Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Piled High - A Spotlight on Rugs

Several designers have suggested beginning the design process with area rugs.  By working from the floor up you can ground the room (quite literally!) and create a color palette all in one purchase.  Not to mention, a rug can easily imply the vibe of the room to guests.  How, you ask?  Picture a stiff, low pile rug next to a dense, plush one.  Which makes you want to kick your shoes off and stay awhile?  They each have their place in a room, as long as it's the right room.  If you're having trouble deciding, keep in mind the amount of traffic expected in the space so constant trekking through doesn't dampen your under-foot cushion.

via, via

The most common mistake people make when choosing an area rug is the size.  Small rugs can actually make a room feel even smaller.  By expanding the corners to include the furniture you can actually create the sense of a larger space.  When the pattern or color underneath is spread out it encompasses all the surrounding elements, making them look all part of a cohesive plan.  Reese Witherspoon's living room is the perfect example!  The opposite can also be achieved, as area rugs are also great to break up a space.  They create... you guessed it, areas!  Now, that reading nook can stake out its' own little territory.

via, via

Layering rugs has become increasingly common over the past decade and add another layer of interest to a room.  Designer Antony Todd uses this hip trend in his apartment shown below.  The bottom rug brings together all the furniture in the room, while the zebra throw separates the main seating from the window nook.  Twice the design for twice the fun!  If you're going for the layered look, remember to coordinate them each with the room, but also with each other, let only one be the showstopper, and avoid tripping hazards.


Now, what you've all been waiting for!  Here's a roundup of a few of my favorite rooms featuring beautiful rugs.

With neutral furniture, this Surya Aimee Wilder rug is allowed to make a statement, and boy does it!  Hello world, I'm awake and ready to go!   The interesting pattern and bright Pantone colors definitely make this space enviable.
Pinned Image
via Pinterest

The black and white rug below calms down a very bright and cheerful living room.  Coordinated with the geometric art on the wall art and floral runner on the side table, this photo is the perfect example of how the space underneath can tie in elements throughout a room.

Pinned Image
via Better Homes & Gardens

This geometric Madeline Weinrib wool flat weave rug is the perfect touch of interest for this monochromatic living room.  The contrasting rectangles underfoot create a enough of a focal point to keep away a case of the stuffies in this high class space. 
Pinned Image
via Porch Light Interiors

Not only do I love the pattern of this rug, it is the prefect size for the room!  It encompasses both nightstands, the bed, and the ottoman with enough extension to avoid cutting off the space.  Between tying everything together and reinforcing the room's color scheme, what more could you ask from a rug?
 Pinned Image
via Pinterest

What is your favorite way to use rugs in your home?  Do you prefer neutrals or something that
stands out?  How about the layered look?  Comment and share your thoughts!

This post was inspired (but not sponsored) by Lulu & Georgia, a home décor e-commerce site launching this Fall.  You can register for updates on their site to learn more! 

Monday, July 30, 2012

Attitude of Gratitude - Week 7

Can you believe this is already week 7 of Just Squeaks?  I sure can't!  This summer is flying by without giving me the chance to take a breath and catch up!  But I am taking the time to send some appreciation over the blogosphere and throwing in a little bonus if you make it to the end!

1.   Home Goods is like mecca to the design obsessed.  It has to be my favorite store by far.  I stopped by my local store last week looking for things for Squeaks' apartment but naturally stuck around much longer than planned uncovering a few unrelated goodies.  Check out this very cool mirror I came across.  So interesting!

2.    One of my favorite things right now is my United Social Sports skeeball team.  It's basically a happy hour with teams competing in different sports.  This season we play skeeball and cornhole, the perfect mix of childhood and college.  In the fall we'll start kickball which I'm also pretty pumped for.  It's so much fun and a great way to meet people if you're new to the area.  And this past weekend we had a team bonding party which was just as much fun!
via Dealbreaker
3.    I fully recognize how much of a perk it is that my job serves food all day, every day (and no, I'm not exaggerating) which means all my breakfasts, lunches, and snack cravings are provided to me whenever I'm at work.  Granted this is a large test of my willpower because hearing people ooo and ahhh over Haagen Dazs every day makes it incredibly hard not to gain 50 pounds, but I certainly save a lot of money with this work benefit.

