If You Want To Read In Bed…

I’m still in the midst of my “If You Buy A New Bed” saga. I bought myself a new, bigger bed. Which meant I needed new bedding. My new bed is also taller than my old bed, which unfortunately means that my old floor lamp is now too short and doesn’t provide enough light by which to read at night. And this girl loves to read in bed.

I haven’t yet settled on bedding, but my brain enjoyed the opportunity to take a break and peruse some lighting options. In my studio apartment, table and floor space is at a premium, so I’m looking for a plug-in sconce to go right on the wall. The best part… most of these can be angled and adjusted to provide light right where I want it. Book-errific!

You can see it coming now can’t you… Next, this mouse is going to need money to spend on Kindle books…

I’m imagining that I will purchase two sconces, one for each side of the bed. Here are my favorite options (thus far):

Bedroom Lighting Options // Likes to Smile

(Option 1 Grey & White, Option 2, Option 3, Option 4, Option 5)

My next step will be to scour for bedding and pillows.  I’ll put together a mood board (or possibly two) of some options I’m loving.  Then, decision time!

And you? Which one do you think will look best with my grey walls and white bedding (with maybe bright pillows)? Do you also like to read in bed?

Until next time!


If You Get A New Bed…

I’m having a bit of a “If You Give A Mouse A Cookie” moment…

In October, I bought a new bed (mattress + box spring). It was time. I upgraded from a Full size to a Queen size. Heavenly!

But then… If you buy a new bed, you will need new bedding. And if you buy new bedding, you will want to read in bed. So you will want new bedside lighting. Chocolate chips and milk, someone gave this mouse a cookie!

I have been on the hunt for new bedding since October. But I’ve purchased nothing, because I’m hesitating to decide on a look. The bedding will need to coordinate with everything in my studio apartment, as I will be seeing it all the time.

I have no headboard, it is just the bed against the wall. The walls in my apartment are grey (Manhattan Mist to be exact). The other two main colors in the apartment are wood (most of the furniture) and white. Any new bedding needs to work with my grey, wood and white color theme.

I did what you do. I turned to Pinterest and created a Bedroom Ideas pinboard. And then I found it. The inspiration. I heard bells ringing.

Bedroom Color Inspiration: I love the fun patterned pillows against a grey and white backdrop! // Likes to Smile

(Image 1 & Image 2)

I fell in love with the couch on the left and the window seat on the right. I loved how the bold and bright patterns popped off the grey couch or the white window seat. It was like someone took my apartment’s color palette and added vibrancy! And happiness! Now I knew what to look for.

Bedroom Inspiration // Likes to Smile

(Image 1, Image 2, Image 3 & Image 4)

I had a bit of trouble finding exactly what I was looking for. I found a lot of grey rooms with white bedding. In looking at these, I noticed I loved the feeling of serenity they created. I particularly love the mix of textures in Image 1.

But I also loved the bright pops in the bottom row. Please forgive the barely visible bed in Image 3, clearly the accessories were the point of the picture, but the bed does peek out and I love the color scheme. The bright colors do pop really nicely against the grey and white.

Which makes me think that adding bright accent colors to my bedding will brighten up my one room apartment and make it more cheerful. I love the idea of adding color with a lot of pillows, because I love the support they provide when I read in bed. And I still need to hunt for the perfect lighting. There’s that mouse with his cookie again…

But I shall start with bedding. First I need to decide the serenity verses cheerful debate. And then I shall make a mood board to see the look before I purchase. Stay tuned for more decisions…

And you? What would you choose? Serenity or cheerful, bold accents? Any bedding you’ve fallen in love with lately? Feel free to share links to inspiration in the comments.

Until next time!


Postscript: Hi, Mom! Thank you for loaning me bedding while I figure out exactly what I want! xoxo

Goal Get It

Everybody has a goal. What’s your goal? My goal is to get back to the gym.

Continuing the good news of 2014, the sports injury that had me sidelined for all of 2013 is healing and my doctor has released me from the bench. Sigh of relief! With a “woo-to-the-hoo” sprinkled on top for good measure.

#goalgetit My plan to get back in the gym and achieve my goals! // Likes to Smile

(Image via Unsplash by Petra Dr)

Back in 2012, I was the girl who never missed a workout. I got my touschie to the gym four times a week, easy peasy. I craved going. Every time, I was able to do a little bit more and frankly, I was putting my high school self to shame. I went and left feeling healthy. Feeling strong. Feeling proud. Most of all, I left feeling relaxed (well, hello, 2014 New Year’s Resolution)!

