Monday, March 31, 2014

DIY Planter Boxes

A few days before the end of our spring break I decided we needed to tackle a little project.  My husband was game because that meant he could tinker around in the garage.  I have always wanted some English style planter boxes for the front entryway.  We just used scrap wood and only had to purchase the finials and paint!  They ended up costing only $16 each.  Nice right?  
Photo: Any guesses as to what my guy is making now?
He started by making a four sided box (no bottom) with left over tongue- and- groove.  It would have looked just as good with flat sides and trim, but this is what we happened to have and it matches the style of my home on the inside.
These are the boxes in their raw state.  He added the flat trim and the finials (pre-made at Lowes).
I'm still thinking about adding decorative hinges to the corners but we'll see.  Also, I had my heart set on topiary trees of some sort to go in the boxes, but I couldn't find any that would grow in a shaded area like my entry.  I settled on these pretty azaleas.  I do love the color against the blue and hopefully they will grow taller.
Photo: I just finished these flower boxes for our entry way . 100% scrap wood except for the finials.
I used an exterior semi gloss called "blue haze" by pantone on the boxes.  One of the nice things is that these don't have a bottom; there are plastic urns inside the boxes so that there is no water or dirt against the wood to rot it over time.  
I am very pleased with the end result.
It's back to reality today for us.  The kids were cranky waking up and we were too.  Ah, yes.  On the more positive side of things, we only have around 8 weeks until Summer vacation!
Happy Monday everyone!

Friday, March 28, 2014

What I Want: The Basics

Lately I've been thinking that I'd like to pare down my wardrobe.  I have way too many clothes (I know, I can't believe I'm saying that either!), but I still always feel like I have nothing to wear.  I really would like to make the move to quality over quantity.  Of course, this takes time.  And money.  Can't forget the money!
Anyway, so I've been drawn to more basic pieces that have something special, like a black blouse that looks simple in the front but has buttons down the back or a swing cut in the back.  (I am describing two of my most recent purchases, just so you know.)
I love color, and I know it is spring, but lately I have been drawn to a palette of black, white, cream, and navy.  Go figure.
Here's a little of what has been inspiring me lately.
image via Hemingway & Hepburn

image via Hemingway & Hepburn
image via Hemingway & Hepburn
image via
Can Ines de la Fressange do wrong?  So chic! I hope you are having a fantastic weekend!  The Cat and I wasted our day standing in line at the post office to renew her passport only to find out that we were missing a piece of paper that the website said we didn't need.  Super fun times.  I have to keep telling myself that the end result is our trip to France.  Standing in line for a couple of hours at the post office two days in a row will be worth it.
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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Beach Trip via Instagram

Don't you just love Instagram?  I think the whole thing is genius and I love following all those creative people who see beauty everywhere and inspire my day.
As you may know, my family just got back from a little beach trip to Pismo, Morro Bay and San Simeon.  We had tons of fun and I went a little overboard capturing moments on Instagram.  I want to share a few of those images today.

 We had such a good time, from lounging at the beach, dune buggy rides, Farmer's Market stops to a visit at Hearst Castle. Here's to Spring break and Instagram!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Can't Wait: Wes Anderson and Rifle Wallpaper

Spring Break is more than halfway over.  We were supposed to go to the beach for a couple of days, but it is supposed to rain up and down the coast, so we are staying home.  The consolation is that every time it rains, my Mom throws the kids a tea party.  I love a good tea party.
Another thing I am really looking forward to?
The new Wes Anderson movie arrives in a close-by theater on Thursday!  I can't wait.
image via Grand Budapest Hotel
image via Geek Tyrant
Another thing to look forward to- over on Hygge & West, they've announced a a collaboration with Rifle paper company, and are releasing a Rifle wallpaper collection in May.
image via Hygge & West
Pretty, isn't it?  This little display was made by Nicole Balch of Making it Lovely.
For now this is the only wallpaper they are letting us see.  It reminds me of my Gram (and that is a good thing).
Hope you're having a great week!

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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

The Spring Table

natural table setting
Now that it is officially Spring, I have been changing out my accents in my home.  I am also looking forward to entertaining.  I love making the table pretty but I don't like anything over the top.  I like these rustic modern tables.  They have just the right amount of Spring time prettiness.
gwenyth paltrow ... easter tablescape
white candlesticks by Paintingdreams
simple celadon and golden yellow decor for the table #entertaining #tabletop
I'm inspired to try colored taper candles for the season along with casual floral arrangements.  
What has you excited about this new season?

Monday, March 24, 2014

What I'm Not

So I went to the store yesterday with my Mom.  One of those big warehouse stores where people with big families shop so they can buy in bulk and save some cash.  I do not have a big family, and in my house it is a miracle if a 1/2 gallon of milk gets used before it expires.  But I went with my Mom anyway, because she asked me to and sometimes I like to do things to keep up the pretense that I am a good daughter.  One of the things I will buy at these warehouse stores, besides larger than normal bottles of alcohol, are magazines.  They are discounted, you see, so I can buy two or three or seven and not feel too bad about it.  Unfortunately, I already had a lot of the magazines that they were selling, but I had to buy something, and that's when I saw this.
This kind of magazine speaks to me, because it is what I want to be.  I want to tackle clutter in every room!  I want to shop smarter and stop paper pileups today!  In other words, I really, really, really want to be organized.  I want a place for everything and everything in its place.  And I try.  I really do.  Last week (and thankfully this week too) we are on spring break.  Slowly but surely I have been cleaning my house.  And by cleaning I mean making piles of junk that are now residing in my hallway.
Anyway, I wish I could be more organized, and have neat little gadgets and things for all of our stuff.  I can't see that actually happening any time in the near future, but one should always have a goal, right?  In the meantime, I will content myself to look at other people's beautifully organized spaces.  Here are some of my favorites.
image via How to Decorate
image via pinterest

image via Organized Living

image via Houzz
image via Decorology
I love that last picture.  Is it weird to say I even love that toilet?  As far as toilets go, it's pretty, don't you think?
Well, we are off to Disneyland today.  Hopefully.  I could really use a dole whip!  You know, to celebrate all this spring cleaning that I've been doing.

