Monday, January 19, 2015

Holly's Favorite Finds

If you follow me on Instagram, then you know that I've started a hashtag #HollysFavoriteFinds to tag those things that I see and want to share because it's just too good not to share with all of you.

I'm bringing that over to the blog - sharing those items that catch my eye that I think you might love too.

As you may know, one of my passions is supporting independent artists and local artists whenever I can. The time, talent, effort, love, joy, pain that goes into an item is really quite special. I know that we all have our own taste in art, accessories, decor, but the items below are ones that caught my eye and maybe one (or more than one) will strike a chord with you as well.


Clockwise from top right:

Therese Marie is just rocking and rolling out there in Kalamazoo. I love the creativity that goes into every pillow she makes. Classic stripes, grommets, and a whimsical fabric = FUN! I love that Therese builds in multiple looks to her pillows. You can style this pillow on the side, or you could turn it to have the stripes at the top or the bottom - it's up to you. And that is what I call a great buy. Nice work Therese.

I had discovered Shannon's shop over the holidays and loved all of the stationery and note cards she had listed. There's nothing quite like getting a card or note in the mailbox. I thought these "Hello" notecards were really pretty and I loved the vine detail Shannon included in the design.

Susan introduced these brass wall hangings to her shop and they are so unique and so pretty. I've added one of these to my wishlist for someday along with a pillow and a throw as well. Susan's use of pattern and texture are so unique.

Katrina's shop, Salt and Ginger, has become one of my favorite Etsy vintage shops. I usually browse once a week or so to see if there is anything new. I thought this ceramic fish was really cool and would be a fun object to add to a stack of books or on a shelf.

And the pretty peach birds print is by Amber Alexander, whose work I've featured on the blog before. Amber captures nature beautifully and I love how she gives personality to some of the creatures that she paints.

Hope you enjoyed this round up!

Monday, December 29, 2014

Local Family Room Refresh

I've picked up more local work lately which is really exciting. A family that we are friendly with in our neighborhood asked for my assistance with their family room. This family has great style and knows what they like, but just needed an extra set of eyes to guide them in their decision-making. And they are super motivated so there has been a lot of progress in the past few weeks.

If you follow me on Instagram, then you may have seen a few of these but this post will give more detail for you and will allow me to document the process a little more for me and for them.

You will also note the difference in the lighting and quality of the next few photos. The first photo below is my iPhone photo taken at night and the two photos below were taken by the homeowner who is a really great photographer (bonus!).


The walls, wood panel ceiling, and all the trim are all getting painted (including all windows and doors). The room has a stone wall that you can see in the photo above that is a really nice feature that adds some natural texture. The floors are a pinky-beige ceramic tile that are being replaced by hardwood floors. The wood that was chosen will transition nicely with the wood that you see there that leads into the kitchen. 


The photos above and below give you a good idea of the elements that are staying and what is going to be changed out. Like I mentioned above, the walls, ceiling, windows and doors are all getting painted. The leather recliner that you see above has been given the boot already and a new sofa with chaise is going to be replacing the sofa and chair that you see above.

The doors leading to the patio have been painted and we decided that it looked great (and much more open) without the grids so they are going.


The fireplace is getting a makeover as well. It has been painted and the tile that was on the surround matched the tile on the floor - these motivated homeowners have already chiseled that off and are excited to get that changed out (decision still needs to be made on what will go in there).

Here is a progress photo of the new paint color and a preview of how GREAT the trim looks painted.


And just so you don't have to scroll up/down/up/down - here they are next to one another...AMAZING the difference already. 


Fist pumps right?! They are doing an awesome job. Look at how the trim pops now and that built-in shelf there was screaming for some attention - looks fantastic. And in case you were wondering, window treatments are going to be added as well - just still need to make some decisions.

I had stopped over the other day to see the progress and I had to snap this one before I left...this is the view from the dining room into the family room - look at THAT!!!  Looks so good and it's not even done yet. Not to mention the house has beautiful natural light throughout the day.


And how fun is their dining room chandy?

I hope you've enjoyed the progress and will post more updates soon.

I also had an EPIC thrifting/antiquing run the other day. I went to 2 new-to-me spots that did not disappoint and were filled with treasures - will post on that soon as well.

