Cottage Lovin'

Friday, April 30, 2010

I thought that the month of April would be a good time to share pictures of houses with significant curb appeal so every Friday I have been doing just that.  I will continue to share charming houses with you, but from now on it will be a little more sporadic and not limited to Fridays...unless of course you like to see a cute little house every Friday.  

So here is the final drive least for now.

Every time I go for a run, I pass by this house.  I have watched it evolve with landscape, a brick drive way, and a new garage around back.  Those are all fabulous improvements and I am sure that they serve the purposes of every day life, but I am drawn to the simple charm that I see here.

These flower pots filled with geraniums by the upstairs windows are perfectly charming. 

I am sharing this with The Inspired Room where you will find lots of inspiration.  Have a great weekend!

Bathroom Before and After

Thursday, April 29, 2010

     Knowing how everyone loves to see a great makeover, I wanted to share this transformation that my husband's company recently completed.   The wonderful before and after photos are compliments of the  professional photographer, Nancy Sidelinger.  Thanks to Nancy for allowing me to use her photos.



    Shower Before



     I really don't need to say the anything as the photos speak for themselves.  This bathroom is gorgeous isn't it?  Thanks so much to the home owner for allowing me to share the photos with you.

    Big Advice

    Wednesday, April 28, 2010

       I had another post scheduled for today, but after reading the latest House Beautiful, I had a change of plans.
       It isn't called the big advice issue for nothing because inside you will finds lots of timeless decorating advice.  If you haven't read it, make sure to put HB on your short list.

      If you would like to read an excellent re-cap go here.

      Children's Art and a Wall Lamp Makeover

      Tuesday, April 27, 2010

      OK things are beginning to take shape around here.  Little projects here and there are being finished.  What else does someone with house ADD and who has scarcely been home do but dive in.  So that my friends is what I am doing, diving in.  That said...

      When I was at market last week, a friend asked me, "so Rene, what else do you have planned for the playroom?"  The, I had not thought of that space in quite a while.  My plans are to pull up the carpet and paint the hardwood floors until we can have them refinished, but I haven't done it or posted on it yet.  My other plans were a little more manageable so over the weekend, I decided to get busy.

      I took the arm lamps down and gave them a fresh coat of black paint (they had been oil rubbed bronze).  Then I purchased new lamp shades that were a bit more modern, took the binding tape that I had left over from this project and attached the tape to the lamp shades using my hot glue gun...ouch.  They look much more current now, love. 

      The other plan was to add artwork to the wall behind the sofa that our boys made.  They used to bring home works of art almost daily and I have every single piece in our banquette and in the attic, but I picked some of recent master pieces to display in the playroom.

       Whoops...I spy something crooked.  Anyway,  we love to see their beautiful work.

      If you would like to read about the pelmet boxes go here or the modge podge table go here. So there you have it.  Pictures are on the walls and not the floor.  I am checking things off my to do list as quickly as I can.  Now I need to tend the garden....

      Thank you E for asking me about the playroom...I needed that.

        The Bus Full of Jars

        Sunday, April 25, 2010

        The last time we were in the mountains, Mom and I wandered into this little hole in the wall.  We drive by the place every time we are in town, but had never stopped. It doesn't look like much from the road which is probably why we had never checked it out, but Mom and I were in a serious hunting mood that day and felt like exploring.

        For all you ball jar lovers, you would have loved it.  There were shelves and shelves of old bottles and jars ranging in price from $3-5.  They guy watching shop that day,who happened to be sitting in a lawn chair outside, told us to go around to the back and to look inside the school buses.

        Inside the school buses were more jars and junk.  The buses were without wheels and were just sitting there in the yard.  Maybe I'm weird, but I love places like this.

        It was on this day that my jar collection began. 

        Turquoise and Coral

         I am loving these goodies in the new Shangri-La collection from Thibaut.  The turquoise and coral combined with generous doses of white are perfection.

