Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Christmas greenery

Between doing some decorating for other people and spending hours on Pinterest, I am inspired to try some new decorations this Christmas.  One new addition to our house this year is eucalyptus.  I saw some at Trader Joe's the other day and snatched it up.  It has a festive smell and I love the more muted greens as opposed to the normal "Christmas green."  This year I am going with a green theme (as in the color but also a little for the environment too)!

Normally I would have just thrown it up somewhere but this year I knew I needed to check with the Pinterest gods first.  Sure enough there were plenty of ideas!  I will reveal what I chose to do later but here is my board I created for inspiration.  Click on the picture to look through all of my eucalyptus pins.

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You can also check out my other board dedicated to Christmas decorations in general by clicking on the picture below.  What have you been pinning?  Are you recreating any good finds? Please share!


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

how smart

Bookcases are the go-to accessory these days.  So many ways to style them and so many uses.  I am currently in the process of adding some to my dining room and I have been planning to layer some arm chairs in front of them.  I just wanted to create a little seating area but partly I was adding the chairs just because I like the look of something partially in front of the shelves.  So when I saw this image I had a little aha smart, ottomans in front with a throw pillow for back support.  Totally looks like a little chair and adds so much character to the shelves.  You could easily find some ottomans at Goodwill or on Craigslist and have them recovered.  I love smart people!


Monday, November 28, 2011

georgia goodness

Home sweet home.  That's how I was feeling last night when we FINALLY arrived home from Georgia.  The trip was awesome, the ride home...not so much.  We sat in stand-still traffic for a good 2 hours and did I mention we had 2 little boys in our backseat?  Yeah, not my idea of fun.  I was happy to see our driveway to say the least!

The time away was also a great way to get a fresh perspective on my home.  Do any of yall ever get bogged down with all you want to accomplish in your house?  Lately I have felt like my list of projects is growing and my amount of time/money is dwindling.  Being away helped me take a deep breath and realize it doesn't all have to be done today.  Just not looking at all of my stuff helped me start feeling a lot less agitated.  So I am excited to be back and feeling some love towards my house again.

I definitely still thought a lot about decorating and design-related stuff while I was away because, well thats just where my mind goes most of the time.  Plus there were some great new places for me to explore down there.  One in particular was a hole-in-the-wall fabric store that carried all discounted designer fabrics.  Nothing was over $9.99/yard.  I was surprised at how many fabrics I saw there that I have recently seen in Calico Corners.  Really nice fabric for 5 bucks a yard!  I almost bought some but couldn't really make up my mind.  My mother-in-law is on call for when I do!

We also checked out some other great places but more on that later this week.  One place that I didn't get to check out was the Ballard Outpost store.  Apparently my MIL forgot that I just might like to go there (???) and I didn't find out about it until late Saturday night.  Has anyone ever been to one of these?  It has all discounted merchandise, like the "as-is" section of a Ballard.  I am so mad I didn't get to go but it is definitely on my list for next time.

So how was your Thanksgiving?  Find any new stores??  I hope it was great and I will be sharing more from my trip this week so stay tuned!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

happy thanksgiving

I have so much to be thankful for this year (and every year)!  For starters I am off for a much needed break with family where my computer will not be attached to my hip.  What will be attaching to my hips is lots of turkey, dressing (stuffing), mashed potatoes, my mother-in-law's homemade chicken nuggets, wine, desserts, and all that good stuff.  I will be making my fool-proof chocolate chip pumpkin muffins to add to the mix as well (thank your Ryan for the recipe, I will forever be grateful!!).  If you are in a only have a few bucks and an hour these muffins need to be your go-to as well!  Here is the recipe and Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins Recipe
1 box spice cake mix
1 bag chocolate chips
1 14 oz can Libby's pumpkin
(1/2 cup water)

Mix the cake mix (no eggs, oil, or water JUST the mix) with the pumpkin, and bag of chocolate chips.  I add water if it gets too sticky to stir.  Fill either muffin cups or cake pan and follow heating instructions on cake box.

Voila! Done!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

thankful for: blogs

In the whole blogging world I am still pretty green.  I have just recently discovered just how many great design blogs are out there and some of them just blow my mind.  Some days I read them and think, I will never be as cool as (fill-in-the-blank) but most days I just leave them and feel grateful that not only are there these great designers out there, they are also willing to share their work, resources, and general awesomeness with the rest of us.

I know I have a lot to learn and thats just fine with me.  Especially since I have so many great bloggers to keep my creative juices flowin.  Here are some of my most favorite blogs:

She is just everything that is cool...
Amber Interior Design

Best deal-finder and Craigslist master...

You paid more than me

Carolina girls have to stick together (and clearly we are soul sistas bc check out her post this week on rugs...didn't see it until after I had written mine!)...
i suwannee

For when I need a break from design-related things (although she does some awesome crafting)...

a room inspired by....those bold rugs

So I bet yesterday's "thankful for rugs" post left some of you doubtful.  I bet you saw some of those big bold rugs and thought I had lost my mind!  So today I am going to show you a design board that was created around one of those rugs.  I think it is gorgeous and I hope it restores your faith in me:)  Just the other day I read an excerpt from an interview with Amber Lewis of Amber Interiors and she said something that really resonated with me:

{I’d have to say that the hardest part of my job is getting clients to trust that sometimes, I can’t explain every detail of what I’m  going to do to their homes — I just have to do it. If I try to explain too much, I start sounding like a lunatic without a clue. A vision is always in my head so having a great and trusting client always results in the best end product.} 

I have to say that so far I have had great experiences but sometimes I can tell that when I am explaining my "vision" to someone, they are totally lost or scared or both.  To me it all makes sense because I can see the finished product in my head but to the other person it sounds like mumble jumble.  Sometimes I want to say just what Amber did above..."I swear it will look good, I just can't explain it!"  So this room is my "visual explanation" of one of those crazy rugs yesterday.  I know it still won't be everyones style but maybe (just maybe) someone will love it.

