Tag Archives: home accessories

What Items Make Your House Your Home?

Past the design, past the paint, past the walls and windows- what items make your house your home?  Creature comforts, particular points of decorative interest, memorable mementos, and those I love my  _______________ gotta haves tend to go a long way in making the daily life lived within your home a little easier and a little prettier.  It dawned on me the other day I favor certain items over others when I clean, cook, compose, create… you get the idea.  I position certain accessories more front and center than others when company is coming.  These items run the gamut of detail.  Some perfectly nail the details of our personal tastes and others make it a beautiful, easy and convenient day in the neighborhood. Far from mere decorative objects, everyday favorites and go-to items, these items all have one thing in common- they’re all things house that make a home.


The big blue dutch oven  

The ooh la la factor is alive and well and cooking comfort food in French blue fierce style.

blue cast iron dutch oven



A great pillow

A great pillow can help to remedy the nightly flop, flop, flip, flip of discomfort. A rested house is a happy house.

bed pillows



A scented but not too scented candle

Summer Sorbet by Aromatique is my all time favorite scented candle.  It’s fresh and light just like summer and sorbet. Chamomile Tea by Circle E Candles is a little heavier scent, but my goodness it is pleasing.  My must have kitchen candle is hands down Fried Green Tomato.  It’s the candle scent that brings the most “what is that fantastic scent” comments.

scented candles



Dried or fresh, flowers are one of the quickest ways to bring the colors of the season to the table in any space.

Setting the Entryway Tone | Ty Pennington




Modern accessories can, and do, live well with antique, primitive and vintage pieces. Pairing the unexpected is a trade secret worth sharing in the quest to combat boring cookie cutter decors.  Remember this caveat- accentuate the mix and match, eliminate the mish-mash.


Family pictures

Displaying pictures of family members frames the personality of our lives and offers a daily pictorial retrospective.  Memories light the corners of mind and bookshelves.

foyer chandelier


Reliable appliances that get the job done right the first time

A cook,  baker or homemaker is only as good as the appliances he or she uses. Of all the appliances in my get the job done inventory, I would hate to do without my Electrolux vacuum cleaner(s).  I’ve got four, yes four of them.  File this under if it ain’t broke don’t fix it.

Electrolux vacuums


Two of the models are no longer in production and are used for parts. The other models are for finish jobs on installs and for everyday chores around the  home base that is Places In The Home.


Show off  individual style and house to home personality through collections. Place, hang, vignette- pick your display preference and do your collected treasures proud.

showhouse traditional entry
It’s show and tell time, friends!  What items make your house your home?
love your style

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Filed under Decor, Home, home decor, Home Furnishings

Baby Boomers: The Age of Aquarius Aging At Home

The John Tesh Radio Show has a feature I really enjoy listening to.  Intelligence For Your Life factoids are entertaining and educational tidbits of information on everything from diet to affairs of the heart(physical and emotional).   I was especially interest in a particular segment I heard this week.  Baby boomers are those of us born between1946 -1964.  It is estimated baby boomers  have  40+ trillion dollars to bring to the economic table.  To further educate you on the numbers, Baby Boomer Magazine  reports boomers have more discretionary income (wealth) than any other age group.  Boomers control 70% of the total net worth of American households, own 80% of all money in savings and loan associations, and account for 40% of total consumer demand.  Home furnishings and home improvement considerations for aging at home process is on the mind of baby boomers.

John Teshvia

Back to the Intelligence For Your Life factoid.  It really grabbed my attention when the subject of boomer style was addressed.  According to the factoid, styles will change to accommodate the tastes of baby boomers.  In regards to fashion, expect to see more flats, longer skirts, and stylish scarves for year round wearing.  Scarves are a hot fashion trend with boomers and the reason is fashionably obvious- a scarf covers a multitude of wrinkled sins on aging necks. Plastic surgery proves a difficult option for the neck area, hence the stylish scarf.

As I digested this interesting info, I took a quick mental roll call of some famous boomers besides Dave the Builder and yours truly.

Brad Pittvia

Denzel Washingtonvia

Bill Gates


Johnny Deppvia

Good looking bunch, wouldn’t you say?  The boomer generation will not take growing old sitting down, turning down the music or looking nothing but fabulous in the process. The age of Aquarius is aiming to be the age of active with attitude and agile ability.

