An Office Evolving

Gloria Joy_Office_13So I have a lot of stuff.

I do a lot of  side projects for people . I’m the girl that people call when they have something “creative” that needs to be done. I love it.  Naturally, I have accumulated a lot of different tools and materials for all these things, sewing, painting, invitations, chalk art, etc.  which means some serious organization is in order. Every basket, shelf and container in this room serves a very specific purpose. If it looks like there is a lot of stuf in this room, it’s because THERE IS.

Until recently, my office never had a focus. It was mostly just leftover furniture pieces and things that didn’t work in any other room so it got dropped here. It’s bothered me for awhile and I finally started clearing out the things that didn’t work and ONLY putting things in that DID.  I don’t exactly have the luxury to design a room all at once, source and buy materials and then install. It’s a much slower process of acquiring things and snagging deals as they come along. Patience for the win. While it’s not a “perfectly completed” space, it’s certainly evolving into one.

Gloria Joy_Office_12 When I finally decided to purposefully “decorate” this room, I started with painting the walls bright white. It was a shade of tan that seemed to suck in the light and didn’t give me that bright energetic space I craved to work in. Once all the walls were white, it was a bit TOO white. I like that stark, but also wanted some kind of an accent wall. Wallpaper was  my first choice, but with the texture and price of my favorite designs, hand-painted it was. An accent wall under $15? I can handle that.

Gloria Joy_Office_22 This is a bit of real life here, the unpainted spot on the ceiling.  The rug was a Craigslist find at $50. It’s worn and tattered a bit on the corners, but to me it was such a piece of art that I wanted it. I wasn’t sure where it would go after I bought it but dragged it in here since this is the last room without a rug that would fit. I was surprised by how much I liked in here and with the chandelier installed, I loved all the layers even more.

Gloria Joy_Office_16 Another project in here is this glitter modge podged chair. Originally it was a white chair, turned dingy. Then I tried to modge podge fabric on top and well that was a fail. In a frustrated moment, I poured glitter into some modge podge and painted it on. I’m really happy with the color and sheen it gives off. Glitter is hard to photograph, but I love it in person. That’s what counts.

Gloria Joy_Office_15 If you look closely here, you’ll notice I definitely jumped the gun. I’m still waiting on a few parts for the chandelier to arrive, more crystals and candle covers, but I couldn’t resist taking a bunch of photos because the chandelier feels  so much like the icing on top. I was giddy when it was put up.

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This yellow painting has bounced around to just about every wall I have. I may sell it and paint something new for this space since there is a lot of color going on in here.

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Another item I’m debating is the chair. I love sitting in it. It’s comfortable and just the right shape, but I accidently tore the seat cushion cover when I was cleaning it. It just split like paper. I’d love it in a soft, neutral linen .

Gloria Joy_Office_18 I love having my accordian file holder mounted on the wall. My mom gave it to me and said, “This could be something” and a few days later the lightbulb to put it on the wall went off. I have a TON of paper from invitations and I love having it out in view so I can see what I have at a glance.

Gloria Joy_Office_21 Gloria Joy_Office_10 These acrylic shelves are like the brain of this room. I’m a huge fan of storage out in the open and these shelves hold a lot of the supplies I use on a frequent basis.

Gloria Joy_Office_20 My trashcan basket, another vital part of the room.

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Rug // Craigslist
Drafting Table // Craigslist
Upholstered Chair // Flea Market
Sheepskins // RugsUSA
Filing Cabinets // CB2
White Console Table // CB2
X Base Ottomans // Target
Baskets // Hobby Lobby
Acrylic Trays // Amazon
Acrylic Shelves //JMKDisplays
Ceramic Copper Knot // TJ Maxx

That’s the current state of my office I’m sure there will be more change in here in the future. I acutally have a printer hidden away in one office and a tv in the other! I’ll have to share those as soon as I get around to painting them, which WILL happen…. eventually…

If you have any secrets to keeping an office or craftroom organized, I’d love to hear!

