Monday, April 30, 2012

Pallets, Crates and Slipcovers

I love reading the opinions of designers, but I usually take them with a grain of salt and do whatever I want.  I don't worry about trends and am limited by a small (no) budget.  So when I read today that pallets and slipcovers are no longer trendy, my thought was I didn't realize they were ever trendy.  Since I am limited by lack of funds, I prefer casual design and love to see how people with small budgets (and spaces) solve problems.  The point of all this:  when decorating your home do what you want.  Trust your instincts.  Listen to advice, but only take that which appeals to you.  And most of all have fun.

I'd like to humbly offer some inspiration showing that pallets, crates and slipcovers can look chic in your home.  I am falling in love with a little rustic element thrown in.


Love the gray bedding and the low scale of the lamps.  Also love the white painted floor.  Above two images Bodie and Fou.
Bonus points for using industrial wheels on this pallet coffee table!  Love it.  Image via flickr.

Stunning use of pallets!  I'd love to have some of these for my deck!  Stay tuned for a post on outdoor decor, which I am currently obsessing about (like we all do at this time of year).  Above two images Simone Tasca via Desire to Inspire.


Love the touch of rusticity this crate as coffee table provides.  Also love the organic rug and the artwork, and - of course - those fab sofas!  See the rest of this wonderful home tour at Desire to Inspire.  To see creative use of crates in display, see previous post here.


This gorgeous room remains simple and cozy at the same time with its skillful use of texture.  You know I love those white floors.  Image Mary Beth Koeth.
Gorgeous.  Love the gray.  Image via The Style Files.

Don't these rooms make you want to put your feet up and sip on a nice cup of tea?  You wouldn't have to worry about spills.  Perhaps you'd prefer a nap.  It's all good.  I like life a little less perfect.  And not to mention the obvious benefit of upcycling to the environment.  Image via Damien Russell

Want to see one of my favorite rooms featuring a chenille bedspread as a slipcover?  Click here.

Design Obsession: A Mood Board for Haley's New Apartment

My good friend and artist extraordinaire, Haley, has a new apartment!  I am so excited for her.  It is perfect for her.  It's a gorgeous space.  Sort of like a 60s lodge.  It has high ceilings, a large sleeping loft, great windows.  The best part is that the area is wooded, and there is a large deck overlooking tons of trees!  Haley is a nature girl, she needs to be surrounded by trees.  As you know, I am always decorating places in my head, it's an obsession.  So, of course, Haley's place is no different.  I've been having a ton of fun thinking what I would do if I were her interior designer.

The place is still a work in progress, but it's easy to see how gorgeous it is.  This is the view to the living room from the sleeping loft.
Here is how her living room currently looks.  As you can see, she is on her way to having a fabulous place that is all her own.  The theme for decorating Haley's place is FEARLESS.  We are not afraid of color, pattern, texture, DIY projects and money is no object.  We trust our instincts.  Her home should be a mix of Moroccan, Asian, rustic and mid century modern.  And very, very Bohemian.
Haley has a great start with her chartreuse pillows and her organic rug.  I've merely added my three favorite colors (pink, turquoise and orange) and a little texture.  The over sized vases are lacquered bamboo from Z Gallerie and would hold the bamboo branches she got from Ikea.  Poetic isn't it?   Bamboo vases holding bamboo branches.   A good example of the versatility of bamboo.  The fleece pillow is from Anthropologie.  A trio of ottomans is a great solution for a coffee table.  The nail heads provide a Moroccan influence.  Haley has nephews who visit.  Ottomans are perfect for tea parties, playing games or occasional seating.  Kids love them!  Image via Girl Meets Glamour.  Pink and gold painting of the sunset by Peggy.

Haley is a wonderful host.  In addition to needing a beautiful tea set, she will need several beautiful trays for serving.  This one from le souk would work well.
Here is a custom Arc lamp I envision to the right of the sofa.  This lamp would balance the height of the bamboo shoots and honor Haley's love of rusticity.  The base of the lamp is made of a railroad tie. The lamp provides a nod to mid century design, which I think is an important part of any room.  In addition, the lamp would highlight the beautiful high ceilings as well as mimic the ceiling beams.

