April 13, 2014

Spring Planter Ideas

Facing empty containers or the last vestige of winter? Those of us in the colder zones, 6 most of you, definitely 3, 4 and 5, have been hit hard this winter and are in a spirit lifting mode. Nothing enchances an outlook like getting our hands in the soil, lovingly planting and nurturing these seasonal annuals and bulbs. Smiles abound!
My favorite is the Tulip; great color and shapes, elegantly simple with much needed height in your composition
Alas, they are very short lived, one hot day.....finished. As we head out next week to plant clients spring containers, we will be armed with faux Tulips. These above are called 'Real Touch' as they oddly feel lifelike, in addition to looking lifelike. Being plastic however, they can withstand the elements, re-using each Spring for 4-5 years!  Our in development on line shop, has the tulips. Want then NOW,  we can ship them to you immediately. Visit here

Let's examine these designs for inspiration......
Tulips with Pansies and Primrose, all in one color way
Only Tulips, in one color.
Exuberance with Tulips, Pansies, chartreuse foliaged Heuchera and Ivy (also cold hardy). I will often turn the faux Tulips into a downward fashion mirroring real ones.
Lily Pulitzer colors
Faux Tulips can "thrive" in shade with companions such as Maidenhair Fern and Cyclamen
Mixed with Daffodils, Primrose, mosses, Pussy Willow and Curly Willow sticks for height
 and textural interest. 
Why not create this arrangement that will last year after year versus using real? Stunning for an event but very short lived.
Happy Daffodils. Some day I want to live in a home with stone window surrounds
Pansies, Ivy and grass. Notice how the chosen colors are complimentary to the homes colors? A seamless blend. The favored pink tones of spring would have clashed.
Bellis Daisies. What a great look tucked in a basket
Rose colored Ranunculus and mini Daff's.
One never knows........sometimes nature has other ideas and gets there first.


We have a party coming up and will chat further next post. If nearby, hope you can come for fun and learning a new skill

Join us in welcoming....... 
Amy and Gene Howard from Memphis ! !

Just for us, this renowned interior designer, furniture designer and co-creator, with husband Gene, of the elegant decorative paint and finishing brand, 
    ‘AMY HOWARD, is coming to town! 
When........April 30th, Wednesday evening, 6:00pm
Where......Dunham Woods Riding Club Wayne, Il.
What........An evening of fun and learning! After a meet and great, Amy will demo or discuss every product in her vast line;
‘One Step’ paint, Toscano paint, Spray lacquer, Zinc application, Antiquing mirrors, Eglomise, Gold & Silver
gilding, Bole, creating patina’s of age. And all that’s new!

March 28, 2014

Blogging All Stars

Hello everyone!

How has your week been? I know some of you are in the throes of Spring,
 temperature wise. Next week promises the 50's, virtually balmy!

Freedom still eludes me, cast off, boot on, "Yes, you will still need the walker, and eight weeks of
therapy will get you on your feet, oh, and you cannot drive for at least four weeks".
 B U M M E R!

So let's focus on beauty and creativity and not my pity party. I am a visual maniac, beauty gets the creative juices flowing, and my utter addiction to Pinterest (my happy place)aids in satisfying that mania. This past week fulfilled my lust for gorgeous images, from three blogs in particular.

My hands down favorite written by Loi, chronicling his and partner Tom's homes, 
antique shop, travels and topiaries. The current post features their Washington D.C. garden,
 which is in the April issue of Southern Living magazine.
 Feast your eyes on this massively talented duo.......


March 17, 2014

Are you there Spring?

Last week had it's series of ups and  it's downs. Most of the week was spent reassembling my computer as it had a total crash and was wiped clean. Many terrified days later we seem to be mostly intact......prayers answered.

On the plus side I was thrilled to win a gorgeous upholstered bench on a favorite blog, The Enchanted Home, it pays to comment!

And for great news this week, my cast comes off, a long 6 weeks! Some sort of walking boot is next, freedom!!
                                               Now, if Spring will appear..........

It is the most feminine of seasons, light, airy and bursting with all manner of pastels
Crab apples, and well any flowering tree for that matter, can be the foundation for a floral arrangement 
Tulips are perfectly wonderful from the market, particularly if you have these bad boys!
And deer, and sometimes squirrels. On our property I have both bunnies and tulips. How? We do not have a lawn service, hence no chemicals. What is then prevalent is clover, their hands down favorite food......nothing else is touched
Sandra Mehl, in the shop, just sent me this image, her latest watercolor. As soon as she gets him framed, this guy will grace our walls, while looking for a good home. 
Your safer bet is daffodils, never bothered by marauders 
Or Scilla
Scilla, en masse 
As the birds are furiously building nests, give them a hand.......imagine, all this intricacy, without hands
Set out your dryer lint on top of some shrubbery, or nestled in tree limbs. The hatchlings will thank you.                        
The Amy Howard gold leaf will be perfect for this application, cannot wait to try!
Spring contributes to such lovely tablescapes
Washi tape flags
These charming table votives are new to the nest candle line and just arrived. Diminutive in size with a very subtle hint of an herbal scent. Pretty lined down a table.
The new season is nearly here when our topiaries begin to arrive.  Nothing change an interior like fresh, live greens 


March 7, 2014

Waterlogue vs Brush Stroke

Have you discovered the fun watercolor app called 'Waterlogue?' Their tag line is Photography Distilled, a user friendly app that takes your photographic images and turns them into dreamy watercolors.

To my attention just came another artist styled app called 'Brush Stroke', providing an artist studio in your lap. Not only can you create a painting, you get to choose from endless options for just the right effect AND, if desired, you can instruct the site to print on canvas, the size, and delivered to your door, ready to hang, reasonably!

let's do a comparison...........

Brush Stroke   My kitchen


Brush Stroke

      Master Bedroom above and below

Brush Stroke     I collect original oil paintings of dogs. The wallpaper is Brunschwig and Fils En Pointe, a toile-like paper with dogs and hunting scenes

Brush Stroke. This app allows you to write something in the lower right corner. This reads Cooper, my beloved's name.

Brush Stroke   Actually the options are endless for a desired look. All the images I am sharing are in the normal setting

 A portion of a clients room in progress, Brush Stroke


What do you think? Have a favorite style?

When I shared this Waterlogue image of this clients garden, he asked me to print and frame it for him. So I will take this to Kinkos, have it enlarged and printed on very heavy linen/cotton stock. Next i will tear the edges versus cutting the image, to repeat the jagged edge effect. To the framer I go, requesting the image be floated onto mat board and encased in a thin black frame

                                              Have fun, give it a go, you will be addicted!

                                                                Happy weekend

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