Time Captured

A home is created over time: layered with stories, precious pieces, memories, and lots of love. 

Oh yeah, and I want you to read this post not like I'm Puff the Magic Dragon feeding you fluffy, poetic thoughts. But like I'm your friend who's letting you in on the biggest decorating secret behind designing a good home. So listen up. 

Too often I see people rushing through buying a home, rushing an architect, builder, designer through the process, filling it up, and not being thoughtful with the design process.. 

We want things instantly. But who can blame us? Siri, find Starbucks...NOW.

We rush to pick paint colors for an entire house on a cloudy day because the contractor hounding us to have them by Monday. We plan a party and then rush to the nearest Pier1 to get dining chairs we don't even like.  I always think of what my grandmother would say in a situation like this and I am pretty sure she would kindly ask her friends if she could borrow their dining chairs for the evenings' events. Somehow in that sentence she turned into a lady of Downton Abbey but nevertheless!! Tis' better to have an empty room than a room that lacks character.

We need to be more patient and thoughtful with our homes. They cannot be instant. For a home to feel lived in it needs to evolve and unfold over time.  Most of these pieces come in the form of details and accessories- artwork, books, photographs, a bowl of seaglass your kids found on the beach one year, that one door you had painted red because you like the unexpected. The house needs to show your sense of humor, what you treasure, a gathering of all things personal. 

In my job, which is very psychological, I try to coax my clients this way and that- helping them create a canvas or a comfortable home where they can express themselves. I help select things that will be dear to them and fit the story of their home. I don't buy things that necessarily fit the mold of what I like- I look at a room full of antiques through the eyes of my client. It's a sixth sense, ok? I see dead people. Big woop.

A friend sent me an article recently that really resonated with me.

A discovered flat in Paris was found, 70 years later, untouched.... 

The owner of this apartment, Mrs. De Florian fleed the city just before the rumblings of World War II broke out in Europe. She closed up her shutters and left for the South of France, never to return to the city again. Seven decades later she passed away at the age of 91. It was only when her heirs enlisted professionals to make an inventory of the Parisian apartment she left behind, that this time capsule was finally unlocked.

"The team that had the honor of opening what must have been a very stiff old lock for the first time in 70 years, likened the experience to ‘stumbling into the castle of sleeping beauty’. The smell of dust, the cobwebs, the silence, was overwhelming; a once in a lifetime experience." *to read the full article from MessyNessyChic click here- it's fascinating

So, here's my challenge for the week. (if you're new here don't be alarmed. I've never used the term challenge and/or watched The Biggest Loser.)

Think of your home as a time capsule. Rooms that are meaningful to you and pieces that are precious to YOU and your family. For whatever reason. Not just something that looks good in a magazine. 

If these parisien time capsule discoverers (with their dashing good looks!) were to come upon your untouched home in 70 years, what would they find? Would it reflect your family and your story? What would you want them to see?


Siri, Chew on that.

*top 3 photographs above were taken by me; personal spaces that have evolved over time and that I have grown to cherish.

* would LOVE any thoughts/ comments below on your time capsule home- I know I will! 


Hello friends, 

Happy New Year!!!


 has snuck up on us.!! The new year always seems so eager-

doesn't it?

Like it's a pushy little kid in the lunch line bumping his way to the front before the cafeteria is even open.

As I look back on a wonderful but 


 2011 I am amazed by how truly fast life passes us by. 

At the close of this past year I planned to do Christmas cards, a blog post for every holiday, return all my phone calls and emails, finish up my website, and start taking pilates again but have somehow managed to not accomplish any of the above. If only I had more time... that's what I find myself saying.



Like that image from 

my last post

 time is a big ole' freight train barreling around the corner... There's no way you can outrun it- and it's not going to stop for you. But we keep wearing ourselves out trying to catch up with it.

Over the holidays my mom gave me a wonderful book called 

One Thousand Gifts

 by Ann Voskamp-

<oh and i just realized it has nesteggs on it! yippy skippy-I swear I didn't plan that.>

In the book she makes a list of 1,000 gifts- not of gifts she 


 but gifts she already 


. It's a wonderful reminder to 

be present

 and appreciate what we have 


. Gratitude for the seemingly insignificant..

"Do not disdain the small. The whole of life- even the hard- is made up of the minute parts, and if I miss the infinitesmals, I miss the whole. There is a way to live the big of giving thanks in all things. It is 


: to give thanks in this 

one small thing

. The moments will add up."

