Contemporary Chic Meets A Modern Challenge: Bring Vegas Home

Design and decor features of beautiful hotels dazzle the eye from check-in to check-out. I base a great stay on the total property package, and interior design is at the top of the list. Stylish, chic and luxurious features provide a comfortable and unforgettable experience, and inspire ideas to use in our own homes.  I am thrilled to participate in the “Bring Vegas Home” challenge using The Cosmopolitan Hotel as the model for design inspiration. It’s really no challenge for me to bring Vegas home. To know me is to know I’ve got a huge place in my heart for my oasis in the desert. Thirty+ years of traveling to Las Vegas puts you up close and personal with Vegas interior design and interior decorating choices through the decades as only Vegas can Vegas. The get up and boogie style of the ’70s set the trend setting for the period, and the over-the-top theme them and they will come extravagance ruled the design conscience ’90s and ’2000s.  Crystal baroque chandeliers and dark mahogany wood-paneled walls came to town years ago and still prove relevant to today’s Las Vegas, stylishly existing in tandem with the Californicated modern luxury currently headlining on the Las Vegas Strip.  Forget what you’ve read or heard about tacky, kitschy or out of touch interiors- contemporary chic, relaxed elegance and modern luxury has checked in at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas

Cosmo-3---LobbyChic surroundings in high style!

Crystal chandeliers are synonymous with glamour, and The Cosmopolitan believes in making a Vegas statement in contemporary and cosmopolitan fashion.



Cosmo-acrylic-chiarMarilyn Acrylic Arm Chair from Global Views

Crystal chandeliers aren’t just for the dining room anymore. Bathrooms, master bedrooms, kitchens, foyers and closets become a bright lights city when a crystal chandelier graces the ceiling or walls. Contemplating a “Bring Vegas Home” transition, I may be more inclined to pull back the reins on the your Vegas style is showing drama for a slightly scaled down version of glitz and glamour.

bring Vegas home

And then again, maybe not.


Dark tones and rich textures play the style game very well.  I say double down on decorative drama with a premier focal point piece.


Las Vegas is an adult Disneyland of sorts, and the fantasy aspect of this desert oasis is part of the deal. Enter the Las Vegas Bungalows at The Cosmopolitan.


Design and decor features of well-appointed and well designed hotel rooms offer floor to ceiling ideas to pack up, bring home and implement into our own home decor. Cosmopolitan-Bungalow

“Bring Vegas Home” Design and Decor Winners:

- Lighting selections are crucial to the overall design of a space. The use of crystal chandelier(s) strikes a grand balance between ambient and accent lighting while instantly adding presence, form, function and ambiance.  There are plenty of crystal chandeliers in today’s market that offer the look of expensive elegance with a most affordable price, and that point is always a design and decor winner.  Another point of decorative visual interest is the focal point statement made by pairing design styles together in a non-traditional opposites attract in a wow factor on steroids kind of way.

- Wallpaper is a notable design and decor option.  Classic patterns have no expiration date.  Faux croc and wood grain patterns as well as traditional and new traditional grasscloth in neutral tones frame the space for pattern and bold color to proceed.  Like a good optical illusion in a headliner magic show, the “headboard” in the image above is an optical and design trick.  It’s wallpaper!

- Crisp white accents and linens raise the stakes.  I know, I know- white in a high traffic hotel room?  I don’t pretend to analyze the logic behind it, all I know is it works beautifully.  This is definitely one of the “Bring Vegas Home” decor features I would not hesitate to try.  Pristine white stands up to any decor style and pairs elegantly with the other neutrals in the space.  Do the purple decorative throw pillows jump out or what?  Make no mistake, great thought went into this neutral at first sight color palette.

- Mixing metals creates contrast, and contrast creates an interesting aesthetic.

- The allure of the design darling color combination black and white is at play throughout The Cosmopolitan.  The draw is timeless, and the classic color palette complements the design flow and gives decorative balance to the contemporary setting.


Opulent interior design and interior decorating features from The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas offer fantastic inspiration for your own Bring Vegas Home challenge.

Love your style!







Just so you know disclaimer:  This is not an official review or paid advertisement post.  All opinions expressed in this blog post are my own.