And for the bonus!  I definitely suggest checking out Well, That’s One Way To Embrace Color. The couple of Young House Love wrote this awesome post about partaking in Color Me Rad and a fun home decor bonus that came from it.  I'm not anything close to a runner by any stretch of the imagination, but this post made me want to run a 5k.  That is until reality set in that I'd most likely pass out of exhaustion before making it to the colory finish.

What are you thankful for lately?  Comment and share!
Do you have a random hobby that helps you make it through the week?

Friday, July 27, 2012

Don the 'Ron: Chevron Spans the Market

Earlier this week I was browsing Nordstrom's Anniversary sale and spoiler alert, way too many things are way too amazing.  At least with such huge discounts they're slightly more attainable.  Why I do this when I've already announced my credit card is on retreat I'll never know. Glutton for punishment, maybe?  But I digress... I came across this dress:

Look familiar?  As soon as I spotted it I knew I had seen the likes of it before...

Room Essentials® Chevron Comforter - White.Opens in a new window

That's right, Target shoppers!  They carry a duvet version of that couture dress in stores near you for a very affordable price.  Soak in the bliss...  Chevron is very in right now, as are teal and grey, so naturally this duvet stood out to me when I spotted it in the home aisle a few weeks back.

I considered using this chevron home line in Squeaks' apartment for about a mili-second before I realized it wasn't at all the look he goes for and is a little too young for him.  But when I saw that dress it took even more self control not to snag it, especially at a sale price of only $50!  And what do I do when I pass on owning beautiful things?  I blog about them so I can share them with you so you can own them and so I can  look back and remember them.

So whether you're a Target shopper or a Nordstrom shopper (or both), you can don the 'ron!

Which is your favorite, dressing or bedding?  Are you running to purchase one?
(P.S. Both is a totally acceptable answer!)

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Thursday Thoughts - Imagination

Several of my posts have had quotes mixed in with all my (hopefully equally as enjoyable) blabbering.  Quotes are something that tend to stick with me... Little blips of wisdom that are easy to carry around with you and reference when appropriate. 

I've decided to add another weekly series (the first being Mondays' Attitude of Gratitude) and begin Thursday Thoughts.  Every week on Thursday I'm going to share with you a quote.  Funny, inspirational, genius, and silly... they'll all be there.  In honor of Stephen Covey's recent passing, the thought below is the perfect way to kick off this new weekly series.

Live out of your imagination,
not your history.
                                                                                               - Stephen R. Covey

Words of wisdom from a man who has inspired and helped millions with his book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People.  Where you've been doesn't have to be where you're going.  If you want something different for your life, envision it and start working towards it and before you realize it, you just may have it.

Do you like this series idea?  What words of wisdom have you taken
away from Mr. Covey?  Comment and share!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Barneys Sale Wishlist

Barneys New York is having a super sale right now with some designer labels up to 75% off!  While I'm forcing my credit card to take a little hiatus at the moment, it doesn't hurt to do a little browsing...  So here are a few of the things I'm pining over.

{I apologize for the weird white lining around the photos!  That's how they come out when you borrow them from the Barney's site.}

I'm a sucker for cute flats.  I fully admit it.  These are an obvious choice with that fab yellow color and the cut out side to let your feet breathe.  Summer necessity I'd say.

A few of these sprinkled on my dining room table would be the perfect pop of turquois, don't you think?  Right now it has a bowl of blue potpourri and lots of junk mail.  I'm officially ashamed.

Pipe seamed and green... Maximum squeak alert!

These jeans look hella flattery, not to mention super comfy.  I always go for the dark jean so I can look sleek and slim!

I had to throw this one in just for fun.  Tell me that dress doesn't scream 'fun in the summer sun' to you.  Those vibrant colors are to die for.  Oh, and that reminds me, I need to take a trip to the aquarium...

What do you think of my choices?  What would you get?

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Pedal to the Metal

Do you like to make your wardrobe or your house sparkle?  If so, you are not alone, my friend.  If not, maybe seeing these photos will change your mind.  2012 has been big on metallics, so let's talk shiny!

The term metallic generally refers to colors in the silver or gold family, as well as bronze and copper.  But it doesn't have to stop there!  Any color can be given the metallicized look by adding in metal flakes (or a sparkled sheen when it comes to makeup or wardrobe).  This gives you endless possibilities... But be careful!  Because metallics command attention, they are best used in small doses to avoid being overly bold or cheap-looking.  Pairing them with deep colors can help ground them and create a more pleasing space or outfit.

Here's a roundup of some great ways to bling out you and your home.

