Thursday, September 30, 2010

Decorating With Pumpkins


I can't believe it's October already! Time to think seriously about decorating for fall.
I went to Half Moon Bay this week to buy pumpkins, mums and topiaries to decorate our home for the season. I'm not quite ready to show the final result yet, but here are a few of my inspiration photos.

I love this fall arrangement above with the dried flowers and pumpkins. No need to even plant this flower box.

Same for this flower box. It's just a simple collection of green pumpkins, which I love, and gourds.

An old wheel barrel with stenciled pumpkins is perfect for greeting guests on the porch.

I like this one because of the variation of pumpkins. I'm not a fan of orange, so white and green pumpkins are a nice departure from the traditional orange pumpkins. Besides, I think they look more elegant!

An old bird bath becomes a gorgeous centerpiece for this collection of heirloom pumpkins.
How beautiful is this!

I like how this urn has become a pumpkin lantern.

And finally, just putting a collection of gathered pumpkins in all colors by the front door with dried branches and leaves is enough to greet your guests.

Happy October!
Now go out and get some pumpkins!


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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Peeking Through the Windows


It is no secret that I like to experiment with photography at night. It's always fun to see what I can come up with. Last night, I took this photo peeking in to our kitchen window.

Then I remembered that at various times this past summer I took photos of our house in Asti at night. So, here is a little evening tour of our house, peeking in through the windows. We'll play "Peeping Tom," if you will....

Let's start with the master bedroom above.

Moving around to the kitchen window, let's peek inside.


From the courtyard, looking in to the living room.


Another door, another view.

And through a living room window. A dirty living room window!

I like the mood these evening photos create, like being on the outside, looking in and wondering what that world is like in there.

That must be how these real "Peeping Toms" feel. On Saturday morning, about ten "Peeping Tom Turkeys" were on the steps, pecking at the door, trying to get in. I'm wondering why they would want to come inside the house? They are very determined to do so too.

Maybe they are curious about the decor!? Whatever, the little devils are getting on my nerves!

I'm joining Susan at A Southern Daydreamer for Outdoor Wednesday.



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Friday, September 24, 2010

Holy Cow!


Look what I bought from Joy at SavvyCityFarmer! She has some of the neatest "stuff." In fact Joy also has a website called "Stuff in the Burbs."

This is a tiny little print, only 5 x 7. But where to put it? I think it needs to be on a shelf or propped on an easel.

I tried hanging it on the wall in the dining room, but it was "lost" there.

Besides, I already have a large cow painting on the wall. The real deal, hand carried all the way back from France! I don't think he wants to share the wall with the little mini-me print.

I tried him inside the cabinet, but that didn't work either. I know! He belongs in the kitchen. After all, he is a fun little print, and will fit right in with some of my other fun cow decor.

I found an easel and propped him up next to the sink. I like this! Look who is keeping him company:

A couple of white ironstone cow pitchers.

And the king of kitchen cows, this carved bull hanging over the stove.
Yep, my little SavvyCityFarmer cow print has found a home!

If you get a chance, go say hi to Joy at SavvyCityFarmer. She had a birthday this week and is off celebrating at her family farm.
What a Joy!

I'm joining Artie at Color Outside the Lines for Vignette Fridays.
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Thursday, September 23, 2010

Hall Trees, Always Lending a Helping Hand!



The hall tree is one of those pieces of furniture that never goes out of style. Whether greeting your guests in a grand entryway, or holding your boots in the mudroom, the hall tree is an essential piece of furniture that just "keeps on giving."

There are so many styles and configurations of hall trees, but my favorite is vintage faux bamboo.
This hall tree lives on a veranda holding hats and scarves.

This one sits in a living room and holds the owner's collection of hats from Viet Nam. It is a lovely faux bamboo piece and fits right in as a decorative piece. This room was designed by one of my favorite designers, Lynn Von Kersting. She seems to like hall trees in her decor as much as I do.

This antique piece is doing it's duty in a small cottage. Although there is no entry, this hall tree establishes the feel of an entry, especially with it's "open arms."

This is our hall tree on the stair landing last spring when I posted about our entry here.
I've had this piece for over 20 years and it has always found a place in our homes. I even put it in a bathroom in a previous house. It held towels on the bottom shelf and I hung my necklaces on the hooks.

