Thursday, March 26, 2009

Accessories for your home office that can be unique

Accessories for your home office-A pencil cup or a mail holder can work for you in your home office. Why not make these everyday items beautiful? I was cleaning out a junk drawer the other day and came across an old mail holder that had a faded 80's flower print. I almost tossed it in the trash, but then thought about the beautiful Amy Butler paper I had in my stash and decided to take out the decoupage glue and give it a go. The results are stunning! But no, I did not stop there- I also had a very plain looking square shaped pencil holder. I decided to make a set! I decoupaged the same pattern on the pencil cup, and then added the corresponding circles to the front- and then added the "J" monogram cut from some flocking paper! Smashing dahlings!!!! I love my new set that sits on the shelf of the mirror in my tiny home office. :)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Creating a workspace that inspires you

I have learned that is very important to carve out an area of your home where you are happy to work. A home office, no matter how small should be a place where you can work that is a part of who you are. If you have no designated space in you home for your office, get creative and find any area that is somewhat quiet, where you can close a door or that is off the path from the main area of the house.

In my case, I was able to find a small area in my bedroom that I use as my office. Feng shui experts warn against keeping an office in your bedroom, but I think that if you use it as place of inspiration and keep it clutter free, that it will work to your benefit. I love my home office! I use colors that inspire me everyday and I have made it my own.

The purple lampshade (Target find) and red chair offset each other in a vibrant way. The desk is a find from a second hand shop- the mirror is a must, because it opens up the space and when you are facing a wall it's crucial to feel like you are not closed in. Get creative with the options that you have for an inspiring home office! It makes doing mundane chores, such as paying bills much more bearable!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Emerging new obsession..Amy Butler Fabrics! (and patterns and bags and designs...)

As I look around my house, the places I find most joyful these days is my emerging collection of Amy Butler pillows. I discovered this textile designer on Etsy, but as I learn more about her philosophy, style and design, I find there are very few things she does that it don't like.

Her patterns are fresh, yet slightly retro, bright and energetic. Some of her things almost have a south Florida Lily Pulitzer vibe, but not as stiff or overly "preppy". I love this designer! I am so inspired by her stuff, that I am somewhat tempted to start sewing again! (not really:) I will be searching Etsy for those talented enough to churn out beautiful pillows, tops and dresses made directly from her patterns. I will be posting more and more pictures on this blog with items made by her can bet on it!
(photo from Amy Butler website)

The importance of creating a home that has "soul"

I can't stress the importance of creating a living space for yourself that is uniquely you.
Living in an home that you create transforms the space from house to a "home". A home is any space that you have touched that expresses yours and your family's personality. It should feel like a safe haven, a place to relax and a place that brings you joy. Always be sure to surround yourself with items that comfort you. They need not be expensive, just an expression of who you truly are. :)

Monday, March 16, 2009

Use pieces in unexpected ways...

Take a look around your space and see if there is anything you can remake. Is there something that could be repainted and used in a different way? The cabinet in this picture was purchased years ago at an unfinished furniture store. It has gone through several "stainings" and paint changes, but it is perfect for me now. It resides in my master bathroom where there was a huge gaping space underneath the window. I love the combination of red and black, but at first, the black base was too much "dark". I added the light pink checkerboard pattern over the black to soften it a little bit. I then added my signature "longjohn red" over the top and distressed the edges of the top. I took of the old knobs and added inexpensive Anthropologie knobs and to me this $90 buy is invaluable...It's a piece of who I am!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Okay...I did it again.

I decided that I didn't like the white on the chair that I repainted.. So I repainted again. We had a beautiful day today so I was able to take the chair outside and repaint the entire thing. I sprayed the legs and the bottom solid glossy black. I added a brown undercoat to the seat, a VERY thick layer of crackle..I was sure to let it dry 1 hour this time..and then Ralph Lauren Longjohn Red. I love it this time and won't change a thing...YES!


Friday, March 6, 2009

How to find recycled home decor....make it useful again!

Don't you just love the idea of making something that's inherently good, a little broken, perhaps, just better again??? That's how I feel about upcycling home decor and even fashion items. A little creativity can go a long way. Keep a keen eye open for things that you see out on the side of the road on trash day. Seriously! It's amazing what some people will throw away. I will post some of my "redone" finds soon...

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Upcycling...will keep you in the black and little green too!

Upcycling furniture, home decor and fashion items is not only good for the enviornment, it's great for your wallet!

There is an art to finding the perfect peice of furniture that has great "bones" but needs a little paint or fabric. How about that classic black dress that was your grandmother's that really just needs a visit to the tailor? What about old costume jewlery? I could go on and and on, but the thing to keep in mind is being fashionalbe with both your wardrobe and your home does not have to be expensive. Think outside of the box and visit your local consignment shop, salvation army, or goodwill. You will be surprised about what you can find on the cheap! Send me pictures of your finds and I will post them on my blog!


Upcycled Chair...I can't just leave things alone...

I needed a chair for my desk and I'm never happy with what I find in traditional furniture stores. Everything is always too expensive, not the right color on not "me". So I found this basic chair at a salvage shop for $30.00.

It was a dirty white, so I sprayed it black (looked good just black), but noooo, I couldn't leave it alone. I added a layer of crackle glaze, then longjohn red over the glaze. I thought it looked too dark, so added white over the red and crackled it again.

The result is this really cool weathered looking chair. I wanted it to look like it's been out in the elements and really old, and I think I achieved my goal. It's perfectly imperfect- just like nature. :)