Wednesday, November 8, 2017

A Kitchen worth waiting for

Hey everyone! 

I am so excited to show you this beautiful kitchen I just completed! My client and friend since grade school asked me to help her with the design of her kitchen. We had a lot of fun working on this project! From lunch dates to play dates discussing kitchen plans- this job never felt like work. 

Jessica wanted a clean, open and light kitchen. To her, the old kitchen made things feel dark and closed in so she wanted to go with all white. We painted the cabinets high reflective white from Sherwin Williams. As you can see it really brightened up the place! We kept with the white theme by using white beveled subway tile but instead of choosing a white grout we went with a grey grout to help tie in the Calcutta laminate countertop and to give each tile a pronounced look. The beveled subway tile was a great texture feature in this all-white kitchen. They gave it a nice spin on the timeless subway tile. 


With new cabinets come new flooring. Jessica and her husband picked this walnut stained oak laminate plank flooring. In an all-white kitchen it's fun to play with contrast and who doesn't love the way white and wood look together?! Our wonderful cabinet maker took the floor sample and hand matched the stain so we could replicate it on the hood. I think they did a wonderful job! 

A kitchen nor an outfit would be complete without jewelry! We found some great knobs and pulls from Top Knobs. Jessica spotted these pulls and loved the bling. They are sleek with a little flare!

As a designer, I love picking out all the beautiful parts and pieces for the design but seeing the finished product is such a wonderful and rewarding feeling! I love being an interior designer and I really believe that everyone should have a place to come home to that makes them feel relaxed and safe.  Between Jessica and her family doing a lot of the work themselves and my awesome installers, I think we achieved just that with this kitchen!

Now Check out these before and after pictures!

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

All the right things-maybe just all the wrong places?

Do you have all the right furnishings but struggle with the layout? No problem I can help you find the right places for your existing piece. Like this client, she had an existing nursery room but she wanted to tweak a few things. Now that her little boy was starting to become mobile she wanted to put things up hire and also create a space where he could read and play with toys. The only new items were the yellow bookshelf with cut and colorful tots so that we had storage for his ever growing collection of books and toys. The other new items were purchased to help warm the room like the area rug, a cute little fox pillow, a floor lamp- because, in my opinion, lamps are the best and help create that warm ambiance and a side table so mama can put any items that she may need while she is rocking or nursing. That is it! The client did such a great job assembling it all for the completed look! Take a look for yourself!









Safari Complete!

Hey everyone!

The safari edesign I blogged about earlier is complete! I am so excited to show you all how fun edesigns can be! For those of you who don't know or might still be confused as to what an edesign is, edesign is a quick and easy way to decorate any room in your house. We talk over the phone, or video conference and you send me some documentation and ideas for the space that needs some help and I create an overall design and provide you with instructions and plans and EVEN a shopping list of all the furnishings that will be needed to complete your room design! It's that easy!

This room was so much fun to do! I love to help with nurseries, there are so many fun cozy little nooks to fill with snuggles and books. I love creating nook-hence by business name. Here is the material board I provided to the client so that she could get a feel for the over design and decide if that was the direction she wanted to go. Once I provided her with the shopping list she took off! She bought almost everything I had suggested and with some slight adjustments to the floor plan she assembled it into the cozy room that they will bring their new, beautiful baby boy home to.

Client's testimonial

My family and I have worked with Nestled Nook, and April twice now. Both times we have had a great experience. With our first nursery we had some items on hand, but we wanted our nursery to be more lively and fun. April worked with us to keep existing furniture, while adding fun new pieces to the mix. Some items we swapped out to give our nursery more utility and be able to grow with my son. With our second nursery we gave April free reign on designing based off our chosen theme. April was there throughout the whole process checking in with our progress and seeing if she could help with anything else. One huge thing she was great was finding companies that would ship to us, especially the larger items. If they wouldn’t she would be back working hard to find an item that did! Such a great and easy process. Loved having her room layout designs to tell exactly where everything should go. Can’t wait to work with April and Nestled Nook again!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

For the love of seating!

Oh, my goodness what a fun project this was!

First, my client was probably the most interesting lady I have met! She is such a talented artist! She has all of these wonderful paintings throughout her house and as I was asking her about them I would comment on how beautiful they were and she would always reply with a, "Thank you." I didn't find out until about the third one in that they were all one of a kind piece painted by her! I think I may just have to get one of those paintings myself. 

