Friday, January 28, 2011

Happy Friday and Happy Birthday, Lizzie!

What do you have planned for the weekend?  I plan on slowing down and eating lots of homemade breads, soups, steaks, andy's custard, and cheesecakes.  Can you tell I'm hungry? 

Last night was sister night.  I did eat, and it was good to have laughs with all of them, aside from distractions, and to gawk over their uniquely made gifts that each of them gave to Lizzie.  And, not only were their gifts handmade...their cards were too, as always.  Works of art + funny poetry...worthy of framing.  

 I will share more with you in the coming week, just how each one of them is a gift in my life.   They will each one, be a contributor in the six day give-away I'm hosting.  {Six sisters give-away, in support of the store opening.}  It makes me want to cry, because I'm just so proud and thankful for their support as I take this huge leap into...  And, I'm just proud of them, period.

I hope you'll join me next week!!

Thanks to Anne, over a The City Sage, for the imagery board above!     Images from: 1.  House Beautiful 2.  Delicious Magazine 3.  Amanda Pratt

Have a lovely weekend!


Thursday, January 27, 2011

Studio Board Series: #2 + some fun news

Clever Vignettes 

B&W Striped Awnings:  So a pair of Vans or Chuck Taylors

Studied Work of Art:  This ROOM!


Antiquified Beautz

Simple Warmth

Whimsy + Wallpaper

As you can see, My second color scheme for the new studio/showroom builds on a neutral grey-brown.  I found the perfect shade.  Anything looks good against it.  It's warm.  It's rich.  It hides dirt and kids' fingerprints perfectly.  Slate, be the color. We're covering the ceiling with it too.  We think it'll make our chandeliers really pop.

Are you looking to find that perfect shade?  Let me help you.  As always, we give freeeeee in-home consultations.

LOCAL Excitement: I still haven't seen or read our very own locally written, filmed, and wonderfully acclaimed, Winters Bone, by Daniel Woodrell. Eleanor and Will read it and absolutely loved it.  SO excited for all involved and for the surprisingly-wonderfully-high number of Four Oscar Nominations the movie received!  I'm going to try to catch the movie at the Moxie this weekend.

AND TONIGHT:  SIX sister night tonight.  We're celebrating our sister, Lizzie's birthday.  I'm proud to say my sisters are my best friends. Since we all have kids and hardly ever go out, we're making it a night out.  Probably Sushi.  Happy Birthday, sista' Elizabeth Ann Arnold!

images via a perfect grey, this is glamorous, julie blackmon {one of my five sisters}.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Studio Board Series: #1 of 2

Casual & Calm, yet fun! 
Gotta Love Glam + Crystal Chandeliers

A Touch of Boho + Mod Smartness
Paper Packages Tied with String + Wax Seals.  Sweet, Humble + Classy.
Old + New World Italiano 

Frenchie Boho. No More War.

Book Warmers

Vintage Linen + Big Splash of Color
images via apartment #34, a perfect grey, domino, this is glamorous

While planning the studio/store, I've been doing some serious going back and forth on decision making on choosing the color for the store.  Color is so important.  I brought a panel of people in to help me decide.

Not only do I want my style and brand to come thru, I want the store to be appealing to a larger population, where styles range widely all across the board in this Midwest region.  I love many styles too, so I'm going to mix it up with Casual & Calm, Stylish-Industrial, Eclectic, Rustic, Classic, and glistening glam touches.

I'll have Studio Board: Inspiration Series #2 tomorrow....Because I just HAD to go with one more color scheme.

Hope your week is going well and don't forget to swing back by for the BIG six day give-away coming up next week!  We've got some that you {especially you, locals}, won't want to miss. 


Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Thoughts of Gorgeous

Thoughts for Today:

*Sylvie's favorite color is pink. She loves talking about her birthday that is coming in April and tells me where each of her friends will sit when they come to her party.

*We'll be loading goods + presents to take to the store very soon.

* Keys to heart, soul, happiness, knowledge, truth, an end of pain and sadness, a promise that it will end just right.

*Hybernating Comforts.

*Spring flings + dinner clubs at Pickwick House.

* And, now, my dear friends, I would love and welcome your ideas for workshops/parties for the store.  

* I am also taking submissions for art {hand-made and fine art}.  We will select only a handful, as we'd like to focus on keeping the store streamlined and in-line with our brand.

*If you're in the Midwest region, I'm also looking for special guest artists in the following fields: d.i.y., entertaining, food, and craftiness. Guest artists will be featured at our store's events each month.  Send all submissions to by the end of February.  Please send three to five images.

Thanks.  Have a good Tuesday, my sweet ones, and please pass the word on to others you know that we are getting ready for a six day give away!

Smiles & Light!


images via stars masquerading, apartment #34, and design*sponge.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Pickwick House {Home-Office} Bash + Some Table Dainties

vicente wolfe

john granen table

Happy Monday!  

Tonight, I'm having a little pre-store opening prep party at my pickwick house {home}.  We'll be setting up our workshop/bash with dainty supplies + wine + treats on my dining room table.  It's always doubled as the work table/home office desk.  

