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Decorating With Delphiniums

Today at the farmers’ market I couldn’t resist the Delphiniums! I just love their elegant stature and particularly the ones in astounding blue and violet tones! I also enjoy them in white with crisp, black centers. I scooped up 3 stems for €5 (steal!) and as I walked home I kept thinking of where to put them and which containers to use. I knew that I didn’t want them all together in one clump nor did I want to hide their stems in vases that were opaque, so when I got home I opened my gardening + containers cabinet and selected some clear, glass vases, one with a greenish tint to complement the flower stems. I unwrapped my flowers in our formal dining room and did a quick walk-through around the house to see where I best imagine placing my new finds. Would I display them in one space or in different areas?




I decided to place them together on the table in our second eating area, which was formerly a very dark and boring hallway that I turned into an eating nook since it’s directly off of our kitchen. It has new flooring (hardwood), the walls were resurfaced (old wallpaper stripped away) and was painted crisp white. This space (below) still needs work (like art work and the rug needs to be pulled away from the wall, also I will have a simple radiator cover made so I can remove the leaning mirror, etc. etc. etc. BUT for now this space was the chosen area for my delphinums. It needed color and life! I decided to go with 5 arrangements and used little scrappy spares in a porcelain Rosenthal vase and others in a simple brandy glass and grouped the larger ones in big vessels across the tabletop. I am very pleased with the results. I walk through this area constantly to Aidan’s nursery, so seeing these gorgeous blooms will definitely perk up my travels back and forth. Quite a statement maker, too – aren’t they!? Love it!





Note: I mixed in a few spare godetia flowers (they look just like paper!) with the delphiniums because I wanted the arrangement to be quirky and imperfect, which I achieved. Decorating with delphiniums really made this area look great. Now I’m motivated more than ever to really decorate this hallway space and show you how it looks when I finish in the next month or so… Wish me luck!

But seriously, see how easily you can transform a space with flowers that cost so very little yet add such a massive impact?

(images: holly becker for decor8)

Posted in Decorating Tips, Flowers on June 18, 2014

Review: Evomove Nomi Highchair

Looking for a high chair for baby with an infant seat attachment? Look no further! Recently Evomove, who are fans of decor8, contacted me since they’d heard I was looking for a high chair. They’d recently worked with designer Peter Opsvik (he designed the iconic Tripp Trapp chair) to create a chair for them called the Nomi. Since the Nomi just won the “Red Dot: Best of the Best 2014” award, a prestigious international design award only given to 1% of 5,000 competing products, I was interested in receiving and trying out the chair and if I liked it, I would keep it and if not, I’d give it to a friend. My neighbor is expecting twins in August!


Well, from these two photos it’s evident that I am KEEPING THIS CHAIR. I love the Nomi but more importantly SO DOES AIDAN. That should win an award on its own because Aidan is VERY fussy about where he is placed. He only falls asleep in his Stokke stroller, his car seat, his bed at night, or on one of our shoulders. That’s IT.


Until today. He passed out in his Evomove Nomi Chair and that was enough convincing for me – in fact, it made me SO HAPPY that I snapped a few photos then ran over to my computer to write this post. When your baby falls asleep without any props, singing, rocking, motion, etc. it’s like OH MY GOD what did I do to deserve this? Did all of the volunteer work I did for years at Habitat For Humanity finally pay off? Because my baby fell freaking asleep ON HIS OWN.

A little about the chair… The Nomi can be used from birth until the teenage years (so from the time they want you around every second until they can’t wait for you to leave the room/house/this planet) because it has a fixed ‘stem’ with interchangeable sitting and lying elements. I selected the white version with the white oak stem and the Nomi Baby recliner (for babies up to 6 months) in sand AND later, I have the Nomi Mini restraint for when he is able to sit up on his own. This chair looks beautiful in my home and is so lightweight and easy to move around from room to room – it’s pretty awesome. My four-month-old son thinks so too… Just look at this face. TOTAL CONTENTMENT.


