Saturday, March 31, 2012

And the winner of the Ram Sign giveaway is...

Miss Kitty

Thanks to everyone who entered.  Miss Kitty, congratulations; send me your email address and I will forward the information to Tezz at Ram Sign who will take your order.

Until next time,

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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Guest Post~French Nordic Design

Hi Bloggie Friends,

Today's feature is a guest post from Mari at Design Shuffle.  She is going to discuss one of my favorite looks, the French Nordic style.  Thanks to Jeanne d'Arc Living and other similar publications, this style is hot, hot, hot.  I can't seem to get enough of it, and I know many of you feel the same.  So, enjoy this little bit of eye candy today.  Take it away Mari...

Hello, everyone! It's Mari here from Design Shuffle, a fabulous online portal for interior designers and all things interior design. One of the things I love best about writing guest posts for Design Shuffle is getting to visit amazing design and decorating blogs like French Laundry to share some of my favorite decorating ideas.

Today's post is about the beautiful French Nordic look—part French style, part Nordic appeal and all white and gray loveliness. When it comes to this charming style, there is no such thing as just a touch is enough—once one is smitten, there is no turning back. Each and every space in the home must be decorated in the desirable French Nordic style—an exciting never ending adventure. Here's a glimpse into the world of the French Nordic look. We hope you will enjoy these eight inspiring images.
French Nordic
This lovely vignette is brought to us Jeanne d'Arc Living, the magazine that showcases all things French Nordic. On every issue are the words, "Lifestyle in a Class of its Own."
French Nordic
An appealing corner is filled with furnishings and decorative pieces that might be chosen for a French Nordic space.
French Nordic
With clawfoot tub and vintage fixtures along with lovely words of French, this bath is perfect for the French Nordic home.
French Nordic
When going for a bedroom design in the French Nordic style, consider a lovely combination of pure white linens mixed with grays, taupes and greiges.
French Nordic
Here's another space from Jeanne d'Arc Living—an appealing mix of white slipcovers and rustic textiles. You probably have noticed that angels' wings are often seen in French Nordic rooms.
French Nordic
This photo is full of dining room design ideas. It is a slightly Americanized version of Nordic French style with the quintessential black and white sign in English not French. I love the soft cotton slipcovers on the dining chairs.
French Nordic
Live plants, such as vines and topiaries are often seen in French Nordic rooms. Antique mirrors and distressed shutters add an appealing aged feel to this corner vignette.

This light and airy dining space is all about the French Nordic look in interior design, from the white painted floor to the restrained size of the crystal and iron chandelier. Images 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8
Love French Nordic design? You'll find more inspiration at Design Shuffle! Connect with some of the top Los Angeles interior designers, San Diego interior designers and many others!

Thanks Mari!  As I have said before on my blog, my style is a little fussier and far more cluttered than the traditional JDL look, but I still enjoy incorporating elements of that style into my decor.  Zinc (or faux zinc) is a must have in this look and there are many ways to pull it into your interior.  The beautiful French zinc plant pots are great, but a bit pricey.  If they aren't affordable, try a new metal container and give it a faux zinc finish (yes, I do still need to do that tutorial-note to self).  I found this cutie pie at Goodwill for $1 or so, gave it the finish I wanted, then added a faux enamel tag tied on with twine.  You can find the tutorial for the tags here.

Simplicity really is the key with this look...a pretty paper doily, a page from an antique book, one of my faux zinc crosses with torn muslin bow, stuck on the wall with a push pin; what could be easier?

Of course,  part of the serene beauty of this look is the incorporation of some religious elements, if that is your desire. 

Even if your decor is less rustic, you can still blend this look in.  Beautiful French mirrors look great when paired with some more primitive elements like this one from Atelier de Campagne.

I have the ubiquitous antique grain sack pillow and the white slipcovered couch in my living room as well as some pretty French tables, but as you can see in the rest of the photo, I also have other elements that aren't typically associated with the French Nordic look like the sort of fussy hand painted lamp and tole tray. Still, it works.  In other parts of my home, I have Victorian furniture that I inherited from my great aunt, an early American salt glazed crock collection from my days in New England, my slightly goofy Victorian hoof pincushion collection, and my husband's Native American drums.  Eclectic, oui?

