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Posts from — January 2011

Visit to the Michigan Design Center Part I

I’m just busting at the seams to share with you my visit at the Michigan Design Center – “…a one-stop shopping resource for the finest names in interior furnishings“.  The Troy, MI based location has 215,000 square feet filled with fabrics, wallpapers, sofas, lighting, tiles, artwork, accessories – just about anything for the home you can think of.  So when I received an invitation to their Sample Sale a few weeks back, I was beyond excited.  Days before the sale, I contacted their main office to obtain a photography clearance.  It was suggested that due to the high volume of people expected, I come a couple days before the sale actually started to take photos.  This was not only helpful, but quite the treat for me!

Upon my arrival at the Design Centers concierges desk, I was greeted with warmth and lead to the Manager’s office to confirm my arrival.   Shortly thereafter, I went off to explore the 30+ showrooms.  I took so many photos and spoke to some of the finest designers that there was no way I could capture it all in one posting.  Therefore I have dedicated this week to the Michigan Design Center!

I began my journey at TRA Art Group where they offers tons of glasswork, sculptures, paintings for purchase, framing, and art rental.

My next stop was at Brunschwig & Fils fabric, upholstery, and trimming company.  There was wall after wall of luscious fabrics.  I was really happy to see such a wonderful and extensive contemporary collection.

I inquired about the stunning fabrics above and was told that they were by Stark Fabrics.  This set is from the Lelievre collection.   Below is a designer’s work in progress.  So many beautiful fabrics to choose from!

I continued my way to the next showroom which happened to be Michael Coyne Design.  As I walked into his showroom, I immediately recognized the rope chandelier hanging in the middle of the room.   He was a sponsor at last years Dining by Design and it was used in one of the displays (you can see it in my post here).  As I was nearing the end of my photo session at his exhibit, in walks Michael Coyne himself!   I introduced myself and briefly spoke to the designer noting that I had recently seen his famous chandelier.

I spent hours at the Design Center and could literally have used another 3 hrs. – there was so much to see!  One thing to note if you are going to visit is that products not offered at the Sample Sale  generally must be purchased through a designer.  Don’t know one?  Not a problem.  The Design Center can help you connect with one.

Thank you to the Staff and Showroom Employee’s at the Michigan Design Center for your superb hospitality and informative experience.  Stay tuned for more…

Images:  House of Many Hues

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January 31, 2011   No Comments

Tim Walker Photography

I am ending the week with one of my favorite fashion photographers, Tim Walker.  Born in England in 1970, his work often appears in Vogue magazine amongst others.  His photos are quite playful and ever so captivating.  Be prepared to be intrigued…

Did you enjoy?  I hope so!  I always find myself smiling when looking at Tim’s work .  Well, the weekend is here and I really must get to preparing a plan.  I want to spend lots of time with the kids but somehow need to include time for home chores, grocery shopping, blog work, and so much more!  But I will be back next week and you really must stop by for a visit.  I took a special trip this week and can’t wait to share my experience with you.  Take care!

Images:  wegoodlooking.com, Tim Walker Photography, nowpublic.com, poshsblackbook.com,

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January 28, 2011   No Comments

What I’m Checking Out On Etsy

I am always amazed at what can be found on Etsy.  The other night I started looking at one item which lead me to another and just like an adventure on the yellow brick road I was lost into tons of great finds.  From vintage to couture, there is something for everyone.  Here are some of the items I was checking out…

1.  Flower Girl Print by munieca 2.  Couture Switch Plate by couturelightplates 3.  Vintage 1960’s Drapery Panels by gottagovintage1 4.  Yarn Bowl by JulieKnowlesPottery 5.  Porcelain Leaf Plate by WhiteEarthStudio

Images:  Etsy (see Sellers above)

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January 26, 2011   2 Comments

Basement Design

Did I mention before that I have been working on a design for our unfinished basement?  While we are years away from having it 100% complete (if that’s ever possible), I am taking a step towards having the floor carpeted (right now it’s just concrete with a couple of scattered rugs). We are lucky in that our basement is a walkout with plenty of natural lighting leaving color options rather open. I’ve been researching the type of carpet (tile or broadloom) that will best suite our needs and at this point, I am highly leaning towards not only broadloom but commercial broadloom by Shaw.  You may ask why commercial carpet and my answer is simple: 1. Cost 2. Durability and 3. Practicality. Our basement has two sets of double doors leading to the outside.  While we don’t yet have a patio, I fully expect that once we do, it will be highly utilized (translation: lots of little feet bring in dirt).  Not to mention, commercial carpet has come a long way.  There are so many options, grades, and colors that I’m not sure it should be labeled “commercial” anymore.  Many people are using it in their homes with such great results.  Basements don’t have to be dark and dreary dungeons anymore.  Check this one out…

Don’t have a lot of natural light in your basement?  Try using overhead halogen lighting – it gives a dark space wonderful lighting that (I think) mimics natural light.

