Week three: let's do this btchz! 


I've learned a lot since jumping on this whole interior design train years ago: 1. you should ignore pretty much every interior design rule you've ever heard of. 2. Proper measuring is REAL important. Like real real for real (sidenote: I'm horrendous at measuring). If you have barely any money to spend and you want to completely transform the look of your space, focus on the lighting. 

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For my ORC project, I realized that I needed to seriously up my lighting game in our space. Cause it was legit feeling a little sad around here. Case in point: 


This is an Ikea light...which is fine. Whatevs. I have no problem with Ikea, but this light just looks super dumb right there. You walk through our front door, look up, and you see the light that's hanging there, and I realized that I really, truly, madly, deeply need a statement light in that spot. 

I searched and searched and then searched some more. Then I bugged my sister who's a lighting designer, because I kept choosing fixtures that were too big for the space. So before I pulled the trigger, she made this for me: 


Greg is 6'1" and so we wanted to make sure that the light we picked didn't bonk him in the head every time he walked into the room. So this baby was super duper helpful. 

Ok, so are you ready to see the light we picked????

Can you handle it!? 

I think you can.

I have faith in you. 

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Ok, here's the light I chose from Lamps Plus


Isn't she a sexy, sexy beast???

It's the Hudson Valley Gideon 33 1/4"W Aged Brass 14-Light Chandelier, and it's kind of magical. 

One of the things I love most about it is that it's "open," as opposed to the last fixture, which was closed. It's also way wider, and def makes waaaaay more of a statement when you walk through the door. 

But hold up there, homie. You didn't think I was stopping with just one fixture didja? 

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The fixture is def the star, but I realized I needed some serious supporting actor and actress help around this joint, so I decided to add some floor lamps and table lamps to the mix. 

I picked out these two beauties from Article: 

This slim barbell number


And here's Article's gorge Pendula orb lamp


And lemme tell ya, it wasn't easy for me to pick two fave lamps from Article, cause they have such gorge, simple lighting...and really everything (stay tuned for my other Article picks in upcoming weeks). But I wanted to choose something that spoke to my Paris apartment theme, and I think both of those totally do. They're sculptural and brass, and just hot, hot, hot. 

And then I picked out two of these from Bellacor: Robert Abbey Jonathan Adler Bristol Antique Brass One-Light Table Lamp


Those babies are actually going on my kitchen counters. Yep, weird I know: but they look gorge.

But wait...that's not all. After choosing the two lamps from Article, I was sort of floor lamp addicted. And I realized I needed onnnnnnnnne more lamp. So I found this mamma jamma from Hayneedle: Dimond Lighting Huntington Drive Floor Lamp


Doesn't this look like it's straight outta the Paris metro?? And the best part is: I'm not using this as a standard floor lamp. Yep! Riddle me that. Well, actually wait...that's dumb. I know exactly what it means. But my lips are sealed. 

So yeah: this week has been all about getting the lighting sorted. And I'm super psyched to have such cool pieces to work with. But now I need to figure out my bulb situations for each fixture and lamp (which is a whole confusing world to me). Like, I've realized that I love the look of clear bulbs when the lights are off, but when you turn them on, I prefer frosted bulbs. So that's been a whole dramz. 

Next week: I'm focusing on curtains, cabinet pulls, and all the little details in our space. But in the meantime, you should check out what all the other ORCers are up to, cause they are doing some SERIOUS transforming: 

Boxwood Avenue | Coco & Jack | Design Manifest | IBB for DWD | The House That Lars Built | Little Green Notebook | The Makerista | Making it Lovely | Old Brand New | Old Home Love |  The Painted House | Megan Pflug Designs | Pink Pagoda | Erica Reitman | Sacramento Street | Simply Grove | Jill Sorensen | Sugar & Cloth | Vintage Rug Shop | Waiting on Martha *

Media Partner House Beautiful | TM by ORC


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Ok, so as a refresher: 

+ I'm making over our living room/kitchen/dining room (except we don't have a dining room yet). 
+ I'm doing what I'm calling a "skinny makeover," which means I want to switch things up big time, but I also want to re-use some pieces that are currently there which I really dig. 
+ My goal is to make the space feel way the hell more pulled together and sophisticated. I sort of want to marry California Cool with a Paris apartment. 

Stick with me for a minute here...I swear I'm not completely outta my mind.

