When I picture New Year's Eve, I picture this . . . 

How I celebrate New Year's Eve, I picture this . . .

So long 2011 !!

- Beth

Idea of the Day . . More like the Year !

Hi . . . (this post will confirm your opinion of my OCD side . . .)

I say "Year" because it's a new one, and this is a project you should start at the beginning and carry on throughout the year.  New Years Resolution, keep it up, you will be happy you did.

Now, if you are on this blog, you have a computer.  If you are smart, you have an Apple.  I am an Apple fan, have 3 at home and 4 at the office, have the I Phone, have the I Pad, have the Apple TV, have the little white Apple sticker on the back of my car, made friends with an Apple employee, didn't buy stock when I should have - idiot.  Steve Jobs was my hero.  There is nothing easier than an Apple, there is nothing prettier than an Apple monitor on your desk.  No clunky hard drives sitting on the floor next to your desk, just a sleek, big pretty screen.

Here's the deal.  I was a Scrapbook-er forever, see . . .

I know, all nice and organized, but if you know me, the simple fact that the books, while similar in color, are not the same style, so of course that bugs me.  Go ahead and think what I already know.  I am ridiculous and all that.  Scrapbooks are great, because A.  they hold all your pictures, and B. they hold the cute scraps.  I don't often look at them, Kate loves to and someday she and Lucy will get them all and get a kick out of it, but man, it's a lot of work !!!

And this will kill you even more . .  I not ONLY created a family book, I did a book for Lucy and a book for Kate (AT THE SAME TIME !!) 

I know, don't even bother saying it.   But in my defense, I added the pictures as I got them back (from that archaic action. . picking them up at the photo store, which then graduated to ordering them on line).  I spent, maybe, an hour putting them in the books and not stuffing them in a box or drawer marked "will get to it as soon as I can" which means 10 years from now when the kids are older and I can't even remember the year the picture was taken.  It was a Sunday thing, loved it, it was fun... but the problem now is that I am running out of room and more importantly the I Book is just prettier and easier . . . see . . .

So I graduated . .  and I promise, if you start this new, simple task . . you will appreciate it in the long run.  If you are crazy enough not to have moved over to Apple land... you can do this on numerous sites . . Snapfish, Shutterfly, Picaboo, Photobox . .  it's endless.

But if you do have an Apple . .

1.  Load the pics into I Photo (that means plug your camera in and let it do it's thing).
2.  Once they are downloaded I dump the bad ones or Photoshop the good ones.
3.  Drag them into a file so you can find them all . . . mine is pretty basic here at the house, the big key is to tag or name the picture so you can find it within the file . . . or simply "Sort by Date" then they will be in order
4.  Now you are ready to make your yearly book . .

5.  Click on the file and then look at the bottom and click "Create."

6.  The amazing Apple I Book, does most of the work, let's you pick a style of book, hardback, softback, color, layout, etc and it basically creates it.  The fun part is customizing it.  That's where it becomes a total TIME SUCK... but totally fun to make it as pretty as possible.

Take a look at some of my pages for year end 2011.

The best part is you CAN put kid art, cards, etc in your book, you just need to scan them and dump them into I Photo, just save them as a JPEG and you are good to go.  Don't know how to scan?  You can even take a picture of the art then just download it as you would any other picture.

Above . . . both pictures and art . . .

So . . . as I wrap up my New Year's project . .  Book of 2011 (actually 2 volumes. .  cause I got a little too into photography this year) I plan on hitting the "Buy" button, pulling $300 out of saving . . cause again I got a little carried away with two books, each 100 pages . . . but totally worth it.

and P.S.  Mom get's one as a Christmas Present - which is totally great for the grandparents.

and P.S.S.  If you are wondering if Lucy and Kate are getting the shaft on their childhood memories by not having crap . . . sorry Scrapbooks after the age of 7 and 12 . . you would be correct.  They can fight over these pretty books later . . .

Happy New Year !!!

- Beth


Idea of the Day !

Clever !

Came across this idea today and thought I would pass it along.  Don't know what to do with all your mother's serving trays . .  well here you go !

- Beth

Install of the Day !

Hi All . . .

I have been anxiously awaiting this install for a couple of reasons.

1.  I loved all the fabrics, colors and patterns.
2.  I loved this house as a whole.
3.  Couldn't wait to see it all together.

A little while back my friend Windy O'Connor came to me with a rug sample she chose for her daughter, Lily Rhook's room (check out our post from Oct. 29th)  Windy, an artist herself and a woman with great taste, just moved into the most amazing house and I couldn't wait to see it.  At the time I was super slammed.  I gave the sample to Jena and asked her to pull a bunch of fabrics and wall papers to go with the slightly unique blue in the rug.  It wasn't an easy blue.

