Wednesday, May 14, 2014

English Cottage Master Bedroom Details - Pile on the Pillows & a GIVEAWAY

When it comes to making up my bed, I say pile on the pillows.  I love lots and lots and lots of pillows on my bed, mixing and matching patterns which each add layer upon layer of texture, color and give it a warm, inviting and custom look.    

Several years back I bought some deeply discounted Ralph Lauren bedding from his Brittany collection.  Since then I have added to it, mixing different Ralph Lauren collections together and adding other pieces I had or have found along the way. The aubergine needlepoint floral pillow is one that was purchased with the set originally and has all of the colors of my room and pulls it all together visually. It is truly a mixed and matched, collected over time set but I like it that way.   I think it's good to start with big shams towards the back and then layer and alternate color and pattern to achieve a collected, lived in look.  I have floral king size shams at the back which set on top of of our pillows we actually sleep on and that props them up above the others.  In front of those are two, wool tweed herringbone pillows (also king shams) in a brown and cream color trimmed with aubergine velvet.   

 Next are two shades of purple pillows, one a woven polyester and one a velour fabric both have tan prints…one paisley and one a botanical which are layered between a white embroidered eyelet pillow and a cognac brown leather buckle pillow.  

 Mixed in between are pillows that my Mother in law made using silk flowers which were sewn with individual petals all over the fronts.  They are so pretty!

I love a little touch of animal print in just about any room.  A few years back  I got a pair of small, inexpensive giraffe print pillows at Steinmart.  They are the same cognac color to match my leather pillow…but even better than the match in color, I knew just what I wanted to do with them when I brought them home.

  I have had the tapestry belt you see in the photo below for years.  It belonged to my Great Grandma, Mimi.  I absolutely love to decorate with and around heirloom pieces that otherwise would probably just sit on my closet shelf.

To the left of the belt are two purple paisley window tie backs with button closures.  I added both of these, off centered, around the pillow and then cinched them with the belt.  It now looks like a custom made pillow and it is a perfect compliment to my bedding.

One important key to creating that look like you might see in a magazine is to alternate colors, patterns and size from biggest to smallest.  Adding white also cools and brightens dark colors and allows the eye to rest.

I have more pillows piled in the chairs at the foot of the bed too.

I'll be posting more of our Master Bedroom details soon including decorating with purses and hats…and of course transferware!

Before I sign off though, I wanted to share a tiny glimpse into the beauty of Aiken House Gardens with you.  Carolyn Aiken, who authors the stunning blog is hosting a giveaway to my website, Nancy's Daily Dish, good for $50 of transferware or jewelry (or both!).  Carolyn has had three books published which feature her gardens on Prince Edward Island.  It is truly one of the most breathtaking gardens I think I have ever seen and I bet you will agree.  Carolyn loves transferware too and has a humongous collection with just about every color.  Check out her post today, enter the giveaway and grab a special discount code to my shop while you are there.  Her home and gardens are what most of us women dream of having.   I can't wait to show off some of her transferware, home and gardens but you must take a look for yourself.  You'll be mesmerized by how beautiful her little paradise is!

Joining some of the following parties:

Monday, May 12, 2014

English Country Cottage Bedroom - Before & After

The door is open, so step on in to our Master bedroom.  

I know many of you have been reading my blog for a long time and so you know that our family has had some hard times, most of which I don't share publicly but some that I have.  We still do have our hard times. Probably, we always will.  But, I believe that in between those bad times we are given glimpses and moments of joy that make those hard times bearable and give a little reprieve to get us on through.  I cannot begin to say how blessed we feel to have found this house we are now living in.  It is like a dream home for us and it feels like home, a feeling my kids, hubby and I haven't really known in some time despite the fact that we have been fortunate to live in some lovely places, especially when we were in Colorado.  

This past weekend we hosted a Basic Training send off party for Jonah.  We invited friends and family and this was our first large gathering in our new house.  Most everyone that attended has known us through good times and bad and most of them commented about how this home felt like the 'Robert's house'.  One of my sister-n-laws commented and said "I couldn't imagine you all living anywhere else".   My Mother in law stated that, "there couldn't be a more perfect house for you all" and one of the boys best friends, Bryan (who is like a family member to us and has grown up around us), commented about how this house brought him back to his childhood memories of the 71st Street house (our home which we lost to foreclosure…the last place to feel like home to us).  Everyone made this night so special and it felt so wonderful to see so many people come together to celebrate Jonah and welcome us into a new home.  I had a 5 minute hugging and  bawling session on the couch with Jonah's best friend Robert…a giant guy who is a giant teddy bear.  We had a small fire lit out in the backyard and some of them played football (at 3:00 a.m. in the morning I might add!!!) while some sat around the fire and we listened to Shawn, my boys and a couple of their friends play guitars and sing.  It was such a fun evening and I'm so grateful for those that came by.   Thank you!

Five of my kids and some of my many nieces and nephews…two sisters which are both expecting their first babies soon!

Jonah's BFF Robert, aka Bert.  So thankful Jonah has such a great friend~

Ethan and Shawn singing and playing some Tom Petty around the fire~

 and the man of the day too.
Jonah with Grandpa and Grandma Roberts (Shawn's Dad & Mom)

 I just couldn't help but share some pics and mention how not only do we feel like we're home, but so do our family and friends.  That is a really good feeling.  Okay, so back to the bedroom.

Before moving in, I took a few photos of most of the rooms.  Our bedroom was painted a garish yellow color which needed to go bye bye.  I chose to paint the room a color called Afternoon Tea in an eggshell finish.  I like eggshell paint because it has a very subtle sheen that reflects light, it covers well and it is washable.  The color is reminiscent of hot cocoa with lots of cinnamon, a perfect backdrop color to my bedding ensemble which includes several printed fabrics: paisley, tattersall, floral, plaid and pinstripes in shades of green and aubergine.  I love many traditional styles so it's sort of a mix of English Country Cottage meets Bohemian Ralph Lauren.  I created custom looking bedding by mixing patterns and collections and because I love color I added whites here and there to tone down and break up the bold use of color.  I think it's important to add some light when you use so much color.  





I do realize that the carpet is a choking hazard, as in I feel that I'm about to choke every time I look at it, but that's what lots of throw rugs are for and eventually, and hopefully, new carpet or even better; wood flooring.  Besides the 80's sculpted carpeting I am loving this bedroom and I thought it would be my least favorite space in the house.  The reason for that being that the angled wall bothered me and it doesn't align with the corner that it faces…and then on top of that the ceiling fan is just randomly placed on the ceiling.  Those things may not bother many people but if you're OCD, it can be a serious dilemma.  Now that it's all together, I've realized it's more spacious than I thought it would be.  We were able to add a seating area at the foot of the bed and in front of that is an armoire which houses our television.  I love the room now and feel it exudes exactly the romantic, cozy cottage feel I wanted it to have…  

…and of course be a place to display some of my purple transferware collection.

Next post I'll be sharing some vignettes around the room with close up pics and decorating details along with announcing a giveaway.

Stay tuned and thank you for stopping by,