white subway tiles in show nook with shampoo soap and wash cloth
One Room Challenge~ the Guest Bathroom… Week Two

Ah, the dirty, dusty, demo week is always a sight to behold! The whole concept of getting worse before it gets better is so accurate here. But, thank goodness for demo because that gives us a clean (ok, dusty) slate to start fresh! For those of you who are new to my blog and my Instagram, my husband and I have been restoring a 1918 house for more than 2 years. We are finally in the design stages, and so I am sharing the design process that we are finally tackling. I am retroactively sharing the original state of the house when we bought it and this demolition phase. You can see the way the bathroom looked when we bought the house here. And, below…here is how it looked after we removed the tiles, the shower wall, the wallpaper, the ceiling, the sink, commode, etc.

guest bathroom in 100 year old house in mid demolition for restoration

You can see that we took down the floating wall where the bathtub ended. We have wanted to move the plumbing to the other wall so that the shower head and faucet will be at the other end. Our plan for this room has been to replace the bathtub with a shower only and use glass to open up the space rather than having an entire wall that blocks the light from the window.

home remodel guest bathroom demolition phase dusty floor with tile on wall removed

Also, the bathtub is SO HEAVY! Cast iron is no joke and that sucker is hard to move! These photos bring back so many memories and make me realize how far we have come! I can’t wait to tell you more about the saga of the bathtub in my next update. Whew- sometimes things get scary when you undertake a huge restoration!

Just for reference, here is how the bathroom looked before demo…

vintage home with retro bathroom with wallpaper

You have probably seen all you want of the demo process, and so I will show you what my inspiration board has looked like all along. My “inspiration board” is also known as “texts I send my husband so he understands what I’m going for”. LOL And his texts back to me usually look like :-/ I told you in my last post that I am obsessed with black and white tile floors. I really love typography mosaics in tile- there is something so beautiful and meaningful about them. Little works of art on the floor- the fine details are always my favorite ones! Here is the feel I was going for…

white mosaic tile floor with black tiles making the number 5
black and white tile floor mosaic spelling out london
This is actually a print by FAUXSAICS
Another print by FAUXSAICS

What I would love to have on our guest bathroom floor is the year 1918 in black tiles on a white floor. I would like for the year to be outlined with a decorative pattern. I love to give a nod to the year the house was built. Other ideas on my list that I want to add to the guest bathroom…

~I want to go with white subway tile to keep it simple and because I really like the clean lines. It is trendy right now but I also hope it will be relevant in decades down the road as it has been around forever. If it isn’t, well…it was just subway tile and we can change it without feeling too terrible about it!

white bathroom with white subway tile and a stack of white towels folded in a chair
white subway tiles in show nook with shampoo soap and wash cloth

~I also mentioned in the last post that I want to paint the walls white and have white cabinetry. I think it will make the accessories in the room stand out. For knobs and pulls and other hardware, I really love brass and/or gold. The hardware is so good looking in the inspo photo below…

bathroom with white subway tile and brass hardware
Source

And, I really want to hang an Ashley Longshore painting in the guest bathroom. I am always drawn to her vibrant use of colors and the beauty of her Audrey Hepburn paintings. She posted one on Instagram that jumped out at me and I was able to get it for this room. I saved it in its box for over a year. The photo below is when I visited with Ashley at her show in Atlanta…it gives you a sense of her bold and bright artwork.

Photo by David Ecton

That is what I have had planned for this room for quite a while now and it is fun to see it all coming together. I am happy to share the remodeling process at the One Room Challenge each week as we actually completely finish this room. All of our rooms feel like they need to be a part of this challenge! It motivates me to get it done! Please be sure to check out all of the other rooms that are being transformed over at One Room Challenge, hosted by Linda Weinstein.

ORC logo One Room Challenge guest participant

See you all next week for more photos of the remodel and redesign process!

Cheers xo,

Lydia

Jazz Up Your Life with Ashley Longshore Art

Have you met New Orleans artist Ashley Longshore yet? Let me tell you, Ashley is a force in the world that draws me in like no other. She is equal parts loving and caring mixed with unabashed raw humor and bluntness. Subtle, she is not. But let me tell you what I feel like she IS.

