Friday, September 30, 2011

Thank God, It's Friday.....

It's Friday!!!!!!  That coveted day of the week when we throw caution to the wind and do what makes us happy!!!!  Yay!  Speaking of happy, here are some visuals that make me happy!!!!

aren't the weekends all about just hangin with the "fam" and lovin life?
of course we are suppose to look "fashionable" while doing so, right?
nah!  it's not about being beautiful, it's not about being the perfect mom or wife or friend,
it's truly about just being.....

....tomorrow I am running in the Susan Komen Breast Cancer race....
it's all about honoring those women (&men) who have had breast cancer and survived or perhaps didn't survive but taught the rest of us how to "just be"
enjoy your weekend and please don't forget to "live"......

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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Party with Pom Poms!!

There is a recent love affair going on with paper pom poms that I think is really fun!
They are all over Pinterest and the blog world.  You can follow Martha Stewart's how-to's and make your own or buy them from Etsy stores.  It's an easy way to add panache and color to your next party, shower, wedding or child's room!  Check them out!

There are several stores selling pom poms on Esty here is one I liked because of all the colors!  Aren't these fun!  Can't you just imagine having them at your next party?
Check here to buy from Pomtastic!

Here are some fun bright ones from Createitgirl on Esty as well.  
Love them hung over a table!  Makes any function special!  
Check them out Here!

Love the way Pomstyle on Etsy used these to create flowers on branches for a wedding...

I normally don't repost other bloggers content but this was so good I couldn't resist!
Kristen Kral of 6th Street Design School  posted this awesome bridal shower  this morning with a paper lanterns.  She used a peacock theme which is very "in vogue" right now.   Boy did she do an awesome job!   My post was just about paper lanterns/pom poms but this shower was so creative I wanted to share every detail.   I always enjoy seeing what she will post from day to day.   Kristen got Createitgirl to make tissue paper lanterns to hang over her table.

Here are the invitations created by Kristen.  Even the flap on the envelope reminds me of peacock spreading his wings.
courtesy of 6th Street Design School

Check out these adorable napkins.  If you go to her blog, she tells you where to buy them.

She even made these cute peacock feather ornaments by sticking a peacock inside of a glass Christmas ornament!

This was one of my favorite ideas! How simple, yet so colorful!
She made the table runner by punching out different colored paper dots!
I love the color combinations she chose, you can tell she has an eye for color!

Last but not least, these awesome paper lanterns!  See what I mean?
Really packs a punch of color doesn't it?

I especially like the way everything implies peacocks without an in your face peacock design!
Absolute perfection don't you think?

Make sure you check out Kristin's blog, you will like it! 

More pom pom love below.....

Kid's rooms...


Big,  pop of color...
How to Here

 The party girl in me wishes she was going to this  luncheon...

There are a million ways I can think of to use these fabulous paper creations!
If you want to try to make some yourself, click here for details!  These aren't exactly
like the ones above but you can improvise and create your own shapes and sizes!
After all, they are handmade, so anything goes!  Have fun, get your kids involved!
I think you will have as much fun making them as you will enjoying them at your party!

Enjoy!  Life is the party you create and you only live once!

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Monday, September 26, 2011

What to do with those leftover wine corks?

Why do we keep wine corks?  What do we think we are going to do with them?
I don't know why but I just can't bring myself to throw them away.  They keep multiplying but nothing ever gets done with them.  This morning I came to the conclusion that I have to either make something with them or throw them away!  After all, I have to make room for more corks, don't I?  What's a girl to do?  I decided I would do a little research and see if other people have this desire to recycle wine corks.... Guess what I found out?  I am not the only one!  However, if you don't drink wine and want to make some of these cool products, just ask your local wine bar or restaurant.  I am sure they will be glad to supply you with all you need to create these projects.  With the holidays coming, wouldn't these make great gifts?

Here is my current wine cork stash... It doesn't look big, but would you believe there are 218 corks here!   I put my favorite wine glass in the picture, so you could get an idea of the size of the the container the corks are in.  I also have a larger container than this at my beach house that is also running over.... I clearly need to make something!

So what should I do with these corks... Let's see...
After doing a little research online, I came up with the following options..

The would be fun to make,  all I need is the hurricanes, and a candle in a glass jar, since I already have plenty of corks, seems pretty easy ....

How bout making some letters like these?  I could cut the letter out of wood or a heavy cardboard and hot glue the corks on top?  This is a little time intensive.  I think they actually cut the cork names out with an exacto knife and applied to some of the corks.  Still very unique and interesting idea also obviously a big hit since they sell for $67.50 on Etsy and are on back order!  I could start making them just so I could drink the wine to get the corks!  Or may be not!  That might create issues....

 This same shop also makes this cool  L-O-V-E for $275.00
Check out the shop, they really do have some fun things...

Another great idea to make this fabulous bath mat.  This would be fun in the shower room at my beach house...

Click Here for Step by Step Instuctions!

I'm also digging this lattice cork board with the corks laid in an interesting pattern.  People have been making cork boards for years but this adds a new twist to the pattern!  I think this would be easy to make, but again if you aren't the crafty type it can be purchase it
 from here for $50.00!