Making an Oilcloth Table Cover

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After I finished Beckett’s table, we had our first little craft session and I instinctively grabbed a trash bag to cover the top. While incredibly functional, it’s not very attractive or practical to keep reusing. It made me think of an oil cloth shop that I pass on my way to work but have never had the chance to venture inside. Over the weekend, I did exactly that and came out with some orange striped oil cloth.

I love this project because it was cheap, quick and easy. The trip to the store took longer than anything else.

Here’s what I used:

• 48″x48″ piece of oil cloth
• Scissors
• 24″ String
• Marker
• Tape Measurer

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The fabric came in 48″ width so I got just over a yard to make it a nice even square.

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Flipped it over to the back side and measured to the center both sides so I knew where to draw my circle.

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To draw the circle, I tied the string around the pen and held it in the center. I had to readjust in a couple of spots because its hard to do in one motion. My string wasn’t an exact 24″ but closer to 23″ which makes the entire width of the circle 46″.

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I couldn’t be happier with the finished piece! It adds some color in here all while being totally functional.  Any other kid room projects I should know about? I love getting inventive in these spaces.


Shopping for Marbled Swirl Lamps

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Over the weekend, I did a little antique shopping. I got a new chair for the office that needs a fair amount of work. Story of my life. While I was out, I saw this lamp base and it made an impression on me. I didn’t buy it that day because it wasn’t a huge need, but the mental note I made was strong. So strong in fact that two days later as I was driving past the store on my way home, I pull right in on instinct with the intention of taking it home. All mine for $20. Turns out I DID need it in my office. It fill the space so perfectly I’m constantly turning my head to look at it.

I had a few people tell me they had one in their homes growing up or parents who have one. I thought I’d do a little internet shopping and see if I could find any similar items. These kinds of things are usually best priced in antique stores. Let it be known that I’m well aware of how outrageously priced some of these are. I also thought it would be fun to include a few with a modern take on the marbled look.

Ginger Jar Marbled Lamp Shopping

//1. ETSY, $45 // 2. ETSY $120 // 3. CHAIRISH $400 (pair) // 4. CHAIRISH $400 // 5. Lamps Plus $60 // 6. ETSY $50 // 7. CHAIRISH $225 // 8. CHAIRISH $63 // 9. ALL MODERN $193 (Pair)//

Number 4 as my heart while 2 and 8 most closely resemble the shape of the one I found.

Sometimes, things like this are hard to shop for unless you just happen across it. Typically, you would start by the name or style of the piece. Usually, that works great,  but often times the seller of the item has no clue what they have and come up with a name of it’s own. Here ‘s a few I came across on this search: Asian Ginger Jar , Glazed Ceramic , Marbled Porcelain, Mid Century Ceramic.

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I’d love a book that talks soley about lamps and covers every different era, style, origins. Does such a thing exist? A lamp encyclopedia? I could waste so many hours and cups of coffee on that.  Please tell me if there is such a thing.

If you have any info on this style of lamp I would love to hear it. If you have one like this send me a link or tag me on instagram @gloriajoy. I would love to see it and/or be educated on it!

Making an Easy, Custom Kid’s Table

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Let me start by saying that 90% of my decorating is really problem solving. Sure, I buy pretty things from time to time for no reason, but the bulk of things brought into my house are intended to serve a purpose or two or three all while still being something that I like to look at.

Beckett’s room is pretty small and that’s okay, he’s tiny and doesn’t have a clue. That simply means I’ve really got to be smart about the things that go in there and creative with storage. The rug in there is almost an 8×10′ and you can see it’s pretty much wall to wall. Like I said, tiiiny room.

I still wanted the room to be a place for him to play in. I knew I wanted a table, but every option I saw was wrong—wrong price, wrong size, wrong shape, wrong wrong wrong. In my head I knew what I was looking for, there was already too many rectangle furniture pieces and a circle would be a nice reprieve from all the angles in the tiny room. Have I said that already?

