Fetching Friday: Exterior Entryways

Exterior entryways welcome distinctive style to house, home, curb, and post this fetching Friday.

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Exquisite exterior entryways go the extra mile when the objective is creating superb curb appeal.

exterior-entryways-Jeffrey-Dungan-Architects

Jeffrey Dungan Architects

What defines exquisite is subject to personal design style preferences.

greenery-climbing-roses-exterior-entryway

Southern Living – Robbie Caponetto

To me, exquisite is exterior entryways flanked by landscaping that rivals classic works of art.

Tuscan home exterior

Energize Builders, Inc

Less is more is thoughtfully achieved through well-appointed and well- positioned accents.

exterior-entryways-Milieu-magazine-Jeffrey-Dungan-Architects-photo-Leslee-Mitchell

Milieu Magazine- Jeffrey Dungan Architects – Photo by Leslee Mitchell

Long Acre Farm

PJS Building & Maintenance Ltd

English-inspired-architecture-Buckhead-entryway

Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles – Photo by Chris Little

The beauty of uncommon design lies within the details.

Bevolo-lanterns

Bevolo Gas & Electric Lights

Symmetry promotes a pleasing balance.

D. Stanley Dixon Architect

D. Stanley Dixon Architect

Peter Zimmerman Architects (1)

Peter Zimmerman Architects

Exquisite exterior entryways standout as the focal point feature that most contributes to the desired effect of curb appeal- an aesthetic that beautifully welcomes style home.

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Show & Tell

Get To Growing Garden Goodies

Get to growing garden goodies grow a long way in the beautification process of the spring flower and vegetable garden.

get-to-growing-garden-goodies

We’re in for an “Easter snap” at the end of the week, but the temps will remain friendly to the tradition of Good Friday gardening.

The tradition of planting cool and warm season crops in the South is common practice with many farmers and gardeners who believe Good Friday to Easter represents a symbol of fertility and rebirth.

Get to growing garden goodies inspiration often comes from a flower or vegetable garden sight to behold.

country-garden-geraniums-pansies-osteopermum-silver-petiolaris

House & Garden Magazine is a phenomenal source for lawn & garden inspiration, and it is my pleasure to share these enchanting examples.

English cottage gardens visually fascinate me.

Dave the Builder and I designed and planted a small one outside our bedroom at our last house, and although small in size, it commanded a large presence among the total landscape.

Osmanthus Tea Olive Shrub with White Fragrant Flowers

Planted in the garden right outside our bedroom window was a sweet olive tree.

Fragrant scents floated through the late afternoon into evening air, making spring into summer deck sitting times an aromatherapy session of sorts.

fragrant

adjective

having a pleasant scent or aroma; sweet-smelling; sweet-scented:
a fragrant rose.

delightful; pleasant:
fragrant memories.

Stanton-Residence-garden

In regards to planting your own English cottage garden, there’s no need for a large parcel of land or sprawling estate.

Better Homes & Gardens offers plans for creating the perfect cottage garden suited to your taste, zone, and design vision.

Here’s the link:  Garden Plans for Cottage Style 

Garden Plans for Cottage Style

Illustrations by Mavis Augustine Torke 

Aim to create a quaint garden space rich in color, fragrance, and charm.

knee-high-mix-sweet-pea-seeds

Knee High Mix Sweet Pea Seeds

The design objective of the cottage garden is refined undesign.

color-rich-English-cottage-garden

“I am rooted, but I flow.”

— Virginia Woolf

Quote means something altogether different, but I thought it fit the occasion.

hollyhocks

Hollyhock Indian Spring

Laying out the design of a cottage garden is similar to styling a coffee table.

High, medium and low is a working concept with considerations to factor in.

When I’m styling a coffee table I sit down on sofa, chair, etc…  and choose the primary sight line.

X marks the center spot- the prime location for a medium or low height object placement.

The outer areas balance the method with graduated heights to continue the flow, theme and visual engagement.

Border Charm Peony Roots

Border Charm Peony Roots

Color bursts runs intertwined in greenery grandeur.

English-cottage-garden-hyacinths

Hyacinths Bulbs Easter Basket Blend (Set of 12)

Mix and mingle annuals with perennials, textures and patterns, the shabby with the chic.

Contrast produces an informal, romantic, distinctive and visually pleasing aesthetic.

Ruby Slippers Oakleaf Hydrangea White Flowering Shrub Bare Root

Ruby Slippers Oakleaf Hydrangea White Flowering Shrub Bare Root

Weave unique planters, chippy garden statues, and accents of interest throughout.

Estate and garage sales, antiques markets, and vintage shops are garden supplies treasure troves for finding pots, planters, tools, and decorative garden statues.

get-to-growing-garden-goodies-1

Antique Shoppes At 1100 Barksdale

Strategically place, tuck and trellis seating and accents.

cottage-garden-accents

Stas Spiral Iron Gothic Trellis
Rose Stepstone Dark Walnut
Fiberstone Pot Planter

Woodland Excelsior Foxglove (Digitalis) Mixture Live Bareroot Perennial Plants (5-Pack)

Woodland Excelsior Foxglove (Digitalis) Mixture Live Bareroot Perennial Plants 

Sunday Lilac (Syringa) Live Deciduous Plant Purple Flowering Shrub

Sunday Lilac (Syringa) Live Deciduous Plant Purple Flowering Shrub

When planting and placing, work with the design rule of odds.

