I've been trying to finish a couple of small projects around the house lately . The window seat in our living room is a favorite hangout spot for the kids . It sat without cushions and curtains for the past few months because I kept putting client projects ahead of my own projects with the seamstress . She finally put her foot down and insisted that I do something for myself and I agreed . A few weeks ago she completed everything and I am so happy with the results .
I love the mix of colors and patterns and the kids love hiding behind the curtains . Unfortunately a certain white dog loves to chew all of our pillows so I can't keep many on our sofa .
The window seat is high enough that she can't reach them so they are safe for now . I am hoping this will motivate me to complete the next few projects on my list that have been lingering for way too long now .
It took us a while to get into the fall spirit this year . Between work and travel it just seemed to sneak up on us . To finally get us in the mood, the girls and I spent the day at a pumpkin patch a few weeks ago .
I think I need to throw some hay bales in our back yard next year . Seriously, a stack of hay bales can entertain my kids for hours and it is pretty hard to hurt yourself with hay .
(Hayes doing her best Miley Cyrus impersonation - Lord, help us ! )
Hayes loved this goat .
And he was pretty fond of her too .
We did manage to bring home a few pumpkins which definitely kicked off the Halloween excitement around our house .
And speaking of Halloween, the girls had a blast last night . Riley wanted to be a unicorn and Hayes went along with that idea so I threw together a costume based mostly on this example . Last night I think someone refered to them as Unicornasauruses . Ha . That is a pretty good description .
We trick or treated in a nearby neighborhood and had a really good time . The girls practically have candy coming out of their ears . I guess I have no choice but to help them eat it : )
Every fall it seems like life becomes out of control crazy - football games, holidays, travel, etc . On top of all of the regular chaos, this year has probably been the busiest Fall on record for my business . In the past few weeks I have wrapped up different phases of three different clients and it has been a whirlwind. Both kids have been my "design assistant" on more than one occasion and they have really been good sports about it most of the time .
It's not easy dragging a 5 and 2 year old to job sites but sometimes there just isn't another option . Hayes is usally content if I bribe her with snacks or stickers and Riley has turned into quite the photographer lately . She loves taking pics with my phone while I am working .
It is actually pretty fun to look through them later to see what caught her eye .
Unfortunately none of my projects are 100% complete at the moment (and may not be for quite a while) but here are a couple of quick pics:
We used Farrow and Ball's Hague Blue on this vanity and the color is so beautiful .
And I am loving this Restoration Hardware chandelier in my client's dining room . I've had my eye on it for a while for my own house and now that I've seen it in person I am sold !
This pic is a blurry Iphone shot I took of an office I have been working on with a client in Richmond .
You can just make out a signed copy of Betty White's book inside the cabinet in the background and although you can't see it, to the right of the book is an autographed photo of Rue McClanahan . The first time I met this client and saw these items I knew we would hit it off . I'm a huge fan of the Golden Girls and never tire of watching the reruns on TV . While I was working last week my client happened to mention that she recently bought a model of the Golden Girls house from Etsy . I pretty much stopped in my tracks and insisted that she bring it out immediately so I could check it out .
We were both sort of disappointed that it didn't include the linai or the bedrooms (remember Blanche's bedroom with the tropical wallpaper????) , but it was still so fun to look at all of the tiny details .
I just appreciate that someone out there loves the Golden Girls enough to spend their time building this replica . It's always fun to meet new clients and get to know them - you just never know what you might have in common !
And since life isn't crazy enough already, I am heading to London tonight for a few days of much-needed vacation . My husband has been there since last Friday so I can't wait to see him and relax for a bit before the holidays hit . I'll be back soon !
If you happen to be local make sure to pick up a copy of Charlottesville's Abode magazine this month .
I am super excited to be answering 20 questions in this month's issue !
Have a great weekend!
Last year my sister and I decided to give my Dad and his friend, Nancy, a hot air balloon ride for Christmas . They scheduled the ride for last Saturday and Riley and I woke up early to see them off .
There were several other balloons taking off at the same time and the colors and patterns were so beautiful .
Once they were airborne we mananged to keep them in our sights for quite a while as we drove back towards our house . They actually ended up landing (accidentally) in a field that is about a mile from our house .
I was super excited about their landing because I pass this field every day on my way into town and I have been dying to stop and take pictures of the beautiful hay bales . While they worked to pack up the balloon, Riley and I had a blast running through the field .
