Sunday, June 27, 2010

Her Personal Space . . . at Home with Maya at Completely Coastal

Maya is a woman after my own heart. (We both love the sea, and we're both beachcombers.) You'll see one of her beach discoveries within this post, which inspired the color of her favorite spot -- at home. Her blog, Completely Coastal, offers some of the best and most ingenious ideas on how to create and incorporate seashells into your decor. (Actually, her posts cover a variety of sea- and home-decorating topics, but the ones about shells are my favorite.)
Maya is Swiss but enjoys life in a coastal town somewhere in Rhode Island. She and her husband call an old Dutch Colonial home. Her favorite personal retreat, she says, is "on the second floor in the orange room:"

Meet Maya -- and take note of her "shell" lamp!

"I love how removed the room is, meaning I feel as if I'm in a tree house or on the 10th floor." says Maya. "We wired the internet, so that I can work (blog!!) there. It's the closest thing I've got to my dream..., to one day live in a place where I only hear and see nature! No people noises! Our home sits on a hill, so it is somewhat private since the neighboring homes are below us and not too close. And when I sit at the table I don't see any houses, only the ocean inlet, and boats (the boats I love too see!!)..., and I can watch the sunset too."

Her inspiration for the room color:

She said she formerly used the room as a place to exercise (or not). We can all probably relate to those good intentions to work out both hard and frequently, yes?  It looks like to me, though, she's pretty disciplined....

Another look at her favorite room:

(Love the oars.)

Thank you, Maya, for joining my feature series called "Her Personal Space . . . . Some of my favorite bloggers and new friends are sharing photos -- each weekend -- of where they like to go to be alone, to read a book, to just be. Please join us next Saturday and Sunday.

Yesterday, we went into Ann at Hill Country House's favorite room, at home.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Her Personal Space . . . at Home with Ann (Hill Country House)

Everything is bigger in Texas. That oft-heard saying about the Lone Star state also rings true for Ann at Hill Country House, in Fredericksburg, Texas.  Ann's big on style -- (her favorite blog topics range from architecture to antiques), and she definitely conveys a Texas-sized personality that's both warm and friendly. She strikes me as someone who knows no stranger.

Ann joins us today as my third guest in a feature series I'm calling "Her Personal Space . . . . A few weeks ago, I thought it would be fun to visit places where some of my blogger friends go to to chill, read a book and relax -- at home. I had asked "where do you go to escape the 'noise'?" This is Ann's favorite spot:

Ann calls this her "escape chair," which share shares with no one -- except, Buddy, whom you'll see below:
"Often my little friend, Buddy, snuggles up with me, or in the matching wing chair. He was not too keen on being photographed here, so he doesn't look too snuggly!"

 She says they've had a pair of wing chairs for almost 20 years. "Whenever I think about getting rid of them I just can't, because they are so comfy. They are big and cumbersome, and hard to place in just any room but perfect for curling up in to read or to sit by the fire. They are in our living room.

"I sit here in the mornings with my coffee, and often on Sunday afternoons with a stack of magazines or design books. I choose this spot primarily to get away from the television and the clutter of the den and kitchen -- you know, mail, books, backpacks, brief cases, pet toys, etc."

And the other one.

"This is the one room that pretty much stays as I arrange it, so I get to be with a lot of my favorite collections and paintings when I sit here:"

Thank you, Ann, for sharing your favorite spot -- at home!

Tomorrow, please drop by and see where Maya at Completely Coastal likes to go, again at her home. 

p.s. Sorry I'm late posting today; We've had a busy ArtWalk in Salida (see below for previous post).  And here are the first two guests in "Her Personal Space:

Vicky at Room Service -- Decorating 101


Greet at Belgian Pearls

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Pet Portraits and Gorgeous Hand-made Scarves!

Our small mountain town of Salida, located on the eastern slopes of the Colorado Rockies, hosts this weekend (Friday to Sunday, June 25-27) its 18th annual ArtWalk. It's my favorite event!!!  Our shop, The Green Plum, will host two gracious and very talented artists. Patti Vincent is an oil painter who enjoys painting pet portraits (although, she does do other types of work). Look at the painting she did of our Sam, an Australian Shepherd:

Patti presented this as a gift, which I will forever treasure. 

I relayed to Patti earlier this evening that I had presented to another artist -- years ago -- a few photographs of our "then" dog -- a Shar Pei named Genghis, whom we later lost at the ripe old age of 15. That artist painted him romping on the beach at sunrise. I love the memory, and the painting keeps that moment alive for me. If you have a beloved pet, check out Patti's Web site:

Our second artist is Bonnie Pfeil. She is a textile artist who will be showcasing 20 of her lovely handmade scarves this weekend. Gorgeous, gorgeous, gorgeous! So delicate and pretty. Additionally, they're lightweight and perfect for summer-time wear. She's demonstrating below a couple of ways to wear them:

Hey . . . I think this one's mine. (Another gift . . . I think I like hosting these sweet and thoughtful women!)

Envision this with a backless dress or delicate blouse perhaps. 

