Urban finds

May 5, 2008

I want one of these Urban Outfitter’s chairs for my new Dining Room!!!


Spring Cure 08

May 4, 2008

The Spring Cure is officially over. I’ve learned a lot of things from this cure. I’ve learned how much happier I am in a more organized space. I’ve learned how much impact a strong pop of color can make. I’ve learned that I can’t do everything at once. I’ve learned that decluttering NEVER ends.

When I started this cure I thought that I would have everything done by week 8. Eight weeks is a long time! Well I don’t. I’ve cured my dining room, kitchen, hallway, and have made some serious progress on my living room. I’m now looking ahead to my fall cure. I want to cure my bathroom, finish my living room, and do the bedroom in the fall.

I guess the biggest lesson I’ve learned is to be happy with the little changes that you make in your home. I would get frustrated with myself at times because I wasn’t seeing enough BIG change. It’s the small things however, like organizing a junk drawer, that make the biggest impact on how I live and function!

Thank you Apartment Therapy for all the guidance and for showing so many of my pictures, it really kept me motivated! AND of course thanks to the amazing Chicago Cure Group!

Here are some of the results!

Dreaming of Paris

April 29, 2008

My sweet and lovely 86 year-old Grandpa surprised my family today. He’s taking my entire family on a 15 day European cruise. I’ve been to London 2 times, but never anywhere else in Europe. I’m so excited! One of the stops is going to be Paris. I’ve always dreamed of going there!

In homage to my surprise I would love to alert you to a new blog that I found. It’s the blog of Claudia (one of my recent commentators). It’s called The Paris Apartment. This is her blog and this is her boutique website. Claudia owns a design company and is a published author. She has an affinity for French interiors and movies from the 20s and 30s. Her site is lovely and it was such a great find!

Some pics from her blog:

Here is her gorgeous website of her boutique and some of her amazing wares. 🙂

GORGEOUS! That pink dresser is like a dream. Maybe Claudia will give me some tips on where to shop in Paris! Especially flea markets!!! DROOL. 😛

Fashion-Inspired Decorating

April 27, 2008

I found this article at Country Living today. I go to Country Living when I get tired of the never-ending mid-century modern look. Don’t get me wrong I love that look, I just crave variety every once in a while. 🙂 Anyway, this is a house tour of Annette Tatum, owner of House, a store in Santa Monica.

“Everything you need for stylish interiors is hanging in your closet.”

This is her philosophy and she carries it into her own home.

Her Living Room was inspired by a pink prom dress!

This dress:

Inspired this outdoor space (DROOL):

This Dress:

Inspired this dreamy Guest Bedroom:

Clearly this woman has insanely flawless taste, but I think her philosophy can be used by anyone. I finally found my muse for my living room and after I read this article I looked in my closet and saw that my clothes are the same bright happy colors that are in my inspiration fabric. If I had read this article four months ago my life would’ve been much easier! 😉

Antique Postal Furniture

April 26, 2008

Someone in Chicago PLEASE buy these off Craigslist so I can live vicariously through you. Aren’t these amazing? WOW! I’m so in love I can barely stand it. It’s $200 for both. I love the color of the one on the left. It would be great for book and magazine storage, dishes, collectibles…anything really! The one on the right I see as part of the perfect craft or sewing room! DROOL! I wish I had the space and money to snatch these up.

I’m sure these are going to go very quickly. Search for Antique Postal Furniture on Craigslist. Get them while they last!

Stress-free life

April 25, 2008

This is from Architectural Digest.

Just looking at this picture relieved half of my stress instantly. Can you imagine taking a nap on that bed? Lovely. 🙂

Marimekko Inspiration

April 24, 2008

This is my new inspiration for my Living Room. I threw all my other ideas out and started over. I decided to design the room around my new chairs and this amazing marimekko fabric wall hanging. This will be the focal point of my LR, when I can afford it of course LOL.

This fabric goes really well with a huge vintage print that I already have. I can’t hang it on the walls because it’s too heavy, so it’s gone undisplayed for years. I HATE my walls. My solution is to put it on an easel!

Additionally I would like to use one more vintage print (I’m obsessed with Vintage Art prints and they aren’t ridiculously expensive). I narrowed it down to these three. I can’t decide though!

Blue Chair Happiness!

April 16, 2008

I found these on Craigslist and I’m picking up two of them tonight. I know the picture is hard to see. Basically it’s vibrant blue velvet tailored goodness. I love them. I’m taking all the art off my wall in the Living Room. The whole room will now be designed around these chairs! I’ve completely broken the bank on these. I got an amazing deal but still absolutely cannot afford them. Here’s to blue chair happiness!

My Mother: my inspiration

April 11, 2008

I felt like blogging about my mother tonight. I think it’s because I’ve been laid up for a little while from a small accident. It makes me miss her more than I normally do. My mother never fails to inspire me. She is the most creative woman I’ve ever known. She’s a visual artist and has worked with many different mediums. She owns a boutique in Lake St. Louis called Cinderella’s Coach that sells evening wear for women and party dresses for little girls. She paints, sculpts, sews, collages, writes, has the greenest thumb imaginable, and is an amazing cook. She can clean a room, any room, no matter what it’s state in under 30 minutes. She can come up to visit me and make a 3 course meal out of whatever random thing I still have left in my cupboard. She calls herself a gypsy cook. 🙂 She makes everything beautiful and everything good. She laughs insanely loud at things that nobody else thinks is funny. She is so full of life. Her cellphone goes off during movies, plays, church, anywhere really and she doesn’t know how to turn it off. Her favorite thing is to read the bible before anyone gets up WITH her morning cup of coffee. She has so many talents and gifts, but the greatest one has always been her being our mom.

