Friday, May 27, 2011

Happy Friday

What a week. Hearts still heavy for Joplin.  My thoughts will be with those who have lost their lives and their families.  

I am happy though, when I think on the resilience, cooperation, and care that people are showing. That's why I titled the post Happy Friday.  I hope you will find a piece of Happy in that too.
I'll leave you with a sneak peak into a project presentation that I've been working on late this evening for a new coffee bar/restaurant that will be opening in July, called Boca Mocha.  
{Salon Chair From Bernhardt}
{Flame Stitch from Tonic Living}
{Via Design Sponge}

Happy Friday and Memorial Weekend to you.  


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Guest Post w/Kendra

Hi all!   Kendra and I put together a "Summer Lovin" party shoot.  Janae Hardy, an amazing photog, neighbor, friend, blogger, and mom photographed the set-up for us. We had so much fun! Thanks Janae!  Be sure to pop over to Elsie's blog this afternoon to see that Summer Lovin guest post we did for Elsie, who is still away "honey-ing and moon-dancing" with her new hubby.  Congrats, Elsie and Jeremy!

For those who took a hop over from Elsie's blog, HELLO, And welcome to MO stuff.

I just opened Picwick House, here in Springfield, MO, a little over three months ago.  It was a long time dream. It's so great to  finally have a space to think clearly and to meet with new clients outside my home, where I formerly worked under the name, sharon taylor designs.  Anyway, Pickwick House serves as a mini-showroom where I sell "finds" that I simply fall in love with and can't resist...mostly refurbished vintage pieces/antiques, one of a kind items, and art.  I also use it as a design house for working on my commercial and residential design projects, events, and weddings.  I host monthly workshops, and also love to host private parties for people at the store.

Me {30 weeks along}{source Janae Hardy}

A Picture of The Shop {snapshot by iphone}
My Home Designs {source}

 Summer Cocktail-ing by the Pool {source Twin Town Studios}

Summer Dining {source Twin Town Studios}
Last Summer Wedding {Kendra and I designed with LA event designer, JL Designs} {source gabriel ryan}
A Dining Room I Designed for a Client {photo by Sesha of  Convey Studios}

Thanks for stoppin in!  Hope you're having a lovely, sunshine day!


Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Emerald-City Wish List

The perfect shade of green to me is Emerald. Would LOVE to have shades in my living room just like these... 

{image via coco and kelley via stockholm street style}
       Somehow this girl makes this crazy-patterned jewel toned outfit above work.  LOVE the tailored emerald jacket and the fabric on those pants is stunning.
{dainty ring by Carla Caruso}

Willy+Daro Malachite and Bronze Lamp and agate plate via 1st dibs
I don't know how much this lamp above costs, but I imagine it's well worth the thousands of dollars I predict it to cost.

Hope you all are having a wonderful day! I know I will.  It's my birthday.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011


I don't normally touch on local news and events, but hearts are heavy here... for the town of Joplin {A neighboring town not far from Springfiel}.  Not one life is untouched there after one of the deadliest tornadoes in this past century's history devastated the city with a fierceness six miles long.

Scenes and stories are too much to bear.  Devastating.  My heart and prayers go out to them as well as all of those helping with the relief efforts.

                                               /AP Photo/Mike Gullet and Springfield News Leader

How you can help Joplin relief efforts:

Convoy of Hope

• You can donate to Convoy of Hope at its website:, or donate $10 by texting Convoy to 50555. Additional texting charges may apply

The Food Bank/Ozarks Food Harvest

• Donations are needed and can be delivered to The Food Bank/Ozarks Food Harvest at 2810 N. Cedarbrook Ave. in Springfield.
Monetary donations are also requested at this time and can be made securely online at Or, you can mail donations to Ozarks Food Harvest, Attn: Joplin Disaster Relief, P.O. Box 5746, Springfield, Mo., 65801-5746.
The Food Bank is requesting that community members donate easy-open, ready-to-eat nonperishable food items, or canned goods and can openers. Snacks such as crackers and granola bars are needed. 
There is a demand for all types of personal hygiene items, including diapers, and paper products such as paper plates, eating utensils, paper towels and toilet paper.
Cleaning supplies are also accepted. Water bottles are not a priority from donors at this time.
Donations for Joplin relief can be delivered to Ozarks Food Harvest between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. through this week and beyond.
Red Cross
• Red Cross is not accepting material donations but is taking monetary donations. 
You can donate by log onto Red Cross Greater Ozarks Regional Chapter at
You may also come to Red Cross’ Springfield office, 1545 N. West Bypass.
Or you can donate by calling the toll-free number 866-206-0256. You can also text the word “REDCROSS” to 90999 to make a $10 donation to the American Red Cross.
Salvation Army
• The Salvation Army is accepting non-perishable food donations at its Springfield location, 1707 W. Chestnut Expressway.
Those wishing to send monetary donations to help with this disaster should designate those donations with the word “Joplin.”
Habitat for Humanity
• Habitat for Humanity is collecting items such as water, blankets, toiletry items, food, batteries, medical supplies, etc. Please bring items to the ReStore located at 2410 S. Scenic Avenue. Habitat will deliver the items to a central location/drop-off point in Joplin.

