Friday, October 18, 2013

Chic Halloween Dinner Party Decor

Hello again and Happy Friday!

I often find myself lusting over some random item, one that I don't really need and that I can definitely live without, yet lust I do.

Case in point, a set of gold silverware from West Elm.......These to be exact.

Yes, gold silverware. Anyone who knows me or who has been keeping up here knows that I'm all about gold, and the idea of having some soiree with gold utensils is a hell yea! must.

Let me help you with some convincing. Take a look at some yummy table scape eye candy with gold silver ware.  Queue the Austin Powers "I like gooooold"....

Yup, it's that awesome. Soooooo, I had 12 place settings in my "cart" ready to pull the trigger and order away when I had a thought. 12 place settings, which is enough to fill my dining table for 12 is a necessity, but it also costs me $29 per set which translates to over $300 or closer to $350. **Truthfully I would still do it, but something told me this was crazy! It could be that I'm in the middle of multiple projects at the house (as usual), and it could also be that I'm always finding an object du jour that I MUST HAVE. So, in this case I said NO :-(

If you're feeling sad for me, read on. As fate has it I was shopping one day at my local Home Goods (where there have been many Whitney spottings), and there they were. Gold silver ware! 3 sets of 4. It gets better, they were $49.99 each. I quickly realized that a) this was more than a 50% savings, and b) I did in fact have to have them and not only did I have to have them but I had to create an occasion to exhibit them in.

Fast forward to the makings of a "Chic Halloween Dinner Party". Though it's fun to decorate for Halloween, see my home and costume last year here Halloween Decor  and here Day of the Dead Costume Reveal, it's also fun to create memories and moments with friends through entertaining for the holidays.

You saw the gold silverware and its epic story above.

I'm planning to make things especially fall and festive (even though I live in sunny Florida:-( ) by adding a burlap runner down my table similar to this table.

I don't prefer anything else in that set up for my Chic Halloween Dinner Party. Instead I will add mason jars for my flower vases sprinkled down the table hopefully achieving something like these.

What would a Halloween party be without some form of Halloween in the mix?! For my special theme I am going for something "pretty" by sprinkling the little white pumpkin gourds down my table along with my mason jars full of flowers, maybe something like these.

I love the table scape below! It embodies much of what I hoped to achieve in my own Chic Halloween Dinner Party table. Fall gets warmer as do the colors. Burnt orange, cranberry and deep berry colors are perfect for flowers of any kind. Add some pumpkins and candles and really you can't go wrong.

Want to see how my table turned out, and how I made it happen???

Take a look at my Chic Halloween Dinner Party decor.

Not bad huh? Want to know how I did it? It's really quite simple;-)

1) I started with a white table runner. I own it and use it as my base runner every time, and because it's white it is neutral and can be layered endlessly.

2) I added 2 burlap table runners that I found at Target for $15.00 each. Most people could use 1 but my table is over 120" long so I always need more.

3) I bought 2 boxes of mason jars from Ross which were 4 for $5.99. I then bought 6 misc bunches of berry colored flowers from my local grocery store that were 3 for $12.99. I separated the flowers by type, cut the stems and dispersed them throughout the mason jars.

4) I bought 8 white pumpkins from my local grocery store for $1.50 each and placed them in between the flowers. I chose white because I wanted the table to be "pretty" and "chic" and I find white pumpkins look better than orange, but this is purely my preference. I also added a few extra flower stems down the runner for an added layer.

5) I took out all of my various candle votives and added them all over the table. My biggest dinner party rule is that YOU CAN NEVER HAVE TOO MANY CANDLES, EVER! I have these on hand at all times, but you can score some from any craft store or local home store such as Target or Wal Mart for pretty good prices. You can buy candles and use these over and over.

6) I added my regular dishes which I have in all white because they are neutral and can be rotated to suit any occasion. I then separated them with a napkin draped between the two. I prefer cloth napkins for dinner parties and always have a variety in my home. I found that Target has a great selection and these black ones were 12 for $9.99. I then set each place with my new gold silver ware (secret high five to myself for this obsession score!).

7) I added a RIP name tag to each place setting for a lil something spooky. These are from Target, 4 for only $1.00!!!

That's it my friends. See how simple it can be with a little planning to dress up your table for a Chic Halloween Party? You will find that once you have the basics on hand, you can use them over and over and can easily change up the themes around your basic pieces for future parties.

What are some of your ideas for decorating your parties? Do you like this "chic" version or do you prefer the traditional Halloween colors and style?

One things that's for sure is that it's Friday, and I can't wait to break this table in!

Friday, October 11, 2013

New Project Sneak Peek, Shedding Light On A Dated Space

Happy Friday!

I have been recently working with a client on a new project. She wanted me to help her finish off her family room, dining room, and kitchen areas. Though the family already own some base pieces they haven't been able to complete the house with the "designer" look they are hoping for.

Sound familiar? I get these types of requests frequently where a client just can't get the space to come together and they call me for help. If you find yourself in this same spot, email me. I'd be glad to help you finish your home.

Here is where the family room started.