Here is how her dining area looks at the moment.  She spray painted a mural on the paneling, but decided she didn't like it and is taking it down.  We've all been there.  Mistakes are made, but it's no big deal.  It's only paint and you have to take risks.  She got the gorgeous table from Craigslist and painted white.  Here are a few changes I envision to this area of her apartment.
She's on the right track wanting to paint that ugly paneling.  I went round and round attempting to design a swirly, Moroccan mural for this wall.  After much consternation, I finally decided to do a simple accent wall in a Tiffany box blue.  All girls need one Tiffany blue wall in their home.  Haley loves plants and would love to do a living wall, so perhaps this is a good place to hang it.  She is more aware of lighting issues than I am!  I'm not good with plants.  This cute living wall is from Etsy shop owner sosucculent.  Makes me want to give it a try in my place.  The hanging light is another nod to the mid century, but also has somewhat of a Moroccan inspired shape.  It's from Etsy shop owner AntiqueAddictions.

Perhaps a buffet under the living wall.  I adore this partially lacquered piece with wood peaking through.  It nods to rusticity as well as mid century glamor.  Image via (now defunct) Domino Magazine website.

Haley has a deck overlooking a beautiful wooded area.  It's heaven.

She needs a few over sized pots for her garden.  These lovelies are reasonably priced from Marshalls.  She has a green thumb, so maybe she can plant some herbs.  And maybe some wonderfully aromatic lavender.  Her deck doors open to her studio, which I am sure will be totally fabulous when she is done with it.  I am hoping she and I will collaborate on some art together.
Here is the window to the sleeping loft.  This must be heavenly on a rainy day.  I wouldn't put window treatments here.  Maybe just some pretty votive candles.
Haley dyed this lovely gossamer fabric with tea.  She's going to hang it over her bed like mosquito netting.  I've always wanted to do that!
Inside the netting she plans to hang her favorite chandelier made by her mom.

Here's an idea I've always wanted to try.  Painting a headboard on a canvas.  Maybe this would work in Haley's bedroom.  Image via Penny Farthing Design House via sfgirlbybay.  I envision her bedroom painted a lovely pale lilac.  Very Jamie Drake inspired.  Of course, she would need some luxurious bedding.  This organic bedding from West Elm would work very nicely.
For her dresser I think she needs this fab patchwork dresser by namedesignstudio.  I adore it!
This is just a start.  I know her place is going to be great when it's done.  It's been great fun thinking about it.  I'll be sure to keep you updated!  Thanks for reading!  xo

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Qora & Shai

I am in love with the artwork at Qora & Shai!  Simple, graphic, geometric, minimal.  Beautiful use of positive and negative space.  Perfect for a modern home.  I love them all so I had a hard time picking just a few to feature here.

The one that got away

Has this ever happened to you?  Sometime ago I saw a beautiful vintage vase in a thrift store.  I passed on it.  I try not to impulse buy.  After I left I couldn't stop thinking about that vase.  I went back and it was gone.  Now I am kicking myself, especially since I am falling madly in love with blue.  I've seen the vase a couple of times on decor blogs.

Sorry, I don't remember where I got these images.  If anyone knows where I can order this beautiful blue vase, let me know.  Thanks!

Pottery Display - Symmetry

I've mentioned many times that my sister-in-law and I share a love of pottery.  We have a lot of fun shopping together and rearranging new pieces in her home.  So I thought I'd show you some of her fabulous collection.

Like me, she tends to favor white pottery like these gorgeous vases from West Elm.  However, she's been adding pops of black like this bowl we found this weekend.  She tends to prefer symmetry, while I prefer asymmetry.  Her office is a perfect study in symmetry.  And while her office is completely her, there's a little of my influence in there too which makes me very happy.

