May 1st marks a fresh start. And for The New Yorkies, May 1st marks a fresh start with a personal update and a new design challenge! (Go straight to paragraph 4 if you’d like to skip the mushy stuff!)
When Gwyneth and I moved to North Carolina from NYC a little over four months ago, our objective was to get back to NYC. To be more specific, our goal was “to get our old lives back.” (I literally said that. Several times. Daily.) And without having a time machine to jump into, we were unsuccessful and frequently discouraged. But when we weren’t living in the past, we started to notice some really great things happening in the present. I love the freelance marketing and social media work I’m doing for a local contemporary boutique. It’s well received by my clients, and sharing beautiful clothing online hardly feels like work for me. Gwyneth remembers how much she enjoys grass, and in North Carolina she gets more attention and treats than any vet would approve of.
Getting here was a gradual process, but we’ve finally discovered that putting the fairy tale we wrote for ourselves on the shelf allowed us enjoy the one we actually happened to be living. (Side note: I have read no less than 20 Oprah-approved books that say this is how it works, and I found each of them nauseating. I suppose we all have to live this one for ourselves to believe it.)
Before y’all either leave this page to watch another You Tube spoof of the Maryland sorority girl or find the nearest vomit receptacle, here’s how all of this relates to decorating: Maybe one day Gwyneth and I will be in New York again; maybe we’ll be somewhere else. But now we’re in North Carolina, I’ve got a dream gig that I can do mostly from home, we write a lifestyle blog on the side, and we don’t have a proper home office. The baristas at Starbucks are gonna miss me, because Gwyneth and I have made May’s design challenge to create a “Blogger’s Dream DIY Home Office.” Our goal is to have it set up by the end of the month and to share the mini projects and DIYs with you along the way.
And we have quite a few projects ahead of us because of one very unfortunate experience – almost each of our Dumpster Dive furniture makeovers was damaged in the move. In a few cases, pieces were practically destroyed. (We will spare you the gory details, but we will make one recommendation: If you have U-Haul help you move, do not count on your reserved and confirmed furniture pads being available the morning of your move. Also from experience, you cannot count on them calling you back to help resolve the problem.) Being so drained after the move, Gwyneth and I didn’t have the heart to even look at our damaged pieces, much less repair them. So they’ve lived in corners of the garage – until now.
There’s a whole lotta DIY about to happen over here, friends! Want to see where we’re headed?
Some of you might think Gwyneth and I have lost it. We want our “Bloggers Dream DIY Home Office” to be a separate room rather than an area of our living room. So we’ve moved all the furniture out of our bedroom.
You never saw our North Carolina bedroom because we never really set it up. Instead, it was a mash up of the Cottage Guest Bedroom that my Mom and I designed last year and a lot of our half-unpacked things from New York. In the four months that Gwyneth and I have had to decorate and take a photo of our North Carolina bedroom, neither happened. On the plus side, we’ll get to remember the room at its prime – after Mom and I made it over.
With everything from the bedroom out, Gwyneth and I are working on what we’ll add. We reserve the right to change our minds and know some of our big ideas might not go as planned, but here’s what we’re thinking for now:
If there is one thing we miss the most about our NYC apartment, it is our DIY Pink Interior Door. We think we have an idea of how we can bring it to life in our new space without creating a massive amount of work when we move out and give Dad his man cave back. (Unless you think your man cave could use a pink door, Dad. Then we’d happily redo the DIY just like we did in New York. Just say the word).
We loved adding overlays from My Overlays to our Expedit Bookcase. Since our Dumpster Dives need some serious love post-move, there’s no better time to have a little fun updating and customizing our pieces.
Gwyneth and I reupholstered one of our Dumpster Dive Slipper Chairs, but we have yet to finish the other chair and share the how-to with you. It’s on the agenda.
While we were taking things from the guest room up to the attic, Gwyneth and I stumbled on my old summer camp footlocker. We’re so excited about our plans for this guy that we’ve already started on the makeover. Assuming things turn out, it will probably be one of the first things we share with you!
This one hurts to type. Our Dumpster Dive Dresser With Hutch (the project that won the Ikea DIY Contest) got TEEEE-RASHED in the move. The entire thing – chest of drawers and bookcase – needs some major TLC.
Our Dumpster Dive Bookcase was perfect storage for our supplies in the home office corner of our NYC living room, and we’re pretty sure we can put it to work in our dream office too.
That’s the sneak peek at our plans! If you’re thinking we’ve got our work cut out for us, you are right. But wait – there’s more…
We still need to sleep, so we’re figuring out how to squeeze a bedroom into the areas that were previously our living quarters. We can say with confidence that we’ve got this one. Our current space is significantly larger than our 470 square foot NYC apartment, and we managed to fit it all in up there. We have no idea how it’s going to work (that’s part of the fun!), but we do know that it’s all going to be shuffled. Our Living Room…
…and probably our Expedit bookcase set up too.
We’re so excited about our Dream DIY Home Office and can’t wait to share it & all the project milestones with you! More coming soon, but now Gwyneth and I have some painting and furniture shuffling to get back to!
mk & Gwynnie
PS: For spoilers, follow us on Instagram. It’s where we give up all our secrets!