And then sports injury.

Despite being released from the bench, I’m no where near as fit as I was. I don’t have the distance, endurance or strength. If I’m being honest, I’m frustrated. It’s going to be a very long road back. And I’m going to have to be very good at listening to my body and slowing down when it tells me to.

So while my doctor has granted me permission to begin the process of getting back in the game, my motivation is nowhere to be found. I think my best choice at this point is “fake it until I make it.” Silly as it may seem, more often than not, “faking it until I make it” often gets me started down great roads.

I came up with a very simple plan. I’m going to go to the gym, three times a week for thirty minutes. I already scheduled gym appointments in my calendar that I’m simply going to keep. Every time I keep my appointment and go to the gym, I’m going to tweet that I went and sign the tweet with the hashtag #goalgetit. I’m going after my goal. And I’m going to “goal” get it.

Nothing would make me happier than if others would join in on the #goalgetit hashtag. For any goal you have. My thinking is that if we all notice others working towards whatever goal they may have, it will motivate me (or you) to work towards my (your) goal, too. Thus, we can all work together to motivate each other. Because it’s more fun to achieve your goal with friends by your side!

I’m going to #goalgetit! I hope you’ll join me on any goal you have (gym-related or otherwise). You can follow along with me on Twitter here.

And you? What goals are you going after this New Year?

Wishing you a 2014 filled with #goalgetit’s!

Until next time!


Postscript 1: I had written this post ahead of the New Year beginning and on New Year’s day, as I was sitting on the couch trying to convince myself to “get my touschie to the gym,” I saw Eileen instagram this. It was the a-ha I needed. It reminded me I wanted to go the gym and it wasn’t a guilt thing. Thank you, Eileen. Off I went. #goalgetit

Postscript 2: Friday usually has a Smile List, but I wanted to get this post up and get after my goal, instead. My hope is that getting a start in the gym this weekend will make me smile big. As to the Smile List, it will be back next week and I’ll double up on the link goodness! Happy weekending everyone! I hope you #goalgetit this weekend! xoxo

Lindsey & Tim’s Entryway Inspiration

My sister and her husband Tim bought a new house in May. Here they are out front with their dog Monty.


(Forgive the bad lighting. I didn’t have my blogging hat on when I snapped this photo.)

You may recall the mention of their new house from this post. Lindsey and Tim both endure a major business busy season in the summer and not much decorating has happened since they moved in. Now that their busy seasons have passed, they set bathroom decorating aside to turn to the living room. There is no coat closet and the weather is getting colder. Lindsey emailed for help:

I’m getting my summer bonus after Labor Day and we want to paint the downstairs and add finishing touches to the living room. We are between two shades of light grey for the walls, but the walls are definitely going to be a shade of light grey. We don’t have a coat closet, so I want to make a little entryway type thing next to the front door. We definitely need a bench with lift-up storage for shoes, because having shoes lined up by the front door drives me crazy! Any advice you have on decor would be EXTREMELY helpful – I like your style :) I feel like I’m kind of going in circles until I find the right bench/hooks.

A compliment and a chance to help out my sister! Girlfriend, I’m so in! Plus, this lives-in-an-NYC-studio gal is also anti-clutter. Game on!

Sidebar: while design experts would probably agree that you start with the bigger portions of the room before you get to the small details, I can totally understand how an organizational issue would make one want to start a design there. It’s being at peace with the little things that make you feel happiest and at home. Thus, starting with an entryway in a side of the room it is!

We live in different towns so my sister snapped a couple of before pictures for us. Here’s the room from the back left corner:

Living Room Before // Likes to Smile

And from the side:

Living Room Before // Likes to Smile

The couch faces that wall, so if you are watching TV (in front of the window), you’ll be able to see the entry area.

Lindsey and Tim would like the coat area to be to the right of the front door (if you were looking head on) and underneath the air conditioner. They really want coat hooks because the front door is the main door and they don’t want to trek wet coats through the house.

Here’s the part where I got nervous that it might be anxiety provoking to look at a mess of hanging coats while watching TV. And that’s the part where my sister told me that practicality and pragmatism need to beat looks. In the well-styled blog world, you still have to hang up a wet coat. Touche!

I started a pin board and pulled a lot of photos for inspiration for the entire room. These were my four favorite coat hook solutions:

Coat Hook & Bench Inspiration for Lindsey & Tim // Likes to Smile

ONE: Pottery Barn Samantha Entryway TWO: Home Styles Naple Hall Tree
THREE: Shanty Chic Entry Bench FOUR: Home Remedies Entryway

For styles ONE and TWO, I really liked the storage benches complete with storage on top.  I would stick baskets in all the compartments to up the storage capacity and hide the clutter.  But that would still leave an upper shelf to style.  And we all know I love to style!

