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December 29, 2011

More, please!

As promised, here are a few exceptional 

2011 decorating moments.   Enjoy!

Source: A Designers' Nest

Source:  Doti Decor

Source:  House and Home

Source:  Dwell Shop

Source:  Fresh Home

Source:  House and Home  

     Source here 

     Source:  The City Sage

    Source:  Phoebe Howard Designs

     Source:  Home Bunch

Source:  Shoot Factory

Thank you for sharing some of the 
best decorating designs of 2011.  

Soon we'll take a look at some of the 
promising trends for 2012.  

December 28, 2011

2011 was a very interesting decorating year and today I'd like to take a few moments to review a few less-than-successful designs created over the last 12 months.

Right:  Faces on Tarot cards might be interesting but not in a foyer.
Source:  Room Service

Source:  A Lovely Being
Silhouettes date back hundreds of years and are charming - but, not as wallpaper and not in a bathroom.  Can you imagine seeing this first thing in the morning?

Source:  House Beautiful
Bohemian meets Aunt Clara of Bewitched?  There are few specific elements of this decorating scheme that I like - the lamps, the mirror, the round end table, and the antique dresser.  But, a low ceiling looks lower when wallpapered - you definitely don't want to bring attention to the height of this room.  And don't get me started on the Purple Crush tufted sofa with mix-and-unmatched chairs.  Just NO.

 Source:  House to Home
Okay, you know where this is going.  MAYBE I could have tolerated the purple Moroccan valance and drapes if the headache-blue wallpaper wasn't included.  Probably not.

A martini is the only place where you should find an olive 
in this room - definitely NOT on the wall!  

NO.  Just a huge NO.  

If you walked into a sophisticated apartment and saw a swing hanging from the ceiling in the middle of the living room, what would you think?   Either the owners are too lazy to take their kid to the park or they're just kinky. 

Believe it or not, wallpaper featuring life-sized outdoor views was popular in the 1970s.  The trend should have stayed there.  (I'm worried the cat will get confused.)

You're puzzled, aren't you?  You're wondering, "Why would she include this benign, pleasant room on her Decorating Fail List?"  Take a look at those unacceptable window treatments - too small, too old fashioned, too boring.  If you're brave enough to throw a zebra rug on the floor, take a risk with the windows, too.

What's my gripe with this room?  It's too safe.  And, I'm a little put off by the chair covered in a fabric that matches the sofa instead of a complimentary fabric.  Why is that curtain covering up one of the few interesting architectural elements in the room?  

Source:  Room Service
Where do I start?  The magenta animal skin tufted ottoman?  The hideous modern art hanging over the concrete-looking sofa?  The outdated enamel lamps?   It's hard to believe that a decorator actually put their name and reputation on this project.  The wood paneling is beautiful and I think I would have made the rug the focal point of the room.  Just sayin'.

Thanks for putting up with me as I vented about some Decorating Fails.  Tomorrow - Decorating Successes! 

December 27, 2011

Have you noticed a correlation between how early you decorate your home for the holidays and how quickly you put away the ornamentation after the 25th? 

I actually saw a denuded tree lying beside the curb on Christmas night.  That's cold.

With 5 days 'til the dawning of 2012, it's time to add the finishing touches to your New Year Decorating Resolutions list.  

Here are a few suggestions for the DON'T column:

1.  Black chalkboard paint is a no.  It's a cute idea and uber contemporary but decorators forget to remind us that writing with chalk is quite messy. 

2.  Decorating with skulls - again a no unless you're a college freshman,  a rebellious 15 year old girl, or you intentionally hire an over-priced decorator who thinks you should live with a 'shock factor' element.  

3.  While I totally appreciate the vast wisdom conveyed in the Keep Calm posters, they're also a no.  Two words:  over done.

4.  Ghost Furniture - you know, clear acrylic or Lucite tables and chairs.   It's just too futuristic and looks cold and uncomfortable.  

Source:  House Beautiful

5.  Burlap.  I know, I know.  Burlap is awesome and I really, really like it.  But some decorators have gone a little overboard with the use of this charming fabric and it's tottering on the brink of tacky.  

Well, just wanted to give you a few things to consider as you narrow down your decorating resolutions.  

You're welcome. 

December 25, 2011

Sincerest best wishes 
for a happy and 
joyous Christmas. 

December 24, 2011

The more things change, the more they stay the same

This cartoon was drawn by J.C. Leyendecker in December, 1936.  Over the last 75 years the procrastinator's chaotic shopping on Christmas Eve hasn't changed much - stressed out mother, screaming child, frustrated father.  Only the prices have changed!

Ah, serenity.  There's no sleep like puppy sleep. 
What do you think they're dreaming about?

 Source:  Woman's Day

 Source:  The Steward

Source:  Oh! Pioneer

Chicago in Snow, Jo Sullivan Photography

Bob and I leave for Minneapolis today to spend the holidays with our
daughter, son-in-law, and 10 month old twins - Jack and Caitlin. 
We're so excited to be a part of the babies' very First Christmas
even if it is in the frozen tundra. 

I will make a very serious effort to blog while we're in the far North country
but no guarantees.  Babies are way too much fun to play with - believe it or not,
even more fun than blogging!

Please accept my sincerest wish that your Christmas be special, safe and full of joy
and happiness for you and your loved ones.   -- Sarajan

"Mai ces vacances soient remplies avec l'amour,
l'arrangement, la sérénité, et espoir.
fleaChic prie que tous vos rêves
vraiment viennent vrai."

December 23, 2011

joy  \joi\n   1. a feeling of happiness that comes from success, good fortune, or a sense of well-being;  2. a source of happiness; syn. bliss, delight, pleasure  Source:  The Webster Dictionary

It's so easy to get caught up in the race to sprint toward The Perfect Christmas finish line. 

I've learned the hard way that there is no perfect Christmas or any other holiday, for that matter.  Sometimes we have to search really hard to find the joy and happiness around us, but, it's so worth it!

Source:  Patina White

How darling is this dining room Christmas decoration?!  The home owner wrote out the words to the poem 'Twas the Night Before Christmas on the chalkboard.  And, isn't that burlap table skirt darling?

Today, I will be as joyful as a little bird who finds a warm Christmas light in the snow!

You know how much I admire clever people. Suzy, a Georgia Peach of a Crafter, has turned vintage ornaments into a thriving Christmas wreath business.  Retro decorations, viewed by many as "tacky" (a Southern term worse than the Kiss of Death), have gone chic in a big way . . . . .

Check out Suzy's wreaths at The Wreath Blog.

Speaking of clever, let's play a game called -

You Choose

A plain brownie or

a Christmas brownie?!

A regular pancake or

or a snowman pancake?!

Made you smile!  Have a joy-filled day.