SMP Livings Editor, Jacquelyn Clark, has been lovingly working on her home since we hired her nearly two years ago. Because no matter how amazing you are at designing places and spaces, when it comes to your own, well, decisions are just plain hard. But, after thoughtfully choosing each and every perfect detail, Jacquelyn is finally ready to share her home adventures with us. Dive on in to the gorgeous photos by Heidi Lau and check out J’s Behind the Blog right here!

From Lark & Linen… Though I may be an interior designer, I’ve realized that designing for my boyfriend and I is an entirely different ball game. Over the years, our bedroom has gone through three different iterations before finally landing here. When I design for clients, I have a very specific step by step process that helps ensure we end up with picture perfect results every time. But for the longest time, my process went out the windowwhen it came to our condo.

At first, we relied heavily on hand me downs from friends and family, all while getting creative to help with costs. In addition, we would find ourselves picking up things here and there simply because we liked them – which just meant that we ended up with a miss-mash of items that really didn’t go together. So we did what any sane person does: sold everything that didn’t make our hearts sing and started fresh. I then began treating the project as if it were for a high paying client (on a pretty serious budget, mind you). And it was the best decision we’ve made in a while! What we ended up with was a calm, beautiful, respite from the rest of the world. Truly, every time I walk past our bedroom I smile. And, in all honesty, I’ve never slept better!

In a world where living spaces are shrinking by the minute, I count our blessings that we ended up with a sizeable dining room (in a condo no less!). It’s made all the sweeter by the fact that I absolutely love to cook. And cooking is significantly more enjoyable when you have a plethora of friends at the ready to enjoy the fruits of your labour. 

Much like our bedroom, our dining room has been a labor of love. I’ve come to terms with the fact that I have champagne taste on a beer budget, which just means I have to be incredibly patient when it comes to our decor. I like to refer to my aesthetic as girly with an edge, and I feel like our dining space embodies that perfectly. Everything you see has been slowly amassed over the years, and I’m kind of thrilled with the results. 

Our living room, too, had its fair share of challenges. A weird layout, complete with strange little nooks, off-centre windows, and a massive column just for fun made sure my design skills were tested. We’ve played around with a number of different options, ultimately landing here. And I’m beyond smitten with the results!

Like many designers, I have a bit of a love hate relationship with Ikea. I love that it provides beautiful pieces at affordable price points, but hate that you can almost always spot the Ikea item in most every home you visit (usually because you own it yourself). When it came to our living room, we needed to pull everything together on a pretty tight budget, but we really didn’t want it to feel like an Ikea showroom. 

So we picked up pieces where it counted (inexpensive shelves that we spray painted white and gold, or a simple TV stand for example), and relied heavily on craigslist and unique flea market finds to pull the rest together!

Though I’m 100% an advocate for a bright, white palette, I’m equally as obsessed with comfort. The key for me to create a fresh, white palette all while maintaining a cozy vibe was to ensure to infuse the rest of the space with a serious dose of texture. From our antique wood coffee table/cart, to a tone on tone patterned rug, to dipped basket overflowing with wool throws… there really was no detail that was left unthought of. 

Funnily enough, my desk was purchased for me when I went into kindergarten almost 25 years ago. It’s originally from Ikea (does that make it vintage?) and has been patched and repaired countless times. And in an effort to revitalize it a few years ago, I gave it a lick of jet black paint (while leaving a portion of the legs exposed). It may be on its last legs, but I’m just not ready to part with it!

Since our condo’s floor plan is pretty much wide open, I had to get creative with how to define each space. Area rugs are always beneficial here, but in the case of our office I also took advantage of a bump out in the wall to create bold stripes. It was kind of an on a whim decision one Sunday afternoon, and could have been messy. But it ended up being a total show-stopper, and one of the first things people comment on when they visit. 

Photography: Heidi Lau Photography | Interior Design: Lark & Linen Interiors | Blog: Lark & Linen | Flowers: Sweet Woodruff

BEDROOM: Throw Pillows: Rebecca Atwood | Duvet Cover + Shams: Crane & Canopy | Knot Bed Sheets: Serena & Lily | Gold/Sequin Throw: Souvenir from my trip to India | Area Rug: RugsUSA | Lamps: Serena & Lily | Nightstands: Ikea | Nightstand Hardware: Anthropologie | Candle: Illume | Alarm Clock: Pottery Barn | Wooden Figure: Ikea | Campagne Dresser: Craigslist | Gold Dipped Pillow: West Elm | Art: My Own | Frames: Ikea, Pottery Barn  & West Elm | Kiss Statue: Souvenir from my trip to Africa | Pink Donkey Plate: Souvenir from my trip to Italy | White Bowl: Souvenir from my trip to Spain | Green Bowl: Chapters, Indigo | Jewelry Holder: DIY Necklace Tree | Candle:  Illume | Flowers & Vessel: Sweet Woodruff | Drapery: Custom

DINING ROOM: Table: Ikea (but it’s a piece of junk – don’t do it!) | Chairs: Morba | Rug: RugsUSA | Caravaggio Pendant Light: Lightyears | Gallery Wall Art: My Own, Coulson Macleod, Annawithlove | Frames: Ikea | Flowers & Vessel: Sweet Woodruff | Fiddle Leaf Fig: Ikea | Planter Holder: Vintage from MacCools Re-use | Black China Cabinet: Vintage/My grandparents

LIVING ROOM: Couch: Craigslist | Chair: EQ3 | Coffee Table: Guff | Tray: Chapters/Indigo | Mirror: Ikea | Flowers & Vessel: Sweet Woodruff | Moss Candle: Waiting on Martha | Gold Bowl: Gift | Matches:  Illume | Foldable Gold Star Sculptures: Kosticks | Flower Pillow: Custom | Dotted Pillows: Caitlin Wilson | Graphic Pillow: Chapters/Indigo  | Grey Pillow: Dollar Store (I KNOW!) | Navy Pillow: Chapters/Indigo | Paint Dipped Blanket/Magazine Baskets: Serena & Lily | Blue & White Floor Pillows: Anthropologie | Drapery: Custom | Shelving: Ikea, painted | Lanterns: Anthropologie | Fan: Vintage | Black vase: Vintage | Antique Shoe Horns: Vintage, from the Christie Antique Market | Artichoke Candle: Anthropologie | Letters: Vintage, from the Christie Antique Market | Polka Dot Blanket: Souvenir from my trip to Ireland | Lamps: Gold; Home Sense, Glass; Structube | Cantaloupe Flower Pot: Anthropologie | TV Stand: Ikea | Rug: RugsUSA | Art: My Own + small painting from my trip to Paris

OFFICE: Desk: Ikea, circa 1989, painted | Chair: Structube | Pillow: West Elm | Rug: RugsUSA | Flowers & Vessel: Sweet Woodruff | Calendar: Waiting on Martha | Lace Plate: One of a Kind Show | Lamp: Ikea | Footed Pen Holder: Anthropologie | Pipe Bookshelf: Custom (made by my boyfriend) | Candle: Sydney Hale | Drapery: Custom