Guest Post: Kelly from Refreshed Designs

I’m excited to be here guesting at The Mustard Ceiling to give you some inspiration for living smaller but better. I’m a big proponent of sustainable design, and by that I mean living with style and with a small footprint. Sustainable design can be achieved by building and decorating with eco-friendly products, or through reusing materials, or simply by living small. Small spaces can be organized and designed so that you don’t have to sacrifice style or function. But what if you already feel too cramped? Move up. To the attic.

Here are some great examples of using attic space to create new rooms without adding on or building new.


Fresh Home
Fresh Home
Coastal Living
Apartment Therapy
Kelly Deck Design
Lotta Agaton

Yes, slope roof lines can create challenges, but as you can see from these examples, they also create interesting spaces.  If you are lucky enough to have convertible attic space, what are you waiting for? If you don’t, come on over to refresheddesigns to check out other ideas for living small and sustainably.

Thanks Elizabeth for having me!


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Guest: Jessica from Stay at Home-ista


Hi! I’m Jessica from Stay at Home-ista. I was so excited by the opportunity to share my house with all you Mustard Ceiling readers. I think it’s hard to image someone, and especially their home without seeing them, so here I am, complete with husband and three kids. As you can imagine, it’s impossible to get a photo where everyone is smiling:)

Here’s my quick story. I’m a Harvard-trained architect, now staying home with 3 small children (all under the age of 5 (I also have a love of parenthesis!)). I was lucky enough to be able to buy an empty plot of land, only 2 miles form where I grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, and I designed and built our dream home. Throughout the process I acted as the Project Architect while my husband acted as the general contractor, so I probably know more about every nook and corner of our house than I would ever need to know! Now I’m in the decorating stage, spending my days mommy-ing, blogging, baking and occasionally craft-making. I’m putting my passion for design, food and family to work. I built the dream, but I still live in reality.
I have finally cleaned up my Living Room enough to be able to take “proper” pictures of it, you know, ones without children racing through the frame or a pillow fort on the couch.


Out those big doors is our deck.


We actually eat breakfast and dinner in our Dining Room everyday, so it’s well used and usually has a high chair pulled up to it! It’s very June Cleaver of me, but I love the family meals and when you see my kitchen you’ll understand why I’m happy to cook everyday!
This is “my” Library. I’m still working on the styling of the shelves, most of the time I start, then just throw everything up there, toss the toys on the bottom two shelves and promise to try again another day.
Now for my absolute favorite. The Kitchen. I even have an organized spice drawer, kitchen clock, hidden trash, and a pantry. Then for my mommy-ing side we incorporated a morning launching pad, and redone family command center to help me keep track of all the goings on.
I’ve been working on our gallery wall that goes up the stairs to the bedroom level. Our entry also houses my mom’s piano, that I grew up with. Too bad none of us play (yet).
The loft has an awesome 8′ high deer decal (I have a *small* love affair with decals). And I know it also appears that I have a love affair with deer as well, if they giant, glossy deer head over the living room mantle means anything. I’ll either have to work it out in therapy or get my big brother to take me hunting…



My Master Bedroom is a serious work in progress. So far I’ve spruced up the bedding (although I’ve already made changes since I last took a photo!) and added art above the bed. In case you can’t tell they are a series of photographs of Paris, all using the color yellow, I’m kind of in love with them.
The Master Bath is pretty much an all-marble room. Which is awesome until I’m trying to wrangle three wet kids out of *my* tub, then it gets slippery. And I did have dreams of relaxing in a bubble bath here with candles, music a good book, a glass of something… Guess how many times I’ve been in my own tub? Just once, and it was with the baby. Not exactly what I had been dreaming about.
Then we have some kid bedrooms, our Little Girl’s Butterfly Bedroom, although now we’ve done a Nightstand Switcheroo, so she has more space for all her hoarding collecting.
Our Little Boy’s Room has been through quite a few changes in the last few months, we took out the crib, gave him a big-boy bed with construction machine bedding, and we’re still working. Here it is still “in progress” and “in use”!


The Pink and Teal Nursery. What can I say? The baby is only 7 months old so she can’t ask for any changes yet:)


Click here for a post with paint colors for each room. I hope you all stop by real soon!



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Guest Post: Bethany from Powell Brower

Hiya!  My name is Bethany and I represent the
daughter-half of Powell Brower Home, a Virginia-based design firm headed
by a mother-daughter team. I love Elizabeth’s blog and really effortless
style, so I was really excited for Elizabeth to allow me to flood the
airways in her absence.  I really admire her skillz, especially the
‘BAM or SLAM’ series, so the fact that she’s handing over the MIC is a
special treat for me!

To pay homage to our lovely hostess, I’m going to wax on about
your favorite and mine – the contrasting ceiling.

My Mom and I are obsessed with unexpected design elements in a
room and this particular trend lends itself to just that.  I recently
unveiled my new master bedroom design as part of the One Room Challenge and sure nuff, we sported a painted
ceiling!  We chose Smoked Oyster by Ben Moore, which turned out to be
a really opinionated grey-brown that kinda hints at plum, too.  I like
my paints like I like my wine, complex and full-bodied.

I feel that ceilings are often ignored when decorating a room
so I’m singlehandedly trying to restore the ceiling to a state of high
esteem.  I did my own take on ‘Best in Show’ wallpaper on my powder room ceiling
by handpainting it to include all of the breeds that have
personally touched my life.   Ok, well maybe I haven’t had a special
relationship with a Poodle, but you can’t leave their curvy topiary fur

Paint and paint alone can do wonders on a home with little to
no architectural detail.

I also rather enjoy a papered ceiling.

And who doesn’t love the rustic feel of a wood panelled

A couffered ceiling is always a good

And my very favorite ceiling is one with a canopy!  We’re
in the middle of design project for a yoga studio in which we are covering
the exposed beams and ductwork with a dreamy canopy.  Kinda like this

And a little detail around a light never hurts,

So tell me, what’s your favorite kind of ceiling?  Plain
or decorated?  Colorful or architecturally interesting?

I look forward to meeting you all and I sure hope the move is
going well for Elizabeth!  Thanks for the opportunity to hijack your

Pop on by Powell Brower Home and say ‘hello’.

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