When I was 3, I learned how to sew by hand from a chipboard doll that was pre-drilled with holes along her edges. She came with a large yellow plastic needle, a selection of yarn colors and several sturdy cardboard outfits that could be sewn onto her body.
She must have been the latest and greatest toy, because I obtained 3 as gifts that year. I received one for my birthday in August and two others, 4 months later, at Christmas! That’s when, in addition to learning how to sew, I learned that it is impolite to tell the giver of a gift that you love it and are so happy because you already have two just like it!
A Stack of Summer Fabrics
Part 2 ~ So Cal Garden Tour:
This O.C. house is quintessential So Cal to me. It’s a classic soft white stucco Mediterranean with a clay tile roof. The garden, designed by Valerie of The Home and Garden Stylist, is in keeping with Mediterranean and droughtscape influences. The front yard is planted with Olive Trees, Italian Cypress and Rosemary Bushes that thrive in the climate. The tidy Boxwood hedges survive with little water, once established and so do the Roses.
This So Cal front garden takes its cues from the Mediterranean.
Vignette: A Brief, But Powerful Scene
Valerie has an exceptional talent and love for arranging accessories into beautiful displays. Her design firm used to be called Vignettes of Refinement, but the word vignettes confused too many people. I love vocabulary.com’s definition of VIGNETTE: A brief, but powerful scene.
Eventually, to simplify things, she changed her firm’s name to The Home and Garden Stylist. The name change has made life easier and it still implies her ability to create order out of unwieldy accessories and collections. The following photos of displays, designed by Val, illustrate how to attract the eye with effective vignettes.
Corralling porcelain trinkets together on a porcelain tray, rather than each trinket sitting alone, creates an organized and cohesive collection that attracts the eye.
Part 1 ~ So Cal Garden Tour:
I lived in Santa Barbara in 1990 when the drought was so dire. People who wanted green lawns had to paint them or, in cases of extreme wealth, they would import truck loads of water from some far away land.
Southern California is once again facing a dire drought, but in the decades since the 90s nearly every gardener has traded in their water loving plants for drought tolerant choices. In the beginning, gardeners were concerned that they would lose the ability to play textures and colors off of each other and still have lush gardens, but they seem to have adapted.
Birdcage Planter filled with Broken Glass and Succulents and a Downlight Wired for Illumination
The following brushes are my favorites (my essentials) for making makeup application easy:
This is Paula Dorf’s Cheek Cream Brush, I use it for foundation.
If you are afraid to paint perfectly good wood furniture, reconsider!
The following photos illustrate how good quality stained wood furniture can go from boring to beautiful in a matter of hours.
In my work as a decorator, I occasionally cross paths with clients who want light bright and airy interiors, but they are held back by their drab wood grained furniture and cabinetry.
You know the saying, “The cobbler’s children have no shoes“? That’s sort of me when it comes to decorating and tidiness. I help my clients create beautiful homes while I will turn a blind eye to my own home’s decorating issues. The photo, two photos below, is proof of my bad behavior!
If you refer to me as a florist, I may look around to see whom you are talking to. I see myself as a successful Southern California decorator who, in addition, happens to run a thriving floral design business.
I am showing you photos from one of my recent projects to help spark your creativity. Between flowers and friends, we can make this world a brighter place! Are you ready?
While I was giving my make-up brushes a much overdue washing this morning, I realized I musn’t be the only one who mistreats her brushes.
If you are like me, and haven’t cleaned your makeup brushes in a while, let me encourage you by giving you 4 solid reasons you should:
From the time I was in grade school I was drawing floor plans for my bedroom, for forts in the woods and for future dream houses. In high school, I excelled through 4 years of drafting and architecture classes (I was one of only two girls to make it to the end).
When I go into a less than beautiful home or building, I see all of the possibilities. I recognize this as a great gift and a slight curse; we have lived in more construction zones than I can count because of this!
Our last home in Southern California was the sweetest 1920s historic home. It was in rough shape when we bought it, but it had heart and soul. The downstairs bathroom had a large hole in the floor and a strange asbestos stack leading to nowhere.
When it came to redesigning, I made every effort to create a plan that would be handicap accessible for our niece and for anyone who in the future might have physical limitations.
36″ doorways and a flush shower threshold for ease of accessibility