Saturday, May 10, 2014

Let's Do Brunch...Mother's Day

Mother's Day is tomorrow and I'm just now  making out my menu.  For dessert I want something easy, pretty, and light, if that makes sense. But I saw the embellished angel food cake on Pinterest the other day and can't stop looking at it!  Store-bought too!  Anyway, I'm off to walk the dog and Hubby, then on to some gardening a little cleaning and then to the store.  Happy Mother's Day!

Martha Stewart Bundt Cake

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Derby Time!

I was having lunch with my friend Colleen yesterday and she told me she was going to a Kentucky Derby party this Saturday. Colleen said she was working on making her own hat, that girl never ceases to amaze me!  Well, I've never actually been to the Run of the Roses but Hubby and I have been to the iconic Churchill Downs.  Indeed, a place to check out if you are ever in Louisville area. These roasted brown-butter pecans with rosemary from Southern Living caught my eye in case you need a quick, easy bite for Derby day!

Monday, April 28, 2014

Mother's Day Gifts for The Nature Loving Mom!

Bird Bingo!  Love the charming illustrations!!

Audubon's  Aviary - I gave this to my Mother-in-law for Christmas and could not help but peek through.  Beautiful book!

Gardening Gloves from Red Envelope

Thursday, April 24, 2014

The Classic Fisherman Cable-Knit Sweater!

Grace Kelly via Habitually Chic.  Love!!

I'm always a day late and a dollar short. Last year, the classic ivory cable-knit fisherman sweater was all the rave!  I've been obsessing over them since early Fall,  when I read this great post over at Habitually Chic, but I just never got around to getting one.  Now I do have one, but I don't really like it, so I'm not counting it.  In fact, I had it on the other day, but I was desperate and I want to step it up a notch.  

Just in case your wondering, why is it April and everyone else is shopping for Spring and Summer and I'm not? Well, this is why. Hubby and I finally booked our trip to Montreal and Quebec City. We leave in the middle of  May, and I've been warned to dress warm!  So here's my chance to finally grab that fisherman staple that I've been wanting.

Marina Rust pic via Vogue. Love it!!

Since I can only focus on a few things at once, my visions of tunics, white jeans and espadrilles will just  have to wait until I get back. Here are a few that I've rounded up, just in case your holiday takes you somewhere cold too, or you want to grab a classic staple at a really good price. Over at Brooks Brothers I found three: a shawl collar wool cable knit sweater, a long sleeve Aran cable knit turtleneck, and the V-neck cable knit Saxxon sweater. And just this afternoon I stepped out of my office and placed an order for two of them. So perhaps, being a day late sometime pays off, at least it did in this case.  

Also, found this one at L.L. Bean in the men's department. I loved it. Great price, but I'm petite, and I thought that it would be a little to big.  I should have checked the boys department.  Anyway, it's time  for me to move on so I can cross a few other things off my list. 

Here's another great post here that I found while searching for the fisherman.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Book Alert!

Last Friday evening, while browsing Pinterest, my latest obsession, I spotted a beautiful living room done in blue and white.  I knew immediately that the living room picture that I was ogling over was from One Man's Folly The Exceptional Houses of Furlow Gatewood.  Because earlier that week, perhaps it was Thursday, I had read a nice review over at The Peak of Chic.  Blue and white Chinese porcelain, simple cotton duck slipcover, nikko blue hydranges, a barn, and dawgs...doesn't get much better then that.  And written by one of my favoriate Southern writers too, Julia  Reed.  The release date for the book is April 22, just in time for a nice gift for Mother's day.  

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Arriving at Dogwood Living!

It wasn't until this past fall, while cleaning out drawers and such, that I came across some of my old business cards from my antiquing days. Many were old business acquaintances—from vendors who I would buy from, to innkeepers in the English countryside. One old business card instantly put a smile on my face. It was from a taxi cab driver named Babs. She had befriended me and my good friend Brandon. I even found the little pom poms that she had made for our luggage that day, right along with several other memories, all just thrown in a drawer. Naturally, with life, everything just got thrown by the wayside for years. In this case, these were in my old beat-up English secretary that you can't even open!

