Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Banana Leaf Photography - DIY Artwork

Over the past few years, I have been eyeing the large scale photography of artists such as Gray Malin, Kevin Russ, Thom Filicia, and Judith Gigliotti, via One Kings Lane.  I have been thinking of ordering something, or doing my own DIY version for our condo in Florida, but I haven't pulled the trigger until TODAY, just 2 days before departure (I should be packing, not wasting time on this!) I have debated various beach, ocean, and water scenes, but I finally settled on the iconic banana leaf print.  The condo is currently designed in blues and whites, and I thought a pop of kelly green would be fun over our sofa in the main room.  Also, this lush green print will likely feel right at home in tropical Florida.

If you have any interest in design or fashion, I am sure you are well aware that this classic print has made a major resurgence over the past few years, showing up on everything from iPhone cases to bikinis to settees, to its most familiar form, wallpaper.  It conjures up vintage images from the Beverly Hills Hotel, The Greenbrier, etc.  After debating various sources, I settled on purchasing the digital photos from Sarah M. Dorsey and will have them printed and framed via Snapbox according to her blog,  Thank you, Sarah, for these awesome photos!

Attached below are several inspiration photos...Enjoy and happy spring break everyone!!

Sarah M. Dorsey Designs
Sarah M. Dorsey Photo via Etsy

Sarah M. Dorsey Photo via Etsy
Lila and Lola

Adore Home Magazine


Beverly Hills Hotel Cabana Spa


CocoKelley via Domaine Magazine- LOVE this EXTRA-LARGE SCALE!!!

Martinique Wallpaper via

Nate Berkus via Cotedetexas

Wallpaper by Dorothy Draper via Society Social

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Large Brass Industrial Pendants for the Kitchen

I recently spotted a FABULOUS kitchen on Instagram designed by Nashville Designers, Paper & Pencil Company.  It also happens to be the Southern Living Kitchen of the Year, 2016! I absolutely LOVE the drama and statement of a large-scale kitchen pendant.  Particularly, when you have the rest of the kitchen designed in a traditional way, these lend a more modern twist to a space. These hand-rubbed brass Large Eugene Pendants from Circa Lighting would be so fun over a kitchen island.  I also love an extra large lantern, as these same designers used in their own kitchen (photos below).  I have considered adding a couple pendants over our kitchen peninsula as it would provide some extra task lighting, so I am thinking about these two options....

Southern Living Kitchen of the Year 2016
Circa Lighting Eugene Pendants in this kitchen designed by Pencil & Paper
(photography by Leslee Mitchell)

Southern Living Kitchen of the Year 2016
Circa Lighting Eugene Pendants in this kitchen designed by Pencil & Paper
(photography by Leslee Mitchell)

Southern Living Kitchen of the Year 2016
Circa Lighting Eugene Pendants in this kitchen designed by Pencil & Paper
(photography by Leslee Mitchell)

Southern Living Kitchen of the Year 2016
Circa Lighting Eugene Pendants in this kitchen designed by Pencil & Paper
(photography by Leslee Mitchell)

Circa Lighting Eugene Pendants in this kitchen designed by Amy Sklar

Santa Barbara Designer Showhouse, Kitchen designed by Mary McDonald, Industrial Pendants

Large Country Industrial Pendants from Circa Lighting in this Kitchen via Life in Grace Blog

Large Country Industrial Pendants from Circa Lighting in this Kitchen via Life in Grace Blog
Brass Industrial Pendant (designer unknown) via House & Home

Industrial Pendants in private residence at St. Regis Hotel at Monarch Beach via HGTV

Kitchen designed by Tobi Fairley

Large Brass Industrial Pendants via Traditional Home via ThingsThatInspire Blog
Circa Lighting Eugene Pendant via

LOVE these charcoal and brass pendants in this kitchen by designer Matthew Baran (Valley Street home), via HGTV

William Sonoma Home Emmett Pendant
Wanted to include these showstoppers in Diane Keaton's home (via Architectural Digest)....Designer Stephen Shadley came up with the idea to hang lampshades upside down, "it works well, directing light down and also giving off great indirect light." 

LOVE these large scale brass lanterns in the kitchen of
Pencil & Paper Designers, Gen and Ben Sohr, via via One Kings Lane
Horchow Regina Lantern Pendants
Regina Pendant

Matthew Quinn Design
Darlana Lanterns via Life in Grace Blog

Darlana Medium Lantern (source unknown)
Martha Stewart Living Magazine (Jan) 2015
Although this photo does not feature pendant lighting, I LOVE the color scheme of grey, brass, wood floor, subway tile, etc.

This is a very popular often-pinned kitchen photo of Alison Cayne's beautfiul space...Again, although this does not feature pendants, I LOVE the overall color scheme of blacks, greys, whites and the juxtaposition of various industrial v fancy textures and finishes.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Emerald Green Chairs - Downton Abbey Finale Favorite!

We finally got around to watching the grand finale of Downton Abbey!  I am so sad this show has come to an end.  My husband and I have loved watching this over the years and we will miss it so much!  I have blogged about various aspects of the show, from the fascinating historical fiction to the rich character development to the delicious setting, scenery, costumes, and interiors.  This show has been a design lover's dream!

Prior Downton Abbey posts....

Although the finale was certainly all about happy endings, I thought it was a bit rushed in its quest to tie up EVERY SINGLE POSSIBLE loose end.  It was almost too squeaky clean.  Of course, I am happy Lady Edith reunited with her prince charming, Anna finally gave birth to her sweet baby boy, Mary shared the exciting news of expecting a baby with new hubbie, Talbot, and even Thomas (despite viewers' most often dislike) got his own happy ending as the new butler once Carson semi-retires.

