Briana Mowrey

"I want the Eames chair and I want the Saarinen table and I want them both."

Briana is a writer and senior editor for HGTV.com. Her self-described design style is "mid-century modern magpie." She lives in a Brooklyn apartment with her husband, their spoiled dachshund, Chauncey, and approximately one million old shelter magazines. She cannot wait until she is a home owner, and can wallpaper and/or tile just about every available surface.

Briana Mowrey ON PINTEREST

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POSTS BY Briana Mowrey

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I live in the land of subways and taxis here in NYC, so while I rarely get a chance to drive anymore, I still appreciate the look of license plates. I particularly love vanity plates and the designs on plates that support worthwhile causes. While I may not be behind the wheel anytime soon, these eye-catching license plate crafts mean I can surround myself with road-tested style. Check out my finds and get inspired to snatch up vintage plates the next time you’re thrifting or browsing an online auction site!

Learn how to make this license plate divider and more license plate crafts on HGTV's Design Happens blog
This license plate room divider by Brian Patrick Flynn provides a jolt of color and a little privacy to boot. It looks super cool in this outdoor room, adding a bit of art where it’s usually hard to find.

MORE IDEAS FOR OLD LICENSE PLATES

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It’s been a while since we featured projects specifically for oenophiles, but if you’ve crafted with all of your corks and are still looking for more raw materials, look no further than the wooden wine crate. Like milk crates, these sturdy boxes are surprisingly simple to transform and have a certain rustic flair. (Not big on wine? Fruit or soda crates may work for many of these makeovers, or you can head to your local craft supply store for plain crates.) Drink in these clever ideas and when you find one you like, try the tutorial!

6 Crafty Ways to Update Wood Crates: Toy Box
Keep kid clutter to a minimum with these mobile wooden crate toy boxes from Brian Patrick Flynn. Names spelled out with stencils are a cute, personal touch.

MORE WOODEN CRATE CREATIONS

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BRIANA: Over-the-top holiday light displays aren’t exactly a new fad, but this 2013 trend list suggests that social media and Pinterest are inspiring people to get more creative. Themes like “winter wonderlands, candy canes, Santa’s workshop and character themes” are apparently in-demand and hey, looks like someone found a way to tip a hat to that fox trend, too. Some homeowners have even gone high-tech with smartphone apps so they can orchestrate the whole setup with just a tap or flick of the finger. So, what do you think? Are souped-up holiday light displays merry or scary?

Are over-the-top holiday lights merry or scary? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

MARIANNE: Do I love to take my kids out in their Christmas jammies for a holiday light tour? Definitely. Do I put lights on my house? Nope.

KAYLA: I’m with you, Marianne. They’re great to look at it but I’ll never, ever, ever put lights on my house like that. I’d rather sit on my sofa and sip a hot toddy. I do appreciate those that go the extra mile, though.

MORE HOLLERIN’ ABOUT HOLIDAY LIGHTS

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BRIANA: Pantone has released the 2014 Color of the Year and it’s [drumroll, please] Radiant Orchid!

Do you like Pantone's Color of the Year 2014? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Photos: Courtesy of Pantone

Are you glad this purple/pink has put down roots and blossomed or is the hue too much for you?

Do you like Pantone's Color of the Year? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Design: Mary Jo Fiorella/Fiorella Design, Photo: Frank Paul Perez

LILI: Make way for this gorgeous pink, y’all.

KELLEY: Oh wow – way better than Honeysuckle. And quite ’80s, too. Our whole senior class seemed to have ruffle-necked shirts in that color, LOL!

MARIANNE: It’s very Unicorn Club (points if you get that reference).

MORE OPINING ABOUT ORCHID

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There’s nothing like a classy beverage to make a holiday party feel more festive or to whet everyone’s appetite for small bites. My husband and I are cocktail enthusiasts, but as much as I love drinks with lots of exotic ingredients and elaborate garnishes (hello, flaming limes!), we’ve found it’s best to keep it simple behind the bar when you’re entertaining for a large group. It’s also a good idea to keep drinks on the low-alcohol end of the spectrum so guests can sip the night away without feeling the negative effects the next morning. So, what do you mix when you’re looking for something simple, low-alcohol, festive and tasty? Enter the shim!

The Pleasant Evening cocktail on a tray

TWO TASTY COCKTAIL RECIPES TO TRY

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BRIANA: I professed my tree & tree branch decor crush back in 2011 (still love you, Cole & Son Woods!), but even back then, I recognized that there was some trend fatigue. Fast forward to 2013. I just noticed an item in this month’s issue of People StyleWatch declaring that Tree Branch Decor was OUT. Their expert says people are going more modern and less rustic these days, but what do you think? Are you still a tree-hugger or do you wish this trend would make like a tree and leaf? (Sorry not sorry.)