So a few weeks ago, one early Saturday morning while organizing some pictures, it finally occurred to me that it was time to get organized, and to get into the 21st century. I arrived at the decision to stop blogging incognito, jump on Pinterest, and perhaps send out a few tweets here and there.
Now the tricky part, the name! Of course something southern came to my mind. Southern Chic, Southern Charm, Southern not me at all. Then came magnolia...synonymous with the south. Magnolia Living, Magnolia Lifestyles, you name it, it was taken. I even found a located in Germany! And you know what, I don’t even have a magnolia tree. Forget magnolias...who needs 'em! 
I googled every Southern flower, tree, plant and finally arrived at dogwood. Dogwood Living - which more describe my lifestyle – southern, simple and I think pretty easy-going if I do say so myself. And it's awakening now...just like I am!

Lisa Mule'

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Pretty In Pink...for Mum!

Mother's Day is just around the corner, as all the sales promos in my mailbox keep reminding me. So I've pick out a few things for Mum and for some reason the color pink is on my mind. I don't really decorate that much with the color pink and I don't really wear too much pink either. I could probably count everything on one hand. In fact, the only pink things I buy are: collars, leashes, dog coats, which, of course, are for the dog.

Check out my "Pretty in Pink" Pinterest broad. It's still a work in progress, but I'll keep adding to it. So here you go, a few gifts for Mom in "Pretty in Pink". 

Above: pink wallet from Tory Burch in Tory Pink.

Refined Silk Cashmere wrap from J.Crew in Vintage Blush. Perfect little pop of color...I find!

The boat and tote bag from L.L. Bean in pink.  Perfect for Mom, or better yet the new mom-to-be.  Just don't forget the monogram...cute!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Let's Do Brunch!

Last year, on Good Friday, with my awful time management skills, I decided that I wanted to do a centerpiece using wheat grass.  We weren't even hosting a brunch but I love to wake on Easter morning to a pretty tabletop. Plus, I was determined to find it. Both image above and below from Good Housekeeping.

Here' a pretty tabletop...more my speed.  Using nests.  

Here's the wheat grass that I was looking for, but I quickly found out that you can't just walk into a health food store and come out with a nice full tray of it like this.  Image from Martha Stewart.

Both Images, above and below, from Real Simple

Here's another one more my speed. Pull out a soup tureen (I got mine from Target') I'll add what I find at the supermarket the night before.  Simple! 
Let's Do Brunch...continued!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Loving Ann Mashburn!

It's that time of year again, when I have absolutely nothing to wear.  This past Sunday, I spent the evening changing out all my clothes, although still a wee bit nippy here if you ask me.  But anyway, I felt a little pressure, I was starting to get the look from our fashionista...Gwen.  During my task, I discovered that I'm in desperate need of a skirt.  The one above is perfect for my daily routine and I love the one below for a evening out.  Both from Ann Mashburn

Monday, April 7, 2014

Brass...What Do You Think?

Early on, I once had a contractor who said, "Don't forget your hinges" at the time, I was like...what???  A few renovations later, I knew exactly what he meant.  It's those small simple changes that can really make a huge difference when renovating.  When doing our current house and replacing all the dated 70's hardware, I was looking for hardware with a warm patina, such as bronze or perhaps brass.  Although, for my bathrooms, I'm still a polished chrome or polished nickle type girl.  However, with one more bathroom to redo, I'm starting to rethink that.  Here's my case-in-point - where the hardware, brass in this case, certainly makes the room.
All pictures via Martha StewartI almost bought the cabinet brass hardware pulls (above) for my  kitchen.  Every time I'm at Home Depot I stop by to stare at them.  I do have a old washstand that could use some new brass hardware.  If I only had the energy and hadn't sworn off painting cabinets in my lifetime, I would do the above kitchen in a heartbeat! 
Here's the bathroom that has me convinced to use brass on my current bathroom renovation.  Here again, the brass takes center stage - Who can resist the old world elegance?  I certainly cannot!  Now,if I could only get my hands on a clawfoot tub, I'm in business.  Below, I love all the hardware - especially the toilet paper holder! 
So what do you think about the new brass?  As you can see...I love it!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Time for a Little Taste of Spring!

I spotted this recipe "Asparagus Soup with Perfect Sea Scallops" from Alex's Kitchen in House Beautiful last week.  I showed it to Hubby and he agreed it looked good and pretty easy to make!  Also, Alex suggested for lunch to serve it with croque-monsieur, which sounds pretty good after all the tomato soup and plain old grilled cheese sandwiches we've had this winter!  The only thing that I need to do now is pick up the scallops!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The Long Forgotten Guest Room!

