Friday, March 30, 2012

TGIF, 3/30/12 Edition

Welcome to the weekend, friends!
Aside from feeling giddy over the Philadelphia Inquirer feature, I've been feeling color inspiration all week.
I'll show you what I mean.

My husband Adam and I had a bit of a date night yesterday and, while walking to dinner, I realized that I had gotten some color inspiration from the blooming apple blossoms.
Aren't we both dressed in our best whites, pinks, and greens?

I've also been working on my den, which has been feeling a bit sparse to me for awhile.
I've already ordered a round decorator table, a la Heather of My Many Moments, to hold a demijohn lamp.
I've found a new fabric combination for the room, which includes "Winter Floral" from Parlor Textiles
Color inspiration comes from this vintage oil painting of an ocean cliff that balances light and dark so well.

Earlier this week, I shared a photo of my once-pitiful umbrella stand that cried out for color intervention. 
I chose to give it a bath in "Blue Note" from Montana Gold and the stand looked so good in its new coloring that my hands decided to get in on the action.
Perhaps color inspiration for my skin came from the Smurfs or a state of hypothermia, you decide.

All in all, I had a very color-filled week, and I wish you the same this weekend.
'Til Monday, blog friends!

Look for Me in Today's Philadelphia Inquirer!

 I woke up this morning with a squeal because...drumroll, please...I'm featured in today's Home & Design section of the Philadelphia Inquirer discussing the topic of Ikea hacks!

This is so cool! I'm giddy, I really am (even if I do look awkward staring at myself in the mirror...).

Naomi Stein, my lovely design-fiend friend and blogger at Design Manifest, was also interviewed for the article, so be sure to pick up a copy (if you're local) or read the entire article here.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Mid-Week Miscellany

Here are a couple of miscellaneous, unrelated items that are floating around my brain mid-week. Enjoy.
For one, I discovered this plaster sculpture of David at Dick Blick yesterday. He's cheap, real cheap ($18).
(via Dick Blick)
Wouldn't you like to bring David home and decorate your bookshelf or etagere with him?

I saw this painting on One Kings Lane (now sold) for, like, the equivalent of several student loan payments.
Am I bold enough to copy it for my living room? Hmmm. Stay tuned.

Speaking of living room walls, these framed intaglios from Ben Pentreath would add a worldy and historical touch to mine.  Add this to the list of things I want but probably will never buy. 
Mandi of Interior Design Musings has a genius tutorial for framed intaglios, so I might be looking to her project for assistance in recreating this piece.

Oh, and I brought home this sad little umbrella stand yesterday. 
My friends at Montana Gold (specifically, "Blue Note") will help me transform this pathetic wire thing.
If the weather warms up, I'll be spray painting this puppy before the week is out.

And lastly, I've been thoroughly enjoying the all-music channels we have, especially the channel called "Throwback Jamz," because they play things like this:
What ever happened to Arrested Development (the band, not the show, which I also loved)?

I told you, just some random thoughts for Wednesday.

Monday, March 26, 2012

What's Your Perfect Pillow Combination?

Recently, I was flipping through my copy of Deborah Needleman's book The Perfectly Imperfect Home, and the topic of bedroom pillows grabbed my attention. In the book, Needleman offers a helpful recipe for pillows that keeps us from going overdosing on them. 
There's an assumption out there about women and their beds that concerns the amount of pillows we like to use to make our beds pretty--the assumption being that, for women, the more pillows the better. 
What's your take on the matter?

On my bed, I keep things simple with a combination of 4 standard pillows and three small decorative pillows.
But, according to Needleman, there are three main pillow combinations, all of which are chic and none of which require 57 decorative pillows.

"The Square Finish"
One way to combine pillows is the "square finish," where a pair of Euro square pillows are leaned against the front of a stack of standard-size pillows.

"The Domino Effect"
This pillow combination places Euro square pillows against the wall or headboard, with standard-size pillows in front. Pillows in this combination are organized from largest to smallest, like the examples below.

"The Standard Issue"
The "standard issue" pillow arrangement is a bit more stripped down than the other combinations because it does not involve a Euro pillow at all. Standard-size pillows are stacked and paired with 1-2 small pillows. One long bolster pillow adds a clean, finished appearance.
(via my Pinterest)
What's your perfect pillow combination?
Are you a fan of "the square finish," "the domino effect," or "the standard issue"?

