Wednesday
Nov262014

A Thanksgiving Cheat Sheet

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! I hope you all are getting ready to enjoy some time with family and friends this holiday weekend. Whether you are traveling out of town, or are running around preparing the big feast I wish you the best!

Wherever you sit this holiday season you are likely to encounter a beautiful table setting. Or if you are hosting you may want to create one. There are so many beautiful ideas out there, but just where does everything actually go? I mean the basic details such as: Does the fork go on the left or right of the plate?

(source)

Or as a guest if you all gather around a table filled with glasses, silverware and bread plates, which water glass is yours?

At last here is a cheat sheet that easily explains it all! No more wondering how to set, or which to use! I used to waitress so I am very familiar with the "proper" way to set a table. Another tip I can give is to start from "the outside in" meaning, your dessert fork will be closest to the plate, and your salad/app fork is furthest. Enjoy!

(Pinterest link)

Cheers!

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Friday
Nov072014

A Map Chair DIY

So I finally had a chance (and the motivation) to work on this little side project I had in mind for awhile. I inherited these imitation Arne Jacobson Ant Chairs awhile back and wanted to do something fun with them. They were a little scratched up so I thought of painting patterns, doing a collage, or something else altogether. Then I thought it would be really fun to apply an antique map across the entire surface!

So I started shopping around and saw this nice old world map in blue on AllPosters.com. It was something a little different looking and I loved the colors together. It almost looks like a wood texture underneath the print which was a nice effect.

My motivation was to complete this chair in time for the Habitat Green Event held last month. I thought it would be a fun addition to my booth as a little before & after project and I only had 3 days to work on it!

So when the poster arrived I laid it out on the table to relax the curl from shipping.

Then I gathered my first round of supplies including: a brayer, Mod Podge, and brush

Now to be honest, I'd never used Mod Podge before, but it seemed like a simple yet strong adhesive to use. I watched a few YouTube videos on how to use it, then I felt ready to give it a try. First I began to gob it all over the surface of the chair and spread it around with a paint brush. Then I very carefully laid the map across the surface and rolled the brayer across the surface to get out any air bubbles.

As it turns out, while I was in the middle of this time sensitive part a very large UPS delivery came to our house and due to the sheer size and weight of it, the UPS delivery man came to the side door, knocked, and offered to bring it in. I was very appreciate of his kindness, and my guard-dog Lab absolutely loves the UPS man so he was going nuts, got a few treats, and wanted to go for a ride.

So... by the time I got back to the chair the Mod Podge was starting to adhere and I couldn't really adjust the map or roll out any other bubbles. In general I'm very happy with how it came out, but there is one section in the back where there is a complex curve and it didn't adhere perfectly.

So now that the map has been applied to the chair it was time to very carefully cut the map to the shape of the chair. I just used a simple xacto knife with a fresh blade and followed along the edge.

 

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Wednesday
Oct292014

Creepy Artwork!

Just in time for Halloween this week I thought I'd share some really cool, yet strangely bizarre, and possibly even creepy artwork! I stumbled upon these at the Habitat Restore and couldn't believe how intricate they were. They are 3 exotic beetles with gears and tiny mechanism inside, and each is preserved carefully inside a glass bell jar. It was pretty amazing to see the high level of detail that went into each piece!

My photo definitely doesn't do this creature any justice! The creator of these Frankenstein pieces is Mike Libby of Insect Lab Studio, and he smartly put his signature on the bottom of these pieces. So curiosity takes me on an adventure through his website to see what other creations he has made - and I find them all amazing and beautiful. I could see these in an office or science classroom!

So now here are some better images of these really unique pieces of art.

Dynastidae: Eupatorus Gracilicornis
(aka Rhino Beetle)

Lucanidae: Cyclomattus Elephas
(aka: Stag Beetle)

Cetonidae: Torynorhinna Flammae
(aka Flower beetle)

And in case you're wondering, YES THEY ARE REAL BUGS!!! I have no idea how he is able to handle them without them crumbling to a million dried dust particles. But somehow he manages to install the gears into each and every one of them. And he doesn't stop at beetles... oh no! Check out these other beautifully mechanical insects.

Papilionidae: Papilio Ulysses
(aka Swallowtail butterfly)

Odonata: Anax Junius
(aka Dragonfly)

Wasp (no latin name!)

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Tuesday
Sep092014

1st Dibs on This Habitat Collection

Well it's been a busy few weeks but I am excited to say that I can finally share some pictures and links for a staging job I recently worked on. Someone had contacted me about staging a home that was completely vacant. I offered a few options, one of which was to stage with inventory and furniture from the Habitat Restore. They chose that option and the fun began!

First I met them at the house for a staging consultation. That's when I walk around and asses the space, make recommendations, then decide what type of furniture and layouts would work best for each room. Every home is different, and here we focused on these 3 impact rooms: living room, dining room, and kitchen.

Empty home before staging

The day before staging I walked the Restore floor and found pieces that worked together and fit my plan. That was a good practice in my "use what you have" training and philosophy. Whatever was available on the floor at that moment was what I could use. No time to make changes, order anything else, or shop around. I used only what was available - good thing the Restore has a lot of great pieces!

The day of staging I met the movers at the Restore to help coordinate the furniture pick-up. I worked with a team from Junk-A-Haulics, and they were fantastic! Everything was packed and unpacked quickly and very carefully. You can see them in action here :)


Junk-A-Haulics in action

Then the fun part for me really began - rearranging the furniture and adding decorative touches through accessories. Once everything was in place the transformation was complete! It's amazing what a difference furniture makes in showing a home. Many home buyers have a hard time imagining themselves and their furniture in a space, so staging helps potential home buyers see the scale of a room with furniture, and suggestions how they can use it.