Family Room Before:

The space is small, and though ideal for a sectional which takes up less space while giving ample seating there isn't enough in the budget to replace her existing set. You can't see the entry way or the TV area in this picture, but take a look at the mood board I put together for this space.

It's amazing what color and a little paint can do to a space, no? In this case we are lightening up the walls with a soft grey. 

I am replacing the large brown leather chair, which closes the room in and makes it feel a bit cluttered AND small with a smaller scale chair in a fresh Ikat print. 

The dark floors are instantly brightened with a cozy cream shag rug which is perfect for any family. 

I took the traditional sofas up a notch with graphic and Ikat printed pillows, both of which are modern and freshen up the heavy brown. I also further lightened the area with a pair of washed white accent tables, amazing mercury glass jug lamps and modern graphic printed drapes in a great trellis print and turquoise color.

I grounded the center of the room with a cozy upholstered ottoman. It was a Home Goods score on clearance for only $140 and it is perfect, large and has amazing light wood legs! Whoot Whoot. Add a tray and a throw and you have the perfect ottoman used as a coffee table.

The entry is brightened with a painted white bamboo mirror above a rustic table.

Throw in some accessories, books and candles and you have a pretty quick room update. I can hopefully share some progress pictures with you this coming week as it's already coming together quite nicely. 

What do you think of the room update? Remember that one of the quickest and easiest ways to update your own room is through paint and textiles i.e. pillows, drapes and rugs. I also change my accessories around all the time to keep thinks fresh. 

Happy Friday and enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Teen Room Makeover, The Results For This Amazing Grey Bedroom Design

Happy Hump Day! I finally had the chance today to try to get you some quality pics of a room I just completed. 

I'm talking about Amanda's room that is finally complete hopefully for the last time, I swear it!

Amanda's Room Reveal:

 I recently posted a mood board that I created for this room with the inspiration that came from a head board I purchased from Joss and Main. If you missed it you can read about all the crazy that is me here.

Here it is again in case you missed it.

Well, the room turned out better than I had even hoped. Take a look again at the before and the new after pictures of Amanda's room.

Teen Room Before: 

**(Crap I Phone pic. Ugh! This is probably why Robert tells me to NOT show rooms with poor camera skills and lighting)

 Teen Room After:

It's amazing and completely unplanned how the silver quatrefoil mirrors that I recycled go with the graphic design on the bed spread that I happened to find in a Home Goods store. I love it when that happens!

 Above is the view from the bed. I used the good old Ikea Expedit unit for her room. I know I've said it a million times, but this sucker is so wonderful for storing "stuff", and ALL kids come with "stuff".  I say if you can't beat em, join em. Put it out there, in pretty boxes and on shelves. If you give kids a place to keep their things it makes life so much more organized and therefor makes the room so much nicer and clutter free.

 Above is a close up of that corner. I staged the expedit with a pretty vanity mirror to display her perfume, candles and nail polish on which I think is a pretty touch for any girl regardless of if they are big or small. Notice the black deer head with the little pink bow on it? Well that is the lone survivor of all the fake animal heads from our HGTV makeover. I can guarantee he's sticking around our house for years to come. I use it to hang all of her soccer medals. Cute and functional. 

  Look at the drapes in this room! I use this banding approach often in my designs though in this case I added much more of the fuchsia color than I normally would. I wanted it to make a statement behind the beautiful mirrored night stands and didn't want them to get lost. Need I say goal accomplished, and I'm in love!  Oh and if you look closely, you can see the little tiny disco ball hanging from the rod. No reason or point other than it simply makes me smile:-)

  Above is a close up of her dresser, I re-framed her art, cleaned up the accessories and added some silver and mirrored accents to glam up the natural wood of the dresser.

 The above picture shows a close up of the many textures, colors and prints that I used. I love that there is so much visual interest, but with the muted color on the walls and the anchor of white from the bed it all just works without competing and being too busy.

 I have one word for you, ruuuuuuuuugggg! Isn't it just amazing? I actually fell in love with this rug when I put it in another little girl's room for a client. It's quite the rug, no? Well I admit that it was a bit of a risk in the sense that I've got a whole lot going on in this room with all the prints, but when I put it in the original mood board I knew it would just work, and work it did. It's the right size at 8' round, and adds just the right amount of zebra, and with the rather large print it isn't as busy as one would think.

 Above you can see the lovely Besta Burs desk from Ikea that I posted about here. I still love it, and it's still going strong. It was such a great purchase and if you've thought about getting your own, do! On the desk I have a pretty silver tray with a lamp, and above it are 3 different colored cork boards which I scored on clearance for $5 bucks each! Baaam. And that chair, remember when I posted about it here? Well I found it a new home in this room, and I love how it dresses things up a bit and again adds an unexpected touch.

I hope my poor photography skills didn't kill this room because it's even more stunning in person believe me. For now  I LOVE it, and think it was about time to give Amanda a truly finished designer space. She deserves it. No more hand me down hodge podge room going on here. It's now a modern, clean sophisticated space that still screams fun for a teenager girl. I'm definitely done changing it around which is probably why I should have just done it right in the first place!

What do you think? Are you digging the mixture of color and print or do you prefer something a bit more matchy?