Yet, my favorite aspect of the show is the appearance of that fabulous KELLY GREEN dining room at Brancaster Castle, Lady Edith's new home...Ever since I spotted Grant K. Gibson's stunning dining room from the 2011 San Francisco Decorator Showcase (see photo below), I have been longing for kelly green.  I first brought this bold green into our previous home via our master bedroom walls.  It was a MAJOR project to find the right shade of green, and then of course, we moved.  Since then, I have been wanting to re-introduce green into our new home, but I haven't been able to pull the trigger.  I've debated between walls, a couch, and now, dining chairs.  I was REALLY tempted to purchase these emerald green dining chairs from Cost Plus World Market, but I feared they lean a bit too blue.  Yet, I really want a padded seat and an easy-to-clean fabric (for our kitchen), so I settled on a different leather chair from World Market in a neutral 'cognac' color, that will have to do for now.

Below are a few inspiration photos of dining rooms with fun green chairs....One of these days, perhaps!

Brancaster Castle - Downton Abbey Season Finale

Brancaster Castle - Downton Abbey Season Finale

Grant K. Gibson's San Francisco Decorator Showcase

Anne Hepfer Designs

Evars and Anderson

J. Wheeler Designs

Ben Pentreath Interiors

Kate Spade Worthington Chair

Cost Plus World Market Chairs
A World Market Reviewer actually posted a photo of her dining room with these chairs...not bad for the price!!

Cost Plus World Market - Sophia Chair in Cognac
This is what I ended up picking for our kitchen, not a bad price at $69 each on sale this week!
(I didn't want to invest in anything too nice since my little ones tend to give our furniture plenty of wear and tear!)

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

2016 Oscars Red Carpet Review....

This year, despite my best intentions, I did NOT watch a single movie nominated for best picture.  Our recent movie watching has been limited to Sunday nights with the kids: Hoosiers, Miracle, Glory Road, Seabiscuit, you get the idea.  We are sports-movie-fanatics around our house as of late.  So, unfortunately, I did not watch the full Academy Awards with the suspense over who would win best picture, as in prior years.  

Nevertheless, I always enjoy a good red carpet review!  I have to say, I did not LOVE a ton of the dresses this year.  Some of the actresses with consistently solid fashion choices were disappointing for me, including Reese Witherspoon, Jennifer Garner, Kate Winslet, and Julianne Moore.  Also, no matter how fabulous the color or fabric may be, call me old-fashioned, but I simply cannot get on board with the asymmetrical hem (Alicia Vikander), excessive cleavage (Olivia Wilde, Charlize Theron), OR peek-a-boo transparency (Gwen Stefani, we know you are gorgeous w a rockin' bod, but you could leave a little more to the imagination!) 

In fact, to collect a Top 10 list, I had to go beyond the actual Oscars Red Carpet and dip into the Vanity Fair after-party pics.  

So, here goes my Top 10:

Cate Blanchett in Armani Prive - As usual, Cate knocks it out of the park in this
gorgeous pale aqua (please don't call it seafoam) feather-and-beaded-embellished-confection...
By far, my favorite gown of the evening.

Cate Blanchett in Armani Prive - How amazing is the back of this gown!

Margot Robbie in Tom Ford - Loved the gold statuesque silhouette of Margot's snakeskin gown...So flattering and stunning on her!  I also loved her natural relaxed hairstyle.  The deep v-neck is far more tasteful than some of the other u-shaped necklines, and is balanced by the long sleeves and overall coverage in the remainder of the dress.

Olivia Munn in Stella McCartney - I absolutely LOVE the chic simplicity of this bold orange one-shoulder gown.  Though not as embellished as your typical Oscars dress, it is a breath of fresh air in its clean lines and fun color.

Kate Bosworth in Ralph & Russo - I believe this was at the Vanity Fair after party, but I HAD TO INCLUDE this knockout of a dress. The beautiful full texture along the neckline and soft lilac color are both gorgeous on her!

Kate Bosworth in Ralph & Russo

Louise Roe in Christian Siriano - I am not so familiar with this actress, but I loved the unique, light, airy, and graceful flow of this gown.  I always appreciate when a designer includes an interesting detail such as this, with an otherwise boring strapless gown. The color is also a pretty compliment to her fair skin and brown hair.

Mindy Kaling in Elizabeth Kennedy - Have you read any of her books? Although I have not seen her as much on TV, I absolutely LOVE her writing. Hilarious. Real. Thoughtful....did I say HILARIOUS!?  I thought this black and cobalt gown was just beautiful on her.  So elegant and classic but with a modern, color-blocking twist.  Everything from her hair, to her makeup, to her accessories were perfect on her!

Naomi-Watts in Armani Prive - Although I did not LOVE the rainbow effect of the blue-indigo-violet gradation of color, the overall jewel tones, silhouette, and graphic beaded texture were stunning on her.  

Rachel McAdams in August Getty Atelier - As mentioned above, you know I am not a big fan of excessive showing of the skin. However, somehow Rachel McAdams pulls this one off WELL.  I think it comes down to balance. If you are going to have a plunging front or back, keep it simple and balance with rest with coverage.  Her gown accomplishes this with the high neck in front, and the deep emerald color is beautiful on her!

Selena Gomez in Louis Vuitton at the Vanity Fair after party - I am not too familiar with this young pop artist, but she looks adorable in this killer silver sequin disco ball of a dress. 

Selena Gomez in Louis Vuitton

Elizabeth Banks in Ralph & Russo at the Vanity Fair after party...Perhaps more bridal than Oscars!  I still love the beautiful lace top, elegant cape, and ivory color.  So pretty on her!

What were your favorites?  It is always fun to dish over the 'best' and 'worst' dressed on the Oscars red carpet! xoxo