Filed under bedroom, decorating styles, Home Furnishings, Interior Decorating, Interior Design, Las Vegas, Remodeling, travel, Wallpaper

A Most Fetching Friday





adjective: fetching


synonyms: attractive, appealing, sweet, pretty, good-looking, lovely, delightful, charming, prepossessing, captivating, enchanting, irresistible


This week’s Fetching Friday accentuates both the tasteful and the decadent.



ff-fall-dessertsCountry Living Magazine


Chocolate-Pear-Loaf-Cake-via-BHG1Chocolate-Cinnamon Pear Loaf Cake

ff-wallpaper“Zebras” in Safari Brown from Scalamandré as featured in Traditional Home

ff-hot-cocoa-brownie-cakeHot Cocoa Brownie Cake with Pumpkin Marshmallow Frosting

I hope you have a most fetching Friday.

Love your style!


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Filed under Antiques, Architectural, baking, cake, fabric, Interior Decorating, Interior Design, Recipes, Upholstery, Wallpaper

Halloween Not So Haunted House Favorites: Halloween Decorating Ideas

Friday night lights will apply to more than high school Friday night football games this Halloween. The flicker and glow from jack-o-lanterns, skull sconces and every tricked out decoration in-between will illuminate the evening and catch the eye of the costumed faithful.

skull-sconceSkull Wall Sconce from Moonshine Lamp on Etsy

Halloween is exciting enough, but when it lands on a fab-Boo-lous Friday night the celebration soars to flying monkeys all hopped up on sugar heights.

flying-monkey“Fly, Fly, Fly.”  Winged Monkey Costume

Halloween decorating has taken on a life all its own in recent years. Decoristas leave no moss covered stone unturned, no craft store unshopped, no Halloween Pinterest board unseen in their search and shop for the ultimate get your Halloween decor on ideas.  I’m a traditional old soul at heart when it comes to my Halloween decorations.  We keep the scarefest very G-rated as not to spook or scare the little ones.  The most frightening thing at our house is the amount of calories in the bowls and bowls of candy, but who’s counting? Black and orange rule the color palette, Monster Mash is the first tune on the Halloween playlist, and I’ve been known to break out an old pair of men’s cowboy boots, jeans, flannel shirt and stacks of yesterday’s news (0ld newspapers) creating a wicked good cowboy to help me pass out candy. Speaking of haunting hits, here’s a few of the Places In The Home Halloween house favorites.

If your ideas of Halloween pumpkin decorating finds you in the no carve pumpkin zone, fret or fright not.


Invent your very own throwback Halloween hashtag #TBH and channel decoupage days of basket purses and vintage milk cans past. Spray painted leaves, printables, old photos – get creative and test your mad Mod Podge skills. Glitter stickers, acrylic paint and a decorative furniture or curtain finial lend a designer touch and signature style to your Halloween decorations.


Stylish decorations don’t have to expensive to be impressive. Create fab-BOO-lous Halloween centerpiece magic with a couple of dollar store feather boas, a witches hat, and a rhinestone pin.  You can get more bang for your harvest and Thanskgiving decorating buck by not carving the pumpkin and simply surrounding it with wow factor embellishments. Mingle twinkle lights in and around the freather boas for mood lighting.  Wrap average party paper cups in high Halloween style with ribbon in your favorite designer pattern and color.


I like using fabric for foundation tablecloths and table skirting. Velvet and lace are hot trends at that moment and add an elegant, creepy edge to the festivities.  I stock up on pillar candles and dollar store glass containers and cylinder vases for my Halloween tablescapes.  Glitter, black beans, candy corn or food-color dyed water make great filler choices. This can I give you a hand serving bowl from Target would make a fun centerpiece anchor.  Another dollar store run for Spanish moss, red apples and glow-in-the-dark insects and you’re set.


Paper lunch bags come in handy for Halloween treat bags and light the way luminaires.  For treat bags, I like to glue Halloween themed printables to the front of the bags.  Next, I fill each bag with a generous layer of shredded newspaper, and finish with favors and treats wrapped in glitter tulle.  I cut the tulle so the ends will flow from the tops of the bags.  Using a hole punch, punch a hole through the center of each bag (about 1” down from opening), thread the raffia through and tie together to seal.


