Just the other day my fiancé, Andrew, and I were on evening walk around our neighborhood, just like the hundreds of walks we went on last year at this time when the world abruptly shut down. These walks always lead through an area where new houses are constantly being built. Naturally, this has stirred up lots of conversation between the two of us on what our dream house would look like. How many rooms, what color kitchen, a yard for the dogs. We have spent hours walking, admiring, and talking, but over time we started to question ‘what about the living space we have now?’ It might not be our dream house just yet, but it is a place we have shared for the past 4 years.
Fun fact: we didn’t decorate our apartment for the first 3 years. Between the two of us, we had spent years moving from apartment to apartment in college, then back home with our parents, and then I lived on my own in Central Pennsylvania until we felt ready to move in together.
Through all those moves we never took the time to really decorate. Every space always felt temporary, so why invest? But then last year, mere weeks before the pandemic hit, Andrew and I decided to decorate our living room – and thank goodness we did. When we were forced to be home 24/7 you have no idea how much joy this new room brought us those first few months.
Over the past year we have made it a priority to slowly create a space that is a reflection of us, and the improvements to room I am about to show you below is a project Andrew and I are both proud of. It’s more than just a guest room that we hope to fill with friends once again in the future, but also a happy place in our home that brings a sense of newness and joy.
When we moved into our apartment, we knew we wanted to turn our spare room in a guest room. While it's been well over a year since friends have stayed here, all of our friends and family have to travel to visit us, so creating a welcoming space was a priority.
If you read my living room post or follow along with me on social, you know I love neutrals - and thankfully Andrew does too! So we wanted this guest space to be an extension of the other rooms in our home, with some fun and cozy details.
I called this post 'Upgrading our Guestroom' for a reason: this is not our first round buying furniture for this room, specifically the bed. A few years ago we purchased the bed frame and got an amazing deal on a pillow-top mattress...and then a few months after getting our second dog, Lacey, she had an unfortunate accident ON the bed forcing us to throw everything away. Let's just say we were not happy and left the room empty for over a year. Recently we decided it was time to start looking and used the last experience to make better decisions this time around.
Why the Mattress Matters
If you are someone in the early years of your life, marriage, or relationship here's something the mattress people helped us think about when investing in a new bed...
Many people buy the cheapest mattress for a guest room. But if you hope to have a family one day, your purchase could be an investment in your future child's room. Let me pause for a second - as someone who spends their career in marketing and sales, THAT sold me.
Buying a new mattress was no longer just something for guests, it could potentially be the bed I lay in helping my child fall asleep at night or for the nights Andrew or I are sick and want to sleep separately...makes you think about your furniture purchases a bit more, right?
So with that newfound mindset we decided to invest in a full size Serta Perfect Sleeper Aldrin Plush Mattress which is the perfect combination of plush and firm. And to be safe of no future accidents tarnishing this furniture, we protected our investment with the Bedgear Stretchwick 3.0 Cool Mattress Encasement - a breathable, light cover that ensures things are covered.
Comfy Cozy Covers
Andrew and I appreciate comfort in all facets of life, and we want those who may stay in this room to feel like they are at home. Truly there is nothing worse than staying away from home and feeling uncomfortable - we've all been there.
So, we looked around for the coziest, breathable and affordable bedding and came across some great options from the beloved Target. We went with this extra soft cotton blend Micro Matelasse Comforter Set in Natural, these 300 Thread Count Organic Cotton Sheets in White, and these Sealy Clean Comfort Antimicrobial Pillows.
Lastly I added some decorative pillows and a woven throw blanket from HomeGoods for a comfy finishing touch! - and yes, I'm one of those pillow hoarders who needs as many throw pillows on a bed or couch as possible.
Penn State Personalization
If you didn't know, Andrew and I met our senior year of college at Penn State, so of course we needed to have a little space in our home to honor our favorite place!
I'm personally not into huge pieces of PSU memorabilia - at least until we have a basement lol - so we compromised on a gallery wall.
This wall is a collection of our graduation pictures taken together (so thankful we took a relationship risk 7 months into dating and captured that memory together), prints we've bought over the years at Penn State's Arts Fest, a layout of favorite bars, and even an ode to our first date at The Corner Room, an iconic restaurant on College Ave.
I hope you enjoyed taking a peak into this previously hidden space in our home. While it can certainly use more updates and furniture, I've learned that any upgrade you invest in, big or small, is still certainly one worth sharing!
Among the many important lessons this pandemic has taught us, one of my favorites is that you should invest in your home, even if it’s not yet a house.