How to Mix Styles at Home

Friday, May 22, 2015

image via Nicole LaMotta
Mixing and matching styles can be challenging, especially when we're talking about design.  Furniture isn't cheap, and mixing styles can be intimidating if you're not sure about how it will all turn out.  Here are a few of my tips to mix and match styles at home like a pro:

Create synergies: Make the pieces in your room talk to one another.  The brass chest complements the brass lamp, while the pillow combo picks up the pink in the rug without being too matchy matchy.

Choose timeless pieces: When mixing styles, it's important to choose pieces that aren't going to go out of style any time soon.  Timeless styles like mid-century modern are timeless for a reason: they have clean lines and simple designs that you'll never get tired of.  Pieces that are classic and simple will easily blend with other styles rather than fight them.  

Incorporate vintage: Authentic pieces are so important to a rooms overall look and feel - vintage pieces give a room soul, and add intrigue.  Flea markets are a great source for vintage, and online, you can find great stuff with resources like Etsy, Craigslist, Ebay, and Chairish (my personal favorite; with a concept like Craigslist but with a much more curated collection, and great photos of their products).

In big pieces, go for neutrals: Larger pieces command more attention in a room, so mixing a bunch of different styles with say, a kelley green sofa can be more challenging.  By sticking to a neutral color for bigger items, you'll be able to create a more cohesive look when paired with other styles.

If you love it, it will work: Style, in any form, is an expression of your true self.  I've got a mix of styles in my home, modern, mid century, bohemian, vintage; and the reason they all work together is because I love each piece.  I couldn't imagine sticking to only one style, because that doesn't express who I am and what I like.  My golden rule is that if you truly love a piece, go for it.

Kitchen Trends

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

image via Apartment Therapy
Lately I've been day dreaming a lot more about my future non-apartment dream home.  Some days it feels like I may never live in my dream home, but I figure the more time I spend dreaming, the quicker I'll be able to make game time design decisions when I finally DO live in a house.  For me, the kitchen will probably be the most important room, so here's a look at whats hot in kitchen design right now:

Rugs: I go back and forth on this one.  On the one hand, cooking with a nice turkish kilim rug right under the stove seems like disaster could strike, but on the other hand, a rug in the kitchen really warms up a space where you may not have much control over the look and feel of the room.  I think this also depends on your layout, a narrow aisle would do well with a rug, but if you have more of an open kitchen a rug under the sink might be the better bet for you.
via Door Sixteen
Globe pendant lights: For whatever reason, the beautiful circular shape looks beautiful in the kitchen.  The light and airy globe pendant adds a certain symmetry to a room that is typically very linear with lots of corners.  It's a great companion in the kitchen, adding to the aesthetic without being heavy or taking away from the main stand out elements.
via House Tweaking
Open shelving: I'm not totally sure that I could live with only open shelving, but I love the idea of incorporating it to showcase your most beautiful pieces, while still being able to hide away unsightly things like blenders behind closed doors.
via Veneer Designs
Subway tile: The trend towards subway tile is really about making a space bright and shiny.  White grout and slick tile make it easy to clean, and it looks great with a wide variety of materials like wood and marble (also trendy right now in the kitchen).
via Our House
Farmhouse sinks: These over-sized sinks are true workhorses in the kitchen.  Their large size makes dishes a breeze, and the porcelain is easy to clean itself.
via Lonny Magazine
Marble counter tops:  I feel like marble is the creme de la creme of kitchen counter top materials.  It's beautiful, sophisticated, and everything anyone could ever want of their surfaces in the kitchen.
via One Kin Design
Brass hardware: Brass has made the biggest come back in home decor, and it looks particularly brassy and beautiful used as kitchen hardware for pulls, faucets, etc.  This gorgeous kitchen also uses brass combined with marble for the back splash.  I love how the brass really pops against the navy, and the brass faucet is such a standout detail.  If there's ever an opportunity to have more brass in your life, the answer should always be yes.
via Style by Emily Henderson
Two-tone cabinets: I absolutely love this kitchen.  The shade of green is beautiful and plays so well off the brass, white, and marble details.  Two-tone cabinets work so well in bright spaces - notice how the white cabinets kind of melt into the light and really allow the green to take center stage.
kitchen renovation // before & after // sarah sherman samuel
via Smitten Studio
Concrete: In the kitchen, concrete tends to invoke more of a stream-lined, industrial feel.  A decidedly unique material to use, its no-fuss clean look and feel can be very beautiful.  It can also be warmed up by pairing with wood (see below) for a more rustic aesthetic.
via The Design Files
Wood: I think I would love to have a wood and concrete kitchen in my future second lake-front home.  Wood accents can be incorporated in many ways, in the bones of a kitchen as cabinets and drawers, or in a smaller scale as open shelving.
via The Style Files
What are your favorite kitchen trends?

California Cool: House by Amber Interiors

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

I've long admired the work of Amber Lewis, and when I came across this gorgeous house designed by her I had to share it with you.  The style is so quintessentially Southern California, with modern lines, layered textures, and bohemian touches that all come together in such a collected, comfortable, and cohesive look.  I'm ready to move in!  All photos by Tessa Neustadt via Amber Interior Design.

