5 steadfast rules when decorating a home..

Ok, I must admit, I pride myself on my ability to find a way to make unlike pieces (aka, my old broken down college furniture) work together with the sleeker Ameriwood Home pieces I put together last week.

I guess you can say, I’m a bit of a mix-matched extraordinaire when it comes to decorating my home. And, trust me, I have had A LOT of practice… with 3 moves in 4 years, you find a way to make it out!

Truth be told, when it comes to moving, the even parts taskmaster & budgetnista are triggered! And, before I knew it, mix matching different types of wood, furniture & decor became my JAM!

I figured a little before and after living room photoshoot was in order for those AMAZING Ameriwood pieces I added.

Before (our makeshift entertainment center, that specifically warned us not to put a TV on it) to our new Ameriwood Home Entertainment Center:


Before (a little chest) to this amazing Ameriwood Home accent table:


In full disclosure, the accent table has since been moved to our laundry room since the wall felt a bit furniture heavy! But, I love the versatility of this piece since it worked perfectly in both areas.

Now, on to what you’ve been waiting for… 

Here are my 5 steadfast rules when it comes putting a house together:

  • Determine your color palette – with each move, I decide what color throw pillows I want to use on my couch and go from there! This go round, I went with dark blue, teal and cream. All three colors work with different furniture pieces we had. I try to visualize each room, with what we have, before I begin the process!
  • Embrace what you already have – don’t be afraid to mix & match pieces, colors, and even different woods. Only add when you fall in love with pieces, like I did with the beauties above! Allow accents, the way the light hits the piece or even a knickknack to pull everything together. Trial and Error, people! Be open, you never know, that crazy idea might actually work!
  • Start with neutrals – I always make sure my furniture; wall color and décor can work several different ways. The trick is to stay with largely neutral colors adding a few pops here and there with the decor. It allows you to mix different woods (& patterns) without it getting too busy and feel overwhelming!
  • Wood finishes don’t need to match – they just need to complement each other. That means, similar grain and/or complementary undertones! If they don’t, try putting a barrier between the two such as a rug!
  • Kick the clutter – remember everything should have a place… and minimalism is the new black! Put things away while remembering the rule of the odds: keep useless (non-functional) décor to a minimum and always group in an odd number.

Following these 5 rules helped me not only decorate 3 houses but saved me a lot of money and grief in the process!

Next installment, how to make affordable NO SEW curtains and valances out of sheets and pillow cases! I am telling you, finding and applying this hack saved me LOTS of moolah in this new house!

Comment below with any questions, links, recommendations or anything you may want to see in future posts!

Tips + Tricks to Assembling Furniture in a pinch!

I am backkkkk… and, after a much needed break, I decided to start sharing more about those passion projects I was SO adamant about finding in the last year! So, here goes nothing…

As a former military wife, there are a couple of things I know the ins + outs of … & that is MOVING & decorating a new house! My husband and I are on our 3rd move in 4 years…

Trust me, I know… I am exhausted thinking about it!

This most recent move has been a bit tricky since we not only downsized but we found out quickly north central FL homes have their own unique flare and flat-out weird floor plans.

There has been A LOT of maneuvering to make this house our home.  I was fortunate enough to receive TWO amazing pieces from Ameriwood Home that spiced up our collection of discount/chalk painted furniture.

Ameriwood Home Entertainment Center:

Ameriwood Home Accent Table:

After a fun day of assembling, I was inspired to share a few tips + tricks that I’ve picked up over the years…

First things first, set aside a good hour or two and grab a partner. Most of the time, you won’t be able to do finagle it all on your own! It took me about two hours & a husband to put both pieces together … all the while, I was taking pictures + recording.

Make a space: to assemble your furniture and preferably do it where you’d like to keep the piece! There is nothing worse than moving a large piece of furniture plus it reduces the chances of dinging it up. Oh, and environment is everything – turn on some tunes and make sure you have adequate lighting to see.

Grab your tools: a hammer, screw driver, allen wrench and a towel. Most kits come with everything you need but I like to have my tools handy – just in case!

Get organized: Unwrap and wipe down all the pieces & toss the packaging. I recommend not only laying out the pieces in numerical/alphabetical order for easy access but it’s a quick way to ensure you have all the items you need. Yes, that means not only counting those big pieces but all the screws, dowels, etc. too. I recommend leaving the small pieces in the numbered bag, that way you don’t lose any of them!

PRO-tip: keep the stickers on the pieces (in places you cannot see) just in case there comes a time you have to un-assemble/re-assemble… you can follow the instructions again!

Peruse the assembly instructions: After making sure you have all the necessary pieces, take time to go over each step + looking over each piece. When you take the time on the front end, you’re least likely to make mistakes and preventing the assembling/un-assembling/reassembling dilemma. Yes, I know from previous experience.

PRO-tip: Many pieces look-alike – so, be sure to compare the pieces to the diagrams – shape, size + unique attributes of each.

Get to work: Now, its time to make it happen!!

PRO-tip: Don’t tighten all your screws at first – screw each of them and tighten when everything is aligned!

Lastly, have fun with it! Enjoy the process! Arrange, rearrange and even paint your pieces to fit YOUR space.  A little chalk paint goes a LONG way when mixing and matching pieces!

I hope these tips and tricks help with your next furniture assembly adventure. Also, be sure to check back for my next post with different ways to use each piece in different spaces and in different ways!

Emily, xo

My Twenty-Seventh Great – Speakin’ my TRUTH


Hello, Hellllllooooo… I am SO excited to share my GREAT for this past week. It is hard to put into words how monumental this specific event was to me.  But, I am going to try..so, bare with me while I get all up in my FEELS! My TWENTY-SEVENTH great of my #fiftyfirstgreats was a speaking engagement at Sigma Kappa sorority at NC State! Hands down one of the most fulfilling experiences of my life!

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My Twenty-Sixth Great – Half-Marathonin’


Have you done something you NEVER thought you could do?  Well, I have..running a half marathon! To be frank with you, I never really had a desire to do it either. Running has always been very intimidating and miserable for me.  Being overweight a majority of my life, I avoided it at all cost not because I didn’t want to be healthy but the embarrassment outweighed the benefit in my mind.  It was NEVER going to be my thing… or, so I thought!

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