One day walking through Target (this happens often) I walked past this little white accent table and it immediately clicked. I did a thorough inspection of the piece and did a run through in my head of how I would assemble it. Then I went home and bought it online, I usually save money online stacking coupon codes. Plus I had a gift card that covered this, score! 

What I love about this project is how easily it could be converted, different base, different table top size. I’ve always felt like these Target accent tables are a tad limited. I mean, thanks for holding my drink and half of a magazine, so thoughtful. This could make a great end table or coffee table that actually holds real stuff for real people.

So let’s get to it. Here’s the list of everything I used to make this table.

• Pine Wood Table Top (I used the 30″ top)
• Target Side Table (The copper version is to die for!)
• Industrial Strength Velcro
• White Paint
• Paint brush
• Sander
• Johnson Paste Wax (I’m such a fan of this product!)

Custom Kid Table_08The very first thing I did was sand  the top. Pine is fairly rough and you’ll notice a huge difference after. DON’T skip this step.

After that I put a white wash on it. Originally, I was going to paint it solid white but realized the whites might not match up and I knew that would forever bother me so I went with something that was more obviously contrasting. For the wash, I did about 2/3 paint to 1/3 water, mixed it then brushed it on.

Once dried, I used the paste wax to give it a subtle polish and seal. It’s incredibly simple to use. Apply generously, allow to dry and then buff off. That’s all I did to the table top. Sand, Paint, Wax.

Custom Kid Table_01 Do you see what I mean about how small these table tops are? Maybe I’m the only one it irritates.Custom Kid Table_02

I decided for me, the best route to attach the top to the table would be something that was removeable (hopefully.) That’s why I chose velcro instead of glue or drilling into both pieces. A little goo gone and I could repurpose down the road if needed.

Custom Kid Table_03 I chose to apply the velcro to the base first so that I could place it on the underside of the table top to get it as centered as possible. Custom Kid Table_04

Close enough. It’s kind of a one shot thing and I’m not typically one who “measures”. Mostly because Beckett is always playing with the measuring tapes and not his actual toys.

Custom Kid Table_05Step back and observe. Again, good enough! I already had this chair gifted to me by my mom via Craigslist ($20). Awesome. The height of the table is peeerfect for this chair. I couldn’t be happier!

Custom Kids Table_09Custom Kids Table_10Here’s a couple close ups of the top. You can see I left a fair amount of wood grain there and the top is suuuper smooth.

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He has so many rustic earthy elements in his room I really wanted a lighter contrast to all of that and this table came out exactly how I hoped it would! After one bout of creativity on it, I quickly realized I wanted a dedicated tablecloth and not a trash bag. The solution for that will be up later this week!

Custom Kid Table_07  Watching a kid create something is just about the best. Any fun kid projects that I should bring into his life?

A Summer Bedroom

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A perpetually unmade bed. Crisp, white linens. A whirring ceiling fan. Fresh garden clippings. Deliciously scented candles. This is summer, according to my bedroom. This room has always taken the lead as the most finished room in the house, the one I’ve paid the most attention to the details. I take so much ownership in “my space” and hold this retreat in high regard.

I believe summer is about being unapologetically easy. When it comes to clothes, throw on a sundress and sandals and you’re good to go. Why should a room be any different? I prefer simple bedding, easy to drape over the bed with a few pillows and call it made.



White is by no means exclusive to summer, but I wanted an overall brighter feel in here. Switching sheets was the first thing on my list.  I have two sets of sheets to switch between. I would have a million more, but good bedding is an investment and I believe in quality over quantity. I always preach that to my younger sister’s friends or anyone who will listen, really. Don’t just buy something because it is cheap! Buy because you LOVE it and is a QUALITY piece. If you’re not sure where to start, Parachute Home has a great selection of luxury bedding that can blend into any style and is perfect for the summer months. My next bedding purchase will likely be a new linen duvet. My current one has popcorn butter stains on it from a certain monkey  I gave birth to. Also, coasters people.

