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Entries in home décor (35)


renovation: plaid for the big boy bedroom

photos by DELPHINE

FINALLY! The plaid dresser is done and put in A’s bedroom. To be fair, I must admit that the dresser started with light blue and white stripes, so we had a head start.

Ever since we finished the room the cat has started hanging out in there.


renovation: big boy room update

Thought I’d give you a little update on A’s room. All his furniture has been painted. The step stool used to be pink, with white sponge painted details (it was in my bedroom circa 1985). I also painted a boring white shelf from Target — it is now painted grey and is stenciled with meaninful numbers and letters. I WISH I had thought to take a before photo of the bookshelf. It was in really super bad shape. We bought the bookshelf, the paint and the stencils for less than $20. It took a few hours, but stenciling was fun, and totally worth the effort.

A has been sleeping in his “new” room for a week now and he loves it. We have yet to hang the shelves and the curtains (which means he is in OUR room at dawn now, to report “it’s dawn.”) On the agenda for today: hang the curtains!!! Once everything is placed and cleaned up I’ll post some after photos, along with photos of the plaid dresser. Yes, I said plaid. Trust me, it’s cool.

If you have any questions or comments about the room re-do please leave a note. I’d love to hear what you think so far.


renovation: big boy room inspiration

These are some of the things that inspired A’s “big boy” room renovation. Each of these things has been approved by our son. He’s especially keen on the owl lamp and the hopscotch rug!

1: Owl Table Lamp (West Elm) “Oh, Mommy, I really need this for reading”  2: Pictorial Dictionary (Chronicle) is more for me than him, I think … I love the old illustrations  3: Alphacritters mouse pad (Alexa Pulitzer for Anthropologie) has been purchased — yay! 4: Hopscotch Rug (CB2) is THE missing link to tie the room together … hoping it will go on sale soon  5: Green sand hourglass (CB2) would be awesome for helping to limit computer time  6: Grey stripe flannel pillow (CB2) would be great for the reading chair (which he also needs)  7: Cool white and steel gray metal trunks (CB2) for a secret stash of Legos  8: A picked out these pretty mercury glass knobs (Anthropologie) and I picked out no. 12 knobs (though we decided to keep the clear glass knobs he already has on his furniture).  9: Wire basket would be a perfect “jail” (aka storage) for stuffed animals (Wisteria) 10: Wire shopping basket — fun for putting the kitty in jail, A says (similar at Wisteria)  11. I love the idea of C clamps for book ends (West Elm)

1: Vintage radio (West Elm) would be nice … but I think A wants one that he can plug an iPod into, because he’s only into “music that rocks, and they don’t play music that rocks on the radio.”  2: We have a little mahogany writing desk like this one (sorry, I can’t remember where I found the photo) that we will put in his room as a “homework” desk (to be used for computer games, I’m sure) 3: Menlo lamp (Anthroplogie) is cool — but A really wants the Owl, so maybe Santa will pull through. 4: I cannot remember where I found these  vintage looking metal bins — they would be perfect for storing toys (though I may steal them and put them in my studio)  5: Zinc Letter A (Anthropologie) is the perfect accent for his room. I’ll be using lots of initials and numbers in the décor and furniture design 6: A LOVES to read. I think a cozy wing reading chair like the Ellery chair from West Elm would be sweet in his room. He picked it out himself.  7: We used this Rust-Oleum magnetic paint to apply a giant stripe on his wall. He loves it and can’t wait to start “magneting stuff.”

Progress report: the baseboards are in, the bookshelf is painted, and the bed has been put back in the room. We have to finish up the baseboards (fill the nail holes and touch up the paint), paint the dresser, and re-install the curtains.

UPDATE: I fixed the linnk to the key piece, the hopscotch rug from CB2. Thanks to everyone who let me know the link was wrong. Sorry about that!


renovation: e+j bedroom

Yes, I know we are in the middle of renovating our son's room (just purchased the flooring last night ... install to take place this weekend ... yikes!) but I just couldn't resist tackling our own bedroom as well.