Floor Plan Madness

April 7, 2008

Existing Floor Plan

This is the old set up of my Living Room. It doesn’t really work and everyone on the couch ends up just staring at a closet door.

Living Room Floor Plan Attempt #1

This is much better. When sitting on the couch the view is the courtyard in the front of the apartment building. The seating arrangement is much more inviting for conversation and entertaining. The other side of the room, however, looks unbalanced. Also, when I put this floor plan into action I discovered that the end tables don’t fit on either side of the couch.

Living Room Floor Plan Attempt #2

I think this is the best set up. The end tables are gone. I moved the trunk under the window. I also added a little sideboard/vanity area next to the radiator thanks to a suggestion from fellow curer Scraplolly. I made the width in this rendering a foot smaller than the other ones by accident. The room is not really quite this cramped. It’s tight, but not THIS tight. It’s a tricky space, but I think this will work.

Living Room Style Tray

April 5, 2008

As I told CQ on my last post, my new goal is to make every room in my apartment look as good as my Dining Room does. Or maybe a better way to put it is…make every room in my apartment make me FEEL as good as my Dining Room does. The next big question mark is my Living Room. I know that I’ve posted color schemes and ideas on here before, but I’m not completely sold on anything. The cure suggests that we do “style trays” for inspiration. I’ve never followed this particular suggestion of the book, because I’ve always known exactly what I want to do. With the Living Room, however, I’m at a loss. So here it is…my Living Room style tray!

I’ve been toying with the idea of doing a deep red accent wall behind my couch. I love the idea of using a wallpaper with deep red in it instead of painting an entire wall one color.

Space above couch option #1: What to put above my couch or on a really long wall expanse always stresses me out. I like the results, but hate the actual act of hanging art or mirrors on the wall. It’s hard to get the scale right and my walls are impossible. (I have drywall over brick). I love this picture ledge. Instead of having to commit to one arrangement that I think is perfect (this never happens), I can change what I have displayed at will and won’t have to spackle up dozens of holes each time. I also like that you can display other items on it as well. It creates a mantlepiece look…which I love! AND I think that it would work with the wallpaper or the red wall.

Space above couch option #2: The other option I’ve come up with is to go ahead and paint the wall red, but do away with framed artwork and have some sort of nature inspired wall decals up and maybe one mirror instead. This would keep the look much simpler. I also wouldn’t have to hang shelves. 😉

Space above couch option #3: Alright call me crazy, but I kind of love this. I love the defiance of it. I love that it says, “No! I will not obsess for hours, months, or even years on the perfect arrangement for above my couch!” That gorgeous panel, the bright pillows, and the lamp take center stage instead. Of course this is a nice muted sage green and not a deep red. I might need to break up the red. I don’t know! I need some advice. What do you guys think?

Because of my crumbly horrible walls, I am always looking for alternative methods for displaying art. I am a big fan of just leaning art against the wall. I know that it looks less formal, but it’s also much less of a headache. I also adore this idea. I bought an easel at IKEA for 10 bucks. I’m going to paint it and I already know exactly what piece of art I’m going to display on it! (This gorgeous painting is by Celeste Vaught.)

This is the sister of my Stainless Steel Curio that I have in my Dining Room. I love these pieces so much. Believe it or not I got them both for free from dumpster diving at a Navy base I was stationed at in West Virginia. They are vintage medical cabinets from the fifties I believe. They weigh a ton, but I absolutely love them. Right now the hutch is living in the hallway as my landing strip, but it’s not working for me. It’s a huge piece and it’s overpowering my hallway. I think that I’m going to move it into the Living Room. I have the top portion set up as a bar and the bottom portion is great for storage.

My Living Room has a doorway, but no door. My Dining Room actually does too…AND my kitchen. 🙂 I plan to utilize this curtain idea all over my apartment. My roommate is 6ft though, so I’m going to have to hang them from the ceiling instead of the top of the doorway.

This is pretty close to the red that I want, and that splotch on the opposite wall is pretty close to the color I already have and will have on the other three walls.

*That’s it! I would LOVE a new couch, desk, side chairs, coffee table, etc….but I can’t afford it. So the ones I have will do for now. The hardest part of this room is going to be the setup. It’s a long and narrow room. One wall is almost completely taken up with a doorway, a closet doorway, and a radiator. One of the narrower walls is all windows that I don’t want to cover up. I have an idea of how to rearrange the furniture that will hopefully work out.

Cured Dining Room

March 31, 2008

Here are some pictures of my cured Dining Room. It’s not completely cured. There are still a couple of things to do. I want to get a club chair, I still need to edit, I have a couple of touch up paint spots, and I need to recover my chairs. BUT I feel like I could entertain in here. I’ve been eating every meal in here. I now spend half my time in a space that went completely unused before. Here it is!

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