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Color Me Pretty

Hello Friends, it’s me Leslie again for Color Me Pretty! This time around I decided to play with turquoise, persimmon, lots of neutrals, a little grey and a touch of black. I wanted to use this palette to explore some David Hick’s inspired patterns. It seems Hick’s has influenced many American designers these days, like Kelly Wearstler, Tory Burch and Jonathan Adler. It is easy to see why as his work was bold, graphic and loaded with colors and textures. I tried to tone it down a little to see how we could incorporate some of these bold graphics into our existing décor with a little DIY project, I hope you like this little study.

Color Me Pretty

DIY I wanted to create a super easy piece of wall art with some of the patterns I painted for you. Thus, I scanned in the painted patterns and printed them out onto matte ink jet paper. (The colors do not always come out exact as scanners vary – like mine -which is not very good!) I then took my lovely little Marvy square punch and quickly punched out squares from my patterned paper. I then created a grid on a piece of 12 x 18″ paper – I used this size because I had an old unused frame in my garage that was just waiting to be dusted off. I used spraymount adhesive (a type of toxic spray glue that works beautifully as it does not warp the paper like regular glue) to lightly spray each square and then placed it in the grid I had penciled on the white paper and voila! Now, if you do not have a square punch it is easy to cut up paper with an x-acto blade and a ruler. As for the patterned paper you could use anything with a design on it that matches with your home…it would be really nice to use old photographs too- because if you are like me there are lots of photos in boxes that could be used and would look great. (Like all those ocean or flower shots!)

Color Me Pretty

Color Me Pretty

When you use a primarily neutral color scheme in your home you must rely on texture and pattern to create some interest so that the space does not look to bland. It is fun to then use dabs of bold color to really show off the colors you enjoy like persimmon (which is basically just a darker orange but sounds more “designy” – right?). I use this color in little doses in my dining area with some vintage plates hanging on the wall along with some art that features the dark orange-red along with grays, whites and wood. Turquoise looks great in the mix too as it really makes the dark orange pop especially when you have the neutral tones in there creating negative space around the colors. If bold colors kind of scare you start with some flowers or a small accessory like a vase and see if in fact the color may just brighten your day!

Color Me Pretty

Color Me Pretty

I hope you enjoyed this study and I will see you back here November 9TH, enjoy the rest of the month! – xo, Leslie Shewring

To see  more of Leslie’s posts, click here.

(image copyright: Leslie Shewring)

Posted in Color Inspiration, Color Me Pretty, guest bloggers on October 19, 2009

Color Me Pretty

Hello Friends! It’s me, Leslie and it’s time for Color Me Pretty again. Are you ready to see what I’ve come up with this time around? Today I am using different shades of mauve, magenta and deep purple combined with lots of aged paper for a more nostalgic feel. What do you think? I also wanted to paint some Anni Albers (German textile artist and printmaker, read more here) inspired patterns in watercolor to bring geometric elements to the mix as I always like it when different styles converge, don’t you? Some of the dahlias I photographed also inspired me to paint a few which brings a softness to some crafts I made for you. I really hope you enjoy this little investigation.

Color Me Pretty

Decorating ideas: As you know vintage papers of any kind can provide an interesting texture to your home decor. Old books with worn spines on a shelf, maps of cities you love or images from bygone eras can help to create more flavor to any room. I have noticed that vintage post cards are widely available at my local flea market and they can be an instant way to add color and a little bit of history to your walls. It is also fun to turn them over and show the old handwriting and stamps on the back. I could imagine some tacked in a group or clipped to a string hung on a wall, some showing the images and some showing the back. The postcards I picked up were fifty cents to a dollar with some dating back to 1910.

Color Me Pretty

Color Me Pretty

Color Me Pretty

DIY Ideas: Garlands (above) are featured everywhere these days but they are also nostalgic and so sweet, I just had to try making one for you in this color scheme! After scanning in some of my watercolors I then printed them out on textured paper, cut the triangles, and then quickly glued them to a ribbon. I hope you like it and I will try to sew one next time!

Color Me Pretty

Another DIY idea — Lastly, I scanned in some old German text book pages to use as a background texture for some of the photographs and for some little gift tags that I made. I just didn’t feel right about cutting up the book for my crafts! Are you the same way when it comes to cutting up books? It’s hard, isn’t it?

