365 Days of a Happy Home

This blog grew from a challenge to post an image a day of something that made me happy.  I did the challenge and decided to tweak this challenge for MJG Interiors.

Who doesn’t love a Happy Home? We certainly do!  Each blog post will contain one idea of something that contributes to a Happy Home. Check back often for ideas and ways to make you feel happy in your home! As always, leave us comments! Agree or disagree, there is no wrong answer. However, there is lots to learn!

View Blog Archive


Day 147: Outdoor Folly!

by MJ Gourd


Day 147 of 365 Days of a Happy Home!

Spring is finally here in New England and everyone wants to be outdoors.  Mother Nature doesn't always cooperate!  So, when dreaming of being outdoors, I am reminded of some great projects we have been involved with and the follies for inspirations.  Do you have a folly in your yard to make you happy?  Here are some pictures for your own inspiration...

 Functional and Beautiful!  This pergola was designed using the geographic location in order to provide the proper amount of shade most of the year.   Thanks Ramsay Gourd Architects for your keen understanding of how this all went together! 

Functional and Beautiful!  This pergola was designed using the geographic location in order to provide the proper amount of shade most of the year.   Thanks Ramsay Gourd Architects for your keen understanding of how this all went together! 

 To the right of the pergola we placed a pool house.  As you will see in the next picture, it is a great place to get changed or take a nap!

To the right of the pergola we placed a pool house.  As you will see in the next picture, it is a great place to get changed or take a nap!

 Great for napping by the pool (there is even a trundle bed under the day bed).  And cold drinks are stored in the fridge in the right side cabinet.  

Great for napping by the pool (there is even a trundle bed under the day bed).  And cold drinks are stored in the fridge in the right side cabinet.  

 This image is courtesy of Ramsay Gourd Architects.  This pond house cantilevers over the pond for a great jumping off point.  It doubles as a ice skating pavilion in the winter time. You can sit on the edge, put on your skates and off you go!

This image is courtesy of Ramsay Gourd Architects.  This pond house cantilevers over the pond for a great jumping off point.  It doubles as a ice skating pavilion in the winter time. You can sit on the edge, put on your skates and off you go!

 This adorable doll house is available through Jamaica Cottage Shops.  We love the double doors on the end. They make storing larger items so much easier.

This adorable doll house is available through Jamaica Cottage Shops.  We love the double doors on the end. They make storing larger items so much easier.

 Another beauty from Jamaica Cottage Shops is this greenhouse.  Super cute!

Another beauty from Jamaica Cottage Shops is this greenhouse.  Super cute!

 Dream big for your Happy Home!!!  Take inspiration from the Pagoda Tea House at the Marble House in Newport, RI.

Dream big for your Happy Home!!!  Take inspiration from the Pagoda Tea House at the Marble House in Newport, RI.

 Outdoor follies can provide their own space for inspiration.  Here is one of my favorites located on Garden Island in Lake Champlain off the coast of Charlotte, VT.  It is built into the cliffs of the island and impossible to get a photo of unless you are out on the lake in a boat.  This will have to do for my inpiration!  I'll take it! 

Outdoor follies can provide their own space for inspiration.  Here is one of my favorites located on Garden Island in Lake Champlain off the coast of Charlotte, VT.  It is built into the cliffs of the island and impossible to get a photo of unless you are out on the lake in a boat.  This will have to do for my inpiration!  I'll take it! 


Day 146: Relaxing Color!

by MJ Gourd


Day 146 of 365 Days of a Happy Home!

Life is stressful!  Our surroundings can calm us down or send us in a tail spin!  Why not surround yourself with soothing colors in your Happy Home?  Here are some of our favorites...

  Benjamin Moore's  Province Blue on the vanity is a nice compliment to Ben Moore's Summer Shower on the walls.  These colors, along with the marble floor and vanity top help to create this relaxing bathroom.

Benjamin Moore's Province Blue on the vanity is a nice compliment to Ben Moore's Summer Shower on the walls.  These colors, along with the marble floor and vanity top help to create this relaxing bathroom.

 White on white on white!  Ahhhhh!  The Simply White trim with the Dove white walls and the marble help relax us.  Add the polished nickle faucet and sconce plus the children's silhouettes and we just have to smile.   

White on white on white!  Ahhhhh!  The Simply White trim with the Dove white walls and the marble help relax us.  Add the polished nickle faucet and sconce plus the children's silhouettes and we just have to smile.

 

 More white on white with pops of blue.  Sweet dreams!

More white on white with pops of blue.  Sweet dreams!

 Change rooms, change focus without losing that relaxing feeling.  Tan walls with a flat finish surrounded by chocolate brown trim with a satin finish.  Don't you just want to cozy up with a good book?

Change rooms, change focus without losing that relaxing feeling.  Tan walls with a flat finish surrounded by chocolate brown trim with a satin finish.  Don't you just want to cozy up with a good book?

 The walls are  Ben Moore's  Woodlawn Blue and the trim is Kendall Charcoal.  It easily brings you into the office where the trim is Kendall Charcoal with Muslin walls.  

