Wednesday, November 15, 2017

With Thanksgiving around the corner

If you're like me, you had the sudden realization that Thanksgiving is next week (and you're hosting!).  I've compiled a few things to get you in the holiday mood, whether you are up for a project or prefer to keep things simple.
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DIY paint splattered napkins OR these are adorable (link):

DIY wooden chargers OR these are pretty:

Love these DIY place cards OR these are darling:

Also:

5 simple table design tips for the person who would rather be meal planning
I made this homemade stuffing last year and had requests for it again
12 tips to help you be a good host over the holidays
Not this year, but I'm dying for some matte black dishes
9 healthy holiday eating strategies
Along those lines- apple chutney & brie puff pastry pockets




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Thursday, November 9, 2017

Painted Trim

My feelings on this subject have made such a dramatic change in the past year. While I blame my previous dislike for painted trim on design choices I witnessed first hand as a kid growing up in the 80s (red trim anyone?), I can credit my newfound love for it from some of the below gorgeous images. It's understated and elegant, and I'm all about it.
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Friday, October 20, 2017

Wrap around Built-in bookcases

One of the "problem areas" of our new house was the living room. There was one average sized window in the center of the living room wall. I quickly fell in love with the idea of built in bookcases that wrapped around the window. Not only does it look more finished to me (than just having two bookcases on either side of the window), but it also fits really well with our old house. There will be a DIY coming to you soon, meanwhile here are some images that have been my inspiration:
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Thursday, October 5, 2017

On trends

Whenever I'm feeling uninspired creatively, I take a step back and examine how much time I am spending looking at other designers or on instagram. Blogs and other forms of social media are a great platform to see design projects and designers I might not otherwise see, to share current projects, and even to grow a business. One of the downsides though is the rise in trends, they come in a flurry and then all of a sudden we all look the same and decorate the same. We lose what makes us unique (and in my opinion, interesting). I am not taking an anti-trend stance (just visit my house and you will see many trendy pieces), but rather I'm advocating to really be in tune with your personal style to where you would know whether or not a specific trend suits you. The best compliment I can get as a designer is for a client to tell me that their home feels like them. Here are a couple spaces where I breath out a sigh of relief and think to myself "I haven't seen that before":
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Friday, September 22, 2017

Currently loving: Banquette Seating

Lately I have been stumbling across image after image of the most beautiful dining areas with banquette seating, and I can't get enough of it. Maybe it's because I'm using banquette seating in one of my client's spaces right now, or maybe it's because I'm considering it for my own house (hey space saving solution), but either way- I'm loving it. I think we are all used to the banquette seating that's been around for years......the kind that usually includes white built-ins (which I still love by the way). However, the banquette seating that's been catching my eye is fresh and unfussy. It's stream-lined, yet cozy. I love it all, I can't even choose a favorite: 








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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

My 6 Tips for Small Space Living

Between working with clients living in tiny city condos (try a family of four in 600 sq ft.) and downsizing to our own house of 1300 sq. ft., I have been learning a lot about how to make the most of small spaces. If you are in the house hunting stage, my best advice for deciding on which small living space you should choose is to find a home with as much natural light as you can, high ceilings, and an open layout. These three things will go a LONG way when you are short on square footage. If you take two houses with the exact same square footage, you will feel like the one with high(er) ceilings and natural light is more spacious. I can't tell you how many houses we walked through that were bigger than our current house, but Connor had to duck in places, walk sideways up the stairs, or I could touch the ceiling if I stood on my toes.....and we are not large people. It felt very chlosterphobic. So that's my advice for those on "the small house hunt". If you have a small house and are wanting suggestions for making the most of what you have, these are some things that have made the world of difference in my own house and in my client's homes.
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1. The Chair and a half.  Obviously, this would not work for the living room of a 600 sq. ft. house....BUT if you have just a little bit more space, I cannot say enough about this as a smart piece of furniture to own. Why? Because it's smaller than a love seat, but seats two people comfortably. We bought the West Elm Bliss chair in Indiana for our bedroom (back when our bedroom was the size of half our current house), and since then this chair has proven invaluable when we have company. Also, there are some situations, where the room is too small for two accent chairs, and you just have a corner to work with (such is in our last home).....the chair and a half just takes up one corner but seats two people. It's genius, really.
2. Change out your winter/summer clothes. If you have extra storage in a basement or attic, this is a simple thing that can make your closet not feel jam packed (that and actually getting rid of clothes).

3. Go vertical. Perhaps obvious, but worthy of mention. Go vertical with bookcases and decor. It will not only be helpful for storage, but it makes you look up and makes a room feel more spacious.


4. Acrylic or white furniture over dark. Not always, but sometimes dark furniture takes up a lot of visual space. It might be the exact dimensions of a white piece of furniture (or acrylic), but it will feel larger.

5. Low/lateral furniture.  This one has surprised me by how much of a difference it makes. Our bedroom furniture is pretty average in size, but when we moved to our "cozy cottage", the only thing that didn't make me feel like the walls were caving in on me were the nightstands. This was unfortunate because it was quite the ordeal to get those dressers up the narrow staircase and into our bedroom in the first place (thanks Connor). So, we exchanged our dressers for two pieces that were the exact width and similar depth for two that were about a foot shorter. Problem solved. I no longer feel like I'm sleeping in a cave, and we still have storage. Here is a low vintage piece I snagged on craigslist for $40.

6. Multi-use furniture.  This includes the obvious ( a day bed that can fold into two twin beds) and the less obvious (a low dresser that can also act as a bench).

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Friday, September 8, 2017

Lovely Attic Renovations

There are a couple projects highest on our priority list now that we are moved in. One of them is transforming the attic into a living space. The research I have done shows that attic renovations in the New England area are next to kitchen and bathroom renovations in the return profit. As long as the window is large enough (fire escape), then this is valuable square footage being added to the house (especially treasured in small New England houses).  While our attic is not a large space, I think there are so many possibilities. Mainly though, I envision it being a playroom and guest room. Here are some of the pictures I've been mulling over for inspiration:



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