Since Bonnie doesn't have a Web site to share, I'd like to show a few more samples depicting her very sweet and feminine style:

Her scarves range in price from $20 to $80. (I would be happy to share contact info with anyone who's interested; just let me know.)

If you happen to live or be in the area of Central Colorado, please stop by! We're located at 118 North F Street in Downtown Salida. The whole community comes alive with music, dance and inspiring art. Our artist receptions will be Friday and Saturday, 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Bonnie will have her weaving loom outside our shop doing some demonstrations. 

Another painting of Patti's:

Just a few images of Salida and the area:

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Blue and White Give This Bayside Home an Elegant Yet Casual Vibe

It's officially summer!
And what better way to celebrate this warm season --  (OK, that might be an understatement. It's hot! At least in some parts!) --  by enjoying a tour of a grand home located on the shores of Galveston Bay?  

A glance back to the door from which we entered. Love the palm fronds hanging just beyond the entry balcony. Seeing a bit of greenery outside a window is an added bonus, don't you think?

The other side of the entry.

My intent with all my posts is to inspire ideas for your own home, regardless of where you are . . . on the water, in the woods, in suburbia, or tucked within the boundaries of a large city. And regardless of whether you live small, large or somewhere in between.... I hope and want for you just what I say in my header: Love Where You Live. 

Enjoy these rooms below and fine-tune any decorating ideas you may like to make them your own.

In the foyer looking beyond the "great room" and toward the bay.

Lots of entertaining room. And that's what this family does . . . plays board games, reads, chat . . . . On the other side of the white slipcovered sofa is another area where they all sit and watch TV, listen to music.

Sweet bench -- and what a view, eh? (It was raining this particular day. But even still, when you love where you live -- and it shows -- it doesn't matter if it's sunny, snowy or rainy.)

This family is comprised of children of all ages. The homeowner opted to cover her chairs in a small checked -- in blue and white, natch -- vinyl-like material. The kitchen wallpaper around the fireplace below matches:

Stepping out to the deck:

Nothing compares to dining outside, don't you agree? (The water is nice but so is a place where trees are decorated in small white "Christmas lights," or even if it's a romantic courtyard spot under moonlight with nice candles lit to complete the mood.)

The master bedroom (and their guest rooms, by the way, evoke equal elegance):

The upstairs loft:

The poolside cabana -- and guest room:

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

The Library

Worth the wait: The library shot in Greet's home -- her very favorite place, where she retreats for time alone. It especially beckons her during winter, when she can light a cozy fire and snuggle into a comfortable chair to enjoy a good book. See it below; I've added it. For some reason, it just didn't want to come in batch form when this lovely interior decorator sent along other images for Her Personal Space.....Enjoy!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Her Personal Space . . . at Home with Greet (Belgian Pearls)

Meet Greet, an interior decorator living in Belgium who along with her brother operates a fourth-generation cabinet-making shop. When she wants to break from work or take pause from writing her fabulous blog -- Belgian Pearls -- she heads to their orangerie to relax:

In addition to solo escapes, she says, "We love to gather here in the evening after a busy day to enjoy an apero!! 

"And after dinner, we love to sit here to watch TV or enjoy a good movie."

"Our library. There, I just soooo love to sit and read a good book!" And she enjoys the added pleasure of listening to  some soft background music. Greet adds that it's her favorite spot in the winter, especially, when she can light a cozy fire. 

She and her husband just finished constructing what she dubs their "outbuilding." (As we know in the states, outbuildings don't always exude such a comfortable setting . . . . Hers, however, gives different meaning!!) While the weather there in Belgium "hasn't been that fantastic during the pass few weeks," Greet says they are counting the days until they "can barbecue with our friends!!!!"

Thank you for sharing, Greet! 

I hope you'll visit next weekend -- to see who invites us into their own personal and/or favorite place -- at home. Sometime this next week, I promise to list on the sidelines a schedule of who's scheduled when.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Her Personal Space . . . at Home with Vicky (Room Service-Decorating 101)

Recently, I thought it would be fun to ask some fellow bloggers to share photos of their own personal and very favorite spots -- at home. Where do you go, I asked each, to escape the "noise," to read a book, or to be alone with your own thoughts?  

Vicky at Room Service -- Decorating 101, from Tennessee, is my first guest who sent along these photos:

Vicky says she sometimes takes a meditative walk "in these fields on cool evenings" with her two English Setters. (Take a look at those stunning Daylilies!!)

Doesn't this idyllic scene look too beautiful to be real? Like a painting . . . .  Vicky, mother of two and grandmother of one little guy, says she comes here to enjoy a little solitude. All she hears is the sound of the waterfall. "A lot of the time I will see a deer, a turkey sometimes, or a baby calf that will come up to the fence and look at me." She brought the statues back from Easter Island. Her garden is constantly changing. She loves Daylilies, Candy Tuff and yellow Roses.

Isn't this a refreshing oasis -- especially to those of us living in hot-weather climates? "Our pool is another favorite spot, where I go to read a book," says Vicky.

Vicky's bedroom -- where she might curl up with an intriguing book.

Thank you, Vicky! 

Tomorrow, Greet from Belgian Pearls, shows us where she likes to retreat as well as entertain.

