May 31, 2013

Friday Fun Home - Light, Bright, & Colorful Design

I came across this lovely home in the June 2013 issue of HGTV magazine and was happy to see that they had posted pictures of the beautiful abode online as well.  The home belongs to the Stephens family of Birmingham AL - and it had me at "hello!" with all the bright yellows, blues, and greens.  Take a peek inside!  (all photos curtesy of

Check out that glass-front fridge!  A kitchen dream of mine...

Oh vintage yellow gas stove, how I covet thee.  (p.s. they found it in the basement when they moved in!)

 Love their bold use of color - especially the rug and art in this room.

 This banquette is seriously fabulous (and yellow) seats 10!

 Art - yes!  Fiddle-leaf fig tree - yes!  Bright accents - yes!  Mid century mod lamp - yes!

 Every home should come with lockers...and shoe shelves.

 Wood moulding + cork board + white paint + nail gun = huge frame for kid art

Yet another map wall done right.  This map was from Sky know the catalog on the airplane?!?

What do you think of this fun family home?  Which is your favorite room?  I'd move in!  How about you??

May 29, 2013

Flea Market Art from Rio de Janeiro

I owed you quick post to share some of our art finds from our Rio de Janeiro trip last month.  When we go on vacation, we like to bring back some art that will forever remind us of our trip.  Some people buy shot glasses...and we buy flea market art!  Go figure.

Of course, we couldn't decide on just one piece of art, so we'll have a spattering of Rio artwork throughout the house.  First off, we have the "spatula" piece depicting the favelas of Rio - the artist used a small spatula to cake on a thick layer of white acrylic then scraped it off, revealing the rooftops, windows, and doorways.  He then painted over it with (lovely!) vibrant colors.

Next, we have a mini abstract of the bay that sits at the base of Sugar Loaf mountain.  I love the multi-colored dots, square-ness, and simplicity of this piece.

We had to find something that displayed the graphic black and white mosaic sidewalk pattern from Copacabana beach, where we stayed.  This watercolor on fabric did just that...

And, this little palm tree print was too cute to pass up for $2.50.  Again, it has the Copacabana sidewalk wave goin' on.

Finally, we have our "yellow" oil painting that shows the Christ the Redeemer Statue in the foreground and Sugar Loaf mountain in the background.  I can't say no to yellow, and we loved how this painting vividly shows how amazingly lush and green it was in Rio.

There they are...happily sitting on a sheet before being hung (or propped up) throughout our home.

Anyone else like to find local art while on vacation?  Which of our paintings is your favorite?  Which would you have opted to take home with you?

May 27, 2013

Ikat Dot Lampshade Makeover

I adore all things polka dot - fabrics, fashion, interiors, lady bugs, you name it.  The geometric pattern is just so classic and preppy and upbeat.  Sometimes polka dots can look juvenile, but when executed properly they can provide the perfect pop of pattern in any space.

I was inspired by the modern and graphic polka dot patterns below - one on wallpaper and one on a Kate Spade handbag - to add a few dots to a lamp shade in our dining room...

 Pienet Kivet Wallpaper from One Kings Lane

Kinkley Small Karen Satchel from Kate Spade

And, here's how it looks:

I was going for the imperfect ikat stacked dot look - that's what I'm calling it.  Should I coin that phrase??

Here's how I did it...a super easy project you can do during naptime.

Lamp shade
Craft Paint
Dot Sponge
Small plate

Instructions (I'll try not to insult your intelligence...):
1. Pour paint on plate.
2. Dab sponge in paint.
3. Press sponge on shade.
4. Repeat.
5. Let dry.

I know I'm shocking you with my brilliant idea...but hey, sometimes the best projects are those we can do in 15 minutes with stuff we already have on hand.

I think it pepped up the room a lot!  What do you think?  Like I always say, go graphic or go home...ok, I don't always say that.  (I just said it once, and I promise not to say it again.)

May 24, 2013

Globe-Trotting Girl Inspiration Board

I took a little inspiration from these two rooms with map walls...

And created an inspiration board for an adventurous girl who has (or one day will) travel the world!  All sources are provided below the inspiration board...

