Monday, November 23, 2009

Monday, November 9, 2009

Content in a Cottage - powered by FeedBurner

Content in a Cottage - powered by FeedBurner

Content in a Cottage: Some of the things I love about fall . . .

Content in a Cottage: Some of the things I love about fall . . .

Design Vitamin #13 Flea Market Extravaganza!

For those you that are not local--I apologize, but the much revered twice a year Extravaganza was this past weekend at Metrolina---and I meant to remind everyone! My apologies to everyone for being so scattered---october/november are really busy crazy months for me. It starts with market and then spirals with clients wanting everything done for the Holidays. I ventured out on Wednesday morning which is "dealer" day. For $25.00 you can have a 5 day pass through Sunday. I was on a mission to find some unique treasures for myself and for clients. Of course my first stop I ventured into a booth with a man that had on a wicker Panama hat. He had all sorts of vintage dog art in beat up frames. The art itself was beautiful---very haunting pictures of dogs with vivid color. Right there is where I got the idea to do a "dog-wall" in my laundry room off the garage.  It is where I keep my dog Beijing and is also where his bowl is located.  My cabinets are a custom color--an apple green with black hardware.  The first two dog pics I bought to start the wall--a pair of Boston Terriers which are black and white.  And one of my all time favorite dog breeds a Harlequin Great Dane---guess what color?  Black and White!  So I figure--my collection going forward has to be vintage with some sort of black and white in it to make sense. I cannot wait to hang them! Other treasures tomorrow!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Design Vitamin #15 In Honor of Church Day--Holy Holy---!

Check it out--would you like to sleep on an altar!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Design Vitamin #12 Spooktacular Book Club!

Okay--I know I owe you all a zillion posts/vitamins since returning from Furniture Market---late Tuesday night.  Proceed to Wednesday where I hosted bookclub at my home---of course fresh off of Market I was full of design ideas and went a little nutty with Halloween decor and "Spooktini's". I had my husband hauling furniture for me out of my space at Oak Street Mill in downtown Cornelius.  He was not happy!  I was determined to have book club fireside---and the perfect three hundred pound organic cypress table had to leave my space. So in a very Veruca Salt way---I said I wanted  the table brought home "NOW" Lots of cursing and sweating ensued---yes my husband pretty much is a saint because when I get a bee in my bonnet I do not give up!  In the end the table looks fab--and he agreed it is a welcome addition to the  porch. Also brought home from Oak Street were these darling vintage books turned inside out so all the pages were folded with jack-o-lantern faces---get it book club? everyone that attended was very excited about the decor and theme.  I did not spend allot of money--- but EFFORT goes a log way.  I emphasize effort because that is what seperates a successful gathering from a ho-hum one.  I took empty glass hurricanes filled them with candy corn--very inexpensive.  I had the of course "blue/grey pumkins.  I enlisted my dear friend Jill to do a dip that she baked right in the oven in a pumpkin that was delicious.  Candles everywhere--a must---and please keep your candles to one color---do not have a circus of canlde colors all over the house. I have ivory, cream or white--keeps it simple.  The book we read this month was The Help by Kathryn Stockett---I highly recommend it! I am colleting my thoughts about market---lots to discuss!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Design Vitamin #11

See you after Furniture Market with lots of Catch up Blogs!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Design Vitamin # 10--a break from Me! Enjoy!

Before & After - Chateau Chic

Posted using ShareThis
Eddie Ross is one of my favorite blogs that I enjoy. I am one of his followers! He was on the design show on Bravo " Top Design" He was also one of the finalists. He is such a creative person and hilarious! Eddie also worked for another one of my favorite "icons" Martha Stewart. Yes. I love Martha! I have never left her side. She gave all of us the shot in the arm that we needed----to be creative and be perfect while you are doing it! Smile. I met Martha at Furniture Market--I was in awe, but we will save that for another blog! of course Eddie worked for Martha--he is just as neurotic and creative as she is----watch for him--he will have his own empire one day! Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Design Vitamin #9

Don't be in a rush. That is when bad things happen. Research,research,research! I hope the person whom I am speaking about knows I am talking to them. Trust me--we have all been there! I do not care if the painter is standing at the front door and he showed up a day early because his "Tuesday" cancelled--do not make a rash decision and choose a paint color nonchalantly to make the painters life happy. You have to live with the color--he does not. When making major decisions such as remodeling I am always about bringing in the "experts" If you are re-doing a kitchen ie:tearing out cabinets reconfiguring please use a certified kitchen designer NKBA. You will save yourself lots of heartache,headache and money. I have allot of clients that bring me in as the "band-aid" designer. They want me to fix the mess that was made previously by them because they tried to take short cuts. Please take your time--make your lists--research and get quotes and opinions. The web is a perfectly place to start!