For You 
via Mama Knows, Southern Charm, & Real Beauty
Left:  Feeling daring?  Take a page out of the runway handbook and choose a staple garment in a very loud metallic and you'll be sure to turn heads.  These floral jeans would certainly do the trick.

Center:  If you want to make a statement not a shout, try a shimmery yet subdued blazer like the Emilio Pucci one Blake Lively wore in Gossip Girl.  This foil linen one from Anthropologie can fit the more budget-friendly bill.

Right:  Kate Beckinsale provides the perfect example for testing out the metallic waters with her subtle silver eyeshadow.  If you want to try a trend out and see if you feel comfortable, try working it into your look through makeup or accessories.  Between Nars and Stila you can have all the metallic colors you dream of right at your eyelashes.
via Naturalizer

Or check out Naturalizer, where I picked up the flat sandal version of these shiny babies last summer to trek around Europe.  They are amazing!  After breaking my foot, Naturalizer is my go-to brand for shoes because you don't need to sacrifice comfort for beauty!  And at $79 you don't have to break the bank either!

 For Your Home 

via Pottery Barn & Tonic Home

Left:  Mercury is very hot right now, and these antiqued candlesticks can bring glam to any mantel, especially when layered in front of a gilded mirror.  Two metallics for one!  If you're looking for a touch of shimmer without the overwhelming shine, antique and gilded finishes are the perfect way to create understated glitz.

Right:  Tell me you don't love this gold leaf table. With a mirror top and that beautiful graphic design, it's the perfect way to glam up any space!  Because it isn't a visually heavy piece, it can be the subtle detail that plays off a beautifully covered bed, or sit next to a sofa as the perfect spot for your books or a vase full of flowers.

Pinned Image
via Houzz

If you're interested in giving your walls some panache, try Benjamin Moore's metallic paints, as mentioned in Sketch 42.  Or try using the same paint color in a matte for the entire wall, with high gloss squares being painted to give that metallic interest to the room like this photo.  Pretty sweet don't you think? 

What's your favorite way to add some shimmer
shine to your wardrobe or home? 
Found any great
metallic buys lately?  Comment & share!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Attitude of Gratitude - Week 6

Happy Monday everyone!  I hope you had a fabulous week and weekend.

Pinned Image
via imgfav

It's so easy to go day to day without noticing all the small (and big) blessings we have...  I don't wake up every day spewing gratitude that I have my health and able body, but I really should.  It's such a hassle to get to the doctor, even when it's just a routine check up, when you're so busy in your day-to-day life.  Trying to fit all my annual appointments in recently has reminded me that at least I have a body to care for, insurance to help me do so, and no medical issues.  So I am super grateful for my health and my body, even with all its' little imperfections!

I love that when you're feeling a certain way, like no one else has ever felt the same as you, you can always be corrected by the blogosphere.  These past few weeks have been extremely stressful for me (for reasons which I will be sharing soon enough), so when Emily over at Cashmere & Cupcakes posted about having "A Good Cry" I couldn't help but take a second to feel comfort in the fact that I'm not the only one out there that gets overwhelmed, and the reminder that sometimes all you need is a good cry to pick yourself back up and keep moving.

I've been having some pretty good weekends lately.  It's always nice when the week flies by and the weekend seems to drag. Weekends are perfect to mark things off your to-do list (or bucket list!) and catch up with friends, and of course sleep!  Saturday & Sunday I get to decompress and forget about my stress, which trust me, is much-needed.  I've been really needing my weekends lately and the past couple have been awesome. 

What are you grateful for this Monday?  Have your weekends been
sunshine and smiles or could you use a good cry?

Friday, July 20, 2012

Design Rush: Muse Interiors

"She does not choose beauty over function. She chooses both."

Pinned Image

This entire post was inspired by the living room above.  I originally came across it on the Houzz website and the small details just blew me away.  I followed the link to Muse Interiors and at first sight of the homepage I knew I was in for something great.  As I scrolled through the portfolio, each photo made me fall in love even more than the last.  Not to mention, my favorite office I mentioned in week 2 of Just Squeaks was their work... Fate!  There wasn't a single space that didn't make me squeak in awe, which is pretty rare.

Muse Interiors is a small (but dynamite) company in Connecticut started by Lauren Muse in 2000.  With the help of her two assistants Ryan and Lucy, beautiful rooms are created.  Judging by her press portfolio, this lovely lady is going places.  But by far, my favorite thing on the website is a quote in the description of Lauren: "She does not choose beauty over function. She chooses both."  Damn.  If that's not a wonderful design mantra I don't know what is.

