Friday, December 2, 2016

Christmas in the dining room ~

My living room is still in flux with the furniture either at the upholstery shop or covered in sheets waiting for me to decide which fabric I am going to use so it can go. This all  makes it ridiculous to decorate the room for Christmas this year.

But I missed having a tree somewhere nearby.


I put a little tree in the dining room. At least it will add a touch of Christmas when I entertain. 

The cherub statue was already on the table and fits in perfectly. It is meant for the garden but I have always kept it inside.

In the background you can see one of my unfinished drapes in the aforementioned, living room. It took a long time to find the right fringe for the trim -  it was finally delivered today so by next week they should be finished and hung.

 This  room has really proved to be a challenge and I decided that instead of making quick decisions I would take my time and not be rushed, but it does feel like it is taking forever.

No decorations in the living room this year but I do have my pretty little tree in the dining room to enjoy.

Thank you for visiting.

Happy Holidays

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Planting for the holidays ~

Earlier in the week I found myself planting for the holidays.

Starting with Amaryllis. I have never planted these before but they were such a lovely color and on sale for 50% off. I figured why not give them a try. And maybe, just maybe, they might bloom in time for Christmas. 

a little Dwarf Alberta Spruce which I will bring in the house for the holiday season and then plant in the garden. I have a perfect spot for one and this is the time of year that pine trees are available in Southern California. I think most people use them in lieu of cut Christmas trees but I like them for the garden too.

  Not really for Christmas, but for later in the year,
Sweet Peas  - planted now they should bloom early before it gets too hot. And finally, Calendulas. Although commonly available in pony packs the only way to get the taller old fashion variety that I prefer is to plant seeds. They add great color to the winter and early spring garden and if you are lucky some will reseed for next year. 

As you can see I am planning a very extended holiday season, especially in the garden.

Thank you for visiting.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Sunlight and design frustrations ~

When I count all of my blessings one at the top of the list is that I am able to wake up so many mornings to the sun streaming through my bedroom windows in the most glorious way.

This room was designed by my husband. He tried to include everything that I wanted in a master bedroom suite: I wanted a a spacious room with a fireplace, french doors and a sitting area, and that is what I got.

The morning sun...well that was happenstance.

Natural light is such an integral part of a room and I don't think it is given enough significance. Throughout the day it can make enormous differences and the shifting light is what I find so difficult to deal with when picking out paint and fabric colors.

 But here it all came together for me and I am very, very happy with the results. 

When I go in this room it gives me hope for the living room project which I have been struggling with...trying to get the colors right and vacillating it seems everyday. In this room the natural light, which is the afternoon sun, has played a very important role. As much as I enjoy redecorating a room getting it to reach your expectations can sometimes be very frustrating, With this in mind the fact that I have finally found fabric to reupholster the canape is very for the rest.

Thank you for visiting, I hope you have a wonderful day.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Mums and more mums ~

Tis the season for mums. 

Last spring I attended the local Chrysanthemum Society's annual sale. They have plants in 4 inch containers started by cuttings from their members. Every year I buy three or four of them. They are nice plants and are flowering now but are of the tall, show type and tend to need a watchful eye, and staking. 

So I was very pleased to walk into my local Home Depot a few weeks ago and find a really nice selection of 'garden' mums in gallon containers. Less fussy than their showy sisters these will only reach 24 inches and  require much less care in the garden.

 I have planted them now, and they will provide some fall color but they really won't met their potential until next year when they have matured.

I guess you call this, planting for the future.

Here is bouquet of some of the chrysanthemums  I already have in the garden. Not only do they add color to the fall border but are wonderful cut flowers.

Thank you for visiting

Have a happy, happy day.

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Chaos reigns ~ living room update

When I started this project I was hoping to have it finished by the holidays, least by Christmas.

As of today, the painting and wallpapering is done and I have the new area rug. The fabric for the living room drapes is on its way, and as soon as it is delivered I can start making them. 

Meanwhile, the room is in chaos. Most of the upholstered furniture will either be discarded or moved to another room, I have managed to work around it but it will be very helpful to have it gone. Next week I have someone coming to move the heavier pieces and bring in the ones from storage I do intend to use.

 So far I like the way it is going, although I had a completion goal it really wasn't a deadline, but it will be nice to see it finished. I have found that when you do a room slowly it doesn't have that big impact because you adjust to each change gradually. How nice it would be to leave for a few days, come back, and find it all done exactly to your specifications.

