Not Your Granny’s Crochet

What was once prominent in home décor and a fashion statement of the 70s, crochet is back in a big way and better than ever. It is shabby cottage chic; bohemian, romantic prairie style and of course, vintage. What used to be associated with ugly granny sofa covers and blankets, is now retro chic and gorgeous. Seen here in dresses, curtains, revamped sofa covers and more vintage style repurposed diy crafts, crochet fabrics are everywhere. Are you groovin’ on this hot trend?

 

 

crochet valance

A traditional vintage crochet valance lets plenty of light shine in creating an airy, romantic window dressing.

crochet tablecloth

This crochet tablecloth, updated with repurposed aqua mason jar vases each holding a single flower, proves that beauty is in simplicity.

crochetcurtains

Vintage tablecloths repurposed as curtains create a bohemian vibe as they welcome visitors into this home.

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This casual crochet dress is very reminiscent of the 70s; All she needs is a flower tucked in her hair. Groovy.

crochetfashiondress

Crochet fashion isn’t just for the beach – paired with a tulle and floral veil, crochet takes center stage at summer weddings (Above and below).

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crochet runway

Crochet and lace – what could be more romantic on the runway?

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crochet bed

One of my favorite closet/bedroom pics – the crochet bedspread and tea stained crochet blanket draped over the bed sitting atop white washed wood floors, this bedroom is the ultimate in prairie romantic chic.

crochet basket

This DIY-er transformed a tablecloth or doily into a gorgeous basket filled with vintage photos and sheet music.

chenille crochet sofa

Gone are the days of crochet blankets hung on the back of sofas in 70s greens, yellows, oranges and browns. Gorgeous shabby cottage chic covers adorn this sofa and wing chair by sewing white crochet, chenille and floral fabrics together.

chenille  wing chair

Inspiration in the Color Purple

Regal, lilac, lavender, plum – whatever you want to call it – I love purple. Whether it is bold or adds a splash of color to your home, here is a glimpse at some tres chic interiors and how they have incorporated purple into their décor.

 

lilac walls

Orchid walls and matching bergere chairs. Gorgeous!

vanitybenchpurple

A fresh, floral and ultra feminine take on a classic french provincial vanity set. I’d love to get ready each morning here!

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House beautiful adds a pop of color with a regal plum door and periwinkle barrel chairs. I feel like I’m dining in a garden! rococobedroom

The princess and (the purple) pea – a very regal boudoir.

 

purplerehabbedsofa

Even on the street, this regal sofa looks ultra glam.

purplelibrary

Architectural digest fetures a purple library done very Paris chic. I love mixing modern and vintage elements.

purplecurtains

What is it about lavendar that is so soothing? One look at those ethereal curtains and soft reflective lighting and I think I’ve figured it out.

purpleaccents

The new purple. Bold and modern against stunning turquoise and teal.

smallspacepurpleheadboard

Tufted magenta gives a fresh look to an old favorite.

 

purplesettee

Unexpected elements against a classic purple and green background.

lovepurplecurtains

Leopard and purple create a refined and regal look.

shabbypurplechickitchen

Shabby purple chic.

regallivingroom

Architectural Digest combines the best in plush velvet and great architectural detail.

regalthronechair

Daydream in gold and purple – the ideal window seat.

RegalPurpleInspire

Elle Decor redefines regal plum.

purpleplacesetting

A perfectly paired tablescape.

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Intricately carved and curved amethyst daybed poised for a nap.

Interiors Fit for A Prince

Congratulations to William and Kate! In honor of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, I thought I’d pay a royal tribute to some gorgeous English inspired interiors. When I think of English decorating styles, I picture plaids and large floral prints, toile, Laura Ashely, Scottie Dogs and furniture with caster legs.

