Jumat, 04 Maret 2016

New series!! Bloggers beautiful abodes.......

Please be sure to visit me at the guest post I did over at From my front porch to yours, a wonderful design blog. I took part in her series "How I got my style"......I think you will like it! Click here to visit me.

Hi there, and happy Monday to you! Did you have a nice weekend? We did......we attended the bar mitzvah of one of my best friends in the entire world.....it was a great time. Thanks sooo much for all of those amazing movie suggestions yesterday, I have an entire list of movies to rewatch (some great oldies) and a few new names...if you missed my movie post click here. My official spring diet started..ugh. The first few days are always the hardest but I am determined and with summer only a few months away....that's the best motivator of all! I  am soooo excited to be here today with a brand new series! Over the next month or two I will be featuring various bloggers and their homes in "Bloggers beautiful abodes". I cannot even begin to tell you just how talented some of my blogging friends are. They blow me away. Say hello to the talented  

Stacy of South Shore Decorating

who will kick off this series........Stacy, a previous lawyer turned designer, is based in the Boston area. She makes it all look mighty easy but we all know that is not the case and you've "either got it or you don't" and Stacy clearly has the 'it" factor. Stacy is an interior designer (its very obvious) and her home is right out of a magazine, every single room being picture perfect.  Be sure to have your pen and paper ready, this post is chock full of amazing advice and tips from someone who knows.  So enough of me, please say hello to Stacy....


Thank you SO much Tina for having me here today!  I am honored and thrilled to talk to your readers about my design style.

1. How long have you been in your present home?  Is this it for the long haul? Anything you would care to change if you could?

We have lived here for 10 years - I can't believe it! This is the longest we have ever lived anywhere.  When we were in graduate school, we moved every single year, from apartment to apartment.  Six moves in 6 years. It drove my husband crazy, but I always wanted to experiment with a new space, and it's so hard when you are renting, so the only option was to move.  I am very glad to be settled now, though, and don't think we'll move at least until our kids are out of college (which will be in 14 years).  I don't know for sure if we'll move then, but I can envision it for sure.  I love our house now, though, so maybe not.  The main thing I would change about this house if I could is that I would make all of the ceilings 11 or 12 feet instead of the standard 8 that we have. It looks and feels so much bigger with the high ceilings. Oh, and a mudroom - I definitely need a mudroom, but to add one now would basically require us to knock down the garage and move it, and then you have to move the driveway, so it's safe to say that's not happening.

I love the backyard in the summertime
2. If you could only live in two rooms of your house, which two would be the ones?

Oh good an easy one - bedroom and family room.  I do love my kitchen, but I wouldn't choose it because you can't really snuggle up with family, a book, or watch a movie in it.  So, the family room for that. And the master bedroom of course because I love it, it's huge, my kids play in there, we watch tv before bed with them in there, and I absolutely adore my feather bed!
My bedroom
My family room
3. How would you describe your decorating style?

Transitional. The older I get the more modern I get, but I will never be truly modern or contemporary. The coldness of that style bothers me, me I do love some of the pieces enough to incorporate them in almost every room. Like acrylic furniture, for example - I have three ghost chairs scattered about, and I love them (even thought my husband thinks they are the weirdest thing ever).  So, while traditional is timeless, gorgeous, and totally appealing to me, I have to add a bit of modern to it, so I'd say I'm transitional all the way.

One of my acrylic chairs, in the corner
  4. Do you have a favorite color scheme? What is it?

YES! Dark floors, lots of white, some black, and then pops of color.  In my case, those pops tend to be bright green, blue, or hot pink.  Another thing that I've noticed is that the older I get the more white I want. It's hard with kids, but it really is the best base for my style.  I've almost painted my entire first floor white - one more room and I'm there.  I assume one day the urge will overtake me and I'll do it. I'll let you know!

My mostly white kitchen
5. Favorite room of your house and why?

I think the Master Bedroom, for the reasons I already wrote about.  But honestly, also because I really love my sleep. I mean REALLY (see my unusual attachment to my featherbed, above).

My bedroom

6. Best two tips you can give to anyone looking to tackle the decorating of their own home? Best two things to NOT do?

Ok, let me start with what TO do: It has been said a million times before, but it's true. Buy the best you can afford.  I have bought cheaper than I should have so many times, and it is almost always a mistake.  Now, an inexpensive piece is fine, as long as it is well made.  And I'm all for bargain hunting.  But I think there is a lot of general truth to "you get what you pay for."  And if you buy something that's cheap because it's cheaply made, it's a mistake.  Especially on seating, like sofas and chairs. They just won't last.  My other main thing that I tell people, and truly believe, is that you should do what YOU like, not what others like, or what your decorator tells you (unless you like it of course).  If I hear ANY hesitation from a client about an idea, I back of immediately, and never, ever try to convince them.  Because just because I think something will look great, that really just means it will look great to ME. And it has to look great you YOU or you won't be happy.  So my number one rule is do what you like.  I had one client who really wanted family photo canvases on her living room walls.  She had read that you're "not supposed to" do this, and that photos should only be in bedrooms, etc.  We DID end up putting the photos in the living room, and she was really happy.  And in my opinion, that is all that matters.  As far as what NOT to do, I have to say I don't have any rules about that.  I mean, I just told you that you should do what you like, so I'd be a hypocrite to tell you what not to do, right?  So I'll just say, as far as "don'ts," DON'T do anything you don't love - you'll regret it and end up changing it.
Out dining room

