Friday, July 19, 2013

Introducing...Allison

Is it possible to forget how to blog? I can't even remember the last time that I logged in to write, but I wanted to check in and introduce our new baby girl :)

Allison Rachel Gruszka was born on 7/8 and we couldn't be happier. We are enjoying being a family of 4 and getting to know our new little sack of potatoes.

Yesterday was a big day out to the pediatrician and Target. I don't know about all of you but the weather here has been in the upper 90s with "real feel" in triple digits with the humidity, so adventures outside are few and far between until the heat and humidity break - but it felt good to get out of the house yesterday even if it was so STINKIN hot.


This morning I even got a chance to hang a few things in her room. I'm still working on getting her room together but should have more photos soon. We recycled a few pieces of art from Sheila's old room.  


I also hung my Mom's vintage scarf above the changing table to add a graphic punch of color. Allison seems to enjoy gazing up at it mid-diaper change. (Photo below is from Instagram which is why the filter appears a little dark and fuzzy - this was also taken prior to the walls getting painted - BM Glass Slipper).


One of these days I'll post house photos too.

Hope you are all staying cool and beating the heat with popsicles or a cocktail.


Friday, June 7, 2013

36 Weeks and the Evolving Nursery Plan

Hi Everyone! I started this post on Monday and then got distracted :) Go figure. But I wanted to post anyway and let you know we're all moved in to our new house. We've had the week off to get settled in and it's starting to feel a little bit more homey each day. We've got lots of ideas for this house but also we're also going to take things one step at a time - especially with baby #2 arriving in a few weeks. I'll be posting when I can and will hopefully get some more photos up soon. Below are my thoughts from Monday...enjoy :)

Can't even believe I just typed out 36 weeks - where does the time go? Overall I'm feeling good but this baby is definitely out of room in there. I'll start my weekly appointments tomorrow so each week will be a step closer to meeting our second little one :)

We've had a great stay at my brother's and tomorrow is settlement/moving day already! We're excited. Today is our walk through and we're going to pick up the ton of mail waiting for us at the post office. 

Last night the boys were watching Game of Thrones and I had my mind on the house so I started putting a few things together that I've gotten for the baby's room just to give myself a point of reference for this week once we're in the house. Sheila's room and the baby's room are going to be my starting points just so they're all set.

This is where I'm at right now...I wasn't going to do much of anything in the baby's room until he/she was born but I feel like what I've got going is still at a point where it could go girl or boy.

I've already got the graphic silk scarf that has sort of set the tone for the room and the colors. My plan right now is to hang that freely using some small clothespins and fishing line. We've got the crib which is similar to the one shown and I picked up that little elephant at Phantastic Phinds recently. There is a swing arm lamp (not hard wired) in the room similar to the one above as well I think I'll just need to update the shade on it.

The two fabrics shown at the top middle are ones that I am considering for the rocker that I just got from my SIL. Left is John Robshaw for Duralee and the one on the right is Magnus by Dwell Studio for Robert Allen.

And the cute monogram print is a freebie from On to Baby.

Ok, back to house stuff - have a great weekend and thanks for sticking with me during this long hiatus ;)

Friday, May 10, 2013

Love Seat Fabric

Before I devote myself to packing up the rest of the house for the weekend, I thought I'd stop in for one last post.

The love seat is getting picked up on Monday for a makeover. The talented team over at Chairloom is going to be working their magic. If you follow Chairloom on Facebook you can get some sneak peeks of their projects including my client's accent chair I had posted about the other day.

Here are my final three fabrics that I chose from:


The fabric at the top is what I hope to use for window treatments eventually, and then you'll just have to wait to see which of the three options I've chosen. Any guesses? 


And now back to this for the weekend...but first, coffee :)



I'll catch up with everyone soon - enjoy your weekend!

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Second Hand Finds

Well at least when I don't post for a while I have a lot to update everyone on :)  We've been busy packing as much as we can. Starting to feel a little boxed in (literally) but feeling good about the progress we've made on the big move.  We settle on our current house 5/14 and then we settle on the new house 6/4, so we're going to be living with my brother and his family for 3 weeks (God bless them and so thankful that it's only 3 weeks for us and for them).

I've got lots of second hand finds to show you today that I'm pretty excited about.