The other day I was looking through all of my iphone pics, remembering the moments I took them, and smiling. In the spirit of cherishing time and all the little beautiful details along the way here are a few gifts from 2011: 

  •  When you see your puppy on your porch swing. This one needs no further explanation. Kills me!
  • The moments where you think Gosh, I love my neighborhood.  
  • when your {anonymous} client has to crawl through her own doggie door while visiting the jobsite... 

Don't worry, I dove in soon after.

  • or when a client wants a visual of the fabric so she pretends to be the chair next to the lamp.            "Hey, look at me! I'm a chair!"
  • when you visit a new farmhouse jobsite on acres of gorgeous land ...

and the friendly neighbors summon you over to chat:

  • when you get your first signage and you send it to your dad saying "Look, Dad- I'm all growed up!"           
  • when the little girls who live down the street come over to play with Finley and leave drawings like this that melt your heart...
  • or notes like this... 
  • Photo 2
  • when your friend helps you shop at the flea market and you stumble across these chairs as if they've been waiting for you... 
  • When you set up the timer to take a family picture, run back in my seat and yell"Hurry! Everyone act like they're having a good time!!"     *click*

                                            *click* - what is happening?

  • when a light fixture you design turns out better than expected... 
  • IMG_2251
  • or a custom upholstered ottoman bench- sleek and classic: 
  • when you try to make your puppy your "new, funny best friend"...  
    • when you find one million pictures of rusty hardware in your phone because that old crap really does make you happy 
    • when your friend sends you this picture and asks where she can find some platypus babies...
    • getting to spend Thanksgiving in Princeton, NJ
    • when green grows on beautiful old buildings  
    •  when precious nephews love on you and ask if they can "go home with Aunt Rachel... Pleeeease???" 
    • when you take detours to NYC and go for a night on the town with close friends
    •  a flower by my toothbrush in the morning  
    • when a new construction project finally starts to feel lived in...
    •  when you sweet-talk a 200 lb tractor-drivin' workman to Carefully stand on a ladder like a ballerina and hold up a light fixture for you...
    • when you get to spend time with good friends over holiday break  
    • when you realize the gift of blog readers- YOU. All of you who have sent me emails or stopped to introduce yourself- it never ceases to amaze me that people are actually listening to my rambling thoughts. I'm so flattered and humbled... and proud to say I have internet friends.
    • when you begin to measure time by how fast your puppy dog is growing.. :(

    can you believe-

    Here's to a Happy, and present, 2012! 

    p.s. Everyone name a gift in your life (or something seemingly insignificant that you are grateful for), and drop it in my comment box. Just one. Something small. Just do it. :)

    The BEST before/after Makeover!.. by Eddie Ross

    Okay, maybe that's an over statement... BUT I do refer to this 'secretary makeover' ALOT. In fact, I mentioned it today. You may have seen this plenty times before, but regardless- it deserves a little more recognition.

      The extreeeemly talented Eddie Ross really hit a home run with this side project. I'm not a fan of painting EVERYTHING, but there are some pieces that are begging for a makeover. These mass produced 'secretaries', more often than not, take up space and (dare I say) aren't that pretty. 

    Oh, just wait.

    Before ...


    (boring old secretary, see it all the time)



    They replaced the glass with mirror...(genius), put it back together, and.... 



    Told ya.   Breath of fresh air...

    It reminds me a lot of the Hallings Secretary by Hickory Chair- (that I love)-


    Eddie and Jaithan are GOOD at what they do. To read the full story and to find out more about their makeover adventures, read the blog- Eddie Ross.


    Eddie said of this piece "As a collector, one thing I've learned over the years is to be fearless. Just because something'€™s antique doesn'€™t mean it's precious. Don't be afraid to alter a piece to make it your own. Strip it. Sand it. Recover it in fabric you adore. Like I said, all wood is not created equal. If a chair's lines are good but you're not in love with the finish, paint it another color and you'€™ll probably be much happier with the result. I know I am."

    AMEN, Eddie friend.

    Now who's going to grab their paint brushes??

    or if you're looking for an ugly duckling...

    In Birmingham (http://bham.craigslist.org/fuo/1949900019.html)

    In Atlanta (http://atlanta.craigslist.org/atl/fuo/1953885973.html)

    In Nashville (http://nashville.craigslist.org/fuo/1873074121.html)

    Try your city! 


