Video | The New Face of Small Business

Hello all! As some of you may know, I also run an online shop, The Inglenook Decor. I can’t believe it’s been three years since it’s launch in Fall 2009. Owning a small business, whether with a physical location or strictly online has been both exhilarating  and challenging, fulfilling and frustrating. This is a short video of me and two other Austin online shop owners, our short story by this gal. Hope you can check it out! To learn more about the current fate of small online shops, you should also check out Emily’s website here. The other lovely online shop owners are Magpie Fields and Oh Fox Vintage.

Life, Video
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Our Barcelona Holiday

Hello everyone! How was your Christmas? Did you get what you’ve always wanted? Today, I would like to do a little recap of our vacation in Barcelona earlier this month. We booked everything on a whim mid-November and is my husband and I gift to each other for the holidays. This is our *holiday* during the holidays. Here’s a few pics…

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la rambla

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street performers

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From top:

1. Placa Reail was one of my favorite spots in Barri Gotic. At night, there are small and medium sized plazas with Christmas Bazaar’s, farmer’s market filled with artisanal food items, etc.

2. We couldn’t have picked a better hotel, the Hotel Colon. Close to Placa Catulanya, right at the heart of Barri Gotic, our balcony {of which I had a daily photo op of course!} was a stone away from the Barcelona Cathedral. The St. Lucia market was ongoing as well and nativity sets abound as well as fresh winterberry ornaments.

3. La Rambla market was full of fresh produce and marbled meats, even goat heads which I chose not to show here 🙂 There were also live street statues and artists.

4. I am always in awe of little architectural details that is everywhere. Even simple drinking fountains and doors are works of art.

5. Al Fresco *Outdoor Cafe* dining is practically everywhere…all so quaint and where you can do your people watching.

6. Catalunyan food is pretty salty I think but we did feast on endless paella paired with a Sangria. We also overdosed on churros con chocolate. We did do some fine dining and may we recommend Cafe Accademia…we had to go twice. We also tried El Quatre Gatz which was a hotspot for the young Picasso. Although the interior was very reminiscent of the times, the food was mediocre, I thought. We also dined at Petit Comite at Passeig Garcia, the upscale and modern part of Barcelona. A word of caution…do not go to Cafe El Victor which is right across Hotel Colon and a few feet away from Barcelona Cathedral…service is awful!

7. Gaudi sure loves all those fruit of the loom looking things in his rooftops. So we definitely did all the museum and must see attractions. La Sagrada, Parc Guell, Picasso museum and other smaller museums. This one was taken from the Guell Palace which I think is a lesser known Gaudi creation in the heart of La Rambla.

8. There was always entertainment at Barri Gotic and lots of shopping!

9. These giant Christmas Ball ornaments with Nativity sets were magnificent in Placa St. Jaume.

10. The company was ok, no it was great! 🙂 It’s always amazing to travel with my husband.

I just love seeing and being in new places. So much to see, so much to know, so much to experience. Cheers to more years of adventure!

Life |
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Holiday Decorating at the Stevens

I’m not very big on holiday decorating and avoid to get kitschy at all cost. I am a bit late {the tree was up, oh about two days ago} and still catching with my To-Do list after our Barcelona holiday. This year, we decided to put a few things that signal the *holidays* in and around the house. We didn’t buy anything new, just things we already have, well except for the fresh tree of course and sooo happy that we actually have a winter berry tree in the yard. You can never go wrong with the beauty of nature, I think. So, here’s a few things we have up…

christmas at the stevens

christmas tree

Happy Friday everyone! Tomorrow is going to be busy with last-minute shopping. Do check out the shop for some lovely finds and remember not to have holiday road rage 🙂

Design & Decor, Life, Styling |
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Revisiting our Wedding

Well, hello friends! So, today me & the hubs are celebrating our second year anniversary. We’re busy checking out all the sights, the taste and yes, even the smells here in Barcelona. If you don’t mind, I wanna go down memory lane. I wanna share a few images of our lovely wedding at Laguna Gloria in this short and sweet slideshow.

SLIDESHOW

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SLIDESHOW

Ahhh, it was a magical night and it couldn’t be possible without Jason’s parents, sister and family and all my wonderful friends. To all of you…I really can’t thank you enough. Cheers to more anniversaries!

Photos by Jessica Otwell & Andrew Chan.

Life |
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Hola Barcelona!

Hola everybody! We are now en route to Barcelona! We can’t wait to check out the Gaudi Cathedral and La Sagrada Familia of course. I personally can’t wait to check out the chocolate museum, do some vintage shopping and people watch of course! Stay warm and cozy. Hasta Luego!

