Affordable Luxuries and Other Random Good Things

This is an extra long post as I will be taking a break to be with family and friends this week in Southern California.

Farmhouse Urban recently gave some good 
ideas to achieve affordable luxury. 
 I especially liked her own daily indulgences like Bed Bath and Beyond Turkish towels.   
It got me thinking about my own personal luxuries such as 
this silver plated alarm clock in my bedroom.
 Pottery Barn has a similar one here.
These chairs are now in our bedroom...nice place to blog :)

Space is a luxury!  I hate to be a complainer 
but I almost cried when I saw the size of 
my closet in this 1920's apartment.  
I had more space as a Freshman in college 
(remember our little closets, Debbie?).

So, last weekend my husband and I made the trip to IKEA.
I don't really like the idea of buying cheap furniture but
as this is a rental...I'm not sure it will be going 
with us to the next place...
I just wanted white to blend in with the wall.
Not bad, but too big. 
Still too big.
Like the greyed look but think white would be less obtrusive.
Just right...here is another luxury...
we paid extra to have it delivered and 
assembled at home.

Thank God!!!

and José!
Now this wardrobe has my shirts, scarves and work out clothes
 in it and my little closet has everything else like shoes, dresses and jackets.

Debbie found these pretty marble tiles 
for less than $15 per square foot (versus $25- $30 for similar decorative tiles) from Home Depot.

And talk about affordable, have you ever thought about the enjoyment we get from blogs for Free?
Many thanks to these great blogs for the 
visitors they brought me in the last month.  
Check them out.
Calling it Home
The Enchanted Home
Chinoiserie Chic
Design Indulgence
Cote de Texas
Cottage and Vine
Vignette Design
Pawleys Island Posh

And, I get plenty of affordable fun from
Check out my boards Here.

My client is working at Pottery Barn for the holiday season and earning their generous employee discount (40%!!!).
So, we went to the East Bay store to take advantage of it for her.
She is trying out some rugs for her living room, foyer and study.
I liked this gilt tray for her (on sale), too.

And even though she didn't ask for it, I suggested she buy two 

club chairs like these for the study...
which may just have to happen next year 
(or after the kids go to college)
but she will have them forever.
These are less expensive, smaller and I like them, too!

Lisa Mende Design wrote "Simplify Your Life"....basically living with less "things."  I feel like I have really shed a lot of unnecessary things with this move to a smaller place.  
It's been fun sorting through old photographs
(and tossing the unflattering or poor quality ones).
Still have lots of mementos--but they are condensed
 into five or six manageable tubs.

Thank you to Sandra Sharp for
designing my new blog header. 
She also designs custom stationary
with a vintage appeal available on Etsy here.

I have been getting lots of exercise by
 just walking the hills and I joined a Pop Physique gym around the corner.  It's a combination of Pilates, ballet barre and light weights...that's so hard, my muscles shake like crazy.

But we have been eating a ton as there are so many good restaurants to try in San Francisco.  
On Friday, after watching the hilarious 
Beach Blanket Babylon Musical show,
we walked to Park Tavern in North Beach
 (cool black subway tiles)
and started with these deviled eggs

On Saturday, for lunch I had this amazing roasted
 butternut squash, peppers and 

spicy pepitas taco from 
Tacolicious ($3.99) on Chestnut Street.
This photo was taken with my new IPhone--yay
...my old one was just about dead.

Happy Thanksgiving 
to you and your loved ones.
Enjoy this time.


  1. Looks like your settling in... Organizing our personal things feels so good! I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving! I do like your new header... perfect!
    Casual Loves Elegance

  2. So glad you're feeling good and that things are looking good too! Have a wonderful holiday season Mary Ann! All the best!

  3. So glad that you are getting settled into your new home. I love SFO and try to go into SFO when visiting my son in Los Gatos. He LOVES the House of Prime Rib. You are so right about all the wonderful restaurants there. I loves the Beach Blanket show.
    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving Mary Ann.

