November 29, 2010

Inspiration Dumping Ground: Kitchen Ideas

Seems I've gotten a little flak from you-know-who about how many photos I save for "inspiration". He's really right, my desktop is riddled with photos like if only I had a kitchen like this, or our next house HAS to have a dining room with a fireplace ... hey a girl can dream!

In an effort to condense my desktop folder, I've decided to dump 'em here. Hopefully they'll inspire you too. Up first, the Kitchen Collection

Now that they are all in one spot, you can see the common threads that I'm drawn to: simple, white based - yet colorful, a touch whimsical or retro, charming spaces that invite you in for a cup of coffee or canning party with your girlfriends.

November 28, 2010


Need a laugh today?
You're welcome.

*No puppies were harmed in the taking of this picture. Despite her appearance, Lucy (the little one) actually loves it when Charlie (the big one) gums her neck & ears. He is not as ferocious as he looks.

November 27, 2010

Say Cheese!

Christmas came a little early around here.

We've upgraded our hardware and finally sprung for a Digital SLR camera.

Up til now, we've been using a great point a shoot digital, Canon Powershot SD750 to be exact. Our point and shoot has served us incredibly well. It's great for outdoor shots and takes surprisingly great Macro shots buuuut, we've always been photography nerds - both of us taking photography in college and valuing a great SLR (read: interchangeable lens camera).

So, after much saving and deliberation we sprung for the Nikon D3000. We considered all the major camera companies, played with them at the big box stores over the years but it really boiled down to price and reviews we researched, plus I've used a Nikon for work before and love it's ease of use and great photographs.

The D3000 is considered an intro Digital SLR, great for beginners to intermediate photogs and will serve us well for years to come.

So far, I'm loving it! Most notable differences so far - those yummy fuzzy backgrounds you get with a long depth of field and wide aperture and when taking pictures of rooms, the angle is wider and crisper.... see: the first one is taken with the old camera and the second from the new one - while they were taken about 3 months apart, they are from roughly the same angle.
what a difference!

in case you are wondering, we referenced Pioneer Woman a lot for the "non-photographer" advice on photography. I could spend hours on her site. If you've never been there you must live under a rock. No offense.

Cheers to better photos!

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

Best part about Black Friday (other than our new camera!) is decorating!! Does everyone else decorate on Friday after Thanksgiving and take down New Year's Eve or around there (but never carry it into the new year)??
** please excuse the messy living room - Eric and I are halfway through our operation "Organize & Purge 2010". More on that later...

November 26, 2010

Get the Look: Octopus Triptych

Have you seen this delicious Octopus Triptych?

or maybe you've seen it in Bill & Giuliana Rancic's dining room designed by Thom Filicia?

Good news, you can buy it for only $3550!! It's really a gorgeous piece of art. As noted from Tonic Home - "The original is a copperplate engraving by Lord Bodner and was published in 1826 in London as part of a series studying creatures of the deep."

Graphic prints are so hot right now but spending big money is not. This look is easy to knock off. I found the octopus clip art at The Graphic's Fairy.

pretty close right? The clip art is free for personal use, just save the file to your computer. Now, you can print this in black & white for cheap at FedEx/Kinkos - like under $20 (poster size - 36" tall or wide, on rolled paper is available at most office stores - check with your local store for prices.)

or, you can upload the jpg to Picnik and start playing around...
duotone effect: cutie patootie in a kid's room or choose grown up colors for a sleek modern look

or tint effect: this would be so dramatic in a bold color with the white background hung against a darker wall or on exposed brick
then print at a local print house or an online print house like this or this. Ikea has some great framing options too. The Ribba frame starts around $19.99 for poster sizes and you can even choose the wood, black, white or silver.

I'm always on the hunt (who isn't) to get the designer look without the big bucks. Most of the art in my house is from garage sales, thrift stores, artist friends or homemade. Maybe its just me but I would rather spend the big bucks on things like bathroom and kitchen remodels and spend the pennies doing high impact, low cost DIY projects.

November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

Eric and I just woke up from our post Thanksgiving feast nap. I bet you are doing the same thing right about now.Since this Thanksgiving it's just Eric and I, we planned on just making a special pot roast and maybe some mashed potatoes but I just couldn't pass up the opportunity to really COOK. So I ended up making a pot roast with carrots and onions, sweet potato fries, baked mac & cheese, deviled eggs, and to top it all off, a walnut pumpkin pie. Let's just say we have some leftovers.

Today I am thankful for so much but I think the quote of the day goes to Eric, "I am thankful for things we have but also for all the things we don't." AMEN.

excuse me, I'm off for round 1 of the leftover party that is in my fridge.

Quilted Upholstery

Beautiful! What a chic take on the traditional quilt!
I'm filing this idea for future use. I have a great craigslist chair that needs some attention.

top 3 pieces from Squint Limited, final pic unknown source.

November 14, 2010

Gettin' Crafty with it

Since my craft room absolutely never looks like this, I just had to share.
Eric actually said, "No offense, but this is the cleanest I have ever seen your room."
The sign is all ready for the craft show on Tuesday! I actually use it for goals or to do lists but it seemed perfect for identifying my table at O Happy Night.

In case you are wondering my craft table is actually two base cabinets from Ikea (I didn't splurge for the doors) put on legs also from Ikea and a slab of butcher block counter top - also from Ikea.

November 5, 2010

O Happy Night!

Here is a little sneak peak at some of the items I'm prepping for my very first craft show!
I'm working on some flour sack towels, cloth napkins, aprons, and wreaths. I am in crafty heaven.

Come see me and lots of wonderful talented artisans at "O Happy Night" on Tuesday, November 16 from 6-8:30pm at the Happy Cafe on Forest Drive in Columbia. A portion of the proceeds support charitable efforts - last year it was Camp Burnt Gin.

and for those of you wondering, I will have a few ruffle aprons available as well!

November 1, 2010

A Baking roundup

I promised my lil sis, the fledgling baker, (aka MC Hammerpants) that I would share some of my favorite baking websites/blogs and while I am at it, I might as well share them with you. Now, some of these you are probably already familiar with but, just in case you live under a rock, here's the baking roundup!

WARNING: Baking porn ahead. Avert your eyes.
Chocolate Pudding Pie from Smitten Kitchen.

Whole Wheat Sunflower Seed Bread from Joy the Baker.

Vote Cakepops from Bakerella.

Carrot Cake from Joe Pastry.

Fusion Cupcakes from Mad Baker.

Bourbon Orange Pecan Pie from Cakespy.

Pumpkin Cupcake from Bake it in a Cake.

Hummingbird Cakes from Bake or Break.

All photos from their respective sites. Drooling now. Must get napkin.
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