Thursday, July 29, 2010

sharing the wealth....

So, people... I wanted to share some great sites that can save you a booku of moola & are great for some great discount home decor. Now, some of them you probably know about... but lets pretend, for this post's sake, you have never heard of the internet & we'll start from the begining... "a very nice place to start." You have to keep your eye out & think outside the box... but these sites are where I typically browse before purchasing anything for our home. I try to scope them out regularly to see what they are offering: - Of course you have been here, but really, before I even buy anything from anywhere, even Home Depot or Target, I pop over to see if I can find it cheaper here. - Its more addicting than ebay... now, I can say I have never purchased anything from here, but really, your jaw will drop at some of the prices. {I am just leery of what the shipping costs would be?} - Become a member for free... and you can get some awesome, chic designer home decor items for up to 70% off. Most of the items are of great quality, for a fantastic price. - Its hit or miss, but you can buy returns & overstock items from some large retail companies... like, I said, hit or miss, but worth the perusal. - People always ask how I find estate sales... well, mainly, the hidden gems are found when I am driving around & happen on one {and I never pass it up}... but this site lets you plug in your zip & find some ops in your area. {sometimes, some of the sales listed are by the companies that come in & put it on & can be a tad overpriced... You have the best luck with the private sellers.} - duh again, but I know a lot of people go there merely for gifty, cutesy items, but they also sell great fabric & some furniture pieces. love.

lewis& - before I buy fabric from anywhere, I check them out first. They always have the cheapest fabric by the yard prices... also, you can physically call Zimman's (781. 598.9432) which is a fabric store I stumbled upon online based in Massachusetts, and see if they carry your fabric. They are so helpful & will ship it to you, anywhere, as well. - of course... but you can always find some great little bargains.
I always spy some great treasures on these sites... not like I indulge regularly, but when I am searching for something specific, they are helpful... and its fun to dream, right? Now go check them out... ok, perf.
Now all I need is that cutie little nugget above in the pic... Happy Friday's eve!

Monday, July 26, 2010

not a deep post, but long post.

I have had some random questions/ comments/ emails about decorating/ DIY/furniture from our home... so here it is:
I go through moments of being so overwhelmed with beautiful images on blogs that I almost get in a home decorating rut. Anyone else...? There are so many styles, so many color palettes, so many shapes, so many aesthetics, so many furniture options, so many textures... I get so over stimulated that I get confused on our own direction & sensibility. There are thousands of beautiful, great, DIY projects & images out there in the blogosphere that I want to try them all, but then I start to wonder why I am changing things sometimes. Change for change sake? Or am I confused?
Ryan and I are lucky in the fact that we have very similar tastes in furniture and colors... we usually gravitate towards the same style, swatch, or color. We both had some furniture to contribute either passed down from parents or from living alone before we got married. However, when we started buying things on our own, our only rule to was to get quality pieces that would last a long time, that would be inter -changeable from room to room, and we absolutely HAD to love it.
We, also, have been somewhat lucky in the fact that I work for a great retailer that sells furniture to its corporate employees at annual salvage sales... they usually have some scratches or dents, but duh, that has never stopped Ryan & I. {We are also estate sale pros now.} We usually have to make snap decisions in a flurry, and in those times have LOVED some of the pieces we come home with and some we wonder, "what were we thinking." {They are usually such bargains though, you take the good with the bad.}
So back to the topic at hand, when it comes to personally investing in the larger pieces we have bought, we take a long time looking around & weighing our options. Again, all that it boils down to is that we have ended up loving every single piece. I feel like they are somewhat timeless & can be switched in/ out of different rooms as our life/ family changes and they can be played & dressed up or down with accessories dependant on the purpose at hand. I tend to usually stick with my sensibility and what I think I know. I am not good at investing in crazy pieces due to my fear that I will regret it or it won't stick around long... so my crazy ideas come in the form of paint, DIY, and accessories.
So when I see so many different images with different ideas, different palettes, different styles, different rules... "pair this with this, don't do this, or for sure do that." I get overwhelmed and confused... yet, I have come to the conclusion that only I can make up my own rules. Yes, somethings can look better to the eye and there are the definite, basic design rules to follow for balance sake, but I am resolving to only stick to what I LOVE only... whether that be against the grain & not following the rules, or mixing styles, or pairing wrong colors & shades, & juxtaposing the fancy luxury with estate sale bargains. I am done with being confused and changing things just for change sake... I know what I love and I'm sticking to it. Whether its breaking a rule or not... who cares.
At the end of the day, we are the ones that have to love coming home to home... so chose & decide for yourself what you love & own it. There is no right or wrong.
capiche? Thank you for listening to my not so deep thoughts. Happy Monday.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010


