Things have been busy around here lately… sorry for my absence on SBD. So often when life throws you a curve ball it seems as if things stand still for a while, as if you can’t move forward and you don’t think you ever will… and then BAM! Everything picks back up all at once and there doesn’t seem to be enough time in the day to take care of anything. Have any of you ever been there before?

Well, here is a little summary of what has been going on with me in nashville lately. Follow me on Instagram (saymo1) if you want to keep up with whats going on here in Nashville.

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My Beautiful, amazing sister spent the whole summer living with me in Nashville and I cant even begin to tell you what a blessing she was to have here. I havent lived with her in almost 10 years and we had the best time. She has been such an amazing support to me in so many ways the last few months and i miss her already!

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I have been gardening my little heart out lately and recently bought this book to learn more about how to grow more and use what I grow. I am hoping to have a Fall garden this year for the first time… so we will see how that goes!

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We found these beauties on Etsy recently. They are 1960′s Hollywood Regency chairs and they will be getting a little bit of a make-over soon. One of my favorite things about my job is when we get to hunt down really unique items and give them a little face lift. The end results are ALWAYS special.

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Of course there have been lots of installs and client projects keeping me busy lately. This room has really come together nicely. I am so crazy about that Cloud light fixture. It kills me.

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I am pretty in love with the tile detailing in this bathroom too.

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I have also been working on several art installations. We recently hung that large piece over the sideboard in this room. Funny how things come in waves sometimes.

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Of course Lacy girl has been living the dream. I dont think Lacy even knows what a bad day is… she is always the happiest dog.

My family recently harvested some honey at our farm. Its amazing how much honey those tiny little bees can produce in one summer. I am planning to write a whole post on that soon because the harvesting process is really interesting and I got some great pictures. So stay tuned for that!

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This seems to be the story of my life lately. haha… things have been going better and I cant tell all of you how blessed I am to have so many of you praying for me and sending encouragement and love my way. This has been a weird Summer to say the least… I’ve had lots of really great memories and lots of really hard times too. It truly means a lot to know that so many people care. So again, thank you, thank you, thank you. I am convinced that I have the best blog fans on the web.

How has summer been going for you?

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We spend a ton of time in our bathrooms during the week getting ready for our day, but somehow the bathroom tends to get the short straw when it comes to design and money. It is understandable since typically the bathroom isn’t a room that guests see a ton. But wouldn’t it make all the difference to get our days started in a room that we really like? Well you don’t have to gut your bathroom and spend a fortune to dress it up a little. here are 5 easy tips for dressing up your bathroom that you could pull together in a weekend (just in time for those in-laws to show up)

5 ways to update your bathroom | Sarah Barksdale Design

1. Swap our your standard bathmat for a rug with a fun pattern. It can be vintage or new… as long as it is interesting.

5 ways to update your bathroom | Sarah Barksdale Design

2. Hang a pretty mirror over the tub. Obviously this one is huge and most likely an antique, but you could find one with a similar look from a home goods store.

5 ways to update your bathroom | Sarah Barksdale Design

3. Use a basket to display extra towels. This is a particularly good tip for a guest bathroom because it will make extra towels easy for guests to find and give the bathroom sort of a “hotel” vibe. win-win

5 ways to update your bathroom | Sarah Barksdale Design

4. Use a piece of furniture in the bathroom, like a chair or a dresser or shelves for towels and bath supplies. Using a freestanding piece of furniture will make the bathroom feel more like a “room”.

5 ways to update your bathroom | Sarah Barksdale Design

5. Garden stools or small tables are amazing in bathrooms. Not only do they look nice but they add functionality. They can be used as a place to sit or as a table for a glass of wine next to a tub.

All images can be sourced from my Pinterest page.

Originally posted on 6-11-13

Lately I have been seeing terrariums all over the place! At first I didn’t pay them much attention but I must admit they are starting to grow on me. For those of you who don’t really know what a terrarium is, it is basically an indoor potted planter which usually houses several types of succulent plants. The best part is…. you don’t have to have a green thumb! Succulents are very low maintenance, just mist them with water them every once in a while and make sure they can get lots of light.

Depending on the type of plants you get, you can plant them in soil (for ferns), or in sand (for succulents and cacti) and add some rocks for an extra flare!

I love the layered look of terrariums. They would be perfect for any table, shelf or desk since they can be any size and require minimal care.

WOW! WHERE CAN I GET ONE OF THESE TERRARIUMS FOR MY HOME??!…. well, I am glad you asked! haha

West Elm has some great options out right now and they have everything you need to built your very own terrarium. It is like a one stop shop.

Here is what you will need to get started:

They have great options for cacti:

And succulents:

Happy planting!

Some of you may know this…. but last Spring I took a pottery class here in Nashville and I fell in love with it! I can’t say that I made any masterpieces…. but I had a great time and I cant wait to take the intermediate class in the Fall! Ever since my class ended I have found that I just love unique, handmade pottery! There is some gorgeous stuff out there and some really talented, creative potters. I would love to have a cabinet full of beautiful mugs, bowls, vases, everything! I have found that I am drawn to pottery that is a little more earthy and subdues in color… but once in a while I love a good pop of bold color!

Handmade Pottery | Sarah Barksdale Design


Handmade Pottery | Sarah Barksdale Design


There are so many good sources for handmade pottery. Pinterest and Etsy are great places to start your search.

Handmade Pottery | Sarah Barksdale Design


I actually have this little honey pot at my house and I love it!

Handmade Pottery | Sarah Barksdale Design


Handmade Pottery | Sarah Barksdale Design


As a designer I try to stress to clients the importance of making your home uniquely yours. I think every room should have something interesting in it and something out of the ordinary… like an antique or family heirloom. Handmade pottery fits that criteria perfectly and I cant wait to start a collection of my own (and hopefully make some treasures of my own in the future!)

