Tuesday, November 16, 2010

You know when...

You haven't visited your blog in awhile when it disappears from the favorites on your Mac. Woops!
Life has been maddeningly busy for the last month, or month and a half... I've lost count. We've been putting efforts into wrapping up house projects before the gray days of winter are upon us and we're wrapping presents. Anyways, I was browsing along this rainy morning with my coffee and hand and stumbled across this funny wedding invitation I had to share...





































                  {via delightfully engaged}


It's not for me (the style, obviously not the invite!) but its cute, funny and well designed. And kudos to groom for designing it!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

I'm Loving

These curtains....

Glamour in the rough...


Ribbon Candy Cake....
{via Ruffled}

This kiss....
{source unknown}


Monday, October 11, 2010

Vintage Keys

I've got a lot to catch up on but I just got inspired to share this with you for now... I've been seeing a lot of vintage keys in decor recently, both wedding and home. A recent wedding featured on Style Me Pretty (and one which I had to physically push my jaw shut with my hand I was gaping so) had vintage keys as both seating cards and as favors for the guests. And I just stumbled across this frontpage post on vintage keys by Inspired By This.

{39 East Photography}

{Brandon Kidd Photography}

I have what would to most of you seem like a massive collection of vintage keys that I acquired when my grandfather passed away. For a long time I thought that I might incorporate them into my wedding but as each year passes I find that their sentimental value to me is now worth much more than any aesthetic value. What is truly amazing about my grandfather's collection (of which I have about 1/3) is that each key tells a little bit of his history and had we spent time over the years looking at each and everyone carefully there might be a very detailed story for each. I have two favorite pieces; one is a working padlock with key and the other is a key that extends to about six inches and folds into itself. Very cool. I'm looking for a way to further incorporate them into my home decor (maybe I'll fold and hang a few as our Bride and Groom markers on our chairs) but other than that, I don't think I could bear to part with the memory of my grandpa. 

{if this is your image, I'm sorry... I can't remember where I found it...}

I also recently acquired an old typewriter that was my maternal grandmother's... It's nice to have pieces that while old and relatively meaningless in this digital world still can serve a function in this day and age.

And yes, I did hang one of my globe lights! I was so excited and I am still so in love with it. Although the entryway is not used as an entryway that "room" is currently my favorite because of the soft color. One thing is that we need to install a dimmer as a 60-watt bulb in the thing is like a spotlight!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Droolworthy

Somehow it just seems like I can't help it: I have to post about my house. I just stumbled across these photos on Erin ever After and I'm in heaven. My only full bath can be described, at best, as gross. After we do the scraping and painting that is the first floor my bathroom is #1 priority. We're taking a sledgehammer to the thing and breaking some ceramic. Maybe I'm getting ahead of myself but that is what I really want to do.


This I love. 
 I have been brainstorming ways to turn the bathroom into an all out shower room- tiles on the ceiling and floors with drainage in the floor- but it just seems a little bit cumbersome and too modern for this old colonial. Not to mention not cheap and our current bathroom is smaller than well, lets just say its small and the space is tight. 


The other consideration is that, as much as I am daily falling in love with our house as we make it ever more ours, we both know that its probably a 5 year (max 10 year) home so we need to have a bathtub for resale. I'm not much digging on the large concrete and wood slabs but the glass enclosure with two shower heads and a clawfoot tub thrown in is awesome. 

On another note, my globe lights arrive today and I'm like a kid on Christmas Eve. 


Monday, September 27, 2010

Friday Night Impulse Purchases

I know that I'm supposed to be posting more about my wedding planning and occasionally putting in a house posting here and there... Between salmonella and trying to put my house in as tip-top order while undergoing some seriously messy projects, I've been doing not a whole lot of wedding planning... uh oh!
I have however made two awesome slight impulse purchases. The first being, I ordered these shoes from Target. I know that shoes from Target never last very long but I guess that that is what I was going for.


