2/28/2015

YEAR OF THE SHEEP

If you ask the Chinese zodiac, 2015 is the year of the sheep. And I don't know about you, but I have a hard time thinking of something cuter than sheep.

I mean...

{Valais Backnose Sheep via}


Is that one in the middle grinning?

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Ok, so sheep are super cute, but what are we really talking about here? Well, for starters it is their year. But unlike some other Chinese zodiac animals (like the rat and arguably the rooster), they inspire super chic, super versatile decor that I just can't get enough of. 

First, let me start by saying all of my favorites are faux. I mean look at those little faces. Yes, you can find plenty of humanely sheered wool items, but for a sheepskin look, the most humane way to go  is faux. 

That being said, here are a few pointers for picking faux that doesn't look like a big fat no.  

Look for a long shag, like this Habitation Boheme pillow. 


In my experience with clients, I think a longer fiber can seem a little much to some people, but scroll up to the very top of this post real quick and take a look at those first crazy-cute beasts. The texture and length of this 100% vegan fur is spot on and completely captures the likeness. 

This is such a gorgeous way to add plush, interesting texture to a space and works with virtually any aesthetic. Don't believe me?? Keep reading...

Similarly, I love the feel of this Pottery Barn faux fur blanket. 


Great fiber length, nice color, and looks absolutely divine. 

What I'd caution most against is selecting a fiber that's too short and too uniformly cut. What you'll end up with in a valor-looking thing with a likeness to those fuzzy toilet seat covers at your grandma's house. 

This is especially true if you opt for a little bit of color. Now, I'd probably recommend against too saturated of a color, but a little soft color can be really pretty. 

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I wish this image was better quality, but I think you can see the softness in this Cloud Hunter Co. faux sheepskin. The texture is on point and the color is just a cloud of whimsy chic. 

Another great thing about going faux?? It's often cheaper! It's good for a our furry friends and our wallets. 

So now that I've convinced you, take a quick look at some of my favorite ways to style these beauties. 

Use as glam upholstery...

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Now consider this space by Anne-Claire Rohé. We have either weathered plank or maybe cement floors, a charming, slightly disheveled bookcase, and well-lived woven rug. A very different space, but a similar material used as a much more casual throw-blanket style chair cover. Total versatility.

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Finally, I love this use as a rug, but maybe not where you'd expect. Before coming across this picture, I wouldn't have ever thought of putting a sheepskin in a bathroom, but how stunning is this space by Wheaton Hushcha Design??

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So to recap:

-Go faux!
-Goes anywhere!

Cheers to the year of the sheep! 


2/13/2015

ALL THE ROMANCE

Woah. Tomorrow's Valentine's Day, y'all. Is it just me or has the month of February been completely sneaky?? 

So in honor of completely indulgent, elegant, old-world romance my sweet intern Lacey and I have compiled some of our very favorite romantic stunners. Consider it your Valentine's Day eye candy. 




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Of course bedrooms are the first thought when considering romantic interiors, so they can't be skipped over. I absolutely love the easy luxury of these spaces. But bedrooms don't have to be the only romantic part of a house. 



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Hello, gorgeous!! Bathrooms with all the romance!


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This space is a little more modern, but the patina mirrored wall and inky velvet chairs paired with gorgeous lighting and accents pack a definite romantic punch. I'm absolutely in love with this dining room. 

And this one too...


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Layers of neutral glam is always a recipe for romance. I can't get enough of this chandi and shelving. 



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Moody color, patina, good light. Add some candles and flowers. Take me to there. 

And last but not least, check out some of this totally swoon-worthy built-in romance. That's right, inherent romance oozing out of the walls (literally). 



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So there you have it. Romance can really be cultivated in any space, no matter what it's function. Sometimes a little goes a long way, and sometimes you just have to indulge. 

Happy Valentine's Day, friends! <queue eye-candy sugar crash>


1/22/2015

BRIGHT + BEAUTIFUL

I'm so ready for spring. And I know I'm the only one! This winter has just felt so long and gray. And while gray is one of my favorite colors, and I'm not averse to winter, I just need a little brightness in my life right now. I feel like my eyes will atrophy a bit if I don't set my sights on some color.

So....

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And I don't even have anything else to say!

Besides that I'm ready for sunshine. And the beach. And a beach house with all of these lovely things in it.

That is all.



1/17/2015

NOTED!

It's hard to beat a good notebook. One with perfect paper weight, a pretty cover and good binding. Do I sound like a total nerd? 

Probably yes. 

But I know I'm not alone. I have stacks of notebooks in my studio and at home. I've come to grips with the fact that I may have a bit of a problem. But a girl's gotta take notes, ya know? For projects, grocery lists, journaling. I mean really, I can think of any excuse to pick up a pretty notebook (and rarely do I actually fill one up before I'm on to the next).

So I've rounded up six (well, technically seven)  of my favorites that I plan to add to my excessive collection. 


