Autumn Refresh: Bedroom Makeover Reveal!

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files

It’s finally reveal day! For the past couple of months, Heather and I have been working on our homes for our Autumn Refresh series and today we’re showing off how everything came together. To give you an idea of where we started, here’s a very lackluster before:

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover (Before) | Frock Files

And here it is post-transformation!

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files

Our goal was to take the bedroom from a space we merely slept in to one that we could actually enjoy. James and I love boutique hotels, and we thought it would be luxurious if we could bring in a few of the elements we like from those rooms, while creating a functional bedroom that we can live in every day.

Although we love our condo, it really doesn’t get a ton of light except in our bedroom. Especially in the wintertime. So before the days got too short, we decided that we would go with a soft white to amplify the light as much as possible. We went over all of the walls with Benjamin Moore’s White Dove, and to add depth and a bit of elegance, we painted the closet bump out Benjamin Moore’s Black Beauty. After the painting was done (and let me tell you, it took us awhile!), things really started to come together.

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files

Like a lot of new construction, our bedroom doesn’t have a ceiling light in it. We had two lamps but then one of them died last year and we were left with one 75-watt lamp to light the whole space! Luckily, Wayfair saved the day by sending me these gorgeous swing arm lamps. They plug in, so we can take them with us when we move on.

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock FilesBoutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files

You might be able to tell from the “before” image that our night stands were way too low. It was a cool concept to begin with, but dozens of spilled water glasses and knocked over cups of coffee later, we were tired of them. As you already know, I went on the hunt for the perfect gold side table and when I didn’t find it, I hacked an almost-right one from Home Goods.

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files
Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files

On James’ side, we created a small workspace for the days (and frequent nights) he works from home. When I moved in, James generously gave me the second bedroom (check it out here and here) to use as a home office, which left him to work from the dining room table.

But that meant lots of distractions, and too much noise during conference calls. He told me he didn’t need much room–just enough for his laptop–so I asked our favorite carpenter for help wall-mounting a piece of reclaimed wood my friend Eling had found for us. This is by far James’ favorite part of the makeover.

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock FilesBoutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files

The little accessories are what really bring the space to life. We didn’t want to get rid of the carpeting but I gave it a bit of a boost by layering faux sheepskins next to the bed–which Kona promptly declared to be her new bed. At the risk of being redundant, I hung another deer hook, which is the perfect spot for scarves. The blanket from DLK gives the bed a big dose of personality and chicness. And the big mirror brings even more light into the room.

Last but not least, the painting above the bed is an original watercolor by Roger Whitlock. He’s an amazing artist (and equally amazing person) based in Honolulu. I’m a lucky girl to own two of his paintings. I love the way it helps to tie in the natural elements in the room.

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock FilesBoutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files

Now that we’ve wrapped up the makeover, we spend so much more time in the bedroom. When James and I are both working from home, I like to interrupt his afternoon with a little coffee break. And on the day I shot this, I climbed into bed and took a nap right afterward. Call us hedonists–we don’t mind!

Boutique Hotel Inspired Bedroom Makeover | Frock Files

Thanks for joining us on this Autumn Refresh journey! Both Heather and I have loved the motivation that the series has given us to finish our rooms. Now, head on over to The Caterpillar Years to see Heather’s amazing home office/guest room transformation! It’s chock full of ideas for renters with nit-picky landlords and perfect for anyone expecting guests later this year.

Check out the rest of the Autumn Refresh series here

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Autumn Refresh: The Best Bedding

Autumn Refresh: Bedding Makeover | Frock Files

Our bed has been an embarrassing hodge podge of college-era comforters, hole-y quilts, and mismatched pillowcases for far too long. I’ve always justified it by telling myself that no one else spends time in our bedroom anyway, but this Autumn Refresh challenge has given me the perfect excuse to finally give our bedding a facelift.

People who visit usually use the word “cozy” when they talk about our home. I have an affinity for soft things–both of our couches are cloud-like in their ability to envelop even the tallest of our friends; we have fluffy throws everywhere; I live in cashmere in the wintertime; Kona (need I say more?). The bedding was no exception.

My Favorite Bedding Picks

Once I started choosing the elements, I began to understand why it’s really taken me this long to get my act together when it comes to bedding: there are lots of pieces to coordinate! Here’s what I ended up with, and I have to say, I’m thrilled with every piece.

Sheets: While our blankets were mismatched, we’ve always had really nice sheets. A couple of years ago, Lindsey discovered these Beech sheets at Bed, Bath, and Beyond and she insisted that I buy a set immediately. Luckily, I listened. They’re the softest, most luxurious feeling sheets I’ve ever owned–even better than the high thread count Egyptian cotton ones I used to have. A head’s up that these say sateen and they appear shiny at first, but they lose that shiny look after the first wash–thank goodness.