Soaking up the enthusiasm and energy of Ashley Longshore at her show in Atlanta

Ashley is praised for her dynamic use of color while she depicts pop culture icons, makes light of society’s fascinations with luxury items (all the while also making them more enticing and desirable), and sharing her amusements with everyday life. She literally finds the beauty and humor in life itself, embraces it, and paints it in the most spectacular ways. Bottom line, she just draws you in. Sometimes you will hear people say that her wildness is offensive, but I find that her wildness is what MAKES her- she sees life in a vibrant, more exciting way and wants to share it. Ashley’s mouth could be described as more colorful than any painting she has ever created- whatever she is thinking is spoken and whatever she feels… she shares. But, thank goodness that she expresses herself, because that is also the reason we have her art. Expressing herself is a gift she has and she makes it her career ~ a career that she created FOR herself. A career that has her currently as Bergdorf Goodman’s Artist in Residence. At Bergdorf’s in NYC, Ashley had 5 windows showcasing her art and the entire 7th floor- holy cow. She is the first female artist to have a solo show at Bergdorf Goodman’s in the history of the store (which is over 100 years old). She also just teamed up with Gucci on a project- and Diane von Furstenberg asked Ashley to create a collection of portraits of women for International Women’s Month for her NYC flagship store.

Art by Ashley Longshore

And the reason that I love Ashley and her message so much is that Ashley’s story reminds me to be the type of mom that embraces her children’s personalities, qualities, interests and differences – and to remember that they are here to leave their own mark on the world and not necessarily the mark we may have envisioned they should leave. I love the reminder that our kids aren’t simply replicas of their parents to forge the exact same path or the path we have created in our minds for them. I really love that. Ashley is an example of what is possible when you let a child grow into their own rather than trying to force them into a certain mold.

I love the beautiful place setting with the cheeky message
Artwork by Ashley Longshore Photo by Lydia Menzies
Commissioned artwork by Ashley Longshore

I was originally drawn to Ashley’s story of her childhood that she freely shares. As a child, Ashley’s mom wanted Ashley to fit into her ideal vision and Ashley’s Dad was very happy to see her soar on her own (you can read more in Ashley’s words in the questions below). Fast forward several years, and you can clearly see the results of being allowed to pursue her own vision for herself.

Artwork by Ashley Longshore Art

Ashley is the type of business lady that inspires all business ladies (and men) to step up and strengthen your game. She encourages us all to stretch ourselves to be better than yesterday and to be unapologetically ourselves- while also reminding us to be our best selves on our way to realizing who we are and what we are capable of achieving. But her way of sending that message is unlike what you might imagine it is…it varies from a gorgeous post of her work on Instagram to the craziest meme or video you’ll see all day- and both are typically sprinkled with expletives and captions that will make you blush or make you laugh out very loud. She’s a hoot, as we say in the south.

Ashley is from the south which I also love. She was raised in Montgomery, Alabama (near where I went to college) and went to boarding school in Gainesville, GA (near where I live now). She is now in New Orleans which seems like a perfect match to her unbridled energy. In New Orleans, Ashley has assembled a team of ladies to help her run her gallery, and they seem like one, big, happy family who really get things done- and have a great time doing so! When I was interested in one of Ashley’s pieces of art several years ago, Ashley sent me a video of herself showing me the art but she first showed me around the gallery. I thought it was a brilliant move on her part. What a personable way to share your products and to see the personality behind the art! It stuck with me because it was helpful but also such a treat to receive such personalized attention.

I had a chance to ask Ashley a few questions recently and I wanted to share those with you…I feel like Ashley’s overall message in life is very uplifting just like her art. She is inspiring and unique- and I am so happy to have her work in my home as a daily reminder of all of the good that she shares!

Here is what I am talking about – directly from Ashley’s mouth…

Self Portrait by Ashley Longshore. Photo by Lydia Menzies

1.  You have worked so hard to accomplish goals and you encourage others to do the same…what are some of the goals that you set for yourself for the future?  I want to have a career like Andy Warhol and I want to leave a legacy like Peggy Guggenheim. I want to give lots and lots of scholarships and buy HUGE buildings and fill them with artists for the public to enjoy. I am a big art collector and hope to display my personal collection so that people can enjoy for years to come… I want to help artists understand that giving up 50% to a gallery is NOT the only way to have an art career. I want artists to have MONEY so they can make their biggest ideas come to life!!!!!!!! 

2.  Tell us about your Dad. He seems like a really cool guy to have in your corner. I adore my own dad, and learn so much about life from him. What can other parents learn from your father about raising a child?  He is the BEST. He always let me be me.. and he let me follow my passions… the best gift he ever gave me, was to cut me off and let me figure out how to financially take care of myself….. he is self made…. he taught me work ethic …. he is my favorite human. 


3.  My teenage daughter wants to ask…what is your favorite thing to paint? I love to paint everything.., the act of painting brings me soo much joy…. it is the foundation of my journey to self love… art saves me everyday, it brings me soooo much JOY! 

And, with that, I think my feelings about Ashley’s art have come full circle…her bright, colorful, happy, larger-than-life artwork brings me so much joy probably because it was created out of her joy. There you go! I think it all makes perfect sense! What are your favorite paintings by Ashley Longshore? I am drawn to the “Audreys”. You can see her gallery of work here.

Lance Jackson, Lydia Menzies, Ashley Longshore, David Ecton