January 10, 2016

On the Road Again

The wildly busy Holiday season is in the rear view mirror. I pull out of the drive with heart palpalations; what antiques will I find, will the gift show be a good one, will I find myself in a jam?
Two hours out of Chicago, the first jam.......
 At the Scotts Antique show, many of my dealer friends started coming up to congratulate me, ME!?
Over and over I heard "You scored the piece of the show!" From Provence, a sinous, perforated metal table. "Do not sell it until you can manufacture more!" I wish

A new favorite design style is Spanish Colonial and I have a client heading in that direction, this piece is for them. Spain, 18thc, original paint, step back cabinet from my creative friend Lisa. 
That movement in the wood is called 'Linen Fold' an old world craft adding movement to wood
 Green/Turquoise seems to be my theme......A gorgeous antique cabinet, original wavy glass fronted cabinet on metal stand, would make a perfect bar, with style.
The step-back interior could hold bottles on the bottom, glasses and accroutements on the upper shelves. 
Ever see these? Probably not, I surely had not. Next question; what are they? Very old wine barrel stoppers. Rare to the market as they just do not leave the wineries, staying within the family. This conversation piece adds to any vignette
 Stylish Lisa never fails to leave me inspired. How is this for a vignette?

In my current vein of Spanish Colonial, is this Santos monk, c. mid 17thc, hand carved wood

The detail is stunning. The soulful eyes mesmerizing.

                                       Lessons from the Professionals.....
As I was purchasing hand woven vintage linen, from a woman that specializes in these goods, I asked her how she keeps her linens so crisply pressed. Buy an iron with as many steam openings as you can find, she advised. Ignore price, that is not an indicator. Before pressing, lay a terry cloth towel on the ironing board, the steam will go through the terry and come back up through the fibers keeping them open and 'fluffed'.
I chose this oversized sheet due to the gray undertones. "Oh, in that region of Germany the soil produces a flax with those color ways" Who knew?
 A master restorer said Loctite super glue is the best and only product he uses for wood repair

This French watercolor from my friend/dealer Lee appealed to me on many accounts but the lack of glass was high on the list. Most of us feel that to fully protect a watercolor is to encase under glass, that cheapens it, it could pass for a print. Lee recommends this product, to fully protect without a trace of evidence

 DRATS! Another day another tire! As I told my husband, "things happen.....when pulling a 22' trailer."
"No, things happen when you hit curbs."  He was not amused

Next up.........the warehouses and the gift show.......pinch me

Joanne, with the bedroom, you won! Drop me a line and let's get started.         debra@scentimentalgardens.com


December 21, 2015

Better to Give than Receive

And I Love to Give.......
 I have a gift for one of you!
The gift of Design......

. Interior
Assistance with part or all of a room
What can we do together? 
Colors, upholstery, lay-out, window treatments, restoring, rugs, accessories.....
. Patio/Outdoor living space
Assistance with your patio or deck
What can we do for you?
Layout, renovating, outdoor furniture and accessories, containers..........
. Exterior/Curb Appeal
Assistance with an exterior refresh
What can we do for you?
New color schemes, lighting, shutters or not, containers, entry door.........
The Package....
. Three hour consultation
.  Completion of an in-depth survey
.  Phone calls/email as needed
.  Design Recommendations
.  Receipt of a Mood Board
.  Sources as needed
A $300.00 value

Simply..... Leave a comment  .  State your project  .  Subscribe to this blog

You are greatly appreciated and I thank you for landing here. One person will be chosen and notified on my next post.

Merry Christmas!

December 14, 2015

Christmas House Tour 2016

The Geneva Illinois, Christmas weekend, is pure magic. 
Held the first weekend in December, the event kicks off with the lighting of the huge tree, while the streets are closed for Santa, roasting chestnuts, and live music. My fav, the Housewalk.
 Five homes in town are decorated by five businesses and this was ours this year.
A pre-civil war cozy gem of a home with a welcoming family, important as we come in and take over!

