7.29.2011

"Pillow Addict" • First in the Saturday Series

Yes, I admit it.  I am a Pillow Addict.  Are you?

My friend, Debbie from Carlson Crew Home has the same addiction, too.  
Here, in her living room are her Spring pillows. 
The pillow in the center is from a vintage hand painted silk kimono.
These are her more formal "winter" pillows.
She found the crewel pillows (with double rows of trim)
 on sale and had the mini leopard print cut velvet pillow made.

 Note:  if you have more than one set of pillows 
for any given room, you ARE a Pillow Addict (also known as a  "Pilloholic").
Here is another pillow from a vintage Japanese kimono mixed with Fortuny fabric.  They are 
working on their new website but if you are interested in more information about these pillows, 
contact Debbie at carlsoncrewhome@gmail.com.

I bought these limited edition pillows from Carlson Crew Home for our ski condo.

I love the rustic linen for the mountains (or at the beach..or anywhere casual).
 
Speaking of our Mammoth mountain condo (decorated on a budget),
I bought these cheerful guest room pillows and duvet at IKEA.  One side is embroidered with flowers
and the other in coordinating stripes with cute buttons ($19.99 including feather insert).

And back to Debbie's fab pillows...

Notice the fine coordinating trim and flat welt piping at the end of the bolster?
Nice details.

In the meantime, stay tuned on Saturdays for the new "Pillow Addict" series.

You may be surprised (well, probably not) who is coming out of the closet next!

Best Wishes,
Mary Ann

Participating in
Show Off Your Cottage Monday
Metamorphosis Monday
Blue Monday
Amaze Me Monday
Open House Party
Flaunt It Friday
Feature Yourself Friday

7.26.2011

Eight Great Ideas for Your Bathroom

1.  Cotton Hand Towels from West Elm.
At $9.99 each, these organic feeling towels can update your bath.
Monograming available.  Mix these with...

2.  Fluffy Thomas O'Brien towels from Target.
Stock up on well priced white towels!  We have had house guests who 
love them much they go home and buy the same towels ($22.50 for the set on-line).

3.  Simple TP holder
This simple design makes changing toilet paper easy.
I bought ours at Home Goods but you can find a similar design here.


4.  Built in Hair Dryer
It's a good idea to have an outlet underneath your sink with an extension cord to 
have your hair dryer or other appliance readily accessible (yes, I know you should 
not keep appliances plugged in but this is the only one that I do).  

5.  Make-up Mirror with Natural Lighting
Try to install the mirror near a window for better lighting. 
This mirror is from Restoration Hardware.

6.  Hooks are Easier than a Towel Bar
Especially with kids.  
There is a slightly better chance that the towels will not end up on the floor.
Place a hook conveniently near the shower door. 
This one is from Restoration Hardware.

7. When renovating a shower, add a built-in seat.
8.  Find Storage with a Built-in Medicine
Cabinet between the Studs in the Wall

I like to place funny cards in the cabinet to give guests a smile.  
Thanks for leaving a comment on my blog...
I appreciate the connection so much!

Best wishes,
Mary Ann

Participating in Wow Us Wednesday


7.21.2011

Stylish Affordable Travel

When researching stylish places to stay, Tablet Hotels is a good resource.  
The boutique hotels on their list meet high design criteria in all different price ranges. 
 
Hotel Keppler, Paris
Usually, I check Tablet's prices and then the price for the same hotel on the hotel's website and another source like Kayak (which compares other good sources like Travelocity, Hotwire, Expedia, Hotels.com, and Priceline).

About three years ago, my stylish friend, Netta recommended joining the Tablet Plus program for the amazing upgrades like the next higher level accommodation.  The Tablet Plus program includes 350 hotels costs $195/year (which pays for itself if you plan to stay in their hotels a number of nights).  We have been happy with the program so far.

Here are some examples of the extra's we received...

The Bowery Hotel, NYC
We received a larger room, a fruit plate, bottle of wine and a 4 pm check-out.
 Old world décor meets hipster crowd in one of Manhattan's last "edgy" neighborhoods.

My husband likes the larger hotels for business travel but Tablet won him over eventually.  
We have stayed here for both business and pleasure.
The Crosby Street Hotel, New York City
 They gave us a larger room, free movie tickets for their in house cinema and
drink coupons for the fun bar below.
There is more on our stay at the Crosby Street Hotel here.

 At the Hotel Keppler, Paris, France, a lovely French breakfast was complimentary
(which was a deal considering we had our "always hungry" teen-aged son with us)
in addition to a room upgrade.
Check out FabSearch for avante garde tips for around the world travel.  
I find them useful especially for restaurants.

Do you keep folders of places you would like to go to someday?  
I have clippings from travel magazines and newspapers and
I especially like Elle Decor's travel articles from a design standpoint.  
Fabsearch has chronicled Elle Decor destination articles here.

The Citizen Hotel, Sacramento, California
Right now, I am tagging along on my husband's business trip.
We are staying at the Citizen Hotel (found on Tablet).
Isn't this coordinating silk shade a nice touch?  Great headboard, too.
  
More masculine décor is fun for a change and I love all the stripes.

 
Notice the trim on the little black velvet chair and the brass ball on the top.  
The California state constitution is reprinted on the lampshade.  Fun idea.
Rocky blends in nicely.
Gotta love a hotel robe.
The hotel is in a 12 story building; the first downtown "skyscraper" in the state's capitol.

The view from our window of the state capitol building.
 The hotel lobby is decorated with the law books.  
The same kind that I remember filling my father's office.

 My father was a state senator and worked here in Sacramento, California
in this beautiful building until I was born.  

Do you have sources for stylish and/or affordable travel? 
 I'm not going anywhere really exciting in the next few months, but it's fun to dream.

Best wishes,
Mary Ann

7.16.2011

Beach Cottage Bedroom Remodel

This is our son, Tommy's remodeled room.  
When we bought the house, the room looked like this below.
The ceiling was pitched to the right.  We gave it a center pitch and added insulation.  
We removed the middle window and added two on the sides and new oak flooring 
 Tommy picked out the antique engraving on the far wall when we lived in Paris.  
He was in second and third grade (I dragged him to flea markets)
and has loved France ever since, especially the food
and their national soccer team.  It shows a French ship beating a British flotilla. 

 Do you think Tommy's room normally looks like this?
 Of course, not.  He's an 18 year old.    
Tommy is a prankster...
remember my momentary elation when I thought 
Martha Stewart commented on my first Kitchen Remodel post here ?  
It said..."Decent article.  Keep working on it. 
You'll get the hang of it." 
Sort of an authentic ring to it, right?

Here is a view into his bathroom.
Here is what it used to look like.
Below is his bathroom.  
This was featured in an earlier post on all three bath remodels.

And more normally...
Look how neat his desk is.
That's because last month...

Tommy graduated from Newport Harbor High School in California
and three days later he started the summer session at the University of Florida.
(I'm holding the diploma with the bad hair--windy day).
It's nice having his room look like this, but I'd still rather have Tommy in it.  
We have an empty nest now with our daughter in New York city.  
But Tommy will be back for a couple weeks in August.

Do you miss your children's messes or are you still "enjoying" them?

Best wishes,
Mary Ann
 
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