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!
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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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?
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.
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.
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:
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!
Photos: Chrissann Gasparro