VIP Home: Bedroom and Bathroom Before, During, and After


Hello, fabulouses, and welcome back to VIP Home. Today, I am going to chat about the madness of renovation and what I learned from it…

I gained some pretty useful knowledge from the total home renovation that my family and I endured together, and I could not be more thankful for the  journey.  It was tough–I am not going to lie. Lots of boo boos and sleepless nights…phew, I am getting exhausted just thinking about it. Now, before you get inspired by Pinterest to totally redo everything in your house, read the VIP tips below and prepare yourself for the challenge…

1. Do not expect to cook a five course meal while living in renovation unless your five course meal is chicken nuggets, potato chips, cheese sticks, Cosmic brownies, and leftovers from Logan’s Roadhouse.

2. “We’ll be done next week,” really means “We’ll be done next month.”

3. Prepare to live out of boxes and suitcases for a while because there is no sense in unpacking when sheetrock dust is going to get on everything. Yuck.

4. Buy lots of ban-aids ahead of time. You never know when you might get a boo boo.

5. Even though the renovation may be super stressful…it is worth it in the end. Don’t give up when you get bad news or when things do not go exactly as planned, take a deep breath and continue. Carpe Diem *fist in the air*

Now that I have reminisced and cried a little bit about the time I got my leg stuck in the wall–that’s a story for another day–let me take you on a little picture journey of the before, during, and after of my bed and bath :)

My room before was just blah. Tan carpet, tan walls, tan stick tiles in the bathroom--so much tan.
Before, my room was just blah. Too much tan for my taste…
Check out that 1980's shower, right? *wink* Note: it was one solid piece, and my dad had to cut it out with a sawzall.
Check out that 1980’s shower kit…hot, right? *wink* Note: it was a one piece kit (I did not even know they made such), and my dad had to cut it out with a sawzall.
Ziva "helped" put in the shower kit. *wink*
Ziva “helped” put in the new shower kit. *wink*
Tile for the vanity room back splash. Note: my dad did all of the tile work...I was not trusted with such a messy project *wink*
Tile for the vanity room backsplash. Note: my dad did all of the tile work…I was not trusted with such a project *wink*
My mom and I glazed the bathroom cabinets. Before, they were some aweful shade of pinkish-white...I am having nightmares just thinking about it.
My mom and I glazed the bathroom cabinets. Before, they were some awful shade of pinkish-white…I am having nightmares again just thinking about it.
With all of the construction out of the way, my room is my favorite place in the house--with the exception of the pool *wink*
Totally in love with my new room!


*drum roll* After the bathroom reno--getting ready for events and photo shoots in here is now an easy task. Who knew that counter tops were so handy *wink*
Now, getting ready for photo shoots and events is fun and fabulous :)

Stay tuned to VIP Home next week for more stories of the renovation…maybe just maybe I will tell y’all the story of when I got my leg stuck in the wall *wink*

Stay Fabulous,

Abby Hathorn

VIP Interview: Ahmed Hassan, DIY Network’s Yard Crashers Host


Have you ever watched Yard Crashers, the show with the really cute landscaping host, on the DIY network? I have a lot…especially during the reno.

During our year-long renovation, my family and I lived the DIY network. We were surrounded by things that needed to be done everywhere–even the yard was a hot mess. 

Every time we went to the home improvement store, I kept hoping that Ahmed Hassan with his camera crew would pop out and ask to go crash our yard. Sadly, our landscaper in shinning armor never came to our house in Birmingham; however, he did come to the Birmingham Home and Garden Show 2014 where the VIP got to interview the expert yard crasher, who is also a contributor to the CBS Early Show and NBC’s Today Show

Okay, that is enough chit chat for now. Are y’all ready for the VIP’s interview with Ahmed Hassan of DIY network’s Yard Crashers? *drum roll* 


VIP: What is your favorite part about being a TV host?

