Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Not so headBORING!

I learned the hard way, when decorating my bedroom in Hilton Head, to always start with the headboard. I had originally picked out everything else and then couldn't find a headboard that looked good. The end result was that I fell in love with a headboard that didn't go with anything and had to completely start over (thank god I kept receipts!) It was significantly easier to choose the other furniture and accessories once the headboard--or the centerpiece of the room--had been settled. I chose a distressed wooden headboard, but I'm also really into fabric covered ones right now. These are some of my favorite variations on fabric headboards. 

1. Try a unique shape!

2. Can you say tufting?

3. Make your own design. 

4. A great place for pattern.

5. Nail heads anyone? 

6. It's all in the details, think about piping. 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Getting dirty

Okay so these are not your average mudrooms. These are take your breath away, stunningly beautiful mudrooms. While it is not the most practical place to blow your budget, I think having a gorgeous mudroom is one of the ultimate luxuries. The first step is to choose high end flooring in a unique pattern. Next, pick the most exquisite door you've ever laid eyes on. Finish it off with cool lighting, a great bench and some Wellies of course! 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Red White & Blue: Election Day Inspiration!

On this exciting day for our great nation, I thought a little red, white and blue decor would put everyone in a patriotic mood! Let's watch the poll returns...Happy Election Day!  

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Stunning staircases

These staircases aren't for the timid, but are ideal if you like to make an entrance! Pops of color, sculptural design and ornate iron-work are just a few of the things that make these staircases such a major focal point. Although not the easiest design concept to translate into real life (unless you are building it from scratch), these inspirational stairways can keep you dreaming. 

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Bookcases 101

Bookcases are a wonderful opportunity to create a focal point in any room.  If you don't have the space for an entire wall of books (rare indeed), a well decorated bookshelf is an excellent substitute. The key is to find an aesthetically pleasing balance of books and accessories. Here are a few key tricks to help you do this! 

1. Start with a clean shelf! It is so much easier to visualize and rearrange objects when starting with an empty surface. 

2. Don't just go out and buy all trendy accessories. I think it's more interesting when you use books and objects that have been collected throughout a lifetime. It doesn't have to be perfect, but it's so much better when you are seeing something that has a story.

3. Use bright accessories! I love pops of color to liven up dark wood. This bright pink is so much fun, but any choice can work.

4.  Use a mix of accessories. I love the combination of modern (painting), organic (coral) and glamorous (candle sticks). When in doubt a book (I prefer hardback, but I try not to be snobby) is always a good space filler. 

5. Paint the back! This is the fastest way to make the greatest impact. I love this little trick and will definitely be attempting it on my next bookcase.

6. Don't over stuff. A full shelve can look fabulous or end up looking cluttered. When you have a few things that you really want to highlight, I would lean towards a less is more philosophy.

7.  The most important part is to step back and give your bookcase a hard look. As a rule of thumb, the more substantial pieces go towards the bottom, while the objects at eye line will get the most attention. It also tends to look better when the shelf displays a nice flow without a rigid symmetry.

If you don't think it looks quite right, then ask a friend to help. I am constantly rearranging things and asking my friends/family's opinion on whether they could look better in a different spot. Good luck arranging your shelf!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Nook time!

In the midst of Hurricane Sandy, I thought celebrating cozy reading nooks might make everyone feel a little bit warmer. My favorite thing to do when the cold weather hits is to curl up with hot tea and a book (ok, maybe a computer?) Nothing makes me love the cold weather more than a warm place from which to escape, so on that note let's look at my favorite nooks!! 

For the princess at heart? This little nook is the one of the most romantic settings I've come across. There is nothing like white twinkling lights and a chandelier to create the ultimate feminine space. I don't think I would ever leave. 

This nook's oil paintings and warm colors scream for nothing but first editions and espresso. Though, I'm sure US Weekly and Mountain Dew would substitute just fine in this serene little corner. 

A perfect hideaway built under this beautiful arch, I love the layers of pillows and blankets available in this little space. The rustic stool and simple curtains are the ideal touches to finish off this colorful nook.

What a wonderful solution for combining storage and sleeping! Especially in areas where space is at a premium, this would be a great way to sneak an extra bed.

This nook has two things I will always love: toile and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels. So chic...

I love the built-in bookshelves in this nook (and I recognize the Nancy Drew's in the bottom corner!!!) The rough wood frame says rustic, while the modern fabric keeps the look up-to-date.

So the space might not technically be a nook, but it looks so cozy nonetheless. This chair would fit one girl and one (slightly overweight) King Charles perfectly!

Monday, October 29, 2012

A heavy dose of navy :)

Navy is one of my top three favorite colors and so much fun to use when decorating. A little bit nautical and way cooler than black, navy is always my go-to dark color. It looks fresh paired with white and yellow (or sexy with gray and orange). Navy is a versatile color for any design.

Smoking counter tops

There are so many options when it comes to kitchen counters today, it is easy to make it one of the most fabulous parts of your home. Natural stone is always a good value for resale (granite being the most popular because of it's durability) but here are a few other ways to make your sure counter tops stand above the rest. 

Go with color! I am OBSESSED with the hot pink and natural wood combination. I would love to do this in a pool house or anywhere with lots of light.

Choose an irregular pattern. The more organic the pattern, the more I love it! The minimal design around the counter top allows the focus stay on the marble's natural beauty.

Think wood! Great for a rustic feel, a beautiful piece of wood can be as unique as any stone. Wood counter tops exude warmth and comfort, but make sure you have a good sealant!

Paint? A fun makeover project, I think this gray polka dot is extremely charming. I wouldn't just start by slapping some paint on my counters, but I bet enough googling could make a DIY happen.

Glass?!? Ok, so I don't know how often you see this, but what a cool idea! I love the modern look and I bet it feels amazing...maybe this will be around one day soon?

Honed natural stone? Instead of glossy granite, why not think matte? I think a matte natural stone counter top is one of the chicest options out there right now (if you're up for a little more maintenance?)

Saturday, October 20, 2012

5 minute hostess gift

I am always looking for an original hostess gift (that people will actually enjoy!) Costing only $15 and taking only 5 minutes, this jute (rope) wrapped orchid is my new favorite. 

Because my original pot was brown, I did not mind a little space between the twine. If you are going for perfect, it might take closer to 15 minutes to wrap. My favorite part about DIY projects are the imperfections, but it's up to you on how "hand-made" you want your gift to look. 

I recommend orchids because they come in all colors and are very easy to care for (all it takes to keep it alive are three pieces of ice in the pot a week). This bright fuchsia color was ideal for my girly-girl friend, but there should be a wide variety from which to choose.

What you'll need to complete this project: an orchid (I got mine at the Lowes Food for just $13), jute twine ($2 at Home Depot) and adhesive. 

*Although I started the project with tacky glue, spray adhesive was much faster! Both are going to leave a little glue on your fingers but I am definitely going to use the spray adhesive from now on. 

Start by spraying the top half of the pot with adhesive. Beginning at the top/backside wrap the jute twine around the plant as evenly as possible. If you want to prevent space between the twine, just carefully roll the twine upwards until they touch. 

Continue to work your way down the pot until you've covered the area with the glue. Next spray the bottom half of the planter with adhesive. *Be careful not to glue your plant to the surface on which you are working (this almost happened to me!) To prevent this just make sure you are moving the pot while you are wrapping it with twine. It also helps to put down another sheet of paper after you have sprayed.

Once you have reached the bottom, add a little bit of extra adhesive to keep the end in place and voile! You have a beautiful gift for any hostess or housewarming party.