Lessons from a weekend of intensive yoga Teacher Training.
And of course, some of my favorite shots from my #InstagramYogi Phase:
This past weekend was the first of its kind for me.
Typically, my weekends are a crossover between fruitful productivity and off-the-rails debauchery. Workouts, cleaning, and grocery shopping during the day met promptly with an overpriced meal out, some good old-fashioned imbibing and a few hours of shitty sleep.
And don’t get me wrong, I’m a big fan of my standard weekend. But life is comprised of yin and yang, and where there’s a benefit, there’s usually a proportionate shortcoming. Have a great night out with your friends? ...Awesome, now you have earned functioning at 50% the entire next day, getting nothing done, and sacrificing all the momentum you likely built the day before.
Stay in to be rested and skip the night out? …Fantastic, now you’ve permanently missed the memory of your friends meeting someone’s pet snake at 2 a.m. in Whataburger (yes, that actually happened to me, and no, I’m not over it).
These two scenarios do have one thing in common, though—neither consequence is all that extreme. Ok, so you have crippling hangover anxiety on Sunday and can’t peel yourself out of bed long enough to stop crying at the first season of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. It happens.
Or, you can’t partake in your friends’ party story they tell strangers about that time they met a domesticated reptile over honey butter chicken biscuits. Again, it’s not the end of the world.
This weekend was different for me in the sense that I didn’t participate in a single social activity—not a dinner, not a lunch, not a single night out—and I can’t remember the last time I completely removed myself from the Dallas weekend ritual of overpaying for drinks and joining 18 of your closest friends for mimosa pitchers at a 2 p.m. "brunch."
The reason? An intensive weekend of Yoga Sculpt Teacher Training.
I know, I know. You’re all rolling your eyes. “You do yoga, Katie, we get it.” While I am, admittedly, a Sculpt evangelist, I have to say—I was a little apprehensive (and not exactly thrilled) about giving up an entire weekend (Friday night, all day Saturday and all day Sunday) for training.
It’s one of those things where you sign up two months in advance with visions of your better self in the future, being solely dedicated to your fitness and wellbeing, and then those eight weeks pass in much the same fashion as the previous 23 years of your life and all of a sudden it’s Friday at 5 p.m. and... time to spend your 20 free waking weekend hours in a yoga studio with strangers.
But for real, I was excited, it’s just that nothing conditions you to cherish days off quite like working full-time. A day where you’re beholden to nothing but the whim of your own fancy is worth its weight in almond butter, and usually I fill that time with as much socializing as possible—because, in my mind, that was the best way to make use of my precious time out of office.
Luckily, my love of Sculpt and watching myself lift weights in a mirror outweighed my pathetic FOMO and I embraced the weekend with the force I usually reserve for enduring six hours of stumbling around Uptown in heels.
And at the risk of sounding preachy, I am so happy I did.
Even the most fun weekends always leave me feeling a little…empty? It’s hard to articulate. Maybe it’s exhaustion after quasi-poisoning your body and neglecting your regular sleep schedule, or maybe it’s the fact that having a bunch of fun provides such a stark contrast to the rest of the week that the thought of going back to work the next day is miserable at best.
For whatever reason, my Sunday nights are almost always a little gloomy and lonely. I'd venture a guess that you likely know the feeling I'm referring to.
The ironic thing about this weekend was that, yes, I spent time with fellow teachers in training during the day, but I didn’t do anything with my friends. I went to sleep at 9 p.m. each night, woke up, got my morning coffee, and headed back to the studio. It was a distinctly inward-focused, solo weekend, and I felt less lonely than I have in months.
I felt so at peace with myself and the commitment I had made—and way more in control of my life. (Traveling with someone I care about is another way I achieve this sense of solace and peace, but it's far more tiring.)
That’s not to say that I’m going to swap out my ‘normal’ weekends for doing 8 hours of exercise daily, getting 10 hours of sleep on a Friday and Saturday night, and being permanently asocial—but hey, it was kinda nice. I was pleasantly surprised with the outcome and how I felt about myself afterward, especially when compared to the way I normally feel on Sunday nights.
