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Entries in Interior Design (221)

Thursday
Dec212017

my house at christmas

As I write this, there are only four more sleeps until Christmas, so I thought I'd take a break from all the wrapping and toy assembling (there is SO much to put together!) to post a few snaps from around our house this year at Christmas!  I like to keep my Christmas decorations like the rest of the decor in my house: super simple.  Fresh white pine garland on my entry table, my mantle and the hutch in the eating area, a rosemary topiary or two in the kitchen, clementines in my favorite oversize clam shell bowl and, of course, lots of white twinkle lights are my go-to staples every year and go a long way in making the house feel so cozy and smell amazing.  This year, we ended up going with a 9 foot tree, which, I will say, I absolutely love, but the bottom half is sans ornaments, thanks to a 15 month old bear who tries to scale it every chance he gets (I'm hoping he outgrows this by next year!)  My absolute favorite Christmas decoration is the pair of nutcrackers on the table in my foyer.  They were in my house growing up and when I got married, my mother gave them to me.  I don't remember a single Christmas when they weren't on our mantle as kids, so it makes it even more special for me to carry on the tradition of having them out for my children. 

Hope you are all enjoying these last few days of the most magical time of the year!

Thursday
Jun082017

how to clean out your candles

I'm such a sucker for a beautifully scented candle and bonus points for one that looks pretty enough to use again after you've burned through it!  (After all, isn't that the only incentive to fork over the big bucks for Diptyque - so you can stick Q-tips and fresh blooms in them???) 

Park Hill Candles are some of my favorites for this reason; they aren't too pricey, they smell amazing and the wicker and glass they come in make for gorgeous little vases once I've burned through the candles!

I'm probably the last person on the planet to figure out how to get the residual wax out of the bottom of the candle, but I'm going to post it anyway just in case there are still a few of you who, like me, have tried busting it out with a butter knife or freezing it, etc.  It's super easy and takes no time at all.  Here's how I did it:

-Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

-Spread aluminum foil over a baking sheet and fold the edges up to prevent wax getting on the sheet.

-Place the candle upside down on the foil and bake for 5-7 minutes.  Watch carefully for the wick to fall out and take the whole thing out of the oven as soon as it does so it doesn't burn (trust me, you're kitchen will fill with smoke)

-Let it cool (I took mine outside on the deck) and then wash it out with soap and water and you're good to go!

How amazing are these "mermaid" alstromeria, by the way?  They've moved around the house more than I have the last three weeks, but they're the best five bucks I've ever spent on blooms, that's for sure!

Tuesday
Jun062017

a 19th century farmhouse at the beach

I can't think of a better way to hop back on the blogging bandwagon than to share an unbelievable 19th century farmhouse in Bridgehampton by design genius Steven Gambrel, which was featured in the latest Elle!  I'm obsessed with everything and anything Gambrel does and if there's anyone still out there visiting the blog anymore, I would imagine you're just as smitten as I am with the gorgeous homes he designs.  His signature color palette of pale blues and grays, textured walls and subtle nautical accents reign supreme in this stunner and are a beautiful backdrop to incredible architectural details that are true to the period of the home.  It's not easy to make a new home (or addition) look like it was built a hundred years ago but Gambrel does it with panache, while still mixing in modern art and furnishings to keep it fun and fresh.  Hanging lanterns, a great mix of patterns and textures, painted mouldings and cerused oak flooring are favorite design elements that Gambrel uses time and time again to create the feel of a sea captain's cottage without being kitschy and the result is always absolutely stunning - casual but super chic!

Tuesday
Apr252017

on my radar: goodies for summer

We just got back from a week at the beach and now, aside from lamenting over the decade we lived right next to the water, I'm so beyond ready for summer!  I definitely don't believe you need to live by the water in order to reflect one's love of the sea in your home - especially if you pick elegant furnishings and accessories that are anything but kitschy, so I've rounded up a bunch of goodies I'm loving lately that definitely fit that bill!  From a natural bistro counter stool that gives me heart palpitations and the extra large version of the Atlantis clam shell I already have (this one is a MONSTER!) to gold leafed chain book ends that I'm completely OBSESSED with and a white lacquer and raffia coffee table that is bananas, any of these picks would bring a bit of a beach vibe to any style decor:

Riviera Counter Stool in Natural / Gold leaf chain link book ends / Extra large Atlantis clam shell /

Marble wine holder / Rattan ice bucket / Gold bamboo mirror / Bone tray / Brass knot bottle opener /

Link pitcher / Shell cheese knives / Cabot square coffee table

What are you loving lately for warmer months??

Wednesday
Apr122017

new lantern lighting for my kitchen

 

This post is a LONG time coming - and not just because it's been forever since I've blogged!  It's taken me seven years to make up my mind on a chandelier for my breakfast nook and then find one I won't get tired of as soon as it's installed, but I'm excited to say I've found the perfect, linear, oversize lantern and I'm OBSESSED!  If you guys have been reading along here for a while you know I've had my heart set on finding an oversized lantern light for over my breakfast table but the search has been ridiculous because everything I found was either dwarfed by my vaulted ceilings or cost a couple month's worth of mortgage payments.  Seriously...it's much harder than you might think to find a ginormous lantern chandelier for less than a down payment on a car!

I had seen the Sheffield 8-light lantern chandelier by Ballard Designs before but it wasn't until a few weeks ago when another catalogue landed in my mailbox that I thought it just might work in my space.  It was also on major sale so I bit the bullet and ordered it and you know what?  I LOVE IT!  It's just what the space needed; it's the perfect size, the finish is beautiful and the guy who installed it said he was amazed at the quality. 

The only thing I will say I wasn't crazy about was the fake wax drip candle sleeves (sorry, Ballard), but that was a quick and easy fix.  I ordered a pack of plain white plastic sleeves from Amazon and gave them a few light coats of Rustoleum Oil Rubbed Bronze spray paint, which matches the finish so perfectly.  This is a great way to modernize a chandelier on the cheap!

I finally feel like this space is finished, which is really saying a lot because I've constantly been changing things up to compensate for the fact that I had the wrong size lighting in here for so long. It adds just the right amount of drama and the prettiest, softest light (I used 15 watt bulbs).  I highly, highly recommend this fixture if you're looking for an oversize lantern light.  Thank you, Ballard...from the bottom of my oversize lantern loving, indecisive heart, thank you!