It’s the end of the month, and we are extremely grateful for all of the design challenges and experiences that have come our way. Today, we continue to show you some of our favorites … 5 things that truly made us happy in the great big world of design this month. This has proven to be a great way for us to share sneak peeks into projects that are in the works (but not quite ready to show in their entirety), flashbacks of projects from the past, and highlight an interior or event vendor that deserves recognition. Enjoy!

#1: This update! We finally got our custom window coverings installed this week in all of our bedrooms and bathrooms in our home. I went with all white linen flat roman shades to keep things consistent. We are loving the privacy and how they soften up each room like this Modern Bohemian Girl’s Bathroom. (Written by: Lauren)

#2: This menu option! One thing I love to do with my clients is to help them plan out the menu for their special day. Whether it be a dinner party at home or a bigger event like a wedding or Bar Mitzvah, planning the perfect menu is key! It could be a sit down meal with lots of delicious courses or really fun stations filled with comfort foods (but done in a classy way) … Each event’s menu is unique and customized. Can you guess what the theme is based on this menu option for one of my upcoming events? (Written by: Tami)

#3: This color scheme! This particular photo has become the main inspiration for the overall feel and color palette for a new project I’m working on, and I couldn’t be more excited. The client’s wish for a travelled, eclectic, and slightly bohemian vibe is sure to give her gorgeous Cape Cod home a style all it’s own. We will be sharing each and every space as we complete them right here on the blog, and I can’t wait to hear what you all think. (Written by: Lauren)

#4: This vendor! When searching for pieces of furniture and accessories for the various clients I have right now, I recently revisited a pretty cool store I haven’t been to in a while, Mix . They have an amazing array of eclectic pieces from all over, and I absolutely need to find a place for this grouping of baskets. They are divine! (Written by: Lauren)

#5: This draft party! Last weekend, a group of friends gathered at my house to take part in our annual Fantasy Football draft. The Commissioner (as she is known) was on top of her game with a custom trophy for last year’s winner, everything you need to conduct the draft in the most professional way, and even sandwiches and pizza. Since it was at my house, I made sure to have out a bunch of fun snacks to munch on before and that kept everyone happy. (Written by: Lauren)

We plan to share our “Favorite Five” for the month of September on the 28th, and of course will be sharing what’s inspiring us for the month ahead on the first Friday of the month. See ya soon!


Written by: Lauren

As I sat down to write this post today, I am remembering back to just a few hours ago when my twin two and a half year olds took turns climbing in and out of one of their cribs. I am constantly telling clients that no space is ever really “finished”, and I guess I will never truly “finish” this space either as before I know it I will need to get these girls into big girl beds. We never really created a true “nursery” in our last home (as seen in our previous post, Transforming Your Master Bedroom), and I guess this is as close as I am going to get this time around, but it’s still pretty cute so I thought I’d share. 

Cara and Sienna were gifted this gorgeous hand painted canvas from the amazing artist I work with, Angel. It has all the colors I wanted to tie into this room and is something they can keep in their space as they grow. I love the large scale and the abstract design. 

Their mismatched beds seem to work in this set up. I added a few accessories, some different sized baskets, and a fun sheepskin rug to fill in the space between. 

I still love these custom pillows with all of the details of the day they were born. It also gives babysitters a reminder of which bed they belong in. We got new sheets when we moved, and I love how the tiny black pin dots give the room just the right amount of an edge.

Some stuffed animals and a sweet rocking lamb will last only a little bit longer, but I am holding on as long as I can!

I kept the existing lights in my girls rooms. I don’t know if I’ll keep them forever, but for now I sort of like their mid-century modern vibe.

The custom dresser my dad built for my previous room was a nice addition to their room as well. It gives us plenty of space to store all of their cute little clothes and we added a changing pad on top for now as well.


We just got all of our bedroom and bathroom window shades installed this week, and I love how their simple linen shade softens up their space while still showing off the gorgeous mountainside during the day. A few other fun accessories include this adorable ostrich doll that they like to say hello to and the cute framed saying Tami made for their shower

The all white design was sort of an accident as I really just reused items we already had, but if you know me you know it wasn’t really an accident (wink). This clean, crisp space calms my rambunctious girls down and feels clean most of the time. I look forward to really getting the chance to design this space and already have tons of ideas, but as I said I wanted you to get a chance to see their nursery while it is still in tact. 


