Monday, January 31, 2011

La Maison de Leurs Reves...

translates to "The House of Their Dreams". Well, it's the house of my dreams too!!

Do you tend to decorate your home in a way that reflects the places that you have been or wish to go? This home is actually located where I would like to go someday. Just outside Paris.

You can learn more about this gorgeous home here. I spotted these images on the lovely blog, Morning T.

Beams for days!

Looks like this little doggie loves his house just as much as I do.

I love the stark contrast of the crisp white with the rustic woods and tiled floors.

Sometimes when we decorate based on our idealized vision of a place, we miss the mark and end up with a themed disaster. I guess I'll just have to go there someday to make sure I get it right!!! I'm putting my pennies in the can right now!

Where do you want to go?

Happy Monday!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Showing My Stripes

I will be showing my stripes soon...I can't wait till February for soooo many reasons!!!

1. We get to do more work on Miss Emely's room.

2. I get to repaint my family room, living room, and powder room. Mostly due to drywall patches, but also because I have ideas :)

3. I get to start working on the lovely Victorian Settee that I posted about on Monday. (I'm thinking a random light blue/green color with a subtle fabric and maybe some nail heads, we'll see)

4. Upholstery lessons will begin....I'm stoked about that!! I have always wanted to learn how to upholster! I practically die every time I see a beautiful piece of furniture that needs some love. Once I learn, I will be able to create the pieces I imagine! The power will be mine....all mine...MOOHAHA!!! Ok. That might have been a little weird.

Anywhoo, these are striped walls that have been inspiring my upcoming paint project:

via decorpad

via I'm not sure

via the beloved Domino Mag

via oops, not sure again

via House Beautiful

via decorpad

Aren't they enticing?

Subtle stripes add an interesting element without being too distracting. If I went black and white that might be a little distracting, but it would be worth it in my eyes. I love it when people take the plunge and just do it!! They scream confidence and "BONJOUR!!"

Beige and white stripes or gray and white are an alternative to going all white. Usually the all white look is pulled off using lots of texture, like adorable paneled walls, bead board, or wainscoting, but since I have zero of these in my home, I'm adding my own. I wish I could go down the the panel/wainscoting road, but my allowance said no.

I'll be working hard and hopefully by March you will see the results! Can't wait!

Happy Hump Day!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Humble Thyself

One of the most valuable characteristics of any great designer is their humility.

What do you hear people saying about Nate Berkus all the time? "He is so HUMBLE" When you watch his show, do you not want to hang out with him?

What do you hear people saying about Vicente Wolfe all the time? "He is so HUMBLE" He is a master, yet he knows he can still learn. That is true humility.

Great designers are great "people persons". People want to work with them because of who they are and how comfortable they feel with them, just as much if not more, than their desire to work them because of their talents.

Statements like these that lack humility get under my skin: "You never want a family room that is consumed by a couch because everyone who comes over will think you are a couch potato. You don't want people to come over and think "does this girl ever get off the couch?!"

These designers give the rest of us a bad rap. They make comments that are insensitive and come off as very intimidating. I wouldn't blame people who hesitate to contact a designer for fear of humiliation and judgement.

Here is why letting insensitive and judgemental designers into your home is a not so smart idea:

First of all, designers have no business telling clients what their priorities are or what they should be. If a client's priority is watching tv, then so be it. What business is it of mine?

Second of all, I never put so much weight on the "thoughts of others". I care about the needs of my clients. Not the needs of imaginary people. I say "imaginary" because these "people" that we fear will be coming to our house to judge us, are usually imaginary people that are made up by our insecurities. If I were to play into these insecurities, I wouldn't be helping my client achieve a room that is the best for THEM.

It is unhealthy to worry so much about what others think of you. If you are a couch potato, who is anyone to say that is wrong? It is never a good idea to help a client feel bad about who they are and what they like to do.

If someone comes to your house, sees your couch, and makes a snap judgment about you, they don't deserve your company because they aren't willing to get to know the real you anyway. I mean, it's really simple.

Third of all, it's just plain rude. Just because you are believed to have exceptional taste, that doesn't mean it's ok to be rude. The end.

Fourth of all, as soon as you utter the words "you should never" or "that never looks good" you will be presented with an opportunity or situation where your statement will be debunked and you will have to eat your words.

The beautiful thing about design is that the options are endless and the doors are always open for a different interpretation. I would hate to have to eat my words.

NOW for some beautiful examples of rooms with exceptionally large couches, or rooms oriented specifically towards the television.

Most of these are by the fabulous Candice Olsen. Would you dare tell Candice that these are bad designs because of the couch size or orientation towards the tv?? I wouldn't!!! That girl is way buffer and taller than I am! They are beautiful rooms that function just as the clients wished. She is great because she listens, she doesn't judge the priorities of her clients, and she has a great personality. The perfect recipe for a design where everyone is happy in the end. Even the imaginary people are happy!!

What gets under your skin? This should be interesting!!


Monday, January 24, 2011

It's Not MY Fault!!

Mrs. French made me do it!!

ok. Maybe Mrs.French didn't exactly MAKE me purchase this lovely little I guess I can take full responsibility for this purchase...I mean, I do have a client that can use it, and it will be a very good project to work on.

She just needs some love.

Ok. Maybe she needs LOTS of love. She is sort of comfy...but her springs are hard and her seat is lumpy. She still gives you a big ol'hug when you sit on her though. I mean just look, her arms are just waiting to hug you :)

Had I not met Mrs.French the other day, I wouldn't have had visions of settees floating in my head, and I wouldn't have been able to envision this lovely lady all done up.'s a good thing. At least I think so. Mr.Dame on the other hand, not so much.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Mrs.Dame Meets Mrs.French


Mrs. Dame met Mrs. French and now Mr.Dame is in BIG TROUBLE!!! ok. I didn't really meet her, but I stumbled upon her blog and I haven't been the same since!!

