Friday, January 30, 2015

K9 Photoshoot Fail

 Last week, Kat and I attempted a photoshoot with the Les M├ęchantes dogs wearing our new line of dog apparel.
It was an epic fail!

While Benji on the left cooperated nicely, Oscar did not.
Trying to get him to stand still and stay is just impossible.
He has a mind of his own and would rather run and chase the seagulls!

 Of course it would have helped if I actually remembered the treats!
Notice Oscar looking up for them?  Yea, I forgot them.
He was not amused!

 Not Bear though.
He is the perfect male model!
Doesn't he look handsome in his bowtie?

Oscar and Benji modeled the bowtie too.
We found if we put them on the bench, they actually cooperated.
Who wore the tie better?
Oscar or Benji?
I think Oscar did!

Off the bench, they were like herding cats--every which way!
Who wore the harness better?
Oscar or Benji?
Definitely Benji!

I'm imagining Oscar whispering in Benji's ear that this is stupid!
Who wore the coat better?
Oscar or Benji?
Yep, Benji again!

To see more dog clothes and accessories, be sure to visit Les M├ęchantes here.
Use the code Dlo15 to receive a 15% discount off your purchase.

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Thursday, January 29, 2015

Where's The Bathtub?

 I love a long soak in a tub at the end of the day.
Just add bath salts, a candle, soft music and a glass of wine and I'm so happy!
So it was quite a disappointment when I had to give up the tub in the master bathroom.
No matter how we tried, it just wasn't going to fit.
The space that the tub would have gone, but wasn't quite big enough will now house a linen armoire instead.

 The armoire makes me happy because I'm already filling it with white fluffy towels, baskets and apothecary jars in my mind.
It just doesn't make me as happy as a tub would!

 That's ok.  
I've always loved the idea of furniture in bathrooms anyway, so now I'll have fun creating a whole new look.

 The armoire will now replace the built in cabinet that the architect included for bath storage.
This is much better and original.

Hopefully I won't miss the tub too much.
And hopefully I won't hear the question, "Where's the bathtub?'

So this poses a whole new dilemma.
Should I put a shower-over-tub in one of the guest baths, even though I was planning on a walk in tiled shower?
Just not sure if it even matters anymore!
What do you think of a home without a bathtub?
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Saturday, January 24, 2015

Apothecary Sinks

 Evoking both a vintage and contemporary aesthetic, apothecary sinks add charm to bathrooms with their open framework and marble top.

Equally at home in a powder room when storage isn't a must... 

...but also in a guest bath with a basket of towels underneath at the ready.

The options are endless with this style of sink.
The legs can be custom made in any width and style, but also in chrome, nickel or brass.

Glass cross bars are also an option, as well as glass legs.

I prefer chrome or polished nickel with a cross bar for towels.
I also prefer a lower shelf, preferably out of marble, but glass or metal shelving is also an option.

Pottery Barn sells the perfect apothecary sink for my needs.  
I love the marble sink with its custom look and the marble shelf, perfect for storing towels and products.

 Pottery Barn also offers the same sink as a double.
A nice option for a small master bathroom.

Restoration Hardware sells this industrial double apothecary sink for a new take on an old classic.

Another double sink alternative lets the beautiful marble take center stage.
This is definitely custom built.

In a master bath, two sinks side by side would be an option.

This side by side configuration sports porcelain sinks instead of marble.
I really like the shelf below.

For a custom sink, Palmer Industries is the best source.
They are the leading manufacturer of sink bases and can fabricate any size, shape or finish to accommodate any vanity top whether it be marble like above, granite or porcelain.

Imagine the possibilities for customizing your vanity!

The possibilities are endless!

Whether I end up using the Pottery Barn sink or have one custom made, I am definitely going with apothecary sinks in my downstairs guest baths.
In our powder room, I may go custom and create an apothecary sink like above.
As for the master bath, we have decided that we need cabinets to hide our stuff!

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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Brass Or Chrome?

If you live long enough, you will see trends come and go and come back again.
Brass is one of those trends. 

I should have seen this coming!
It started with jewelry.  We wore yellow gold, then began wearing white gold, then back to yellow gold again.  My jewelry box is a mix of both!
It's like that with brass. 

But I'm not talking about the polished, shiny brass from the 80's.
I'm talking about unlacquered, natural and organic brass with its warm, gold finish.
I'm in love!

I'm in love with the look but afraid of commitment.
After all, I did systematically eliminate that shiny 80's brass in our old home, replacing it with chrome.  I don't want to do that again!
So what does one do in my shoes?  Jump on the brass wagon?  Or choose clean, simple polished chrome or nickel, hoping that I won't regret it in a year or two!

