Saturday, July 31, 2010

A Few Home Improvements...

I told ya I was going to show you the Paris map once it got adorned with the right frame!


I was able to find a frame at Michael's since they were having a 50% off custom frame orders sale. I don't even want to know how much it would've cost had I gone to a frame specialist downtown (Annapolis) since this frame wasn't exactly inexpensive. BUT it was worth it since now it's hanging in the powder room looking fabulous.

I know, I know, there's still no chair rail in this bathroom and when did I say I was going to finish it? I only have myself to blame but it'll eventually be added, promise!

Remember how I said in the recent Dining Room post I did that I wasn't finished decorating it just yet? Well, not that I am, but we added curtains to the windows about a month ago (yes, I totally forgot to write about it and show you!) and I am finally getting to show you all what it looks like. And I have to say it looks pretty darn good, if I do say so myself.

Concorde Medallion Panel from Ballard Designs, $69-$89.


I didn't even prop Emma there, she was already there waiting to pose for me.*

I don't know if I mentioned this in my Floor Sample Sale post, but when we purchased the Paterson White Media Console we also purchased the Sloane White 18" Leaning Bookcases as well to flank the console. I was a little worried about it since I wanted bookcases with backs to flank the console, but it turns out that the leaning ones work better than what I had envisioned. Without the backs, it lets the beautiful blue paint color come through, and it also allows for any accessories on the bookcases to really stand out which is what my goal was for the bookcases.

*See a 'Before' shot of the same room with a darker media console.



And the last improvement we literally just did (yesterday and this morning) would be our garden in the front of the house. Our hydrangeas have been looking a little pathetic (no thanks to us for not taking care of them as well as we should have) so we decided to get them healthy again and to add some new flowers for more color. We also thought it would be nice if we framed our front stoop (I can't think of any other euphemistic word for stoop) with some potted flowers. We went to this place called Homestead Gardens to pick up the flowers, mulch, potting soil, and the pots but the pots they had were just way too expensive ($100 and upwards for a flower pot!). So, I told my husband let's wait until I take a trip to HomeGoods tomorrow morning to see if I can find any flower pots there that would be more affordable. I'm so glad we waited because we got 2 unique flower pots for a steal ($24.99 each), well at least compared to the Homestead Gardens ones.

Our stoop looking so much lovelier with the potted flowers.

A closeup of the unique flower pot.

That's all of the improvements done in the past 1-2 months and hopefully there will be more coming up. I'll keep you all posted with our progress!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

More Art for the Walls

"Better Days..." Print Set
$10 - $18

If I could get the above image blown up and framed to go right on one of the walls in our bedroom, I think that would help me get out of bed for work. I really do. And if not, then at least it's a really nice looking piece of artwork.

With all of the walls we have that are still blank in the house, I am learning that artwork can be really expensive if you keep a closed mind (i.e. if original artwork is all that you are looking for). But if you're open to any and all possibilities, then, what is it that they say? The world is your oyster?

So, now I look for artwork EVERYWHERE I go now. Tag sales, thrift stores, Craigslist, Etsy, eBay, you name it I've searched through it all. Now, I can't really show you what's available at these tag sales cause I was an idiot the last few times I went since I didn't take my camera with me (doh!) so I can only show you what I've found online. But act quick, because some of the items (from Etsy) go fast!

Hat Collection Print for $24.00.

Smart addition to a dressing room/closet.


Antique Brown Engraving of Famous Signatures from the French Encyclopedia Nouveau Larousse Illustre Print for $10.00.

Great framed in a powder room, or on a bookshelf. Only 1 left!


Boticelli By The Sea fine art print for $16.00.

The colors in this print will perk up any space you place it in.


1834 Antique Regency Era Engraved Portrait for $19.85.

Haunting, yet lovely.


I stand each day on the shore Photography print for $30.00.

Normally, I am not a fan of purchasing photographs (only cause I think I can do it myself, a bit arrogant I know, but I'm trying to be frugal) but I have to say there are gorgeous photographs out there that I know that I cannot replicate and that's when I break down and just buy it.


Alphabet Poster for $50.00, Limited Edition.

How adorable would this be in a nursery?


Coral red dancer Fine art print for $30.00.

The movement and color really captivates me when I see this photograph. It would make a great stand-out piece to any wall or shelf.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Latest Tag Sale Finds!

Got this French lamp shade from The Treasured Hunt. J'adore!

Some of you already know this, but for the past few weeks I've been feeling really under the weather and I've gone through the full gamet of medical help that's available. Trust me, I even went to the ER. Everything is okay in terms of me physically, it just turns out that I am really, really stressed out and my body is suffering because of it.

Hopefully I didn't get too debbie-downer here, but the point of sharing that with you is that I have amazing family and friends who really cheer me up. Case in point, this past weekend we celebrated a friend's wedding and I just had a great time! And that would've been plenty of fun for me for the weekend, but nope, the fun didn't stop there. Sunday was a blast too because it was Sunday Funday. It's what a group (Great Gatsby Gang) of us call the Sundays that we all hang out together. And yes, we call ourselves the Great Gatsby Gang because we just love having fun together.

I should say that Sunday Funday didn't start with the whole gang together, just the girls. And we took advantage of the fact that we didn't have the guys there cause we went shopping! I have been dying to get the girls to go to some of the Tag sales around the DC/MD/VA area and they were finally able to come with me this time. Nothing like retail therapy, I tell ya. We went to Chartreuse & Co in Frederick, MD and got some real great finds. Here are a some of the items I was able to snag.

