Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Penny Tile

For those who view my blog, I just want to take this opportunity to say THANK YOU and also say sorry for not being consistent with my posts these last few days. I’ve been victim of a bug that’s been going around which lead to me being a complete couch potato. But that was the best part of being sick! You see, our house only has one TV with cable and my hubby and I constantly have our TV show battles. We tolerate each others preferred TV shows to avoid endless bickering. Although our “neutral” TV shows are good for the mean time, most of the time I prefer watching HGTV, The Food Network, E, TLC, and whatever network there is showcasing style, fashion, and food. I must admit most of the TV shows on these networks are my guilty pleasure. So back to being sick, home alone and getting our lovely couch all to myself wasn’t so bad. Despite the achy body, nausea, and lack of appetite, I enjoyed my 2 little days off flipping back and forth between my fav channels and today’s post is a result of that. After watching back to back episodes of Dear Genevieve I discovered my interest for penny tile. On this particular episode a young couple wanted to update their dated kitchen for a modern one but maintain its vintage character to pay homage to his Nana. During the selection process Genevieve showed the homeowners penny tile to use as the kitchen backsplash. [penny tile are porcelain rounds which were commonly used in the early 20th century but fell out of favor after World War II (] Choosing penny tile as a backsplash was a great way to maintain its vintage character. After seeing the finished results I would gladly use penny tiles in any upcoming projects. Watch the episode and let me know if you think penny tile can be a universal design; modern or vintage.

I absolutely loved how the kitchen turned out! She even tied in traditional cabinet knobs to add to the classic flair. Here are few other designs using penny tile. With the right touch of style and design, traditional doesn’t have to mean old and outdated, rather it can be seen as a hip new way to compliment your space.

Take a look this floor! They actually used pennies! This is in the restaurant at the Standard Hotel in New York. How unique. I wonder how long it took to collect that many pennies?!
You can find penny tile in just about any color. I particularly love the ones with a outer lining like the ones above. It’s so original and gives it a finished look.

I mentioned Genevieve used traditional cabinet knobs. Here are few I think would be great compliment to penny tile.
Genevieve used traditional knobs like this from the episode. I love the solid milk color. If your tired of nickel or metal, try this classic look.
If you like your things to match, here a knob that matches perfectly with penny tile! 
More traditional knobs. Love the pastel colors! I think they would go great with dark wood cabinets. 

Adding splashes of traditional features like penny tile and traditional knobs to sleek kitchen or bathroom cabinets will help keep that classic character to a home. It’s an easy and simple solution for a facelift. You can probably find traditional knobs at your local thrift store or salvage store. And of course it’s even better if they exist in your home. Just a quick clean will make you appreciate what you once thought was outdated. These two traditional items will without a doubt be added to my book of design schemes. ~MG

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Made with Love

This past month has been a swirl of wedding festivities..I've attended two in the last two months and after simply being a guest at one and helping with some wedding accessories with the other, I'm impressed with the outcome of both. Both weddings were complete opposites of each other when it came to budget, but let me say that if you were an average guest you would not be able to tell the difference when it came to the standard accessories weddings normally require, center pieces, placement cards, favors, etc..
This last and very recent wedding I attended and gladly to be a part of the wedding party, was one of the most speediest weddings I've seen put together. Needless to say I, along with the entire wedding party and guests, were impressed with the outcome. The wedding was done in just two months from the time of engagement and everything was set in place after just one month. This wedding proves that you don't have to have bukos to have that dream wedding. Now of course it depends on the couples expectations but still, there are ways to stick to your budget by staying dedicated and being open to DIY projects.