But first, remember this client with these great chairs? They got shipped off to the upholsterer yesterday so things are progressing. Sometimes projects can take much longer than expected with client schedules, budgets, etc a lot of times projects happen in pieces. I'm excited to see these chairs revived with some new fabric.

This accent chair will be getting a fun animal printed fabric, and the larger club chair (not shown) is going to be reupholstered in a beautiful glazed linen. Will be sure to post some updates when they are finished.


And do you remember my love seat that I picked up recently? I've been trying to figure out what fabric I want to use on it, and I'm still waiting for a few memos to arrive to make a decision. Maybe I'll round up my picks so you can see where I'm headed with it.


The story behind this piece...I've been doing a LOT of searching on Craig's List for furniture for the new house. Sheila's going to need a few pieces for her room. I was looking for accent pieces that I knew would work well in other rooms. I came across a posting about a month ago on Craig's List and the furniture looked so familiar. It ended up being furniture from the first house we had bid on and ended up losing. How crazy is that? The owner is down-sizing and was selling a few pieces of their furniture. I remember touring their house and thinking what great pieces they had, so I knew I had to snatch this one up. My husband even commented that this piece could survive a war - it's really solid and really well-made so I'm pumped. The owner and I have had a few conversations and it's been nice to connect even though we didn't end up with their house. So that's the quick story on the love seat - small world huh?

Speaking of Craig's List...we're going to pick-up this head board tonight for Sheila's room. I really wanted to find a Jenny Lind style bed or head board, and I found a posting a few days ago, emailed the seller and Steve is heading out tonight to pick it up.  AND, $10.00!  HOLLA!


I talked to the seller yesterday and it was her daughter's head board who is now 33. I love to find unique items with a story.  

And just yesterday I stopped into my favorite local consignment shop, Phantastic Phinds, which I know I've mentioned a lot on the blog, to find this little trinket. I thought he'd be perfect for the baby's room. I think it's supposed to be a bottle opener (?) but I'm going to hang it on the wall.


And I passed up this painting but I keep thinking it would be perfect and so pretty in Sheila's new room. I would probably change up or fix the frame a bit but the colors are so pretty.


Mmmm....I might go back for it.

I'm sure I'll be back again soon with more updates. I've got a new client to update you on as well but I'll save that for a future post.

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Under Contract!

Just wanted to check in to say that we're under contract on our next house!!! It feels like it's been a long road but we finally found a great place in a wonderful location with lots of potential for us. We have our inspection tomorrow morning.

I feel like I've been so out of the loop but now that we're headed in the right direction toward another house I'm feeling a huge weight off of my shoulders (at least for the time being).

Remember my spending freeze post? Well I sort of broke that promise to myself but for good reason. I picked up this loveseat below (which is being stored in our garage for now) for the new house a few weeks ago. It's got excellent bones and I can't wait to give it a new look. And, it's got such a neat story behind it - I'll share in another post.


In other family related news, we hit up the Manayunk StrEAT festival this past weekend where a bunch of food trucks lined the streets of Manayunk for your dining pleasure. We went early to try to skip the crowds which ended up being the right move - it got crowded since the weather was beautiful. This little beauty got to go on her first train ride...and she loved it.


I'll be back soon and may even try to get some photos of the new place soon.

Monday, April 1, 2013

Big Girl Room Updates

Happy April 1st! I wish I could say I had some updates on finding a house. Hopefully soon.

I do have a few updates on Sheila's big girl room. Ideally, when we move I'd like to transition her right into her new room = new bed = new bedding, sheets, etc. So I started ordering things so we're ready to go.

Here's my inspiration board I had posted about previously...


My jumping off points were the photos in the upper right and bottom right corner - a color palette of pale pink and pale blue. Then I came across the Thomas Paul Botany fabric and thought that was a perfect choice for some window treatments. Here's a photo of the full repeat so you can see more of it.  Seeing the full repeat allows you to see the variety of flowers and insects brought into the pattern - perfect for a young girl's room.


And here are some of the items that I've picked up thus far...


I got the blue floral sham (top right) and princess sheets (bottom right) at Pottery Barn Kids. The sheets were on sale so that was a big score.

I also ordered the pink floral block print pillow cover from Lands End. I can't say enough good things about this pillow cover - it's so pretty in person. And, wait for it, on sale for $16.99.


Lastly, I did a little digging at Target the other day, and found this quilt in the twin size that I needed on clearance. Love seeing that sale sticker!


