Hi to you from Seattle. It’s the month of my annual summer road trip get-away. Every year, same time, same place and – hopefully I can say this without jinxing myself – the weather is always gorgeous. Seattle is my childhood home town I suppose you could say. Where I spent my ‘formative’ years from ages 9-17. Where’d that expression come from – the formative years? I did most of my forming in the last five! Anyway, Seattle sure has changed. Software, technology and Amazon have radically altered the socio-economic landscape. There is a new wide-spread prosperity as well as all the trappings that go along with, that was not as prevalent when I was growing up. Seattle used to be a funky, pedestrian, sort of bohemian but also sort of Nordic city. Now it’s hard to put my finger on what Seattle is – what the real personality of this town is. It seems to be more focused on what it is not…
In the next post, I’ll share photos and places that might be of interest to you should you find yourself in the Puget Sound area. In the meantime, feel free to visit me on Insta.
Sending you lots of love wherever you are,
What is it about attics that is so captivating? In books and movies, attics are always the location of something dramatic, romantic and ethereal. There’s a dreamy mysteriousness about them. Perhaps because they hold memories, spirits and often a lifetime of treasures. If there’s any truth to the notion that spaces take on the souls of their inhabitants (and I do believe they do), then attics are the heart center. I’ve never lived in a house with a real attic so naturally, that makes them even more intriguing. I once stayed in a a cabin with an attic that had been turned into a sleeping loft for the owners granddaughters. How my younger self would have loved sleeping there…
I’ve been pinning images ever since. Here are some I’d like to share with you.
Maybe it’s because Lily and I are headed out-of-town for a week of skiing in a few days (I can’t wait!!!), but all I can think about are cabins. Truth be told, I started fantasizing about them this past summer – lake cabins in particular – and the ever-so-slight departure I noticed away from the farmhouse/barn design trend of the past 5+ years. I still firmly believe in the permanence of this style and love it (obviously) but if I were to spot an aesthetic trend in interior design emerging, I would say that ‘cabin chic’ might be next. Just a prediction 🙂
On an administrative note: There are still a few tweaks, additions and modifications to the site in progress, I’m working diligently on fixing them with the help of Luke over the phone from college when he’s available, Our highly skilled and efficient tech department is on it! and you will see improvements made in the days to come. Thank you for your patience.
ps – ski trip photos will be on Instagram!
Notice the double sets of doors. I have been seeing this done quite a bit lately and think it’s just brilliant. It allows for privacy and weather protection when you want, light and openness when you prefer that.
I would love to know more about that counter piece on the left… It looks like it’s a vintage piece of furniture and melds beautifully with the other elements in the room. Sometimes clients are apprehensive about mixing woods. This is a great example of how well it works and is actually better than having all the wood match exactly. It looks like there are five wood components to this space and they’re all different.
What a nice place to read or take a nap.
I really like the gallery wall but what caught my eye is the painted shiplap. Typically we see it in white, and in cabins wood-paneled walls are often kept natural, but painting one in a rich gray to create a focal wall I think compliments all the other wood details in the space beautifully.
I want to be right here! Doesn’t this room draw you in? Especially in a vacation/second home environment where family members and friends are likely to gather, a comfortable seating arrangement to pile into is so inviting.
Stacks of blankets and pillows are decor by themselves.
The cabin essentials kit:
Faux fur blankets – can’t have enough of these lying around. From here.
Recent updates to my house and missing David Bowie.
Hi sweet people. I wrote this post about a month ago, right before I thought I lost all of my photos and was having computer issues. Other than omitting the part about the bad weather we were experiencing at the time, and where I riffied on about how I've made yoga and meditation a lifestyle rather than a part-time hobby, I didn't change anything…
The passing of David Bowie this week hit me hard. His music was the soundtrack to my youth as I'm sure the same is true for many. I was with my Dad when he got the news that John Lennon had been shot. He sat down, covered his eyes with his hand and began to sob. At the time, I felt so awkward. An Ivy League graduate, college football linebacker and Korean War Veteran crying over the death of a musician… I get it now.
To the Thin White Duke…thank you.
Speaking of changes, I've been making some around the house lately. What do you think?
I went back and forth – modern or traditional for the dining room light fixture. As you can see, I finally decided on a traditional chandelier. The chairs and table are all modern, so to balance them out I decided a chandelier would be perfect. A mix of both old and new is what I strive for. I love how sparkly it is at night too.
I bought this early American table at an estate sale a few years ago thinking I would sell it. I don't know why I fell so hard for it, but I absolutely love it and cannot part with it. It bounced around the house in different spots, usually to fill a temporary hole, but I think it found a permanent place under this Hiro Yokose painting.
I wanted a table for next to this acrylic chair from the 70's that I found on Ebay (for $100!) but it had to be simple yet substantial. I opted for a petrified wood stump from here.
See that french daybed in the back? I've had that piece for awhile and am not sure what to do with it. I moved it to the above location around Christmastime when I needed to make room for the tree. I'd like to remake the mattress more like this and make big fat bolsters in a contrasting color like dark + light gray or brown + natural linen. I'm still deciding…. We'll see.
So now there's this big open space at the top of the entryway stairs and between the living and dining rooms where the daybed was… A round table would work, but it's not that practical and I don't want a formal feel. So, I'm thinking of a small 'conversational cluster'. I'm considering moving the coffee table from the living room (above) and adding 4 modern chairs. Ideas?
Hi to you! Things have been quite hectic around here lately! All good I'm happy to say. More later… As a follow-up to my last post - Donna's house sold right away! Yay!
I recently received the following email from a reader:
I love a simple white bed: just a duvet and a fitted sheet with wonderful pillows. I usually buy Pottery Barn sheets, but would like to indulge in something more luxurious without breaking the bank. Which brands do you suggest?
