Monday, October 28, 2013

inspiration of the week: alternative chandeliers

One important design element that's often overlooked, is great lighting. And as you can guess by the title of this blog, my favorite type of lighting to shop for is a sparkly crystal chandelier. When I was designing our nursery, I spent a lot of time looking for a great chandelier that could work for a little boy's room. I didn't want something kitschy like an airplane or giant hot air balloon (although those can have their place). I ended up finding a whole world of alternative chandeliers outside of my beloved crystal fixtures. Here are some of the great pieces I found inspiring.

this chandelier is made from coconut beads and gives a wonderful earthy, fresh vibe to this dining space
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this unique chandelier has eighty hanging notes - thirty-one are printed with expressions of love in various languages, and the other forty-nine are left blank for the owner to add their own sentiments!
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I love how this turquoise chandelier adds a pop of color to an otherwise neutral space!
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we've all seen the mason jar chandeliers, here's a fun twist for a bar using alcohol bottles
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I realize this is treading the line towards a traditional crystal chandelier, but I couldn't help myself. I love the oversize scale of this fixture and the layers of the starburst.
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this modern geometric chandelier fits perfect in this neutral minimalist space
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I've seen a lot of chandeliers using candles, but I love the DIY nature of this version. Using a simple metal basket and some battery operated candles, you could make this farmhouse chandelier yourself.
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I couldn't feature a collection of chandeliers without including a birdcage chandelier. It's a great way to add an eclectic lighting element.
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here is the chandelier that ended my quest and will hopefully be featured soon in baby Alexander's nursery
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Sunday, October 20, 2013

design crush: bunk rooms

I've been seeing a lot of cute "bunk rooms" lately and I have to say that I love the idea and thought I'd share my favorites for this installment of design crush. We all remember how much fun sleepovers were, so this is a clever way to be sleepover ready all the time. Although there's no replacement for a living room full of sleeping bags, this would be so much fun for family visits or holidays. And it's the great way to maximize sleeping space at a vacation home! Here are some of my favorite bunk room designs. 

perfect for a vacation home, this bunk room serves as the ideal kids den and keeps kids suitcases and toys corralled away from the main living area
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what could be more fun than a slide coming down from the top bunk?
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a bunk room doesn't have to utilize elaborate built-ins, this guest room is turned into a bunk room by selecting two beautiful bunk beds
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if you have the floor space, why not use full-size beds below with bunks on top for even more sleeping space?
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A basement is the perfect place to incorporate extra sleeping. Chances are the existing space is already setup for relaxing, and bunk beds can be tucked against one wall without taking up much space.
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A bunk room doesn't have to feel rustic or scream "children's area". This clean and contemporary design can fit into a more modern home seamlessly.
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love this nautical themed bunk room - perfect for a lake house!
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Last but not least, if you have the vertical space, this is a great way to put it to use. How fun is this extra tall ladder up to a third tier bunk loft?
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Saturday, October 5, 2013

design tips: bookcase

Things have been a little exhausting here with the new baby, but we've managed to complete a few projects in our "down time." The first was painting the dressers in our bedroom. That project turned out to be the biggest DIY disaster ever. But we learned a lot and ended up with a great finished product - I'll post more on that later. 

The second project was updating our basement. We mounted the TV and moved some furniture around to give more space for the baby to crawl around. We desperately needed some storage for all of baby's things, so that meant a trip to Ikea. Let me tell you, Ikea with a new baby is no easy errand. But we found some great bookshelves to start our basement storage solution. Of course bookcases = styling dilemma. So I thought this would be a perfect theme for my next post. 

Here are some tips for styling a bookcase.

1. Work with what you have. 
This is the perfect place to display items you've been storing but didn't have a home. Great bookcases often house an eclectic mix of books and treasures. So look around your home and grab some items that need a place to live.
items like personal photographs, statues and magazines that you already have in your home are the perfect bookcase styling accessory
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2. Books.
Remove the jackets from books you already have. Chances are the spines are neutral and look great when stacked together on a shelf. Then alternate those books both vertically and horizontally for visual appeal.
stacking both vertical and horizontally help this eclectic mix of books feel cohesive and interesting
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3. Play with scale. 
Vary the size and shape of the objects on each shelf. 
the different sizes of the objects, books, pictures and treasures here make this bookshelf interesting to the eye
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4. Color. 
Look around your space and pinpoint your existing color pallet and bring those colors into the bookcase accessories. One or two dominant accessory colors can compliment a variety of books.
this bookcase uses the citron, pink and white from the surrounding space for a cohesive look
side note: Sarah M. Dorsey Designs is one of my FAVORITE design blogs! She has fantastic style and great DIY tips. Check out her blog via the link below.
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5. Texture.
Don't forget to vary the texture of the objects, as well as scale and color. 
the texture of the plant and accessories add visual interest to the books
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6. Pictures and Art.
Lean framed photos or artwork on each shelf and selectively cover some of the artwork with other objects for an organic look.
photos in black and white help add a personal touch to this bookcase
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what better place to display artwork that you've aquired?
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Friday, September 6, 2013

introducing baby Alexander!

Exactly one month ago, we welcomed our beautiful son Alexander into the world! It's been a very exhausting month but I truly cannot believe how amazing it is to be a mother. As much as everyone told me how my life would change, I wasn't prepared for how instantly in love I would be with our little man. So, needless to say, blogging has fallen to the back burner. But I'm still daydreaming about design and eager to get back to school and research - as soon as we get this little guy on a sleep schedule. Until then, here are some pictures of our perfect little angel!
our sleeping angel

our new family of three
future ski bum

Hank loves his new brother!
I have lots of design ideas I'm daydreaming about these days. Can't wait to have a few moments to share them!

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Sunday, August 4, 2013

nursery reveal

After a busy week of finals and finishing up the last of our to-do-list for the baby, I'm excited to finally share our completed nursery! I had so much fun with this project and managed to even get crafty with a few things and show off my DIY skills. I hope baby enjoys the nursery as much as I already am!

crib :: rug :: mirror :: beadboard paneling how-to
owl :: rocking bird :: plush blocks
hamper :: dresser :: picture frames
photos :: alphabet animals print :: plush animals made by me
glider :: bookcase :: schoolhouse chair
Now it's just a waiting game until baby decides to make his entrance!

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Monday, July 22, 2013

waiting for baby

We've had quite a whirlwind of activity happening here the past couple weeks that has caused me to neglect sunlight & sparkle. Although I haven't been posting, I've been keeping up to date with my favorite design blogs and staying inspired. Hopefully soon I'll be able to share some of that inspiration here. Until then, I'm counting down the days until baby arrives! The arrival of the Royal Baby has me even more excited to welcome our own bundle of joy in a couple weeks.

Here is a glimpse at some of our favorite maternity photos from the lovely and talented Khala at DOX Photo. Check out her amazing work here!

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