Monday, November 30, 2009

When I came across this arrangement of roses....

It was a combination of the "just-the-right-color-pink" accompanied by the improvised mercury glass vase that almost prompted me to re-think my choice of favorite flower.

Undeniably the rose holds its praiseworthy place in my top five but it's the hydrangea that captures top honors....most especially what I wistfully refer to as the "Cape Cod Blue" hydrangea. They're picture perfect against the backdrop of a shingled cape house - weathered and gray- boasting cottage white shutters, a seashell laden driveway and a plush green lawn. Toss in a white picket fence with an arched garden gate and I'd say "heaven on earth".

Saturday, November 28, 2009

First time guests commonly ask me......

"What's with the rocks?" And before I have a chance to answer, my husband pipes up with "They're part of the effect!" And he's right, they are....they're part of the ocean effect I so covet. What strikes me funny though is that my husband takes great relish in answering the anticipated question, as if it were his decorating brain child. I guess he surreptitiously likes the rocks!

I wish I could say I hand picked said rocks from some exotic distant shore but truth be told, I purchased them at a local Michael's Arts and Crafts store. Nonetheless, who knew these simple, unassuming, store-bought rocks adorning the bottom of the sink in my half bath would become a dinner party conversation staple.

The guest bathroom took a few re-dos....

But I've settled on a look that I'm happy with. You know, after the proverbial green, gold and rust Waverly decor, complete with wallpaper border, matching shower curtain, balloon valance, hand towels, soap dish...and the list goes on. I quickly moved on to a deep lavender and lime green decor. Sounds icky I know but you'd be surprised at the amount of accessories I was able to find that actually worked well with that color palette!

The current decor came about as a result of the mirrored shelf I came across while browsing at Pottery Barn. The original bathroom mirror was one of those home builder installed 4x5 foot mirrors complete with the usual six bulb strip light above it. Although I didn't capture a picture of it, a new light fixture has since been installed.

I bought two shower curtains from the Rachel Ashwell Simply Shabby Chic collection called "Capri Pants Stripe". One of course was used as intended for the shower and the other I cut and sewed to make a window valance. From some of the extra material I made a cover for the night light.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Oh how I love being ahead of the game......

I was about to toss out these leftover key tags when I had the idea to use them as seating tags for Christmas dinner. The best part was, I had everything I needed in my crafting cases to complete the project, which took less than an hour. Cross THAT off my Christmas "to do" list thank you very much! I was going to write a play by play on how I created the tags but I think the pictures are self-explanatory.... enjoy! (Click on an image to enlarge)

Friday, November 20, 2009

Without a doubt, what drew me to this piece........

Is my love of the sea and all things nautical; weathered and worn by time, salt and surf. When I spotted this floating ship's compass at Thoreauly Antiques in a locked glass case I silently whispered to myself "please, let it be affordable". Turns out it was more than I thought I should be spending, especially since I already had a number of items waiting on the counter to be rung up. And then, an epiphany! An early birthday present. "Just think", I said to my husband,"you won't have to rack your brain thinking what to buy won't even have to wrap it!". He took it from my hands looked it over a few times, as if he were an experienced appraiser, smiled and nodded yes. One of my best birthday gifts by far. When I look at the compass my mind brings me back to a movie I've seen many times....The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. As a young girl I romanticized about Gull Cottage and the love story that played out between Captain Daniel Gregg and Lucy Muir. (To view the movie trailer, click on The Ghost and Mrs. Muir above.)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I had been saving wine corks for quite some time....

Exactly what I wanted them for and what I was going to do with them I was never quite sure. That was until I spyed this vintage bingo wheel at a frequent haunt of mine.... The Wrentham Country Store and immediately knew I had found them a "home". I cleaned it up - just dusty, no rust and painted the knob black. A week or so later I found the vintage bingo cards at Antique Therapy - located in a multi-dealer consignment shop in Concord, MA called Thoreauly Antiques. I happily walked away with a few items that of which I asked my husband to buy me for my's an old ship's compass and I plan to feature it in my next blog.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

I don't cook very often, however....

