Friday, January 28, 2011

Fashion Files - DIY fashion tutorials

Happy Friday.  I love a good diy project and I'm hoping to find some time during my upcoming vacation to do a few.  I've been saving my diy inspiration to Pinterest and these are some of my favorites.  Maybe you will be inspired to whip up one of these beauties this weekend.  See you all back here on Monday.  Have a wonderful weekend!

braided fabric headband tutorial

pom pom necklace tutorial

t-shirt flower tutorial

purl bee embroidered scarf tutorial

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Behind the Thrift - a trip to Arcadia

Last week I introduced a new feature and this week I finally decided on a name for it...Behind the Thrift.  I'm hoping to make this a weekly feature as I have a lot of ideas and information to share with you!  I'm really excited about it and hope you are all looking forward to it as well!

Over the weekend my mom and I took a trip to Arcadia for their monthly antique fair.  If you've never heard of Arcadia, it's a small town in Florida and is considered the number one antiquing destination in the state.  There are over 24 antique shops all within four blocks of each other and every fourth Saturday of the month they hold an antique fair with additional dealers located on the streets and vendors selling food and live music, etc, etc.

antiquing dacshunds
antiquing in Arcadia
antique fair in Arcadia

I didn't buy much on this trip. Sometimes I like to go and just explore, window shop and gather information. There's always an opportunity to learn, especially if you are looking to start a vintage shop or business of your own.  Gaining knowledge of items, eras and prices makes you a great vintage shop owner and also a great vintage shopper!  Knowing your stuff can help you get the best deals and can also help you learn to spot the real thing vs. a reproduction.

Even though I didn't bring much home my mom left with a cast iron hat stand and a beautiful set of green saucers to complete a vintage dessert set.  I'd consider that a successful day of shopping!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Mike and I have been discussing our plans for the house non-stop since he finished his last classes at the end of December and we finally have had a moment to begin working on the house. 

topic that has come up a lot recently is our backyard.  The space is huge and we have a lot of ideas for creating a mid century inspired Palm Springs kind of feel.  I have been following The Brick House's blog for quite a while and the direction she is going in is spot on with the feel we would like to create.   

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Things that make me smile...

Hi there!  I hope you all are enjoying your Tuesday.  Mike and I are taking a relaxing vacation in the next couple of weeks and I have a growing reading list that I fully intend to tackle.  What's making you smile today?

vintage book_typeface_calligraphy

girl reading books

stack of vintage books

girl standing on books_bokeh

girl and stack of books


Monday, January 24, 2011

I've been shopping...

Good morning!  I hope you all had a nice weekend.  I spent some time antiquing with my mom (sadly I didn't turn up much but the shopping and the company were wonderful) and visited Ikea, twice.  Mike and I had sort of an ordeal with dinner out on Saturday evening en route to Ikea (service and wait staff were horrendous at this little Turkish restaurant we like) so we ended up getting to the store with literally minutes to spare.  It was the fastest Ikea trip ever, but we picked up a chair for our living room and when we got home and put it together, we liked it so much we returned the next day to pick up the matching ottoman only to find out the cover is sold out until February (argh) so we ran through the store, again, picking up a few things for the house and getting lots of ideas and inspiration for our kitchen renovation. 

I'm always so hesitant to shop Ikea because it sort of irks me when I walk into someone's home and can tell where every piece of furniture came from.  I'm not opposed to new furniture or big box stores, I just believe in a well rounded collection over time of truly great and classic pieces, mixed in with a few current trends here and there.  However, Ikea done right with your own personal touches and styling can really be amazing...

Friday, January 21, 2011

Fashion Files - Making over a thrifted find

One of my goals this year is to start sewing clothes for myself.  I've totally mastered the art of home sewing and have reached a level where I can create things without patterns and generally understand the way things are pieced together.  Basically, what I'm trying to say is that I am really comfortable in front of a sewing machine but I know sewing clothing is a totally different challenge.

After seeing these thrift store dress makeovers through Project ReStyle I am totally ready to take on the challenge and have already been on the hunt for some hideous looking garment with a great pattern that I can make over. Aren't these transformations amazing? 

thrift store makeover

thrift store makeover

thrift store makeover

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Behind the Thrift - A new feature

Today I am introducing a new feature, Behind the Thrift where I will be sharing some of my tips and tricks for successful thrifting and antiquing as well as some behind the scenes looks at shopping for vintage clothing, accessories, and home goods for our house and our vintage shop

I remember before becoming a die hard thrifter how intimidated I was by the whole thing. It always seemed like everyone was finding these amazing things at thrift stores and every time I visited I seemed to turn up nothing but junk. I have found that the key to becoming successful at thrifting is persistence and patience.

