Inspirational Word Art

I am just going to come right out and say it: I can’t stand the meaningless word art that is mass produced. Keep calm &… Home is where the heart is. Or, even worse, the meaningless & self-centered drivel that pops up constantly on my Pinterest feed. I almost made a board that was called ‘dumb words’, but then I didn’t – because I try to move away from my cynical self and this didn’t seem like a move in the right direction. My all-time favorites include (but are not limited to):

“stay true to you & you will end up happy” -unknown *WRONG*,

“a woman who cuts her hair is about to change her life” -Coco Chanel. Coco, I respectfully disagree with you. Unless you mean that her life will be changed by looking in the mirror 25 times a day and muttering “this is the worst haircut on planet earth, i should have saved $115 dollars and let my 6 year old try her hand at it”

“I got my own back” -Maya Angelou. I have two things to say about this, A.) that’s a shame and B.) this thinking is what’s wrong with the world.

Years ago when I made my first word art canvas I thought I had come up with the idea (it was before pinterest days). Clearly I wasn’t the only one with a good idea. There are so many mediums and styles, you are sure to find something that suits you AND puts beautiful truth into your way every day.

Here’s a little round-up of some of my favorites:

doxology press

{this lovely excerpt from a favorite hymn is by doxology press. I have it up in my family room, and it gets me humming the tune pretty much every day}

 word printable

{This is up in my oldest daughter’s bedroom. I think it is a great perspective at any age. You can purchase it from Katygirl Designs}

In Christ Alone

{how pretty is this embroidered art from Elizabeth Street?! It’s one of my families favorite hymns!}

love never fails

{three little – VERY TRUE – words! printable available for the teeny-tiny amount of $6.50 from BW prints. Think of how much encouragement those words could give you, as opposed to having your own back like Ms. Angelou…just sayin. As an aside, this one reminds me of the beautiful Ellie Holcolm song with this title – I will put it below for your listening pleasure because good words should be seen AND heard}

{if you need some good tunes feel free to listen to the Ellie Holcolm pandora station all day long like I do}

they broke bread

{I have been thinking of making something similar to this on a wood slab with the quote “enough is as good as a feast” for my kithen. I think this one found here by would be a great addition to a dining room or kitchen}

be still and know art

{the worship project produced a bunch of modern posters and canvases using words from worship and sacred music. So many good options over at society6}

cease endlessly striving

{this is from the beautiful Ruth Simons at Gracelaced. What parent doesn’t need to read this 500 million times a day. Such wisdom!}

great minds eleanor roosevelt

{My wise sister-in-law Beth quoted this years ago in a conversation and it has really stuck with me as a way towards meaningful conversations. You can find this print at Whisker Prints}

love is patient

{If you ever watch the HGTV show fixer upper with the adorable husband wife hosts Chip & Joanna Gaines, you might know that they also have a great online shop. For those of us not close enough to shop at their brick & mortar store you can explore their goodies – including this beauty – at the online Magnolia Market shop}

i carry your heart ee cummings

{My sister just sent me this lovely wood tablet with these e.e. cummings words inscribed. You can buy them from Wildwood Graphics}

love begins mother teresa

{love this ceramic plaque and these true words. find them here}

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I’m not sure this falls into the category of “inspirational”, but if you are related to me (or you have ever been around me when I was really hungry) you will know that this would be a good fit for my kitchen:

I'm sorry for what I said

{you can buy it here, if I don’t buy it first}

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I have just scratched the surface on this, and since I have worked on it on and off for  year and I am going to call it done and put it out there. Put good words in your home! For more good words follow my words pinterest page.

to see my older post about DIY word art click here.