I really look forward to seeing you back here in a couple weeks!- xo, Leslie

(images: leslie shewring)

Posted in Color Inspiration, Color Me Pretty, guest bloggers on October 05, 2009

INK+WIT: Favorite Things

A few of my favorite things: INK+WIT

Hello! I’m Tara Hogan from the INK+WIT blog and I’m visiting today to share a few of my favorite things, also as part of Holly’s guest series. Featured are five of my favorite photos inside and outside around my home. I hope that you enjoy them!

INK+WIT

Our kitchen was a project to fix up. We have a 100 year old home where the kitchen tile and countertop were in such bad shape. Every time I walk into the kitchen I feel like we have made such great progress. I took all the cabinet doors off as they were of no use anyway and created more of a café feel which makes me really happy and also gives you a reason to keep all of your cabinets meaningful and cleaned out. The kitchen to me is the foundation of the home as it nourishes you and brings people together.

INK+WIT

This space has a wood burning cast iron stove you can not see here in this photo but it is quite nice. The white wall you see was just sheet rocked and we took down the stove pipes as they were rusted and falling down. This area is a nice place for eye relief. It has become a little gallery for me to display my work. It reminds me of some of the old gallery spaces I saw while in Tallinn, Estonia.

INK+WIT

This is our dear cat Abby. She is the softest cat ever! And, very sweet with the exception of eating paper. She jumps on my desk and tries to chew all my magazines. She is lounging on our sun porch (in need of a paint job.)

INK+WIT

We have a barn that takes the place of a garage. This barn reminds me of CT, my native state. It is very New England. The wooden deck you see was just built by my father this summer. It will always remind me of him. He is an amazing engineer and craftsman.

INK+WIT

A glimpse from my studio shelves which house inventory for INK+WIT, supplies, and of course all of my little Fisher Price animals I saved from my childhood. I love animals as you can see from all the INK+WIT illustration. Having these little nostalgic toys around reminds me to stay young and always play when I am creating. It helps you not take yourself too seriously.

INK+WIT

The Fox and the Grapes illustrated by me on maple block seen on my messy art table. The white dish I use to put my inks in is a salt and pepper dish from Pottery Barn. I love painting and drawing on wood. I have a ton of paper scraps I use to collage into my pieces.

INK+WIT

I saved this Garbage Pail Kid with my name, “Tara” and it totally makes me laugh as I had a HUGE collection of these and have not seen them since 1985. The little rooster is a memento from my childhood toys and the wood block and lead type make my initials.

INK+WIT

I love France. There are so many little treasures around my studio that I took home from my two trips to France. Little books, sketches, and paper memorabilia make me happy.

INK+WIT

INK+WIT around my office and studio. I love buttons.

INSPIRED BY…

Recently, I have been inspired, funnily enough, by HBO’s series Entourage. It is the one series I watch now. My husband and I stay up Sunday night and laugh wholeheartedly at Jeremy Piven’s mannerisms. It sucked me in, I admit it. But, I enjoy every minute of this show for the simple fact that the characters are funny and the music always catches me off guard. I heard De La Soul, The Cure, and Violent Femmes in the last few seasons all at once and it reminds me of so many good times in high school and college. I love those bands. This show inspires me to have fun while going after everything I want in life. And, starring at Adrian Grenier is not too bad either. I have also been blogging more and more about children’s apparel, toys, and gadgets. I have been inspired by Handmade Charlotte, Kice Kice, and Tamar Mogendorff. Their ideas and way with ease of materials is magic. All are so different and take you into a storybook place. I love that.

Speaking of getting sucked into something I am now a coconut milkshake junky. Since I am vegan and pretty much allergic to a ton of food at this point I have gotten very creative in the last year. Looking for some refreshment? Saw open a Young Thai Coconut, pour the water in your blender, scrape out the meat, add 1 tablespoon of Agave Nectar, pinch of cinnamon, and 1 teaspoon of raw cacao powder. Best chocolate vegan non dairy milkshake you will ever have and I have had all the dairy stuff back in the day and this is mighty fine.