If you've been married, or are about to get married, you know budget is the first topic of discussion. There are few who have an endless budget to invest towards their wedding but for most of us, especially those effected by the economy, budget means BUDGET; tight, small, careful planning. This recent wedding was a prime example of how you can stretch your budget. Now there are things you just don't want to skimp on like venue, music, catering, cake, and of course the Brides dress! The things you can get away with on an extremely tight budget are the wedding accessories. It helps to have the creative gene but with the help of you friends and family, you can achieve your desired look.
Take a look at these bouquets from various florists:

These are all beautiful; however, they can range anywhere from $50-$100 per bouquet! This can be costly especially if you have a large bridal party..We found it was super easy to create our own bouquet for a fraction of the cost and you can create it anyway you like! With the help of her bridesmaids (myself included) mother and aunt, we were able to create the same set of bouquets along with center pieces, boutonnieres, and floral arrangements for the ceremony by spending about $350! The best part is there were plenty left over and it was super easy!
We watched a tutorial online on how to create your own bouquet. Of course, the person demonstrating it made it look a lot easier. Even though it was, it took some getting used to when it came to bunching the flowers and forming the bouquet to an even circular bunch. But we all got it down and each of us discovered our own specialties between the bouquets and boutonnieres.
$350 dollars worth of flowers and this was the end result! Not bad at all for our first time..The joke of the day was to quit our jobs to open our own floral shop. It actually sounded tempting with all the fun we had..

Now I was going to post the video of the actual tutorial we used, but typing in a search for DIY Wedding Bouquet, I came across this tutorial from a very comical website for brides on a budget sharing inexpensive ideas..The title is well put and simply stated! My kind of style!
Now flowers are not the only money saver of a wedding..Paying to print placement cards can also add to the budget paying a per card price...Our creative bride did it again by creating her own placements cards and placement card holder..

She searched various decorative images for the design. The half pearls identify the meal the guest chose at the time of RSVP. Genius!
The cards were neatly placed on extra large individual cutouts of their initials, M&V. Ribbon was layered across the M & V so the cards slipped in easily. Picture to come..

The bride also saved on party favors, center pieces, table numbers, flower girl basket, ring bearer pillow, and other small accessories that can easily add up by playing with her creative ideas and keeping an open mind. The most significant feature of all is the fact she created it herself giving it sentimental value you can't get from store bought accessories. They were simply made with love~MG

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Design Scheme of the Day

When I have down time (which is extremely rare) I flip through pages and pages of interior design magazines soaking in new trends and refreshing my personal design style. I've collected images of my favorite furniture pieces, accessories and color schemes. Starting today, I'll be posting my collective images and turning them into design boards that I personally would love to use as design schemes. 
This first one are collective finds from projects and helpful tips; my room and a friend asking for decor ideas. For my room; this color palette popped up in my head. I don't remember where I got the inspiration, but as soon as I started looking into the different shades of purple mixed with gray tones, I didn't turn back..Obviously it stuck since its the color choice for my blog =)
I chose one deeper shade of purple for my bedroom walls and a lighter shade for my ceiling..still love it to this day. 

Sharing decor ideas and introducing bold color to a friend asking for design tips had me looking into grey couches. I want to say I chose grey because it could fit both feminine and masculine personalities; a great compromise for any married couple. 
So after sitting on these finds for a few months..I combined the color choices choosing accessories to bring  this design scheme together..

The bold colors in the room call for something light and airy. These crystal clear lamps will do just that.. I love both but if I had to choose, I would go for the solid clear lamp with beige shade. I'm so drawn to the simplicity and sleekness of the base.

These pillows are a great offset for any of  the grey couches. Subtle hints of the purple color will bring the color scheme together. I would purchase all three to bring more texture and color to the it brings in the femininity from the masculine grey color of the couch.
I love this pattern and color for the curtain panels. The design on the fabric is subtle but enough to pop out of the purple walls.
I chose this ivory cable knit throw to break the grey and purple tones. Color details from the pillows, curtain panels and lamp shade will bounce off each other.

Here are a few finished rooms with similar color schemes where my accessory choices mesh well with the existing design.

This page from House & Home magazine had a very similar color scheme with the purple walls and grey couch.  Different shades and different style approach but still a fabulous room!