Not all hall trees need to be antique. In fact, there are some really cool contemporary ones out there that are very functional and attractive like this one from Pottery Barn. I love this!

Restoration Hardware has this version of a hall tree that would look wonderful either in a mud room or an entry. It comes in several sizes.

Another contemporary hall tree/storage bench. Perfect for a young family. Shoes can be stored in the bench, coats on the hooks. Organized! Hmmm, I think my daughter could use this....

Would a hall tree fit in your home? Do you need a little extra help keeping your home organized and uncluttered? Front door, back door, bathroom, even the laundry room, a hall tree might be your solution.

Here is one last shot of my hall tree, taken today. Notice the little cow picture?
More on that later.....

I'm joining Cindy at My Romantic Home for Show and Tell Friday.  Be sure to check out her blog and wish her a Happy 50th Birthday!

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Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Hangin' Out in Los Gatos

Los Gatos is one of those quaint little California towns that I love to visit. The shopping is great, great restaurants too. I met Heidi of Heart and Home yesterday for just that, shopping and lunch. One of the stores we spent some time in was LuLu Pom.

I was intrigued with what they did with the arrangement behind the sofa. What a great idea for a huge blank wall. Frame out a section, paint it a different color, then hang your art in the middle. Here, they hung maps of Paris in the inset area with sconces on either side.

Another wall was treated the same way. A big gold frame defines a smaller area. Painted black, the three framed prints just pop.

The store was packed with everything I love. White ironstone, silver, etched glass....

...and lots of organic objects like antlers, lichen covered orbs, and found objects.

I spied this clock in the store and thought it would look great in our wine country kitchen. It looks so authentic with the rust, but it's a reproduction and was reasonably priced. I thought about it and ended up going back to the store after Heidi and I said our goodbyes and bought it!

We really enjoyed discovering this store. I could have done some serious damage here!
For instance, I regret not buying a few of those lichen covered balls. Heidi though that they would be easy to make. Hmmmm, great idea Heidi! Probably cost a lot less than $12 each!
Uh, oh - I think I need to go to the hobby store now...

It was such a fun day! If you get a chance, go over to Heidi's at Heart and Home and say Hi!
Tell her I ended up buying that clock!


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Sunday, September 19, 2010

Red Sky At Morning


"Red sky at morning, sailors take warning."
I couldn't help thinking of this old saying when I saw the red sky this morning. I guess this means the weather is changing, a reminder that summer is coming to a close and fall is officially here.

I was up very early this morning! Which was great, because not only did I witness this magnificent sunrise, but I captured it with my camera. These photos are from my front yard looking south.

The sky looks like it's on fire! Yet there is a chill in the air; rain is on its way.

As the red faded, the sky changed to pale yellow, blue and gray. In the pale morning light, everything looked surreal.

What a beautiful morning! I took the opportunity to pause and reflect, to say goodbye to summer, and to feel grateful for another day.

Wednesday is Fall Equinox. So, Happy Fall everyone, and here's wishing you:

"A September to remember.
An October full of splendor.
A November to treasure."
~ from La Prevenchere, Brittany, France

This sunrise is so beautiful, I can't help but share it at
Seasonal Sundays at The Tablescaper.
Outdoor Wednesday at A Southern Daydreamer.
Wednesday Gratitude at Heart and Home.

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Saturday, September 18, 2010

Cake Vintage


In my previous post, I used these paper placemats in my "Disposable Tablescape." Aren't they great? I actually found them at NapaStyle, but thought I would share with you the website where these can be found, along with other wonderful treasures.

It's called Cake Vintage. They sell lots of hotel silver
plate in mixed patterns. This 5 piece place setting retails for $25.

They also take old hotel silver plate and repurpose them like these napkin rings.

Another example of repurposing old silver plate. Cake Vintage has a lot of different chandeliers, some even made with old tea cups. Very creative and funky.

There are kitchen linens like this linen tea towel, as well as cute little aprons.

But what I am really loving is this mounted grain sack. Found in an old barn in France, there are a limited quantities. This one retails for $275.

Check out Cake Vintage here! Let me know what treasure speaks to you!

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