I have been wanting a pair of cowgirl boots but I haven't been able to commit to the purchase and these seem to be the perfect thing to test out. If I like the look and can swing the style maybe I'll commit to a more cowgirl-worthy pair.

Second, I have made a snap decision on an entryway light. I have been coveting the Globe Pendant lights from West Elm since I found out about West Elm like two years ago (yes, I might have been living under a rock). I had wanted to do the three pendant lights together as pictured in the catalog and website for our dining/kitchen area but frankly, I don't know how to splice and dice wires and it seemed just a little bit risky and perhaps a little bit of a fire hazard in our 85 year old home. I settled on our entryway which I just repainted in Ecru from Benjamin Moore and I am SO EXCITED for it to arrive.


I don't know, maybe its a tad wee bit of a boring light but I love it. And I was as thrilled to know that BR loves them just as much and wanted to put one in the upstairs hallway as well. He also jumped on the lighting train and told me that the ceiling fan in our living room (ugly, brown and fake wood) has Got-To-Go ( I could have jumped out of my seat in complete adoration and smooch him on the cheeks that is how ecstatic I was). We're going to wait out the winter months to see if having a ceiling fan is useful, as the ceiling is so high, and then we're going to either pick out a fantastic chandelier or a better ceiling fan with a light.

Friday, September 24, 2010

Photographers

When I first started on the hunt for a wedding photographer a good friend pointed me in the direction of Justin and Mary Marantz. I liked their photographs but back then I had no idea what I was looking for. I eventually contacted them- they were free on our date!- and then dropped the ball and someone else snatched them up. What was attracting me to them was that they were also married at the Branford House and that they had a lot of experience working at the venue.

This photo that I stumbled across yesterday made me breathe a big sigh... It's just so beautiful. It makes me almost want a veil (I have nearly ruled one out) and it makes me want a replication of this photo {insert BR + Me}.

All of this having been said, I am extremely excited to be working with our photographers Oh! Darling Photography. Whitney and Dustin are possibly two of the sweetest people (albeit, we've only met via Skype thus far) and I do feel like we'll be great friends *fingers crossed*. We have our engagement shoot coming up which I'm a bit nervous about (I'm not photogenic at all) and we have some major planning to do surrounding all of that!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Bright Shoes




I love how brides are adding their own tastes to the traditional. Modern times call for modern brides!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

367 Days

EEk! It's almost a year to go until my wedding... By the time my fiance and I tie the knot we will have been engaged for almost two years. The "long" engagement has been a blessing because we've had so many changes and adjustments in the last year. And I've needed the time to get excited about it. Now that I have a few ideas and things are coming together, I'm getting pretty darn excited!

{Leslee Mitchell Photography via Style Me Pretty}

I've been busy the last few weeks securing some amazing vendors, doing some planning and busily prepping the house for well, for life and there's a lot to do... I'm going to turn my focus more to pulling together wedding ideas with a house idea thrown in here and there. Sometimes I get the best inspiration for my wedding from design blogs...

{Leslie Mitchell Photography via Style Me Pretty}

This wedding is just a big sigh. The details are absolutely perfect. Nice light ambiance and a pop of color. Gorgeous bride and perfectly executed.

{Leslie Mitchell Photography via Style Me Pretty}

This is making me just giddy... Love it! 

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Fall Home Catalogs

Love, love, love these Aviator Chairs from Restoration Hardware!




















But the price point is a tad wee bit over the yard-sale-paint-diy chair redo.

Would die for this down-stuffed, almost ten foot long sofa...












Le sigh...

This bed {except for as styled in the fall Pottery Barn catalog with white curtains tied to the wood frame with semi-transparent ribbons}























And oh hey, did you see the Mason Jar lighting fixture on page 127? I believe that may have been inspired by this blog or perhaps this one too. But maybe its like the chicken and the egg... which one came first? I love that you can find how to do almost anything via the amazing skills of people out there in the blogosphere. Thank you DIY Bloggers! Perhaps I'll be able to contribute some day...

