Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Alabaster Crush

Here of late (don't ask me why) but I'm crazy about alabaster.  I can't get over how beautiful it is.  This quarried stone can be costly, but I've been lucky enough to run across some pieces that were perfectly imperfect ~ making them more affordable.  Here are a few of my favorites.  

The alabaster bowl (above) stands lovely by itself but I also use it for a fruit bowl. 

In spite of their imperfections (although unnoticeable in these photos) I still find the alabaster pieces to be stunning.  This photo says calm and serene to me.  

I use the rectangular box to hold Q-tips and the ashtray is an ideal ring or bracelet holder.  The exquisite necklace was a gift from my sweet friend Tara ~ see more of her amazing work here and the fabulous bracelet was made by my friend Gloria ~ check out more of her unique creations here.  

The candle holder above came from the thrift store for a couple of bucks.  It seemed oddly appropriate that I pair it with this pear candle that I found on clearance here.

I'm on the search for more pretty alabaster finds.  Wishful thinking...I hope to find a couple of vintage lamps...someday. :)

Just an FYI ~ I've had a little hiccup with my camera (the one I usually shoot photos for the blog with).  The shutter hasn't been opening all the way.  So, it had to be shipped off to New York for repair.  The pics today, were with my iPhone.  All things considering, I think they turned out pretty good.

I hope to see you back here soon.  Have a super week!  :) Dana

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Around Reagan's Home

Today's pics provide a peek into Reagan's (my oldest son) house.  I think it's an ideal Austin home.  There's lots to love...light and space and great design.  Reagan and I recently worked together to make this house a home.  Below are a few photos. 

The Entryway//Bright and Spacious
The choice to layer the mirrors horizontally was inspired by the front door design (see photo below) and helps visually expand the foyer.

Reagan's bike rests here ~ ready to grab in a jiff when he decides to take a spin.

Truly vintage + Modern
The vintage light up globe is a favorite of Reagan's.  It's usually lit and serves as a night light ~ so one can carefully navigate his way to the kitchen for a midnight snack. We found the modern table here

The main living space continues to echo the mid-century modern vibe that Reagan loves. The assembly of the chairs was a joint effort ~ we couldn't have done it without the help of Reagan's roommate, Chris and friends, Amanda and Brandy.

Coffee//Tea Bar
 When it came to the beverage area, Reagan and I knew we would be making a trip here.  We scored the stainless shelf as well as the mugs and glassware.

Wood//Chrome//A Dose of Orange
Accent lighting, an interesting clock and a colorful tray complete the bar area.

The mid-century modern table is the most recent addition to the living room.  The penguins add a touch of whimsy and the orange and white chevron pillows (made by a friend) add color.

Stainless Steel Numbers//Art
Reagan and I painstakingly hung the stainless numbers above.  I think they are definitely one of our favorite art elements.

Brown Leather//Geometric Pillow//Accents of White and Green
The surprise makeover in the room above was the white lacquered lamp.  In it's former life the lamp was a worn shade of black and sported an ailing lampshade.  It was in such bad shape, we considered pitching it altogether.  Once again, it goes to show what a couple coats of high gloss white paint and a new shade will do ~ the lamp was totally transformed.  :)

 A Pop of Green//Vintage Tray
Accessories help make this room a cozy spot.  When we found the fun green lamp, I think I made a believer out of Reagan and convinced him that it is possible to find some treasures here.  We found the vintage ashtray from here.

Reagan had a Murphy bed installed in the room above allowing the room to be multifunctional.  It serves as a media room and a guest room as well. 

Landing//Vintage Massage Chair ~ Perfect
The massage chair has traveled with Reagan from previous homes ~ it seemed only fitting to spotlight it here.

A lot of TLC and helping hands went into making Reagan's house a home ~ for days we worked until the wee hours of the night.  In the end it was a wonderful trip down to Austin ~ thanks Reagan for our time spent together and for letting me feature your home...love Mom.

Before I go, I'm excited to tell you that the article about my home recently went live on Houzz.  A great big shout out and thank you to my new friend, Sarah Greenman for her beautiful write-up and photos.  Be sure to hop on over here to take a look.  Bye for now ~Dana

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Zinc Number Stencils / Magnet DIY

It seems I'm always running across something that I want to rebirth as creative note, memorabilia or photo holders.  This time around, I'm turning vintage french zinc number stencils into wonderful, utilitarian magnets.  You know the drill ~ as seen in similar posts here and here but in case you've not read about it on previous posts, here are a few supplies you will need. 

  • E6000 Glue
  • Magnets 
  • Item of Choice to be magnetized.  You can find similar reproduction zinc stencils here

Directions ~

Apply a little dab of E6000 to the back of the magnet and affix to zinc stencil.  Allow several hours for the glue to dry and you'll have yourself a new set of magnets in no time.   

A little side note ~ the boy and girl standing outside the house in the above pic are my oldest brother, Charlie, and myself (a few years ago :). 

Before I say bye, I have some exciting news to share.  Recently, I had the honor of having Sarah Greenman from HOUZZ, pop over to do a photo shoot of my home.  The photos and feature will be going live soon.  I'll keep you posted and share the link when it does. In the meantime, you can catch a sneak peek over on Sarah's beautiful and inspiring blog ~ La Maison Boheme.

Have a lovely week and be sure to share a hug or kiss on Valentine's Day!  XO ~ Dana

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Wine Bottle Candle Holders / DIY

I love simple and low cost decorating ideas.  Here's a super easy idea that gives you the best of both worlds.  I was needing an interesting centerpiece for an event.  I thought I would use wine bottles as candle holders for my table.

I've always loved the rich green color of the bottles and their silhouette shape.  Plus ~ they're pretty easy to come by.  I sent out a request for empty wine bottles and had more than I needed in no time.

To ready the bottles for the project, simply soak the bottles in sudsy water causing the label to loosen. You will need to scrub any remaining residue off with a scrubby sponge and/or a razor blade.

When it came to finding tapers for the wine bottles, I had no idea it would be so difficult.  I searched high and low for ones that would fit the mouths of the bottles but to no avail.  So, I tried shaving down the bottoms of standard tapers so they would fit the bottles correctly but it was time consuming and tedious.

Then out of frustration, I discovered I could just pop a taper in upside down (the smaller end pointed down into the bottle) and each taper would fit perfectly, no matter the size of the bottle.

By melting down the the top of the taper and exposing the wick (this is actually the bottom of the taper) my problem was solved.  

Be sure to do this over a protective surface since you are using a live flame.  I covered a cookie sheet in foil to make clean-up a breeze.

I lined up a whole menagerie of the bottles on my dining table and then used some zinc stenciled letters I had to spell out a sentiment ~ appropriately enough "Be Mine" since Valentine's Day is just around the corner.

The letters above are by Aiden Gray.  I was fortunate to find a whole bag of them at at thrift sale for next to nothing.  In their place you could easily use paper stencils tied on with string or round key tags.  Either could be customized with stamps or hand lettering to spell out a word or greeting.

Thanks for stopping by ~ I hope to see you again here soon.

:) Dana

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