Saturday, January 30, 2010

It's romantic until you're ripping the pool out

This backyard of event planner Walter Hubert, featured in the LA Times, is so lush and romantic. We have a multi-level yard so I was particularly interested in the large bushes that they have overflowing the lower wall. They are just perfect.

And that Eucalyptus tree? So fantastic. And romantic. Imagine it draped with dangling white lights for an evening soiree. Then reality set in pretty quickly. Isn't it a little close to the pool?

This could very quickly turn from a romantic backyard to one filled with strife. "We bought the house for the beautiful tree. Now we're ripping it out and building a whole new pool". Isn't home ownership fun?

Monday, January 18, 2010

Looking for unique railing?

Check out this charmer in one of Daryl Wilson's portfolio (as featured on Desire to Inspire).

I can positively guarantee that this would never make it through inspection down here. Maybe it would work for a remodel? Any takers? :)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

DecoDomo in Zurich

Last week I had a challenging week of work in Switzerland with lots of meetings, lunches and dinners....and window shopping of course. After meeting countless clients and contacts, the end of the week found me headed back to the hotel fairly drained. Well, so drained that I unexpectedly stumbled (i.e. curiously ventured down various alleyways) into DecoDomo in Zurich. Perfect find!

With a window display full of Designer's Guild fabrics and colerful pottery, they had me at hello. Inside, they introduce you to a perfectly styled mixture of morrocan, asian, english, french, and everything-else-good-that-I-could-ever-imagine design.

They carry Mateus pottery, which is designed in Sweden, produced in Portugal, and soon to be enjoyed in our least in the form of espresso cups anyway (sans the lacy saucer). Without the handle, they can easily be stacked and tucked away. We had been looking for something unique for a while and these perfectly fit the bill.

Their pillow selection, presumably mainly from Designer's Guild, was top notch. Their furniture was unique without being too "out there". They had great morrocan and other motif tray tables that could fit many places in a home. The shelves were filled with all sorts of other goodies, from reasonably priced porcelin bowls to decorative stands to beautiful morrocan lights.

Overall, it was unique to find a small shop that carried off so many different styles so successfully. And of course, they were as nice as you can image. If you are ever in Zurich in search of a fun design store, perhaps a stroll through the street will lead you to DecoDomo.

An overwhelming closet?

Do you long (unrealistically of course) to wake up to something like this?

This article over at Apartment Therapy gives some good ideas. I found this advice particularly interesting and useful:
  • Put items used regularly at eye level, items used less at lower levels and items used rarely at high levels.
  • Make sure that the space is well lit

  • Color coding can make things easier to find

  • Consider good looking and coordinated storage boxes

  • Use coordinated hangers for a clean look

When we moved into the house, we ditched the 10+ different types of plastic and wire hangers. Through an ebay seller, I was able to get a great deal on loads (and I mean loads) of hangers. It's sort of a silly little thing, but the fact that everything hangs at the same level in the same fashion just makes my closet feel more coordinated. Perhaps it reminds me of a shop...who knows. I've also gone the color coordination route and find it easy to manage. is another great resource as it's author, Anne-Marie works through organizing her home and life. The best part is that she's a normal gal just like most of us, as opposed to a professional. That makes her posts just that much more realistic. And if for nothing else, you should pop over there to take a peek at her craft closet.

While our closet is in fairly decent shape, I have a particularly poor habit of discarding my worn outfits daily on our closet countertop. Who am I kidding? Sometimes I'll go 2-3 days (wink wink). I think this will be my New Year's have everything put away by the time I go to bed each night.

Does anyone else out there have organization-related resolutions?

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Going girly

What is going on? I'm getting soft or something because this outdoor loveseat featured at oh joy caught my interest this morning. Again, I see my grandmother everywhere in this fun piece.

Actually, it's a bit of a coincidence. You see, there is a quaint, rustic, and yet much loved hotel that will soon be shutting it's doors in Cayman. We were there recently for a party and their iron outdoor seating really caught my eye.

In a possible stroke of luck, they recently announced that they are selling all of their furniture. While a bit "frilly", I was thinking that they could be made a bit more modern with a good coat of paint. In particular, I l-o-v-e the alternating round and square tables. And because they are quite heavy, they would work really well on our dock, where we get a lot of breeze.

I'll certainly be keeping my fingers crossed that these might be included in their sale. Wish me luck!

Shine Shanghai console table

Oh how I truly admire this beautiful console table by Shine.

It's even more stunning in citron, but the white could go in any house with any decor. If my grandmother was still with us, I can imagine her getting giddy right next to me over this piece.

I can completely imagine it at the entrance to our master bedroom right fun!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Why do they call them "poufs"?

Seriously, there must be a better name. These pieces are useful when company comes over and can fulfill a design desire, but the poor guys got the name "poufs". If I were so fortunate to own this gorgeous Ankasa piece, I wouldn't dare utter "Honey, could you move that pouf over here for the party?"

The name alone could possibly eliminate it from any real consideration from the dear husband (the price would certainly follow shortly thereafter). We'll stick with "ottoman" around here and maybe it could stand a chance. :)

Nevertheless, I just wanted to take a moment to admire this pretty....

Recipe: Roasted Potatoes

These roasted potatoes with rosemary and spinach made a number of appearances at our house over the holidays. You know that they are good when repeat requests are made (especially in my kitchen!).

They are so easy to make and certainly pack a punch in the flavor department. I used dried rosemary instead of fresh (that's what happens when you don't get to the store until noon on Christmas Eve) and they still were very fragrant. Although the recipe indicates only 2 servings, we fed at least 5.

Let me know if you try them. And of course, enjoy!