        Drive By

        Friday, April 23, 2010

           Not exactly a cottage, but I could make it work.

          After this weekend, my life should be moving at a slower pace.  There are a couple of projects that I have been working on to share with you as soon as I can be home for a while....hint: paint and fabric.  No big surprise right?

          Have a great weekend!

          Stretching the Dollar in the Garden

          Tuesday, April 20, 2010

          This is by far my favorite time of the year!  I love to see the new leaves emerge, the flowers bloom, and the birds nest.  Over the years my husband and I have tried to plan our landscape so that it has a good balance of plants that include trees, shrubs (both evergreen and deciduous), and ground covers.

          Ground covers are a great way to fill in the gaps between trees and shrubs and they add a lot of interest to a garden.  Most of them can be divided to cut down on the cost especially if you have several areas that need that extra touch.  Here is what I do.

          First I look for pots of plants that have multiple plants in them.  
          Here you can see about three or four separate plants.

          Next I shake most of the soil off of the roots which makes it easier to see what you are working with.

          Divide the plants by using a shovel or trowel.

          See, now I have three plants.

          I shopped around to find the best price.  One garden shop charged $5.59 and the other charged $3.50, so needless to say, we went with the latter.  $10.50 for 10 plants, 3 pots,  is a very economical solution if you don't mind waiting a couple of months for results.  In a couple of months, the liriope will fill in nicely.

          To keep grasses such as liriope neat looking, they need to be trimmed back in January/ February before the new growth appears.

          Other favorite ground covers include:
          creeping jenny
          mondo grass

          I am sharing this with Finding Fabulous and The Inspired Room.

          Market Perks - Thom Filicia

          Monday, April 19, 2010

          Working at the furniture market has its perks.  Yesterday I met Thom Filicia.

          He arrived by limo, noticed us standing there smiling.  Thom knew what we were up to...he's seen the likes of us before.  He gladly dropped his bag, threw his arms around us and smiled for the picture...a kiss on the cheek , then off to his show room next door.  What a gracious man, the only way I could be more impressed is if he appears at my door and offers to redecorate my house.  Thom, what do you say?

          Greetings From Market

          Saturday, April 17, 2010

          I thought you all would enjoy seeing this book case filled with leather bound books in the Encore showroom.  Stay tuned as I send more favorites your way in the next few days.

          Drive By

          Friday, April 16, 2010


            It's Friday and you know what that means.  This little house on the corner is special for many reasons, but I will just let you enjoy it as you wish.  OK, I'll just say it, the pergola by the hedge, the dormers, the topiary, the green shutters and door...   Happy Friday!

              To Market, To Market

              Thursday, April 15, 2010

              I love it when men look like men....

              and women look like women...

              The furniture market begins tomorrow.  Am I ready?  Yes and no.  For the next several days I will be working in a beautiful showroom with fabulous people...and wishing that I had one of these to wear on my jacket.  Isn't it lovely?

              If you have questions for me and don't hear from me for a while, please don't give up.  I will eventually respond.  That is after I do 20 loads of laundry, scrape leftover sandwiches and pizza off of the sofa, re-stock the pantry, scour the bathrooms, and try to re-store general order in my little frat house, ahem, I mean cottage. 

              By the way, you might want to follow me on twitter because there's a chance you will see some twitpics from me at market....lot's of pretty things there....

              All images: Emerson Made

              Thank You PVE Design!

              Wednesday, April 14, 2010

              I don't normally post twice in one day, but this is an emergency.  If you don't already know about the artist Patricia, otherwise known as pve, then you are missing out.  She does amazing illustrations of lifestyles, pets, places, parties, and people.  Patricia contacted me recently and offered to illustrate our cottage.  Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful talent with others Patricia.

              You might recognize some of the blogs that have also been graced with the her talents.  Mrs. Blandings, All the Best, High-Heeled Foot in the Door to name a few.  Please visit her blog and let Patricia know how beautiful her work is and while you are it, visit her on etsy.