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September 29, 2017

Easy Tiny Arrangements | My Hutch Style


There has been a big trend in home "styling."  I sort of hate that idea - especially if it is a home you actually live in.  I feel like, in this internet photo world, that there is a lot of styling going on and a lot less living.  How many people have a cozy nook that "looks" perfect for snuggling up and reading a book, but is never actually used?  Or a gourmet kitchen that rivals most on Pinterest, but is never used for cooking or baking.  Some of my biggest grievances are bath tubs that are never filled and fireplaces that are never enjoyed.  To me, a home should be beautiful only because it makes it more comfortable and livable.  

The only "styling" I do is to add flowers on a weekly/daily basis.  It is one of my favorite ways to give our home life and bring the seasons inside.  Floral arranging can seem intimidating, but when on a really small scale, these tiny gatherings are so simple.  What's more is that these small arrangements can make a huge impact on a space - powder room, bedside table, next to the kitchen sink, on an end table or on top of that coffee table book you never read ; )


I put together these fall-ish tiny arrangements to scatter around our house.  Here are the elements I used :

- Orange Roses
- Orange/Coral Dahlias
- Navy Viburnum Berries or Privet Berries (Viburnum grow in our garden)
- Deep Purple Leaves
- Small Creamer Pitchers


These are my favorite tiny helper hands that are currently at Kindergarten right now.  Kids love making floral arrangements because when you start with beautiful flowers, they can really assemble something truly beautiful all by themselves.  These small ones are especially easy to make.


I cut the flowers to length and Emma plucked them in where she saw fit.  This arrangement is made in the Creamer from the Classic Cream & Sugar set with a pewter finish.  They make the most charming vessels.


We added these dark foliage leaves for contrast with the orange and coral colors.  It turned them in to very Fall-ish looking arrangements.  In the spring, we could add fern sprigs instead to this same arrangement and they would look springy.




Now, remember when I said I hate styling my own home?  Well, since this hutch has entered our home, it has become sort of my seasonal muse.  It is the centerpiece of our kitchen/hearth/dining room and it calls out for being decorated.  I plan to keep the Creamware Platters (set of 6) on it throughout the year, then add seasonal color through plates, flowers and candles.


So, it has been one of my favorite spots to nestle a flower arrangement.  It also becomes a perfect place to set up some appetizers/bowl of nuts/stack of plates/wine & glasses when we have guests.

This tiny arrangement is made in one of these Creamware Creamers.


I always love putting the little buds of flowers in the arrangements, too - they are the perfect compliment to the blooms and so nice to add a variety of size.


Creamware Creamers
12" Taper Candles


Another version from the Creamware Creamers.





I also love to add candles - obviously.  I get these thick glass votives from Target for $2-3.  They look so expensive because of the thick glass.  I buy the 12 packs of simple votive candles in glass and slide them in the thick glass votive holders.



Little frames are another way to add charm to a corner.  This is an engraving of a river that I love.


Our garden roses are beginning to fade, but until them, I will keep cutting them and placing them around the house - for their lovely scent and their beauty.

Shop my favorite small Creamers for tiny arrangements, here >

September 28, 2017

The Making of a Block Print | My Process




For about a year and a half, I've been designing my own custom block print designs that are made into textiles for my store.  I have them stitched into cushion covers and table linens.  I also have some fabric left as yardage so you are able to have any item custom made for your home projects.  I get so many questions about how this process works, so I thought I'd show you.  


Each season I pull together swatches, photos, paint chips, tags, anything that is speaking to me.  This is my current board in my office right now.  I'm getting ready to launch the Harvest Collection full of browns, greens and burnt oranges.  That collection will also transition into Holiday in the month of November.  I always like these two collections to merge well, since the seasons are so close.  I don't like to do exclusively orange in October, then red in December, I want each to work together so you are able to just add/change a few items for each season to really change the feel of your home.

The Harvest Collection will come out October 4th (next Wednesday).

The Block Print Fabric by the Yard is currently on sale, $36 for 3 yards : )


This paper is the original that I sketched these little prints on.


I take a photo of the sketches I like, then crop them out so I have a rough jpeg.
I lay out the design as a pattern for a 6" wood block.  I send this document to India and my producer has  a wooden block made from my design.  In the meantime, I work on sending her colors.


I love neutral based, in-between colors.  They feel most natural to me.  I created a collection of Benjamin Moore paint swatches for my producer in India to keep on hand.  I give her the swatch color number to match the dye.  


I wanted this Berry Sprig to remind me of the Rose Hips that I find this time of year - a muted umber with brown stick/stems.


The final colors were Greenfield Pumpkin + Whitall Brown.


The wood blocks are hand printed on 100% cotton.  About a month later, I receive a sample of the block and paint colors.  Often times we go back and forth several times to get the colors perfect.

This is the newest Berry Sprig with autumnal colors that will launch with the Harvest Collection next week.


This is the topiary print that I introduced last month.  I like this pattern because it is more saturated in color so it gives the appearance of all over color.  It will be a great essentials to use in different color each season.  The next color in this design will be a deep brown, which I love to use Nov-Jan.



The Hydrangea Print is one of my favorites, too.  It is so elegant, yet clean and graphic.  Last month I featured it in a deep blue and cream.  



