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The Night Circus

17 Oct

Have you read The Night Circus? I finished it this week and I miss it. I really do. I was one of those books that sucked me in to a completely surreal world. It’s magical.

the night circus

Of course, it got me thinking about fabric. The colors and textures described throughout the book are so rich, yet so simple – shades of black and white, with a pop of crimson. The gold stars in the sky provide the only other pop of color at the circus.

The Night Circus

Click the image to enlarge the fabrics and learn about sourcing.

Wouldn’t these fabrics make a cozy movie room or reading nook? I am especially fond of the black and white dots. The one in the upper-right is Michael Miller Atomic Dot ($8.98/yard Fabric.com) and the one below that is Mesh Polka Dot White/Black ($3.98/yard! Fabric.com).

Another cozy idea for these non-traditional fabrics would be a non-traditional room, like these lovely attic converts.

attic room

attic room2

atticroom3

atticroom4

These rooms are like little bits of fairy tales. Love.

Would you use whimsical colors and patterns in your home? Or would you rather leave them for a set decorator (what an amazing job that would be for this story!)

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Home Decor Planners…and Me

21 Mar

Are you a planner when it comes to home decor?

Source: dwell.com via Katie on Pinterest

We’ve discussed my love for list making. You would think that bit of Type A would would translate into planning for home decor.

It doesn’t.

I’m not someone who knows where every piece of furniture is going to go before I move into a place. I don’t even know what furniture I’ll use and which I won’t.

Here is my process:

Domino

Every free moment lately has been spent scouring Pinterest, home blogs and my beloved back copies of Domino (can these count as home decor?) for inspiration for my new home. And let me tell you…in my head so far, the place is a knock out.

Color scheme here, room layout here – I’m pinning my little heart out to build what I hope to be the feel for my new place. And that’s kind of the extent of my planning process. Sure, I’ve got room measurements and I’ll test fabrics against each other when I get to that point, but that’s about it.

My New Place Pinterest

I’m not a blueprint or even a mood board girl. I’ve tried to be – there are some amazing tools out there. If you’re a planner, check out Young House Love’s favorite online tools.

I’m kind of a live in the space and decorate until it feels right kind of girl. I want my home to make me smile when I walk in, and I just don’t think I can plan that. Instead, I comb through fabrics, furniture, rugs and everything else online, pin what I’m attracted to, and then step back to see what they have in common. Then I get to arranging (and DIYing).

Weird? Probably. Inefficient? Definitely. But oh so fun. I guess so much of the rest of my life is planned, that I cherish being a little freewheeling when it comes to my surroundings.

Freewheeling in an organized fashion, of course. I’m still Katie.

So what’s your home decor style? Are a you a room planner? Do you pick everything at once? Or does it fall in place over time?

From the Desk of…

5 Mar

I love a hand-written note. There’s just something special about creating or receiving something on actual paper, in this age of email and virtual communication.

Source: fleamarketstylemag.blogspot.com via Sara on Pinterest

Yes, I’m writing this on my MacBook while my iPod buzzes next to me and I flit from Gmail to Facebook. I appreciate the irony.

But maybe that’s what makes me appreciate the hand-written note even more.

I’ve had pretty stationary on and off throughout my life, but I’m in the market for more. And, y’all, for all of our emailing ways, we live in a world of so much pretty paper!

Here are some of top contenders:

Tiny Prints.Katie

Source: Tiny Prints

Tiny Prints is known for their cute invitations and birth announcements, but they also have a good selection of customizable stationary. I like this card for its simplicity. The style is called Kate (fitting) and you can choose how to use the two lines of lettering. Maybe a quote at the bottom?

Kate Spade.Peacock Correspondence Cards

Source: Crane & Co.

Continuing with the Kate theme, this Kate Spade set of correspondence cards is sold through Crane & Co. They’re on the pricey side, but Crane & Co. tends to be the gold standard when it comes to stationary. Worth the investment? Maybe not, but they sure are pretty.

Crane & Co. Correspondence Cards

Source: Crane & Co.

These cards, also from Crane & Co., are bright and cheery. I love the colors and the simplicity of the white note space. Again, they’re a little bit pricey, but fun and poppy.

LeenMachine.Etsy.Notecards

Source: LeenMachine on Etsy.com

Etsy is a great source for custom stationary. I really like these doily initial cards from Leen Machine. So simple, but pretty. And at $14.50 for a box of 10, they are a lot more affordable than the other options.

Do you have stationary? Where’d you find it? Or if you’re in the market, any more options to add to the list?

HGTV Dream Home 2012

4 Jan

Every year, HGTV gives away a house. A whole house.

And every year, I think how overwhelming it must be to win a house. A house! But overwhelming in a good way of course – a problem I could certainly get on board with.

This year’s house is in Utah and its rustic exterior and interior match the landscape. As with most of the giveaway houses of the past, I like some of the decor choices and I’m not a fan of others. Let’s explore:

HGTV Dream Home Foyer

I love the front door and the hardwood floor (which flows throughout the home) is stunning. I’m also intrigued by the art on the wall. What do you think? It looks somewhat modern, but understated.