Then there's the collection of 1940-60's rhinestone clocks (just a few represented here...).

Basically, if you are all about one particular style and you are able to achieve that, then I say go for it.  If, like most of us, you are forced by economics and sentiment to live with what you already have and make little modifications here and there as your tastes change or you add new "loves" , then always follow your heart.  I believe, as others have said as well, that if you live with what you love, no matter how disparate it may seem, it will somehow all come together to make a style that is truly your own.  I think if you are true to yourself, there will be some element, whether it is color or shape, texture or feeling, that will tie everything together and make it work.  So don't be afraid to mix it up! 

Don't forget to enter my Ram Sign giveaway ending March 31st.  Can't beat a great product for FREE, right?  Enter by leaving a comment on this previous post.

Until next time my friends,

Linking up with:
White Wednesday
Pearls and Lace Thursday
What's It Wednesday
French Inspiration Friday
Vintage Inspiration Friday
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Thursday, March 22, 2012

So many vintage wallpapers, so little time...

Just a quick heads up, for those of you who share my obsession love for vintage wallpaper, I have added more papers to my little blog shop.  They are great for altered art, journals, backing cupboards, covering boxes, and, well, papering walls.  All are available by the yard and the price includes shipping.  The prices are excellent, I'm sure you will agree.  $12 per yard, INCLUDING domestic shipping.  Yep, that's it.  I'm just trying to defray the cost of my own collecting habit, not make a pile of money.  So, either click on the shop about halfway down on my sidebar, or click here to be transported to the blog shop.  If wallpaper isn't your thing, hang tight, I'll be back with more spring decor soon.

You'll remember from my last post I covered this box with one of my old papers.  I had a yard of it and, after covering the box, I still have plenty of scraps for other projects down the road.

Also, don't forget to enter my giveaway for a beautiful European enamel house number sign from Ram Sign.  Click here for the post about that.

Until next time,
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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

The First day of Spring

Hi Friends,

Not much going on here, just wanted to share a couple of things.  Above is a hatbox that you would think is an old one but it is new or at least the box is.  The wallpaper is from the 1940's.  I made the box with a kit I purchased literally YEARS ago.  I have many beautiful vintage wallpapers in my stash, and this one was so pretty, I decided I needed to make another hatbox to go with the ones I am using for storage in my closet of dreams.  Speaking of that, I found out that the organization process is taking far longer than I anticipated.  Guess I should have figured as much!  Maybe next month I'll be sharing the finished project.  Sigh...

The arrival of the official first day of spring makes me see spring everywhere.  Even my little silk flowers are all apple blossomy looking.

Now, I do live in Colorado, so it is going to be a while before we have any remarkable flowers to share, but I did find these photos from a previous spring, showing what I look forward to every year.  Lily of the Valley for one.

And the beautiful Bleeding Heart is always a favorite that I look forward to each year.

I'm still enjoying my flowers from 10 days ago.  Can you believe they still look this pretty?   Even though they are drooping a bit, they are still luscious.  Sometimes you get lucky...

Have you seen the magazine Cottage?  Their spring edition has just come out.  It is published by Hoffman Media, same folks who crank out Victoria, Paula Deen, and Southern Lady.

I just got my copy today at WalMart. I can't wait to peruse each page as it looks like a good one.  It is particularly good to me as one of my dear friends is featured in it.  Sharon is one of the most talented ladies around and this shows her beautiful little garden getaway (next time, I hope they show the inside-it is French and FAB-U-LOUS) in her backyard.  It started out as a Tough Shed.  Can you believe it?  The gal's definitely got vision.  I'm so happy for her.

Don't forget you still have time to enter my Ram Sign giveaway.

Just leave a comment on the previous post for a chance to win one of these awesome European house number signs.  Sorry about the total random photos and my rambling.  I am a little out of sorts due to a job that has now fallen into my lap because of another person's incompetence.  Oh well, this too, shall pass.  Keep a good thought (or two) for me this next week or two as I embark on a task that I'm not sure I am really up to, but I have to do it, so damn the torpedoes and full speed ahead. 