Mrs. French is the owner of French Market Antiques and the writer of Mrs. French, the blog.

This week the fabulous Mrs. French has discussed the impact that a beautiful settee can make. Exhibit A:

This gorgeous piece is from her store.

This one is via Design Sponge, design by Amy Corley

The famous Modern Living shot

Here are some more pieces from the French Market:

If you haven't checked out her's an absolute MUST!! Be prepared to contemplate selling your kidneys!! Mr.Dame is hiding his wallet as we speak!!

Hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

If ALL the fabulous things...

that I discovered and loved in 2010, were packed into a bomb, and the bomb exploded in my front living room...this is what it would look like:

It would be a fabulous mess, wouldn't you say?

It wouldn't "match", and it wouldn't be perfect in any other way than "perfect for me" :)

What would your fabulous bomb disaster look like?


Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Feeling Romantic?

This book by Fifi O'Neill has me feeling all romantical!

I have a feeling that this book is gonna find it's way to my house someday ;)

Speaking of romantic is this little snippet that our friend and photographer, Rachael Niles took??

Just this one perfect moment caught in time made it completely worthwhile having a professional do our family shoot. We NEVER could have caught ourselves in this moment!

Another perfect daughter playing with her most favorite thing...

With a house full of's the hair that gets her :)

My New Years Resolution: Take a cue from my daughter and try to find happiness in the simplest of things. Sounds simple enough, right?

Hope you are all having a great week!! I hope to stop by all of your fabulous blogs tonight for my weekly dose of inspiration.


Saturday, January 15, 2011

Update: Paul and Diana's Bedroom...

in sketch form...

Remember Buddy Holly and Angelina Jolie. I figured that since it's gonna be awhile before this project is finished and since I have been talking about it FOREVER, that I could at least share the sketches.

The photos aren't so great, thanks to my poor lighting and my not so crisp paint lines, but you'll get the general idea.

Here are the sketches for their super glam, eclectic bedroom:

The bad thing about sketches is that they can't really portray all the BLING and drama that this room is gonna have!

I'm talking bling like this:

Bling-y West Elm Pillows

Bling-y Chandeliers as bedside lighting

Some more bling-y pillows...why not??

Bling-y mirrors. This one is from Ballard Designs.

I promise this room will be finished and you will see the real thing soon. We are making some major progress now that the key purchases have been made.

So, i's not that I am the slowwwwwwwest designer in the world, it's that I really strrrretch the time line for projects when the budget and the client's dreams aren't exactly best friends. I say, "Ain't no thang butta chicken wang" when that happens. Why?? Cuz sometimes we just need a plan and some specific goals in place in order to reach our dreams. It might take some time, but at least with a plan, we can see all the BLING at the end of the tunnel.

Hope you are all having a great weekend!!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Shhh....I'm studying

Yep. I study. Studying is very important...

I will make sure that my daughter is very much aware of the importance of studying.

Can you even believe the studio of designer Bunny Williams?!

I don't know about you, but I'm green with envy.

Hope you're all having a fabulous week of studying!!



If I can hardly handle the suspense of seeing little Miss Emely's room completed, I can only imagine how she is feeling!!!

The little Miss checks my blog regularly, so I can't post all the fabulousness for you to see just yet, but I can share the things that she has already seen...

Here is some of the loot:

A fabulously sequined pillow and crystal lamp from Embellished Heart. And a $10 flea market frame that is just loaded with character :)

On top of being a great artist, Emely is a great writer, and she has written about her fabulous day of shopping for her room in her journal. She decided that she will hide her story inside the special little pillow she bought. How special is that?? The best part about our day and the fabulous loot is that she will always remember that day when she sees these things in her room. Is there any better way to decorate? I think not!

...and what's the harm in a few more inspirational images?

Gorgeous pearly letters

capiz shell pendant from PB Teen

This dining room/Living Room, by Samantha Pynn, of Pure Design on HGTV, has the overall feeling that we are trying to achieve.

Can February come any faster???! We are all just dying!!

Hope you are all having a fabulous week and maybe taking some time for your own little shopping adventures :)

All the BEST

Thursday, January 6, 2011

So Inspiring!!

While obsessing over my "pretend" daughter's fabulous pre-teen room, I stumbled across these images....from Elle Decor....OF COURSE!!

Why am I ALWAYS unknowingly drawn right into images from this magazine??

Anywhoo, they are all of Cynthia Rowley's home...I mean rather large slice of heaven... and one gorgeous shot of her store front...

...I die!!

Don't you love how my insane for design brain jumped all the way from a children's book that made me obsess over a preppy entryway, to a completely girl-y and frilly space for my pre-teen client?? I really am easily distracted by shiny, pretty things!

Hope you all have a fabulous weekend!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Inspiration Comes From Anywhere...

Like from a children's book...

I NEVER thought that while reading Chipmunk's ABC's, by Richard Scarry, to my daughter that I would be inspired to decorate.

More specifically, I never thought that I would immediately envision an entryway with an interesting old wooden door, crisp white walls, a chic coat rack and umbrella holder, and a fabulous black and white plaid rug atop dark hand scraped wooden floors. Do you see it? A red striped wing backed chair perhaps?

All of this from one page...about the letter Z.

These are images that came to mind:

For an entryway perhaps?

via decor pad

I would definitely need one of these:

Umbrella holder via Style at Home

AND Chipmunk made me want a red coat too!


Now all I need is a client who wants a "chipmunk" style entry way. Anyone???
I promise not to go nuts with plaid!!

Happy Wednesday everyone!