Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Music: From the Year I Was Born

I'm super excited to be starting a new linkup party featuring music. Many of you know how much I love music, so I wanted to create a way to share what I've been listening to and also to get music suggestions in return from all of you! So if you'd like feel free to check out the linkup party info at the end of the post and join in the fun.

Lately, while on Facebook, I noticed people posting about the song that was a number one hit on the day they were born. It got me to thinking about what the music scene was like in the year I was born and whether or not I'd be ok with what was happening. I was struck with a horrifying feeling that maybe 1983, my birth year, was the crappiest music year of all. That (for a self-proclaimed pretentious music snob like me) would have been one of the worst things to happen to me this week. (Yes, I'm being realistic here with my time frame as there are probably a lot worse things that have happened to me or anyone else within the year or within my lifetime.)

So I set out on a scouring of the internet to see just what I could come up with that would ease me of my horrible feeling in my gut. The number one song on my day of birth was less than pleasing being Michael Sembello's Maniac from Flashdance. However in terms of popular songs in 1983, my findings put me at ease and were literally music to my ears.

Every Breathe You Take - The Police


Africa - Toto


Rock the Casbah - The Clash


Stand Back - Stevie Nicks



What are some of your favorite hits from the year you were born? Join the music link party and tell me what you've been listening to! Grab the button or include a link back to this post to let your readers know who all is linked up so we can share some music. Also, be sure to link to your blog post for the day rather than to your main blog page. Don't forget to get ready for next week's music linkup party. The theme will be favorite winter songs, since we are now well into winter! Happy listening!

Row House 14 Music Linkup Party



Monday, January 30, 2012

Featured Shop - Little White Chapel and Oh, Nostalgia

Since I started my Etsy shop and blog a little over a year ago, I've gotten to know a lot of other artists. I am constantly amazed by the amount of talent I am surrounded by, not to mention, super awesome people. One of those super awesome people is Paige from Little Nostalgia. Aside from her blog she has two fabulous jewelry shops, Little White Chapel and Oh Nostalgia. Her jewelry is vintage inspired and absolutely fabulous either for that wedding that you're planning or for every day wear. And her blog? Well she's a pretty awesome DIYer that has great fashion sense and a great sense of humor to add in the mix. Here's what Paige has to say.


1. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your shops.

Nice to virtually meet you! I’m Paige from Chicago, and I make jewelry. I’ve had a weird string of jobs that led me to this point (I used to be on the radio, and then I worked for an office supply company) but now I make a living running my two Etsy shops, Little White Chapel and Oh Nostalgia.


2. How and why did you start Little White Chapel? What made you decide to open your second shop Oh Nostalgia?

I’ve always loved weddings, and after I had so much fun planning my own, I wanted to stay involved in the scene somehow. I also saw a lot of the same old jewelry marketed to brides, so I wanted to make something a little different. As for opening up a second shop, I knew that if I wanted to quit my day job then I needed to expand my business. Developing an everyday line seemed like the natural thing to do next. I actually started selling Oh Nostalgia pieces at craft shows first—just to make sure it didn’t tank—and then opened the Etsy shop a few months later.


3. Aside from the projects you're working on for your shops, what other projects do you like to spend time on?

Decorating! It’s been a hobby of mine for most of my life. In fact, when I was a kid I would make my sister play “interior designer” with me. She never got to be the designer.


4. If you had a free day with nothing planned and time on your own, what would you do?

It would probably be a lot of sitting around. Reading while enjoying a cup of tea, catching up on episodes of Teen Mom 2 (don’t judge), and napping on the couch come to mind. Then I might go antiquing just to get out of the house for a bit.


5. What are your hopes for your creative endeavors in the future?

Well, I just went back to school to get an interior design degree, so the ultimate goal is to do some combination of jewelry-making and decorating. I’d like to keep working for myself, too.


I'm not going to lie, I'm loving those turquoise pearl earrings (I just have a thing for that color in case you hadn't figured it out)! They're pretty much perfect! Oh, and don't forget to say hi to Paige elsewhere on the web!

Valetine Blog Hop

My favorite card (and the favorite of many) this Valentine's Day season was inspired by my exact feelings of the holiday.


I'm not a big Valentine's Day person. I get frustrated by its over-commercialization. And I think this card sums up my very reason for that. Why should we say I love you in a big way just on Valentine's Day? Yet here I am, still making and selling Valentine's Day cards. So that in itself is a bit hypocritical. I am a card maker after all, I suppose.

When challenged by the Etsy Greetings Team to pair one of my cards with an Etsy gift for this blog hop, it became obvious what would be most fitting. Cards and stationery are meant to be written in, so it makes complete sense that I chose these fabulous Valentine's themed pencil packs from Write With Moxie.


I love the simple idea of the pencils, and being a teacher, I find these too cool for school. Perfect to pair up with a card to to give just as is!

And don't forget, see what other Valentine's Day pairs the Etsy Greetings Team has come up with by following the hop via the links below!






Sunday, January 29, 2012

Year of the House Bathroom Floor Update

The time has come. The self-leveling underlay has been poured in the half bath and it is finally time to lay the cork flooring. A few update photos courtesy of Andrew who snapped away while he was working.