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So whatever needs to be noted, make sure it's noted in style. It's always more fun to be productive when it's done in style. 

Write that down! 


1/08/2015

[ 2015 ]

Am I the only one who still can't believe it's 2015? 

Hey, I'm not complaining. I'd be lying if I said I was sad to 2014 go. Sure, some great things happened, like the launch of our Amen Domestics shop, but if I'm being 100% honest, it wasn't the easiest year for me personally. 

It was kinda rough, actually. And I know I'm not the only one. But ya know what? I'm super hopeful for this year.  2015 has begun with a glimmering uncertainty. It feels full of promise and optimism, though for what specifically I'm not really sure. There are a few things, but we'll have to talk about those later. 

Honestly, I'm not one for super specific New Year's resolutions, but I'm a huge believer in knowing your vision and defining your goals. So this year, I'm super excited to be using Whitney English's Day Designer to keep myself on track. 


For a long time, I've kept my schedule on my iPhone, but this year, I'm going analog. And I couldn't be happier about it. There's not much I don't love about this planner, from super helpful goal-setting worksheets to practical day-to-day scheduling, I'm already pretty giddy about using this beautifully designed tool, especially as life grows busier. 

There's so much more I want to share, but I have a meeting in 20 minutes and a toddler to get dressed, so wish me luck and let's chat more soon! 

Happy 2015, friends! The best really is yet to come!

12/30/2014

A DAY IN DC

Ahhhhhhhhhhhh. 

That's me letting out a long sigh of relief that the holidays are over. Does that sound terrible?? Don't get me wrong, I love Christmas, but I know I can get an amen from some mamas who know the chaos/craziness of orchestrating meals and families and travel and a million other things. Not to mention the fact that Christmastime is the craziest when your husband's on staff at a church that has a cumalative 90-some services between all their campuses. 

So I'm super thankful that Brendan has the week after Christmas off every year. Some years we just hang around the house, but this year we've headed north and are spending a relaxing week with my family in Maryland. 

I wish I would've had something super Christmasy to share earlier, but like I said, too much craziness. Plus I'm trying really hard to take a real, work-free vacation, so instead of talking design and stuff, let me share some of our nice, obligation-free time here in Maryland (or DC;). 

Like a couple of  dumb-dumbs, we thought it would be a great idea to take two-and-a-half-year-old Eva to DC to hit up some of the museums and landmarks that Brendan and I both so enjoyed visiting as kids. 


I don't know why this pic is so blurry. Or who that little boy is. What I do know is that the Natural History Museum was a total madhouse. Winter break was definitely something we failed to consider.

Due to Eva's wreckless independence and overall obstinance, we couldn't stay long. But we saw a few cool things.


Predictably, Eva loved the fish.

And I wish we would have more time in the mammal exhibit.


Not an exhibit, but I think maybe my love of architectural detail started right here.


I wish the quality of this picture was better because the light in this Smithsonian stairway was so beautiful. And you can't necessarily tell from this picture, but the paint color is almost identical to the NoLa-inspired dining room we've been working on (blog post coming soon, but you've probably seen snippets on Instagram).

Speaking of architecture, our nation's capitol is pretty magnificent.


I feel like I've mastered the art of being a drive-by tourist; stealthily snapping pics on the move, so as not to blow my cover as total photo-fanatic nerd.

That being said, I actually did stop for this corridor in the EPA building. Can you blame me?

I was pretty slick with the others though...




We had a chilly but pretty walk to the Nation Mall and let our little chicken run around for a bit, knowing that traffic out of the city could keep us in the car for a while.


We all know this little kook stays still for no one. So this was our best effort at a family monument pic. 


Ya win some, ya lose some. I still think I'll frame it. 

Speaking of winning, we did hit up Shake Shack, which in all my times in New York, I'm a little embarrassed to say I've never tried. Maybe because of the outrageously long lines. But we had lunch there in DC and were not disappointed...


....especially the french fry queen who refused to take off her sunglasses. #Diva

Also speaking of winning, this is what happened when we got back. 


Eva has loved helping Pop-Pop make the fire and Brendan and I love it because we have neither the fireplace nor the weather to support it back in Charleston. I'm sitting in my Dad's armchair by the fire right now, actually, listening to an old piano jazz record on the turntable he got my mom for Christmas with a Heavy Seas brew on-hand. 

I'd say it's been a pretty wonderful few days. 

So cheers to Christmastime, the wrapping up of Christmastime, and taking a nice, long exhale. 

Hope you all had a lovely holiday!




12/15/2014

YES, I AM

Amendment to the post I wrote earlier this week about fancy holiday dresses...

While I absolutely love those dresses and would be happy to be in any one of them, the reality is, I will most likely be wearing something along these lines to any and all holiday festivities.


So there you have it.

I am not always as fancy as I claim to be. But I'm usually cold as crap.