Friday, June 18, 2010

A Few Great Decorating and Design Ideas

I've culled a few stand-out images from my own files of homes I've recently visited. Each homeowner stepped out of the box to create their own individual space. I'd like to share them with you. Please enjoy:

My friend, Jan, wanted to access her screened-in porch from her dining space. Before adding this great old door, she and her visitors first had to go through the kitchen to get to the porch. She and her husband opened up the wall and inserted this great 19th century door (with a coveted original green patina), which they obtained from an antiques salvage warehouse.  (Side note: Look at the great old-fashioned framed swimsuit on the right side.)

Industrial meets beach aesthetic. A great kid's room. Love the little bed inset into the wall and the fun plaid rug paired with the striped cushion -- all complete with a dollop of red (the chair, natch).

Interior Designer Trisha Dodson showed me this kitchen. The homeowner moved to Texas from Europe, where she brought over the idea for the cupboard pictured here. Love the library-style lights overhead.

This angel resides in a home on Galveston island. The homeowners sadly lost a majestic old Oak tree to Hurricane Ike almost two years ago. They had an artist carve this lovely from its remains.

Interior Designer Trisha Dodson also showed me this kitchen with the fabulous and very unusual round island. Apparently, there's reason why round isn't readily seen . . . it's a challenging process. Have you seen a round island before now?

Stop by tomorrow afternoon for my first weekend of "Her Personal Space . . . at Home with (a favorite blogging friend). Cheers.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

I Have Some Exciting News to Share . . .

I am launching this Saturday a series called "Her Personal Space . . . at Home With (Blogger friend's name)."  I am sooooo excited!!!  I've asked a number of my fellow bloggers to participate and the best news yet:  They said yes! I asked that they send me a photo of themselves nestled in their favorite place -- at home. My burning question for each: "Where do you go to escape the 'noise,' to read a book, to relax? I think we may be seeing everything from gardens to laundry rooms.

Please drop by this weekend for my first guests' appearances. 
On Saturday, Vicky at Room Service -- Decorating 101 shares her "personal and very favorite spot."  And on Sunday, I will show you where Greet at Belgian Pearls likes to retreat for quiet -- or to entertain. 

In the meantime, here's my chosen spot -- in my cozy home on Galveston Island:

Sam likes to jump up and join me. I love gazing out the window, admiring the garden (or thinking about how someday I should go do some weeding) or gawking at clueless passsers-by.  More often than not, I have a stack of magazines at my side. Jimmy, my husband, is typically in an adjoining area watching golf or something on TV. (This is an aside, but get a look at my boots! The green soles sold me!)

This is where I go in Colorado:  It's a bed on my front porch!! I told my husband one day that instead of just rocking (yep, we have a line of rocking chairs), I wanted to bring on deck this black frame daybed and dress it up in pillows and bolsters we happened to have (left over from a previous home/guest bedroom):

Very comfy, I tell ya. The views aren't bad either. Behind me is a view of Salida, located in the valley. When I look out the other way, my eyes land on the Rockies. As you notice, I've got a thick Brahms Mount cotton throw to warm me from morning and evening chill. 

Another visitor whose company I enjoy:

Hope to see you here this weekend!  It's gonna be fun!  At that time, I tell you who else who be showing their personal, favorite places -- at home. Hopefully, they'll be images you haven't seen . . . . See ya!

Friday, June 11, 2010

My Historic Island Home as Featured in Better Homes & Garden Magazine

I loved this home. (Actually, I still do, as it probably best reflects who I am -- from a decorating standpoint, as least to date.) We got to enjoy it for three years before heading off to explore new areas (both on and off the island) and tackle other beckoning real estate projects. It is a raised Queen Anne house built around 1892 in Galveston, a barrier reef island located just off the Texas coast. A survivor of the infamous 1900 Storm, it conveys good karma. How could it not: The original owner -- a petite German woman and her husband -- took in some 150 people the night that storm hit. The next morning, according to an notation made in the family's bible --  she made 300 biscuits to feed her hungry neighbors and friends. 

Better Homes and Garden Magazine photographed this house two or three days before we closed on our sale to a Houston interior designer (who fell in love with it primarily because it reminded her of a family home she once had up around Brenham, Texas.) 

Amy Panos wrote the story, and Brian McWeeney took the photographs. Of course, it was raining cats and dogs the day he and his assistant arrived. So, trying to achieve consistent lighting was challenging. I remember that . . . . Plus, I was moving boxes from here to there to make room. Anyway,  I love sharing it with you today, as it conjures again some great memories for me:

Now, that you've had the tour, does my header look familiar? It's from a different angle in the sitting room, which flows into the dining room. I know someone had asked recently if I still had the furnishings seen in that little sitting area. Well, no . . . the buyer bought it. I may show more photos of this house on down the road, along with our kitchen redo. 

A funny thing happened recently. A woman from northern California came into our shop in Colorado and told me she had gone to a doctor's office and happened to pick up this issue (2007). Maybe they need to update their subscription (ha).

Thanks again for visiting and allowing me to take a walk down memory lane. 
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