New couch!

I know. Didn’t we just get a slipcover for our couch last year? Yes we did, but after playing around with the layout of our living room and having to wash said slipcover a million times, Pk and I decided it’s time to move on. While Pk and Lucy were doing their weekend swim lesson (cutest ever) I wandered into World Market and spied a couch that fit the bill.

kendall sofa

Right now World Market is having their 25% off furniture sale, meaning that this beauty is only $524 before tax. I love its clean tuxedo shape, tufting, and trim dimensions. Our current couch – an Ikea manstad, is just a bit too big for our space. I always imagined it would end up in the basement, but since it appears that project is proceeding at a glacial pace – I just can’t wait any longer. Luckily Pk’s mom might want the couch, and if she doesn’t our renters have offered to take it so I don’t feel like it’s a total waste.

I’m REALLY excited about the new couch and desperately hoping the velvet upholstery will stand up to some dog/toddler/future baby love. It is basically dirt colored which should help.We debated quite a bit about whether or not it made more sense to just hold on to our current couch and get something a little nicer down the road, but realistically I don’t think we will ever be $2k couch people. Maybe when we are empty nesters?Basically all the other couches I liked ran in the $1500-$2000 price range which equals 3 World Market couches. Considering how fickle I can be, and how frequently we seem to replace them (3-5yrs) the cheaper option is just much more appealing. The couch should be in next week (fingers crossed) and I can’t wait.

Happy Friday!

-H

ps – It was a totally rainy Halloween around here. Imagine a damp, bedraggled princess with rubber boots on and you’ve got the picture. We did manage to hand out quite a bit of candy (sad face) but there’s enough leftover to keep this preggo lady happy.

I would live here.

Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi’s Hidden Valley, CA home, featured in Elle Decor, is right up my alley. Beautiful simple architecture, a mostly neutral palette and a jaw dropping collection of furniture. The property is made up of several different buildings, offering up plenty of different types of spaces to decorate. Just the perfect amount of eye candy for a rainy spring afternoon.

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Hope you all are having a great week so far!

xx-H

I would live here.

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Oh my god. That bathroom kills me. This is a house designed by the very talented Andrew Waller (found via Desire to Inspire.) I’m totally blown away by all the beautiful wood and the sophisticated palette. It feels masculine, but comfortable and inviting. Like if my husband was a house*, this is what he would look like. Is that a weird thought?

Hope you’re having a great week.

xx-H

* Pk would make a much messier house than this. Just saying.

A poem for my mood today…

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Penumbrae

BY JOHN UPDIKE

The shadows have their seasons, too.
The feathery web the budding maples
cast down upon the sullen lawn
bears but a faint relation to
high summer’s umbrageous weight
and tunnellike continuum—
black leached from green, deep pools
wherein a globe of gnats revolves
as airy as an astrolabe.
The thinning shade of autumn is
an inherited Oriental,
red worn to pink, nap worn to thread.
Shadows on snow look blue. The skier,
exultant at the summit, sees his poles
elongate toward the valley: thus
each blade of grass projects another
opposite the sun, and in marshes
the mesh is infinite,
as the winged eclipse an eagle in flight
drags across the desert floor
is infinitesimal.
And shadows on water!—
the beech bough bent to the speckled lake
where silt motes flicker gold,
or the steel dock underslung
with a submarine that trembles,
its ladder stiffened by air.
And loveliest, because least looked-for,
gray on gray, the stripes
the pearl-white winter sun
hung low beneath the leafless wood
draws out from trunk to trunk across the road
like a stairway that does not rise.
John Updike, “Penumbrae” from Collected Poems 1953-1993. Copyright © 1993 by John Updike.
I took this photo of the melted snow in field across from our house.

minimal, maximal, and tgif

Minimal
Maximal
Miles Redd
living room – Miles Redd
Is it strange that I’m equally drawn to both of these decorating styles? On the one hand I love the absolute simple elegance of the first room – it’s beautiful, light, masculine, and neutral. On the other hand I love the riotous pattern play and layering in the second pic (by the genius, Miles Redd.) Saturated jewel tones, traditional furniture with an occasional modern nod (tree stump table! leopard pillows!, ikat!) and that massive persian rug; all a few of my favorite things.
Sometimes in decorating my own house I find myself totally pulled in two different decorations. There are days when I want to start fresh with white walls and completely modern furniture and other days when I find myself thinking about dark lacquered walls, plaster ceiling medallions, and gilded frames. In some ways I think the answer is room to room decor that’s unique – like having really soothing clean lined bedrooms to provide a respite from richly decorated public rooms like living and dining spices. I’ll never be someone that completely eschews one design style over another, but I do find myself leaning towards slightly more traditional decor over the kind of sleek modernism that I used to admire.Recently I was in a house that had me itching to decorate – it was a little too clean, know what I mean? Obviously having a kiddo can dictate your decor a little bit (the priceless antiques and knickknacks in the Miles Redd room are not really toddler friendly) but patterns and rugs hide spills and “rich patina” is nothing more than wear and tear right?
Where do you guys fall in the spectrum? Do you like a more collected look or prefer a clean lined modernism?
A few friday links,
- I’ve been enjoying this fashion blog
- try not to laugh, I bought these shoes and I kind of love them
- loving this fashion designer
- speaking of fashion and beautiful things, I love this gal’s tumblr and blog
- this was an amazing and haunting book.
Happy weekend!
-H

