Lili Zarghami

"I buy chairs instead of expensive shoes."

Lili is Editorial Director of HGTV.com. Her personal obsessions include looking for just the right sofa, ogling real estate listings, and reading floor-plans. She has an admitted "chair problem," collecting them like most women collect shoes. Lili lives in an apartment that's perpetually too small (probably because of all the chairs) in Brooklyn, NY with her husband and young twins.

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POSTS BY Lili Zarghami

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Happy 4th of July, D-Happers! I hope you all are relaxing with family and friends and celebrating all the best of America. I thought I’d share a few delights with you that would be right at home with any patriotic decor, and are also all Made in the USA. Enjoy your holiday!
made in the usa products

Top: Etsy seller KelseyGarrityRiley (Savannah, Georgia), Bottom left to right: Harper Chair by Jonathan Adler (Designed in NYC), Milking Stool by François Chambard (Brooklyn, NY), Oculo Pendant Lamp by Niche Modern (Beacon, NY)

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When my necklace collection started getting out of control, I took matters into my own hands and made a wall organizer out of little more than a ruler and many clear thumbtacks. It works, but it doesn’t come close to being as beautiful as this Wish Tree Jewelry Holder. The branches can hold dangling earrings and necklaces, while the small cup at the bottom can catch more dainty pieces. I even think that it would look pretty great with some bow ties and cuff links hanging around.

jewelry tree

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With a truncated holiday week on tap, I’m having a hard time concentrating on anything but 4th of July celebrations. I’m a real sucker for fireworks, but what do you do with your day off before the sun goes down? I think I might try my hand at this Patriotic Berry Trifle. Blueberries and strawberries are in season and it looks fairly simple to put together. And you can’t argue with the very pretty red, white, and blue results!

patriotic berry trifle

Photograph by Steve Giralt

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These gold-leafed log tables have been around for a while now, but every time I see one, I’m equally charmed by them (they remind me of The Giving Tree!). I love them used as unexpected accents in an otherwise staid room. These tables from Phillips Collection are cast from tree trunks, but I think you could DIY them from a spare log you have lying around, don’t you?

gold leaf log table

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The upcycling design trend is still going strong, and rightly so. Taking an unused item and turning it into something useful and beautiful is not only earth-friendly, but it results in truly one-of-a-kind pieces. This “hacked” light designed by HGTV Star Cris Mercado was made from an old camera body, a tripod, a light kit and finished with an Edison bulb. It was the judges favorite, and one of mine too!

vintage camera light

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Of all the joys of summer – swimming, grilling, camping – there is one that I can’t get on board with: linen. Obviously, it’s lovely and fitting for the season, but the moment I’m in a linen shirt it’s wrinkled and stained. I’ve banned it from my wardrobe. This dinnerware, however, could let one enjoy the feel of linen without all the drawbacks. It looks natural and “raw” but clearly works just as well with dressed up silverware.

west elm linen plates

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For all of you who wish you had just a little bit more counter space, I present you with Autour by St. Charles of New York. The concept is pretty great: instead of redesigning your entire kitchen, you add a butcher-block-topped counter to what you’ve already got. I like that the shape allows your kitchen helpers or cocktail party guests a place to park themselves while you cook, or to help with some prep while not being in the way.

autour counter extension

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I’m not sure how many times I’ve seen something and thought that it was the best thing ever invented, but there have been quite a few. What can I say? I am an optimist! When I saw this beach bag, I couldn’t believe that I’d lived so long without it. After every beach trip, I always end up trying to gently shake sand out of our bags and into a trash can. (I know, I know, this problem would be solved with a yard if I had one.) Enter: The Shake bag. It has a trap door at the bottom that keeps your items in while letting the unwanted sand out. Genius.

shake women's tote

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June is prime wedding season (not that people don’t have lovely weddings all year long). But because most of my friends and family tied the knot a decade or so ago, I’ve been out of the wedding loop for a bit. I’m excited that this year I have a wedding to look forward to, though – ahem, Ms. Designer MacGyver.

barn wedding - kacy jahanbini photography

Photo: Kacy Jahanbini

Briana’s nuptials have me thinking about wedding trends, and man, are rustic weddings hot right now. There are so many gorgeous barn weddings with burlap accents, wild flowers in mason jars, and rough-hewn signage happening these days. The barn above might be my absolute favorite rustic wedding location. Photographer Kacy Jahanbini captured this gorgeous shot in Norfolk, Connecticut. If you want to check out the whole event, head on over to his blog.

Do you have a wedding trend that you’re gaga over? Tell us on our Facebook page.

