Events + Markets, Shopping + Products, Travel

Boston: SoWa Open Studios + Open Market – September 15-16

September 14, 2007

Psst: Don’t forget to head over to the South End Open Studios and the South End Open Market this weekend. Both are running on Saturday and Sunday, held in the SoWa (South of Washington Street) district. Lots to see. Learn more about the event here and have fun, Boston!

Boston: SoWa Open Studios + Open Market - September 15-16
(image from se open studios)






Arts + Crafts, Events + Markets, Shopping + Products, Travel

Nahcotta: Enormous Tiny Art Show II – Reception Tonight!

September 14, 2007

If you’re in the Portsmouth, New Hampshire area this evening, you won’t want to miss the Enormous Tiny Art Show II currently underway at the beautiful Portsmouth-based gallery, Nahcotta: Enormous Tiny Art Show II - Reception Tonight!The show features work that is 10″ x 10″ or smaller and runs from September 12th – October 7th in conjunction with Three Graces Gallery and their Teenie Tiny Art Show. Amy Ruppel, Tara Hogan (Ink & Wit), Marisa Haedike (Creative Thursday), Dan-ah Kim, Cathy Nichols, Matte Stephens, Burcu Okay, Sam Faix, Ann Kirchner, Jennifer Judd-McGee (Swallowfield), Kate O’Leary, Lucie Summers, Sofia Barao, and Susie Ghahremani (Boy Girl Party), are a few of my picks, of course many other terrific artists are taking part in this amazing show so if you attend, you may find a few favorites of your own. Some of these artists will be attending in person, like Jennifer Judd-McGee and Tara Hogan, and it’s rumored that Amy Ruppel may attend as well, so if you’d like to meet them, stop by!

Nahcotta: Enormous Tiny Art Show II - Reception Tonight! Carefully mapping out everything for installation.

Nahcotta: Enormous Tiny Art Show II - Reception Tonight!That’s a lot of art!

Nahcotta: Enormous Tiny Art Show II - Reception Tonight! The work of Kelly Moore on display.

If you aren’t in the Portsmouth area don’t worry, you can view everything in the show online, and if you see something you like, write to Deb at Nahcotta for more information and how to purchase. email: Deb at gallery AT nahcotta DOT com.

(images from nahcotta)






Rooms

Akasha: 30% off (for decor8 readers)

September 14, 2007

I introduced you to the ethnic prints and patterns of Akasha recently, their collection of bedding and pillows each handmade in India and are really luxurious, each with intricate details and lovely colors. This collection is perfect for those of you looking to bring ethnic prints into the home in a more subtle fashion, they blend so well with the modern home.

Akasha: 30% off (for decor8 readers)Best part, Akasha is now offering decor8 readers 30% off their total online purchase, simply enter DECOR8 upon checkout. Hurry! Offer ends September 21, 2007.

Thank you so much Akasha for this very generous offer!

(images from akasha)






Handmade, Objects

Habitat

September 13, 2007

One store that I always look forward to visiting when in Germany is Habitat in Hamburg, where there’s both a retail store and an outlet. I have to take photos for you this time when we go, you’ll love it. Hamburg is so beautiful and this store is such a pleasure to shop because it’s both affordable (the prices are in the West Elm range) and ultra stylish and chic in that European way, the way we all seek to recreate in our own homes here in the states.

Habitat
I just flipped through their Fall/Winter ’07 catalog and decided that I’m going to try to fit the Concetta vase in my luggage, I absolutely adore the pattern and colors on it. It’s designed by none other than Concetta Gallo for Habitat. She is amazing.

Habitat
I really like this affordable rocker, I see it in about a million different fabrics that I’d use on the seat, but I highly doubt I can fit this in my carry-on bag. :) The Concetta rug is fabulous as well, but again… Not going to fit on the plane. But if you live in Europe, most likely there’s a Habitat store near you.

HabitatHabitatHabitat
In addition to the styles and deals, another major perk when shopping Habitat, at least in their Hamburg store, is that there’s a wallpaper section where you can buy fabulously hued rolls right on the spot. I love this, I wish stores in America sold wallpaper in their showrooms, such a great idea and it makes shopping for wallpaper super easy when it’s right there alongside the great sofa or chair you’re planning to purchase.

(images from habitat)






Arts + Crafts, DIY

Unfinished Frames on the Cheap

September 13, 2007

I’ve been trying to stay busy this week to avoid falling into a total state of depression over the recent death in our immediate family. The only way I can get through it all and maintain some joy is to find things to do around the house, play positive music, and work on a few projects that are easy enough so that I don’t walk away frustrated and tense. Stay positive! Keep smiling! That’s the only way to deal sometimes when all I want to do is hide under my blanket.
No hiding allowed.