Here are some of my favorite English countryside pictures and some that really pay tribute to British heritage!

queenenglandstamp British-Bedroom-Design5 britishliving scottyroom english boudoir shabbyenglish englishgardenroom charminghouse Annette-English-interior-design-ideas-kids-bedroom hepplewhitelegs

british flag living

From Paris With Love

In honor of Bastille Day this past weekend, marking the beginning of the French revolution, I thought I wanted dedicate a post to celebrating the glamour and beauty of French inspired home interiors. Je t’aime Paris!

 

dressing area

 

traditional white gold

 

fench decadent bedroom

 

french closet citified blogspot

 

frenchbathroom

 

frenchcommode

 

french kitchen

 

french living

 

french dining

Never Sacrifice Style No Matter What Size Space

I live in a small apartment so I am always scoping out ideas for spacious organization tips and chic decoration trends. I especially love vintage décor and anything with a French flair or Parisian influence that will make my studio feel more like a home.

Some of the best tips I’ve read:

– Divide and conquer. Divide your apartment into livable sections. With limited space, you really want to take into consideration the things you will do at home on a daily basis and the things you have aquired that you need to store or display (You know, the stuff you just can’t bear to love without. The rest should be sent to Goodwill .) For me, not including the kitchen and bath, this entails (1) a closet/vantiy area, (2) a living room area and a (3) bed(room).

– Do double-duty using multipurpose furniture and accessories. My favorite – an ottomon (any size, shape or fabric – as long as it has a lift up top) and vintage steamer trunks. Both can serve as an alternative to a coffee table, extra seating and storage.

– Monthly clean outs. If you love shopping, like me, try to shop by the motto, “buy one, discard three”. Sometimes easier said than done – but try (read:do) and you will live so much happier with less clutter. (I so much prefer the label shopaholic than hoarderJ)

– And NEVER sacrifice style – no matter what size space you have.

Here are some of my absolute favorite designs, layouts and inspiration photos! Hope you find something to inspire you!

SmallVintageStudio

Apartment Therapy – Small Vintage Studio

favoriteclosetclosetbehindbed

Apartment Therapy – Decorating without a “real” closet

oneroom

House Beautiful – Designer Decorated Studio

ShabbyChicLiving ShabbyChicOffice   ShabbyChic Closet  ShabbyChicKitchenShabby ChicBed

 

One of my favorite blogs! IHeartShabbyChic.blogspot.com

DressingOffice

Elle Decor

Always Glamorous – A Paris Apartment Juxtaposes Vintage and Modern

Last week I featured a celebrity home designed by Shabby Chic founder and entrepreneur, Rachel Ashwell, so this week I wanted to feature a glamorous home decorated in Paris Apartment fashion. The two styles – Shabby Chic and Paris Apartment – are my absolute favorite and I think in each décor scheme, you can find a little bit of one and the other.

Each room appears so glamorous, with their rich colors and decadent fabrics but at the same time, it does not have that “museum” “don’t touch” feel – it looks like people could actually live there. That is what I love so much about Paris Apartment style.  I’ve taken the term Paris Apartment straight from my favorite book on Interior Design – by author, entrepreneur and Paris flea market extraordinaire, Claudia Strasser, in which she defines her style by choosing to decorate with what one loves, using items that have a history, and that are always beautiful. Décor items of this style are always luxurious whether they are of the highest quality or rich in color and material, showcasing a mix or vintage, modern and eclectic finds. Each room tells a story with its carefully chosen furnishings and deliberate organization but it is able to appear effortless at the same time.

This stunning Paris apartment was featured a few months ago when Christies listed it on the market. I don’t know what I love the most, from the richly colored walls to the elegant gold mirrors, the gorgeous oriental rugs and the sparkling chandeliers.

ParisDining ParisLounge ParisFamily ParisLiving2 ParisLiving ParisEntry

Situated on the popular rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré in Paris, for a cool $8.8 million, this apartment could be yours. For any budget, with a little creativity and passion for décor, you could transform your own home into your very own glamorous Paris apartment! What flea market find do you love that you would use in your own Paris style apartment?