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Friday, March 21, 2014

Friday Round-up

amazing sofa
As of right now we are headed back from our beach trip but I thought I would share my favorite images of the week.  There were some pretty spectacular spaces and inspiring photos on pinterest and the net recently.  See if you don't agreee!
Home of Style at Home design editor Jessica Waks
Corral pieces in all shapes and sizes for an eclectic spread.
Master Bedroom
eclectic outdoor entertaining
Think of all the Beauty Still left around you and be happy - wise words from Anne Frank

Aren't those fantastic?
I hope your week has been as wonderful as mine has!  Have a fantastic weekend.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Top 7 Sephora Picks

Happy Thursday! Today I thought I'd share a handful of my favorite products from Sephora.
 First up is my new favorite hair product, from Living Proof.  I got this as a sample and fell in love with it the first time I used it.  A dime sized amount goes a long way, and does a lot to add texture and body to hair.
Second is Almost Lipstick from Clinique in Black Honey.  I have been using this stuff for as long as I can remember; it's my go to color, and I am pretty sure it is universally flattering.  It looks really dark in the tube, but goes on the perfect shade.
Third up is my favorite eye liner, by Make Up Forever.  This pencil has staying power, smudges beautifully (if you want it to), and lasts all day.
Good Genes is another sample I got from Sephora and fell in love with.  It is ridiculously priced, and not something I would normally splurge on, but one of my Valentine's Day presents was a gift card from my guy, and there's enough left on it to make this one last purchase.
Urban Decay's make-up setting spray is also a newer purchase; it helps control shine and it sets your make-up pretty nicely.  This product makes me want to start trying other face mists- any suggestions?
Fresh's Sugar lip gloss in rose is also a favorite- who doesn't love this subtle coral color that looks good on everyone whose ever tried it?!
Last up is a find that I got at Marshalls- we got it a small tub of it for under $5 and my daughter loves it.  It is a really good lotion, and it smells really good.  Like makes me want cotton candy and gummy bears good.  And even though we found it at Marshall's, it's available at Sephora.
So those are just some of the products that I am loving right now, all from Sephora.  Some are long time faves, and some are new discoveries.
Any of your favorites on my list?  Any new discoveries or good old stand-bys that I should know about?

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Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Frozen Birthday Party

When  my good friend Christine asked what theme she should use for her soon to be 9 year old's birthday party it was a no-brainer..."Frozen!"  Of course every child in attendance would love it and the birthday girl, Francesca, was ecstatic.  We both got down to work.  All I did was lend her some of my white Christmas decorations: fake snow, mercury glass candle stands, apothecary jars, snowflake and icicle ornaments, wreath and my daughter's small Frozen dolls.  It really was easy to pull together.  Christine did a lot more work than I did and I got to have the fun of putting things together a few days before the party.
How sweet is the front door?!  I lent her my icy looking wreath and she embellished it with dye-cut snow flakes.  
Christine had just purchased a few Ikea lamb rugs and I was thrilled because they worked perfectly with the theme.  I made a few floral "snow balls" before the party out of white carnations and mums then I brushed on a bit of silver glitter glue at the tips of the petals.   

 I have made these mini apothecary jar scenes in parties past and I always think they are cute.
Christine did an amazing job with the baking!  All the treats were lovely and yummy.

I can't tell you how wonderful the food was!  You can't see much of it in this picture but let me assure you, this was no pizza and soda birthday.  There was even wine...(I love that about these friends;)

 The beautiful birthday cake.  This birthday girl doesn't go in for rich desserts so this light-as-a-feather confection fit the bill.
Christine wanted to have a candy bar for the kids and it was a huge hit!  
 There were all sorts of beautiful candies (my favorite visually were the rock candy suckers).  So perfect.

Christine made this lovely banner using dye-cuts and I had her print out photos of Francesca in the snow at different times that I added to a pretty garland.  I love this so much.
 Now this is amazing:  Christine found out which Frozen character each child liked best and ordered them t-shirts from the Disney store with their names on them!  Now the sad part...the order didn't arrive on time:(  That's okay, they will look forward to getting them.  Here are the awesome boxes they will eventually be going home in.  I think this is about the best party favor I have ever heard of.
 A few of the guests!  Can you spot my kiddos? (hint: they are bookends here)  My daughter didn't know all the guests and is going through a shy phase so that is why she looks a little sad.  Poor darlin'.

 The stairway was the perfect place to create a backdrop for the birthday girl to sit in front of to open gifts.
I'm so happy that Christine and I have the same taste and she didn't get her daughter the Frozen costume;  I like this so much better!  I think it's nice when little girls don't feel like they need to be the character but their own version.  I think it looks far classier too.  This dress is from American Girls available here.  Christine added the little cape in the back.
Happy birthday sweet Francesca!


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