Minggu, 31 Januari 2016

January Dining Room

Well, I'm cutting it pretty close putting January in the title. Even though February is just a few hours away I thought I'd show you what our dining room has looked like these past couple of weeks. Like most people, I always struggle a bit after Christmas trying to still make things looks cozy and not too bare once all of the greenery comes down. Obviously it's a bit too early for anything that has a spring-like feel to it so I generally keep things pretty simple. Although I do put all of my Christmas greenery away I generally use paperwhites for at least another month or so.  (We have just a few of our Ruffled Table Runners left in stock!)

You can see in the first two photos I had some cute little frames above the wingback chair that were a Christmas gift from my sister-in-law. I really wanted to use them in the living room but they were just too small so I ended up swapping them out with this painting we got several years ago and I think I have a good spot for the frames upstairs!

I have to admit I miss having the chairs on either side of the buffet. I moved them into the living room when I changed things around. I am keeping my eyes out for the perfect chairs for the living room, though, and when I do I will move those two back here.

Although we got rid of the Christmas greenery, we keep the hot cocoa station up for most of the winter. (You can see it decorated for Christmas here).

You can see photos of the living room side in yesterday's post.

Last year we got a bunch of e-mails requesting that this year we offer the Valentine's silhouette in a boy option to go with the girl. We just got them finished up and are listing them in our shop right now.
Have a wonderful evening!

Fab Ab February

I have seen this on pinterest, but couldn't find a calendar for this year. Yes, I could use a calendar where the days are off, but that bothers the perfectionist side of me. So I made my own calendar! I am a huge fan of having something to follow. I like recipes, directions, things that tell me when and how to do something. This isn't always the case, but with a lot of things it is. So when I found this idea for a calendar I was excited. I can definitely follow a fitness calendar!

I can't wait to get started. Here's to fabulous abs this February!

Download and print out your own copy HERE.

Finding That Perfect Bed & Breakfast

I was born in England and emigrated to New Zealand when I was only six years old, I consider myself a kiwi but have regularly made trips back to the UK to visit family. The last time I went to England was about 7 years ago when I was living in Brunei and was in desperate need of some culture and floral inspiration for my paintings. During this time I stayed in a London bed and breakfast while visiting the beautiful Chelsea Gardens. The bed and breakfast I chose was a really pretty Victorian Semi detached in Kensington. Rather than stay in impersonal hotels I prefer to choose bed and breakfasts as I have always had pleasant experiences of kind people who go that extra mile to make you feel welcome. I don't truly think you experience a country until you have stayed with someone locally, shared their home and in England, eaten the genuine English cooked breakfast. 

I'm really fussy when I'm planning a trip and when I find something I think will suit, I always read the reviews. A photo can easily look better than the real thing, images don't show the exact size of a room or the cleanliness, a picture may paint a thousand words but sometimes a few of those words might be missing. Of course when you are looking around for accommodation, cleanliness and comfort is paramount, this is where reviews truly come in handy. Put into Google search the name of the bed and breakfast you choose and add the word, "reviews" onto the end of the bed and breakfasts name. Please don't disregard a place for one bad review, check the date of the review, if it was because the accommodation was a little tired, its highly likely the owners have since re-decorated. Read a number of reviews and make sure they are current. I have never been disappointed with any of the places I've stayed since using reviews and I have travelled extensively throughout England and Europe.

The following are important points when seeking accommodation: 
  • Room size 
  • Bed size and comfort level 
  • Do they have washing facilities (most don't but some do allow you to catch up with your washing) 
  • Cost - don't always go for the cheapest, as with most accommodation you usually get what you pay for, however there can be a big difference between two places of a similar price. 
  • Shared bathroom or en suite? 
  • Shower or Bath? 
  • Is there a TV in the room? - Often missing from B&B's but doesn't bother me as I'm there to sight-see, not catch up with the latest Coronation Street :) 
  • Do they have a guest lounge or garden you can access. 
  • Is dinner available at an extra cost (sometimes it's nice to eat in rather than going out every night). 
  • Proximity to public transport 
  • Proximity to tourist highlights/shopping 
  • Check overall reviews. 
I have often thought of how nice it would be to own a bed and breakfast when I retire. Possibly a small place in the country with 2 guest rooms and a small studio/gallery for my paintings, what a wonderful way to keep busy and meet new people from new places. One can show off their cooking expertise and really go out of ones way to make sure guests experience great hospitality when visiting your country. 

If I had my own bed and breakfast I would design my bedrooms to be fresh and clean with special little touches such as a home made chocolate on the pillows on arrival, scented candles and gorgeous crisp white cotton sheeting. Sometimes rooms lack little extras such as a small table or desk and chair but if you can find space, I feel they are important. I don't think bed and breakfast proprietors have to spend a fortune to create a little style to their rooms. These days with so much inspiration on the Internet it is easy to take a style and re-create it without a huge expense. I am in the process of styling a couple of bedrooms in a house that is going up for sale. I will be sharing the two room makeovers next week and telling you how much, or rather, how little spent in creating what I think is 2 inviting rooms to sleep in.

If your looking for ideas for your bed and breakfast rooms or want a change to your own bedroom, I have found some inspiration to share. Note: these are not bed and breakfast interiors, simply inspiration for creating that perfect place, to rest your head.

And for a little sunshine and a touch of Morocco, mind you I would iron the pillows perfectly :)...

If you've always stayed at hotels, I would most definitely recommend experiencing a bed and breakfast stay your next trip away, especially if your visiting London where hotel prices are sky high. 