See the original article at:

http://www.casasugar.com/Glamorous-Parisian-Apartment-Pictures-28211447?slide=2#/Glamorous-Parisian-Apartment-Pictures-28211447?image_nid=28211447

Ga Ga for Florentine Furniture

It has been a dreary, rainy (tropical storm-like) June. This time of year I usually walk around on my break at work, taking in the sights, admiring the Victorian houses in the area – one of them, my new favorite, freshly painted in a light grey with turquoise shutters and trim; but I digress. Not feeling so spring-y out lately, I decided I needed to do something to perk up the mood in the form of a little “retail” therapy. A new antique co-op popped up on Main Street very recently, and I thought it’d make a great lunch hour retreat.

I had only been in the shop once before but already much of the inventory had changed (i.e. sold) and more great finds put in their place. My favorite area was the front of the shop where there is some painted furniture, Parisian inspired vanity accessories and some gorgeous beaded and needlepoint handbags. I tried not to linger too long so that I could get back to work, but I still wanted to make a quick loop of the booths and I am so glad I did because that was how I stumbled upon my newest treasure.

Sitting in the front of the store but tucked behind a standing screen so as to not be too obvious to passersby was a trio of vintage Florentine nesting tables with one extra table of the smallest, square table – all 4 being sold as a set. Circa 1960, each table was in the Italian signature white and gold with ornate scroll and floral carvings detailing the top tray and long, lean, Queen Anne legs bowing out. Very Paris apartment and absolutely gorgeous!

nesting3  nesting1nesting4nesting5

Funnily enough, I had just been drooling over a Florentine table featured in an issue of Romantic Country magazine and day dreaming about how gorgeous it would look in my apartment. Not only beautiful, but practical, with the three tables nesting, each one fitting perfectly under one another, they are a great space saver to be pulled out and moved around as needed.

I picture a stack of vintage books and a flowery coffee cup with mismatched saucer on the tallest table. Do you go ga-ga for Florentine furniture? What would you place on your table?

teacupsflowerson tableRosesonTable

Designer Digs – Shabby Adds Some Celebrity to its Chic

One of my favorite designers and interior design entrepreneurs on the West Coast is Rachel Ashwell – best known for coining the décor trend and brand Shabby Chic. She grew an empire out of creating homes that were “comfortable, cozy, vintage and pretty” according to an Inc. report on her rise to retail fame. Her handpicked furniture, linens and accessories are predominantly white mixed with soft blues, greens, pinks. As the name suggests, Shabby Chic exudes an unexpected juxtaposition – in her collection you can find a mix of old with new, florals with stripes and the refined with the slightly tattered – but everything is beautiful.  I adore the feminine elegance she brings to every collection yet at the same time it is not so feminine that a man wouldn’t find comfort in it as well.

I recently saw an article on a Beverly Hills home on the market, currently owned by reality star Jessica Simpson and football hubby, Eric Johnson.  Its recent renovations, designed by the Queen of Shabby Chic, Rachel Ashwell, are absolutely stunning!

ShabbyEntryShabbyLivingRoomShabbyPorchLights

Here are some of the pics I grabbed from the Sotheby’s listing. There are countless chandeliers and oh so chic french inspired furnishings!

ShabbyNursery ShabbyHollywoodBedroom

 

 

 

 

 

 

I would love to sleep in that bedroom (I would even sleep on that pink day bed in the nursery:))

This was the article I saw that had the shabby designs first catching my eye: http://hookedonhouses.net/2013/06/06/jessica-simpsons-shabby-chic-house-in-beverly-hills/

If money were no object, who would you have design your home? And what would it look like? Share here!

 

Weekend Thrifty Treasures

It’s that time of year again and flea markets, yard sales and estate sales are popping up more than ever. This Memorial Day I was driving to my local Salvation Army for their holiday 50% off sale to pick up a gorgeous brass and ornately detailed vintage Victorian style head and footboard when I spotted a tag sale on the side of the road. Right away my eyes were drawn to the two, too-cute Drexel nightstands that were parked right out front for all passersby to see. I couldn’t pass them up – but with my mind set on the vintage head and footboard I knew was at the SA – I decided that if the nightstands were still there on my way back (and the price was right), that I’d pick those up too.

