{House Guest} Leela Cyd Ross


Last week, I had a special house guest. The lovely and ridiculously talented Leela Cyd Ross stopped by for a kitchen photo shoot, and a much too short catch-up date. Leela and I met three years ago, back when we were both figuring out ourselves and our careers. We first met when she shot our  last house for Apartment Therapy and for The Kitchn’, and it’s been a kick to “grow up” together. Speaking of growing up, here’s a photo Leela took of me the day we met (in the pre-Instagram days)…

kirsten bw

And here’s a photo she took just last week. No more baby face, and juuuust a few more wrinkles:)…

Kirsten | Restored Style

Anyway, Leela got right to work and snapped a number of photos from all sorts of angles. She has the best eye. It’s fun to see a true professional at work – she sees interiors through a different lens and I loved seeing her work her camera magic on a dark and dreary Portland day.

photo-222 photo-221

We’re not certain where this kitchen shoot will land, but when it’s published, you’ll surely know about it:). Have a great week, friends!



{Before + After} Main Hallway


A few folks have asked what else is left to tackle on our main floor. Wellllll, I’m happy to report that all we have left to do in terms of actual renovation projects is detail stuff. Details like paint touch-ups, new hardware, lots of decorating, and such. Now that the big stuff is complete (I know, I still need to reveal the guest bathroom), even the hallway is getting a little love.

Here’s what our main hallway looked like when we bought the house…lots of old + orangish trim, and GOLD hardware everywhere (no, not the good kind of brass)…



We started this update with new (and wider) trim and a fresh coat of white dove paint on all the wallls, trim and hallway built-in piece. A can of white paint goes far. Really far! We also updated the light fixture, to one of my favorite surface mount fixtures from Schoolhouse Electric.


hallway_drawers during

And then, the newly white built-in needed new hardware, so of course, Schoolhouse Electric saved the day. After much debate, I landed on the Kate knob and the Half Moon bin pull in oil rubbed bronze.

Schoolhouse Electric drawer pulls

Hardware always puts the cherry on top, and it certainly made this little space feel complete and updated to 2014 standards.

hallway_drawers after

The hallway is hard to capture on camera because the light is fairly minimal, but the new space certainly feels a lot more like “us” – once again, white paint saves the day.

Cheers to a happy week!

The Next Project

Hands down, the most common question I get asked is “What’s your next project?” and sadly, I always have an answer to this, as I’m addicted to projects. At least I can admit it:)?

So, to answer this question, our next big project in 2014 is renovating the basement. I’ve been slowly gathering ideas for some time now, and I *think* things are coming together (at least in my head). We’re lucky that our basement is already semi-finished, meaning we currently have electrical and plumbing already in place. All we need is insulation, sheet rock, and flooring, and we’ll be in business. It also has great light-it’s a true “daylight” basement.


What will this project exactly entail? The basement renovation will include a family room (with a fireplace that also needs some serious love), a closet laundry area, a full bathroom, and a large bedroom. So there’s lots of nooks and crannies to pay attention to, and it will all be tackled at once. Whew. To get a feel for the layout of the basement (which will stay the same) check out out “before” house tour here.

basement before

basement before

basement before

basement before

Again, we’re just in the research phase of all this right now, but it’s certainly a project we want to tackle this Spring. A few design boards are coming soon:)!


The January Cure


Have you guys signed up for and/or read about Apartment Therapy’s January Cure? It’s essentially a daily schedule of tasks for folks looking to start the year with an organized and clean home. I’ve been somewhat following along, and it’s that extra little kick in the booty I need to do some serious deep cleaning around here (ie: the fridge, the dussssty basement, etc.).

This weekend’s assignment was to bring home flowers, organize the kitchen, and to find a recipe and make a meal. Seems fairly easy, right? Well, this was our kitchen island on Saturday morning. Fresh off from a run to the grocery store, our island had remnants from that shopping trip, as well as other goodies that made their way here during the week. Bad, I know.

january cure

So….I managed to clean up the island and a few other “problem areas” in this room (did you notice the dumping ground in front of our entry way bench?) and I threw a number of expired items out of the fridge. Don’t worry – I didn’t take photos of the past-their-prime fridge items:). I also managed to buy some lovely french tulips. I thought they were certainly worth the $5.99 I paid for them, and I love having something fresh and new in the kitchen, especially during a month that seems quite dull and grey.

january cure

I also made dinner, and although I technically didn’t follow a recipe, I made one of those what-do-I-have-that-sounds-tasty salads. I threw together arugula, beets, edamame, feta cheese, glazed walnuts, dried cranberries, and topped it with homemade olive oil + vinegar dressing. It was pretty delicious.

So that was my January-cure filled weekend day. What about you? Are you guys curing? Just following along online for fun? Already so organized you don’t even need the cure?