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The school year is finally winding down for my kids. Because this has been their first year of school, I’ve kept a significant amount of their artwork that’s come home. I’m hoping to hold onto as much of their 6-year-old sweetness as I can (for when they’re terrible teens who tell me how uncool I am). But since we live in an apartment, I’m acutely aware of how space for these mementos will quickly run out. I thought this coffee table book called Mini Masterpieces designed by Paislee Press might be just the right (neat! ordered! beautiful!) solution to the problem. You upload your little Picasso’s work to the template, mix in some family photos and you’ve got a keepsake that will not shed glitter. And how adorable is the Paislee Press family?

book of your kids art

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Happy Monday morning, everyone. If your brain isn’t quite ready to jump back into the work week quite yet, take a little mental vacation with me and this portable hot tub. When Briana showed me the Dutchtub® below I let out a gasp and asked, “That’s a hot tub?!” As their site explains, it’s fairly straight-forward and simple: it’s a big bowl of water that’s wood-fired and naturally circulated. Best of all, it’s completely portable. If this is getting back to basics, count me in.
dutchtub outdoor hot tub

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Yesterday’s New York Times Home section featured the recently renovated brownstone of Beastie Boy, Mike D (also known as Mr. Michael Diamond) and it’s just as cool as you might expect it to be. Aside from their media room “sofa” which I’m pretty sure is an upholstered bed — genius! — the one thing that caught my eye was this chandelier made by Studio Tord Boontje. Maybe you’ve seen his Midsummer Light before? The guy’s good with lights. This Blossom Chandelier is made of Swarovski crystals and lined with LED lights. The effect in Mike D’s dining room is beautiful, natural and elegant. I’d love to see it lit up at night.

tord boontje blossom chandelier

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A friend of mine was just bemoaning the lack of diversity in Father’s Day cards. If your dad (or the father of your children) doesn’t fall into the barbecuing, golfing, remote-control-loving category, it can be tough to find a card or a gift for him for Father’s Day that seems appropriate. My dad and my husband — and I suspect a lot of other dads out there — are hard to shop for because of their “outlier” status. Something like this wall art from Etsy user RedWallStudio might be just the thing, though. Because no matter his taste, chances are you feel just this way about your dad:

father's day print - etsy

Photo: RedWallStudio

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Know what’s better than luxurious (yet expensive) wallpaper? A trompe l’oeil treatment on your walls that looks just as good at a fraction of the cost.  Chrissann Gasparro over at Ducklings In A Row is sharing her tutorial on how to paint your walls with a DIY stencil. Chrissann’s hilarious account and really simple instructions not only make this a fun read, but also a project that will make you wonder, “Why didn’t I think of that?”

I love how this pattern made a very straight-forward and otherwise ordinary white-walled room feel immediately glamorous and “done.” It even straddles the masculine/feminine lines I was just wondering about the other day. Great work, Chrissann!

DIY wall stencil - Ducklings in a Row

Photos: Chrissann Gasparro

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I’m a real estate stalker. Being a New Yorker, I love knowing how much a home costs (it’s a quirk in this city and I promise you it’s acceptable here).  Most of all I just love pulling the curtains back and taking a look at what’s behind those windows. One of my favorite places to do just that is over at one of our sister site’s blog Cool Houses Daily. I spotted this Frank Lloyd Wright beauty over there just the other day and wanted to share it with you all.

At a hefty $1.39M you get to own a piece of history, letters between Wright and the original owner Ray Brandes, and all the FLW-designed furniture, too. Anyone in the market for a million dollar home in Issaquah, Washington?

frank lloyd wright brandes house

Image Source: Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty | Via FrontDoor.com

 

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I’m an admitted Jonathan Adler fanatic. So when I saw that JCP is carrying a new line of his products called Happy Chic I was…well…so happy! I’ve already pinned this blue velvet side chair to my “I sort of have a chair problem” board and had to stop myself before I pinned the whole line. True to Adler style, the collection is full of accessories with loads of color and bold graphics. His large scale pieces are elegant, classic and would blend with most any decor. The price point is more affordable (especially with a sale!), so maybe this is the time a JA piece and my apartment finally become one?

jonathan adler happy chic

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Last weekend my family was invited to a friend’s Putnam Valley lake house for a day of row boating, paddle boarding and general good times. I’ve never really enjoyed lake swimming that much in the past (see: my aversion to bugs), but my point of view changed radically after just one lovely day. Now I’m lake-house-obsessed.

This absolutely perfect one bedroom cabin on Lake Michigan is being completely renovated by Sarah Sherman Samuel of Smitten Studio. She’s sharing her progress as she transforms this formerly unappealing, plywood-paneled home — check out the before pictures! — into a truly gorgeous retreat. I really adore the charcoal exterior paint and how it makes the greenery surrounding it seem even greener.

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