Modern Rug Round-up

Kitch is starting to sit up…& fall down! Which means a face-plant into our HARDwood floors. So, I really need to narrow things down in my rug-hunt so that sweet little peach can face plant into something a little squishier. Here is what I have narrowed it down to:

jonathan adler sybil rug

{Jonathan Adler Sybil Lines Warm}

trina turk2

{trina turk vivacious blue hook rug – I love the one in pink too}

 orange/cream modern rug

{momeni bliss rug in orange}

surya modern blue geo rug

{Surya cosmopolitan rug – this is the current front runner}

gray/white modern tufted wool rug

(surya harlequin in oyster gray}

angela adams ocean rug

{Angela Adams ocean rug}

modern peony rug

{Harlequin Tembok – Peony}

modern HAY dot rug

{HAY dot rug}

amy butler sandlewood rug

{Amy Butler Sandlewood Grass}

Modern, Beautiful Bedding

 

I am in the market for some new bedding. We moved our house around in preparation for our new arrival (due in the beginning of March) and now we are using the downstairs family room as our bedroom/nursery. The upside is it has a fireplace and more space. The downside is that it is currently a smorgasbord of random items collected throughout the years posing as a bedroom set. Most everything is a shade of tan/white/beige/pink and gives me the overall impression that my “theme” in putting it together was “flesh-tones”…Needless to say, something has got to give.  I want to start with bedding. In general I like to stick with textures more than patterns when choosing bedding because it is more versatile and easier to change. This is especially true when combining 2 spaces. In our case Nursery/Bedroom. We want it all to go together so we will need to stick with a similar color pallet and go from there. I am leaning towards a grey base (no surprise, considering it is the primary color throughout the whole house) and adding some orange and brown into the mix. But, I might change my mind while writing this post, because I keep coming across all sorts of snuggly, fabulous options in beautiful colors. Let’s start with the throws:

rouched blanket{you can find these at Nordtrom for a mere $48, I especially love the “blue mist”}

modern knit quilt{this beauty makes me want to pick up my knitting needles again. Especially since I never got past the scarf straight-line phase of knitting. In fact the entire website, Purlbee, is amazing. Nothing granny about it}

gray and orange blanket

{this blanket by Woolrich would be a perfect adult compliment to the colors we are thinking of for our little buddies space. p.s. I bought my husband a blanket from woolrich a few years ago – husband has a bit of a blanket addiction – & we love it!}

rouched quilt{this pintuck quilt by bloomingdale’s comes in a number of colors and is lovely in person. We have 2 in a marigold color – which they no longer have – for our girls. I’ll post a pic below}

modern girls room{see that little bird hanging in mid-air? That’s what you get when you put a 2-year old in a bed within reach of the wall decal. He used to be sitting on a branch 🙂 – you win some & you lose some}

modern "pendleton"{love, love, love these! They have a cabin rustic or modern vibe. Would look great in so many styles. Especially love the graphite/aqua combo. You can buy them at abchome & they come in a “throw” size and queen size if you want it as your bedcover}

yellow anthropologie throw{isn’t this lovely? and it looks perfectly-worn-in-sweater-soft. you can find it at anthropologie}

neon pink striped wool blanket{I’ve often thought that Design Within Reach was oddly named – I’m not sure who would think a $525 throw was “within reach” but if you do, I think this would be the perfect choice. As much as I have tried to reject the neon trend it has snuck up on me and in small doses I find I like it.}

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OK, so I could spend hours finding more amazing throws, but then I would never get to the duvet covers & bedspreads. We have always been a duvet family, they are so cozy and warm, but I have to admit to liking the way a bedspread looks when made…No lumps & bumps, just a nice smooth surface. So, I will show you both and you can decide what you like best:

anthropologie zigzag quilt{I tend to stay away from patterns of any kind of a comforter because it can take over the whole room, but this is pretty lovely and you could do a lot of different things in a room around it. Find it at anthropolgie}

polka dot duvet set{my sister pointed out this adorable duvet set when we were at ikea the other day. It comes with a white background too. So cute for an older girls room.}

moose duvet bynord{basically the best duvet cover I have seen! it’s from bynord & I contacted the company and they will ship to the US…this may soon be on my bed}

shabby chic girls bedding{I’m not generally much for florals – maybe you noticed – but this is so fresh & vibrant, I just love it! Plus, it’s called the “sister florals” and it would be perfect in a room for sisters. You can find it at Garnet Hill}

smocked gray duvet{love this smocked grey set from Pinecone Hill. It comes in white too, if you want a blank slate to work with in your bedroom}