Autumn Refresh: Bedding Makeover | Frock Files

Blanket: When Kim of DLK told me that she would be importing her favorite cotton sweater throws from Australia, I knew that it would be love at first sight. I was right. This throw was a bit of a splurge, but I just love the character it brings to our bedroom. It’s also incredibly soft. As you can see, Kona loves it too. In fact, we may fight over it a little. What can I say? She has good taste.

Duvet Insert and Duvet Cover: For awhile, I’ve been waking up feeling really hot in the middle of the night, but all that changed once we got this duvet insert and cover. The duvet insert is filled with down alternative, but it’s not overly filled, which makes it breathable so that I’m not waking up sweating at 3am. The duvet cover is made of super soft Egyptian cotton that makes climbing into bed feel like a religious experience. Bonus: both were steals on Amazon.

It should be noted that our bed started off feeling pretty great, despite our eclectic bedding, because we invested in a Tempur-Pedic awhile back. My god, we love that mattress. In the dead of winter, we layer on an electric blanket to warm the mattress before we climb in, which makes the Tempur-Pedic a big, dreamy marshmallow. Mmm…

Autumn Refresh: Bedding Makeover | Frock Files

That’s it for this week’s peek into our Autumn Refresh! Check back next week for a little DIY action, and don’t forget to head over to The Caterpillar Years to see which area of her home office/guest bedroom Heather’s revealing this week. Are you working on a decor project? We would love to check it out! Tag it on Instagram using #AutumnRefresh.

Autumn Refresh: Bedroom Makeover Inspiration

Bedroom Makeover Inspiration | Frock Files

When I moved in with James two years ago, we joked that his condo looked like the apartments that spies use in movies–sparsely furnished with builders-grade everything and totally generic cream colored walls. Since then, we’ve painted almost every wall, hung artwork, laid down rugs, hung curtains, bought new furniture, and put up shelves that are filled with books. There’s no mistaking that people live here now. (In fact, you can get a taste of our space by checking out our half-bath and home office.)

The one room we haven’t touched is our bedroom. But after spending a lovely weekend in New York City last May, we fell in love with the decor at the Refinery Hotel (above and below), and I decided that it’s time for us to finish off the bedroom at long last.


My dear friend Heather (The Caterpillar Years) and I have been missing each other since both moving away from Portland, so we decided to give one another a little peer decorating pressure by collaborating on a series of posts about our room makeovers. We’re calling it Autumn Refresh and we’ll each be publishing one post each Wednesday throughout the month to document our progress. Today we’re both focusing on inspiration.

Here are a few more images that have influenced the choices I’m making for this space:

Bedroom Makeover Inspiration | Frock FilesBedroom Makeover Inspiration | Frock Files

(All images are posted on my Nesting board on Pinterest. Most of them don’t have original sources or aren’t linked.)

And here’s my inspiration board! Some of these pieces will actually make it into my bedroom. Others are DIY projects, which will be featured here. I’m particularly fond of the yummy cotton blanket from the newly opened DLK shop. It pulls everything together so nicely and it’s the best thing to snuggle up with when it’s chilly.

Bedroom Makeover Inspiration | Frock Files

Lamp: Wayfair | Terrarium: West Elm | Blanket: DLK | Table: Anthropologie | Frame: Crate & Barrel | Paint: Benjamin Moore

That’s it for this week! Don’t forget to head over to The Caterpillar Years to see Heather’s inspiration for her home office. Heather always does a great job of blending contemporary and Mid-century Modern style, and this room is no exception. Come back next week for more from our Autumn Refresh series!

Is there a room in your home that could use some freshening up for Fall? Join us in reclaiming our rooms!! Post photos of your room refresh on Instagram with #autumnrefresh. Heather and I will be re-posting our favorite rooms! Be sure to follow both of us on Instagram: The Caterpillar Years and Frock Files.

DIY Real Life Pin Board

Frock Files | DIY Giant Bulletin Board

Do you watch Homeland? We got totally hooked on it and while, yes, I get wrapped up in the storyline, whenever they’re at Carrie’s apartment I’m totally distracted by her giant floor-to-ceiling bulletin board! Ever since I saw it, I’ve been trying to figure out how to create my own bulletin board, so that I could create what I like to call “Pinterest in real life.”

After finding this tutorial on Apartment Therapy, I went for it and created my own. Since the original tutorial doesn’t have any step-by-step photos, I thought I’d attempt my own here.