HGTV Dream Home Great Room

The great room is a stunner. That stone! I’d move in for the fireplace alone. Two things I’m not a fan of in this room: The painted white walls above the stone (I’d much prefer a more rustic stained wood) and the blue-checked chairs (they seem a little out of place to me).

HGTV Dream Home Master Bath

The master bathroom is beautiful and naturally sunlit. Is that penny tile? I like the way it’s neutral but still visually striking. Ah, and a bathtub. In my bathtub-less existence, the mere presence of a tub inspires high marks from me.

HGTV Dream Home Outdoor Living Room

If the great room fireplace sells the house, this fireplace is the cherry on top. I love outdoor living space and the stone makes this a natural extension of the interior. In continuing the looking-a-gift-horse-in-the-mouth theme of this post, I’m not a fan of the glass-topped decorator tables or the blue striped pillows. But I’d gladly overlook them as I settled in with a book in this spot.

To see all of the rooms in the 2012 HGTV Dream House and register to win the house (really! a whole house!) check it out here.

What do you think? What rooms do you like best?

Bathtub Dreamin’ (on Such a Winter’s Day)

6 Dec

It got cold here today.

Like make-a-second-cup-of-coffee-just-to-hold-it cold.

One thing I always start dreaming of when it gets chilly is a bathtub. I don’t have one, just a shallow shower/tub combo that is really just a tease.

A great big soaking tub has always been at the top of my someday-home wishlist. Since I rent, a bathroom reno is not really in the cards right now, so let’s do a little bubble bath dreaming, shall we?

(If you follow me on Pinterest, you know I’ve got a bit of a bathtub obsession.)

Clawfoot Tub

I’ve always wanted a clawfoot bathtub. They’re so elegant and retro. Isn’t this one pretty?  Love the faucet in the middle too.

Not clawfoot, but still freestanding… I love the gauzy white curtain that can be pulled around the tub. And you know I’m a fan of chandeliers in unexpected places.

This one isn’t freestanding at all, but isn’t it cozy? Maybe it’s the slanted ceiling, the unusually high tub wall or the happy yellow curtain, but I could definitely spend a lot of time in here.

This is just ridiculous. Stone, hardwood and a chandelier? This is the ultimate hibernation bathtub. I feel warmer just looking at it.

Which one is your favorite? Do you have a clawfoot tub, and if so, do you like it? (I know some people don’t care for them, but I love them.) Share in the comments!

Cyber Monday: My Etsy Picks

28 Nov

Planning on a little online shopping this Cyber Monday?

Sure, the big box retailers might be offering some great deals, but why not add a little homemade to your Christmas list? Etsy is stepping into the Cyber Monday big leagues, with many of its sellers offering free shipping and discounts.

Here are my picks, perfect for gift-giving. And don’t forget to get yourself a little something too. (Click on the images to start shopping.)

Vintage Trays

Vntage Queen, Etsy

I’m a sucker for a serving tray. Like mason jars, their uses are endless – serving (obviously), desktop organization, flower display, tabletop vignette…the list goes on and on. These classic trays are priced right ($74 plus free shipping) for adding fun and function to your home or for giving away to three very lucky friends.

Vintage Coasters

MaKo Art, Etsy

These chic coasters are made by Maya Gencic using vintage napkin images from the 1930s. They’d make a great gift for a stylish co-worker or your friend who throws the great parties. They’re only $10 and the shop is offering free shipping, so throw in a bottle of wine and cross another gift off your list.

Love Sweater Card

Erin Dollar, Etsy

We all see piles of Christmas cards this time of year, but this one caught my eye. It’s so sweet and simple. I love how it would make the recipient feel warm just by looking at it. For $4.50, it’s a steal. Pair it with a sweet print from Erin Dollar’s shop and you’ve got an awwww-inducing present.

Doily Linen Napkins

Pony and Poppy, Etsy

Beautifully classic and priced right for gift giving ($37), these linen screen printed napkins would make an excellent hostess gift. Each set contains four napkins, two of each design shown. I bet these would look equally beautiful on a holiday table or framed as wall art.

2012 Calendar

Alice Potter, Etsy

This charming calendar is two gifts in one. Not only is it a sweet way to keep track of the days, but each month’s illustration is also a detachable postcard, perfect for mailing or for decorating. I could see these postcards grouped together on a bulletin board or in a large white frame…how pretty would that be? Snag it for $23 and free shipping.

As usual, Etsy does not disappoint. And with the added incentive of discounts and free shipping, my advice is to start clicking.

What have you found on Etsy lately?

What other stores are you hitting this Cyber Monday? Are you picking up some happies for yourself as you shop? Share your deals in the comments!

P.S.: I don’t work for Etsy and they didn’t ask me to write this post. I just love Etsy and want to help spread the homemade love this Christmas.