design in a box…

Today’s going down as one of the best in the history of the Findlay household. I just about giggled like a school girl when I saw the postal lady walk up my sidewalk with a box and a roll of carpet samples in her hands.


It’s the Design In A Box that I won from Canadian designer and design columnist for Dabble magazine, Nyla Free!!!!!!!!!!

It came in the prettiest grey box with yellow trim & ribbon!! I’m a wrapping kinda gal! It’s full of fabric samples for upholstery and drapes, design layout options, source guides and carpet samples!!!

It’s just like Christmas around here! I was so excited that I tore everything open in a frenzy (as you can see), called Nyla to blabber on about what a huge fan I am, and now I need to go back to bed ’cause my brain blew up!

I’m suddenly craving turkey and gravy…mmmmmmm!

playhouse do-over…

Have you ever wanted a childhood do-over?

As a child, I spent much of my time dreaming in my playhouse, and I would love to recapture that feeling of pure freedom. Only this time, I’d do it up in GRAND style!!! (I shouldn’t complain ’cause my dad built me a really amazing playhouse on stilts with windows, a shake shingled roof, and a grand staircase leading to the front door.)

There would be some serious whitewashing and it would be completely over-the-top frilly and girlie–a sight to behold, let me tell ya! My guest roster would extremely selective…only friends bearing lavish gifts and bottles of wine! Gossip would not only be encouraged, but expected!

photo courtesy Rachel Swan Design blog

photo courtesy Restyled Home

photo courtesy Jeanette Van Wicklen

photo courtesy Country House via Hooray

Above: This is a garage that was converted into an outdoor room (featured on Hooray Design). Below: The interior

photo coutesy Country House via Hooray

photo courtesy Moth Design

Above: The inspiration for this blog post. An outdoor room by Moth Design. Below: The interior

photo courtesy Moth Design

happy summer happy color…

Can you hear me sighing with relief? It’s finally summer! Although the sun isn’t shining here, we’ve been promised a peak at it later in the week. When I think of summer, I think of color, so what better post than one on color in decor? I’ve collected an eclectic assortment of colorful rooms.

My inspiration for this blog is a bungalow designed by a fabulous Canadian designer, Jonathan Legate.

Photograph by Stacey Haines for Style At Home

I can see myself living happily in a room like the one above. The combination of warm buttery yellow walls with just the right red–especially the striped chair–and the gorgeous black toile drapes is such an inviting combination! Just the right degree of cozy & drama.

photograph by Stacey Haines for Style at Home

I think I finally get it…fabric is king! Look at how fantastic this room looks with that fabric. I might not give it a second look if I was leafing through swatches, but a designer like Jonathan has the experience to see the big picture and understand how it will make a room shine. Yet another example of why it pays to hire a designer.

photo courtesy Benjamen Moore

Pottery Barn’s summer paint colors for Benjamin Moore are really interesting. As paint chips, they don’t jump out at me, but once I see them in a vignette, they’re fabulous. The brown, blue and red in this room somehow manage to seem light and airy. Go figure! At this point, I think you’ve got a sense of how color-challenged I really am…lettin’ it all hang out here on the pages of this blog.

photo courtesy Benjamin Moore

I just think this cozy turquoise room with the gorgeous-smorgeous bedding is the cat’s meow! I’d never leave my bedroom if it looked like this!

photo courtesy Lonny magazine

You know me…gotta get a little orange in here somewhere. This appeals to the modern side of me.

photo courtesy Midwest Living

For some reason, I’m craving a mojito and a fan! I doubt that Mark would actually join me on this verandah for a drink…hmmmm…wait a minute..!

photo courtesy Elle Decor

This rosy red is “in” right now. So if you want to be super cool (just like me), rose is the color for you! I just can’t decorate with it, ’cause it would be a major clash with my red hair–I’m  a big believer in decorating with the colors that flatter you! My mom would probably claim that horizontal stripes on chairs make you look wider…hmmmm!

photo courtesy Benjamin Moore

photo courtesy Lonny magazine

The boldly colorful couch and the gold gilded picture frame remind me of some of the decor I’ve seen in Britain. It just says, “sit down and we’ll have a really good chat”.

I’m hopeful that this summer will be full of color. Full of friends. Full of fun!

set design to die for…

In an attempt to keep my mind off profiteroles, I settled into my bed last night to watch Something’s Gotta Give–one of my all-time favorite movies! I adore Jack Nicholson and Diane Keaton, but I covet that house! Oooh la la. Besides the amazing Kenton Nelson paintings, my absolutely favorite part of the house is Diane’s bedroom–that bed linen…that desk…that fabulous chair…those french doors…that beach view. Mark couldn’t believe it when I told him that girls do cry like that when their hearts are broken!

This photo was featured in an issue of Architectural Digest that discussed set design on SGG.

photo courtesy of Architectural Digest

You can imagine my delight when The Holiday came on immediately after SGG ended. The part where Kate Winslet‘s character explains to Jack Black that she understands exactly what his broken heart feels like, kills me every time. The cottage in Surrey is so cozy and charming–the creamy blue kitchen cabinets are adorable. But it’s the house in California that absolutely blows my socks off.  Hallelujah  Nancy Meyers — you rock! Keep bringing us fabulous movies.

photo courtesy of Kaleidoscope

photo courtesy of Kaleidoscope

By the way…I’m happy to report that the Angel on my shoulder won the sneak-another-profiterole-while-everyone-is-sleeping tug-o-war! Phew.

Portland calling…

I have been hearing wonderful things about Portland, Oregon. Art, culture, heritage buildings, cafes, great food, great skiing…sounds like my kinda place. Mark keeps raving about the Timberline Lodge at Mount Hood, so it won’t take much to convince him that we need to take a a road trip with the kids and our skis. I came across a a talented Portland interior designer, Jessica Helgerson, on a wonderful blog called Delight by Design .

I just love this before and after–such a fresh take on a classic bungalow.

Photo courtesy of Jessica Helgerson

At some point in my life, I’m going to have a round table. I just think they encourage lingering over wine and conversation!

photo courtesy of Jessica Helgerson

This photo just makes me want to whip out a yoga mat….er…make that a deck chair.

photo courtesy of Jessica Helgerson

The chaise lounge is just so enticing in this room. The mantel display is wonderful–such an unexpected vignette.

photo courtesy of Jessica Helgerson

the verdict is in…

I peeled open my Amazon package in glee last week. Inside were the two books that I mentioned in an earlier post–The Well-Dressed Home & Glamour Making It Modern. I have wanted to read them for a while now, and I finally found some time!

I am really enjoying The Well-Dressed Home, by Annette Tatum. It’s full of eye-candy photos and wonderful inspiration boards. Annette takes a unique approach to interior design by encouraging people to look in their own closets for inspiration. She recommends going well beyond “the box” to define your personal design style. Look at your clothes, your accessories, fashion shows, music, etc.

If you’re the kind of person who loves to pull on some old jeans and a white t-shirt, you’re probably happiest in a casual decor. If you love to wear cashmere and silk, Annette would probably recommend a formal gilded damask theme for your home. Likewise, if you love the hottest clothing designers, you’re probably someone who should be shopping at EQ3 for that “it” chair.

The whole idea is to pin down your personal style, whether it’s clothing or home decor. I’m not finished the book yet, but I’m looking forward to seeing how she brings it altogether and helps me figure my style.

I give this book a thumbs up. The cover itself is worth the price! I love just seeing it on my coffee table every time I walk into the living room. Gotta love gold and turquoise!

The Well-Dressed Room

The Well-Dressed home

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