August 30, 2011

Well, hello there!

I am back.

First and for most I would like to say “Thank you “ to  Shelli, Aubrey, Megan, Michaela, and Aubree for filling in me for me while I was enjoying the beach in my home country of Bulgaria! You girls rock and as always are very inspirational.

Six weeks away from home. Three weeks with no phone, no TV, and limited access to the Internet (both by choice & no choice), hanging out with family = the best vacation in a long time.

I have to admit I get paranoid when it’s time to go on vacations. I do not know who is reading my blog so I try my best to not let my readers know when I would not be home especially when I am six weeks away from home. I would rather tell you about my travels after I come home. 

It was a fantastic vacation, and to be quite honest I am having a hard time getting back into the swing of things. Ever since we came home (few days ago) my daughter hasn’t been sleeping very well, and have been keeping me up all night which makes it ever harder for me to function.

Now I am home getting ready to sort through 6 weeks of mail, catch up on my blog reading, cleaning, house much to do. I think I need a vacation from my vacation!

IMG_7886 IMG_7651 IMG_7653 IMG_7829


If you would like to know more about my trip you can read about it here.



August 24, 2011

House Tour: Sarah’s cottage

If you are a fan of HGTV then you have probably seen all of the episodes showcasing Sarah’s cottage that is located on the tiny island 17 miles away from shore. I have been a fan of Sarah Richardson for a very long time. She has a great eye for design, and is not afraid to get her hands dirty, and use tools when needed.

Everyone has a view no matter where they are sitting in this living room. The whole house has an elegant yet casual yet child friendly feel. After all, Sarah has two kids that she plans to bring every time the family comes to their cottage.

sarahs-cottage-lounge-image1 sarahs-cottage-lounge-image3

The hanging hats in the dining room lounge make a lovely and unique display. I love that blue on the chair.

The boards that you see used on the wall below the countertop are left over wood boards that were originally in the house. She had them painted, and glued on. The bolsters she purchased from a salvaged yard that sells vintage goods, which I think its pretty cool. Originally Sarah wanted three pendant lights over the counter where you see the “Groceries” sign but old cottage, new lights, solar system didn’t go together for some reason so that’s where the sign came in.

All the boards in the cottage are white washed pine both original from the house, and newly bought. I love how she has used different seating all around the table.





In the master bedroom Sarah compromised with her husband and settled for red. I say it looks great against the white furniture (the desk and the chairs where bough from a second hand store) and the blue painted floors.





The table lamp in this room are made from left over birch wood and a light kit. Easy peasy! I enjoy that red pillow in the room, it gives it a pop of color and more fun.

I have to say I would love to have a small cottage like this to live in. It’s cozy and spacious. Now what I want to find out is the little vintage shop that Sarah and Tommy constantly visited during the remodel. It looked like it had great finds. (Okay, I found it. It’s called Cynthia Crawford Antiques.) Now I just have to figure out a reason to visit the Toronto area. I have heard good things about it.

For more photos of the cottage go here.



August 23, 2011

Decorating with sea shells

Disclaimer: I am still on my vacation. This was a scheduled post but I know for a fact that I will be collecting sea shells from the beach, here on the Black Sea. I know for a fact that I will be bringing those sea shells home like I did last time and try to figure out a way to display them.

Growing up by the Black Sea (I used it as my back yard every summer) I used to collect shells while hanging out at the beach. Once the carefully chosen ones where collected I would try to make either necklaces or bracelets out of them or I would put them in a bowl somewhere as a decoration.

No matter the style of my home I always will try to incorporate somewhat of a coastal design in it or at least have art work or accessories that bring in that beach feeling in my home. For example, I have an oil painting of the coast of the Black Sea in my home as well as a ship, a coral, and few other small knick knacks. With all the shells that I have collected over the years as well as the ones I am hoping to collect, here are few project I am considering or I came across on the web.

         Shell Seating Card Holders  





This is giving me a great idea


These two ideas are great for the holidays



here is an idea for the kids


I already am loving some of the ideas. Hopefully I will be able to execute them once I am back home, or at least by the end of the year.



August 19, 2011

Guest Blogger: Aubree from Keeping up with the Seamans

Thanks so much Megan for allowing me to share one of our DIY projects!  My husband and I have taken up a recent love of "wooden pallet" furniture and thought it would be fun to try our very own.  I am due with our fourth child in about 6 weeks, and we needed a big boy bed for our 2 year old son, Owen, so that we could use his crib for the new baby.  So, that is what inspired us to make his bed!  We wanted it to be something really special for him, so we decided to design it with inspirational words of wisdom for him to grow with!  We came up with a few of our own phrases, and threw in some great, John Wooden phrases that his Dad gave to him when he graduated Elementary school.  John Wooden kept this piece of paper in his wallet until the day he died!  So, they must be pretty good "words of wisdom", right?!!

Now, to make your very own Inspirational Pallet Headboard, here is what you need:
First, we decided on the measurements for the headboard.  We wanted it to fit a full size bed so we went with 50 inches tall X 60 inches wide. I recommend measuring your wall, you may have to come up with your own measurements to fit your space.  We added 3 inches on each side to fit a full size mattress.  (Disregard the fact that there is a twin size bed in the picture, we are waiting for his full size mattress to get here).

