Monday, February 23, 2015

Dallas/Ft. Worth peeps, can you help?

I am traveling this week to Dallas/Ft. Worth with my daughter
for a soccer tournament.  While most of my time will be spent
on the sidelines of a soccer field, I always like to take the opportunity
to find some great home interior shops or local art galleries to check out.
Any recommendations local peeps?
We are staying in Ft. Worth so it's likely I won't get much
opportunity to get to Dallas.

And on a side note…..what's with your weather Texas?
Do I really have to plan for snow/cold/rain?

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Friday, February 20, 2015

White Kitchen Love…...

I'm not even gonna state the obvious……{I've been m.i.a.}

My life and time have been full of the good stuff…..lots of 
challenging design projects with clients who want to love the 
spaces they live in, watching my oldest daughter get her driver's license {what?},
working personally on better nutrition and more exercise, enjoying
spring-like temperatures in the Pacific Northwest and in general
trying to keep on, keeping on….probably like all of you.

A friend who happens to be a designer and shop owner
{Wishbone Home & Design} asked me to take some
photos of her home last week.  A local publication
was looking for some shots for a story they are doing
on her business {btw, I don't claim great photography skilz,
but was happy to help}. My friend gave me permission to share the photos
here!  As you will see, her recent kitchen renovation is beautiful!

The countertops are white Quartz and the backsplash
is Carrera marble subway tiles.

The kitchen has lots of charming details like open shelving
and a butlers pantry nook.

This kitchen proves that white is NOT boring!
The mix of textures, wood, glass and lighting choices
make the space interesting!

What's your favorite element?

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Monday, February 2, 2015

Design point of view…..

**Warning….rambling post coming.

During the past couple weeks I have had some
situations and challenges experiences that have lead me to really
think about how I design spaces, why I design a space a certain way
and what influences my direction and decisions.

Back when I spent way too much time only dreaming about
helping clients create beautiful homes, I was discouraged by
my own thoughts.  Could I really create a career in a field
that I lacked the proper training?

And while I fully acknowledge I don't know CAD, have
never drawn a space or possess other technical skills 
taught in interior design programs,
I know for sure that I have a design point of view. A point
of view that is unique to me but influenced by some of 
my design heroes…….

Like the Emily Henderson designed space below.

I am working on numerous client projects right now.
I am also designing a space basically, just for me.
I have had a lot to think about.

And while I can try and channel my best Anna Spiro {the room
below is her design}….I really can only channel Jill Hinson…..
it would be wrong to think I could be anyone else.
It's a fact…...I work well with vintage, neutrals,
unique art, accessories galore, pillows{!} and natural elements.
While I appreciate fancy furniture and finishings, 
most of my clients appreciate my ability to mix it up, 
find a bargain, stretch a budget and STILL 
create a beautiful, personal space.

When I find myself questioning whether I have what it takes, I look
around at all the 'famous' designers whose work I admire and study,
{like Jaime Meares, whose own living room is pictured below},
they all bring a unique point-of-view to the spaces the design.
A point-of-view that will appeal to some and not to others.
And that's ok.  Their spaces are their art - subjective and open to 
interpretation, eliciting emotions and reactions as much as
a priceless painting.

As a designer {or a decorator, whatever}….I respect the
point-of-view my clients bring to the table too.  I really believe
I am hired to curate how they want their home to look
and feel - it's not about me completely imposing my style on them.
I offer choices and options, all equally good ones.

Nothing made me think more about my role and my point-of-view than
working in my own home this weekend.  As much as I began trying
to be Emily Henderson as I designed my space, I quickly realized I can't BE
Emily Henderson….it felt awkward and too 'try-hard'…when
I let it go and began designing my space as me, it worked, it felt 
{for lack of a better word} right.  

I am grateful for the inspiration of others, I hope it makes me better.
And mostly I am grateful to my clients who trust me and
my point-of-view - I will never stop trying to be a better designer,
to offer creative, functional and affordable solutions.
I acknowledge that my point-of-view may not be
for everyone and that's ok.  Thankfully I have learned that
any rejection of my aesthetic is not a statement on my worthiness
as a designer but rather a difference of opinion.  

As they say, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder".

Just look at the home of designer Kelly Wearstler below!
{which I love, btw}

Congratulations to Ashley@Parsons Farm and Kristen Wall!
You each won a $75 credit to Minted!!!

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Thursday, January 29, 2015

Our *holiday* cards and some {giveaway} love from…..


I am not ashamed to admit that this year I sent 'Happy New Year' cards.
I did it for a number of reasons - first, I did not have a good
photo that everyone agreed was Christmas card worthy -
Mom's of small children, hear me now……enjoy the days
where YOU and you alone choose the photo YOU like best -
without hearing, "ooh, you CANNOT send THAT photo out, I 
look soooooo gross in that picture"…..

And the second and final reason I sent a New Year's card was 
that I just didn't have my sh*t together……And as the song goes, 
I 'let it go', 'let it go'……

Pictured above is the front of the card that was sent to our peeps on
approximately January 15th.  I love this photo of my girls because 
it sums up their personalities to a 'T'.  My 16 year old
is big hugger, lover, and overall touchy/feel-y girl - her sister, not 
so much…thus the pose!  My 16 year old got her braces off about
a week after this photo was taken…right in time for her
sister to get hers on…next week - cha$ching! 
While I love this photo, I sometimes long for the days when I got
to choose their outfits, hairstyles and had time for a proper
photo shoot…….ah, the good old days!

I was grateful for and the fact they had SO
many great New Year's cards to choose from  for all us slackers!


As a HUGE fan of the all the 'minor' holidays - I have promised myself that I
am not going to be behind on my Valentine's Day preparations - In the past
I have order personalized Valentine-themed journals for my girls,
this year Minted has some beautiful options for Valentine's gifts, art and cards!
Minted has been a faithful partner of Forever*Cottage…..I am a HUGE
fan of all their products.  And to help YOU get a head start on your
Valentine's gifts, Minted has graciously offered to give TWO
Forever*Cottage readers a $75 credit to shop Minted!

To Enter:

* Go visit Minted and check out their fabulous
Valentine's Day products.  Then come back here and
let me know which ones are your favorites!

That's it!

I will close the comments on midnight on Sunday, Feb 1st
and announce the winners on Monday!

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