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Hey there it’s Little Nicki from Team Jungalow. If you know me, you know that I am obsessed with the moon. I can feel the energy of the full moon every month and its power always amazes me. Here are some ideas of how to put the mood in your room. 

1) A crescent moon cut out in a door is incredible; with hanging plants poking through though..its just beyond.  You often see this cut-out shape in old outhouses, so it has a bit of a cozy cottage in the woods feel to it as well.via+rootsandfeathers.com

2) Decorate with a crescent moon in a shiny metal; place by the window to have beautiful natural light bouncing off of it and onto your walls.

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3) Print off some moonscapes and frame them in a circular frame.  Three is company.

 

4) Print a large full moon for your mantle (this one I printed from shutterstock and framed in black) and have fun placing different objects in front of it.

 

5) Moon phases look lovely framed as another option in a gallery wall setting.

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6) Abstract versions of the moon look great as a series.  You could have the whole family do their own black, grey and white interpretations in the same shape.

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7) For something super fun and temporary, try projecting an image of the moon on a wall in your home and host a little get together.  You can actually download this same design, over at Bri’s site, here.

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8) A really simple way to introduce the beauty of the moon in your home is by hanging a single white, round paper lantern in your space.  The shape and colour mimic the look of the moon if you use your imagination.

Do you love the moon?  How would you introduce la luna into your home?

Photo credits: flickrRoots and FeathersOchreDara Tippapart (Styling: Nicole Valentine Don), Stil ZitatDesignLoveFestDaniella Witte

This post was created by Nicole Valentine Don for The Jungalow

For more of her magical musings visit her blog & check out her instagram

 

 

 

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Not long ago I received an email from Bianca of Italian Fix.  The email said, “I’m wondering if I could entice you to come to Italy this August and teach a workshop?” As you can imagine, it didn’t take too much convincing. Bianca has worked with other creatives I admire (like Leela Cyd, who I’ve blogged about before) on Italian workshops and tours. And like me, Bianca studied in Italy, fell in love with the country and knows it intimately.

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For those of you new to the blog, I lived and worked in Italy for seven years, and even though I’m not Italian, I consider the country to be a second home. I haven’t been back in ages and the opportunity to combine two things I love deeply: Italy and teaching, made this experience a must. And to make the whole situation even more irresistible, the creative workshop will be held in the Cinque Terre, which is the Italian Riviera, and pretty much one of the most amazing places on earth.

And guess what? You’re invited.

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We’re calling this a Creative Playcation. We are committed to making this a life-changing experience. As Bianca says, It’s going to be part art school, part walking tour, part creative discourse, part mind-meld pow-wow, and then a whole lot of Italian hedonism (AKA carbs and wine). And as if hanging out together and talking shop for a couple of days doesn’t sounds enticing enough, we’ll be in Italy. We’ll be on the beach. We’ll be among friends and fellow creatives. We’ll be breaking bread together–really good bread smothered in extra virgin olive oil. And did I mention we’ll be in Italy?

If this sounds like an Instagram hashtag you wanna be a part of, sign up for the mailing list below and we’ll powow about all the details. I hope you’ll join us. It’ll be the best and most productive playcation you’ve ever had. Promise.


Photography by Leela Cyd for Italian Fix.

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When walking to my car in the evenings, waiting in line at a burrito stand, strolling to work in the mornings, I’ve gotten in the habit of looking around. I think it’s from blogging, or Instagram or something, but I’m constantly foraging for inspiration–and every now again just by keeping my eyes out…I see something.

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It can be (and often is), a very simple something, but that simple something is a seed, and can grow into a sprout that can become a vine. Yesterday it was this vine that grabbed me…the way it contrasts with the cream and the blush underneath it, it’s quiet “S” shape, the yellows in the baby leaves, the imperfect line where the pink meets the cream. I see a color palette for a kitchen, a wallpaper motif, a dress. So much inspiration to be had just from paying attention.

Sometimes, when I’m feeling uninspired, I just go for a quick walk around the block with the intent of finding little moments like this one. It’s amazing what can come simply from noticing what’s already around you.

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We got the keys to our new home just last week, but because we hope to get the kitchen remodeled before we move in July 1st we hit the ground running.  First stop was to Badia Design to pick out Moroccan tile. I’ve been dreaming of putting cement tiles in my kitchen forever and plan on basing the rest of the design off of the tiles so that was a first stop. We narrowed it down to four designs (thanks to those of you who weighed in on this post.) And now we’ve narrowed it down to three. To help better choose the tile, I created a few sketches of the design we (more or less) want in the kitchen. Then I’ve accessorized with different design elements to better get a sense of what each kitchen would look like. So which is your favorite? I’m seriously torn over here! I’d love to hear what you think!

Lamps, Stools and dishware from my favorites on Chairish

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I was so inspired by my brand new copy of The New Bohemians in SO many ways, but especially in the creative use of textiles beyond their original purpose.  My favorite thing was seeing blankets, curtains and rugs masquerading as doors in the bohemian home.  I tried a few different options at home to experiment with which ones I liked best.

1) Blankets, more specifically kantha quilts look great in a doorway.  I used two for a more dramatic effect than just one.  Tack them up however you want, with nails or tacks.  Loose looks best; the more they drape, the more they boho.