Dedicating an absurd amount of time to something you’re passionate about is daunting, for sure, and involves the sacrifice of knowing your friends are out engaging in shenanigans without you—but it’s also insanely empowering and fulfilling. My sense of self-efficacy and confidence shot through the roof following my first successful ‘practice round’ of teaching parts of a class Sunday afternoon.
Everyone needs a recalibration period, but more than that, I think everyone needs something that gives them a sense of purpose. I’m passionate about Sculpt because it’s gotten me through rough times where I felt lost and—literally—taught me how to breathe my way through discomfort, pain, and frustration.
The idea of giving that same 60-minute confidence boost to others is so meaningful.
Because here's the thing: your social life is fun, but it won't fulfill you. It won't remind you who you are (sometimes, it does the complete opposite). It won't give you a sense of purpose. It's entertaining, for sure, and the memories are worth the Sunday morning headaches. But if you sustain yourself for too long on the excitement of others, you'll eventually start running on fumes.
There's a saying in yoga: Meet yourself where you are. I can acknowledge that it sounds semantically null, but it's a beautiful sentiment about self-acceptance and patience.
I've said it before and I'll say it again, dedicating time to self-awareness and self-discovery is so underrated, and when you're bustling from one obligation to the next without taking time to breathe, you start to slip without even realizing it.
Whether it takes 20 hours of yoga training or 20 minutes of daily meditation, nothing compares to the inner quiet that settles over you when the anxiety of daily life falls hush. The clarity is astounding, and suddenly—if briefly—you see things for what they are.
Cheers & namaste, friend!
If you’re anything like me, you have that one thing hanging over your head that you’ve been putting off for months. Maybe it’s because the process for completing the task is unclear so you’re avoiding it, or maybe it’s just annoying and you relish in that temporary relief you feel from pushing it forward another week.
But I’m here to tell you—YOU’RE PLAYING YOURSELF.
And here’s why.
Annoying to-do list items are like the shitty opposite of compound interest. One annoying to-do task may seem manageable to procrastinate, psychologically, but two frustrating or annoying to-do tasks exponentially compound how overwhelmed you’ll feel trying to get both done—even more so if one involves an unexpected expense or super time-consuming process.
And the lovely thing about life and being an adult is is that there's almost always something lurking just around the corner. Whether it's a flat tire, a big deck for an upcoming presentation, or a flood in your bathroom—there's always something waiting for you (ominous, I know) that requires you to, more or less, handle it.
Allow me to take you on a journey of the ‘postponement’ nature.
I’ve been meaning to get a passport for a while. And by a while, I mean I printed the application in October and slowly started compiling the stuff I needed (birth certificate, social security card, etc.). Every week, I’d tell myself I’d get it “on Friday at lunch.”
But guess what kept happening?
I kept going to Chick-Fil-A on Friday at lunch instead and saying, “Eh, I’ll do it next week,” effectively prioritizing chicken nuggets over international travel.
Then I found out my taxes got lost in the mail and I have to redo them.
Then I got a speeding ticket in another state and had to pay $200 to do a four-hour online defensive driving class to keep it off my insurance.
And all of a sudden, having to get a passport felt 10x as overwhelming. On their own, none of these tasks are all too unmanageable (just annoying as shit), but taken together on tight timelines (all needed to be accomplished by early April), it suddenly became unnecessarily stressful.
This week I decided I was going to get my adult shit together and just get it done. No more excuses, no more postponing, no more 8-ct. nugget entrées—just sitting down like the grown ass woman I am and knocking out each task one by one.
And you know what? It felt good. The U.S. government now has my passport application and birth certificate (hoping that doesn’t get lost in the mail, too—cue nervous laughter), I completed the four-hour driving course in one afternoon, and now I’m slogging through the 1040 form, cursing the IRS with each and every confusing, federal government jargon-laden step.
The temporary relief you feel when you postpone that one thing another week is just that—temporary—and nowhere near as satisfying as the relief you’ll feel when it’s off your plate for good. I know you all have at least one thing that falls into this category.
