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Monday, April 28, 2014

???? Did YOU Know This ????

I am constantly reading. Always trying to fine tune my knowledge in design. 

I have always been a reader and researcher. One of my favorite things to do is sourcing for a project.

Design is not an exact science, but there are some very good guidelines to use when planning a room.

In design nothing is in cement. There are no hard fast rules, only guidelines. If you break a rule, and it is accepted in the design world you just might become the next new, “Design Diva!” Dare to be different!

I like to pin these ideas on a pinboard that I have titled, “Did You Know This?”

Today I am going to share a few of what I hope to be helpful guidelines.

did you know this 1

We all love hardwood floors, but they need an area rug, especially in a bedroom. No one wants to step out on a cold floor. This is a helpful guideline for two typical sized rugs for a bedroom.

bed and area rug

Next are some wonderful guidelines in planning out your shower.

did you know this3

I remember designing my shower, and I took great pains to make the bench height comfortable for sitting. 

I even went as far as to measure my very own backside in order to have the depth just right. I put the height of the shower head high enough for the tallest person in our family to use comfortably.

The other thing I did was closed my eye as if to reach for shampoo in order to place the height of my niche for my lotions, and potions as well as my soap dish.

Another thing to keep in mind:

If you have a feature wall make sure that your shower door does not impede on the sight line. I made my door a bit higher so the top of the door would not be in the middle of the top of my feature strip….

Master Bed and Bath 2 019_thumb[4]
 (my glass door height is 7ft.)

My shower is 6ft wide by 3 ft deep. In planning a bathroom there are codes that have to met as far as where the toilet will have to sit so that measurement is set in cement according to your city or state codes.

Shall we move into the living areas and talk about furniture?
Have you always wanted white slipcovered furniture? If you are like me I was always reluctant because of dirt and stains.

Melissa at Inspired Room blog wrote a very thorough post on the in’s and out’s of slipcovers. She writes wonderful practical advice and inspiration on her blog. If you are not familiar with her blog be sure and check it out…..

slip covers

Before I purchased two slipcovered chairs for my family room, this is one of the most informative post that I read.


I have found everything the Melissa said to be true. I am now a believer and most likely will purchase more slipcovered furniture in the future. I highly recommend slip covered furniture.

That is a few thoughts for your Monday morning. Hopefully helpful thoughts and ideas.

I hope you all have a great upcoming week!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

I Made The Decision On My Kitchen Barstools!


With a breakfast bar you need barstools, but what style and silhouette will you need?

With the recent reno of my kitchen I decided I did not want anything to detract from my new marble counter tops, and it needed to blend, or coordinate with the fabrics used in my family room which can be seen from the kitchen.....



I knew it would need to be a solid, check or stripe in blues, white, or black to mix well with all of my existing fabrics.

The very first thing I do in this process is to start saving images of barstools that I am attracted to.

At this point I am merely looking at the style of the barstool. 

When you do this and go with your instincts of what you really like, You will start to see one or maybe two designs that keep emerging.

Once I have several options I get down to the nitty gritty and get practical.

This is where you need to ask yourself a few questions………

Who will be using the barstools most frequently?

Do they need to be easy to clean?

How high and how wide can they be? (take measurements at this point)

Do you want them to stand out and make a statement, or do you want them to blend in with the area?

Do you want them to swivel?

Do you want a back on them or just a stool to sit on?
How comfortable do they need to be?

The first thing I knew for sure is, I did not want the back of the barstool to be too high….

The height of this barstool's back rest seemed to be perfect to me.

I am kind of in love with this entire room.

In looking at these barstools closely I could tell they had slipcovers! That would be the answer to making them easy to keep clean.

I already have lived with my dining room chairs slipcovered, and they have survived years of family dinners, and spills so I knew I could handle a slip cover!

I just spot clean these and throw them in the washing machine.

I gathered up images of the barstools that I seemed to gravitate towards…….