It was a great way to spend a Saturday .
Sometimes shopping for clients can be pretty difficult, especially when you are shopping for multiple clients at the same time . There are budgets and design plans and dimensions flying though my mind as I roam up and down the aisles trying to find the perfect items for each client . And if keeping all of that orgainized isn't difficult enough, I still manage to find room in my brain to imagine each item in my own home as well . Before I know it I have bought just as many items for myself as I have for my clients . This phenomenon seems to happen most often at fabric stores but lately accessory shopping has proven to be just as dangerous . Here are just a couple of the great finds I've discovered lately .
I've had my eye on a gorgeous blue tiled storage box that is ridiculously expensive . I came across this green version for under $20 at HomeGoods last week !
I love the shape of this alabaster lamp . Drexel Heritage at TJ Maxx ? ? ? I just couldn't resist .
Also at TJ Maxx and HomeGoods,
this amazine watercolor wrapping paper . Oh, the possibilities for this paper .
And, speaking of color, I finally made a purchase from Furbish. I was so excited to open the box and see this beauty tucked inside .
It is almost impossible to be unhappy while in the presence of this rug .
Hopefully most of these items will make their way to client's homes instead of my own . Except that rug . I mean, who are we kidding ? There is no way I can part with that thing !
Last spring I hired a local photographer to shoot my renovated barn . She recently posted the photos on her blog and I realized that I never posted the photos on my own blog . Well , better late than never .
This project was not easy considering the condition of the barn when we moved in but it has been so worth it . When we were looking for a new house one of the requirements was a space for my studio - a barn, detached garage, shed, anything that could be renovated and was separate from the main house . When we found this house we fell in love with it immediately but we were also SO excited about the barn which seemed crazy because it was not really even in usable condition . Here are a couple of before pics :
Apparently this barn used to house llamas and / or goats . I have heard both stories and I don't know which is true . Either way, most of the barn was unfinished and it was filled with dirt and grime and various creatures . Once it was cleaned out and the construction got underway the vision in my head begin to materialize .
As always with a renovation there were hiccups along the way . Our biggest delay (and expense) was finding someone to make the steel doors and windows . We came so close to giving up and just going with something else but I am so glad we held out for the steel - they really make the barn feel so much more modern and they let in so much light . Halfway through the renovation my husband asked the contractor how many brand new barns we could have built for the price of renovating this one . The answer was, "Definitely one, maybe two." Ha . I can only imagine some of the conversations that must have occured between my contractors along the way . I know they thought I was crazy when this project started but they definitely seemed a little shocked (in a good way!) by the outcome . It is so peaceful working here - everything is organized, the view is gorgeous and the light is amazing . It really does feel like an escape when I am out in the barn .
All of the after photos were taken by Andrea Hubbell. Be sure to contact her if you have any photography needs in the Charlottesville area !
How can summer be almost over already ?!? Ours has been one of the best ever which I guess explains why I haven't had much time for blogging . The past few months have been filled with pool days, cupcake dates, weeks at the beach, painting marathons, picnics, polo matches and so much more .
We also had another birthday around here . Sweet Hayes turned 2 at the end of July . We celebrated with a little pool party . While she didn't seem to enjoy her cake quite as much as last year, I think she still had a pretty good time .
Along with all of the fun I have been working like crazy . I have never taken on so many clients at once and this summer has been incredibly busy for me . Mostly I love it but there have been a few overwhelming days . The past week Riley has been out of school so she has been my design assistant . She loves seeing sites under demolition and taking photos during my meetings with clients . Despite falling asleep on the job the other day,
she makes for a great assistant and I will miss her so much when she starts kindergarten next week . I think several of my projects will wrap up in the fall and I can't wait to share them with you !
I believe I mentioned that we (and by "we" I mean Paul) planted a garden this year .
It has gone surprisingly well considering neither of us really knew what the heck we were doing . We have yellow squash, English cucumbers, several varieties of tomatoes and lots of zuchinni .
We've had sauteed squash and zucchini, fried green tomatoes, BLTs and lots of this zucchini bread . The kids love to help make it and it is so, so good for breakfast .
Somehow the deer have not found our garden yet but I am sure it is only a matter of time . Until then, we are loving having all of these home grown vegetables to eat !