Madcap Cottage Gents

Hey Y’all! How’s your week going? I’ve been pretty busy at work and at home and one of my favorite things to do when I’m busy and need to get things done is listen to podcasts.

I really like the Ballard Designs “How to Decorate” podcasts. Their latest episode features another episode from the Madcap Cottage Gents.

ballard madcap

They are known for their love of pattern, prints, and fun use of color!

They are John Loecke and Jason Oliver Nixon and are based in North Carolina and describe themselves like this:

Imagine a British country house that pairs Granny’s antiques and a spirited dash of Chinoiserie chic with a dash of Morocco-meets-India élan. Shake, stir, then pour.

Doesn’t that sound super fun? They tend to be more adventurous with color and design chances than I am but I feel like we would get along!

Here’s a few of their projects from their website.


madcap 2

They have a book coming out in Fall 2017 called Prints Charming that I definitely want to check out!

prints charming

Rest of photos via Madcap Cottage Pinterest page.

Have you heard the podcast? Do you know the Madcap Cottage Gents?

Follow them on Instagram if you aren’t already! They have a cool blog and their Insta is so fun :).


For the Love…of Green

I pulled this picture in the spring of 2014 from Southern Living and knew I was going to paint my dining room green.



We tested a few colors and ended up with Twist of Lime from Valspar. As we’ve discussed, I’m not sure it’s quite right.   It doesn’t show up great in pictures but this is a pretty true photo of the actual color.


I’ve decided to complete the room first and then truly decide. So, until then, I’m pinning all the green dining rooms and – heck! – just green rooms that did it right.

So I thought I’d share some green Pinspiration for your Monday!

This first shot is gorgeous on several levels – the gallery frames, the sideboard and the styling. From Ashley Whittaker Design.


I couldn’t leave this post without posting some Bunny inspiration. This is her dining room in her Affair with the House house. Love the wallpaper and rich color of the dark green mantel and molding.


Traditional Home has showcased quite a few green dining rooms.

This photo from House Beautiful is showing off the 2017 Pantone color of the year – Greenery.

Do you like green? Would you paint a room in your house a bold shade of green?

Friday Insta Faves – We Made It Edition! 

This Friday is special as it marks the end of a rough two weeks. So I’ll get right to sharing my faves from Instagram!

Loved the blue and white buffalo check in this install photo from Mark D Sikes!

The next photo from Country Life Magazine – a beautiful look through the house into the manicured garden. Ahhhh💚.

Next, I love @amandalouiseinteriors and her love of color. The blue animal print rug and orange buffalo check is so fun!

Mrs. Alice posted the cutest picture of Nancy and those giant ginger jars!

Emily Henderson’s new patio. That tile is so good!

Charleston Home and Design magazine posted this lovely blue pool photo. With this humidity, it’s needed!

Again, that photo from Mark D Sikes is too good not to post again! Check out my Look for Less on this room here!

I saved this photo reposted by Ballard of that block print bedding!

Cutest puppy and love the pilllows @theblueoctagon.

This bedroom is simple and I’ve been crushing on indigo pillows. @danielleoakleyshop

Mark D Sikes killing it with the pattern overload!

This picture from John Rosselli reminds me a bit of my living room. And the view framed by the window is just lovely!

Hope you have a great Friday!!

The Look for Less vol. 2

I’ve touted Mark D. Sikes and the #blueandwhiteforever trend that’s going on pretty recently. I thought it would also be fun to do a look for less with a one of the more famous pictures from his Beautiful book.


The original block print bedding, curtains, etc pattern is from Les Indiennes. My friend, Elizabeth, wrote a great post about the originals here.

block print bedroom

Ava block print ballard

Ballard has a block print bedding (that’s currently on sale!) that could give you the same look. The King duvet in Indigo is on sale for $129!

Ballard also has their Bingham Printed Damask Panels in Indigo – which would most likely be the same color and would continue the pattern play look.


blue drapery ballard

I love the mirror that he uses here and thought it would work to do a bone inlay instead. They are more accessible and you can go several different colorways with it.

