Monthly Archives

November 2009

Designers + Stylists

Kimberly Ayres Interior Design

November 3, 2009

I was catching up on some much-needed blog reading today and came across a post that my friend Anh-Minh Lee wrote just yesterday about California-based interior designer Kimberly Ayres. Not knowing who she was, I clicked on her link and found a most delicious portfolio that I thought I’d highlight for a little eye candy inspiration. Kimberly’s design style is classic meets bohemian with a feminine, elegance in her well-edited rooms. There’s nothing like drooling over the work of a talented interior designer to spark an idea or to light the fire under your butt to work on that idle project in your home, right!?

Kimberly Ayres Interior Design

Kimberly Ayres Interior Design

After reading her bio, I learned that she didn’t start out as a designer — she actually practiced law before tapping into her creative side. Leaving her profession behind, she went to school to study painting, antiques and interior architecture. The more I looked at her work I realized that her name rang a bell for a reason…she was mentioned in Domino magazine as one of the Top Ten Young Designers to Watch in 2009. Do you remember that article?

Anyway… before launching her own practice, Kimberly worked for Kelly Wearstler and then, Michael Lee. In 2000, she launched her own practice and now, nearly 10 years later, she is a successful designer with not only her own practice but also owns a furnishings and accessories store in San Francisco called Kimberly Ayres Home.

And hello yellow! Don’t you love all of that warm goldenrod in her home shown in the photos above? That color is super fab, beautiful in the summer, gorgeous in the autumn… and truly a great hue for California living. I also adore {drool drool drool} that turquoise bedside lamp — so much! It’s very Domino-esque — something we we would have seen in Domino mag, are you with me on this? The nightstand is pretty too, looks a bit Asian but I cannot see the legs to truly tell. The fish cup/jug/creamer/vase/whatevertheheckitis is also great with those bold fuchsia blooms — it’s truly the ice breaker in that vignette, it keeps all those blue and yellow patterns looking perky and modern.  Don’t believe me? Place your index finger over the floral arrangement. See the difference in that photo now? The colors aren’t as snappy, are they? Almost a bit dizzying. That pink really creates healthy tension and I love it. And so if you ever look through magazines and don’t notice the flower arrangements at work already, start paying attention to them and how stylists use cut flowers to often add a lift. They’re the push up bra of decoration. :)

I say this a million times on decor8, but again… another example of a career changer who turned out to be a successful small business owner. So if you’re considering a career change, don’t lose sight of your dream! Imagine if Kimberly didn’t go for it?

(photos: Eric Cahan)






Etsy Faves

Etsy Take Five Tuesday

November 3, 2009

Are you ready to explore five charming Etsy stores with me today? Oh goody! So let’s see here {ruffling through my files, one moment please}… what do I have… tah-dah! 8 shops in my magic hat! {crowd roars.} Three of these shops have two stores each so you’re getting 8 for the price of 5 today! 8, 8 shops (ah Ah ah ahhh, I lovvve to count things… in my best Count voice). Enjoy!

Etsy Take Five Tuesday

Warm Whispers is photographer Sara Duckett who has such a soft, romantic view of the world with lots of vintage charm. {etsy} {website} {etsy shop #2} {website} {portfolio} {vintage shop} {blog}

Etsy Take Five Tuesday

Crazy for buntings and banners? Storia Home has some crafty cute ones! {etsy} {blog} {etsy shop #2}

Etsy Take Five Tuesday

Aprile Elcich takes recycled papers and her own drawings and transforms them into little pieces of art. {etsy} {blog}

Etsy Take Five Tuesday

Simply Hue photographs are simply lovely! {etsy} {blog}

Etsy Take Five Tuesday

Flores Del Sol designs simple floral centerpieces that are so fresh and pretty – ferns in milk glass never looked so good! {etsy} {etsy shop #2} {blog}

Did any of these beauties catch your eye and give you butterflies?

