simple is beautiful

Chic & Affordable Lamps & Happy Birthday Baby Boy

Friday, September 30, 2011

Thanks to all of you who left sweet comments about the lamps!  I am really happy with where things are going in this room.  The other day when I went to pick up the black shade for the second lamp, I noticed a few fun lamps that I thought you might like at Walmart.  My apologies for the phone pictures.

If my lamp fairy had not been looking out for me, I may have gone this route for bedside lamps.  The price is great though they might be a tad short for where I needed them.

 I love this color!  How great would these look with a linen shade?  I'm thinking about using this in an entry that I am working on for a client.

 Love this color!  You could really up the drama with a black shade.

These linen shades are only $15.  It is hard to see here, but it has a nice nubby texture.

Have you ever purchased lighting from Walmart?

In other news.....

Today my baby turns 13.  I can hardly believe it.  It seems like yesterday his father and I brought him home from the hospital.  Time flies.  This will be a weekend filled with celebration so I'd better get busy.  A cake to make.  A sleepover to prepare for.  And for good measure, let's add a 2 day swim meet to the mix.

Have a great weekend!  You all are the best!

My Favorite Room: Michelle from Vintage Junky

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Today I welcome Michelle from the blog Vintage Junky.  Take it away Michelle!

I was so excited when Rene asked me to do a little tour of my favorite room.  I love her style!  I think that my favorite room in our house is our dining room.

It is the first room that you come to in our home.   It is also one of the first rooms we "finished."  I have been tweaking it here and there bit by bit though.

We recently switched out the chairs that originally went with the table with some curvier painted ones covered in grey linen.  My husband painted the Audrey Hepburn painting for me as a birthday present during our engagement.

I love having fresh flowers... don't we all?  I don't have them nearly as often as I would like though.  I also love ironstone and mercury glass.

Across from the table, I have this little area that I like to change more often than other areas.  I would like to add some other small pieces of art to this area, but I am waiting to find that perfect piece.

We switched out our basic builder chandelier with a vintage one that fits our style so much better.  My clock was a gift from my husband to celebrate me leaving my full- time job to be a work at home mommy.  He knew I had wanted a clock just like this for years.

That's my favorite spot!  I like being out in the front yard and our door being open just a crack and this being what you see.


Michelle your dining room is full of charm and meaningful objects and that is what makes it so special.  Thanks so much sharing your favorite room with us today!  To check out more of Michelle's home and blog go here.

Craving Clean & Simple

Monday, September 26, 2011

I hope that everyone had a wonderful weekend!  Ours was nice.  After the rain passed and we were able to get outside and enjoy the fresh air.  Yesterday I picked up some humongous mums in a burnt orange and cannot wait to plant them in our urns on the front porch.  I have never been a mum person, but for some reason I wanted to give them a try this year.  I am also looking forward to sprucing up the window boxes with some cheerful white pansies very soon.  Hopefully I will share more on that later this week.

My mind is racing with lots of little things that I want to do around the house.  My goal is to be caught up by the holidays which will be here soon, by the way.  I know we all joke about our rooms never being finished, but doesn't a finished room sound dreamy?  A room where you sit there and think, wow, this is perfect.  Am I dreaming or do people really say this?  Sometimes I wish I was more like my clients and would just finish something.  One area that has been under construction is the master bedroom.  How many of you are gagging at the mere mention of my bedroom yet again?  It has been a place for experimenting with bookshelves, bedding, and burlap which was all well and good, but now I am ready to settle down and enjoy a serene space for once and for all.  The bedding that I mentioned in an earlier post once again turned out to be too busy for my taste so out it went.  Also, I was tossing around paint colors for a while and even asked for your advice.  Thank you for bringing me back down to earth and convincing me to go with a lighter color.  I have chosen Frosty White by Sherwin Williams.

 Fearrington (this is not the color...I just wanted you to see the gorgeous mantel)

Frosty White is on the same strip as the color I initially fell in love with (Aloof Gray) at Fearrington Village near Chapel Hill.  I painted our dining room a shade down on that same strip with Sensible Hue.  I really like that strip of grays.

Hoping to keep myself on task, I made a mood board.  It is really the bare bones, but that is kinda what I want now.  A clean simple oasis without a lot of fuss.  Anybody else out there craving a clean and simple oasis?  So here it is....