Ahmed: My favorite part about being a TV host is that because I host reality-based TV shows, I get to just be me–I get to do what I want to do and build off of my own inspiration. Landscaping is something I have spent most of my life doing, and it has always been interesting to me even when I was a little kid. Now, it is really cool to see other people being interested in what I love doing–which is landscaping. To be able to share my passion for landscaping on TV, to be in the limelight, and to get paid TV dollars is a heck of a lot better than just being your average gardener!

VIP: And you get to be you!

Ahmed: Yes, I get to be me, and it works–that’s the best part about it!

VIP: Exactly! If you weren’t Ahmed Hassan, playing Ahmed Hassan, it would not be nearly as entertaining to watch.

Ahmed: I do not think I am the best actor–I can act like Ahmed everyday, all day long, and I know all the lines! I can even put on a little extra for TV because as a host, you have to learn how to spice up things. You are always slightly amused, and you have to come in with a lot of energy at the beginning of the show–things like that are a little bit of a stretch, but not so much that it pulls me away from my authentic self.


VIP: Who inspired you to start landscaping?

Ahmed: My inspiration was really my dad. He was a landscaper, and I grew up watching him work. He soon moved on to do construction and truck driving. I grew up around blue-collar work and around learning to work with your hands. Through that, I sort of evolved into that type of work too…I had a wake up call that people who work a lot with their hands typically do not make a lot of money–and I knew that I wanted to make good money and be highly respected. I knew that I did not want to just be a lawn jokey. So, that’s when I decided that I needed to become more educated in the field. I have been able to build a career where I am interacting with people, problem solving, and creating beautiful spaces, and I love doing all of those things. I never imagined that doing the things I loved would have developed into the career that it is now.

VIP: Absolutely! You have to do what you love–if you don’t, you will never be truly happy!

Ahmed: I agree. I am seeing if I can prove this in my lifetime…if you love what you do, you create such an energy and such a passion around what you do that people want you and want to be around you. It’s not so much what you’re doing that attracts them, but it is the love and the passion behind what you are doing. That’s how I went from being a gardener to being a television host and probably the country’s most popular landscape expert.


VIP: When it comes to landscaping a yard, what would you say is the most important element?

Ahmed:  It’s like most things, it is a lot of conscientious planning. If you want to build something, you really need to take the time to think about what you are going to do and how you are going to do it. Planning and doing research in today’s day and age is really easy because we have Google right at our fingertips, and we can find out everything we need to know right on our mobile phones….If you do not want to do the research, pay the right people who have the knowledge to assist you with what you want to do before you go out and waste a bunch of money on something you do not know how to do.


VIP: What landscaping advice do you have for homeowners that are looking to spruce up their yards for spring?

Ahmed: Sprucing up your yard is really no different than sprucing up your house. You have to clean it up–mow the lawn, trim the shrubs, rake the leaves, put some fresh mulch in the flower beds, plant some new flowers, and add other things that make your yard work for you. A lot of times, I joke how I am like a glorified outdoor janitor because we always clean up people’s yards before getting started with the “crashing,” and they are amazed at how such a simple task really makes their lawn look amazing.

VIP: What color best describes you?

Ahmed: Oh, Lord…ahh!

VIP: I know, what color best describes you…crazy question *wink*

Ahmed: Well, I going to go with burnt-orange, and the reason I say that is because it is a color you will find in nature, and I am mostly a natural guy. That burnt-orange/rust color has a little bit of bling and a little bit of interest–it is a natural pop of color–and I think that color best describes me because I have a little pop of this and a little pop of that, but when it comes down to it, I am just an average guy like everyone else.

Special thanks to Nature's Edge, LLC for letting the VIP hold the interview with Ahmed Hassan at your beautiful display at the Birmingham Home and Garden Show 2014. You guys are awesome!
Shout out to Nature’s Edge, LLC, where the VIP held the interview with Ahmed Hassan– your display was absolutely beautiful!

Stay tuned for more of this interview in an upcoming Abby In the City column on!

Also, stay tuned for the VIP Interview with Retro Rad diva Emily Ellyn coming this Friday. Yay!