(images linked to their sources above)






Arts + Crafts

Yarn Wreaths

November 3, 2009

I was feeling crafty and whipped up this yarn wreath over the weekend. It was very relaxing, easy, and a lot of fun! I got the idea from Katie Runnels who makes and sells them in her shop and who just so happened to post a tutorial on her blog TODAY (talk about timing!). I thought that, being my first wreath, I could attempt to make a little something for my door. Here is the result, it’s a winter wreath that I will no doubt use until I’m tired of it and decide to get more yarn and make another! :)

Yarn Wreaths

Yarn Wreaths

I selected these colors because the craft store that I went to only had 10 colors and I wasn’t feeling the primary color scheme so I grabbed three of my favorites, a pretty little bird with a feathered tail, and a plastic ornament that splits in half — I used only half of it to build the little nest. The nest was made out of recycled packing materials (I keep things I feel may be good for a crafts project), a little ribbon, and mushrooms that were bright red that I painted eggplant. The wreath is white foam, flat on the back side so it’s great for hanging flush against the wall. I basically wrapped yarn around the foam, tied it into place and then embellished here and there with some ribbons in white since I’m very limited with supplies since I’m still unpacking!

Now I’m inspired to make more, I figure with this one only being my first and taking me about 2 hours in front of a movie, then perhaps I can whip up a few more as presents… I really want to do one in a nature theme in greens and blues with natural twigs and a little nest too. Maybe for Spring! If wreath making is your thing, and you’re looking for something crafty and fun to do that is also quite inexpensive (Mine was $10 total for all materials), then I encourage you to give it a try. :)

(images: holly becker for decor8)






Inspiration

Deb Mclean is Busy Being Fabulous

November 2, 2009

Photography and the styling of objects is huge — I thought the trend could slow as more magazines fold but I’m seeing a definite upwards curve with more independent creative types looking to photograph and/or style — either as possible hobbies to fill a void or as potential income-maker. Regardless of your intentions, no doubt you’ve been perusing websites and blogs seeing all the gorgeous interiors and food imagery and have thought, “If only I had a good camera, I’d love to take pictures like that!”. Well, have you? If so, but you’re broke and unable to buy your dream camera at the moment: take heart. I was looking at stylist Deb Mclean’s blog, Busy Being Fabulous, this morning when I suddenly realized that the gorgeous photographs she shares, the ones she personally shot herself, well… my dears… I will show you some first and then I’ll tell you what I realized. It may just make you rethink waiting for the day when you have your dream camera….

Deb Mclean is Busy Being Fabulous

Deb Mclean is Busy Being Fabulous

In the photos above she has used her, ready for this… the camera on her iPhone! Yup. If you’re at home styling shots, or out and about enjoying something special there is no reason why you cannot quickly style up a vignette and take a photo of it with a good quality phone and upload it to share on your blog. Don’t let the lack of having a “real” camera in hand hold you back. No need to wait on that expensive camera, you can start small and work your way up and still have a gorgeous portfolio of photographs to enjoy along the way.

In addition to Deb’s blog, you can view her professional styling portfolio online showing some of her most recent work from the pages of top magazines. These photos below were NOT taken with an iPhone but by a professional photographer and of course, there is no comparison – a pro won’t show up on a shoot with only an iPhone in hand (ha! can you imagine that scenario!?) and a phone camera lacks sufficient quality to turn out photos suitable for print publications or a billboard. So we need the expensive cameras, the “big guns”, too. But I’m just sayin’. If you can do THAT above with an iPhone then the only thing holding any of us back is the excuse that one needs a better camera to take a better photo, right?

Deb Mclean is Busy Being Fabulous

There’s no harm in learning with whatever equipment you currently have, so again — don’t let excuses hold you back. Any photographer will admit that while a pro camera is vital to shoot professionally that in the end the most important thing is not the camera but the eye of the photographer and whatever they are seeing through that viewfinder that gives the photo it’s uniqueness and style. So in the end, it really comes down to Y-O-U. :)

(images: deb mclean)






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