This is actually very similar to the design scheme I am going for in my room but budget issues have delayed the project. I'm close..just a few personal touches to call it mine (and my hubby's)  and it's done! I will of course be thrilled to share the results so stay tuned.~MG

Monday, November 7, 2011

Fall Decor

Fall is officially here and with Halloween over we are speeding our way into the holidays. If you don't have time for elaborate are just a few easy and inexpensive ideas to get you into the holiday spirit!  
Don't throw away your pumpkins..that is if they aren't growing mold yet..If you purchased a sack of small pumpkins or still have a few leftover from Halloween, reuse them by turning them into center pieces or add to your Thanksgiving decor. You can place these small pumpkin candle holders just about anywhere.
Got big pumpkins? Another great way to reuse them making for a great holiday accessory!
Another one of my favorite ideas is filling clear vases with holiday food. No flashy decor here. The color and textures warm up any room!
I love this idea! Adding the mum tops off this centerpiece.
Wrap fall colored tissue paper around a glass vase to give off the warm fuzzy fall feeling in your home. Simple and affordable! 
Now this I love! Simply find a vase or small urn (I know you have a few lying around) collect some leaves and create a festive bouquet..No holiday splurging here! You can collect leaves like this just about anywhere and turn them into an elegant centerpiece.

More (free) leaves to add to the festivities! Martha Stewart displays these beautiful oak and maple leaves perfect for a Thanksgiving table setting. 

These simple designs can be versatile displays throughout your home. Converting your decor and transitioning it to the next holiday is one of the most convenient qualities during the busy holiday season. Even if you aren't hosting holiday parties, its still a fun reminder of what time of year it is and a treat for your guests who come and go. Happy Holidays. ~MG

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Zen Retreat

My hubby and I celebrated our 9 year wedding anniversary this past September in Cabo. It was our first time going to Mexico and after viewing the hotel's website several times I had the same feeling as a kid would the night before going to Disneyland. The website revealed a zen retreat including a ocean view canopy, beach front swimming pools and stunning views of the ocean. Best of all it was an adult only resort; those with children understand how important this feature is. Once I arrived I immediately fell in love with decor. Of course being an interior design fanatic I paid attention to every detail which wasn't difficult considering the hotel was elegantly simple. There was minimal architectural detail but the decor detail that went into designing the hotel is what makes the hotel memorizing. I give you Pueblo Bonito Pacifica...

This couldn't be anymore relaxing. It might just be a lobby but it was the perfect place to sit and relax during the 100 degree weather.
I fell in love with these mosaic trees. These were displayed in the lobby area and each time we walked in I found myself endlessly staring at them. Up close they are broken pieces of pottery mixed with whole pieced  tile water animals. The aroma in the lobby was just as calming and relaxing as the aesthetics. As soon as you walk in you're greeted with the warm and inviting scent of menthol and lavender.
A side stairwell which takes you up the lobby level..
 When you reach the top of the staircase..another simple and beautiful  detail.

Walk to the lobby.
Lobby lounge area
This wasn't our actual bedroom but same layout. It had a breathtaking ocean view and a full view of the resort.
 The walk to the rooms. Stunning view!
 Outside the lobby. I love how exterior wall art like this was placed throughout the hotel.
 Another amazing detail throughout the resort was the intricately raked sand. Where there was sand, there was zen sand art; newly raked every morning.
They even raked the sand above the fire extinguisher!
View from the ocean view canopy..perfect set for a Corona commercial!
 Entering the hotel
I know its silly but I paid attention to every detail of the hotel including the color combos. This was the table cloth and napkin. They are both gentle color tones opposite of each other yet so complimentary of each other.
I love the texture and color combo. It's so simple yet appeasing to the eye.

The simple design of the hotel definitely gave me design ideas to incorporate with my own. The great thing about simple design it that its that much easier to create DIY projects. Everything in this hotel can easily be used to create a design scheme or add to your existing decor. I mentioned the mosaic trees gave me inspiration for wall art in my bedroom. Hopefully you found something that will inspire you. Stay tuned..I'll be working on my version the mosaic trees. For more on Pueblo Bonito Pacifica Spa and Resort visit I highly recommend this for your next getaway!~MG