Wednesday, September 17, 2014

13 Reader Space: A Vintage Inspired Vanity

OK gals!  I have a beautiful and inspiring vanity area to share today.  It is a special space that my dear friend, Jenna, created to store all of her daily accessories.

There is something magical about those mornings where everything goes smoothly and you greet the day with a smile.  And although that is not always the case, one thing that does help is having your clothing and accessories organized and awaiting your eager morning face.  Jenna, of Jenna Sue Designs, is no stranger around here because everything she touches turns to gold and she inspires me on a daily basis.  Her projects are always a breath of freshly organized air and she always appreciates taking things to that final step of "absolutely lovely".

Jenna recently revealed her master bedroom renovation, in which she flanked her bed with two amoires from IKEA.  The cabinets started out as a blank slate of white and she was able to put her personal twist on each.  Both the exterior and the interior are customized to fit her needs and wishes, and today she is stopping by to share a bit more about the project.  Here is a glimpse at the cabinet just after she lined it with beautiful paper.  Keep reading for more delicious eye candy...

What is the main function of the space?

"To organize and display my jewelry, purses, shoes and accessories."

Any superstar tips for keeping it organized?

"Everything must have its own place and you should be able to clearly see every item without having to dig around for it.  If you instantly know where it belongs, it becomes second nature to grab and return it back to its spot—keeping the system operating smoothly."

What items did you find were essential when organizing this space and why?

"The pull-out wire baskets were definitely needed so I could have access to the back of the wardrobe and utilize the entire depth.  For my jewelry, I needed smaller organizers (I used small vintage containers, trays, a earring and ring holders and hooks for necklaces).  And of course, a mirror!"

What did you do to go the extra mile and "make it pretty”?

"I wanted it to maintain some of the rustic qualities found in the rest of our home so the stained wood sides were perfect for that, but I also made it girly with gray damask fabric, a vintage style mirror and metal lace tray.  By keeping the design neutral, I could let my accessories provide the fun pops of color."

What items did you DIY to stay on a budget?

"I used plain Ikea Pax doors and added X style trim (made from thin plywood) and black handles.  I covered the back with damask fabric (using modge podge), stained some scrap wood from the garage and nailed it up to the sides, and added the hooks.  On the outside, we added molding to make it look built in.  It really was a fairly inexpensive project!"

How has it impacted your life for the better?

"Getting ready to go out is a very different experience now!  With all of my accessories out in the open, it’s so much easier to see what I’m working with and takes less time to coordinate my outfits. No more rummaging through piles of jewelry to find what I’m looking for!  It’s great to have this feminine little space in the house that I can call my own (that’s also hidden behind closed doors so there’s no conflict with the Mr!)"

As a girl who prefers to keep my clothing neutral and basic and let my accessories do the talking, I can completely get on board with this vanity armoire.  Everything from hats to shoes to handbags to bangles are stored within this super sweet nook, and I think I would have to accidentally on purpose leave those doors open all of the time.

The wardrobe may have started out basic but it is the perfect example of what a few simple additions can do to take something from ho-hum to ooh-la-la!  Some very basic trim on the door faces around the top and it looks like a custom built-in {and we all know how expensive those can get}.  I love the idea of planking the interior walls which gives the cabinet warmth and function - offering the perfect spot to screw in hooks for those necklaces.  Pull out drawers for shoes and accessories will keep everything right within reach each day.  And how about that beautiful fabric?  I know it has been done time and time again but you guys, it still gets me every last time!  Paper and fabric really go a long way in any project, big or small.  And as if I haven't gushed enough, I love Jenna's thoughtfully curated accessories.  The vanity tray is simply stunning.

To find the complete step-by-step tutorial for how Jenna customized her armoire, you can pop over to her blog here.  And if you can't get enough of the armoires, stick around and check out the entire bedroom makeover which is as breathless as the views she has.

I would love to know, what special touches do you add to your morning routine to ensure that you wake up ready to take on the world?

*  All images courtesy of Jenna Sue Design

ATTENTION!!  Want to be featured in a Reader Space edition?  Have an awesome organizing story to share?  I am looking for projects that have made a positive impact to your life, big or small.  They can be anything from an organized drawer or cabinet to an entire room.  Please submit your story and photos to, and I would heart to feature them right here on the blog!!  Photos should be high resolution and unedited.  Please include a description of the project, including any costs, inspiration, and how it has changed your life and routine for the better!  Oh, and no worries my friends, we will NEVER judge "before" pictures because that just wouldn't be nice!  Only love goes on at this blog!


  1. Oh wow! A gorgeous make over.

  2. Jen you're the best! Thank you again for the feature and the super sweet commentary! <3

  3. This is beautiful, I'm speechless.

  4. This is incredible! Love how she made the most of a small space!

  5. Style and Function, perfect combo! Love the contrast between the fancy damask and the stained wood!

  6. One again a beautiful make over! x

  7. I am so in love with that mirror! Mirror-hunting can be so tricky!

    High Heels & Happy Feels

  8. Great idea !! I will definitely inspire myself with this !

  9. Wow, really beautiful. The whole room is lovely but the idea that such amazing storage can be so pretty is great. It looks like you opened the door to your own personal boutique!

  10. Depending on the space, angle and need, maybe adding a full-length mirror to the inside (or the outside) of the cabinet would be a plus. Nice piece.

  11. This space is absolutely stunning!

    Lauren Elizabeth
    Petite in Pearls

  12. This looks so perfect!! I would be so happy if I had that :)

  13. Oh my gosh gorgeous!!!! I love all the neutrals!!! :)


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