{home & garden} tiny oranges design reveal!

So a few weeks ago, I shared that I had done a design update for a friend. Such a fun project! Be sure to check out the before shots in that post as well as Jen’s post today.

I’ll rewind a bit for you.

When we put our house on the market last spring, quite a few people commented on the interior design of our home during the open houses.  I never really thought of our home as a show house of sorts…but for some reason, lots of people commented and asked if I was still doing interior design.  While my past life, pre-kids, involved large scale interior home design, and hotel resort design project management, my current life and our own home, was certainly not that same level!

What our home is, or was, is an example of a young family with 3 crazy active toddlers, parents that appreciate design, who don’t think that needs to change with kids, and a mom that needs to have her house fully functional and organized to keep up with the chaotic, awesome, and busy life we live.  Wheeewww….tall order. (Here’s a quick shot of our main Great Room).

I got to thinking that there were probably other families out there that could use a little bit of design help along those same lines. So after 16 years in the design industry, I returned to it again last spring under the name, MFE Designs. The primary focus being simple, but creative, family functional rooms.

Along the way, Jen from Tiny Oranges sent me an email asking if I could help with some suggestions for her girls’ rooms.  As is normal when you tackle projects like this, it gets a little overwhelming with decisions!  It’s nice to have some one sort through your thoughts. We met for the initial hour and a half consult and walked through the rooms to discuss the major points:

1. WHO would be sleeping in which room. Jen had 3 rooms, a Guest Room with ensuite bathroom, then 2 little girls rooms. I knew Jen wanted to change the order around. So we needed to talk about what the needs and goals were. As well as what size beds would work for all the rooms.

2. WHAT things were important to each girl. Colors, activities, toys, pictures, books.  What did the girls like to do? What were each girl’s individual interests? It’s important to me that kids really feel like their room is truly theirs.

3. HOW OFTEN would they use their Guest Room? And who were the guests? Family? Or?

4. What did Jen and her husband envision were the priorities for each girl?

From there we talked about ideas and solutions to accomplish the goals. After meeting, we provided a general estimate to complete the project. Once the “Not to Exceed” budget was set, and a few general meetings took place to show them our overall direction, then they were willing to be surprised.  Jen and her family left for a previously planned vacation, and we were able to install all 3 rooms, revealing them all to them on their return….sooooo fun!!! I can’t wait for you to see each of them!

The key points for their 3 year old’s room ~ their daughter liked green, she needed lots of imaginary play space (wanted to keep an existing play kitchen), toy storage that she could keep up with herself, better use of closet storage, moving into a big girl bed from a crib, and needing to incorporate family and friend photos.  Jen also did a GREAT job of leaving us with “piles” grouped for each girl in their front room.  We were able to pick out things we could easily incorporate, or change and use differently.  So the girls were able to walk into new rooms, but also see familiar items. We REALLY loved this design project!  Such a sweet family to work for!!

Hop on over to Jen’s blog to see the full reveal with before and after pictures.

Below is a source list of items.

Bed:

  • Bed Frame ~ LEIRVIK, Ikea {$89 for a Full!!!}
  • Sheets ~ Client purchased
  • Green Bed Pillows ~ TJ Maxx
  • Blue Body Pillow ~ EVALOTTA Fabric/Ikea, Form/Target, Fabrication/Custom Workroom
  • Yellow Throw Pillow ~ MARGARETA Ikea (I don’t see the yellow anymore).
  • Sherpa Bean Bag ~ Pottery Barn Kids
  • White Bedspread ~ ALINA, Ikea
  • Green Striped Bedskirt ~ NYPONROS Full Duvet set, Ikea custom made into a bedskirt. 2 pillow cases included in the set used on the bed.
  • Window Treatment Sheers ~ MATILDA, Ikea (Existing Black out Rollers hidden behind sheers.)
  • Window Treatment Rod, Finials, Brackets ~ Ikea
  • Mirror ~ STAVE, Ikea
  • Lamps & Shades ~ Target
  • Robin print ~ Existing (and worked sooo well with the bird print fabric!)
  • You Are My Sunshine print ~ Client purchased from Etsy (Source in Jen’s post today) / Frame, Aaron Bros 1 cent sale
  • Rug ~ White shag, Target
  • Storage Cubbies ~ EXPEDIT White High Gloss, Ikea
  • Storage Baskets ~ PJAS, Ikea

Closet Wall:

