Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Bird Watching

I woke up to the most glorious sound today: birds chirping. What a great way to start a morning! And why not continue on with some great bird-inspired finds on Etsy?

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


There was a beautiful freshness in the air today that made me rush home from work. I got to enjoy it on a late-afternoon walk with my husband and dog. It even prompted me to crank open the windows and let this gorgeous air in. The house was freezing within ten minutes but I can still smell a hint of the outdoors inside, which makes it all worth it.

I think this amazing beach house from House Beautiful shares some of that sentiment. The wood, the muted colors, the relaxed furniture, even the fact that everything isn't perfectly tidy -- it's wonderful!

Take a look at a few of the rooms and prepare to be inspired to let go, just a little bit.

Photos from here.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Forever Fashionable

I recently stumbled across the UK Vogue's cover archives (thanks to this post by the lovely Plum). It is fascinating to flip through the decades to see what was inspriational and what was in style at different times in history. But the covers from the first two decades of the twentieth century -- the roaring twenties period -- are amazing. Each cover is a work of art and the women who inhabit them seem the epitome of glamour, even today.

Here, take a look at a few:

Photos from here.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Know Thyself

This weekend has been filled with lots of the things I love: going out for sushi with my husband, getting lost in a book, going for a long run, cuddling with the pup and devouring a big stack of magazines checked out from the library.

While there's hardly a magazine I won't read -- or enjoy, most likely -- I was blown away by the September 2009 issue of House Beautiful. I know, it's a little old but this, the Fall Color Issue, is packed with info that's anything but dated. There are house tours to pore over, a feature on the color amethyst and lots more.

But what I especially love is the back page, which lists twenty questions that help determine one's "color personality." I love this type of thing, just for the chance that it will help me understand myself better. And indeed, this quiz was quite illuminating. Here are HB's questions and my answers:

1. What's the first color you see in the morning? Either the pale turquoise of our bedspread or the soft white afghan knitted by my grandma that I pull on top at night or the light gray walls of our bedroom.

2. What color are your eyes? Blue -- like denim, really.

3. What color do you wear the most? I definitely have a thing for dark pink.

4. What color do you never wear? Coral.

5. What color do you wear when you want to feel sexy? Black most of the time, but white in summer or on vacation.

6. What color gets you the most compliments? Usually blue, sometimes yellow.

7. What color is your lipstick? I'm more of a gloss girl, but I have a deep pink lipstick I like.

8. What color was your living room when you were growing up? White.

9. What color was your bedroom growing up? Lavender. I really, really wanted this color although I don't remember why.

10. What color are your sheets? White -- definitely my preference for sheets.

11. What color was your favorite crayon as a child? Green, my favorite color for awhile as a kid.

12. What color is your car? White.

13. What color was your prom dress? Light turquoise, actually the same hue as my bedspread. Weird.

14. What's your favorite gemstone? Diamonds or sapphires.

15. What is your favorite flower? Pink peonies and white tulips and roses.

16. What color makes you happiest? A cheery yellow.

17. What color depresses you? That really awful mint green.

18. What color calms you? Deep blue.

19. What color makes you grind your teeth? Warm beige.

20. What color would you like to try, but are scared to? I'm kind of intrigued by champagne, either in a formal dress or some sort of home accessory.

Here's what I've learned: Apparently I really like white, blue, deep pink and pale turqouise, with a little gray, yellow and green thrown in. Cooler shades all around. In our house, these are the prominent colors. Wow, right on!

Friday, March 26, 2010

In Bloom

As spring approaches, I want to deck myself out in pastels and whites, ruffles and the prettiest, girliest jewelry. A good place to start would be Ann Taylor. I am loving their gorgeous spring looks. I want to jump straight into each of these outfits!

Photos from  here.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Calm and Cool

I came across this minimalist South African home on Living Etc. today and I think it's just fantastic. I like the clean aesthetic, cool hues and the abundance of concrete. And of course those dogs are great! Check it out:

Photos from here.