So join me as I drool over these squeakalicious designs!  And since I can't fit their entire website in this post, check it out because there are plenty more where these came from!

Have you been so swept away with a designer's work you just couldn't wait to share?
Comment and dish on your design hero.  Enjoy your weekend!

**All information and photos are from the Muse Interiors website.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Will Smith Saves the Day

A wise man once said...

" Stop letting people who do so little for you control so much of your mind, feelings, and emotions. "

 That wise man was Will Smith.  And boy, how right he is.  Today I needed this little reminder so I'm posting it for all you squeaksters who may just need it too.  Check back tomorrow for another Design Rush post!
Will Smith
via People

What do you have to sometimes remind yourself about?
Comment and share!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wednesday Wisdom

A wrong decision is better than no decision.

Decidophobia is the fear of making decisions.  Pretty much everyone I know has experienced this at least a time or two.  I have a lot of big decisions on my plate right now and I'll admit, I'm guilty of falling into this trap.  But whether it's choosing a new couch or a new job, more often than not it's better to just make a decision.  Do the research, be smart about it, and then make a choice!  (Of course, when that doesn't work you could always just close your eyes and flip a coin.)  Life moves forward only through decisions, both right and wrong.

So whether you end up like this...
via Diva Dance

Or this....
via Fatihah's Minisode
Make it happen!  Live, learn, and grow.

When have you been paralyzed by a choice?  What happened once you decided?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Don't Kick the Bucket!

It seems pretty commonplace these days to have a bucketlist.  Lifed actually made a pretty decent list of all the worldy adventures you could do.  Between that and the 101 in 1001 started on Design Darling, I was inspired to actually put mine up on my blog as a way to make it more concrete and make myself more accountable. 

My list includes some short-term goals, some long-term ones, and some that are ongoing.  Some I've never done, some I've already done and want to do again, and unfortunately, some I may never do.  I like to always be moving forward, so I'll be adding new ones as I think of them to keep things interesting!

As I complete things on the list I'll put $10 in a special savings account to put towards reaching some of the other goals.  So join me on this bucketlist adventure and let me know of things I should add!

via Squidoo
So far there's 115 things on my list, including:
  1. Complete at least 5 DIYs.
  2. Treat myself to a full-on spa day/weekend. (Incl. hair cut, eyebrow wax, mani-pedi, facial, full-body massage)
  3. Watch at least 5 of Katharine Hepburn's movies. (My namesake!)
  4. Wear something really fashionably daring.
  5. Take each of my nephews out on their own 'Day of Fun' and spoil them.
  6. Live in a state outside the DMV. (DC, Maryland, Virginia)
  7. Plant my own tree & watch it grow.
  8. Take an aqua aerobics class.
  9. Shoot a round at a gun range.
  10. See a TED talk live.
  11. Establish a professional design portfolio.
  12. Come up with my personal design statement.
  13. Keep the blog going for at least a year. (Hopefully much longer!)
  14. Find at least 5 blogs to follow that aren't style or design related. (1/5)
  15. Learn at least 10 words/phrases in sign language. (2/10)
  16. Visit somewhere new every year.
  17. Read at least 12 books a year.
  18. Do a closet purge every spring and fall.
  19. Visit at least 5 Northern Virginia wineries. (1/5)
  20. Keep a plant (besides bamboo) alive for more than a year.

Check out the full list & my progess here and subscribe to Just Squeaks on the right side of the homepage!

Do you have a bucket list?  Share what's on yours!

Monday, July 16, 2012

Attitude of Gratitude - Week 5

Last week was such a blur.  I've been super stressed out with everything going on lately, but this past weekend was one of the best in a very long time so I am bursting with happiness and gratitude!

