I’m bringing back the Den! My One Room Challenge Reveal – Spring 2020

So it’s been quite a year, right? And its June. So it seems appropriate that I would pick this year to be a Guest Desinger with the One Room Challenge 2020.

What is that?

The annual event is sponsored by Better Homes and Gardens and is a great resource for homeowners and Designers. When I signed up, I had just moved to a new state and a new life, trying to rebuild my business in a new place, helping my daughter move across country, my husband traveling to Louisiana for work, and oh yeah – there was this pandemic.  Can you read that in one breath?

But….I am so glad I did it. Why you ask? This fabulous challenge, that I have watched evolve over the years, has always intrigued me but never found the right time. I wasn’t confident enough to take on the challenge and in particular “show my personal home style” Participating made me get out of my comfort zone and force me to start working on my new home.

The Project:

I decided to tackle the Den. Some may call it a office but I grew up in the 70’s – that is what my parents called it. I had planned on my guest room – but had to keep it available for quarantining. Still can’t believe I am typing those words.  By the way, there literally is now “quarantine design” if you want to learn more.

The Den was a concern from the moment we bought the house. The walls were a molded plaster treatment that was a combination of a raised vertical stripe, a metal trim pressed into the plaster, a stamp treatment of ivy vines, and a glaze treatment over the faux finish of 4 different colors.  Combine that with years of neglect and dust – and you have yourself a pretty scary “before.”

I have never seen anything like it. It was rough to the touch and had collected dust bunnies in its crevices over the years. Yup. Contractor had to take walls to studs -couldnt save them.

The wood paneling and bookshelves were stained plywood. You just can’t make it pretty. Paint or remove were the only options.


The real treasure of the room is the fireplace.

It appears to be a antique parisian style mantle that was installed in this 1979 home. My kind of treasure.  Not sure if that is really what it is but I am going to run with that.  Please don’t burst my bubble.


We chose Sherwin Williams Jasper Stone for the walls and wood. We wanted a green blue feel that could change at different times in the day. Nailed it. It looks really green in the pictures – which I LOVE – but it does change. It is so warm and rich feeling in the space.

Same view as before – wow! I think it’s a total transformation. Not bias.

This Den will be my husbands retreat. The shelves are loaded with things that are important to him. Awards, Degrees, memorobila and special trinkets from his kids fill the shelves. The art above his record player is of Louisiana where he has an office. The sword on the mantle was a gift from my father. It is a Civil war sword passed down in our family. The chairs are one of his favorite things we have purchased over the years. The lamp near the sofa was given to him by his Grandfather.  Everything is intentional.  It reflects us and him which I love.

The sofa is covered in Revolution Performance fabric. It’s called Sugarshack. It is indestructibleand I truly love it. I had to work with what we had as much as possible. Where I did bring in new, I made sure it was the good stuff.

The fabric in the pillows, window seat, and window treatment are all Anna Elizabeth fabrics by Greenhouse fabrics. So beautiful. I could stare at the bird print all day long.


The rug. Yes, it is as lush in person. It is dreamy. Thank you Surya for this amazing layer that takes this room to the next level. Got to sneak my dog in here…

Lots of stuff but it all is personal – which is the best part.
I did have a hack I am proud of. This room is dark. I really wanted the fancy library lights installed at the bookcases. As we progressed into the project, we discovered that installing true hardwire lights would cause so much damage to the book units that we would end up needing to replace them. I found a solution with remote controlled, battery operated art lights.

They mount directly to your art frame or cabinet. So easy. I use one remote and viola – all my lights come on and truly, you would never know they are not hardwired. I saved like a gazillion dollars.

Of course there are things I would tweak in retrospect but that’s okay. I am not too hard on myself. This DEN was created with love, on a budget, made incredibly personal, and a huge improvement for our home. We love it. Together. In quarantine.

Peace and love to you and thank you for reading this.

Jessica xoxo

Happy girl.