I bet that crazy green animal skin rug wasn't even the first thing you looked at now was it?!  I picture this rug in a room with a little bit of brass and a lot of coziness.  Its definitely a rug that needs to be layered over another to give it a more casual vibe.  I also love using emerald as the main color in a family room because it is unexpected but still not too over-the-top.  I chose accessories that would play off of the boho feel of the rug so vintage trays as wall art, plush fur poufs, an antiqued brass floor lamp and a rustic desk used as a console table.  I can picture lots more to this room from other angles as well as an entire house with the same feel.  Makes me want to grab a comfy throw and read a book in one of those chairs.  Sounds similar to how I am picturing my Thanksgiving holiday!

Thoughts??  Would you ever consider using this rug?  If so how would you style the room?

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

thankful for: rugs

Rugs, ever heard of em?  I know I am telling you some mind-blowing stuff today!  But really rugs are one of my favorite parts of any room.  They are so versatile and can literally be the starting point for an entire design.  I think its smart to go with a more neutral rug so that you can change out accessories over time but lately I have seen some really bold rugs that would be the statement piece all on their own.

Sierra Antique Ikat Midnight Rug

Radiante Lanterns Blue Rug

Serendipity Devour Cowhide Green Rug

Satara Whispy Peacocks Charcoal Rug

Hip Hop Kids Tie Dye Fuschia Rug

Think I have lost my mind with some of these??  Unable to imagine them in a room that actually looks decent??  Well I promise you they could be used in rooms that come out looking glam, chic, bold or even understated.  Want help creating a room like that or just a room that screams "you"?  Contact me at, and we can get started today!

kitchens on the brain

Lately I have had kitchens on the brain.  I have a potential kitchen project (hopefully!) in the works and it has me in the mood to think about kitchens....counters, cabinets, paint colors, tile, sinks, all of it!  So here is a round up of some kitchens that I am really loving....



last 4 images {via}

UPDATE:  How could I have forgotten two of my favorite movie kitchens ever??
Something's Gotta Give

It's Complicated-kitchen
It's Complicated

Both kitchens were designed by John Hutman, production designer.  For more pictures of the rest of those houses as well as other tv and movie homes click, here.

If you need assistance in creating your dream kitchen contact me,!

Monday, November 21, 2011

thankful for: the novagratz

Just for fun I wanted to write a series of posts this week highlighting the design-related things for which I am thankful.  There is so much out there that inspires me on a daily basis whether it's another blog or a store window that I pass by and this week I want to share some of my favorites. Today's post is about two people that constantly cause me to think outside the box and consider doing things that would otherwise never cross my mind.

Bob and Courtney Novagratz, if you haven't heard of them are a husband/wife team who specialize in unique, eclectic, and unexpected design projects.  I first saw them on one of their design shows, Nine by Design which was named due to the fact that they have 7 kids!  Oh yes, 7 kids while running a design business!!  I love their attitude toward design because they are not traditional in any way and do not box themselves in by any rules.  And although they design for some pretty big league clients, they still shop antiques, thrift stores, and eBay.  You can find them now on HGTV's Home By Novagratz and you can find all of their products, including their book, their paint collection for Stark, and much more on their website:


The Novagratz have inspired me in so many ways, here are a few...

funky, modern nursery 

Plaza Gold (Metallic)
dying to use their gold(metallic) paint!
their take on family life is much like their design philosophy: keep it fun, easy, and functional
somehow even with all the quirky details, their kitchen and dining room still feel warm and friendly
their always fun and creative details!

even their Bing list brought me some inspiration....
this zGalerie chair was on it and it would be perfect for my dining room

imperfect gallery walls & brick floors

I have ben very inspired lately by some slightly imperfect gallery walls.  Probably because just seeing the collection of unmatching frames and not-so-perfect layout makes me feel like I could accomplish them.  I have never been one for levels and grids so gallery walls are very scary to me. Plus lately I have been very drawn to the whole boho chic look.  It seems cozy to me and cozy is the name of the game right now with this colder weather rollin in.  Plus it just always looks easy in the relaxed-throw-some-pictures-on-the-wall kinda way.  Here are some of my favorites at the moment...

via: Southern Accents


I also love the idea of brick floors in a home.  I know that seems contradictory to your typical definition of cozy but for some reason they just are to me.  Sure they are hard, cold surfaces that are not at all kid-friendly but thats just when they are left uncovered.  I say layer some rugs over them and you and your feet will be good to go!  Don't believe me?  Look through these pictures and try to tell me you don't feel like curling up by a fire!!

Can we just talk about that kitchen above in general for a minute?  Perfection in every way...white marble counter tops, basket lights, the exposed the annoying words of Rachel Zoe, I die.

Ok, back to brick flooring...
Angela parlange

*ps. this one is actually a vacation rental!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Cool doors

All of this eye candy comes straight from the magical land of Pinterest.  Thought I would start your weekend off with some images of the most most fantastic doors I have ever seen.  Wonder what the rest of their house looks like?  Happy weekend!

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