Ta da! Same house after staging.

The best part of using Habitat Restore for staging is that all these pieces of furniture are available for sale, so make sure to read through to the bottom! Here are some more before and after photos:

Living room before

living room after

living room after

living room after staging

Dining room before

Dining room after

Fireplace before

Fireplace after

Foyer before

Foyer after

And while I don't have any "before" pictures of the kitchen or front porch I wanted to show the "afters" anyway!

Kitchen after

Kitchen after with butcher block cart in previously empty space.

Countertop staging

Front porch after staging

Ok, so now that you've seen what items I used from the Restore I am excited to say you can have first dibs to buy these items!! They have been listed for sale on ebay so you can buy any of them right now. We have it set up so you can use paypal online or pay at the store when you pick up. The only catch?? These items won't be back at the Restore until Tue Oct 21st. So that's it! See something you like? Take a look at the listing here!

http://www.ebay.com/usr/morrisrestore973

And make sure you click "see all items" for a full list. Act quick - the beautiful dining table and coffee table have already been sold!

Any questions send me an email or call, just click the contact link below for information.

Cheers!

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Saturday
Sep062014

Custom Office of "The Grommet"

The other day while I was reading an article online and I saw an ad for "The Grommet - Buy Differently" embedded in the page. I NEVER click on those ads but for some reason it intrigued me, partially because I've never heard of it and also because I was in the shopping frame of mine for some client projects. 

I learned that The Grommet is a product launching platform that takes undiscovered products from makers and artists and provides them a platform for selling. In the era of kickstarter and other crowdsourcing options The Grommet gives an opportunity for the artists to tell their stories and sell their products to a larger audience. 

What also intrigued me though was the custom office of The Grommet! They had artists custom make their cubicles (which they call pods) and they added a lot of personal touches to the space. I love to see collaborations between designers and small businesses because the possibilities are endless! This is a good case study showing how brand identity & interior design go hand in hand. 

So now for some pictures! 

They designed their "pods" to look like shipping palettes since they ship all their products. 

They also created a custom video backdrop where they film the launch of their new products. 

Some other details of their office, an industrial look with exposed brick and ductwork.

And of course I'd be remiss if I didn't say to check out their products! They do have a wide variety of unique products with stories. It's perfect to keep in mind for the upcoming holiday season!

So what do you think of their custom office and product lines? 

Cheers,

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Friday
Aug292014

Oh Summer, Where Have You Gone??

I probably say this every year, but summer has gone by way too fast! I wish you a happy long weekend to soak up this last bit of summer! Here are some ways to indulge...

Swing in a hammock with drinks readily nearby (via Pinterest)

Enjoy a seat by the fire (via Pinterest)

Great tip I found on Pinterest: keep mosquitos away by making bundles of sage and toss into the fire!

 

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Wednesday
Jul162014

ICFF Sub-trend: Convertible Furniture

Here is my second ICFF recap from this year. The first was a round up of some of my favorites, now I'd like to share a few items that have a common design thread of space saving, convertible furniture. 

1- Convertible Pool Tables

First on my list is a pool table that converts into an elegant dining table by simply adding a cover. Perfectly stylish way for eating a meal, then simply slide off and play! This one by Belgium company Fusion Tables is streamlined and contemporary, and I just love their use of new color instead of the same old green felt. 

(Fusion Tables)

Vision Billiards, formerly Balic Billiards and part of Bilijardai products, offers handmade and premium billiard tables. They too offer a line of contemporary convertable tables which they brought to the show, but they also offer some of the most unique custom table designs I've seen! Check out their website for some examples. 

(Vision Billiards at the show) 

 

2- Umbra Folding Chairs

I love the flexibility (foldability?) of these chairs - and what a great way to get them out of the way when not using them? So simple and fun. Not available through their website yet but check back soon I'm sure! www.umbra.com

 

3- Riveli Shelving

I remember seeing these at the show last year and like how many options they've come out with since. What really clicked with me this year was that the back side was a magnetic blackboard, which would make these shelves perfect for a kitchen or foyer.

The whiteboard is a good idea too.

And I especially love the graphic print options when closed, these make for a great retail option, like the photo above. For more information check out their website www.lakeandwells.com 

4- Sliding horizontal columns

And lastly these interested sliding horizontal columns that can again serve as a graphic background, but can then be pulled out several feet and turned into a light fixture (shown above) or a seat or climbing wall (shown below). 

I remember this booth was from one of the student section, but unfortunately can't remember which one! I will update the information when I find it, but in the meantime if anyone knows who's this is please leave a comment below! 

And that's a wrap! What do you think of some of these design concepts? Would love to know in your comments below. 

Cheers, 

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Thursday
Jul032014

Gliding into the Weekend

Well it certainly feels like summer here, and I am really looking forward to the holiday! I was reviewing my notes from this past weekend's Happy Places event at Babies R us and I wanted to share one of my favorite tips for repurposing furniture as your baby and toddlers grow.

When planning a nursery many people opt to have a glider or rocker in the room. When picking out your glider style and color consider one that can live happily in a family room or den once baby has grown. There are so many armchair options that you would never deem them as nursery furniture! A good quality glider can really grow with your family and you'll get many years from your investment. 

   
  
  

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