Look! Ahmed and the VIP matched! Did we plan it? Nope. Great minds think alike *wink*
Look! Ahmed and the VIP matched! Did we plan it? Nope. Great minds think alike *wink*

Stay Fabulous,

Abby Hathorn

Shopping in Your Own Closet: Denim with a Splash of Neon


Hello, hello, hello, fashionistas! What about that Super Bowl yesterday? I am not a huge football fan; however, that was quite the interesting game! A power surge in the stadium, Beyoncé, and funny commercials-perfect way to spend Super Bowl Sunday (given that I spent most of the day in Nike shorts and a sweatshirt-fashionistas deserve to a lazy day too!) Anyway…we all know I am not here to talk sports! If I were…it would go something like this: Kick off, linebacker, quarterback, touchdown, go team go, cheer, chant, cheer, swing batter, batter, swing, homerun! Okay, now you all know why I am not a sports blogger haha! So, let’s get down to business! It is time to see what magnificent ensemble the VIP styled while shopping in her own closet!


As I was organizing my newly renovated closet…Yes, our house is still under construction, but the mess makes for fabulous pictures! I do not know what I am going to do when we actually finish the house…hmm…Anyway, as I was organizing my newly renovated closet, I stumbled upon a terrific pair of denim trousers! I had forgotten all about them during the move! So, without further ado, I introduce the VIP’s closet shopping ensemble! Whoo hoo!







Shirt: VIP DIY

Trousers: JCrew, Raspberry Beret Consignment Shop (Louisville, Mississippi)

Heels: Belk at the Summit, Michael Kors

Belt: American Eagle (Trussville, Alabama)

Necklace: BluKat Design

Earrings: Claire’s (Trussville, Alabama)


Time for tips? Of course! Shopping in Your Own Closet would not be the same without tips! C’mon, fashionistas, it is VIP TIP TIME!



Would you like to be featured on the Vintage Inspired Passionista blog? Email or post pictures to the Facebook page of you wearing your darling denim trousers! Email: OR Facebook:

Check out The Raspberry Beret Consignment Shop on Facebook @

If you cannot get enough of the VIP, check out my articles in The Real Story! “The Adventures of the VIP” in the LifeStyle section!

Town and Gown Magazine is now online! Read previous issues @




Stay Fabulous,

Abby Hathorn

OMG it’s 2013: Part Two


Hello and welcome back, fashionistas! I know you have all been waiting patiently for part two of the “OMG it’s 2013″…No home depot aprons or house renovation talk–just fabulous fashion, gorgeous heels, and amazing ensembles to kick off this new year in style…So without further ado , I present to you “OMG It’s 2013: Part Two”!

Fashion Talk Time!  Drum roll, please…The VIP’s top trends for the new year are….

  • Monochromatic ensembles: They are so simple, yet so glamorous-every fashionista needs one!
  • Floral Apparel: Lovely floral jeans, skirts, and blouses are ever so vintage and bring a smile to faces of the young and young-at-heart.
  • Handmade Jewelry:  Ooo! handmade jewelry! The VIP just loves Etsy! Etsy is a fantastic way to discover amazing jewelry artisans who put so much effort into their work! Ladies like Lisa Hamilton of Beadsoul, Rachel Leathers of Hearts of Stone Jewelry, and Heather O’Cain of BluKatDesign are some super sweet women who will strive to make beautiful pieces of statement jewelry.
  • Super Sweet Pink Wedges: What more can I say? :)
  • Sequins and Metallics: What girl doesn’t love sparkles, sequins, and metallic! Pick up a sequined skirt and pair it with chiffon tops for an effortless, yet glamorous look! Metallic jeans are a great way to spice up any causal outfit in a snap! Remember, think sparkly!
  • Pistachio Green: A fashionista can never have enough pistachio green apparel in her closet! “Well, have you ever just eaten one pistachio?”-Abby Sciuto from NCIS
  • The Hair: You can never go wrong with a messy bun! They are so effortless and elegant and look fantastic with whatever you are wearing–from fancy dresses to comfy pajamas!

I am so excited about all of the awesome blogs and fashion coming this year! So many trends, so many outfits, and so little shopping time! I will have to get super organized in order to ensure adequate time to shop….

