Saturday, October 31, 2009

Out and About Halloween night!

~A new costume creation.  Really loving how the "Masked Butterfly" came out.~

It turned out to be a beautiful day, very mild and sunny here in the Boston area.  Turning out to be a great night for Trick-or-Treating.

Some homes in our neighborhood... We are headed out now.  It is tradition to go to the Tootsie Roll residence, yes they live here (not in homes pictured).  It is a tourist attraction and they hand out tons of their candy.  It is so much fun.

Happy Halloween and stay safe!
*All images taken by "Living it at Home"

Friday, October 30, 2009

On the Eve...

~~My Centerpiece~~

My daughter said that I didn't decorate enough.  I dug through all my boxes and came up with...

*Tattered and torn is all the rage*

Till tomorrow then...

*Images taken by "Living it at Home".  Last image, witch legs, unknown.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Lamp Love Update For Living Room

Here is my inspiration reading lamp for my living room (brass reading lamp lower right).  I have finally discovered that the lamp is by Mattaliano, to the trade.   I had posted this image before on earlier post, and Victoria from Art House Design was very helpful in tracking down this floor lamp for me, she was very nice to do so.   Thank you!  You can see my post about my "Before and After" of my living room here.   I have a reading area with two chairs and an ottoman that needs light.

*Image-House Beautiful

Here are the three lamps below that I think would work.  Top is from Circa Lighting.  I think this lamp will be the least expensive and probably in our price range. The next two are very good looking lamps and are from Galleri Des Lampes in France, to the trade.  They are really close to what I am looking for.  Very simple and small. I know that these are going to be way out there in price.

While researching floor lamps, I came across some other lights that I love.  It would be great to find a place for them all!  I think I need several houses to decorate.  Anyway, I am sure once I make my decision, I will stumble upon something else I like.  Don't you hate when that happens?  Just when you think you settled on something, up pops something you love just to confuse you more.  I am not a designer.  I am a "wanna be" designer.  I love looking at rooms and magazines (tearing page after page), searching for that one thing, or studying how a picture of a room is put together.  I think I am getting the hang of it.  However, if you are a designer or are working with one, you have access to endless resources, and you are so lucky! That is one perk that I am lacking.  But, I am still going to have fun and keep trying.  It makes me happy~ (I do stress a lot too!)           
 *The really cool looking lamps are from Oly,Wisteria, and Galerie des Lampes

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Getting it together slowly-before and after

I thought I would show some of the work we have done in our home.  It took me a long time to do anything in our living room.  When we moved in 4 years ago, the house was decorated in a very traditional manner.  The living room had wall to wall cream carpet, looked almost white.  I don't know how you live with white carpet when you have kids and pets!  Anyway, got rid of that, had all hardwood floors redone on the first floor.  Then it came time to paint.  For me, it was agonizing picking the colors for each room.  I think the reason was because we didn't have much furniture to pull a color from.  Actually had nothing for this room.  It sat vacant for 4 years.  My daughter loved using this  room to practice dancing in.

I had painted swatches all over the place...I really love gray.  Now that I look at this picture of before, I kind of like the light walls.  Looks better in this picture though.  Was very worn out and needed some color.

Living room after...

The color we went with is called Camouflage by Benjamin Moore.  We finally purchased some furniture.  We had a designer help us.  It turned out to be a long, expensive process.   However, the designer really helped us with the arrangement in the room and with furniture selections that would work best.  The ottoman was costum made.  It is this beautiful "mossy green/brown".  Notice beautiful fringe detail on it.   It is my favorite piece.  It really isn't supposed to be in the middle of the room.  However, we still have 3 more chairs to buy.  Two flanking the fireplace (the wing chairs you see aren't in the right place) and one next to the sofa.  We still need a coffee table and 4 more lamps.  We are taking it a piece at a time, due to the expense.  Or, I am going to get very creative with other pieces.   I have arranged the furniture for now to make it look like the room is finished.  It still feels plain, needs more furniture and places to sit for entertaining.  And a more personal touch....