Groupings of three or five fashion the essential casual yet elegant design concept of the cottage garden.

Inese-Bite-Garden

Fencing of wood, iron, or hedge complete the desired intention of creating an intimate space.

Dark Green Metal Garden Fence (9-Pack)

Dark Green Metal Garden Fence (9-Pack)

Montebello Wrought Iron Garden Edging

Montebello Wrought Iron Garden Edging

Knockout roses.

garden-roses

Climbing roses.

Pinkie-New-Dawn-Climbing-Roses

Garden roses.

salmon pink rose

“There is simply the rose; it is perfect in every moment of its existence.”

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

Grand Freesia & Ranunculus Bulb - Set of 25

Thankfully, the ice storm spared both the flowering quince and azaleas.

flowering-quince

Did you know azaleas are classified as an evergreen shrub?

pink azaleas

Harsh winter weather was cause for concern with so many of our plants and shrubs; however, these Southern Indica azaleas are rated for down to zero degrees fahrenheit.

Spring’s in full bloom gift graces the vases and tabletop places in the home.

pink-white-azaleas-in-vase

Our Deep South planting soil to temperature zone indicates the essential need for particular plants to be planted in the ground and growing by Easter in order to be strong enough to survive the heat of this region.

Some planting zones, climates, and soils ready for spring gardening quicker than others.

My steadfast rule and suggestion to fellow gardenistas is to first consult a zone map to know the best time for planting vegetables and/or flowers in your part of the world.

usda_plant_hardiness_zones

Two gardening go-to sources I consult is the USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map and the Louisiana Vegetable Planting Guide from the  LSU AgCenter.

Links to both provided above.

In this area April is the time for planting eggplant, okra, squash, cucumbers, peppers, snap and lima beans.

Based on information gleaned from a host of gardeners in the know,  azaleas, jasmine, viburnum, camellias, and flowering quince are prime for pruning as soon as they finish flowering.

snow storm damage

I shared this picture of the viburnum that did not fare so well during during and after the ice storm.

What, how, and when to cut back to promote new growth is the question I called the extension service with.

Our local extension service is a get it growing source of valuable lawn & garden information and get it growing tips.

bees (1)

Beauty and the bee is all the buzz, and you know I’m all about the theme.

SHORT HEIGHT PRINTED WELLIBOBS

Short Height Printed Wellibobs – Yellow Bees

Garden shoes for your ready, set, grow activities 🐝.

bee plates WSBee Salad Plates

Marble Honeycomb Salad Servers

Marble Honeycomb Salad Servers

garden fresh salad ingredients

Pass the buttermilk dressing.

La Rochere Napoleon Bee Verdigris 10 oz. Tumbler, Set of 6

La Rochere Napoleon Bee Verdigris 10 oz. Tumbler, Set of 6

Super cute outdoor pillow set at an unbelievably great price.

Bee-outdoor-pillow

bee-outdoor-pillow-1

Mainstay Bee Script Outdoor Pillow

Safavieh Hand-hooked Chelsea Aubree Country Oriental Wool Rug

Outdoor spaces decked (porch or patio) out in color, texture, and pattern invite the look of the season to sit in style for awhile.

Safavieh-Hand-hooked-Chelsea-Aubree-Country-Oriental-Wool-Rug (1)

Safavieh Hand-hooked Chelsea Aubree Country Oriental Wool Rug

“In spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.”

—Margaret Atwood

Getting garden ready involves getting garden dirty.

Honey Bee Hand Wash

Honey Bee Hand Wash

“The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature.  To nurture a garden is to feed not just the body, but the soul.”

— Alfred Austin

Burt's-Bees-almond-hand-cream

Burt’s Bees Almond & Milk Hand Cream

Gardening can be hard on the hands.

After a get to growing gardening session, treat your hands to a post gardening at-home hand spa treatment

hummingbird-moving

Griffin Products 38 oz Green Hand-blown Glass Hummingbird Feeder

Griffin Products 38 oz Green Hand-blown Glass Hummingbird Feeder

I ordered this hand-blown glass hummingbird feeder today for a friend who is an avid hummingbird watcher.

hummingbird-map (1)

Hummingbird Nectar 

Ingredients

granulated white table sugar

Water (tap is fine)

Directions

Mix 1 part sugar with 4 parts water (for example, 1 cup of sugar with 4 cups of water) until sugar is dissolved.

Do not add red dye.

Fill hummingbird feeder with the sugar water mixture and place outside.

Any extra sugar water can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks.

hummingbird-feeding-from-Lilac

Change feeders every other day and thoroughly clean them each time to prevent harmful mold growth

To prevent the growth of mold, a hummingbird feeder should be cleaned and refilled at least twice a week in hot weather and at least once a week in cooler weather.

garden-vegetables-in-wheel-barrow-House-and-Garden

House & Garden – Photo by Andrew Montgomery

Bee & Willow Home Garden Tools Set

Bee & Willow Home Garden Tools Set

MOLLY MID HEIGHT PRINTED RAIN BOOTS

Molly Mid Height Printed Rain Boots – Khaki Chickens

pink-roses-gardening-gloves

Gardening Goodies

get it growing garden goodies

Tools

Fiskars® 3pc DuraFrame Garden Tools Set
Ames Poly Scoop
Barebones Living Small Garden Scissors
3pc Garden Tool Set – Smith & Hawken™

Planters

White Washed Brown Faux Woven Planter 
Green/Grey Ceramic Artichoke Planter with Saucer
Cast Stone Ornate Low Urn in Aged Charcoal
Fiberstone Pot Planter

Watering Cans

2 Qt Gray Elephant Watering Can
Hunter Green Watering Can with Copper Accents
Place & Time Spring Watering Can – Gold
Achla Designs Haystack Pitcher Watering Jug

Garden Goodies

Cast Stone Leaf Stepstone Dark Walnut
Pure Garden Rolling Garden Work Scooter w/ Tool Tray
Orbit Irrigation Zinc Adjustable Impact Tripod Sprinkler

tomatoes-in-sink-Delft-tiles-photo-Johannes-Mueller

House & Garden – Photo by Johannes Mueller

Crisp lettuce.

Tom Thumb leaf lettuce seeds

Leaf Lettuce “Tom Thumb” Seeds – Butterhead 

Home-grown tomatoes.

Beefsteak heirloom Tomato

Beefsteak Heirloom Tomato Seeds

Fresh from the garden vegetables deliciously complement spring and summer grill it up favorites.

hamburger-patties-ready-to-grill

garden-vegetables-citrus

Edible Plants

Preparing spring fresh dishes and treats can be a messy undertaking.

SL apron new spring

Scrolling through the home offerings from Dillard’s resulted in this new pretty for spring purchase.

new spring apron

wicker-vegetable-basket

Wicker Vegetable Basket

Vegetable themed serveware sets a stunning from the garden tablescape.

vegetable-shaped-Italian-Majolica-serveware

Vintage Vegetable Shaped Italian Majolica Serveware

CORNERRUBY INTERNATIONAL carrot bunny figurine

Cornerruby International Carrot Bunny Figurine

never-underestimate-the-healing-power-of-a-quiet-moment-in-the-garden

National Garden Clubs Inc. 

There’s a whole host of reasons for gardening.

Gardening is:

Therapeutic.

Relaxing.

Visually gratifying.

Expresses creativity.

Early spring is an excellent time to plan, plant and Easter parade your flower and vegetable gardens accented with get to growing garden goodies.

spring signature

 

Show & Tell

Spring On The Beauty

Spring on the beauty time is here, and my heart is full of expectation for the best of the season to show up and beautifully show out.

spring on the beauty (1)

Speaking of time, when I started blogging ten years ago one of the suggestions from those in the know was to be 100% truthful and transparent with your readers.

Based on this expert advice and my truth is key philosophy, I find it necessary to share with you all a realization.

This spring forward daylight savings time thing is kicking my 50something tuchus.

coffee sizes

It’s one of those there’s not enough café au lait in Louisiana to caffeinate the moments of my life days.

Raise your hand and coffee cup if you know what I’m talking about.

The silver lining of the time change is more daytime to enjoy the sights of the season.

coffee-at-shop

Foodiesfeed

Saturday officially marked the first day of spring on the beauty, and I greeted the day full of vim and vigor.

“The day the Lord created hope was probably the same day he created Spring.”

– Bernard Williams

in full bloom azaleas

New spring blooms provided a pretty in pink backdrop for a front yard picnic with family old and new.

OKC_BKC

Meet the newest additions to the Places In The Home family.

Our nephews and niece-in-laws traveled to Louisiana to introduce us to one month old Oliver and six month old Beau.

Three year old Wyatt was masked up and ready to hunt Easter eggs.

WJC (2)

The biggest baby in the family, Beaux the Wonder Shepherd, posed pretty for the camera on the not so ready for spring time good times patio.

Beau Shepherd

Our front yard picnic-Covid responsible-spring time is here gathering was a bright spot in the post winter ice storm aftermath.

pink spring blooms

Signs of spring in the beauty is slowly coming back to life.

Red Diamond Loropetalum Shrub with Burgundy Foliage and Bright Red Blooms

Red Diamond Loropetalum Shrub

pear-tree-in-bloom

Cleveland Select Flowering Pear Tree Bare Root

 Cleveland Select Flowering Pear Tree

Spring suppers tend to run a little later and a little lighter.

tropical-fruit-salad

Spring fresh green, fruit, or pasta salads.

colorful-vegetables

Colorful Vegetables

Garden veggie plates.

peeled-shrimp-in-bowl

Chilled Louisiana Gulf seafood platters.

Tory Burch Home lettuce ware dishes

Tory Burch Home

Many evenings we’ll eat on the patio or porch.

Cabbage Oval Platter

Cabbage Oval Platter

I prepare each of us a tray set with spring themed dinnerware in keeping with my firm belief you eat with your eyes first.

Set Of 12 Franciscan Desert Rose Dinner Plates

Set Of 12 Franciscan Desert Rose Dinner Plates

gardenia-salt-pepper-shaker (1)

Gardenia Salt and Pepper Set

Wares and decorative pieces inspired by spring set the loveliest of tables and trays.

pink lettuce ware dinner plate

Ceramic Cabbage Plate

So pretty!

Stoneware Chinese Cabbage Jug - White

Stoneware Chinese Cabbage Jug – White

Color, texture, pattern and taste repeats throughout chosen spring favorites.

artichoke-on-saucer

artichoke-mug

artichoke-cocotte

Braised-Artichokes-recipe-Williams-Sonoma

Braised Artichokes with Shallots & Peas

Ingredients

Finely grated zest and juice of 2 lemons

6 large artichokes, about 1/2 lb. each

3 Tbs. olive oil

2 large shallots, finely chopped

1 sprig fresh thyme

½ cup (4 fl. oz.) dry white wine

1 ½ cups (12 fl. oz.) low-sodium chicken broth, plus more if needed

Salt and freshly ground pepper

1 small clove garlic, chopped

Leaves from 1 bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

6-8 leaves fresh mint, cut into slices

1 lb. fresh English peas, shelled

½ cup (4 oz.) creme fraiche

1 tsp. Dijon mustard

Directions

Have ready a bowl of water to which you have added the lemon juice.

Working with 1 artichoke at a time, pull off and discard the tough outer leaves until you reach the tender, pale yellow-green inner leaves.

Cut off about 1 inch from the top to remove the prickly tips.  Using a paring knife, remove the tough outer layer on the stem.

Cut the trimmed artichokes lengthwise into quarters.

As each artichoke is finished, drop it into the lemon water.

Warm a large saute pan over medium-high heat and add the oil.  Add the shallots and thyme sprig and saute until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Drain the artichokes, shake off the excess water, and add to the pan.  Raise the heat to high, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the artichokes are lightly browned in places, about 5 minutes.

Add the wine and cook until reduced to about 2 tablespoons, about 3 minutes.  Add the broth and ½ teaspoon salt and bring to a boil.

Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until the artichokes are tender when pierced with the tip of a paring knife, 12-15 minutes.

In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, parsley, mint and lemon zest.

When the artichokes are done, there should be at least ½ cup (4 fl. oz.) of liquid left in the pan.  Add a little more broth if needed. Add the peas, then stir in the creme fraiche and mustard.

Cook, stirring, until the peas are warmed through, about 2 minutes.

Gently stir in the herb mixture, taste and adjust the seasonings, and serve. Serves 4-6.

Williams-Sonoma Taste

This Helsa Vintage Green Stacked Artichokes accent immediately caught my eye, and the thought is how lovely a focal point piece for an entry table or tablescape this spring appropriate accent will make.

A&B Home Helsa 16-inch Vintage Green Stacked Artichokes Accent

A&B Home Helsa 16-inch Vintage Green Stacked Artichokes Accent

What’s your spring on the beauty plan?

love signature

Show & Tell

Decorating With The Color Green

St. Patrick’s Day inspires decorating with the color green.

dark-green-hydrangea

Flickr

The color connection between the St. Patrick’s Day and the color green dates back to the 17th c to what some perceive as an association to the lush landscape of the Emerald Isle.

Beautiful French Room of green chair by Cecilia Rosslee

Beautiful French Room of green chair by Cecilia Rosslee

decorating-with-the-color-green-1

Green is a classic color that evokes the splendor of the outdoors, four leaf clovers, St. Patrick’s Day, and the essential recipe for spring.

lettuce bowl with biscuits

Skonahem

“Green is the prime color of the world, and that from which its loveliness arises.”

– Pedro Calderon de la Barca

ombre-staircase-entry-foyer-Veranda

Veranda

Classic color, texture, and pattern frames a picturesque setting.

shabby-chic-bedroom-design

 Maddie Hughes Design

sofa-cover-fabric-HG-photo-by-Jake-Curtis

House & Garden – Styled by Gabby Deeming – Photo by Jake Curtis

Farrow-Ball-breakfast-room-green

Farrow & Ball Breakfast Room Green No. 81

colefax-fowler-bowood-fabric1

Bowood by Colefax and Fowler

green-and-gold-powder-room-design

Zoe Feldman Design

Decorating with the color green is a proven in-house formula for amplifying the beauty and patina of the woods and finishes detailed in antique pieces.

green-fabric-settee-Rachel-Whiting

House & Garden

Creating cozy yet elegant spaces isn’t as difficult as one may think.

Believe it or not, antiques pieces are the answer when the goal is to create a warm, rich, and yes, cozy aesthetic.

decorating-with-the-color-green

I love this “in my own little corner in my own little chair” space within a space in beautiful design and decorating with the color green accents detail by Ashley Montgomery Design.

antique-chest-leather-chair-home-bar

Ashley Montgomery Design

Antiques take very well to spaces enhanced by decorating with the color green.

interior designer Minnette Jackson

 Minnette Jackson – One Kings Lane

Scouting accessories and accents in the style of suggestion:

 Bengal Tiger Grass Fabric by Fabricut

Bengal Tiger Grass Fabric by Fabricut
Modern Faux Fur Stool Gold – Olivia & May

green-kitchen-cabinets-TIM BEDDOW-House-Garden

House & Garden

Interiors that incorporate the color green as the main palette choice or well appointed accent color will invariably catch the eye.

Reason?

Decorating with the color green associates a natural beauty with a tangible balance that easily flows from space to space and shade to shade, complementing the core elements of design and decor.

love signature

Show & Tell

Blooming Good Spring Finds

Signs of blooming good spring finds have arrived.

time for spring

Daylight savings time begins this weekend.

Pollen: the amber yellow tint beginning to cover the outdoor world.

Pretty little things for home, lawn and garden tickling your spring fancy.

Screen saver image switched out to reflect spring’s in full hydrangea blooms beauty.

spring-2021-computer-screen-image

This back in stock and delivered to the door just in time for the season willow cloche is marked gorgeous for a garden decoration or tabletop accent.

home depot order delivery confirmation

22 in. H Willow Cloche Protector

22 in. H Willow Cloche Protector

willow-cloche-tulips

So Fine by Electric Light Orchestra providing spring (and summer) hum and buzz sweet inspiration.

♫ People walking hand in hand,
Everybody’s singing to the band
I want to be where the stars shine bright
And hear sweet music on a summer night ♫

fresh-Louisiana-strawberries-spring-2021

There’s nothing quite so delicious as the first bowl of extra large Louisiana strawberries to kick off the spring tasting season.

fresh spring asparagus

Well, perhaps a fresh bunch of garden asparagus.

the seasons of Louisiana

The seasons of Louisiana vary from minute to hour to week.

Ice storm damage is throwing our planting into wait and see mode, but the warm days signal planting and patio time is near.

Nature awakens in color and bloom to remind us dark and barren times never last forever.

Burchett Outdoor Acacia Wood Club Chairs with Cushions (Set of 2) by Christopher Knight Home

The Burchett Outdoor Acacia Wood 4 Seater Chat Set with Cushions by Christopher Knight Home sold out faster than you can say Oprah Winfrey’s palace patio sit-down with Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, but here’s two other options from the line to pretty up your patio, porch or perch.

Linwood Outdoor Acacia Wood Club Chair with Wicker Accents (Set of 2) by Christopher Knight Home

Linwood Outdoor Acacia Wood Club Chair with Wicker Accents

“Peter Brady” is a mover and a shaker in the home furnishings business, and the line’s options offer a good look at a good price.

Aston Outdoor Modern Acacia Cushioned Club Chairs (Set of 2)

Aston Outdoor Modern Acacia Cushioned Club Chairs (Set of 2)

Flowers infuse color into our homes with all of the beauty and scents of the spring season.

Blooming Good Spring Finds

Muscari

“Anything is possible with sunshine and a little pink”

– Lilly Pulitzer

time for spring

Ranunculus

Harsh late winter storms combined with multiple days and nights of arctic freezing temperatures zapped the life out of many of my plants, buds and blooms- most notably the hydrangeas I’ve babied for the last three seasons.

new-hydrangeas

A jaunt to the big box store garden center will replace what was.

I believe I’ll add a couple of packs of dusty miller and begonias to the mix for filler and balance.

dusty-miller-begonias

Spring flowers come in many shapes and forms.

Better Homes and Gardens Outdoor 15in Metal White Flower Wall Art

Better Homes and Gardens Outdoor 15in Metal White Flower Wall Art

Jordan Manufacturing Lessandra Outdoor Square Toss Pillows Rosewood Set of 2

Jordan Manufacturing Lessandra Outdoor Square Toss Pillows Rosewood Set of 2

Pressed flower notecards, set of 6 assorted cards, blank notecards

Pressed Flower Blank Notecards, set of 6 Assorted 

Much to my surprise and joy I’ve proven to myself no formal florist skills are needed to create a seasonal floral arrangement.

fresh-flower-bouquet

Blooms and greens from my lawn and garden or the clearance buckets perched in a local grocery store floral department display become the stars of the window seal or tabletop spring flower show.

spring flowers in pitcher

Better Homes & Gardens

Keeping it simple is the key to DIY flower arranging.

green-clippings-in-antique-rose-bowl (1)

It might be a dollar store glass container, vintage Mason jar, ironstone creamer pitcher, the antique rose bowl Dave the Builder gifted me with years ago, or these eye catching-soon to be in my buy now pickup later cart- pretty in pink vases that becomes the vessel of choice.

pink vases for spring

Bloom Room Spring Faceted Glass Vases

The point is whatever you’ve got and whatever suits your floral arrangement fancy is perfect.

Fill vase with tepid water, add one teaspoon of vodka and one teaspoon granulated sugar.

Tepid water allows for quicker water absorption, and the vodka and sugar combination delays wilting.

Drop a copper penny in to the vase to help deter the growth of fungus or bacteria.

floral arrangement tips

Although the decorative post courier mailbox wall accent is not new to the home decor accent market, its popularity is ongoing.

Give it the wall pocket effect and fill it to the brim with your favorite spring floral and greenery stems.

Post Courier Mailbox Wall Accent by Ashland®

Post Courier Mailbox Wall Accent by Ashland®

You know it’s spring finds time by the scents and sights of spring in full bloom.

I do love a season that shows out.

Darleen hydrangea in blue (1)

Show & Tell

Affordable All-Around Kitchen Hacks

Affordable all-around kitchen hacks offer budget-friendly design, decorating, and storage options to take your kitchen from bland to brilliant.

interior-decorating-supplies

Just when I think my design and decorating mojo is in post holiday/new year limbo, along comes an awe-inspiring photo and I’m back ready to show and tell.

This Nicole Franzen photo with styling by Kate Berry is featured in the Domino article, 13 Reno Budget Hacks, Straight From Leanne Ford.

Leanne_Ford_Interiors_Kitchen_photography by Nicole Franzen styling by Kate Berry Domino

Domino – Photography by Nicole Franzen – Styling by Kate Berry

One recent Places In The Home analytics report showed an increase in traffic towards a 2013 blog post, Color Combination Pink and Brown.

Trends and tastes come and go and ebb and flow, but a visually engaging color combination becomes a lasting favorite.

So you can see why the above kitchen space instantly caught my eye.

pink-and-brown-color-combination-brush-strokes

Color plays a pivotal role in the world of design and decorating.

An interesting tidbit of color trend information comes from the CB2 Trend Report 2021.

Designers (62% of those surveyed) predict mineral-inspired shades will be the colors of choice in 2021.

Mercury.

Olivine.

Ochre.

Clay.

Give the latter two a big thumbs-up.

mineral-colors

If you don’t like it, change it to the best of your design, decorating, and budget hacks ability.

Speaking of liking…

I like the part of the post that features in the style of decor accents.

Wauseon Power Loom Brown/Pink/Beige Rug

Wauseon Power Loom Brown/Pink/Beige Rug

22 Wall Mirror with Decorative Handle Gold - Patton Wall Decor

22″ Wall Mirror with Decorative Handle Gold – Patton Wall Decor

Art in the kitchen is always an on-trend option, and this color and subject is 0n-trend for 2021.

Mixed Faces Abstract Canvas Art Print

Mixed Faces Abstract Canvas Art Print

Flower+8+oz.+Glass+Goblet (1)

Flower 8 oz. Glass Goblet (Set of 6)

pour-me-xl-mixing-bowl-w-handle

Pour Me Extra-Large Mixing Bowl

mastering the art of French cooking

Mastering The Art Of French Cooking

measuring-bowl-antiques-1100-Barksdale

Antique Shoppes at 1100 Barksdale

Measuring and mixing in vintage style never looked so good when keeping house with current wares.

pink-enamel-bowl-Washington-school-antiques

Washington Old Schoolhouse Antique Mall

Bergamot+6+Piece+Ceramic+Mixing+Bowl+Set

Bergamot 6 Piece Ceramic Mixing Bowl Set

Artificial Olive Leaves Branches (5pcs) and Stems with Fruit (1) (1)

full-moon-clay-vase-Leanne-Ford

Full Moon Clay Vase

Pink and green is another wonderful color combination, and with spring soon to be, this take on a classic color and pattern makes a lovely addition to kitchen shelf and table alike.

The Pioneer Woman Timeless Beauty 3-Piece Dinnerware Set, Jade

The Pioneer Woman Timeless Beauty 3-Piece Dinnerware Set, Jade

Realizing I spend waaay too much time washing dishes, I figure I might as well ring some type of enjoyment out of this seemingly endless routine.

Everspring dish soaps

Everspring Dish Soaps

Now that we’ve addressed colorful, workable, and affordable kitchen accessories that perform and complement, let’s talk the customize optimize combination.

optimize-definition

Working off the assumption you’re working with a basic white range, consider customizing it to suit your space and style.

Customize = Optimize

Freestanding+Gas+Range

 

The Nostalgie Series Freestanding Dual Fuel Range by ILVE in color combination white/brass is one good looking range that guides this next in the style of budget hack.

Nostalgie Series Freestanding Dual Fuel Range See More by ILVE

Nostalgie Series Freestanding Dual Fuel Range See More by ILVE

If the four figure price tag is out of your range (get it?), consider a refresh via spray paint.

Rust-Oleum Universal All Surface Interior Exterior Metallic Spray Paint and Primer in 1

I call this the priming stage.

Remove the knobs from stove.  Wash the knobs in a warm water mixture of several drops of Dawn dishwashing liquid and a generous pour of white vinegar.  Rinse well with warm water and allow knobs to dry completely.

Holding the spray paint can approximately eight (8) inches from knob, apply spray paint in a back-and-forth motion in even layers.  I like to suggest applying two to three (2-3) coats of spray paint.  For a smooth polished finish, it is crucial you allow each coat to dry completely before applying the next.

What about range knobs with markings?

The first step is to take out your phone, device, or point and shoot camera and take a photo of the knob(s).  If a photo is not an option, draw out a template of the knob and settings placement.

After painting, use a black Sharpie to remark.

hotpoint-knobs

Now comes the oven door handle.

I’ve got a paint in place option and a remove the handle and paint tutorial.

For those of you who don’t want to fool with removing the oven handle, here’s your how-to.

Wear a mask (you should have plenty of practice with this 😄) and adequately ventilate the area by opening a window or door.

Tape off the areas above and below the handle using painter’s tape and proceed to spray paint the handle while in place.

ScotchBlue Original Multi-Surface Painter's Tape

For those of you who prefer to remove the handle, here’s the how-to.

Open the oven door and locate the screws on the top edge.  Using a screwdriver, remove each screw and set aside.  There’s a front and a back side to the panel.  You’ll want to lift the back panel of the door up to remove.

Using a nut driver, remove the two nuts on the inside of the door holding the handle in place; usually located on each side of oven door.  Remove the door handle.

Holding the spray paint can approximately eight (8) inches from the handle, apply spray paint in a back-and-forth motion in even layers.  Apply two to three (2-3) coats of spray paint, allowing handle to dry completely before applying the next coat.

Once the handle is completely dry, put back into place by lining up handle into the holes, placing nuts on each end, and tightening the nuts with the nut driver.

Bring door panels back together, line up with openings, insert nuts/screws and tighten.

Ta-da!

sub-zero-door-handles

I believe all this show and tell about affordable all-around kitchen hacks is inspiring me to bring about a bit of change to the Places In The Home kitchen.

New year, new pulls.

appliance-pulls-assorted-finishes

Braydon Studio Center to Center Appliance Pull

Instant doesn’t always guarantee a fruitful result, but in the case of installing new cabinet hardware I can almost guarantee instant visual upgrade success.

shea-mcgee-kitchen-renovation-domino

Domino – Photography by Studio McGee

brass-hardware

Gray kitchen cabinets with brass hardware Mike Stevens Homes

Mike Stevens Homes, Inc. – Photo by Bruce McCamish

There’s more than one way to impress the eye when creating storage solutions in the kitchen.

kitchen-bookcases-photo-Laurey-W-Glenn

Southern Living Magazine – Photo by Laurey W. Glenn

Absolutely loving the light oak gateleg table.

Finding one exactly like it proved unsuccessful, but here’s two suitable options for your kitchen decor consideration.

Larue Drop Leaf Solid Wood Dining Table

Larue Drop Leaf Solid Wood Dining Table

This English oak Barley Twist drop leaf table found at Gallery Auctions is in the dark finish so many gate leg tables traditionally come in.

The fantastic going once, going twice, sold! price on this table makes it all the more easy to fall in love with the darker finish.

English Oak Barley Twist Drop Leaf Table

Does your kitchen design lack sufficient cabinet and storage space?

There’s a hack for that.

5 Shelf Bookcase - Room Essentials™

5 Shelf Bookcase – Room Essentials™

Stake out an area of a wall and introduce an inexpensive bookcase or bookcase unit.

Begin by anchoring the unit(s) to the wall with an anti-tip kit.

Once everything is good and secure, the next step is to give an otherwise plain and rather utilitarian bookcase the custom treatment by dressing it out in a smart paint color and on-trend accessories.

Sherwin-Williams-neutral-gray-green (1)

Sherwin-Williams
Shoji White SW 7042  ||  Rushing River SW 7746  ||  Anonymous SW 7046 

Glidden paint colors (1)

 Glidden High Endurance Plus Interior Paint and Primer

Add molding and/or appliques.

How about plug-in swing arm lights?

Mattia 2 - Light Dimmable Plug-In Swing Arm

Mattia 2 – Light Dimmable Plug-In Swing Arm

There’s absolutely nothing wrong with traditional options for kitchen storage, just as there’s something very right about choosing a unique piece to bring visual lagniappe to the mix.

Gorgeous is as gorgeous stores.

In your antiques, vintage, and estate sale shopping, keep an eye out for bookcase or hutch with a bottom half that’s seen better days and a top half that’s completely salvageable.

A good eye sees past functional obsolescence, immediately  zooming in on the tremendous project opportunity found in otherwise overlooked redo-refine-repurpose pieces.

anthony-esteves-maine-cape-kitchen-detail-greta-rybus

     RemodelistaAnthony EstevesPhotography by Greta Rybus

If wall space is limited or any extra space for that matter is not to be, let there be hooks.

rustic-iron-wall-hooks

Options rich in variety, visual interest, form, and function enters into the kitchen storage grand scheme of things.

Affordable just happens to be a budget friendly bonus.

Now it’s time to stack and store in style.

Bee & Willow Milbrook Small Canister in White

Bee & Willow Home

farmhouse-pottery-trunk-vase

Farmhouse Pottery Trunk Vases

kitchen-utensil-holder

H&M

stoneware pitcher gray Hearth & Hand with Magnolia

Stoneware Pitcher Gray – Hearth & Hand™ with Magnolia

storage baskets with lids

H&M

Designer Jeremiah Brent’s eye for attention to function, design, and detail proves 20/20 perfection in regards to this super chic choice of open shelving.

Jeremiah-Brent-designed-Park-Avenue-kitchen-open-shelving (1)

Architectural Digest

Start with a set or two of floating wall shelves.

Modern+Floating+2+Piece+Wall+Shelf+Set

Modern Floating 2 Piece Wall Shelf Set (Set of 2)

Modern+Floating+2+Piece+Wall+Shelf+Set (1) (1)

Modern Floating 2 Piece Wall Shelf Set (Set of 2) in Black

Cover the front and sides with vinyl self adhesive peel and stick metallic shelf liner to create a polished modern look.

gold vinyl peel and stick paper

On the subject of peel and stick stylish and affordable kitchen hacks, wall decals and/or wallpaper easily become a choice material for a kitchen backsplash.

map-wallpaper-backsplash-idea-photo-John-Bessler

Better Homes & Gardens – Photo by John Bessler

The wall area behind a stove or sink is prime focal point real estate for this application.

Seabrook Designs Vespucci Map Tan & Gold Wallpaper

Seabrook Designs Vespucci Map Tan & Gold Wallpaper

Blue Azulejos Kitchen Panel Wall Decal

Blue Azulejos Kitchen Panel Wall Decal

What got this backsplash show and tell started was this farmhouse butler’s pantry redo by Cathy and Garrett Poshusta of The Grit and Polish and their rather impressive side-mounted sink placement choice.

Gorgeous, n’est-ce pas?

In real estate and renovation, it’s all about location, location, location.

butler's-pantry-sink-placement

The renovator used a scrap piece of marble for the backsplash, cutting the curved design himself.

My skills do not include this talent, but I can source the faucet with the best of them.

Concord 2-Handle Wall-Mount Standard Kitchen Faucet in Brushed Brass

Concord 2-Handle Wall-Mount Standard Kitchen Faucet in Brushed Brass

These two fixtures are from my personal inventory.

eBay crystal chandelier

The iron and crystal chandelier an eBay find, the bamboo chandelier an estate sale treasure.

kitchen-cabinets-backsplash

For approximately $150 all in including the fixtures, two rewires, aesthetic adjustments, a couple of coats of paint, and clear coat applications, two new to me custom chandeliers replaced two drab and outdated fixtures long past their prime style days.

vintage-bamboo-chandelier

Think outside the box when it comes to a particular area in the kitchen.

foyer-paint-fixture

I don’t know what’s more of a showstopper- the collection of ironstone or the pantry doors made from louvered arched wood shutters.

shutter-doors-kitchen-pantry

 Atchison Home 

Antique auctions are known treasure troves of goodies.

vintage-shutters

Gallery Auctions

Gallery Auctions in Houston, Texas is a personal favorite auction offering in person and online bidding.

This pair of French Louis XV style armoire doors in Cherry (50″ X 71″) sold at Gallery Auctions (our favorite) for $90.00.

Talk about a unique choice of pantry door.

Pair French Louis XV Style Armoire Doors in Cherry

Pair French Louis XV Style Armoire Doors in Cherry

March arrived today, and with its arrival comes spring project ideas.

Several of these kitchen hacks will see the light of day, and the treasure hunt for the unique, the stylish, the classic, and the affordable to pull it all together is highly anticipated.

love signature

Show & Tell

Snow Storms Issues

Snow storms issues are not this homeowner’s idea of fun.

snow scene

Granted, we don’t see snow, sleet, and ice in the Deep South very often, and I’m beginning to be thankful we don’t.

snow on ground

When you get all three X 2 for several days in a row dread and worry sets in.

snow gate

It’s hard to see the beauty in winter’s calling card when power outages, water shortages, boil advisories, leaking roofs, and bursting pipes come with it.

Snow Storms Issues

Our crepe myrtles took a beating, and the Sago palm is currently a super funky shade of wheat brown.

ice-on-Crepe-Myrtles

Dripping water to prevent the pipes from bursting (they did) and then being under a water conservation and boil advisory for five days is a physically and mentally draining experience.

dripping faucets

Sago

Shrubs, bushes, and trees green and doing their seasonal bloom thing now are brown, weathered, and damaged.

snow storm damage

On the good news front, the water conservation and boil advisory lifted this morning.

Oh, and we were able to get the second dose of the Covid 19 vaccine that had to be postponed due to the storms.

Light at the end of a very dark and troubling tunnel.

Snow storms issues dominate my time this week, but I’ll be back with you next week discussing design and decorating this and that.

Have a lovely rest of the week, and I’ll talk to you soon.

Darleen-signature-custom

Show & Tell

Copycat Piccadilly Pecan Delight Pie

This recipe is a copycat of a copycat Piccadilly Pecan Delight pie.

Piccadilly Cafeteria came to our little town in 1967.

Quickly taking its place as the big dog restaurant on the block, Piccadilly has been the one word answer to the what and/or where do you want to eat for dinner question asked what seems a gazillion times over all these years.

A recent walk down memory lane conversation began with Dave and I naming our favorite dishes and desserts that sadly are no longer on the menu at Piccadilly.

Southern fried chicken so crisp you could hear the crunch clear across the rows of booths and tables.

Cinnamon crusted egg custard served in dark green pottery custard cups.

 Pair of Hall China Custard Cups

Pair of Hall China Custard Cups

A slice of pie so pecan packed with dessert goodness that it made a lasting impression, the one and only Piccadilly Pecan Delight Pie.

Our conversation stirred up memories and this copycat recipe of a copycat recipe for Piccadilly Pecan Delight Pie.

copycat-pecan-delight-pie-sliced

Copycat Piccadilly Pecan Delight Pie

Ingredients

3 egg whites

1 cup white sugar

½ teaspoon vanilla extract

½ teaspoon baking powder

30  Ritz crackers

1½  cup chopped pecans

1 (12 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed

Directions

Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Spray a 9 inch pie plate with cooking spray and set aside.

crushed-pecans-butter-crackers

Add pecans and Ritz crackers in small batches to food processor bowl.

crushed-ritz-crackers

Pulse several times until pecans and Ritz crackers reach a fine crush/chop.

egg-whites

Beat egg whites until slightly stiff.

beaten-egg-whites

Add to that the sugar, vanilla, baking powder, crushed and chopped Ritz crackers and  pecans.

crushed-pecans-egg-whites

Using a wooden spoon, mix ingredients together until incorporated.

crushed-pecans

Spoon mixture into prepared pie plate.

Copycat Piccadilly Pecan Delight Pie in pie pan

Bake at 350 degrees F  for 25 minutes.

Copycat Piccadilly Pecan Delight Pie without whipped topping

Allow the pie to cool to room temperature.

baked pecan delight pie

whipped-topping-on-pie

Spread whipped topping over the top of the pie; cover to desired thickness.

topped-pie

Refrigerate pie for at least 2 hours before serving.

Copycat Piccadilly Pecan Delight Pie

The pie is packed firm with pecan goodness, and is not too sweet- perhaps a wonderful Valentine’s Day dessert choice.

Enjoy!

Darleen-signature-custom

Show & Tell