So far, I have the pillows, bedding, rug, and mirrors.  I am currently hitting the vintage venues for some special lamps and maybe even some cool pierced mid-century ones if they fit the budget.  Now for matchstick/bamboo shades and paint.  I would also like to add a few pillows to the window seat in monochromatic shades.  And, I'm considering a little diy art canvas inspired by one of these lovelies

I'm off to the paint store.  Have a great day!

Just in case you didn't see it on twitter or facebook, I am having a 40% off sale in my etsy store.  Use promo code COTTAGEANDVINE at the checkout.  If there is something you want buy it now because I will be taking down most of the inventory soon.

Find Me Here Today

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Today I have been invited to share ideas for fall decorating on Heather's blog, My Many Moments.  While you are there be sure to check out what the other guests have shared this week about fall.  Hint: think beyond pumpkins and scarecrows ;)

Also, to all of you modern vintage lovers, be sure to stop by tomorrow for something you will not want to miss.  Think lighting

My Favorite Room: Mary Ann from Classic Casual Home

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Today we have Mary Ann here to share her favorite room.  Mary Ann writes the delightful blog Classic Casual Home.  Welcome Mary Ann!

My Favorite Space is Rene's Dining Room (did you see her makeover)?!!
Ok, after THAT my next favorite space is more like
my private sanctuary.  A place where I am forced to close my laptop 
and just let my mind relax.  

A place where no one is allowed to enter except the 
readers of Cottage and Vine.

We completely remodeled this room in our 1950's beach cottage.
My mother gave us the demi-lune table.  I like using furniture
in a bathroom if you have the space.  
My husband wanted the television.  I never turn it on.

I'd like a softly gathered Roman shade on the window. 
(no one can see in)
It's always something...
Decorating.   Does it ever stop?

We put in this checkerboard patterned tile that resembles polished cement.

I like this soft wool rug instead of a bath mat.  

Check list.  Ready?

1.  Soap from France--check

2.  Towels (in a vintage shell fish basket from Normandy)

3.  Monogrammed Terry Cloth Robe--check

4.  Chilled glass of wine--check (this is really just for staging purposes)
Ha!  Well, as long as it's there...

5.  Bubbles--check

Thanks, Rene for featuring my second favorite space.
Hey guys, would you mind closing the door on your way out?

Thanks so much for sharing your favorite room today Mary Ann!  Your bathroom is absolutely wonderful and your style is perfectly timeless.

To visit Mary Ann's blog and see more of her beautiful home, go here.  

A Client's Family Room

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A couple of weeks ago I was hired by a local couple to help with their family room.  I love it when both the husband and wife participate in how they want to room to feel.  The home was already lovely and had an overall serene vibe.  Think calming colors, linen upholstery, fresh and airy.  They needed help with adding pattern, choosing a few key pieces of furniture, and accessories.  While I was there, we began re-arranging the furniture.  Gotta love clients who are willing to quickly make changes.  The sofa was originally opposite the tv and now it faces the fireplace with chairs flanking it.

With limited space between the fireplace and window, I recommended hanging one panel per window up high.  Also, the new location of  the sofa allows for a sofa table.

Here is a mock-up of the plan.  Please overlook the crooked curtain rods.

And here is the mood board that I created for the room.

Using existing photos of the family, I created a gallery around the new tv console to "fill in" that large wall.

I am really looking forward to seeing this room come together.

Revised to say:  Out of respect for my clients, I do not share sourcesThank you for understanding.

Do you need help with a space?  Explore my services here.

Dyed Curtains: Questions Answered

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Thanks so much to everyone who commented on the dyed curtains!  I received lots of questions about them and thought it would be best to respond in the form of a post for reference.  If you are completely ready to move on to another topic - can't say that I blame you.  Please stop by another time ;)

I really just followed the instructions on the box.  If you have more questions, you can check out the rit dye website.  I considered combining colors, but decided to keep it simple this time around.  The site also covers topics like how to chose your fabric, ombre dyeing (which would be fun to try), and washing machine dyeing.

Here is what I did...

1)  I pre-washed the curtains to remove any finish that might be on the fabric that may prevent an even dye. 

2)  It is important to use the right amount of dye and this is based on the weight of your fabric.  Two pairs of curtains requires two boxes of dye dissolved in 2 cups (per package) of hot water.