    Garden & Gun

    Remember when I posted about the barn swing being the highlight of my year? Well apparently it's the gift that keeps on giving. 
    Little did I know that this special swing would find its way to the cover of a magazine. .!!?

    GG Cover
    From the second I got the news I have been speechless since.  I am beyond honored to be a part of this awesome magazine and among the list of talented southern designers and artisans. (Including my friends, Matt & Carrie, from the hippest store in Nashville- Imogene and Willie.)

    Really... Speechless.


    Full of soul and Southern charm, Garden & Gun has become one of my very favorite magazines. It's not just for Southerners! Once you pick up a copy you'll see-  It's effortlessly cool. Their writing, photography and approach to stories is so down to earth and REAL. No bells and whistles. No team of stylists. What you see is what you get.

    Haskell Harris, the {effortlessly cool} associate editor, called and said "OK, we're sending a photographer over in one week to photograph you at Ronnie's barn."

    I panicked.   "But.. what do I wear?!!"

     "Well... what do you usually wear when you go out there?" she asked.

    "Uhhh....jeans and my cowboy boots." 



    *Thanks to all of you who have sent me sweet, encouraging emails and comments. I am so very grateful.

     Garden & Gun, August/September Issue 

    Go getcha' one!!


    *Special thanks* to Haskell (read her stylin' blog!) , Ingrid, and the G&G team- y'all rock! *to Tina Adams for helping me put those jeans and cowboy boots with the right tops and accessories:),* to Hollis Bennett- the incredibly talented photographer that is responsible for these pictures, *to my encouraging and patient husband, Hoyt- for sitting there at the shoot and telling me when my hair was stuck to my lip gloss * to RD and Janine- for letting me take over your swing, and for challenging me to be the most creative I can be.  *Thanks y'all*

    MAQs.... let's try this.

    I've gotten a lot of emails and comments asking details about projects I post on the blog. I am truly flattered that you ask!! Really, I am. But since my clients pay me to come up with a plan for their home and implement the design I can't share every detail of their project on the blog. That wouldn't be fair to them. It's the tricky part of this business... and blog. 

    BUT- here's what I will do. Any time I post projects that I've done I will answer the most asked question (MAQ). I've thought about this for a while and it seems like a happy medium. 

    ***The MAQ from my last post was- what is the dark paint color of the cabinets?

    Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze.

    (It's a great color- I use it often.)

     Thanks for understanding and I really, really appreciate your encouraging comments. It means SO much to me!


    Gotta Get A Gourd

    Robert Abbey 31" Taupe Ceramic and Brass Table LampRobert Abbey 22 3/4" Lt. Green Ceramic and Silver Table LampRobert Abbey 31" Lt. Pink Ceramic and Brass Table LampRobert Abbey 31" Light Blue Ceramic and Bronze Table LampRobert Abbey 31" Oxblood Red Ceramic and Brass Table LampRobert Abbey 31" Apple Green Ceramic and Bronze Table LampRobert Abbey 22 3/4" Egg Blue Ceramic and Silver Table LampRobert Abbey 31" Bone Ceramic and Silver Table LampRobert Abbey 31" Light Blue Ceramic and Silver Table LampRobert Abbey 31" Peacock Blue Ceramic and Bronze Table LampRobert Abbey 22 3/4" Yellow Ceramic and Silver Table LampRobert Abbey 22 3/4" Dark Brown Ceramic and Bronze LampRobert Abbey 31" Light Green Ceramic and Brass Table LampRobert Abbey 31" Cinnamon Brown Ceramic and Bronze LampRobert Abbey 22 3/4" Pink Ceramic and Bronze Table Lamp

    A bright, colorful gourd lamp will update ANY room. Guaranteed. I find myself recommending them almost as often as I recommend changing a paint color.

    (The lovely ladies above are all from HERE, around $150-$200 each)

    Some other affordable ones....

    Pb gourd 105 

    a few from here , $105

    West elm gourd lamp 

     two from here, $179

     one from here, $119

    And if you are near a TJ Maxx HomeGoods store you should swing by to check see if they have any gourd lamps. Nine times out of ten you'll find an inexpensive pair. I always do. Then I pace around TJ Maxx trying to decide if I should buy them or not, finally manage to awkwardly hold them while standing in a line, get irrationally annoyed after 5 minutes of waiting, put the lamps back, and walk out frustrated and empty handed. (P.S. This is how Hoyt shops ALL the time) Anyway, don't repeat after me us. If you see some good gourd lamps, think of me and wait patiently in line. 