Don't be like me and wait until you have two or three more annoying things to do to knock it out.
The best way I've found to keep track of this stuff (aside from the project management app Trello) is by keeping a physical planner. If I were an inanimate object, I would be a planner. I love them. I write shit down that I've already done just to cross it off, and color-code based on category (social is pink, productivity is yellow, and health is orange). Does this paragraph make my OCD look fat?
There's something so satisfying about having an actual agenda that you can open up, page through, and look back on. It almost functions like a journal if you write down the fun stuff, and you can look back on your weeks to get a better sense of how you're doing overall. All in the name of #ContinuousImprovement.
The best planners in the game for busy betches
As a self-proclaimed list obsessor, I’ve tried just about every planner in the Target school supplies aisle and those boujee enough to have their own Instagram accounts. I’ve consolidated them here for you in the hopes that it’ll help you get a little more organized. Nothing like a fancy, beautiful book you can tote around that’ll make you feel more in control of your life, right?
They range in price from $20 to $60 (depending on how much motivation you need to commit), but I’ve used all of them and can speak to my favorite and not-so-favorite parts of each. In my opinion, these are the best in the biz.
A lot of women like those Erin Condren planners—and I don’t blame them, they’re cute and personalized. But I think they’re overpriced and don’t have anything special in the actual planning pages themselves. Humble opinion.
If you click on the names below, you'll find them on Amazon niiiiiiice & cheap.
The Passion Planner, $30
Guys, this one might be my favorite. It's a highlighter-happy queen's dream, and it breaks down the day into 30-min. increments, starting at 6:30 a.m. and ending at 9:00 p.m. (because who only plans stuff from 8-5?).
It's special because it allows you to chart your Personal To-Do List and Work To-Do List at the beginning of each week to keep things straight. It also has a 'focus' for each week (#HUGE) to keep you intentional about how you're approaching your life. Y'all know I'm all about this.
For my personal focus, just for insight, I always write: Stay hydrated, do your squats, love yourself. 2018 motto.
For work, I write: Be a simplifier. Deliver when you get the ball. Work smart.
They're just nice mantras to come back to.
Next up is the Day Designer.
The Day Designer Original, $64
This puppy takes an intensely micro view of your day.
You'll notice from the image above that it calls out a DAILY top 3, what you'll eat for dinner, a full to-do list (I'm sorry if you require all 25 lines each day), and a "Dollars" section in which I used to write my checking account balance in college each day because I was broke as a joke.
The one downside to the Day Designer is that it's harder to see a weekly overview or look ahead quickly. Since each page is its own day, it's good for people who like to get into the nitty gritty of each day but don't have super longterm stuff due.
I'd say the Passion Planner is better for college students and the Day Designer is better for people who work full-time (and the price points reflect that) or are self-employed.
There's a Blue Sky version of the Day Designer that's cheaper, but effectively you're just paying for a lower quality version of the same planner. The Original is solid and big, the Blue Sky version is smaller and not hardback. Here it is:
The Day Designer Blue Sky, $27.99
You'll also notice that the daily pages lack some of the same boxes that the Original has (shown above), but there's a column for notes, which is nice.
I'm also very much into this gold speckled version of the Blue Sky version.
I hope y'all like some of these recommendations—after all, it's only March, so there's still plenty of time to kick 2018's ass. Even if you didn't start the year quite on track, it's never too late to force yourself to sit down for five hours, do your taxes, and take online defensive driving school.
I'm so curious what y'all have been putting off on your 'do it later' lists. Let me know.
Thanks for reading, and happy planning!
So evidently there are a lot of other lady ballers on a budget out there, because I got a fair amount of positive feedback on the post about furnishing a chic bedroom on an entry-level salary that said it was helpful. As promised, here’s the run-down on my favorite stuff from the walls outside my bedroom.
My poor roommate Rob is less than thrilled about our feminine aesthetic (see if you can spot him in some of the pictures below), but I think he generally benefits from the trade-off: he has to live in a girly place, but it’s astoundingly clean and organized 24/7. His future wife will thank me.