Thoughts and Prayers to all Affected.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Sweet Red Velvet

The wedding season has ushered in.  Last Sunday, a special girl got married. Elsie Flannigan of Red Velvet Art.  Kendra and I had the best time collaborating with her.  Boy, was it ever a fun and different and sweet experience of a wedding??!!  Unlike any we've done before.  We can't say enough good things about Elsie.  She's queen of inventions and talented in many areas:  fashion, style, DIY, and entrepreneurship.  She's humble, kind, sweet, relaxed and open.  This picture above is just a snapshot from her good friend.  You can read and feel Elsie's excitement here in post.   The professional photographer was Anna of Arrow and Apple. of Seattle, WA.  She was super sweet to work with, too.  More to come on this very soon, we hope.

Next week, we'll share what we {kendra, myself, and interns} have been busy, busy working on.  Excited to share some sweet posts and also let you in on the interior design plans I'm preparing for a much anticipated coffee bar/cafe that will be opening in July.  

What plans do you have for the weekend?


Friday, May 13, 2011

Take a Load Off and Could You, Would You?

One of the main questions I hear when customers walk into the store, is "What do you do?".  The phrase I also hear in response to their walk-thru is..."Cute Store." Thank you so much for that.  But did you know I offer more than just a little shopping experience?   

 I just found out this morning, that one of my interior projects is going to be published in book form.  That's a first for me...and I'm pretty proud.  But what me makes me most proud is that it's not just about a good looking space.  It's about building a trusting relationship where we {me and you, the client} hit the goal together. I hope to do this and that with a lot more of you.  Opening the store is sort of like a first step towards building new solution-solving relationships, trust, and de-mystifying the myth that decorators can be snobbish and/or not real.  

For those of you who know me, you know I'm far from putting on airs. I'm the first to tell you that I haven't cleaned my house in weeks, I hardly have a social life, and that my back room is pretty much a day-care for Sylvie and baby-on-the-way.  

 That said....Take a load off, browse my work, visit with me, and ask yourself.

Could you? Would you? Let me do these things for you?

1.  Design a Space You LOVE

2. Find "Unique-ness that reflects YOU"

3.  Plan It and Make It Happen for you.

Hope you have a fantastic weekend!!

  Big wedding decorating weekend in store for me. Can't wait to share this "famous girl's" wedding with you.  She's so sweet, real, and fun.


Thursday, May 12, 2011

Design Crush: Chris Barrett

Im working on a proposal for a coffee shop project as well as trying to figure out some things at our house...{the tee-tiny kitchen}.  I went straight back to my design inspiration files to pull this out.  The work of Chris Barrett.  It's probably no surprise that this restaurant, COMME CA speaks to me. I chose the same palate for Pickwick House that he used here.  Notice the black and white striped awning.  So classic, happy, and cute to me.  Drawn from the time-honored tradition of the Parisian brasserie, Chris used a minimalist color palate and eclectic decor to provide an intimate and understated backdrop that works for any gathering or special occasion.  I think it's sweet perfection.

What do you think of the chalkboard walls?  Are they a long-gone-overdone fad?  I still love them, but Will thinks I need to move on with something else.  

Happy Facing-the-Spring world today! "It's so BEAUTIFUL out!", as Sylvie says.


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Spring In My Step

Hi Guys!  Sorry for the delay in announcing the winner of the Mothers Day giveaway.  The winner is...........Nicole Chilton.  Yay, Nicole!!  AND, Thanks to all of you who signed up for the giveaway and shared sweet little stories about your inspiring moms.  I LOVED hearing all of them!!