16 one-foot (12″ x 12″) cork squares
Razor blade (Xacto knife)
16 square feet of foam core board
Heavy duty masking tape
Heavy duty double sided tape
Four drywall anchors
Four screws
Aluminum tape

Frock Files | DIY Giant Bulletin Board

Cut the foam core into your desired shape using a razor. I wanted mine to be a 4′ x 4′ square.

Frock Files | DIY Giant Bulletin Board

Tape all of your pieces together on both sides using the heavy duty masking tape.

Frock Files | DIY Giant Bulletin Board

Add double sided tape to each of your cork squares and adhere them to the foam core board.

Frock Files | DIY Giant Bulletin Board

Make four marks along each side with a pen, about half an inch in from the edge. You’ll use these as guides for aligning the aluminum tape. While you could do it in one long length of tape, I found that using smaller sections made the job easier. The tape covers the jagged edges of the foam core. It’s still not going to be perfect, but it definitely looks more finished.

Frock Files | DIY Giant Bulletin Board

Mark about two inches in from each corner, then drill small holes at each mark. Have someone hold the board up to the wall so that you can level it and then poke a pencil through each hole to mark where the drywall anchors will go. If you have dark walls like I do, use a white out pen.

Install the drywall anchor by drilling a hole, then screwing the anchor in with a Phillips head screwdriver. Line the bulletin board up with the holes and screw in at each corner.

Frock Files | DIY Giant Bulletin Board

Another big blank wall conquered! I’m so excited to finally have a place to pin real-life things that inspire me. And each time I look at it, I’ll be reminded of friendship, since artwork from Paige and my Project Postal partner, Ruth, hangs right at eye level.

What would you put on your real-life pin board?

Half Bathroom Makeover Reveal

Frock Files | Half Bath Makeover Before

Ugh. That’s what I felt every time I walked into this bland builders grade bathroom. It’s not just that the walls looked like they were painted in margarine, but the whole space felt thoughtlessly planned. On the right, there’s a closet with our stacked washer and dryer, but if the door was open, as it often is, you couldn’t easily get to the towel rack. And that toilet paper roll was basically hanging out by itself in nowhereville. Let’s not even talk about what those light bulbs were doing to the color of the space…

Frock Files | Half Bath Makeover Before

Inspired by all those black and white images I’ve been collecting, I decided to start fresh. I painted three of the walls Benjamin Moore’s White Dove, which made everything look cleaner. It felt like I’d taken bleach to those yellow walls! And if you’ve been paying attention, you know that I painted the fourth wall with chalkboard paint — after removing the awkward towel rod and toilet paper fixtures. (Getting rid of them was enormously cathartic!)

Frock Files | Half Bath Makeover After

We didn’t want to spend a huge amount of money on the bathroom because, quite frankly, it’s in pretty good shape. But I wanted to do something with a lot of impact, and juxtapositioning white with chalkboard hit that sweet spot for being well within budget while infusing the space with personality.

Frock Files | Half Bath Makeover After

Above the toilet, I added the reclaimed wood shelf with silver branch brackets. Eventually, I’d love to put apothecary jars up there. I tried to get a shot with the toilet in there for perspective, but it was next to impossible with the lighting I was given. So you’ll just have to use your imagination.

Frock Files | Half Bath Makeover After

Does that paper look familiar? In a perfect world, I would wallpaper the entire bathroom with Rifle Paper Co. wrap. But since I’m freaked out by wallpaper, I came up with the happy compromise of framing it in this pretty mirrored frame. It’s actually from Target, but I couldn’t find it online. At $34, it’s about half the price of the one from West Elm.

Frock Files | Half Bath Makeover After

While I was dreaming up this bathroom, I had the basic towel ring in mind for the spot next to the sink. But once all the pieces started coming together, it felt out of place. Back in Portland, I used this hook for my coat and I’m so happy to have the chance to re-purpose it here.

Frock Files | Half Bath Makeover After

We had a hard time thinking of what to write here. We thought of things like, “Have a Seat” but that seemed kind of gauche. So I took a step back and began thinking of the space more like a powder room than a bathroom. That’s when I realized that one of my favorite Downton Abbey quotes would fit the bill. I imagine you’ll come for a visit and think, “Why, yes, my hair does look jolly!”

This isn’t the end of the facelift — we still need to get a toilet paper stand (right now it just sits on the back of the toilet) and a rug. But for now, I’m pretty happy with what we accomplished in a weekend.

P.S. Check back tomorrow for my first ever video!

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