Images:  House Beautiful

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January 25, 2011   2 Comments

Design Reference Books

What a busy few days it has been at our house!  So I’m not sure what I was thinking the other day when I placed a huge order of art and decor books (when am I going to have time to read them all?).  While my local used book sales are awesome, they rarely have some of the books missing from my collection.  Either the dealers are buying them up early in the morning or people are just not giving up their design reference books.   Nevertheless, I thought it was about time I finally got my own copy of the design worlds bible, Domino (especially since it’s now less than $20 bucks).

I think our family’s book collection is getting near (if not already) what our bookshelves will hold … OR  maybe we need bigger bookshelves like one pictured below.

I’m glad that there is a person in the photo for reference as to how high these go up.  What a great concept by Diane Bergeron Interiors – a library in the dining room!  Think of all the potential conversations that can take place while dining.  Totally love this!

But seriously, I think I need to thin out the books we have and make space for new ones.  When am I ever going to read any of my pregnancy books again?

Images:  Diane Bergeron Interiors

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January 20, 2011   1 Comment

I Want to Grow Up Here Part II

Good Monday morning to everyone!  Did you accomplish all that you wanted to this weekend?  My answer is usually no – but I did spend a great deal of time with my kids which is always wonderful.  On Saturday, I took my oldest to the library as it was time to return our books and check out some new ones.  Our library has a childrens section with toys and puzzles.  As soon as we got there, she saw the children and ran to them.  I sat nearby looking through books trying to determine which to sign out.  A few minutes later a mom came up to me and asked, “is the little girl yours?”.  I immediately started apologizing for any annoyance my daughter may have caused.  She shook her head and said that she wanted to let me know that the two boys my daughter was playing with were hers.  She continued to explain that her youngest son had Autism and that she worked 40 hours a week with him.  I sat and listened, puzzled where she was going with all this.  Her son who generally shied away from kids was playing with my daughter.  “Your daughter has opened up my son – it’s wonderful to see progress!”, she said with glossy eyes.  “I just wanted to let you know”.  I could have cried for so many reasons – for the step forward her son made, for the evident hard work this woman invested each week, and for her happiness.  It was a great Saturday!

We left off last week with kids bedrooms and I want to continue that today.  Would you like to join me?  While I’m not currently working on either of my kids rooms, I like to keep ideas and inspirations flowing.  I can remember thumbing through youth designs for the fun and color even before having children.  Ok, are you ready?  Here we go…

I love colorful stripy rugs!  As the article in Skona Hem suggests, this room can be for kids anywhere from 5 to 15.

A dreamy dress-up room for girls.  Checkout the light fixture and pink chair…so glam!

I like that the toys in this photo are on shelves.  While there is a definite need for toy boxes, I do enjoy displaying toys (I have them in my living room).

The table and chairs look just like the Kritter style available at Ikea – only painted turquoise.

Images:  Skona Hem, Hus and Hem (last image)

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January 17, 2011   3 Comments

I Want to Grow Up Here Part I

Be prepared for photo overload today.  I was checking out inspirational kids rooms at Vtwonen and seriously had a hard time choosing just a few.

Ok, how cool would it be to grow up in the room above?  Wonderful lighting pouring in, a bookcase that goes to the ceiling, and a funky rug – everything a girl (me) wants.  Oh, and a lime green rocking chair to finish it off.

Where can I get that wallpaper and lamp shade?  Everything (including the coffee mug) works so well in this room.

I did warn you that there were alot of photos?

Another great lamp shade (and lamp base) above.  I’m assuming this one was handmade as the pattern follows the comforter.

Images:  Vtwonen

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January 13, 2011   3 Comments

Good Morning Tuesday + Elli Popp

Hope everyone had a great weekend and a wonderful start to their week. This morning I was up a bit earlier than normal as Miss Kaia is teething and sleep is not an option (thankfully she hasn’t been crying!). I spent some of the wee hours of the morning scouring the internet for wallpaper and fabrics. You may remember me taking evaluation of the rooms in my house in this post.  One idea that emerged was related to the kids toy shelf in our living room (photo here).  Many times the toy shelf is not as organized as the picture shows (yes, for me that’s organized!).  By mid-afternoon, toys are all over the living room and the shelves sit empty.  As I looked at it in this state during my evaluation, I noticed how bare and blank it sat in the corner.  Then an idea sprung – why not wallpaper or decoupage the back of the toy shelf ?  This way a marvelous surprise could develop as the toy shelf contents were removed.  So while on my path for wallpaper, I found Elli Popp.   Check out this gorgeousness!

Her designs and colors just excited me when I saw them!  Many come in different colors and can be ordered through their online retailers.  While I don’t think these designs are what I’m looking for the kids toy shelf, I will definitely be keeping Elli in my back pocket.  I’ll keep you posted on my progress.

Images:  Elli Popp

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January 11, 2011   No Comments