I'm excited to have made a little progress on this project - at least someone will have a room ready for her when we move :)  I've also been scouring Craig's List in search of a bed so hoping to find something soon at a good price.

Hope you had a great weekend! Hard to believe it's April already.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Spending Freeze

I put myself on a spending freeze. I'm not really a big spender to begin with (maybe my husband would disagree) - I maybe buy myself new clothes and a pair of new shoes a few times a year but nothing crazy. And as far as for the home, I'll buy small things here and there that really appeal to me. That's important to buy what you really love. And in our current home we never really had a ton of space for more furniture so we just used what we had for the most part and never really bought much more.

I've been waiting to move to a new house, a bigger house, in order to really start purchasing bigger items that we'll have for a while. And to be honest, I certainly have certain items on my wish list (a new sofa, new chairs, a coffee table) but I want to wait to see where our next home is going to be and what it's going to look like and how we're going to live in it to really start thinking about a plan.

So while I really want a new sofa, I'm waiting very patiently to see where that next house is going to be and what our floor plan is going to look like. Sheila is also going to need a bed, so we'll have to get that going as soon as we move as well (because the new baby will use her crib eventually). And I'll also be shopping consignment stores, yard sales, and hopefully check out an auction or two to find some good bargains on old, well-made furniture. And, oh yeah, we're going to have a new baby ;)

I figured it was a good idea to start brainstorming shapes and styles that I like, so here are a few things that I have been admiring...and I couldn't leave out a few fabrics that I've saved as "favorites" to maybe use at some point.


Carlisle sofa has always been a favorite of mine from Pottery Barn. It's got a nice English roll arm and I like this style with the tight back, but it can also be slip-covered which I'm going to consider too.

I really like the shape of this chair from West Elm.

You can't beat the value of this IKEA Ektorp sofa with chaise. Ever since we cleared out the basement, we've been spending more time down there playing and on the computer. We always talk about how nice it would be to have a sofa or chairs down there for the adults to relax in while Sheila plays.

This cute side table is a great value from Target and a piece that can be moved all over the house when needed. I know I've seen it in the stores but quantities must be limited as I can't find it online any more.

And a storage ottoman...must have some sort of storage ottoman to store toys and books. Great for entertaining and holidays and great when you need to throw all the toys and books in at the end of the day. (leather ottoman is from Ballard and the striped ottoman is from Safavieh)

And those dreamy fabrics...those are all Robert Allen.  The trim is Kravet.

I still get myself a coffee treat, but the big items will have to wait a while.

We're going to look at a house tomorrow - fingers crossed!!

Monday, March 18, 2013

Finding Home

Well it's been a few weeks since I posted, hasn't it? I wish I could say I have good news about our house hunt but I don't. I don't have bad news either. We just haven't found a house yet. And I haven't been inspired to blog at all, but I felt inspired tonight.

We did have a few close calls. An offer here that got beat and a house there that we stepped into, fell in love with, and then found out 10 minutes after leaving it that an offer had already been accepted with several other offers already made as well. Complete bummers but we're still hopeful.

This whole experience has made me realize that the biggest thing is that we have a roof somewhere wherever that may be with my family that I love more than anything. They are home.

I've also been inspired by a few things I've read recently about people who took a big leap of faith and wound up finding home. Their home just happened to be New York City but I could still relate and find comfort in some aspect of each these stories (remember my love and fascination with New York? I've got an entire Pinterest board dedicated to NYC - whenever I get the chance to visit again.

Ann Hood recalls her first apartment in New York and her experiences floating from one apartment to the next. I thought it was interesting how her less than ideal living conditions helped her discover what she wanted in a home.

I had a good mail day last week...


My First New York is a series of quick stories on people who took the leap and headed into New York for the first time. From Yogi Berra to Nora Ephron, Liza Minelli to Maggie Gyllenhaal - it's neat to read the thoughts and experiences that shaped all of the people featured in the book.

Pregnancy-wise I've been feeling great. I'm exactly 25 weeks today which is nuts-o. It's going really fast. Emotionally the house hunt has been tough (with added hormones thrown into the mix) but I've been able to handle everything well so far. I had no intentions of posting any type of belly shot, but today is your lucky day friends...this was taken over the weekend (don't mind the bath towel thrown over the shower - that's how we roll around here).


