Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Which One Did She Pick?

Yesterday I showed you three different idea boards that I created for my friend, Ashley. Well, after some deliberation, she chose this one...

However, we made some tweaks to the plan.  She opted to do away with the zebra hide and instead do some small sheepskin throws on the seats of the slip-covered chairs. As for the host/hostess chairs, she wanted to keep them as is so that she would have more money to spend on the candelabra chandelier and the teal silk dupioni drapes. Finally, she wanted to add two lanterns to the table scape.

Ashley and I are both very excited to get started on her dining room, and will share pictures of our progress asap.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A Friend's Dining Room Project

I am currently helping one of my life-long friends, Ashley, decorate her dining room. Like many people, Ashley has furniture that she either inherited, married into, or that was given to her by her in-laws. Here is a picture:

As you can see, she has some absolutely gorgeous pieces. However, she really wanted to lighten the room up and make it a little more her. I asked her to email me some inspirational pictures and describe the overall look she was going for. She informed me that she had purchased a large, 3-piece bookcase and wanted the space to be a dining room/study. She also said she loved the idea of layering rugs, playing with different textures like animal furs, burlap, etc., and bringing in the colors aqua, robins egg blue, turquoise, and the like. Finally, Ashley had a tiny amount of some black and white striped fabric that she wanted to somehow incorporate into the mix.

Based on our conversations, I knew that her style was shabby chic with a modern edge and that I needed to incorporate those styles into a traditional dining room setting. So, these are what I came up with:

#1 -




Stay tuned to find out which one she picked!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

A Few Fall Inspired Interiors

Tonight, I watched the Alabama game at a friend's house on her back patio. She has the best setup for game day: two TVs, a large sitting area, a fire pit, three grills (if not more), even a refrigerator! It's awesome! Anyways, I noticed that it had gotten quite chilly outside. In fact, I had gotten so cold that we rode home with the heat on. When I stepped inside the house, I could smell the scent of my pumpkin candle in the air and thought, "Oh Fall! How happy I am to finally have you here."

With the Fall season in mind, I ran across some interiors that I thought would be appropriate to share with you. See if you can figure out what they have in common...

via Ralph Lauren Home; other images found via here

If you guessed animal print and plaid, you are exactly right! I love the juxtaposition of the mod with the rustic. It's very unexpected, but it totally works. For me, the animal print is glamorous and brings some energy to the space. The plaid, on the other hand, is toned down and cozies the room up a bit. I would certainly do this in a study or something. What about you? Would you mix the two in your house?

Hope all of you in blog land are having a relaxing, fun-filled, (fill in the blank) weekend!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Dress Your Nest

Are you wanting to decorate a room in your home but don't know where to start? Here's a tip: go to your closet. It is one of the best places to get inspiration for designing a space. Think about it. There is a reason you chose those particular pieces of clothing, pair of shoes, or handbags to dress yourself, whether it be because of their color, pattern, texture, etc. The same concept works for your home. Dress your nest the same way you would dress yourself.

Here's what I mean...

In the example above, both the model's jacket and the bench are structured and made of cognac leather, giving them a very masculine look. And in the second example, the chandelier is reminiscent of the model's hairpiece.

However, when dressing your nest, you don't always have to be so literal. You can also simply use furniture pieces and textiles that have the same feel as your clothes, such as that in the first image. While the model's pink dress is literally shown in the throw pillows, it is also portrayed by the overall femininity of the room.

Clothing and accessories can be interpreted through design in a variety of ways. Let me know if I can help you put together an outfit to dress your nest! An E-Design service is currently in the works (woo! hoo!), and I am dying to get started.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Go Green By Decorating

It's always a great day when one of my catalogs comes in the mail. Today it was Pottery Barn. As I was flipping through it, I noticed this art gallery:

The designers had basically taken sheet music and other random pages from books and applied them to the wall. I thought it was so interesting and such a great way to recycle old books and newspapers! I showed the Hubs, and even he liked it. (Though, I knew he would because he is an avid music enthusiast. Seriously, he can play anything on the guitar.) But anyways, back to the sheet music...

Emily Hewett, author of A Well Dressed Home, did an entire wall this way using pages from romance novels. Wow!

You can read more about Emily's project here.

And, here is another image where the designer used newspaper clippings as wallpaper:

I've also seen designers and artists recycling old books by printing vintage images onto their pages like this:

I don't know about you, but I love this! In fact, I loved it so much that I bought this little guy for my own home off of Can you believe he was only $8.00?!?
The seller had all kinds of prints to choose from, but this one was calling out to me. 

If you are needing to fill up a blank wall in your home, I hope these have given you some inspiration.  Happy Recycling Decorating!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

September 11, 2001

I vividly remember where I was, what I was doing...every little detail of 9/11. I was a junior in high school and was ironically wearing red, white, and blue on that day. The first plane crashed while I was working as a teacher's assistant.  Though, I didn't do much assisting that day- all I could do was stare at the television in disbelief. As I watched the second plane hit, I could hear gasps from the other classrooms, and a sense of fear overcame my body. People kept talking about "terrorists" and "war".  I was extremely naive and had no idea what it meant to be at war or what it meant for our country to be attacked by terrorists. I just knew I was very afraid.

