Larry’s Old Time Trade Days

When in Southeast Texas and it’s the weekend after the first Monday of the month, you’ll likely find me at Larry’s Old Time Trade Days [aka Winnie Trade Days]. Why? Well, because I love flea market & vintage shopping! So, this trip was March of this year. Let’s see what caught my eye this time…

Now, I wanna start this collection! Vintage salt & pepper shakers!
This pair is a beaute!
White milkglass is always adorable. Too bad I only needed compotes which I of course forgot to take pictures of. I got a pair of gorgeous ones!
And I bought both of these. Need a place for lovely trinkets anyone?
And beveled vintage mirrors are just classic!
Here’s a bad picture of me thinking…Where can I put this vintage furnace?
And my daughter wearing her coffee cup necklace & pondering on who knows what.
I think these cast iron hooks are lovely. Paint or decoupage them to add your unique touch.
What’s a flea market without some greasy but scrumptious grub? Presenting the funnel cake.
So, my take on this place:

Location: So easy to get to! Exit 829 on I-10 in Southeast Texas in Winnie.

Selection: lots but not all are necessarily the good kind.
Staff: Depends on the stall vendor but overall people were friendly & helpful.
Pricing: Very good. You can get good deals here, the goods are sold cheaper here & you can haggle much easier.
So according to our Mason Jar Rating system, I give it 4 Mason Jars. This flea market is good so if you’re in town & the timing is right, it’s worth a visit!

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Taking Sides: Dark versus Light Walls

Light walls or dark walls, I am simply torn! Well, at our own space, it’s dark walls right now but after a few months I was wanting to change it up and go towards a lighter scheme. Dark walls makes it warmer and cozier, light walls makes it bright & refreshing. And here’s more tidbits of information {yet again from this talented gal}: Dark walls with light floors create a floating sensation; Light walls with dark floor draws attention upwards. Let’s see, samples of dark walls…

Versus Light Walls

Which side are you on? Onto the dark side or bright side?

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101 Things to Collect and Display

Ok, maybe this is not exactly a list of 101 things but below are images and tons of other ideas of things or stuff you may collect, probably already collecting or already collected and just baffled on how to display them. One of the things I hear from clients and friends when designing and decorating their homes is, they have clutter, junk, knick knacks that they just don’t know how to display. According to Meg Mateo Ilasco’s book, The Space Planner; “clutter when arranged sculpturally or organized skillfully can be transformed into a thing of beauty. ” I couldn’t agree more.
Here are some ideas:
1. Hats…whether they’re used or not can be arranged vertically or horizontally with simple hooks. I’ve seen them framed above a bed as well {genius idea from this creative gal}.
2.  Apothecary bottles…of course, right? Whether clear, in cobalt blue or green glass is best above the mantle or ledges.
3. Postcards….from vintage shops or from your travels, get coordinating frames and do a wall collage. As soon as you have at least 5, go ahead & display them and just add more as you go along!
4. Vintage cameras….stack or line them up or place inside pictureless frames…voila 3D one-of-a-kind art.

5. Plates…whether vintage or non-vintage is best displayed just by themselves {with museum glue} and not on a shelving.

6. Vintage book covers…lay them out in a square or rectangle. A non-symmetrical collage is ok too as long as you have tons of them & will fill up a wall like artwork.
7. Fez dispensers & other little things….since each one is a bit different, lay all of them out symmetrically. Make a display that’s proportional to the wall size.
8. Vintage clocks…suspend big ones. Small ones on mantle & ledges, above books or screw them to the wall.
9. Pottery or ceramics…are great in bookcases, credenzas and armoires.
10.  Cigar boxes…can be stacked or framed. They are sooo gorgeous as the artwork is truly unique.
11. Sign Letters…the bigger the better, put them on the floor or up on the wall or above dressers, bookcases or armoires. They can spell out something but don’t have to.
12. Woven baskets…ok, this maybe overkill but you get the idea. Plus points if they came from your travels.
13. Vintage spools….let them stand, hang them with nails or place in a shadow box.
14. Framed quotes…the more inspiring and motivating they are, the better. Buy them in print or do-it-yourself. So easy!
15. Doilies…can be undulating like this.
And more ideas…
Vintage tin cans & boxes, birdcages, seashells, coral & sea fans, cobbler shoe forms, demijohns, decoupage plates, soap wrappers {the ones from Claus Porto are adorable!}, vintage trunks, mirrors, favorite gift wrap paper {after all, they will be vintage in a few years}, vintage knobs, vintage book paper, coffee grinders, wooden cheese boxes, milk bottles, mason jars. The list can go on & on. Happy collecting!