Written by: Tami

A couple months ago, we posted about Hosting at Home (a new series) and Lauren shared some great tips for hosting a Healthy Mex family friendly dinner party in your home. This time it is my turn! I like to think I am not the person who hates to host and gets scared at even the thought and I am not the person who loves to do it, invites people over all the time, and feels truly complete when guests are over either. I think I fit somewhere in the middle. Can you relate? I do love to host as it gives me the opportunity to try out new recipes and make my table and food presentation look “just so” adding in new creative touches each time. If I am being completely honest though this almost always comes with a little bit of a nervous feeling as I am running around trying to get everything I need done. The events that I share on this blog are usually a lot more over the top and can take months to a year to plan which is why these every day types of gatherings are so much fun.  The content of these “Hosting at Home” blog posts is meant to inspire each of you to throw an impromptu BBQ, to pull out dishes you haven’t used in a while, and to find that random accessory that helps create your table for your next meal. Keep it casual! None of this is sponsored … It’s from the heart and straight to you from my very own home. Enjoy!

My husband’s birthday falls right at the end of summer (It is actually today … Happy Birthday Phil!), and he absolutely loves to BBQ. This just happens to be the perfect time of year for that. When I asked him what he wanted to do for his birthday this year, he said spend time with family and make some steaks. Easy, right? We invited his family to BBQ with us and I took over the planning of the meal as I didn’t want him to have to worry about anything. As this dinner party was taking place in our home, I wanted it to feel casual but still classy and added in a few masculine touches. We started with chips, homemade guacamole, and shrimp cocktail just for fun! Here’s a tip … If it is a birthday you are celebrating, make it feel that way! Use fun napkins, a printed table cloth, and birthday candles to make your set up extra special.

As I said, I love to make my table set up look “just so”! Sometimes I will even use trial and error to see what works and then leave it when I am finally happy and set up extra early before all my guests have arrived. A black and white table cloth and a little burlap string did the trick this time!

Summer is the best … There are just so many fun summer salad options to choose from! I made one of Phil’s favorites (a delicious mix of watermelon, cherry tomatoes, mint, basil, and feta) and my guests brought a few of their own too! I even got our beautiful Nambe salad bowl out for this special occasion.  

My husband loves meat (especially ribeyes)! So it was a no brainer in planning this meal for what to have as our protein. Thanks Mitch and Karen for gifting all of us these gorgeous steaks! Make sure to pre-plan for all of your guest’s dietary needs. We also added in some barbecued salmon for our pescatarian family members.  

One more thing Phil loves are chocolate chip cookies. We happen to love the chunky ready-to-bake ones from Trader Joe’s! For best results, I did not pre-cook these. I made them right before I was ready to serve, left them a little soft in the middle, plopped them (still hot) into our glass footed bowls, and topped each one with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. What a treat!

When hosting in your home, do what feels most natural to you while trying to push yourself a little each time to think outside the box. Until next time … Happy hosting from Side by Side Design (and Happy Birthday Phil)!


Written by: Lauren

As an extreme perfectionist, I find myself torn between my desire to share spaces in my home and the annoyance of feeling that they are just not quite done yet. I came to a realization this week that one of those spaces is sure to be ever evolving and thus will never really be finished. When we moved into our house, the current homeowner was using the space between the garage and kitchen (that had previously been added on to the house) as the primary entry / laundry room. It was completely awkward, dirty, and not a glamorous space in any way. More of a service porch feel than a front entry for sure. When we bought the house, we quickly decided to resurrect the previous front entry space (as seen in our post Modern Bohemian Entry) and went through the options of what would be the best use of this space. As we were able to remove the washing machine and dryer from this room and move it to a better location (our pantry), we decided that this could be the perfect space for a playroom for so many reasons.


As you can see, the room needed a major makeover. The exterior stucco on the walls was not ideal for a playroom, the flooring was mostly damaged (although I liked the black and white concept), and the shelf on the ceiling just didn’t make sense to me. When my dad mentioned to me that it would be a great space to store items we infrequently use, I responded, “That’s exactly what I want to see from my kitchen window … A bunch of junk!” I asked him if it was in any way supporting the roof and he responded with, “Not at all,” so I made the quick decision to remove the shelf and show off the beautiful ceiling above it. We also found out that one of the walls was corroding and majorly needed to be replaced, so we did that as well.