She not only had beautiful art pieces but she had so many wonderful pieces of furniture that were art pieces themselves. She has some lovely antique items in her home. One of which is this beautiful Victorian love seat. This piece was passed down from her great grandmother. The piece was in pretty good condition minus so rethreading that needed to be done on the springs. The wood frame had minimal scratches and besides the fading, the upholstery was holding together pretty well. 


Not too much repair needed to be done but the webbing had started to come loose. You can tell by the decoloration of some of the webbing that it had been repaired before. This is why I LOVE antiques, they always have a story and with each new owner, I love thinking that their story is continuing. Luckily we found someone who also appreciates antiques and he was able to restring the springs, repair the webbing and re-upholster the love seat. He takes great pride in his work and does a great job. He even went the extra mile and gave the wood a little polish. 

This is her color scheme for the room. Originally we were going to go VERY bold with the fabric choice but instead felt that we could go more neutral on the piece itself and the accents can be the brighter and bolder colors in the room.


Although I love the fuschia pink fabric I am so excited with the way the piece turned out! The two toned gives the love seat a fun, updated look!


Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Timeless bathroom- Black and white!

Welcome to the Black and white bathroom!

The classic black and white bathroom, I don't think it could ever go out of date. I was able to put a concept and materials together for my cousin and her husbands master bathroom. It's a great space. Large and open with plenty of natural light but in need of just a few updates and repairs. A you can see by the photos, they had some water damage in their shower. They already got to work on demo and it motivated them to get the bathroom of their dreams. So they asked me to give them some idea! They want to keep the overall layout but want switch everything out for new. Along with replacing old with the new they wanted to replace all the tile. We thought we would run a wainscot of tile along both walls with the new free standing tub. As they have 3 children the more waterproof we can get the better. They gave their ideas and provided an inspiration image and we went from there.

This project really was so much fun! I created a mood board with all the overall design of materials. Mood boards are a great tool to get a overall feel for the style and decide if there are things that need to be changed and switched out. Once she felt good about the overall feel of the bathroom design I created floor plans, elevations and 3d images. Because she doesn't live in the same town as me, she will need to hire a contractor and provide him/her with these plans. By having plans and her materials already picked out the remodel process will go a lot smoother for both her and the contractor. Half the stress of a remodel is trying to decide on what materials to use.

Mood Board

Existing bathroom

To save a little on the remodel we contemplated keeping the existing vanity by adding paint and replacing the door panels and knobs. Once we explored that option we found it really didn't save a significant amount. They felt for the money it would cost, they wanted to get a vanity they wanted. We found a photo of a floating vanity they can show a custom cabinet maker to have built. We also talked about replacing the existing with 2 individual mirrors instead of a sheet mirror and two adorable gold vanity lights. This vanity wall will have a completely updated, stylish look!

(Not my photo)

Proposed concepts

Flooring Option #1

In the proposed options most of the materials are the same but the floor material. In option 1 you see there is another floor tile planned under the bath tub. The bathroom is quiet large with a lot of flooring. To be able to break up the flooring material I designed a distinct area around the free standing tub to set this space apart from the rest of the bathroom. This allows the tub to become its own relaxing environment. 

Flooring Option #2

Floor tile

Apavisa-Hydraulic Series (Option 1. Used under the free standing tub)

Roma Series-Grafite

Retro Active (Option 2. 12"X24" herringbone pattern)

This design was used in the format of Edesigns. Edesigns are a style of Interior design that allows for the client to receive a clear plan for either a remodel or placement of furniture and accessories. Nestled Nook supplies the plans as well as the material and furniture shopping list that the client can either DIY or provide to a contractor. (Final measurements and remodel will be completed by client or contractor. Plans are preliminary.) For more information email me or visit my Etsy site.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The fun starts all over again!

Hey all I hope everyone had a wonderful summer!

Over here at the Merrill house we tried to get out and enjoy some family time every weekend we could. Paul completed his first year of law school and now he's on to round two! I am so proud of him. He worked so hard and I have been nothing but impressed with his hard work.

It was a tough 1st year of law school. He practically lived at the library. There would be some nights we would only see him for about 1-2 hours! Along with law school and moving across the ocean from Germany back to the States, we decided to not only have me head back to work while he was going to school but that I would start my own design business! There were a lot of challenges balancing our busy schedule and making sure we set time aside for our marriage as well as family time with our beautiful little girl!Somehow we made it work quiet well.