So, movin on into spring...The roses are blooming at my house on Pickwick Street, and the sight and smell of them are putting an extra spring in my step. There is also a fresh scent of herbs filling the store at Pickwick House.  By the way, the roses are called Zephrine Drouhin.  A sweet farmers market farmer told me about them years ago.  They are a thorn-free, new/antique hybrid that grow in the shade or sun, bloom all season long, and are maintenance free.  They grow fast too.  

This past week, I needed to have 90 favors ready for a local fundraiser benefitting The Developmental Center of The Ozarks.  I wanted to use something that cost virtually nothing, but that also reflects the unique services and style we offer at the store.  I came up with the idea of using vintage books and stamped them with my logo and then added sprigs of fresh Rosemary.  

I have a set of sweet, sweet vintage-french-reproduction twin headboards in the back storage room.  I haven't brought them out to the floor because they are waiting for the perfect client or customer to put some tender loving care towards them.  If I could, I would cover them in a soft velvet, or creamy linen. 

Gotta run. Have a Slap Happy Day!!


Saturday, May 7, 2011

Blogging, Motherhood, biz and LIFE

Happy Saturday, Friends!  I was going to do a post #2 gift guide yesterday, but got so behind on things at the store. Please come into the store today.  I love getting to know you!

The biz:
I'm having so much fun meeting new customers that are coming in daily and bringing with them...the bright, May sunshine that lifts my spirit.  Not to mention all your smiles and ideas.  Thank you for coming into see me!!  By the way, one new customer of mine...gave me a terrific idea this week. More on that to come...

The blog:

*In case you've not noticed, I'm hosting a giveaway in honor of mom's day.  Go here to check it out.  {By the way...I'm a bit perplexed that only three people have signed up!!  Come on sweet-peas!} 

*Okay, and I'm a bit stumped and want to figure out how to make my blog better....While I have lists and lists of ideas for projects I'm working on that are about ten miles long, I'm fresh out of ideas on what you'd like to see here on the blog.  I'm all ears and would really love to have your feedback.  Any new blogs you love out there?  Any suggestions for some weekly features you'd like to see?  More wedding/events?  Interior Inspirations and Room Makeovers?  Flea Market finds?  Design Crushes?  Family features?

*Or, should I just quit? That's not my style, so I don't even know why I just said that.  Some days I think about it, though.  Fitting it in, isn't the easiest thing to do when you have a biz, four kids, an old house and one more bebe on the way.  

I do know revamp is underway!  I'm going to alleviate the side bar all together and make photos HUGE.  This requires more work than I thought it would.  Hours of decoding and rewriting.

MOTHERHOOD: The biggest gift AND job in life.

How did I get here?  One minute I'm just a girl...and the next I'm pregnant, and the next, here in my arms I hold and let go of one, two, three, and four real beings that are quickly walking out into the  big, scary world.   Equipped with the training I am giving them?  Nothing really prepares us for this job fully.

And my, oh, my, have they ever taught me some things about life? At least I'd like to think I've learned some things while trying my best to raise them. I'm sure they will continue to teach me many more new things as we stumble our way through minute by minute. 

Structure:  Whenever there is a breakdown or chaos within the house, it's usually due to the fact that the daily schedule has fallen apart.  Daily tasks, and schedules MUST be drawn up and seen thru.  Consequences laid out as well {this is so hard to follow thru with for me, but when I don't...things worsen}.
Laugh: I'd be a big, tight mess without it.
Listen: I don't always know EVERYTHING.  Listening gives them a sense of individuality, and a voice. Also, find out what they feel, think, see before and while they are teens with big social lives.

One on One Time:  My mom and dad did this with nine kids!   Bless their hearts in heaven!!  Life is crowded in a big household, and it's hard to get a word in edge-wise with some of the fighting, and the hustle-bustle.  Time out or just a five minute talk one-on-one each night at bed time helps to "build up" a strong realization that this person and all their activities really do matter.
Lead by being Good:  They watch everything and take in all that we do, whether we realize it or, working hard to do everything we can "right"... is a good goal to have.  "Do your best" is what my parents told me I like to tell myself and my kids this daily, too. 
Fess-Up:  As a mom, I make mistakes all the time. I think it shows humility and strength to fess up to mistake.  Own them and say, "I shouldn't have done that, I will NOT let that happen again." I WILL do better.
Give High-Fives, Not Lingering Applause:  I won't be a gushing mom, because I think this can make kids have an inflated sense of themselves. I can still let them know I'm proud of them step by step along the way to build the confidence they'll need in the real world.
Honey Time: Keeping a tight, partner relationship is key to keeping the household structure running smoothly and happily too. If we are good partners to each other, the kids will feel good too. Being on the same page will ensure that no loop-holes are discovered.  I like to think of it as a good-business-type partnership with kisses all around.

