31 July 2012


Yesterday was a sad day for Charlestonians...as we lost Hope. Quite literally. Our renowned charmer of a brew-by-the-cup coffee shop, Hope and Union, closed it's insanely good looking doors yesterday. They were pretty coveted...by all. Even Design Sponge, as they featured the mod-minimalist interior on their blog. So in an attempt to relish the last-ever H + U brew, my (super talented) friend Natalie and I paid a visit last week, and she snapped some bittersweet photos:

 They've assuredly turned my into a cappucino snob.
Who wouldn't start to insist on a feathery milk design?

 Well hey, there...that's me... :)
Dressed to impress...in total slum attire...as usual.

 Our favorite little window nook.
Complete with comfy throw pillows and this gorgie ceiling to stare upon.

 Love the industrial ingenuity behind their pour-over station.
Pipes are cool.

 Weathered shiplap.
Light blue walls.
Sleek black chairs.
All very good things, in my book.
 Love the simplicity behing the nautical outdoor pendant lighs + that incredibly 
old exposed brick fireplace. Hope and Union was housed in a renovated Charleston single, 
so it was inevitably long and narrow with an amazing side porch (complete with marble
bistro tables and black Bertoia chairs, I might add).

Good 'til the last red star.
Natalie made friends with the dude behind the bar.
He told us where to buy these mugs.
I'm hoping Santa might just come early.

Love Natalie's photos?
Me, too. You'll assuredly love her blog, too:
(especially if you like food).
I tell her repeatedly, too, that I want nothing more than to live in her tumblr.

Oh, and speaking of coffee (which I drink far too much of)...what really gets you going in the morning? Lately my spark has been routed in some energizing AM yoga...and not even a full session. Just 10 minutes of breath and flow totally jump starts my day and gives me that motivation to tackle anything and everything. So I thought I'd share a short, super-charged yoga routine I've been starting my days with:


25 July 2012


So, you may have picked up on the fact that the Mr. and I have essentially been out of town alllll summer long...and for super exciting, insanely good reason, I might add. You see, I have this big interiors project going on in Kentucky, and I've been traveling back and forth working on installs as furnishings and draperies arrive...and I've thrown some fun shopping trips (like to Atlanta) into the mix as well.

Anyway, the project consists of an entire house and the outdoor courtyard area. My clients requested a mix of modern and rustic, so I developed a well-curated culmination of weathered materials and sleek lines and surfaces. Overall, the aesthetic is uber-refined...built upon layering neutrals and a multitude of textures. Black and gray accents ground the space in hints of masculinity, and interesting patterns, artwork, and accessories lend subtle interest. And, perhaps most importantly, the rooms are comfortable and welcoming...the biggest request from my (really amazing) clients.

Now...want to see? The big reveal will come with professional photos, but here's a little instagram sneak peak into a few evolving details:

Hope you enjoyed the mini glimpse.
And hope you have an uber-amazing and inspiring Wednesday in store!

24 July 2012


So I woke up early this morning to do some yard work. Maple and I have been gone what seems like all summer (hence the lack of regular blogging...oops), and returned to our little abode a few days ago to find our yard on the verge of overgrown. Anyway, I love being out there...digging in the dirt...cleaning everything up...making it look loved and cared for again. Being outdoors is just good for my soul...our neighborhood is so peaceful in the early morning...and I, of course, can't help but imagine all the things Maple and I want to do to our yard, porch, and patio when I'm out there slaving in the AM sun.

I pretty much love landscape design as much as I do interiors, and it's a goal of mine to become fairly well-versed in the art. Our fairly tight budget means we have to take it a little at a time, but we're working our way towards a yard that will someday channel these favorite inspiration photos I've filed:

 I pretty continually find myself drawn to Mediterranean architecture + landscaping. I especially love the natural-looking mix of Sheryl Crow's plantings: whispy grasses, stately aloe + cacti, succulents, and creeping wall vines, of course.

 Again with the Mediterranean aesthetic. How perfect is this little patio nook for sipping AM coffee? It's definitely in our patio plan to replicate a similar shade spot.

 A lush mix of green and white landscaping is what I have in mind for our own front yard. And hints of purple (like the salvia I planted) add the perfect pop of color. And I'm sort of obsessed with having a pea gravel front walk!

 This simple stucco firepit, pea gravel, and grayish adirondack chairs are perfection.
I don't think I'll ever tire of gray-weathered wood. And how brilliant to create a simple divider with vintage shutters-turned-trellis!