Oprah Winfreyvia

Wolfgang Puckvia

Jody Fostervia

Madonna via

I would be remiss if I did not give thought to the influence and impact baby boomer consumers will have in the interior design and home accessories market. Construction, kitchen and bath and appliance professionals are paying close attention to the concerns of aging boomers.


grab barBathroom fixtures such as grab bars and faucets offer decorative options, plainly stating the obvious message the new age of aging conveys.  Simply put, Institutional design need not apply for the job.  Every aspect of  home construction is taken into consideration in the aging process.  Aging stylishly is as important as aging gracefully to the boomer generation. The look is as important as the form and the function.aging at home


We all want to be stay at home boomers.  What I mean by that is we want to be able to live in our own homes that are built, remodeled, or modified to stylishly and comfortably accommodate our concerns and needs as we age.  Decorative interior task lighting, non-slip hardwood flooring, door levers and scaled down furnishings are some of the options being marketed to boomers as the trend dictates.

Kelsey Grammar Dr. Frasier Crane


As boomers scale down to smaller square footage homes, furniture size and placement becomes a factor.  Furniture designers are responding by reducing the length and width of sofas, end tables, and decorative accessories. Speak loud boomers… they’re listening.




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Filed under Bathroom Remodel, entry doors, entryway floors, Furniture, Home Furnishings, Interior Decorating, Interior Design, Kitchen, Remodeling, Renovation

The Completely Doable And “I Love It!” Look Of Pairing Antiques With Modern Furniture Styles

Pairing antiques with modern furniture styles is a completely doable decor style in home decor and interior decorating terms. Contemporary, urban and traditional styles also love a good antiques piece thrown into the mix for very good and stylish measure.

Victorian sideboardHouzz~Peter A. Sellar

If you don’t already know, I am an antiques dealer.  I appreciate, admire and generally love antique furnishings and most periods of furniture. Do I have antique furniture in my own home?  Yes!  Only antique furniture?  No!  All traditional, antiques, modern, contemporary, urban, farmhouse, coastal, or rustic makes the decor style of the Jack or Jill decorista a tad too one-dimensional.  Where’s the fun in that?

Sela Ward Bel Air homeSela Ward’s Bel Air Home 

I like, suggest, encourage and admire the look created when furniture styles and periods mix and mingle in complementing harmony.  My aha moment came one afternoon at the shop when Dave the Builder was hurrying me to kick it in gear. I asked him to move a formal set of Regency period dining chairs. Trying to hurry up the process, he placed the chairs in the first place he came to. I turned around to see the chairs placed around a primitive Cypress farm table we recently brought in.  The styles could not be further apart on the style spectrum, but the accidental pairing created a stunning look!

farm table Chairs~Chappell & McCullar              Farm Table~1stdibs

One piece of antique furniture in a space will often become the focal point.  A vintage chest incorporated into a kitchen island makes a stunning and unique focal point.  Strictly opting for antique accessories is often a better fit for some. Antique accessories can achieve the desired effect on a smaller scale.  This option can give the homeowner an adjustment period and time to take the look in. I discourage my clients from over thinking the process. Never underestimated the power and accuracy of your own eye.

vintage chest islandBetter Homes and Gardens

Even in furniture styles and placement opposites attract. Architect Peter Marino shows how  a circa 1765-70 chair attributed to Pierre Remy and a 1956 Dubuffet oil enrich and enhance the space without intrusion.

pairing antiques with modern furniture styles Architectural Digest

A 19th c. Russian chair with gold frame beautifully accentuates the custom sofa in Belgian linen in the home of Houstonian Renea Abbott.  The balance is anchored through color and furniture placement.

antique abbott-houston Veranda

The kitchen in the 1816 Federal-style farmhouse of Elizabeth Locke shows a perfect relationship between new and old. Antique accessories and fixtures highlight the remodel.  The Italian lanterns are exceptional!  Note the traditional center island juxtaposed with  the antique breakfast table.  Wow!

farmhouse kitchenArchitectural Digest

Marshall Watson senior designer, Wendy Monette, brings a modern twist to this traditional living room.  The combination of classic elements, styles, pattern as in the houndstooth sofa, color  and modern lucite tables creates a visual flow.  A room with personality is the result of thinking outside of the box of standard decor rules.  Shake things up!

blue living roomHouse Beautiful

Take a moment to take in the neutral beauty of this Darryl Carter space.  The antique and architecturally inspired decor enhances the use of modern tables and accessories.

