Steps to Create a Dreamy Bedroom

 Start off with a comfortable bed and deluxe frame.

 Use Roman Shades (possibly with black out liners) in a natural linen fabric or in a grass or bamboo material.
Splurge on bed linens with lovely detailing like these from

Place a couple of these (a good deal from Overstock) or a longer bench at the foot of your bed.

Paint your bedroom a soothing color, 
like these from Benjamin Moore.

This shade would be pretty on the walls, like in my bedroom, or just on the ceiling like in our guest room.

Invest in pretty nightstands with storage.

                                    Hang an interesting chandelier, like this one, as a finishing touch.  In our bedroom, we hung a crystal chandelier from my mother.

Find all the above sources and more dreamy furnishings on my 

Also, this was a pleasant surprise!
houzz interior design ideas 
 My company was recognized as a winner of their 
2013 "Best of Remodeling" Customer Satisfaction Award. 
Houzz is a great resource to gain inspiration and help you determine your design preferences.

Thank you, House Beautiful for including my last post on slipcovers in your top five weekly reads!


What You Need to Know About Slipcovers

Do you have children or pets?
Like to change the look of your interiors?
Eat on the sofa ?
(oh, you know you do).
Here are some things you should keep in mind when slipcovering.

Tip #1:  
Consider slipcovers on dining chairs or bar stools.  Our barstools came with removal, velcro-ed covers.  They are a cinch to wash when food gets on them.

Tip #2:
Having slipcovers made often costs as much as reupholstery.
 So, decide if your furniture piece is worth it.

Do you like the design and is it in good shape?

Tip #3:
Have slipcover fabric washed before fabrication. 
First, try washing a swatch.  The fabricator may charge you $1 to $2 per foot to wash the fabric for you (which may be worth it if you have large quantities). 

Tip #4:
Look for white, off white, taupe or oatmeal fabric on sale or at a discount outlet.  I use 100% linen, cotton/linen blends, cotton basket weaves or cotton twill fabrics.

Tip #5:
Purchase at least 10% more fabric for shrinkage and if want to have throw pillows made...or to back expensive, designer fabric pillows with it.  

Tip #6:
Generally stick with solid fabrics in the colors mentioned above so that you can change your look.
Here you can see how Debbie changes her living room from winter to spring.

Tip #7:
Make sure your fabric is sturdy enough to hold up to wear and is thick enough not to be able see through it.

Vignette Design uses heavy woven, vintage Hungarian linen on her dining chairs...
and she even had them beautifully monogrammed.

Tip #8:
Use slipcovers to change or update the design.
Here my friend, Netta, slipcovers just the back of her armless Louis Ghost chairs.
Notice the simplicity of the drape on this sofa from 
And here is another updated simple slipcover from The Iron Gate from T&G.
I love these chairs.

Tip #9
White is good for cleaning with mild bleach and stain removers.
After Tommy went back to college, I washed this sofa's slipcover and the chocolate and pizza stains are gone!  Note:  Take the slipcover out of the dryer slightly damp and hand smooth the wrinkles while it is on the sofa.

Tip #10:
When in doubt about the fabric, dry-clean the slipcover.
I dry-clean some of my throw pillow covers, too...since I have ruined a few (with fading, bleeding or shrinkage) in the washing machine.  More on Pillow Care here.

Your slipcover can be sewn for a loose, casual look or tailored for a more formal design.  Either way, I think they are great.  
How about you?


5 Steps To An Easy Dinner Party

1.  Set the table a day or two in advance.
Seriously.  It only takes a few minutes and you will feel so prepared.

If you are receiving this by email, please click
HERE to visit my blog...the post will look better.  Thanks.

2.  If you don't have flowers, just use a house plant like this succulent or fruit.

3.  Have a game plan and prepare things in advance.
You can see here where I made the balsamic glaze, soup and dessert on Thursday, the day before the party...
I used the new cookbooks that I got for Christmas.
This appetizer from Tiny Food Party was waiting as guest arrived.
Along with warm Parmesan Crisps from
Here I am checking the oven. 
All set.  I like to roast lemons with the vegetables and give them 
an extra squeeze before serving.  The Crispy Mustard Chicken is in there, too.

This Easy Pea Soup is also from
(basically the whole menu is from this book).
Looks pretty good with that crispy prosciutto, huh?
What was I doing?  Oh yes..."my steps to an easy party"...

4.  Get a "volunteer" to help you serve.
Look how fast Cody serves the soup!  He doesn't want it to get cold.
5.  Start drinking wine (or not, that's just me) and enjoy your guests.
I can't cut the raspberry bars as precisely as Ina...
but you know they were home-made.  I found the French cupcake papers at Home Goods.
6.  One last step...the idea is to have fun with friends in a
 homey environment.  Take the initiative.   
Order take-out or do an impromptu pot luck.   
And light the candles.  
You know how good you look in candle light!

Participating in 


Who Drank The Tequila?

My husband:  "Tommy, did you or your friends drink the tequila?"
Tommy:  (30 seconds of silence)...
"No, Dad, your bottle of Patrón is right here!"
My husband: "Well, someone left an empty bottle by the driveway."
So, look what I did with it.

By the way, if you are receiving this by email, please click
HERE to visit my blog...the post will look better (you can also always click on the post title, too).

Then, I went to one of my favorite places...Home Goods.

This long, cut velvet pillow would be pretty on a bed and
this pillow would be fun in a teen's room.  It has a soft feather insert.
Love this bone inlay box...but what's up with the right corners?

This reminds me of a John Derian plate but it's only $12...it has a French script on it.
 I wanted it...but, I restrained myself.
Trays are always useful.  These are lacquered with a shell inlay.
Love these extra large zinc containers.
I scooped up some unscented candles...
makes even week night dinners special.
These bath products look and smell lovely.  I bought the body wash for the guest bath.
I sent a photo of these wooden lamps with linen shades to my sister.  I thought they would look nice in her bedroom...she gave me the thumbs up to purchase them.  Only $39.99 each. 
I like Home Goods return policy, so if they don't work out, it's no problem.
And I bought this new mercury glass soap dispenser below to replace a broken one.
My husband wonders how I can easily spend an hour and a half in Home Goods...
And  I am still wondering which neighbor left the empty Patrón bottle in our yard?
(I'd like a couple more, please).