To Faux or not to Faux?

T0 Faux or not to Faux?  That is the question.  At least around these parts.  I would say for the last 10 years the Old World style has been very popular in Oklahoma.  Things are changing a bit lately.  Things are becoming a bit brighter and cleaner.

I have a philosophy when it comes to this style.  I really like it if it’s done right.  Some people tend to go way over the top (as in anything in life, right?).  The key to successfully decorating in this style is moderation.  Too much fringe.  Too much gold.  Too much velvet.  Too many faux painted walls.  This has such a heavy feeling to me.  However, I think Old World can be done with out going to the extreme!

My Old World Rules:

Rule #1- Never faux finish or crackle paint an entire kitchen or bathroom.  Instead, do just one piece of furniture.  I think this makes it look more authentic.  People wonder: Is that really old?  But if the entire kitchen is done that way, it’s pretty obvious it’s not really antique.

Here are some examples of this I really like.

Now this Swedish armoire is probably really old, but you get the idea.  The patina of the piece also goes with the rest of the rustic furniture.
This living room is bright and beautiful.  The antiqued mirror adds character to the room.
Design by Lisa Luby Ryan.  Notice the chest, mirror and settee all have a patina.  These few pieces add that Old World charm without being over the top!
Rule #2- Never faux finish the walls of an entire room.  Of course, there are exceptions to this rule.  If you have a professional that knows how to create a beautiful patina to woodwork, it can be extremely beautiful!  I’m really talking about what they used to do here in Oklahoma about 5 to 10 years ago.  They would paint the walls then take a rag and rub a stain or another paint over the top.  I think the goal was to create a cool finish.  Some did look okay, but a lot of the finishes just made the walls look dirty.  I think you can still achieve the old look without this effect.
Another design by Lisa Luby Ryan.  This room still has an old French/Belgian feel because of the furniture, art and lighting.  Nothing needs to be done to the walls to give this effect.
This home is by Loren Interiors in Houston.  It has a distinctly European feel because of the rock, wide plank floors, furniture and lighting.
Decor de Provence.  Notice old-looking floors, old fireplace, art and beams.
I think this room is so homey and beautiful.  The beams add richness and I love the painted bookcases.  They might even have a patina finish on them that would be a great little touch.  The smooth cream walls keep it so soft.
This has a more rich look without being over the top.  It’s still livable.
Rule #3- Keep fabric and trims to a minimum.  I would say the majority of us do not live in a palace like Versailles, so why do we try so hard to make our homes look like a castle?  Everyone has their own taste.  I understand that.  For me, I like to keep the opulent finishes to a minimum.  I love a very formal look, but I’m talking about embellishments.
Reece Witherspoons ranch in California.  It is very Old World Spanish without fringe and red velvet.
The iron staircase and luxurious rug add the richness to this space.
Room by Patricia Healing and Daniel Barsanti.  It’s Old World in architecture, but the furniture is simple with luxurious upholstery.
These homes are really Mediterranean in origin.  And who doesn’t love the Mediterranean? It’s glamorous and rich looking. I think that’s why people around here want to try to copy that European look.  In moderation with a few great pieces, it can be extremely lovely and luxurious.

 

My First Love-Kitchens

I love decorating any room, but my first love is kitchens.  Kitchens are the heart of the home.  Your kitchen should not only be functional, but a beautiful representation of your style. I love a light, bright happy space.  There are some extraordinary kitchens out there, and I want to share a few of my favorites with you!

Karlavagen76 5

This grey is lovely.  The white marble on the backsplash and countertops along with the white walls keep it light and open.

I love how different this kitchen is.  It’s rustic and raw.  Again with the white marble to keep it fresh.  So different!
Angela Free design out of San Francisco.  This color is gorgeous!  So rich.  I love the patterned backsplash.  Looks like it has some sort of quartz on the countertops.  Instead of white, they used cream to keep it light (notice the floors).
This greenish grey is so pretty.  Notice how cabinets go all the way the ceiling.  Gorgeous green backsplash with white counters.
FGY Architects in California.  Traditional cream kitchen with wood floors.  Lovely and rich.  Beautiful marble splash and detail above the window.
Victoria Hagan design.  This color is like a light mocha.  So creamy and delicious.  It’s difficult to tell what the countertops are made of.  The dark hardware stands out and makes a statement.
Soft and gorgeous.  This kitchen is rustic with the beams, but has a contemporary feel with the simple cabinetry and lighting.
Mary Ross Design in the Woodlands, TX.  Love this simple white kitchen.  It’s so homey.  The lights add a sophisticated, modern feel.
This is a butler’s pantry!  Beautiful mushroom grey with soapstone counters and white backsplash.
I love the layout of this kitchen.  Looks a little too big for my taste.  But the layout perfect.  I love how it opens into the family room.
This kitchen is so beautiful and European to me.  I love open cabinetry.  Why hide your lovely dishes and pottery?  Show it off and enjoy it as art!
Do you have a favorite?  As you can see I tend to lean toward a painted kitchen.  I do love stained kitchens, but sometimes they seem one dimensional and too brown.  Your kitchen should reflect you.  If you have any questions or need help remodeling or designing your kitchen, I would love to help!  It’s my first love!

A Little Rustic

I love where some designers are going with the rustic look these days.  Sometimes I think rustic can be kitschy and dark.  While I don’t mind an animal head mount every now and then (I have a few in my own home, thanks to the hubby), this look can look very manly and rough. But I feel there is a new wave of rustic. Many of the designs have beautiful exposed beams and lighter walls.  The neutral grays and tans are really lovely.  Here are some pictures that I find soften the look.  It looks more livable and bright than ever before.