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There’s a perfectly good reason why my wait for Christian Lemieux’s decorating book ironically titled Undecorate took so long to arrive. Actually, it wasn’t late. I order so many books from Amazon & apparently have 3 or more shipping addresses there. I’ve become more & more nomadic as I get older staying with friends, family, hotels, B & B’s when I’m gone for business or pleasure {although business is always done with pleasure as one should:)} that I accidentally click the 2nd place where I’m at, well 25-50% of the time.Well, it was definitely worth the wait. The hardbound book is full of swoon worthy images of interior spaces & of course inspiring information and ideas from the creative director & founder of Dwell Studio {yes, they have a line of linens,etc at Target}. She is of course in my Top 10 women I admire the most, along with along with the Rachel Ashwell’s and Tara Shaw’s of this world.

I do think it’s a must buy|must read even if you’re not a design enthusiast. It’s divided into sort of the personalities of varying dwellers; The Decorators without Borders, The Career Opportunists, The Incurable Collectors, The Imperfectionists, The Self-starters & The Environmentalists. I betcha you fall into one of these. If you’re not into “structure” or just cringe at the word decorating {believe me some people do!}, you probably will appreciate this book, after all it’s about undecorating!

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Geometric Terrariums

What is a terrarium?ter·rar·i·um  

: a glass container, chiefly or wholly enclosed, for growing and displaying plants.
I’ve always had a love for terrariums, they’re like little green houses where I can put my herbs & succulents… only if they will only live for longer than a few weeks before me having to replenish them again. I found these ones via Better Living Through Design . Yowzers, geometric, fun ones…adore! Hmmm, the price may be a little steep  {$100 to >$300} but I’m thinking of getting the small one.
…still thinking

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HWY 237: The Antique Heaven Highway

Come Spring & Fall [April & September with smaller shows in the Summer & Winter], Highway 237 in Texas is busting in the seams with antique shows, dealers and buyers from all over America [if not the world folks!]. This is truly antique highway heaven & one [again, if not the biggest] that should not be missed by any antique or vintage maven.So, let me give y’all an idea as to where this place is at, it’s midway between Austin & Houston. The map states it’s a 2 hour drive from Austin but apparently I can make it in one and 15. It hits HWY 290 East in the North & HWY 71 in the South hitting the small town of La Grange. Antique shows are all over many towns close to the highways including Carmine, Shelby, Fayetteville, Burton, Bellville, Oldenburg & Rutersville and of course, the very well known shows at Warrenton, Roundtop & Marburger.

As soon as you get in the area, get yourself a copy of the Antique Show Daily Mag {this is by no means an Elle Decor or House Beautiful looking mag} but the map above {found in the center of the magazine} is only a sixth of the whole map itself with tons of information. The ads from dealers look homemade & antiquated as well {tsk!tsk! Somebody, please get them to talk to a graphic artist!}.

Anyway, I was there for 3 whole days with an antique-loving couple {I think it’s just the wife that loves it as the hubby mostly sat & patiently waited for us—-too sweet!} for their Spring show. I’ll unveil more images in the next posts but here’s a sneak peek {thanks to Tippi, budding photographer extraordinaire!}.