And that's the belly disguised in one of my comfy outfits that I wear a lot. Black pants from Target that are so incredibly comfortable and a black long-sleeved shirt from Gap that I had gotten a few years ago.

So hopefully I'll have a *good* house update soon - let's hope :)

Friday, March 1, 2013

Bathroom Updates

First I want thank all of you for your kind and supportive comments on my last post about our big move. It is a thrilling time for us that's for sure and I'll try to keep you updated on the house hunt.

Prior to placing our house on the market, we needed to update the valance in our bathroom and in addition to that our bathroom had to get repainted.

Here's a photo collage I put together of the various stages of our bathroom:

The bathroom was pink when we first bought our house. And then I posted about my color correction a month or two ago, which led us to our current state which is that last photo there on the right which was taken by our realtor.

We had our bathroom painted BM Stratton Blue and I replaced the valance with the striped fabric below that was on clearance at Calico Corners (it doesn't appear to be available any more but this is a similar fabric in a different color way). The goal here was to spend as little money as possible.


Other things we did to make sure the bathroom was in tip top shape prior to listing:

- Instead of hanging the two pieces of artwork above, I ended up standing the two pieces on the top ledge of the yellow shelf to add some height.

- I also de-cluttered the shelves of any extra items that didn't need to be out in the open (edit, edit, edit)

- I made sure we used all freshly washed white towels and that they were neatly folded on the towel bars.

The paint color isn't that much of a change from our previous color (BM Feather Grey) but switching out the valance was key to make the color palette look cohesive in here and easy on potential buyers eyes.

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What do you have planned for the weekend? We will be looking at houses bright and early tomorrow morning - wish us luck!

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Movin' On

We're moving! You read that correctly friends. It's been a whirlwind of a few weeks, but long story short we are under contract on our current house and actively looking for our next house to call a home. CRAZY!!  I know, I know.  {I've already had one 3 a.m. panic and I've warned my husband there may be another one at some point} Steve and I are still in shock, but it's all good and we're confident that we will find a house.

Here is a quick timeline from the past week:
- Our house was listed on the MLS last Tuesday.
- By Tuesday night we already had 3 offers on the table. 3 offers in one day. Craziness I tell you.
- We accepted an offer on Thursday morning.
- Inspection is currently being done

And now we're on the mad hunt for our next home!!!!  Keep us in your thoughts please :)

Here is a photo from our listing:

Photo courtesy of our fantastic realtor Stephanie Cantner

So my plan for Sheila's next room? Well that's going to be her next room in our next home.  And the sprucing up I was doing in our living room and bathroom? That was getting the house prepared for photos and listing. (I'll do another post on the bathroom update since I never got a chance to show you the final results)

Nothing like selling your house to get the house in order and all the projects done, huh? All this while also being 22 weeks pregnant - I'd say I'm handling things very well thankfully ;)

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Fabrics for the Big Girl Room and a New Book

A few had asked how I was going to use the fabrics that I had shown in the design board I brainstormed together for Sheila's next room. Here's a photo that I had taken this past weekend once two of the memos had arrived...the Thomas Paul/Botany fabric and then smaller scale fabric.


You can get a better feel from this photo as to the colors and pattern in the Thomas Paul. You can see the butterfly peeking through on the left there and then a few different flowers. It's so pretty and I love how it also has a vintage feel to it as well.  I'm thinking about using this fabric on drapery panels or a Roman shade.  And then the other fabric I would probably do pillows.

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And now I'm off to read some more of my new book - Thom Filicia's American Beauty: Renovating and Decorating a Beloved Retreat. Have any of you read it yet? I'm only about 25-30 pages in so far but I'm fascinated by his architectural vision for his upstate NY home and how he works on his projects. So far so good - I'll give more of a rundown once I'm finished.

Have a good one!

Monday, February 18, 2013

My Big Girl's Room

I wanted to show you my ideas that I've put together for Sheila's next room. 

You guys...I'm in love with  this and I hope Sheila will be too. I actually put a few of the fabric samples out on the floor yesterday and then Sheila came over and wanted to play around with them too (my assistant in the making?!)

Realization has kicked in that she's not going to be in the crib forever - although she still sleeps so well in it BUT we're going to need it for the baby and it will be good to get Sheila into a real bed (and she's getting so tall that she'll outgrow the crib before we know it anyway). So that's when I started thinking about her next room.