Until next time,

Linking up with:
White Wednesday
What's It Wednesday
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Friday, March 16, 2012

Vintage Pretty is IN THE HOUSE and... a Giveaway

Happy Friday my sweet friends,

I have a list as long as your arm today, but it is Friday, I'm off from work, and I spent the whole morning puttering and foofing, taking photos, and basically enjoying the process.  My husband said "the list" is really not hard and fast, more like a guideline, so if I was enjoying myself, I should deviate from my to do's and not worry about it.  Gotta love that man...

I am still enjoying the beautiful flowers I bought Sunday.  They are fully opened and nothing short of gorgeous.  I set up a little vignette on my favorite dresser in my living room and, although I thought I was doing it just for the sake of a blog post, I am going to leave it as is because I love it.  I needed to redo that spot anyway and, had I been trying to consciously redo it, I know I probably would have come up with nothing near as nice as this little serendipitous grouping.  Don't you love happy accidents?

One of the little things peeking out of my sewing machine drawer box is my grandmother's prayer book.

She was German, so it was all written in German.  It is pristine, so I don't know if maybe she carried it on her wedding, or perhaps just took very good care of it.  I never got to meet her since she died of pneumonia in 1922 when my mom was just a year old and my aunt was 5.  So sad.  I've always been fond of the book since it has this beautiful crucifix inside the front cover and wonderful gilt edges on the pages.

Now that I've shared some vintage goodness with you, I'd like to tell you about a great giveaway that starts today here at French Laundry.  When the nice folks at Ram Sign asked me if I'd like to do a giveaway of one of their address signs for one of my readers, I jumped at the chance.  If you've seen these porcelain enamel signs, you know they are beautiful, sturdy, and oh so simply elegant.

For this generous giveaway, Ram Sign will give one of my lucky readers a house number sign with 1-5 digits of any size and style (sorry, no name plates or addresses, just a house number).  It is open to bloggers worldwide.  Yay!

So, here's the deal.  To enter, do the following:

1.  Leave a comment on THIS POST to be entered.
2.  For an additional chance, go on over to Ram Sign and look around and come back here and let me know what your favorite sign is.
3.  For another chance "Like" Ram Sign on Facebook.
4.  For yet another chance, become a follower of French Laundry (that's me) or let me know you are already a follower.
5.  Blog about it, Facebook about it, or Tweet it, linking back to this post and send me the link.

You MUST leave a separate comment for each one you do.  So that's 5, count em 5, chances to win an awesome house number sign for FREE.  You only have to do #1-if you'd like additional entries, pick 1-4 of the other choices and go for it.  Ram Sign will contact the winner after I let them know who it is and they will take your order for your sign.  Please make sure you leave an email address for me if you do not have a blog.  If I can't get in contact with you, I can't arrange for you to collect the booty and that would make me sad. :-(

Winner to be announced March 31st.  Good luck!

Until next time,

Linking with:
Vintage Inspiration Friday
French Inspiration Friday 
Home Sweet Home 
Potpourri Friday
Open House Party Thursday
Fridays Unfolded
Show and Tell Friday
Pink Saturday
Simple and Sweet Fridays
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Tuesday, March 13, 2012

A Lovely Start to a Lovely Day...

Hello Bloggie Friends,

I began my day with a cup of cafe au lait, served in my newest acquisition-a beautiful vintage cafe au lait cup from France, purchased on Etsy.  Somehow, it just tasted better than my usual cuppa joe.  I suspect it had something to do with the fact that I actually did do the half coffee, half steamed milk and mostly because of the sweet vessel it was served in. 

I also had to revel in the beauty of one of my old white ironstone pitchers holding the prettiest roses that I picked up at the grocery store (Albertson's) for a well priced $6.99 a dozen!  I told myself I would remember the name of the roses because they were the coolest pinkish parchment color, but, of course, I have forgotten already.  When I brought them home, my little boy said they looked kind of like old paper-EXACTLY!  Anyway, they are delightful and I think they just get prettier each day as they curl and open a little more. 

SOOOOOO yummy!

I've restocked my Etsy shop, so pop on over to Elegant Farmhouse and check out the merch.  I hope you enjoy some of the pretty things I've found in my travels, like this pretty chippy white cutlery box...

and this beautiful art nouveau clothes brush.

A new selection of vintage wallpapers on my blog page is in the works for this week, too.  Finally, I'm going to be hosting a giveaway this week, so check back on Friday for the details.

Until next time,

Linking up with:
White Wednesday
Knick of Time Tuesday
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