I was thinking recently about American interiors retailer West Elm and how much I miss having a store nearby (or even in my country!) where I can go for inspiration and to buy great decorating objects from lighting to furniture and beyond. For those of you who once lived in America and who now live abroad you must be able to relate to sometimes feeling cut off from the mother ship, right!? Shopping in the states is always a huge draw for me when I visit home and I can’t wait until I’m back in NYC this January to hit the stores and indulge again – even if only to window shop!
When I’m missing a particular store, as dorky as this sounds, I’ll often visit their website and daydream about the things that I’d love to have but today I thought I’d take it a step further and pull together a little West Elm wish list to inspire you, make home feel a little less far away for me, and hopefully to highlight some things that those of you living stateside may like to check out for yourself.
13. Floating lacquer frames (love! eek!).
Though most of these companies (like West Elm) do ship internationally now, it’s not the same experience as walking into an actual shop to touch and experience the product in person, especially for a very tactile person like me but I can’t complain AND that chevron shower curtain IS calling my name, what about you!?
I hope that you’ve enjoyed my 14 faves…
(images: west elm)
I find it so inspirational when I see people take products and furniture and use their imaginations to personalize somewhat mundane things into something special. That’s the beauty of IKEA. Their price point is affordable and nothing feels precious which gives you freedom to explore your ideas – perhaps a lamp base would look better decoupaged in a favorite paper or a cabinet would be far better with new hardware and wallpaper hung on the inside.
(Tip: Stack wooden storage boxes and drawers and paint them inside to create a bookcase – this is a look I’m seeing more and more and I love it!)
That’s what I love about buying things at vintage stores, flea markets, yard sales and shops that are priced reasonably – like IKEA – you have the freedom to go a little crazy and exercise your creativity. You have the right!
(Paint a thick stripe down the center of a table as a “runner” to customize and add visual interest.)
I thought I’d share some of my favorite IKEA inspirations today from their beautiful blog, Livet Hemma. I recognize all of the pieces shown but love seeing the fresh updates each have been given by the creative team behind the Livet Hemma blog. It’s so inspirational and fun! It also shows that IKEA pieces can be quite special and do not have to be left ‘as is’, but can become something special to you and your family.
(Tip: Some vintage pieces add character to a space so consider using them to avoid your room from looking like it all came from a single catalog.)
(Tip: A low cabinet works nicely for displaying favorite things and for storing boxes and books underneath. In a mostly white space, use different tones of white to avoid a clinical look and by all means, go with lots of different textures to warm up white – wool, knit, ceramic, glossy, matte, cotton, linen, etc.)
(Tip: Add a little green to all white space, plants give texture, color and are good for purifying the air in your home.)
(Tip: Paint furniture in chalky matte colors to make them look vintage.)
(Tip: Paint cabinet doors in different colors that you love.)
(Tip: Try layering mirrors and frames, leaning them against the wall.)
Another decorating tip: When you look at anything for your home, it’s great to use your imagination and to not always see what you’re looking at but to imagine how it could be. Look at the shape of a piece, think of alternate uses, imagine how it would look painted in a fresh color, visualize a dresser for instance without the drawers and used as a bookcase instead… There are so many things our imagination can dream up if you only give yourself the permission to do it and so I say, have fun, follow with your heart and happy decorating!
(images: ikea livet hemma)
I spotted these frame wall decals today from Love Mae and had to share as they’re quite cute along with their fabric pantry labels, sweet nothing messages and message tiles… I’m also liking their wrapping papers and that they ship worldwide – yay for all of us!
(images: love mae)