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a gender neutral shared kids' room...

a gender neutral shared kids' room / oh joy!

It can be hard to style a room for siblings, especially when its boy and girl each with their own personalities. So today, we're showing you how to create a gender neutral bedroom that's bright, colorful, and fun. Here's are some tips you can apply to your own space...

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oh joy! pumpkins...

Artist Pumpkins... / via Oh Joy!

We're halfway through October, which means Halloween is right around the corner! Over the last few years, we've shown you different Oh Joy! versions of painted pumpkins. It's a great way to get creative, add some color to the traditional black and orange holiday decor, and requires a lot less clean-up than making jack-o-lanterns. Here's a look back and some inspiration for this year's pumpkin decorating for you...  

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bringing yellow into fall...

how to bring yellow into fall / oh joy!

Yellow has become one of my favorite colors over the last couple years both in fashion and home decor. It's often seen as a summery color but it transitions so well into fall if you know how to use it. Here are some tips for making yellow feel just right for fall...

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a diy paper table runner fit for fall...

How To Make A Colorful Paper Table Runner / via Oh Joy!

How To Make A Colorful Paper Table Runner / via Oh Joy!

Today we have a really fun and VERY easy way to instantly add bright pops of color to your dining table with a DIY pieced paper table runner that's perfect for fall! It only requires four supplies, all of which you probably already have at home. And since it's so free-flowing, you can make the style and color palate completely your own. It's great for a fall table or even a kid's birthday party. Here's how... 

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How to style a corner gallery wall...

2018_10_02_Corner-Gallery-GIF-blog

If you know me, you know how much I love gallery walls! We've shown you a few different ways to create them over the years, and today, we're showing you how to fill a small corner with a mix of great art. Corner nooks are so cozy and are a great way to utilize every inch of space. Plus, gallery wall instantly adds personality and makes it more inviting. Here's how...

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NEW in the oh joy shop!

NEW in the Oh Joy! Shop...

A new month means lots of NEW items in the Oh Joy! Shop. This month is extra exciting because we're introducing a brand new category to the shop (KIDS' BEDDING!) and beautiful fabric dolls that are whimsical, colorful, and fun. Come see it all...

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pattern adventures: a grid room

Pattern Adventures: A Grid Room / via Oh Joy!

September is almost over, which means we've got some Oh Joy Pattern Adventures for you! This month's theme? GRID! I love how it can work for rooms of all ages, so we're decking out a kid's room that's calm, cool, and collected in grid. Check it out...

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Oh Joy! Builds a House: Construction Loans!

Explaining Construction Loans / Oh Joy!

This might be the most exciting day of your life because I am holding a TON of piggy banks about to talk about LOANS! But seriously, I am VERY excited to discuss this topic with you because there are lots of misconceptions about how anyone can afford to build a house. The answer is...most people do it with loans! I was completely overwhelmed by this process when I started, but I have since learned SO much and want to share that with you...

Here's what most people think about paying for a huge home project (a custom build or major renovation):

A. You need all cash to build a house. (NOT TRUE. I don't have cash just lying around, and here I am doing this crazy project!)
B. You need to have saved up a lot of money. (SORT OF TRUE. You do need to have some savings to be able to qualify and provide a down payment to close a loan. The amount of the down payment will vary, but could be up to 20-25% of your loan amount. However, things like owned land can be used as equity towards this down payment.)
C. You can use a credit card to pay for a home renovation. (NOT A GOOD IDEA. Credit card interest rates are much higher than a loan and unless you are using a credit card to help your overall credit, get points on your credit card, and then pay off each month in full, then don't do it.)

Mortgages vs. Construction Loans
You may already be familiar with mortgages if you've ever bought a home or are in the market for a home. A mortgage is a loan you can get to buy an existing house that you pay back over time (10, 15, 30 years, etc.). The amount of the mortgage you are given is based on your financial credit, cash flow, income, and the value of the home you want to buy. Construction loans are similar but also different. If you do Google search for "Construction Loans", you will get a ton of information about it. All of that information can be overwhelming and confusing, so I wanted to explain how they work from my experience over the last couple years.

Essentially, Construction Loans can be used to build a house from scratch or to do major renovations on an existing house.

Explaining Construction Loans / Oh Joy!

Here's how a Construction Loan works:

1. In order to qualify for a Construction Loan, you need to first be approved for a Mortgage. The Construction Loan that you could get will eventually turn into a Mortgage when your renovation work or your new home is finished. So if you don't already have a mortgage, a bank needs to work backwards and first approve you for the Mortgage that you will eventually be paying off over time. This process is the same as applying for a Mortage, except that even if you are approved for the mortgage, it's not guaranteed you will be approved for a construction loan. You still need to go through additional steps to qualify.

2. A bank will usually lend you 70-80% of the value of your finished home. So, hypothetically (with made-up numbers here), if your finished home will be valued at $100,000, the bank can approve you for $70-80K in a construction loan. In some cases, that amount could completely cover the cost to build or renovate your home. But, let's say your work will cost $85K and the bank can only lend you $80K, you will need to come up with the difference of $5K to get approved for the Construction Loan (in additional to standard financial paperwork). Now, if you already own a home with a mortgage and looking for a Construction Loan for major renovations, your current mortgage will get factored into how much a bank can lend you for construction.

3. In a Construction Loan, the bank pays the contractor — not you. So, let's say you do in fact get this hypothetical $80K from the bank to cover the cost of your construction. Once the work starts, your contractor would request draws from the bank regularly (usually monthly) by providing a record of what work was done and what funds are being requested to be paid for. The contractor sends a "draw request" to you, you sign off on it, and then the bank pays that amount to the contractor. Sometimes the bank will send someone out to your project to make sure that work has, in fact, been completed before paying that amount. This process happens monthly until the project is completed. This is when a qualified and organized contractor comes into play because their ability to stay on schedule and complete the work that they are asking to be paid for will be reviewed by the bank regularly in order to get each phase of the project paid for.

4. Once building is complete, home construction loans are either converted to permanent mortgages or paid in full. Depending on your type of construction loan, you have either decided you will pay off the cost of your construction by the time the project is done. Otherwise, the money that you borrowed from the bank to pay the contractors now turns into a mortgage which you will pay off over time just like any other mortgage.

Now, keep in mind, I am not a bank nor am I a finance person. This explantation is a "101 of Construction Loans" and how I would explain it to a friend or family member asking me about it. But, if you have any other questions...please feel free to ask in the comments below and I will do my best to answer!

You can see more over at my post on Architectural Digest's Clever to see the details on what a Construction Loan can cover.

{Photos by Lily Glass. Styling by Wilmarose Orlanes, styling assistance by Jess Hong.

how to style with large branches...

How to Style with Large Branches... / via Oh Joy!

Vases can get hard to constantly keep full of fresh flowers, so I always love options to fill them that doesn't require as much upkeep. Branches make for a beautiful option plus they last for for a while. Styling a large vase can feel daunting, so today, we're showing you how to style with them using large beautiful branches! Come see how...

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how to style with two rugs...

 How to style with two rugs... / via Oh Joy!

Since launching our Oh Joy! for Lorena Canals rugs, a lot of you have asked if they come in larger sizes. Because they need to be small enough to fit into a washing machine, they only come in one size (4'7"x 6'7"). So what do you do when you want to use one of our rugs to style a larger space? Use TWO of them! There are so many ways to pair them side-by-side and depending on how you position them, you might not even notice there's two of them. See how great they look as a duo...

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