I did the living space about three months after my bedroom (because I was, you know, still financially recovering from furnishing an entire bedroom and figuring out what aesthetic I wanted to build in the rest of the place), and I think that lead-time helped me find some solid stuff.
Another fun side effect of waiting three months to furnish your living space is that your place looks like a yoga studio for 12 fun weeks—nothing but wood floors and mirrors! People would walk into my place, confusedly look around, and then awkwardly laugh about my sociopathic minimalism.
Legend has it that Steve Jobs lived in an empty place for months while he was starting Apple because he’s such a perfectionist that he couldn’t settle on what he wanted his place to look like. So yeah. Call me Steve.
Let’s get started, shall we?
I want to start with my favorite part: the rug/coffee table situation.
This coffee table is gorgeous and took about 10 minutes to assemble, and was only $130. I’m very much into the sleek marble look right now because it’s bright and clean.
This was the other one that I liked, but it has black legs and I was really feeling the gold accents. This one is only $114.
I wanted to keep the surface of the table fairly uncluttered, and while I love coffee table books, they’re pretty expensive and—in my experience, at least—I never end up looking at them. (If money were no object, I’d have a stack of Hermes and Chanel coffee table books taller than me.) But for right now, they’re effectively expensive dust collectors.
I will say, though, the coffee table book I probably will get is the Gray Malin “ESCAPE” book. I love his photography, and that book is gorgeous. It’s $30 on Amazon. Here are two of my favorite shots. I like his stuff because it's unusual and quirky—the photo above my bed is my favorite, a KLM airplane landing over Maho Beach.
But instead of coffee table books, I did this acrylic tray with gold handles, a vase with flowers, and the dankest candle known to the interwebs.
The acrylic tray with gold handles was about $30. Guys, I just love acrylic stuff. I know it’ll go out of style eventually but I love it. I think it’s so pretty. The gold handles tie it to the legs of the table well, too.
This vase felt like the only ‘stretch’ product that I don’t consider especially bargain-priced, but still reasonable compared to the in-store versions I’ve seen. I love the blue oriental vibe and think it adds some timelessness to a room that’s otherwise pretty modern (marble, acrylic, etc.). It was $48, so not a steal, but under $50 nonetheless.
Ok guys, I know fake flowers are tacky as hell, but I’m obsessed with peonies and one peony (yes, one) at Whole Foods when they’re in-season is $15. That means if you want a modest bouquet (about five flowers), you’re on the hook for $75 a flower arrangement. And in the cruelest twist of all, the flowers effing DIE on a weekly basis. So basically, peonies are a money pit of sorrow and disappointment.
…Unless you embrace your inner gaudy queen, suck it up, and go the fake route. You can even make yourself feel better by euphemizing them: faux silk flowers, anyone?
I’ve had several people get close to inspect these and ask if they’re real—I think they’re fairly convincing and I’m just such a fan of having flowers that this was just about the only reasonable way to do so without draining my 401K savings on petals. For the low, low price of $10.99, you too can enjoy pink peonies year-round. I got the “Spring Light Pink” color because I thought it looked most realistic.
This is also a very convincing option, also for only about $10.
Moving on to a more nuanced component of design—the scent of the room. Y’all, if I had to smell one smell for the rest of my life, it would be this. I want everything to smell like Mahogany Teakwood. My apartment, my hair, my laundry, my dog—and I don’t even have a dog! It’s that good. It smells like the hottest man you’ve ever seen but in a musky, fresh way. Just trust me on this. I order several at a time and just disperse them.
And because our living space has wood floors, I wanted to add accent rugs to spice stuff up (but truly, I think rugs on carpet still look nice, as I added in my carpeted bedroom). It serves a focusing function, in my opinion, where it draws the attention to the focal point of the room.
This $90 rug is everything. It’s navy and gold (mostly picked because the couch we had was navy) and I’m obsessed with it. It’s so pretty and the perfect size for between the couch and the TV for the coffee table to sit on. I especially like how the gold legs in the table and the gold in the rug look together. I got the 5’1” by 7’6” option.