 The back exterior wall of our house is boring concrete block. It will be the backdrop for our entire patio, so we planted creeping fig all along the perimeter. It's already climbing away...and will sooner than later look like this gorgie wall.

And how stunning are these whispy lady banks roses? Maple and I planted two on either side of our front porch iron spindles. They're vigorous climbers, and will *hopefully* soon be cascading along the overhang of our front porch and entry. 

So anyway....our yard is coming along, slowly but surely. It's pretty rewarding to watch it evolve, and see how far our sweat equity (quite literally...it's so dang hot!) has come, and dream of where it will someday be.


18 July 2012


So, I've been a pinning fool as of late, and there seems to be an underlying theme: expansive windows and doors. And not just any windows and doors, but insanely gorgeous, masculine, simple, classic industrial iron windows and doors, filled with rows and rows of crisp glass panes. That's one of the two reasons Maple and I knew we had to have our house: the windows were giant, and they're the insanely cool aluminum-gridded industrial windows that crank open. I'd love to replace them one day, as the 1950s wasn't the most energy efficient era, and when we do, they'll resemble these beauties:

I'm especially taken with this bottom photo...which is pretty much my dream. How I'd love to knock out the back of our house and replace it with floor-to-ceiling industrial glass, and move our kitchen so I can spend any and every bit of my free time staring out those stunning windows.

So, thinking of replacing windows and doors of your own in the near future? Think outside the box a bit (if you're willing to splurge, of course). You don't have to go with the contractor's special, as I like to call them: white, plastic-paned windows with upper and lower sashes. Look into industrial windows, like those shown above: these days they're manufactured just as energy efficient as those everyday cheapies you see in big box stores.


09 July 2012


So, our house is constantly evolving. We've owned this little casa for a year and a half now, and we had high hopes and giant to-do lists, only to have them both blundered by a lack of time and money. No one told me homeownership was expensive?! Kidding...kidding...they ALL did. Anyhow, Maple and I have made a tiny bit of progress (remember the befores?...scary.), so I thought I'd give you a little glimpse into how are little abode is coming along. It's an eclectic little place, filled with treasures we've picked up from our travels, pieces of furniture we happen upon, and family heirlooms...but it's super warm and cozy, and totally suited to me and my Maple:

A corner of our sofa...and therefore our living room. The bertoia chairs were my dad's, the lamps my grandmother's (same for vintage photo on wall), and the lasso was Maple's dad's. See the little ivory and black clay vase? I picked it up in Argentina on our honeymoon.

The entryway console is topped with little treasures, but perhaps my fav is the burled wood humidor I had engraved for Maple. It's gorgie. And that iron horse head tray came from an antique shop in Asheville--one of our favorite, well-frequented cities. The books are all vintage, and family heirlooms...and they're held together by gold horseshoe bookends I found at an estate sale. The artwork is a fav piece given to us for our wedding (it will get hung on wall, I just haven't done it yet), and the mirror behind it was a wedding gift to my grandmother in the 1940s.

Ahh, my beloved peacock chairs. They were purchased for the outdoors. I fell in love.
 I had to keep them in.

A corner shot of our dining room...and the other peacock...in all of its glory. That window will someday be french doors, as it goes right out to our *future* patio. The vintage Kilim rug is an absolute favorite find, and my Maple built that amazing farmhouse table you can sort of see.

Our dining room is long and narrow, so we constructed a built-in banquette for super-cozy eating.
That gorgeous cotton painting was an amazing gift from Maple's mama, and the horse shoes (kind of a thing of mine...long story) were picked up in Brooklyn, on a rendezvous to NYC.

A favorite painting pops off sultry, navy blue walls in the den/TV room.
Coveted books and treasures fill the built-in nook to the left. 

And lastly, a little peek at our kitchen...the very reason I fell in love with this house. It's fairly big (there's an entire wall of cabinets you aren't seeing), and the huge picture window and terracotta tile floors vaulted it to perfection in my book. We painted the cabinets a rich, bronzey-gray, and outfitted the plain-front doors with simple bronze hardware. She still needs some love, but she's getting there. Friends tell me it reminds them of an Italian-countryside kitchen. I kiss them when they tell me that. 

So there you have it...the slow (but sure) evolution of our casa. Our to-do list (more like renovation list...eek), is still four miles long, but I've learned to enjoy the process...and more importantly, be completely happy with where we are in that process.  Hmm...a life lesson, perhaps? :)