  1. Last Tuesday I posted about my continuing luck when I won a gift card to Bedding Style from the lovely Melissa over at 320 Sycamore.  She is awesome, her blog is awesome, and I'm sure my new duvet and sheets will be equally... awesome! 
    beddingstyle collage
    via 320 Sycamore
  2. Friday I had a great night of darts and music with some new friends, which was the perfect way to unwind after a long week.  Saturday I went home for the annual Hog Roast hosted by one of my best friends, Cathy, and her family.  I squeak this girl and her family as much as my own and it was so awesome to finally see her after a whole year of separation!  And who doesn't love delicious food, drinks, and all the craziness that ensues at a summer party.  So I am beyond grateful for both old and new friends... you know what they say, one is silver and the other is gold!
  3. Celebrating her 21st
  4. I don't know how I went five weeks without mentioning this one (and for that I truly apologize), but I am grateful for Squeakers!  Even though we drive each other crazy sometimes, I know he'll always be there for me when I really need him...  He'll be there to push me past my comfort zone (even if I don't want him to), to help me make those big life decisions, to cheer me up, cheer me on, and support my dream of interior design.  So for all of that and much more, I am thankful to have him in my life.

Do you have any summer traditions?  Comment and share! 

Friday, July 13, 2012

Friday Favorites

In honor of yesterday being the monthiversary of Just Squeaks, I wanted to give another round of my favorite things. 
1. via Polyvore   2. via Pretty Stuff tumblr
3. via Whole Lot of Lovely tumblr   4. via Live Simply

1. Tortoise Shell Watch.  I'm a huge fan of the tortoise shell design.  The mix of black and brown makes it a great neutral pattern that is still quite interesting.  It has become pretty popular in both fashion and home design, but my favorite use of it is in this Fossil watch I got last year.

2. Elephants.  I love these little giant babies.  I think these animals are so beautiful.  To me, they are the perfect mix of exotic and ethereal.  They're also said to be good luck when their trunks are up.  I have random elephant things all over my house, from jewelry to statues.  It is definitely on my bucket list to ride one before I die. 

3. Accent chairs.  My mom and boyfriend will probably both let out a knowing laugh as they read this.  A room doesn't seem complete to me without an unexpected pop, and accent chairs are my favorite way to do this.  I begged my mother (to no avail) to let me get an accent chair for their living room, and when it came time to decorate my new apartment my boyfriend came with me to countless stores on the hunt for the perfect chair (which I finally found at Home Goods).  The brighter and more patterned, the better!

4. Scarves.  Anyone who knows me will certainly back this one up... Scarves are my absolute obsession.  My collection has reached about 30 and every time I go shopping or even walk past a store that sells them, I have an intense internal battle over how much I love them but should really be putting that money towards something more practical.  They are the perfect accessory for any outfit, occasion, and the possible colors and patterns are endless!

What is your favorite animal?  How about your secret style obsession?
Comment and share your favorite things!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Mixing it Up... the Right Way!

Yesterday I posted about the benefits and drawbacks of mixing furniture rather than buying matching sets.  For a brief recap, some of the pros to mixing furniture include:
  1. The freedom to use any pieces you like, which can lead to a better reflection of yourself.
  2. Mixing styles can create a timeless look that saves money by avoiding the need of a massive redecoration.
  3. Furniture can become a focal point and build a unique atmosphere.

When mixing furniture in a room, the key is intention.  Everything chosen for the room should look as though it belongs, as though it was made to be surrounded by the other items in the space.  Before searching for new pieces to add to a space, know very clearly what you already have and what gaps need to be filled.  Mobile phones are great for this!  I take pictures on my phone of anything I need to match or complement, be it a necklace or an armchair.  And don't forget measurements!  If your perfect couch is 6" too big for your space, it probably won't look as dreamy as you're envisioning.  Scale and proportion are also mega important, and should always be considered.

Pinned Image
via Porter House Designs

A room with assorted furniture can end up feeling disorganized and uncomfortable.  Repetition is a must if you want to avoid this.  A sense of continuity can be created in many ways, including similar shapes, styles, time periods, colors, or fabrics.  This could mean a pair of accent chairs to brighten up the room, or it could mean furniture from all time periods being painted the same hue.  In the picture below, most of the furniture is square or rectangular, with few curves in sight.  This allows the modern, bright magenta cubes to coexist in the bedroom along with the antique black and white nightstand without seeming misplaced.  Repeating colors in the artwork, arm chair, and flowers tie the room together even further.

via Elle Decor

When deciding on what pieces to purchase, keep in mind if you want it to blend with the space or stand out as a focal point.  In the living room below, the furniture is kept neutral to combine the different styles while the accessories do the talking.  In the second photo, the dark elements all over the room allow the bar to steal the show with its bright seafoam green color, which is then repeated in the mosaic rug underneath to keep the space cohesive.

via Style at Home
Pinned Image
via House & Garden
When it comes to making a special piece of furniture match your space, don't be afraid to change it up a little!  If there's a chair you just know  would look great in the room but the fabric is awful, don't let that stand in your way!  There are reupholstery services everywhere, and if you're feeling adventurous you could even try to tackle it yourself with the help of online tutorials.  And why stop at the fabric?  If you think the frame would look better a different color, go for it!  Your home and your furniture should be a reflection of you, so make what you want, and what you have, work.