Do you like the tree branch decor trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

DEANNE REVEL: I was just looking at my accessory tree that holds all my necklaces and headbands this morning and thinking, “Man, I need to get hip. This isn’t cool anymore.”

FARIMA: I was never really on the tree train. I say keep it to nurseries only.

MARIANNE: I prefer my trees petrified these days.

Do you like the tree branch decor trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Photo: Charles Tilford/Flickr

MORE BANTER ABOUT TREE BRANCHES

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BRIANA: Put a fox on it? From the looks of it, this crafty creature has made everyone forget about birds. Abbi suggested foxes as a possible DTT topic a few months back because she was noticing them all over baby goods and nurseries – now they’re all over these products Kayla featured in her mood board*, not to mention viral videos. We may never know what the fox says, but what do YOU say about foxes?

Mood Board Monday: Fox Fashion and Decor

MARIANNE: Roald Dahl’s The Fantastic Mr. Fox was my favorite book as a kid (I kind of had a crush on Mr. Fox?), so I love foxes…but it bums me out that they are so overplayed right now. Though I will confess to dressing my kid in a fox onesie and loving it:

Do you like the fox design trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

KELLY SMITH TRIMBLE: I love foxes. They’re like dogs you can’t tame. They look cuddly but they’re really wild and elusive. I agree they’re getting a bit overplayed, but I’m also glad they’re being used sans hunting scene this go ’round.

MORE FIGHTING OVER FOXES

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BRIANA: Move over, orange – there’s a new color in town. White pumpkins were once novel, but now they threaten to usurp the Halloween pumpkin throne. So, what do you think? Do white pumpkins look smashing or would you like to smash them?

Do you like the white pumpkin trend for Halloween? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

MARIANNE: I love all of the non-traditional pumpkins right now, white included. My mom just made this motley gourd tower and I’m digging it.

Do you like the white pumpkin trend for Halloween? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

HANNAH SLAUGHTER: Kelly Smith Trimble is single-handedly responsible for me embracing the white pumpkins. They  just seem so elegant!

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BRIANA: Barn doors have been making their way indoors and have landed on top of trend lists in the process. What do you folks think of these rustic accents? Do they make you say “OMG ILU” or “E-I-E-I-OH NO”?

Do you like the barn door trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Design: Linda Woodrum for HGTV’s 2011 Dream Home

ALYSSA: It’s not a look I’d typically go for, but I actually loved what Tiffany [Brooks] did with one for the winners of our Most Embarrassing Kitchen in America. Choosing to stain it blue allows the natural wood to show through while also making a rustic barn door work in a fairly modern kitchen.

Do you like the barn door trend? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Photo: Victoria Pearson for HGTV Magazine

KELLEY: E-I-E-I-NO! It’s an awfully big installation for something that’s gonna look dated in two years. 

BARN DOORS: YAY OR NEIGH?

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BRIANA: Bust out your ‘80s bedding – florals and chintz have been back in a big way this year. Though chintz typically refers to a type of floral fabric, blooms have been gracing wallpaper, china – even tech accessories.  Are you a fan of all this flower power or do you wish floral patterns would wilt and die?

Do you like chintz and floral patterns? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

MARIANNE: I think it depends on the floral. I can’t get enough of Rifle Paper Co’s floral prints, and I’m putting this little lady in my kitchen:

Do you like the floral trend, as seen in this print? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

Rifle Paper Co. “Rosa” print

KAYLA: I wish that the floral decor in [the first picture] would die right this minute. Also, I hate those hotel comforters. (Sorry.) I think modern florals or retro florals are perfect. I’ll never get tired of them – on sundresses, throw pillows, upholstered side chairs, or as a wallpapered accent wall.

KERI: I’m with Kayla. The florals in [the first picture] remind me of my grandmother’s spare bedroom (except there would be a waterbed underneath – yikes). But I’m currently drooling over this pressed flowers print:

Do you like the floral trend, as seen in this art print? Vote now on HGTV's Design Happens blog!

“Field of Dreams” 18 X 24 Pressed Flowers Limited Edition by HaleyJsNaturalArt on Etsy

DEANNE REVEL: Have you guys seen Kirstie Alley’s former house on FrontDoor? Brace yourselves. So. Much Floral.

DO YOU LIKE THE FLORAL TREND? VOTE NOW!

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