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Apartment Therapy’s Room For Color 2014 Contest

I was so honored to have been asked to be a judge for the Apartment Therapy Room For Color 2014 contest sponsored in part by Sherwin Williams. There were so many colorful entries. It was also so great when I saw that Janel over at AT put together a post announcing my participation (read it here), it really made me happy. One of the questions that she asked me about color was fun to answer so I thought I’d share that with you now. She basically asked me what my thoughts on color are at the moment – what palette I’m digging. This is the collage I created below followed by my thoughts.

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I love these four images and this fun, colorful palette – but the draw to me is that navy has replaced black as a strong accent color. Black and white is such a huge trend at the moment, yet I feel like I’m seeing it too much now and its losing it’s appeal. That’s why a nautical deep navy is a nice replacement and break from black while still keeping things deep and dark and providing a nice contrast amongst all of the light colors and brights that are trending at the moment. Plus navy (not cobalt or any other blue – strictly navy) and crisp white look stunning together, so a deep navy wall with white trim – well, you can’t go wrong!

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Here were some of entries in Warm, Cool, Light, Dark, International that I found really interesting. Apartment Therapy readers judged what they liked the most (there were so many entries!) and the judges were sent the 5 most voted for rooms per category and each of us voted for our favorite without knowing what the other judges were voting for. It was done very fair and square which I appreciated. You view all of the homes here. And guess what Germany? One of your own won the International submission!

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So much fun!!! And thanks again Apartment Therapy for having me. Here are the winners, but in my eyes everyone won the moment they submitted their entry because that takes major courage.

I think I need to team up with some big company and have a decorating contest for decor8 readers, right!? Wouldn’t that be fun???

(Images in the top collage: Johan Rosenmunthe for Bolig Liv magazine, Lys Vintage, Dust Jacket Attic , Smitten Studio Online. Single image: George in Delaware (winner!). Bottom collage: top left: Amanda in Montana (winner!), top right: Jessie in Ohio (winner!), bottom left: Katharina in Germany (winner!), bottom right: Jo in the UK.)

Posted in uncategorized on October 09, 2014

The Most Gorgeous Interior Palette For Fall 2014

I’m really feeling green lately you guys! I thought I would share some beautiful finds from Instagram that inspired me this past weekend. Things that really made my heart feel full of joy and loaded with interior inspiration. And perhaps it’s the coming of the holiday season with its evergreen overload, but I adore everything in many shades of green at the moment from pale mint to the deepest emerald. Here are some gorgeous and happy inspirations to encourage you along in the same green direction with a shot of coral, pink and black, and of course, loads of bright clear white. This embodies the perfect interior palette at the moment in my opinion.

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Leslie Shewring

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Architrend from &Tradition

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Leslie Shewring

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Design Love Fest

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Illustrator Daniela Dahf Henríquez via Little Gatherer

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Garance Dore for Zara Worldwide

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Leslie Shewring

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Leslie Shewring

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InsideOut mag

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Pickled Thoughts

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Concrete Geometric

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InsideOut mag

This is all so crazy pretty right? And be sure to click on all of the links above to discover a ton of great Instagrammers that I follow. And now that I have a new iPhone 6 Plus, I can actually SEE the stuff people post a lot better – so if you’re on the fence about the new 6 Plus then yeah, I can say it’s a big phone BUT if you’re a blogger using it for Pinterest, Instagram and Skype like I do, it’s the bomb diggity!

Hope you are all doing well. xo Holly

Posted in uncategorized on September 30, 2014

5 Things I Look For When Shopping For Throw Pillows

We could all use a little interiors inspiration for Autumn/Winter 2014, don’t you think? What are you planning to do to add warmth and a fresh touch to your rooms once Fall kicks in? I’m still on the fence, but I’ll definite add new drapes for my living room (I’ll share the before and after next month) and I plan to hang some art over the sofa and buy a new coffee table as I attempt to baby proof things around here since our crawler is super active and pulling himself up on everything at only 7 months old. And of course, a good throw pillow or ten! Here are some from Lauraloves, designed exclusively by Laura Nicolson in England who so nicely reached out to me today. I love the peacock silk cushion and the olivia silhouette with that chic herringbone pattern. That looks so Fallish.

