New House Dress Up

My parents recently moved to a new city and my mom has been designing their new space with a mix of newly purchased furniture and moved pieces. The house is a large, older home with separated rooms and detailed wood work. While the house is similar in style to homes my family has lived in previously, they didn’t move a great deal of furniture, which means….it’s time to play dress up.
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– A white sofa is a really daring choice (especially if you’re a fan of red vino), but in a home with a formal living room and no kids why not go for it? Plus I love a couch with a chaise extension, they really are the best for lounging.
– I find the sofa with the white throw pillows a little too sterile, and would ditch them for jewel tone printed pillows. I love the rich berry print on this pillow  and would pile them around for comfort (and stain protection.)
– With this white leather couch, my parents would definitely need some natural elements to complement their taste and existing antiques. This wood frame mirror would be gorgeous over an arm chair or the couch.
– Growing up our den had a massive wooden coffee table with two drawers that held literally everything and the kitchen sink. This modern version is a little bit sleeker, but the grain provides a nice natural focal point.
– I love a little shimmer, and this pillow is just neutral enough.
– Every living room needs a cozy throw, and this soft blue complements the jewel tone pillows with a contrasting hue.
– My mom has a thing for yellow rooms and always find a gorgeous gold for dining rooms. This pale butter yellow would be a beautiful way to extend the color into the living room.
– How great are these storage suitcases? They actually open to provide storage, but also could act as an interesting side table stacked together.
– My parents have fantastic artwork from all of their travels that bring warmth and a personal touch to every space. While they tend to incorporate photos or artwork purchased while traveling, I do love this piece currently on One Kings Lane!

Discovered: Gray Malin

Discovered is a series capturing new to me findings in fashion, food, beauty, and the fun things of life. They may be new, or they may just be new to me (and maybe you.)

Art really is the finishing touch to any room, in particular hanging wall art. While I love adding strange trinkets to our home (like a paper mache deer head) I’m pretty particular about photos, paintings, or prints that adorn our walls. I think this was instilled in me by my parents who have always decorated their home with art that was purchased on a trip, or that captures a special place, etc. It’s a practice that I’ve tried to keep in our home as well. This doesn’t mean they have to be ridiculously expensive or gut wrenchingly emotional. Rather I’ve found that a photo that evokes a great day on the beach, a beautiful walk, or the art fair where you had the most delicious chicken satay simply brings more joy when you catch it out of the corner of your eye than a random flower purchased at the mall.

I recently discovered Gray Malin’s work through Erin’s blog, and I immediately felt this sense of connection. Firstly, the beach is without a doubt my happy place. Add to that the fact that Gray captures specific beaches that I happen to love and have great memories of, and it’s a match made in stunningly colorful heaven.

I particularly love the people dotted images like this one of Manly Beach (very near where we spent four years in Sydney.)

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Cinque Terre is jaw droppingly gorgeous, and we had a pretty hilarious vacation here during our time in Europe.

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These lounge chairs in Santorini would take me back to our honeymoon in a heartbeat.

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P.S I love when people are flat out over the moon about their success, so I loved this Instagram – Congratulations Gray!

What Is Your Interior Style?

With endless amounts of cash, I would have a blast decking out our apartment (or really any apartment) in a curated assortment of furniture, rugs, and storage pieces (!!!) Although this is not yet the case, I do love day dreaming about how I would rearrange and revamp our current living space. One of the challenges I face, like every other person living with another human, is how to blend design styles in a way that both people can happily enjoy.  Pair this with ever evolving changes in styles and prefernces, and it can be quite a (if only day dreamy) challenge.

While my personal style has thankfully matured, if slightly, from my high school tear out of a dream kitchen that resembled Alice In Wonderland, I still love a good mix of textures, colors, and closed door storage. A touch of metallic, sparkle, and faux fur are always welcome. I dream about a huge kitchen table made of rustic wood slabs with giant metal legs. A TV stand that resembles a storage locker, covered with some sort of Moroccan inspired fur throw and a mix of family photos would be a lovely replacement for the current book shelf. Since organization is not a natural gift of mine, we’ve come to the mutual understanding that open shelving and I will never be friends. My husband prefers a more mid-century/dark wood and leather/patterns of the antique rug variety style. Thankfully we can normally agree on artwork and kitchen pieces. With this in mind, today I was casually entering Bri’s contest for a super cool fur throw, which required taking the Plaidfox style quiz to enter. Killing some time with an incredibly frustrating early fall cold, the quiz was surprisingly entertaining. I highly recommend taking it, if not only to enter the contest (she really does do the best giveaways!)

My results concluded that I had a primary design style of Eclectic, with a secondary style of Urban Industrial. I considered the first style a cop-out for ‘you’re slightly schizo and therefore can’t be categorized- good luck living in your mismatched den’ until I read the description that hit the nail on the head!

So much more than just a catch-all for those without distinct style, true eclecticism is one of the hardest styles to pull off. It takes a keen eye to match a brightly colored chevron pattern chair, an antique oriental rug, and traditional floral wallpaper, but when done properly, eclectic spaces can be both funky and inviting. It’s all about valuing and cherishing every unique thing in your home and then finding ways to knit the mosaic of such different pieces into a well planned space.

So true! We currently have a (faux) antique rug, leather couch, monkey food bag print, and Jonathan Adler-esque pillows, in our mosaic. Urban Industrial seems like a natural secondary pairing, and frankly one the husband may favor. A few of the items I would love to house in my dream decorated apartment…

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This stool will be perfect for our future breakfast bar, which will feature the wraparound granite and farm sink preferred by the Property Brothers.

– A distressed pink side table – doesn’t really need an explanation does it?

– This little end table would actually work perfectly with our armchair. I see drink rings only adding to it’s appeal, of course this table would only accept bourbon drink rings.

– I love the idea of a cow hide rug. This one with gold flecks seems more feminine and less grotesque.

– This is a miniature version of the locker storage piece that haunts my decorating dreams.

– The perfect plank kitchen table.

– This pillow looks like it is flecked with confetti, a great girly touch for our couch.

– I honestly have no idea what these ear/nose things are, but they look like a great conversation centerpiece. If these don’t kick start conversation…you need new guests.

Simple and Focused Stands Out

This weekend I attended my first “friend’s” wedding. The ceremony took place at a gorgeous mill in Virgina and was a lesson in simple focused design. The wedding was neutral colored except for gorgeous bouquets of autumn toned flowers. The couple stood underneath a bold wreath of oranges, yellows, and mellowed red. Even the reception was highlighted by fall colored center pieces.
However, my favorite use of subtle, focused detail was on the dresses of the bridesmaids. All four were drapped in champagned colored satin, but each had a different neckline that was personally flattering. This was a kind gesture from the bride to allow each party member the comfort of a flattering gown. Even amidst the teary eyes, story telling, and memory triggers of the speeches, this wedding highlighted an often forgotten fashion tip. The potential and power of a design is maximized when you highlight either the intricate cut or unique pattern. Examples are below, do you agree?







{House Beautiful, Apartment Therapy, and Style.com}