Battery-operated LED votive candles produce the perfect flameless lighting for pathway luminaires. Safety first, and this option is a safe alternative to fire burning candles.


I hope one or more of these Halloween decorating ideas offers inspiration for your Halloween fab-Boo-lous haunted or not so haunted house soiree.

Love your style!


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Filed under color palette, decorating, decorative hardware, DIY, entertaining, holiday decorating, party ideas, tablescapes

Define Homemade

How do you define homemade?  I like to take culinary liberties with the word homemade. My homemade state of mind is firing on all culinary cylinders at this time of year.  Shortcuts that simplify, enhance and spice up the homemade baking and cooking experience top my ingredients list. Store bought banana nut muffin mix is just an extra teaspoon of ground cinnamon, ½ teaspoon of ground cloves, and two ripe bananas thrown in for good measure away from scratch. Welcome to my this is how we homemade world.

fall-fruit-plate-banana-breadSpiced up banana-nut muffin nread served with sliced apples and grapes make for a lovely fall afternoon nosh.

My daily life is messy, clean it up routine finds me at the kitchen sink washing dishes several times a day.  The upside of this daily routine is it allows me a pondering session.  Over the last 40+ years I’ve stood in that exact spot pondering and appreciating the view from outside my kitchen window with today being no different.  Gazing merrily along I spotted one lone falling leaf of deep golden amber. That one lovely leaf was all the verification I needed to determine it’s soup weather! The beauty of fall was the inspiration, but leftover instant mashed potatoes became the culinary catalyst for this recipe.  I like to come up with a soup, stew or chowder rich in hearty simplicity.  I think this simple corn chowder delivers.



Corn Chowder


4 tablespoons butter or margarine

1 medium yellow onion, diced

1/3  cup all-purpose flour

8  cups chicken broth

1 can cream of mushroom soup

2 medium potatoes, diced

1 cup prepared instant mashed potatoes

¼ teaspoon Kosher salt

½ teaspoon fine black pepper

2 bay leaves

1 package frozen sweet corn

2 cans cream style corn


In a large pot melt butter over medium heat. Add diced onions and saute until tender. Add flour to onions , stirring onions and flour constantly until onions are coated. Pour in chicken broth and cream of mushroom soup, stirring until well blended.  Add potatoes, bay leaves, kosher salt and fine black pepper.  Stir to incorporate and bring mixture to a boil stirring. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook 10 minutes or just until potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally.
Add instant mashed potatoes, whisking until well blended.  Next, add frozen corn and cream style corn, stirring to incorporate. Reduce heat to simmer, and allow chowder to heat through, uncovered, 10 – 15 minutes longer.


For no reason other than I adore the beauty of this cottage and its outdoor fall finery,  I’m including these images for the fall of it.  I like this definition of homemade.











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Filed under baking, cooking, Dinner, fall, Recipes, soup

A Most Fetching Friday




adjective: fetching


synonyms: attractive, appealing, sweet, pretty, good-looking, lovely, delightful, charming, prepossessing, captivating, enchanting, irresistible

This week’s Fetching Friday shines a light on crystal chandeliers in all their sparkling, brilliant and elegant majesty.

ff-white-pitchersRaised in Cotton – REstyle Source

ff-Vanderbilt-CrystoramaCrystorama glamorama


ff-EbanistaEbanista- the first name in details.


crystal-chandelier-Ralph-Lauren-HomeRalph Lauren Home

crystal-flea-market-findFlea Market Style featured in Better Homes and Gardens

I hope yours is a most fetching Friday.

Love your style!



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Filed under Antiques, dining room, Interior Design, Kitchen, Lighting

In Season: Warming Up Of House and Home

What elements of design and decorating inspires your in season warming up of house and home?