Any negatives? Yes*. The first is that because it’s on wheels, you really shouldn’t pull the baby up to the table if his legs can touch the side because there is a chance that your baby could “push off” the sides of the table with his feet, and if he is a strong baby like our little guy, this could be a bad thing. So just be mindful of that. I wish the wheels locked. The only other negative, which is a really BIG negative so PLEASE don’t order this chair unless you read this… But the Nomi Baby Recliner has instructions on how to mount it on the stem but the actual cushion with the “T” strap on top with the belt does NOT have instructions. Not on the website or in the boxes, so BEWARE. If you put the straps in the belt once, the belt is not secure enough and the baby can EASILY slip right out onto the floor. It’s really dangerous. The trick is, and we had to spend over an hour just trying every possible idea to secure the belt/strap, is to loop the belt through on each side twice and really pull it through super tight so that it’s as strong as steel. I honestly think the design of this strap could have been better and when I looked at lots of the EvoMove pictures on Instagram from their customers, it looks like lots of the parents just sort of “winged it” and looped the belt through only once and that is super duper dangerous. My husband wasn’t pleased with this at all. So please, if you buy the Nomi with the baby recliner for the chair, make sure you really make sure that belt is secured well.

In the end, we are so happy with this chair and thank EvoMove for sending it to us. By the way, this is not a sponsored post. I didn’t promise them to blog about it – that’s not my thing, I don’t play that way… and I didn’t even plan to blog it – but Aidan is always so happy in this chair , we are finally able to eat at the dinner table again after 4 months AND well, seeing him passed out and happy in the chair today for the first time inspired me to blog it. I figure if it can make Aidan happy, it can most likely make lots of little cuties out there (and their parents) happy, too.

(images: holly becker for decor8)

*UPDATE June 19, 2014: Evomove now has manuals on their website and that will be included in their boxes which have specific instructions on how to mount the cushion and secure the belt. I’m very pleased by this. Also, the wheels on the chair have been tested and are indeed safe, another very good thing. See comments on this post for details. Thank you Evomove for making sure our children are happy and safe in your chairs!

Posted in baby on June 18, 2014

Help Me Pick “The” Rug + Win It!

Hey gang! Want to win a rug? GOOD because this is your chance. Okay, so in addition to my art wall projects around the house, I’m working on window treatments and rugs – one for the entry and one for Aidan’s room to replace the lovely flokati rug that I talked about here. I need to act quickly though because the baby is 4 months old now and I can tell he will be crawling pretty soon! Then it’s zoom! zoom! zoom! all over his room. Recently Armadillo&Co posted on their Instagram that they would send ONE lucky person who comments on this IG photo a rug just for suggesting one for Aidan’s room. Isn’t that nice? So if you could do me a favor and help me pick a rug, then comment below AND on their IG photo here, that would be super great!  You have to comment in both places though to qualify.

Screen Shot 2014-06-17 at 3.22.19 PM

So this is the deal. I will order a rug for Aidan’s room to replace the fabulous yet impractical flokati – I want the same size and shape (nothing round), just one that will work in his room and will be easy on his knees as he begins to move that little bod around. If you want to help me out, can you look over the Armadillo&Co website and see if you imagine any of those rugs for this space below? Remember, it will replace the flokati and be positioned in the exact same place.



The new rug will need to coordinate with the current scheme and blend nicely but definitely not steal the thunder away from the beautiful window and wallpaper (“Kite” by Ferm Living). The colors in the room are mint, goldenrod, white, gray, black… and some blue. The walls are pale mint (“Cabbage White” by Farrow & Ball). The gumball round felt rug will stay in front of the changing table so the new rug will need to coordinate with it. It is mint, gray, white, goldenrod and beige. You can see more photos of the nursery here.