Me, as the baby girl.

Eleanor, Louis, Charlie, and Sylvie

Eleanor, 16yrs

Louis, 15yrs
Charlie, 11yrs

Syl, 2010

Baby A. due this late summer
Will and Me, 2009


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Mothers Day Giveaway + Gift Guide {Day 1}

At Pickwick House, I'm getting ready for Mothers Day + I'm giving away something I reeeaaallly adore.  A pretty little candle made of soy, hand-poured, and smells of orange blossom.   It makes me happy and it comes packaged in a darling white box with a gold wax seal!

 To enter the give-away, just share a sweet little memory or a testimony below on how your mom has influenced your life.  Be sure to leave your email address. If you blog, or tweet, or facebook a link to my blog and/or Pickwick House, you'll be entered again.  I'll announce a winner on Mothers Day.  Hearing stories from you will make my day!  {I didn't think I'd share my own testimony, but I did at the bottom.

AND, to my dear sweet local followers:   Come into the store today thru Saturday....mention that you are a blog follower, and you'll receive a 10% discount.  In addition if you are a facebook a note or link about Pickwick House' to your page, we'll give you a free gift that will be on hand this weekend for you to pick up and give to your mom.  I do hope you'll come in.

A Mom's Day Gift Guide from Pickwick House:
Soy-Based, Hand-Poured into Pretty Glass + Darling Box {$32}

Custom Made Lonie Mae Pillow with Down Insert {$58}

Rosemary in a Metal Pot {$35}

Framed Jane Troup Print {$55 & $65}

Victoria Hagan Book {$58}

Butterfly kisses to my mom up in heaven.  Mom: Thanks for making the ordinary pretty extra-ordinary.  What did you do when handed some lemons?  You not only made The Lemonade, but you made Cute Lemonade Stands everywhere...on anything and everything you touched...all out of Trash Piles.   Wish you were still here and could see all your lemonade coins.  Love you!


Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Spring is Here!

How's your week going?   Mine's going great. It's MAY! Yay...and with that comes the kick-off to wedding season and just all around general outdoor fun and parties.  Isn't this alfresco above fun?  What plans are you making for outdoor fun?

The first wedding we're {kendra and I} doing is with a local girl.  She's global, though.  She's "THE Nicest Girl with Big ideas".  We'll letcha in on it in a few...

Anyhow, We're pretty excited to be collaborating on what will be an amazingly one-of-a-kind event with the bride and her team.  And we are beyond flattered that she's asked us to share some DIY's on her amazingly popular blog this coming month.

Baby A is getting bigger and I was asked twice yesterday if I'm having twins.  What would your response be to that?  Sometimes I laugh and other times I want to cry...{oh, boy, the hormones!!}

I DO love being pregnant, mostly.  So many people smile and wink, and offer cookies and drinks.  SOO, Soo sweet!  But, I do think a book should be written on "What NOT to say to a woman that's expecting."

{Does anyone know where this image is from?  I would love to know.}

Have a great "Springy" day!


Monday, May 2, 2011

NEW things

May is Here!  And with it, a lot of new things.

This Friday, we will be open for artwalk and highlighting several artists, sipping some bubbly, and lighting some candles.  The last artwalk around Pickwick Place was all abuzz and really fun!

{If you are a local artist, and are interested in being showcased, please email me.  We love promoting local artists}

Also, Artsfest, Mothers Day, and a Giveaway coming up soon!  Stop in the store to see our new finds and new lay-out, and say hello to me and our new interns. We've been working hard at finding new and cool things and would love to hear what things are looking for in your home and outdoor patios.  We also love to hear of any suggestions you might have!  We LOVE feedback!!

The image above is from the Sonia Delaunay exhibit at the Cooper Hewitt.  Delauney was a painter and a fabric designer and clothing designer.  I found this via Ms Blandings blog.  Check it out!

Have a great week everyone!