Tonight's party reminds me that we'll be opening the store with some really, really great tables that will be for sale and will also be fully decked out with each of their own dainties + their own entertaining style + fresh flowers.  Have I told you that we'll have fresh flower bouquets at the store...provided by one of my favorite florists, The Orchid Lady.   You will want to remember that if you're here local, especially for Valentines Day! 

 What's style are you feeling for table entertaining right now?  I'm loving these rustics mixed with moderns, and especially this elegant-tay mixed with the gorgeous, violet-drapey linen.  On a side note: Sylvie used the word gorgeous the other day.  I guess she listens to me, sometimes.

Stay tuned for our give-aways, here on the blog, coming in the next week! We're planning SIX days of give-aways in the countdown to the SIX-Eleven S. Pickwick St. Brick & Mortar Store.  {Boy, that's fun to say!!}

images from red


Friday, January 21, 2011

Honeysuckle Pink: Pantone Color of the Year

Jonathan Berger via House Beautiful
Windsor Smith via House Beautiful
Jonathan Berger via House Beautiful
Miles Redd
Miles Redd
I thought I was immune to sickness because my four kids have all gone through well spaced waves of the flu separately, these last few weeks.  Moms aren't supposed to be sick, but alas, oh... uh water, I am.

Today, I'm treating myself to watching Ellen, looking up cheerful inspirations on-line, glancing out my bay windows at the snow, and ignoring the fully wrecked house full of dirty clothes, dishes, and dirt.

I love the new color of the year.  It's cheerful and spring like.  What do you think?  Would you do a room or decorate with this color?  Not sure if I could sell any clients on it.

I guess, if I'm well enough to lay around on the computer, I'm probably well enough to do my yearly spreadsheets of bookkeeping to prepare for taxes.

I still need to post the befores of the last bedroom I posted.  I'll get to it, once I'm able to get out of bed.

Have a wonderful weekend!!


Thursday, January 20, 2011

Colorful Girls Bedroom by Sharon Taylor Designs

Here is a recent project that I did for an eleven year old girls bedroom.  I'll post more later, along with befores.  It's time for me to run, though.  I am headed to a meeting to firm up the first quarter of events we will be offering at the store.  Can't wait to share more fun details with you!

Happy Snow Day!!

Images by

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Wishful Spring

Wishful Spring
I was going to use these green suede pelts for recovering a bench for the shop opening, but then when I found the green hills painting, above, at a flea market, I thought that the suede pelts would work well for  mimic-ing the grassy green that I am so longing for right now.  Throwing in the Italian leather Castelli chair, and I immediately imagine myself as a real horseback rider with those cute kind of riding boots.  The trophy just "goes" for the show.

Hope you are having a wonderful week.  What are you doing to ward off the winter blues?  I could use some pointers, 'cause the kids are going in waves of the flu around here, and it feels as if Spring is a million miles away.  Help!


Saturday, January 15, 2011

Locked In Love, In Paris

I had a good evening last night with a friend.  It felt good to laugh and fill our "inspiration buckets".  I'm stealing the phrase inspiration bucket from Rachel Ashwell.  Last night, my friend shared Rachel's blog with me.  If you've never gone there, you should, because Rachel opens up with her deepest thoughts, struggles, limits, triumphs, fears, and amazing inspirations.  She is a goddess of strength and just a really great woman/mom role model.

She built an empire, only to see it fall, and now is beginning to see it slowly be built back up again.   Ironically, her empire is built on simplicity. {Goes without saying...shabby chic}

I admire her simple, honest views on life, work, home, and family.

**Cherish every moment with your loved ones.

**Love is a daily choice...For others and yourself.

This is the month leading up to LOVE day, so you may hear more from me on it.   I told you I love, LOVE.

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!


Thursday, January 13, 2011

Refined Rustic Chic

I'd love to go to this place in the Sawtooth Mountains of Idaho.  It didn't surprise me that Miguel Flores-Viana so beautifully captured the amazing work of interior designer, Mary Lynn Turner, and her two daughters, Marie, and Emily of m. elle design.  Amazing workmanship, too, I might add.  The place they built on family land looks as if it was rescued, and those were there exact intentions.

Rescuers, come to my rescue and take me there. I've been walking a mystery mile, here lately, and could really use an escape like this one to let free a few worries o'mine.  I just know it would soothe any ones soul, don't you?


Cheering up is in order:  shop projects, craft projects, and creating entertaining table tops with friends.  The line-up begins in February and Oh, what FUn is to be had with all of you who will come!  I do hope you'll join me.


Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Motor Running!


I love:  

1. vintage cars
2.  chocolate
3.  kids in military jackets
4.  twin beds
5.  grace kelly and cartier
6.  amaryllis
7.  classic stationary

...still thinking on the other three things...

8.  snow covered streets
9.  LOVE
10.  two oxen pulling the cart the same way.


As I prepare for wedding show and shop opening, I'm loving red! 

 THOUGhts Today: 
*I think a red mercedes would be the perfect prop for designing a wedding.  

*This week, I'm having red drapes made for the shop and looking at words that symbolize "LOVE" to be added to my brochures and signs for weddings.

*Beautiful text is what I go weak in the knees over, and who represents classic beauty more than grace kelley?
So, what are you all loving right now and what really gets your motor running?  And what does love represent to you?  

I'm getting ready for give-aways as the countdown begins for shop opening.  Get your boots on and sign up as a follower!  You might just be happy you did.