It doesn't stop me from bidding on and (lucky me) "winning" vintage aprons on eBay. I'm simply drawn to them and they're usually reasonably priced and sold in lots so they're quite the bargain. Yep, that's my justification when the package arrives and my husband raises a knowing eyebrow!

Monday, November 16, 2009

I came across this darling white table at a local shop....

And I immediately knew it was going home with me. It didn't matter my SUV was crammed with purchases I had made throughout the day - I'd find room and I did! The question now is where to put it, which piece do I swap out and banish to the basement? No worries, the table is mine and right now that's all that matters (she said, with a huge smile on her face)!

My table was purchased at a shop in Holliston, MA (House at 755). They have twenty or so different dealers, each with their own space. This particular dealers space is called "My Whimsical Victorian Chic Cottage". If you have the time, take a moment to check out her page and all her lovely creations.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

When it came time to redecorate this guest room.....

I knew it had to be blue. Finding just the right blue on the other hand took weeks of paint chip samples taped to the wall. Daily I would enter the room to peel away a chip that didn't make the cut until finally I settled on Glass Bead (#570E-1 by Behr). The chip looked a bit lighter than I thought I wanted but my husband and I knew from experience that once on the wall, with two coats of paint, it would show a bit darker. Glass Bead it was and to my delight....perfect!

The headboard is an old fireplace mantel that I bought at an antique shop in Northboro. I had it dipped and stripped of many coats of paint and then painted it White Dove (#OC-17 by Benjamin Moore). My husband secured it to the wall and voila! the double bed fit pefectly into the opening.

The dresser was purchased at the Brimfield Antique Fair. It was already white but in need of freshening up so I painted it Super White (#02 by Benjamin Moore). The rocker was purchased at a consignment shop on Cape Cod which I also painted Super White along with the foot stool.

The bedding, British Rose, is from the Rachell Ashwell Simply Shabby Chic Collection which can be found reasonably priced at Target stores. My sister Judy was so inspired by my guest room makeover that she went ahead and redecorated her master bedroom the same. Did I mind? No way! To quote Charles Caleb Colton.... "Imitation is the sincerest from of flattery."

Saturday, November 14, 2009

The best part of my house.....

Is having the laundry room on the second floor. And...I love my high efficiency machines (Whirlpool Duet)....they're so quiet. The color scheme was inspired by the clothespin bag my mother in-law made from a child's dress and graciously passed on to me. ( can click on an image to enlarge it)

Friday, November 13, 2009

All I want for Christmas is....

For these dreamy slipcovers to adorn my family room furniture. The ruffles, the buttons, the pleasingly romantic soft white. They seriously bring a smile to my face. Oh, and Santa....I've been g-o-o-d !

Thursday, November 12, 2009

For the love of the sea.....aqua and white

My front living room has seen some changes through the years. I originally decorated it to look like a tea room - flowery and fragile. It was then transformed into a garden room - earthy and rustic. It now reminds me of a seaside cottage. The sofa and love seat are the mainstays of the room and have worked well through the transformations with a little help by simply changing the throw pillows.
The wet bar was purchased at a favorite shop of mine ~The Purple Rose Northboro, MA~. It was the color (Heavenly Blue - Benjamin Moore #709) that drew my attention to the piece and that which prevented me from leaving the shop without it! Once home I redecorated my front living room to showcase my new purchase. I then promptly went to the paint store for a quart of 709 and painted the shutter hanging between the windows as well as the seat on the bistro chair.

My intention wasn't to keep the bird bath inside - many birds actually got quite a bit of use out of it for a number of seasons. I just decided after bringing it in for the Winter that it would be a nice addition to my room and it is. Not to worry, a new bird bath has been purchased and will go outside come Spring.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I've been wanting to start a blog for quite some time....

I'm not exactly sure who I'm expecting to read my blog - I mean besides my husband, mom and sisters. You know, my worst critics! But here I am and if nothing else I hope this blog motivates me to take more before & after pictures of some of my future projects.....which is something that I enjoy viewing on the many blogs that I follow.

These pictures are of some Fall decorating of my yard and shed.