The media stand I bought is glass (instead of marble). I didn’t want to do everything marble in case someday I decide I don’t like it, and the glass seemed like a safe bet. This one was easy to put together and looks nice under our mounted TV (but you could definitely just set your TV on top of it, too).
So moving on over to the couch. Sadly, y’all, I can’t recommend a couch in good faith to you because Rob brought this couch from Kentucky. But when I move out and have to buy my own, I will absolutely do the legwork and show y’all. But when it comes to accessories, I can hook y’all UP.
I’m a pretty big fan of this faux fur throw I bought for about $30 because it’s huge and plush and makes for some solid Saturday afternoon nap sessions. It adds a little flair to our otherwise plain navy couch. It gives you that cozy ski-cabin-in-the-mountains vibe when in reality you’re parked on your butt 8 feet from an urban swimming pool in the middle of Dallas, Texas.
Much to Rob’s dismay, I had no other choice but to completely feminize his couch. And how do you make an innocuous navy couch look girly? VELVET BABY BLUE ACCENT PILLOWS! Sorry, Rob. These puppies are $15 for two (nailed it) and the inserts are only $20 for a two-pack. There are several other colors, too, if baby blue ain’t yo vibe—but the quality of the pillows is nice.
I went with the matching end tables for either side of the couch; they’re the same style as the coffee table. They were $60 each, which was slightly more than I was hoping to pay, but I combed Amazon for a couple hours trying to find cheaper alternatives and these were the best value, in my opinion, for something that was cute and reasonably priced.
And if anyone wants to laugh at Katie’s online shopping mishaps, these lamps I bought (and was super excited about) arrived in a suspiciously small box. I opened it reluctantly and, wincing, pulled out the smallest damn Barbie Dreamhouse lamps you’ve ever seen.
But, on principle, I kept them and use them. We must all face our follies, my friends.
I’m also really into the ‘nesting table’ look--I liked these because the spindles are intricate (and gold) and add some visual interest. It’s only $90 for both, and I stuck them in the entryway (only one is pictured below; the other is a little larger).
Speaking of entryways, I’m not sure what got into me when I was buying pieces for our little mirrored entry area, but I was having a teal MOMENT, people. I loved how strong the teal velvet looked and felt interesting and bold. I wanted to add some drama, ya feel?
Turns out finding two teal velvet chairs in my budget was a bit of a challenge, but your girl came through. I love how these turned out in the space. Unfortunately, the exact chairs are no longer available (likely because some other desperate broke gal snagged them), but these are so similar I thought they were the same.
I decided to go with chairs for the entryway because I felt like they were more inviting when positioned next to a literal cart of alcohol, but if your entryway is more hallway-like and less open, I’d suggest going for a bench and putting art or a mirror above it. The bench is nice because you can set your bags on it when you come in or do a tray with books/candies/etc.
I love this one, and it’s only $139. Amazon calls this an 'ottoman,' so just make sure you measure how much room you have in your entryway to make sure it won't be too big. Again, the acrylic legs just get me goin'. Same with the tufted velvet. There are several other more neutral color options available.
And OK, I’m kinda pissed, because I paid way more for this, but my entryway rug is legitimately on sale right now for $29. It’s a 4’ x 6’ and it’s gray (which is reminiscent of the bedroom rug in this post), but felt like an appropriate neutral given my wild ass teal thrones. It comes in about 10 other colors, so go crazy.
My other semi-splurgey item was the bar cart. A bar cart is the #1 best way to say, hey, I drink alcohol, but I’m classy about it! This one was $158. I found a cheaper one at Target, but it was much smaller and nowhere near as cool. That was one of those situations where I thought, OK, having a bigger, cuter bar cart is worth the extra $20 to me.
I like how you can display all your glassware and liquor and add fun accents (like straws and shakers). I didn’t get too wild with my accents because I was buying literally all of this nonsense at once and that stuff adds up, but if you’re looking to spice up a bar cart you already have, I suggest the copper cocktail set for $40. It comes with all the necessities for really wooing your lush friends.
And that's it, y'all! Hit me with any questions. And if you don't like my design style; well, you're not the one who has to live, are you?
