Tag Archives: decorating

Chez Moi: Before

Bienvenu chez moi! Welcome to my studio! I’m lucky enough to live in a comfortable little apartment in the sixth arrondissement of Paris, a beautiful neighborhood where you’ll find attractions like the Luxembourg Gardens, the Église Saint Sulpice and the Sorbonne. When I moved in, my goal was to turn my studio into a space I could love just as much as I love the surrounding neighborhood. Here’s a look at what my apartment looked like before I made it my own: 

Luckily my studio is tiny, so there wasn’t much space to decorate. But I was also limited by the renter’s curse: I can’t put holes in the walls, paint the walls, or move/remove anything. This forced me to be creative and frugal with my decorating. Here’s what I was hoping for as I set out upon my studio makeover adventure:

  1. Neutral bedding: I wanted bedding that would make a nice background for all of the other prints and patterns that would soon fill the apartment, namely my clothes and my scarves! (bedding: Target)
  2. Paper Lanterns: There is a shelf that hangs over my bed, and it is the perfect place for a garland of paper lanterns! (lanterns: Old Shanghai Online)
  3. Baskets: I don’t have a closet or a dresser, so I decided to use baskets to hold some of my clothes and my towels.
  4. Splashes of red: I love to decorate with red accessories to add warmth to a room. (bowl: Target; oven mit: Star Red Grill)
  5. Cute throw pillows: I know they’re useless, but I love decorative pillows! They add character to a space, and they are super fun! (pillow: Suzani)

And flowers! Replacing those wilted weeds in my flower box with beautiful summer blooms was priority number one!

How do you like to decorate? What do you do when you have limited decorating options?

Stay tuned for the “after” post!

Smiles and all the best,




Filed under Paris

Filling the Void: DIY Chandelier

When my roommate and I moved into our apartment nearly nine months ago, we couldn’t wait to start decorating. We scoured stores of all kinds in search of the perfect decor like two chipmunks gathering nuts for winter. Slowly but surely, we acquired many of the necessary trimmings: color-coordinated pillows, pig-shaped salt and pepper shakers, refrigerator magnets. But several months into our home-making, we found ourselves saddled with one last decorating challenge: the nook. Carved out of our white plaster wall, inconveniently placed just to the right of the couch, is a three-by-four sort of cubby. We weren’t quite sure what to do with it. Perhaps we could get a bird cage and adopt a monkey? Or turn the nook into a theatre and host a flea circus? A shrine?

While these ideas were appealing, none were quite what we wanted. We abandoned the nook until Christmas, when we stuffed it with a miniature tree.

However, Christmas brought inspiration, and thanks to one of my favorite blogs, A Beautiful Mess, I was able to fill the three-by-four void.

Using this DIY design, I crafted a fabric chandelier out of Christmas lights, old scarves and a wire cooling rack. Now, the nook houses some of our favorite books, cute photos and a one-of-a-kind chandelier.

Thank you so much to Rachel, who designed this project! If you’re going to try it for yourself, here are some adaptations I made to her design that you might want to try:

  • Rachel uses texture, like lace, in her design to make the chandelier more exciting. I decided to use color instead. I varied between two shades of blue and white, and both of my blue scarves were patterned.
  • If you have limited fabric, craft your chandelier into an inverted pyramid shape. Just lay the scarves out like diamonds and cut from the outside in. This way, you’ll have an even assortment of short-to-long strands of fabric.
  •  If your fabric is thin, or your chandelier is smaller, use some of the fabric to sew a cylinder for your lights to fit into. Sew or tie it to the wire rack just like the other garlands, and slip the lights inside. This will keep your lights from peeking out from between the strips of fabric.

Thanks again to the ladies at A Beautiful Mess for helping me add a special touch to our home!

I hope you enjoy the soft glow of your new chandelier!

Smiles and all the best,


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Filed under Most Popular, Projects