Garage Game's Pics - A thrifty find and a homemade office

Hello all! I don't know what I'm enjoying more - watching the Olympic Games, (hello USA Women's Gymnastics!), the tear jerking commercials, or receiving all your amazing home decor photos! I have been blown away by the number of responses by your creative rooms, ideas, tips and tricks.

If this is your first time visiting Chelsea's Garage I am so glad you stopped by! Let me fill you in really quick so you can join and/or enjoy! I am doing our very own Garage Games right here on the blog over the next two weeks spanning the Olympics. I am asking anyone and everyone to email me, (, at least one photo of a home decor piece/project/craft/room that is reflective of their style and personality. It can be anything you want so long as it represents you. I will post the photos right here on the blog as they come in as a fun way of sharing our creativity and inspiring one another. At the end of the two weeks we will do a random drawing of all the people who submit photos for a chance to win a piece of jewelry from my jewelry box clean-out! I love accessorizing and have 14 fun pieces that have served me well for several years now, but alas, it's time to change things up and pass them on! So, please don't hesitate to submit your photo(s); you never know who you'll inspire and you could get a cool piece of jewelry out of it! See this post if you'd like more details and a peek at the jewelry pieces! Photos will be accepted until Sunday August 12, (closing ceremonies day for the Olympics).

Today I have two different submissions from two long time friends who don't know they're being featured together, (until now, obviously).:) My earliest memories include these two women; the first is my one and only Mom. The other, a long time family friend who lived down the street from my family in Illinois when I was a wee one.

Let's start with my Mom. I have no design background, never taken a class, but I have 28 years under my belt of watching my Mom transform many a home, (we moved several times), into this soothing yet fun, comfortable yet classy, modern meets antique, peaceful abode. When you walk into my parent's home, you will see my Mom's personality at every corner and 'ahhh, yesss' moment.  I don't know how to describe her home decor style except that she just 'knows'. She's got an eye for things like no one else. She mixes pattern and color like a pro. She knows how to accessorize and where to stop. I've heard guests of hers gush that there is no better feeling than being in her home - it is just that warm and inviting. I've studied and watched her in action. Most of what I do 'right', (and let's be honest, there are hardly any black and white rules when it comes to home decor), is from what I've learned through her.

She submitted a photo of a beautiful piece she found a long time ago. I've never heard it's story, until now.:)

"Twenty years ago we were living in New Hampshire and I was on the hunt for some new sofas. I heard about a huge tent sale at a very upscale place in Massachusetts. I got there early (it was a madhouse!), found my sofas, and as I was leaving I spotted this heavy iron table with no glass top. I don't know why I liked it because it's not my usual style. I thought it would be great 'in the mix' in our family room. I asked my sales lady whom I just bought 2 sofas from, what the price was. She waved her hand and said, "Just take it". So I hurriedly did! Got home, had a glass top cut for it and it has been with me ever since. Goes with everything and kind of decorating!" -J

This next submission is an absolute brilliant transformation for an office space. If you work full time away from home, then most of your awake time is probably spent...away from home.

"Wanting my office to be a reflection of the things I love, I grabbed some things from home and this is what I came up with. Like you, I like lighting, and opted for some lamps in my office, to avoid the blaringly bright overhead lights. Combined with the light from my window, it’s just perfect. The picture on the wall is a watercolor my mom did. It’s a scene of the waterwheel on our campus (where I work). She painted it long before I ever started working here, so when I took the job, she gave it to me! The quilt hanging on the wall helps to cut down on the noise, adds visual interest, and I made it (a hobby on hold right now—but just looking at it inspires me to pick it up again). The colors are perfect for the room. People stop to comment on it all the time. I got rid of the metal bookshelf that came with the office, and brought in the antique washstand. My husband and I love looking for old pieces, and this was the perfect size for the space. It’s functional too! Haven’t found the perfect guest chair yet, but the one here does fine (can’t be too comfortable or my visitors will never leave!). Folks often comment how they feel like they are coming into my home, and not my office. It’s comfy, cozy, and makes me smile when I walk in to start my day. I figure if I’m here 40 hours/week, I better love the environment I’m in!! Just these few things have made it perfect for me."-D

Beautiful photos and thank you to the beautiful women who sent them in.

Tomorrow's post will feature a seriously talented mom who submitted some befores and afters which will knock your socks off! Don't wait too long to get your photos in! Deadline is Sunday, August 12.

Thanks for stopping by!