A LOT of time has passed since I last shared some updates on our home remodel. Since we were completely gutting and renovating the whole house, we were in the middle of a lot of projects across a couple rooms when covid hit. For some of our projects we had hired outside help, so that had to be put on pause. And with everything being so up in the air, we wanted to save as much money as possible just in case. Now that things are starting to get back to normal a bit in California we have been getting back to work. The room that is for the most part done (aside from being more decorated) is our living room, which really needed not much work compared to other rooms in the house. Keep scrolling to see the before and after!
This room was all us. We scraped wall paper, painted, put in new floors/baseboards, and upgraded the fixtures. I think the most noticeable change is the window behind the couch being closed up. The windows in this room were very old and inefficient. As well, the area behind the couch is where we moved out the wall to expand the bathroom (if you haven't seen our bathroom transformation you can check that out HERE) so instead of replacing it with a smaller window we decided to just close it up. The existing window we had replaced with a much more efficient upgrade.
The only new furniture we bought was the two piece coffee table, which we got from Ikea (HERE). The white couch is also Ikea, but not new. We got it barely used off Facebook Marketplace for $300! The tv console used to belong to my parents, and the green rolling cart is actually a family antique. My grandparents bought it in Korea in the 70s!
Most of the decor are knick knacks I picked up at thrift stores. I'm super proud of the rug, I also found it on Facebook Marketplace! I only paid $50 for it, and managed to squeeze this 9x12 ft rug into the back of a crossover suv all on my own! These rugs are regularly $300 so I couldn't pass it up. The one piece I did buy new for the room is the fake fiddle leaf fig tree. Many I found were pricey, but this one was only about $70!
These have been our coffee table books for years. The Mercedes Benz book was my husbands from Germany, and the Vogue is special to me because I bought it when I was in Paris back in 2011 (the trip where I met my now husband). I love the coasters I bought off Amazon, they have a marble design and are leather so they hold up really well. Plus they have over 1200 reviews and almost 5 stars!
As far as what we are working on now, our goal is to get this old toolshed off the living room transitioned into a bathroom (with shower!) by Thanksgiving. The door to this bathroom is next to the TV. If you look at the old pictures of the living room, the door into this bathroom had a bookshelf attached to it, so it didn't look like a door at all. There was actually a door to the backyard/outside that we closed up behind the toilet.
As far as the room I am most excited to share, the kitchen, we should be getting that room wrapped up very soon! We ordered our cabinets back in February, but one *single* cabinet was on backorder and was supposed to arrive by April. Due to covid, it got pushed back until August and there was actually a lot our contractor couldn't build because of this one cabinet. But now that we have the cabinet our guy is coming back in to finish the kitchen very soon! I'll be sharing that hopefully at the end of this month :D
Back in the beginning of 2020 (simpler, happier times...) I got a killer deal on a pair of canvas Chanel espadrilles. They were super popular a couple years ago, but the look is really timeless and classic so I've been keeping an eye out for a pair. I was super excited to find a pair on Poshmark that needed a little TLC but were still in really great condition. With shipping and taxes, I only paid $63 for them. Similar pairs in that condition usually range from $200-$250! Especially in my size which is super common and in demand.
For the most part they were in really good condition. The only major issue was that the sole was starting to separate from the top part of the shoe, which you can see in the before pictures below:
I was SO EXCITED to get these shoes in the mail! As soon as I saw they had been delivered to my PO Box, I immediately drove to the post office. I got them from my box and rushed back to the car to try them on. I was SO DISAPPOINTED TO FIND THEY WERE JUST A TAD TOO SMALL. :( I could barely slip the back on my foot and I was worried the shoe would split even more due to my big fat feet (lol if you are ever buying Chanel shoes online know they run small and to size a whole size up at least!)
I have seen espadrilles as slip on slides so I decided to do a little DIY project and try to convert them into another kind of shoe I could wear. Did I commit a designer sin by putting scissors to a pair of Chanel shoes? Maybe, keep scrolling to see the result!
It was actually super easy and all in all took about 20 minutes to do! I used some sharp scissors to cut along the fray hem where the top of the espadrilles met the sides. Around the sole I made sure to cut just above the stitching so as not to unravel it. As far as the breaking sole I used super glue to hold it back together. Without the pressure of the sides holding on to the back of the foot it hasn't broken apart again.
Overall I am super happy with the way my DIY project turned out! I now have some really cute casual *fancy * slip ons. Plus it barely cost me anything besides the cost of the super glue.
I did a little research and found a handful of secondhand Chanel espadrilles similar to the ones I found at some really discounted prices below:
I also found a whole bunch of Chanel espadrille dupes on sale that look so similar to the designer ones! The Sam Edelman ones are half off! Just click on the picture to check them out.
While other states have been open for weeks, the lovely state of California is still very much in shelter in place. I'm definitely bored, so what have I resorted to? Painting butts.