As I have lamented before, our bedroom looks like the inside of a Dijon mustard jar. I love Dijon mustard, don't get me wrong. Just not on my walls. Even worse: the ceiling. I have no idea what the previous homeowners were thinking when they picked this paint. Perhaps, "this sandwich could use some mustard" was running through their mind as they sat over lunch perusing swatches. All I know is "barf" is what runs through my head every morning as I open my eyes and see this icky color.

What I would love my room to be is a restful, peaceful, calming place. The colors that do that for me are celedon, watery blues and greens of any kind, greys and taupes. I'm taking inspiration from my favorite pieces of artwork and the sea as I build the color palette for our bedroom.

Each time I go to Home Depot (which feels like every five minutes) I have the lovely paint peeps mix up a new test jar of paint for me.

So far three have made it onto the wall: 1. Light French Grey (Behr 720E-2); 2. Pensive Sky (Behr 710E-2); and 3. Sea Anemone (Martha Stewart MSL087).

The verdict: French Grey is too blue; Pensive Sky is too boring; Sea Anemone is too chalky. Looks like we're headed back to The Home Depot ...


renovation: update 

Here's a little progress report on A's bedroom renovation. We've finished all the room painting, including the magnetic paint stripe, and re-hung the surfboard.


renovation: a's "big boy" room

Our first grader has been asking for a "Big Boy Room" for more than a year now. He loves Legos, his kitty, experiments, trains, matchbox cars, computer games, and being mischevious. Two weekends ago we started the project by painting his ceiling white and the walls a medium cool grey with blue undertones.

Before: the entire room was a medium blue shade, which came with the house, and was fine for his baby-blue and white striped furniture and pale green crib.

A few things we're keeping: his white twin bed with star headboard, Ryan's surfboard, his armoire and dresser (though they will be repainted), the cute side table, and the star lantern. We're losing the gross shaggy carpet, the bleached out rug, the "baby" artwork, and the curtains.

This past weekend we finished painting the room and started on the furniture. I'll post photos soon of the progress. My favorite things so far is a big magnetic strip of paint on one wall, so A can post up favorite pictures.


bedroom design

Is it wrong to base an entire bedroom redesign around a carafe shaped like a pill? I think not. And I'm pretty sure Mr. Jonathan Adler would be pleased to hear it.

Awesome turquoise pill carafe by Jonathan Adler.


1 2 3 ... 

I really am not sure what I would store in these jars (from Target), but somehow I know I need them for my studio. I know numerals are a bit trendy right now. But I don't care. Love them!


ring me up: vintage telephones

You know how some places just have a super fun vibe about them? (Think the opposite of this blah boring boringness). Well, over the holiday weekend I went to a fantabulous party at a fellow wedding industry pal's summer beach rental. A's home has such a wonderful feeling to it. You walk in and know that there is a lot of fun going on there! I told her I felt like I was at summer camp as I oohed and ahhed over all the quirky details in the place (an open skylight in the bathroom; a fireplace in the dining room complete with rotisserie, a kitchy mural of hawaii in the basement). I fell in love with two things in particular: a giant vintage flower farm hand painted wood sign (promise next time I go over I'll bring my camera), and a bubblegum pink rotary wall phone. Got me thinking .... hmmmm ... my studio could use a vintage phone, couldn't it? I found 3 phones I like so far (still searching for that perfect one).

1. Vintage mustard yellow telephone, Ebay.   2. Vintage aqua bell rotary telephone, Ebay.   3. Vintage aqua blue wall mounted telephone,


zine love: lonny magazine

Lonny magazine keeps getting better and better. I'm happy that online magazines are filling the gap in the shelter magazine space, and Lonny is my favorite of the bunch. One of the nicest things is that an online magazine isn't really limited by space in the magazine, so they can run longer stories with more pages of photos. Here are a few of my favorite stories from the August issue:

I was thrilled to see a profile on Virginia Tupker, a stylist and home market editor at Vogue. I've bumped into Virginia many times at many many trade shows. The first time I met her I was floored by her incredible sense of style. I remember telling my mom something like "she belongs in Vogue, she is so chic" and my mom (a French woman who knows a thing or two about being chic) told me something like "darling, she works there" and then told me to turn over the business card Virginia had handed me. Every time I see Virginia at The Javits Center (not the easiest place to keep your cool) she looks amazing. But what really stands out is that she is one of the most gracious editors I've ever dealt with. Thanks, Lonny, for offering me a peek inside Virginia's world.