Looking Good

My little bean got a haircut recently, and I can't stop admiring how nice she looks. But I guess that's nothing new. In the four years we've had her, I don't think a day has passed that I haven't asked my husband whether he's noticed how cute she is -- even when she's staring us down, like in this photo. My goodness, I love her!

Photo by me.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Keep Looking

I am mesmerized by the collages made by Shelley, the artist and blogger of the beautiful Oiseaux. There is so much detail to explore in each work, and I like how each is unique from all the others. You can buy them at her etsy shop, too. Let's look at a few:

Photos from here.

Spring Fling

These Kate Spade looks have me so excited for the new season. Stripes, wellies, yellow -- happy, happy, happy!

Photos from here.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Just Beachy

There is something really special about this adorable apartment, documented by almostbunnies on Flickr. I love the whites and neutrals, the natural and weathered elements and the casual, beachy feel. I can't believe the apartment is only 750 square feet. Talk about good use of space!

Photos from here.

Monday, March 22, 2010

A Happy Thought

I think I need to buy this card immediately. I will frame it and put it up somewhere in my house so I will see it and smile.

Photo from here.

Blog it Forward: What Inspires Me

Good morning! I'm excited that today is my day to participate in the Blog it Forward blogger mash-up generously organized by Victoria of sfgirlbybay. Three hundred bloggers have been taking turns sharing what inspires them. Did you read Kate Harrison's post on Friday? My goodness, she is a talented photographer! How I would love to spend a day in the world she sees behind her camera.

Part of why I started blogging was to allow myself the space and time and energy to reflect on what inspires, fascinates and makes me happy. I'm constantly on the lookout for inspiration, whether it's for this newbie blog or in my other creative pursuits: writing, drawing, painting, designing, dressing myself, decorating my home, entertaining or simply trying to live life to the fullest. So without further ado, here are a few things I find inspiring:

Color: I think the most energizing element on earth is color. I love everything from bold, saturated tones to soft, whispery hues. Simply seeing a gorgeous shade can spark so many ideas. Photo from here.

Nature: Water, air, flowers, trees -- all these aspects of the natural world restore, calm and inspire me. Nothing clears my mind more than sitting beside an ocean, and the change of seasons has a profound impact on me, shaping the way I feel, think and interact withthe world. Sometimes I pray to be more aware of the beauty and miracles around me every day. I don't want to miss anything! Photo by me.

Light: Much like the changing of seasons, I am completely affected by light. I love the pureness of early morning, the brilliance of the afternoon sun and the golden hues of late day. I can't think of much more beautiful than natural light. It makes me feel so alive. Photo from here.

Travel: Is there a better inspiration for seeing things from a new perspective than travel? I don't think so! I was fortunate to be born into a family with a passionate love of travel, and many of my favorite memories growing up are exploring new cities and countries. It was the best education I could have received -- learning about other places, languages, foods, ways of living, ways of thinking and how big the world really is. Photo by me.

Connections: You know that great feeling you get when you connect with someone -- that little click that happens when you truly understand them? I love that! Whether it's with a new friend or my closest loves, it's something that propels and inspires me. Photo from here.

Words: Books, quotes, plays, blogs, little notes -- wherever I find words I find inspiration. There is something immensely satisfying about the perfect word chosen for just the right situation, and I adore becoming entranced in another person's voice and point of view through their words. Photo from here.

Puzzles: Not that I like problems, but I do find that creativity often comes from constraings and limits. I try to remember this point of view when I'm feeling stuck. Every problem is an opportunity, right? Photo from here.

Stillness: In a hectic world where we're pulled in so many directions, I crave the time and space to let my mind wander. It's often out of this stillness that ideas and inspiration come to me. And it's also just a nice little gift to give myself. We all deserve it! Photo by my mom.

Please check out today's other Blog it Forward participants:

And be sure to visit Kenziepoo tomorrow. I can't wait to see what Rachelle has in store for us!