Flowers

Pick Your Own Flower Fields

July 27, 2016

If you live in the city like me, chances are you get fresh flowers at a farmers’ market, florist, grocery store kiosk, maybe your backyard or balcony (if you have one) or a delivery service. In Germany, and I believe also in some other EU countries, you can take a short drive out to the countryside and you’ll spot “Selbstschneiden” Flower Fields or Pick Your Own. I love these fields!

Pick Your Own Flower Fields

Pick Your Own is based on a sorta honor system – the field has no one visible to buy the flowers from, rather there is a little stand with a list of how much a flower costs (like a Sunflower may be between .25 -.80 per stem) or you can buy in bunches by cutting your flowers, tying them and inserting into 3 various holes on a board at the stand – each hole is labeled with the price for that bundle.

Pick Your Own Flower Fields

The stand has small vegetable knives with the ends cut off, small scissors and a donation box with a lock. Also string for binding and a big basket or bin on the ground so you can clean the stems of excess leaves before you go.

It’s such a pleasure that I’ve indulged in since moving to Germany. There are so many of these fields in my region, some are as close as 15 minutes by car, that I’ve lost cost. The typical flowers are gladioli, sunflowers (large and small) and dahlias in all colors. You can also find daisies, poppies and much more depending on how creative the person planting the field is. Some have only 3 varieties of flowers or only sunflowers, others have dozens and go all out – you can tell flowers are their passion! The fields typically look like this. Here is the one that we enjoyed just a few days ago.

Pick Your Own Flower Fields

It’s such a beautiful and relaxing afternoon to take an hour or two and just spend them roaming the fields to pick flowers. My little boy and I had a snack of blueberries and read storybooks while my husband was off cutting sunflowers. Then, as I cut, he took our son to see the cows across the street so I was able to relax and enjoy myself. I’ve been bringing my son to these fields since he was 6 months old and today, he loves to walk through them and sniff as many flowers as he can.

From those fields above, here are my flowers at home below.

Pick Your Own Flower Fields

I didn’t bother to invest much thought into how I would arrange them, my goal was simple – to make the arrangement look straight from the field and un-styled. I really like taking a casual approach to flower arranging. When I wrote a book about flowers and flower styling when I was pregnant, I intentionally left the more complicated arrangements to my co-author who is great at mastering both looks, though casual is also her preferred approach.

I choose to place these flowers in a Nordic-inspired vase – the Omaggio vase with the mother of pearl stripes is by Danish brand @Kahler. I love the subtle stripes and the slightly off white color because it doesn’t fight with the flower textures or colors, but also wanted something non-transparent to hide the stems – I wanted the focus to be on the bright colors.

Pick Your Own Flower Fields

Pick Your Own Flower Fields

Do you have flower fields where you can go to cut your own? Do we have this concept in America yet? There are even companies that specialize in setting you up in Germany so you can own your own. I find this a terrific business concept. When I left the states in 2009, I don’t recall it. Corn, blueberries, strawberries, etc. are common but I don’t ever remember driving by a field without anyone watching you where you can just pick flowers and donate the amount you estimate they should cost. I think it’s a really beautiful system!

Hope you have a happy day!

Holly x






Inspiration

Summer Inspiration For The Home in Peach + Green

July 26, 2016

I love this fresh, summery palette. Imagine having a summer home on the coast in pale shades of melon, mint and clear blue – that would be heavenly, wouldn’t it? I was dreaming of Autumn tones and colors last week but this week, I’m definitely back on summer mode. All I can think about is the beach! Coastal living! Weeee! Anything to get my mind off of all of the violence and the crazy politics, especially in my country at the moment. My goodness, it’s definitely draining. So for a moment, I hope that these images inspire you and some of your decorating projects at home as you look at them… And I hope you are having a very nice and happy summer despite this crazy news lately. Stay positive!

Summer Inspiration For The Home in Peach + Green

Summer Inspiration For The Home in Peach + Green

Summer Inspiration For The Home in Peach + Green

Summer Inspiration For The Home in Peach + Green

Summer Inspiration For The Home in Peach + Green

I love this palette. In fact, it’s the same as my office, the photo with the gladioli in the clear vase was taken by me where I work.

Do you like this palette too?

(Photos: Enter my attic, Dust Jacket, Behance, Dashwood Studio, Looks Like White, Danish Streets, Micasa, Bjurfors, Maria Cristina Ballarin, Meagan Floris, Modernica, 100 Layer Cake, Luisa Brimble, SFGirlbyBay, Style Me Pretty, Elena Kovyrzina, Haymes.)