Monday, October 12, 2009

Lonny Magazine « The Cultivated Home

Lonny Magazine « The Cultivated Home

Design Vitamin #8

If are interested in design--or are totally confused about it--you must subscribe to shelter magazine. Each page holds a wealth of information. One page could be a paint color, the next a piece of furniture that appeals to you. Tear the page out! Put it in a file labeled appropriately for future reference. When the times is right and you do have that meeting with a designer you will be prepared,she will not have to read your mind,and you will get some much more bang for your buck within that hour because you are not flipping through magazines!My faves hands down---Veranda, Southern Accents, Coastal Living ,Traditional Home and House Beautiful. Soooo sad that Domino is no longer--it was so cool. There is a new magazine on line called Lonny--check it out. I just like touching and feeling glossy pages--very old fashioned.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


Design Vitamin #7 I am so excited to find gray pumpkins! Tonight at our local Boy Scout lot--I was in shock---these boys are right on the pulse with the color trend! For those of you local to Lake Norman---I hate to give this tip away--because they will be gone tomorrow! You will find theses shades of gray exquisite jack-o-lanterns located next to Brusters Ice Cream on Catawba Ave they have always had the very best Pumpkins! The boy scout pack has been in operation 7 years now and receive truck-loads from New Mexico! I cannot wait to display these tomorrow along with an arrangement of smaller ones sprayed Benjamin Moore Decorator's White for an arrangement that is going to blend in perfectly with my existing color scheme! Crazy---I know--- was starting to worry how I was going to work the orange in! Life of a neurotic designer!

Saturday, October 10, 2009


DESIGN VITAMIN # 6 Make sure you at least set a pumpkin out on your front porch--tis the season. What! I never said my blogs were going to be "earth-shattering" or "deep"at every post. This is a simple one that everyone can do--plus my brain is mush today! As I type I can hear my senior coughing like crazy---she woke up with a sore throat and has a full day of filling out college apps! I just hope it is not the dreaded "oink-oink'-(h1n1) That is going to set my world upside down. My son,who is sophomore has a huge AP psychology project on "The Brain" to do today--so we are all camped out---working on a Saturday! YUK! Oh and hubby is hiding in the basement filing out late tax forms due on October 15---hence--no design tips! Oh and I also forgot my lovely college junior just left after brunch of scrambled eggs,goat cheese spinach wraps, pumpkin bread and raspberries to go back to school. We scrambled around this morning to spray her really groovy desk chair we picked up at Habitat for Humanity for a cool $10.00! It looks like a Chippendale/Tori Burch lattice Pattern back. I decided to have her leave it here so I could fabricate the seat fro her--and bring it to her next weekend--Parents Weekend with the Sigma Kappa's. Okay---for someone who was going to be short and sweet! UGH! Pics of chair to come!

Friday, October 9, 2009

If it speaks to you buy it!

Design Vitamin #5 Please do not be one of those buyers "where am I going to put it"? I have so many clients who have "passed" on something that they fell in love with---because they did not know exactly where it was going to go! If it is something that you just absolutely fall in love with--trust me you will find a place for the little jewel! I am not just talking about furniture here either---everything---art, tables all the way down to a small oddity that you picked up at a flea market--! Purchasing items like these are the beginnings of making your house a "home" and giving it personality.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Fresh Air Shopping ! Vitamin Included!

Design Vitamin # 4---and this is going to be a quickie! Major computer problems tonight plus I am getting in so late from JV football! This is not the NFL people! YIKES! Tonight's vitamin is a suggestion/shopping tip. A dear friend of mine ,Debbie Fann at is having a Tag Sale event in Statesville Friday and Saturday.

