February 3, 2017

966 days.

Well, hello there!! It's been quite some time since I've posted anything here on Suite Revival.  Just how long has it been? 966 days! I can hardly believe it's been that long. I have two words for why Suite Revival faded away...GRAD SCHOOL! Earning my master's degree had been a goal of mine for many years but the circumstances were finally right and I decided to take the plunge in the Fall of 2014.  Between my full-time job, class, readings, group projects, writing papers, fieldwork, and studying for the comprehensive exam, there was just no room in my life for Suite Revival. I barely saw my friends on a regular basis, let alone had time for blogging :-)

But the good news is I graduated in May of 2016 and have spent the last 8 to 9 months enjoying my new freedom!! Other than to two conferences (one to New Orleans and the other to Oahu...I know, poor me) I wasn't able to travel for fun much over the last two years...sitting in the business center working on a research paper isn't really the ideal vacation.  But now that I'm out and have no projects or due dates hanging over my head, I decided a trip to NYC was in order!! My two beautiful nieces joined me in the city last month and we had a blast! 
We had some beautiful but FREEZING COLD days!
There have been some big changes in my living situation, too. I moved out of my cozy little studio on the beach and into a one-bedroom house literally 25 steps away from my very best friend. I obviously miss the beach and my nightly sunsets, but the decision to move has been a great one!!
After living with off-white walls for about two years, I had finally been inspired to paint but then moved out less than two months later...oh well. I enjoyed it while I could.  This was a good home and I'll always have fond memories of my time here but my new place....it's amazing! And I can't wait to share more about it!

June 13, 2014

Summer vacation and office gallery wall.

Hi friends! It's been a little awhile since my last post but I'm still here! Work had been kind of busy with the end of the semester and I was preparing to take a trip of a lifetime! I returned from New Zealand last week and I can't even begin to articulate how incredible that place is! I have a gazillion pictures and I love them all but will only share one. You can see a few more on Instagram - just search for "suiterevival" :-) 
Our third night there was spent up north in the Bay of Islands. We had hopped a ferry over to Russell - one of the 144 islands in the bay just before sunset and it was incredible!! The beauty was like nothing I'd ever seen and actually brought tears to my eyes. It really did!! The picture doesn't even do the sunset justice, but it's the best I have :-) If you're planning your next vacation....New Zealand should definitely be in the running! It's so beautiful!! Okay....moving on.

It's been two whole months since I moved into my cozy little beach side studio. Studio living hasn't been that much of an adjustment since I was pretty accustomed to living in a small space before I moved here but it has taken me a few go a rounds of furniture re-arranging to fit my living room, bedroom and "office" into one large room. I'm feeling pretty good about the arrangement right now but that could all change tomorrow :-) 

One area that won't likely change in my office nook. Here's what it looked like as a blank slate just before moving day...
And here it is today after I FINALLY hung things on the wall...
With the exception of a few small frames from IKEA and a framed print from Target, I decided to go with an eclectic mish mash of things I already had which means turning this little nook into something with character cost me very little! 
 I started with just a rough layout and then kind of winged it once I started hanging things. 

One thing that I am super excited about is that I finally found a home for my print of Jackson Square and the St. Louis Cathedral in New Orleans. I had picked up the print during a rebuilding trip I took with my church after Hurricane Katrina hit the city. That trip was incredible and left a soft spot in my heart for New Orleans and it's people. And now I get to think of them daily with this print hung right at eye level! Yay! 
Here's one more look at the before...
And the after...
Like I mentioned earlier, the only new items I purchased for this gallery were the three gray IKEA Ribba frames at $1.99 each, the postcard prints inside of those frames for $0.99 also from IKEA, and the "Go your own way" print from Target for $16.99 which was 15% off using my Cartwheel app!

So happy to be able to check off my first summer project from my list! 

1. Hang gallery of prints above desk
2. Make bulletin board out of New Zealand sheep towel
3. Do something above bed wall
4. Make patio more cozy - add succulents??
5. Give jewelry frames a new look (spray paint and fabric)
6. New desk chair

Until next time...

April 28, 2014

Home Sweet Home.

Happy Monday! I hope you all had a great weekend! Mine was filled with an overdue happy hour, walks on the beach, church, Craigslist wheeling and dealing, the farmer's market and and the delivery of my new sofa! It's hard to pick the top highlight in there, but the sofa is a top contender! I was chatting with a friend and realized that this is my 3rd sofa in as many years! That might be a sign of some sort of problem but for now I'll just chalk it up to... liking change. Yeah...that's it. I like change! 