In my in season warming up of house and home retail rounds I admit the word standout has yet to enter into the equation.  All the usual suspects of the season and blog world stars of the moment are present and accounted for in aisles and endcaps. From store to store, it’s like one large retail run-on sentence. A handful of trends caught on and the home decor buyers of the retail world bought, and bought, and bought thinking consumers would buy, and buy, and buy. I noticed the clearance aisle at one of the large chain stores was busting at the seams with items that I still see in home decor magazines, blogs and other retail outlets.  Does this mean the saturation point has been reached and we can now move away from tacky confused as tasteful?  Gosh, does that remark read snarky?  That’s not the intention, but if the shoe fits perhaps it’s time to step out of the everyone else is doing it, making it, buying it stiletto of conformity.

 ***Edited to include***

 This article from House Beautiful, “10 DIY Projects That Are Past Their Prime (And How To Update Them)”, was delivered to my inbox a few hours after this post published.  It is worth the read and further touches upon the conversation of when is it time to pull the plug on or resuscitate certain trends and tries.


Are there current trends and tastes in decorating and home decor accents floating around worthy of copying, imitating and incorporating into our design and decor?  Absolutely!  My copycat looks for fall fall somewhere between cozy comfort, to thy own seasonal style and taste be true and Sex In The City 101.
Sex and the City (2008)
Miranda Hobbes: [at a bar, drinking Cosmopolitans] 
“Why did we ever stop drinking these?”
Carrie Bradshaw: “Because everyone else started! ”

I’m seeing more of and loving the merging of deeper tone spring and summer colors with traditional warm colors of the fall and winter color wheel, and doesn’t that naturally make sense?  I don’t know about you, but repainting a space every time the wind changes to reflect the season is not on my gotta do it list.  If a color is gorgeous in the summer it will more than likely be gorgeous in the dead of winter.  

fall-paint-colors1, 234

Past accents, furniture, lighting and home decor accessories, coziness is often the most desirable design and decor element of warming up of house and home and home away from home spaces.  Hotel rooms aim to achieve it, designer showhouses embrace it, and hospitals have recognized the importance of it in regards to room design and the beneficial effect a cozy environment has in the promotion of healing.  


 Decoratively speaking, coziness as a design feature is a natural fit with most decor styles.  


Comfortable, warm and relaxing remain three distinct design traits that will always be in season. 

Love your style!


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Filed under accents, Color, color palette, Decor, fall, home decor, Home Furnishings, Interior Decorating, Interior Design, paint colors, seasonal decor

A Most Fetching Friday




adjective: fetching


synonyms: attractive, appealing, sweet, pretty, good-looking, lovely, delightful, charming, prepossessing, captivating, enchanting, irresistible

This week’s Fetching Friday features impressions and inspirations associated with the star of the moment, October.


Hello, October.  I’ve been anxiously waiting your arrival.


Berthe Morisot Tureen and Apple


ff-blanketsStyle Me Pretty – Photography by Judy Pak Photography

Seatings and settings.  Crisp evenings set the tone and texture for seasonal tablescapes with attention to cozy details.

rolling-pinRustic Olive Wood Rolling Pin

Currently craving.

ff-apple-pancakeApple Pancake

I hope you have a most Fetching Friday.

Love your style!


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Filed under Culinary, fall, Food, kitchen accessories, party ideas, Recipes, seasonal decorating, tablescapes, Texture

Patience In Design and Decorating

Want, need, seasonal availability and patience in design and decorating lined up over the weekend.  It was hard to contain my excitement when Dave the Builder emailed me the picture below of this display live and in person from our local Lowe’s garden center.


One white pumpkin, one greenish blue pumpkin, one ornamental cabbage and one vintage dough bowl later…  well this isn’t exactly the look I had in mind. The build up to perceived pumpkin perfection may have been better than the actual great white pumpkin purchase.  As it sometimes goes in the world of design and decorating, what we initially envision doesn’t necessarily translate well to space, palette, placement or in this case, pumpkin.

patience in decorating

If at first you don’t succeed, design and decorate again, and again, and again.  I think it is safe to assume all great, beautiful and stylish design and decorating does not come straight out of the box that way.  I’ve lost count of the projects I have started over at the beginning, in the middle of, and heavily tweaked at the end.  If it doesn’t feel right how can it look right? I know, the client knows, and the client knows I know.  You know?  Adding to, taking away from, switching up or a simple re-positioning is often the missing piece of the puzzle that brings forth the “that’s it!” look you were going for in the first place.  Tenacity, coupled with patience in design and decorating, is the power tool of the trade.