7. What do you think are the most important features for a kitchen?

Well, putting aside the utilitarian concerns (yes, I am pretty much a form over function type, especially in the kitchen, as I'm not the greatest cook), I like it to sparkle.  So for me, it means elegant lighting, crystal, and stainless appliances.  Also, white cabinets.  I just can't go back.  I used to have cherry, and they were beautiful, but now that I've had white I know I'll never have anything else (except I COULD see myself painting them black, but that's another story).   

My white kitchen
Mirrored backsplash to add sparkle

8. How do you like to dress up a cocktail table and console in a living room?

Difficultly, and over time.  This is not the easiest thing for me.  I don't know why, but I sometimes struggle with vignettes. I can make a beautiful one, but then it looks too cluttered when I step back and view it in the room (probably because I use a lot of furniture in most rooms, and pattern, so I have to be careful not to go overboard).  So, I usually make the vignette with books or magazines I love, candles, art, etc., but then subtract and subtract until it looks right.  My coffee tables are in a place where I like them, but I've been working on my bookcases for 10 years.  No lie. 

My favorite vignette
A simple vignette

9. Any advice on the subject of lighting?

Yes! I went into a house for sale recently that had just had a $50,000 lighting upgrade. It reinforced what I already knew - lighting is SO important.  My builder only put recessed lighting in the kitchen, so I've slowly added more to every room that didn't already have them, and what a difference it makes.  Also, don't listen to electricians who have not been taught lighting design.  I've had so many, how should I say this, "disagreements" with electricians who want to put the recessed lights geometrically in the center of the room. NO! They should actually be above what you want to highlight, like the curtains, mirrors, furniture, etc.  So put them close to the wall (12-15"), even though the electrician most likely won't want to.  It looks so much better when they are strategically placed over items you want to highlight, around the walls, rather then in the center of the room (especially if you already have a chandelier for general lighting).

Next on the list for recessed lighting
10. Have a favorite paint color? Do tell!

For whites, which can be so hard, I always use Ben Moore Cloud White.  It's soft and warm, but not dingy, and not too white.  For other colors, I agree with so many others who say that Revere Pewter is the best paint color ever made.  It works with just about everything, and can be either "cool" or "warm" depending on the rest of the room.  I have yet to see it not work in a room.  Also, I always use Flat paint (NOT washable flat, which does have a sheen, despite what they tell you in the paint store).  The truly flat paint has so much more depth and dimension, and is so much more interesting, no matter the brand or the color.

This room is painted in Cloud White
11. What are a couple of really simple inexpensive things you can do in your home to make it feel "homey" and inviting?

Throw pillows.  The more the better.  Now, husbands don't always agree, but it is a must, in my opinion.  And a fire in the fireplace.  Oh, and I like the tables to be set at all times.  y friends make fun of me, but I think it seems more inviting to have it set, like we are about to sit down for a home cooked meal.

Our kitchen table

12. Fill in the blank- If money was no object, the very first thing I would buy for my home would be............. 

Oh, don't get me started -  there are so many.   I think first, raise the ceilings, second, make a mudroom and/or bigger foyer, third, do a really sophisticated lighting design.
Toddler room
Big girl room
Thank you again, Tina. It was a thrill to be here!


Stacy, the pleasure was all mine! I never get tired of seeing your beautiful home...your talent, taste and eye really are something to behold and share. Keep up the great work.  If you want more Stacy, then by all means hop on over to her beautiful blog, South Shore Design.....her blog is one of my daily stops and it never ever disappoints!  She is always doing something new, and when she comes up with an idea, this girl means action, trust me. She is one of the most talented do it yourselfers I know...take a look at these amazing monogrammed lampshades she did! Click here for more Stacy!

And this painted rug, it was brown and she wanted it to be black......I mean seriously Stacy what can't you do?????

A big thank you Stacy for sharing all your knowledge, expertise and opening up your incredible home  and to everyone for stopping in! Stacy has also generously decided to sponsor an amazing giveaway, click over to her blog for details and to discover one heck of a gorgeous blog. Click here.

Don't forget to visit my for my guest post, how I got my style over at FROM MY FRONT PORCH TO YOURS. Click here to visit. See you over there!


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