As full-time artists who work from our home, it’s important to have spaces throughout our house that feel both creative and bold, as it helps foster our own creativity. We recently bought a new home together — our first ever house purchase — and it's provided us a blank canvas in which to really hone our DIY home decor skills. "Inside an Artist's Home" is our new blog series where we'll be showcasing our personal home decor styles, room by room.
As we share different rooms of our home throughout this blog series, we'd like to note that the artwork, accessories and furniture you'll see here has been collected over many, many years. We didn't buy a new house and immediately drop thousands of dollars decorating it. From Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters to Home Goods and local estate sales, we've shopped from a variety of places offering a wide range of price points. Plus, we attend a LOT of art markets as vendors for ARCHd. We never leave one without at least one new piece of art from another vendor — and that adds up over time! To sum up, take your time collecting pieces that mean something to you. Now, on to the first room!
Purple has always been my (Kristen's) favorite color. I love the richness and drama of jewel tones — both in decor and fashion. With that in mind, I knew I wanted a jewel-toned color palette for my room — purples, turquoises, golden yellows, dark pinks, vibrant blues, etc.
When we bought our house, the previous owners had painted all the rooms a bright, neutral ivory. After we officially closed on the house and prior to moving in, we chose to have a few of the rooms painted to add some pops of color. I chose a fresh new wall color for my bedroom, which is a custom color match from Sherwin Williams, with "Fine Wine" being the base. Here's the exact color combo:
Once my walls were painted, I chose my duvet cover – a splurge from Anthropologie. I love this Anthropologie duvet cover because it literally has ALL the jewel tones I wanted to incorporate in my room!
And, I mean, how cute does my dog, Maddie, look on it?! Speaking of dogs ... she sleeps with me every night, so having a duvet cover I can wash frequently without it losing its vibrancy is an ABSOLUTE must. This Anthro duvet has held up very nicely, so far! Plus, it's reversible, providing me with a second option if I get tired of the floral pattern.
Before we moved into the new house, we refinished and painted several pieces of furniture to give them a refresh. For furniture paint, we chose Jolie paints
because you don't have to prep or sand the surfaces AT ALL before painting. We like a matte finish on our furniture, so we use Jolie's clear finishing wax
for sealing. It seriously makes the furniture feel like butter. So smooth! My two miss-matched wood night stands are painted in Jolie's Marigold
which is "an orange-yellow color, named after the cheery flower."
While I already had the three-drawer piece, I found the second piece (with the doors) at a local estate sale for under $100. It had a few scrapes, but with the fresh coats of Jolie paint, you can't see them. I love how using the warm gold across two completely different pieces of furniture helps to tie them together. The matching color makes them look more coordinated while flanking each side of my bed.
I got REALLY lucky with this next piece of furniture! This gorgeous chest of drawers was left for free by the previous home owners. I didn't initially have plans to refinish or paint it. It wasn't until a few weeks after being moved into the house that it started bothering me how the original dark brown finish blended in too much with my dark purple walls. It was driving me crazy! I went to Me and Mrs. Jones's booth at Palladio
in Memphis to pick out a blue that would pop off my wall. She is a local stockist of Jolie Paints. The Santorini color
was temporarily on sale (50% off) AND happens to match my duvet cover
PERFECTLY. To shine and clean the existing handles and hardware, I used a mixture of vinegar, baking soda, salt and flour
that I found via a Google search. I soaked the handles in the mixture before scrubbing the HELL out of them with a scouring pad. It was annoying and took about an hour, but they look TWENTY times better! The bright brass finish makes the handles pop off that blue matte paint.
What I love about our house is that it's a mixture of things we've had in our family for decades, things we splurged on, things we got for REAL cheap, things we bought and up-cycled and things we've refreshed over and over again. One of my splurges for my bedroom was my light switch covers. I didn't find a lot of great options when I Googled "jewel-toned Moroccan themed light switch covers." Maybe that was a little too specific for Google ;). After LOTS of searching, I finally found Beth Sherman, a ceramicist and owner of Honey Bee Ceramics in Santa Cruz, CA
, that made EXACTLY what I wanted. I got the Moroccan Single Toggle Light Switch Plate in Apricot Gold Gloss Glaze
and three different "Sapphire Blue Moroccan plates" for my en suite bathroom. They turned out absolutely gorgeous! Here's the links:
Speaking of my bathroom ... I decided on a pale pink, "Romance" from Sherwin Williams
, for the wall color. The space is small and and the light color offers a great contrast to the darker tones of my adjoining bedroom. During a random trip to HomeGoods
, I found this round corner table (low key obsessed) and decided cobalt blue would be the perfect bathroom accent color!
I started out with two different bath mats, but it just didn't work in the small space. My new bathroom runner is from Anthropologie
and is the perfect size. This longer one helps protect the painted tile floors, courtesy of the former owners (
they came with the house and we definitely DO NOT recommend painting tile floors white because they get SO dirty SO fast!).
For an extra layer of privacy on the windows (but according to Lindsey, not FULL privacy), I added this really easy-to-adhere window film from Amazon
that looks like stained glass. It shows as pretty clear, unless the sun is hitting it. Then, the pastels shine! And, how perfect are the pink and blue hues in this Jess Tinsley "Memphis Sunset" art print
?! To bring in some purple from my bedroom, I switched out the knobs on the medicine cabinet with purple glass knobs I found 1/2 off at Worlds Apart in Memphis
. One of our favorite ways to easily refresh a piece of old furniture: new knobs and/or hardware!