So when summer rolled around for Paul we took advantage of it and had a great summer, making so many wonderful memories! I am not ready for Paul to go back to school! He was able to be a stay at home daddy over the summer. I went to work 4 days a week while he stayed home cooking, cleaning and taking care of our little girl. It was quiet the experience and one that I wish everyone could have.

 I had been a stay at home mama for Maja's (My-a) first year. I loved it but there were days that were so hard and all I wanted to do was go back to work! Paul was able to see first hand the struggles and frustrations of being a stay at home parent. To say the least, he gained a greater appreciation of stay at home mamas. He learned all about the balance of trying to get things crossed off the to do list while making sure Maja's needs were always met. Sometimes the house gets neglected so the child stops whining.  I on the other hand learned all about how frustrating it is when you can't wait to get home to your loving family but instead you walk through the door to find your child is screaming and your spouse is begging you for 5 minutes alone so they can regroup and gather what's left of their sanity.

One day in particular will always stand out. I had just come home from work. I couldn't wait to get home to my family! I missed them so much! I get home and open the garage door to see our Subaru and all its parts on the floor. Paul looked exhausted and frustrated. He looked at me and said, "Maja has been so clingy all day and the Subaru isn't cooperating! I can't seem to get all the parts put back together. I need to go to the store really quick." No, "Hi, how are you? How was your day?" Just come take your child so I can get out of this house for a few minutes. I didn't yell at him or really say anything- probably because I knew if I said something I would end up needing to apologize for it later. I went to our room and changed from work clothes to casual, gathered my thoughts and came out where Paul was.We had a talk about what just happened. Paul is, and always has been very understanding and willing to listen to my frustrations. We talked it out and ended up laughing. I remember one winter day when Paul got home from school and I met him at the door in a very similar frazzled state. I hadn't showered and I'm sure, looked like one tired mama. Maja was teething and wanted me to hold her all day but I had a huge list of to do's. I know now how it feels to walk in expecting a cheerful home, with smiling faces but instead find them completely exhausted and not at all cheerful.

This summer we have had moments when we would get frustrated with the other but end up laughing because we knew exactly what the other one was going through. Paul had his first day back at school and it certainly has been a transition. I have quickly realized how much I am going to miss having him home. Summer life was good for this mama but now we are back to balancing life. So far we are doing great getting back into the swing of things. We kicked it in gear and some how managed to get the house cleaned, dinner made and child bathed almost every night this week!

These two cuties have changed so much in the last year! Daddy was happy to not have to wear a suit for the first day of school. As for Maja, it is impossible to get her to smile or even look at the camera these days!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Safari Nursery

Who said boys are no fun?!

Our very good friends, well they are more than friends, they are our my daughters future in-laws. They have the sweetest little boy who we have already arranged for our daughter to marry. We had to snatch him up before any other ladies got to him. I am sure that Maja will thank us when she is older.
They not only have one adorable little boy but will be having another handsome little man in just a few moths! We are so excited for them! She asked me to help her with the new little misters nursery. She always comes up with the greatest themes and this time she chose the safari theme! We went with neutrals and we wanted to make sure that he would be able to grow with everything we put into the room.

I had no problem shopping for this project. Right off the bat I found this adorable little giraffe chair then the perfect bedding and pretty soon I found it all!

This style of design that I used to help our friends is called E-design (electronic design). Our friends unfortunately live miles away from us. E-design was a great option for me to be able to help her put a room together. For her E-design was another great solution because she has a one year old running around and she works as a nurse. Having busy life like that it can be hard to shop around looking for all the little things that make a room great. How we went about the process is fairly simple, she gave me the theme and colors she was thinking about as well as documentation of the room like the measurements, photos. I put together what I call a mood board so she can get a feel for how everything will look together. I also sent her some sections, floor plan as well as a shopping list with online links attached.

Everything is purchased and she is waiting for arrival! She was so quick! I can't wait to see it all put together!

E-designs can be a wonderful tool to be able to achieve a well designed room BUT my clients have greater success if they don't wait to long before they order it all.

Let me know if you think E-designs sound like something your home could benefit from!

