Tuesday, January 31, 2012

DIY Sunburst Mirrors (using SHIMS!!)

I've been trying to step away from the Pinterest lately (old habits die hard). My motto in helping me conquer the beast is "10% Inspiration, 90% Perspiration." (I talked a little about this in my Alt panel.) But apparently I need to come up for air more often, because there is some magic happening in the blog world that I was completely unaware of.

Look at all these GREAT sunburst mirrors made from those cheapy packets of shims from the hardware store! Most of these finished mirrors are really quite big (22 - 40" in diameter) and the supplies cost less than $30! What the WHAT.

Natalie Roe and her sister, Rachel, emailed me a link to their version HERE. I love the staggered edges.

This Old House (do I like this one. Or not...)

Westerman Family (love the gray stain!)

K Sarah Designs (I love how big the mirror is on this one. It feels a little more functional than decorative. PS, love the styling.)

Momtastic (I'm more of a gold sunburst mirror type gal, but I really like this white painted version! And how pretty does it look hanging on top of the canopy curtains? Really cute.)

Did I miss any of your favorite shim sunburst tutorials?

Monday, January 30, 2012

Custom Black Out Roman Shades

Every decorator has a favorite thing to see installed. I think mine is a toss up between new pillows (they really can transform a room!) and new window treatments. I was so happy with the way Joanna's roman shades just transformed her bedroom!

The white linen fabric with the cheery yellow trim has such a brightening effect on the room! The shades are also super functional. You know I am a big fan of making shades out of mini blinds and also glueing fabric on top of matchstick blinds. Both are great methods, but for this project I knew we needed something a little more permanent and hard-wearing, so I had my seamstress make the blinds. We had them blackout lined, which, beyond looking great and giving the linen a nice weight/drape, it's so nice for blocking out the city lights at night or the morning sun which always comes too early for us parents!

Custom shades are not inexpensive (that's why the DIY method can be great to keep around for some projects), but if you are using the shades every single day, I think the extra cost is justified. Joanna lives in a prewar apartment and her windows are extra, extra long so the cost was a little more than standard windows.

I had these exact shades priced out at the Shade Store for comparison to my work room, and they quoted me $650 per shade. Yikes! My seamstress did BOTH shades for several hundred less than that. So again, ask around. If you look on craigslist for a great seamstress, you can get custom work for a lot less than you might expect.

PS The mustard yellow vintage trim completely makes these shades for me. We bought the trim at JEM in Tribeca for just a few dollars a yard. They still have some left if you'd like to stop by and snag some for yourself!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Josef Frank Ceylon Fabric Pillow

Joanna and I both share a love of Josef Frank textiles. The designs are so gorgeous! But the fabric is really hard to find and it is extremely expensive. We splurged on one yard of the Ceylon print at Just Scandinavian in Tribeca.

We used this down blend insert from Pottery Barn Teen because the dimensions were perfect for one long pillow on Joanna and Alex's queen size bed (most body pillows would have been too long). I really love the look of a single pillow on a bed. It's so unfussy - and it was a great way to maximize our yard of Josef Frank fabric.

We used black piping on the edges for a bit of contrast.

Here are some affordable fabrics with a Josef Frank vibe that would also look pretty and graphic on a big pillow.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Buttery Soft Camel Leather

Today got away from me somehow, but I wanted to pop in to say the Chesterfield arrived! It's lovely and so comfortable and makes me super excited for those 'we're-staying-in-our-apartment-longer-than-expected' changes. Can't wait to share.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Bedding in Joanna's Room

When Joanna and I were discussing bedding, we decided something mostly white was going to be the best choice for this room. I almost always prefer white bedding - it's just so fresh and clean-looking. I'm crazy over the punchy simplicity of Olatz bedding, but I'm pretty sure my first car cost less than a set of Olatz sheets and a duvet! Jenna Lyons had a lovely coral red Olatz duvet that was our inspiration for making our own.

I bought a very discounted white Frette duvet at an outlet and a yard of brushed cotton in a lovely tomato red color and asked my fabric work room to piece together to duvet with a 5" border similar to the inspiration photos. I asked them to wash the red fabric before sewing to prevent any color bleeding when washing.

It is super easy to find a professional seamstress on craigslist that will do work just like this for not a lot of money (be sure to ask for photos of their work!). I could have pieced and sewed the border myself I think, but I ran out of time and I am pretty sure the labor here was less than $100, so it was a good thing to hire out.

For less than $150 Joanna got a custom duvet cover that provides a gorgeous, graphic punch and boasts a lovely thread count! I think that's a great purchase.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Layered Turkish Rugs in Joanna's Bedroom

We were faced with a bit of a challenge with flooring in Alex and Joanna's bedroom. Their room has a bump out and a radiator and other trickiness that made choosing a rug a little hard. We wanted the room to be bright and folksy, so when I ran across this eBay seller, we bought two medium sized Turkish kilims for less than $200 each (including shipping!).

The rugs are old and came a little dirty and very mildly smoky smelling (like if the doors and windows were closed for more than an hour, you'd start to smell a little something). It was faint, but it was there, and Joanna and I both felt like it was necessary to get the rugs professionally cleaned and sanitized. I've used Big Apple Carpet a bunch of times and could not be more pleased with their work and customer service. Cleaning the rugs was not expensive and they came back brighter than ever and completely smell and dirt-free. Totally worth the extra step and cost.

In Joanna's room we layered and even angled the rugs (normally a HUGE no-no for me), which helped cover a lot of floor space in the bump out near the closet area. Since we were going for that bohemian, folksy look, the layering/angling works. It also helps that the patterns of the two rugs are sort of similar - it looks like a design decision instead of a making-it-work thing. You know?

Have you ever pulled off the layered rug look in your home? If you're looking for some well-priced options, I would check out this Turkish rug seller. He has lots of smaller pieces that would look great in a kitchen. I just bought another one last week for a teeny tiny bedroom redo I'm working on and can't wait to share later.

PS I just got word that my Chesterfield is getting delivered tomorrow night! I told a friend I'd tweet a photo of the sofa when it arrives, so follow me on twitter if you want a little sneak peek.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Joanna's Bedroom

It was so fun decorating Joanna Goddard's living room and nursery last year, I jumped at the chance to work with her and her super-cool husband, Alex, on their West Village apartment's master bedroom. The room before we started was lovely and simple, but Joanna told me she really wanted to add more color and energy to the space, which made sense because she works in there a lot.

I thought I'd share all the after photos here and through out the week I'll share details on the DIY projects and sources. Come back in a few hours for info on Joanna's rugs and our inspiration starting out point.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Alt Summit 2012

Just a quick post to say - Alt was A-mazing. I was so inspired by the keynote speakers (like Pilar Guzman and Deborah Needleman(!!!) and Ben from Pinterest), but I especially loved seeing new and old friends. Gabrielle from Design Mom, one of the geniuses behind Alt, is my hero. I don't know how she manages to make that conference better and better every year! It probably has something to do with her unending talent and generosity. Love that woman and love that conference!

(PS Here are my notes from last year's panel on Growing a Blogging Community. I'll see if I can put together some thoughts from this year's talk on blogging and owning a design business)

Me and my assistant, Colleen (from There Comes A Yes)