Thursday, June 22, 2017

Project Design-Simple Summer Entertaining Tips

Welcome to our latest installment of Project Design!  We planned  a simple dinner at the lake with friends for Steve's birthday that just happened to be on Memorial Weekend. We like to keep entertaining simple at the lake so we made this easy appetizer.  All it takes is three ingredients; a wedge of Brie,  TJ's corn salsa (at Amazon if you don't have one nearby)  and Terrapin Ridge's Hot Pepper Bacon Jam. (also on Amazon click the link)

 We set up dinner on our lower patio because it can get toasty at the lake. 

The view above

Jenna and I decorated the tables with our faithful fence board box filled with flowers in red, white and blue.

We used my white Target plates and my twig chargers.  We layered these great Minted Watercolor Dots Napkins over bright red bandanas, added mini flags, herbs from my garden, and tied them with red raffia found at Michaels. They have the larger flags as well.

We set up one of our round folding tables in front of the fountain; (I have three for this purpose) , covered it with a burlap cover ( you will need 108" to touch ground), and used one of the toppers left over from Colin and Lauren's wedding with more bandana napkins.

This is the garden (in case you are wondering).  The deer, bunnies and birds eat everything in sight

Lime Chipotle Sauce
  • 1 cup greek yogurt
  • 1 chipotle chile,with 2 tsp sauce from can of chipotles in adobo sauce
  • ½ cup packed cilantro
  • Zest and juice of one lime
  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • Combine all in food processor and serve.

After dinner as the sun set,

we enjoyed one of my homemade desserts (just kidding).  I don't bake.  For simplicity and the fact that I hate to bake ,I purchased these from Dollie Cakes in Salinas and added the flags, fruit and mint.

How about a Patriotic Playlist to get you in the spirit of things? The picture on the playlist is the barn on my dad's farm in Indiana.

Now stop by and visit these other lovely bloggers to see what they have in store for you. I know you won't be disappointed!

Monday, June 19, 2017

Pretty Tablescapes

Hi everyone!  I hope you all had a fabulous Father's Day Weekend.  We had record heat here on the Central Coast but we aren't complaining!! We have another installment in our fabulous Project Design Series coming up on Thursday with some simple summer entertaining tips you won't want to miss. Here are a few of my past tablescapes .

 My daughter's wedding...

A bridal luncheon at Cassanova Restaurant...

A simple gathering at the lake...

A baby shower for one of my favorite moms...

Summer Dinner Fireside...

Come back on Thursday for the latest installment in our Project Design Series,Simple Summer Entertaining Tips.  We have another group of fabulous bloggers weighing in! Follow us all on Instagram for sneak peeks #classiccasualhome #hellolovelystudio #mepflug #prettypink2lips #cindyhattersley #shabbyfufu 

Monday, June 12, 2017

Makeup Tips and Tricks for Women over 50–Best Makeup Primers

Last summer  I did a post on 12 Essential Makeup Tips for women over 50 here.  If you haven’t read it I would strongly recommend it not necessarily for what I had to say but all of the great suggestions and comments from my readers.  You guys rock! When it comes to makeup over 50, some of the rules we lived by in our 20s and 30s no longer apply. Before 50 (well maybe 40) I could  pull off being a “makeup slacker”.  Once everything started to go “south” it was time to get more serious. I have followed up on several of your suggestions myself. 

12 Essential Makeup Tips for Women Over 50
Let’s take a look at makeup primers and and keep the conversation going.I am not an expert I am only sharing what I have learned.  I will follow up on the others in future posts.
Makeup Primers What do they Do and Why are they  Important to Aging Skin?

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Decorating a Difficult Space–Part III-Solving the issues and Sources

I apologize for not getting this post up last Friday as planned.  We were at the lake and I forgot my power cord. This room had many problems.  I wasn’t sure if it was possible to make it workable.  Originally the space was to be one big room but as I pointed out in Part 1 here we opted to carve out a small bath that was accessible from the pool. That proved to serve us well for many years while the kids were growing up. This left us with an L shaped space.  Please excuse the unprofessional sketch


The main part of the space was taken up with this giant pool table.


Here is a shot from Colin and Lauren’s wedding where the room was used as a staging area for the caterers to give you an idea.  This room was done during the height of the southwest era note the glazed walls and Santa Fe green trim (ughhhh!!) This room never really looked very good so we don’t have many pictures of it.


Here is the same view now


Problem #1 The biggest problem and the biggest asset were the deep sills on the windows and lack of wall space.  What I did was create the illusion of larger windows.  For instance here; the window ends where the curtain panel starts.


