Monday, June 25, 2012

C&B Bryant Coffee Table

Just a little post for this Monday morning...

I thought I would share this: the Bryant Coffee Table from Crate & Barrel is fantastic.  If anyone is in the market for a coffee table like this, I highly recommend it.  I recently suggested one for a client's living room.  It sits among pieces from Baker, and no one would know the difference.  For $599.00, it can't be beat.  The lower shelf is particularly useful for stacks of books, and the stain is perfect (not too red, not too orange-- it's just right).  And the recessed base is a very sleek little detail.  Love this view from the top:

(it also comes in a square size, 38" x 38", which is wonderful)

Thought I would pass that along, in case anyone was interested.  :)


Friday, June 22, 2012

Client Project Sneak Peek

Happy Friday!  Today, I thought I would share a sneak peek at one of my Philadelphia design projects.  We recently installed 6 custom drapery panels to frame the floor to ceiling city windows, and just last week, the custom pillows were delivered.  Things are starting to come together, so I snapped a few photos.  The color scheme in this living room involves a combination of neutrals and textures, navy blue linen, and a pop of the most perfect shade of raspberry-- in the photos, it looks red, but I assure you it's raspberry.  :)

Happy Weekend!


NEW in the store...

Yesterday, we added three new products to the store.  The "Joanie" Bamboo Table Lamp (above) is a custom piece that we have designed exclusively for our store.  We love the way it turned out!  It's perfect for a bedside table, desktop, or small entry table.  Available HERE.

and, a few other things...

To join our mailing list, enter your email address at the top right corner of this blog!  You'll receive an email from us about twice a month detailing new products, High Street Market news, and secret sales. 


Thursday, June 21, 2012

Current Inspiration

Just a few images that have been running through my brain lately. 

Hope you enjoy!


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Nellie Stevens Holly (Update)

We've gotten a few emails recently asking about our new hedge row, so I thought I would post an update.  We planted our Nellie Stevens Holly trees in late April, and so far, we love them...

holly trees, the day they were delivered

We ordered 20 Nellie Stevens Holly Trees from a nursery in Doylestown, PA.  Each one was about 5 feet tall when we bought them, and the nursery delivered the trees for us.  I highly recommend working with a local nursery, rather than buying your trees from an online source.  It's so important to see the trees in person.  When you buy trees from an online source, they often won't survive the shipment.  And they're pruned so severely before shipping, that the tree you buy is not exactly the tree you expected to receive.  It's not a good thing.  So, do your research beforehand and buy from a local nursery.  You'll be happy you did.  :)

We dug twenty holes along the fence line, just deep enough to accommodate the root ball with about 6 extra inches on all sides.  Since we want these trees to grow about 10 feet tall, we spaced them 5 feet apart on center, and 5 feet away from the property line.

After 6 weeks, this is what our little hedge row looks like:

We've already seen lots of new growth on the branches, so we couldn't be happier.  Hopefully, by this time next year, they'll be a couple of feet taller than they are now.  We love the tiny waxy leaves and deep green color.  And come Christmastime, I can't wait to clip a few branches and bring them inside.  :)

To answer some of your questions: Yes, the leaves are prickly but it doesn't bother us.  No, we did not fertilize these trees (I hear it's not good to fertilize holly trees right away).  No, the leaves have not fallen from the trees.  I've heard mixed reviews about this-- some hollies drop leaves and others don't.  I believe that this is most common in the fall.  So, we'll have to wait and see.  Yes, these trees were easy to plant and aside from heavy watering (during the first few weeks) they seem to be maintenance free.  I hope this helps! 


Monday, June 18, 2012

Lilies & Hostas

Everything is blooming like crazy this week, including the orange daylilies that are sprinkled behind our hosta border.  I love their vibrant color...

Tawny Lily (aka Tiger Lily)

UPDATE: Thanks to all the smarty pants readers for correcting me!  These are not Tiger Lilies.  However, they are Tawny Lilies.  :)

I wish I could bring a few stems inside...  just like Martha Stewart did with these Tiger Lillies (dinner party hosted at Martha Stewart's East Hampton estate):

(how pretty is this?  I love the combination of the orange blossoms & blue glass Ball jars)

We also have a few of these blooming in the backyard...

The previous homeowners planted them.  I believe they're Asiatic Lilies? 

Happy Monday!


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

John Robshaw for Duralee

John Robshaw has created a new and unique collection of fabrics for Duralee and I'm OBSESSED.  Every single print is perfectly bohemian while still feeling super sophisticated.  I want everything in this chic collection.  See for yourself...

Some of my favorites...

I love this print so much, we're using it in a client's Philadelphia home.  Here's a snapshot of the fabric combination that we're using:

Browse the entire John Robshaw for Duralee colelction HERE.


