MOTHER’S DAY GIFT GUIDE–ONLY THE BEST FOR MOM!

Mother’s Day is just around the corner and making sure mom feels loved and appreciated on her special day (and everyday) is top of my list.  As I’ve gotten older, I’ve really come to understand the courage, dedication and selflessness that it takes to be a mother.  My mom is one special lady and along with teaching me about life she instilled in me the power to dream big and reach for my goals. Priceless gifts.

To help you celebrate your mom on Mother’s Day I’ve curated a gift guide filled with special pieces from a few of my favorite stores and online shops.

 ♦ Amara.com is a new online shop I recently discovered and to say I love everything on their site is an understatement.  They sell a wide range of products from over 300 of the leading home decor, gift and fashion brands around.  p.s.  I’ll be sharing more about Amara in a couple of weeks along with a fun collaboration I’m doing with them!

♦  BaubleBar continues to be one of my favorite sources for fashion jewelry.  Not only are their prices good but their tassel earring collection is hard to beat.  I want one of everything.

 When we lived in Seattle, Nordstrom was a favorite shopping spot for clothing, handbags and shoes.  And now I love shopping their gift and home departments for unique items.  Mark you calendar for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale which will take place July 21-August 6th.

Mark & Graham is my go-to source for high-quality leather goods, entertaining items and accessories for both men and women. And I love that so many of their items can be personalized with a monogram.

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Designer Tricks of The Trade | Ideas To Inspire

Designer Tricks OF The Trade

Have you ever wanted to know what tricks designers use to create unique rooms?  Well, today is your lucky day.  I’m sharing TEN designer tricks that you can easily incorporate into your own home to get a custom look with your decor.

Some of the ideas require a little DIY, the others are quick, easy and affordable decorating ideas.

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DESIGNER TRICKS OF THE TRADE

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No. 1  REVERSING RUGS

Did you know that some rugs are designed with a defined pattern on each side?  That’s like getting two rugs for the price of one. Rugs with two usable sides are great because with a quick flip of the rug you can change the look of your decor.  The next time you’re rug shopping check the back side and see if it has a usable pattern.

tip:  pay attention to the weave and feel of the back side to make sure you like it

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Reversible Rugs

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The same ‘reverse’ trick works with some fabrics too.  Designer Jamie Meares used the reverse side of this dot fabric as the welt providing the perfect contrast to give the chair a real designer touch.

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Reversible Fabric

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No. 2  CHANGING OUT or UpSTYLING LAMPSHADES

Have you ever come across the perfect lamp but it has an awful shade?  It happens all the time.  It might be that the shade is the wrong shape or color, or maybe the lamp needs a shade with more style.  The trick here is to buy the lamp and change or UpStyle the shade!

 One of my favorite sources for lampshades online is Lux Lampshades. Lux has a quick ship program with in-stock shades of all shapes, sizes and fabrics.  And their custom program allows you to design a custom shade from a range of fabrics and  frames they have available.

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--UpStyled Lampshade

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No. 3  USING OUTDOOR LIGHTING INDOORS

Did you know that the only major difference between outdoor lighting and indoor lighting is that the finishes on outdoor lighting are created to withstand weather elements?  Beyond that outdoor lighting is suitable for indoor use.  Some of my favorite outdoor lighting styles to use inside are scones and lanterns.  Check out this chic outdoor light used in a bathroom by A Beautiful Mess.

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Outdoor Lighting Used Indoors

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No. 4  MOUNTING A FRAME WITHIN A FRAME

I’m always taking about how important layering is when decorating and that concept even applies to wall decor.  If you have a framed art piece that’ to small, think about hanging it inside of a larger frame.  The two pieces combined will provide the impact you’re desiring and also give your wall decor statement a custom look.

tip:  don’t overlook ugly artwork at a thrift store because the frame might be of value

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--A Frame within A Frame

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No. 5  CREATING A LARGE RUG FROM TWO

Did you know that designers sometimes create one rug from two? Let’s say you find the perfect rug but it doesn’t come in a  large enough size.  If the pattern works, you can actually use rug tape to create a larger size from two smaller rugs.  And if you want a more permanent fix, some rug companies can actually glue the rugs together.