Sources: 1. World Map Mural, 8'x6' ($64) - Amazon // 2. Jubilee Collection 4-Light Harp Chandelier ($179) - Wayfair // 3. Avoca Multi-Color Check Throw, small ($113) - Pure Luxuries // 4. Wire Eiffel Tower Sculpture ($97) - Amazon // 5. Russian Nesting Dolls ($17) - Etsy // 6. Indonesian Daybed Frame, twin size ($400) - Cost Plus World Market // 7. LexMod Philippe Starck Style Louis Ghost Chair, white ($152) - Amazon // 8. My Heart Print, 20"x28" ($70) - Erie Drive // 9. Peekaboo Clear C Table w/casters ($180) - CB2 // 10. Handmade Malibu White Shag Rug, 5'x8' ($194) - Overstock // 11.  Stuffed Moroccan Pouf, Silver ($138) - Amazon // 12. La Fiorentina David Hicks Wine & Magenta colorway Pillow Cover, 20"x20" ($125) - Etsy // 13. Industrial Task Table Lamp, yellow ($79) - West Elm

I'd love to create an inspiration board for your home!  Click {here} for more info on this incredibly affordable and totally customizable service that can help you completely transform a room.  And the best part?  We can work with whatever budget you may have!

May 22, 2013

Great Gatsby Art Deco Inspired Design

Have you seen it?  Have you seen it??  

The Great Gatsby came out on May 10th, and despite the lackluster reviews, I must say that I LOVED it!  I'm a little biased since the book is one of my all-time favorite pieces of literature, but they truly did a wonderful job with the movie casting, the costumes, the music, the set production...really everything.

I typically don't love art deco design and the over the top fancy, shiny, frilly, swirly, shimmery opulence that comes with it. However, because I was so inspired by the movie, I was able to round up a few very pretty rooms that definitely have the Great Gatsby vibe.

Art deco is done best with a little restraint.  (Just don't say that to Gatsby...restraint was not a popular word back then.)

The first two rooms are actually from the move - the first is Gatsby's bedroom, and the second is Daisy's sitting room.

The next few spaces are a few other art deco-inspired rooms I found that are really quite exquisite...







After looking at all these spaces, I'd say my favorite Gatsby-esque decor statement has to be a daring art deco light fixture, like one (or a few) of these...

                                                         via                                                                              via

Of all the bling, which thing draws your eye in to art deco design?  The mirrored finishes, the grandiose furniture, the gilded details, the luxe fabrics?  Any one else see the movie, and love it as much as me?  Do tell!

May 20, 2013

Charred Tomato, Prosciutto & Mozzarella Pasta Salad

This pasta salad that I discovered in the June 2013 Canadian House & Home magazine is delicious and it's olive oil and vinegar based, so it's far healthier than other pasta salads that are drenched with mayo.  It would be a beautiful side salad for a party, but it also works as a main course because it's quite savory and filling with all the yummy prosciutto and mozzarella.

For dressing-
olive oil for brushing
1 lb plum or cherry tomatoes, halved lengthwise
1 clove garlic, minced
3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste

For salad-
1 lb dried pasta, I used baby farfalle
5 oz. washed kale, chopped
1/2 cup basil, chopped
1/2 lb fresh mozzarella, torn into bite-size pieces
1/4 lb thinly sliced prosciutto, torn into bite-size ribbons
basil leaves and extra olive oil for garnish, if desired

1. Preheat broiler to high.  Line baking tray with foil, brush foil with olive oil.  Place tomatoes on foil, skin side up.  Broil approx 6" from heat until nicely charred (about 5 minutes) then flip tomatoes over with a spatula so cut side is up and broil for an additional 5-8 minutes.  Remove from tray and cool.

2. Place tomatoes in blender with minced garlic and vinegars.  Puree.  Add oil, salt, and pepper.  Puree again.  Transfer to air tight container.  (can be refrigerated for up to 1 week!)

3. Bring large pot of salted water to boil.  Cook pasta according to package instructions, then drain in colander.  Rinse with cold water and drain.

4. Place pasta, chopped kale, and chopped basil in large mixing/serving bowl.  Add dressing, mix thoroughly.  Add mozzarella and prosciutto, stir in.  If desired, sprinkle with additional basil leaves and drizzle with oil (I skipped this step, as it was delicious without the added oil).

Makes 6 large servings.

Enjoy and please let me know what you think of the recipe!  It's a definite keeper for our household...
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