If you only visit a thrift store every now and then, chances are you aren't going to find much.  In the beginning I would go once every few weeks, when I remembered too or when I passed by one, sometimes I would find something cool but usually I would come home empty handed.  Now I visit several stores a week and my favorites, I visit numerous times a week.  By doing this I have scored some truly amazing finds like a gorgeous antique credenza with inlaid wood for $15, our mid century dresser for $20, several vintage coats, and about half of my current wardrobe!

Don't think that every trip is going to turn up things like this.  To find all of these things I had to come home empty handed, a lot.  There are weeks that go by when my trips don't turn up a single thing.  This can become really frustrating and a little depressing but it's totally worth it when you have that one amazing day where it seems like the clerks laid everything out in the store just for you (and trust me there will be days like this!)

Map out the thrift stores that are close to your house and visit them often, at least once a week.  Ask the clerks if the stores have special sale days.  The Salvation Army has 50% off of clothing on Wednesdays and weekly furniture sales that usually run on Fridays or Saturdays.  Get to the store as early as you can on these days to find the best items.  Have fun with and don't get discouraged, before you know it you will have established your own thrifting route and will be coming home with tons of amazing finds!

vintage and thrift shopping how to
 Photos: The Design Boards

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dining room tables new vs. vintage

I have been so impressed with West Elm lately, their collection of home goods and furniture has expanded tremendoulsy and the styling in their recent catalogs is beautiful.  I love that they are featuring artwork and designs by etsy sellers throughout their catalog. 

I've been eyeing this dining room table for a couple of weeks now and am seriously considering making the purchase.  I just really can't decide if I want to go with a new piece or something vintage.  Almost every piece of furniture in our house is vintage and I really love the idea of a large rustic dining room table with a lot of character and age but I also like and am drawn to the simplicity and design of the West Elm table.  What are your opinions on new versus vintage?  Are you drawn to one over the other.  They both seem to have their advantages and their drawbacks. I just can't seem to decide which is right for our house.

dining room tables

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Things that make me smile...

Hello! I hope you all had a lovely weekend. My four days off of work were wonderful both relaxing and productive and I really feel refreshed and de-stressed. This is what I've been up to for the past few days...

Some nasty weather kept us indoors for a day but we tackled a ton of home projects and it was so nice and cozy watching the storms as they passed through.

We listened to records

I worked on a couple of sewing projects

We consumed lots and lots of tea

What did you do over the long weekend?

Friday, January 14, 2011

A long weekend

Happy Friday everyone!  I'm so glad the weekend is here.  I'm taking the day off from work and it's a long holiday weekend here in the States so I won't be back to blogging until Tuesday.  I have a full weekend planned which includes lots of home projects and an apt22 photoshoot, plus a little vintage shopping and a spa trip with my mom, and a trek to Ikea.  I hope to have lots to share with you next week including pics of our completed dark grey bedroom (it looks amazing!) and a diy headboard Mike and I are working on.  What do you have planned for the weekend? 

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Our studio makeover

One of the first projects I plan to tackle this year is our current office/studio space. Now that I have a Bertoia chair to use in the space, I'm really excited to start designing the room.  Here is a look at the current layout.   
Right now the room is full of craft and project supplies and I'm in the process of organizing and de-cluttering it.  We installed a closet system a few months ago and we have a wall of Billy bookcases  that may or may not stay.  We have a Parsons desk and that dresser project I'm working on to provide extra storage.  Don't worry the King Kong poster is definitely going, as is the paint color which was meant to be a shade of grey that somehow looks more purple than grey.  Here are some of my inspirations for the space.

studio office space inspiration

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

We're going dark...

Every so often a room grabs my attention and I can't get it out of my head.  I usually ponder what it is I like about the room, I wonder why it grabbed my attention, I hem and haw over it for a while and eventually show said room to Mike to get his reaction.  Usually this is where my design dream comes to a screeching halt because while we agree about many, many things - in terms of design, we walk a fine line between desperately loving each others ideas and getting into heated arguments discussions about why we are so greatly opposed to his/her grand scheme to paint everything in chalkboard paint [hers] or put racing stripes on our kitchen aid mixer [his].

