Love and Olive Oil

Picture-Perfect Roast Chicken and a Peek Inside our Home

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

Thanks to all y’all’s input on our art dilemma, we finally made a decision and went with Option 1. The combination of print and pattern and color turned out to be simply perfect.

And as great as the art looked in my mockup, it looks even better in person.

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

It feels so good to have some art on the walls again, like someone actually lives here now and didn’t just move in days before. And we couldn’t be happier with our choices!

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

I realized it’d been years since I’d shared any home pictures, and the ones I had were seriously outdated. Our under-the-spiral-stair storage was still a flimsy little metal thing from the second hand store (we’ve since built a custom shelving unit with light wood and metal rods, see it in the kitchen photo below), nor had we installed our semi-built-in storage that spans the living room wall. Really, the only things that haven’t changed in the 7 years that we’ve lived here are the pot rack, the lime green mixer, and the Hatch Showprint posters on the wall.

Oh, and Kalypso. She’s still as chubby as ever.

Our Home Loft Living Room with Cat Shelves!

The living room built-ins (which is actually an IKEA Besta base to which we added a new top and base pieces to make it look more built-in) were the only way I could imagine to fit all my props into our limited space.

But what do I do now that it’s full?


And no, we didn’t forget to ‘stage’ those floating shelves above the TV. The only decorative objects that grace those shelves are of the furry variety. Anything else that happens to be sitting there will be promptly relocated to the floor.

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

These cats. They run our lives, I tell you.

Our Home - Loft Living Small Kitchen

Our kitchen. While we’re thankful for ample counterspace, the cabinet space is severely limited. Hence the need for all the extra storage.

We’re toying with the idea of painting the cabinets. Light gray, perhaps? I’d love white, but seeing as how much white we’ve already got going on I think it might be a bit excessive. What do you think? My dream would also be to replace the counters with a single level (no more raised bar) and a matte-finish countertop. I’m sick of this shiny stuff.

Our Home Loft Living Room

The faux-hide rug is our newest addition, replacing the old multi-colored Flor tiles we had there before. Dare I say our taste is maturing? The rug, anyhow, was so opposite of our typical style that I almost didn’t get it. But after some rotating and careful placement under the gray sofa, it’s starting to grow on us. I love how the organic shape breaks up all of the squares in the room (our old rug was ALL squares, I was longing for some curves!)

A new sofa is probably on the horizon, as what these photos don’t show (hello clever blanket placement) is the number our cats have done to the back corners of the sofa.

Here’s a million dollar idea for you: a sofa with refillable cat scratchers embedded into the corners. Then they can scratch to their heart’s content and when it gets gross and stringy, you just pop in a fresh post.

Brilliant, I tell you!

Picture-Perfect Roast Chicken Recipe

I wasn’t kidding when I said we were going to make that chicken recipe (I mean, if it’s on your wall you better as heck be able to vouch for it). It was our Christmas dinner, in fact! While the recipe is lacking a few key details (artistic license, ahem), I’ve filled them in for you below.

I loved cooking the chicken in the cast-iron skillet, so much more manageable than a giant roasting pan (save that one for the turkeys). Why didn’t I think of that before?

Perfect Roasted Chicken

Did you make this recipe?


  • 1 whole chicken
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat to 500 degrees F. Place a 10 or 12-inch cast iron skillet on a rack positioned in the lower third of your oven until hot.
  2. Rub the chiken all over with olive oil, then sprinkle generously with salt and pepper.
  3. Carefully place the chicken, breast side up, in the hot skillet and return to oven. Roast for 15 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Continue to roast until chicken is golden brown, and a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the thigh registers 165 degrees F (ours took about another 45 minutes for a 6 pound bird; depending on the size of your chicken, I’d recommend checking the temperature after about 30 minutes to see where you’re at).
  4. Transfer the chicken to a platter, tipping the chicken to let the juices flow out into the pan before moving it. Let rest for at least 15 minutes before carving and serving.

Recipe from Minted artist Elliot Stokes

All images and text © / Love & Olive Oil

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Leave a Comment below or share a photo and tag me on Instagram with the hashtag #loveandoliveoil.

Loft Dining Room Art Wall

I have to say, getting a box with your art already framed and ready to hang on the wall is downright convenient. Custom framing is complicated and expensive and just a hassle overall.

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  1. I would buy the How Do I Love Thee print.  My daughter is getting married in the spring and this would be a perfect wedding gift!

  2. I would buy the Aglow Valentine’s Day Cards.

  3. Following on Instagram!

  4. Following and tweeted on twitter! 

  5. I already subscribe!
    [email protected]

  6. I would buy some artwork for the home my bf and I are decorating together.

  7. I already subscribe to your email.

  8. I would buy notecards and stationery. Oh, what fun!!!

  9. hi, i would love to buy some of their beautiful stationary , personalized gift wrap or their art prints, thanks for the chance to win – [email protected]   

  10. hi, i subscribed to love & olive oil – [email protected]

  11. I would buy something totally not in my usual style…a chance to totally go outside the box…how wonderful!

  12. Email subscriber

  13. i love Folliage Patterns 1 and The Staredown. We need bedroom art.

  14. This would be a shopping dream: stationary and journals for the kids, birthday décor, stickers, custom art, personalized stationary for me :)

  15. My instagram username is ems0247

  16. @emma_greensmith

  17. I am already e-mail subscribed!

  18. Christmas cards! I live in South Korea and all my friends and family are in the UK. I love letting them know I am thinking about them.

  19. already a subscriber

  20. something for my walls as they are empty

  21. Fabric, Fabric, Fabric, Fabric, Fabric. Love Love Love their fabric. (Smile)

  22. I follow you both on instagram @rusthawk1. Thanks! (And love your idea of roasting chicken in a cast iron skillet! I will have to try it.)

  23. I follow you both on twitter @rusthawk, and tweeted –

  24. I am one of your email subscribers.

  25. I love their fabrics. I would put it toward some new fabric covering for my dining chairs.

  26. I just had a baby and would love some of their children’s art for his walls!

  27. I love Minted!  I would update the art in my son’s room as he is almost 2!

  28. We just got engaged and have found need for thank you cards that show people how much we love them, too. 

  29. i follow both on instagram! @btfitnesseats

  30. framed wall art!

  31. Your house is gorgeous. I love that teal hutch. I’m jealous of all the bright light streaming in through the windows. It’s a photographer’s dream come true. That chicken is perfect. 

  32. I would use the credit to buy fabric to cover my dining rooms chairs for a fresh updated looked.  The last time I did that was more than 15 years ago.!  I need a change.

  33. I follow both on instagram @erinm415

  34. I follow both on twitter @erinm415

  35. I subscribe to your newsletter

  36. I would get some type of art work for my walls lining my stairs!

  37. I’d finish decorating my office with some new prints!

  38. There are some prints on Minted I’d love to get for my sister’s new house.  I’d start with “Waiting.”

  39. Subscribed! No more trying to deal with Bloglovin :)

  40. I just subscribed and tweeted! My username is @cjackson_96

  41. I need some art for my dorm room! As any college dorm, it is pretty stark and I want to make it feel like home! 

  42. I’m subscribed by email.

  43. Baby announcements!

  44. I would buy the “Indigold” and the “Raining in Red” print for my kitchen. I am about to paint the wall behind the table with a color called puddles.  My next step is to hang something. I haven’t changed it in 9 years. I think it’s time.

  45. I would by the “Raining in Red” print and 

  46. Oh my gosh your house is too gorgeous – so pinnable! :)

  47. Hi,

    I would definitely buy the limited edition painted called “traffic JAM”

  48. I subscribe to your email

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