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Since so many of you enjoy it when I share decorating tips, here are five things I look for when I’m shopping for cushions:

1. Zippers! They need to have them so I can easily swap out the cushion covers with each season and rotate through my favorites year round without having to store bulky cushions.
2. The fillers definitely need to be down or down-like because I love a relaxed look – they can’t be overly plump – they need to be squishy
3. Natural materials… Silk is great for a glam look, cotton for a bit more of a natural, relaxed home and you can even go with texture like leather, wool, knit, etc. For spring I like cotton and linen and for cooler months I’m a lover of leather, wool, knit and nubby linen. Silk is nice for all seasons but not so much to lounge on, they’re meant to be more decorative I think and to simply sit on a sofa and look good.
4. Something fresh and trendy. I know, lots of you don’t like the word trend but honestly, I really love trends as long as I have some balance and don’t go overboard. I really enjoy wearing trends from time to time (Birks were trending this summer, did you notice? We can thank Jenna Lyons and J.Crew for that I think) and I love adding stuff to my home that is trendy because I feel it freshens the space and adds a different vibe. Sometimes I can get really same-y same-y with my interiors – I think lots of us can when we decorate for years and years – and trends pull me out of that and force me to try something I may not have attempted before. Like adding a certain color, motif or texture to my space. And cushions are perfect for adding a bit of trend into a room because they’re not that expensive and they can easily be swapped out when you tire of them, stored easily and reused later or you can donate them or sell them on eBay or your next garage sale or something. In fact, I think the easiest way to experiment with a trend is through soft furnishings, particularly cushions, as they are small enough and can be budget-friendly.
5. I need to love it. This point should have been first maybe? But yeah, I have to love it. Even something as seemingly mundane as a cushion. I need to feel a bit of excitement when I see it and when I bring it home, it needs to give the space that needed touch.

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What do you think of these throw pillows by Lauraloves? Do you look for anything in particular when you shop for pillows?

Please Note: I do not own nor have I experienced this product in person so my opinion is based upon what I saw on her website and lookbook only.  Products that I own and use will be noted going forward with “decor8 tested and approved” at the end of the post to help you to better find products that I personally love and recommend for purchase.

(images: lauraloves)

Posted in uncategorized on September 18, 2014

Today We Shall Eat Cake + Enjoy The Flowers

Today is a very special one because it’s July 14, 2014 and 13 years ago today I got married! We were so young, so daring, so full of hopes and dreams… Today we’re not the doe-eyed dreamers we once were as much as the let’s-do-it doers and that’s something age and marriage gave us both – gumption, courage, fire. We’ve had many good times but also hard ones like when we had to count all of the change in the house in order to procure enough to buy groceries. I remember when my husband sold all of his belongings to be able to afford my wedding ring and a flight to America to marry me. I remember our honeymoon in San Francisco and how exciting it was to be in a city I had only dreamt to see back then and how we looked at rental apartments while there because we were convinced we’d found our dream city. Only we were too broke to make that happen.

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Marriage isn’t easy but what relationship is? There are none without compromise, tears, joy, heartbreak and smiles that extend ear-to-ear. It’s impossible to have a perfect life with someone, but it’s entirely possible to have a happy life . Happy doesn’t mean trouble-free. Life is hard and sometimes we grow together and other months, we drift apart. But we come together again. And we just keep going. One thing I’ve learned with my marriage is that the growing apart at times doesn’t mean it’s over. It only means that you have to keep walking ahead until your paths converge again. Humans evolve. We aren’t going to be the same people we were when we got married. When I read articles about how couples “grew apart” I often wonder what they went into marriage expecting. That they’d always be the same and want the same things and just follow protocol forever?

To think of where we are today, and that we have a child now on our journey with us, is mind-blowing and beautiful. It’s also hard to grasp that 13 years have passed because it seems like we’ve been together my entire life while it also feels like yesterday that we met online in a public forum where I was writing back and forth to a woman on the topic of masculinity vs. femininity and female objectification. And to think that a topic like that piqued the interest of a German journalist and computer science genius living thousands of miles away is just a riot. I remember back then (1998) I confessed to my mother that I was dating a man on the internet that I hadn’t met in person yet and the first thing she said was, “How do you know he isn’t a serial killer or rapist?”, because back then that was what most people thought when they heard about online dating. We wrote back and forth for nearly a year before we met for the first time and we were engaged within two weeks. That was 15 years ago in the Autumn of 1999. Then we were married in 2001.

Writing online has brought me uncounted blessings like a beautiful marriage and a glowing career. No serial killers mom!

Today my husband sent me gorgeous flowers that I’m holding above. And champagne that I’ll be holding in my tummy later on after the baby is snoozing. He also gave me the most beautiful ring to symbolize the birth of our son. I burst into tears the moment I opened the little black box with the exact same gold lettering on it that he gave me holding my engagement ring many years ago.

Thank you Thorsten for living with me, putting up with me, loving me and always being so loyal and caring. And for being the most wonderful daddy to little Aidan. I loved you from the first time we talked on the phone for 5 hours back in 1998 and I’ll love you forever + ever. Happy Anniversary my love.

(photo: thorsten becker)

Posted in uncategorized on July 14, 2014

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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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