    And last but least $
    Picture 1
    Target one, $25 

    Get a gourd, 

    Thank me later. 


    Share your Nest

    When hearing and reading about the conditions in Haiti I feel totally helpless. 

    But there is still hope. And there are ways to help...

    I have added a list of links on the right hand side of the blog under the heading "Share Your Nest." I encourage you to click through them and consider donating to any of these organizations. 



    How great is this dining room by John Saladino?

    Honestly, I would like ANY room with that window/door in it.


    In other news...

    Picture 1
    I have been nominated for 2009 Homie Award put on by Apartment Therapy. Even though the rest of the design world has also been nominated it makes me feel very special that readers like what they see here! Thanks for being such great supporters. 

    But if you are interested in finding new, great shelter blogs you should check out all these homies! The list is FULL of inspiration.

    And if you'd like to vote for nestegg you would make my day. I know I don't really have a chance of winning considering the voting ends at the end of the day TODAY !!-the 29th- (jeez, I'm behind!)

    Anyway, If you're interested click HERE to vote. (you have to register and then add this blog as a favorite)

    And thank you!

    I'll be back soon with better posts. 

    Ok, one more pretty picture...

    another Saladino...


    images from elle decor and his website  

    Dorm Room

    I had someone email me recently about dorm rooms. She is sending her oldest daughter off to her first year in college to..... a concrete hole in the wall?


    Okay, maybe I'm being dramatic.
     A cinderblock closet.

    Believe it or not, I'm not a fan of hiring a decorator to come in and dress up your college room to the nines- it is just a dorm room and is very temporary. BUT, I do think it is important to make yourself at home and let it reflect who you are. 

    But no one wants to take a bunch of $$ from their nestegg, right?

    Two strangers are living together.
    In my experience anytime you mix girls and dorm rooms you get ------> stimulation overload! Lots of colors coming from clothes on the floor, pictures on the wall, textbooks all over the place, sharpies in every color... I mean, LOTS of color. I say this same thing to clients who want to build kid lockers in a mudroom. They want to paint it a bright, fun color but I have to remind them that everything that is going inside that child's locker is bright and fun. So don't jump the gun on colors because believe me- there will be plenty of it.
    Some people like to match with their roommate. But what if you show up and your roommate whips out Sponge-Bob-Square-Pants bedding? I, for one, think it's much more interesting (and realistic) to do your own thing and not worry about matching. After all- two totally different people are sharing a room closet. No reason to hide it...

    You don't want to go overboard but you also don't want to be boring so it's good to decorate your room in moderation. In fact, it's good to do everything in college in moderation.
    In this particular case we have a roommate that purchased a black/white bedding set with hot pink piping. I imagine it is a graphic pattern with not much pink involved.
    For me? I'll choose fairly neutral bedding and add my own bursts of color throughout. I'm not a big fan of hot pink so I'll probably not include it in my own bedding and just incorporate some black or white.
    For the bedskirt I'll probably go with this route from the bedroom makeover post- inexpensive, simple, and you can make it as long as you want. {check out the post for more information on how to make it}
    Image004  or even a lighter colored burlap: Thom-211-Natural

    with this comforter set:
    Parachute duvet west elm
    from west elm. This kind of thing is easy to wash, simple yet feminine--- and you won't get sick of it!

    I'm going to add color with my sheet selection because if I ever experience stimulation overload I can just throw my duvet cover on top and voila! all white bedding. 
    Pinstripe percale garnet 
     I'll jazz it up with these fun, pin-stripe sheets..  They come in extra long twin size too- which is what we need!

    in blue Blue

    And for the pillows I"ll choose something with a graphic pattern to add some interest-
    like these fun ones with a hint of blue in them:

    Garnet john roshawMore pillows garnet hill
    {all from garnet hill}

    PB teen has some pillows I like but the blue doesn't really go- so I'll make my own. Plus, it'll be something that no one else has. 
    Get a plain white pillow cover Cott_Poly_pillow_insert_16 , buy grosgrain ribbon that matches the blue sheets Grosgrain ribbon, and make your own box frame pillow. You can even monogram it by adding an iron-on letter in the middle. Like this-
    Don't want to make it yourself? Throw one of these blue ones on there-
    Bamboo coversZebra
    {both from pbteen}

    or if you want to tie in the roomate's black/white theme you could incorporate this pillow somehow... 
    Line orchirds pillow urbano

