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April 29, 2011

happy royal wedding day!

I watched the wedding in real-time this morning. So worth waking up early.
I loved the dress, the decorations, the music, everything!

But now I need a nap.

Happy Weekend!

In case you missed it,
don't forget to check out this week's tour of Ana Antunes' beatiful home and office!

April 28, 2011

design school: scale up!

Kelly Wearstler

"Always scale up, not down. Everyone is terrified of making things too big--if in doubt make it bigger, not smaller."
Roger Banks-Pye // Colefax and Fowler Interior Inspirations 

Two of the main principles of design are  
scale (the size of the items compared to the room)
and proportion (the size of the items compared to each other).

In general, you want to achieve balance in both scale and proportion. But when in doubt, I love the advice to go BIG rather than small.

First of all, I adore everything about this room. But did you notice how much space the bed takes up? It would have been fine to do a smaller bed (or just a headboard) in this room. But the big bed is such a statement piece.

Kelly Wearstler really likes to go dramatic with scale and proportion. Check out the over-sized art and lamps.

Go BIG or go home!

(It had to be said.)

April 27, 2011

tour: designer ana antunes' home and office

I recently stumbled upon Portuguese designer Ana Antunes' work through this blog, and my jaw is still on the ground. Ana is the designer behind the interior makeover show "Querido, Mudei a Casa." Her style is so exquisite and bright, but it isn't at all stuffy and maintains a sense of fun. To me, her designs seem to smile.

Today, Ana has been nice enough to share glimpses into some of the beautiful rooms from her office, home, and beach house. The photo above is the waiting area and reception desk (left) of her showroom and office in Lisbon. I adore the black piping on the sofa and the large, off-center sunburst mirror. I don't know about you, but I could wait forever in a reception area this beautiful!
Her showroom is perfection. I love the use of flowers, leaves, and bold black & white against the mainly neutral/metallic color pallet.

 H O M E
This is the coffee table in Ana's living room--mirrored, bright, and airy. She has such a beautiful display of objects (and sweets) on top and I LOVE her collection of shelter magazines down below.

 Using a mirrored coffee table was absolute genius--it not only keeps with Ana's breezy, glamorous style, but it also reflects the jaw-dropping ceiling details.

The seating arrangements are done as beautiful little vignettes. I love the symmetrical balance in this seating area, which is in everything except the art. A little asymmetry adds fun and keeps the look from being too formal.

 Ana has a lot of pieces with interesting and varied textures. Most of them are glossy, reflecting light and keeping with her relaxed but glamorous style.

This console is a perfect example of Ana's knack for styling. There is a TON of stuff on it, but it looks beautiful and well-curated, not cluttered.

V A C A T I O N  H O M E
 Ana's seaside vacation home has a breezy vibe like her primary residence and her office, but with bolder colors and nautical accents. This is nautical done right.

Thank you to Ana for giving us a glimpse into her beautiful world!
You can check out her blog and portfolio, or watch "Querido, Mudei a Casa" on YouTube.

April 26, 2011

describing your personal style

"French Eclectic"
I recently took a handful of "find my style" quizzes online. On the one hand, I'm not particularly fond of putting anyone's style into a succinct little phrase because I think it's limiting. But it can also be incredibly useful to narrow your general style to a nice little package. You certainly don't have to take a quiz to figure out how to describe your style, but they are kind of fun. 

I would probably use some combination of the words traditional, vintage, soft, romantic, happy, or classic to describe my personal style. This quiz called my style "French Eclectic." And, yes, that does describe some of what I like. But I don't think it's even close to spot on for me.

You know what is spot on? Happy Chic = Jonathan Adler. That is the perfect name for his style.

How do you describe YOUR style?

April 25, 2011

navy + dove + peach

This is my favorite color combo lately--so preppy and fresh. These are some of the pictures I'm using as inspiration for my bedroom. Still working on making it a touch more masculine for the husband.

For more inspiration, follow me on Pinterest!

April 21, 2011

colorful & eclectic den design

A few weeks back, I mentioned I was working on a project that involved a heavy dose of zebra... and by that I meant an entire zebra sofa! This is the design I came up with, incorporating several different colors and gold accents for a glamorous and fun family living space.

One of the most fun elements of the design is one of these custom watercolor portraits from Etsy seller Birds of Ashmae, which are done based on whatever photo you send to her. I can't wait to get one for myself!

April 20, 2011

cheap chic: sunburst mirrors

I was pretty slow on the uptake with the sunburst mirror trend, but now I LOVE them and want to put them in every room. They can be très expensive, but they are now popular enough that great budget versions are pretty easy to come by.

I bought this mirror at Target a few weeks ago. I just couldn't resist it--at about $25 it was definitely well-within the "affordable" category. Aside from the Target mirror, Overstock.com's $185 Sunbeams Mohena Mirror (at the top) is my absolute favorite budget sunburst.

