Reasons to Celebrate

I’m feeling celebratory.  Business is fantastic, Winter is (please. God. hopefully) ending soon, Romance is alive and well in my life, and my house is FINALLY coming together.  I’ve given myself a summer deadline to complete The Cottage.  Finishing in 4-odd months feels pretty daunting when I feel like it’s so far from perfect, but I’m trying to tackle in one small element at a time.  With each new step I celebrate.  A glass of wine, a happy dance, whatever.  My home is starting to make me feel giddy again… and shouldn’t our homes be our happy place?

 

Here are a few small reasons I’m celebrating today:

1.  Black Bamboo Chinese Chippendale Chairs Reupholstered!

I picked up a pair of these vintage chairs years ago and let them sit with ugly upholsltery because I didn’t want to spend the money to recover them or pick a fabric.  I discussed fabric ideas HERE but ended up choosing something different.  I found this great vinyl faux ostrich fabric down on Fabric Row of Philadelphia ans snagged 1.5 yards.  I love that it’s light, textural and totally durable.  The brass nailheads are a nice touch too, I think.

Black Bamboo chair with Ostrich Upholstery

chinese chippendale chinoiserie chair with ostrich upholstery les touches pillow (1)

2.  The slipcover has made its triumphant return!

After 4 months of sitting crumpled in a bag I finally accomplished my personal goal of getting my slipcover dry cleaned.  I spent the winter with snowy boots, dirty dogs and my old gray original upholstery on my sofa.  IT IS SO NICE HAVING OPTIONS WITH THE UPHOLSTERY.  The gray was perfect for winter but now I’m welcoming the natural linen again.  It feels so fresh and clean that I can almost feel the spring air wafting through my cottage.

DM Living room- Layered cowhide over jute rug, patterened ottoman, slipcover sofa

3.  The Fireplace Mantel has been Refreshed

I loved my holiday mantel and kept it a little too long, but it was time to mix it up.  I needed a little less gold and shimmer and a little more softness.  I’m simplifying things all over the cottage and being a little more selective with what I display.  Less is more.  Just don’t call me a minimalist.

DM Fireplace Mantel simple styling

Design Manifest Fireplace Mantel Gold Mirror

So there you go- just a few small tweaks to the living room and I already feel like I’m on my way to a finished home.  Fingers crossed I can continue to pull it together.

Creating a Layered Look with Antiques

Today is my first post as a contributor for Meg Biram‘s fabulous new site!  Please hop over to see me share my favorite ways to add in antiques or vintage pieces into a room design.  I don’t think I realized how often I go vintage in my design work until I compiled the ideas into one post!  For me,  layering in antiques is essential to create a room with depth and soul.  You can just feel it when you walk into a space and its all spanking new… something is just lacking.  

Not wanting you all to live in soulless sterile interiors, I’ve quickly whipped up a few vintage finds to help you get that Design Manifest Layered Look.




1 / 23 / 4 / 56 / 7 / 8 / 9
PS- That inlaid elephant table is nearly identical to my own!

Chinese Lattice Designs

My mom knows me so well.  While thrifting, she picked up “The New Book of Chinese Lattice Designs” for me.  It’s filled with 372 designs that were sketched from windows all over West China during the first half of the 20th century.  I just adore these intricate patterns.  I’d love to turn them into fabrics, wallpapers, stencils or O’verlays. I think their complex geometric nature is both modern and ornate and blends so well with many other patterns.  Here are just a few of my faves… (sorry I’m hoarding the rest for myself.)  

 
Do you like them too, or are they too “ethnic” for your taste?