Another idea I found were these cool orbs created by pinning the corks on end into a styrofoam ball or chains make from corks that have been sliced and joined to create a chain link rope.  How cool would these be as drapery tie backs.  These were done in where else... Anthropologie!  I love the way they take nothing and make art with it!

Here is another picture of cork art from Anthropologie.  The ends of the cork were dipped in paint and then used created the cork sculpture!  Sometimes I go into Anthropologie just to see what they have created.  I secretly want that job!  I heard they have a art room in the back of the stores just for the person who creates all the art!  How awesome would that be?


How bout this great idea for  herb growers... cork herb markers from Lisa at "Let Your Light Shine", a set of these would make a great gift...

click here for how to

 This cute monogram board was created by Kathryn at "I can't find the time", you gotta love the name of her blog!  I wish I had a nickel for every time I say that.  I could hire someone to do all my projects with all those nickels!

How to here!

This has to be one of my favorite ideas even though it is with champagne corks and not wine corks.  .  I don't have very many champagne corks, but I do have a few.  Wouldn't these  be cute knobs for a chest of drawers or a bar cabinet?  I'll have to tell "Miss Mustard Seed", these look like something she would like!

Last but not least, if you don't want to be crafty but don't want to throw away your corks, check locally to see if you have a recycler who takes corks.  I know there are several online.  Some of them will even pay for your corks but you have to have about 10 lbs which is a lot of freaking corks....
The options are endless!  Now to decide which project to make?  What do you think?  Do you have wine corks lying around waiting to become works of art or objects of use?  Hopefully, you will at least think about recycling the next time you are tempted to toss a cork in the trash even if you don't want to make anything out of them. 
 I think it would be fun to  look at our creations and remember both the fun times making the project as well as the good times we had drinking the wine.  
I'll share my project if I ever get one made, right now "I can't find the time"....

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Friday, September 23, 2011

Fabric is an Obsession of Mine...

Ok, I'm admitting it!  I am obsessed with fabrics!  I love the patterns,
the textures, but mostly the overall idea that someone created a design in their heads that came out in something beautiful like a piece of fabric!  In design school, we had to make woodblock designs and create our own fabric.  It took me back to my elementary school art class where we used potatoes and cut them in unique shapes and stamped them on brown paper to make wrapping paper for our Mom's mother's day gifts.  It was so much fun then and it continued to be fun for me when I was an adult in school and doing the same thing on a much larger scale.  When I look at fabrics today, there are so many different processes used to create designs.  Some of the designs are totally manipulated by the computer and while they are interesting and serve a purpose, I am still intrigued by the patterns that are hand done.  There are several companies in particular that I want to share with you.  I feel like this type of work is art.  I love the imperfections caused by creating the patterns by hand.  Here are a couple of my favorites....

John Robshaw is one of my favorite textile designers.  John graduated from Pratt and studied block printing in China, but it was a trip to India where he developed a love of the artisans and their way of making fabric.  He journey to India was to find an indigo ink for his woodblock prints, but  he acquired more than the ink.   His love for artisan creations and how the "human touch" affected the overall design of the fabrics was the beginning of what has grown into John Robshaw Textiles.  His designs seem to work in any decor.   Beautiful, timeless pieces of art for your home. Combining patterns that seem as though they evolved over time.  He truly is an example of "do what you love and the rest will follow".

Here are some of his designs...


I love mixing the patterns to create an interested, eclectic bed.  These patterns seems to combine just the perfect amount of masculine and feminine so that they work well for both sexes.  He uses only the highest quality linens so not only are they pretty to look at, but are all so very soft and luxurious.  

Another designer team  I admire for their hand made fabrics is..

The design team of Galbraith and Paul

When I originally called their studio to inquire about ordering products, I spoke to a very knowledgeable and friendly person.  Little did I know until the end of the conversation, but I was actually speaking to Ephraim Paul, who with his partner, Liz Galbraith are the founders of this amazing company.  The company began in 1986 and now creates not only beautiful fabrics but also handmade rugs and handmade wallpapers.  The also make an entire line for Room and Board.  Check out their beautiful designs here.  Below are a few of my favorite designs from their collection...



Lighting with the Galbraith and Paul designs....

 John Robshaw  and Galbraith & Paul products can be purchased online or through the trade.  Click here for Robshaw and here for Galbraith & Paul

The next time you are looking at fabrics, remember that someone made that design, it didn't just appear.  Thinking about the process involved in designing a fabric often helps us to appreciate the price of something or the beauty that has been created for our pleasure
Who knows one day soon I might break out the wood and carve my own wood block design and create something unique.

When I do I will be sure to share with you!
Have a fabulous weekend and try to stay dry!
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Friday, September 16, 2011


My fellow blogger, Emily Clark of Emily Clark Design posted a new bedding resource
this morning and guess what!  It looks almost like my Ann Gish Bedding
at a fraction of the price!  Of course it isn't silk but then who cares right?
Actually, my husband would say "hurray, it's not silk"!  He hates our silk bedding.
(I make him put a blanket on it if he wants to lie down on top of the spread to watch tv)
I know... I am "mean", but what's a girl to do?