As for me, I am currently brooding and hunting for the right pendant light for our side door area/dining area/hallway. There is currently a stock brass chandelier that makes me cringe and since we just repainted the dining area Marmalade {Benjamin Moore} it makes the walls look fluorescent at night.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

P. Allen Smith

I really enjoyed this NY Times Article on P. Allen Smith. As terrible as I feel saying this, I really did not have any idea who P. Allen Smith was before stumbling across the article. As an avid subscriber of Martha Stewart, she is my go-to gal for project inspiration, recipes and etiquette advice. I like to read her Monthly calendar so I know when the appropriate times for me might be to say, air out my duvet's, prune my roses and start baking that Christmas cake. Do I follow her advice to the T? Sorry Martha! I'm not nearly as prudent as you are... It helps that she has branded herself so well and has been able to apply the Martha Stewart name to so many everyday goods and objects. Whether you like her designs all of the time, or not, you know you are getting an aesthetically minded object when you purchase her goods. Okay, enough of Martha- for now. P. Allen Smith's gardens are beautiful, his home is really the "everyman's" home, and can I tell you how much I just love fans on a porch? Of course you can really only have that in the South... I've always felt a Southerner at heart. I am absolutely drooling over his outdoor bathing area.
{photo credits: Robert Rausch for The New York Times}

Spending a good amount of time on the shoreline I understand perfectly the concept of the outdoor shower, but an outdoor bath to soak, relax and (privately!) enjoy the out of doors just seems like a dream.

And I love the lighting in this kitchen... has me giddy.


{photo credits: Robert Rausch for The New York Times}

By the way, did anyone else think that the September issue of Martha Stewart Living was lackluster? Martha looked A-mazing on the cover (maybe too good?) but the rest seemed kind of... meh. I did appreciate that Swans Island Blankets, beautiful, homespun wool blankets from an island I grew up going to off the coast of Maine and one which my family still frequents, got a nod on page 46 but the rest was kind of dull and maybe a bit redundant? 

Monday, August 16, 2010

Happy Monday

It's a dreary day here in New England so I thought I'd leave you with a beautiful day in England...

{copyright a kiss on the cheek}

Friday, August 13, 2010

John Derian for Target

I 'm loving these silhouette plates by John Derian for Target collection.
Images via {nitrolicious}


They could serve nicely as special plates for the bride and groom at their table during the reception or they could just be a fun wedding present! The collection goes on sale on September 5th and I'm loving the Target price tag.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Pretty Things

I wish I had all of the pretty things that French Larkspur has...


Aren't her pictures just so refreshing? 


     
         {all pictures via frenchlarkspur}

I want all of it in my home. If I came home to these beautiful rooms everyday I would feel so at peace. 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

HAVE I BITTEN OFF MORE THAN I CAN CHEW?

The other day, I suddenly felt so unbelievably overwhelmed that I didn't know what to do. So I sat down and started making a list and I started an excel spreadsheet for, you guessed it, my wedding. Quite by surprise, I started to feel better. I started to think that "No, I don't actually need to hire that wedding planner who is so awesomely fantastically perfect that I haven't even inquired how much they cost because I so much want to have them help me group all of my silly insane ideas for a wedding into one cohesive unit that makes sense." I did- I started to feel that way.
I also started to feel that way because the wedding dress that so far looks the best of any I have yet to try on is *gulp* $2000 more expensive than I was thinking I was going to spend. And with alterations running another *BIG GULP* $300 to $500 dollars, I really have no room for hiring people to do anything- not even a plumber to fix my leaky kitchen sink. I started to feel almost as good as when Paul McCartney calls you up to headline for him on your tour. Okay, maybe not that good.
But then, the next day, and frankly today, while staring at the shingle-style cupboard door that I was attempting to strip from the decades of people not caring and simply layering paint upon paint upon paint, I felt like perhaps I actually have bitten off more than I can chew.
I have a dream of attending some important graduate school that will help me achieve all the career and family goals in my life and for which I am trying to study for my entrance exams, I have a new-to-me house that is currently undergoing some aesthetic and superficial changes and I have a wonderful fiance with whom I am trying to plan a wedding. And we're doing all of this on a shoestring budget- like, a 2008 Recession era budget. I try to not get too overwhelmed but sometimes I just can't help it. As many spreadsheets as there are that I can create, I just can't create one that will create a lovely pivot table of my emotions. Not possible.
This doesn't happen that often to me. I'm always "if there's a way, I'll find it." Rarely does it happen that twice in less than a week I start to think that perhaps I've really taken upon myself too many tasks. So I don't know world, you tell me.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Worst Marketing Campaign Ever

