buy a small craft mirror and test out your paint first if you want to make sure it won't wipe right off during cleaning.

4 solutions for fixing black spots on vintage mirrors (click through for more)  4 solutions for fixing black spots on vintage mirrors (click through for more)4 solutions for fixing black spots on vintage mirrors (click through for more)  See?? That original dark area looks SO much better. Since moisture is what caused the spotty damage in the first place, you'll want to make sure you also protect your new mirror from further damage by using a layer of protective polyurethane on the back of the mirror as well (do it before taping the foil or after using the mirror spray paint if you are doing those options). While it does still have that imperfect "vintage feel" to the glass, the makeover process made such a difference to this forgotten treasure, and I will definitely think again before walking away from another cool mirror find in the future! xo. Laura

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

Infused Water InspirationsWe just returned from a ten day carb fest vacation. We tried every possible Dutch fry, Icelandic hotdog and somehow, not sure why, a LOT of pizza and fried foods. It was fun #noregrets. Haha!

With that said, we ate so much indulgent food that I was actually CRAVING kale when we got home. (Not exactly my normal Jeni's Ice Cream craving, you guys!!) 

So Jeremy and I have been kickstarting a bunch of healthy routines this week. It feels amazing. We tried Avo for dinner, and we were both inspired by how tasty a raw, vegan, gluten-free meal can be. I think I need some dramatic music, actually, because I'm feeling REALLY inspired. 

Anyway! Water. 

Water isn't coffee. It's certainly not a latte. Water isn't soda. Water isn't juice or smoothies or cocktails or all the other delicious things that I love. 

To be blunt—water is no fun

But we all know we need to drink more, right? (raising my hand) So this week I am making batches of infused waters to keep in our fridge. And so far, it's really helping me reach for the water! 

Infused Water Inspirations Here are a few combinations you may not have tried before! Orange and star anise (you only need one star to flavor the whole bottle), basil and kiwi and apple and cinnamon. 

If you think these sound gross, cool, but I am NOT LISTENING to your feedback until you at least try it. :D

No really, just try it! 

Infused Water Inspirations  My favorite is the orange and star anise flavor. There is a hint of citrus and spice. It's real nice. 

There are endless combinations you can try. I also love lime and mint and strawberry and basil/mint. If you've never tried infused water, don't expect it to be super flavorful like lemonade. Expect it to be lightly flavored water. Keep this in your fridge at all times and you're straight up fancy

Oh—and if you have a winning flavor combination that you go back to again and again, please leave me a comment. I will try anything! xx. Elsie 

Credits// Author and Photography: Elsie Larson. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

Sister StyleSister StyleI don't mean to sound dramatic, but my brain EXPLODED when I saw this matching cape and skirt set. It's the perfect autumn outfit, in my humble opinion. 

Also, what's all this about plaid being a big trend? Isn't plaid ALWAYS cool? Don't get me wrong, I support the trend (because I love plaid), but I don't get what the big deal is because every autumn is plaid season in my book. 

Sister Style  So fun, right? I love matching!

Sister Style   Elsie's wearing: Cape and skirt/Ruche, Hat/Moorea Seal, Shoes/BC Footwear (you guys, SO comfortable), Glasses/Crap Eyewear, Bag/Madewell

Sister Style    Sister Style    Sister Style    Sister Style    Sister Style    Sister Style    Emma's wearing: Dress/F21, Tights/Target, Jacket/Express, Boots c/o BC Footwear, Hat/Walmart (impulse buy while grocery shopping...I'm cool like that), Purse/Zara.

Does it feel like fall where you live?? I keep hearing my California friends saying it's HOT still. Here in Nashville it's nice and crisp and the leaves in my front yard are starting to fall! xx- Elsie 

ps—SEE! We promised you we'd keep Sister Style going even though we're living in different states now. We'll be together again in just a few weeks to do more. :) So far, so good! 

Credits// Author: Elsie Larson, Photography: Jeremy Larson. Photos edited with Lennon of The Signature Collection

Shop

Check out our new product line,
Photoshop Actions and E-Courses!


Back to Top