  • Green Storage bins over closet ~ clearance aisle at Target
  • Vintage Books ~ Clients exsiting
  • Closet Curtain ~ Rod, Rings, Finials ~ Ikea
  • Closet Green Striped Fabric ~ SOFIA, Ikea, Custom made
  • Magnetic Bulletin Boards & Round Magnets ~ SPONTAN, Ikea
  • Book Ledges ~ RIBBA Picture Ledge, Ikea
  • Yellow Clock ~ Target
  • Ribbon Board ~ I DIYed from a Pottery Barn Kids Book
  • White toy box ~ Box, Client’s existing / Fabric ~ Fabric.com, then custom made
  • White Bolster Pillow ~ EMMIE RUND, Ikea
  • Yellow Throw ~ Ikea (I don’t see it now to give you the name)
  • All Monogramming ~ Anne Pyke in Costa Mesa
  • Storage Bins in Closet ~ Container Store plastic storage boxes

Entry Wall:

  • Play Kitchen ~ Exisiting
  • Book Ledges ~ RIBBA Picture Ledge, Ikea
  • Box Acrylic Frame ~ Aaron Brothers
  • “Sweet Letters” ~ Clients Exisiting

I really loved how this room turned out! Playful and young, but easy to grow up with too.  Stay tuned for 2 more rooms in Jen’s house.

Update ~ I’ve had a few requests on how to contact me about our design services, best way is by email, shanna@mfedesigns.com we look forward to connecting with you!

{Photo Credit: All home photos above photographed by Tankersley Photography}

{home & garden} an update for a friend

Oh Hi!!  How are ya!?!?  Been while, hasn’t it….

You may wonder if the photo above is our house. It’s not.

I’ll fill you in in the next couple days about all that’s been happening, but in the mean time, I wanted to be sure you didn’t miss out on one of the MAJOR things I’ve been doing and had SUCH FUN while doing it!!

You all know Jen at Tiny Oranges?  I’ve talked about her loads in the past. And thankfully for me, I’ve also gotten to know her in real life over the past couple of years.  Jen’s blog was the first blog I ever read…and truthfully, I didn’t even really know what blogs were.  But I knew I loved hers!

So here’s the FUN… Jen has been talking about choosing a new mattress.  The things you should think about when deciding to do so, what to look for in a mattress, etc. But here’s the thing, there’s always a domino effect when you tackle things like this. You know, when you find a cute pair of shoes, you HAVE to get a new outfit to go with them!! Right??!

And that is EXACTLY what happened with Jen. Deep in the desicion process of what mattresses to get her girls, she felt slightly overwhelmed with the overall switch in her bedroom situation she felt needed to take place. A quick phone call and meeting later and we were brainstorming ideas on what to do with her Guest Room, and 2 daughters’ rooms….and I have got to tell ya, these little girls’ rooms might just be the most fun rooms I’ve ever worked on!!!!  I can’t wait to share them!  For now I have a few before shots to show you, along with a suggestion to go check out Jen’s post on how they selected their mattresses.

Stay tuned for the fun reveal!!!

Love is in the Hair!!

I love this!!  It’s definitely a Favorite Thing because 3 favorite things are involved….Jen from Tiny Oranges. I adore her blog and Jen is as awesome in person as her blog is with tips and info. Tera is a FABULOUS hair stylist! Amazing color, and crazy kickin’ skills with her scissors! I loved the cut she gave me that added a few layers and made me feel a little (a lot) younger again! And FINALLY, the cause. Anything that’s going to help kick Pediatric Cancer in the A– is a Favorite thing in my book!

So check out this post for all the details, but seriously, whether you are heading out for a rockin’ Valentines date or not…

Just to have someone OTHER THAN YOU, blow dry your hair…

Which in turn makes you feel like a million bucks

Which in turn puts $25 more dollars to the cause

Which helps kick that Pediatric A– I was talking about…

HOW can you lose??

If you live in Orange County, book it. Book it now. I might even see you there ~ I’ll be the one that hasn’t showered in 3 weeks, but my hair will be HOT!! And really….that’s all that matters!

To learn more about Team Tiny Oranges check out this page. You can also read about how our family is getting involved here.

Happy Heart Day!!

friend favorites ~ tiny oranges ~ most used baby toy

Jen comes to us today from Tiny Oranges!  This is a favorite local OC blog find of mine.  Jen is as busy as they come, yet always up for sharing a tip or trick.    Jen has been a great source to me over the past year with fun local activities, products and tips, and great outings to take Addie on.  She is a Favorite OC Blog Friend and I most definitely encourage you to check out Tiny Oranges!!

Meet Jen of Tiny Oranges (and her DARLING family!)