Arguably one of the best things about being a #RealPerson is getting to furnish your apartment exactly how you want it. When I faced the thrilling task back in September, visions of tufted headboards and mirrored front furniture danced in my head.
I had been proudly saving a disciplined amount of my generous $12/hour Intern paycheck all summer in preparation for squandering it all on furniture and faux fur throws, and I was PUMPED.
The excitment promptly dissipated after my first visit to a “discount” furniture store. I remember strolling through the aisles and feeling my confidence wane at each “$899” price tag. To make matters worse, most of the pieces were not-heinous at best, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to walk out of there for under $1,300 for my bed, dresser, and nightstands.
That felt unacceptable to me, especially since I didn’t necessarily like any of it all that much.
(Call it champagne taste on a beer budget, but the only bedframe I liked was $999).
This was a wake-up call, of sorts. My fantasies of beautiful, chic furniture devolved into nightmares of me sleeping on a wire bedframe with Target dormroom plastic tubs as dresser drawers. And to a high-maintenance, bourgeois Millennial, this was 50 shades of not-going-to-fly.
Enter Amazon, Bezos’ magical online marketplace.
My hope in this post is to inspire some of you who are likely going through a similar transition, and help you find beautiful pieces online for a small fraction of the price you see in brick-and-mortar stores.
I had a very distinct vibe I was trying to achieve with my bedroom, and I do feel strongly that your environment impacts your mood significantly and shouldn’t be ignored. In other words, I wasn’t about to fold and purchase cheap stuff I hated just to stay under-budget.
My vision was a space that was open, clean, bright, and timeless, but with a few trendy elements that made it feel just a little sassy.
I’ve linked the exact products I purchased (all from Amazon) that were mostly Prime and shipped for free (or close to it). I put together this entire bedroom (minus the mattress) for around $1,000, and I’m so happy with the result.
Let’s launch into the focal piece: the bed.
I wanted a “sheltered” headboard because I like how it makes the bed feel cozy. I also wanted light colors, but didn’t want wood or oak. I grew up with a white bedroom set, and feel that sometimes it looks a little juvenile to go with straight-up white, so I felt that a tan linen would be perfect.
This is the bed I purchased, and it was only $300 for the entire frame (one thing I noticed is that most ‘beds’ that cost $300 are only the headboard—watch out for this). I built this bed by myself with an Allen wrench (please hold your applause) and was surprised at how easy the assembly was.
This is what it looks like after it’s put together but before you put your mattress on it.
…And this is how I styled it:
It also comes in this gorgeous dark gray, which, looking back on it, I probably would’ve opted for if I were going for a moodier overall aesthetic.
Now, for the more fun stuff: the bedding. I really wanted bedding that, more or less, looked like it belonged in a hotel. Maybe I’m weird, but I think sleeping in hotel beds is the best—they’re white and fluffy and envelop you in don’t-think-about-the-fact-that-a-million-other-strangers-have-also-slept-here warmth. Charming.
A lot of people ask me if I regret buying white bedding, and the answer is no. White bedding forces you to be a better person. Nobody eats pizza in bed with white bedding.
This comforter set is beautiful. I bought the comforter, two Euro shams, two regular pillows, and plain white sheets—all from Target. The comforter and two regular pillows were $90, and I got the white with the thin blue double-stripe because I felt like it added a nice subtle accent.
I went with the comforter because I literally cannot be bothered to mess with a duvet cover. If you have time to wrangle a massive lumpy sack into a slippery tortilla-like sheet encasement, be my guest, but I'd rather not.
I wanted to add some pink—because, you know, trying to stay on-brand here—and I opted for the velvet to add some texture.
These pink velvet pillowcases were a steal—$12 for a set of two. I bought three individuals. They come in different colors, if you hate fun and pink isn’t your vibe. You’ll need the inserts, too, which are only $9 each.
Having a really extraneous amount of pillows is the fastest way to make your bed look luxe. And if you're opposed because it seems unnecessary and you're like, I could get by on two, then I ask you: why are you rejecting comfort AND style? Just do it.