Two years ago, around this time, my good friend Brandon (from Charleston) called to let me know that she would be breezing through Atlanta in a month or so. At the time, Hubby and I were on vacation in the Brandywine region.  After hanging up, I started thinking about our guest room that had been left for dead, Ellie didn't even go in there. However, we missed each other because of our schedules, so I escaped having to do the room.  
Last year, around this time, she calls again--she's passing through again. The short story, we had lunch and I drove her by our house.  So anyway, to facilitate finally wrapping up the long-forgotten guest room, I'm ditching my B & B scheme (see here) that I was starting to conjure up.  I've decided to change all bedding, duvets, sheets and shams - I'm going for a classic crisp blue and white look. I love the above room by Serena and Lily. Earlier today I was checking out all the different schemes I could the Gobi Embroidered sheets in Navy too!

I also like the look above Pottery Barn's Rayna Paisley....Hmmm!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

April Showers...

April showers bring May flowers! I know, I like green, even my regular barrista  points that out to me!  I just saw these rain boots from Tory Burch the other day.  Of course, I don't need them, because I already have the Hunter rain boots in green.  However, the last umbrella I bought was around this time last year and I was being cheap!  I bought it at drug store and, in our first torrential downpour, it practical blew away on me.  I've never replaced it, and I keep telling myself to get a nice, big umbrella (Hunter) like the ones the golfers use!  If it rains anything like it did last year here in the South - I may spring a wee bit more for one! 

Monday, March 31, 2014

Juliska Classic Bamboo plates...Gotta Have Them!

Easter, Mother's Day, perhaps a few Sunday evening soirees, just to name a few, are all entertaining occasions that are coming up. And I am in need of dinner plates, we currently have joke! They're Pottery Barn's Great White plates which I've had for years, I still like them and there easy to add too. But I'm starting to think, since I've always wanted these classic bamboo plates by Juliska now's my chance to mix them in.  I want everything in the collection, but I think that I will start with what I need, which are the dinner plates.  That way, in case, if we have more than three people over, I'll l be in good shape! Any other suggestions on incorporating some natural glamour to my table?  Just let me know!

I would love the flatware as steps though!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Leontine Linens...Obsession!

It's time to make over my bed!  It's been awhile and with Spring here, I'm more then ready to get going on it.  I need everything - new pillows, shams, sheets in particular, and a bed skirt.  So I'm currently obsessing over Leontine Linens, which are absolutely beautiful, not the least bit in my budget, and not the least bit practical for my household.  After all, look who does the laundry...see here Leontine Linens is a private company specializing in custom luxurious linens, based in New Orleans.  It all started here with the January issue of Southern Living, Cathy Kincaid made over a small space and created the beautiful bedroom that you see above.  Then there was the February issues of House Beautiful, Sara Ruffin Costello uses then in a preppy and southwestern combo style. Below are a few that will show you just what I mean!!

 Love this by Avera Wagner a Design Firm out of Dallas.  Did I mention I need a headboard too! 

By Kati Ridder - Love the embroidered chopstick monogram! All image above via Leontine Linens

Aerin Lauder's home in the Hampton's shot for Elle Decor which I've always loved!

I'm very much drawn to Leontine linens, love their signature monograms and unique borders.  Indeed a great way to freshen up your bed. While pouring over their website I did notice coming April 1st  - I'll be back! 

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

A Spring Essential!

My lemon obsession continues, although this time it's not food.  During our snow storm last month, I cleaned out my old cosmetics case, which was a with purchase.  So since I'm not really into wearing  floral or fruit, a dose of lemons on a cosmetic case will do!  Nice to take on vacation... don't you think?  If I were only going to Capri!

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Bowood by Colefax & Fowler - Gotta Have It!

My Southern Living arrived at my door last Thursday afternoon. At about ten o'clock that evening, finally some down time to browse. While browsing, the one thing that got my eye was “Chintz Back In Bloom!”...really! But what really got my attention, though, was when the talented Ruthie Sommers said that her favorite chintz was Bowood in Grey/Green by Colefax and Fowler. It happens to be mine as well...imagine that. Ruthie stated “it was a fabric that could have been in a ladies locker room at a country club”. It got me thinking of all the places around Atlanta that could use a nice dose of Bowood, and one in particular, my guest room, that has been left for dead. Anyway, come Friday morning Bowood was still on my mind.
That afternoon, my House Beautiful April issue arrived...what was on the cover? Bowood...that’s right. This time around, the whole house was done in just that one particular fabric. Bowood, in the gray/green colorway—and I stress it has to be gray/green, you know me and my greens—is one of my favorite patterns. For me, it very much epitomizes that English country style that I've always loved. So here are a few that I rounded up. 
Last year, I wrote this when I was thinking of painting my guest room Elizabeth Mayhew's Gray Owl. Here she used Bowood on the headboard. I love how she kept the bedding and everything else very simple! Indeed, this is one way I would use it!

