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Jamie Meares

image via Jamie Meares

I’ve been quite obsessed with all things Chinoiserie of late in part because it’s a design style that is super popular right now and also because I just love the eclectic feel the style lends itself too.

Chinoiserie also speaks to my love of color, vintage and bold pattern work.  The Jamie Meares image above just says fun to me and really represent a collected home filled with unique treasures.

The Ralph Lauren image below is another take on Chinoiserie with a more subdues color and pattern statement but with just as much personality and visual interest.

Some of my favorite Chinoiserie styled decorative elements include blue and white pottery, bamboo styled furniture, mirror and lighting and also Asian motif pillows.

Ralph Lauren

image via Ralph Lauren

Recently I went on the hunt for some Chinoiserie pillows for our bedroom.  I started my search on Etsy and was thrilled to see that there are lots of pillows available on the site.

One of the things I like about shopping on Etsy is that you can get handcrafted items in designer fabrics for a great price.  I also like that shopping Etsy is a way to support independent artist and small businesses, many of which are run out of the home.

Here’s just a sampling of the pillows I found…

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Books:  NEW DESIGN & ENTERTAINING BOOKS

Spray Paint Books

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I love books and you all know that I am a hoarder collector of design books.  Yes it’s a function of my business but I also just love decorating and reading beautiful design books.

While I was at market in January, I stopped by my favorite book wholesaler to check out what’s new in design books.  Here’s a look at my favorite new design and entertaining books being released as we speak or in the coming months.

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Today’s post is all about catalog shopping!  

If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you know that I worked in the retail/catalog industry for many years.  I spent over 11 years working as a buyer and executive at Eddie Bauer in both the catalog and retail arms of the company.  After moving to Atlanta I worked for a privately owned, national home decor catalog called Touchstone.  Throughout my retail career I have learned the ins and outs of the catalog business and I am a fan of shopping from catalogs.  It’s a good thing because I receive numerous home decor catalogs in the mail each week.

I know that catalogs aren’t for everyone and there are some cons to shopping from catalogs.  But, there are also lots of PROS to shopping  (and browsing) from catalogs.

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Favorite White Paint Colors.002

Since one of the main focuses of my blog is to share design tips and information with you, I thought I’d do a Design Guide series to talk about paint colors.  Over the next few months I’ll be sharing my favorite paint colors along with tips to help you when you’re selecting paint for your home.  Today the color wheel landed on WHITE so I’m sharing my favorite white paint colors from two of the most popular paint lines on the market, Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams.

I know you already know this, but picking a white paint color can be super challenging.  There are hundreds of white paint shades between the Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams lines and finding the right one to work with your decor and lighting is not an easy task.

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With spring knocking at the door and Easter just a few weeks away, my latest Product + Inspiration post is dedicated to pretty tables capes and a key component that makes each one great, Bamboo Flatware!

I’ve been on the hunt for vintage bamboo flatware for over a year and haven’t lucked upon any yet but have it on my shopping list for my big trip at the end of the month.  When I reviewed my list with my husband he asked me what the big deal was.  Well, let me tell you and remind him.

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Statement Tile In The Kitchen

Even though Pantone’s colors of the year and soft, subtle and pastel, the trend in kitchen design is bold and dynamic.  You’re seeing more and more kitchens  moving away from classic white subway tile and using larger design in big patterns and fun colors.

While patterned tile isn’t for everyone, it’s a great way to enhance your kitchen walls.  Here’s some inspiration:

Tile in Kitchen

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Tile in Kitchen2

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Pattern between the counter and cabinets add so much punch to a kitchen space.

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Taking tile from counters to ceiling is a great way to add drama and impact behind the stove.

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I recently went on the hunt for some patterned tile and found lots of great options.

Both Home Depot and Lowes have a nice selection of classic patterns and their prices are really good.  Another great source is Overstock.com which I recently discovered has a large selection of decorative tile.

Here’s a round-up of some of my favorites…
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#1  Merola Twenties Classic  from Home Depot.  Check out how amazing this looks in Cassie’s kitchen.
#2 Merola Twenties Crest.  Amazing price for such style.
#3 This Revival Memory tile is the perfect accent for a french country-style kitchen.
#4  I love the soft hue of  Kings Seagate and think it would look great on walls or on the floor.
#5 This Agdal Blue and Grey Tile is just one of the dynamic patterns they sell on Overstock.
#6  If you love blue and white in the kitchen, this Somer Tile is great.
#7  The color combination in this Borough Mondo is one of my favorites for a kitchen.
#8  Black accent tile like this Argana Black and Grey is a classic that will work in any kitchen.
#9  And maybe my favorite black and white tile of all times, Medina Black and White Ceramic.

Tile

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Design Tips for Tiling Your Kitchen:

  • A complex or colorful backslash looks best with solid counters–that way they don’t clash with each other.
  • Wrapping the backsplash around the entire room gives a sense of visual continuity, which can help a small space seem large.
  • Changing the orientation of run-of-the-mill subway tile can create an expensive look for less. Run the tile vertically for a modern look or lay it on a diagonal in a place you want as a focal point, such as cooking areas.
  • Before you install a backsplash, try “walking” tiles up a wall to make sure you aren’t left with a thin sliver where the tile meets cabinetry. Hold the tiles against the wall at the bottom of the backsplash area and move them hand over hand up the wall following your desired pattern until you get to the top. You may find you have to start with a half-tile at the bottom to be sure at least a quarter-tile fits at the top.

 

When it comes to kitchen design, is your style clean and classic or do you like a bold statement?

Shelly Signature

Spring Flowers
I can’t believe the weather we’ve had the last couple of days here in Atlanta.  Spring is definitely in the air and I’m super excited for its arrival.  The other day I was driving and noticed that a few cherry trees had started to bloom and that daffodils are popping up everywhere.  All these signs of spring have me thinking about decorating for the season which is not typically something I do a lot of.  This year though, I want to add a few more spring touches to my decor and rounded up a few ideas and inspiration that just might inspire you too.

When we lived in Seattle there were tulip fields about 60 miles outside the city.  Every year we’d take a drive to look at the beautiful rows of tulips and buy bundles and bundles of tulips for $5.00 ea. The tulip festival took place around my birthday in April so tulips hold a special place in my heart.

♦♦♦

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Creating A Pillow Assortment For Your Sofa.001

image via BHG

Happy Monday friends.  I’ve got another round of my Design Chat series for you today and I’m answering a question about selecting and styling pillows for your sofa.

Deziree is having trouble selecting pillows for her living room sofa and posed the following question to me…

” I have had the hardest time styling my living room. I have purchased probably 8 sets of curtains, multiple pillows, hand-made covers, and I still have not finished it. My walls are a grey taupe and my sectional is tan and I currently have natural ivory off white linen curtains. I would love help with picking pillow colors, patterns, shapes and amounts for my sectional. Any suggestion”?

I’ve gotten this question on more than one occasion from readers and I hope the tips I’m sharing will help you if you’re struggling with your pillow decor.

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