Sunday, August 31, 2008

Who doesn't love a good before and after?

I can't get enough of "before and after" pics -- if they made books or magazines with just pictures and pictures of every little detail before and after, I would be in heaven. (Kind of like the look and find books my son is obsessed with right now -- I'm all about the details.) I found some older pictures from our house the other day, and thought I would share some of my own transformations with you.

I'm always growing and expanding decor-wise. Especially working in the decorating field, I feel like I've gotten more creative over the past couple of years. Sometimes I look at old pictures and want to cringe...I hope I don't feel that way a few years from now! :)

One of my favorites is our corner fireplace in the family room. We both thought a corner fireplace would be great and put it there on purpose. And then I realized what a pain it was to work with. My solution was (SHOCK) molding!



I'll share more of my own before and afters soon -- there are some doozies!! Yikes.

Perfect Beach Cottage!

I work on a lot of very expensive homes at work but they have nothing on this cute little beach cottage in the Hamptons owned by Lezlie Klotz. It was featured in the July 2008 issue of House Beautiful magazine and I fell in love with it the minute I saw it since it's exactly how I would want my beach house to look and feel. It's simply perfect!

"A yellow-cab-colored surfboard makes a curiously good match for an antique painted chest that belonged to Klotz's grandmother. Portrait of Show Business, Klotz's childhood pony, by Edith Diehl."

"Jonathan Adler needlepoint pillows pop on a sofa and a striped club chair, both designed by Steven Gambrel. The Italian caned chair was Leslie Klotz's grandmother's, and the curtains are by her late mother, interior designer Patricia Hopkins Klotz. The Lucite coffee table, bench, and side table holding the glass ball lamp are antiques show finds. The blue lamp is by Christopher Spitzmiller."

"Seahorses from an garden antiques store are the wow factor in the dining room of a Hamptons cottage. Louis XVI–style dining chairs are covered in a jaunty shade of chartreuse leather, and backed in a coral and white print. The table is from Liza Sherman Antiques."

There is nothing I love more than art in a kitchen!

"In redoing the kitchen, Klotz "imagined I could actually cook. Then I tried to create a kitchen that an actual cook would want to cook in. And believe it or not, now I do cook. It was like my own personal Field of Dreams." Hanging lights from Rejuvenation."

In a guest room, the red painted headboards perfectly match the red toile lamp.

"In the sitting area adjacent to a guest room, wide-planked wainscoting in white and a deep navy wall create a graphic sense of spaciousness."

This bedroom is my favorite and would be the most perfect place to rest after a long day at the beach! "Klotz found the quilt at a Brimfield summer antiques show and the accent pillow in Venice. Lamp by Christopher Spitzmiller. Wall color is Spring Mint and trim is Light Touch, both by Benjamin Moore."

"An old birch bench holds books in a lavender guest bedroom."

Big bold stripes were created in a bathroom with Benjamin Moore Apple Green and Decorator's White paint.

I love how the seahorse became a running motif both inside and outside the house!

Photos by Laura Resen

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Weekend Project #3: Crocodile USB drive

Marinka's project is too cute. It's a Söt Barnslig crocodile USB drive. I imagine it can work with any of the other animals but the croc may be the best choice, considering its shape.

Marinka says, "It looks like a normal Söt Barnslig stuffed animal. But when you remove its head, it's a USB-drive."


Söt Barnslig crocodile
USB drive
Needle to melt holes
Needle and thread to sew
Pair of scissors

Step 1:
Start with preparing the animal.
You have to cut off the head of the animal with a pair of scissors and pull out some of the stuffing to make space for the USB drive.
Step 2:
Than prepare the USB drive.
Melt with a hot needle some holes at the edge of the USB drive. Take care not to damage the inside of the drive. To heat the needle, poke the blunt end of the needle into a cork. Heat the sharp end with a flame.
Step 3:
Now put the USB drive into the body of the animal and the cap into the head. Fix the USB drive to the animal with needle and thread. Pull the needle a couple of time across the animal. Fold the cut edges a little inside when sewing the holes at the edge.
Step 4:
The finishing touch.
You could put a ring to its tail. Or to stop you from losing its head, you can attach a wire between the two parts. (I did this after I took the pictures)
See other Weekend Projects:
- Go fly kite!
- Hack a Lego table

Friday, August 29, 2008

End of Summer Lovin'

Unlike most Americans, I will be laboring over the long Labor Day holiday weekend. I have a lot of irons in the fire so I need do some work and get myself organized. I'm a little bummed but I knew that forgoing vacations this summer might be necessary and if all goes well, I will be able to take some fabulous ones next year! What's funny is that it feels like just yesterday that I posted some photos from the first Hamptons Cottages and Gardens magazine of the season and now summer is almost over! Times flies! So as a last hurrah, I'm posted photos from Hamptons Havens: The Best of Hamptons Cottages and Gardens published in 2005. The book contains a great mix of traditional and modern homes to die for as usual. Hope you enjoy your holiday weekend whatever you are doing...or not doing!

