Girls Night Outdoor Dinner Party

OUTDOOR PARTY LGN

Kate’s grandma lives on a beautiful property with tons of gorgeous, mature trees. It was the perfect place to host a low-key girls night last weekend. The weather was gorgeous and the company was even better!

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oval woven tray  //  white vase

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We’ve been working with Target this spring to share some of our favorite ideas for easy entertaining and I love this set up we made with a low lounge table, inspired by all the GREAT throw pillows at Target right now! The weather has been so beautiful lately, we all want to spend as much time outside as possible!

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 cream textured pillow  //  blush macrame pillow

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outdoor pouf  //   yellow pillow  //   cream macrame pillow  //  striped tassel pillow  //  navy pillow

We grabbed a jute rug and an assortment of pillows and throws in different colors and patterns right before the party and threw them out right on the ground underneath the pretty cafe lights we strung up in the trees.

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To keep the prep as low key as possible, we hired our friends at 824Pizza to come to the party and grilled some pizzas for us to serve with a delicious salad – so simple!
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blue candle  //  blue and white platter  //  white salad bowl

The purple potato and rosemary pizza was my favorite! YUM.

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Kate and I are both soda-lovers, so we set up an Italian Soda station on this cute rattan bar cart. We had a few flavored syrups out with fresh fruit and whipped cream.

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bud vase  //  cake stand

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beverage bins

Some of our favorite combos ended up being Fresca with raspberry syrup and fresh peaches and Diet Coke with peach syrup and cream. I love the hand-blown tumbler and paper straw combo!

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pub glasses  //  straws

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And isn’t the low table great? It was Kate’s genius idea. We made it super fast with just a sheet of furniture-grade plywood and a few lengths of 1×2″ trim!

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We stained it with my favorite DIY stain color – Minwax’s Special Walnut and then we added some hairpin legs.

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It is lightweight but sturdy and makes for a great indoor or outdoor coffee table the rest of the time! You could always make it a little smaller too. We had the hardware store do all the cuts for us to make this project as simple as possible!

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tufted blue pillow

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The dark stain makes the bright white dinnerware just pop!

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dinner plate  //  salad plate  //  hemstitch napkins

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I love how easy it was to throw this simple outdoor dinner party! There wasn’t a lot of planning or prep needed – just a memorable setting, good food and pretty decor. We stayed up really late talking and laughing and eating allll the carbs. :) It was pretty much a perfect night!

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This post is brought to you by TargetStyleShop the new Home collection in stores and online.

DIY Floating Credenza IKEA Hack

I’m sure you’ve seen all the tutorials for Fauxdenzas floating around the web the past few years. I love the concept of IKEA kitchen cabinet uppers being mounted directly to the wall at a traditional credenza height (30-36″ AFF). The no-leg look is clean and airy and perfect for small or awkward spaces that need a lot of storage but don’t have much of a footprint to offer.

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I made my first floating credenza for Lucy’s living room. Ali and I loved the project so much, we came home and made one for her family room! Her credenza was a little longer and we did a darker stain on the waterfall surround, but the concept is the same.

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With both projects, I wanted the cabinet doors to be more of a square than a long rectangle, so we went with two 20″ high, 36″ wide cabinets and three for Ali’s.

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After building your cabinet frames using IKEA’s instructions, the process is super easy to hang these floating credenzas. You start by using a level to make a long straight line on your wall about an inch below where you want the finished top of your credenza to sit. IKEA’s Sektion upper cabinets come with a rail that the cabinets hang on. With a couple helpers, hold the rail up on the wall flush with your line and mark your screw placements that line up with the pre-drilled holes in the rail. It’s a good idea to find your wall studs and line up the holes with the studs to make the rail extra secure and to save you the steps involved with hard core wall mollies! (PS I used painters tape here to mark out the rough dimensions of Ali’s TV and some of her art before we chose a height for the credenza. Super easy and very helpful!)

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Once the rail is installed, the cabinets can get hung right on the rail and screwed into place.

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The tops of the cabinets are unfinished and you can sort of see the mounting rail from the side view so it’s necessary to make a waterfall edge.

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I had a piece of 3/4″ furniture grade plywood cut down to 16″ deep and 73.5″ long for Lucy’s credenza (which is the two 36″ boxes with 1.5″ of overhang on the side panels). Before staining the plywood, I used an iron to glue on veneer to cover the plywood look of the edges.

