Monday, October 31, 2011

Home Goods Convert

I'm sure I'm waaaaay behind everyone else here, but I hadn't been to Home Goods before this weekend. However, I finally managed to make my way to one on Saturday. How had I never been to one before? There is SO MUCH awesome stuff! Le Creuset cookware, adorable cake stands, cute throw pillows, and Christmas decorations galore! Best of all, I found exactly what I wanted: an ultra-cheap footstool to reupholster to go with the new slipper chair in my bedroom.

I found this little gem at my local Home Goods for $22:

$22! I don't think I could even build that for $22. Especially since "building" it would have involved bribing my husband to do it for me. While the footstool looks okay as it is, it doesn't coordinate with my bedroom at all. Plus, the top is kind of grotty looking, and there is a slight rip in one of the seams. But that doesn't matter to me, because I plan to recover it in this fabric:

I have pillows made out of the same fabric on my bed. I was originally going to make it a tufted footstool, but I haven't decided on that for sure. We'll see how it goes once I get in there.

I had intended to finish the project this weekend, but my aunt had a stroke on Saturday, and I spent most of the weekend in the hospital trying to support my cousins. I learned that people often don't recognize the signs of stroke, and because of this, it is one of the leading causes of death in the United States. If someone exhibits these symptoms, it is very important to call 911 immediately.
  • Sudden numbness or weakness of the face, arm, or leg (especially on one side of the body)
  • Sudden confusion, trouble speaking or understanding speech
  • Sudden trouble seeing in one or both eyes
  • Sudden trouble walking, dizziness, loss of balance or coordination
  • Sudden severe headache with no known cause
Time is of the essence when dealing with strokes, so every second counts!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Light Fall Scarves

It's definitely autumn around here, but it's still not THAT cold. Definitely not cool enough to warrant a full-on winter scarf. I get cold easily, though, so until winter sets in, I'll be using lighter, summer-weight scarves to keep me warm.

Today, I'm loving the combination of coral and gray. It's perfect for fall - a variation on the classic autumnal pairing of orange and brown.

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6

I'm going to try to make my own tufted footstool tomorrow. Hopefully, it will work out and I can write about it next week. Otherwise, I'll have to write about my miserably botched attempt.  I hope everyone has a lovely weekend!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Every chair needs a good throw blanket

The chair in my master bedroom needs one, in any case. I've been redoing my bedroom in fits and starts, but I've really been focusing on it lately. Probably because of this blog and all the inspiration I've gotten from other people. Most of the bedroom is gray and white with touches of teal here and there. And it is a VERY specific shade of teal. I am in the process of finding the absolute perfect cover for the pillow on the chair, but that's proven to be harder than I expected. But I have to; the pillow that came with the chair is way too simple for me.

1. Herringbone Pleated Throw Blanket
2. Jonathan Adler ZigZag Grey Throw Blanket
3. Steel Grey Slipper Chair
4. Missoni Home Humbert Throw
5. In2Green Eco Chevron Blanket
6. DwellStudio Draper Stripe Ink Throw
7. Nordstrom Ombre Throw

I'll probably end up getting one of these throws. I'm dying to get one of the Missoni ones. Either the middle or bottoms ones would look great in my room. I'm just not sure how to justify over $400 for a blanket. Any opinions on which one to buy?

Friday, October 21, 2011

Birthday Cake Challenge

The other day was my birthday. I've apparently gotten to the point in my life where I have to make my own birthday dinner and my own birthday cake. While it is kind of sad, it also has its benefits for my family. My husband is allergic to dairy, so he can't indulge in most purchased desserts. In fact, we had a dairy-free groom's cake at our wedding. (Which was delicious despite the lack of cream and butter.)

Anyways, I decided to make a sour cream chocolate cake because it is so easy to substitute the dairy ingredients. I got the recipe from my mom's copy of Joy of Cooking because they dropped it from the most recent edition. I substituted margarine for butter, soy creamer for milk, and Sour Cream Supreme for regular sour cream. This recipe uses unsweetened chocolate, which doesn't have milk in it. (It just uses a ton of sugar instead.) The result is a light, fluffy, chocolatey-but-not-TOO-chocolately cake.
Since I love coffee, I made a quick espresso-chocolate frosting. I realize that coffee and chocolate is usually called mocha, but this was not mocha. It was espresso. And chocolate. In frosting form.

My son "helped" me spread the frosting on top and in the process scraped off large portions of the cake. He hasn't quite learned to wield a cake spatula. So I mounded a few raspberries on top, and sprinkled a little powdered sugar over it.

