Monday, August 30, 2010


i like to watch HGTV.  and i do it a lot.  there are occasionally rooms and ideas that i like....but then a lot that i don't care for.  i still like to watch them but i am always wondering why there isn't a designer with a style that is really inspiring to me.  well i was an avid follower of this season's design star and liked emily from the beginning.  guess what. she WON!!! and i think she may have solved my HGTV conundrum.  i watched her first new show tonight, secrets from a stylist, and was in love with practically everything i saw.  i loved it.  and want to watch the episode at least twice more.  and i am going to try to make my husband watch it with me (ha ha!)

here are some shots from her first show:

photos via 

and some other photos from her portfolio:

love this vintage swiss flag!
photos via

and then two makeovers from a designstar challenge that i really liked: 

glass house challenge

white box challenge
photos via

isn't she great? go to and you can learn more about her and see lots more photos.

ps. while we're on the subject, i also have to add that this season on sarah's house, she renovated an old farmhouse and i saw a lot that i liked there too.  see pictures here.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

tea cozy twins

these two babies bring me such joy!

arrival: aug. 23, 2010
size: [left] xs / [right] small
fabric: mixed weight knits
pattern: tea cozy

other notes: fraternal. one with striped sleeve and band, one with striped band only.



they will soon be up for adoption in my etsy shop!

Monday, August 23, 2010

best dressed

isn't it amazing that some bloggers [and regular people, i suppose] get up and get dressed and ready and look stylish and wear makeup every morning?  they pick out great outfits and do their hair, accessorize....the works.  i won't get into the details of my outfitting neglect but let's just say i wouldn't have many posts if i were just blogging about my daily outfits.  

that being said, i love that people out there DO blog about their great ensembles!  i see so many wardrobes that i covet that are a mix of new and thrifted and handmade clothes.  i find their photos inspiring and i save the ones i love in hopes that i'll be so put together myself someday.. ha ha.

i have a few favorite places to find outfit inspirations.

this link takes you to mydailystyle's "looks" archive written by a cool, super fashionable girl in spain.  i love her style and wish i had her clothes....  she blogs about fashion in general and also posts her own outfits at least once a week.
one of my favs.

i also like to peruse katy at kansas couture's "daily style" archives for cute outfits with vintage pieces mixed in. 
a cute outfit she posted lately.

lookbook is an interesting site with a neverending supply of outfits posted by contributors.  most of the looks are a little too extreme for me on this place, but there are also lots of great ones if you spend the time.

i recently found this website yatt with a lookbook of their latest collection.  
loved this casual look i came across.

and of course, aside from bloggers, who doesn't look forward to when anthro comes up with new outfits?  i don't know if this happens once a month, maybe bi-monthly? but i am always sure to get a couple screen shots of my favorites to archive.  their newest collection, in the news is up...

like the layers on this one                            and i would love to jump into this
i never love every single outfit anthro does. but i always love at least one or two.  

freepeople also puts up outfits monthly.  they are usually hit or miss but i do love so many individual pieces at free people.

j. crew has also been known to put up lookbooks now and then.  the new fall "looks we love" had a couple of looks that i loved...

anyone have any go-to outfit inspiration sites to add to the round-up?  anything you can't wait to see each week/month?  i just keep hoping that the more i look at the inspirations, the more inclined i'll be to put thought into my own outfits!

Friday, August 20, 2010

my life in a construction zone

besides all of the summer road construction that is going on here [that i have no control over] i have voluntarily turned our room into a construction zone as well.  we are finally on the home stretch however, and the ladders, drywall mud, paint buckets, and plastic dropcloths are finally gone.  i have been married just over a  year and my husband and i made the impossible live in my parents' basement for our last year of school (ha ha).  with graduate school tuition, yada yada, its inevitable.  so we are redoing my 13 year old teenage girl design choices in our room and bathroom.

lately i have been loving the almost all white, monochromatic, light and airy look.  i knew i wanted to brighten up the room but was also thinking about doing some sort of plaster looking treatment on the walls.

here are some of my assorted inspiration pictures for this redo.

i love the arrangement of this room


isn't this a great desk?  it is so pretty and perfect. i just wanted to teleport it into our workspace.