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Two rugs from one

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No. 6  A TOUCH OF BLACK IN EVERY ROOM

This is one of my tried and true design rules.  Black adds a touch of drama to a room and helps to ground the decor.  Don’t think that it has to be a piece of black furniture or a wall painted black, all it takes is a touch.  A lamp base, a decorative object or a textile with black in it.  If you have a room in your home with no black, add the color and see the impact it makes.

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--A Touch of Black in Every Room

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No.7  MIX HIGH END WITH LOW END

Because I’m an avid vintage shopper, I love mixing high with low.  A high-quality sofa paired with inexpensive pillows or a budget friendly rug paired with a statement coffee table are just two ways to mix it up.  Mixing high and low will give your decor distinct flair, add personality and save you money.

My favorite budget friendly pieces are side tables, pillows and decorative objects.

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Mix High End with Low

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N0. 8  MIX OLD & NEW

Just like mixing high and low, mixing old and new is a great way to customize your decor.  Pair a vintage coffee table with a new sofa or a new lamp with a thrifted cabinet.  The days of shopping at one store for all your decor needs are gone so have fun mixing it up.

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Mix Old and New

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No. 9  PATTERN MIXING

Ask any designer and they will tell you that pattern-work is key to any design statement.  You don’t have to go bright and bold because subtle colors and patterns can have just as much impact as bright colors and bold prints.  The key to pattern mixing is to pair patterns of different scales and styles.  You can read more of my tips on pattern mixing here.

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Pattern Mixing

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No. 10  EMBELLISHING OFF THE SHELF FABRICS

I love designer fabrics but they aren’t always in the budget.  One of the tricks designers use to UpStyle off-the-shelf textiles is to add trim.  There are some many affordable trims that can be applied to curtains, pillows or just about anything.  Check out that seat cushion below that has been transformed with some greek key trim.  #brilliant

tip:  my favorite trim source are this, this and this

Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Add Trim

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Designer Tricks OF The Trade--Add Trim

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Designer Tricks Of The Trade--Add Trim

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So there you have it friends.  A few of the tricks designers use when creating and decorating a space.

A little creativity goes a long way so get crafty, think outside the box and give your decor a unique spin.

HIGH/LOW OPTIONS: Black & White Outdoor Umbrella

Creating an outdoor space that is as stylish as the interior of a home is something I strive for whenever I get the chance to design an outdoor living space.   Here in the south an umbrella is an essential part of outdoor decor and can serve as a dominant design element.

In my latest high/low shopping post I’ve rounded up what seems to be a hot commodity for outdoor decorating– black & white striped umbrellas.  Stripes are one of my favorite design details for a patio or deck and nothing beats a classic awning stripe design.

With temperatures on the rise and summer just around the corner, I’ve found four options to fit any budget.  And you know I had to include some design inspiration for you as well.

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BLACK & WHITE OUTDOOR INSPIRATION

How pretty is this white furniture with a black and white umbrella?  And the blue and white planter adds the perfect finishing touch.

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If you love a colorful outdoor space, black and white is the perfect companion to add impact but not take away from your color statement.

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Surrounded by lush landscaping, black and white adds a dramatic and sophisticated Parisian vibe.

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Now that you’re inspired, let’s go shopping…

HIGH/LOW OPTIONS:  BLACK & WHITE STRIPED OUTDOOR UMBRELLAS

♦  BUDGET FRIENDLY: The wide stripe Round Black and White Stripe Umbrella from CB2 is a great value at $69.95.  It measures 108″ in diameter, is made of spun polyester and has a classic shape with no details or embellishments. If you’re looking for a budget friendly option with more style details, I’d check out this cute black and white gingham umbrella with fringe

♦  MODERATELY PRICED: Home Depot has upped their game when it comes to stylish outdoor decor and they too sell a black and white striped umbrella. The Italian Bistro Umbrella cover is made in Italy, measures 7.5 ft (90″) diameter, has a three-position tilt and a wind vent. And the simple scallop detail is kind of cute. Although a bit smaller than the other styles, the price is affordable at just $169.00.