This is the photo that started it all...a soft, feminine powdery blue paired with the prettiest blush pink. 


And then this fabric memo arrived the other day and it couldn't be more perfect...it's youthful, playful, colorful, and brings in some touches of nature. Perfect for my little girl (and I'm SO curious whether she will be my only girl or not).


And here is the rest of my inspiration board for her room...


All fabrics are Duralee, pillow by Hable Construction, "You are so Loved" print by the Wheatfield, inspirational wedding image Southern Weddings, original painting by Angela Moulton, Onward & Upward print by Girl From Blue Skies, Bear archival print by Amber Alexander, Paint colors are Bashful by Benjamin Moore and Glass Slipper also by Benjamin Moore

I can't wait to get started on this. 

**Everything went great at our 20 week ultrasound - this baby is an active little one and the baby is already measuring a week ahead lengthwise which isn't surprising since Sheila is very tall for her age as well. I can't believe I'm already half-way through this pregnancy.

Tomorrow I'll be back with some fun news. Hope you had a great weekend.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Words to Live By

I'm working on selecting a piece of original art for Sheila's next room, but in the meantime I just ordered this print for her room as well...


Thanks Mom ;)  Do you have words that you grew up with and have found yourself using as well?

I'll be posting some more ideas I have for Sheila's room soon.

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We've got our 20 week anatomy ultrasound tomorrow morning so we're looking forward to seeing our little bubba on the big screen. As curious as I am about whether we're having a boy or girl, we won't be finding out the sex of the baby. I'm anxious to compare our photos to Sheila's photo at 20 weeks. The 3D technology is incredible. Gotta make sure I drink a little OJ so the baby is wide awake :)

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Boy's Room Fabric Options

I had posted about this scarf that my Mom had given me over the summer and how much I loved the colors. I'm thinking that if we end up having a boy then it would be a perfect opportunity to get the scarf framed and use it as art in the room.

I decided to have some fun and play around with some fabric and trim options just in the event this scarf does end up in a boy's room in our home at some point...


I really didn't have any intentions of this but I like how these fabrics took on a loose nautical vibe when put together and I also added in some fun trim options that I could add to a valance or shade.

Now I'm wondering if somehow I could swing using this with a girl's room too - mmmm...

Fabric sources (clockwise from top): Duralee, Duralee, Thom Filicia, and Duralee

Trim sources (top to bottom): Stout, Robert Allen, Stout

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Living Room and Bathroom Updates

I had hung some additional art/photos in the living room the same day that I updated the floor lamp and the gallery wall, but I never had the right light to get a good photo of the other wall where I had installed the additional art/photos. Here is a decent photo I was able to get the other day:


From top to bottom: vintage sketch of Valley Forge National Park chapel that I had picked up at a flea market last fall, Manayunk Bridge oil on canvas by Jeremy Shires, and a photo of my sweetie pie that I had blown up in black and white.

The wall color is BM Camouflage.

And our bathroom got painted this past week and my Mom was over this past weekend to help me make a new valance. Here is a sneak peek of what is being added:


The wall color actually didn't change that drastically at all. What helped bring everything together was the new valance in the fabric that you see above. I hope to have some more photos later this week.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Baby Love - Inspired By Food

I'm 18 weeks pregnant so naturally I think about food a lot :) But food has so many meanings, doesn't it? It's a source of comfort. It can bring back memories. It can mean tradition. It can mean decadence or it can also mean health. Regardless, food is personal.

A fun way to make your space personal is to bring in a favorite candy in a dish in the kitchen or entry, but you can also add a piece of art inspired by food to your living room, dining room, or kitchen. Remember I showed you how I added that pretzel and beer print I had gotten my husband to our living room. It's a great spot for it.

Feast your eyes on some more ideas...


A child's room is also a fun spot to bring in a piece of art inspired by food - maybe their favorite snack or treat. The popsicles are really fun too - reminds me of summer.

I have to tell you that this all started because I came across the Janet Hill art print at the top middle called "The Chocolate One with Sprinkles" - just say it to yourself. Doesn't  it make you want a nice fresh donut? I'm not a big donut person by any means but the donuts in that print were talking to me.

Yum.