One of our favorite things to do is arrange pottery together!  I'm so glad I have someone to share the obsession with.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

New Vases and Rearranging Pottery

Whenever something new comes into my place, it affects everything else.  Everything gets rearranged.  My favorite thing in the world is to rearrange pottery.  Pottery is a tactile experience, it's meant to be touched.   I adore simple shapes.  Here are my new vases:

The gray vase is from the Goodwill, cost $1.99.  The white vase in the middle is from Marshalls, cost $3.99.  I know I'm cheap!  And I'm proud of it.  The white vase to the left was a house warming gift from my sister-in-law.  Talk about your thoughtful and perfect gifts.  Fortunately, my sister-in-law is also infected with the vase sickness, so she understands me.

Here's a close up of the flower pot in the middle.  It has actual lace glued on it, not just an imprint.  I love it!  I've always had a thing for lace, I'm surprised I didn't have any in my home before.  In keeping with my rule - something must leave before something new comes in - I re-donated the turquoise vase I got from the Goodwill.  (See previous post here.)  After experimenting with this vase, I didn't really like it in my home.  Since it was cheap and part of a good cause, I could re-donate it without guilt.  It's the ultimate in recycling!

Now to rearrange.  What a perfect thing to do on a beautiful gray, drizzly Saturday.  Put on some music, open the windows and pour a cup of Columbian coffee.  I've said it before, I wish I owned a pottery store.  Here are a few of my experiments before finally settling on the perfect arrangement (for today).

Here's what I finally settled on:

When arranging pottery, I just trust my instincts, and try to achieve balance while maintaining simplicity.  This influenced me to move some of my art and vases around the rest of my place.

 Loving blue!
 Love the simplicity of these!

I love the opalescent vase on the small table.  I felt the table needed a little height, and I love how this vase looks in the changing light from the window.  I also love mixing ceramic and glass.

 Ah.  Here's a little corner of my place.  Feeling cozy, warm, protected, happy and so very grateful.  Hope you are having a wonderful Saturday, dear readers!  xxoo

Just Browsing

I've been having a lot of fun exploring the shops and flea markets in my new neighborhood.  Not really buying, but getting a ton of inspiration.  Here are some interesting things I've seen:

Saw this interesting wall shelf at the Goodwill.  It's about 18" high.  I thought about buying it to display some of my toy collection, but passed.  It's interesting, but it's not exactly what I want.  I have a shelf in mind, now just to find it!  Wish I built furniture!

Was tempted by this cute tea kettle at the flea market.  Love the atomic shape.  Dealer offered it to me for $5.00.   Hmm.  Still thinking about this one.

More temptation at yet another flea market.  This time in Hartville.  No shortage of cute stuff to buy.  I'm being very picky, though.  I like things, but I like my apartment clean, simple and kind of sparse.

On to Big Lots.  Another store I'd never heard of.  They had a ton of cheap vases and just about everything else you'd need for the home.  I can't help but wonder why Cleveland is so devoid of shops.  I used to have to leave the city whenever I wanted to spend money on things for the home.

Saw these lovelies at Marshalls.  The tall one is very tempting to me.  I am falling madly in love with blue, especially baby blue.  I've been seeing it everywhere and I am dying to decorate a place in monotone blue.  Maybe a cool blue color scheme would help me stay cool in the summer.

Also really loving outdoor furniture.  Much of it is so cute you could use it indoors!  Saw this wonderful set up at World Market.  I love the blue coffee table and the blue drum used as an end table.  Would fit in nicely in my all blue decor.  No wonder people have more than one home.  Wouldn't it be fun to say to your friends, "Would you like to have dinner at the pink house or the blue house?"  I prefer to fantasize.  In actuality, I'd hate to clean two houses, and I panic when I feel as if I have too much stuff.  It's all about balance.  Keeping balance in mind helps when facing the temptations of shopping.   So rather than shop for stuff, how about just shopping for inspiration?


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