♦  HIGH STYLE: Ballard Design carries a similar style umbrella with more designer details and a higher price tag.  For $349 you get a 9′ diameter classic black and white stripe umbrella made from UV-blocking, fade resistant Sunbrella fabric. The umbrella also has a tilt feature which allows you to position it for maximum sun protection.  Also available in a 11″ diameter and additional colors.

♦  DESIGNER FIND:  If your budget allows here’s an umbrella that has a lot of design detail.  The Daiana Two-Tier Umbrella has a pretty scalloped edge and the top tier adds a unique design detail.  This oversized umbrella rings in at $489,  measures 102″ diameter and is made of Sunbrella fabric.

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I don’t think I’ll every get tired of black and white outdoor decor.  What about you?

Color Crush: Decorating With Yellow

Color Crush: Yellow

Cheers to another week friends!  Did you have a great weekend?  I was ripping and running on Saturday and had a much needed day of relaxation Sunday.  I’m ready to hit the ground running this week and tackle my long to-do list.

I’m popping in today to share some colorful design inspiration with you.

I’ve also love the color yellow and have used it in my decor over the years but I’ve found myself gravitating toward it more recently.  As I’ve been working on design projects and looking to change our some pillows in my own home, this is the color I’ve been seeking.

My love for yellow runs the gamut from bright and sunny to deep, rich amber tones.  I love the soft and pretty shades as much as the warmer tones.

Yellow is one of those colors that mixes well with other colors and it also feels right at home with silver or gold finishes.

DECORATING WITH YELLOW

Color Crush: Yellow

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A pop of yellow adds an instant dose of cheer and vibrancy to room and just a small statement goes a long way in making an impact.

Color Crush: Yellow

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A brighter shade of yellow can be a good choice for an accent piece of furniture.  Against white walls, the color looks fresh and modern and against a dark wall the color feels dramatic and sophisticated.

Color Crush: Yellow

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Yellow has been a color used in traditional decor for decades and will be around for decades to come.

Color Crush: Yellow

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If you’ve been reading my blog for a while you know I love a colorful sofa.  Next to emerald green, a yellow sofa is on my design wish list.  I love the look of the sofa below against the soft grey built-in cabinets.

Color Crush: Yellow

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And in a sunroom, yellow is the perfect color to pair with neutrals and white for a relaxing and polished feel.

Color Crush: Yellow

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And kitchens are one of my favorite places for the color yellow.  The yellow cushions on this banquet seating add so much life and energy to an all-white kitchen.

Color Crush: Yellow

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If you like bold statements, why not a yellow oven or a statement piece of art to punctuate the room?

fyi–artwork by Bobbi Burgers

Color Crush: Yellow

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Since painting interior doors and accent color is such a big trend, yellow is definitely a fun way to add an unexpected pop in the kitchen.

Color Crush: Yellow

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As with all paint colors, selecting the right shade for your decor is key.  To help you out, I’ve rounded-up six of my favorite yellow hues with suggestions on where I’d use the color when decorating.

Color Crush: Yellow

Happy decorating!

Bookshelf Styling Workshop with Steve McKenize’s

Bookshelf Styling Workshop at Steve McKenzie's

My passion for decorating goes beyond helping my clients with their design needs.  It also includes sharing my knowledge about design and decorating with others.

When my home decor and gift store was open I taught design workshops throughout the year.  Topics ranged from space planning and accessorizing to styling tabletop vignettes and creative ideas for entertaining.  I’m excited whenever I get the opportunity to lead a workshop and when I get to do it in partnership with one of my favorite stores, it’s even better.

BOOKSHELF STYLING WORKSHOP

I hope you will join me at Steve McKenzie’s on Saturday, May 6th from 10:00-11:00 am. 

Creating a dynamic bookshelf display involves picking the right accessories and knowing how to arrange them with flair and style.  During the workshop I’ll share my tips and tricks for styling bookshelves and my list of ‘must-have’ items that every bookcase arrangement needs.

And to make the event even more special, one lucky attendee will receive a custom piece of artwork designed and painted by Steve.

Click here to register for the workshop.  Space is limited so sign up today!

Bookshelf Styling Workshop at Steve McKenzie's

To shop Steve McKenzie’s online, head here and be sure to check out their blog.