Then you will need to buy: 
3 inexpensive, 12 foot, 1"x2" peices of wood for the frame
about 20 "fill-it" strips, they are thin, 8 ft. long pieces of wood and measure 1/2"x2" (we found these at Home Depot)
6 screws for the frame
several small pannel nails to hammer the "fill-it strips" onto the frame
stain (I used a pint of Miniwax Special Walnut)
Flat white paint for the words
saw (we used a circular saw, but it would probably be best to cut the wood with a table saw)

I let my handy-dandy husband create the pallet for me, but of course he had little helpers too!  They like to hammer in the nails.  :)  Brad cut the wood to size and created a square frame for the headboard and drilled screws into each corner to hold it together.  Then, he drilled a piece of wood down the center for stability and to give the headboard that "pallet" look.

After that, he and the kids hammered away at the "fill-it strips", using the end of a sponge brush to stick between each piece of wood as a spacer so we could keep things even.  Here is a photo of Brad, Lily, and Owen, looking very proud of all their hard work!!  :)

I got the job of the stainer and "free-hand" artist!  I figured out after many tries with different brushes, that a regular paint brush is best for the job.  The roller made the stain go on too thin and it would've taken forever!  The sponge brush didn't give the stain the right consistency either, so though it took much longer, I used a paint brush to achieve my results and used a sponge brush in between the cracks to get those hard to reach insides of the wood.

Once that all dried, I free-handed the phrases onto each slat of wood.  Initially, I was going to use stamp letters and paint them white, to stamp the letters on nice and neat, but I couldn't find any that were large enough.  So, bravely, I decided to free-hand it!!

Here is Owen's new big boy bed and a headboard that hopefully he will appreciate one day when he grows up to understand it!  ;)

Have a blessed day!!


August 18, 2011

Guest Blogger: Michaela from Michaela Noelle Designs

Michaela Noelle

Hi all! I'm Michaela from Michaela Noelle Designs!  I'm really excited to be here at Splendid Design today! I'm an interior design major at Seattle Pacific University and am totally, head-over-heels, in love with all things design.  

Today I'm going to share some insight from one of my favorite topics: color psychology.  Colors have the innate ability to make you feel a certain way...reminds me of mood rings from when we were little.
Let's dive in!

The Joyful Energizer: Yellow

Yellow is refreshing.  It's adds life to any room, rejuvenating the soul.  It's pure and bright characteristics of the hue offer energy and happiness.  Last year in class we discovered that painting a nursery a bright tone of yellow may cause the baby to be too awake and energetic, therefore causing more crying.  Silly, but it could be true!  Yellow is the brightest color on the color wheel, so your eye will be immediately drawn to something yellow, even if it's surrounded by multiple other colors. 

The Bold Show Stopper: Red

Did you know it's actually proven that when a person walks into a room of red, their heart rate will automatically increase? It gets your blood pumping.  Red is the absolute most appetizing color.  So serving food on red plates or eating in a room with red walls or accents will actually make someone more hungry {and perhaps enjoy your cooking even more!}  Sarah Richardson nailed this dining area with punches of red, warming up the space, while the accents of blue anchor the room.  

The Haven: Purple

Purple is definitely my favorite color on the color wheel.  Sitting directly opposite of yellow, purple is the perfect color to make you feel at peace.  Peace and serenity is only fitting for the personality of purple as it exudes confidence, creativity, and passion.  It is also the color of royalty, and who doesn't like feeling like a princess?

The Tranquil Get-Away: Blue

Reminding us of the sea, sky, and rushing rivers, blue will sooth our soul.  Want to know a secret? Blue is the most unappetizing color.  In fact, if you ever go to a salad bar or buffet table, a lot of the time they will strategically give you blue plates so you'll automatically not take as much food, because you're not as hungry just by looking at the plate!

All Natural: Green
Green brings the outdoors in.  Green is said to bring new life and a sense of freshness to a space.   In other avenues of life, we attribute green with money, health, and jealousy.  In the home, though, it often tends to have a calming effect, much like purple and blue.  Did you know guests on TV shows wait in "green rooms" intentionally, so they can de-stress before their appearance? I love how designer, Tobi Fairley, is bold in her color choice!  This is a great example of how to make a statement with pieces in the room, not necessarily your wall color.

The Understated Grace: Neutrals

 Just because you chose neutral paint, furniture and accessories doesn't mean you have no personality!  You have a quite a distinct one, actually.  Neutral colors are said to be relaxing, soft, plush, pleasant, graceful, and have a sense of understated elegance.  White couches and rugs also say "I'm bold, daring, and luxurious enough to own something white".  I happen to be very drawn to neutral spaces, with perhaps a touch of color in the rug, pillows, or flowers.  One tip- when trying to achieve this look, be sure to include more texture in your space.  Texture is what makes neutral rooms shine, as seen in the beautiful fireplace above!

Thank you so much, Megan, for letting me take over your blog today. I so enjoy reading your blog and adore that we share our love for design!
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