For styles THREE and FOUR, I liked the sparser look of the styled bench (even though that would mean no shoe storage). I also liked the two different takes on areas above the hooks.  Lindsey and Tim have a lot of great family photos that could be displayed, or we could do baskets for more storage.

No sooner did I start writing this blog post than did my sister text me.  Lindsey and Tim decided they didn’t want to look at hanging coats from the couch after all.  Go figure!

And then a second text came: Do you have other ideas for that area?  Do I ever! Don’t worry sister! I’m on it.

Three totally different thoughts immediately popped into my head.

ONE: Place a small piece (so as not to compete with the media unit the TV is on) near the door.  This is a great example from Target (Target Avington Entryway Table, $171.49).  I would put shoes in the bottom baskets and use the drawer for Monty supplies (leashes, etc). I would style the shelf as a space to collect incoming reading materials like magazines and newspapers.  On the top, I would put a bowl for keys, a bigger bowl for mail, a charging station for phones and iPads, and a lamp.  Over the system, I would hang a mirror so you can quickly check your appearance on the way out the door.

Entryway Table Idea #1

Sidebar: upon second examination of the orignal photo, you may already have something like this. Perhaps it is worth painting a fun, glossy color for a look that stands apart from the media unit?

TWO: I would place a colorful bench for a fun pop of color in that nook. I would hang artwork over it with a hook or two for when guests visit. I would also add fun pillow or two, as well. This would increase seating for parties and give you a place to sit to put on and take off shoes. You can put a drip pan underneath for wet shoes and/or baskets off to the sides for other shoes. You could buy one at a yard sale and paint it your favorite color. Here’s an example from Crate & Barrel (Crate & Barrel Sonny Yellow Bench, $499):

Entryway Bench Idea #2

The bench will also help put a different shape on the wall, so you don’t have two boxes (media cabinet and storage unit) next to each other.

THREE: I would buy an acrylic console table so that the table becomes a light item in the room (rather than a heavy item). Underneath, I would put two fabric-covered storage cubes to corral items. The top could be styled nicely for keys, mail, and the like. With a pretty painting hanging over the table. This also allows the media console to be the heaviest item on the wall without the entire wall feeling heavy. Here’s an example of the table against a grey wall (hey, just like your living room!) from CB2 (CB2 Peekaboo Clear Console, $379):

Entryway Console Idea #3

Lindsey and Tim have heard no part of the new ideas because she called yesterday afternoon with a change in tunes. Welcome to my brain, good sister! So I will tell you not to fret about what is and is not in the price range. If you like the look, we can hunt for items that match your budget. Promise.

And you? Have you ever had a house with no coat closet? How did you solve it? Which design solution would you pick or would you propose an entirely different route? We would all love to hear your thoughts! This is very much a design in the making.

Feel free to leave comments/ideas on the Pinterest inspiration board, as well.

Until next time!


Organized Oasis Week // The Barn

Today’s Organized Oasis post is by Allyssa of The Barn.

Organized Oasis Week // Likes to Smile

How to Organize Earrings | The Barn for Likes to Smile
Hello everyone! I’m Allyssa from The Barn, a blog where I post tutorials, inspiration, and tidbits from my life. I’m so glad Stacey invited me to guest post on her blog for organization week! I’m kind of an organization freak, so this topic is right up my alley.

Today I’d like to clue you in on a cheap and easy way to organize your earrings. I used to store them in boxes or on the little cardboard/plastic things they came on, but that didn’t work so well. For something so tiny, they sure took up a lot of space! Not to mention trying to find a particular pair was a nightmare.

Enter this cute little bead organizer (similar one) from AC Moore (or any craft store for that matter). For a few bucks, I can organize 18 pairs of earrings (or more if I double them up). What I love about this case is that it’s tiny, portable, and you can see what’s in it! No more looking through a bunch of boxes in order to find that one pair.

Don’t wear earrings? No problem! This organizer is perfect for storing your pendants and chains. They won’t get tangled and you can see what’s what!

How do you store your earrings? Do you use these bead organizers to store other things?


Stacey here:

1) How amazing is Allyssa’s idea? So smart, simple and easy. Je T’aime! Thank you for the guest post!

2) Likes to Smile Book Club is discussing Reconstructing Amelia on September 9th! It’s the best book I’ve read all summer! I can’t wait to discuss and hear your take!