  Still missing much of our furniture.  Room looks empty.  The large painting we picked up in San Francisco at the Hespe Gallery .  We had a hard time finding a proper place for it due to wall space.  That is why we hired a designer.  She was able to give us ideas and best way to arrange furniture and fabrics to work with the painting.  Whenever I placed furniture with too much pattern on it, it really didn't work in the room.  The painting by Eric Zener really dominates the room.  (Always thought we would have a bigger house or larger walls for it, not the case here).

This picture looks really nice.  I love my sea grass rug.  It is from Meridian.  We had it custom sized.  The fireplace is really beautiful and has great architectural details.

I am nuts over roman shades.  These had to be custom ordered.  Look better in person.  The shade is made with linen and has a decorative trim.

Sofa is from O Henry house at Boston Design Center.   Notice different styles mixed together.  Still a very serene design.  I need 8 pillows for living room.   They were very expensive at about  $400 to 500 a piece.  Decided to forget that right away, too expensive.  Went to Restoration Hardware and got these pillows on sale.  Still looking for more pillows!

This is a very pretty pillow, looks great against neutral material on sofa.  Also works with painting.  I don't mean to match it, just compliment it.

This is how the two wing chairs are to be arranged.  When you walk into our living room, this is the reading area positioned at the end of the room.   The chairs are Manor Wing chairs from Icon group, at the Boston Design Center.   The fabric is linen.  I love linen.  The fabric has light brown ticking stripes in it.  Need two kidney pillows here.  We need two reading lights here.  The light you see is something I picked up at Restoration Hardware during a store closing.  Just using it temporarily.  I have seen many floor lamps that I like on Circa Lighting.

Here are three reading lights I am considering for this spot from Circa Lighting .  They have gorgeous lights.  What lamp would you choose?  I need advice.

Aren't they great?  I have been searching, however for a particular floor lamp I saw in a magazine (image below, reading lamp next to chair), but have had no luck.  Darn!  Has anyone seen anything like this?  I have searched every lighting web site, looked in all the local lighting shops in the Boston area.  Not using a designer anymore, so trying to finish home by myself.

This is a good looking room.  Notice the all the textures used here.  I think image is from Traditional Home or House beautiful.  Not sure though.  Sorry!   I would like to find a basket for next to my fireplace and the white little ceramic table is very sweet.  Need to find that lamp.  It is probably too expensive anyway!!!!

Here is another scanned image from Traditional Home or House Beautiful magazine.  I am only looking at the lamp here.  Looks just like the one in prior image.  Of course magazine doesn't mention where they got it from!  I really don't like when they do that!  The lamp is behind tall wing chair next to large bookcase.

I hope you enjoyed looking at photo's of my living room.  I still have a lot of work ahead in finishing my home.  With the living room, it came out a bit more sophisticated than I wanted it to be.  I need to cozy it up a bit with treasured finds and unique objects.  That may take a long time, but it will be fun and a journey I will enjoy.
*images from Living It At Home*

Friday, October 23, 2009

Scary Finger Cookie Recipe

Here is the recipe for the spooky fingers.  These cookies will be a hit!  Thank you for your question about it!  

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup confectioner's sugar
1 Egg
1 tsp almond extract
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 2/3 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3/4 cup almonds, whole blanched (not sure what blanched means, I just bought "slivered" almonds for the nails)
1 tube red decorator gel
 Preheat oven to 325

Cream the butter with powdered sugar.  Mix in egg, and extracts until creamy.  Sift and add the dry ingredients.  Blend to make a soft dough.  Wrap and refrigerate dough until it is easy to work with (about 15-20 minutes).  Roll into a finger shape about 3" long and 1/2" thick (They will rise when baked so make them smaller than you'd like the finished finger to be).  Place finger on lined cookie sheet.  Using a butter knife, lightly press a flat nail bed shape at the end of the finger and cut 3 lines in the middle of the finger to form knuckles.  Press lightly above and below knuckle to make finger more realistic (give it shape).  Bake at 325 degrees for 20-25 minutes.  Remove from oven and let cool for 3-5 minutes.  Put a bit of red gel in the nail bed and press the almond fingernails into the end of the finger.

*Arrange fingers on a nice platter, add some spiders to crawl over fingers.

Have fun making these!

                      *Images and recipe from "Living It At Home"