Mood board

Sections and Floor plan

Monday, August 7, 2017

From big or little projects

I have been so fortunate to have only worked with the best clients! These clients had the sweetest little granddaughter that I would get to hangout with every time I would go over and check on the project. She is a year and a half but she knew how to run the show. She was very helpful and supervised as the tile installer worked.
This project is a great example of how I can help you with your next project. I love being able to help with all the aspects that go into a project but if you are like these clients maybe you only need to purchase some tile. They had recently remodeled their kitchen and had left over 12x12 tile and wanted to use the left over boxes on their shower. We shopped around my store to find some pretty mosaic deco that would complement the tile and they were ready to begin their shower remodel!



Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Kitchen-Subway tile

 I LOVE how this kitchen turned out! The color of the cabinets and the beautiful counter top compliment each other well. The kitchen is clean and simple but modern. I was only in charge of back-splash but when you hear your client say that her favorite part of the kitchen is the back-splash design it feels good! This was a 3x6 white subway tile laid in a brick pattern capped with a chair rail to switch the pattern to a herringbone. The grey grout really helps to define each tile and allow for the the mix of patterns and tile to become more prominent.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Introducing E-Design!

Hey all,

I wanted to share with you all a new and exciting service I am going to providing! I am adding E-designs to my list of services!

You probably all are wanting to know what is E-design, right?

E-Design is a way of offering my interior decorating services to those who may live out of the area or those who are interested in hiring an interior designer but may not have the budget to do everything at one time. E-design is a service that I provide to clients who are finding themselves with a room that they simply can't figure out how to decorate. This service is a great tool to provide clients who may not have the time or the vision to be able to decorate a room themselves. I provide a list of all the furnishings recommended in the room as well as drawings so you know where each of these items are to be placed.

One of the great reasons I love E-design is because it doesn't matter where you live or what kind of budget you have. With the information that I gather up and send to you, you get to choose, in a reasonable time frame, when to purchase these items.

The process is painless and goes like this; when you choose to go with E-design you, the client, would be responsible for all the room measurements, and photo documentation. I send a questionnaire to be filled out so I can get to know you and your likes and dislikes. After you send this information back over email the real fun begins!

I get busy on my end putting together the room design! I create a mood board.(Refer to image below) The mood board is a great tool to show the client how the materials selected will read together. Once you see the mood board I create a product list for you. This Product list includes all the furnishings that will go into the room. The documents will include an image of the item itself, along with the price and link to the materials for purchase. From there you can choose WHAT items you want to order as well as WHEN to order. It's a great alternative to the traditional way of hiring a interior designer. It can be ordered by you or through me and delivered directly to you.

Mood Board

E-designs are great but there are some cautionary warnings that I think every client should be aware of. When you are ordering solely online- colors, sheen and sizes are portrayed differently. There are so many different shades of one color out there and as helpful as the mood boards are, sometimes the colors vary in person than the image on the computer screen portrayed. I don't want to detour you from E-designs but I want to make sure that I am informing my clients of the realities of E-design.

I think that E-designs can be very beneficial and so far my clients have been very pleased with the outcome. I will say that if you find yourself needing help with materials such as flooring, tile, or wallpaper this type of service may not be for you. In a remodel situation I would want you to come see me in person so we can be sure that everything looks perfect. I have found that E-design is a service that is more successful and productive on smaller scales with purchase of furnishing not materials. You have better luck returning a lamp than a pallet of tile.

I know that a lot of people have that one room that they keep walking in or keep shutting the door-worrying that your guest will open the door and see the embarrassing site. I get it, life is busy and sitting down trying to create an idea for a room or spending hours going around store upon store is the last thing you have time for!

Email me or call me if you think you may be interested in trying E-design out. Go over to my services tab and check it out or come visit me at my Etsy shop.

Stop stressing about that forbidden room and lets make it a room you want to show to anyone and everyone who comes by the house.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

The Centerpiece

Hello again!

I hope everyone had a wonderful Mother's Day! Mine was wonderful. We got to celebrate my mom and all the wonderful woman in my family on Saturday with a BBQ at my sister's house. We had almost the whole gang there. We are missing my sister and brother and 3 nephews and 3 nieces. I have a large family so althought we we missing quiet a few the house was filled with noise.

On Sunday we celebrated my mother-in-law, my husband's grandma and my sister-in-law. Every year my husband's mother loves to go to a park outside of town and play softball. It's been like this since Paul and I started dating way back in 2007. We had to modify our plans this year with the weather being on again off again. This year we spent the day with my in-laws. The girls got to swing and play all day long together. 

