Wednesday, December 29, 2010

BIRDS OF A FEATHER (WALLPAPER)

As my obsession with wallpaper continues to grow, I'm realizing I better start saving to buy a home where I can go wallpaper crazy. Until then I'll continue to dream of the many wonderful designs out there, and possibly even frame a few of my favorites such as these adorable bird and birdcage wall coverings. I've never had the desire to own a pet bird, but cover my wall with them... definitely! 












Tuesday, December 28, 2010

TUESDAY'S TREAT: GRANDMA'S CHEESECAKE

Our family has a few holiday traditions, but for the most part we try to keep things interesting by mixing up our gatherings. From a karaoke Christmas to an Elfster present swap, there's always a slight twist to our family events. Meals range from your typical turkey dinner to a mix of wonderful dishes from around the world...which is what we did this year. Beginning with sushi and dolmas for appetizers, dinner was a potluck of spicy chicken fajitas, traditional lasagna, and latkes with apple sauce...and although she is not with us any more, Grandma's famous cheesecake lives on thanks to cousin Laura. I love the family tradtion of 'not following a tradition,' but it's always nice to have a few familiar reminders of the great times spent with family over the years.



I am a huge fan of color, and sometimes I can have a hard time with a beige room, but wouldn't it be nice to have just one simple space to escape to? 



This is my kind of beige! Just a few pops of contracting colors go a long way. I could definitely get used to relaxing in this cozy alcove.











Thursday, December 23, 2010

MY WONDERFUL WORLD OF FASHION

There are many great things about working so close with clients for months on their project...sometimes years. Getting to know one another and working together can be such a wonderful experience, and it can also be a little sad when the work is done. Recently one of my first clients from almost 3 years ago stopped by with a couple thank you gifts (which is totally not necessary, but greatly appreciated). She know's me so well and it shows with her gifts. When I opened the peacock inspired scarf I couldn't believe that she hadn't just read my blog post about my obsession with peacocks! Really...she knows me so well! The second gift was "a book for drawing, creating, and dreaming" called My Wonderful World of Fashion


She said to use it as a stress reliever, a doodle book, a place to get the creative juices flowing, and that's exactly what I did yesterday afternoon during a computer malfunction (I'm seriously considering a Mac next time).  

Each page gives you an idea to start with. When I randomly opened the book to this page, the instructions were to create my own patchwork pattern. Although I only filled in two triangles with fluorescent pens, it was such a nice break from the computer which was taking it's sweet time reloading. 

I'm thinking I'll design some crazy tights later today!

If anyone is looking for a last minute gift for the creative type, this would be a great gift idea. You could even throw in a set of colored pencils!


Here's a list of places to shop online, or my client purchased it at Anthropologie (if you are lucky enough to live near one). 









SATC2 INTERIORS: THE KITCHEN

If you are as obsessed with interior design as much as I am, you'll look past the actors in movies hoping to get a glimpse of their surroundings, and that's exactly what I did throughout this movie. Alright...I'll admit it! I watched Sex and the City 2 as soon as it came out (on DVD) and although it was a bit of a disappointment, Carrie and Big's new condo was not. I loved every dramatic thing about it, especially the dining room and kitchen. The built-ins...the chandelier...the tile...I LOVE IT ALL!

The colorful accessories and books pop against the white (and well lit) built-in bookcases. I'm crazy for this chandelier! If anyone knows where it came from, I'd love to add it to the archives for future design options. 



It's hard to tell if those wall cabinets even function or if they are just decorative, but for an imaginary couple who dines out every meal I suppose they don't have to serve a purpose. 


This blue mod back splash is one of my favorite tiles designs (see Ann Sacks Ceramic Art Tile for more colors). 


Look at those tiles glow! 

Stay tuned...the living room, bedroom and closet will be explored next. 




Wednesday, December 22, 2010

THIS IS WHY I LOVE DWELL...

My style for years has been eclectic vintage or vintage modern, but lately I'm gravitating to the more modern side of things. A few things have contributed to this change, one of them being my recent subscription to Dwell magazine. The images and ideas that come out of this magazine make me want to start playing the lottery!


Lottery or not, I WILL build this reading nook someday (with my bare hands if I have to)...and why not take advantage of that unused space under the stairs with drawers? Imagine the miscellaneous items you could keep tucked away in there!

My 3rd floor apartment overlooks two small yards with chickens clucking around all day and I've grown quite fond of them. I'm not sure if I ever want to own chickens, but if I did, they would definitly live in a chicken coop like this one. 

They are pretty cute!

Study this picture long enough to notice everything that's going on here. What a great way to bring the outside in...it's brilliant!

Although this space is a little bare for my taste, I love the idea of having a soaking tub and   skylight in the bedroom. This could be incredibly relaxing (or romantic) after a long day.

How about all glass hallways? It might be a little creepy at night, but it sure would be a great way to let in natural light.


 I'll be keeping these in mind for when I buy/build a house someday!


 

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

TUESDAY'S TREAT: POSTAL PEARS

After a long weekend of great holiday gatherings (three to be exact) I'm anxious to get back to my normal eating habits. Please...no more sugar cookies (until Christmas at least)! Luckily, an early gift arrived in the mail the other day for my boyfriend and I. It was a box of "happiness" pears sent from Medford, Oregon, and given to us by his parents. They signed us up to receive a fresh "fruit of the month" for the next 6 months...what a wonderfully delicious (and healthy) gift idea! Thank you!!!


The pears became the subject of a photo shoot this week as I practiced using my new camera. Don't they look great in my new mod fruit bowl? They were perfect inspiration for this week's 'Tuesday's Treat', and how great are those chairs!?!...except that I think those are apples.

This shade of green mixed with bold chrome accents and geometric patterns screams retro...a style I'll always love...

