I’ve been thinking about this upcoming new year and I get butterflies in my stomach. Literally. There are big things that are about to happen in our lives and business and it gives me all the feels. I decided to come up with a theme word for 2018 and I think I’ve decided on “fresh”.

I love to decorate with live plants in our own home. I think something about the fact that they’re living just brings a breath of fresh air. They must be cared for and tended to. If that doesn’t happen, they won’t flourish. But if they’re taken care of they will thrive and make the space feel fresh and alive. I want us to embrace that same feeling of freshness in our life and business this year.

This little plant on our mantle helped inspire our word for 2018.

This next year will be full of that.

For starters, this year might bring a fresh new endeavor. The very first new home construction that Hartman Homes has ever done is on the horizon for 2018. I mentioned in an earlier blog post that we purchased some land a couple months ago. We’ve been toying several different ideas around in our minds and right now the idea of subdividing that land and building homes on it is winning. I guess that would end up being a mini “Hartman Homes” neighborhood.

My second thought with “fresh” is with design. I’ve found that when you design multiple kitchens, bathrooms, exteriors, etc for a living it’s easy to find a comfortable spot in design and stick to it. But I also get tired and bored of “trends” really quickly. For instance, I’ve been getting tired of the farmhouse craze that has taken over the world. This year, I’m challenging myself to continuously think outside the box and have fresh ideas when designing new spaces. Our drive is to do quality work that is “different” enough to set us apart from others.

And lastly, fresh beginnings are on the way. I don’t want to say too much too soon, but a big change is about to happen in our business and we couldn’t be more excited and nervous all at the same time. When we started working this business three years ago we had a specific goal in mind. That goal was to have freedom. We wanted freedom with our time so we could enjoy this life together and with our children. We didn’t want to miss a minute. We wanted financial freedom so we would be able to bless others and exercise our spiritual gifts of giving. We also wanted freedom to dream and be able to pursue those dreams. I’ve been thinking about sharing a bit more of our beginning story on here and maybe someday I will.

During the really difficult, exhausting, overworked times we’ve maintained the mindset to “live like no one else, so that one day you can live like no one else”. Does that make sense? Basically, don’t get comfortable. Pray harder and dream bigger. Pursue those dreams that God placed in your heart tirelessly. Be the driving force to accomplish those dreams.

So going into 2018, “fresh” is going to be the word that we claim as we embark on this new year full of fresh things. Thanks for reading and I pray you all have a blessed new year!




Hartman Homes: Flip #4

Well, it’s that time again! The most exciting blog posts for me to write are the ones with before and after pictures of our flip projects. I call them “projects” because they’re just that. These houses are a hobby for us. We LOVE breathing new life into an old house and making it new and fresh again. Of course it’s a very expensive and labor intensive hobby, but it’s also quite lucrative when it’s all said and done. So with that in mind these projects are more of a financial investment than anything. It’s just fun for us; we enjoy it and we make money. Win/win situation!

Don’t let my scarce blog posts fool you. These flips aren’t finished overnight.  These are long, hard renovations. Right now we’re averaging about a 4 month timeline from demo day to staging day. There are moments in this process where we feel like the end is not in sight. But, then the day comes and we look around and there’s nothing else to add to our list of “to do’s”. And then as soon as that day approaches, I’m already starting to plan the design for the next one. 

The blog today is going to encompass the entire main living spaces that includes: living room, kitchen, dining room, foyer, and sunroom. For this house my initial inspiration was this: a clean, neutral slate with bold pops of color and pattern. This is tricky, you see. If that wasn’t executed perfectly the house could end up looking one of two extremes. It could end up feeling tacky and sporadic or it could be too far the other direction and feel boring and tasteless. At one point during the process I was nervous and was worried the kitchen was too simple with whites and blacks, but once it all came together and the bold pops of color joined in at the end, I was so relieved. In my opinion, it turned out perfect, but I’ll let you (and the buyers) be the judge. I’ll add paint colors and such at the end of the post in case anyone is interested. 

Now, the before pictures:

Kitchen and Dining


Living Room


Now, on to the after pictures!!! Aka…the exciting part! šŸ˜¬šŸ˜¬šŸ˜¬

Kitchen and Dining After

If you look closely in the picture below you can see the texture on the leathered granite countertops. Such a neat, unexpected detail…

Foyer After

This space, friends, turned out so fabulous. Now, of course, if you’re a person who only likes whites and no color then I’m sure it’s not tickling your fancy. But, for me, since I love a little personality…I think it’s great! 

This is what you see on your left as soon as you walk in the front door.

And below is your view looking straight forward as you walk in the front door.

