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our new guest room

    You know what the best motivation for getting your house in order is?


    Hosting a guest.


    Because our family lives locally, we don’t often have sleep-over guests. But my friend Paige was coming to visit {and take our family photos – can’t wait to show you!} and I wanted so badly to give her a comfortable, pretty, welcoming guest room to stay in. Our house has three bedrooms upstairs – one is the boys’ bunk room, one is Audrey’s and the third has been a million different things. Most recently it was in a transition from a playroom to an extra bedroom and it was a mess. guest-room-before

    These photos were taken about three days before Paige flew in. Why do I wait until the last second on everything?! As much as I would have loved to paint the walls to get rid of the stripes and make a great upholstered headboard, I just didn’t have time. I kinda challenged myself to only use what we had, shopping from different rooms and being resourceful to give the room some style without spending a bunch of money.

    A few days later and a bit of scrambling and here is the new and improved guest room:


    Because we didn’t have a twin headboard, I moved the bed under the window to make it the focal point. Switching out the dot curtains for simple white ones frame the bed and brighten the space.


    The bed is dressed with polka dots sheets borrowed from Audrey’s room, an old matelasse coverlet, and throw pillows gathered from around the house.


    For some late night or early morning reading, a few of my current favorites sit stacked on the bedside table.


    On the wall to the right of the bed are a set of shelves previously used to display picture books and rather than take them down, they became the perfect spot for propping artwork.


    Again, I shopped the house for black, white and gold artwork/photos/ephemera to put in the room.


    Clockwise from top left: Mighty to Save art print, salvaged grate, my grandparents’ engagement photo, Greatest is Love print

    bobby pin print, old playing card, graphic number print, be still calligraphy {my first real calligraphy work!}

    silent night sheet music print {coming friday}, photograph of city benches by my cousin, little wooden sign

    On the wall opposite the bed is this media cabinet/shelf that badly needs a facelift. Above it is my twirl artwork in a thrift store frame. The lamp was a cast-off from my grandparents – it’s tall and brass and heavy. The only items I bought for the room were a few different lampshades, but none were quite right. I’ve had this wire shade frame in a storage closet for years, never really knowing what to do with it, and while it is super weird to put a wire frame on a lamp, it totally works. With a reproduction vintage bulb it is a funky lamp/shade combo that gives a soft glow when flipped on.


    The final touch to the guest room happened in my imagination while driving in silence one day. I pictured a sort of whimsical canopy made of book page paper chains and paper poms.


    I already had a few long paper chains from our Christmas tree last year and the kids and I just made a few more while watching a Seahawks game.  The paper chains are tacked into the ceiling at the center and both sides.  Because they are so light-weight, it doesn’t take much to keep them up.


    The center hanging collection is an assortment of coffee filter foofs made a few years ago, paper flowers and flattened cupcake wrappers threaded on a string, and book page poms {made the same way as for the tissue pom wreath}. It’s so random and odd, but it gives the room this interesting focal point and was a free way to add whimsical charm.


    So just in time, the room came together – for basically no cost.  It welcomed our special guest and gave her a place to rest in this crazy home.

    Are you hosting overnight guests this holiday season?

    31 thoughts on “our new guest room”

    1. I know this is an echo, but this room is beautiful! I have looked a bit for a post on the twirl artwork that is in the picture of the wall opposite of the bed. Do you have one? If not, how was it done? It looks like maybe sheet music…

      1. Thanks for the compliments! I have not posted about this picture, but I should! I just decoupaged sheet music to a thrift store painting. Then watercolored over to make it look aged. Then I hand painted the word Twirl with black acrylic paint.

    2. Love it, Emily! And, may I just say, I’m so glad you didn’t have time to paint over the stripes. The room was son soothing and calm (good!), but the stripes (and that awesome paper chain/pouf garland) gave it just a little bit of punch (even better!).

      Fantastic job!

    3. Oh how simply beautiful! A lovely room for lovely lady done by her lovely friend!! (i know sappy but i think you girls are just the sweetest things ever!!!! i was just beside myself when i learned all three of you ladies were going to be getting together!! sorry… yes… i am such a geek… and little things bring me such joy… friends getting together, beautiful rooms, wildflowers picked by the roadside… sorry i digressed, haha!)

      have a truly wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving!!

    4. hey there happy thanksgiving! I am wondering where I can purchase the polka-dot fabric your curtains in the playroom are from. I love it and it will be perfect in my basement!!!!!
      thanks, Harmony

    5. You are just ridiculously talented! You make it all look so effortless, so lovely. Thank you for sharing your God-given talents and for always being so gracious with your kinds words!

      happy Thanksgiving!

    6. Gerry Lynne Baker-Tatum

      Emily, you are truly blessed with wonderful talent! I look forward to your blog every day. With that, here are a few words from a song I wrote titled, “Every Day.”

      A gift a day is the least we get
      and many more than a thousand
      If we count every breath.

      And if we look at all He’s forgiven
      We’ve been blessed, of yes,
      with the way to heaven
      Every day…every day…

    7. Emily, you never cease to amaze me with your God-given talents! Gorgeous makeover! And I’m also currently loving A Million Little Ways – so I was delighted to see it in your picture too! It’s clear that you are living the art He gave, and you are the poem we love to read. Have a beautiful and blessed Thanksgiving! :) Always, Cooper

    8. I love the paper chain. It was just the right touch to take a great room and make it really special and whimsical. I am so going to write down the book titles for my to read list, also!

    9. from the paper chains, to the lego name left on my bed, to the hugs & the ” i missed you” while i was showering…your ENTIRE family truly has the GIFT of hospitality.
      thank you thank you thank you
      you love well

      what an honor….
      and let it be said, it’s a good thing i i DON”T CRY because i teared up as soon as i saw “my room” and all that you did for me….. shhhhh…..

    10. That is just darling and so whimsical! I love that you created a welcoming space using nothing newly purchased and only things you already owned. When you have things you love in your home they work beautifully anywhere! Hope you had a wonderful visit with your friend!

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