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hey there! I'm monica 

I pride myself on making amazing style and design accessible for everyone, regardless of location, budget, or ability! My design philosophy is rooted in authenticity + attainability - If I can do it, you can too! My work has been featured in countless publications, but I take the most pride in homeowners that have been personally inspired by my DIY ideas and have tried something in their own homes!

learn more about ME + MY BIZ

Today’s a Seriously Important Day:
Happy 30th Birthday Jess!
(Kev and Jess at the “decades” prom we went to last year- they looked awesome!)
Let me just tell you that I officially have the best friend ever.  Jess is hands down, my favorite person in the world.  She’s confident, strong, dedicated to her family, friends, and most importantly her faith and having her in my life for the last 13 years has made it all that much better.  So here’s to 30 Jess, I can’t wait to see what this decade has in store for you.  Love ya- have an awesome day!
So every once in a while I have a pretty cool, unique idea… trust me, it doesn’t happen all that often, but when it does I pretty much love it.  The stenciled wall panels in our Nate Show room were one of those rare times.  If you haven’t seen the room yet, here she is in all of her fuzzy, screen shot taken from a video glory.

nate show after pic

We were walking through the thrift store and saw a roll of this black paper stuff.  I didn’t know what it was at first, but then I thought way back when and remembered putting a new roof on my parents’ house with a high school boyfriend (ah, the crazy things teenage girls will do to impress boys. Eric couldn’t pay me enough to get on a roof now!)… Anyhow, I remembered it was like the paper that you put under shingles.  Tar Paper it’s called.

tar paper

This is where the random awesome idea part comes in… I immediately stopping seeing this as roofing material, and I saw it as a canvas-like material for some fabulous high-end-meets-industrial-art. Jess sort of wasn’t quite sure about my plan, but being the wonderful BFF that she is, she trusted me and encouraged me to go for it.
Here’s how I turned this roll into art.   We had just gotten the stencil in the mail from Royal Design Studio for Jess’ kitchen renovation.  Remember, she used it here:

Jess kitchen

The first step was to simply figure out the size of my panels, I knew I wanted two stenciled images on each panel.  Once I had them cut to size I rolled on two coats of semi-gloss navy paint.  I was worried it wouldn’t take the paint well, but it worked like a charm.  No primer needed- score one for the lazy DIYer! Once they were really dry, it was time to stencil.  Stenciling 4 images was a cake-walk compared to Jess’ kitchen.  It took me about 15 minutes to complete both panels.  I used DecoArt metalic gold paint and it needed about two coats to really get the pop we wanted.


Did you notice all the gold on the stencil when Jess posted about her kitchen?  It was a mini spoiler alert!


One additional thing I’m crushing on and could have added to my crush post are grommets.  I have been using them as much as I can lately.  I pretty much can make an argument that everything is better with grommets! We added them to this piece to give it a finished look and also play off of the industrial nature of the tar paper.


These are grommeting tools.  The funny thing is that no matter how many times I use it, I have to think pretty hard to get it all lined up correctly.  Once you do, it’s a piece of cake.


There she is…I’m pretty sure it’s the prettiest a piece of tar paper has ever looked.  She’s like the Miss America of roofing materials. (It got a tad wrinkled when it was shipped back to us after the show, but it really does stay nice and flat on the wall)


Roofing 1

I was really thrilled with how they looked in the room and wow, look what Nate was saying during this part of the show…

Roofing 2

Oh, you didn’t hear him say that?… weird. Must have been a glitch with your TV.  (hehe)
The bottom line here is that ANYTHING, literally anything can be turned into art and it doesn’t need to cost a million bucks to be fabulous.  This was $10 tar paper (for a whole roll, I could make about 50 more with what I have left) and it was beautiful enough for Nate Berkus.
So who’s going to their local roofing supply store today?  Ha! Actually, next week I’ll share another awesome project I used tar paper for.  It’s a pretty cool one and saved me a ton of moolah!



The comments +

  1. Erica M. says:

    That’s awesome! & so exciting you guys were on the Nate show. I love him! But I heard rumors this is his last season.. I hope its just rumors!

  2. Those are very cool! Definitely a very creative idea.

  3. Jesse B says:

    Happy Happy Birthday, Jess!!!! Sending you lots of good thoughts for you on your special day! I hope it is perfect for you!!!

  4. I love that Chevron rug, did you make that as well?

  5. I saw this on Nate Berkus today. I recorded it on DVR. I had to stop the show so I could take a picture of it….LOVE LOVE LOVE it.

    PS. I wish I could find a creative friend to make stuff with! I own a store in Myrtle Beach
    and Etsy…

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