Sources (clockwise from top left): Stone Crab Claw by Clair Hartmann, The Chocolate One with Sprinkles by Janet Hill, Popsicles by Joel Penkman, Le French Fries on Society 6, Une Poire print by Sycamore Street Press, Pizza Recipe by Lucile Prache, pancakes stack by Laura Row, Pike Place Market print on Art.com, sprinkle donut (no longer available) by Deidre Wicks.

Friday, January 25, 2013

How I Find New Etsy Favorites

I thought I'd show you my quick tip on how to find new Etsy favorites.

I may be browsing a vendor I've bought from in the past or I might go back to the same vendor in my Favorites over and over because I love their work, and when I want to discover perhaps a similar style product or a similar aesthetic I'll click on that vendor's "Favorites".

Here's an example...I had bought a beautiful vase from Taylor Ceramics before the holidays. I loved Cara's work so much that I wanted to browse to see what some of her favorites are (maybe something might spark my interest too).


All you need to do is go to the vendor's side bar and click on the "Favorites" link. Favorites may or may not be marked as private, but I find a lot of people to have their Favorites public so it's always worth a browse.

**One other tip, I always read feedback before making a purchase. I've never had a bad experience with any of my Etsy purchases (over 30 at this point), but I always like to read what others are saying as well and what products have been purchased. 

**And fantastic news, Etsy has added a search functionality to the user's favorite items list but I don't see one for favorite shops. But it's a great enhancement that I'm very happy about (especially since I save lots of pillows)

I'd love to hear your experience with Etsy and how you navigate the site.

Have a great weekend! We've got a busy one ahead.

Monday, January 21, 2013

A New Floor Lamp

I've been looking for a new floor lamp for our living room for a while now. I've never found just the right one that I liked and that I knew would be right for the room (and the right price). I had some time yesterday to swing over to one of the Home Goods near us and I found what I was hoping to be a lamp that would be a good fit. Check out the before and after...

I have had that white lamp for over 8 years I think. I had bought it when I moved into my first apartment and it was fine and served the purpose but the room was ready for a change. I love the shape of the new lamp and that it is adjustable - not to mention I was really happy that it was black too. The lamp is a matte black and the base is a brushed copper.

Here's another photo that I took...with the exception of the lamps, do you notice anything different between the photo below and the photos above? 


I also had time to hang some photos and art that I have been meaning to do for a while (can we say nesting?) In the photo above I added a print that I had gotten for my husband a few years ago. It's called Home Made Pretzels and a Brew by Etsy seller Working Woman. Aside from me and Sheila, those might be 2 of my husbands favorite things :)

Oh and the basket there at the bottom is new too - also from Home Goods. I got that to corral toys and stuffed animals but it also fit perfectly under the console for this photo.

I'm pleased with these small updates to our living area - it's the small changes sometimes that have big impact.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Color Correction - Our Bathroom

At the end of the summer, I had posted about the color correction that we made to our kitchen.

Today I'm keeping it real and telling you the tale of our bathroom - our only full bathroom.

When we bought our house, the bathroom looked like this...pink, pink, and more pink. And don't forget the wooden accordion door that you can see at the right of the photo below. Sweet!


We had someone come in and renovate the bathroom for us prior to moving in. We changed out everything but the tub: new floors, new toilet, rip down the tile and put up drywall and new lighting. We also replaced the sink with the cabinet and moved the pedestal sink above down to the half bath in the basement.

Here is where we were at the end of the renovation. 


Nice and clean, but we lacked storage and the blinds had seen better days.

I had picked up this shelf below with the intent of using it in the bathroom and it has worked for us. It's not too deep and it has multiple shelves for placing everyday items and a few colorful accessories.


But then I picked a fabric, that I thought would look okay as a valance to disguise the top of the old blinds. I'm here today to admit that this color combination does not work, and here is why:

For starters, if I had known then what I know now as far as having a plan for a room, I would have been in much better shape with this color palette (instead of just choosing things willy nilly).

What do I mean by that? It may be difficult to tell in this photo, but the yellow and greys found in the fabric on the valance are dirty compared to the paint color on the walls and the paint color on the shelf. If I had chosen the fabric first prior to doing the renovations, then my paint color that I chose should also have a green/yellow undertone to it to muddy it up a bit. Does that make sense?

Believe me when I say that my eye has come a loooooooong way when looking at color. It really takes practice and a lot of reading and analyzing to really train the eye. And believe me when I say I still have a lot to learn as well, but hopefully this small lesson will help someone.