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Oh how I love throw pillows! They are so aptly named too, since what you mostly do is throw them off your bed and off your couch so you can get comfortable. They bend all my rules of form & function – since they are mostly just there to be pretty, but I love them just the same}

linen and neon pillow{perfect combo of rustic and modern from SMITHhandmade}

yellow ruffled pillow{this yellow ruffled pillow from The Land of Nod would look great with the grey smocked duvet set above}

modern bolsters{love these bolster pillows from Blue Dot}

house pillow{I don’t know where exactly you would use this vertical pillow by Design Public, but I sure like it}

balsam pillow{In general I find the words put on home goods poorly chosen – for more on that see this post – but these little gems from Izola have both good words and a good smell. They are filled with Balsam needles! I am pretty sure I am the target market for these. Before you buy them though make sure and look at the size. Think sachet, not chair pillow}

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If you need some more inspiration take a look at this post – specifically, for throw pillows, or this pinterest board for all sorts of home goods, including bedding.

Organize for the New Year

I am not much for New Year’s resolutions. They seem like a set-up for failure, not to mention that if I want to change something about myself, circumstances or home I would rather start as soon as the idea strikes. That being said, I am for getting organized anytime of year and when you are taking down all your Christmas stuff and figuring out where to put all the newly acquired Christmas goods seems like an obvious time to me. My New Years gift to you is some beautiful & functional organization ideas.

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When I was getting things organized for my homeschooling adventure I needed a bunch of storage for colored pencils, pens, dry erase pens, crayons, etc. I was about to buy some containers when it dawned on me that we have a huge supply of mason jars in a variety of sizes (due to my husbands canning addiction). They are perfect. Here is some inspiration about the myriad uses of a mason jar:

mason jar storage{How about putting your good looking craft supplies on display? If you are like me this would just make you want to run out and buy cute craft supplies so you could see them lined up on a shelf in your craft space. Originally found at twotwentyone}

mason jar storage{originally found at lifeiscrazybeautiful. When I saw this I wondered why I never thought of it before now. So handy!}

mason jar storage basket{I posted this for 2 reasons. 1- mason jars are great storage for dry goods as shown here & 2- you can buy this vintage basket from thehomecraftcottage that fits 6 quart jars and takes your organization to a new level}

modern painted mason jars

{these beauties would look good storing anything and I love how modern it makes an old mason jar look. originally found at Blue Eyed Yonder}

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Here are some storage bins & boxes that add to, rather than take away from the style in your house {unlike the plastic kind with a lid we all have too many of}:

burlap storage bag

{if you happen to be a reader that lives in Europe than you are lucky enough to shop h&m Sweden, or any of the other h&m stores that carry home goods. If not, you can be like me and add it to the growing list of fabulous things us Americans don’t have}

felt storage bag{I pretty much like all things felted. This would make a perfect catch-all for books, magazines, toys, games or even kindling. You can buy it from DIGS}

chunky knit storage bins{knit storage bins by landofnod would be great in an adult space that needs some color, or of course a kids room for easy toy clean up}

modern metal storage containers{I love these numbered boxes by Jayson Home}

etsy storage bin{if you want something personalized BaffinBags makes all sorts of storage bins out of lovely fabrics}

yellow vintage chest{I found this old wooden box at the etsy store oldgoatandhorse. The thing I really love about this simple, rustic style is that it works with pretty much any style. My home is pretty modern, but I have quite a few funky, junky items to add warmth and visual interest}

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Here is some storage furniture I like. Really the options are endless in this department, so here are just a few of my favorites:

modern rustic coffee table with storage{love this simple coffee table by west elm. Form & function!}

chalkboard storage locker vintage{we have a few old lockers that I love as storage. One is in my kitchen and it houses all my baking stuff, oils, vinegars, salts, etc. I especially love that the old coat hooks are still in the large compartments because it is a perfect place to hang onions and potatoes so they get good circulation. This set with chalkboard paint was originally found here}

teal metal buffet table

{This teal metal console is intended as a TV stand, but I think it would make a great sofa table with blankets, books, etc stacked up, or a kitchen console with lots of white dishes and glassware piled on. You can buy it at Target for a measly $180 -BARGAIN – if you aren’t very adventurous it comes in white, black or orange, and it’s a really nice orange too. You should look.}