Have a Happy New Year!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Thrift Score Thursday

Hi Everyone! I'm popping in quickly today to show you a few of my latest Thrift Store Scores. Without a doubt, Impact Thrift in Montgomeryville is my go-to, need-a-fix thrift store. I almost always leave with something.

This past week I found this sweet woven basket....




Seventy-nine cents. That's right cents. Could not pass up. It would be fun in one of my girls rooms, a bathroom, a shelf - it's adorable.

And this beauty...I spent a little bit more than I had hoped but still at $8.00 I couldn't pass on this brass pitcher/vase (?) for the shape and interest. I really liked how elongated the handle is and the neck of the piece itself. It was love at first sight. I don't really know the origin of it at all, and if you look closely you can see that it is etched/engraved with a pretty pattern. I'll have to do some more research and get back to you on my findings.




And you may be wondering...ok, what does Holly do with all of this stuff? (I'm sure my husband wonders the same thing). Well, a lot of things I keep for us/me since I really do love everything that I buy (which you should always love what you buy), but recently I've been picking up more clients that are in need of accessorizing and styling assistance. These smaller projects are perfect for me and my schedule right now and I LOVE to help with finishing touches. Anything that I do not use goes into a projects bin, so if I need some items for a client project I shop my bins in addition to shopping other stores. Wayyyy down the road, my dream would be to open a small shop in town but that's really in the distant future. :)

To check out more Thrift Score Thursday items, you can search the #ThriftScoreThursday hashtag on Instagram and see what other goodies people have picked up.

What's going on in your neck of the woods?

Monday, December 1, 2014

Holiday Decorating

Hello friends! I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving weekend. The holiday season is upon us and so it brings with it holiday decorating. I've gotten a head start on things compared to last year but then again last year I had a 4 month old :)

I've got a holiday pillow scheme under way in our living room...


I'm in a desperate search for another one of the red velvet pillows. I got one at Home Goods and they only had one, so the search is on for a mate. It's a Ralph Lauren 20" pillow. It pairs so well with my Chanee Vijay botanical pillow and my grosgrain ribbon trimmed pillow by Therese Marie Designs. I love this mix. I played around a little more and threw in the animal print pillow that Therese made for my upcycle challenge...


Love this mix even more. I'll get some better photos when it's all done.

We went to visit my brother and his family this past weekend and I had fun helping my SIL with a mantel refresh for the holidays. We used what she had including that great mirror as an anchor.


We used her red floral topiaries on either end and added in the sparkly trees for some fun shimmer. And then I grouped her nutcrackers together on the left (including a cute soccer nutcracker since they are a BIG soccer family) and a cute santa there to the right. I also suggested maybe adding a bow to the mirror for a fun touch and she's going to search for some garland or trim to add below as well. Looks great and took us just a few minutes. Simple and cost effective.

I also worked on our mantel yesterday as well. I started with a blank slate as always - removed everything I had on there and put everything that I had to work with on the table so I could see all of my objects. Here is a sneak peek of where I'm going this year...using items that I already have on hand.


Have you done any holiday decorating yet? I'm doing my best to finish up by next weekend so I can enjoy the rest of the weekends with family and friends and food of course.

I also have a few fun new projects under way that I'm excited to tell you all about.

Have a great week!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Kids Korner - Let's Organize

If you have kids or nieces/nephews or friends with kids, then you know that the "stuff" is never-ending. Clothing, toys, books, laundry - you name it.

This is my first post in my Kids Korner series in which I'll give tips for decorating with children in mind. This first post is dedicated to organizational items since they are certainly needed when kids are involved. The goal when organizing for kids is putting it away.

And just from my own experience, it really does bring such peace to have everything in a designated spot and off the floor.

Below I've rounded up a few of my favorites and also included a few that I thought would work well too although we have not personally tried yet.

Clockwise from top left:

This wooden storage bin from Walmart would be a great way to organize books in a child's bedroom. We have some collapsible bins that we use for books but I've been thinking about getting something a bit sturdier such as this. Similar items can also be found at Homegoods or TJ Maxx.

The adorable nesting bowls are cute and decorative but could also be used in a dresser drawer to organize hair accessories for girls or could hold art supplies in a craft area as well.

You can never go wrong with a basket. We use a rectangular basket in Allison's room for dirty laundry. Once the basket is full it gets dumped into the master basket for the laundry room. This round basket by H&M is a good size and looks durable enough for toys or books. And extra points too because this could really be used anywhere in the home.