Blue from

Brown from Wayfair

He uses a shell mirror and stenciled dresser to continue the pattern play on the other side of the room. Those would also be fun projects to diy!

He also uses a pair of mis-matched blue and white lamps.

Here’s an option from Wisteria. With all of the blue and white trends, any store should have some great options!

simone bench

The Quincy Indigo Simone bench from Ballard mirrors the one he used under the window.

This more modern one from Target is a good look too in a solid.

2017-06-21 (2)

These striped LaJolla baskets from Serena and Lily are a great copy of the dipped basket he used in the corner.

He also included a patterned headboard.

Many stores have good options that you can customize with their fabric but it would also be really easy to make yourself.

We diy’d our headboard for less than $100 and it has held up really well – 3 years and counting! As long as you have the tools to cut the plywood in the shape that you want for the headboard, you just need fabric, batting, a staple gun and nailheads.

Lastly, to complete the look, add a cool striped cotton rug like this one from Dash & Albert. 

Would you duplicate this look? Or maybe incorporate some of these elements in your house?





For the Love of English Country

I think if I had to pick a certain traditional style – English Country would be it. If you know me in real life, you know I’m an Anglophile. I’ve always been. Ever since I watched Prince William grown up, watched Princess Diana’s funeral in 1997 and then studied at Oxford in 1999 and 2004.  I’ve lived there for a short time and it only grew my passion.

Our house growing up had English Country influences with florals and checks, Staffordshire and all of that fun pattern mixing and oriental rugs.

I also love an English garden – some are rambly and wild and some very manicured. But they are unmistakable.

I have several boards on my Pinterest devoted to this – shall we call it – obsession?

I thought I’d share some of my favorites that I’ve pinned recently.

Love that we got a peek into Kensington Palace when the Obamas visited last year.

Do you love English Country? What’s your favorite style?


*Images via Pinterest. Want to follow me there?

For the Love of pattern

I feel like the 90s are really making a comeback. Brass, wallpaper, and fun patterns are replacing the minimalism of the 2000s. I never thought wallpaper went out, especially a fun pattern in a powder room. I had a friend at work a few years ago sneer as I checked out wallpaper samples on a lunch break. He was a guy, after all!

I really love pattern play and when the theme takes over a room. I remember the first time I saw pattern play in my own home when my Mom re-did my bedroom when I was a teenager. Green check bedspread, pink and green floral curtains and a matching solid ottoman for the desk. I loved it! 

My mom’s house has always had an English country theme and they are the masters of the stripe, floral, check in a coordinating or matching colorway. 

I’m also loving the way designers are using the same pattern for the wallpaper, bedspread, and curtains. Mark D. Sikes and Mario Buatta come to mind. Do you like repeating patterns in a room? 

Mari Buatta used this technique in this phot from Architectural Digest in Pat Atschul’s bedroom. 

I also looove this amazing red dining room from Mark D. Sikes! The curtains, contrasting sizes of buffalo check, and framed wallpaper panels are just so good! 

There are also ways to repeat with a little less intensity😊. 

*Images via Pinterest

Guest Room Inspiration

The only room I haven’t shown in my house tour is the guest room. The reason? It’s the least loved room in the house! I know a lot of people focus on that room first, especially if they have guests coming to stay. Well – we’ve lived here three years and are just now getting around to it!

We’ve finally purchased and rug and are still finalizing the concept.

This is what it looks like today… twin beds, striped coverlets and a seagrass rug. I love the faux bamboo mirror that I got for my birthday!

I like the idea of a totally blue and white room. Part of me does wonder if it’s a little trendy? I love blue and white and think it’s timeless but it’s definitely having a moment right now.  If you know me, the word “trend” makes me run far, far away. However, I’ve purchased other trendy things – the fiddle leaf fig comes to mind.

I usually have to warm up to trends (whether it be in clothes or home décor or hairstyles) and by the time I go through with it, it’s no longer trendy. Which is perfectly fine with me!

So while blue and white is having a moment for friends, décor enthusiasts like myself and interior designers….I’ll likely still be having a moment with it in 10 years :).