Monday, June 11, 2012

DIY: Antique Brick Pathway

A few months ago, Dave and I had a spontaneous moment and decided to repave our front walkway with antique brick.  It was mid-March and the weather was getting warmer, so the "lightbulb" idea to spend an entire weekend outside seemed like a brilliant plan.  And it was.  We had a lot of fun.  But, the work was a bit more labor intensive than you might think (bricks are heavy).  Here's how This Old House describes a brick pathway DIY:

Difficulty: Moderate
Requires stamina for digging and pounding, as well as an attention to detail 
time: 2 eight hour days
cost: $2.00 to $15.00 per square foot 

I would say that this assessment is pretty accurate.  Laying a brick pathway is not that difficult, depending on the pattern you use.  It does require a lot of stamina, and attention to detail (especially when cutting brick).  We spent about three days on this project, and our cost was around $42.00 (for joint filling sand); we used existing antique brick that we had in the backyard.

Here's how we did it:
simple concrete pavers, probably around $5.00 per square foot

We started with this walkway (above).  We think that the previous homeowners recently installed this path (maybe within the last five years?).  Made of simple concrete pavers, it was fine and very functional... but we wanted something with a little more character (to match our 120 year old home).  Enter, antique brick...

We inherited a weirdly constructed brick patio in our backyard when we bought this house.  It was an odd mix of new concrete pavers and heavy antique brick.  Many of the clay brick pavers were in excellent condition.  So, we decided to move these bricks and use them in our new front walk.  We needed enough brick to cover 100 square feet of walk (4' wide x 25' long), and this old patio provided more than enough material.  So, we began the arduous process of moving this brick, piece by piece, to the front yard.  We also gathered the necessary tools we would need for this project:

tools: work gloves, knee pads, a rubber mallet, a masonry hammer, measuring tape, chalk, stakes & string, levels, extension cord, an angle grinder, protective eye wear, an angle square, and a float.
not pictured: shovels, 3 bags of Quikrete sand, wheelbarrows full of brick, a push broom, and an immeasurable amount of enthusiasm. :)

Armed with a strategy, we began popping out the old concrete pavers...

Each piece popped out easily, and once removed, we could see that this walk had been installed by a professional.  Under the layer of sand was a layer of crushed gravel.  Everything was in excellent shape (and fairly new), so we kept it all in place and used it as the foundation for the brick. 

Here's a great diagram from This Old House illustrating the appropriate layers of crushed gravel and sand:

We looked at countless images of brick hardscaping for inspiration.  Based on that research, we decided that we wanted to use a running bond pattern for our new front pathway.  We tested out the measurements beforehand:  5 bricks + 2 vertical bricks (as the border) was the exact perfect fit.  This is the pattern we would use going forward:

rough fit of 5 bricks + 2 vertical bricks for edging

We added stakes with yellow line to mark the outside edging, and keep us on track.  We also added a center line to make sure our pattern was consistent the whole way through:

When we excavated the old patio, we found 6 bricks with an embossed keystone on the face (this is the Keystone State, after all!), so we decided to incorporate them as a focal point down the center of the new path.  Every 48" we added another Keystone brick. 

Before placing each new row of brick, grade the sand base and make sure it's level.  Since we used a running bond pattern, Dave had to cut many bricks in half with the angle grinder.  Once the pattern is cut and laid on center, pound each brick into place with a rubber mallet.  Repeat, repeat, repeat...

progress shot (and the area covered in brick dust from cutting the bricks in half)

Once all the bricks are in place, it's time to fill the joints with sand.

close up of the brick pathway before we filled the joints with sand

We used a Quikrete product with a polymer, to add a bit more stability to the pathway:

(we used 3 bags for 100 square feet)

Sprinkle the sand across your freshly laid brick pathway and sweep into the joints:

(you can see one of our Keystone bricks in the center of the pathway)

Once the sand is sprinkled into the joints, take out the garden hose and sprinkle with a light mist of water (step not shown).  We repeated this step with sweeping sand and misting with water a few times.  Once the pathway is complete, let the Quikrete set for about 48 hours.  After that, you're done!  Sit down on the porch and admire your work.  :)

We finished this project in March, and this is what it looks like today:

Obviously, we were very lucky to already have these antique bricks on the property-- and they make a warm, welcoming entry into our home.  The pathway looks like it was supposed to be there all along.  :)

If you're interested in using antique brick, I recommend checking Craiglist!  In Philadelphia, there are a ton of ads for reclaimed brick pavers (and cobblestone too!).  You can expect to pay anywhere from $1.00 per brick to $4.00 for brick (and cobblestone usually runs around the same price).  If you're interested in doing this DIY and can't get your hands on antique pavers, check with your local stone yard.  There are many new products on the market today that make excellent hardscaping material. 

For more information on this type of DIY, check this article from This Old House.  And, here is a great YouTube video of the same thing. 

And, if you need a little inspiration, here are the images that inspired us to complete this project.

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