Friday, April 29, 2011

Royal Wedding

I'd like to interrupt our regularly scheduled posts for a quick word about the Royal wedding.  I'm not usually into hype, but I found myself fascinated by the Royal wedding this week.  I remember watching the wedding of Princess Diana and Prince Charles from the Delta Zeta house (in the same chair I was in when John Lennon was killed).  My sorority sisters and I were in awe of the genuine innocence of Diana.  We all cried.  We hoped to meet a prince.  I never did, but I've kissed many frogs.

Last night I was caught up.  What will Kate wear?  How will she wear her hair?  What amazing pagentry, how on Earth do you plan such an event?  It's not often I want to sit in front of the TV.  Since I have no TV, I watched it on the Internet.  Back when Diana and Charles were married, I never could have imagined the miracle of the Internet.  I heard a statistic last night - please forgive me that it is not accurate but only an approximation - you'll get the idea.  Some 81 million viewers tuned in to see Diana and Charles married.  Today between TV and Internet, about 3 billion tuned in.  Astonishing.

Why are so many people interested in this?  In a word, it's love.  We need more of it.  I find myself excited about the prospect of progressive Royals.  Kate will gracefully wield power I can only imagine.  I do, however, know how I would use that power.  I'd ask the world's people to once and for all lay down their arms.  William and Kate, I wish you much love and happiness.  I look forward to watching you change the world.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Portrait of an Artist

Dear readers, as you know, I've been obsessing quite a bit about decor lately.  I've decided to switch the focus over the next week or so to art.  I am happiest when I am painting, and I am working on a new series of paintings.  One of my writing professors once told budding writers to study the work of authors they enjoy.  I thought this was good advice, so I am going to study the work of painters that I enjoy.  I hope you will enjoy this journey.  

I'd like to start by featuring a great artist, and a dear friend of mine, Haley Litzinger.  Haley is a creative person, who lives her life as art.  She is an intellectual who deeply ponders questions of God and human choice.  She says it better than I ever could: "Humans' essential nature is good; holding or comparing oneself to the polarity of good and bad will cause an inoperative disconnection with this essential nature."  See more of Haley's Artist's Statement and Bio at RWAV.  I feel a kinship to Haley.  Indeed, elements of her work remind me of my own.  She also loves to explore detritus, urban decay and her work questions human intervention by often taking on apocalyptic tones.  In my own work, I like to question the notion of what we consider beautiful and ugly and render both of these constructs as illusion.

I had the pleasure of visiting Haley at her studio recently.  I adore artists' studios and plan to do a full post on studios in the near future.  When she first rented the studio she told me she planned to paint the ceilings, floors and walls white.  I wholeheartedly agreed!  I love all white boxes, and they are especially great for creating.  She also wanted a chill space where friends could hang out.  I see Haley as a love child of hippies, sweet and innocent, yet sophisticated too.  Nothing too conventional for her would do.  I could see her with Bohemian, Moroccan and Hindu influences and colors.  Lots of textiles, but also touches of nature.  I suggested to her that we collect driftwood to make a chandelier.

I scoured the Internet for inspiration.  This is her  favorite of all the many pictures I collected for her.  I apologize for not remembering its source.  Please contact me if you know the designer of this fab room.  Here are some pictures from Haley's studio.  It was totally fun visiting her there.
The studio.  Makes me want to create!  I love the industrial shelving.  It has great windows and great light.  I could live here!
Haley at work.  She works with resin, creating multi-layered collages with depth.

Here's the chill corner.  She got the sofa and chairs from Craigslist.  Unfortunately, the day I was there the pillow covers were in the wash, but I think you get the idea of how cute they are.  Haley raised the seating area by placing it on palettes.  Too fab!  I love the little crate used as a coffee table and the lanterns.  Just the right amount of earthiness.

Here's a close up on the rug, it's a very deep shag.  She got the rug on sale at World Market.
Another thing Haley and I have in common is that she also has two young nephews she adores.  Here is some of their art hanging on the wall.  I think it's too cool.  The wind chime adds a nice organic touch.  Here are some photos of Haley's work:

Photos don't really do these complex pieces justice.  They have a multi-layered depth to them, I tried to capture it by photographing them from the side.  When looking at her pieces, you are literally drawn into another world.  It was fun to watch her work.  Here is a work in progress:
I hope you have enjoyed this tour of Haley's studio.  If you are a local artist and would like to be featured on this blog, please send me an email.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter, dear readers!  I love Easter, it signifies rebirth.  After the long, difficult winter I know we all need a rebirth.  Spring is a time of creativity.  Thank you so much to everyone who takes the time to read my blog.  I can't tell you how much it means to me.  Stay tuned, exciting things planned for this week.  xxoo

Saturday, April 23, 2011


Have you been following Apartment Therapy's Small Cool Contest?  I think it's great fun.  I love to see how people create a stylish and functional home in a small place.  This year one of my favorite entries featured a sofa covered in houndstooth fabric.

