Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Instant Gratification: Bookcase Before & After

This "before & after" project comes from Emily at Recently.  Last week, I stumbled across her blog and my jaw dropped when I spotted this post on Emily's bookcase makeover...  Sometimes, it's the little things that can pack the biggest punch.  I just had to share it with all of you.

Inspired by this fabulous shade of blue...

Emily decided to give her bland bookcase a jolt of personality...

Rather than paint the interior, she cut foam core to size...

and painted each piece of foam core a custom shade of navy blue.
(this way, she can pop out the foam core and repaint it if she tires of the blue.  so genius!)

Check out the transformation!

and she styled it so perfectly too!

Talk about instant gratification.
And, I love how the foam core can pop out to be painted a new color-- although, I doubt you'll find a better shade of navy blue.  And if you're a renter?  With tough "no paint" rules in your lease?  This is the perfect DIY project!

Nice work, Emily!


David Stark Rope Bowl

I spotted this David Stark rope bowl at West Elm this weekend, and think it's kind of fabulous.  It's so unique, a little beachy...  and really quirky.  Wouldn't it be fabulous on a kitchen island, full of summer fruit?  Or leave it on the kitchen table to catch napkins...



Sunday, May 29, 2011

Memorial Day Picnic!

Happy Memorial Day Weekend, everyone!  It seems like the perfect weekend for a picnic.  Care to join me?  Let's have a virtual picnic.  I'll bring my portable red BBQ(!) and my festive navy & white stripe blanket.  We'll drink Coca Cola, grill burgers, and eat giant slices of berry pie.  Afterwards, we'll play croquet! 

You can bring the watermelon, okay?  Meet me at the park.


Friday, May 27, 2011

Modern Vintage Guest Room

I'm helping a client of mine furnish a tiny guest room in her new--100 year old--house.  We want it to be modern with a vintage vibe.  It should have lots of clean lines, organic texture... it should be comfortable, but not too comfortable.  Perfect for that 2 to 3 day visit.  Then, you're outta there!  (I joke. Sort of.)

Here's what I came up with for the guest room design:

My client was inspired by this adorable bedroom, so it was a large influence on the design...

simple bed, cozy linens, lots of light, lots of texture.

Then, we thought it might be fun to do a great wall treatment on the one large bedroom wall.  Something quirky and insteresting...  Maybe a wall of maps?

Or, it might be fun to show off a collection of antique team photos (or military photos).  All in black and white.  Love their vintage appeal, and that long rectangular shape...

And, I've always loved this graphic shot of Kristin Cunningham's guest room.  So simple!  Framed vintage doilies:

What would you pick?

And, how long do your guests normally visit?  A couple of days?  A week?  Do you love the extended visits?  Or, do you need a "less comfortable" guest room?!


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Yellow & Turquoise Tablescape

From the new issue of Lonny Magazine
styled by Lulu Powers, entertaining genius.

Three things I want to say about this spread:
  1. I obviously love the yellow orchids with turquoise planters-- such an unexpected and chic centerpiece idea.
  2. That orange tray (on the "Get The Look" page) is excellent.  It's from Z Gallerie and it's only $29.95.  It also comes in white, green, silver....
  3. I love the idea of using printed scarves as table runners...  I've done it in the past and it works like a charm!  My favorite places to shop for cheap, colorful "table runners" (I mean, scarves) are Target, Zara, and even Old Navy (I've tried Kohls and Walmart too, but then we move into some pretty bad polyesters...  I suggest sticking with basic cotton).  I'm telling you, you'll find better prints than you will at the fabric store.  Most are less than $25.00 and they're already cut to size.

Oh, and this new issue of Lonny is SO fabulous.  Check it out when you have a chance.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Back Home

Hi guys!  I'm back from my quick trip to California.  I left on Friday, returned on a red eye flight this morning, and made sure that every day of my visit was action packed!  The weather was completely spectacular-- lots of sunshine and ocean breezes.  Most days were spent prepping for a VERY special baby shower, visiting with dear friends, and having quiet dinners with the grandparents...  but, I was able to sneak in a Friday night with a friend I hadn't seen in eleven years!  It was great.  Don't you love how you can pick up right where you left off?  Like no time has passed!  Even after eleven years

chardonnay - reuniting with a long time friend - lots of good conversation
(killer view)


As usual, my visit came to an end too quickly.  I'm sure this is how most people feel when they go "home" to their hometown.  When you get there, it's like a big fuzzy blanket wrapped around you.  You forget that you missed it so much?  All the streets are familiar, the sounds are familiar, the smells.  Funny things like a street sign or a familiar restaurant trigger bizarre memories of growing up.  And, clearly the best parts of going "home" are seeing those familiar faces, the great conversations, and lots of spontaneous laughter.  I have the most dear friends and family, and I feel truly blessed.

Now that I'm back in Philadelphia, it feels good to be home here too.  It's sunny, the grass seed we planted has grown so much over the weekend, and I've got a busy week ahead of me.  :)

In case you were wondering, the baby shower was GORGEOUS and everything went off without a hitch!  I can't wait to share the pictures with you.  And also, lots of DIY party projects and recipes (like Blackforest cupcakes-- to die for good).