    So the bed is done--- and designed in a way that is even better looking when unmade! **you're welcome.
    Make every attempt to find things that are multi-functional. For example, the bed. Jack it up high and get some storage underneath there! The bedskirt will hide it so you don't need anything fancy.
    Even something as simple as this from Ikea:
    Although, I did find an even better idea- dry erase storage bins! Because, let's be honest, we can't ever make up our mind on what goes where!
    Dry erase bins

    I also thought this would be a good addition:
    Anywhere desk
    the anywhere desk from pbteen- when you're not using at as a desk you can use it as a step stool to get up on that high bed of yours... Double function!

    I'll bet $$$ that the overhead light fixture is fluorescent. Do me a favor, keep it off. Make it feel like home with a few floor lamps. There probably won't be much room for a bedside table so I would stick with floor lamps wherever possible.
    Floor lamp pb
    Except on the desk- you can have one of these adorable task lamps:
    Hi-light desk lamp
    {both lamps from pbteen}

    Usually there is a limit to how many nails you can put in the wall so you need to keep it to a minimum. This is actually a good thing because nothing makes a tiny room feel more cluttered than a bunch of small,framed pictures on the wall. Remember when you used to collage your entire bathroom with magazine tear outs of Jared Leto? (no? just me?) Well, I'll admit- it didn't look so good. For a cleaner look avoid putting up posters, collages, celebrity crush pictures, etc.  

    A way around the nail limitation is gluing framed prints together to make one larger piece of art- 
    4-6 pictures, 1 nail. Bingo.

    Like these from Ikea:
    Kort artwork ikea
    If you'd rather have pictures of family and friends above the wall get 6 of these frames, fill them with pretty pictures, (*preferably black and white in this particular room) and hang it on the wall:
    Ribba picture frame
    To tie in the burlap bedskirt we can wrap a bulletin board in that same material and prop it up on your desk area- no nail needed!
    Bulletin board staples+ Thom-211-Natural+Grosgrain ribbon
    then run that same grosgrain ribbon along the inside edge-

    To start off on a good foot with your new roomate it might be nice to make a matching one for her side of the room- different ribbon to match her bedding.


    These are the only decisions you'll probably need to make with your roomate. In other words- meet in the middle.  If you want to fool with windows I'd go with something simple like flat roman shades. For this room I would either go with plain white or a more natural material- like bamboo shades.
    White roman shadeGrass shade

    {both from Target}
    and I'd do the same kind of thing for the rug
    Natural area rug
    A jute rug with black border... it'll hold up well and go with everything.

    Don't think too hard. There are so many things to take into consideration that you will drive yourself nuts trying to piece it together before move-in day. Just remember to decorate in moderation, stick to what you like, and be nice to your roomie (even when she snuggles up in her Sponge-Bob blanket).


    Seaside Room

    I am leaving tomorrow to attend my best friends' wedding in Sea Island. I say "best friends'" in that both the bride and the groom are two of my favorite people.  Hoyt and I decided to make a mini-vacation out of it so we can hang out with our friends before the BIG DAY~!!

    Graduation 2006 065

    {katie and me}

    So, I got to thinking about Katie's wedding and the colors that will be involved...


     The bridesmaids' dresses are green- (I just asked Hoyt to describe what color green it is and he thought for a minute and said "an indescribably good green."  -- take it for what it's worth)
    Katie, of course, will be in white and carrying a white/ivory/cream bridal bouquet. The rest of the flowers will be green and white, with pops of coral! 
    I love this color scheme so much I decided to try something new...
    Have you ever visited the blog snippet & ink? Kathryn, the designer, puts together wedding collages based on a certain color schemes... and the collaborations she comes up with are so beautiful! I'm amazed by the things she puts together. (if you are planning a wedding or will be planning one in the future I recommend going to her blog for inspiration)

    This is one example her inspiration boards:

    Inspiration Board 12
    <both of the above images from snippet&ink>
    Anyway, getting to the point: 
    I have decided to reverse this unique idea and...