Back to the subject at hand…”OMG it’s 2013: Part Two” is here and ready to shine!


Blouse: TJMaxx
Skirt: Belk
Heels: TJMaxx, Jessica Simpson
Earrings: BLuKatDesign by Heather O’Cain

You can get earrings like the VIP's @ These fantastic, vintage inspired earrings come in several color varieties!
You can get earrings like the VIP’s @ These fantastic, vintage inspired earrings come in several color varieties!



You can get gorgeous earrings like these from BluKatDesign @ Check out the VIP modeling these earrings on Heather's blog!
You can get gorgeous earrings like these from BluKatDesign @  Check out the VIP modeling these earrings on Heather’s blog!


Top: Urban Oufitters, Pins and Needles
Jeans: TJMaxx, Kenneth Cole New York
Heels: TJMaxx, Jessica Simpson
Earrings: BluKat Designs by Heather O’Cain

You can get glamorous earrings like the VIP's @ Like BluKatDesign on Facebook to stay up to date with Heather's latest creations and projects!
You can get glamorous earrings like the VIP’s @
Like BluKatDesign on Facebook to stay up to date with Heather’s latest creations and projects!


Jacket: Target
Jeans: TJMaxx, Kenneth Cole New York
Wedges: TJMaxx, Jessica Simpson
Earrings: BluKatDesign by Heather O’Cain



Sweatshirt: Belk
Skirt: Belk
Wedges: TJMaxx, Jessica Simpson
Earrings: BluKatDesign by Jessica Simpson


Check out my article on to see even more fashion tips and inspiration! (“The Adventures of the VIP in the LifeStyle section)

Buy yourself something special @ BluKatDesign in honor of the VIP! Heather makes earrings, beautiful statement necklaces, and super fun magnets!

Town and Gown Magazine is now online! Read the issues and enjoy the fun @

Like the VIP on Facebook to see sneak peaks and the latest VIP news!

Twitter: @Abbysauce_

Instagram: @VintagePassionista


Stay Fabulous,

Abby Hathorn

High Heels, Tool Belts, and Saw Dust


Hello, fashionistas, and welcome back to the Vintage Inspired Passionista blog! As you all know, for the past couple of weeks, I have had to trade in my snazzy heels for a tool belt as my family and I renovate a 1981 “fixer upper”. It has not been much glimmer and glamour lately on the blog; however, that is all going to change January 2013! Prepare yourselves for more tips, ensembles, DIYs, Accessory Challenges, and much more! What better way to kick off the new year than with fabulous VIP fashion!


It has been quite the adventure as I have learned to rip up carpet, carpet tacks, put down floors, paint with the color yellow (I always laughed at my mom when she said that yellow was hard to paint with…),  pick out backsplash tiles, and tear down walls. By the time all of this house renovation is complete, I am going to need a spa day-a refreshing facial and a relaxing mani/pedi!

A strip of the wallpaper from the "his" side of the master bath. I cannot imagine having wicker wallpaper all over the walls....80s fashion was amazing, but their home décor...not so much haha:)
A strip of the wallpaper from the “his” side of the master bath. I cannot imagine having wicker wallpaper all over the walls….80s fashion was amazing, but their home décor…not so much haha:)
My dad and I installing the new butcher block counter tops in the kitchen. Cannot wait to see them all polished and looking fantastic!
My dad and I installing the new butcher block counter tops in the kitchen. Cannot wait to see them all polished and looking fantastic!


To see more photos of the home renovation project, check out Sweet Sorghum Living and Lolly Molly Art’s Facebook page!

You can read more of the VIP on my article @! The Adventures of the VIP in the Lifestyle section!

Town and Gown Magazine is now online as well as printed! You can check out my fashion spread in the November issue @! My article is pages 47-49!

Don’t forget to like The Real Story and Town and Gown Magazine on Facebook! &

Like the VIP’s Facebook page to stay up to date on the latest VIP news, sneak peeks, and more!

Twitter: @Abbysauce_

Instagram: @VintagePassionista


Stay Fabulous,

Abby Hathorn