ADVICE…

One of the best quotes I ever read was in typography designer, Gill Sans, An Essay on Typography. “If you look after goodness and truth beauty will take care of itself.” I love how straight to the point this is and how it communicates all forms of beauty. If you take care of the inside the outside will follow on all levels both physical, mental, and spiritual. If you do good, good will follow. But, of course, you cannot expect anything in return for your goodness. Staying humble is wise. -Tara

(images: tara hogan)

Posted in guest bloggers on September 04, 2009

theSCOOP: Favorite Things

A few of my favorite things: theSCOOP

Cheers! I’m Laura from theSCOOP, and I’m pleased to share some of my favorite things as part of Holly’s guest blogger series this month. Below are some treasured items from my personal collections:

theSCOOP

Two pillows given to me by my sister. The left pillow she made from the skirt of a vintage dress. The right pillow is from West Elm and I love the beaded edge detail.

theSCOOP

This vignette, in my kitchen, is composed of some of my favorite acquisitions from the past year: a reworked rattan chair from Home Girl, a peonies print by Kari Herer, and a painting by Chad Wys that reminds me of a storm over water.

theSCOOP

Amidst the toys and books that get thrown about the house during the day, my writing desk offers a calm place to rest the eye, as well as a spot to store stationery, stamps and even a pile of books “to-read”. The classroom scene print by Ryan Feeney echoes the reflective nature of this working space.

theSCOOP

Speaking of books: These Target storage bins, from Victoria Hagan’s Perfect Pieces line a couple years back, are sized just right for my daughter to rummage through and make her own selections for us to read together. The grasscloth and hardware details bring a bit of polish and sophistication to her room.

theSCOOP

My most treasured photo is this image of my grandmother holding my mom at about 6 weeks old; it’s just so tender and sweet. I keep it on a bookshelf in my family room, where I can look at it every day. The silver lantern behind it is from ZGallerie and the nested bowls are from Anthropologie. The bowls sit on top of a gift box that I kept because I liked the fifties-ish pattern (especially placed next to the image of my mom, from the same decade). Not shown: I have a huge bulletin board in my office, part of which I call my “bride wall” which is another one of my favorite things. Here, I keep photos of my best friends on their wedding days; it’s a personal space that allows me to see my favorite people in some of their happiest moments.

The aesthetic I identify with and that I’m starting to define, but I think has always existed within myself, is equal parts detailed and spare, classic and modern. It’s examplified by the following people, places and things: The modern vision of Loeffler Randall designer Jessie Randall – strikingly graphic, elegant forms with just-right details, a palette of pale gray silk, barely pink metallic leather, black wool and light woodgrain, with a tiny sliver of cobalt blue suede. Patterns by Neisha Crosland. Ballet and all that goes along with it: the movements, the classical music (adagio and allegro), the shoes, the costumes, the form-fitting practicewear. Iridescence: opal stones and vintage lustreware. A few rustic elements thrown in: cowgirl boots and country line dancing, the dirty-shiny look of mercury glass, rough-hewn wood frames for art. The cities and countrysides of Italy and Japan. Music by Carla Bruni, Regina Spektor, and almost anything with violins. Interior and graphic designer Angie Hranowsky. Chocolatier and branding genius Katrina Markoff of Vosges Chocolates. Anything that my sister Kristen makes or wears. Marfa, Texas (never been – would love to go). Blank notebooks (especially Moleskines that I cover with my favorite papers).

My favorite advice, from a style perspective, came from my mom – who told me at a young age that every room needs a touch of black. Judging from my current space, I took this advice to heart, and then some. Particularly because I am drawn to pale colors that verge on pastel, I need healthy doses of black to ground the compositions and avoid an Easter-egg effect. The color has become a consistent element throughout our home, and now I’m starting to incorporate it more into my wardrobe as well – to play off the pale pinks, grays and aquas I tend to wear. -Laura

(images: theSCOOP)

Posted in guest bloggers on September 04, 2009

Books:

Some of my books...

Further editions available: Decorate published by Murdoch Books for AU/NZ, Decorar BR, Alt om indretning DK, Inspirace pro váš byt CZ, Dekorácie SK, La décoration FR, Lust auf Wohnen DE, Sisusta tyylillä FI and Sztuka aranżacji wnętrz PL.

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