I would love to have unlacquered brass in our master bathroom... well as the kitchen.

The question is, what about the rest of the hardware, like door knobs?  Cabinet hardware?
Hinges?  Towel bars etc?

I'm afraid of commitment!

Brooke Giannetti wasn't afraid of commitment when she chose brass for their new home, which by the way, is a-mazing!   You can see it in the latest issue of Veranda.
As amazing as their bathroom is, would it still be as breathtaking if the plumbing fixtures were chrome?

Luckily, I don't have to make a decision tomorrow, but am definitely up late pinning images these days of unlacquered brass.
Please weigh in, brass or chrome?

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Wednesday, January 14, 2015

I'm Floored!

One of the hardest decisions I had to make was to say goodbye to this beautiful parquet floor.
It's original to the house, circa 1935. 
They just don't make floors like this anymore.

Because we are vulnerable to earthquakes in this part of the City, we had to lay a layer of plywood over the floor to strengthen the house in case of the big one.
A new hardwood floor will now go over the plywood, so I actually can create a new pattern, a new floor.

Of course, I want to duplicate the original pattern, but it would be too expensive.

It killed me to see this plywood after it was layed and I'll admit, I lost a little sleep while brainstorming what to do.
I'm surprised Pinterest didn't max out with my "hardwood floor ideas" search!
So far, I'm thinking of just running the boards the length of the living room but create a pattern in the dining room and entry only.
As my contractor keeps reminding me, this is a chance to make the floors even better!
I'm not so sure...

Any suggestions?

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Sunday, January 11, 2015

The Plans

When I was ten years old, I found a book of house plans at my grandparents and became obsessed with floor plans.
I even started drawing my own plans for a house that I would build someday.
Finally, that day is here, so grab your magnifying glass and let me walk you through.

Beginning with the first floor, which isn't very exciting is the before plan and proposed plan.
Included on the first floor is the two car side by side garage--a premium in San Francisco.
Two guest suites separated by a very long hallway because of the garage, but at the east end is the family room which opens to an enclosed courtyard.

The biggest change is reconfiguring the bedroom next to the family room which originally was accessed from the family and had an outside door.  The outside door is now gone and access is from the hall, making this suite private and secure.  This will by my mom's room.

Upstairs, the living room and dining remain the same, but the master bedroom and bath expanded with a new master dressing room.
We lost the fourth bedroom, but gained a dream closet!
In the kitchen, we repositioned and raised the height of the windows on the north side to allow for the kitchen sink.  New windows look into the atrium.  I'll create a sitting area in front of the windows.

Last week, we met with the window and door guy.  Originally, we were only replacing the kitchen windows but now almost all the windows will be replaced with new energy efficient windows.
The living room and dining room windows will remain.

I have a lot of decisions to make, so I'm back on Pinterest, big time!
You can check out my SF House Ideas board here.

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Monday, January 5, 2015

Ground Zero

 It's hard to feel like there's progress being done to our home when it still looks like this!
Let me take you on a "ground zero" tour.  Be careful though.  Don't step on a nail!

This is the kitchen, looking through the wall to the master bath, bedroom and dressing room.

We are still standing in the kitchen but looking the opposite direction to our kitchen sitting area.
The window will be centered, offering a view to the center atrium that leeds to the roof deck.

Bear is not sure about all of this!
We are looking at the stairs that go down to the family room and two guest bedrooms, as well as the garage.

This is the master bathroom.

This will be the master walk-in closet.
The small window on the right will go away and the larger window will be smaller with a window seat underneath.  This was a guest bedroom next to the master and we chose to cannibalize it and make it into a glamorous master dressing room instead.

The stairs will get a minor adjustment and new rails.
I'm planning on a seagrass runner, bordered in black.

It's hard to imagine that this will be the family room.  
A wet bar will be at the far end of the room.  I'm planning on putting a sectional in here and placing the television over the mantel.  While it's not the typical design choice I would make, I'm learning to adjust and this will make for a more comfortable room for everybody.

This will be my mother's room.  It is actually being totally reconfigured.
The outside door will be replaced with a window and the entrance to the room will now be from the hallway at the bottom of the stairs instead of the family room.  
While small, it will be cozy and will offer privacy for her.

Our house is now "ground zero," because the only where to go from here is up.
And it begins today.
Today, the framers will begin to frame out the new walls that were relocated and start to put "humpty dumbty" back together again.
Stay tuned....

I'm joining Susan at Between Naps On The Porch For Metamorphosis Monday.

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