Happy Tuesday everyone.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Pillows With Turkish Corners

I've really never been a big fan of box pillows.  Or, round pillows.  Or ball-shaped pillows (by the way, what is that about?).  Me?  I like to stick with a basic square pillow, typically with a knife edge or self welt.  Down insert, invisible zipper.  It's just what I like.

But, then I saw this image on My Notting Hill.

And, I like those pillows!

Then, I remembered that Martha Stewart's Kevin Sharkey had filled his apartment TO THE BRIM with these pinch-pleated box pillows... in the living room, in the office, in the bedroom.  All in velvet, I might add.

These pinch-pleated box pillows are made with "Turkish corners."  That is the correct terminology.  What do you think of them?  Would you upgrade from a traditional knife edge for a Turkish corner?
They look pretty great in a super modern space (like Kevin's apartment)... 


New Vintage!

Yesterday was a Newsletter Day at High Street Market!  Many new and exciting vintage pieces were added to the shop yesterday, including a gorgeous tomato red table lamp and a set of 3 white bamboo nesting tables with mirrored tops! 

Check out a preivew below...  and to shop all of the new merchandise, click HERE.

Want to join the High Street Market mailing list?  You can join right here on this blog!  Just enter your email where it says "join the mailing list..." at the top right corner of this page.  It's that simple.  You will receive about 1 email per month from me, with updates on new vintage, High Street Market news, and even secret sales! 


Monday, May 16, 2011

Bb is for Baby Shower (Inspiration)

This Friday, I will be getting on a plane and flying to California.  My amazing friend of 11 years is having her first baby(!) and this Sunday is the baby shower.  Besides being purely excited to spend 3 days in my home town, visiting grandparents and seeing friends, my mind is spinning with baby shower craftiness.  I am co-hosting this sweet event with a longtime girlfriend, and for the last three months we've spent our free time discussing such important topics as cupcake flavors, floral centerpieces, and the great varieties of yellow candy on today's market. 

I couldn't be having any more fun.

I'm in charge of all baby shower decor, while my co-host (who is a culinary mastermind) is planning the menu.  We came up with the theme and color scheme together, and from there...  well, let's just say there are 58 pom poms in my carry-on luggage. 

Here's the inspiration board for this very special baby shower:

Lot's of yellow!!! Mixed with charcoal gray, aqua blue, and a bit of orange.  She's having a baby boy, so it won't be too feminine...  but, we wanted the party to have a grown up feeling.  Sophisticated with a playful edge.  Think baby corn dogs for appetizers, salt water taffy, and cupcakes for dessert.  It should be so fun.

In terms of decor, here's what I've been reviewing for the last three months...

and, we're serving Eddie Ross's "Summer Sangria" (alongside "Mommy Mimosas")...

Now, if I could just focus on work for 3 more days...


A few months ago, I asked you all to share your favorite party planning blogs and websites with me.  Well, you did not disappoint-- thank you for the fabulous suggestions!!!  Talk about inspiration.

Did I miss any?  Please include your favorite party sites in the comments below!


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Current Inspiration: Ashli Mizell

While browsing through the Elle Decor website, I stumbled upon the portfolio of Philadelphia designer Ashli Mizell.

I love how she mixes the old with the new...  love all that bold color (the pink wall in that dining room with all the portraits? so unexpected) ... and then the wallpaper with the sputnik light fixture!
Love that too.

Visit her portfolio HERE!

On a side note, I'm running out of town so the blog will be silent for a few days!  But when I come back, I'll share some progress pictures of our garden, and a little DIY project with a shadow box frame.

Happy Tuesday!


Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

my mom, a former flight attendant, and me
manning the cockpit.

Happy Mother's Day, Mom.

There aren't enough words in the universe to describe how much I love you.

Thank you for being my friend.


and, Happy Mother's Day to all my mommy readers too!


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Hello, Inspiration (via Matchbook)

Thank you, Matchbook Magazine, for providing a welcome relief to the daily doldrums.  The new issue is full of fabulous inspiration...  from fashion, to design, to cakes, calligraphy, and even diamond jewelry.  Here are some of my favorite pages...

LOVE the "Editors Wish List"

And, they showed me this:

I kind of love it and want to wear it this summer.

An article on Princess Diana:

(I'm not yet sick of the Royal Wedding and all related topics. I'm actually wanting more, so this was a pleasant surprise).

And, this is genius.  A Mother's Day Gift Guide (based on the editors' mothers):

love the daisy brooch.

An article on "Style Setter" Kelly Wearstler:

An article on GADABOUT owner, Hanna Brooks Nation,
and a tour through her Charleston, South Carolina home:

loving that wall of portraits, too.

The gals at Matchbook had a whole section dedicated to weddings. 
It included a feature on crazy talented calligrapher, Maybelle Isama-Stukuls:

San Francisco flower shop, Studio Choo:

I will never tire of the Jane Magnolia blossom (branches shown in a vase on the right)

And of course, New York wedding jewelers Doyle & Doyle:

Read the inspiring (and diverse!) new issue HERE.


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