Sunday, October 18, 2009

Outdoor Fall Arrangements

I finally decided to stop pining for warm weather and embrace autumn by putting out mums and pumpkins. I love to decorate our front porch: it’s a classic set up and so welcoming for company. Pumpkins of all varieties are placed around a potted mum and an articulated skeleton on the front door provides a nod to Halloween. We don’t often use the front door, so I wanted another arrangement that we could enjoy from inside. I set up a centerpiece for our patio table just outside our dining room, now we can all enjoy the colors of the season from the warmth of the dinner table. Someday, I will get my wish to put out a GIANT pumpkin worthy of the great pumpkin himself.

Look for plants with just a few open flowers and lots of buds to ensure that they will last longer, perhaps even till Thanksgiving! Don’t forget to water your mums and other fall plants…though that’s not an issue in Seattle this time of year.

When it comes to pumpkins gather them in all shapes and sizes, and pick ones with the longest stem as they stay fresh longer. Don’t carry the pumpkin by the stem or it will break off. I added several squashes to the arrangement which provide various shades of green.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Phinney Staging: Fruit + Flower Refresh

When your house is on the market, there are lots of simple tricks to make your home as welcoming as possible to a potential buyer. A quick trip to the grocery store can provide you with some inexpensive accents that will make your home feel a bit more polished:

Fruit: A big bowl of green apples are a great accent to any room. They are bright, fresh and welcoming. We used a bowl of apples on a small table next too the front door. Depending on the season you could also use lemons and limes, pomegranates or clementines.

Flowers: I prefer arrangements of one flower in one color epically in a staging project. The flowers should blend in with the room, complimenting another color in the space. You don’t need a huge arrangement to stand out as the only thing a possible buyer might remember. Always keep the flowers tidy and fresh – dried out or dying flowers will send the wrong message to a future home owner.

Here I used green hydrangeas in the dining room (in this case we went for a tall arrangement to help hide a poorly placed outlet). A small tight arrangement of white roses in the bedroom complements the color palette.

White Pottery: My collection of white pottery came in handing as another accent piece throughout the home, offering a unified feel without taking anything away from the architectural details of the house.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Illuminating Style

Over the past few months I've spent a lot of time looking for a dining room light fixture. There are so many to choose from, and it’s easy to get overwhelmed. But I know what I like and I like these:

From West Elm comes this Capiz Pendant that fits the bill perfectly for a client’s need for a bit of femininity in a house full of men. Her 10 year old son collects rocks and shells and she wanted to feature that somehow in the d├ęcor. Not only is this a great tie in, it’s super chic.

Who knew Jonathan Adler had a lighting line at Lamps Plus? He's so cleaver when it comes to adding an extra flourish to classic designs. The chain-link detail makes this drum fixture even more sleek and urban. I'll admit it - the client for this light is me!

This fixture from Restoration Hardware takes the drum shade to a very stylish new level. The two-tiers, though unadorned, add drama to any dining room. You can get great deals at Restoration Hardware during their lighting sales…which happens to be on right now.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Sofas I Love

Delicious is the first word that came to mind when I saw the Ted sofa at Velocity Art and Design . I love the classic modern lines. The showroom piece was covered in sea foam (gorgeous!) but you can get it in a wide range of colors. Think of all the fun you could have accessorizing it with pillows.

Okay, technically this is a love seat but look how stunning it is! This little lovely is from designer John Derian, covered in Belgian linen and made with sustainable hardwoods. I love the reverse camel-hump with the dip in the middle. Hmm, I wonder if it’s comfortable. I’ll have to check it out on my next trip to Portland (available at Cielo Home) or Derian’s own shop in NYC.