i deviated from the plaster wall treatment idea when i re-found this in my haus file archives.  i thought this texture would add a lot in this room.  i had decided on doing one gray wall, but i was trying to pick a pretty light color.  now that i look at the finished product, though, it looks just about exactly like this wall at knack.

also via a designsponge sneek peek

this is kinda the light, nearly-monochromatic look that i was going for.  however the dog is not something you'd find on our bed :)

and there's lotttsssssss more where that came from.

progress has been made. you will see it soon.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


one of my best friends got married this summer.  it was such a cute, simple, fun wedding.  her color scheme was gray and yellow (isn't that everyone's these days?) and she had a croquet game, a vintage typewriter, and old doors at her garden reception. i wanted to get her a nice present but i didn't really want to just go to target and pick something out.  so i was walking around a little antique mall looking for the perfect thing when i saw a grain sack.  i loved it so i took it and ran, before i even had an idea of how to use it.

 i came up with a little tableware set for the new couple.
 now i realize this wouldn't be the ideal gift for every bride.....but for those like me who love the sweet, country, homespun look, it's perfect.
 this grain sack was such a find.  it was in good condition, had great colors, and lots of character.  and it was only $5.
 i also love how much the doilies add to the placemats.

so even though this isn't rocket science, i wanted to post a little how-to in case anyone had questions.

what you'll need:

a vintage grain sack and doilies (kind of optional--i've made cute placemats since these without either)
fabric scraps
2 yards of muslin
quilt batting


--rip the muslin: in half width-wise, then in half length-wise, then in half lengthwise again on each piece.

this will give you 8 of the same size rectangles.

--cut out or rip squares, rectangles, and strips of your fabric scraps.

i only used one grain sack so i cut out 4 substantial pieces to feature one on each placemat.

--arrange each placemat and topstitch (unless you quilted these, raw edges are inevitable but just add to the look)

--add a layer of quilt batting. make sure to match up all four corners or you will have trouble when they go through the wash.

--add another muslin on bottom to make a sandwich.  

--topstitch all four sides.

--rip four napkins out of a coordinating fabric, serge the sides.

--add a set of bowls to the placemats and napkins to make a complete gift.

--write a note (or in this case, sew one) and wrap it up.  

i liked this present because it was affordable, but i felt like i had spent so much time to make something i loved that the price didn't matter or make it cheap. was so hard to give away!  i wanted to keep these for myself.  

Monday, August 16, 2010

day dreaming on etsy

there are a couple items that i have really been lusting over this summer and heading into fall.  i have been searching for the perfect pair of light leather oxfords for a month or two now.  i like this little vintage trend and i think they are so versatile.  i can picture myself wearing them both with skirts and skinny jeans. and as a student, these look especially nice for walking around campus since they are flats.

i finally found a pair i love at free people but they are a little pricey and are currently out of stock...


anyway, looking around on etsy the other day, i came across some vintage leather oxfords that were reminiscent of the free people oxfords and about 10 times cheaper:


 yay! i had to order them.  they arrived last week and i love them.  the shop owner was so cute, she even wrote a little note about their merit in the package.  check out her vintage shop, becky plants trees, on etsy.

another item i have been wanting since i got an email about them from refinery29 everywhere is this leather satchel from asos.  

i would love to prance around campus with this on my arm!  i think my laptop and a couple schoolbooks would fit perfectly in this little guy.  and the tan color is definitely my leather of choice.  once again, out of my price range.....but etsy came through again.  this is the look alike i found:

okay, so i realize neither the etsy shoes or bag look just like the new products i wanted to buy, but they both have their share of charm and character.  i'm actually not sure which i'd choose if money weren't an option.  i loved this little leather briefcase from ark's endeavors and i'm kicking myself that i didn't snatch it up right away!  i was only $20 or $25 and i guess some lucky person out there is getting use out of it!

so there are a couple of morals here.  i am obviously a little color blind outside of the light leather family.  shopping on etsy can be a cost friendly alternative to other stores. and you have to act fast if you want to become the owner these one-of-a-kind etsy items.

oh yeah....p.s.

i also found another really cute pair of oxfords on etsy that weren't my size:

but i love the floral laces!  two great trends in one perfect shoe.  i am going to try to track some cute laces down as another option for my new vintage oxfords.