Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Happy New Year!

... and uh, Merry Christmas too! Between the holidays and the kids-home-from-school-cold-days, it's been awhile!

Hopefully you all had a little R&R during the holidays!  Now, let's start the New Year off right! I've got lots of client appointments lined up for January already ... it's a great time to make a fresh start. And since we're spending so much time inside these rooms of our homes this time of year, it's only natural to start picking apart the things you don't like and look for ways to make a change.

I thought I'd share a few things on my radar lately ... maybe they will inspire you to make some little "change-ups" around your house!

I am loving these bath towels from Kassatex ... darn, would have been a great Christmas present idea!

Speaking of Christmas presents, after 16 years, we finally decided to retire the everyday dishes we registered for at our wedding. My parents, in-laws and sister were kind enough to help me collect a new set for Christmas!  I did a lot looking before I finally settled on these:
It's the Marin White Dinner Collection from Crate & Barrel. I really liked the kind of uneven gray edge that gives it a unique, organic feel. I also wanted a set that came with a large wide bowl (they call it a pasta bowl). We use this size a lot for soups, meal-size salads, chili ... and, of course, pasta!
Now that your dining room table is cleared of Holiday centerpieces ... what about designing a custom table runner at Loom Décor? You can select your fabric and border from a great selection of gorgeous prints and even some metallic solids.
I'm also loving the glass and Lucite hardware at this fun French site.

Maybe the males in my house are rubbing off on me, but I love this blue, locker-inspired cabinet from Ikea ... and it is only $99!  I would use it as little media cabinet in a basement family room or for craft storage in a kid's playroom.
Another great steal ... this coffee table from West Elm. I love the mix of wood and metal. Kid-friendly with the rounded edges!
I also have many dog-eared pages from some of my favorite magazines ...
This light fixture from Urban Electric caught my eye ... it feels unexpected in this room, but I kind of like that.
Campion Chandelier
I'm also kind of digging this rug from Kravet.
Kravet Fine Facet Rug
Finally, are things feeling a little bare at your house now that all the greenery of the holidays is gone?  Terrain has some nice preserved and faux options to bring a little life and color to your house and help us all get through these winter months!
Adiantum Fern Bunch

Dogwood Branches

Faux Blooms Bunch
 And last, but not least ... while many people like add a fur throw or pillow this time of year, we decided to add something else a little furry ...
 His name is Pancake and is he 7 months old!  He was rescued from a rough neighborhood in the city, but seems to like his new home.
 He also likes to follow our 15 year old cat, Luke, everywhere he goes.  Luke is a good sport, but sometimes he needs a little separation.
We are super excited to have this little guy pitter-pattering around the house ... one of our best home additions yet!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Simplified holiday decor

I can't believe, as I type this, that Christmas is one week away!  The month of December has gone by in a blur! Are you sick of seeing pictures, articles and blogs about Holiday décor yet? If not, I thought I'd share just a few snapshots from around my house. I decided to keep things simple this year ... and I kind of like it! How did I do it?

1. I was very selective in what I put out this year. It was a good opportunity to go through my boxes of decorations and clean them out! Instead of lots of little knick-knacks, I primarily used greenery, ornaments and a few holiday signs/artwork.

2. I kept to a very simple color palette of blues, greens, grays, and whites.  What? No red?  Could I do it?  I've always used a lot of red in the past.  I've got some red outside and in a few little spots ... but for the most part, I am really enjoying the softer, soothing colors. This month is crazy enough as it is, right?

As you'll see below ... Boxwood is my friend!  I just love it's bright green color and part of me would love to just keep it up all year round.
I like to swap out the artwork above my fireplace with this mirror and boxwood garland.



Look! Some red!  I just love this nostalgic little sign, so I couldn't resist.

And of course there's some red on the Gingerbread house Kyle and Braden made!
What's your decorating style ... do you go all out or do you like to keep things simple?