3)  Next I added dye along with 1 cup of salt and one tablespoon of detergent to my top loading washing machine and filled with hot water.  Agitate to mix. 

4)  Uncrumple and add damp curtains to dyebath.  Set machine for extended wash cycle before rinse begins.  Oops, I didn't make it to the machine in time and missed this step.  They turned out ok though.
Fabric should be in the dyebath at least 30 minutes.

5)  Dry curtains. 

Worth mentioning:

Ritva curtains come with hem tape which had already been applied to my curtains.  The tape lasted through the pre-wash stage, but fell apart during the dye process (perhaps because of the salt?).  My advice is to wait until after dyeing to apply any hem tape.

 I hope this helps.  If any of you dye your curtains I would love to see them!

My Favorite Room: Kelle Dame of Kelle Dame Interiors

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Today we have Kelle Dame of Kelle Dame Interiors here to share her favorite room.  Welcome Kelle!

Hello to all of you fabulous Cottage and Vine readers!!!

I'm Kelle, from Kelle Dame Interiors and I am very honored and excited to share my favorite room with all you! If you are one of my adored readers, you will probably recognize my favorite room, but there are a couple new things to talk about! I have added a couple special items that have made this room even more dear to my heart!

It's my Audrey Hepburn inspired Guest Bedroom and Work Space!!
This room has to function in several ways. It has to be a comfortable and inviting guest room, an inspiring creative retreat for myself, a place for sewing, and an office space. That is a lot to squeeze into a room that is no larger than 12 x 11 feet!!

And on a tight budget too!! I will admit this room is not yet complete...there is a lack of window treatments at the moment. Custom roman shades are in the making and the ugly blinds had to GO!!

 Including custom window treatments, this room cost no more than $1,800!

I stuck to a tight budget by finding some pieces at the thrift store and re-purposing them or fixing them up. Like the headboard for example. It was $5! All I had to do was make a slip cover out of black fabric and have my handy man attach it to the bed frame! Easy for me and easy on the budget!!

Comfy bedding is a must. There is no such thing as too many pillows in my book. That way your guests can have a choice between firm, soft, and medium-soft pillows. I love a collected over time look and mixing things up with store bought pieces and hand made pieces is how I like to achieve that look. 

I want my guests to feel comfortable, fabulous and spoiled rotten!!

Looking up at a spectacular light always makes me feel spoiled!!

And waking up to fresh flowers and the smell of coffee. What more can a girl ask for?!? 

Besides some minty candies in a dainty little dish!!

Another way to help people feel at home in your home is to surround them with beautiful and meaningful things. It lets them know that they are as much a part of your special home as they are a part of your life.

Another reason I love this room so much is because of the artwork. It's personal and meaningful and unique.  

The large abstract watercolor was painted by my daughter! Is there anything more fun than children's art??

The drawing of the woman was a master drawing I completed while in art school and the silhouette cutout is from one of my favorite little shops.

The round mirror is also very special...

....I purchased it from a dear friend's boutique and it happens to have my favorite quote by Leonard Cohen scribbled on it. It's a perfect reminder of the beautiful truth that nothing is perfect and it adds a fabulous touch of whimsy!!

As for my work space...

I get an inspiring little corner of the room.

I work on this little kidney bean shaped desk that I found for a steal for under $100!!

It's just the right size for the corner and has plenty of storage. I may still paint it, but the veneer is in great shape. We'll see if I get the urge to paint it soon! 

The desk also serves as a vanity for guests. I put the sewing machine away and voila! It's a little vanity!

My little nook is also surrounded by artwork and a collage of inspiring pictures, items, and quotes. It's not the biggest space, but I make it work!

So, there you have it. My favorite room! 

I loved sharing it with you and I hope you all love it as much as I do!

Thanks to Rene for asking me to guest post! It was fun and as always, it was a pleasure to be a part of her fabulous blog for the day!



Kelle, just between you and me, you might have strangers lining up at your front door to spend a night in that darling guest room ;)  You proved that with careful planning and thoughtful touches you can make any room a little haven.  Thanks so much for being my guest today!

Check out more of Kelle's work here.

Just in case you were wondering, the mirror quote reads:

"Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in."  Leonard Cohen

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