 There is some satisfaction of knowing that you did it all yourself, or at least most of it. I will paint, wallpaper, and make simple slipcovers, but I definitely will not attempt upholstering.

One thing is for sure it will be done by next years holidays, but then I will probably have something else torn up.

Have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Color in the fall garden ~

I may be wrong, but I think that along with football games, falling leaves, and cooler weather most people associate Chrysanthemums with this time of year. Mums are very abundant now in shops, nurseries and gardens. They are beautiful, and a pot of chrysanthemums can add instant seasonal color. I do love them and every year add more to my garden.


there is another flower that means autumn is really here for me, and that is the fall blooming, perennial aster. 

These asters are hardy garden plants, in many ways almost garden thugs. They really would like to take over whatever bed they are planted in and need judicious thinning over the summer months in order not to run rampant.

But for any gardener willing  to put in the work, this is what you get; the most splendid display of  tall stems bursting with flowers that provide marvelous color to the fall landscape.

These will continue to bloom like this for several weeks. Then I will cut them back to the ground and wait again for their return next year.

Pretty, don't you think? You might want to add some to your garden.

Thank you for visiting, have a wonderful day.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Best laid plans ~

In the beginning phase of planning the redecoration of my living room I found the fabric you see below for the drapes and  thought it would tie in well with the wallpaper I was using. that the painting is completed and the wallpaper is up I have had a change in direction. This fabric in very pretty and I will eventually use it in another room, perhaps my bedroom, but I decided it just wasn't right for the living room.  

I thought I needed something with a bit more of a wow factor, so I set off on a search for a different fabric.

This is the result
My first option was this charming print, but when I got the sample the background was too dark and didn't tie in with the wallpaper. 

Waverly Sanctuary Rose Linen:

This one has a gorgeous 'gently worn' look which I like and the color was okay but it didn't offer me the range of colors that I might like to use as accents in the room. 

Richloom Queen Tearose:

Next there was this Waverly stand-by, nice. but really two dimensional in it's color range.

Waverly Norfolk Rose Fabric:

Then I found this. I ordered a one yard sample and crossed my fingers that it would turn out to be exactly what I wanted.

Covington Belle Fleur Tea Rose Fabric:

And it was.

 It completely matches the wallpaper in color and the range of pinks and raspberry will allow me to use some of the furniture I already have without the cost of reupholstering.

 With the exception of two raspberry checked bergere chairs that I will be using this will be the only print in the room, so I think the boldness of it will work. I can just image a velvet throw pillow across the room on a cream colored chair in that wonderful dark, mossy green.

Whenever I redecorate a room and and along the way make mistakes like this I always wonder what professional decorators do, do they also make these errors and have to rethink a decision. Probably not. Meanwhile I will continue to bumble along.

Have a splendid day!

Friday, October 14, 2016

Fall decorating ~

I am a little late this year with my fall decorations, last week I finally ventured down into the basement and brought up the storage boxes. It's always fun to go through everything and discover things you fondly remember and those you completely forgot you have.

With the main part of the house still in disarray with the redecorating project I decided to limit my holiday decorating to a just couple of rooms: the kitchen and the media/library.

I love adding seasonal decorations to the kitchen, probably because I spend so much time here. For the shelf under the kitchen window I brought out the wooden box I made last year and filled it with pumpkins, gourds and fall foliage. Then added a wreath.  

Next to the sink I just 'plopped' a few of the extra pumkins in a very casual, but colorful arrangement.

 Once again brought out my little black witch to put on the bookshelf in the library/media room. I have had her for a very long time and every year when I take her out I am reminded how cute she is. This year I added the lighted jack-o-lanterns to the vignette. When I go in this room at night to watch TV it is fun to click on the light....spooky!

After Halloween I will replace the little witch with a turkey. Voila, Thanksgiving.

Miss Twiggley is her own holiday decoration. She is starting to get her winter coat and is looking, as you can see, quite beautiful for the upcoming holidays. She likes to sit in this window and watch the birds and insects flitting around outside. I left just enough room on each side to indulge her.

That's pretty much it for fall decorating this year, the living room project is still taking up a lot of my time. It is slowly progressing but more about that in a future post.

Have a great day.