Living Room After

This tile around the fireplace….let me tell you….it’s even better in person, if that’s even possible! It’s so vintage and fun and …just perfect! 

Sunroom After

Well, how do you feel about my green ceiling in the sunroom?? I literally LOVE it!!  I feel like the ceiling is a place that often gets forgotten when design takes place, but it’s such a huge place to make an impact. 

Well, that’s all for now. This beauty goes on the market next Tuesday, so wish us luck! And, if you’re interested let us know and we can put you in touch with our realtor. The house is 2300 sq feet with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. Asking price is $187,500.

As always, thanks for reading!!




Wall color: Sherwin Williams Drift of Mist

Trim color: Sherwin Williams Dorian Gray

Kitchen cabinets and fireplace mantel: Sherwin Williams Alabaster

Sunroom ceiling:  Sherwin Williams Julep

Built-ins in foyer: Sherwin Williams Vegan

Floor tile in kitchen and sunroom: name is Blue Nile

Hardwood floor stain: Provincial 

Flip House, Master Bath Reno, and 34 Weeks Pregnant…

We’ve got so much going on right now. Sometimes I think we’re a little bit wacko to tackle so much at one time…but alas, here we are! 

First off we’re elbow deep into our current flip house. It’s been 3 weeks since demo day and we’ve had stuff going on almost each day. We had the new HVAC system with a gas furnace installed last week. This week the new rooms started being framed, we had a new roof put on, and the painting started. I’ve pretty much finished all of the designing and shopping for this house already. All of the bathroom fixtures, lighting, tile, and paint has been purchased. I am SO stoked for this house to start taking shape. I decided to go with a creamy White for the walls (exact color is Sherwin William’s Drift of Mist) and a medium gray (Sherwin William’s Dorian Gray) for all of the trim and interior doors. This house had fabulous, thick old trim and I wanted it to be a highlighted feature in the design of this house. Here’s a sneak peek of these colors.

As soon as the kitchen cabinets are finished being painted (in Sherwin William’s Alabaster), we will select the granite so it can be installed. 

Once the bathrooms start coming together I’ll share details of those rooms. Here’s a hint, we’re creating an enormous master suite by turning the old den into the master bath!! Whoo, I can hardly wait! It’s going to be incredible! 

My goal is to have most of my design work completed for this house before our baby makes his appearance in the next several weeks. This will allow me to have some necessary time off from this project after he is born. 

The next project that we have going on is at our house. At this very moment our master bathroom is fully gutted and is about to receive a complete makeover. We’re also hoping to have this done before the baby comes, hopefully even in this next week. We’re rearranging the layout of the room, we’ve removed 2 closets and are adding a new walk in closet, adding all new tile, a new vanity, new shower, fresh paint, lighting, fixtures, etc. I’m SO excited! 

My vision for this bathroom was for it to be a good mixture of several styles and not feel too “trendy”. I want it to be classy enough to last for a long, long time. The goal of the design is for it to feel clean and fresh with a hint of a historical, Charleston feel, a hint of farmhouse, and a hint of industrial. But not too much of any of those. I want it to feel fresh and airy. I’ll share a few individual pictures of some of the items going into this bathroom. 

This gorgeous, classy tile is perfect! I knew it was the right one the moment I found it!! We will use it to cover the floor and the large soap box in the shower will be in this tile too!

This 72″ vanity is handmade from reclaimed wood and will have two above mount white, rectangle sinks on it.

These lights that we decided to use for above the vanity were the perfect mixture of industrial and farmhouse. We have three of these lights that will be to the left, middle, and right of the round, brass rimmed mirrors.

The tub/shower will be tiled in a large white subway tile with charcoal colored grout. The wall behind the toilet will also be tiled in this same subway tile. The rest of the walls are going to be painted in a bright, fresh…wait for it…green!! Yes, green! Imagine a creamy sage green, but a bit brighter. I’m so excited! Another feature I’m pretty excited about are these built in shelves next to the shower. They will look kinda like this.

One of the design staples that inspired this room came from a purchase we made during our recent trip to Charleston, SC. We love it there so much and wanted to incorporate some pieces from there into our new bathroom. I purchased two old prints (one of a painting of the battery and downtown area and one old map).  I framed them in antique brass frames and they will be hung above the toilet on the tile wall. Can you get a sense yet of the feeling I’m trying to achieve in here?! Ahh, I can feel it and can’t wait to see it all come together! 

Stay tuned for the before and after pictures as soon as this room is finished! I promise I’ll do a blog post. 



Hartman Interiors

Maybe that will be the business name that I’ll start operating under? Haha. Who knows what the future holds? 