  1. Favorite Wrapping tip –Erin Condren gift labels for all my gifts.  Super cute and simpler than buying cards.  Everyone loves them!
  2. Favorite Recent book – “The Middle Place by Kelly Corrigan” Really touching memoir about a young mother’s journey through breast cancer and beyond.
  3. Favorite Costco pick – Kirkland baby wipes.  The best!
  4. Favorite Soda – Coke Zero!
  5. Favorite Beach – Crystal Cove by the historic Crystal Cove Beach Cottages:

Guest Post:  Our MOST used baby toy:
Fisher Price Amazing Animals “Sing and Go Choo-Choo”

It can sometimes be frustrating to look around at the number of toys in our house and realize many of them don’t get that much play time!  When we get a new toy, there is about a day or so of interest, and then she is on to other things. I really don’t buy her many toys for that very reason.   That’s why this one particular toy has impressed me so much. I can safely say, in 3 years and 7 months, it has been our MOST USED toy!

My in-laws got my oldest daughter the Fisher Price Animal Train for her first Christmas when she was 6 months old.   It has two train compartments that interlock, 3 chunky little animal passengers and fun sound effects.  You can set it to and move across the room on it’s own or you can switch it to just sing and stay in place.

Now 3 ½ years later, she still plays with it! She loves to put her lovies in the back of the train and push them around.  Just the other day my new 6 month old baby was spinning the leaves on the side and pushing the horn.   When I saw that, I thought how amazing it was that it can entertain both a baby of 6 months to over 3 +years! Not many toys can do that!  It is a great birthday gift idea, especially for one-year-old birthdays, which I sometimes struggle with.  Plus, it is a totally unisex toy!

So, if you invest in the animal train, I guarantee it will be money well spent.

Only downside:  the animal train ditty that will forever be burned in your brain.  It’s that catchy.

friend favorite ~ tiny oranges ~ supersoft hiphugger

Jen comes to us today from Tiny Oranges!  This is a favorite local OC blog friend of mine.  Jen is as busy as they come, yet always up for sharing a tip or trick.  She is in fact so helpful, that she offered to write not one but THREE guest posts for my “Maternity Leave”.  I loved reading Jen’s pregnancy posts as well as the first few posts after she jumped back in the blogging saddle after having #2.  I could SOOOO RELATE with her new very crazy life as I had just had Hayden!

One of my most favorite posts that Jen shared was Little Miss Forgetful, having to do with adjusting to being a mom of 2 and keeping a great sense of humor through life’s little trials.  I laugh so hard that I get tears in my eyes every time I read it!!  (Which for the record is often as it somehow makes me feel like my day is normal!)

Jen has been a great resource for me over the past year with fun local activities, products and tips, and great outings to take Addie on.  She is a Favorite OC Blog Friend and a wonderful new “in real life friend”.  I most definitely encourage you to check out Tiny Oranges!!

Meet Jen of Tiny Oranges (and her DARLING family!)

  1. Favorite Wrapping tip –Erin Condren gift labels for all my gifts.  Super cute and simpler than buying cards.  Everyone loves them!
  2. Favorite Recent book – “The Middle Place by Kelly Corrigan” Really touching memoir about a young mother’s journey through breast cancer and beyond.
  3. Favorite Costco pick – Kirkland baby wipes.  The best!
  4. Favorite Soda – Coke Zero!
  5. Favorite Beach – Crystal Cove by the historic Crystal Cove Beach Cottages:


“Something happened to me during my pregnancy – I had absolutely no tolerance for uncomfortable underwear.   I figured I was uncomfortable enough as it was, why torture myself more??  Once I embraced comfy undies, there was no turning back. Pregnancy or not.

My girlfriend gave me a hilarious book when my 2nd baby arrived called “If You Give a Mom a Martini”.  I liked it even before I opened the book.   It is about simple things you can feel sexier, stronger and more fabulous (in the limited time we have!)  One of the tips was to take 10 minutes and clean out your undie drawer.   I couldn’t remember the last time I did that, so I went through and got rid of any panty that was on the questionable side.   I had ones in there I wore during my first pregnancy 4 years prior.  SO WRONG!    So, once I purged my drawer, it was time to make some new purchases.

I found these at Victoria’s Secret and they are my absolute FAVE!!!!  They are in the “Angels” family and are called the “Supersoft Hiphugger.”   You can buy them in the stores or online, and they do come in thongs as well.  They are all cotton, tagless, and have cute little details like mini bows and lace.    They are the most comfortable underwear I own.   Great everyday panties that are sooooooo comfortable, but they still feel feminine at the same time.  Say it together ladies, “No granny panties…Yet!”

WHOOHOOO – We love a find like that Jen!  Thanks for sharing! And thanks for the post!

Will most definitely need to check these one out!!