We ultimately decided to completely remove this cabinet although it would have given us lots of storage space. It did not have much shelving inside. It had a few weird cutouts in the front that would have been a pain to patch and once we removed the washer and dryer from inside, we realized how much it was deteriorating. Needless to say, it was a great decision. 

Like I said this flooring had to go … But wait til you see what I replaced it with!

Playroom Inspiration

Here are the many ideas I had for this space. Some I did, some are for later, and some are just so cute I couldn’t help but put them on the board. One thing I would like to add to this space (as my girls love to color and draw) is a table and chair set, and I love this retro option from Amazon.


The wall with the door is the one we replaced. A brand new wall, a brand new window, the door to the outside remained, but we had to put new siding on the exterior of the wall to finish it off. Other than that, we repainted the existing staircase and railing (but kept it black as I liked the previous look), used an existing exterior sconce on this wall to remind us that this space used to be outdoors, and added this fun easel from Uncle Matt and Tsering to create an art corner. My thoughts are to add a hanging display for the girl’s art down the road when they are done scribbling (LOL). I also would love to paint the easel tray and maybe even do a fun dipped leg. If I get around to it, I’ll show an update. I promise!

I thought it would be fun to add a little play kitchen just outside of my kitchen for the girls to enjoy while I cook dinner. Family members pitched in and got the girls this retro kitchen from KidKraft and some fun Williams Sonoma pastries and cheeses. Cara and Sienna love to feed their dolls in the wooden high chair. 

Ava is all about Barbie’s right now and loves to play in style with her favorite pink van and dessert truck … Where were those when we were kids?

I bought some fun buckets to house all of the markers and crayons since they don’t stay in their boxes for very long, and when we moved I realized we had a huge collection of wooden boxes which I’ve used to store everything else on the shelves. It gives everything a consistent look and adds in the touch of natural wood I wanted to incorporate.

I really made a conscious effort not to clutter the room with too many toys. I love the fact that the girls spread out the toys they are playing with but have a place to put them away at the end of the night. The open space is often used for somersaults, dance moves, and even stroller races. 


I can’t even picture this room anymore with that awful shelf hiding this gorgeous ceiling. Removing that was one of the best decisions as all the ceiling needed was a fresh coat of white paint and some track lighting, but by far my favorite detail in this room is the flooring we put in … Simple black and white checkered rubber tiles from Rubber Flooring Inc. It was the perfect flooring option for my active kids who love to play on the floor, was super cost effective, and looks great too! It makes me happy that the kids have such an awesome space to play in each day and even happier that I can close it off at the end of the night and have a home that is relaxing and not cluttered with toys. 

I know that this space will continue to grow alongside my kids throughout the years. I left it completely open to change and know that it will probably do so many times. It is a perfect blank canvas. I simply love this space and my three girls do too!

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By taking one of the looks from our Get Inspired: August boards, we are providing our readers with further information for where to purchase similar items with a range of price points (from super affordable to fancy and one of a kind). 

Planning an end of summer pool party? Let us help you … Here are five items to spruce up your space for summer and five items your party can’t live without. We have also included a link for each item for your convenience in obtaining them. Enjoy!

Interior Items

1. Waldner Ping Pong Table / White – Houzz – on sale for $3,509

2. Loft Seafoam 3×6 Polished Glass Tile – Tile Bar – $12.99 per square foot

3. Spin Vase – CB2 – $99.95

4. Libbey Selene 2 Piece Cake Stand – Wayfair – $41.99

5. Stemless Wine Glass – Crate & Barrel – $2.95

Event Items

1. Inflatable Medium White Beach Balls – Oriental Trading – $11.98

2. 16″ Black and White Beach Ball – Perfect Imprints – $2.92 


3. Chocolate Dipped Ice Cream Cones – Little Sugar Snaps – DIY Recipe

4. 52 Ft. Patio Light Stringer – 1000 Bulbs – $45.85

5. SEJ Design Large Black Round Rubber Tray – Trouva – $35

Kids going back to school? Feeling those summer weeks dwindling? Plan one last pool party … You won’t regret it! Have a great weekend from Side by Side Design!