I just love the color of raspberries!

Final result
J. was so happy I let him "help"
A 10-year-old took this photo. Because it's not obvious at all.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

New Accessories for the Master Bath

I am simultaneously redoing our master bedroom and the master bath. Actually, I work on the bathroom whenever I get stuck waiting for purchases to arrive. Right now, it's a little out of the question to completely renovate the bathroom with new tile, fixtures, and paint (which is what I really want.) In the meantime, I have to be content with updating the look.

Since I'd like to completely redo the bathroom in the near future, I'm not planning on spending a whole lot of money on this update. Most of the items are from Pottery Barn and World Market. However, I do want to splurge on this Kelly Hoppen wallpaper for the little tub alcove.

1. White Vintage Flock Wallpaper
2. Kyoto Ikat Printed Towels
3. Large Kyoto Ikat Glass Tray
4. Blue Fez Tumblers
5. Black & White Apothecary Soap Pump
6. Black & White Apothecary Wastebasket
7. Black & White Apothecary Large Canister
8. Small Classic Glass Apothecary Jar
9. Large Classic Glass Apothecary Jar
10. Etched Glass Pedestal Soap Dish

Monday, October 17, 2011

On the menu tonight...

This is a little late, but it's finally feeling like fall around here. Normally, I'm all about sun and warmth, but I do get excited when I first detect fall in the air. In celebration of fall, this is what I plan to make for dinner tonight...

Apple and Sage Roasted Chicken

I've never made this particular recipe, but chicken, apples and sage go so well together. I'm sure this will turn out great. Here's to autumn!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Indian Summer

My favorite thing about living in San Diego is the weather. Having great weather all year round means that I can wear the dresses and skirts that I love without freezing. Right now, it's 90 degrees out. This weekend is supposed to be a little cooler... around 80 degrees. I love it!

1. Alice and Olivia Fallon Blouson Tank Dress
2. DVF Seraphina Croc Embossed Belt
3. Vince Skinny Rib Cardigan
4. Loeffler Randall Winifred Ruched Flat
5. JADEtribe Lanna Tribal Tote
6. Lesbijouxcrealune Brass Leaf and Green Jade Chain Necklace

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Serene Start...

to the week, that is. I have a feeling this is going to be a terribly challenging week. Before I get too caught up in the difficulties of the coming week, I'm taking some time to calm down first. My favorite way of doing that (short of going to a spa) is looking at pictures of beautiful flowers!

I LOVE fresh flowers. I have them in my house all the time, but living in Southern California, we don't get a huge selection of the flowers that I love. My absolute favorite flowers are peonies, and this arrangement is just perfect. It reminds me a little of my wedding bouquet. Sometimes I wish I lived in a place that actual flowers grow. Then I remember that rain is required for flowers to grow, and I change my mind.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Upholstered Headboard

I just love the look of an upholstered headboard, and I finally did something about it. A few months ago, my husband and I bought a California King mattress. I decided it was the perfect time to revamp our bedroom. Our furniture was still in perfect condition, and it was all white wood, which was the look I still wanted. It was mostly the textiles and decor that had to go. The first thing to come in was a new headboard.

I originally wanted something like this Serena and Lily headboard:

It comes in a number of fabrics, but I really wanted a graphic pattern of some sort. The only drawback was the price...$1800 including delivery. While I just love this headboard, I don't love it that much.

After a lot of looking and wavering, I finally decided to buy a basic headboard that I could easily customize into an upholstered headboard.

This is what I decided on:

I only bought the headboard, because I don't like the look of a footboard very much. I like the bedding to drape down the front of the bed. This cost me about $450, including inside delivery. It's a good thing, too, because the thing weighed at least 80 pounds and it was BIG.

To make the upholstered panels, my husband cut some 1/4" plywood into the shape of the inset panels. I made this a little easier by making a tracing, and then transferring it to the wood. I glued high density foam to the front of the panel, and then stapled batting all the way the panel. My husband also drilled holes in the corners of each panel, and drilled holes in the corresponding place on the headboard.

Then it was time for the fabric. I chose F. Schumacher's Summer Palace Fret in Stone. I bought it from, a discount fabric place, and it ended up being about $150 for 2 yards.

 I stapled that all the way around and then attached it to the headboard using the bolts.

And voila! A custom upholstered headboard! The entire project took about 3 hours, including drying time for the glue.