The April Edit: Spring Must Haves

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Does the ever-burning desire to shop lessen with age?  I haven't found this to be the case, so for now I'll just keep blogging about all the things I want to buy.  Read on to see what I'm craving for spring.
01. J.Crew indigo gauze popover: This shirt looks like denim but is actually super lightweight and ultra soft.  The contrast of the tortoise shell buttons with the indigo is a great detail.
02. Ashlyn'd honor roll clutch: (image via Nasty Gal) A perfectly unique chalkboard clutch that you can write clever messages on! It also has an interior mirror to make touch ups in a flash.
03. Native Union clic wooden iphone case: I love this color combo of peach and dark wood on this iphone case.
04. Stateside striped tank: Spring is the perfect time to break out the stripes - a staple in any girl's wardrobe.  I love to pair them with florals for a fun play with pattern.
05. Anthropologie impressionist headband: I tend to wear my hair up more often when the weather warms up, and this cute playful headband will take your messy bun to the next level.
06. Nike flex fury sneaker: I couldn't be happier that the fashion gods saw fit to bless athletic sneakers as trendy!  These cute and chic sneakers are the perfect comfortable shoe for casual days (and the gym!).
07. Madewell corsica straw beach tote: This woven, textured tote is just the thing to haul your produce from the farmer's market or your towel and book to the beach.
08. Forever 21 tropical brushes: These makeup brushes have the cutest palm leaf pattern!
09. Michael Stars curved hem shorts: I love a good dolphin hem, and these pull-on indigo shorts are easy to dress up or down, making getting out the door that much quicker.
10. Nine Space carmel beach towel: I might be thinking ahead a bit to summer, but you just can't go wrong with these Turkish cotton beach towels that are lightweight and super absorbent.

The Most Life Changing Invention for Women Everywhere

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

via Bittersweet Jewelry
This blog post title carries some serious weight, but so does this miraculous discovery.  Bittersweet Jewelry makes jewelry cuffs designed to not only keep your wrist from losing circulation from a too-tight hair tie, but to rid you of your 8th grade fashion sense when wearing all of your hair ties on your wrist was cool.
via Bittersweet Jewelry

These jewelry cuffs hold your hair tie inconspicuously and elevate your wrist game tenfold.  Because every girl needs a hair tie, but no one needs to know you're wearing one.  Use code 'HAPPY' at check out for a 15% discount!

The Best Travel Accessories

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Travelling can be an ordeal, especially if you're not doing it right.  Yes, I believe there is a right and wrong way to travel.  The first time I flew on an airplane alone, I was 5 years old.  Granted, my family could meet me at the gate back in those days, but my point is that I've been at it a while.  Below are some of the practical travel accessories that I've found make any trip a whole lot easier.
ONE: mobile charger - the days of relying on power outlets to charge your electronics are far behind you.  Make sure you never lose a charge with this fun portable charger.
TWO: Target Sonia Kashuk beauty organizer - keeping your cosmetics all in one place is a must when travelling.  This cute palm print will make packing a little more fun.
THREE: Clare Vivier luggage tag - a bright luggage tag will help you spot your bag in the sea of lookalike luggage that is baggage claim.
FOUR: Always Rooney passport case - I don't know about you, but my carry on always starts off super organized, but as soon as I get to the airport things change.  This cute leather case will help you keep track of your passport so you can easily grab it when you need it.
FIVE: Mini travel steamer - this doubles as a home AND travel must have.  For those of you who hate ironing use this mini steamer and keep wrinkles from ruining your otherwise fabulous outfit.
SIX: Colgate wisps - for any longer plane ride, I love using these disposable mini toothbrushes (no water required!) to keep your teeth fresh and clean.
SEVEN: yes to cucumbers face towelettes are perfect to freshen up your face without having to wash it.  The cucumber scent is also very soothing!
EIGHT: ElizabethW sleep mask - make sure you can fall asleep and block out light with a pretty sleep mask.
NINE: Gotoob travel bottles - don't worry about your shampoo bottles exploding everywhere anymore; these silicone travel bottles are flexible so you can squeeze every last ounce of product out.
TEN: Honest hand sanitizer - I carry this around in my bag whether I'm travelling or not.  It's always good to have in a pinch, and smells wonderful.
ELEVEN: Bose headphones - good, comfortable headphones are a must when travelling.  I'd recommend splurging for the noise cancelling ones to better your travel experience even more.  If you're travelling with a friend, you might also consider a headphone splitter to watch/listen together.
TWELVE: 4-1 travel adapter - for the world traveler, this all inclusive adapter has you covered no matter where you're going.
THIRTEEN: Mini dual voltage curling iron - the mini and dual voltage are key here, especially if you're travelling overseas, you don't have to worry about frying your tools with the wrong voltage.  This mini curling iron probably won't cut it if you have really long hair, but is great for shorter lengths.  These days, most hotels have blow dryers, but depending on your styling needs you can get a mini straightener or travel hair dryer (all dual voltage).  If I know I'll be blow drying a lot, and need a nozzle, I travel with my regular Harry Josh pro dryer which, while pricey, is hands down the best beauty investment I've made. 
FOURTEEN: Luggage scale - okay, who's tired of rearranging your packing situation at check in?  I am!  Scoop up a luggage scale and never unpack at the gate again.
FIFTEEN: In transit spray on moisture - most people are prone to dry skin while travelling, especially with recirculated air.  This spray moisture doesn't clog pores, and you can use it on your face and body to stay hydrated.
SIXTEEN: Travel laundry bag - this nylon bag is ultra compact (fits in the palm of your hand) and will keep your dirty clothes properly sequestered from the clean.
SEVENTEEN: Kate Spade shoe bag - don't let the shoes you wear outside get your nice clean clothes dirty.  Kate Spade also makes cute intimates bags as well.
EIGHTEEN: Memory foam pillow - things that can be stuffed into tiny bags are what make travel accessories convenient.  This pillow will support your neck on long flights and become compact when you're done using it to save space.
NINETEEN: Minimergency kit - this tiny studded case holds tons of things that come in handy like a sewing kit and double sided tape.

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