The cheeky style of Ben Brougham's little NYC apartment makes me want to drop in for a cocktail. Something tells me he has frozen vodka at the ready. How cool is that rope pattern wallpaper? The color combo in these shots is one of my all time favorites. One of these days I'll get a client I can convince to go for this quirky color pairing.

My favorite photograph from the issue. Ben Brougham's apartment again.


Rachel Ashwell is back! While I think I'd get bored living with Shabby Chic style all the time (I love color too much to give it up), I still think her style is iconic and inspiring. I especially love how unpretentious her look is.

Have I ever told you what my dream job would be if I weren't a graphic designer? I'd be a magazine editor. When I was a journalism student my plan was to launch my own wedding magazine, so I guess I've always had a thing for the bridal market.

All images from Lonny Magazine August 2010 issue.


love: faded & glorious candlesticks

........ oh, excuse me, I was just fantasizing about the fabulous life someone with these faded and glorious Florentine carved wood candlesticks from Restoration Hardware must have. Can't you just picture them outside, with candle wax dripped all around? A plate full of freshly made pasta with peas from the garden in your lap, a nice glass of Rosé from Provençe. A friend strums his guitar on the chair across from you. The cool breeze wafts in the scent of Jasmine and salt air ......... or the most romantic wedding ever could be styled around these candlesticks, don't you think? sigh ...........


wish list: bedding by dwell studios for target

It's a certain someone's birthday (ahem) next week, and this chic lemon yellow and grey Mandala bedding by Dwell Studios for Target is near the tippy-top of my list (along with sunglasses, a flatter stomach, a new car, and an iPad). I actually tried to buy the bedding for myself as a gift, but our local Targets seem to be out of it, and it's unavailable online. Boo. So I guess I'm not getting it. But I do love it, don't you? I think it's perfect summer bedding. Our down comforter is way too hot and it's not even June yet.



foxy wallpaper by ashley alexander 

photo: studio nommo; wallpaper design by ashley alexander for studio nommo; orange fox illustration at right by katherine brannock for delphine

I AM smitten by Ashley Alexander's (of I'm Smitten) new foxy wallpaper design for Studio Nommo. It looks great in a studio/office environment, but I think it would be equally lovely in a dining room. I'm envisioning a dining table with lots of birch candles, warm lighting, good friends, rustic wood dishes, and a steaming pot roast. And some popovers. And a bottle of yummy red wine. Mmmm. Now I'm hungry! Is it lunch time yet?


to do list: clean the studio

Normally I'm a fairly organized and tidy person. But lately it looks like a herd full of wild animals have been living in the studio. On the to do list today: clean up around here.

Red rim metal wire waste basket from Wisteria. I've got my eye on it as a wrapping paper holder, but I'm not quite sure if it's tall enough.


wish list: vintage factory furniture

uhhhh... whoops. i write this a few weeks ago and totally forgot to hit the publish button. duh...

I've always had a thing for vintage industrial and factory furniture. As a child I loved visiting my dad's office (he's an executive in the machine tool industry). My favorite part of my visit was always touring the factory floor with my dad. I even got to wear those crazy eye protection goggles and hard hats. I remember in particular a giant factory in Cincinnati, with floors and floors of dirty and grimy steel work tables, spinny stools, work boxes and bins & bins of parts. It's no wonder that my own studio has a few pieces of vintage factory furniture (including a stool from his last factory -- they were going to throw it out during a move!).

I think if I had a lot of time and a giant truck I'd love to drive around the midwest (I can only imagine all the goodies rusting away in Detroit right now) collecting this stuff. Sigh.

Stools, from Left to Right: an Ebay treasure; turner barstools, crate and barrel; backless shop stool, uline; spin barstool, crate and barrel. Bottom image, desk, chair and accessories all from Factory 20.