  4. Glad you are having such a great time making your new place your own. Happy Thanksgiving!

  5. Hi Mary Ann, I can see you are loving your new surroundings! I just moved and it was really great to purge. I donated, gave away, threw away, etc. It made me wonder why I hung on to so much "stuff". I am also getting much more organized!

    Art by Karena

  6. I can imagine the 'horror' of a smaller closet Mary Ann since I am currently enjoying the luxury of a walk-in closet still, but your also absolutely right about the fact that less things makes life actually a bit easier and makes you see what's really important to you in your home. Love the wardrobe you chose, I shop BIG when I go to IKEA, just so many potential to their pieces. Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving too, it looks like your well on your way to making your new home, HOME!

  7. Mary Ann really enjoyed this post and your thoughts on small luxuries and limited space! Looks like you are really enjoying your time in SF and thanks for sending traffic my way!! xoxox Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

  8. Awww, there are those pillows that I love! So cool you were able to use your awesome chairs in your bedroom...they look very comfortable too.

    Ikea has so many great storage pieces and you can't beat the prices. I'm using some in my closet for extra organization.

    Hope you have a really nice So Cal Thanksgiving Mary Ann! xo (loving your new apartment!)

  9. What a fun post....a little bit of this and a bit of that. Things look like they are going well and you always come up with practical pretty and affordable solutions! Wishing you a wonderful and healthy Thanksgiving!

    PS Thanks for the shout out, you are most welcome:)

  10. Mary Ann, hope you and your family have a wonderful Thankgiving in Southern California.

  11. I love to read about your adventures in SF. I know the move had to be so hard but it looks like you're adapting so beautifully. Love the new header! great first impression. Your home is looking like you've been there for years already and your treasures will always bring memories with them. Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family. xo Nancy

  12. I am glad that you are settling in to you new home, Mary Ann. Laughing about the closet. Been there.
    Now this a a great version of bacon and eggs!! The food looks great, and I am so happy that you found a gym you are happy with. The barre will get you!

  13. Love hearing about your adventures in beautiful SF!! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  14. Aww, sweet Friend, you are welcome and you bring me as much joy and visitors to my blog. too. Love the SF adventures. The new header is fantastic with the bridge. What would we all do without Ikea? Happy Thanksgiving!

  15. Mary Ann...sounds like your adjusting right in to your new home....Looks like S.F. has some great restaurants..have a great Thanksgiving!

  16. I love Ikea pieces but assembling them takes forever! So smart to get delivery and assembling....gotta remember that next time! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, Mary Ann!! xo Loi

  17. Looks like things are coming together at the Pickett home! The IKEA armoire is a perfect fit for your bedroom. I have often been envious of those people who can downsize and live with much less "stuff"! When we did our kitchen remodel, we set up a kitchen in our dining room and had just a tiny little area and only the bare minimum in kitchen ware. And it was fine!!! Don't get me wrong though, I LOVE my kitchen, but might be convinced to have less for say, a little beach cottage!!! Hmmmm…something to think about!

    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving. XO

  18. Awww! Thank you sweet friend for the mention! Love your luxuries too! Have a wonderful holiday in SoCal!
    ps - Park Tavern rocks!

  19. All the custom closets are nicely designed and i respect the skills of that carpenter who made also remember the color of rooms. He made it perfectly with great color combination. i would like to suggest this with my father so they also fix these kind of custom closets in their newly constructed house. Hope they like my suggestion and implement it.
    closets NYC

  20. Hi Mary Ann, I need to catch up to see how your move went and where all the new places you're exploring. That will give me some good ideas when we visit up there. We were able to pop up to Berkeley, SF and Mendocino the week before Halloween. I'm always reminded why I love it up there. SoCal misses you but how lucky are we, your readers, that you are taking us along on your adventures. :) xoxo

  21. Mary Ann, always love visiting and seeing what you are up to! I want those leather club chairs for myself! Enjoy your time in SF, know it's an adventure. Your workout place sounds great!


It's SO nice to hear from you!