Unfinished Frames on the Cheap
So I painted a wall in my living room this morning. No clue why, but I felt like painting things was the way to kick my sadness. And it works. Last night, I put those sticky discs on some of my favorite plates like I told you about earlier. No real effort there, but it made me feel like I accomplished something because I seriously detested those wire hangers I had before. So a few easy tasks later, and my smile is more natural and less forced.

But I still feel like painting, so I took this small unfinished wood frame that I found at the craft store and applied a few coats of white paint. I love all the little original works of art that I buy, but most of them look so much nicer when framed and I’m not about to run to the frame store for every little painting I have. I just came back from the local frame shop and $200 later, I have two of my favorite prints up and gorgeous. But still, $200 is a lot of money and I certainly can’t give all of my art work the royal treatment. Unfinished frames, no glass, that’s the way to go for mini paintings. Plus, it makes them appear much larger.

Unfinished Frames on the Cheap
I think this $4 one works nicely with one of my Creative Thursday paintings purchased back in March. These frames come in various sizes and widths, so I didn’t give it much thought, I just grabbed the only one on the shelf assuming that for $4, it will work until I can buy a better frame. It had a 5 x5 insert, the painting is 5 x 5, so what could go wrong. Nothing.

Unfinished Frames on the Cheap
The results are very nice after applying a few coats of primer, a few coats of white acrylic paint, and a single coat of clear lacquer. I simply popped the 5×5 painting in the back and taped to secure. I know I can use hardware to secure it, but until I run to Lowe’s, strong tape will do just fine. So what will I do next? Maybe I’ll go buy a new staple gun and try not to staple my hand as I did last time when I was reupholstering a chair and held the gun backwards. Ouch! Okay, no staple gun projects for me this week. I think I’ll sew something, that’s always great therapy and I do have some pants to hem…

Psst: If you’d like a pretty painting from Marisa, don’t miss her online sale going on today – I’m not sure what time she’ll be posting them, but I’m sure they’ll sell out quickly so make sure you keep checking her blog for updates.

{Update: Marisa just posted her paintings right here.}

(images from holly becker for decor8)






Objects

Happy Mundane’s Picks

September 13, 2007

Jon over at Happy Mundane consistently locates those hidden gems, often from his many trips to Kmart, Target, Macy’s, Michael’s, and beyond. This is one man obsessed with shopping and decorating, but even more so with scoring a budget find. I think Jon is that guy friend we all need to have, the one with impeccable taste who is not afraid to hunt for bargains because he doesn’t need expensive things to feel like some hip hot shot. Jon recognizes that some really great finds exist that don’t require going in debt for. Of course, he has expensive taste and craves the finer things just like the rest of us, but he’s careful to show balance, one of many traits that I really respect about this talented man.

Happy Mundane's PicksHere are a few cool things that Jon wrote about recently that I fell in love with, the first being this Anthropologie-like plastic cuckoo clock for only $15 at Walmart. Don’t like black? Slap some primer on it and paint it your favorite color. How hard is that?

Happy Mundane's PicksAnd this crazy cool bookcase. Looks like a DIY project if you happen to have two spare coffee tables, or you can simply purchase this one for around $525 from Umbra. This is great for a hallway, a nice solution to your standard console table. It has some definite ‘tude going on.

Happy Mundane's PicksAnd finally, Lauren Saunders, whom I’m seeing everywhere lately. And her tactile pillows appeal to me because they remind me of a landscape painting – a canyon or the colors of desert sand, they have a very western America look – like I can see these in Western Interiors magazine in some gorgeous mountain home in Boulder. I love the two shown below on Lauren’s lap, and the other two on that modern blue sofa.

Happy Mundane's Picks
Now back to making Jon blush. Jon lives in the O.C. (not the show, the county) and since most of us don’t, we have to buddy with him solely through the entries on his blog, Happy Mundane. This is why I love the internet, we have so many opportunities to mingle with creative + stylish people without leaving our desk. I remember years ago when all I had was my circle of friends, family, or a few (bad) magazines and mediocre books to look to for inspiration. Nowadays, with a bevy of design blogs and delicious magazines (both print and online), one never needs to suffer a design rut. There is so much out there to learn from and so many pools of inspiration to tap into.

(images from sources mentioned above)






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