Friday, May 2, 2014

Derby Duress

Tomorrow, once again, the running of the 140th Kentucky Derby will take place at Churchill Downs.

 

Perhaps one of God's most glorious creatures will quicken our heartbeat, and elevate our blood pressure for little less than a few minutes. Who will win the Run for the Roses this time? Every year we celebrate with a Derby party, and all of us racing aficionados take turns hosting. A menu with Southern favourites is a requisite...I am bringing Bourbon Barbequed Ribs, as well as some version of a mint julep...best hat gets a mention, whether fashionable or just fun...

My picks are Hoppertunity, because my favourite jockey, Mike Smith will be riding, followed by Wicked Strong, Vinceremos, General A Rod, Danza and last but not least California Chrome, in no particular order..

After all it is a horse race! My husband and son, have been handicapping for days ! I just pick a winner, put together a superfecta and enjoy my mint julep! I hope you will tune in to watch the race and experience the excitement of race day!

N.xo

 

Friday, April 25, 2014

Taking a seat....

Finding the right chair for the right spot can drive one silly! I know when I was looking for stools for our kitchen island it took me months to find the right ones....they had to fit my decor, but above all else be comfortable. What type of occasional chairs would work in our open concept kitchen/great room? I knew that I wanted to have seating for as many guests as possible, but I didn't want it to look like an assembly! Plus, I was working on the idea, that I wanted to reuse as much of my existing furniture as possible after the renovation...that was the operative word...reuse!

I have owned this Henry Link wicker armchair for over twenty five years, here, in it's lovely nineteen eighty something, pink glory...in the background you can see the then dining room with the lovely floral Allison wallpaper....by RL... I loved that wallpaper..a little garish when it came to serving spaghetti in there ! All the ladies loved it, just like me...and here they are flanking either side of my fireplace at Christmas, prior renovation...I think wing back chairs are so versatile, and can be used in traditional to contemporary settings..

 

Here, they are repurposed for the garden room in natural cotton linen and a toss cushion in vintage fifties curtain fabric...I think good design is timeless, and I try to keep that in mind when I purchase anything .

Here, prior to the addition of accent cushions....They are perfect for just sitting and enjoying the garden views, and serve equally well as side chairs for dining...and they are very comfortable...

These bedroom chairs were in the master bedroom for years...with the original yellow damask from when I purchased them at an estate sale in West Palm Beach... The French provincial bedroom set also came from the same sale...I remember the daughters of the lady who had owned the furniture, the day of the sale, hushed, and saddened watching their Mom's precious belongings being taken away by strangers...I was to experience the same, many years later....

Here is the beautiful, lemon yellow damask in perfect condition...

I have had this green toile for a long time, squirreled away for just the right chair...

Here they are repurposed for the great room...

I decided not to tuft them as they had been before...

These slipper chairs, as they are known, are one of my favourites as well...I had the height adjusted for sitting in this room..

I also removed the skirts to maintain a simple, clean look.

This is a look at the master bedroom today...the little vanity stool came with the dressing table from the estate sale...still with the original fabric..I debated painting the the entire set, but decided to leave it as is...

Currently this petit point French armchair is replacing the yellow damask...

I hope to add some soft brown ticking and toile to this room to pull the chair together?? Thoughts?

The etched French door leads to my closet....

I am drawn to vintage chairs, they are generally better constructed, and have more generous proportions than newer ones, and the price point is better as well, because usually they need to be recovered...the photo above is unsourced, from my Pinterest boards...mixing fabrics with different textures is so appealing...

The lovely, Chloe from One Kings Lane has asked me to do a post on my favourite chair...thank you Chloe for your patience!

I was not compensated for this post.

N.xo

 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Details...

I am hoping everyone had a beautiful Easter weekend...for the first time in my married life we ate out for Easter brunch! The jury is still out on that...I am still recovering from an upper respiratory infection and just felt it was the right decision for this time...