Kathryn's The Couch was the Catalyst.  Man, that sofa is to die for!  I love how she took a motif and ran with it.  Love the shag rug, the acrylic table and the red accents.

And fabulous wallpaper!  Kathryn has a business recovering chairs which can be found here.  You already know of my love of yellow pops.  I was so inspired by this place, I wanted to see how it would look with yellow accents instead of red.  I hope Kathryn doesn't mind.

Fab!  Clearly this home would work with whatever accent color she chooses.  I could see hot pink, turquoise or cobalt blue used as the accent color.  The red is totally hot, but if she tires of it, it would be easy to change.

I'm not much of a pattern person, but I do love houndstooth.   I have some houndstooth fabric I've been saving for a long time.  Maybe I should have a pillow made.  Here's the fabric wrapped around a pillow.  What do you think?  Good luck in the contest Katherine and thanks for being an inspiration!

Adding pops of black to your decor

Black is a color I never would have used in my decor several years ago.  Now I love it!  Black can be added to any color scheme.  It adds instant sophistication and edge to a room that otherwise may appear too girly or sweet.  It looks great with lots of white and a pop of bright color. 

Black looks great with large amounts of white and pops of yellow, as this fabulous room shows.
Black also looks great with pink, silver and gray.  This room might be too girly with the cameo pillowcases without being balanced by black and the silver lamps.  Black gives it the perfect amount of edge.  Above two images Bianca's Bright White Cottage via Apartment Therapy's Small Cool 2001.
The black lamp helps to ground this room so that it's not too witty, while the yellow shade adds just the right amount of pop.  I adore that silver chair!  Image via Elle Decor.
Black accessories add the perfect amount of punch to this gorgeous room.  Love the pink pillows trimmed with black ribbon, the Moroccan table and the large artwork over the sofa.  The room is feminine, but definitely edgy.  Image via Rue Magazine.
Speaking of edge, how fab are these black chairs?  They resemble tires and are the perfect foil to the white.  The round shape is repeated in the ottoman.  Notice the skillful use of art and pattern in this room.  The room is witty but still remains sophisticated because it is not overdone.  Darek Swalwell via Desire to Inspire.

This lovely room combines pops of turquoise, yellow and red.  It remains fresh looking because of the large amount of white.  A pop of silver is provided by the table.  Notice how skillfully the accessories are chosen.  Yellow pillows and gorgeous collection of glass.  The yellow, red and black colors of the glass collection tie the room together.  The whole thing is grounded by a black and white rug.  This is, indeed, a skillfully designed room.  Image via HGTV.

I need this colorful dresser.  Image via Design Boom.

Here's my favorite corner of my apartment.  I love to change it around.  I've added a black pillow.  If you'd like to add some pops of black to your place, it's as easy as adding a vase, a pillow or a piece of art.  (For more details see Peggy's Rules for Decorating.)  Afraid of black?  Try a little slate gray.

Here are some lovely pieces that can be added to your room if you'd like to add a pop of black.  Coil Side Table available at Urban Outfitters.  I love this piece, and it's reasonably priced.  Beautiful black vase by Kim Westad.  Cute metal flower wall hangings from My Olive Flower (only $10 for three!).  Beautiful pillow from Chic Decor Pillows.

Note:  If you buy something from Etsy as a result of seeing it on this blog, please let me know.  I'm trying to track Etsy sales.  Thanks so much!

Friday, April 22, 2011


Happy weekend, dear readers!  I'm working on a new painting, so that means I am obsessing about color!  Something new for me (sarcasm).  Maybe it's also because it's gray outside and I can't wait for Spring.  As you know, I obsess about color all day long and it makes me happy!  I have so many pictures in my inspiration folder, I thought I'd share an explosion of color with you.  Hope you enjoy!

Love that orange lamp!  Pink and orange look great together, especially with large amounts of white.  Image via Rue Magazine.
Love the coral behind the book case and the pops of yellow.  Lovely display of pottery and vintage dessert glasses.  Image via Kelly + Olive.