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This doesn’t just pertain to color. In this case, I put the down comforter on hold and kept the ivory quilt for those warm summer nights with an extra throw blanket in case. I also reduced the pillow collection so that most of them could stay on the bed and weren’t just there for decoration. I prefer my summer bed unpretentious and one that doesn’t have to be made perfectly with hospital corners and karate chopped pillows.



Sometimes it’s nice to change things up for no other reason than to re-appreciate the things you already own, but in a different arrangement. I borrowed the pillows and throw from my living room and gives it just enough of a change without costing anything extra. Often, I find that the new spot looks more intentional that the original location. I doubt these will go back to the living room :)

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Every so often, clutter tends to accumulate and I’ll have a day that I go around, sort and organize to free up the nightstands and dressers. It’s mentally relaxing to see a blank space instead of piles of papers, books, drink cups sprawled about. It’s hard to me to fall asleep with too much junk hanging around my nightstand. Even more than that, I go through my accessories and clothing to move some of that around too. It’s hard to even look at sweaters when all I want to wear is a bikini.



Candles live in my house year round, always seasonal appropriate.  This one  from Anthropologie is a recurring purchase in Santiago Huckleberry. Plus, I love the little containers they come in.



This is one of my favorite free changes. I’ll walk in my backyard, find something that’s flowering, cut some stems, check for bug and throw in a vase! Free flower finds are my second favorite kind of flowers, these are from my crepe myrtle. Bouquets being GIVEN to me will obviously take that number one slot. I love being outdoors and nothing quite perks me up the same as having fresh blooms to wake up to.



In Oklahoma, the ceiling fan runs just about 24/7. I’ve been debating whether I would replace it with a chandelier and get a stationary fan. For now, the overhead stays, but I always check to make sure the blades are running in the forward direction to bring the air down. My fan had a switch on the base that indicates which way is best with little icons. It’s helpful for me because I have a hard time remembering little details like this.

Anything I missed? What else do you do for your summer bedroom? I’d love to hear!

Beckett’s Room, the Original

The other day, I had an odd compulsion to redecorate Beckett’s room. Redecorate may be too strong of a word, I just wanted to give it an update. I quickly tidied up just to snap a few pics of the current state. I regret not having many photos of where Beckett lived the first year of his life, I thought there would be too many unpleasant memories brought back by looking at photos of a house that wasn’t ours, but it couldn’t be more opposite. There were so many fond memories created at my former in-laws home as we lived there for a year trying to figure out what was next.

We moved into this house almost two years ago. Back when Beckett still slept in a crib, and by himself for the whole night. So before the curtains and pictures came off the wall, I wanted to remember our first house together, his first room. So here is it the “original” room since I wouldn’t really call it a before.

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Becketts room_Before_05And here’s the little boy himself. I’m not going to go crazy with changes, I just want to freshen and brighten things up. Rearrange some art, make it function better for a busy two, almost three!, year old .

Watercolor Birthday Invitations

I had a fun little job last month, I painted some flowers for a birthday invitation and can I just say, I love that people send out invitations for birthdays. Not just kiddie invitations, I mean, those are great too. Grown up invitations, how fun.

Occasionally, people ask me about my process and how I design things. Sometimes I’ll paint individual elements and then piece it together in photoshop. Others, like this, I do all in one pass and then tweak colors and scale with photoshop. I wanted to show the original painting to see how and where it differs! Colors doesn’t always come out how I would like with paint, but I don’t let it phase me and just keep moving forward.

This suite ended up being printed on white gold metallic paper. I’ll print small jobs on my home computer, but will mount the invitation on one to two pieces of paper with spray adhesive to give it some extra rigidity. It carries a little more presence that way than a flimsy sheet of paper. I’ll post a how-to someday just so I can clearly explain what I’m talking about. The triple thick paper got paired with a matte wine envelope and gold addressing top it all off!

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If you’re interest in custom invitations or announcements email me at gloriajoyink(at)gmail(dot)com. I’ll get you set up with a quote and help your ideas come to life!