Burritos are a new thing for me. In fact, I've probably only been eating burritos for about 1.5 years. Crazy, I know. Here's the thing: I can't eat beans. None of those squishy squashy, twice cooked, turn into mush in my mouth beans can go in this body of mine without me feeling as though I were a black bear in need of some serious hibernation. They just don't go with me. Well, little was I aware that burritos were also evolving into the gourmet realm along with every other food out there... A few adjustments here and there and I had discovered that I was fast joining the cult of the burrito snob. 
Having been recently removed to suburbia, I have not consumed a burrito for almost 8 months. The town next to us recently got themselves a Chipotle, so we decided to try it out. Well, the burritos were mediocre, the state had already taken away their liquor license and their marketing campaign to elaborate on how Chipotle sources their food locally was quite frankly, the worst thing out there. 



Don't try to make "local sourcing" cute. It panders to the complete morons who go in there (like the lady next to me in line who made a scene when she accused the one minority looking burrito maker of "not being able to speak english" and thus messing up her order when in fact she had failed to differentiate between beef and braised beef). What really peeves me about this marketing campaign is that it is in the voice of a farmer who apparently truly believes that his lettuce can call home, email or text message. And then the farmer apparently thinks that Chipotle is taking care of the lettuce. C'mon! I'm eating that lettuce! I'm certainly not taking care of it. I'm pressing that stuff firmly into a burrito along with a variety of foods and then that lettuce is going into my digestive tract. There is nothing cute about that. But what really frustrates me is the pandering to a generation of uninformed consumers about local sourcing. 

Why isn't it possible to speak about how sourcing your products from local farms is actually: 
1. Good for the local economy
2. Good for your health as they *theoretically* have to utilize less pesticides and preservatives when they don't have to transport your food so far. 
3. Able to drive awareness of goods and services closer to home
4. Much tastier. 
5. Promoting sustainable land management.  

I don't know I'm sure that there are a bajillion more things that are good about local sourcing but those are the ones I could think of off the top off my head.

C'mon Chipotle, we're not all idiots. 


Thursday, July 15, 2010

What I Learned Today

Today I learned that if I were by some stroke of sheer idiocy stuck in my freshly painted sunroom with the windows being my only avenue of escape, I would be a goner. See, one of the things I love about older houses are that you can paint the windows! One of the things that I hate about older houses? Painting windows... They look so lovely and crisp freshly painted, and then you have to open them.





















I also learned that I love Frog Tape. The sunroom is floor to ceiling wainscoting and I can guarantee that I would not have achieved the same result if I used regular blue painters tape. Do you remember when all that we used to use was masking tape? And then the invention of the blue painters tape? And now Frog Tape. What will they think of next?! One of the many things that I love about Frog Tape is that it's the same price (!!!) as good old blue tape at my local Lowe's, or at least I think it is. Well, ignorance is bliss.

After:





















It's not complete, but is a much needed improvement from the caution tape yellow. The hubs picked the color out and I'm really hoping that on dreary New England days when I curl up in a chair in this room that it won't feel so much like the summer will never come back.  If it weren't for the sheer gaudiness of "Living in Palm Springs," I might make this into the Palm Springs themed-room because that would scream Boca Raton! 