When have you mixed up your furniture to make a room look oh-so-you?
Do you have other tricks to making a space look cohesive?  Please share!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Mix or Match?

The time-old question  should furniture be mixed or matched?  The majority of designers and trade magazines will suggest mixing furniture to add character to a room, yet furniture stores still sell room sets.  My mom and sister both prefer buying furniture sets, whereas I tend to combine various pieces.  So which is right for you?  Here are a few pros, cons, and examples to help you decide.

 Matching Sets

via Sectional Reviews

 Pro:  With a matching furniture set, any other furniture you may need to get is easier to find because you have only one design to pair it with.

Con:  Sets tend to pidgeon-hole a room with a specific look or time-period more so than several pieces collected over time that complement rather than match exactly.
via Modern Home Designs

Pro:   Rooms become easier to decorate when all the furniture is exactly the same and can act as a jumping point for accessories.

Con:  Sets bring very little personality to a space and can come across as dull.  Your room can very easily look like several others' who bought the same set.

via Furniture Bedroom

Pro:  Most value furniture stores and big box companies sell furniture in sets, making it easy if you are in need of something quickly.

Con:  Spaces can feel cluttered when too much of the same color, pattern, and texture are in such close proximity. 

Mixing Items
style-guide-At-home-with-power-couple-Ali-Wentworth- and-George- Stephanopoulos-ED0509-1.jpg
via Elle Decor

Pro:  If a specific piece speaks to you, it can be incorporated into a room without looking out of place.

  Mixing items that complement one another can require a lot of time, thought, and energy.

Pinned Image
via Chinoiserie Chic

Pro:  Mixing modern and traditional pieces can keep a room looking timeless, which can mean less major overhauls will be needed, saving money in the long run.

Con:  Without some continuity or repition, the space can feel overwhelming or disorganized.

room: Bedroom, Traditional room by Janette Mallory Interior Design, Inc.
Janette Mallory via House Beautiful

  Rooms become more interesting when pieces are unique and create places for your eye to gravitate towards.

  Buying separates can become more costly than a set, depending on the amount of time you are willing to spend or places you search.

What do you think?  Which do you prefer, mixing or matching?
Check back tomorrow for a follow-up post on how to mix furniture succcessfully!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

320 Sycamore

Two weeks ago, Melissa at 320 Sycamore had a wonderful Bedding Style giveaway and I think you can tell where this post is headed... Out of 710 entrants, I won!  Believe me, I am just as stunned as you are.  My luck lately is undeniable!  I'm seriously considering playing the lottery for the first time in my life...  Naturally, this couldn't be possible without the lovely and generous bloggers out there, so I'm sending a major THANK YOU to Melissa!
via 320 Sycamore

The photo at the top left is actually the set I commented about, it looks so gorgeous!  If you've been reading my blog lately you know what comes next... my favorite 320 Sycamore posts.  So here they are!

Master Bathroom After - I love all the little details in this space!
How Cool Is This? - Pretty squeakin' cool! I always wondered how people did this.
Gallery Wall After - Beyond just picture frames, this one is interesting & beautiful.
Valentine Vignette - I'm not one for over the top holiday decorating so this is perfect.
Dollar Store Version of WS Glass Hurricane - The title says it all, watch out Williams Sonoma!

Thank you again to Melissa and her generous blogging!
What are your favorite 320 Sycamore posts?

Monday, July 9, 2012

Attitude of Gratitude - Week 4

Happy Monday!  How was your weekend?  So much has happened this week that I can't contain my gratitude to just 3 things.  So here are 5 things that made my week.
1.   If any of you have been reading my posts lately, particularly this one, then you know huge props are in order to Kirsten from Through the Front Door who made my day week when I won her first giveaway!  She has an amazing blog, that featured this fabulous giveaway below.  I can't wait to get my package in the mail. :)
via Through the Front Door
2.   Luck was really in my favor this week... I won another blog giveaway!  So Much to Smile About was one of the first blogs I started following because Liz always has interesting posts and she's from the DC area too!  She generously gave a gift card to The Limited, and just in time for when I needed a new suit!  Thank you Liz, you are fabulous!