The cream walls make this space so much brighter.  The light floors help as well.

The light wood makes it so warm despite all of the rock.

Eclectic Island Style Cream kitchen, oak cabinets, $100,000 and over, Linda McDougald Design/ Postcard From Paris, Charleston
Designed By: Linda McDougald Design/ Postcard From Paris
Photographer: Rachael Boling Photography
The grays in this mountain kitchen give it that modern feeling.
Wow!  So much to talk about here!  Color, texture, shine…  The white cabinetry and backsplash keep this room from looking heavy and dark.  Beautiful!
beams in living room and open kitchen by kelli

Same with this open kitchen and living area.  If these cabinets had been stained, it would be way to brown.
beams
I love the color of these beams.  The creamy walls brighten up the space.  It feels light and airy despite the heavy beams.
Mediterranean Living Room Design, Pictures, Remodel, Decor and Ideas
Of course, I love this Mediterranean, rustic look.  The stucco walls make this room so soft.
Hope you all have a Merry Christmas!

 

 

Beautiful New Kitchen

I started this project last fall and had a great time with it.  Sorry I couldn’t get any before pics.  It had red wallpaper, tile on the countertops, a horrible range in an odd shaped island, and low cabinets that you couldn’t fit any appliances underneath.  We tore the entire kitchen out: floors, cabinets, lighting, and wallpaper.  We even closed up a sky light.  We replace brick floors with wood.  Notice there are only drawers below the counters.  This allows you to get to all items easily.  On the end of the island there are doors for a small spice cabinet.  Behind the doors above the ovens is a TV.  Enjoy!

The client loves green and red.  The cabinet color is Mourning Dove from the Martha Stewart line at Home Depot.  It’s really a greenish grey.  The backsplash is Sonoma Tile 2×8.  The pulls are Amerock in gilded bronze.  The countertops are granite. Pendant lights are the Barn Light from Restoration Hardware in antique brass.  Chandelier is the Vendome Large Chandelier from Circa Lighting.  Bar stools are Red Isabella Barstool from Pottery Barn.

 

The Right Light

Well I hope you all are feeling better the me right now.  I have been sicky for almost a week.  Pregnancy + upper respiratory infection = misery.

I’m working on a kitchen project, and I just want to share my thoughts on how important lighting can be for the overall design of a space.  Basically, you can spend thousands on decor or cabinets, but if you have cheap or dated lights, it will totally ruin the space.  Lights add character, personality, and shine.  Don’t skimp on lighting.  Look around and find the best deal, but save room in your budget for beautiful lighting.  Here are some examples of how lights add juxtaposition, character, richness, and shine in a kitchen.

Pinned Image

These lanterns help draw your eye to the beautiful windows.  It brings it all together.

Pinned Image

Again, these lights accent the dark metal in the room and bring a modern contrast to this Euro rustic dining room.

Pinned Image

I love the contrast of this traditional kitchen with the modern pendant.

Pinned Image

These mini chandeliers give this kitchen a feminine sparkle.

Pinned Image

I like the industrial look of these dark pendants paired with the modern square chandelier shade.

Pinned Image

I love the contrast of this dark chandelier with light cabinets and walls.  It’s also got a rustic look that really draws your eye up.

Pinned Image

These pendants give great shine.

Pinned Image

These pendants give this kitchen a chic glamorous look. Doesn’t it look expensive?

Pinned Image

This lantern reiterates the traditional aspect of this kitchen.

Plate Display

So I needed something on my big, white, blank wall in our breakfast area.  I didn’t want to spend a lot of money, but it needed color and character.

I found this picture on Pinterest that I loved.

Pinned Image

house and home

I thought it might be difficult to find so many plates that fit together.  It really wan’t.  I shopped around and found plates for reasonable prices at TJ Maxx, Dillard’s, and Pier 1.

I laid out my pattern on the floor.  I had to take about 6 plates back.  I just had too many for the design and the wall.

Then traced and labeled all the plates so I would have a template for the wall.  Thank you to my sister for climbing the ladder, so this pregnant lady wouldn’t have to!  Then I put on the Dischangers.  I googled and searched Pinterest for ways to hang plates.  Everyone said these worked great!  They are very reasonable.  I hated those old wire plate hangers.  They are so difficult to attach.  These are permanent, but that’s okay with me.  They work wonderfully!

 

 

We measured how far down the hook would be and put our nail into the paper template.  Then hung the plates!

 

 

 

I’m really happy with this look.  I think it looks really cute with the new window seat pillows and the colors in the family room.

 

Totally into Brass

No, I have not lost my mind (well maybe), but I’m totally into antique brass right now.  We’re seeing it in kitchens all over the web and in magazines.  It’s a wonderful solution for those homes built in the ’80’s and ’90’s that are totally loaded out with brass hardware.  It means that we don’t have to “de-brass” an entire house!  Yipeee!  That can be expensive!  Here are some of my favorite brass pics.

Farm Pendant from RH

Pinned Image

lifeingraceblog.com

Pinned Image

More pics of this fantastic kitchen HERE.  I am CRAZY over this kitchen.  I love love love the island and the hood and the range, oh and just about everything!

Pinned Image

Pretty brass penant lights over island.

Pinned Image

Again brass on the pendants over the island.

Pinned Image

Again brass pendants.

Pinned Image

Brass pendants and hardware.  From cococozy

Pinned Image

So what do you think?  I would love to hear your thoughts!