***Forgive the iPhone pictures! After almost blowing a gasket opening the windows I decided I was just too tired to use my digital.



Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Room with a view

It might just start to be time to start unveiling my first room makeover in our new house. It's been a little crazy here trying to purchase and re-make our first home, plan a wedding, work our full-time jobs, stay on top of our "social" calendar and have sufficient time to connect to each other. That being said, we are about 80% complete in our first total paint-redux, complete with replacing broken windows and oodles of priming.

Before:



















This is what the room looked like while touring the home. I can't really believe that you would show the house with a room looking this disastrous but it was obvious that this was their "dumping" room. It was so full of the former homeowners' belongings that we had a very happy surprise when we went on our final house tour and realized the size of this room! What was going to be my home-office is now going to be re-purposed as our Sunday morning paper + coffee nook.
More to come!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Sailboat Ties

The wedding planning recently got a kick-start with the discovery of my love of monkey knots.



I know, I know... strange. What ended up happening was I started looking at how to make my own monkey-knot doorstop, stumbled across the previously mentioned "Know Your Knots" kit, realized that my venue was seaside, and the rest is history in the making. How do the Sailboat Ties come into question, you say?
Well, this weekend I was down in the little town where I spend most of my weekends of the summer and I happened to be taking a different route home from the usual one due to a real-live fire!

Let me interject by saying of course that fires are no good for a multitude of reasons but in the little seaside community where I spend my summertime (due to the complete and unencumbered generosity of my future-in-laws might I add) NOTHING ever happens! But of course, the overpaid and underworked policemen race around as though they are Chicken Little (or any other variety of dooms-dayers) putting their sirens on for almost anything and causing a stink about absolutely nothing. So this time when I heard sirens, I thought nothing of it until I saw the fire, and then believed that the cops, namely one chief, was finally utilizing the enormously large salaries they receive from this little enclave. Okay, okay, back to the tie.

It was fabulous. It was perhaps older, but still absolutely perfect. And unfortunately, I didn't have quite enough gumption to jump out of my car to ask this elderly gentleman if I could take a picture of his tie while he was strolling with his lovely wife on the way to a cocktail party. And for that, I could kick myself for I have not been able to find another one like it. The tie is only in my mind now (well also in that gentleman's closet) so I have to try replicate the image in before it gets all wishy-washy and I end up thinking it looks like this:


Which it does not. This is tacky. The tie I'm drooling over....it's so lovely. With big sails billowing in the wind, a blue ocean and the huge numbers 91 on the sails in red. It was of that which dreams have been made.

Although this tie would also be really cool with far fewer birds (3-5) silkscreened on it in a much different color.


I'm so sad, I'm not certain that I'm ever going to find the tie again! I'll have to keep on looking. And of course, start stalking the other area of town where I seldom drive to see if I see this gentleman wearing his necktie again.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Best Proposal Ever!




How unbelievably cute is this proposal?!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sarah Seven

I have a serious love of Sarah Seven's designs. I would love to have my bridesmaids decked out in Sarah Seven but its a bit more than I am willing to ask my attendants to spend on wedding outfits.




I love the look of coordinating outfits- similar color schemes, similar themes, similar textures-  versus matching outfits.




All images via {Sarah Seven}

Friday, June 18, 2010

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Beautiful DIY Wedding with Vintage Flair

I love love love this wedding... 




It has all the weddings of a modern wedding with vintage touches... And it has all the things that I love.


Ecru dresses with texture and individuality? Check!
Gray suits? Check!


Adorable flower girls in fluffy tutus? 
And peonies in her bouquet... 





















all images via Style Me Pretty 


Friday, April 16, 2010

Blue Door



I love a blue front door.






It's the only thing I've been able to decide upon.






Ever since I stumbled upon this picture I knew I would never compromise.






I'm certain that the want for blue doors is something that was engrained in me since I was a young girl touring the National Trust houses in England. 






And watching A Year in Provence with its gorgeous Provencal blue. 




It just makes me feel so alive.






So welcomed.