    Design a room based on a wedding color scheme!

    for katie :)

    Color Scheme: Whites, Neutrals, Dark/Emerald Greens, Coral
    Theme: Seaside

    <double click on the image above for the full effect>

    The Walls: Ralph Lauren's CottonWood
    Ralph lauren cottonwood th29
    The Floor: Pottery Barn jute rug
    Pottery barn jute rug

    The Furniture: Hickory Chair's Guthery Sofa with contrast green pillows
    Hickory chair guthery sofa
    Anthropologie Treasure Cabinet (to hide her new husband's TV) (You're welcome, MikeB)
    Anthropologie treasure cabinet
    Driftwood Coffee table from Pieces...
    with these coral pieces sitting on it- I don't know what they are exactly, but we are going to use them as coasters! (Katie would like that. )
    Coral coasters?
    Ballard Designs Pierson Green Console
    Ballard pierson green console
    With four of these prints hanging above it:

    The Art: 1st Dibs Vintage Shell Prints
    1st dibs shell prints
    and above the sofa- this 5'x3' painting from a SCAD student. (off of Shopscad)- unframed
    Scad painting tropical series
    The Lighting:
    Currey and Co.'s Coral Chandelier
    Currey coral chandelier

    And the pair of lamps- 1st Dibs lucite lamps (*with grass shades- see big picture of room)

    1st dibs lucite lamps

    The Windows:
    Simple, pleated curtains out of this beautiful Madeline Weinrib fabric (rotated the other way)
    Madeline weinrib
    with this Kravet trim along the leading edge:
    TA5220_903 kravet trim

    The Pillows and Accessories:

    These Madeline Weinrib ikat pillows for the sofa- (in front of green ones)
    Madeline weinrib Mor
    And if you want some extra pillows, I threw in these seahorse pillows from etsy
    Etsy seahorse pillow
    add some simple Lee Jofa tape on the sides for a bolder statement:
    Lee jofa green trim
    This fabric just made me happy- so my mind started wandering over to the (hypothetical) dining room... Perhaps we should make the drapes out of this?
    Peter dunham fabric

    With these chairs?
    Pieces red chairs
    -fabric by Peter Dunham
    -chairs from Pieces

    Okay, I'm off to pack. I've procrastinated long enough!!
    {nice color scheme ladies...}

    Mirror, Mirror on the Floor

    A few days ago I get my daily Restoration Hardware email that I usually delete upon arrival. (Yet another sale or THE LAST DAY to order outdoor furniture, and so on and so on...) But on this particular day I decided to click on the email to see what they had to say. And this little beauty popped up...
    Entablature mirror 3290
    The new Entablature Mirror- I melted...
    And then---- I saw the price.
    whopping $3,290.00 ???? Seriously Restoration Hardware? 
    So, being your trusty {nest egg} investigator, I searched for something similar with a better price tag on it:


    Ebay  for $785, free shipping** (which is fantastic when you're talking about big mirrors)
    Rustic elm floor mirror pb 599
    Rustic Floor Mirror,$699 Pottery Barn

    I found some that were not floor mirrors but they have that same architectural feel to them:
    Floral mirror wisteria 719
    Wisteria- she's on sale for $519
    Trumeau mirror vagabond
    Vagabond  Trumeau Mirror- $200  She's pretty... contact me if you are interested in this piece- or find the nearest dealer 

    Oeil de bouef mirror wisteria
    Wisteria- on sale for $299, right here.
    Wooden door mirror pb 199
    Architectural Door Mirror- on sale for $199 at Pottery Barn!
    That, my friends, is a good deal.

    Last But Least $

    This old house
    Or if you're feeling craftsy- make one yourself! This Old House has step-by-step instructions on how to make a new mirror out of old door trim. Very cool.


    Sit. Stay.

    We don't have a dog because we currently don't have a yard. Apparently these two things go hand in hand. (The picture below isn't helping much either) But don't worry- I have grown quite accustomed to waiting. I used to glue my face to the car window on road trips praying that a box of puppies would just happen to be sitting on the side of the road- awaiting my glorious rescue. But alas, I only got a handful of horrific road-kill mental pictures that are still engrained in my head. With the occasional box turtle. (sigh) One day my time will come. And in the mean time I will wait patiently,force my cat to do things only dogs do, and remind Hoyt every day that we don't have a dog and I want one. 