 {yes, that’s me pondering & making sure I’m taking mental pictures of all the vignettes}Happy Monday everyone!

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Umm…What is a Pelmet?

To be a design & decor enthusiast and not know what a pelmet is pure travesty. Gasp! And to think I only knew about that word a week ago. I was extremely worried at first but then I remembered a friend who didn’t know what condiments were or the decorator acquaintance who didn’t know what sconces are for. Yikes! We laughed about it of course but in any genre, knowledge is power & even something as trivial as terms like this is important.So, a pelmet is a wood box cut to shape, usually padded & covered with a fabric [definition via Domino Decorating Magazine] to accent windows & curtains. So, basically it’s a type of cornice, you know, the horizontal decorative molding around the wall of a room. I took the liberty of drawing different pelmet shapes for you in french macaroon colors [you’re welcome…ha!ha! now, I’m craving for those sweet things!].

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Have you been Flor {ed} Before?

Seriously, why didn’t I think of this idea before? For some of you who haven’t heard of Flor {really?why?}, they are this design company who makes rug tiles. Simple, yet ingenious right? I mean, how hard is it to find the perfectly-sized rug without spending an arm and a leg? Well, I’ve been getting the Flor catalog for a while but have yet to sample or buy it {c’mon if I buy stuff from every catalog I get, I’ll be dead broke}. I’m thinking their  my lucky day to sample their product is soon. I’m designing a loft right now and the client is asking for cool and contemporary. Here are the contenders.

Fine Feathers
Hmmm, so which one will it be? Will I be floored at the result? We’ll have to wait and see…

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Wee! A Write-Up at Statesman

When I was away, the Austin American Statesman published a write-up about how we’re turning our condo into our current urban cottage. Sweet! The interview & photo shoot happened a few days before I left. I just saw the real write-up just a few days ago, the actual paper {thanks to Melissa!}…woohoo! Here it is:

Thanks to the wonderful & amazing lifestyle writer, Amy Gabriel. She’s also the editor-in-chief for Go Tidbitsin Austin, Houston, San Antonio, Dallas & New Orleans {I’ve also heard they’re expanding nationwide…congratulations girls!}. It has been so amazing to know her, she’s very fun & quirky, stylish & Bohemian chic.

Here are some pics from the shoot:

Here’s a link at their website. And the gallery here. So weird to see our little space…so honored. Thanks again Amy & to the Statesman!

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Kitchen Back to Basics

I’m still under the woes and bad spells the retail industry has reported. But despite the overwhelming negativity, there is some positive news. One retail giant has exceeded their sales from last year…Wal-Mart. I know, it didn’t come as a surprise to any of you, but it seems like even the high-income earners has decided to buy just the basics. I still yearn for the design & exclusivity of other retailers such as DWR (Design within Reach) which targets the urban rich & Williams-Sonoma, the traditional rich. Ikea also continues to give alternatives that are overwhelmingly cheap & somewhat trendy & stylish at the same time.

Let’s look at some common kitchen gadgets. First up, the metal can opener, it may be just a couple of bucks at Wal-Mart. A better-looking one is available at Ikea for $9.
Better yet, from DWR, it’s $32.
Serving trays anyone? Cherry wood serving trays, set of three is only $32 at Williams-Sonoma.
But at DWR, a set of 2 will set you back $350. Why? Well, they are crafted from forest-salvaged Douglas fir.

While, the klack tray from Ikea is only $4.99.

How about kitchen timers? The top of the line at Wal-Mart has a modern edge & cost about $9.
It has a close resemblance to what Ikea has to offer which is about the same price.

At Williams-Sonoma, it is $32.

So are the basics good enough for all kitchen gadgets? I’m not an avid cook & I’m not a fan of hanging-out in the kitchen anyway. My bread just stays on top of the kitchen counter but I know that this bread box which rings in at $240 at DWR is a must-buy for somebody out there.

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