Shopping For Stationery | Chinoiserie Style

Hi friends.  I hope everyone had a great weekend and Easter.  It’s not secret that I love paper products and today I’m sharing one of my favorite paper companies with.

I love beautiful stationery and as a business owner personalized stationery is part of my branding when communicating with clients.

 I was on the hunt recently for new notecards and my search led me to WH Hostess Social Stationery.   WH Hostess sells paper goods including stationery, party decor, gift packaging and personalized gifts.  Their designs are fresh and modern and I love the variety of patterns and colors they offer. Chinoiserie inspired designs are one of my favorite and WH Hostess has a great selection of chinoiserie stationery.

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NOTECARDS

 I prefer flat cards over folded and use them for general correspondence with clients and for quick notes to friends. A few of my favorite designs from WH Hostess include their greek key, stripe, bamboo and plaid designs.

Greek Key Emblem Notecard {available in 8 colors}

Monogram Ginger Jar Flat Notecard {7 monogram colors available}

Striped Letters Personalized Flat Notecard {available in 4 colors}

Bamboo Monogram Personalized Flat Notecard {available in 6 colors}


Greek Key Personalized Flat Notecard {available in 8 colors}

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GIFT TAGS

If you think gift tags are just for gift  giving, think again.  Personalized gift tags with your business logo and name can be used as a creative alternative to a business card.  I use them to tag fabric sample rings or other design samples.  You can also use personalized stickers in the same way.

Foiled Stamped Gift Tag {a variety of ink and paper colors available}

Greek Key Border Foil Stamped Gift Tag {a variety of ink and paper colors available}

Chinoiserie Happiness Medallion Square Foil-Stamped Gift Tag

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NOTEPADS

I jot down notes and reminders on a daily basis so a pretty notepad is essential to my day.  And love giving personalized notepads as gifts.

Buffalo Check Monogram Personalized Notepad

Interlocking Monogram Personalized Notepad

If you’re looking for an assortment of stationery products, WH Hostess sells their Stationery Suites that includes a mix of products.  The suite is packaged in an acrylic box and includes personalized notepads, notecards, stickers and writing pens.

There are so many designs available from WH Hostess so be sure to check out their site and you’re sure to find something to fit your style.

Home Tour | Interior Designer Jessica Buckley

I was scrolling through the Apartment Therapy site and stumbled across a home tour they featured in Edinburgh, Scotland.  The home, owned by interior designer Jessica Buckley has to be one of the prettiest homes I’ve seen in a long time.  

Jessica’s style is fresh and modern with classic elements and just the right amount of feminine details.    With an apparent love for color you can see that she has used color on the walls as a way to define each room within her home.  The blue grass cloth on the walls in the living room is dramatic but not overwhelming.  I love the depth and texture it has against all of the white mouldings and trim work.  Another fun aspect to Jessica’s home is her use of patterns and how expertly she has mixed and matched them.  The paring of black and white with a bold floral in the kitchen is an ideal accent for the soft pink walls.  And the fabric drape over the guest bed is stately but modern.

Jessica is definitely one to watch and be inspired by.

HOME TOUR | JESSICA BUCKLEY

Home Tour of Interior Designer Jessica Buckley

Home Tour of Interior Designer Jessica Buckley

Home Tour of Interior Designer Jessica Buckley

Home Tour of Interior Designer Jessica Buckley

Home Tour of Interior Designer Jessica Buckley

You can view Jessica’s design portfolio here. And check out her delightful blog here.

all images via Apartment Therapy

What I Bought At The Round Top Antiques Market (and a few other places too)!

Round Top Antique Market--2017

Happy Friday friends.  As you read this the hubs and I are headed back to Atlanta with my mom in tow.  She’ll be visiting us for a week or so before heading back to Oklahoma.

I wish you could see our car….it’s loaded to the gills with luggage and the vintage finds I picked up at the Round Top Antiques Market and beyond.   If you’re wondering what I mean by beyond, here’s the scope.  In addition to shopping Round Top, my travel buddies and I, Marsha, Wanda and Sherry also stopped at antique stores, flea markets and Goodwill stores during our road trip.  It was a thrifters dream.