Friday, March 23, 2012

TGIF, 3/23/12 Edition

Is it Friday already? I can't believe how quickly the week has gone.

After having a great lunch for Naomi's birthday on Tuesday (where I met the fabulous Elizabeth of Peacock Feathers, photographer Courtney Apple, and Caitlin of Caitlin Wilson Design), the week escaped me!
Blame it on the weather.

Anyhow, thank you for your wonderful comments on my kitchen cabinet project!
Speaking of the kitchen, I snapped these photos of this new-to-me green apple cookie jar/soup tureen (bought in CT) and a simple bud vase of flowers.
Lots of green in the kitchen made me "think spring", 
so how about some photos of the flowers blooming in my neighborhood?
Aren't these potted plants lovely?
Along with abundant flowers everywhere, it seems like children are out and about enjoying the early-summer temperatures. This shot was too adorable not to share:
(all via Meet Me in Philadelphia)
We live near a preschool, and I love seeing a dozen tricycles parked haphazardly awaiting their next rider. 

 Happy first-weekend-of-spring, readers!
Enjoy the sunshine and springtime flora.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Transforming a Rental Kitchen Bit by Bit

I share a lot about my apartment you all including my bedroom and bathroom, but haven't been so willing to share my apartment's kitchen. Truth is, it doesn't reflect my taste and, until very recently, I felt like there was little I could do to make it work better for me. But, after following Camille's pitch-perfect rental kitchen transformation (really, it's so good!), I decided I'd finally tackle my kitchen bit by bit. 

My first project: to add a privacy/frosted finish to the upper cabinets. 
These aren't special custom cabinets, mind you, they are just standard, unoffensive Adel cabinets from Ikea;  but I haven't been crazy about how transparent the cabinet's plexiglass fronts were.
Here are a few before shots:
I mean, do you need to see our vitamins? No, not really.
I went to Home Depot, bought myself painter's tape and 2 cans of Rustoleum's Frosted Glass spray paint for about $5/can, and got to work.
I began by taking all of my dishes and glasses out of the upper cabinets and taped off the edges of the plexiglass on the inside of the cabinet. The most important part of the process: applying multiple (at least 8) coats of frost-colored spray paint. In order to build up a consistent finish, I waited about 10 minutes between coats. Once each coat has time to dry, the frosted effect will appear.
 Be warned: the fumes are pretty noxious (kind of like 10,000 women polishing their nails simultaneously), so keep the windows open to protect your lungs.

Here is the after: a much more opaque look that conceals all the kitchen necessities in the cabinets.
The upper cabinets' contents are implied rather than declared. Much more subtle.
 While we're talking about the kitchen, I wanted to show off a few more changes, including my newly organized cabinets.
Adam also got around to hanging our second wine rack this past weekend.
I feel so much better about the kitchen wall now that there's a little symmetry! Hallelujah.
So, here is one of the first projects I tackled for my rental kitchen.
What do you think?
Have you ever used Rustoleum's frosted glass spray paint?
What are your thoughts on glass-front cabinets?

Monday, March 19, 2012

Weekend Finds that I Just Had to Share!

Last week, I wrote about an antiquing expedition with my mom while in my home state of Connecticut. 
As it turns out, I spent this past weekend doing more antique shopping and I hit the motherload.
What's more: I spent less than $50 on everything I'm sharing with you today!

My first find is one I've been hunting for a long time. 
On my recent birthday wish list, a small kilim or persian rug was one of the first items listed.
 Also for the bathroom: this antique Spode sugar bowl, which now houses cotton balls.
Looks a bit like a sea anemone and a bit like a cactus, and I love it.
Another bargain treasure: 
This $1 faience-style dish is a piece from the Danish company Nymolle, which I've written about here before. It will hold our keys once I get my entry table/dresser situation figured out.
 Perhaps the most amazing find of the weekend: 
A paper sculpture from Jack Eisner in what could best be described as a junk shop.
I spent a whopping $5 on it and it is so mesmerizing in person, I can't even tell you.
With a little internet investigation, I found a website selling it for $750! Talk about finding buried treasure.

I'm wondering if I should plan another antiquing adventure for this coming weekend...
will lightening strike thrice?
Have you found any amazing finds lately?

Friday, March 16, 2012

TGIF, 3/16/12 Edition

Here is some miscellany from this week, all things you will definitely care about.