 Groovy dining room designed by uber talented David Bromstad.  Image via HGTV.

Not sure if these walls are yellow or chartreuse, just sure that I dig 'em.  Love the white bookcase against the color, and the beautifully displayed collection.  Image via Apartment Therapy.
Yummy lime green!  Notice the hand painted floor.  Fab!  Room designed by Christina Murphy.

Love the turquoise walls.  Love the yellow credenza.  Jennie's Colorful & Carefree via Apartment Therapy's Small Cool 2011.

Dig the orange plexiglass sideboard and silver stools.  Image Living Etc.

Love the colorful glass collection on the coffee table.  Image via Desire to Inspire.  What about you?  What colors are you obsessing about?  Are you craving pops of yellow and pink?  Do you have Spring fever?

Pretty Pink Rooms

Here's a small dose of pretty pink.  Hope you are enjoying your Friday!

 Rue Magazine.
Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz.  I love pink walls and all white furniture and accessories!

Friday, April 15, 2011

My apartment - the process and a new painting

As I mentioned below, I've been rearranging my apartment today.  I have design ADD.  I have no money to spend, so I'm just moving things around.  As I was rearranging, I again marveled at how much stuff I have.  Where does it all come from?  I like a sparse environment, so I rotate my collection.  As I pull some things out of the closet and put other things into the closet, I get very inspired.  Sometimes color schemes emerge on their own, and that makes me want to paint.  Here is a little preview of my current process.
I adore dishes and teapots.  I rearranged some of my collection in the kitchen.  And look at that - a strange and unexpected color combination emerged.  Pink, black and white.  I kinda dig it.
Remember my little gray bookcase (that used to be white and then hot pink).  Well now it's a bubble gum pink.  I just can't get enough pink.  I hate the mirrors in the alcove in my apartment, so I'm experimenting with hanging fabric.  I love it.  I want to cover the entire living room in fabric!

 Untitled, 2011, 24"x30", acrylic on canvas.

Since I was so inspired by this color scheme, I decided to do a new painting!  I love how it turned out.  This is a style I want to cultivate - simple, minimal, geometric paintings.  I don't usually like the way they turn out because I am such a perfectionist.  This kind of painting is not as easy as it looks.  Simple, but not easy.  I have a beautiful new turquoise pillow which is a gift from my sister-in-law.  Can I make my turquoise accents fit with all this pink and black?  Of course!  Here's a little known secret.  No colors ever really clash.  Just take a look at nature, or at the way Jonathan Adler decorates.

My apartment - a quick tour

My mom is coming for a visit tomorrow.  This will be the first time she has visited this apartment.  In honor of her visit, I am cleaning the apartment a little better than usual.  I'm a little obsessive when it comes to my apartment.  As you know, I enjoy experimenting with different styling, color and accessories.  So I wasn't happy to just clean today.  No that just wouldn't do.  I got into a full blown rearrangement.  Then I realized I hadn't shown you my most recent arrangement, so I thought I'd better do that since I'm changing it.

Living area.  Lots of hot pink and turquoise.  Two of my favorites.  Thinking of changing this into the bedroom and turning the bedroom into a studio.

Quirky alcove at the front of the apartment.  Right now I'm using it for my studio, which makes such a mess.  I may turn this into the living area if I move the studio into the bedroom.  I'd just love to be able to close the door on the mess.
My beloved Dee Adams painting is hanging in the hallway.  I want to turn this hallway into an art gallery.

Bedroom.  It's really small.  Not much else fits in there but the bed.  I moved the pink curtains in there.  The sunlight is glorious in the morning.

Little corner of my kitchen.  It's cramped, but I love sitting there with a cup of coffee and a good book in the morning.  Please ignore the ugly tile.  Honestly, I don't know what some landlords are thinking.  This apartment has the ugliest finishes.  On the positive side is the balcony, I just love it!  I need to start looking for some plants.  Any tips on plants that are hard to kill, dear readers?

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Thinking about a mural

Below I mentioned that I'd like to do a mural in my apartment.  This is a picture I cut out of a magazine some time ago.  I think it would make a cool mural.  I love the original image, and I've been playing with it in picnik.  Do you use picnik?  It's great fun and very addicting.  Since I can't do anything permanent in my apartment, I'd love to have one or all of these images rasterized.  I think my favorite is the pink one in the first row.  Which is your favorite?


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