A quick hat and coat rack

Matthias mixes and matches some pieces for a coat rack that will fit in a small entryway.  

Part list:
Grundtal hooks (5 pcs/package)
Grundtal hanger (2 pcs/package)
Grundtal rail(31 1/2")
Kludd glass whiteboard
Bjärnum bracket (nickel plated, 11")
Statlig shelf oak (46 7/8" x 11")
Statlig shelf oak (31 1/8" x 7 1/2")

From top to bottom:
Bjärnum brackets with Statlig shelf and Grundtal rail (with hooks) mounted on the bottom and approx. two-thirds of the shelf width from the wall.

Kludd glass whiteboard to avoid dirt on the wall.
The small Statlig shelf with 5 Grundtal hangers - mainly for the clothes of our little one.

Kludd glass whiteboard again.

Related hack:
- Delia's hat and coat rack

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Inside Out

Even though so many New York based national shelter magazines are folding, it seems that there are amazing regional ones that are thriving. One of my new favorites is Florida Inside Out. I was flipping through the old January/February 2008 issue and came across so many beautiful images that I had to share. I especially loved the article about what Miami antiques dealers collect. Enjoy!

The top image and this one above are from Kaisa and Doug Levine's historic 1929 Miami Beach home. The coffee table and console are from Williams Sonoma home. The art is by Karel Appel.

A 1970's pottery lamp and studio pottery sit atop a George Nelson wooden cabinet in Miami Antiques deal Carlos Casteller's home. His shop in Miami is called Art and Antiques but doesn't seem to have a website yet.

I love this juxtaposition of objects in Miami shop owner Michael Contessa. The 1970's sofa is by Milo Baughman and the Raindrop wall sculpture is by Curtis Jere. I think I might have to plan a trip to Miami just to check out his antiques!

A collection of German and French drawings from the 1920's to 50's hangs above a rare Dominique France chair from circa 1928 in the Miami home of Antiques dealer Regina Nuessle.

In the Miami home of Chicago based owners Marlene and David Green, a black wall displays a pair of stylized mirrors with gold leaf frames from Details at Home while the bed below was custom designed by Martial.

A quality headphone stand for cheap

Wiretap builds this solid headphone stand from Ikea parts.

headphone stand
Parts list:
Main stand portion: Bjarnum Shelf Bracket 11''
Headphone holder post: Capita Leg 4''
Wire wrapping posts: Attest Knob

He says, "Some shorter bolts are needed for mounting the leg and knobs to the Bjarnum Shelf Bracket. They can be found at your local hardware store. Take the Capita Leg and Attest Knob to the hardware store with you to find the appropriate thread pattern and size. (metric thread size) The new bolts for the Attest Knob need to be 1/2'' long, and the new bolt for the Capita Leg should be no longer than 3/4''.

headphone standOne hole needs to be drilled with a 3/8'' or equivalent drill bit, and that is for mounting the Capita Leg to the 'top front face' of the Bjarnum Shelf Bracket. Measure 1'' down from the top and center of the front face of the shelf bracket. Drill the hole carefully so it is perfectly on center. After that is drilled, you can put the large bolt through the hole and mount the Capita leg to the shelf bracket.

Now, there are already two other holes that were supposed to be used for set screws on the shelf bracket, but it turns out the knob bolts will fit through them perfectly. Put the small bolts through those holes and thread on the knobs. Then all you need to do is mount the assembled headphone stand to your desk. I drilled some 3/16'' holes through my desk and mounted it with machined bolts, using washers and nuts on the other side to keep it secure. If you don't want to drill through your desk, you can also make a custom base for it, but that is up to you."

See more of wiretap's headphone stand.

Updated! February 23, 2009
Lauri's headphone stand from a toilet roll holder
She says, "I modified Grundtal toilet roll holder to a nice headphone stand. It stands next to my new rack that is made also from Ikea materials. The moding was very easy. Just slowly bend the metal."