One of my favorite bloggers, Kathleen Barnes/Carrie Bradshaw Lied, shared on her instagram about this project she was doing to keep herself busy, and I loved it! I had been researching modern / abstract bathroom art, but redecorating is EXPENSIVE so I loved seeing a DIY project I could try. I definitely recommend practicing and drawing out a sketch butt with a sharpie before attacking a piece of paper with paint. Once you break down the picture into single lines, it's actually pretty easy! When it came time to paint I just traced my best sharpie practice butt. (I've never typed "butt" this many times and I'm loving it.) I think it makes for cool modern bathroom art!
The only paintbrushes we had were for walls and big paint projects, so I ordered this 10 piece set off Amazon for $7.99. I also got this frame set, 10 frames for only $33.99! Thats only $3.39 a frame, which is a killer deal. Great for a collage wall!
I had so much fun with the butt (lol) that I decided to get all artsy and take a stab at a few more paintings! A number of them went straight into the bin but I did like how two ended up! Hubs said we could hang them up in the garage (lol) but I convinced him to hang them in our living room. :)
I LOVE Longchamp bags. They are so classic and preppy + high quality pieces that last forever. Back before I was so into secondhand shopping I bought myself a new medium size black Le Pliage tote for my birthday, and then for my birthday last year I got a tan nylon backpack as a gift (perfect thrifting bag!)
I've been wanting a large Le Pliage tote bag for sometime. I see so many chic ladies using them for travel and I wanted one! They retail for $145, but because I know how high quality they are I was willing to buy myself a fixer upper. I had been searching sometime between secondhand sites when I found this pretty red bag on Poshmark! I had originally been looking for a navy one, but red is also versatile and goes so well with everything. The bag was listed at $20, but had been listed for some time. I was wondering if I could get away with buying the bag for a total (tax+shipping) for under $20. I sent the seller an offer of $12 and they accepted! It was all mine for under $18. Total score!
Of course, there was a catch. The bag was very worn. You can see a lot of the wear in the before pics below, but it had a lot of dark marking (probably from rubbing on jeans), small water stains, white paint, and holes had started to tear in the corners (this is pretty common on Lonchamp bags.) Keep scrolling to see what I did to make it look almost new!
CLean Nylon with Warm Water + Clear Soap
To clean the nylon of your Longchamp Le Pliage bag, run it under a low stream of warm and water and scrub with a clear, mild soap. Pro tip: make sure to avoid getting the leather details too wet! Water will stain leather and is a lot harder to remove. I had the leather handles and clasp bound up out of the way, and you can also tie a plastic bag around it. I used a scrubby pad to really clean out the nylon, but don't use anything too sharp! Make sure to rinse all the soap out to avoid any discoloration lines, and let it air dry.
Use Nail Polish Remover on Paint
The staining I was most worried about getting out was the paint. I had read online that a traditional nail polish can get paint out of a lot of materials, so I thought I would give it a try. I applied it to a q tip and lightly applied it to the paint stain spots. It dissolved SO fast! Easiest part of the clean up.
Flip Bag Inside Out To Repair Holes
I think it is really important to mend the holes in the corner of your tote bag because with the heavy items in your bag + gravity the rips can really spread and it's less likely you can repair it without being too noticeable. I flipped the bag inside to sew up the rips so as to make sure the stitching is not as noticeable. I used a very thick needle and dental floss because its much stronger than traditional thread. Make sure to keep your sewing very close to the the rip line to make the stitches less noticeable, and make the line as straight as possible to ensure you get crisp corners.
The whole process took me under 30 minutes, and now I have a like new Longchamp Le Pliage large tote bag! Sometimes rehab on an item can be off putting (either for reselling or for your personal closet) but always do your research because sometimes you can get away with an amazing steal! If you are looking for your own secondhand Longchamp Le Pliage tote bag, I've linked a whole bunch of options above 50% + off retail. Thanks for reading!
I will be the first to admit I love a clean, classic, neutral look, but sometimes you just want to add a dash of something special! And when I am feeling spicy like that (yeah right I can't really handle spicy but you know what I mean) I love to use a silk scarf to tie up in my hair, around my neck, or on one of my handbags. I recently wanted to find a few cute new ways to integrate a scarf onto my purse and discovered a couple cute and fun ideas!! Keep scrolling to see a couple how to dos!
First off, all these cute styles start off by folding up the scarf longwise. Like this!
And from there just tie away!
These first few are SUPER easy but still cute in just seconds:
So easy! **I am definitely NOT a DIY type of person so you can trust me**
The scarf I used is 100% silk AND only $9.99 AND comes in over 14 different colors and patterns! It is a total Hermes lookalike without the 4 figure price tag. Pick up one below before they sell out!
ALSO I've scoured the internet and found a variety of Longchamp La Pliage totebags similar to the one I used above secondhand for great prices! I love this bag because it is a great quality bag that is timeless and chic and goes with everything. I don't see them around the US as much as I see them in Europe (it's a French brand) but those Europeans know whats good when it comes to fashion! These are all from TheRealReal, and when you sign up you get a $25 credit, making some these bags only $25!
Secondhand Starting at $50!
Live for luxury? No trust fund, no problem!
Join the fancy free journey as we seek the
finer things in life, sans millions.
- Marie Claire, September 2016