Handmade Pottery | Sarah Barksdale Design


This mug has been on my wish list for a while!

Handmade Pottery | Sarah Barksdale Design


So has this bowl! I think this would look so chic on a breakfast table or coffee table. You cant tell from this picture but the inside is a really pretty pale lavender.

{originally posted 9/27/12}

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Fiddle Leaf Fig trees are EVERYWHERE lately, and for good reason because they are absolutely stunning! I always think it is a good idea to have a little bit of greenery in your home because it really makes your rooms feel much more alive (no pun intended) and welcoming. Sometimes all it might take are some flowers on the kitchen table or a small fern on a shelf to bring a space to life, but if you are in the market for something larger that will make more of a statement, look no further than the Fiddle Leaf Fig.

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They are tall, bright, and dramatic with nice large leaves. We used some in a big basket planter in a client’s dining room recently and they look great!

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I love how these trees can really fill up a space without being too overbearing.

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One thing to be careful of if you are planning to get a Fiddle Leaf Fig tree of your own is to make sure that it is in a place where it will get plenty of sunlight throughout the day. These need a pretty good amount of direct and indirect sunlight.

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I think every single Summer I end up daydreaming about having a big porch with a swing bed on it one day. I love to be outside when the weather is nice, and I am a sucker for a good porch swing and a glass of wine in the evening. Enter the swing bed. Its basically an oversized porch swing and man are they awesome. I could spend hours upon hours in one.

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This is one of the swings that we make for our clients.

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This would be me. All. Day. Long.

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What are some things that you love about the Summertime?

In the spirit of our independence day being tomorrow… I wanted to share some awesome patriotic spaces! Who says decorating with an American fag only has to happen one time a year? Your can rep the stars and stripes any ‘ol time you want!

America | Sarah Barksdale Design

Ok… where do you even get a flag that big? Really?

America | Sarah Barksdale Design

America | Sarah Barksdale Design

This is actually one of our client’s homes that was featured in Garden and Gun a few years ago.

America | Sarah Barksdale Design

America | Sarah Barksdale Design

Love this idea and this room!

What is your favorite way to celebrate the 4th?

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be still

Last week marked the end of a chapeter in my life. It was a pretty tough week because of that realization, but as I reflect on the Lord’s promises I am at peace with where I am. Life throws us curve balls all the time. Some of those are easy to navigate and some of them just knock the wind out of us, but we serve a Lord who never changes. He sees our future and works it out according to his plan, so we need not fear the future… God is already there. Thats a lot easier to say than to truly believe. I have lots of days where I feel crushed and it seems like my life is over. But the thing is… I don’t WANT my life to be over. I want to live my life as full as I can and I believe that the Lord wants that for me too. I am learning to hold more loosely to my dreams. I don’t think it is bad to have dreams… and mine have not changed, however, I might get them in a different way than I originally intended. And that’s ok. Because God’s plan is always perfect. GREAT is his faithfulness. This week marks the first week of my new future and my new beginning. Its going to be a journey but I am ready for the Lord to take me where he wants me to go.

“Be Joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12

It’s ok to be scared. Its ok to have down days. God created our hearts to feel those things, and He wants us to bring those feelings to him so that he can show us his great power in our lives. The last few months have not been easy, but I am trusting in the Lord to use my pain and my story to make me into a more beautiful person and a better witness for him. Thats where I want my journey to go, and I believe it will.


One thing we stress to clients all the time is the importance of good lighting. If you are looking to update your home but aren’t ready to fully re-do everything… start with your lighting. Not only do attractive light fixtures give your home a more custom and updated look, but the actual light they give off is soooo much more pleasing than can lights from the ceiling.

Good Lighting | Sarah Barksdale Design

When selecting lighting think about what your needs are and prioritize. Do you need a new ceiling fixture? Sconces? Lamps? and then decide what scale you need for each item.

Good Lighting | Sarah Barksdale Design

Don’t be afraid to mix metals either. Just because your hardware is polished nickel doesn’t mean your light fixture cant be brass. trust me on this one.

Good Lighting | Sarah Barksdale Design

Don’t be afraid to add lighting that is on the more dramatic side. Lighting is not necessarily cheap, but it is less expensive than many things in the home so it makes for a good way to take a risk.

Good Lighting | Sarah Barksdale Design

I love how they used a large sconce in this bedroom rather than a table lamp. It adds interest and frees up more space on the bedside table.

Lucite has been making a major impact in the design world lately. And I love it! Lucite is basically a type of clear acrylic furniture. We have been on the hunt for some lucite items for some of our more modern projects lately. It definitely adds a more modern and edgy look to a space, but don’t let that fool you into thinking that it cant be used in more traditional spaces.

Lucite | Sarah Barksdale Design

I love how lucite furniture adds drama to a space…. while kind of fading into the background at the same time due to the fact that its clear. Its like a contradiction of itself, which I think is what makes it so fun!

Lucite | Sarah Barksdale Design

You can find just about anything made from lucite too… bar carts, lamps, tables, chairs, stools, bookcases, and accessories. The large range of items made from lucite makes it easy to find something that fits your taste and your home.

Lucite | Sarah Barksdale Design

Lucite | Sarah Barksdale Design

Like I said previously, if you aren’t feeling the lucite look completely but want to add a little bit of it to your home. There are tons of home accessories made from lucite too. Everything from candle sticks to trays to lamps or frames. Just search around, you wont have trouble finding options.

Lucite | Sarah Barksdale Design

Actual lucite can be rather expensive, especially vintage lucite items… so if you want to get the look without spending a lot, try searching fro acrylic furniture or accessories.

Happy hunting!

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