Darryl Carter

Jeff Andrews interpretation of  new traditional style is an easy decor format to follow.  When asked in an interview with Apartment Therapy what the major defining elements of the style are, five words summed it up.  He equates new traditional with originality, confidence, risk, commitment, and comfort. Bravo, Jeff Andrews! Vintage items find a welcomed place in new traditional styling. Vintage items are popular with homeowners and designers alike for two reasons, affordability and accessibility.  Hit your local flea market, thrift stores, garage sales, or curb side boutique for inspiration.  Most of the time I have no idea what I’m looking for until I actually see it in the store, market, yard, or on the curb.  Inexpensive is good, but free is great!  A couple of coats of paint and new hardware works DIY miracles on vintage pieces.  The fit between vintage and most every style is remarkable.

Jeff Andrews Design

 There is something so elegant about this casual pairing. The pedestal dining table and wicker chairs is simple in design and staging which creates the perfect pairing for this space.

Coastal Living

This eclectic space pulls from several styles.  A contemporary drum pendant chandelier is uniquely paired with a formal ceiling medallion.  The gold gilt mirror pops the white mantle, and the contrast of woods and glass does not confuse the eye.

eclectic interiors Canadian House and Home

The current issue of Architectural Digest features the home of Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi.  The couple purchased the house furnished and have added their own tastes to the existing decor.  The decor is a mix of contemporary features and accessories, premier antiques, and African art.  A pair of Louis XVI bergères and an antique fringed throw fit right in among contemporary artwork and furniture in the living room.   The pairing of a 19th century trestle table with wicker armchairs is an unexpected and brilliant move.  I strongly believe that is what decorating is all about.   The phenomenal look created when pairing  formal with contemporary furnishings is evident in this home.

Ellen DeGeneres home

Ellen DeGeneres house

Fabric, texture, finish, and color defines the style of this space. The ebony/black of the Saarinen tulip table, the upholstered limed-oak armchairs, and the 19th-century English portrait captivates the room.  Old meets new and the two live happily and stylishly ever after.

antique arm chair  Elle Decor

Pairing antique with modern furniture styles steps out of the comfort zone of “everything must match.”  The first time I suggested pairing an antique drum table with a contemporary accent chair Dave the Builder thought I had lost my mind.  He strongly protested at first.  It was when the wow factor delivered its one-two punch that his doubts were put to rest.  Your home decor should reflect your tastes and your individuality.  Consider trying out the concept of mixing an antique piece with modern styles. Don’t be surprised if you love the look!  Let me know what you think.

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Filed under Antiques, Architectural, home decor, Interior Decorating, Interior Design, Interior Designers

Warming Up The Place For The Season

Home decor treasures that reflect our interests and individuality celebrates personal style.  I appreciate all styles and tastes in the realm of home design and decor, but I marvel when it is a reflection from the mirror of the lives lived within.  I like putting things here and there that unmistakably show my personality- the treasures, trinkets and trash. Treasures, Trinkets and Trash was the name of my grandmother’s antiques shop, and a term I use quite often. Great term!  One of the best parts of September is updating and displaying  fall home decor accessories.

A mid-afternoon editing session spent rotating out spring and summer accessories welcomed in fall and a walk down memory lane.  Accessorizing for fall is a great way to warm up a space.  I always like to “promote from within” by swapping things around and staging areas with items I currently own.

The pair of blue Dalmatians are a part of our family.  I purchased the pair from a small antique shop in Knoxville, Tennessee years ago. I love them almost as much as I love Tennessee.   What’s better than two pieces of blue and white porcelain?  Three pieces, of course!  Enter the Blue Danube pitcher.

Antique books make a stately decor statement.  I picked up Cimarron and Madame Bovary at an antiques auction.  Like many items purchased over the years at auction, the books never made it to the shop.  My maternal grandmother surprised me one birthday with a 1936 first edition;second printing  hardcover version of Gone With The Wind.   It is a treasure for sure.

My dear neighbor friend knows how I love frogs.  He picked this bronze beauty out at market in Dallas especially for me to add to my collection.  Acorns,pine cones, turning leaves, berries and one lone cotton stem capture the look of fall in Louisiana.

The music box is a cherished Christmas gift from my son.   In one of the images above you can see the antique sterling silver rattle my grandmother gave our son when he was born.  I’ve never grouped the two together until today.  As I grouped them together,  I wondered why I never made the connection before.  That’s the great advantage to editing from within our homes-everything old has the decoratively ability to become new again with a little imagination and styling. 

Is this not a sad face only a frog lover could love?

Seasonal colors and textures weaved throughout a space is a simple way to transition decor from season to season.  A coffee table styled and accessorized with mementos,  a cozy vignette, or a plush throw draped over a fireside chair will easily introduce the look and feel of the season to a space.


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Filed under Antiques, fall, home decor, Interior Decorating, Interior Design, seasonal decorating