Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Guest Post: Hyphen Interiors!!!


It feels good to be back (c:

Back to the series, that is! 

And I can't think of a better way to kick off the week than with Kristy from Hyphen Interiors!!! Kristy and I share a special kinship because we have both battled this ridiculously hot summer here in Phoenix...suffering together = blogging besties (c:  And I'm also like a magpie and I'm drawn to anything shiny and fabulous, and that is definitely Kristy's amazing home! She is so creative and has so much fun with everything! I can't wait for y'all to see her great house!!!


Thank you so much Aubrey for inviting me to share in this series. I definitely have to meet this Aubrey soon in real life - just love her style and her personality is so warm and well, freaking hilarious. Good thing for me, she also lives in Phoenix! (Mainly I want to know if she actually uses words like “amaze-balls” in her real life every day speech, but shhh.) Seriously, so excited to be here.

So, how do you make a house your own? Well, I’ll give you three tips that I use in my own home. We made our third home purchase 2 years ago and have been working hard to make it our own, but on a small budget!


1) Incorporate your style. Don’t be afraid to be creative. Your house is your canvas.

When we first looked at the house, the family room looked like this. The previous owners had stuck to a very monochromatic palette.


Too bad they couldn't take that ugly carpet with them when they left. That is my least favorite part of my home. But, with the size of my house, we can't afford to replace it all just yet. So, I had to work with it.

MY style meant adding pattern and color! I started with fabrics.


I added a zebra rug as an unexpected element for a little sass. I know that not everyone loves zebra, but at the moment, I’m a fan.

We also added pops of blue and green, but all done on a nice neutral backdrop so it’s easy to make changes as our style changes.


Our laundry room was another room that I felt color and pattern were needed in. And, since it can be seen from the family room, I went for the green (at an angle). Here it is before we moved in. Just plain white.


So, we painted her apple green. For pattern, we added a stencil. We also added board and batten for some architectural interest and to break up the green some. She is a work in progress, but here is how she is looking. The art is leaned against the wall in the photo, but I actually just got it hung!


And, here is our end goal. I like to create drawings when I can in order to help me visualize how it will all come together. Doesn't mean things won't be tweaked, but it's a great guide and helps me communicate where we are going with the room.


What can you do to incorporate your style?

a) Add color to the walls. They are just walls and it's just paint. Don't be afraid. Start with samples, paint 2ft x 2 ft squares. Choose a color and have at it! If you don't like it, paint over it. It's probably the smallest investment with the biggest impact.

b) Add pattern. Every room needs at least one pattern. It can be on the walls in the form of a stencil, on pillows or even on curtains if you are super daring.

c) Add something unexpected. This is where your personality really shines. Add a quirky chandelier, some fun art, an unexpected color on painted furniture, paint the ceiling, add a monogram, etc.

To figure out what you love and what your style is, take some time to flip through inspiration photos.

2) Include things that have meaning or history.

This doesn’t have to be grandma’s hope chest, though that would be sweet. It can be as simple as including handmade art, photos that you took yourself or something your child made.

This is Chris’ grandfather’s WW2 flag (lower left) in our office. (What? What are the W’s for? World Wide Web. My husband is a software developer and works from home in this office. To see more of the office, you can check out my home tour.)


And, I plan to create a gallery wall of photos that I have taken on the landing of our staircase. Here are some photos I may consider. They were taken on a recent trip to Flagstaff, AZ.

What can you do to add something with history or meaning?

a) Add a family heirloom. Things with history tell stories. And, juxtaposing old and new is a quick way to add character to any room. If you have nothing in this category, just make something look old! Or, use someone else's old. Buy at a flea market or from Craigslist. The chest in the corner of our family room is an antique but came from Craigslist.

b) Add handmade art. By you or your child. What better way to make your house your own than to add something that no one else would have! There are tons of ideas and tutorials out there.

c) Add your own photos as mentioned above. When grouping them together, make sure they have similar contrast, exposure and color tones or even subject matter. Consider even converting them all to black and white.

3) Make it comfortable. Create a "code green" home.

Part of a house being a home and not just a building is that house being completely comfortable. My husband and I refer to this level of comfort as "code green."


This third point may just say too much about me, but hopefully you can relate, even if just a little. Here is how we define red, yellow and green codes in our home.

Code Red - When you have guests over that you do not know well. You are on “high alert” and aware of everything around you. You are busy trying to make them feel at home, serve them, and entertain them.

Code Yellow - You have people over who are familiar, but who do not live with you. You are dressed, alert and interacting.

Code Green - Only those who live there are home! You hair may be messed up, you may still be in your pj’s and have no makeup on. You are at your most comfortable level. It is at this code green that your house becomes your “home” or your haven.

What are things that make my house especially code green for us when no one is around?


Why of course this sparkling pool! Actually, it has little to do with the pool and much more to do with the pretty private back yard. I can go out in an old swimsuit that doesn't fit the best and still feel completely comfortable. This makes my house “my own” in the sense of it being totally code green.

A room in my home where the “code green” concept is very important is the master bedroom. We did our best to make this room feel comfortable and private. It’s our little retreat.

