Lantern Lighting



Another thing on my to do list for the mini make-over for our foyer is to get new lighting. I definitely want to get a huge lantern for this space. I think it will help with that coastal, farmhouse, manor, cottage, don't know the correct word for it look that I'm loving lately. Here's some lanterns used beautifully by other bloggers, as well as some cool inspiration pics. Anyone loving this look as much as I am?

{so jealous of Jennifer's antique lantern she hanging in her dining room}

{Lauren of pure style home has 2 of these lanterns in her newly renovated family here and one over her desk...awesome!}

{love the iron lantern Janell of Isabella and Max Rooms added to her newly redesigned living room/office}

{Cottage Living...via The Newlywed Diaries}

{Grant K. Gibson...via High Street Market}

{my home ideas}

{from Cottage Living via my home ideas}

{above 3 images by Phoebe Howard}

{from point click home...right inline with my soon to be black front door}

{decor pad}

{decor pad}

Living Room Gallery Wall



Hi! How was everyone's weekend? I started playing around with a layout for the "gallery wall" I want to do in our living room. This is the fourth wall in our living room, the one I didn't show you originally when I posted about this room. Gee, I wonder why?

Ooops. It has nothing on it (except four switch plates!). No furniture, no artwork. Its a slightly weird space. This is the "walkway" to get from the kitchen (that doorway on the left) to the family room (doorway to the right). The main part of the living room, where the fireplace, sofa, coffee table and chairs are is off to the side, pretty much where I'm standing to take this pic. It's large enough that it could have some sort of function...or a sideboard or bookcases or a secretary, something. But I'm not sure what yet. And to be honest, this whole room is pretty temporary (not that that is a reason to do nothing with it)...I'm assuming that once we have kids, the family room and living room are going to have to be rethought to accommodate are growing/changing needs.

But the meantime...I have a huge blank wall with nothing on it and I have a ton of stuff/frames in the basement that I'm not doing anything with. Instant gallery wall. I hope. So I got out the main pieces I wanted to use (some paintings I've done, a cross-stitch my grandmother made for me, a wedding gift of both of our coat of arms) and started messing around with them, filling in the extra space with any random frames or prints I had lying around.

Luckily, the floor in front of this wall is completely open, so I was able to just lay out the frames right here on the ground in front of the wall. This helped me know how wide to make the gigantic invisible rectangle that all the smaller frames will fit inside of (I'd like for the most part for all the frames in the bottom row to be aligned on the bottom, frames in the top row aligned on the top, frames in the left column to be aligned on the left, etc.) I measured the usable vertical space on the wall and then laid my tape measure down on the ground (locked right after the height measurement I wanted) to know how tall to build my layout.

From there I just played around with the composition and placement of everything. Alot of these frames contain artwork that I'm not going to use (it just happened to be in the frame already, or I liked it when we bought it but not anymore) so once I have everything hung in the correct spots, I'll swap out what's inside for new artwork I really like. I'm also considering painting some of the frame molding if I don't think the color works for this room (like that random blue frame on the bottom right - that's my grandma's cross-stitch). For now I'm just worried about getting the sizes and shapes of the frames in the right spot. I think I'm liking the arrangement below. Although its still sitting on the floor like this (thanks for not stepping on any of them, Paul!) so it could change. Any thoughts?

Ps. For a beautiful gallery wall and great tutorial on how to hang one, check out this recent post of Mrs. Limestone's.

Pps. Do any of you have gallery walls?

Need Your Help



Hello! Does anyone recognize this photo? One of our readers loves this shot for master bedroom inspiration and is on the hunt for that fabric on the roman shades. Have you seen this fabric anywhere? Or know where one could find something similar? Thanks for any info you can give us:) Go, blogland team!!!

Winter Mantel



Monochromatic botanical illustrations, nests, eggs, books, mercury glass, white candles.

What's on your winter mantel?

Ps. Did you guys know that Beth of The Stories of A to Z is hosting a McLinky Mantel Party every Friday? Awesome, right?! I'm so there. Check out how pretty hers looks now. By the way, I swear I had my birds nests up there before I saw hers...great minds think alike:)

Mood Board Monday Party: Wisteria Chests



Hello there! Welcome to the 4th Mood Board Monday McLinky Party (and Happy Martin Luther King, Jr. Day too)!!!

