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  • As a rule of thumb, it's a good idea to have chimneys cleaned at least once a year. Usually before cold weather sets in.
  • read all shaktoids!
    June 15, 2015
    Making Your Coffee Table Look Fabulous

    Honestly, I’d never quite understood the purpose of coffee tables. I don’t like how low they are, I seem to always be banging my leg on them, and I don’t drink much coffee. Plus, I’ve never really known what to put on them. I can style a bookshelf like a pro with books and knick-knacks, but coffee tables leave me completely dumbfounded. That’s why I love this post by Kim at Tidbits and Twine. Here are some of her ideas for making your coffee table a beautiful part of your living room:

    -Try putting things in all four corners. This is great if you prefer a busier look and have lots of decorative elements you want to use.

    -Or, try a contained grouping. Place your decorative items on a serving tray in the center of the table.

    -Keep it sweet and simple. Sometimes, less is more. A simple vase of flowers can work wonders.

    -Group things with varying heights and textures.

    Photo Credit: Constanza 


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    June 8, 2015
    Furnishing Your First Apartment On A Budget

    Even though things are looking up for college grads, there are still millions of them out there with no job and thousands of dollars in debt. The ones that don’t move back in with their parents have to face stagnant wages and inflated rent prices. That’s why it’s important now, more than ever, to look for ways to save. Once you save for an apartment deposit, you run into the problem of how to afford furnishings, let alone décor that lets you express yourself. Check out this post by Julia Welling at SheFinds for tips on saving big when moving out:

    -Sign up for store rewards cards before making any purchases

    -Hit up local thrift stores. Be patient and you will most likely find something you love that is affordable.

    -Get creative with your space. A curtain + pressure rod = instant (CHEAP) room divider. Especially helpful for studio apartment dwellers.

    Photo Credit: Rob Young 


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    April 22, 2015
    Wordless Wednesday: Quirky Bathroom

    Photo from Jones Design Company


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    April 16, 2015
    Shelf Styling 101

    The bookshelves in my home are a mess. Well, no. Not a mess. Just…crowded. I have a weakness for used books and trinkets and things, and I like to have them all displayed. While I like looking at all my stuff, it certainly doesn’t look put together. That’s why I was excited to find this post by Mindy at Finding Silver Linings. Check it out for tips on how to style a shelf like a pro:

    -Choose a color scheme, and stick to it. Keeping the colors somewhat limited, you create a sense of unity in the overall look.  Objects that don’t necessarily “go together” will look right if they fall into the chosen color family.

    -Layer shorter things in front of taller things. This creates a sense of depth. Vary heights of objects.

    These are especially useful as staging tips for anyone trying to sell a home!

    Photo Credit: Shira Gal 


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    March 26, 2015
    Getting The Most Out Of A Small Space

    Having a small living space does not mean that you need to be cramped and cluttered. There are plenty of ways to make it work. The key is organization, elimination, and tasteful (minimal) décor. For tips on getting the most out of your small space, be it a kitchen, office, bedroom, or even living room, check out this post by Bao at Releve Design:

    -Don’t supersize. Reenergize- try rearranging furniture to update your look

    -Be negative- Instead of trying to fit everything into a room, try removing items and storing them out of sight. Actively design your negative space. Breathing room allows the eye to rest.

    -Light it up- bring in some good lamps and light up the area. Floor lamps are ideal because they don’t need a stand.

    -Reflect on your space- mirrors always help a small space seem larger

    -Disarm- get chairs, couches, etc. without arms.

    Photo Credit: Karl Frankowski 


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    March 16, 2015
    Making Your Shak Feel Cozy

    March is here, and it’s almost officially Spring. You know what that means- rain, rain, and even more rain. It has poured almost every day for the last 2 weeks where I live (though the days it has not rained have been gorgeous!). In this gloomy weather, it’s important that your home is dry, warm, and cozy. Check out this post by Adrienne Breaux at Apartment Therapy for ways to make your home cozier during the rainy weather:

    -Choose a comfy shaped seat- opt for extra curves, rounded shapes, and thick cushions.

    -Place points of comfort in many, unexpected areas.

    -Cocoon your bed with curtains or canopy

    -Don’t forget the bathroom! Add textiles where they make sense- use fluffy towels, and a thick bath rug.

    -Use comforting materials found in nature

    Photo Credit: Daviddje 


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    March 9, 2015
    How to Start Decorating Your First Home

    If you’re like most people, you probably want your home to look well put-together. If you’re like me, you want that, but have no idea where to start. My favorite design style is “bohemian,” but it’s hard to pull that off without having your home look cluttered and mismatched. For beginner decorating tips that you can match to any personal style, check out this post by Liz Lynch at Who What Wear:

    -Begin with paint- decide on a color scheme for the room, or pick a nice neutral color

    -Choose classic pieces for furniture, rather than something trendy that will feel outdated in a few years

    -Lay down some rugs- they add personality and texture to a room

    -Splurge on lighting that you love

    -Add textiles

    -Put up some inexpensive/DIY wall art

    Photo Credit: Maegan Tintari 


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    January 12, 2015
    Upcycling Idea: Ladder Shelf

    I absolutely love the whole “shabby chic” design trend. I think it just makes the home look cozy and lived in. But, my favorite décor style is bohemian! Flowy fabrics, rich colors, plants living in the house, mismatched throw pillows and rugs- it’s the absolute epitome of maximalism! Which I am all about. That’s why I love this project by Donna at Funky Junk. It incorporates the best of both worlds, while also upcycling an old piece. Check out her stepladder shelf tutorial here:

    -Select boards for shelves, wall supports, and something to connect the ladder to the wall.

    -Lean the full ladder against the wall at the desired angle. Attach ladder to the wall with top brackets. 

    -Mark how long you desire the boards to be, then cut to size.

    -Paint or stain boards if desired

    -Attach supports to wall, add boards.

    Photo Credit: My Latest Obesession 


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    December 31, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Gem Mirror In Bathroom

    Photo from Washingtonian 


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    December 24, 2014
    Wordless Wednesday: Snowflake Door

    Photo from Everything Lovely tumblr


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