Master Bedroom-109

What can you do to create a "code green" home?

a) Add privacy. Have a room, such as your bedroom, that no one comes into unless you invite them in.

b) Surround yourself with things you love. If your goal is to relax, choose things that will point you in that direction. If you love to be creative, choose accordingly. "Code green" is about being able to be you. Include things that aren't too delicate to touch; things that invoke comfort.

c) Make time for yourself and your family. Don't overload your calendar. Make sure you have a few evenings at home with just you guys. (If you have kids you may appreciate one of my favorite sayings, "Rules without relationship lead to rebellion." Quality, uninterrupted time is uber important.)

The best part about this last tip is that it is free. Yet, for us, it's a very important part of our home feeling like our sanctuary.

These are the main keys that I pay attention to when making my house my own. I’d love for you to stop by my blog sometime! Thanks for having me, Aubrey!

Kristy is like the DIY/craft/creativity queen...if there is a way to make something fabulous, she knows how to do it...I mean, did you know she *PAINTED* that gorgeous turquoise wingback in her bedroom??? And I don't mean the wood...the fabric! And yes, I totally use words like "amazeballs" and "redonkulous" in real life.

And people give me strange looks...and it's probably annoying...but hey, if you can't be yourself, who are you??? (c:

Thanks so much Kristy for all your fantastic advice...and I'm pretty sure I need a real life tour of that house! (c;

And up tomorrow, a brand new fabulous blogging friend of mine...

Lesli from My Old Country House!!!


Cheryl E. said...

Beautiful post and pictures. I am working on redoing our master now and do want to do a code green feel. Now I wish I can throw a beautiful master together like yours.

rachel @ Just a Touch of Gray said...

So beautiful! I love that Kristy is so unafraid of color!! Great guest, Aubrey!

Hilliary@ Happily Ever Healthy said...

This is a great post, beautiful pictures! The living room doesn't even look like the same room I love it! And I am loving the green wall and stencil in the laundry room! Thanks for sharing!

christine {bijouandboheme} said...

So many great tips and I love a girl who isn't afraid of colour!

A Vintage Vine said...

Great tips Kristy! Thanks for having her over...Love this series!

Alexa said...

This is such a great post. So many awesome tips in here! Thanks for doing this series, Aubrey!

natasha {schue love} said...

Wow!! What an amazing home! So lively and whimsical! :)

Viviana said...

What a beautiful home! Love the bedroom!

Found you via Schue Love and am now following :)


Tori said...

I love that laundry room!

adventuresindinner said...

Gorgeous! You have the patience of Job for doing that stencil. I might manage a small chunk of a wall :)

{The Perfect Palette} said...

Lovely imagery and great tips :)

xo, chrissy

Courtney {a thoughtful place} said...

Holy cow. I think I have a new girl crush on Kristy. Gorgeous. I love the code green terminology. And so agree about lots of family time . . that stenciled wall is brilliant. Oh, so fun.

Carol@TheDesignPages said...

Kristi has a great house with tons of personality.

Cassie @ Primitive & Proper said...

kristy is SO good! i love her fun eclectic style!

sarah@totalbassetcase.com said...

Huge fan of that zebra rug!

Shelley said...

Gorgeous post, I just love Kristy's style! And LOVING the Code Green :D

Haley @ Cardigan Junkie said...

I absolutely love the wingback chair in that bedroom photo! You have wonderful style, Kristy!

orchidlanedecor.com said...

I'm an admirer of Kristy's home and blog, I especially love the hard work she's put into her beautiful bedroom. I'm stealing the 'code green' terminology too.

Suzy xxx

Ashley {hudson's happenings} said...

Beautiful Beautiful post! And love all the decor!!!!!

Jadyn @ Dutch.British.Love said...

Wow, I LOVE her use of color and pattern. Amazing! And so many useful tips! I like the idea of the code red, yellow and green zones! Thanks for sharing her Aubrey!

Barbara@HausDesign said...

Love the code green concept - we also really value quality home time with just our family, hanging in the pj's. :) What a great series! Aubrey - thanks so much for your comment today!

Ann said...

Oh what beautiful transformation.

I love what you did to the laundry room, so pretty ♥

And I love the chandelier.

classiq said...

She did a fantastic job with her home, in fact she made it her home. I love the turquoise touches and the entire colour palette. Great tips too. :)

Hyphen Interiors said...

Thanks so much for having me, Aubrey!!

Drew {Coral Cafe} said...

I LOVE how bold you are with your use of color, yet don't overdo it!! Love the living room and your master bedroom!! It's huuuge! A sitting area was a perfect idea!! And of course that apple green kitchen is so much fun!

Anneke {RustiChic} said...

I LOVE Kristy's blog! That's how I found a way to paint a chair from olive green to pink. Great style and design eye. I love these tips...honestly, especially your quote about having kids. SO true! And love the 3 codes. ;-) Thanks Aubrey and Kristy!!!

Megan {Splendid Design} said...

Such a great post and lot's of new information. Kristy's home looks great. I love the colored chandelier in the first phot.

Michaela said...

Great tips from Kristy! I loveeee her green laundry room. So fab (: and her master bedroom and pool area...definitely code green (: