Finds and Treasures Currently Catching My Eye

Finds and treasures currently catching my eye for the August gotta have it list include all things house that make a home goodies in appetizing, modern, polished and pumpkin time is right around the corner style.  First up in this month’s round up is a set of appetizer plates with a sense of style and a sense of humor.

appetizer-plate

ED by Ellen

Memories lay the ground work for a collectible fascination to take root.  My frog fascination began in the summer of 1974 when I landed the coveted lead role in the local community theater production of Fairy Frog Superstar.  The play was pure G-rated fun, a take off on Cinderella and her Fairy Godmother.  The frog thing stuck, and I’ve been an avid collector of frog themed objects ever since. Metals are trending with a vengeance for fall 2015, and this brass finished frog object from West Elm is one handsome hopper.

brass-frog

The mixing of traditional, vintage and/or antiques with modern pieces remains on trend and in style.  Contrast is good, visual impact the desired decorating effect, and creating a unique and impressive focal point is the point.  I am inspired by the INSPIRE Q Canali Sleek Modern Accent Chair.

INSPIRE-Q-Canali-Sleek-Modern-Accent-Chair-Set-of-2-5ad33c32-a475-48f4-af2e-f27fff2c0616

Crabtree & Evelyn Rosewater Hand Therapy smells as good as it feels and heals. Perfect treatment for project weary hands.

rosewater-Crabtree-Evelyn

Thank You in any language translates well.   Modeled after antique enameled European signage, this Merci Word Play porcelain wall art says thank you in ooh la la fashion.

merci

Howard Feed-N-Wax is the Tina Turner of wood polishes.  Simply the best.

Howard-feed-n-wax

Who’s looking forward to getting their fall baking, cooking and seasoning on? The Staub Ceramic Pumpkin Cocotte from Williams-Sonoma is making it very hard for me not to be in a fall-pumpkin-cinnamon state of mind.

staub-pumpkin-cocotte

Speaking of seasonal recipes, may I suggest Louisiana De Mer: Seasonal Seafood Recipes for your cookbook collection.  This definitive collections of recipes for seafood lovers features 160 pages of beautiful photography, recipes from celebrated Louisiana chefs and restaurants, New Orleans classics- including po-boys and dozens of Cajun and Creole cooking tips.

Louisiana-de-mer-cookbook

Now we’re cooking!

Love your style!

For Rent: Rental Refresh Upgrades

Today’s blog post is brought to you by the letter R for rental refresh upgrades. The conversation of late between mama and papa Places In The Home and our soon to be college graduate son heading up to the Great White North to begin his career has revolved around rental property viewings, interiors, exteriors, accents (eh?) and scads of all things house that make a home (rented or owned) furnishings.  This is the time of year when thoughts of apartments, condos, townhomes and single-family houses for rent and rental refresh upgrades begin to take center stage in the minds of college bound students, career starting college grads and newlywed couples.  According to recent real estate and business reports, millennials trend more toward renting than buying.

house-for-rent-sign

The genius of internet listings, video viewings, real estate apps and Skype proves an essential tool in locating a property.  With a few clicks, well placed phone calls and virtual tours, our son has successfully rented a two story Victorian-era style home.  Now comes the fun part- the rental refresh upgrades.  He and his girlfriend are currently in putting a stylish spin on his new abode mode.  This is not our son’s first time at the rental rodeo.  He knows all too well renting comes with caveats, and property management firms have rules and code restrictions that must be adhered to.  Addressing the aforementioned right off the bat clearly defines the can and cannots.  Fortunately, the home owner is on board with the updates and rental refresh upgrades our son wants to do to the property.

BM-revere-pewter-framedBenjamin Moore

Fresh paint  rules the rental refresh upgrade playbook.   I ran across this quote yesterday and it really hit home.

“Color is the least expensive thing to put in a house.” —Ruthie Sommers

Color often gives the biggest return on your interior decorating investment. Paint is an instant update and covers a multitude of previous tenant color choice sins and the scuffs, streaks and uh-ohs made when moving out.  As a housewarming gift, Mr. Girlfriend’s Dad is painting the entire interior and key exterior areas of the house.  Going with a neutral color palette allows more breathing room in regards to accents and furnishings.  Landlords and property managers love neutral palettes, and come closer to approving the request for painting with this color choice.

rental-house-den

My inbox is experiencing a high volume of before, during and after pictures.  It’s exciting to be in the loop, share in the progress and to be asked to be a part of the process .

rental-staircase

Does it makes sense and cent$ to make updates and improvements to a rental property?  Absolutely!  Focus less on the fact your new residence is a rental and more on the fact that your new residence is where you call home.  All things house that make a home come together to make the out of your own pocket rental refresh upgrades worth it for the sake of your comfort, convenience and personal style touch.

Rental Refresh Upgrades

So worth it rental refresh upgrades good to go as in take it with you when you go ideas range from a programmable thermostat, stylish mirrors in bathrooms, accent rugs, light switch and wall plates, cabinet knobs and pulls, new shower head(s) and focal point light fixtures to exterior walkway lighting, planter boxes and a decorative mailbox.  Renting or buying, it really is amazing how a sense of personal style, displaying objects of individual interest and decorating with accents that capture and convey your personality makes a house a home.

studded-rug-FlooringHall’s Flooring

I’ll leave it there for today’s post and pick it back up with more pictures and suggestions for rental refresh upgrades.

Love your style!

The Decorating Way, Way Back: Decorating With What You Love

Lost, destroyed, misplaced. These are not the words we want associated with the photos of our lives.  A couple of weeks ago I received an email from my have camera, will photograph uncle with these blast from the past photos attached. Tears rolled down my cheeks for the memories and thankfulness to have these back in my life as we know it photo file once again, grainy finish and all. I have titled this blog post the decorating way, way back.  For the hip and happening hashtag crowd, let’s go with #WaybackWednesday on this #ThrowbackThursday eve.

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These photos were taken at our old house. Originally we purchased this house as an investment property, but it made financial and logistical sense (and cents) to just move into the property while we were in all out renovation mode with our present home.   On this particular afternoon in early 2000 when these photos were taken, family and close friends gathered back at our home after the funeral of my maternal grandmother.  My grandmother, a self-made woman and antiques dealer extraordinaire, taught me the world of antiques.  I see her everyday when I glance at the many items given to us by her and proudly displayed throughout our home.  Dave the Builder and I have always been big on including family mementos into our decor.  Decorating with what you love makes a house your home.

Bob-Dylan-quoteThe decorative anchors of the fireplace mantel consist of two of my most treasured treasures.

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The vintage rose bowl was an anniversary gift from Dave the Builder.  I spotted it in a friend’s antiques store and commented to Dave how I wished I could find one similar to it in our treasure hunting rounds.  As soon as I opened the anniversary gift and saw the rose bowl I knew its new home would be on the fireplace mantel. Of course, this was before my graceful handling resulted in its chip and crack demise.

rose-bowl

The Hull Magnolia ewer on the other end of the mantel was Dave the Builder’s paternal grandmother’s.  When Dave and I first started dating he was using the ewer as a doorstop.  A doorstop! Dave, this is an exquisite, mint condition piece of American pottery.  Please visit your local home improvement store for all your doorstop needs.  It is a sheer miracle the ewer did not end up like the rose bowl.

hull-magnolia-matte-ewerLive Auctioneers

The design of the house was a natural fit for our American antique pieces .

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The dining room was painted in Sherwin Williams Mint Condition.

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The den was painted in Sherwin Williams Fired Brick.  The photos cast an altogether different color.

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This is the dining room in our present home painted in Fired Brick.  Lighting is key to true color reads.

living-room-JS

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Addresses, hair colors, waistlines and fashions have changed over the last fifteen years. Trends have ushered us toward painted furniture, neutrals as color and new traditional modern.  If I had to do the interior of this particular style home all over again, I don’t believe I would change too much of the original interior selections.  They say you can’t go back, but you can remain true to your personal interior design and decor style without apology or comparison.  It’s called decorating with what you love.

Love your style!

The Gotta Have It List Summer 2015 Edition

Making things pretty on a penny is always a subject of interest to me, clients, friends, family and judging from the emails I receive, most of my readers.

the-gotta-have-it-list-summer-2015-edition

The summer retail season is heating up, and the stores, outlets and online sights we love to call favorites are rolling out seasonal finds much to the delight of decorators, designers and gotta have it guys and gals.  Seasonal decorating is nothing new, but the items in which to accomplish this mission of home decor beautification are.  Summer style spotting with pen, paper and bookmark icon ready to jot and save is proving to be successful on the summer finds front.   Here is the first round of the Gotta Have It List summer 2015 edition.

Quorum-chandelier1

This is not the first time the Quorum  6 Light Salento Chandelier in Persian White has made an appearance on the Gotta Have It list.  Why the encore feature?   It begins and ends with my all time  favorite four-letter word, SALE!

zebra-box

H & M continues to impress with decorative accents big on visual quality and style at an affordable price.  You just can’t go wrong with an accent piece in the decorating darling duo of black and white.  A classic color combination paired with a trending pattern in pop of zebra detail places this ceramic jar accent at the top of the Gotta Have It list summer 2015 edition.

eastlake-chiarStyle Me Pretty

  Named after English architect Charles L. Eastlake, the design of this late 19th century style of furniture is one of my least favorites.  This mass produced style is actually more of a “in the style of” interpretation of what American professional cabinet makers serving as master furniture designers deemed an authentic replica of Eastlake’s design.  Charles Eastlake was not impressed with the results.  Mr. Eastlake and I are of the same school of thought.  His words say it far better than mine.

 “I find American tradesmen continually advertising what they are pleased to call Eastlake furniture, the production of which I have had nothing whatever to do, and for the taste of which I should be very sorry to be considered responsible.”  

~ Charles L. Eastlake

That being said, the Eastlake style chair in the above image from Style Me Pretty demonstrates how a chic update can transform an otherwise dated piece into a hip and happening accent chair focal point.  Not all antique furniture pieces are prime candidates for paint, but in the case of Eastlake furniture I say pick it out, shake it up and paint it pretty.

pink-faux-fur

Light Pink Shag Faux Fur Fabric ~   Cherry Blossom Velvet  ~  Crystal Upholstery Nails  ~  Faux Fur in Mongolian Pink

Late summer means treasure hunting days at one of my favorite haunts, Korner Shoppe Antiques.  This gem of a joint is full to the gills with my kind of treasures, trinkets and trash.  Inspiration struck as I perused the shoppe’s Facebook page so I did what all deal dreaming decoristas do- I sketched out plans for an upcoming project around copper pots and pans.

Korner-ShoppeKorner Shoppe Antiques

One very brilliant episode of Mad Men placed Howard Johnson’s back into the thoughts of a generation of hungry Americans who ordered up cups, plates and scoops of American fare under the iconic bright orange roof.

hojoHoJo

This Howard Johnson’s sugar bowl from Fishs Eddy is on its way to the Places In The Home test kitchen counter sprinkled with memories of summer vacations, motor lodges, fried clams and 28 flavors.

 howard-johnson-sugar-bowl

What home decor items will you be adding to your Gotta Have It List summer 2015 edition?

Fabric Color, Pattern and Trim: By The Numbers

Old Man Winter has dropped his bags at the front door of 2015 for an extended stay, but a fabric color, pattern and trim pick-me-up provides all the decorative lagniappe necessary to lift a decorative spirit out of the winter doldrums. Mardi Gras and the calls of Throw Me Something, Mister ring thick in the mild Louisiana winter air, taking the sting out of the fact we’ve got a ways to go before spring, sprang and sprung of spring. With the word throw being the star of the Mardi Gras Carnival parades, and bright, bold and anything but boring color draping the entire state in pops of party shades, color me inspired.

casual-living-magazine

Decorative throw pillows remain a great choice of decorative accent for instant and affordable pop of color, pattern and trim. The colors, pattern and fabric durability of outdoor fabrics are making the transition to indoor home decor accents. Recently I came across a very informative feature by Stephanie Nickell in the Fashionable Fabrics for ’15 edition of Casual Living Magazine. Exclusive to Casual Living Magazine, the 2015 Fabrics Survey shows fabric color, pattern and trim choices projected to be the best sellers for 2015 by outdoor retailers and designers who responded to the survey.  Categories include cushions, slings, decorative pillows and trim predictions with percentage comparisons between the 2014 and 2015 results listed.  Let’s take a look at the numbers in the 2015 preferred pillow colors category.

 

fabric color, Pattern and Trim

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Interesting predictions. To take a look at the complete 2015 Fabric Survey click here. In what category do you find your preferred fabric color, pattern and trim choice in?

Love your style!

 

 

 

Interior design, Decorating and Home Decor Trends 2015

Fresh on the heels of ringing in the new year comes the new year’s trend buzz. Design forecasters, decorating prognosticators and discerning decoristas are weighing in on what they believe will be the interior design, decorating and home decor trends 2015.  There is plenty to talk about in regards to the new colors of the year announcements, forecasted trends and carry over favorites from 2014. Let’s take a look-see at what’s in store, shelf and source for trend 2015, shall we?

 

Interior Design, Decorating and Home Decor Trends 2015

Interior-design-Decorating-home-Decor Trends-2015

Colors of the Year 2015

Color is back.  Did the folks at Benjamin Moore, Pantone and Sherwin-Williams get it right?

colors-of-the-year-2015

 

Metallics and Mixing Metals

This is one forecasted trend I continue to lean towards and admit to having quite the decorating crush on. Bring on the metallics and art of mixing metals in the name of all things home furnishings and home decor accents beauty.

 

Let there be lacquer

A strong look for a strong statement, lacquered walls and ceilings shine the statement spotlight on high gloss glamour.  Don’t buy into the notion that lacquered walls and ceilings are only meant to carry a small space.  Lacquered lies, I tell you!  Drama deserves to play the big room, and a lacquered finish will deliver on the promise of performing as the shining star of statement making style .

Three trends for the price of one gorgeous look- Chinoiserie, a mix of style, and the color infusion rule of thumb follow-through and belief that every space needs that touch of black.

entry-hall-patternTraditional Entrance Hall by  Mario Buatta

 

Pattern on pattern at play

If one is good, and two is better, then three, four or five…

pattern-skona-hemSköna hem

pattern-mixJoss and Main 

 

Open Shelving

Open shelving doesn’t seem to be losing its wide range appeal, and, in fact, is moving away from strictly a form and function design and decor option for kitchen and breakfast areas.

open-shelving-Home-GoodsHomeGoods

HBX020110_105 Kitchen, Cape Neddick, MEHouse Beautiful

 

Things are tuft(ed) all over in classic leopard-print for 2015

When a classic print such as leopard is paired with a timeless textile form process as classically chic as tufting is, the result is trend setting elegance worth decorative consideration.

tufted-chairBosana Tufted Armchair

The following statement appeared in my Decorating Trends for 2014 post:

“I said this last year and why change it if the words hold true?  Good trends possess not only the quality, but the look and decorative chops to become even better the second, third or hundredth time around when done very well.  I do believe there’s another word for it, classic.”

The success of a trend is often measured by the acceptance of the designing and decorating public, ease of implementation into established decors, and the decorative ability to show staying power.  A blip on the trend radar, a pass or fail fad, or timeless classic must try- what say you about the these interior design, decorating and home decor trends 2015?

Love your style!

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.

couleur-pumpkins-lowes

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.

fall-flowers

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 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!

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?

PITH-at-fall-border

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.

decorative-gourds-squash

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

cotton

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.

ball-jar

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.

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Can’t forget the traditional pop of pumpkin color.

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Additions, changes, adjustments…

acorns-walnuts

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

lady

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

Heirloom pieces, vintage favorites and simple accents and accessories place the emphasis on less is more.

pumpkin-plates-fall

Fall home tours are so much fun to share with others.

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Welcome home fall.  You’ve been greatly missed.

fall-home-collage

Love your style!

A Most Fetching Friday

fetch·ing

/ˈfeCHiNG/

adjective

adjective: fetching

attractive.

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

This week’s Fetching Friday features signature design and decor interpretation, fashionable words, a perfect blend of antiques and modern, a summer settee, a full on fall preview, and a question for you all.

ff-office

As illustrated in the Domino magazine feature “High Style Made Easy”, Interior designer Mary McDonald captures decorating lightening in a bottle in this office kitchen with her signature bold design choices. Decorating in a straightforward fashion strictly based on the function and purpose of the space does not always a statement make.  Doesn’t this office/workspace with its playing it not so safe accents and accessories pop a bit more than a conventional just get the job done look?

ff-Oscar De La Renta

The pairing, mixing and blending of antiques with modern and contemporary style elements is a decorative endeavor I highly recommend trying.  Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

ff-sophisticated-retreat-feelStyle at Home

A Marina Rust, Penobscot Bay, Maine summer home and a pink settee seasonally in Vogue

pink-settee

This Traditional Living Room by Springfield Interior Designers & Decorators Nathan Taylor for Obelisk Home defines full fall glory in apples, feathers, rich colors and warm accents detail.

Maggiano's

What favorite person, place or thing will be a part of your weekend plans?  I hope you have a most fetching Friday.

Love your style!