I've recently put some teaser photos out there of a project that I have been working on during July and I'm excited to finally be able to share some details with you all (including sources to purchase!)
For some background, this summer was supposed to be full of some much-needed rest and relaxation in my favorite quaint New England town by the sea. Well, it's officially August 28th and I am fully admitting failure on that goal. Le sigh. However, it's largely for a good reason. Back at the end of June, just as Jason and I were getting up to Rockport, MA for the summer, an amazing opportunity came up for my business down in Charlottesville and I always prioritize my work goals over my self-care goals, so I said YES and have spent the summer working away on this latest project.
It's a 2,400 sq ft single-family home in the Ivy area of Charlottesville, VA and I needed to wall-to-wall furnish, decorate and fully equip it to host large groups via AirBnB. And it all had to get completed in about 35 days while I was mainly living in New England. Oh and on a major budget. Good thing I LOVE a good challenge! Time crunches and tight budgets are kind of my jam.
The home's decor and furnishings are geared toward bachelorette parties, gal pal wine tour weekends, and weddings. I am sure the occasional bookings for UVa Alumni groups and families visiting the area, will also come through, but 90% of the rentals will come from groups of ladies, so it makes sense to cater the decor to that. Regardless of who is coming to stay, it's perfectly situated to enjoy all that Charlottesville has to offer being only 10 minutes to downtown and about 10 minutes to Pippin Hill Vineyard. Location, location, location!
When I entered the house, the first thing that I noticed was that the layout was a bit choppier than your typical new construction. That's because the home was constructed on an existing foundation, which brought about some challenges. If groups of up to 14 are going to be in the space, it's necessary to maximize the space in each room to make it great for gathering in since it doesn't have an open layout and the living and dining rooms are more intimate in scale.
I decided to flip the layout around and put the dining room in a room that was clearly staged to be a formal living area. At first I thought this may be a risky move, but I am super pleased with the decision.
The dining table ended up being a design compromise... a dompromise? That should be a new word. Basically, I needed something that extended to at least 115" to accommodate groups of 10-14 but wanted it to normally be around 90-96" when not extended since that's what looks best visually in the room. Now, many of you know that my business- which used to be called Reclaimed Goods- focused heavily on custom-designed furniture. Could I have teamed up with my builder to make a cool custom table with extension leaves? You betcha. Did we have the time to execute this properly, given the insane deadline? NOT A FREAKING CHANCE. I typically overextend myself as it is (extension dining table pun) so I didn't want to spend too much time on this when I can go back and revisit adding a custom table later when we have more time. So what was our budget-friendly, time-friendly solution? Enter: IKEA's STORNAS Extendable Dining Table for only $399
Sometimes, you just have to go with functionality over style. This was one of those cases. In a world of unlimited design budgets and longer time frames, I know I would have gone the custom route. But luckily there are things like cute Kate Spade polka dot tablecloths to disguise the table and make it blend seamlessly with the room!
So I found the tablecloth at HomeGoods (score) on clearance (double score) for only $22. Which certainly doesn't help you guys out if you want to purchase it online. So I did some digging and they do pop up randomly on eBay and Amazon, but you can shop the entire Charlotte Street dinnerware and table collection by Kate Spade on Bloomingdale's.
However, the coral polka dot one sold out on Bloomie's site as of yesterday- which *may* have been me buying several replacements- but they have a navy one that I am mildly obsessed with, and reversible runners and placemats in both colorways. So. Stinkin'. Cute.
My original vision was to have 3 bold patterns within the space - curtains, rug and then either upholstered pattern chairs or the tablecloth- and the rug was a really important way to bring another one of those patterns into the mix. I ended up purchasing this Safavieh brand 8x10 Dip Dye Watercolor Vintage Turquoise/Ivory Wool area rug and I could NOT BE HAPPIER with this purchase! The quality and color of it are amazing. I bought it on Overstock and paid somewhere around $300 after having a coupon.
Now, for the biggest question I keep getting- "Where are those curtains from?!" While I am working behind the scenes tirelessly to bring you guys a new curated selection of home decor that's purchasable online, I don't have it all together yet. When I do, I PROMISE I will feature amazing curtains and throw pillows because they are the easiest ways to jazz up a room! I searched high and low for the right fabric for this space. And with a million fabrics to choose from, this is where I spent the most time choosing the right thing for the room. The fabric was actually the first thing I picked for this space and then built the room out around it. I tend to do that with rooms- find one thing that I adore as my "inspo" piece, big or small, and build the whole room around it.
The fabric is by P/Kaufmann and is called Eastern Charm Hibiscus. I found it on several sites, but Sailrite had it for the least cost per yard. Now at $23.95/yard, I am not saying this is cheap. But it also doesn't look cheap or feel cheap (literally the most buttery cotton fabric I have ever touched) and is still less expensive than buying custom curtains for $200/panel! I made them myself using iron-on hemming adhesive. For the record, I do not recommend this method in hindsight. I am going to get them sewn eventually. The fabric was too thick and it didn't hold perfectly. They look great in photos and from at least 5 feet away. Just don't get toooooo close, haha. This method has worked great in the past, but these puppies need to get officially sewn down the line. I ordered 12 yards and the cost came to about $75 per curtain panel.
Last but not least, the chairs! I found the 2 upholstered end chairs at my local Charlottesville HomeGoods for about $99/chair. I loved the brass ring pull detail on the back. Safavieh makes a nice, affordable ring pull detail upholstered chair that you can buy here on Overstock. Hardware on the backs of chairs is technically functional, as you can pull the chair out without getting your grubby little cheese plate appetizer-filled fingers all over the upholstery, but mainly we just think it looks good. But if you need to sell the idea to your husband, just say that's the reason for them. Fashion with function is always easier for them to digest, in my experience
I found the other wooden chairs originally on Joss & Main/Wayfair and then continued to do my deep dive to find the least expensive alternative. Now, I am lucky because I have a Wayfair Business Account for design and trade and I was able to chat with my rep there to get a price match situation (shout out to Rusty at Wayfair!) But if you want these chairs, like, yesterday, click here or go to Bizchair.com and search the Veronique series. They are only $61.99/chair!!! There are various styles, but I went with the Diamond back in Antique Fruitwood. They have colors and styles that would match with so many different decors and I just love how neat they are as an alternative to typical blah wood chairs!
This brings the total for the room to about $1,700 for rug, fabric, curtain rods, tablecloth, 6 wood chairs, upholstered chairs, and dining table. So for the cost of a typical nice dining table, we got allllllllllll of that! Oh and an additional $15 for 2 ceramic blue french bulldogs from HomeGoods that were beyond necessary for completing the space on a mantle on the opposite wall as the window, about $30 for a gold mirror from Target, and some faux green apples in a glass bowl to tie the green from the curtains through the room which were both from HomeGoods for a total of $28.
Click here for a link to this flirty and fun house on Airbnb and stick around as we feature more rooms on the blog in the coming weeks! And, of course, if any of my WKNDR followers want to come WEEKEND in this new house, just reach out to me and I will give you the official "OH MY GOD, YOU FOLLOW ME?!" discount. Probably via the coupon code OHMYGODPEOPLEACTUALLYFOLLOWMYBUSINESSTHISISSOCOOL