Love the horizontal stripes in this image. So far I am loving stripes and checks for fabric choices.


I already  have checks in my family room……

family room collage
The designer in me also likes to challenge myself with trying something a bit new and unexpected…….

Could I use one bench?
Unfortunately, not very practical for three people to sit that close together while eating. 

Two people would be fine, but not three, and I have the need for three people to be able to sit at my breakfast bar.

I love how different this look is, but sometimes different will not fulfill the needs.

The other style of barstool that seemed to fit most if not all of my requirements was the French Bistro Stool…


 Now I have narrowed it down to two styles that meet all of my criteria.  

The next step is to think of living with both styles from the stand point of…..

Price point

Longevity of style, (will I tire of it after awhile?)

After thinking long and hard, and sourcing different barstools I decided I could live with one particular style long term. 

As much as I love the French Bistro style barstools I  found that I tired of the look after awhile. 

I know they are quite trendy right now, but for me it just felt like it was just not quite right.

That left me with the simple silhouette of this barstool……


Simple silhouette, a touch of black in the legs and it can be slipcovered in any fabric I choose, if I have a slipcover made.

I found these at Ikea, but they did not have any in stock at the time. 

Of course I began sourcing other barstools with the same silhouette while still checking back on the barstools at Ikea.

I was finding the same look, but not with a slip cover, and at a price point 3 times higher. 

I was just about to give up when I checked back with Ikea for the 3rd time, and they had them back in stock. This is where patience plays a key roll in decision making.

Since I needed 3 barstools that could be slipcovered I preferred the Ikea barstools over the others I found that were similar in style.

I ordered the stools and they now reside in my home.

This is not where the story ends.
Since I like a touch of whimsy and something a bit different I am going to add something to my barstools…..

Ribbet collage numbered barstools 123
I am going to have numbers embroidered on the backs. I love letters and numbers and have used them both throughout my home.

This is the perfect touch of whimsy for me.

I am also thinking of giving some fabric to my upholsterer and have him make some slip covers in a black and white stripe……

black and white stripe
and also in the same blue and white check that is in my family room…..


I am getting affordability, practicality and versatility all in one barstool!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Kitchen Update and What To Do About Barstools?


Happy Monday morning! I hope you all had a wonderful Easter weekend with your families and friends.

The start of a new week is getting me that much closer to having my kitchen back.

This Thursday the plumber will be coming back to take off my beautiful faucet in preparation for the re-honing to take place.

Kitchen update 010
On Friday the marble slabs will be re-honed in order to get rid of the streaking and hazing on the marble.

Kitchen update 001
Being without a kitchen this long has had its challenges, but we all have adjusted, and are just grateful to have this opportunity to be able to do this at all.

Throughout this process I have been making a few plans on some minor changes to the décor.

That brings up the subject of…..


I have certain needs and wants for my barstools. They need to be….

  • Comfortable
  • Sturdy
  • Have a low profile
  • Easy to Clean
  • Clean lines
  • Need to fit three at the bar

 One more very important criteria is the color and pattern need to work with the décor in my family room.

Since I change out my accessories and pillows in my family room for the seasons, the color and/or pattern have to mix well with all three looks………

Final Fall mantel 005 (800x600) ribbit

winter look_thumb[5]ribbit

Summer pillows
spring summer look collage
Summer pillows 004b (1024x768)
Ribbet collage Summer Fabrics

Black and/or white
Blue and white

I have room for three barstools at my breakfast bar, which is perfect because I have 3 sons and that is where they ate their breakfast, lunch and snacks.

Now I have 3 Grandchildren that sit there just like my boys did.

Here are some of the bar stools I have considered……..

Ribbet collage French Bistro


Ribbet collage barstools
They all met some of the criteria, but there was only one that met all my needs and wants.

Which one of the above bar stools do you think would look the best with all of my fabrics that are used in the family room?

To see more barstools be sure to check out my pinboard on Pinterest by clicking HERE!