I have the two standard pillows with the 'sheets' pillowcases in the back, then two Euro shams, then two standard pillows with the comforter-style pillow cases (that come with the comforter) and topped off by the three pink ones.
The staff in my sorority house used to fluff our living spaces and they'd karate chop the accent pillows, and since that house was a mansion and those people seemed to know their way around a pillow, I now do so, too. Feel free to chop your pillows accordingly.
Moving right along.
I think one easy way to immediately class up your bedroom is throwing a bench at the end of your bed. I don’t know why, but it ties everything together so beautifully. I am obsessed with this one, and it’s the perfect length for the end of a queen. I went with the rose quartz color because I thought it was classic and timeless, but there are darker options available (the gray is really nice, too).
The best part? It’s only $150. Most other pieces like this I’ve seen are well over $300 or $400, and this thing is STURDY.
I put a tray for books on my bench to keep my journal (nerdy, I know) and favorite reads at close reach. If I may impose my literary taste on you, definitely check out:
Megyn Kelly’s Settle for More
This book will make you want to kick ass in the workplace and inspire you to go full-out in everything you do.
Anna Kendrick’s Scrappy Little Nobody
This book will crack you up and make you feel OK about being a little weird.
Mark Manson’s A Subtle Art of Not Giving a F***
This book will show you a ‘counterintuitive approach’ to living a good life, by showing you how to direct your f***s appropriately. It’s #8 on Amazon right now.
And now that we’ve covered the bed and the bench, I might as well tell you what the bed is sitting on, right?
I wanted a gray/silver rug because I felt it was a cool neutral that wasn’t too distracting. But guess what? Most rugs are expensive as hell. I was so annoyed trying to find one at rug stores, and I finally found this beaut online. I believe I only paid $180 for it, but the price fluctuates as stock changes. It comes in a bunch of colors.
The reason I loved this one (the 8 x 10 size) is because it felt so plush and luxurious to have a huge rug in the middle of the room that made the bed the focal piece. Much like the bench, it ties things together and elevates the entire look of the space.
(Do I sound like I know what I’m talking about? I have to be honest, I’m impressing myself with the amount of hokey jargon I’m loading this shit with.)
So, onto the piece that I hands-down get the most questions about: my mirror-front vanity. This is the aforementioned ‘trendy’ piece that will likely be out of style in a few years (since mirrored furniture is such a trend right now), but I think it’s beautiful and—frankly—just really wanted one.
The one I ended up purchasing is gorgeous. The drawers are velvet-lined, it’s super sturdy, and it’s the perfect place to get ready. I put mine up against the window because I love doing my makeup with natural light, but at night, I use this super cool little ring light makeup mirror. Most solid ring light mirrors are $50, but the one shown in the pictures and linked above is only $20.
You guys—it’s literally $160. I paid more for a single bottle of the perfumes pictured on my jewelry box than I did for this vanity. If you want a chic space to get ready, I’m telling you, this is it.
And of course, if you’re sitting at a chic vanity, you need a chic place to sit. I wanted to involve the velvet texture here again, so I went for another small bench/ottoman that slides under the vanity when I’m not using it (by some miracle of God and absolutely not because of my strategic forethought, this one fits RIGHT underneath it).
The bench isn’t as much of a steal at $100, but it’s still reasonable based on the other options I explored.
And so you know I’m not just trying to tote all my decisions as fantastic, I will tell you:
Don’t buy dressers or nightstands on Amazon unless you want to literally rip your hair out trying to put them together (and then be super pissed off when they’re wobbly as shit).
My dresser is as good as useless (one of the drawers completely broke) and my nightstands are fine but took SO much time to put together that I would’ve rather just paid a little more for preassembled ones.
These are the two things I would just bite the bullet and splurge on to save yourself the headache.
But the bench, the bed, and the vanity? There’s literally no reason to pay more. The assembly is so straightforward and the result is stunning. Why overpay for the brand name or the preassembly if you don’t have to?
I’m going to do another post about furnishing a living space and entryway soon, but wanted to test the waters with this one.
Let me know if y’all like any of the options!