For the exterior peak, we created a triple boxwood wreath with satin ribbon, and boxwood balls hanging from ribbon tails. One of my favorite exterior elements is to mass upright red twig dogwood into the soil to create winter long interest, and in this case, to pull the eye from top to bottom.
The annual display of the family's Santa signboard additionally acts as an address sign. On the door, we collected fresh greenery, velvet ribbon, and an authentic leather strapped sleigh bell, a family piece of mine, once used on the horses in rural Pennsylvania.
Come in!
Fresh boxwood wreath with wrapped garlands of silver beads and cranberry strands
Besides being a jewel of a home, their family pieces tell a story and spark interest at every turn. In the entry resides a vintage wooden fortune teller

Upon entering the living room, it's charm envelopes you immediately. A faux garland with magnolia leaves weaves around the drapery rod with suspended silver bead garland, hung at varying heights. The beads in this particular garland are a pleasure to work with as they are attached via wire hooks making sizing a breeze

Twin trees rest on deep window sills

Glowing with lights and silver and gold ornaments en-masse, resemble decorative jewelry

Before entering the kitchen, one's attention is drawn to this scene, set into the wall, of a vintage antique shop......mesmerizing 
The kitchen

The details..........
My dishware too, Emma Bridgewater's 'Black Toast' pattern....love! Very complimentary to their McKenzie Childs checked serving pieces

Chef Roby's gingerbread house with ice cream coned fireplace automatically generated smiles.

My friends, Chef Roby, and his wife Esther are the proprietors of the All Chocolate Kitchen, in town. Their creations took our breath away.
The renown Chef  (The Food Network, Martha Stewart.....) spun a sugar snowman at an easel, painting the home owners shop in town, The Paper Merchant. 
Esther painted the shop herself
Quite the artist, isn't she?

Upon a closer inspection, the fanciful sugar easel is topped with a heart and sugar/glass like red cardinals peeking at the art. While resting on a sugar log the snowman, draped in a scarf to match the clients checked dishware, paint brush in hand, is a keepsake for the family.

Fresh greens, and the really good faux envelope a room with life!

Now let's head into the dining area which looks upon the family room

 Again weaving a faux garland around the drapery rod sets the tone for another vignette. Notice the pillars dressed in greenery with flameless pillar candles.
 The chandelier is decorated with a boxwood wreath, hanging crystal garland at varying heights, more pillar candles, and greenery

 Stepping down into the family room to our espaliered tree. Love it or shall we say, question it!
Considering myself, not so humbly, a self-proclaimed master pruner, this was a blast. Yes, I am oddly amused........
The family's zinc finial, ornaments, and flags were added along with red twig dogwood and red berry stems lying horizontal, enhanced the effect

The tree skirt was a combination of a herringbone tweed blanket and beehive-like packaging material
 Oh yeah.........I covet this space; raised hearth, flag flooring, a cozy nook
Hanging from a beam via fishing line are these fab candle holders. With the flameless tapers, they glow and enhance many a space. Sold in the shop, they come with wall mounted arm hooks. LOVE!
 Now let's head outside
 My favorite domain to decorate is the outdoors. Think about those all important views, particularly for those of us in Northern zones. I love creating vignettes to look out on, and those that say Winter vs Christmas
Beyond the seating area is a gentle brick path leading to a greenhouse and potting shed
 A close up of the exceptionally tall red twig dogwood inserted in a vertical fashion for interest with evergreen boughs at it's feet
 As a gardener, I would be beside myself to have these two elements at home, a greenhouse and a potting shed.

 And as you depart, my 1934 Ford pick-up truck dressed for the holidays
Hope you enjoyed this years tour!
 All of this fun is solid teamwork, and we have the best!
     Lead Designer Leslie Juby, with Monica Kratovil, Jayme Manley, and Kim Fuller from the shop
     Chef Roby and Esther of The All Chocolate Kitchen
     Steve Phillips, my husband, happy/lifter/hanger/gopher
     Nancy Villwock, professional photographer    A must visit!
     Plandscape for exterior lighting
For those less than professional images....blame me!


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