I know it was my Mothers Day too. Don't worry I got to celebrate. I had a week long celebration. My daughter really made me work for the tile this week. She had a ear infection and would NOT let her or her daddy lay her down at night. We got to co-sleep. I love taking advantage of the few snuggles I get these days but man oh mighty, not at night. That girl can snore! If she wasn't shaking the whole bed with her snoring she was kicking her daddy out of bed or slapping or kicking me in the face. We did this for three nights before her meds started to kick in. I haven't been tired like that since the night we brought her home from the hospital. But really, Mother's day was pretty great. My husband always makes the day special. He's always appreciated all the women in his life. He started the day with letting me sleep in when missy wanted to be up at 5:30am. They came in to wake me up with a beautiful card and herb jar that I will hopefully keep a live longer than a week. It was a great day. 

Ok so I promised I would write more on projects and less on my personal life so I thought I would let you all in on a little design secret of mine. Finding the centerpiece in your home.

Just like setting a table for a holiday dinner, the centerpiece is always the thing that catches the eye. then the flat wear and so on. In my home and a lot of clients that I have helped there is usually that one piece that they LOVE. I don't mean that one piece that you have to work in the design because your mother gave it to you and you feel like you have to have it on display. No, I am talking about a piece that gives you get excited about. There are always reasons why you are drawn to something. It can be the shape, or the color. It's always fun when I work with a client and they don't know what they like but they keep coming back to a similar color or they have pinned the same photo on Pinterest a gazillion times and didn't realize it and still think that they don't know what they want. This is the same with your centerpiece. You may not know what your style or color(s) is but you keep coming back to this one piece in your home or when you are out shopping. Don't fight it, run with it. Learn to listen to yourself.

My Centerpiece, or the item I love the most in my home is my Swedish Mora clock. I love the shape, the antique feel, and the beautiful hand painting. We bought Mora when we were living in Germany. When I saw her I had to have her. (Yes, it's a girl and she has a name) I have always loved Mora clocks. They are so beautiful. I can appreciate grandfather clocks but they are not me. I realized that I love furniture with curves. It amazes me how wood can be formed and carved. I fell in love with Mora a little more when we went to visit Paul's mother's side in Sweden and I read more on the history of these clocks.

A Swedish Mora clock is designed in Sweden.Imagine that. The northern part of Sweden went through a difficult time in the 1700's. The soil was not able to produce food and many of the people were starving and literally fighting to make ends meet. In order to keep their families alive they went to the southern part of Sweden to make money. Many of them learned new traits and brought them back to the northern part of Sweden. One of those traits being clocking making.

Ander Anderson was one that took off with the Swedish Mora clock. He put his initials A.A.S on the face of the clocks. They are the most famous of the Swedish clocks. The face is beautiful. They were hand painted and often worked on by more then one family and then sold to later be put into the beautiful body that we recognize as the Mora clock.

The body is not to be diminished by any means. The Mora clock was a traditional gift given to the bride on her wedding day. The bridal clock is carved with extra detail. The body of the clock is very significant in this tradition. The body of the clock is shaped in a similar fashion as the woman's frame. She is delicate and feminine. The crown that many of the clocks wear symbolize the bridal veil that the bride will wear as well.

The clock bodies range in different styles and paintings. The very common style that many of us know as the Mora clock is the body that was made in the town of Mora, Sweden. Depending on the area that the clock was made the shape and style will change. In the article that I was given by the lovely lady I bought my clock from, she wrote there were 4 different styles. ( Those being. Country, Fryksdall, bridal and city.

I love that these clocks were given as a bridal gifts to be cherished. They are family treasures to pass down for the next generation to love and adore. When I look at Mora I wonder what her story is and how being in our lives will contribute to that story. Where did she come from? Was she given as a bridal gift? I like to think so and I can't wait to give her to my little girl on her wedding day. For now I will keep enjoying both my girls in each of their stages. There is a special connection you get when you take the time to study these beautiful clocks history. I hope that

Maja will grow up to appreciate the centerpiece in our home and maybe one day it can be a centerpiece in her home. Not the thing she has to decorate around because her mother gave it to her. 

As a clock owner I must warn any new seekers when you search for your special Mora. As much as you think you know what style you want, she will pick you.

Now go and find your centerpiece