You’ve got to roll with the punches when it comes to the creative process. It’s a work in progress, an exercise in patience and pumpkin. What presently doesn’t work will eventually come together for the next phase of the fall and harvest finery extravaganza aka Thanksgiving decorating.  I am gingerly practicing pumpkin caution with these fall decorating beauties of the moment. Here’s hoping they will at least look presentable for an upcoming Thanksgiving staging session. It’s not looking too good for the one in the above image, but hope is on the table.  I always take out a decorating insurance policy in the form of classic core pieces, accents and accessories.

ff-go-greenPumpkin Centerpiece How-to Guide from POPSUGAR

That’s what I love about working with a good foundation and why I preach classic pieces.  Strong lines, good bones, great pieces and patience in design and decorating are the tried and true hallmarks of great and lasting design and decorating.


Love your style!


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Filed under accents, Accessories, color palette, decorating, holiday decorating, home decor, Interior Decorating, Interior Design, seasonal decorating

A Most Fetching Friday





adjective: fetching


synonyms: attractive, appealing, sweet, pretty, good-looking, lovely, delightful, charming, prepossessing, captivating, enchanting, irresistible

This week’s Fetching Friday features signature signs of the season in sight and word, warm reminders, a DIY project, and a pair of birds from a distinct feather.


Warm is a hot topic of fall conversation.  We have entered the season so closely associated with a changing and impressive palette.


It may be a coincidence, but it seems the senses become heightened as the days shorten, colors deepen, spices and aromas entice and the tones and textures of nature engage us by sight, sound, touch, smell and taste.


I call this the apple of my eye wreath.  This stunning DIY apple wreath on fall home tour display at The Wood Grain Cottage is my kind of DIY project.


Lowe’s knows color.


Natural elements come together to create a tablecsape with a nod to the seasonal influence of color, texture and pattern.


This time of year is deliciously referred to as soup weather, and this Pumpkin-Chestnut soup recipe from Martha Stewart is a quintessential fall favorite.


A member of the duck, swan and goose family, the ruddy shelduck or Tadorna ferruginea is a distinctive species mostly found in central and Southern Asia.  Beautiful markings, don’t you think?


I hope you have a most Fetching Friday.

Love your style!


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Filed under Color, color palette, DIY, fall, Food, Meals, outdoor living, Recipes, tablescapes

Fall at Home Decorating Favorites: Places In The Home at Fall

Today all is right with the calendar! September 23, 2014 marks the official start of fall, and in the infamous words of Marky Mark and his Funky Bunch, can you feel it?  Wow, did I just date myself or what?  Summer heat and humidity has finally relented and it’s time to break out the fall at home decorating favorites. Dave the Builder’s mancave looks like the distribution center for Hobby Lobby. Don’t you love that look?


Several “hello, do you have any gourds (cause I’ve got friends in low country places), ornamental cabbage (it’s the deep South lady, wait a few more weeks), cotton stalks (score!) and the ever great, ever regionally challenged do you have white pumpkins phone calls have been made over the last few days.


Decorating for this year’s Places In The Home at fall home tour focuses on a natural theme with a family overtone to it.


My brother has the cotton connection, 46+ acres of it to be exact.  His home is located out in the country surrounded by cotton fields ready for fall harvest.


My parent’s recent trip to East Tennessee resulted in my Ball Mason jar collection growing by one.  My paternal grandmother was known for her famous pinto beans, and this somehow seemed naturally appropriate.


Can’t forget the traditional pop of pumpkin color.


Additions, changes, adjustments… acorns-walnuts

Dark tones, warm colors and the lack of natural lighting worked to my fall photo shoot advantage.


Nature continues to amaze and reward me with an abundance of fall decorating accents.


Heirloom pieces, vintage favorites and simple accents and accessories place the emphasis on less is more.  Fall home tours are so much fun to share with others. I’m linking up this week at Savvy Southern Style.


Welcome home fall.  You’ve been greatly missed.


Love your style!



Filed under accents, Accessories, Antiques, decorating, fall, holiday decorating, home decor, Interior Decorating, Interior Design, seasonal decorating, Vintage