Then, I remember the days following. The concerts, the vigils, and all the American flags. They lined the streets, hung on every house, on overpasses, businesses, and on cars. They were everywhere. Along with sorrow, anger, and fear, that tragic day brought pride, generosity, courage, patriotism, empathy, and goodwill. It was a time that we were all proud to be Americans.

Here we are now at the ten-year anniversary. Today we mourn the lives that were lost. We honor the countless heroes in New York, Pennsylvania, Washington, and especially those on Flight 93 and in battlefields abroad. We celebrate the death of Osama Bin Laden. Today we remember September 11, 2001 - a day America will never forget!

Picture via

Thursday, September 8, 2011

It's Football Season...

And that means its time for good food, good brews, and good times! Today's post will feature the Hubby's and my favorite tailgating recipes. It was so difficult to narrow it down, but here are our top five dishes in no particular order:

1) Texas Caviar -

1 (15 ounce) can black beans rinsed and drained
1 (15 ounce) can whole kernel corn
3/4 cup fresh salsa or pico de gallo
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
1 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon cumin
Salt and Pepper to taste
Hot Sauce to taste

Combine ingredients in a large glass or plastic mixing bowl. Cover and refrigerate for at least two hours before serving. Yields 6 servings.

2) Bacon-Hugged Lil Smokies -

1 (16 oz.) package of lil smokies sausages
1 lb. bacon
3/4 cup brown sugar

Cut each bacon strip into thirds and wrap each third around a smokie. Secure the bacon with a toothpick. Place two inches apart on a cookie sheet and sprinkle with the brown sugar. Bake for 40-45 minutes at 325 degrees.

3) Spicy Sausage Cheese Dip, courtesy of my friend Heather Locklar -

1 (16 oz.) box of Velveeta
1 (10 oz.) can hot Rotel, undrained
1 (16 oz.) jar of mild chunky salsa
1 lb. mild sausage
1 lb. hot sausage

Crumble and cook sausage until browned and drain. Then, mix the sausage and remaining ingredients in a microwaveable bowl. Microwave for 5 minutes or until cheese is completely melted. Serve with tortilla chips. THANK YOU, HEATHER!

4) Hot Ham Sammies -

1 12-count package of King Hawaiian Rolls
1/2 cup melted butter
1/2 tsp ground mustard
1 tsp poppy seeds
2 tsp onion flakes
1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
1 package Swiss cheese
12-16 oz. thinly sliced ham

Slice the dinner rolls in half, and make a sandwich with the ham, cheese, and rolls. Mix all the other ingredients together in a bowl, and drizzle the mixture over the sandwiches. Bake at 350 degrees until cheese is gooey (usually 15 minutes). Yields a dozen sammies.

5) Buffalo Chicken Dip -

4 chicken breasts, cooked and chopped
1 bottle of hot sauce (such as Tobasco)
1 block of cream cheese
1 jar of Naturally Fresh Ranch Dressing or Bleu Cheese Dressing
2 cups grated cheddar cheese
Frito Scoops

Combine the chicken and hot sauce. Place in a casserole dish. Combine cream cheese and dressing, and pour over the chicken mixture. Top with cheese. Bake for 30 minutes at 350 degrees. Serve with Frito Scoops.

Hope you enjoy these yummy dishes as much as I do! Also, if anyone has a guacamole recipe, please send it my way. I haven't been able to find one I love quite yet.

Thanks and Happy Friday!

My Inaugural Post

After much consideration, I finally jumped on the bandwagon and started my own blog. Boy, am I excited!! For years now, I have been saving magazines and pictures of different interiors, exteriors, color combinations, furniture pieces, recipes, tablescapes, (you name it) and have never shared them with anyone. So I thought this blog could be my outlet to do just that. With that said...

I stopped by the store today, and while I was there I picked up the latest issues of Southern Living and Better Homes and Gardens. BHG really caught my eye because of the turquoise and gold color combination used on its cover. I have always thought those two colors make a brilliant duo! The turquoise brings in the fun while the gold adds a touch of sophistication. In fact, those are the colors currently used in my living room (photos of which are to come soon). In the meantime, check out these images:

This plate reminds of my grandmother's tableware - in a good way that is!

Isn't this rug fun?!?

Would LOVE this in an entryway!

Very glam!

Wowzers! I especially love the gold mirrored chest. Isn't it gorgeous?!?

The gold table settings are very formal while the turquoise chairs are not to be taken so seriously.

The two colors here create a very luxe bedroom space.

This is definitely a fun twist on a traditional living room.

The tufted turquoise headboard is a show stopper, for sure!

Turquoise and gold damask wallpaper...yes, please!
What do you think? Do you have a favorite color combo? Do share!

Sources: Railroad Memories,, Four Walls and a Roof blog, Live Like You blog, Design Manifest, David Jiminez via Decorpad, Sister Sophisticate blog, MMR Interiors via Decorpad, Summer Thornton via Decorpad, Hidden in France


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