Due to my lower than usual energy level, finishing up with the small details I think are so important in home decor, things have been going slowly around here....

I felt a sisal area rug would add texture to the mainly cream coloured decor of the walls and soft furnishings, throw cushions and such....and the hunt for a coffee table is still on...I would like to add green ticking fabric in these rooms, but green with a blue undertone is almost impossible to find...

In the meantime, out of necessity, I decided to cut down the base of an existing dining table stored in the carriage house and make it work for now...it is large, has an interesting shape and can accommodate a buffet of appetizers or any other food served on it...

It has a pretty base, I am liking it here for the time being...the rug is from World Market, soft, perfect colour tone and the right price!

 

 

I did very little in the way of Easter decorations, but added a few little details to existing groupings..

I am liking the addition of more blue, with Spring and Summer around the corner...reminds me of robin's eggs...

The bird's nest in this little grouping was found at my Mother's grave, the very first Morher's Day after she died..it had two perfect blue robin's eggs in it...my Mother only had the two of us, my sister Micki and me...I have used it in all my holiday decorations since I found it there...

The lovely, and delicious shortbread chicks and eggs were an Easter gift from Micki...they are enrobed in white chocolate and are as delicious as they are beautiful....

 

These bird candle sconces have been in my home for a long time...I decorate them according to the seasons...here some club moss and small ivies....

...,a view from the garden/ breakfast room into the great room/kitchen.......

I like to combine rough, simple objects with more luxe ones....like this Chinese export china tureen, with my rusty, painted, tin sap buckets....

 

I have to find a home for this large, turkey transferware platter...in the meantime, it is just out on the breakfast room table, where I can look at it every day.....enjoying it's beauty.

Small details are important for adding interest and personality to my home...perhaps being a Virgo and my penchant for symmetry and order are part of it...I just know I can spend hours on small details, others find insignificant and possibly, not even notice ! I hope to plant the jasmine vine in the garden, as soon as the weather warms up....In the meantime, new things are happening here at Acorn Lane....my business is growing in a new direction, which I will share as soon as it is completed....

N.xo

 

Friday, April 18, 2014

Easter Joy....

Wishing all my dear readers a Happy Easter.....May this holy, joyous week, find you happy, healthy and anticipating the joys of Spring....N.xo

 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Fashion forward...or not?

I have never really, expressed or exercised my opinion here on the blog about fashion....it seems such a personal, individual thing for most women, but it seems so many if us are judged by how we look or what we wear....Annie Liebovitz, a preeminent photographer of our time is taking a different approach to her portrayal of women....

" I didn't want to let women down...One of the stereotypes I see breaking down is the idea of aging and older women not being beautiful..."

It's ironic, how as time marches on and we see inevitable changes in our faces and bodies, in my mind, I still think like I did in my thirties! My list of to do things hasn't shortened, and I still have so many dreams to fulfill, both personally and professionally....but do younger women view us as the great contributors that we see ourselves as....

I find that in my particular field of wedding design, the majority of my clients are much younger than I am, so it is very important to me to stay current, and engaged in all aspects, so that these young women can view us as peers, or perhaps even better as mentors!

So of course, the best way to do this is keep current in how we look....

My fashion philosophy is the same as my approach to design, simple, classic and timeless...

What you will find me in during cool weather, during the day....I live in tights, wool sweaters and boots...

 

If I have a meeting or dinner in the evening, this is my outfit of choice...

Adding a beautiful blouse, or dressy jacket for more formal occasions...

....as dressy as it gets for me...

My hair cut...

Shoes with a sensible heel...

And some bling...for fun!

....and a bag to set everything off! There you have it......how I try to stay on top of things in this crazy fashion world!!

I just had to include this photo from my Pinterest board...I love it! The freedom that comes with age...devil may care, je ne sais quoi, thumbing your nose to fashion, convention and stereo types...I bet it feels good!

N.xo