Archive | April, 2012

Layer up.

25 Apr

I’ve been thinking about the Home Tour a lot and the generous response from everyone. I wish I’d had time to have longer conversations with each person. What is it you love about the place? 

Clearly, there is something you’re drawn to in this home.

My hunch is that you all like layers. I love layers. You get instant depth and an opportunity to make more of the basic bedside table. Take a look at what they’ve done below with the crate under the table. Without the crate the table would look oh-so-lonely.

I like to lean things. Take or leave the nails, I’m just as likely to lean something against the wall as hang it there.  I think you all responded to that—it feels casual and comfortable. Pictured below are leaning mirrors on the mantle with garland draped across—it’s so pretty.

These pictures, found at Anthology, inspire me to make the most of space.

Okay, I’m out, y’all. Smile at a stranger today. Because you can.

x, amy


My Favorite Room

24 Apr

After roaming though my house during the Home Tour, a kind soul approached me and said, “Okay, tell me, which is your favorite room.” I fumbled around the answer trying to keep from short-changing any of the rooms. I like them all. Each room has it’s own personality. And I like all the personalities that make up this house. Hmmm.

The living room. My favorite is the living room.

I give credit to the doors and the windows—the way they usher in natural light. A cozy couch and a chair that swivels clad with colorful pillows help make me feel most myself in that spot. That, I think, is what a home should do. It should make you feel most yourself and most comfortable in your own skin.

And about pillows…

Here’s my unsolicited advice: Don’t buy all your pillows at one place. (Don’t put all your eggs in one basket either.) If you want to create an original space then try to pull from several sources. I gathered my pillows from three different sources: West Elm, Color, and Etsy. The throw is from Sari Bari—they have beautiful pillows, too! Sari Bari is such a noble effort to restore dignity to women—the site is worth your time if you feel like clicking.


Here are a few photos that inspired me toward the space I’ve created:


Turquoise, Tulips and Bliss

Gingham and Watercolors

Inspirations for Myself

House Beautiful

Thanks for reading!

Thank you, 12th South. Thank you.

22 Apr

The week before a home tour you almost lose your mind. Or, you become completely neurotic. I can prove it.

True statement: The night before the tour I cleaned out my closet. I threw stuff off the balcony and into the back yard to avoid dragging things down the stairs and out to the alley. Yes. I did. And then I posted to my sister’s Facebook wall that I was throwing broken suitcases off the balcony (in case she heard a commotion in the back yard). It’s not an intruder. It’s just your sister.

I was nervous.

I liken it to putting your kid in a beauty pageant and hoping that everyone else thinks she’s as pretty as you do.What if someone doesn’t like it? What if someone thinks you have poor taste? What if someone totally misunderstands you or somehow gets the wrong impression? What if you put yourself out there and somebody says something unkind about your house or you? If you’re Taylor Swift, you write a song about it. If you’re Amy Jacobs, you just fret over it.

I had a stern talk with myself.

Amy: It’s time to let good enough be good enough. This is the battle for every creative soul—knowing when to stop editing yourself. This house is—for better or worse—my first project as a designer. It is a project I love which has graciously opened the door to other projects. But this home tour thing, if you’re a designer, you’re letting people walk through your portfolio—it’s much harder than putting your best pictures online and crossing your fingers.

But then you came. 

You braved the weather and you came in droves. You came and took this little offering of a house and you did your best to make note of every detail. I was (and am) honored.

You showered me and my dear friend, Brad—who built this home—with the kindest of compliments. You were generous with accolades. And we were entirely humbled.

You for paid attention to the details we labored over and appreciated the elements that we so appreciate. A thousand thank yous—a thousand thank yous for roaming around and enjoying the work of our hands.

The vision we had for this house and the abilities we have are gifts straight from God. We are doing our best to use those gifts well and acknowledge that God’s favor is what allowed us to stumble into a project like this in the first place—we are still in awe. Thank you for reminding us that the house is rare.

Thank you, Brad Skipper, for building houses the way you do most everything—with so much integrity. And, thank you kindest-volunteers-on-earth for making me smile with your welcomes and warnings to all who entered.

Thank you, Allison, for keeping this real. No kidding. And for calling me to look at your front door—that was the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

And thanks, Allen, for coordinating the tour. Nicely done. Nicely done.

Thank you for leaving sweet notes on the chalkboard, many of which I discovered after you were long gone.

Neighbors and new friends, please, don’t be strangers. My house is your house. Faithful readers, my next post will be photos of the house sans my new friends roaming through each room. And, of course, more ideas and inspiration coming, too! 

Thank you, friends.

Tour of Homes

21 Apr

I’m so excited to share my home with neighbors and friends today!