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If your veneer needs to be trimmed, you can used a box cutter or razor blade after the veneer is glued down and cooled. Then it’s time to stain the wood. We stained Lucy’s credenza with Danish Oil and Ali’s with Minwax in Special Walnut.

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Pretty great, right? After the plywood is stained, you just run a few drywall screws (which are extra sharp and easy to use – I always have a few boxes in different sizes on hand) through the inside of the cabinet to hold the plywood top and sides in place.

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The cabinet frames cost about $150 I think and the plywood is about $40, so for less than $250 all in with hardware and miscellaneous expenses, you’ve got yourself a beautiful, functional, unique storage piece! You can hire an electrician to bury your TV wires or you can buy cheap cord covers and paint them your wall color. Both are pretty simple options!

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SOURCES AT A GLANCE:

IKEA Sektion Cabinets – 15″ deep – all sorts of width and height options!

IKEA white doors

Leather and Brass pulls (LUCY)

Horn and Brass pulls (ALI)

Birch Veneer

Danish Oil (LUCY)

Minwax Stain (ALI)

Cord Covers

Stud Finder

Spring Domino Article

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The spring issue of Domino is on news stands and it is AMAZING. Truly, inspiration overload! When I met with my editor to pick the topic for my story in the issue, I threw out a couple ideas that I was excited about and then she was like, “Yeah, you know, all I really want to do is look at your Barneys chairs. How can we write about those??” :)

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No one has to ask me twice to talk about these awesome chairs, especially if I can combine the story with some of my best Craigslist tips! If you haven’t seen the issue yet, pick it up! My article is on page 100.

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When I was looking at these photos (taken by my beautiful friend, Tiffany Haynes), I remembered that I hadn’t shared my little bookshelf redo with you guys yet!

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I still love our library bookshelves! They were made by Classy Closets a few years ago and I’m so happy with how they’ve held up to our abuse! I have completely overloaded these shelves with heavy art and text books and it was time to give them a little relief a few months ago.

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We pulled off every single book and shelf and wiped everything down (*sneezes*). We stacked the books in rows so that everything would stay organized and would be easy to put back up in the same order. We ended up changing up our organization a little in the end, but keeping everything batched together in this way saved me and Michael a lot of time! Sooooo…many…booksssss….

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I cut 30 pieces of coved quarter round moulding in the exact same size and quickly ran a bead of Liquid Nails along the back and then nailed them into place with my pneumatic nail gun (the 18 gauge is small enough to not split such a delicate molding size). Then I flipped the shelves upside down from the way they had been sitting before having the back support pieces. You can see in this photo below that they are still bowing a little, but once the books were placed, the shelf was completely flat and will stay that way with the new trim supports!

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I love that all the shelves are level again and I’m glad that the new trim sort of disappears. I was a tad bit worried that the trim would change the look of the shelves, but you can’t really even see it now that it’s painted the same color as the cabinets.

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This was my pre-photo-photo above. Before I even had time to plant my kumquat tree! I love that thing! We’ve since planted it in the back yard, but for quite a few months I had it just sitting in it’s bucket on top of a plastic tray in a Target basket.

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I also like to have something covering the soil for my tree planters like white gravel or preserved moss. I used Reindeer Moss here, but these are my go-to varieties:

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The chairs are back up in the studio right now, but they move around quite a bit! :) I pretty much love them in any room.

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Oh, and PS! We’re adding a senior designer to the Juniper Studio team! If you’ve had a few years under your belt and all the skillz to pay the billz, email me your resume and portfolio! We’re starting interviews this week. xo

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Some Favorite Rugs

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One of my favorite purchases from Lucy’s project was this amazing Taza rug from West Elm. It was soft and thick and well-made and, for this room especially, it had just the right amount of color and pattern (which is to say not too much, so that the pillows and art could be the stars of the show)!

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(above photos by Julia Robbs)

I ended up ordering one for Margot’s room after we got home and have convinced a couple of friends to do the same. When I went to the West Elm site to send the link to the rug to my friend, I noticed just how many GREAT rugs West Elm has right now, and a bunch of them are 30% off (including my Taza rug!!).

Here are a few favorites I’m eyeing for some of our projects:

LGN W E RUGS

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Have you seen any really special rugs around lately? I’m looking for a 10×14 or even bigger in a warm colorway. Tips are always welcome! :)