Inspiration

Nature-Inspired Wallpaper + Wall Stickers

July 26, 2016

I’m sorry friends for missing a bit on my blog – I’ve been enormously busy with my e-course that just wrapped up this week so now my focus can return once again to my blog and new book coming out soon with Leslie Shewring. In fact, the first week of August I will be busy working with Koen to shoot a video trailer for it – it will be my first so I’m trying to think of great ideas, the right setting… So much involved and I’m very excited over it. Today I have a few posts to share, this is the first, it’s about some lovely wallpaper and wall stickers from Sian Zeng.

Nature-Inspired Wallpaper + Wall Stickers

Look how adorable these are for the little cute girl or boy in your life… Some are even grown up enough to put in your own bedroom…

Nature-Inspired Wallpaper + Wall Stickers

Nature-Inspired Wallpaper + Wall Stickers

Nature-Inspired Wallpaper + Wall Stickers

Or a playroom… A nursery… So many sweet spaces where you could apply Sian’s creative papers and stickers. My favorite is the tree and the teepee space. It’s something I think my little boy would love.

(Photos with permission from Sian Zeng)






Trends

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

July 19, 2016

Let’s talk about plants, baby! I have to admit, the indoor jungle trend is lovely but hasn’t (and won’t) hit my home anytime soon because I’m a total plant minimalist. I like plants but not enough to follow the trend the way some of my friends have. Is there anyone out there who is also like me? You love plants but not a ton of them? In this post, I’m gonna show you 10 rooms that show you how to bring plants into your home without them running the show.

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

1. WINDOWSILL. How simple is this? One barely-there little plant friend on a bedroom windowsill. It’s a sweet addition. It is understated. Stadshem

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

2. OFFICE. Here are some nice plants scattered around yet not overgrowing and overtaking the room. Jose Hevia Photography

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

3. GROUPING. A tiny grouping on a sweet dresser. There but also not there, ya know? Holly Marder Photography + Styling

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

4. ENTRY. One big plant in a basket near the front door. That’s it. Not 30 or 20 or 10. One. Nice. Smitten Studio

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

5. BATHROOM. One big plant, again, it’s the best look for some rooms isn’t it? I like this one propped up on a stool near the tub. Inside Out.

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

6. LIVING ROOM. On a coffee table, on a windowsill, then repeated in the patterns on the sofa cushions. LIKE this. Stadshem

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists
7. BOOKSHELF EDIT. Mingle books with greens. Just don’t overdo it. Nicole Franzen Photography

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

8. SMALLISH PLANTS. These little guys scattered around are simple and sweet especially since the room is already very natural and minimalist. It works. They look lovely in the room too because of the gorgeous natural light. Small and scattered. Stadshem

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

9. DINING ROOM. Here is that big focal point plant again. I can’t get enough, I really like this look of having one big boy stealing the show – it’s Magic Mike XXL! Inside Out.

10 Rooms With Plants For Minimalists

10. OVER THE TOP. Okay so I have to throw in what I think is over the top to show you a bit of a contrast to the other images… This is too much greenery for me though it’s a beautiful styled shot for Inside Out magazine in an article they wrote about plants. I would prefer only the wall plants with one on the table and nothing in the green floor jug… Or the focus being on the tabletop and one plant in the background, minus that trellis thing. THAT SAID, it’s still pretty… Inside Out.

How do you use plants at home if you take a less is more approach to indoor gardening like me?






From The Heart

Let Us Stay Optimistic

July 19, 2016

Hi friends, sorry I’ve been missing from the blog but I’ve been co-teaching our Instagram, Photography and Styling e-course for Blogging Your Way… I’ve not had much extra head space to think about writing here. This week, another teacher leads our classes for the week and I’m off the hook, so I feel like my head is above water so no more absence from me here! And you know, once my little boy is in school, it will be a manageable again to maintain my blog (and everything else) in addition to e-courses, but right now he is home full-time so it’s a bit of a struggle!

Let Us Stay Optimistic

How are you doing? I’m good, just not so happy with the news lately. It’s draining to wake up to so much hate and anger on the news, isn’t it? When I text my friend after the Nice attack to see if he was okay (he is living in London but is French and so there is always a concern he may be visiting relatives in France) he helped me to regain some perspective. I asked him if he was okay and he said yes, he was in another town celebrating Bastille Day, but not Nice. And then I told him that I thought the attack was horrible and sad and I started to complain a little and he simply said,

“Let us stay optimistic. And enjoy an even better life!”

Maybe when you read that, you can let it sink in a bit.

At first I thought he seemed so incredibly naive! Almost a bit selfish! But then I realized that it’s exactly as we should be living, when bad things happen and we were spared, we should consider ourselves to almost have a right to live an even better life because we are still alive. Why should we live in fear, sadness, in an eternal mourning?