This blog party is all about seeing how different people are inspired differently by the same things. It all began over at Room Remix with the fabulous Pk. The second party was hosted by Tracy of Comfort and Luxury and now Mood Board Monday is hanging out here:)

This week's challenge was to design a room (of your choice) around one of these two beautiful and multi-functional chests from Wisteria (this is fake money we're all using, so its fun to pick things out of our normal price range!):

1. Moorish Chest $2,999.00
{"Sixteenth-century Mughal princes brought exotic Moorish designs all the way from North Africa to the Indian subcontinent. This stunning chest is adorned with intricately hand-cut, inlaid camel bone. Each of these exclusive pieces is slightly different and the result of many hours of craftsmanship. Designs will vary slightly."}

2. German Silver Bowfront Chest $2,499.00

{"This chest’s heritage goes back to the 17th-century Dutch bowfront commode. But the German silver gives it a truly amazing touch. The German silver is hand-applied, so each chest features nailheads, slight rippling, and decidedly scratched details."}


Aren't they both lovely? I had to go with the black and white Moorish chest though because I originally spotted it a long time ago in the Wisteria catalog. Now, having said this I figured this week's mood board would be pretty easy for me. Nope, I was so took me forever!! Not sure why...maybe it was that you could use this kind of chest in so many different types of rooms, or because its slightly out of my comfort zone even though I was so attracted to it, or because with such a lack of color in the piece itself the sky was the limit for a palette. Did anyone else have trouble this week? (If so, sorry!)

But here's what I finally came up with...a small dining room that's somewhat elegant but mostly fun and cozy. The Moorish chest would make a great sideboard or buffet. I wanted it to stand out since its such a unique piece, but at the same time blend seamlessly into the rest of the room so that it doesn't look out of place. A large scale patterned area rug in this great shade of green gave me my color jumping off point while not competing with all the intricate pattern going on in the chest.

1. The palette: black and white obviously, but with walls in a soft yellowy green and warm tones like wood and gold frames.

2. I knew right away I liked the idea behind the
Darjeeling Dining Table from saal wood is reclaimed from old Indian railroad ties, restored, and pieced in a natural plank mosaic dining surface of raw awe. Supported on industrial metal square tube legs, blackened with exposed welding marks. An interesting contrast to the in-laid camel bone.

3. and 4.
I'd have 2 of these Napa Chairs with Flax Linen Slipcovers from Pottery Barn on the ends and then these Picardy Arm Chairs in rubbed white from Ballard Designs in the middle. I wanted light colored chairs on the green rug to not distract your eye from the Moorish Chest.

Madeira Rug in green from Ballard Designs

6. My inspiration piece....Moorish Chest from Wisteria

7. this mirror for above the chest...Traditional Bevelled Mirror from Target

8. Haeger Potteries Sage Green Ceramic Centrifugal Table Lamp from Lamps Plus

9. Found these awesome Nature Prints by ebeamer's shop on and white hand-drawn illustrations of nature...5 x 7". I'd frame them in these Gilt Frames from Pottery Barn and hang a symmetrical collection in a grid pattern...maybe 2 rows of 4 each.

10. More nature love and more black and white...Birds on a Wire Dinnerware from Anthropologie

11. Wanted to bring a more casual vibe in by using this Dorchester Four Light Hanging Lantern from CSN Lighting over the table.

Can't wait to see what you guys have come up with!


Now its your turn! Here's what you do to join the party:

1. Create a mood board using one of the above inspiration chests.
2. Write a post about it, including sources (with a link back to this post so others can come look).
3. Add your name and project to the MckLinky here on this post (for example - Sarah's Rustic/ Elegant Family Room).
4. Then add the link to your SPECIFIC MBM POST, not your general blog address.
5. Have fun checking out all the other wonderful rooms.

Thanks so much for joining the party!!!

  1. Emily @ Timeless Paper
  2. Tranquil Master Sitting Room @ Maddies Nest
  3. Elegant Dining Room (Jenny @ Words On Wendhurst)

  1. Odi et Amo (Glamorous B&W Bathroom)
  2. Jess @ Frugal w / a Flourish - Not Quite Candace Bedroom
  3. Ria - Mood board monday

  4. This linky list is now closed.

Foyer Bookcase for Winter



We finally got all of our Christmas decor down and away this weekend (well, except the outside lights...I love to keep them up through most of January...although its a constant battle each day with Paul, he's more of a conformer than I am and by now most everyone in the neighborhood has put away their lights. What's your stand on this? Anyone else still have outside lights or window candles up?)

So that meant a new look for the bookcase in our foyer. Fun! (This bookcase is hanging here until I found the right console table, etc.) A few of the things stay here year round...the clock, the wedding photos, P's metal tray for his keys and wallet, the basket on the bottom shelf for random papers...and the rest I just switch out depending on the season or when I get bored. Here's some past seasonal looks (Christmas, fall, summer). And here's how he ended up for winter after a bit of playing around:

The "theme": black, white, blue and mercury glass. I did not set out with this in mind (especially not the black and blue part...who would have thunk?), it just sort of happened.

I started out knowing only one thing, that I wanted to display the 2 new mercury glass jars my mom had given me for Christmas. Seriously, who doesn't love a mom who knows you love mercury glass from reading the blog and being at your house and then buys you some for Christmas from Wisteria without you having to ask her?!Yay! My first thing owned from Wisteria!! Thanks, Mom! So up they went, with a smaller jar I already had (from Michaels) onto the top of the bookcase.