Ok, back to the bedroom! It took me A LOT of online and in-person searches to find a rug I liked and could afford (rugs are SO expensive!). My rug
from At Home is screen-printed (not hand-woven), so I got it for under $200. It's thin, but really soft. Putting the rug down under my bed made a HUGE difference in the overall feel of the room. It immediately made it feel more put together and luxurious.
My antique vanity has been in my mother's family for decades. I used it in my bedroom growing up and it's traveled with me during every move since. The vanity set includes a small bench with a fabric cover. Every so often, I recover the seat to compliment whatever my room colors are at the time. This time I splurged and got fancy fabric from the INCREDIBLE watercolor artist, (and our friend) Whitney Winkler.
She turns her beautiful watercolor paintings into fabric, which she sells by the yard at her shop here in Memphis.
The last piece of furniture I want to share (before giving links to all my favorite wall decor) is my light pink velvet bed from Wayfair
. Fun fact: this bed is actually considered a child's bed (for whatever reason). I didn't realize that until it came in the mail and included a children's coloring book with the packaging. None of the photos on the website show a child's bedroom decor, or at least they didn't at the time of this blog. Anyway, it holds me and Maddie just fine ;). It also wasn't too hard to put together (Lindsey helped me, so I recommend using a buddy for assembly).
Time to chat about what's on my walls! My sister and I have hundreds of pieces of art, prints, photos, etc., that we've collected over the last ten years or so. For my gallery wall and wall decor, I tried to stick with pieces that fell within the same jewel-toned spectrum as the rest of my room. My absolute favorite photo I've ever taken is of a fire sunset off the California Coast, near Pismo Beach. I chose to frame a large print of that for above my bed. I always refer to it as my favorite fire sunset because LOOK AT IT!
If you're a "lifetime, dedicated, will-buy-Pit-tickets-to-all-her-concerts" Swiftie, you will LOVE my Taylor Swift shrine. Lindsey got me the top print by Bri Bowers from Revelry Boutique and Gallery
in Louisville, KY, last Christmas (the flower dress depicted here is the one she wore to the Grammy's and my all-time favorite outfit of hers). The photo of her performing (next to our hologram VIP ticket because VIP packages are SO extra) was captured by me from the Pit during her Reputation Stadium Tour. Seriously, WHEN is she going to tour again ... ?!
You will notice throughout this blog series that we LOVE a good gallery wall. Executing them has gotten easier over the years. No, we don't measure exactly (sometimes not at all). We eyeball it, lining up at least one side of each piece with another. We also try and make the gaps between all the pieces of art the same distance. The gallery wall around my vanity features a lot of my photography on wood, paired with our Los Angeles Retro Skyline Design art print and 3 prints from one of my favorite artists, Jessica Durant
. She has NAILED fashion watercolor. I love how I hung her photographer art print so it was facing photos I have actually captured. Yes, I do think that specifically about art placement at times ;).
When we moved into this house, it's the first time we decided to become official plant moms. The thing about plants that no one informed us about is that once you start buying them, it's REALLY hard to stop. Real plants make a house feel so warm and alive (probably because they're actual, living things, right?). For my bedroom, I wanted to hang two plants in the back corners in front of my windows. For the plant hanging hardware, I found these inexpensive black metal rods from Lowe's
and spray painted them with our new favorite spray paint, Krylon's High Gloss Metallic Gold Leaf. (Spoiler alert: you will see LOTS of things spray painted with this color in future blog posts.)
The beaded wood plant hangers came from World Market in Nashville
and the clay pots for inside them came from Golden Hour
, a local plant shop in Memphis.
As new plant moms, our main go-to plant shops in Memphis to buy real live plants are:
We have yet to kill a plant (in the two months we've been in this house). SO PROUD OF US.
A few more random room details to highlight before I wrap up this post ... My antique furniture means a lot to me, especially this chest. It was my great aunt's cedar chest and I love looking at the pencil note "This chest is for Sarah. 1.5.36. X-mas 1917." every time I open it. Don't ask me why there are two years listed that are 19 years apart because I have no idea ... haha.
We have an entire collection of city-based art prints, which we offer in a variety of color schemes. Our Los Angeles design is my favorite and with my background in video and photography, it's a natural fit for my room. Always feel free to reach out to us before purchasing one of our Retro City Skyline prints if you'd like a specific color scheme to match your space.
The Brooklyn Bridge Wood Art is in the top 5 favorite photos I've ever captured, because it required me to hang over the bridge and place my camera on the trestle to capture. Safe? No. Worth it? Yes. (Lindsey was there for back-up spotting).
All of our ARCHd wood wall art comes with sawtooth hangers so you can hang them as part of any gallery wall. I love using smaller pieces like these to fill in gaps on a larger wall area. Pictured below: San Francisco, California, Golden Gate Bridge Photography Wood Art.
The last piece of decor that celebrates my photography are my Dad's old Encyclopedias of Photography I stacked under my bedside lamps. I challenge you to find ways to incorporate pieces of decor that have special meaning to you, like these books do for me. Back in the day, my dad was also a photographer and thankfully, it's a skillset he passed on to me!
Another thing you'll quickly learn with this home decor blog series is we LOVE buying candles. Every single room usually has at least one candle burning. For my bedroom and bathroom, here are a few of my favorite scents:
I hope my purple, jewel-toned bedroom design has inspired you! Please reach out in the comments below, via Instagram DM (@getarchd) or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions you may have.
The best piece of decorating advice we have is to mix it up with family heirlooms, splurges (if possible), deals and steals, up-cycled items and pieces you can refresh with a little paint, sanding or stripping. And don't be afraid to use some color!
- Kristen Archer