Ok, well that's a little bit of a lie.

But I've found that over the past year or so, my design style has gone through a major change. I used to be a boho babe, and now...well, I'm def not. I've broken up with my wicker baskets, vintage kilims, and rattan, and now I'm back on Bumble and ready for some action. 

If you missed my first week's One Room Challenge post, you can catch up right heeeere.

I may as well get something off my chest with you guys right from the get go: I am totally not into color. Like not at a-l-l.

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I get that that's totally bizarro, and I know that I'm waaaay in the minority with this one, but a few years ago I decided to go full-on top-to-bottom neutral around this joint, and I haven't looked back since. 

So as part of my skinny makeover, I'm going from...uhm...neutral to neutral [cue record scratch]. 

I'm just obsessed with creams and leather, and browns, so I'm not switching that up at all. 

I'm also still the dad from This is Us level in love with our glossy white floors, so those are staying too. 

This is the point that you might be wondering to yourself: uhm, Erica? WTF are you going to makeover, then??

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OK, so here are the main things that I want to tackle: 

+ Ditch the giant janky Ikea pax closet we had in our kitchen as a pantry. 
+ Create a small dining area for Greg and I. 
+ Make our kitchen feel a bit less hodge/podge (is this an actual word???) and a bit more glam. 
+ Zhush up our living room area. 
+ Create some more storage space to make up for the janky Ikea pax closet. 
+ Update the look of the room, while leaving a few existing elements. 
+ Make the space look like a snotty Paris model lives there who dreams of moving to Los Angeles. 

Here are some of my inspo photos: 

Loving the white mixed in with the wood and the brass light fixture. 

 via  Cereal

via Cereal

Weird sculpture, chair with sexy lines and neutral curtains?...yes, pls and I'll take random stacks and stacks of stylish coffee table books for $600, Alex. 

This is way more on the California cool tip than the Paris apartment tip, but I still really dig it.

 via  D Pages

Wood, white, swing art sconce, marble heaven.

Wanna see some of the fab, fly freddy shiz I've already picked out for the space? Duh, of course you do. Ok, let's do this: 


+ 1. Uttermost Geometric Cabinet, $627 The Mine
+ 2. Texa Rug, 5x8, vanilla ivory, $399, Article
+ 3. Hudson Valley 14-light chandelier, $1450, Lamps Plus
+ 4. Imax Don Metal Bench, $199, Bellacor
+ 5. Trail 16" pulls in satin brass, $49/ea, Emtek
+ 7. Greylock Indoor/Outdoor linen curtain panels, $166/ea, Annie Selke

I left the cowhide off of the list above, because I'm still having major second thoughts about it. Do I really want one? Are they just sooooo overdone? I have really loved them for years, but I"m worried it's going to make my space feel more ordinary. What do you guys think??

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Are you diggin the neutrals? What do you think of my picks so far? Do you hate Jonathan on Keeping Up With the Kardashians as much as I do??

Next week we're going to get INTO my gameplan for the kitchen.  

In the meantime, time to check out my fellow ORC bbs and see what they're up to: 

Boxwood Avenue | Coco & Jack | Design Manifest | IBB for DWD | The House That Lars Built | Little Green Notebook | The Makerista | Making it Lovely | Old Brand New | Old Home Love |  The Painted House | Megan Pflug Designs | Pink Pagoda | Erica Reitman | Sacramento Street | Simply Grove | Jill Sorensen | Sugar & Cloth | Vintage Rug Shop | Waiting on Martha *

Media Partner House Beautiful | TM by ORC

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Hey guyzzzzzz! It's One Room Challenge time up again in this piece!

I had so much darn fun the last time around, I thought: WHY NOT GO THROUGH SIX WEEKS OF MAKEOVER HELL, CAUSE IT'S TOTALLY WORTH IT AT THE END CRAZINESS again. So, yep here we are. 

If by chance we're not already bff's on Instagram, hiiii! I'm Erica Reitman. I'm a tell-it-like is, smart-mouthed, interior designer who lives in Los Angeles with my husband Greg and our senior rescue Basset Hound Gus. I love bad reality TV (it's kind of a problem), political podcasts, and videos of Paul Rudd dancing. I dig sharing super duper easy design hacks and advice, and am committed to helping as many ppl as I can figure out how to kick their house's ass.