Here’s some inspiration photos that I’m thinking about. Got any I haven’t pinned or ideas I haven’t considered? Leave them in the comments below! 🙂

Want to see more of my house? Take the tour here — Living Room Part One – The Before… The wrong shade of green?  The Foyer  The Kitchen  Bedroom Part One – Desk/Vanity Nook   Bedroom Part Deux – The Other Nooks  Gigi’s Room Tour  Master Bedroom Finale  Home Tour -The Porch

*Inspiration photos via Pinterest. 


Friday Insta Faves – Summer colors editon

I looked at my saved category and saw a lot of light, summery colors so let’s go with that as a theme! 🏖

@alexandrawooddesign love this gorgeous blue and white and banquette situation

This post on @honeyandfitz about training your drapes is really cool!

Love this colorful post from @ballarddesigns about their latest podcast? Have you checked it out?!

Next, cathykindcaidinteriors posted this cool foyer shot. I love the bamboo looking light fixture!

You know I’m a sucker for a green theme dining room like this one from @alexandrawooddesigns

Thought the little girls room with the teepee was so cute @sonkisdhomeddesign

Also love this beachy living room posted by Dunes and Duchess!

@ballarddesigns showed off my favorite new chandelier in this shot! 

I liked this bright neutral living room and love the frames over the sofa! @sullivanjamesinteriors

Chatsworth posted these beautiful flowers!

#blueandwhiteforever from @juliocesarlimaudia

And another cool blue and white display from Veranda!

Hope y’all have a great weekend!!

Design Crush – Mark D. Sikes

If you follow me on Instagram, you probably knew this was coming 😊.

I love blue and white and nothing says #blueandwhiteforever like Mark D. Sikes.

His rooms are so beautiful and give off a traditional vibe but with some California flair.

His own home is amazing, as well. Have you seen the tour on YouTube? He even uses his garden area for photo shoots for his products.

Mark has a cool story – he started as a blogger too! His website, Mark D. Sikes, is as cool a blog as I have ever seen! He was a creative executive at Banana Republic and decorated his own house in California that was photographed for House Beautiful.  From there, he focused on interior design and has amazing celebrity clients, a huge Instagram following, and product lines for Herendon and many others, along with his own clothing line – even worn by Rach Parcell!

But, I first found Mark on Instgram through my love for his blue and white designs. He doesn’t just do blue and white – but he does it the best, I think!

My friend, Elizabeth from Blue and White Home, did a great post yesterday on the linens used in the below picture. It’s definitely one of my favorite rooms of his!

I thought I would share some of my favorite rooms of his. Enjoy!!

When you’re stuck…

What do you do when you’re stuck in a room or have to stop?

Maybe you’ve only budgeted a certain amount per month and you’re out for the month. Or maybe the one thing you need to do is expensive and you just can’t justify spending that right now.


Hello, chaise-lounge-I-ve-been-quoted-hundreds-to-recover.

Or maybe you just don’t know what to do and are out of ideas?

My favorite things to do when I reach one or all of these points is to take a break first. I’ll take a few days or a week off of thinking about that project and then re-evaluate.

I’ll think about that while maybe it isn’t design perfect, does it function well? If not, I’ll prioritize fixing that problem first.


If it functions, but just isn’t pretty – can I fix it by changing the styling or using inexpensive upgrades like accesories or pillows. I also love to shop my house first and think of new ways I can use things!

Add flowers/plants!


  • Paint
  • Buy the fabric and then either save up or look for alternatives for recovering/making custom items
  • Upcycle what you have by adding trim
  • Dream- read blogs, Instagram, Pinterest and you might find new ideas that are different than what you wanted in the first place.
  • Prioritize

Look back on all you’ve done!

I keep a notebook with a page for each room and love to look back on all I’ve accomplished during the year.

Bottom line, things like the One Room Challenge and kitchen makeovers that happen in 30 days are super fun to watch but just aren’t mine or everyone’s life. And that’s ok. Because for me- my house won’t ever be finished. I’ll always be looking for a new pillow, new update, new fun seasonal style. That’s what I love about decorating! There’s always a project to tackle and the fun is in the process.


What about you? What do you do when you get stuck?