For my birthday this year, {which I am fully aware is 2 months away}, I am asking for our wingback chair to be recovered. I picked it up at an estate sale about 9 months back because I absolutely loved the shape of it... for the time being, the green linen color was not horrible, so we decided to hold off on recovering for a bit. But now, I have been doing my research and am ready for an update. I have been scoping out fabric choices and looking into some quotes. I thought you all might find these charts helpful, just to file away in your little noggin for future reference... or to use now when trying to decide your yardage quantities. Man do I love little helpful charts like this... welp, for that matter, any little organizational chart is pretty darn great in my book.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

my buddy.

Its been just the two of us this week... and, there are no rules for Miss Senga with me. She was fully allowed to tag team type as my partner on the computer & snuggle up on the couch. She assisted me on downloading some really fun new font suites, and helped in making my own font, which I can't wait to play with. She, also, encouraged me through my on-going quest to master Illustrator and finally, she helped as I searched & scoured for some cheap frames on the net, as I was inspired by these beauties below.

Happy Friday's eve!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Over the top.

To know me is to know my obsession with avocados... Thank you Sunset Magazine - you have pretty much made absolute perfection. Avocado French Fries? I think I will.

Friday, July 9, 2010

photo shoot.

If you have a sec, this is an awesome deonstration of a fashion shoot shot with merely an iPhone... pretty inspiring.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

ode to the crew.

Dearest blog,
I sincerely apologize for my negligence, as of late.
I can't seem to pull my thoughts together, lately, and, at times, seem almost over inspired that I don't know where to begin. Thank you for your patience, blog.... these J Crew shots grounded me back to reality and reminded me of my love & adoration of simply beautiful images. {Oh, but of course, it would be the Crew that I tip my hat to.}
Happy Friday's eve!
PS. - Can I be her? and can I please steal her earrings? oh, and her clutch... gimme.

Graphic patterns.

{We need to really start taking pictures in the daylight.}

So for the past couple of months, {which is a long time for me, at least, to think about something} I have been contemplating adding a graphic pattern to the back wall of our dining room to make things a bit more cohesive, modernize it a bit, & add some interest. Our dining room is really long... so the back wall could easily handle some pizazz.
Eventually, we want to get a buffet or console to complete our set and fill out this wall... most likely something rustic & with some character. We are ready for one, but we have been keeping our eyes out for one we really love. I have been spying a few more seriously... but, we'll see....
So, back to the wall... I looked into papering a modern graphic pattern, painting stripes or chevrons, or all out painting the whole room over again. Then I stumbled across the concept of stencils... you get the same look, but its not a permanent choice (because things never stay the same around the Frazier household) and its instant gratification.
Now, I know, the word stenciling scares you... At least for me it did. I brought me back to the mid 1980's with grapevines or teddy bears painted on the wall.
So I did ALOT of researching & stumbled across a few companies that had some more modern, chic options. I ended up ordering mine from Royal Design Studio because I loved their options, the stencils were larger & got my designer discount.
Finally, after reading 4 pages of instructions, settling on a color, and putting paintbrush to wall... I ended up really happy with it. {another great company is Whitewall & Co.}
You should give it a try... its a really cost effective way to update your room without permanently altering your aesthetic too much. It made me a believer.

Romesco Sauce.

I have found a new obsession: Romesco Sauce
I just had to share. Its a sauce that they use in Spain & Italy pretty regularly on just about anything & everything.

We spread it all over crusty, fresh bread, crackers and even dipped bell peppers in it... I am smitten. While it does take a bit to make, it makes a sufficient amount & keeps for up to a week in the fridge. You can even spread it over fish or pasta... the sky's the limit.

Recipe via Tyler Florence:
Romesco Sauce

3 tomatoes, halved
10 garlic cloves (I used 12-13)
2 slices crusty bread
1/2 cup whole almonds, with skin
1/2 cup hazelnuts or pine nuts (I used sea salt hazelnuts)
1 pimento or roasted red pepper (I roasted a red bell pepper)
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
3/4 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon paprika
2 teaspoons kosher salt
3 tablespoons olive oil

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Arrange the tomatoes, garlic, bread, and nuts on a baking sheet; roast for 10 to 15 minutes. ( I roasted my red bell pepper here, too.)
Transfer to a food processor and pulse to roughly break up. Add the pimentos, vinegar, oil, and paprika. Pulse again until well combined, add salt. This sauce is best if allowed to rest so the flavors can meld (may be made a day in advance).

mmm. mmmm. Thank me later. :)