Life
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A Little Update on the Home Office

Happy Friday everybody! I just wanted to share a little update on the home office. It took me a while trying to decide which table to get in between my two white tufted chairs. I was wanting for it to be cohesive with my console | chest of drawers but still be on the affordable side. I was initially going towards one with a faux malachite top which…yikes was going to cost me $800 bucks or so. I went instead with the Renard Side Table from Ballard Designs. I thought the design was slick and timeless and at $179, it’s a steal! It came in one box and took me about ten minutes to assemble. Yes, I did it all by myself without help from the hubs. No tools needed either! It is polished steel though which didn’t have the gold/brassy hue of the other furniture in the space.

This is what it looked like before:

 

But there’s nothing a little paint can’t do. I always use leftover stuff, like leftover primer and acrylic paint. I had Folk Art Metallics in Antique Gold…a whopping $2.99 at Hobby Lobby. I did have to do four coats though.

And here it is now:

What do you think? My husband also finally got the West Elm panels up. We got the grommet velvet panels in iron in the living room and the home office. I think it’s the perfect texture and hue for the old house. The accessories are from the shop. Now, I just need some throw pillows in this area and it’s the perfect nook for guests or clients. I’ve already had some visits from friends that week and they loved lounging in the area while sipping on wine and munching on crackers and goat cheese.

Design & Decor, Life |
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Top 10 Reasons to Attend Design Camp | Sharon Taylor

At the end of October, I was lucky enough to attend the first ever Design Camp. It’s a conference + soiree hosted by celebrity interior designers Lori Dennis and Kelli Ellis and a slew of their friends who are equally experts and taste makers in the design world. It was an amazing experience. I’m starting a series appropriately called Top 10 Reasons to Attend Design Camp written by some of the people I was lucky to have met.

Today, Sharon of Sharon Taylor Designs is sharing her insight on the camp. She’s an event planner and an interior designer extraordinaire whose work has been featured in amazing mags like Better Homes and Gardens, Real Simple and the like. That mix of Rococo + Vintage mix room above? That’s actually one of her work. Cool beans, right?

That’s her in the lovely black ensemble in the top picture and looking chic en route to the class.

And here’s her Top 10 Reasons…

1. Networking: Chatting it up with fellow designers, industry experts, and colleagues.

2. Trending Alerts: Getting up to date on the latest design trends by experts and being exposed to visual trends as well as the descriptive lingo that we can later use with our own clients.
3. Camp counselors and expert panelists are genuinely interested in YOU!
4. Green Design: Learn about how and why it is so crucial for the world we live in today!
5. ‘Making Magic’: Inspiring speakers who moved me to the point of goosebumps.
6. ‘Decorate Fearlessly’: Moving me to think outside of my own comfort zone.
7. One on One Interaction: AWESOME experience with industry experts and publishers.
8. Book Signing: LOVED adding signed copies to my personal design library!
9. Making new lifelong friends! Laughter. Wine!
10. Extremely helpful tips on getting articles and projects published.

Thanks so, so much Sharon! Please stay tuned for more campers sharing their experiences. The next camp is in Atlanta. You must check it out…here’s how to register.

Design & Decor, Life |
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A Peek at our Thanksgiving Table

It’s been a week since Thanksgiving. I didn’t overdose on Turkey and all the trimmings this time as we went pretty low key. I wasn’t going to decorate the table but later decided I should. I thought making it look festive will give the feel of the holidays!

I decoupaged our table the week before {it was looking pretty shabby…it’s probably 10 years old} with this marbled paper. Plates and silverware are vintage from The Vintage Laundry, votive holders from the shop, this festive branch that gets used over and over again and the Venetian coasters are from the Philippines from my trip last year and winter berries from the trees in the yard.

Did you decorate your Thanksgiving table this year? I wanna see….

Design & Decor, Life, Styling |
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Ireland in Montesino

So, I must say the title sounds like a book or a travel blog, don’t you think? Me and a few creative friends got together for a photo shoot at a farm about an hour away from Austin. The drive to Wimberley, Texas was heavenly and the location serene. Our model have the longest legs ever and I’m always honored to work with such amazing people. Cristina, the wardrobe stylist extraordinaire for Austin Monthly [among other publications] and Wynn, who recently shot “The Makers” Project for Tribeza Magazine.

Here’s a few behind the scenes…

The beautiful skyline at Montesino Farms.

Our gorgeous model, Ireland with our other prop, Max, the dog.

Prepping the props for the shoot.

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Here’s a peek at the gorgeous photos….

THE TEAM:

Photographer: Wynn Myers

Wardrobe Stylist: Cristina Facundo

Make-Up & Hair: Makenzie Mahan

Model: Ireland for Wallflower Management

Behind the Scenes, Life, Styling |
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Grazie! Merci! Thanks!

I’m sure all of you are already getting into the hustle and bustle of the day. So, before I forget, I want to wish you a Happy Thanksgiving! So, aside from the bounty of today’s table…there are just so many things in our lives to be thankful for, don’t you think? The people around us, the experiences that enriches our lives and the goodness and beauty that’s everywhere [Yes it’s everywhere! You just have to open your eyes!].

To anybody that’s reading this…Grazie! Merci! Thanks!

Life
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