Have a great weekend.

Image Sources Via: 1|2|3|4|5|

Italian styles homes designs.

Italian styles homes designs.

Italian styles homes designs.

Italian styles homes designs.

Homes designs from Peru.

Homes designs from Peru.

Homes designs from Peru.

Homes designs from Peru.

Andy's Haircut...

He was not happy that I wanted a picture of his haircut for the blog. What a trooper!

Andy just got his haircut. Normally I wouldn't have given this a second thought, except for the conversation that went down before he got his hair cut:

Andy: Hey lets work a haircut for me into our weekend plans.

Me: Ok. I'm sure there's a good place around here.

Andy: Yeah, about that...

Me: What? You've never cared about where your hair was cut before.

Andy: Well all the places around here have signs in the windows for weaves. I have one rule, I won't go to a place that advertises weaves.

Me: What?! That's ridiculous.

Andy: Yeah, but I'm telling you, if they advertise doing weaves they will have no idea how to cut a white man's hair. Just saying.

Me: Ahh yes, we are in Oakland now. (Still, how ridiculous!)

So we ended up driving into Berkeley for Andy to get his hair cut. Oh my! He got a great hair cut though. I do love him in short hair. :)

Andy's hair exactly 1-year ago.
Some more of Andy's ridiculous hair 1-year ago.

Est. 2013

Just wanted to pop in this morning with our newest pillow cover. We thought these would make great wedding gifts. I'll be back tonight with the some photos of our dining room.

Have a blessed Thursday!

Month in Review {January}

As we sit here on the last day of the first month of the year, I was reflecting back on 1) where the days went, 2) how they went so fast, 3) how I actually stuck to my “evaluate” resolution (y’all, I went to Homegoods this week and bought NOTHING!), and 4) how I’ve done nothing but make Disney books for the last two weeks and thus have no new projects to share, I thought I’d highlight the top five of posts of January based on your page views!

Honey Does: DIY Flat Screen TV Cabinet

January 2013 029 copy


100 Days of School {Free Printable}

January 2013 387 copy


The Boys Bath Before & After

January 2013 434 copy


I Love {House Portraits}

January 2013 006 copy


Dixie Delights Disney World

September 2011 797 copy


Speaking of Disney World, this is the last day to get your personalized Disney Signature Books if you’re going in February.  I’ll definitely list them again for those going later in the year! 

November 2012 653 copy

I’d say the year is off to a pretty perfect start!


Say hello to the new kids in town and a little store biz!

Hi there. Such a busy week over here. Finally today, I am not busy dong something every hour and will have a few hours to just "chill" (though that really means catching up with my looong list of errands).
 I was so excited to finally get some of the tole pieces I had told you about a few weeks ago. Few things in life get me this excited at this stage of the game. Just cannot seem to totally squelch my thirst for this stuff....so having an online store is a great way to "have my cake and eat it too", you  know my motto "one for me and one for you"! This is an exceptional line of stunning handpainted tole pieces. I looooove this line. If you are like me and love chinoiserie, tole and all those kinds of things, then you will love this!

I only got in a handful of each item so these will not be going online right away, if you want to inquire about something, just email me. Click here.

Beautiful planter with scenery and you know how I feel about black.....
And how about this gorgeous green tole chinoiserie decorative "jar"....its a love for me!
This is what makes me happy!

And this stunning moss green lamp with beautiful handpainted metal shade...so beautiful!

Its all in the details.....

LOVE this color!!
And how pretty is this cache pot? Love the detailing and the scalloped design, so classic!

Same pot also available in a smaller tall planter.....could see orchids or moss orbs in these.

Love love love these beautiful planters, the detailing is soooooo pretty!
This is such an elegant wastebasket, and you know I love this with a white hydrangea in a blue and white dish!

Another beautiful classic wastepaper basket...so elegant in black!
These darling planters come in pairs, so pretty!
Moving onto porcelains.......I was so excited to get 8 more of this spectacular hexagon planter. I had gotten a bunch of these way back last spring, and sold out almost right away. I wasn't able to get more until recently and here they are!! In stock and ready to ship. Below is a picture of my own pair and an azalea topiary. Love these!
 And this oversized soup tureen is a beauty. Comes with the wooden stand love the foo dog lid.
 As pretty at Christmas time with amaryllis and pinecones
As it is in the spring with a beautiful white azalea topiary.......
 Love this gorgeous oversized orange and blue Imari bowl, comes with stand. Its a beauty!

My gorgeous napkin rings finally got the recognition they deserve! No longer under new additions they have earned their own little section on my online store. I will be continuously adding new styles to the shop, but for now most of the ones available can be seen online. They really are such special keepsakes, I am so happy to be carrying them. Click here to visit.

I have one tole tray for sale It is $115.00.  It says dark green but both my husband and I think its black or else its one heck of a dark green. You know the drill if you are interested, just email me!

My silver line continues to be one of my strongest categories. Proof that beautiful classic silver pieces are always in style I am excited to be getting about 6-7 new items that are just stupendous. Really gorgeous. And the long awaited flower bowl is finally coming! I am getting in a limited amount, 12 pieces of this very popular item! I know several were waiting on it.......

Lots more coming...will be sure to keep you posted! New wonderful loot will be arriving in the next few months including a new batch of dough bowls sometime in the next few weeks. If you want a dough bowl, definitely email me. They generally sell out within hours of my post. These are exceptional both in color, condition and size.

As always email me with any questions/inquires. Click here to email me. Thanks for stopping in to pay me a visit. Hope you have a fabulous day!