Friday, October 31, 2014

Shopping (and sipping) at one of our favorite stores

Happy Halloween! Yikes ... tomorrow is November! Is it really time to start thing about the holidays? Apparently so!  Kristy and I were invited to attend a little Pre-Holiday soiree at one of our favorite stores, Classic Remix Chicago.  Us and a handful of other bloggers were given the task of  tagging 5 of our favorite items in the store to use or give during the holidays.

That's Mary, the owner ... and her cute pup Charlie.

... and a toast with all of the other fun bloggers we met. Check out some of their creative and fabulous lifestyle blogs: The Kittchen, An Eventful Life, Hunter Style, Cedar and Rush, and Mushroom Stew.
With wine in hand, we set out to peruse the store.
Classic Remix has tons of great gift ideas in their store, and many of the bloggers chose their favorite items to give as holiday gifts.  Kristy and I decided to tag things we would recommend for sprucing up your home for the holidays.
Like this chandelier for instance ...

With an influx of holiday guests coming into your home this season, why not swap out an old or boring light fixture in your entry with this glamorous number to greet your visitors?
And every good holiday party deserves and good bar cart, doesn't it?

What a fun place to showcase your fancy barware and cocktail fixings. In a dining room, living room, study ... this could work in various rooms of your home.
Next up ... these fluffy Mongolian fur pillows ....

 Changing out pillows is such an easy way to give a quick update to a room or piece of furniture.  These pillows are soooo cozy ... and in winter white they feel festive for the holidays.
Our next pick wasn't exactly one "item" but rather this tablescape of glass votives and hurricanes.

 What a lovely and elegant way to dress your table for the holidays, right? You can keep it neutral with white flowers like they've done or add in some colorful blooms.
Our fifth pick is small and could also be a good little gift idea ...
Aren't these acrylic coasters cute?  Typically you don't think of coasters as being very glamorous .. but these have a very chic vibe, don't they?  We thought so!
Of course, we were only supposed to tag five items ... but there were certainly many more we could have happily put our little Swoon Tag on.

Many thanks to Classic Remix and Nicole Regan of Cedar and Rush for organizing this fun and unique event.
Even better, Classic Remix is offering Swoon readers a 10% off anything in the store from November 10-16! Wouldn't you love to knock some things off your gift-buying list BEFORE Thanksgiving?  Just head on down to 24 E. Erie Chicago and mention Swoon!
Enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

It's time to "Chairish" your home ...

Have you heard of Chairish?
First of all, I love their tagline ... Buy. Sell. Adore.
Kind of a designophile's Craigslist, Chairish is an online marketplace for vintage and "pre-loved" furniture and home décor. UNLIKE Craigslist, you can easily peruse items by photograph and even collections such as "Curator's Picks," "Hotties Under $100" or "Cool Combo: Oxblood and Cobalt."
Anyway, Chairish recently contacted me asking if I'd like to participate, along with some other bloggers, in a project to design the perfect home bar using barstools from Chairish. Of course I jumped at the chance!  They sent me an assortment of barstools to choose from and I selected these leather beauties. (You can shop their whole collection by clicking here.)
My idea was to style a cozy bar area you'd perhaps find in a home library ... a place to sit with an after dinner cocktail surrounded by books and cozy but glamorous finishes like grasscloth wallpaper, a soft shag rug and a giant celestial map.
Lots of people are forgoing living rooms these days in favor of a space they will use more often.  The addition of a sleek bar and lots of bookshelves can turn a former living room into a home library that is functional and fun!
Here is my design board:

In creating my design board, I was able to find a ton of other unique and fun items on Chairish for my room. Check out that killer chandelier and the sconces made of bone! I love the cute little bar cart, and I couldn't believe all of the cool vintage barware I found to accessorize it. 
 I've listed sources for everything below:
5. White Leather Barstools
 What do you think?  Do you have a space in your home we could transform into a sexy home library?  Contact me ... I'd love to help ... and I know Chairish would too!
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