Before I show you some of what I purchased, I wanted to share a bit more about our trip.

We left Dallas at 6:30 am on Saturday morning and made the trek to Round Top.  Dallas to Round Top is a 3 hour drive so we had time to chat and plan our shopping strategy for the day.

Once we made it to Round Top we spent the day shopping then drove to Saledo, TX where we were staying the night.  We stayed at the Inn On The Creek which is an adorable bed and breakfast.  I share more about the inn next week but here’s a little glimpse of this charming spot.

On Sunday morning we left Saledo and headed to Waco for more shopping and finally made our way back to Dallas last Sunday evening.

Two days….lots of shopping and a whole lot of fun!

Now let’s get to the really fun stuff…what I bought.

If you remember from my previous posts, I had a list of items I was shopping for including ironstone, blue and white pottery, old design books and vintage jewelry.  Although I wasn’t able to find everything on my list, I did find some plus a few things I didn’t have on my list.

WHAT I BOUGHT IN AND AROUND THE ROUND TOP ANTIQUES MARKET…

I had pretty good luck in the ironstone category.  I found this pretty ironstone pitcher at a thrift store in Waco and it is in great condition.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

I’ve sold several ironstone gravy boats/creamers in my Etsy store recently and was hoping to find some new pieces to add to the shop.  This one has a pretty leaf and vine design on it and it was only $5.00.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

This 3-piece English ironstone sugar/creamer set was a great find at a Goodwill we stopped at.  And you won’t believe the prices–$5.49 for all three pieces.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

I found this large ironstone bowl at Round Top and love the softly scalloped edge.  It’s a great bowl for fruit or serving salads or pasta.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

Another Goodwill score was a set of Federalist  Ironstone cups and saucers.  I’ve never come across this brand of ironstone before but couldn’t pass up the set which was priced at $5.49.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

Round Top Antique Market--2017

There were two of these blue and white gravy boats but one had a chip so I only bought the one.   And it was less than $6.00!

Round Top Antique Market--2017

My friend Marsha grabbed this blue and white vase but offered it up to me.  #goodfriendssharetheirthriftingfinds

Round Top Antique Market--2017

I found these blue and white bread plates at another thrift store for just $1.99 each.  They are English transferware from Lochs of Scotland.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

One of the booths I stumbled upon a t Round Top had bins of vintage lace for $1.00 per bundle.  You know I had to add a few to my collection.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

I was excited to come across a dealer at Round Top that was selling design books for 50% off the marked price.  The books I purchased,  were published between 1993 and 2008 and cost $6.00 each.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

I spotted this beautiful silver-plated bowl in an antique store in Waco but it didn’t have a price tag on it.  When I took it up to the counter to check the price I was expecting them to say something like $48.  I was surprised and thrilled that it was only $12! #winning

Round Top Antique Market--2017

One of my favorite finds was this cute elephant planter/vase.  There were people around me when I spotted it so I played it cool and grabbed it when they weren’t looking.

Thrifting tip:  be ruthless in the pursuit of a unique treasures

Round Top Antique Market--2017

This cute plaid ice bucket and glass set (6 glasses) was a find at an antique store outside Ft. Worth.  What a fun set for someone to use for summer entertaining.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

These are just a few of the items I purchased on the trip.  I’m coming home with tree boxes full of goodies, most of which I’m planning on putting my Etsy shop.  I’ll be sure to let you know when the items are available.  If you see something you’re interested in, just leave me a comment and I’ll email you the price.

Before I sign off, I did want to share an unexpected find.

Last night we stopped by my cousins’ house.  I’ve been in her house many times but didn’t realized she was a blue and white collector.  She has some beautiful vases, ginger jars and a full set of Blue Willow Dinnerware.  When I spotted it, I commented how I’ve been looking for Blue Willow chins. Then she said something I didn’t expect…she said I could have it.

I’m happy to say that I am now a proud owner of a full set of Churchill Blue Willow dinnerware.

Round Top Antique Market--2017

As I pointed out in yesterday’s blog post, it pays to go off the beaten path when antique shopping in and around Round Top.

Until next time…

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