Jena did an amazing job and she hit it on the first try.. Both Windy and I loved them and wanted to use them all . .  and we did.

My job now was to decide where . .    Jena found two wall papers, so we used them both.   She also found the perfect blue in a heavier upholstery grade fabric, we used that too.  We decided not to replace the bed, but rather to add an upholstered inset.

Take a look !

Having a hard time with color combinations ?  Well (almost) anything goes in my opinion, depending on  how you use it.. but if you are having trouble check your color wheel !!!  Try opposites on the wheel... usually always a winner.

The rug was our  starting pint... great shag.  And check out the close up of the inset panel on the existing bed.  Sometimes you don't have to totally ditch something.

We mixed in another paper on just one wall.  This Schumacher paper was perfect in that it lightened the room, combined the rug colors with the orange paper and next to those amazing casement windows, you get the feeling you are up in the trees.

A cottage style dresser and bed with a modern bubble chair.. sure !  Mix it up.  We also replaced the bell style lamp shades with a textured drum, and immediate updater !!!

Great art, interesting lamp, modern jewel box on a cottage dresser all add visual interest !

This, by far, was one of my favorite installs.  The overall look, youthful yet sophisticated and by no means ordinary or "mail order"  a true original . . . thank goodness !!

Thanks Jena, Windy and Lily !  Amazing.

- Beth


Install of the Day !

Hi All. . .

It's back to business . . . took a few days off to clear the head, getting ready for some fun new projects in 2012.  

Thought I would share one of two jobs we just finished the Friday before Christmas . . . with the other install photos to follow . . .

The Third floor bonus room.  Big and empty.  A great place for the kids to hang out, play video games and watch movies, but my client Kristen Foster needed some help.  The room was long with odd angles and a big nook.

Take a look at the finished product, and I will walk you through the details.

In the window nook we added a built in day bed with storage drawers below.  A custom bench seat and pillows create the perfect reading spot.

Our color palate was focused on this great area rug to define the sofa area and a few fabrics and pillows tied it all together.

A little art, and a pouf finish off the area.

Take a look at the TV wall, that was the biggest change in the room.

Behind that wall of wood and TV is actually a small, long window.  With the great light coming in from the nook wall, we decided we didn't need the light from the side of the house, so I had my carpenter make a large backdrop to cover the window and hang the TV !

We coved the window behind it with a bamboo blind.  This is just for aesthetic purposes on the outside.  The new wood panel is mounted to the wall with all the TV lines running behind it.

My inspiration for this wall came from this picture I found showing a wood back drop!
While a little tricky to install, it works beautifully and now takes the TV off the short, side wall.

The base unit was made as well using this piece (available at www.lucyandcompany.com) as inspiration.  Loved it, but need it to be longer with deep top drawers and mesh doors on the bottom.  The mesh allowing the remote for game playing to work through the doors.

A new sofa with long chaise along the short walls.

and voila . . . new furnished game and TV room for all!

- Beth

A Rainbow of Color . . .

Hey Everyone . . .  

I got my January / February Issue of Veranda today and on the cover it said "The Joy of Color."  This got me thinking about vibrant color, strong color, multi color.  It's funny, our new showroom has been transformed from the crazy multi color of years gone by, and what we have always been known for, to the more simplified (all white walls - yes we did that) and sleek look similar to this cover using the pop of only a few choice colors, green and blue.

This is not to say my love for multi color, crazy walls and strong color palates has gone by the wayside, I still love it.  I have just noticed I am using a lot more white in the rooms I have done.  Thought I would take a minute to show the new look of COLOR !!!

Kate Schintzius's West Hollywood Apartment.  Associate designer for M. Design Interiors - wanted a "Palm Beach in the 70's vibe . . . as reported by Design Sponge . . . Love this image, and reading further in the Sponge post I find out the building, a streamline Moderne Art Deco Style, made me love it even more with it's great period detail!

A pop of color on a traditional wingback gives both the piece and the room new life!

Isn't nature amazing . . .  Igneous rocks formed from lava flows of the Archaean era (a mere 2,700 million years ago)

Color kitchen love and art color love . . .

These images below, pulled from the Lucy and Company archives . . . still love all the color!

Eileen Kathryn Boyd, one of New York's most influential designers, uses color in a way I love, a big dose, but not overkill . . . Take a look at a few of her designs.

She is also now designing for Duralee fabrics (available at Lucy and Company)

Water color work of Caitlin McGauley, Summer Series

Caitlin lives and works in New York City.  I love her bio.  Prized watercolorist for Lonny Magazine's Watercolor Wednesdays, part of the Art Portfolio Series at Kate Spade (notecards and stationary)

These last two images I might say are my favorite . . . Need to watercolor my walls and need to create an art piece using nothing but paint chips !!!

Enjoy !

- Beth