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Friday
May132016

friday five

This has been a mighty long week; the hubby worked reverse schedule until the wee hours of the morning every day, so baby girl and I had to find things to do outside of the house in the mornings so he could get some sleep and for some reason, this was the week my little angel decided to have one emotional meltdown after another.  Is it a full moon soon or what?  I am in dire need of some sleep and a strong cocktail, but since I've still got about 16 weeks to go until I can sip the latter, I'll settle for some time spent by the pool this weekend, instead! Here are my Friday Five for this week; I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

My grocery store-bought sunflowers are still going strong a week and a half later, adding a bit of sun to a couple rainy, gloomy days this week:

There's nothing better than heading into the weekend with a clean house, even if it will only last less than an hour before I see furballs and toys everywhere.....

If you guys follow me on Instagram (@bungalowblue) you might have seen that my dear hubba hubba started making me a set of Versailles planters for Mother's Day.  They still need round ball finials at the top corners, but he did an AMAZING job on them!  We made a bit of a rookie mistake, however, by going over the measurements in the driveway and not the front porch, so when he put the first one by the front door, I choked a little at just how big they were!  They've grown on me since and now I'm on a quest for the biggest ferns I can find.  A full post on how he made them is coming soon!

I ordered a copy of Hamptons Entertaining and DEVOURED each and every page of gorgeous table settings, outdoor party setups and mouth watering menu plan and recipe!  Not only is this a beautiful book, but it's also chock full of great ideas for entertaining at home - both indoors and out - this spring and summer!

I caught Lydia sneaking lilies out of a vase in the living room the other day and running off to her room with them, so I decided to start to pick up a little bunch for her whenever I got some for myself.  They make her so happy, how could I not?

Wednesday
May112016

diy: "vintage" sign

A few weeks back, I posted a shot of a vintage-inspired sign I made for my aunt and I got so many emails about it, I thought a post was in order!  This was so much quicker and easier than I expected, which truly is ideal for someone with a toddler who wants to do everything Momma is doing, so if you're considering making one, I highly recommend (mostly because you can get it done in less than two nap times!)

Here is what you'll need:

-Plywood (I bought a piece of white pine from Lowe's that was 1.5 inches thick and 10 inches wide and had them cut it to five feet).

-Black latex paint

-Tracing paper and a sharp pencil

-White latex paint

-100 grit sand paper

First things first, I beat the crap out of the wood with anything I could quickly find - a hammer, a chisel (for the edges and corners), a flathead screwdriver and a wire with extra large bolts that I keep handy for distressing wood. 

Next, I slapped on some black paint.  I mixed a little water in with it so it wouldn't be too thick and also so it would be easier to sand down and look "distressed" at the end.  I applied two coats, letting each coat dry in between.

I used Word for my letters; nothing fancy, just Times New Roman in 100 size font.  I held tracing paper up to my computer screen, lightly tracing the letters and then, using a sharp pencil, laid the paper on top of my sign and traced again, leaving a pencil mark on the wood.  I used the stiffest, skinniest paint brush I could find (which happened to be one of the cheapos in a paint set of Lydia's!) for the outline of the letters and then filled it in with a thicker brush. I did three light coats of white paint, again letting each coat dry in between and then finally sanding the whole thing - letters and all - rubbing off the paint on the edges and scraping some off the letters, until I was satisfied. 

Here is a closeup of how it looked once I was done:

Easy peasy! Happy Hump Day!

Tuesday
May102016

summer vibes

Just when I finally decide to take the plunge and repaint my black exterior doors and shutters NAVY BLUE, I end up falling in love with black and white all over again for summer.  You just can't beat the combination for summer, especially when paired with lots of seagrass, bamboo and fresh greenery.  Here are a few pretties that are heavy on my radar lately:

Picnic basket / Bamboo flatware set / Gordian weave ebony pillow / Avalon daybed / Rope Bottle Opener / Book / Topiary / Anchor door knocker / Seagrass tray / Striped cocktail tray

How chic is this black and white striped picnic basket from Mark and Graham?!  I'd be the envy of every mother at the park with this beauty!