The flooring looks great! Now just to finish it and then get wood for the final piece of the project. I'm happy to announce that this is one home improvement project that has taken as quickly as I had hoped, unlike a project that started with "f" and ended with "ence." I prefer not to talk about that one in terms of the project anymore, but only in terms of outdoor enjoyment factor if you know what I mean.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

One Fine Dae

Just happened across this beautiful little paper shop the other day. If you're one that likes notebooks and other such paper goods, you'll probably love One Fine Dae as well. The notebooks look perfect for the list maker like me and the pencils are super fun.






What sorts of paper shops have you been loving lately?

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Year of the House Update

About a week ago I gave you a little peek at the beginnings of our studio transformation. The painting has been completed and our comfy reading chairs for part of the room have arrived. Unfortunately, our sleeper sofa that was to go in the basement didn't fit so it had to be sent back. Now we must start over at square one in that department. However, I had my heart set on the chairs and after only a few days, I am so glad we decided to keep them. This space, while not yet close to being completely transformed, is already turning into a quiet, peaceful, and tranquil place. It feels cozy and since the room is in the back of our row house, the noises of the street are nearly nonexistent.


Much still needs to be done in terms of decor, and the actual studio side of the room isn't much more than my desk at this point. I'm looking forward to continuing the work on this room.

In addition to this transformation, another one has begun to take place. We picked up our cork flooring for our half bath on the first floor yesterday afternoon. Andrew couldn't wait and had to dive into the project immediately. Here is a glimpse of the bathroom before demolition began.


Those ugly black tiles are also gracing our backsplash in the kitchen-- another project that will eventually be in the works. We're planning on putting down the cork flooring and then doing a Frank Lloyd Wright-esque paneling of maple that extends just right about the height of the sink, similar to this.


As for now, we have a toilet and a sink sitting in our living room. You may or may not have seen my tweet about the construction currently taking place, but for a look at what's going on, check the photo out here.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Design Study: In Full Bloom

After fulfilling my inspiration needs with an overdose of my fashion mags, my blogroll and some Pinterest, I started to get into some bright florals. It's kind of funny because I'm not one to be super girly, which is what I always think of when I think floral. However, some of the designs that popped out at me are far from girly and are more under the bold and vibrant category. And most are pretty gutsy to pull off. Here are my picks.

via Atlantic-Pacific
via Anthropologie
via Rifle Paper Co.
via A Beautiful Mess
via Society 6
via You Are My Fave
I especially love that last look. Just a hint of floral in the scarf with the stripes and texture. What design inspiration have you been loving lately?

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Gwen Frostic

I love wood block prints. I was first introduced to block prints by my grandmother, a woman that loves paper goods and knows best how to write a wonderful letter. She always has a stash of note cards stowed away for the many personal notes that she always writes. One such type of note cards were those by Gwen Frostic, a wood block artist from Michigan.

As a child, on our way home from our camping trips in Canada, we would stop in Benzonia, Michigan to see Gwen's shop and pick up some stationery, calendars, and books. Gwen, who is no longer living, would sometimes be hiding amongst the printing presses as they clicked and clacked to produce her lovely prints.

Her shop, still open for business, is amazing. It is nestled in a wildlife sanctuary and uses native materials in attempt to bring the outdoors inside. Gwen's prints are nature inspired and were often created by the plants and animals that surrounded her studio. She is truly a creative inspiration.

A glimpse at some of the items available on her website.




And a glimpse from my personal stash.





One thing that I love about the stationery that gives it an even more natural feel is the deckled edge. Many of Gwen's designs are so simple, but just perfect. And some are more complex and leave me in awe of her ability to have carved that with an end result in mind. One thing remains certain. Most likely throughout my lifetime, I will always have a stash of Gwen Frostic paper, just like my grandmother.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Living Room of Glass

I'm a bit of a lover of architecture-- some of it inherited from my father and some (ok, maybe a lot) from Andrew. One of my most recent discoveries is a beautifully rustic and modern house located in Belgium by Bruno Erpicum. Roly, as it is named, is a small brick and stone structure that has been converted into a house in which the indoors and outdoors meet. A living room of glass is perhaps one of the most wondrous features and seems quite cozy on a wintry day despite displaying all for an outsider to see. The features of the interior boast rustic stone finishes with clean, modern lines-- a beautiful contrast.





Best yet? It's currently used as a bed and breakfast. Add that one as a place to stay next time I take a trip to Belgium. :)

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Somebody That I Used to Know

I'm a sucker for good film. Combine artsy film with good music and I'm even happier. Here's one that I couldn't resist sharing with you-- Somebody That I Used to Know by Gotye. It really just seems to bring the raw emotion of the song alive in such a simple way. It sucked me right in.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

And So It Begins...

Our second bedroom is becoming a studio. Today it all starts with the paint. Goodbye white walls. Stay tuned for more. I'll be sure to share the transformation.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Design Study: Bolds

Baltimore winters are not really something to complain about. We don't get a lot of snow (except for that time we got pounded with two 22 inch blizzards within one week!) and in general, things are a lot better than when I went to school in Syracuse. But now that I'm acclimated to the warm, balmy Baltimore winters, the slightest dip in temperature makes it ok for me to say it's freezing outside. Anyway, these cold temps and rainy days (especially of late) beg for a bit of color. These wonderful bolds helped to warm me up this past week. And there is still part of me that kind of misses walking to class in this every day.

via West Elm
via Pinterest
via
via Little Dog Vintage
via J. Crew
via Lemon Lime Photography
via sincerely YOU
via notTuesday
via Pinterest
Great color inspiration and certainly a winter warm up! What do you do to beat those cold winter days?
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