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Here are some storage solutions for odds and ends:

open shelf storage in kitchen

{almost all kitchens have a little extra wall space where you could add some open shelves. Ikea has inexpensive stainless steel options & pretty much any home goods retailer has a myriad of options}

rustic hanging metal shelf{this hanging shelf can be found at Pottery Barn}

bright metal wall containers{love these wall containers from landofnod for a craft space, kids room or junk drawer alternative}

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If you need some more storage tips & ideas here are some of my favorites from the experts:

8 incredible clever organizing tricks {from Houzz}

14 foolproof storage solutions {from Real Simple}

Winter organizing tips {from Martha Stewart}

Finishing Touches

Getting SO, SO close to being done with the house! I’m daydreaming about getting in and getting everything ‘just so’ as I paint the miles and miles of white trim that stand between me and the finishing touches. In the meantime, to keep myself going, I spend late nights drooling over my very favorite etsy home goods. Here are a few:

mushroom tablecloth skinny laminx{love this mushroom table cloth by Skinny laMinx}

modern ceramic salt cellar{ceramic cellars by RossLab}

birch tree cloth napkins{birch napkins by Oh, Little Rabbit}

modern porcelain serving set{porcelain serving set by vitrified studio – simple perfection!}

cast iron antler wall hook{cast iron antler wall hook by TheDoorStop}

modern quilted pillow{modern quilt pillow by Barbara Perrino}

recycled t-shirt pillow{recycled t-shirt pillow by talking squid}

oregon pillow{Oregon pillow by love, california – who lives in Texas, haha}

vintage orange desk lamp{vintage tangerine desk lamp by ohio picker}

Oh etsy, whatever did we do to get our one-of-a-kind, crafty, vintage, recycled, re-purposed fix before you came along?

Light, beautiful light

We just bought another house. Yay! So the next few posts will be short on words with loads of pictures of products I am looking at for remodeling the place. Today is all about light fixtures. These are mostly on the higher end, but a girl can dream for a little while. When I come back to reality and actually have to pay for our fixtures you may see a post with some more frugal options.

Murray Feiss Stelle Long Pendant:

Currey & Co. Longhope Chandelier

Arteriors Sheldon Iron Pendant

Lazy Susan Steel Large Lamp

Regina Andrew Cage Pendant

Currey & Co. Lowell Pendant

Arteriors Parrish Floor Lamp

Who needs art when lights this beautiful can decorate a room (ok, you need art too, but if you could consider these art the price would be easier to justify). Now onto looking for something that won’t break the bank…

The Kitchen Island

I have a pet-peeve about homes with tiles counter-tops, all that grout, all the cleaning. I realize solid surfaces are more expensive than tile, but they are also much, much more practical for the person who actually uses their kitchen to cook. Since we can’t all afford to rip out that awful tile and replace it right away, why not at least consider a kitchen Island {one with a solid surface of course}. There are so many options and almost every kitchen can find space to tuck one away. Rolling out pizza dough will become an enjoyable task once again, when all you have to do is grab your pastry scraper, pull up the trash, whisk all the post-dough rolling junk away & give it a quick wipe-down. No more wasting time cleaning out all the flour goo from the grout. Here are some beautiful & functional options:

2 carts from the thrifty Ikea Stenstorp line. One is a smaller sized cart {a mere 31×20 inches & only $199} and the other a more substantial full-sized Island {50×31 inches & $379}.

Smaller sized cart {with wheels to easily move around}

Full-sized Kitchen Island

They both have solid oak tops and have nice straight, simple lines that would work with a variety of kitchen styles {plus, you could always paint over the white if you wanted a bit of color in your kitchen, or if you wanted to match them to your cabinets}. I like that they both have open shelving on the bottom where you can store your prettiest {& most used} pots & pans, or you could get some baskets in there for kitchen linens & odds & ends.

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For the DIY lover, or if you just like something a little more unique {i do}, I think this island is completely fabulous, with one obvious exception. It needs a solid surface on the top. You could get a few pieces of nice wood & glue them together, or splurge and find one solid piece for the top, or possibly carrera marble, or quartz, or anything that would fit your style. The possibilities are endless.

Kitchen Island made from Pallets [originally found on jennyshus]

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For the ultra modern home I think this Island by Shulte Design is pretty hard to beat:

It’s huge, it’s gorgeous & underneath that little plexi-glass looking thing there is a plug-in station for all your goodies, so you can listen to the splendid table, while cooking up a feast & have your laptop open to your recipe {& then hide it away when things get messy}.