She is hosting the event on her beautiful estate in a three story Victorian Home.
Debbie has filled the porches,potting shed,and gardens with French Chic,Shabby Chic,Architectural Salvage, furniture and all sorts of home decor. Visit he blog for directions or contact 704 682-2284---it will be a beautiful fall weekend for this event! Sorry out of towners---look for your local "Tag" events---every town has a "church sale" or a flea somewhere---remember you are also being green!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The LBA! Design Vitamin #3

OMG! I have 7 Followers! I feel sooooo grateful right now! Okay--life has been crazy! I have commited to 365 design tips and and I will deliver! Iam soo late tonight, because Payton,my middle child was in her last tennis match this evening as a senior at her High School. It was bittersweet--allot of "lasts" The "last" tennis match as a senior on our home courts. The "last" tennis match I will ever watch my "last" daughter play. As you can see I am very sentimental and savor every minute----it goes by in the blink of an eye. So bittersweet--! Makes me feel old!

Business! Design Vitamin #3--the LBA!
As I mentioned in yesterdays blog---every room needs a black accent! In the fashion world you have heard of the LBD? The Little Black Dress? Well this is the Little Black Accessory --hence the LBA! I was introduced to this concept in the infancy stages of my career in High Point doing showroom work for a very well known designer. He was emphatic that every room have a touch of black. I was puzzled and naive. His explanation was it adds an element of drama to every room. It does not have to be much--a lampshade, a picture frame,end table, just an accent that grounds" everything----not weighs it down like the "Adams Family" ! I challenge you to thumb through any "shelter " (high brow-language for home magazine) and find a room that does not carry a dark "alter-ego"accent!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Merrily,Merrily,Merrily...Life is but a dream!


Okay, we will start out simple today since I have a jam-packed full schedule. Since it is pouring down rain and the sky is gray--I will address choosing Paint Colors today. Never pick a paint color on a rainy day! Whenever I choose paint colors for a client---its always on a full sunny day. Never on a gray overcast day. Make sure you look at the color from all angles of the room. Please people--its just paint! Do not be soooo afraid of it! Start in a small room. Take a t-shirt (or an item of clothing that you have loved forever because of its color)to the paint store and have it duplicated into a gallon of paint. People are always asking me for my favorite "blue" during this crazy Chocolate Brown and Blue faze. Hands down its Topsail SW6217 by Sherwin-Williams. I first used this delicious color in a model home--at the beginning of the Blue craze. This color lies in between aqua and gray---and it is very calming. To get the most out of an exquisite blue room--you need a serious hit of black! High gloss doors--lacquered furniture! The black theory will be hit upon in your next vitamin!

Monday, October 5, 2009

The 3/50 Project ::: Resource Library

The 3/50 Project ::: Resource Library

The Recycled Houses - The New York Times > Home & Garden > Slide Show > Slide 17 of 19

The Recycled Houses - The New York Times > Home & Garden > Slide Show > Slide 17 of 19

I came across this article over the weekend and just had to share it! What an amazing tribute to the things that people throw out! I am saving my wine corks. I knew there was a reason i must not give up my wine. :)

Explanation for the Pug!

Anyone that knows me well--knows I am obsessed with my Pug Beijing! He turns 9 this Saturday October 10th. Beijing has been a true source of happiness for our family---he never ceases to make us laugh! Pugs are truly people---dressed in fur. All pug owners are crazy about their dogs! We have been to Pug picnics with him--Pug meet-ups he has some local friends in the hood that are also Pugs--Murphy,Doc and Rose. They are the best!

Metrolina --October--Missed Treasures!

Metrolina was this past weekend and I did not go! I am feeling like I missed something! Rarely do i miss an oportunity to scourge the local flea market---its my therapy! Some people garden--or golf to de-compress. I love to go to the Flea! It helps get the creative juices flowing---all the fabulous time worn things--and the endless possibilities. Remember---a room full of new is boring!
Stay tuned i will let you know about the Metrolina Extravaganza in November--one of the biggest on the east coast, and its only twice a year.

Sunday, October 4, 2009


The title of my first blog was given to me by son, Holden--my 15yr old know it all. I am starting this blog tonight Sunday, October5.2009. It may become a quasi-diary--of sorts. My main goal is to share my love of beautiful things and well as the knowledge I have acquired being in the Design world for 25 years! I am very excited about the background paper that was just downloaded. The paper is gorgeous---anything with a bee on it I gravitate towards--its also very chic and designers LOVE them! PS---Holden I have tons of friends!