PS In your opinion, on a king-sized bed, what is the best pillow combination for reading/sleeping? I'm not a fan of a thousand decorative pillows. Thanks!
Here is my response:
I love Percale sheets vs Sateen or any other material. If you like the 'crisp sheet' feeling, that is Percale. I'm with you on white sheets and bedding. My go-to is Bed Bath & Beyond for a 300+ thread count sheet. There are many other high end brands – Matouk, Leontine Linens, Frette that are gorgeous and luxurious but come with a price tag to match.
As far as pillows, go with 3 Euro shams, 2 king pillows and 2 standards. If you want to add a decorative lumbar pillow or bolster with a little color – pale blue, or pink or natural linen are my favorites – that is all you need!
Thanks so much for the email and kind words! Hope this helps!
This email exchange was well timed, since I was awaiting the delivery of my new mattress – a King – and in need of new bedding myself!
It was interesting to note that the selection of Percale sheets was substantially smaller than that of Sateen at Bed, Bath & Beyond. I was told by the sales person that Sateen sheets are 'all year' sheets, thus preferred by many because they only need one set. Living in a mostly warm climate, I prefer Percale for the crisp factor and flannel for the few colder months.
The only thing I would add to my email, is that the type of cotton is extremely important. I remembered this when I was sheet shopping. Look for Egyptian Cotton and a 300+ thread count.
Here is my new bed. Got a little fancy with my photo taking and styling.
I still need a new duvet and a replacement for this quilt which I love but it's a queen! I got it only a few months ago before I got the crazy idea that I needed a king size bed!
After seeing some of the following gorgeous beds, I think I might have to save up and splurge.
Hi and happy Monday! I don't know what it is about the transition from summer to fall, but no matter how prepared I think I am, it always comes on like a speeding train. In addition to buckling up for school, sports and extra curricular activities, my son, Luke will be graduating from high school this year, so we are in the throes of the college application process too. Those of you who have already been there can attest, there is a bittersweet note to this senior year. Yes, it's very rewarding to watch your child take the leap, but it's also really hard to think about all the 'lasts', since as mother's, so much of what we hold onto are all of the 'first's'… Being of the overly sentimental variety, I have to catch myself from going overboard. "It's the last time you will be home for the first full moon of September!!!" or "You must give me a hug goodbye every morning before you leave for school!" And because he has reached that stage where he's ready to leave the nest, he humors his mom and obliges… Most of the time.
So, where am I in the decorating process you ask? Right now I'm deciding on furniture for my bedroom and have been perusing my file of inspiration photos.
My master bedroom has windows on each side of the bed, so many of the photos I've collected have that configuration too.
Symmetry is very appealing visually. I prefer it when lamps match and bedside tables are switched up.
I love the prints in the room above and how they all work together without competing.
I adore everything about the room above.
Erin Martin designed this warm and inviting room.
The antique bed with crisp white sheets and plaid wool blanket is heavenly.
Jennifer Anniston's bedroom via Hooked on Houses
Howard Backen via Architectural Digest
I have always loved four poster beds.
This room was designed by Will Wyck for the San Francsisco Decorator's Showcase several years ago. It was even more spectacular in real life…
Hi to you…First I want to say, as I often to do, thank you to each and everyone who reads this blog. I cannot express the sheer amazement and pleasure it gives me to know that so many people actually read it and even better, like it and find it inspiring. I appreciate your understanding during my recent hiatus…. I've missed you. It's so good to be back.
A little background for those just tuning in… My daughter Lily is 14 and has had the same bedroom furniture since she went from a crib to a bed. She was long overdue for a room makeover, so I decided to surprise her (actually she weighed in on most decisions) while she was away at camp. The big reveal was HGTV worthy -complete with jumping, squeals, etc. Needless to say she loves it and the added bonus – she has actually kept it tidy so far!
The color scheme before was lavender. Her beds were a purchase from ebay from years ago. I bought one bed and when I went to pick it up, the bidder on another bed never showed, so I scored both! Lily was a toddler and still quite content in her crib, but I loved them and figured someday soon she would be ready. The seller had shabby chic'd them, as you can see below.
I painted the beds gray (I didn't actually do the painting, but you knew that :-). I will look up the color and give it to you in a later post. Incidently, a reader emailed me recently requesting my favorite shade of gray. I realized as I walked through my house counting all the things I had painted in various shades of gray, that it is hard to pick just one!
When we were under construction and replacing all the windows in the house, I had the window in Lily's room moved from off to the left to where it is above – centered in between the two beds.
The nightstand and matching desk are available through the trade. They are sold in many home furnishing stores around the country. If you are interested in purchasing click here.
The nightstand and desk came with different pulls – brass, circular and rather large. They didn't work with the feel of Lily's new room, so we bought these pretty glass knobs at Anthropolgie. Click here for the link.
I had a pair of these lamps from Z Gallerie. We replaced the lampshade with this gray one.
The fabric is by Clarke & Clarke. Click here for the link. Lily wanted the colors in her room to match her bathroom, see it here, so once we found this fabric that has grays and dark pinks, the rest of the accessories became easy to find.
We used it for Roman shades and pillow shams.
Floating shelves, gray storage box and pink desk organizer are from here.
Hi, and welcome! I’m so glad you landed here and I hope you find this to be a place you visit often.
I started this blog in 2008 as a way to chronicle the remodeling of our nondescript Northern California house into our dream home. While that did happen, so did a lot of other things - life and all the messy, glorious, complicated, wonderful things that go with it. As such, in early 2017 I decided to change the focus from the house itself to the life that happens inside.
My wish is that this blog provides beautiful inspiration, creative ideas, connections to other like-minded folks, as well as stylish products for your home, to wear and to give.