Fade to current day.  A few months ago I was perusing the internet and spotted a photo of Anna Beth Chao's recently painted bedroom in dark gray.  Being on a gray kick lately, I instantly fell in love with the striking charcoal gray color.  I put the idea in the back of my head and wondered about it every now and then but mostly thought, Mike will never go for this.  Then the picture found its way to me again in the form of Anthology magazine where Anna Beth Chao's house and beautiful grey bedroom was featured, along with some other beautiful homes with extremely dark rooms.  I couldn't stop thinking about dark rooms after that, you could call it an obessession really.  Then on a whim one day, I showed the picture to Mike and he loved it....loved it so much he's painting our bedroom Bejamin Moore's Steel Wool as I type this.

Truthfully, I'm terrified.  Mike wasn't supposed to like the room and I was going to be able to continue living in a world of safe, normal color options like sand dune beige or arctic bunny rabbit white - not steel wool!!  This will either be a great design move or a terrible one....stay tuned.
grey bedrooms

Monday, January 10, 2011

Adore Magazine

Ugg, I can't believe it's Monday again already! This weekend sort of flew by, we spent most of it organizing the house and getting some of our artwork framed (more on that later).

This morning I wanted to share an online magazine that I am really loving right now, Adore Home. It's an Australian based interior and lifestyle magazine.  There are some really great interiors featured in the current issue and it is definitely worth adding to your reading list!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Fashion Files - New Year, New Looks

Is anyone else feeling the desire for a fresh take on their wardrobe?  With the start of a new year, I always want to give myself a fresh new look.  Here are some of my fashion goals for 2011.

1. I love the look of flowy floral dresses paired with boyfriend cardigans, this is something I want to add to my wardrobe once the weather warms up.  It's a great casual look that can also be dressed up with the right accessories - a great date night outfit!

2. I fidget so much it's hard for me to sit still long enough to paint my nails or get a manicure but I so love the look of a great manicure and this year I vow to take a little time for me and treat myself to one every now and then! This is a great color for spring, don't you think?

3. I love a great scarf - it's such a chic addition to an outfit. When I was in Europe over the summer almost every guy and girl on the streets of Berlin was wearing a scarf. I really need to add a few more colors to my collection like this amazing mustard one.

4. My hair is getting sooo long. Unfortunately I tend to wear it straight and down all the boring. I need to take advantage of all the options I have with my hair this length so I am definitely going to be looking for some great tutorials on hair styles (like this one).  I looove the fishtail braid and it's fairly simple to do.

5. Belts...such a great way to make an outfit more interesting. I am definitely going to be hunting for belts while thrifting so I can put together cute little outfits like this one.

6. Floppy hats and fabulous bags...who can go wrong with either one and when paired together like this....ahmazing!

Are you doing anything to change up your wardrobe in the new year? What looks are you loving right now?

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Writer's block

It's rainy and dreary here and I seem to have a bit of writer's block today. I had planned to share some pics of my studio space and the ideas I have to make it over but I seem to just keep staring at the blinking cursor on my screen. Maybe it's the weather that has me feeling uninspired.

To help spark some creativity I thought I would take a look through some of my inspiration folders and share some of my favorites with you.

 Anyone else feeling a little gloomy from the winter weather? What do you do when you need some inspiration and creativity?

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Sydney Hale Co.

While we are still very far from accessorizing our home, I can't help but think of all the little touches I want to add to it to make it truly ours. When I spotted these candles from Sydney Hale Co. I instantly fell in love.  They are the perfect combination of style and functionality and the scent blends sound amazing...fig + vanilla, agave + honeysuckle....delicious!  I am definitely putting some of these on my wish list!
sydney hale co. candles

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Things that make me smile...

What are some of your goals and resolutions for 2011?  Most of mine are business and house related but there are a few just-for-fun goals I would love to accomplish this year.  Here are a few...

Take a road trip or two
 vintage car_road trip

Entertain friends in our home more often

Sleep in a cabin in the woods
cabin in the woods
via divided by truth

Plan a trip to Paris
paris eiffel tower in snow
via Reverie

Buy a VW Bus
vintage vw bus
via David McFarline

Learn to take beautiful and inspiring pictures
vintage camera
via blue caterpillar