Warby Parker Home Try On

Do you know about Warby Parker? It’s a mostly online optical company with a few locations (Chicago has one, but I’m a lazybones.) They offer a home try on service that’s free. You can pick up to five frames, they send them to you, you can try them on at home and then send them back and order the ones you want. There’s no obligation to order and it’s free. Did I mention that all the frames with prescription lenses are $95? That’s amazing right? I think my last pair were about $250 and had no special coatings. The Warby Parker cost includes an anti reflective coating. If you have coke bottle lenses (ahem, Pk) you can upgrade for a small fee to super thin lenses.Even better, with every pair purchased Warby Parker donates one to someone in need (a la Tom’s one for one.) So, I decided to try a few out. I don’t technically need new glasses, but it’s nice to have options right? Want to help me choose?

Here are my current glasses. I’m one of those annoying people who barely has a prescription, but I like to wear them at night, when driving. Or when I want to look extra smart. These are Dolce&Gabbana (ooooh la la.)

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Here are the 5 options from Warby Parker. Try not to laugh, some of them look bananas. Luckily they have a few frames suited for smaller faces. You can search for frames by width which is extremely helpful.

1. Colton in Whiskey Tortoise

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2. Ainsworth in Walnut Tortoise

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3. Linwood in Revolver black

linwood revolver black

4.  Beckett Striped Chestnut

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5.Chandler in Olivewood

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I know which one is my fave, but I’m curious what you guys think (psssst. the Linwood right? #3 dont you think?) Should I send away for another set to try on or do we have a winner? Honestly folks, from now on I’m just going to get my prescription from my regular doc and then order from Warby Parker – the convenience and additional bonus of donating a pair really makes this a no brainer. I will say though, the styles tend toward trendy hipster glasses, so if you’re someone who prefers a wire rim or rimless spectacle these may not work for you (also, no bifocals.) Have you guys ever ordered glasses online?

Hope you having a fantastic week!

xx- H

PS. They also offer this service in Canada for a smidge more moola for those of you that live in the great white north (ooooh that reminds me, when is Game of Thrones back on?)

PPS. They are more expensive, but there is another online specs store called Rivet & Sway that is exclusively for ladies. They offer a similar home try on.

Our bedroom. The befores

Our bedroom is one of the larger rooms in our house. It’s as wide as the house and takes up almost the front half of the second floor (street side.) It has some great features – vaulted ceilings, windows on two sides and two (small) closets. When we first moved in we slapped some paint on it, bought a king size mattress and left it at that.

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the vaulted ceilings make the room feel enormous.

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looking right at Pk’s side

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looking left at my side

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I’ve written before about my wardrobe and the vanity table.

So we’ve basically plodded along with this room, ignoring the things about it that were annoying. It just needed an extra layer of detail and a few touches to make it more functional. This space has to function as both a sleeping and dressing area for us and it was seriously lacking in style.

The main issues  -

ugly bifold closet doors, too small/ugly rugs, better clothing management for Pk, lighting, too short window treatments, no artwork or pictures, and an ugly and discolored chair.

Heres a few things I’ve been gathering for this space to give a layer of sophisticated personalization.
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I’ve been working on the bedroom for the last couple weeks and I can’t wait to share it with you! I’m just waiting for a couple things to arrive and for the snow to stop falling so I can whip out my spray paint. Hopefully it will be finished by the end of the week!

xo – Helen

ps. If you want a little eye candy check out this month’s Matchbook Magazine. There’s a great tour of Bailey Mccarthy’s Houston home and it’s amaze-balls. The kitchen will knock your socks off!

the end of the week.

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1/Our week started with warm temps and rain so we walked while we could. 2/ Lucy realized that trees can be really big. 3/The bear hat. it kills me. 4/when it got cold we stayed in side and colored. 5/ and watched the snow begin to fall. 6/I got a pair of pretty ikat pillows. I love the way the pattern is slightly mismatched. 7/ I finally had a pair of ankle boots that I picked up for $5 at a thrift store resoled by an angry russian cobbler. He did an excellent job! Now I just need to schedule a date-night with Pk so I have an excuse to wear them.

Have a great weekend!

- If you want some interesting reading for the weekend, this site is amazing (introduced to me by Lucy’s Nana.) Thanks Nana! Also, it looks like I’m not the only one thinking about authenticity in blogging lately.

It’s Friday!

designbooks

and my mister is coming home tomorrow! Thank goodness, because the last two weeks have felt like two months. Lucy and I do pretty well on our own, but nothing beats being all together as a family. I’m looking forward to some solid fam time and to having a free minute to pore  (yes it’s “poring over”, not “pouring over”, look it up!) over these wonderful books that I got for Christmas. Some other fun stuff from around the interwebs…

I found an awesome blog thats targeted at moms – very real-life approachable fashion (just the way I like it!)

This home tour is super amazing. I find myself more and more drawn to traditional and eclectic decor.

Speaking of fashion, I’m seriously tempted by this sale. Winter Water Factory has kids and womens clothing thats gorgeous. Everything is 40% off (!!!)

An thoughtful  and witty essay about the movie “Heathers” written by someone from my home town.

Happy Weekend!

xx-H

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