{the thin guy on the left and the big tall guy on the right are from Mom!}

The next spot to figure out was the whole open shelf second from the bottom. I thought it could be cool to have a little collection of random white ceramics...pitchers, tea pots, dishes, whatever. Then I remembered these 3 really cute pieces of pottery that my aunt got me for Christmas...they're hand-painted and written on by a local artist.

I love this one that just says simple. The one behind it to the left says "beans" (ha!) and the little pitcher on the way left says "free" with 2 people flying a kite.

As soon as I though to add this beautiful blue and white hand-painted pitcher I bought when I was in the Netherlands a bunch of years ago, the whole thing sort of came together.

Well, of course at first the blue really stood out among this sea of mostly white. But that's ok, you just add blue elsewhere on the shelf and everything will be fine:) For that I returned to one of my favorite accessories..because I love to read and they're free, or at least, I already have them lying around...books! Books with blue in them. Yeah, that's the ticket. And maybe just for kicks, black books...I do have a new rug in the foyer after all, and it might be nice to pick up some of that black.

{that's the new book from Diana Galbadon that just came it for Christmas too. Can't wait to read it, but I think I'm going to go back and read the other 6 books in the series again first. Anyone else an Outlander fan?}

Never would have thought I would like the black and blue combo, but I do. There's something slightly sophisticated about it. I added this small mercury glass votive to play off the larger mercury glass apothecary jars up top.

And this super cute monogrammed candle from Anthropologie that my brother's girlfriend gave me for Christmas (more black and white and a small punch of graphic text to pick up on the book titles).

One bookcase with lots of black, white, blue and mercury glass featuring a bunch of the really cool stuff I got for Christmas? Check!


Just a reminder, the next Mood Board Monday McLinky party is this Monday, January 18th. Click here for the inspiration post. Hope to see you back here for it:)

moss + aqua + chocolate



I'm going to hit you with another paper post. Sorry! (I know there's been a few lately.) But this one's important...because its my first baby-related invite...yay!

Reader and fellow nestie Courtney is due April 2nd and is having her shower on January 17th. (Congrats again, Courtney!!) When she got in touch about designing her shower invites, I was super psyched.

Her and hubby Jeff aren't finding out the sex, so Courtney wanted to stick with a neutral but still fun palette. She mentioned brown and cream as a starting point, and we ended up adding a moss green and soft aqua to the mix (after messing around with some tangerine too).

Courtney had sent me some inspiration pics of other invites she was drawn too and from them we decided that she was looking for something with a more modern vibe, some cute patterns or a cool border and a hint of a baby bird "theme". I thought nothing says contemporary pattern like the infamous trellis (I love it in home decor!), so I made my a moss green to coordinate with the accompanying envelope.

A little chocolate brown polka dot birdie at the says "Hi!" instead of screaming "You are invited to a bird-themed baby shower!!!"

Thanks for this wonderful opportunity, Courtney!! Congratulations and have fun at your shower this weekend:)


Speaking of babies and such a great color palette, check out these rooms:

{how awesome is that hand-painted vintage travel mural?...from oh dee do}

{loving those drapes....oh dee doh}

{gotta love text used in any room...oh dee doh}

{now that is a paint color!....oh dee doh}

{holy awesome blue dresser batman!...oh dee doh}

Mini Foyer Make-over: Part 1



I've been wanting to give our foyer/entryway a bit of a mini make-over for awhile now. In true me fashion, I started with the thing that would take the least amount of time - a new rug for right inside the door. The one we had there since moving in was old, small and didn't really go with our current style. I completely forgot to take a before pic of it because I was so excited to get rid of it:)

I've been wanting to add more pattern to our home overall...and a bit more of coastal feel, without being cliche or too themey. When I saw this rug (the Nantucket Jute) in the Ballard Design catalog awhile ago, I thought it would be perfect for our foyer.

At $29.99 for the 3' x 5', I thought it was a pretty good deal too! So, guess what I did? Put it on my Christmas list!!!

And my wonderful little brother listened! I should have known, he's infamous for getting all his gifts online:) Thanks, Tom!!! As soon as we got back from the holidays in Pa, I immediately swapped out the old, worn, small rug and replaced it my new black and white striped, hand-woven, large jute one!

I love it! I think the foyer is so much more dramatic now with this bold large pattern and pop of high contrast color. I'm proud of myself, its a little out of my comfort zone, but I think it paid off. What do you guys think?

Next step of the mini-makeover is to paint the inside of the front door black. Don't you think that will make such a huge difference? Right now there's a lot of trim and windows and nice architectural detail here, but it all sort of blends together. I think a black door will be really dramatic and set off the white wood work.

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