As luck would have it, my vintage brass head and footboard was still available at the SA so I grabbed the tags to purchase. I looked around for some vintage frames I’d seen the other day, too, but they were long gone. However, to my great surprise, I stumbled across an excellent condition Louis XVI arm chair that was hidden by a monstrous pile of books that had been placed on its seat. When I drove around back to pick up my furniture finds, what did I see by the dumpster but the second, matching arm chair to my Louis XVI love! I asked the man working if they were throwing it away, to which he replied, “Yep, take anything you want over there.” My eyes lit up at the thought of not one but two Louis XVI arm chairs. The one by the dumpster was still in god condition but a piece of the wood that was supporting a leg had come unhinged from its screw – nothing a drill couldn’t easily repair! And so, I left the SA on my way to the tag sale with a car full of great vintage finds.

Check out my two new favorite finds (picture of headboard found online – very similar to the one I got; chair on right is my new Louis!)

brassheadboard4 035

Having only spent maybe 15 minutes at the SA down the road, sure enough, “my” two matching French Provincial nightstands, in their signature white and gold, were still there in their spot by the side of the road. I couldn’t pass them up! Now I just have to decide, do I keep them? Sell them as is? Or paint them in my newly created chalk paint that goes on so easily, so smoothly and so beautifully. What do you think? Is it time for another transformation? I think I’m going to try my hand at painting at least one of them in a paint that I bought from Home Depot, Behr’s Sterling, to match (as close as I could) Annie Sloan’s Paris Grey.

FP NightstandSterling

Did you get to any flea markets or yard sales this weekend? Share with me any treasures you uncovered recently. I’d love to see them!

Not Your Kid’s Sidewalk Chalk – Painted Furniture

I have been seeing beautiful painted furniture for years now that is made to look like it’s vintage or “Shabby Chic” and recently I have been more and more curious about the paint people are using to make these re-habbed and re-purposed creations. Most notably, the brand name Chalk Paint from Annie Sloan is the primary material of choice. The paint is beautiful and comes in 32 vintage chic colors, with names like Paris Grey, Louis Blue, Provence and Emperor’s Silk, further evoking a feeling of a time past. (Photo of paint colors from Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint collection on her website.)

  Chalk Paint by Annie Sloan   

However, with a monopoly on the market (you can’t find Chalk Paint from Benjamin Moore or the like), the price is about double that of regular paint; but if you’re someone like me, who loves to scour for a bargain, the web is full of homemade recipes to make your own chalk paint in a very simple – and very inexpensive manner. My favorite recipe is only 3 ingredients: ANY can of latex paint (3 parts) + Plaster of Paris (1 part) + water to mix; and voila! You have a limitless selection of paint colors and minimal time in adding the plaster of paris (with water) to it.  Plus, one of the biggest bonuses about chalk paint is that you don’t have to sand or prime your furniture before painting it! That was probably the biggest attraction to me – that and the beautiful finish it leaves on flea market furniture finds.

Here is my flea market demi-lune table turned shabby cottage chic with my own homemade chalk paint using Behr’s Sea Sprite (baby blue).  (I forgot to take a before picture but found one very similar on the web – see belodemi lune 2 before030w).SeaSprite

Here are some great blog articles on mixing your own chalk paint:

http://salvagedinspirations.com/best-homemade-chalk-paint-recipes/

http://inmyownstyle.com/2013/02/diy-chalk-paint-review-update.html

http://www.iheartnaptime.net/chalk-paint/

http://www.thevintagefarmhouse.com/2012/10/homemade-chalk-paint-pros-cons.html

Have you tried making your own creations using either Annie Sloan’s Chalk Paint or your own homemade chalk paint? Share them with me here; I’d love to see and hear about your experiences.