The walls are Ben Moore's Woodlawn Blue and the trim is Kendall Charcoal.  It easily brings you into the office where the trim is Kendall Charcoal with Muslin walls.  

 The two tone walls in this dining room help to create an intimate setting for a dinner party.  I like to use a darker color below a chair rail.  It helps to ground the space.

The two tone walls in this dining room help to create an intimate setting for a dinner party.  I like to use a darker color below a chair rail.  It helps to ground the space.

Where will you use calming color?  Share your ideas and comments with us!  We love to hear from you.


Day 144: Kids Bedrooms!

by MJ Gourd


Day 144 of 365 Days of a Happy Home!

TJSBUNK.JPG

Want to make your kid's bedroom have some longevity?  It's hard to pick just the right furniture and decor to grow with your son or daughter.  Take a look at these kids rooms we have done that can easily transition to the next stage of life...

 The loft bed shown here and in the photo at the top of the blog is from CollegeBedLofts.com.  It came disassembled and unstained.  We could stain or paint whatever we wanted.  There are added features that we didn't choose like a desk  or bookshelves.  We placed a PBTeen sectional underneath for hanging out or sleepovers.  This set up works well from middle school through high school.  It can be made feminine by the paint color, bedding and art. 

The loft bed shown here and in the photo at the top of the blog is from CollegeBedLofts.com.  It came disassembled and unstained.  We could stain or paint whatever we wanted.  There are added features that we didn't choose like a desk  or bookshelves.  We placed a PBTeen sectional underneath for hanging out or sleepovers.  This set up works well from middle school through high school.  It can be made feminine by the paint color, bedding and art. 

 We decorated this room for a 2nd grade girl.  The dandelions on the wall are custom, and can be re-positioned or removed very easily.  They mimic the dandelions in the shade fabric ( Duralee  Fabric).  With a few tweaks (stuffed animals) this room can easily take this young lady through her middle school years.  

We decorated this room for a 2nd grade girl.  The dandelions on the wall are custom, and can be re-positioned or removed very easily.  They mimic the dandelions in the shade fabric (Duralee Fabric).  With a few tweaks (stuffed animals) this room can easily take this young lady through her middle school years.  

 These headboards (made from skis my client no longer used) can go in a boy's or girl's room.  They are fun for any kid who skis, no matter what the age!

These headboards (made from skis my client no longer used) can go in a boy's or girl's room.  They are fun for any kid who skis, no matter what the age!

 These built in daybeds are ready for any preteen and can take them all the way through high school.  The built in shelves have a charging station (you've got to keep your devices charged!) plus a dimmable night light (for those afraid of the dark...come on, you know who you are!)  The grey and orange paint can be made more masculine or feminine with pillows and bedding.   

These built in daybeds are ready for any preteen and can take them all the way through high school.  The built in shelves have a charging station (you've got to keep your devices charged!) plus a dimmable night light (for those afraid of the dark...come on, you know who you are!)  The grey and orange paint can be made more masculine or feminine with pillows and bedding.   

 This is definitely a young girl's room.  But, remove the Raggedy Ann dolls and it can work for a middle school or high school girl.

This is definitely a young girl's room.  But, remove the Raggedy Ann dolls and it can work for a middle school or high school girl.

 Here we are back at the 2nd grade girl's bedroom.  Her desk is a bit small for an older child, but the lamp, desk chair and book rack can transition nicely as she gets older.  She'd definitely need new art work, though! 

Here we are back at the 2nd grade girl's bedroom.  Her desk is a bit small for an older child, but the lamp, desk chair and book rack can transition nicely as she gets older.  She'd definitely need new art work, though! 

How have you created your kid's room to grow with them?  We'd love to see your pictures!


Day 143: The Well Equipped Bathroom!

by MJ Gourd


Day 143 Of 365 Days of a Happy Home!

 This is one of our favorites...wall to wall mirror glass, double sinks, marble top, lever handle faucets and high gloss vanity!

This is one of our favorites...wall to wall mirror glass, double sinks, marble top, lever handle faucets and high gloss vanity!

These days a standard bathroom will have a toilet, sink and a shower/tub combo.  A "Well Equipped" bathroom takes those standard items to the next level, but without going over the top.  Perhaps the toilet is "comfort height" with an elongated bowl.  The vanity has double sinks with lever handle faucets (easy to turn on and off). The shower has at least one glass wall, a rain head and a hand held shower (easy to clean the shower with this) plus a hidden niche for shampoo storage.  A "Well Equipped" bathroom doesn't have to break the bank.  Here are some examples of bathrooms we have provided for our clients that we would consider "Well Equipped":

 This small bathroom had room for a shower but no tub.  The entrance to the shower is all glass.  This along with the darker tile on the lower half of the walls makes the space feel bigger.  We added a handheld shower for easier cleaning.  

This small bathroom had room for a shower but no tub.  The entrance to the shower is all glass.  This along with the darker tile on the lower half of the walls makes the space feel bigger.  We added a handheld shower for easier cleaning.  