Here is my bedding, from Ann Gish....

Ann Gish

Here is the look alike from Jill Sorenson of LiveLikeYou...
Available in orange, black, navy and turquoise.  Much better priced than mine...
don't tell my hubby....

Jill Sorenson
Check it out here!   Her blog is pretty cool too!
Thanks Emily for the info!
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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Absence of Color....

I have always been a self proclaimed lover of color!
The brighter the better!  However, I am feeling a tugging on my heartstrings
every time I witness true beauty in the absence of color.  To see  objects
without the distraction of color, brings a new prospective to form and 
composition.  Here are some examples of how beauty is created through
shape and texture without strong color.

Could anything be more beautiful than this vase of white roses
beside the sterling framed baby picture and silver salt seller?


The black leather straps on these baskets bring out the black
in the painting and link the items of totally different composition together
creating a harmonious vignette in this hallway.

This foyer is a good example of how light effects the neutral palette.  Here we have shades of white against a two toned herringbone stained floor.  Texture takes center stage without color stealing its thunder, through the combination of the glass, wood, and linen.  The strong shape of the lampshades as well as the dark and light tones of the herringbone in the floor, becomes important in bringing balance to the vignette.

All natural, this garden setting is a great example of how neutral items
work together to create an interesting composition.  The little bits of green
peeking out from the vases and reflected in the mirror, do add a little
color, but the interest here is in the combination of wood, stone and iron.
Without lots of color, you see the round and curvy shapes balanced 
by the horizontal shutters in the background.   

I love the way your eyes are drawn to the art in this hallway.
You actually feel as though you interrupted this man
and his work.  The lack of color brings the viewer into the
painting, bringing prominence to the work.

Here is one of the best examples of how the objects create 
compositions when color is taken out of the equation.
In this situation, it brings calmness and order to the bedroom.

Thanks to  Tracery Interiors and  Velvet and Linen for
great examples of using neutrals to create beautiful spaces.  

What is your style?  What makes your heart sing?  
Do you prefer neutrals or color in decorating?  

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Sunday, September 11, 2011

In Memory of 9/11....10 years later

photo courtesy of Andrea Slack

What were you doing 10 years ago on this day?  Do you remember? I was standing in my kitchen, after getting my kids off to school.  I was talking on the phone to one of my friends. The tv was on, but I wasn't really focused on it.  Suddenly, I saw something so unbelievable! At first glance, I thought it was a movie trailer. The announcers were frantic they gained my attention long enough for me to realize the sky in NYC was ablaze.   All I could do was stand  in shock with tears streaming down my face.  It was unreal!  We were under attack from the enemy! The twin towers were burning and crumbling to the ground.  There was another report of a plane crash due to a suicide bomber.  The pentagon was under siege.  There was total pandemonium!   I suddenly wanted my kids at home.  I wanted to call everyone I loved and say "I love You".  It was a sobering moment.   It felt as if all the things we have worried about were happening.  Where would it end? Would it end?  What was the damage? Who was to blame?  Who would be this evil to attach innocent people and cause such heartache.
It has been 10 years since that morning, but when I remember that I still get that sick feeling I felt watching the bombing.   It wasn't until eight years after 9/11, when my son died, that I  unfortunately experienced first hand  the loss those families felt that day.  
It is unexplainable.  There are no words....

When you lose a loved one, you can never go back to the way life was before the tragedy, you can never make up missing that ball game or play,  you can never say prayers with that person again, you can't take back words spoken in anger, the laughter is gone, their voice is no longer heard, you hunger for their smell when you hugged them.  It's too late, it's over...

On this anniversary date, let's make a promise to live as if every day is our last. 
Do it right the first time.  Don't make room for regrets.   Be thankful to those who gave their lives for our freedom.  Let's use 9/11 as a reminder to Love More and argue less,
 give a little grace, be thankful for the little things....

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Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Food for Thought....

"When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the
goals, adjust the action steps."

Last week was a killer!  It reminded me why a timeline is detrimental to a project.
   Each part of a project has to happen in a sequence.  If one of the sequences is off schedule, it throws the entire project timeline off.  If your team doesn't understand the important of adhering to the time schedule, then you have major problems.   My projects always run so smoothly that I don't worry about whether I will finish, I just always know it will get done as planned.  When you work in a new place, with new people sometimes things don't go as planned.  Let's just say that last week was one of the most frustrating weeks, I have had since I began my design practice.  As a result of the schedule being off, all the things I had planned to get done did not get done.  I don't have pictures to post of the project because I was so tired when I left the house, I forgot to take them.  However, when I go back I will be sure to take some and post them!  The painting is finished, the new lighting is hung, the mattresses are finally in the bedrooms and one shipment of furniture has arrived!  
The second shipment will arrive this week.  Great artwork is ready to be hung!   
Things are finally coming together!   

"When it is obvious that the goals cannot be reached, don't adjust the
goals, adjust the action steps."


One thing for sure...
You are only as good as your back up plan!

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