Here you have another one of my favorites - Gil Schafer's  guest room wallpapered in Bowood.

From House and Garden - Love the color of the door too!

Below is fashion designer Tory Burch's home located in the Hamptons - Bowood is used just on the right-hand sofa in the living room. When I googled Bowood, of course, Cote' de Texas popped right up, and I agree with her like I usually do on everything else. It's “fresh and clean”! I've seen this room several times and never noticed the Bowood sofa – how can that be? 


Thursday, March 20, 2014

Finding French Macarons in the South!

As I type this post, I'm staring at a dog-eared image of French macarons and a LADUREE business card that is sitting on my desk.  I don't know why but I have an obsession with LADUREE and their famous French Macarons.  Perhaps, it's those  beautiful colors of the macarons or that pretty green box that there packaged in...I don't know!  My friend Catherine went to Paris a few years back. I had mentioned to her my obsession with LADUREE (the very famous French tea saloon who perfected the macaron) and one place that I have never been to while in Paris. That afternoon,while chatting with Catherine, I do hope that I did not hint too much to her about my obsession because, later when she arrived back to the States, she called me the next day with excitement and mentioned that she had a perishable from Paris that she needed to give me right away! 
Catherine went way beyond the call of duty and I'm still grateful, especially when she told me about the long line that she waited in to get them!  Later that evening Hubby and I devoured every single one of them.  And yes, beyond that pretty green box and the actual beautiful looking macarons themselves, there really very good!  Take my word!  My empty box sits in a bowl where I keep my keys and sunglasses, and it reminds me of my friend Catherine. 
While reading the March issue of Living, Martha shows us how to make French macarons.  However, I know my culinary skills and this would not end will!  With spring comes lots of showers and hostess gifts, and if your anything like me, you just want to arrive at your destination with a beautiful package.  Or if your a hostess, like me, better yet, you just want to pick something fancy up and set it on a platter.  Guess what? If you don't have a trip to Paris lined up or even New York - I found a few places here in the you go! 
Sucre' - Located in New Orleans, my brother-in-law's neck of the woods. And my friend Coleen is heading there this weekend, who was asking me for suggestions and I couldn't give her anything, until now. And no that is not a hint Coleen! Gluten free too mind you!  I love the box - Perfect hostess gift and they ship. 
Alons - For all my Dunwoody friends!
Douceur de France - Better yet! Located in Roswell my neck of the woods and just around the corner from my house.
Star Provisions - For all my inside of the perimeter friends.   
But if you're anything like me, you just enjoy looking at them! 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

A Little Perfume Dilemma!

Last Saturday evening while I was getting ready for date night, my little perfume dilemma resurfaced. There I was staring at my one little perfume that I have worn for many years, now reminding me of my burden. Don't laugh, but I've worn Amarige by Givenchy now for more then a decade. I discovered it way before I was married, even got my mother-in-law hooked on it.

Last fall, every magazine that arrived in my mailbox had an article on all the new fragrances coming out, with expert advice right along with tips for purchasing the perfect scent! Some good advice - so why then do I have this dilemma?  


Closer to the holidays, the week before Christmas to be exact, my allure to revamp my dated perfume came when Ms. Gwen arrived in my office wearing a lovely fresh scent that I thought I could do. Now, my time management skills are not the best – there is always Christmas shopping that I always put off until the week before, dinner parties that I wait until last minute to throw, and then there was work. Does sitting at my hairdresser and pulling out samples count as testing a perfume? I did take a few minutes while out doing a little Christmas shopping to whip by the perfume counter. I almost bought one because I liked the bottle, but left empty-handed, and that is where I am today. Any suggestions?

Monday, March 17, 2014

Craving Yellow!

After the last couple of days here in Atlanta, I'm craving a little yellow.  Image below from Better Homes and Garden.