Anyway, here's what the empty room looked like before I moved in. The living area measures approximately 14 x 13 feet which is a pretty decent size space. 
 My initial thoughts for furniture placement was to have the back of the sofa create a bit of a "hallway" effect when you first walked in. I liked it but it felt a tad cramped not leaving much room to get into my dresser or walk around the coffee table to the chair in the corner. I ended up switching out the coffee table and brought in my silver trunk since it was smaller and that helped a little bit but still decided to move things around... 
Thankfully, I had asked the cable guy to give me the option of moving my TV to the other wall so I just had to unscrew a few things and shift everything over to the other side. Having the furniture like this opened it WAY up! It feels 100% bigger!
So once I knew I liked that placement, I had to just patiently wait for the delivery guys to arrive with my new sofa! I has been looking at a lot of sofa options including sectionals and sleepers but ultimately fell in love with the look and price of the Lorelai Sofa from Living Spaces.
It's like it was meant to be!
I love the size, scale and color of this and imagine having her for a long time to come! As for the place overall, things are starting to come together and the apartment is starting to feel more and more like home. Especially by adding a few of my accessories to the mix...

And since we all love a good before and after...here's a side by side of the room empty and now furnished!
I can't wait to get some color on the walls and curtains hung, but until that happens, I'm feeling pretty good about how the place is coming along!

Until next time...

April 25, 2014

Moving Day and Unpacking.

That moment when you're done unloading the truck and realize you have a bunch of chaos to sort through is actually one of my favorite moments! I love being able to organize and figure out where things should go in a new space. What was even more exciting is that even though I lost 35 square feet of living space, I gained a large closet, more kitchen counter/cabinet space, some garage storage and a patio!

 So as I began sorting through everything, I spent most of my first weekend going back and forth between boxes:
And the ocean:

 Then I'd get back to the boxes:
 And when I needed a break, went back to the ocean:
It was quite a productive plan!

And by the end of the first weekend, I had unpacked most boxes and just had a small pile left...
 And I had my little living room feeling like home:
 Of course, I needed to watch my first sunset at the new place and actually asked Siri what time it was happening so I wouldn't miss it! This is definitely a view that will never get old!
As I walked along the boardwalk that first night, I could help but think of Ephesians 3:20.

 It's kind of crazy how much of a 180 my life has taken - just a few years ago I was drowning in debt and now I'm living my dream! God is so good :-)

Until next time...

April 24, 2014

The Empty House Tour.

Hi friends! It's been a few weeks since I last posted and I'm happy to say that I am all moved into my new place! The boxes are gone and I'm getting use to my new commute, neighbors, and surroundings and I love it! I thought I'd take a second to share pictures of the apartment as a blank slate.  These are pics I took when I went to look at the apartment for the first time...so please forgive the darkness.

Front door:
 View from front door:
 View from kitchen:
 And that's pretty much it! I have a patio, one big room, kitchen, bathroom, and 2 closets (one in the corner and one behind the door). The Craigslist ad said it was 390 square feet - which isn't a whole lot so I like to include the 63 million square miles of ocean just outside my door. 
That makes is seem WAY bigger!

April 8, 2014


Wow. It's been so long I feel like I need to introduce myself again! My name is Rachel and I'm the gal behind Suite Revival. I am still alive and kicking despite a very long blogging hiatus!

I've been gone 6 months! Geez...that's crazy. Time sure flies when you're not blogging! A lot has happened in those 6 months, too!

  • Celebrated some holidays
  • Rang in a New Year
  • Turned 34 years old
  • Booked a trip to New Zealand
  • Been accepted to graduate school
  • Moved to the beach
Did you catch that last one?? Move. To. The. Beach. I'm so giddy, it's ridiculous! And technically it hasn't happened yet....it's happening on Saturday!! But by Saturday night I will be falling sleep to the sounds of the ocean. I'll be sleeping amongst a heap of cardboard boxes (much like I am now) but the ocean will be there, none the less!

The owners (also friends and one of my New Zealand travel mates) of the place I currently rent decided to sell the property and so I figured I'd take this opportunity to explore all of my options! There were a few places that came to mind when I asked myself the question, "If I could live anywhere in Southern California, where would I live?" 

Taking out anything too far away from work, I settled on a few beach communities. Before I knew it, I found the perfect little place. 

Here's a little teaser for you...
And when I say little, I mean 390 square feet little. I didn't think it possible, but I'm actually losing square footage! Ha! Oh and the new place is a studio vs my current one bedroom. So needless to say, I have a ton of ideas floating around my head on how to make every square foot count! 

I'm super excited about this new chapter and can't wait to share pictures of the place and all the little projects that will come along!

Until next time (and I promise there will be a next time!)

November 11, 2013

Liquid sunshine.

It's been awhile since I've shared a furniture makeover but I have a quick one to share with you today!

My friend Katie picked up this piece at a thrift store and asked I could give it a little makeover. Obviously, I said yes! It had cute details and I loved the legs!
She wanted a bright yellow on the bottom and a "distressed" looking top. I'll be honest, when she showed me the paint color, I thought it was a little...um, bright. 
The picture above doesn't quite do the "brightness" justice, but it was looking good!
I did 3 coats of the yellow and then moved on to the top.
She wanted it a  little darker but to still look like wood so instead of sanding and staining, I simply wiped on a little charcoal paint with a foam brush to darken up the wood. There was no method to this, I just kind of played it by ear and darkened a few areas more than others.
I think it turned out pretty good, too!
I gave it one more coat of charcoal using even less paint this time and it was perfect. Here's the final product!
And because I love a good before and after... 

 Until next time...