I spotted this small fabric storage bin on Etsy in the Avery William Designs shop. It comes in a variety of fabrics and could also be stored in a dresser or changing table. We use something similar in Allison's dresser for organizing toiletries. These would also be great in a bathroom.

Cute storage with lids? Major score! I'm going to need a few of these for the girls closets at some point. They can really be used for anything though - small toys, card games, art supplies.

I have never used the wall hanger organizer but I think it's such a great idea. It can hold many items but is also compact and doesn't take up a ton of space. It could also be hung in a closet or playroom too - flexibility is key.

Lastly, these metal bins with lids (!) from IKEA are versatile as well. We use one of these in Sheila's room as a garbage can. These could be used in a variety of areas as well - playroom, bedroom - even in the garage for organizing balls and lawn games.

That's my round up for you - what are some of your favorite ways to organize the kids stuff?

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Photo to Fabric

The fall leaves are brilliant. Brilliant! Especially after a good rain - the colors almost become richer when the leaves are wet.

I vividly remember stepping outside our first house in Conshohocken 2 years ago and seeing the most beautiful spread of wet leaves right there on our front steps.

I came across that photo the other day and saw a design project a few photos away where the colors in the fabrics selected mimicked the leaves in my first photo.


And this my friends is my inspiration for Photo to Fabric. Fun, isn't it?

Coral and berry mixed with a deep forest green, rich mocha, chartreuse, and a touch of lilac make things interesting.

Fabric sources on the right are clockwise from top: Victoria Hagan, Victoria Hagan (Four Seasons in Fall - how appropriate!), Peter Fasano (Kalahari in Lilac), Zimmer + Rohde ikat.

Monday, October 13, 2014

Styling Sessions: Building a Vignette

The other day I had posted a photo to Instagram and I realized that I had a styling lesson to share with you. I'm hoping to post a Styling Session each week or so to give a few tips on styling various areas in the home. Obviously I love the creativity in design, but I also really love the technical aspect to design. There really IS a reason why we do the things we do...let's demonstrate on a recent mantel vignette in my home.

Here is the photo that I had posted about a week ago.


This is the right side of my fall mantle. Maybe next week I'll show you the left but for this week let's focus on this image above.

I had anchored the mantel with that large round basket that you see there at the far left of the photo.
When I clear off my mantle to re-style I always start with a large object to anchor (tip #1). You could anchor in the middle, on both ends (think lanterns), or just on one end. I chose the middle anchor in the example above.

Then I build vignettes to either side of my anchor object. The trick to building vignettes is to keep the eye moving using various heights or haphazard movement (tip #2) and to vary your texture (tip #3) - smooth, shiny, rough, natural, round, angular, etc. And here's the method to my madness: I balanced the height of my round anchor basket with the height of the large rectangular wooden frame. And then I layered in my framed botanical print in front of that. I needed to bring the eye down a bit and add some warmth, so I stacked a small box on top of a book and topped it off with a plant. Bringing the eye even lower, I added that awesome mini basket given to me by my Mom. And to finish off the look, I added the candlestick at the end (Sheila put that candle in there - nice touch).

Layers, layers, layers.

And notice that I've kept my color palette fairly consistent - neutral with red/orange/green accents - my ode to fall if you will.

Now I want to demonstrate how changing 1 single item can change the entire look. I'm always changing my plants around - usually when I'm watering them I'll move them around the house. The other day I just happened to switch out my jade plant above with another plant and look how it changed my look...


Longer, dustier green leaves mimic the leaves in the framed print. The movement of this plant works a bit better and makes my eye happier. And the ceramic cream pot jives with the box and book - keeping the palette consistent. Eeeek...I LOVE this look - and all because I simply switched my plants around.

Here are the two looks side by side:


I hope you've enjoyed my Styling Session for today - I am certainly excited about this and I hope to bring you many more of these mini lessons.

And before you leave, here are my tips again:



What I'd also like to add is that you can apply these tips to various places in your home - it's not limited to a fireplace mantel like I've shown. You could use these tips for a coffee table, shelves, a console - the possibilities are endless.

I'd love to hear what you've been working on and of course if you have questions or ideas that you'd like me to post about let me know.