On Monday, while waiting for my train back to Philadelphia, I snapped several photos of the ceiling of the New Haven train station. Look at all that detail.
 My three Robert Motherwell-esque paintings were hung above Scooter, my husband's 25 year-old turtle.
We're convinced that he's a connoisseur of the New York School; and will appreciate the new artwork.
 Things are happening with these kitchen cabinet doors because, let's be real, you all don't need to know that I take Nature Made vitamins or that I practically hoard Goya beans...unless I tell you.
 I bought myself more carnations because, why not? 
And finally, I discovered fuschia and red combined in quirky preppiness on Emerson Fry's Paulo loafer.
Mark my words: they will be mine. 
(via my Pinterest)

See, I told you: all things you would care about.
I'm off today to try my hand at finding some secondhand treasures in nearby Delaware--wish me luck!
Happy weekend (and St. Patrick's Day), blog readers.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Getting It Did

After sharing a bit on my bedroom yesterday, I thought I'd update you all on the DIY light fixture in the room that I created last year. With nearly 365 days past, I finally got around to painting it (which was my intention all along), thanks to unseasonably warm 70 degree weather. Cross that one off the 'to do' list.

Before, in its original white plastic state:
During, with a coat of metallic spray paint:
After, in all its gilded glory:
Me likey. 
And there's nothing more satisfying than crossing something off the 'to-do' list, am I right?

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Cozifying My Ikea Edland Bed

Perhaps you are familiar with the clean-lines of the Ikea Edland canopy bed, a piece that I've had for about two and a half years. For awhile now, though, I've wanted to soften the lines of the bed with a fabric touch.

I hemmed and hawed for awhile about which direction to go in; did I want a canopy? 
A panel hanging at the head of the bed? A set of panels at each corner? 
Talk about being indecisive, or at least I was until Jamie of I Suwanee shared these images:
(via I Suwannee)
And, like that, the decision was made; I'd add some panels to the left and right of my pillows.
After rousing endorsements of Gray Line Linen from Jenny and Bryn, I opted for this $9 white linen to complement the existing color scheme in my bedroom.

Over the weekend, my mom was kind enough to help with the sewing and she added a row of buttons to hang the panels to the frame of the Edland. The buttons make it easy to remove the fabric when they need to be dry-cleaned.

So, with that I won't keep you waiting any was the before:
and the all-important after:
To create these panels, Mom and I put together two 15" wide linen panels with little more than a straight stitch. The one detail that we added was a row of coordinating buttons at the top of each of the panels, which allows me to easily remove the fabric for dry cleaning down the road. I also chose to add a tie-back to both panels with the fabric I purchased.

I love the cozy touch the linen panels add to the bedroom, while also drawing attention to the tall ceilings.
I still have to add a piece of art above the bed to tie it all together.
What do you think? 

Monday, March 12, 2012

Antiquing with Mom

On Saturday, while nearly everyone obsessed with interior design was anxiously awaiting the newest issue of Lonny, I was out with my mom searching for antiques and some unique secondhand finds in Connecticut's Farmington Valley.
And, in case you thought I would have had a better time reading Lonny, I present this photography evidence to prove the contrary. Man, I spotted some absolutely fabulous items!

Let's start with the items I should have bought:
This empire-style chair was part of a pair and in absolutely perfect condition (though I'd change the upholstery). 
I like the idea of combining a classic, timeless chair like this with more modern pieces. Each chair was $55.
 Don't get angry, but I passed on this gilded chandelier, which was only $248. It was about 3.5' wide and beautiful. 
Ugh, I need a house before I start buying light fixtures...
The same goes for this moravian star fixture, which was $225.
How great would this be in a small space like a powder room?
Anyone need a set of 4 Paul McCobb dining chairs? 
Got $395? That's how cheap they were.
And, why overlook some well-priced pieces, such as this brass and bamboo-shaped bar cart,
 or this collection of eye-catching minerals from India:
 or how about this bobbin-style corner chair, which was $110:
Staffordshire dogs kept popping up in several of the dealer's booths, but if you're not a dog person you can also find yourself a pair of staffordshire cats--who knew?

I loved several more pieces, including rugs and artwork:
While I didn't walk away with any of the pieces I shared today, I did manage to take home a beautiful item that I passed up in October that hadn't yet been sold. Let's hope that some of these pieces will be around when I venture to CT for my next trip.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...