...but for a softer look, pair this pear green (seriously...no pun intended) with brushed nickel or wood tones. Paint a wall, or accent with furniture and accessories...either way, this color is soothing and transitional and can compliment many different styles.  






Wednesday, December 15, 2010

DO YOU RUE?

I've been planning to write about my favorite articles in the second issue of the new online magazine RUE, but they are making it nearly impossible for me to choose a few favorites as I love every single page! If you haven't checked out this magazine yet, I highly recommend it. I'm absolutely crazy for lingerie  designer Jessie Zinke's home on page 188 and Kelly Moore's design studio on page 209. I already can't wait for the next issue!!!


KITCHENS ARE CALLING

I've been dying for some blog time, but life just went from normal busy to crazy busy! With only a few days before most cabinet manufacturers close down for the holidays, I've been surprised with a kitchen order that was designed last March. Final measurement, revisions, estimates and the order must be accomplished in less then a week (on top of the the OTHER kitchen I have to order this week). However, this is the exciting part of the process after working with your client to perfect their new kitchen. One of these kitchens is a blue farm house kitchen and it's going to be soooooo cute! 





If you don't see me for awhile...this is why!











Friday, December 10, 2010

ANOTHER "DIY"...

A few weeks ago when I was dropping Miguel off at the dog sitter (aka my Grandpa) I spotted this disheveled table on the side of the road. It was 7:15 in the morning, I was still half asleep and the back seat of my car was a mess, but as I squeezed it in amongst the cutter I began to imagine all of the wonderful colors that would bring this table back to life. I pictured a retro mustard yellow, but what I ended up with was...well...just yellow. It's still a huge improvement, but I may have to add a little something special to make this table a 'one of a kind'. Any thoughts?








Thursday, December 9, 2010

NEW "DIY" PROJECTS

I'm on a constant search for the perfect piece of furniture to paint and add to my home, and it's usually replacing another piece that I've grown tired of. Two of my  most recent finds were from Goodwill and each piece was $6.00. After some vigorous sanding the table was paint-able, and after a light dusting, so was the shelf. $10 bought me a glass top to protect the table so the project didn't cost more then $22. A higher quality camera (coming soon) would capture the beautiful turquoise much better than this, but I'm too excited to hold off...I wanted to share these with you NOW! 



An updated "DIY" project portfolio coming soon. 




Tuesday, December 7, 2010

TUESDAY'S TREAT: SNOWY WHITES

I was able to witness Chicago's first substantial snow fall of the season this weekend while visiting friends in the (very) windy city. The first one is always the best! Crisp, white, untouched snow resting on every single tree branch transforms the city into a winter wonderland. In honor of the first snow fall (and my new fascination with trendy cupcakes) here are some snowy white treats...






Beware...I may even attempt to make a cupcake or two this weekend!









Wednesday, December 1, 2010

CRAFTSMAN KITCHEN

Today I'm working on designing a Craftsman style kitchen. Although the clients live here in Massachusetts, they've hired The Bungalow Company out of Oregon to design their new home. Having lived in Portland, Oregon myself (and lived in an area surrounded by bungalows) I'm very excited to help them through the process of creating a Craftsman kitchen. Here is a photo I'm using for inspiration today.








Tuesday, November 30, 2010

COLOR PREDICTIONS FOR 2011

It's color forecast season...here is what Mythic Paint predicts for the new year!










Which color do you like? I'm a turquoise girl at heart, but that coral has me thinking about Spring decor (and it's not even officially Winter yet).











FROM TOILETS TO TILES

Almost ever morning on my drive to work I put the iPod away and listen into NPR's Morning Edition. I don't get the newspaper, and most of my time online is spent...well...doing this, so it's my time to catch up. This morning in between supreme court cases, medical discoveries and climate change was an article about Paul Burns, the owner of FireClay Tile in Northern California. After many failed attempts to try to buy old pocelian toilets from landfills, he finally found one who accepted his proposal to dig through the trash and collect toilets to use for his new porcelain tile line. 





It truly is amazing that we can take dirty old toilets, tubs, and vanities and turn them into gorgeous decorative tiles.  







Toilets are not the only recycled material Paul uses. He has used recycled glass bottles, sludge from sandblasting water pipes (whatever that is) and granite dust from a local quarry. Although he recently passed up an offer to reuse the yeast from a Budweiser plant due to an intense, unworkable odor, but I'm sure he's constantly experimenting with new dumpster finds. 










Monday, November 29, 2010

COOKIE JARS THAT TELL IT LIKE IT IS...

As one holiday passes, two more are upon us and it always seems to be a struggle to keep healthy eating habits in check. Perhaps reminders such as these jars by Jonathan Adler would keep us from reaching for seconds around the holidays...




...but who wants to feel bad while biting into a delicious homemade treat? Not me! However, I do think they are fabulously clever, and just as it's hard to resist another chocolate chip, I'm trying to show some shoppers restraint.


"C" is for calories cookie...







Wednesday, November 24, 2010

THANKSGIVING TABLETOP

Some day (far in the future) I'm sure I'll host Thanksgiving dinner, but for now I'm perfectly happy going to my parents with the rest of the extended family (and I know I wouldn't be trusted with a turkey). My mom will be getting in touch with her inner "Martha" and I'm sure the place will look fantastic. However, I couldn't help but dream up my own tabletop decorations for this year's day of thanks. 


I can't remember a holiday where I didn't think metallics were a must, so splashes of silver and golds would mix with cranberry and plums, and natural wood and feathered accessories would add a rustic elegance. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!  




Tuesday, November 23, 2010

I HAVE TURQUOISE ON MY MIND



Just thought I would share a few pops of turquoise today...


 





For more turquoise check out this turquoise lovers blog...