Plus it is available in a variety of wood options, so you can choose what works with your space. {I personally love this walnut one in the photos, just gorgeous!}. Unfortunately, I can’t find where you can actually purchase it in the US, and on their website there is no price, which generally indicates high price – – so for now I will just have to look at it longingly.

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My absolute favorite find during my hunt for functional island options were the many re-purposed furniture items that made there way into the kitchen as an Island. Really you could use anything, so long as you put it at the right height {which depends on how tall or short you are, but generally around 36 inches} & put a solid surface on top. Some of what I saw was a little kitschy for my taste, but I would LOVE to have this one in my next kitchen:

{originally found on bh&g}

Pottery love

I am not sure what it is about the feel of something that started as a lump of clay and is turned into an everyday useful object, but I like it! My mom is an antique dealer and for the most past all the estate sales, antique shows & thrift store stops of my childhood turned me off from collections of old junk. And, while I wouldn’t say I have a full blown-collection, I do have a good little pile of bowls & mugs in my favorite ringed style. This is the one thing I am looking for every time I go in my mom’s shop, or get dragged into an antique store. There are quite a few pottery brands that did this style to some extent, here are a few of the most popular:

{Wouldn’t you like to start your day drinking coffee from these cheery Bauer mugs?}

{Or have your cereal in these pretty pink & blue McCoy bowls? I know, I would}

This gorgeous collection of vintage Pacific & Bauer Pottery was showcased in country living magazine. I love the greens & blues – perfect for the beach house that they live in.

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I have one of these McCoy bowls. I actually think that most everyone knows someone with this bowl. They must have made a lot of them, because so many are still in circulation. They are seriously heavy, but so pretty.

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If you aren’t willing to wait & hunt for an original collection, you can purchase reproductions from Bauer Pottery. They aren’t cheap, but are still made in the USA and made to last. Here are a few pieces from their collection:

things that last, part 2

I saw this on pinterest and thought it went well with what I am feeling about my next kitchen {and whole house really} for more on the subject read yesterdays post:

We have been using wood cutting boards exclusively in the recent months & not only are they better for your knives than most other surfaces, but they are just prettier than a plastic cutting board. These ones from Black Creek Mt. are almost art-Which is one more reason to buy things for longevity, they are almost always more lovely than their plastic counterparts & can save you on cupboard space since you will want to display them.

This butter dish from the adorable shop pot & pantry is so far superior to it’s plastic tub counterpart primarily because it holds actual butter-at room temperature! Even better if it is butter from a cow you know {a girl can dream}. I have one very similar to this one. I tried finding a fancy-pants french style dish with the water in the bottom…but, eventually gave up because I couldn’t find it in the color I wanted & in the end it is no matter, because we eat enough butter that it never goes bad sitting pretty on the counter in it’s dish.

things that last, part 1

First things, first: I’ve been homeless for a few months {well not homeless exactly, living with some lovely folks from our church while we transition to a new home, in a new location, sometime soonish…} But, homeless in the sense that I have no place to hang my photos, paint a wall or be a “homemaker” as my present title demands. It has it’s downsides, but the upsides are all the possibilities. We get to start from scratch in our next home with projects & design & style, etc. It’s so exciting. For now, I have had plenty of time to think about what is important in our next home & for me the absolutely most important space is the kitchen. I spend half my life there, so I want it to be beautiful & functional. Here are some of my finds:

I have been thinking about how much stuff we buy & re-buy over the years, when we would be better off investing in good, lasting things in the beginning.

We have been cooking with cast iron again. This time with well-seasoned, naturally non-stick, old, loved pans. Unfortunately for us they belong to our house-mates, so they will stay when we go. We had perfectly useful cast-iron years ago, but we gave up in rusty, non-seasoned frustration and sold them in a garage sale {for a nickle, I’m sure!}. Soooooo, we will be in the market for some new cast-iron here shortly. I actually would love to buy someone’s old cast-iron to save the frustration, but we won’t give up this time until we get it right. When we do buy, I wouldn’t mind some of the simple, lovely wares from finnish design shop, but the plain-old skillet has it’s own beauty too!