I'm crazy super duper excited to be participating in the Fall edition of this  6-week makeover party that is the One Room Challenge this Spring, and am so grateful slash shocked and awed that I was included in this group of talented, super killer designers and bloggers.



Ok, so we bought a 1955, teeny, tiny MCM post and beam house three years ago, and then renovated the crap out of it before moving in. The house was already kinda renovated, but the trick was, it was "renovated" by some srsly crappy flippers with no taste, and no budget (case in point: they painted the entire interior of the house baby blue). You can see some of the crazy before and afters in this lil video that my husband Greg made:

The rad thing about our property is that we have a main house (where we live) and then a little separate guest house (that we airbnb). For the last One Room Challenge, I completely switched up the look of our guest house. Afterwards, I was like: CRAP! NOW THAT JOINT IS NICER THAN OUR JOINT. 

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So as soon as Linda from Calling it Home asked me to participate this Fall, I was rarin' to go with a makeover that I could really sink my teeth into and enjoy: so we're doing our living/dining/kitchen. 

When you walk in the front door of our house, you're in our living room...which is also our kitchen. Right now there is no dining room (nope, our coffee table doesn't count), and so I want to try to make the room a bit more functional and add one. 

Now, truth time: I'm not looking to do a full on, head to toe, throw it all at the wall makeover. There are many things in our space that I still totally dig: the neutral palette, our couch, lounge chair and coffee table, and some pieces of existing art (like this pretty painting below from our apt in Brooklyn). 

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So I'm calling this one: our skinny makeover. I'm not knocking any walls down, taking on any large scale (read: PAINFUL) DIY projects, or moving around the layout much. 

BUT, I want the space to feel a bit more glam and sophisticated than it currently does, and also I want to erase any and all signs of boho (minus our giant wall hanging). I know there are many out there still on the boho train, and believe me, I had my ass parked in the boho train dining car for a few years now, so #nojudgment. But I just feel like it's time to move on for me. 

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Here's a view of the room from the other side facing our front door. 

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When you walk through the front door, you're looking straight ahead at our kitchen. I love that the cabinets are white, but I hate mostly everything else about it...especially the sparkles in our quartz countertop which, again, was courtesy of our craptastical flippers. 

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I also hate that we have no backsplash...and our janky "island" which is actually a craft table. 

I'm dreaming about a california cool, meets snotty Parisian model's apartment space. I want to keep the palette neutral, but want more sculptural pieces, way better lighting, and a small dining space for me and my husband to enjoy. 

If you're thinking that you'd like to do a makeover, but you're also convinced you want to keep it as simple and manageable as possible, welcome to the skinny makeover. I'm going to show you how I totally switch things up, without crying, fighting, or yelling at everyone on my iphone favorites list. It's gonna be fuuuuuun.

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So here's what I'm thinking for my ORC Makeover: 
+ A refreshed kitchen. I want to switch things up a bit, but I don't want to spend a million dollars doing it. So I'm going lean and mean on that front. 
+ I pretty much want to burn all of our current light fixtures down to the ground. So we're going to do all new lighting all up in hurr.
+ A more minimal, simplified, NO BOHO allowed space. It's not you,'s me. We're breaking up and I get to keep all the good shiz.
+ Sexy new pieces mixed in with my current faves. The space will hopefully feel zesty and new, but keep some of the california cool vibes that I still dig. 

Ok, so now I've ranted on and on about myself, but I'm DYING to hear more about you! Can you relate to my boho hate parade or are you still on the train? Do you like my idea of a skinny makeover? Are you totally bored by my neutral obsession? Can you believe that THREE Kardashian sisters are all having babies RN???

If you want to keep up with my daily ORC shenanigans and listen to my Insta Story rants, you can follow me on Instagram.

This was fun-n-all, but now you GOTTA go check out all of the other participants and see what sort of magic these crazy kids are cooking up. Click all the links below to hit up the other One Room Challenger's snoop bloggy blogs: 


Boxwood Avenue | Coco & Jack | Design Manifest | IBB for DWD | The House That Lars Built | Little Green Notebook | The Makerista | Making it Lovely | Old Brand New | Old Home Love |  The Painted House | Megan Pflug Designs | Pink Pagoda | Erica Reitman | Sacramento Street | Simply Grove | Jill Sorensen | Sugar & Cloth | Vintage Rug Shop | Waiting on Martha *

Media Partner House Beautiful | TM by ORC



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