My dear friend, Christi Kearney, designed a print piece for the tour that shares a bit of the journey you all have shared in as I renovated. Isn’t it lovely? She also designed Brad’s wedding invitations, which are nothing short of charming.

Here’s the write-up from the tour book:

Thanks to Christi and Ashley and Allen and Brad and Natalie and Julie and all my sweet friends who have encouraged me toward sharing this home with others!

Pictures from the tour coming in the next post. Cross my heart.I never say the “hope to die” part. Or the “stick a needle in your eye” part—who really wants that?



No humans were harmed during the hanging of this wallpaper…

16 Apr

… however there was a moment when we thought the best outcome might be that Jesus return and put us out of our wall-paper-hanging misery. Come quickly, Lord. Wallpaper will test your spirit.

For real.

Julie and I started hanging wallpaper around 9 p.m. and wrapped up near midnight. I recommend that if you are going to hang wallpaper you ask your tallest, nicest friend to help you.

I’d like to say it was an awesome experience. The first panel was great. I said to Julie, “I love this. I love wallpaper.” It’s so gratifying, to work the excess glue and bubbles out and see the wall transform. And then we got to the second panel, and the wall sconces and the mirror—that’s when things got tricky (and suddenly less gratifying). Somewhere during the gluing of panel two to the wall I said something along the lines of, “You know I would quit if you weren’t here, right? Like, this is the point I when I’d say to heck with this.”

But instead we pressed on—or papered on—and we love the results.

Here’s the before and after. This thrills my heart to finally post this. You have no idea. Remember this bathroom?

Look at me now. Look at me now. I’m getting paper. (Sorry, Karmin & Chris Brown are running through my head right now.)

The wallpaper in the bathroom is glued to the wall. Thanks to God and Julie.

Feels right to me. Do you approve?

My Neighbor’s Front Door: Before and After

10 Apr

Your front door is a big deal. Profound, I know. My eloquence is blowing your mind this morning, right?

Well, it’s just true. The front door is the cover by which the book is judged. It’s the first impression. It sets the tone for what’s on the other side of the door. It’s a big deal, I say.

When Reagan and Allison called me and asked if I’d stop by for a quick consult I was happy to do so. I was genuinely glad because:

  1. I met them in passing just a few days before and they live just a few blocks from me.
  2. They were also recruited for the 12th South Home Tour. This is an issue of camaraderie. I like knowing who’s in this with me.
  3. Good neighbors are a gift from God. You don’t want to learn this the hard way.

This is their home sweet home.

Here it is: the front door. Reagan and Allison already knew what to do. They knew. Sometimes it’s nice to hear someone else tell you what to do. (Sidenote: Isn’t their grass pretty. Mine is 85% weeds. Not kidding. It’s like a Snapper mower’s worst nightmare. At least weeds are green, too.)

My first piece of advice: Get rid of the storm door. A beautiful door hides behind the ill-fitting storm door. I have a beef with storm doors. They seem unfriendly to me. I find them valuable if your front door is solid and there’s no light coming in. You’ve gotta have light. Otherwise you’ll become a grump. Nobody likes a grump.

Next, paint or stain the sidelight trim to match the finish of the door.  It needs to work together to make a stronger statement.

Those two small changes will make a huge difference.

So they went for it. And here’s the result. They love it.

Feels better doesn’t it? So now all I want to do is think about porches. On my way to work I called Dave & Julie to talk about a thought I was having about their soon-to-be screened-in porch. Like at 7:26 I called to talk about hanging a bed on the porch and framing for it. unsolicited. Just driving and thinking, thinking and driving. I sent Allison a text about outdoor rugs for the porch. It’s porch season y’all—time to up the ante.

In other news, while Allen’s kitchen is getting a makeover, there’s a bit of a facelift happening. A complete change of color to the exterior—the trim is lacking one coat and then I’ll post pictures. Meanwhile, I can’t stop thinking about the front door. I think he should paint it. Maybe an Indian blue?

Now I’m dying for you to email me with your porch woes so we can think of solutions together.

Thanks for reading.

P.S. Be kind. Because you can.

Come One, Come All: 12th South Tour of Homes

4 Apr

You heard it here first: I’m in (and so is this sweet little house on Bradford). If you’re a Nashvilian and home tours are your thing, I highly recommend our lovely neighborhood tour. Aside from roaming through houses—each with a personality all its own—you’ll get a taste of the local fare. This year area restaurants are catering each home. Get your ticket here!

I’d love to see you, meet you, stroll through the house with you! And, of course, you know I will give you the inside scoop on home tours… as soon as I get the inside scoop. Honestly, I think there are plenty of you who would be perfect volunteers at my house—you know the story of this house as well as me, which brings me to this: thank you. Thank you for following along; thank you for chiming in and participating. It’s been my joy to share this story with you!

Don’t be a stranger—come see the place!