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Hold your textiles back with an old belt- I used a chain link one.  You could try string, ribbon, rope, jute or even some old costume jewellery.

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2) A curtain already has the loops for hanging, just fix a rod above or within your door frame.

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3) Another use for the humble hammock *see 3 other creative uses here.  The rope ends add a nice old world sort of detail.  Is that Romantic or Nomadic Bohemian?

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4) The textures in a floor rug look incredible hanging vertically.  These can be pretty heavy, so think about that when hanging- a strong rod might hold this up the best.

Depending on how committed you are to your boho doorway, you could always punch holes in your fabric and add metal grommets so they hang on a rod quite easily and have a nice finished look to them.

Which option would you choose for your home?

{Project by Nicole Valentine Don for Justina Blakeney est. 1979.}

For more Nicole,  visit her blog and follow her on instagram.
Photos by: Dara Tippapart

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When we began this house-hunting mission with Trulia, I had no clue what to expect. I didn’t know if we’d get approved for a loan, I didn’t know what neighborhood we’d end up in, if we’d buy a tiny house or a big house, if the whole process would take weeks, months or years. But after some serious deliberation coupled with swift decision making, we put in our first offer on home! We decided on the ‘small and close’ house from this post. (Thanks to those of you that chimed in on the last post–I loved reading your comments and hearing your stories).

Putting in our first offer for a home was pretty scary. Our agent wouldn’t tell us how much to bid. He basically just urged us to bid the highest amount that we could afford. The house was listed at $530,000. We knew that it was a ‘sellers market’ (I’ve heard about 300 people tell me that over the last few months.) We also knew that there were eleven total offers on the home. Yikes. So as our first offer we bid over the asking price at $552,752 (yes we used my lucky number “52″ TWICE because very superstitious like that).  Then we waited a day or two and then had to come back to the sellers with a best and final offer. We were told that our offer had placed somewhere in the middle, there were offers higher and lower than ours.

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This best and final offer thing was really tricky and annoying. At the end of the day, we decided that we kind of loved the house and that we’d basically go for broke. We were emotionally attached despite everyones warnings. We put in our best and final at $587,752. You many remember from this post we were pre-approved for $590,000.  Then we waited.

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A day went by (it felt like months) and we heard from our agent that someone bid $620,000. Wow. That’s a lot. We were bummed but just tried to remember all the things we didn’t love about the house…it’s small, the configuration is a little weird…and the little galley kitchen and the way the counter comes into the window?! The worst.

And then the phone rings. For some unknown reason, the buyers backed out. There was one other buyer who bid more money than we did but for some reason the sellers didn’t feel confident about their financials and we were next in line. Holy moly. We just may get the house after all. Back to thinking about all the good things about it! Haha. Um, hello amazing location, curb appeal and really bright and airy house!!

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Once we decided to go for it, the next step was to put a deposit in the escrow account. I’ve heard the term escrow many times in my life but only this month did I really understand what it means. It’s basically like a holding account where the money goes while everyone makes sure that loans go through and all that. After the deposit was in the escrow account we had a few days to make inspections and negotiate on the price of the property based on how much work it needed etc. We had all kinds of different experts come out to assess the condition of the house: termites, electrical, plumbing, foundation, roof etc. It was expensive to get all of the reports but worth it to make sure we weren’t buying a lemon.

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And then, in the middle of the inspections we got some bad news. Talk about an emotional roller coaster. The inspections were going fine, but the appraisal of the house came in low at $550,000. Practically speaking, it meant that even though we were pre-approved for a $590,000 loan, the house didn’t get approved. We’d have to come up with the difference in cash, or get the sellers to lower the price, or we’d lose the house.

We had already lost this house once and we didn’t want to lose it again, so we started scrambling. First we hit up our parents to see if we got desperate,  just how much cash we could come up with in family loans. Then we started asking around to see if it would be possible to get another appraisal. Appraisals are created based on ’comps,’ meaning similar houses sold in the area, so our agent helped us find comps that the appraiser may have missed the first time around. By now we were so deep into this process that the idea of doing this all over again seemed almost unbearable.  We wanted this house bad.

Meanwhile the inspections were finishing up. The house was in decent shape and needed about $15,000 worth of work–not bad for a house built in 1926. So now it was time to tell the sellers how much we’d pay for the house. There was a lot to consider: the low appraisal, the 15K worth of work, and the fact that anything that was over $550K was coming out of pocket from family loans, etc.

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And this part was actually kinda fun–nerve-racking, but fun. We knew very little info about the sellers but we did know that it was three siblings who were selling the house and splitting the money. Since both Jason and I have two siblings we kinda tried to put ourselves in their shoes and think about the whole number, but also we looked at the number divided by three–to see how much each person would walk away with.  We were trying to guess what was the lowest amount we could offer without turning off the sellers.

And then, amidst negotiations, (and once both parties had agreed to $573,000) we got notice that the house had been re-appraised at $590,000. Hallelujah. We were getting the house for a lot less than our best and final offer, and the bank would finance the entire loan.  So…we got the house!!!

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Holy yay. Stay tuned for many, many blog posts about renovating and decorating our sweet little Jungalow by the river!! Eeeeee!!!!

*I’m documenting our entire journey of becoming first-time home owners in partnership with the online real-estate site, Trulia. Catch up on all the posts here.

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