Without the panel the sofa would be off center (which it is).  Yvonne from Soft Accents made all of the curtain panels.  They are made of inexpensive linen to save $$$.


Problem #2 On the other side we had the same problem.  I needed a very small loveseat that would not encroach no more than half way into the French doors so we could still use the doors. My biggest expense in this room were the custom made sofas.  I had my “ace” upholstery guy Fred make them.  They needed to be low and precisely the right size.


I added the curtain panel behind the loveseat to hide the fact that there is a space between the French doors and the windows


Problem #3 There was very little space on the opposite side of the coffee table for chairs.  I really wanted the chairs for extra seating.  I had these Lee Industries small club chairs that I had done for a client years ago. The coffee table is from Artesia Collections.


They could no longer use them so “the hoarder” shoved them in her garage.  I had them recovered with indoor/outdoor stripe fabric from Perennials. The African Indigo pillows are by Nancy Ann Designs on Etsy here The sofas are also upholstered in Perennials Rough and Rowdy Paper Bag indoor/outdoor fabric. The brown pillow is Peter Dunham Kashmir Paisley, the blue is Peter Dunham Ikat, and the brown is Leopard Sand by  Ralph Lauren .  Yvonne from Soft Accents made them.  The blue Japanese Shibori pillows are from the Homegirl Collection on Etsy here. The rug is from Home Decorators Collection here.  Beau rolls and digs at rugs so we have rolled up and put away any nice rugs that we own.


This was the wall arrangement when you entered on the left. Once the curtain panels were added there was not nearly the space.  The ottomans from the Lee Industries Chairs were refurbished.  The skirts were removed, I stained the legs, Fred recovered them in this Ralph Lauren Leopard fabric, and added the nail heads for interest.  They are tucked under a pair of Vintage Shutters from Patine here.  Dani has similar ones off and on.


Right around the corner to the right was this. Steve built the built in when we moved into the house and it worked well for the TV for years.


Here is what this area looks like now. The TV is housed behind the vintage shutters. I had Katie of Katie Baker Slipcovers make new covers (out of the stripe perennial fabric) to lighten them up and Dekowe (from Etsy) made the Peter Dunham pillows. The twig table was made years ago by a local artisan and I couldn’t bring myself to part with it even though I was afraid it might not work.  The chairs are from Old Hickory and are probably 20 years old as well. It took some thinking but I am glad I didn’t get rid of them.  Don’t be afraid to mix things up everything doesn’t need to be the same style or from the same period. 


Steve made the TV Cabinet out of old fence boards, ply board (back) and a set of vintage shutters. I will do a tutorial on that at a later date.
This was the sectional set up that faced the TV.  It was a dark little corner as you can see.


We converted this area into a small eating area.  We eat here nearly every night.  The table was my mom’s. It is not a great table but I wanted to save something from her house and it was just the right size.  Steve painted the base with Amy Howard One Step Paint in Windsor so it would just disappear. Lantern is from Noir. Curtains by Yvonne from Soft Accents.  Painting by Carmel painter Chris Johnson. Hunter Douglas Provenance Shades.


The chairs are from Artesia Collection. The cushions are covered in Perennials Indoor Outdoor Ishi in Chai.  The pillow is Zak and Fox from Dekowe on Etsy.  The rug is jute from Ballard Designs here
The cabinet which is behind the table and chairs was painted that same awful green.  Steve repainted it in Amy Howard One Step paint in java. It is a nice taupe that kind of blends with everything.


On the wall above the original sectional was this arrangement.


These pictures were just reproductions from and had become faded from many years next to the window.  Check out the color of the buffalo.  The frames were nice and I wanted to save them.  I selected new reproduction prints from in colors brighter and more fitting for the room, had them rematted at Artistic Hangups and we reframed them.  Note they aren’t perfect.  The mirror I have had for years.  It hung in the spot where the TV is now.


Last but not least… The wall to the left of the bathroom door is where the pool cues hung .  Here I placed two of my favorite paintings by my friend artist Pat Huber.  I can see them every night when I perch on the sofa and they make me happy.


This room was the most underused room in the house with the most potential.  The windows and french doors look out onto the pool and garden area with a view of the surrounding hills.  The prettiest view of the entire house.  The room also has old beams from a Pennsylvania barn and hand hewn wood floors.  Here are the before and afters.


If I forgot any sources or you have any questions please comment below.  We are loving our new space.  I hope you like it too.
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