Courtesy of The Treasured Hunt. Love the scalloped edges and the red piping.

I saw this chair and said, "it's mine!"
Courtesy of The Treasured Hunt.

The zebra print fabric sold me.

A fabulous letter/bill holder from Madison & Mabel. It'll look great in the office to house all those pesky bills.

Fabulous store in downtown Frederick called Tiara Day is where I got this purple vintage French book.

Tiara Day also sells their goods at Chartreuse & Co which is how we found out that they have a store in downtown Frederick. If you have never been to downtown Frederick, please please go. It is a fabulous area filled with all of these wonderful shops and restaurants and I am just dying to go back there asap.

Hey Great Gatsby Gang, when are we going there next?

Friday, July 16, 2010

Gotta go check out the...

Maybe it's cause I go to home furnishing stores way too often, but I always happen to get a great deal when it comes time for these stores to put their floor sample items on sale. Like for instance, my husband and I went into Pottery Barn in Georgetown one day and left with a brand new (not even the floor sample!) dining room table for half the original price! Turns out they were selling the floor sample model of the dining room table we purchased, but they also had more in the back that were brand new that they were selling for the same price as the floor sample.

And when we went to Restoration Hardware just to window shop, we left with a brown, velvet tufted armchair that is currently in our living room for a steal. And when I say steal, I really mean it. I think we got the chair for $140 and it was in tip-top shape.

Well, only a few days ago we went into Crate and Barrel just to look and again we left with a great deal. But this time, for once, it was actually something we were looking for which made the find even better! We've been wanting to lighten the furniture in the tv room for some time now and decided to swap out the dark, media stand for a white one. And while perusing around for a bit, we found a floor sample of the Paterson Media Stand for sale at $240, originally at $399. Not as good as being half off, but pretty darn good.

We're going to switch out the hardware to something that has a bit more character.


We also scored another good find at Crate and Barrel, not exactly something we were looking for but at $160, originally $299, we just couldn't let the Jules Large Accent Table get away from us.

We got the larger of the two.

Since it's Friday and the weekend is upon us, I highly recommend checking out your local home furnishing retailers to see what great finds you can score. You never know what's out there til you see for yourself.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Do You Remember...


How I went to Charlottesville, Virginia to visit Monticello, President Jefferson's estate? Welllll, randomly enough I was flipping through the newest issue of Elle Decor, and what do I see?? Jefferson's dining room redone so that it is now a shockingly bright chrome-yellow. I know that in the previous post on Monticello I had said that we weren't allowed to take photos inside; well, I am so glad that they redid Monticello not just so that I can share these photos with you, but because it's a pretty darn good redo of the dining room.

Jefferson was ahead of his time, not just in politics but in cultural trends, and at one point the dining room was painted yellow, specifically in 1815, only 6 years after the color was invented in France. Told you he was ahead of his time.

Here's a 'Before' shot of the dining room:



More 'After' shots:







One of my favorite designers, Charlotte Moss, designed the table setting.


Now, it's much brighter and really feels like the sunlight fills up the room, whereas before it didn't even look like sunlight came through. Oh, if I only had a house with window panes that were black, I would totally paint a room in this chrome-yellow. Wouldn't you?

{Photo Credits: Elle Decor}

Monday, July 12, 2010

Good Enough To Be Art

Paris-Map-Red-Cavallini-Wrapping-PaperParis Map Red Cavallini Wrapping Paper for $3.95?!

You know, I didn't buy a 2010 planner this year and I'm usually on top of buying one at the beginning of the year but I just put it on the back burner (typical me). I'm still actually surprised that I haven't bought one yet (I'll probably make a pit-stop at Barnes & Noble at some point this weekend) but I told myself that I just had to get one this past weekend since it not only keeps track of everyone's birthday, but also of all the events that go on in my life (I don't have that many, but it makes me feel good to write down the ones that I do).

I also, and this is a big secret and I can't believe I'm spilling this to the world wide web, keep my username and passwords for all of my online accounts in the planner too. Terrible idea, I know, but if you know me very well, then you know that my memory is terrible, as terrible as my eyesight, which is why I have to write things down somewhere...and what better place than in my planner? If it makes you feel any better, I do keep my planner at home and not in my purse.

To get to the point, I went to the Paper Source in Annapolis hoping to find one. While I am rarely disappointed in any trip to Paper Source, I have to say that I was unable to find a planner that was to my liking. BUT I did stumble upon this great wrapping paper which depicts a map of Paris. Well, the size and color and of course content got me thinking that this would look great in our dark blue powder room. It's got bright, light colors, and really, a map of Paris never gets old. So I got it. Plus, it was only $3.95! And now it's just waiting to get adorned with the perfect frame. Once I find it, I'll post pics of it in the bathroom.

Wrapping paper, whether it's a repetitive pattern or a scene of something, is a great alternative to artwork. Don't forget that, I tend to sometimes.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

New Redesign!

Hey guys! I don't know if you've noticed but Proper Hunt just got a face lift! I was getting a bit bored with the simplicity of it and decided that it needed more color. I'm still honing in on a few design elements but for the most part this is how it's gonna be, well until I get antsy and decide to redesign it again.

Let me know what you think!

xoxo,
Christina

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