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Have A Lovely Weekend!

It’s weekend time friends! Yay! I wanted to post more from the What To Do… series today, but I thought that next week we’ll just pick up where we left off with that because I have lots of links to share now and it’s getting late so it’s time to wrap up. What does the weekend mean for you? For me, it’s freedom. :)


So here are some lovely links for those who pop in on the weekend…

  • First up, did you know that you can subscribe to decor8 RSS feeds right here? Yuppers, sure can!
  • A new decor8 sponsor, Mi Spa is offering readers a special 20% off sale on their complete range of bath and body products. Use code decor8 at checkout. I want to try their Asian Pear lip balm. Thanks Mimie!
  • Our second new sponsor this week, The Studio (Orla bags!).
  • Aren’t Geisha roll-on perfume oils from Aroma M. the best?
  • Adorable new art from Sarah Jane Studios.
  • DaWanda is sponsoring an upcoming ethical fashion event in Dublin this month called Fashion Evolution on April 24th.
  • Find your creative voice in Italy with Mati McDonough and Kelly Rae Roberts who will be co-teaching a week long creative retreat in Tuscany this Fall. Learn more and register here. Sounds absolutely dreamy.
  • The Brooklyn Indie Market will kick off its seasonal opening with an Indie Fest in Carroll Gardens in Brooklyn on May 3rd.
  • Gorgeous new wood products from Natu Italy.
  • Three Potato Four has their milk bottles up and ready to ship to your home.
  • Totally funny letterpress cards from Zeichen Press.
  • Jeanine Hays redesigned her blog AphroChic and it’s hot.
  • New wallpaper portrait series from Kiki & Polly.
  • Hable Construction teamed up with Bella-Dura to create a line of eco-savvy
  • fabrics suitable for outdoor and indoor. View them here.
  • Hope Wallace gifted me a sample pack of her amazing cards, Paper Relics. I have to go place an order now, I’m smitten. Thanks, Hope!
  • How do you feel about the new Starbucks logo (or about Starbucks in general)? Voice your opinion here, I sure did!
  • I love Anna’s new chair. You will be inspired.

I wish everyone a most lovely weekend. See you on Monday!

(photo by holly becker)

Posted in uncategorized on April 19, 2008

What To Do… Fernanda Bourlot

My friend is a Boston-based interior designer, product designer, and boutique co-owner who is originally from beautiful Buenos Aires, Argentina. Her name is Fernanda Bourlot and her company is called Simplemente Blanco and I just adore her aesthetic and everything about her handmade wares, made right here in New England (read my interview with her here if you’d like).


I recently asked her if she could share some advice for decor8 readers on the topic, What To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do and she gladly accepted. I’d like to share her insights with you today.


How did you find your calling in the world of art and design?

I just can speak by my own experience which is just mine, and I think it would be good not be taken as an exact science theorem for all the others goodness and safety! But what I think about all of this is that for me knowing what I wanted to do or to be was kind of clear because I always felt in my heart that art or design was my field. It was difficult in my society at those times to be able to follow that road because those kind of things were considered banal or hobbies. That is why I made the big mistake of trying to impress my parents saying that I was going to be a doctor. Obviously that was not my calling because the very first day at school at my first anatomy class I felt that I was going to die, so I went back home and said to my mother I am not going back there never ever more! Of course it was a big family drama. I was 18 years old at that point and that day I firmly decided: I am going to be what I want to be. Period.

The lesson behind this is never never do something that you do not want to do just follow you heart what you feel is right for you no matter what, no matter what others, including sometimes your parents, think or say.

How do you think others can find their calling?

The only way to find it is being very honest with yourself. I found it because I just knew that this is what I wanted to do and put my heart, my soul, and all my energy to make it happen knowing that there is always going to be a bumpy road but I made myself the promise that I am always going to fight it and keep going. I tried different things but always in the same field just to realize which were my strengths and my weak points and then tried to improve them. I think for others it’s helpful to write a short list of things you think you would like to do and get information on them, either reading or talking to people in these fields so you will start to get a sense about each and then you will naturally start seeing what you like more and what you are less interested in as you explore it. You can start repeating the process filtering IN the things you like and filtering OUT the ones you don’t until getting to that one that is the one you want to start trying in real life.

Thank you Fernanda for sharing your views with decor8 readers today!

Posted in what to do on April 18, 2008

Baskets As Storage

You may think I’m nuts to blog about baskets of all things, but I would love to get your thoughts on them. I was recently at the home of this couple we know and her husband made it very clear that he despises baskets in the house. I mean, his basket hatred was as strong as his views on religion and politics which made me realize that I should add baskets to the ‘conversation topics to avoid‘ category next time when visiting with friends. Who would have thought that baskets could bring about a heated discussion?


I started liking baskets at a very early age because when I was growing up in South Carolina you could find basket weavers roadside in lots of the more tourist-y parts of the state (esp. coastal where I lived) and I loved to watch them work (Link: From Africa to South Carolina). I found their weaving so artistic and admired their patience and dedication to their craft. I also liked to purchase them, sometimes from sea grass basket weavers and others at my favorite store called Waccamaw Pottery where I loved to shop with my mother back in the 80′s. It was then a store selling imports ranging from ceramics to rugs, cane, baskets, linens, and the place was huge and a delight to roam through. Now I wonder if Kelly Wearstler was shopping there with her mom too since she grew up in the same town and is only about 6 years older – back in the 80′s it was the place. So my love of baskets has southern roots which could be why most of my local friends up north just don’t get it.

Let me clearly state though that I don’t use baskets to serve bread, nail to the wall as art, or arrange my fruit in. I’m more of a baskets-as-storage girl and usually that means they go unseen by the average visitor in my home because I don’t like clutter. I use them in closets.

I’ve been dying to buy a woven tote and think I found a great place for them online called Medina Baskets. I’ve wanted a classic French market tote for awhile now so in case you don’t think I’m crazy for liking them, you can find some here for only $38 (I’ve seen them in local specialty shops in the $100 range so this is quite a bargain). And when you’re not using yours to tote things, you can hang it on a pretty hook near the front door to store your garden tools in, or place one by your favorite chair filled with magazines.


Don’t believe that I really use them? Here’s a photo of one in my studio/sewing space where I work when it’s warm (it’s a 3 season room) adorned with super cheesy silk flowers. I know, silk and flowers should never be uttered back to back. Do you want to know what is hiding in my tote shown? Hand weights and my resistance band! So much for magazine storage, huh? That floral tote is from Target filled with blankets and things that I make.


If baskets aren’t your thing, these totes from Calista Cove look quite stylish and can serve as both a functional and decorative element in the home too.

(images from medina baskets and calista cove)

Posted in uncategorized on April 18, 2008

Mystic Valley Traders {bedding}

I’m asked quite often for bedding help so I thought you may like to add another resource to your list that I just found in Country Living magazine last night (the benefits of being sick is that you get to do lots of reading in bed with zero guilt).

A little country meets modern, Mystic Valley Traders carries a range of organic bedding to add some beauty to that boudoir, my favorite is the Turtle Bay collection.

More bedding sources here.

(images: mystic valley trading)

Posted in bedroom, textiles on April 18, 2008

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