Category Archives: Local Love

Oh yes, it happened — Design Sponge in Portland recap!

Happy Wednesday everyone! I am so happy to report that the Design Sponge meet up in Portland was all it was cracked up to be! I headed over to Alder & Co right after work yesterday to check out the scene and meet some fellow bloggers and design lovers. I’d never been to Alder & Co and I have to say, I sure wish I had! It is the cutest shop, with the sweetest owner I’ve ever met. When we arrived, she was there to greet us with a sweet smile, southern accent, great conversation and delicious wine. What more could you ask for?! Alder & Co has a beautiful selection of items for the home, some sweet kids gifts, jewelry, clothing and handbags. I’ll tell you what, they had a seriously beautiful necklace and an awesome handbag that I really wanted to take home with me ( hint, hint, Mr. Boyfriend). They’ve only been open 2 months, but I see them sticking around for many more. If you’re in Portland, be sure to stop by their shop, it’s on 12th, right up the street from a Portland landmark restaurant, Jake’s. 

Besides being in the fantastic shop, the best part of this event was Grace Bonney herself!  She was so gracious and chatted with everyone who came up and talked to her. We stopped by and chatted with her and discussed her talks at the upcoming IDSA conference and BlogHer, which is in New York next week. She is excited about the evolution in design and media that is happening right now and feels really fortunate to be in the mix of it all. We talked with her about the state of print media and she said she’s especially excited about the i-Pad and the opportunity she hopes it can create for online magazines. She noted that during this time of real-time content and continuous exposure to the internet, the niche for print and online magazines will be to find the balance between original content and timeliness to market.   Finally, she said she just loves Portland and that it reminds her of her beloved Brooklyn, NYC. 

Unfortunately, I didn’t get a lot of great pictures from the event, but I did take a few on my i-Phone. I felt like a creep bringing my big camera in and nabbing shots of everyone at the event, just wanted to keep it a little more low-key for my first design event. Sorry blog readers! I promise to feel better about being a creep the next time. 

View of part of the shop and one of their table displays at the party


Beautiful paper mobile, made by one of the workers at Alder & Co. So sorry I didn't catch her name. I'll go back and update you with the right details!


Sparkly rugs. These were laid out in other parts of the store and were really beautiful. They added just a touch of glamour to a room.


Feather ornaments. These would look beautiful any time of year, but at the event we were chatting about how cool these would be on a Christmas tree. If I had all the money on the world, you can bet your bottom dollar this is what my tree would be decorated in next year.

Hope Design Sponge comes to your towns sometime soon too!

– Lyn


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Filed under Decor, Local Love

REMINDER! Design Sponge in Portland TODAY!

Hooray! The day has finally arrived! Design Sponge will be in the P-D-X and I will be there too! You may remember that I blogged about Design Sponge coming to Alder & Co in Portland, here. The event starts tonight at 5pm and goes until 8. Make sure to bring some art supplies as a donation to p:ear, they need water-based paints, brushes, craft supplies, crochet and knitting supplies, glues, glitters, markers, papers, sewing supplies, and scissors. I’m hoping to make friends with some fellow Ptown bloggers and meet the fantastic folks behind Design Sponge. I love meeting people with a similar passion to me! Unfortunately, PDX will only be meeting one of the Two Lovely Spaces bloggers. Susan is off having fun in the sun on her summer vacation boo and yay for her!

Here are some inspiring images from Design Sponge’s coverage of Lauren Stern’s apartment in Brooklyn.

Hello amazing wallpaper and chandy! What a great greeting to a home.

Lauren Stern's apartment on D*S

I love me some black grout with white subway tile. You can even see it in my kitchen here. Not only does it make the white pop, give it an aged look, but it sure makes things easier to clean!

Lauren Stern's bathroom on D*S

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Filed under Decor, Local Love, Uncategorized

Design Sponge coming to Portland!

Just in case you guys haven’t seen, Design Sponge is coming to Portland! What a great opportunity to meet one of design bloggers leading innovators, Grace Bonney! She and other Designspongers will be at a cocktail hour hosted by Alder & Co, on Tuesday, August 3rd from 5pm-8pm. You better believe that I’ll be there to meet and mingle with other Portland decor lovers and hopefully learn some awesome DIY tips from Grace too! Info listed about RSVP, etc for the event on the Design Sponge website here.

Just to tempt you to attend. Check out these awesome pictures of Grace’s NYC apartment, that was featured in the first issue of LonnyMag. I’ll tell you what — I’ll take tips from her any day!

Grace's dining room via Lonny Mag. Check out those great chairs! Susan has the same ones in her house.

Grace's DIY headboard via LonnyMag. Check out Design Sponge for instructions on how to make your own!

Grace's living room via LonnyMag. Horse head lamp! Yes please! I'm obsessed!

Hope to see some fellow Portland design lovers at the event!