This 20-piece bamboo-style flatware service from Horchow is perfect for outdoor entertaining and you can't beat the price for four place settings!!

This embroidered knot pillow by etsy favorite Arianna Belle is just the right nautical touch without going overboard.  LOVE.

The Avalon daybed from Serena and Lily is the stuff that summer daydreams are made of.  Literally.

A fabulous brass rope bottle opener from my favorite online shop, High Street Market, adds elegance to any bar, picnic or barbeque!

Hamptons Entertaining is seriously the most inspirational tome for spring and summer get togethers.  It's seriously my new favorite!

I can never get enough myrtle topiary (even though they don't last very long at my house).

A brass anchor door knocker makes for quite a fabulous first impression to your home.

You can never have too many seagrass serving trays for coraling drinks, appetizers or even condiments. 

This black and white canopy striped cocktail tray with gold detailing takes your summer barbeque to a  WHOLE. NEW. LEVEL.

What are you loving for summer?

Monday
May092016

8 things I can always score at HomeGoods + TJMaxx

Stops into HomeGoods and TJMaxx used to always be hit or miss for me.  While there are always some trendy gems to be found, it was usually my luck that if I went in looking for something in particular, I would come out empty-handed.  Over the last few years, though, I've found that there are actually quite a few things both TJMaxx and HomeGoods seem to always have in stock that, for me, are diamonds in the rough and will never go out of style.  Here are eight things I buy over and over again and am always on the lookout for, for myself as well as clients:

Blue and white ginger jars + white platters.  Every one of my blue and white beauties has come from HomeGoods, including a ginormous one that sits on a hutch in my dining room that I scored for less than $40! Simple white platters in all shapes and sizes are another favorite.  I keep a bunch on hand and mix them in with my mother's ironstone platters on my hutch to use whenever we have company.  That way I don't worry about breaking or chipping one of my good ones.  They're always priced so well (I don't think I've spent more than $12 for one) you can amass quite a collection!

Chunks of coral + glass hurricanes in different sizes.  I'll throw elbows for chunks of lookalike resin pieces; they add texture and interest to shelves, mantles, coffee tables and stacks of books and are a great way to bring a bit of the beach home.  Another versatile favorite are simple glass hurricanes.  They're inexpensive and they work great as vases, candle holders, corraling office supplies, you name it.  I especially love those with thicker bottoms (they give the illusion of being more expensive) and the little ones look amazing grouped down a table with unscented white votives as a centerpiece!

Woven trays.  I use them to corral my cooking oils in the kitchen, lotions and potions in the bath, seasonal displays on my breakfast table and books and decorative objects on coffee tables. 

White pitchers.  These look fabulous on their own, grouped together or filled with flowers and it's always helpful to have a few extras on hand when hosting dinner, luncheons or baby showers!

Baskets.  I've scored some oversize woven baskets that are dead ringers for those you'd find at Pottery Barn or Wisteria for a quarter of the price!  I always tell clients and friends to look at HomeGoods first before spending big bucks for them elsewhere.  Now that I have a toddler, they're even more valuable for hiding toys, books and stuffed animals from grown up spaces, too!

Silver picture frames.  Memories look even more special in silver frames.  A grouping can make as dramatic an impact as a few placed on their own.  I'm loving the modern, thin frames that are popular now, so I'm always sure to pick them up whenever I see them.

What are some things you look for?

Monday
May022016

t.s. harris

When it comes to art, I always find myself naturally gravitating toward pieces that remind me of the sea.  So, it's no surprise I'm completely obsessed with T. S. Harris' whimsical, colorful take on summer days spent by the water and the old-school, 40's vibe of each of her pieces.  One Kings Lane has an amazing selection of some of her pieces right now, in different sizes and at amazing price points!  I'm quite partial to "Surfing" but I would have such a hard time trying to pick just one, I love them all so much!  Here are a few of my favorites:

Hope you're all off to a great start this week!