Here are some stripe-y ones that I’m considering… They’re not too “baby” and can grow with him for years to come. But the colors are right. I’m thinking that MAYBE I can ask them if they’ll create one of these rugs in a mint stripe just for Aidan’s room? What do you think? The charcoal is too graphic/harsh for this space and the duck egg blue will make the mint walls look more blue and I don’t want that… Plus I never imagined a baby blue boy’s room and so I’m trying to do all I can to steer clear from that. But stripes are always nice…


Chevron is nice too… And I do have triangle patterns in the room so it could work… The two colors would need to be pretty close in tone though, not too contrast-y, because I don’t want it to be the focal point in the room… The good thing about the Chevron patterns is you can custom order. In this case, what two colorways would you go with for this space? I am imagining maybe sage and fog…


Persia could be good too, but again, the colors would need to be very same-y so there isn’t a high contrast…


What about Triangles? Not in this colorway but..


Maybe a Ribbon Multi Stripe? Again, not these colors… We are just looking at design and patterns for now…


Lots of people are telling me to just go with the big, round Dandelion Natural rug for this room. This would mean removing the felt ball rug from in front of the changing table and placing it in the corner in front of his closet (not shown). It is also great for little knees as I’m told it is soft and natural.


Or I could go with the Marigold (which I love, but I wanted this one for my office!). But he is a BOY and he will have LEGOS and TRUCKS and stuff, will this open cut out pattern really be practical for a little growing boy? Or will I constantly be picking legos out of it when I vacuum? Or will he constantly be complaining because he cannot get his massive lego towers to stand on it without falling over? For this reason, the Dandelion above may be more practical. Plus Marigold does look a little feminine, don’t you think?


OKAY so what are your thoughts? AND REMEMBER: To win a rug from Armadillo&Co you need to:

1// Comment on this IG photo with your rug suggestion for Aidan’s room.
2// Comment below on this post with your suggestion.

That’s it! But you’ll need to do both!

Contest ends when I choose a rug, which I’m thinking will be within the next two weeks so I’ll most likely close this contest on June 30.

THANK YOU EVERYONE and especially to Armadillo&Co for this amazing opportunity for a lucky reader!

(images: armadillo&co)

Posted in contests on June 17, 2014

Art Crush: Emily Ferretti

My very own blog inspired me last week! Do you ever have that happen… You write about something and you feel even more inspired by the topic than you imagined and it leads to research and more research and boom! You are down the rabbit hole! This is precisely what happened to me last week when I shared some photos from a home that lovely Lucy over at The Design Files featured. The home was immaculate, I mean breath-taking, but the artwork sealed the deal for me. I just had to investigate! And when I did, I discovered artist Emily Ferretti. The best part is, Lucy must have had the same craving to look into Emily at the exact same time because she posted an in-depth interview with Emily here on her blog this past Friday. Great minds… ;)


Gorgeous shades of blues and greens are recurring themes in her work.


Emily’s work studio (above)


In addition to her gorgeous paintings that she creates in her Northcote (a suburb of Melbourne, Victoria, Australia) studio, she has a new book available to order online called, ‘Everyday‘, published by Perimeter Editions. Her publishers describe her work so brilliantly, “Oil-on-linen paintings of plants, rocks, domestic settings, sporting ephemera and architectural details are remarkable for their lightness of touch and subtleties in process, tonality and mark making, sidling the representational and abstract via a quiet, poetic tenor. Isolated from wider narrative and context, her various fragmentary scenes – athletic tracks, skate ramps, pot plants or winter forest scapes – work to bestow the day-to-day with a particular gravity and significance.” Yes, exactly! What they said!


Many of her paintings shown are available at her current show at Sophie Gannon Gallery. Her work makes me feel so calm and at peace overall – there is a lightness and good energy about them and I just love the colors and the natural subjects – along with some of her more abstract and geometric pieces, too. My favorite painting is definitely THIS ONE below. Oh how I love it. It speaks to me so loud and clear. I wish it were in my home. And I don’t say that often about paintings because I view them as such a major life commitment. Buying original works of art (especially in this price range) is nothing I take lightly.


21319Apr 05, 2011

What do you think of her work? I wonder how it makes you feel when you see it? Is there a connection for you, too?

(photos: Sean Fennessy and Eve Wilson)

Posted in Arts + Crafts on June 17, 2014


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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