– Lyn

*all images via LonnyMag


Filed under Blog love, Local Love

Before and After – Bungalow Kitchen Renovation

Good morning everyone! Sus and I are starting a new series here of Before and After’s of our homes, so you can see what we’ve been working on these last few years. Both of our home renovations started our love for decor and the whole renovation process, so really, we wouldn’t be here with you had we not embarked on home ownership of the fix up kind.

So on to my kitchen renovation! This was the first project that the boyfriend and I (with the help of my parents) tackled. And boy, was it a doozy! As I’ve said before, our house was a total mess when we bought it. A possible hoarder was living there with all the cats in the neighborhood. Clearly, we needed to start with giving us a sanitary place to cook for ourselves.

Here’s a shot with what we were working with on move in day. I just want to note that the white cabinets actually look a lot better in this picture than they really were.

Shot from the back of the kitchen towards the dining room. Don't you love the old linoleum?

This picture is of a wall that covered a chimney from a decomissioned oil furnace. Our first step of the renovation was ripping the chimney out of the entire house.

Old breakfast nook. Featuring the lovely border which ran throughout the kitchen and a dusty old light fixture.

The grimy inside of the cabinets. You wouldn't want to store food in there would you?

We promptly began tearing this out the day we moved into the house, and spent the next couple months of our first summer in the house putting in our new and improved kitchen. We did most of the work ourselves. Only having the cabinets installed by a professional. And by “we” I mean the boyfriend led the charge in this renovation. I’m basically just a pack horse/garbage dump girl, tear outs are my specialty. He’s the brains and brawn behind the operation.

First of all, here is the inspiration image for the kitchen. You might remember seeing it in a old issue of Domino magazine (RIP, sniff, sniff). I loved how the horizontal stripes widened the galley kitchen, since changing the layout of this kitchen was not an option for us. I also loved how the black and white stripes gave a hint of the feel of the 50’s black and white tile look, but were also modern and fresh.

striped kitchen floor via  simply seleta

Domino inspiration image

So here’s our kitchen today. We still have a few items that we want to work on, but it’s fully functioning and pretty! New cabinets from Pacific Northwest Cabinetry, who I highly recommend. They were a fantastic company to work with. Gave us lots of options and were professional and quick on the install. Flooring is marmoleum from a company that Sus covered here on the blog before, Eco Floors. Besides being from the inspiration image, the flooring is also easy to install “click” flooring, so we were able to tackle this project ourselves. The countertops the boyfriend and my Dad found at our local Rebuilding Center, which helps recycle unwanted items from construction projects or older homes. It’s a fantastic resource and I highly encourage people to check there first, especially if they are fixing up a older home. Light fixtures are from Rejuvination Hardware, who sells both vintage and period style fixtures.  Finally, all the appliances are from the Sears Outlet, which is a great place to start/look when you’re appliance shopping. It’s hit and miss, but we were able to find some great higher end Jenn Air appliances for a fantastic price, about 50% off of retail. Who doesn’t like to save that amount of money?!

The new kitchen today. The fridge on the left is in the place where the old chimney used to live.

Picture of built in breakfast nook that the boyfriend designed and built. Table is a Craigslist purchase that I refinished. Shade was made by the boyfriends Mom.

Refinished countertops from the Rebuilding Center. Slate around the sink to keep the water off the wood.

Picture of the other side of the sink, on the shared wall with the dining room

So that’s it! What do you guys think? Any tips you have to share on your own kitchen renovations? Great vendors to work with?


Filed under Local Love, Renovation Chronicles

Local Love

We are starting a monthly post here at TLS called “local love.” The goal here is to highlight vendors we have used in our home improvements/decorating projects in hopes that we can spread awareness of our favorite places to frequent, encouraging other Portlander’s to use local resources. Rest assured that all services, businesses, and products we are recommending are tested and approved by 2 home improvement/decorating junkies. Our first installment is shining the spotlight on our go-to resource for flooring. The honor-roll in this category is Eco Floors located in the Sellwood area. I have used Eco Floors fantastic flooring in my previous home (tile and carpet) as well as our new home (Carpet and decorative runner for the stairs). The selection at Eco Floors is fantastic. Cork, Bamboo, Marmoleum, Tiles, as well as walls of carpet options. (Check out their selection of wools, so many to choose from and so beautiful). The best part about Eco Floors should be obvious, they are an eco conscious vendor. All products and installation materials are low chemical, and sustainable. The staff at Eco Floors is extremely knowledgable, helpful, prompt, and kind. Read “about” them here. Another helpful hint: Owners Sam and Darius will apply a 5% discount to returning customers. We love that “pass it on” attitude which is why we are shouting from the rooftops our praises to the guys at this fabulous company. All we ask, is if you happen to purchase or install through EF, pass along our info. Tell them that Susan and Lyn from TLS sent you.

Eco Floors Tile- (Pictured in our previous home)

Eco Floors 100% Wool Runner (Pictured in our new home)

Here is to happy floor-shopping! Cheers, Susan

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Filed under Local Love