via So Much to Smile About

3.   Squeaks has finally moved!  After months of anticipation, he is in his new place, so you know what that means... let the decorating begin!  It will be nice to be only 5 minutes away, cause, you know, 20 minutes is just soooo far...
4.   This past Friday was my mom's birthday, so what better time to be thankful that I have such a great one.  Growing up we didn't always see eye to eye, but as I've gotten older and moved out we have gotten a lot closer.  She's really been there for me when I needed someone these past couple weeks and I couldn't be happier that we've gotten to this place in our relationship. 
JMU graduation
5.   Losing my DVR capabilities due to the crazy storm last week made me realize how much I adore this thing.  It is a serious life sleep saver.  I follow way  too many television shows, and somehow the ones I like are always the ones that come on super late!  I'm forced into being an early riser for work so without my beloved DVR I would miss out on all the amazingness train wreck that is the Real Housewives and the amazing hotness that is Dallas, and that would be tragic. 

via TNT

Let me know what you are thankful for this week.  Have you ever won anything exciting?  Has your relationship with your parents changed once you left the nest?  Comment to share, I'd love to hear!

Friday, July 6, 2012

So Much to Smile About

What a fitting title!  Liz of So Much to Smile About had a fabulous giveaway this week for a $50 gift card to The Limited, and as luck would have it, the winner is yours truly!  I am beyond thankful for this gift card, which honestly couldn't come at a better time.  I am in desperate need of a new suit but lacking in the cash department due to some brand new brakes needed for my car.  I figured staying alive was at least slightly  important...  But thanks to Liz I can do both and will now be checking out The Limited asap.

via So Much to Smile About
If you like to smile, which I know you do, be sure to check out Liz's blog!  A few of my favorite posts are:

 Makeup Brush 101 - For those of us who weren't quite sure of proper brush etiquette.
The White Blazer - Cute & affordable, this girl's style is impeccable. 
October Style Essentials - I loved all her picks for my birthday month.
Style Crush: Rachel Bilson - Totally have a girl crush on her too.
Golden Globe Favorites - Love checking out Hollywood favorites.

I will admit, after Wednesday's post I do feel a little guilty.  But I am taking this as the universe's way of paying me back for working every day this week, even on the holiday.  And who am I to spit in the universe's face?  With that being said, I have decided not to enter anymore blog giveaways for the foreseeable future.  I want everyone else out there to have a better chance of the happy surprises from the blogosphere.  Everyone deserves a good squeak!

Have you ever had an undeniable streak of luck?  Comment and tell me about it!
Have a good weekend!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Design Rush: Jonathan Adler Top 7

via WSJ online

This past Sunday I watched an episode of Bravo's 10 Things That Make Me Happy which featured our friend Jonathan Adler, and he's just as nice as you would guess by his cheerful designs.  Every time I see his work, this potter turned self-proclaimed "maker" gives me a design rush.  So in honor of my favorite artisan I will, in a quite Bravo-esque manner, be rounding up 7 things of his that make me happy!

Adler finally has a store in DC and I can't wait to visit!
Who knows, maybe in a few years I could even work there... (Dare I dream?!)
I have a severe love for elephants.
Which explains why when I saw these adorable shakers I almost started drooling.   
via Utilities

People's personalities play such a role in success.  If you're a nice and good person, chances are people want
to work with you more than the rude crook down the street, even if he is a little cheaper.  I love that despite
his fabulous success he still seems like such a fun, down-to-earth person you'd actually want to hang out
with.  Check out his About page on his website and you can see he has fun with what he does.

I want to high five all the well-known designers that create affordable collections for those of us that
don't make the big bucks.  Barnes & Noble carries a ton of JA's products that bring all the color
and joy without the price tag, like these awesome bookends.   
Jonathan Adler Teal Metal Hand Bookends Set of 2
via Barnes & Noble

His use of bright colors is squeakalicious.  My roommate incessantly teases my love of bright,
multi-colored items and his designs are so in line with my own personal taste.

His wallpapers are so awesome I would run out of walls in my house before I could use them all!   
Syrie via Jonathan Adler

As an aspiring interior designer, I continue to gush over this guy's quirky yet clean design style. 

Private NY Residence & Liz Lang's Country Residence
via Jonathan Adler

What about Jonathan Adler makes you happy?
Who else gives you a design rush?