 What about a bench in the shower?  We matched the bench top to the vanity tops...local marble!  We also tiled the ceiling of the shower using the small glass tile in the decorative band.  Its a colorful surprise once you're in the shower!

What about a bench in the shower?  We matched the bench top to the vanity tops...local marble!  We also tiled the ceiling of the shower using the small glass tile in the decorative band.  Its a colorful surprise once you're in the shower!

 Don't forget to hang a robe hook by the tub or shower.  You won't regret it!  Neither will your guests!

Don't forget to hang a robe hook by the tub or shower.  You won't regret it!  Neither will your guests!

 Low on wall space for towel bars?  How about adding robe hooks to the back of the door?   We had fun in this boys bathroom and used pipe fittings to create this sturdy towel holder.  

Low on wall space for towel bars?  How about adding robe hooks to the back of the door?   We had fun in this boys bathroom and used pipe fittings to create this sturdy towel holder.  

 In this renovated barn we added a window seat with cushion made out of indoor/outdoor fabric (from  Donghia ).  We also added a "train rack" for extra towel storage.  Notice that we added a back splash behind this stand alone tub.  It is attractive and will save the walls from water damage!

In this renovated barn we added a window seat with cushion made out of indoor/outdoor fabric (from Donghia).  We also added a "train rack" for extra towel storage.  Notice that we added a back splash behind this stand alone tub.  It is attractive and will save the walls from water damage!

 In this renovation we were able to reuse a cast iron claw foot tub.  It fit nicely in the dormer's eave.

In this renovation we were able to reuse a cast iron claw foot tub.  It fit nicely in the dormer's eave.

What can you do to make your bathroom "Well Equipped"?  Share photos, we love to see what you've done!


Day 139: Well Equipped Kitchen!

by MJ Gourd


Day 139 of 365 Days of a Happy Home!

Important elements in the kitchen include cabinets, flooring, appliances, faucets and lighting.  Once those are determined, people are looking for more to make their kitchen "well equipped".  Here are a few items to not only make your kitchen "well equipped" but also make it part of your Happy Home!

 If you can handle open shelves, make sure they are securely installed.  Our builder installed steel posts in the wall that the shelves slide onto.  They can carry the weight of almost anything!

If you can handle open shelves, make sure they are securely installed.  Our builder installed steel posts in the wall that the shelves slide onto.  They can carry the weight of almost anything!

 Thinking of adding under cabinet lighting?  Legrand has many options that can include docking and charging stations. 

Thinking of adding under cabinet lighting?  Legrand has many options that can include docking and charging stations. 

 Want to convert a drawer to a charging station?  Here you go!  You can get it on line or at local office supply stores.

Want to convert a drawer to a charging station?  Here you go!  You can get it on line or at local office supply stores.

 If Rex or Fifi are part of the family, maybe there is space in the kitchen for a food drawer!   

If Rex or Fifi are part of the family, maybe there is space in the kitchen for a food drawer!

 

 If a new sink is in your future, consider this workstation from The Galley.  All stainless with cutting boards, drain racks and colanders that slide to make a perfectly functional and asthetically pleasign work area.

If a new sink is in your future, consider this workstation from The Galley.  All stainless with cutting boards, drain racks and colanders that slide to make a perfectly functional and asthetically pleasign work area.

 Samsung's line of Family Hub refrigerators have a large display screen that enables you to see your calendar, play music and order groceries.  Inside are cameras you can access with you phone to see what is inside.  Then you know when you are running low on milk if your at the grocery store.  

Samsung's line of Family Hub refrigerators have a large display screen that enables you to see your calendar, play music and order groceries.  Inside are cameras you can access with you phone to see what is inside.  Then you know when you are running low on milk if your at the grocery store.  


Day 138: Stencils!

by MJ Gourd


Day 138 of 365 Days of a Happy Home!

Stenciling dates back to Egyptian times.  Think the pictures on the walls of ancient tombs!   In the 21st century we have moved beyond the primitive stencils to create back splashes, ceiling accents, focal walls and even creating a checker board on a floor!  Here are some fun, colorful ideas for your next project.  Which is your favorite?

 This Calista Tile stencil from Cutting Edge Stencils creates a great back splash in this kitchen.  

This Calista Tile stencil from Cutting Edge Stencils creates a great back splash in this kitchen.  

 HGTV featured this stencil project in one of its blogs. This really transforms the ceiling in this room! 

HGTV featured this stencil project in one of its blogs. This really transforms the ceiling in this room! 

 This checkerboard design was created with a masking technique,  but it could be achieved with a stencil, too.

This checkerboard design was created with a masking technique,  but it could be achieved with a stencil, too.

 I just met the stencil artist, Judy Potter who did this 2 tone floor stencil.  This red and pink combo really transformed this mudroom.

I just met the stencil artist, Judy Potter who did this 2 tone floor stencil.  This red and pink combo really transformed this mudroom.

 Raechel Meyers shared the transformation of this room on her blog.  She makes it look so simple and easy!  

Raechel Meyers shared the transformation of this room on her blog.  She makes it look so simple and easy!  

 This stencil within the arch mimics a tile pattern

This stencil within the arch mimics a tile pattern