Here are some other great options, most well under $200:

April 19, 2011

tip for unruly rugs

urban outfitters L | R
I've been looking for a sturdy rug for my entryway, and I've been really into dhurrie rugs. The problem with dhurries (like many flatweave/lightweight rugs) is that they slide around a lot and the corners tend to curl up. The sliding problem can be solved with a good rug pad, but what about the corners?

The May issue of Martha Stewart Living has a pretty ingenious solution for unruly rug corners: rulers!

It's a little ghetto, but who would look under the rug? And if anyone did, I'm sure they would be impressed with your ingenuity.

April 18, 2011

inspiration: spring pinks

Spring is in full force here in Virginia. I am loving all the blossoms and am so inspired by the beautiful range of pinks!

For more inspiration, follow me on Pinterest!

April 14, 2011

p.s. i'm guesting @ bright, bold & beautiful

I'm sharing some of my absolute favorite bright, bold, and beautiful inspiration at BB&B today...
stop on by!

i love louis

Dransfield & Ross via
There is no furniture style that I prefer over Louis, especially when it comes to the chairs. I'm in good company--Jonathan Adler and Charlotte Moss both said in the new TRADhome that Louis Bergere chairs are a staple in good traditional design. My personal favorite style is Louis XVI, which also got a great feature in TRADhome!

I really can't talk about Louis chairs without mentioning THE Louis of the moment.  It’s been used everywhere, but I’m still not over Kartell’s Louis Ghost Chair. I love it. It's trendy, and I think it might be one of the pieces that becomes very identifiable with this decade. But right now, I can't get enough of it.  Have you ever seen it look bad in a room? I haven't. The sleeker Victoria chair is really beautiful, too. 

This is my latest Louis find, and I am crazy about it. Louis outdoor furniture? Yes, please! I really love the fun, modern twist on the classic shape. It doesn't hurt that it comes in my three favorite colors.

I've been eyeing this pretty coral embroidered chair from Sears for a while now... it's beautiful but unattainable (for me) at $1000. I know, Sears?

I don’t own a Louis chair. Yet.  I’d like to fill the void in my life with this adorable Juicy Couture charm (if I could find it anywhere!). I hope the Easter Bunny reads my blog.

April 13, 2011

lonny + traditional home = love

The love child of Lonny and Traditional Home magazines, TRADhome, came out last night and it is wonderful! Here are some of my favorites from the first issue:
The designers behind this gorgeous kitchen work for Nate Berkus. I love the metallic tile backsplash and the light fixtures. Let's uproot the whole thing and move it to my house--this may be my new favorite kitchen.

There is a lot of interesting stuff going on in these rooms considering they are so neutral.

I love the flooring and the silver chest. The silver chest! It makes me want to repaint everything in my house metallic.

Lonny is still my favorite e-magazine--surprised? I am, considering I love neutrals and traditional decor so much. But TRADhome is wonderful!

April 12, 2011

hundred dollar study

Welcome to my study!

This little room is a combo library/office. Yes, we have a million books! The bookshelves had to stay, but as soon as I straightened up and cleaned the rest of the room out, I had a nice little space for my desk. I'm really excited to finally have a bright, clean workspace... especially after what it looked like before.

 This is what the study looked like at its lowest low. A disaster straight out of an episode of Hoarders. (I can't believe I am showing anyone this room, let alone posting it online!) Almost the entire space where my office is now was taken up by my husband's gargantuan LoveSac: his last bachelor pad holdout. He finally agreed to part with it, as we never used it and it took up like half our house.

Here's a picture of the After again, so you don't cry and give up on life:
 I spent like 6 hours making the drapery panels on Saturday, so they are now my pride and joy. I don't trust my sewing skills, so I used Stitch Witchery and spent the better part of my Saturday ironing. The fabric is Robert Allen's Basquiat in the Patina colorway. I am obsessed with it.

I had this little stack of books sitting on my desk--I love the colors, and they happen to look good with the curtains. I moved the acrylic ball lamp from my bedroom and put it on the book stack for a little added height.

 My dad bought the Kokeshi doll for me in Japan. I don't have a ton of knick-knacks around my house, but she is one of my favorites. I have used this same tin to hold my pens for at least a decade. The tea cup and saucers are a recent thrift store find. They serve no purpose, as I don't drink tea, but they're so pretty!

 The desk was a $30 Craigslist buy. It's actually a vanity--the center panel flips up to reveal a mirror and storage space. I'm thinking of repainting it, but haven't decided what color. The chair was a Goodwill score-- $5! I loved the lines of the back and legs. I spray painted it champagne gold and reupholstered the seat in foam, batting, and a piece of leftover drop cloth. It was meant to be the under layer, but I liked it so I left it.

The pin board was a total last minute decision. I found this IKEA fabric in my stash, and I planned to cover the chair cushion in it. But it turned out to be the exact size I needed to wrap my cork board, so I went for it on a whim. I'll probably switch it out for a black and white stripe.

 Overall, I am really happy with how my office looks, especially considering the only things I bought specifically for this room are the materials for the drapery panels and the chair. I am already planning so many changes and improvements... but for about $100, it's not bad!

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