Monday, May 6, 2013

Crazy Over the Cabana Stripe...and Cleveland Summers

All winter long, I have been daydreaming about the seemingly untouchable days of summer, the warm breeze coming off the lake, and as ridiculous as this may and white cabana stripe pillows for our front porch.  After Hurricane Sandy displaced several of our front porch pillows from last fall, we are currently short a few.  As such, I decided my next round should be the fun, crisp, classic, dynamic black and white cabana stripe.  (As a side note, you can find them reasonably priced via There is just something so pleasantly graphic, almost hypnotic about the bold stripe.  AND, I particularly love the pairing of wide black and white stripes with pops of bold color, including (but not limited to) grass (think boxwood) green, turquoise, hot pink, red, or daffodil yellow.  Low and behold, I received the Serena and Lily catalog today and what is featured on the front? Black and white cabana stripes!

My TOP 10 FAV black and white cabana stripe inspiration pics are as follows:

I previously did another post about bold stripes...

With so much inspiration, I decided to do my own version of the horizontal stripe in our master bedroom via West Elm navy and white shower curtains, re-purposed as window panels (economical tip I learned while writing the 'silly-over-stripes' blog post...)  I like the navy and white combo against our grass green walls.

I gathered additional inspiration pics below from various sources, mainly Pinterest boards..

In addition to the summer-inducing, bold cabana stripe, I am crazy about Cleveland summers....After living in cities in both northern (Chicago, Boston, Cleveland) and southern (Charlotte, Atlanta) climates, I have concluded that Northerners have a unique passion for the summer season.  Don't get me wrong; Southerners certainly know how to celebrate with their own warm-weather flair for festivities (Kentucky Derby), cuisine (yummy Mexican restaurants are everywhere), fashion, and decor.  Yet, perhaps it is because the northern summers are so short and therapeutic after the endless cold, snowy winter months, the Northerners essentially LIVE for this season.

In Chicago, the entire city comes alive during the summer months...outdoor patios, Cubs games, concerts in the park, running/biking/roller-blading (my fav) along the lake.  People literally cannot get enough.  I am surprised people are not camping out, sleeping in the streets, just to squeeze in a few more hours of outdoor air.

With respect to Boston, unfortunately, we lived there only during the fall/winter months.  Yet, I have vacationed there in the summer, and the same passion was on display as people were happily enjoying their strolls through the quaint cobblestone streets, farmers markets, lobster shacks, fishing harbors, quiet beaches, and ice cream stands.

Later, as we moved to Cleveland and started our house hunt, I was shocked at how extensive people invested in their outdoor spaces, particularly since the summers were so short and sweet.  Beautiful outdoor kitchens, fireplaces, and stone patios embellished quaint older homes.  It wasn't until we settled in Rocky River, a little 'village-esque' town along the shores of Lake Erie, that I truly understood why.  The summers here are scenic, sunny, warm-yet-mild, with almost zero humidity.  They are packed with outdoor fun...At the end of the day, as I sit on our front porch, I watch countless children passing by on bikes/skate-boards, elderly couples strolling by, hundreds of runners, bikers, and strollers...Weekends involve boating, skiing, fishing on the lake...There are concerts in the park, wine festivals, beautiful Metroparks, blueberry picking, sea-glass hunting along the endless beaches...I could go on and on...

Cheers to a happy and healthy summer and a celebration of the cabana stripe...Thank you, Cleveland!

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