One thing the news and internet does is that it stresses us all the F–k out. Of course we hate what’s happening globally in politics, gun violence, terrorism, etc. Naturally. And Donald Trump. Oh boy, it’s scary as hell.  And to hear about it all day, every day, plus everything else, well it’s stressful. And then there is me, living in northern Germany as an American. So I have equal parts concern over what is happening in Europe and the UK AND in America. Because my family and life is in both. So what happens in America bothers me as much as what happens in Turkey, or in France, which is right over the border, Brexit, etc. It’s kinda overwhelmed me lately.

Yet I almost think that the negative forces at work in the world – the many ugly people out there behind all of this sickness and sorrow – are winning BIG TIME when we pay them so much credit for ruining our day, our week, or more: Drying up our spirit of hope. And once we lose hope …. Well, one word for ya.

SCREWED.

We are screwed.

In my perspective, my French friend has the right attitude. Sure, you mourn a loss but you have to put everything in perspective. I cried when I thought about the children who were killed in Nice or those who are left without parents and had to see a truck plowing over their family. How can you not feel terrible? Yet, you still have your life to manage and deal with, and that has to come before everything else. Our families need us to be strong, proactive and positive. If we want to fight against something we see as injustice, then take up a stand and actively go out and fight for the rights of the group you want to stand behind. Or put your money into some cause. But complaining endlessly, moping around, saying the world is going to hell… I think it’s only going to make everyone’s life even less meaningful if we collectively turn into one big depressed lump online. Instead of choosing a victims standpoint, let us stand strong as a victor, united in our belief that things will get better. They always get worse before they get better, right? So maybe that can be the candle, the carrot, the hope that we chase… That better days are ahead.

While I support fully acknowledging loss and suffering, I also support even more fully to live better, do better and to lead by example so others can rise up stronger too. Negativity breeds negatively. Let us spread light, love and promote peace.

I’ve decided to stay optimistic and maintain hope. I hope you will to.

WHAT DO YOU THINK? HOW ARE YOU COPING?

(Photographer: Copyright Debi Treloar)






Contests

Giveaway: Win Instagram + Photography e-course! (Updated)

July 9, 2016

Our Blogging Your Way e-course for Instagram and photography just kicked off yesterday with lessons going up on Monday morning, running for two weeks until July 25 with class access until August 1st. That’s why I simply must host a 48 hour flash GIVEAWAY (winners picked and sent login on Monday) so 5 of you can win seats in our classroom valued at $119. In this class, called #Instapower, we have videos, podcasts and over 22 lessons with all new materials never taught before in previous classes, and three teachers — me (naturally), Aussie food photographer Rachel Korinek and Dutch travel writer and photographer Pauline Egge.

Giveaway: Win Instagram + Photography e-course! (Updated)

YOU DO NOT WANT TO MISS THIS CLASS. It’s our last Instagram-focused class for 2016!

Here is our course outline if you are curious to see what you will learn. You will walk away with more than you walked in with, that’s for sure. Look at this..

* Branding your Instagram
* Community building
* Branding 101
* How to lose followers, practices to avoid!
* How to grow your audience
* Working with brands (podcast)
* What makes YOU unique? (podcast)
* Earning money on Instagram
* City guidebook info from Pauline
* How to shoot on location, on the street, etc. Including how to shoot in retail spaces
* Stay true to yourself
* Using hashtags
* What makes a photo attract attention on IG?
* Using your smart phone to capture images for IG
* Using your camera to capture images for IG, including transferring to phone and photo editing
* Best practices for shooting with your camera for IG
* How to shoot in Aperture Priority or Manuel Mode
* How to edit your images in VSCO and A Color Story (video)
* Lightroom basics (video)
* Photography techniques to get the most out of your shots
* Common problems you’ll encounter taking photos on location and simple solutions
* Styling and styling tips (video)
* How to use everyday items for styling when you are out and about
* Things to take with you in your handbag to style with when out
* Importance of backgrounds and what to use
* Case studies of 12 Instagrammers
* Curating a gorgeous a IG feed
* Tools to help you curate a gorgeous feed
* 3 videos from each of our teachers explaining their background, passion and how they work

You don’t wanna miss this!

To enter this contest:
* Comment below telling us why you’d like to be in this class
* Follow us on our new Instagram account: @bloggingyourway
* Join our Blogging Your Way mailing list (form below).

Subscribe to our mailing list




Those are the only 3 steps that you need to take to officially enter. We will draw 5 winners on Monday morning.

Good luck everyone and have a nice weekend!

(Rules: Not transferrable to another e-course, winners will win a spot in current e-course only. One entry per person, per day. Person who wins will be registered, you cannot sell the seat or transfer to someone else unless it is a family member. Value $119. If you have already paid and registered for this e-course, you will receive a full refund for current e-course if you win this contest. Open to all worldwide. This e-course is taught in English only.)

 

UPDATED July 11: We have chosen our 5 winners and they are: Marianne, Kim Byer, Melinda, Amreta, Pamela






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