    Which brings up my post for the day: Stray Dog Designs

    Stray Dog Designs  is one of those companies that is after my own heart. Because of the following reasons:

    1. The front of the catalog:

    2. Based on this past week I kind of know how that dog feels (and am tempted to steal their logo with the subtext: Throw me a frickin' bone!!):

    3. (and most importantly) Their wonderful motto: *please double-click on the picture and read- you won't regret it.
    AMEN Dogma Friend!

    4. They are environmentally friendly!!! Their paper mache products are not only hand-crafted, but they are green

    5. They donate to organizations that work toward making all of our lives better. (Go to their website for more details!)

    6. They make sure their artisans and workers earn a fair living wage to support their families.

    7. And it all started with a blog, i mean DOG. (See Hoyt? Dog first.)

    8. They have adorable lamps that come in all sorts of fun colors:

    A lot of the lamps were in this years HGTV Green Home:
    And their artichoke lamp was in House Beautiful's "The Best!" section:

    9. And their stools/furniture are just as fabulous:



    10. They have a sense of humor! (you know I love that)

    jellyfish pendant... in case you were wondering.
    "What did you give your mom for mother's day?"
    "Oh.. nothing big this year. Just a giant, lime-green, paper-mache, PRAYING praying mantis... You?"

    And my personal favorite is another image I found while flipping through their catalog:
    Why not?

    I love a good laugh during the workday. Must be part of that dogma thing they were talking about:
    Sit. Stay. Wear a parrot head and pretendto read.

    11. After a good laugh, I put down my Stray Dog catalog and immediately go to LAFSpetadoption.com (a local rescue agency right down the street from me in Nashville.. I check it often. I don't know why I put myself through this torture but oh well- suffer with me?)

    Today they have this little guy.. named Vegas.

    Forget the blog... I'm goin' to Vegas.


    Dear Earth Day,

    So I had this whole post planned for your birthday, Earth Day, and I even started it last night! But today was just one of those days... 



    I will make time for my eco-friendly post tomorrow and make it up to you.

    This blogger is going to sleep!


    And The Winner Is...

    Kitchen white SAturn around and:

    For those who commented, thank you for the votes! It was interesting to see everyone's top pick. This beautiful kitchen designed by Frank Randolph caught most of your attention. 
    SO,  I know I said I would recreate it for you with cheap materials but unfortunately most of you picked the one kitchen that is beautiful because of the high ceilings, french doors, porch and back yard. Other than recommending buying a breathtaking lot and building this kitchen around it, I can't really help you recreate the essence of this one. But, since I'm feeling generous, I will disect the other features that make this kitchen drool-worthy:

    (TTN, if you will)
    1. Black and White Floors! 
    Va va voom...If your hardwoods aren't great, slap some paint on them! Well, in this case you're not exactly slapping it on there. You'll need someone with a steady hand and painter's tape. In fact, go ahead and hire someone that does faux finishing. Avoid the headache. Plus, they are looking for work right now in this Big E! They can sand it, prime it, and seal it with enough coats so that it won't chip!
    Martha Stewart Colors "French Bulldog Black"


    Bmoc17 white dove
    Benjamin Moore, OC-17 "White Dove" (or another off white color) Be sure there is some gray in it because if it is too white it will show all the dirt on your floor!

    2.Countertops: Marble, honed**
    Calcutta gold 
    Calcutta Gold Marble ($$$$)
    Venatino ($$)- (in the Carrara family, just a different variation) has the same feel as Calcutta, and half the price. 
    Both are Beautimous... 

    3. Simple Subway Tiles- biscuit or bone colored, glossy finish
    From Daltile (or any other tile place!) Very inexpensive!

    4. Painted Cabinets, Walls, & Trim (all the same color!): It's nice to do this in a kitchen where there is a lot more going on. It helps make it look cohesive, clean, understated. And not choppy! We don't do choppy 'round here!
    Farrow & Ball's "Pointing" (I'm just picking an off-white at random- there are many more beautiful paint colors out there, but I do think this one is purrrrty)

    5. Faucets: They are a key feature in this kitchen!
    I'm pretty sure the one in the photo is this little Herbeau beauty:

    Rohl kitchen faucet

    This one is by Rohl and is similar and you could find it for nearly half the price. 

    6. Little white knobs:

    White knob

    from Anthropologie! My one and only source for unique hardware.

    7. Last But Least $


    Now get to work!