A week ago I received a text from a friend that said “you’re hired”. I knew exactly what she was talking about. The day prior we had been talking about her living room. She wasn’t happy with it. She wants it to be brighter and airier. She’s not happy with the layout. She wants new furniture. She felt at a loss for inspiration. As I was listening to her I said, “I’ll help you. Seriously. I love to decorate.” 

So now here we are, one week later. She has given me a budget, an inspirational picture (per my request), told me the colors she wants to incorporate and then let me loose. 

 Here is one of the pictures that she gave me. An inspirational picture is something that I use when decorating. I find a picture of something, anything that I like. It could even be a picture of a bathroom that I really like and will then use it to try and recreate the same feeling in a different space.  In her picture that I shared below, she really liked the different patterns and colors and how open and bright the space feels. So I need to recreate this same feeling in her living room with the colors navy and red. 


Challenge accepted.

Today I went to some yard sales first, and then to some other stores. I have started my collection of items for her room and I can’t wait to finish and see it all come together!

Here’s some of the loot from today’s shopping.    

I’m going to reupholster this adorable little coffee table and paint the legs.   This table has all kinds of charm. It’s going to get a fresh coat of paint too. 

I have often said that if I could make people’s homes beautiful as a job, I would do it in a heartbeat.  Well, here’s my first chance. I’ll make sure to do a blog post with befores and afters so you guys can see too!!

DIY at It’s Finest

Nathan and I purchased our second home together in October 2013. We were looking for a place that was bigger as we prepared for the arrival of our twins that following spring. We were hoping to purchase what would be our “forever home” and had several requirements for it. We didn’t care so much about a lot of things that homebuyers look for these days like granite, stainless steel appliances, and tile showers to name a few. Those things are all super nice, but can be redone easily down the road.  

The things on our “must have” list were things that either couldn’t be changed down the road, or would be super difficult/expensive. Our list included the following: must be brick, must have a fireplace (preferably wood burning), must have at least a couple acres of land, must have a full basement, must have large bedrooms, must have a front porch, and must be in a very specific location. 

When the perfect house was listed for sale, we called about it just a few hours later. We had an offer on the table the day we looked at it. We loved it and didn’t want it to get away! It was in the perfect location, just a few miles from my parents, was all brick, had a full basement, was situated on over three acres of land and had a wood burning fireplace! It didn’t have a front porch, but maybe someday we’ll add that on. 

We love our new house and have enjoyed settling in and making it our own.  Part of the process of making a house feel like home is decorating it and “fixing” it to make it work for your family. One thing this house did not have that we didn’t even realize we needed or wanted was an office. After moving in we had our laptops scattered about the house and had our printer plugged in in the basement; not an ideal situation. We had no home base for our laptops, mail, bills, and everyday clutter. Our dining room became the catch all for this type of stuff and it wasn’t pretty. 

I started brainstorming. Bingo! I came up with the perfect idea. We decided to convert an upstairs hall closet into an office space. I figured we could do it on a Saturday afternoon.  Ehhh, definitely wrong! But several weekends later we had the perfect spot.  

We started by removing all the closet type stuff. First the contents of the closet, then the closet rods and hardware, and then the doors.

We decided to line the back wall with 1″x 6″ wood planks to give it some character. But first we had to wire in electricity since it currently had none. My super hero husband figured out how to do that all on his own and took care of that in a few hours. He wired up a spot for a light, a light switch, and two separate electrical outlets. 


Then we were able to cut the wood and piece it around the new outlets and light. This was very time consuming and took hours to finish. But I’m so happy we did! It is such a neat touch to what would otherwise be a somewhat boring office space. 


The color I used to stain it with was called Weathered Gray. I was a little nervous about choosing to use an actual color and not just a natural wood color stain, but I loved the results. The next challenge was to create a desk. It needed to be built in so it wouldn’t take up too much space. We found a 6′ x 2′ wooden board at Lowe’s and Nathan cut it to fit our space. He notched a spot out of the back of it for our cords to run through. I stained it in Aged Leather and it turned out great! I ended up sanding it twice and putting five coats of polyurethane on it to make it super shiny and durable.  


The final step was an office chair. A few weeks earlier my grandparents had found an old chair on the side of the road and they picked it up for me. They know that I like to repurpose and reuse old neglected pieces and they always keep me in mind if they see a treasure on the side of the road. Anyways, I had this old chair and decided to give it a facelift and use it in this space. I sanded it down and spray painted the frame with some spray paint we had in the basement already. After it dried, I sanded parts of it down some to make it seem distressed. I reupholstered the seat in some brown leather that I had left over from a previous project. All in all, the chair ended up being free and only cost me a little bit of work! 


At this point, our office was complete! We love the way it turned out. 

Now we have the perfect space to store all of our daily necessities other than our dining room table!