Inspiration: A Dream of a Home

Photo: This is Glamorous

It started this morning with this:
I'm totally inspired.

Although I've been in my house for almost a year, there's still a lot I want to do with the interior. It's a small house, so I want every room to be special, useful, and have a unique personality. Admittedly, right now I spend the most time in the main living room (i.e., where the big TV is mounted. How very Homer Simpson of me.) It's summer and I have some spare time. Time to leave the college dorm room look behind and complete this baby.... I want a house like this.

The former owner had amazing style and vision. She took a 1930s house with blue vinyl siding, and transformed it into a gorgeous cedar-shake Cape Cod cottage, complete with a columned back porch and white picket fence. I fell in love at first sight. Unfortunately I never got to see the house furnished in person, but I did get to see pictures. Another huge plus: She left most of the window dressings and light fixtures, and for that I wish I could hug her.

So I moved into this "happy house" (as I dubbed it before it was even mine) as a newly single girl trying to get back on my feet after some major life changes. Luckily for me, it was move-in ready; so that lethargy I felt from Life's slap upside the head didn't keep my house from looking like a home fairly quickly. But it still has a long way to go. I've dragged my heels on really making this little house all mine, to a point I am embarrassed to admit. This is my punishment: publish it on a blog and out myself.

On yes, and one other thing: I have three dogs. THREE. And they are Shetland Sheepdogs. I don't run from the fact that I am, indeed, a Crazy Dog Lady. (I wonder if the neighborhood kids tell spooky stories about me around campfires?)

The Canines of the Household

Front sunroom: It has built-in bookshelves, and a huge window. It's also the first room you see when you walk in. It is the perfect "sitting" room... tranquil, and if it had the right decor, a room that brings the outdoors in.

Middle bedroom/Living Room: Le sigh. This room came to me just waiting to be made into a fabulous guest room-- the lovely former owner even had an amazing geometric shape painted onto the floor in lime, yellow, and taupe hues (I know what your knee-jerk reaction may have been to what you just read; she anticipated that too. So she smartly put up a page from Southern Living with a gorgeous room she'd obviously modeled this one after.) This room needs a guest bed, some major furniture re-arranging, and... oh yeah, those moving boxes really need to go.

Dining Room: Close to being "there." Except for the fact that, the chairs are like sitting on a plank elevated by toothpicks and superglue. I am not exaggerating. They are the most uncomfortable pieces of furniture ever. They are a great dinner conversation topic, however.

Main Living Room: My first real "big kid" purchase was a sofa from ZGallarie that is the center of this room. The color is Pool, it is entirely impractical but I love it more than one should love an inanimate object. (My boyfriend has assured me that it's "actually comfortable," which makes me feel better.) Clean lines, silver nail head accents, dark wood trim... and no animals allowed.

I have silk dupioni window panels my mom graciously handed down to me, in a sage/yellow/red plaid pattern. I never realized aqua and red could coordinate until my mom assured me I should try it. So I did, and it does. This room doesn't need too much more, but it definitely needs a pretty rug to tie in the taupes/aquas. I also have a wall that is very bare.

The Bathroom: Yes, THE. One. Single. Small. Something will have to give if this ever becomes more than just my house, as I am a product junkie (that's a whole different post). Former owner left the shower curtain and balloon shade that is a fabulous pink/orange toile (very Anthropologie). I had a time trying to decide what color to get for towels and floormats (no more orange or pink)... so I went with black. It works, now I just need a few things for the blank wall.

Kitchen: Small but pretty. In keeping with the New England theme, the floors are painted light gray and cabinets are white. The island has a thick light wood/cutting board type top, and a similar light colored wood hides the pantry and washer/dryer. Three french doors make for great lighting and easy view of the backyard. I've brought in some aqua here and there, and for this room really just need some kitchen accessories (NOTE TO SELF: not clutter), and a roman shade for the window over the sink.

I will probably go room by room for my inspiration posts so I can really concentrate on one room and not get sidetracked.

Let the games begin!


{ Birthday Parties and Eighties Babies }

Last week, I turned 30.
I'm not going to lie... I've been dreading this.

Another decade older. In one day.
A new age group in InStyle's "What to Wear at Any Age" feature.
A different box to check on my voter registration card.
I feel the need to start reading The New Yorker
and permanently program my radio to NPR.

Have I been ousted from the world of fedoras, skinny jeans, Chanel's Black Tie nail polish...?
I just can't do Talbot's yet. I can't.
And really, it seems a shame to delete "Party in the USA" from my iPod.

As I tread lightly into the world of the real adult, I am going to take full advantage of the fact that birthdays are the one day of the year you can be totally about yourself.

I am dedicating this post to all things decadent and self-indulgent...
highly influenced by Varuca Salt.

I want a wine cellar.
I want a closet like Carrie Bradshaw.
I want a garden of gardenias, lilacs, hydrangeas, and roses--
and I want them to bloom all year long.
I want to provide educational funding to low income schools.
I want to visit Florence, Italy and the Holy Land.
I want to meet Tim Gunn.
I want to find homes for all the pets without one.
I want to go to Fashion Week in Paris. And London. And NYC. And Milan.
I want someone to discover a cure for cancer.
I still want to be a good cook like the Barefoot Contessa.
I want to publish a children's book.

That was a quick, stream of consciousness list... I am sure I'll be think of more at random times, and will add them as I think of them.

Time to get busy; it seems I have a rather lofty bucket list.


{ Dream Shopping Becomes Reality }

Fantastic news, friends!
I am so excited to share that one of my favorite blogs,

The Swelle Life

just opened an online boutique!

All images courtesy of The Swelle Life and Swelle Boutique

The sweetheart author behind The Swelle Life has impeccable taste, so I knew the boutique would be fabulous and unique.
She has a great eye for all things lovely-- emerging designers, gourmet cupcakes, couture collections, eclectic artwork, new accessories, incredible architecture ... literally, this list could go on for days. She finds beauty everywhere.

And now it's translated into a shop... Helloooo, happiness!

You know a boutique is special when it literally makes you feel giddy just seeing the clothes... imagine the thrill of actually owning them! The pieces are ethereal, feminine, whimsical, yet so very practical. There's a variety of gorgeous hues and textures represented and all pieces are either one of a kind or limited edition. Also of note: the prices are unbelievably reasonable.

Here's a tiny sample.

Thank you Denise for adding a spoonful of sugar to my day!

But enough of this typing... I have shopping to do.

Visit Swelle Boutique at http://www.swelleboutique.com/