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My Five Favorite Home Basics I Can’t Live Without

The first Wednesday of every month I join my friends Kris of Driven By Decor, Jennifer of Dimples & Tangles and Pam of Simple Details to bring you a ton of ideas on the topic of the month. It’s always so much fun to collaborate with these ladies and see their lists!


This month we welcome Annie of Most Lovely Things as our guest host, and we all could not be more thrilled!Eat in kitchen with banquette from Most Lovely Things blog

If you haven’t visited Annie before you are in for such a treat! Her style is timeless and beautiful and Most Lovely Things is filled with inspiration like Annie’s kitchen above that features a banquette, that gorgeous island and tons of personality!

Thanks for joining us today Annie!

So let’s talk basics!! Here are a few items that I love and are essential to an easy way of living without too much fuss.


Along with our bed, pillows are serious business over here (the sleeping kind, we don’t take the toss pillows too seriously).  We like our sleep and neither Mark nor I can function very well without it. Our pillows are major players in our ability to deal with what comes our way every day! Wonder why our kids love their beds so very much?!

A few years ago I kept waking up in the morning with a sore neck, and my favorite mother-in-law suggested I invest in a good pillow. Okay, how many pillows could possibly be on the market??  It’s mind boggling and some of them are insanely expensive. After a little trial and error, a very nice woman that worked at Bed, Bath & Beyond told me about her pillow which apparently her teenagers loved so much they asked for one for Christmas. I tried it and it was the winner for me (I have the side sleeper one); I bought the back sleeper pillow for Mark and he loves his too.

Is there another pillow brand you use and love? And are you also the crankiest human ever if you don’t get a good night’s sleep?


White bedding is easy to mix with other patterns and colors, can be bleached and never looks dated.

While we’re pillow-talking, let’s discuss white bedding. You can incorporate it into any color scheme, mix up any other textile and any pattern with it, bleach it, and it never goes out of style or looks dated.

A huge bulletin board over a bed is the perfect place for Instagram photos.

Read about how I made two twin beds into a king here.


I have 5 or 6 various sized wood cutting boards and love them for their functionality and also for leaning on my countertops. They are fantastic of course for chopping veggies, but also for setting out hot plates of appetizers on your coffee table or creating a beautiful charcuterie board. I keep this big one on our stovetop when I’m not cooking.

Side note:  our oven died the weekend before Thanksgiving and we had a new one delivered the day before hosting the big day, while the turkey brined in a cooler nearby. Now we have a shiny new appliance in the midst of the 80s kitchen….one step forward my friends!

How about that cute new dishtowel I just picked up for spring????

I used this wax paper graphic transfer method to spruce up an old cutting board with a free graphic from The Graphics Fairy. The other side is still usable for cutting and this side with the graphic is for display.

Check out the Kitchn’s post on how to clean and disinfect wood cutting boards.

You can find a few great deals on wood cutting boards in the Shine Your Light Amazon shop!



I know, I’m like a broken record (plate??) about white dishes (I mentioned them in My Five Favorite Tabletop Accessories too) but it bears repeating! Just like bedding you can never go wrong with white dishes!! We got our dishes TWO DECADES ago for our wedding and use them every day (and often for special occasions too.)

White dishes are a staple for any home.

The set that we have is so hard-wearing…..we’ve only broken a few pieces over the years and they can be bought as a set or individually so I’ve been able to replace them. I’ve added other white pieces over the years, and mix them with other plates and colors.



Okay I *might* be able to technically live without these 🙂 but they sure do stretch the budget which definitely makes this girl happy!

A seating area in the kitchen is perfect for chatting with family and friends.

The solid 20″ Vigdis covers look and feel like linen and are super versatile – I’ve used them many times for myself and clients to mix with patterned and textured pillows or use on their own. At $7 (plus Ikea’s $6 feather pillow inserts if needed) they leave room for pricier pillows or other elements in a space, and they don’t look cheap.

Favorite home basics leave room in the budget for pricier items.

In our living room above:  Green Ikea VigdisNavy Velvet (similar)White & Blue Medallion

Ikea pillow covers are a great place to save in a decorating budget.

I also used the white Vigdis for the painted pillow tutorial I shared a while back:

Painted pillowThey are great for adding graphics and other crafty projects too!


I can’t wait to see what these beautiful ladies have in store for us for must-have basics – let’s pop over and visit!

Most Lovely Things

Driven By Decor

Dimples & Tangles

Simple Details


If you’re looking for anything from this post or our home you might find it here – just click on the picture and it will take you to the item.

Thanks for coming by today!

A Touch of Spring
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Monday 12th of March 2018

You always have the best ideas. I love white bedding and dishes as well. I might have an obsession with wood boards too. Great tips and I just love how you style your home!


Monday 12th of March 2018

Thank you my very kind friend! If "undecided" is a style then I'm killing it! :)


Sunday 11th of March 2018

Hi Lisa, I just discovered your blog thru another. You've probably been asked a thousand times, but I would love to know where you purchased your sectional sofa. I've just started the "hunt" for one and yours looks like exactly what I've been looking for. Thank you for any info!


Monday 12th of March 2018

Hi Jill! I bought our sectional at a local furniture company, Boston Interiors, but I don't think they carry it anymore! This is the closest to what we have - it's modular so each section is separate and can be reconfigured if we move it to another room. The only thing we don't love about ours is that the pieces don't have hardware installed that attach them to each other so they move a bit, that kind of drives me crazy, so that's one thing to keep in mind with your hunt! :)

classic casual home

Thursday 8th of March 2018

Love the white bedding! And I need to buy your bed pillows. Thanks so much for all this helpful info. Mary Ann

Debbie - MountainMama

Wednesday 7th of March 2018

I do wish I had bought white dishes back when I bought my service for 12.....however it was autumn, and I was drawn to the warm colors of the set I purchased. And now, of course, I've added serving pieces to coordinate and I'm all no white dishes for me!


Wednesday 7th of March 2018

Debbie, I have a few sets of dinner plates in other colors too, I totally know what you mean about being drawn to colors!! White is easy to mix and match with other sets. I try so hard to be a minimalist but I love to throw dinners and parties - all the accoutrements for entertaining are my downfall! :)