So yes this is driving me crazy, and yes it has taken me this long to correct the problem. 

What you can't see is that we had some water damage that leaked into the bathroom ceiling and we need to have the bathroom repainted. Since we need to have the bathroom repainted, I'm taking this as an opportunity to redo things if you will.

Here is what we will be updating:
- paint color
- fabric for the valance
- new blinds

I'll share those decisions with you in a future post.

Now it's your turn, I'd love to hear any color correction tales that you may have from places you have lived.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Baby Love: Have Baby Will Travel

*I switched my series name to Baby Love instead of Oh Baby. Mostly because I love the song "Baby Love" by the Supremes and I thought it sounded a little better too.

You've probably done some traveling - even if it's not across the country or across the globe - you've ventured out of your hometown and have fond memories of certain trips. Or maybe a certain town captured your heart. It might even just be taking pride in your own city or state.

A fun way to personalize a nursery is to include artwork, prints, or photos from your travels that hold special memories.

I know I've mentioned it on the blog before, but I love New York. I love the quick pace, the high energy, the sights, the sounds - everything. I don't get up there nearly enough.

Look at all of the fun colors you could pull from this print...


I took both of these photos at the Atlantis about 5 years ago - both of these would be a nice addition to a nursery with the right frame.


Can you tell I like to think outside the box? I love the way the green netting pops against the sand and the lifeguard stand and how it's hanging effortlessly.

And the pop of pink and green in the tropical flowers below would be so pretty in a little girls room.

I'm thinking color palettes and using a piece of art or a photo to create a color palette, but also making the room personal.


I lucked out this weekend and got this national park poster calendar for $7.00 at Barnes & Noble on clearance. How about some emerald green in a little boys room?


Or some pink and purple in a girls room...


The other great thing about travel posters or photos is that hopefully they have some longevity in a youngster's room.

What are your thoughts on adding this type of element into a nursery?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Living Room Refresher

Sometimes a room just needs a freshening up - new pillows, a different layout arrangement, some new framed art - a few things to make the room feel updated.

Remember this client with the great pieces of furniture that she had gotten?


Because we were keeping the existing area rug, wood floors, and working with the wood tones found in her furnishings, the walls have already gotten painted (SW6182 Ethereal White that you can see in the photo below) and now we're in the process of making some decisions for reupholstery fabrics and pillows. She is going to get the chair above and the larger wingback chair that currently has the same yellow fabric reupholstered. I really like all of the warm tones in her existing rug, but I also wanted to bring out some of that blue that you can see in there as well.

I don't have a larger photo of her sofa, but this is a photo I had taken that will give you an idea.


The sofa is Bernhardt that she had gotten at HomeGoods for a steal a few years ago. It's got a nice shape and a really great neutral fabric, BUT it had too many big blah pillows. We had already removed a few of the pillows in the photo above and it made a world of difference - a FREE update! By removing some of the pillows, we created a sleeker profile of the sofa and now we're going to bring in some fun pattern. As you can see we already started playing around with some pattern.

We also saw this fabric at the Philly Magazine show house back in September that my client really liked as well, so we're including a smaller animal type fabric into the scheme.


And in addition to the update in fabrics, my client also was fortunate to pick up these really cool etching prints from a local printer that she works with. They are mostly all local scenes that were originally done my Salvatore Pinto, a well known local artist from the early to mid 20th century. This one below happens to be a New York scene with the Statue of Liberty there to the left, but you get the idea of how cool these are and how great they will look framed and hung gallery style in her living room.


And below is the fabric scheme I've proposed...


**Side note - I just started working in Power Point for doing my design boards and it is awesome. I learned some handy new shortcuts and really liking the ease and simplicity of it all. I'm also able to manipulate sizes and looks much easier than I was before in Olioboard. I see another post coming regarding design board construction.

The fabrics at the top left and top right are for each of the chairs. The top left is for the accent chair you saw at the very top of the post and the top right is for the wingback chair - this isn't the final fabric but it's a consideration.  

The fabrics below that are what I've proposed for the pillows on the sofa. My client really liked the idea of having bolsters at either end of the sofa, so we've repeated the accent chair fabric for the bolsters and then mixed in some more pattern for the other pillows. It's going to be quite fabulous.

Two posts already this week - woo hoo! It feels good to be back.