Shop all of my Block Print Fabric Collections >


Shop all of my Block Print Fabric Collections >

This season I had a mossy green made that will transition perfectly from autumn to holiday.





As I mentioned, I also carry unfinished yards of fabric for you to create your own projects.  I have some for my own home planned in the next couple of weeks.  I've gathered up some inspiration photos to help me design them

The Block Print Fabric by the Yard is currently on sale : )


A lamp shade is going to be 1st on my list - well, two actually.  I'd like to make a pair for our master bedroom that will go with a matching pillow in the center of our bed.  I love a pattern repeated at least twice in the same room.  



I LOVE this roman shade made out of a print.  I might try to fashion some fabric trim bands that I would run along each side of our existing cream linen roman shades in our room.  



See how the fabric is repeated in this room?  I think it is so chic.  


Here too, the drapes match the sham and the bedskirt.  It is a perfect way for a white wall and bed linens loving person to add a coziness and level of finish to a room.



I love how a clean, simple piece turns into something really special with this fabric.


Again, another repeating pattern (but a plaid - you get the point). 


Of course, I'll document my projects here.  I'm thinking the lamps are going to be first.  Wish me luck!

Shop all of my Block Print Fabric Collections, here.  The Block Print Fabric by the Yard is currently on sale : )

September 27, 2017

Our Nantucket Vacation | Sconset


At the end of July, we took a vacation to Boston and Nantucket.  We hadn't planned on taking a "big" summer vacation this year, but as we were inching closer to Emma's first year of Kindergarten, I had an itch to get out and go on one last adventure.  

We decided on a trip to Sconset (Siasconset Massachusetts on Nantucket) after years of drooling over Tessa's vacation photos.   Mike had a work trip to Boston planned, so Emma and I tagged along, then we all headed out to Nantucket.  As I told Tessa, I just wanted to get eyes on it.  Tessa said, take a deep breath for me - it smells like heaven.  She was so right.  I tried to convey the feeling of being there through these photos, but really the scent of the roses and the blooming privet, the light, the salty breeze, and the overwhelming feeling of slowing down and being removed from the rest of the world was hard to capture.  It was breathtakingly beautiful in both a natural and manicured way.  Everything surface was either lushly green, blooming, or weathered wood, stone or shells.  The homes feel comfortable and well worn, removed from time and trends in the most lovely manner.  We loved it and will return soon.



For those not familiar with the area, Nantucket is an island off of the coast of Cape Cod.  Siasconset (known as 'Sconset) is on the southeastern most edge of the island.  It is a little village that was established as a fishing and whaling village in the 1600s.


This view gives you an idea of how small and remote Sconset is - out by itself on the edge of the ocean.  There is a town center with a market, sandwich shop and a couple of inns and cafes.


This view (found online) gives you an idea of how the entire area feels - cozy little plots with lush green hedges and weathered shake homes... with the ocean just steps away.


If feels so old fashioned with flagpoles in almost every yard, manicured gardens and hardly any cars.  We biked everywhere in sconset and used uber to go into Nantucket Town occasionally.

Now, back to photos from our trip :



The Ferry ride over to the island.



This was our rental home, Sunday Cottage.  It was about 2 blocks from the Ocean Bluff Walk and one mile from the village center of Sconset.  It was a guest house of a larger home, but felt very private. 




These are photos I took on our first day, as we walked into the village center, trying to take everything in.


I fell IN LOVE with this home (and several others), but decided this is the home we will stay in next time.



 It could be in a Nancy Meyers movie.

See what I mean about weathered in the most wonderful way?  Nothing seems (or feels) manufactured. I love it.  This town is the kind of place that makes you want live here, not just visit here. 



Emma called these Cotton Candy Hydrangeas.  


When your drink of choice matches your shirt.


 

On our walk to dinner at the Sconset Cafe the first night.



A pop in to "the book store."


Doesn't this look very chic?


Until you look inside!  Emma's request, of course.



Emma ran the entire time on the bluff walk - it was so nice for her to be free to roam.

The Bluff Walk is a public way foot path that goes through the gardens of the homes that are on the ocean.  This was my favorite part, to be able to see their gardens and homes on one side and the ocean on the other.



This photo gives you an idea of the light there.  It is so dynamic.









We went into Nantucket Town on another dreary day for some exploring.  I love Nantucket Light Ship Baskets.


A visit to Flowers on Chestnut.


I am obsessed with this store.  It is everything I love.  I imagined that if I had a store in real life (vs. online) this is what I'd want it to be.


The most gorgeous fresh flowers.  The entire placed smelled like lilies.



Pine chess, ship painting, blue and white + hydrangeas.

 

 We had emma re-create a photo from our first trip to Nantucket when she was 2.  Can you tell she picks her own clothes out now? ; )













It couldn't be Nantucket (or New England) without a couple of grey dreary days.


  



I love this tiny little shack with its tiny little garden filled with herbs and flowers.  So utilitarian and beautiful.  Makes me want to scale down everything.  







And then, in perfect Nantucket fashion, the clouds parted, we stopped taking photos and we started laying on the beach : 



Another side by side from our trip 5 years ago to Cape Cod.


Oh what I would give to be laying on that beach or walking that bluff walk this morning.  


Until next time, Sconset.


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