About Making it Lovely

About Making it Lovely

Making it Lovely is a design and lifestyle blog about living a stylish life and transforming the so-so.

I’m Nicole Balch (hello), and I started this blog in 2007 as my husband and I were moving into our first home. I intended for our families to be able to see what we were up to; I have a handyman background and a love of decorating, so I knew we’d be working on some fun projects. I was a stationery designer, online shop owner (Pink Loves Brown), and web designer at the time, but the blog grew quickly and soon took on a life of its own. In 2013, we sold our century-old bungalow and moved into an even older Victorian. I still write about my home (as I did in the beginning), but also about decorating and fashion, as well as my life as a wife, mother of three young children, and blogger turned breadwinner.

My Lovely Life List is a great way to get a sense of who I am. Hopes, dreams, and wishing I had the Thriller dance in my repertoire.

Nicole Balch, Making it Lovely

My work has been featured in Better Homes & Gardens, HGTV Magazine, The Chicago Tribune Magazine, Time Out Chicago, ReadyMade, Everyday with Rachael Ray, Ladies’ Home Journal, and other publications. Making it Lovely was named one of the top 26 Design Blogs by Domino, one of the 50 World’s Best Design Blogs by the London Times Online, and twice named one of the Top 50 Design Blogs for Moms by Babble.

I hope to one day be able to say that I’ve authored a book (it’s on the list!), but I am proud to have been quoted or featured in the following: Grow Your Handmade Business, by Kari Chapin; Decorate, by Holly Becker and Joanna Copestick; and Young House Love by Sherry and John Petersik.

I have spoken multiple times at Alt Summit and delivered a keynote speech at BlogPodium. I have taught at Columbia College Chicago, as well as several courses online for Alt Summit and Blogging Your Way. I have written for Better Homes & Gardens, My Colortopia, The Interior Collective, and Babble.

This Website

Making it Lovely was designed and coded by me. I was the nerd in high school who programmed her graphing calculator for fun (I wrote functions to create art), and coded her first website back in the days of AOL and dial-up. I used to offer web design services as Smart & Lovely, but I’m no longer accepting clients. This site is based on the framework of Standard Theme and hosted by Liquid Web.


There are several advertising and sponsorship options, designed to fit a variety of businesses. Making it Lovely receives 400,000 page views from 125,000 unique visitors per month. In addition to direct traffic, Making it Lovely has sizable followings on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. I am represented by Federated Media, but also work with brands and advertisers directly. Please contact me for more information.

Contact Me

You can email me at nicole@makingitlovely.com, or if you’d like, you can also write to me the old-fashioned way. Making the trip to the post office is always more fun when there are nice letters waiting for me.

Nicole Balch
Making it Lovely
1116 Garfield Street #1268
Oak Park, IL 60304

Nicole Balch

photos by Arnold Klein

  • Blogtip: Making it Lovely.com « Archana.nl
    August 1, 2010 at 11:00 am

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    June 13, 2011 at 1:19 pm

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  • Freebie Friday « urbancurator
    April 26, 2012 at 9:47 pm

    […] have to share this fun and free printable birthday invitation with you all! Nicole Balch, founder of the stylish living blog Making it Lovely posted these rainbow invitations on her lovely […]

  • Mother’s Day Terrarium by Nicole Balch of Making It Lovely | Front & Main
    May 11, 2012 at 10:48 am

    […] founder of Making it Lovely, a design blog about living a stylish life and transforming the so-so. Get to know her, or connect with Nicole on Twitter, Facebook, or Pinterest. Tags: DIY, garden, Mother's Day […]

  • Friday Five - BlogPodium: Why I'm Going & What I'm Wearing
    May 25, 2012 at 2:28 pm

    […] To hear from Nicole Balch of Making it Lovely again. I took an altsummit class of Nicole’s a couple of weeks ago called Growing a Readership […]

  • LVS::Business of Blogging | Life.Vision.Style
    May 29, 2012 at 1:20 pm

    […] Nicole Balch sharing her blogging experiences […]

  • BlogPodium: The Business of Blogging – Sweetsuite10
    May 29, 2012 at 8:41 pm

    […] topic of this edition of BlogPodium was the Business of Blogging, and Nicole Balch, the lovely and talented lady behind the blog ‘Making it Lovely‘ was the keynote […]

  • Honor Roll | Making it Lovely
    October 28, 2012 at 12:03 am

    […] ThemeLovelyMinimalMy HomeView AllLiving RoomDining RoomKitchenLibraryOfficeBrandon’s […]

  • Liebster Blog Award | thefieryredhead
    November 19, 2012 at 1:51 pm

    […] For those in the know, it is run by the inimitable Holly Becker of Decor8. A few guest bloggers, Nicole Balch and Jeanette Lunde, also gave helpful tips on how to stay motivated, be inspired and most of all, […]

  • 2012 Flashback: 3 Blogs That Should Be On Your Radar
    January 3, 2013 at 12:14 am

    […] I think I found her through a link through a link from Apartment Therapy. I tend to read the “About” section first (after the targeted blog post), and Nicole’s said she had a […]

  • Treetopia Design Council 2013: Nicole Balch from Making It Lovely | blog.treetopia.com
    November 18, 2013 at 11:01 am

    […] the next installment in our Design Council series, feast your eyes on this beautiful piece from Nicole Balch of Making It […]

  • Would You Like a Sample? | Making it Lovely
    June 4, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    […] […]

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    December 22, 2014 at 10:23 am

    […] via Rambling Renovators,  Making It Lovely, The Lovely […]

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    April 10, 2015 at 6:00 am

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  • I'm a Liebster Blog Award Winner! - The Fiery Redhead Blog
    May 7, 2015 at 10:54 am

    […] For those in the know, it is run by the inimitable Holly Becker of Decor8. A few guest bloggers, Nicole Balch and Jeanette Lunde, also gave helpful tips on how to stay motivated, be inspired and most of all, […]

  • Michelle
    March 10, 2016 at 12:37 pm

    Love the new website — the colors, updated pics, border, everything. And I love the inclusion of your Myers Briggs type in your intro!

  • Chicago LOCAL Pop Up - Front + Main
    September 22, 2016 at 2:30 pm

    […] Nicole Balch, a design & lifestyle blogger, mom of three, INTP, and fan of pink. I’m updating a Victorian just outside of Chicago in Oak […]

  • Making it Lovely: Today's Feature Blog - CoContest Magazine
    October 13, 2016 at 4:36 am

    […] If you’d like to learn more about Nicole and her home renovation projects, read on here. […]