Tuesday, August 10, 2010

A how to guide to pick the perfect paint color:

Everyone struggles with paint colors, even the best designers. There are some tricks to picking out the perfect paint colors and we have pulled a few of them together for you. 

Don't decide on the paint at the store. Bring multiple paint chips home of the color you think you like and attach them together on cardboard. Put the cardboard on your wall to see how the light in your home effects the paint. Even better just buy a quart of paint and paint a patch to see what the color will truly look like in your home.

Remember when you are choosing paint swatches, that there are undertones mixed in the paint and they may be different colors that you think. Not all gray is the same. Sometimes brown can look purple and sometimes it can look green. Taupe can look pink if it has to much red it in. This can happen with any color. There are pigments in the color that can take on personalities of other colors depending on where you put them and what light they have.This is why making sure the paint will look good in your home and not just in the store is important.

The psychology of color really does work. Red is vibrant and exciting and you will have a harder time sleeping or relaxing in a red room. Blue and green are soothing and calming but can also make you feel depressed. Choose your colors for each room based on the feeling that you want to portray.

Last the but not least, leave the painting for last. After you get all the other elements for the room then you should choose your paint color. It would be much harder to match your furniture, fabric and upholstery to your paint color.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Shelf decorating DIY: How to put together a great shelf display

Decorating shelves and mantles can be frustrating. Even the most outstanding and unique piece can get lost in a mismanaged display. We came up with these decorating tips that can help you to create a more visually stimulating display in your home. I hope this helps to make your home feel fresh and organized.

Tip #1: Odd numbered grouping...
When decorating a shelf or table, it’s usually best to create odd numbers of groupings. One, three, five, seven and so on. You can place one large piece alone or three pieces on a table or shelf.

Tip #2: Escalating scale...
Make sure the proportions are visually soothing to the eye by using escalating sizes. Create layers by incorporating a tall medium and short item in a group. Always put the tallest piece in the back of the display and let the height come down towards the viewer. Doing this creates a dynamic, interesting display.

Tip #3: Make it you...
It is important to put your personality into your home decorating. Use mementos of vacations, keep sakes and hobbies that are important to your family. Use the books you have accumulated over the years by mixing them into the display. Lay three on their side and one leaning against them. Use the books as elevators for other objects.

Tip #4: Utopias create interest...
Create utopias of similar items like picture frames, teacups, buttons, glass bottles or trophies. Arrange things by like colors, like shapes or like textures to create a pop and a focal point. By putting lots of small objects together you will build scale and minimize clutter.

Tip #5: Use your balance judgment...
The most common way to create balance it by making each side symmetrical. Sometimes this can get boring and stuffy. Try using asymmetrical balance. Some things may not be the same size or color but they are visually the same weight and can balance each other out. By putting small things together you can create a grouping that visually balances out the weight of a larger piece.

Tip #6: Create areas of relief...
Don't cram shelves full it's not attractive. Leave some breathing room between objects. You can treat a utopia of small objects as one large object and leave space around that instead of each individual piece in the utopia. This will make more of an impact and little items won’t get lost on the shelf.

Tip #7: Hide clutter in attractive containers...
Adding baskets or boxes allows you to hide small busy looking trinkets or eye sores like remotes, papers, magazines and DVD's. Be sure to use boxes or baskets that go with your decor and look clean and visually attractive.

Tip #8: Let there be light...
Illuminate your shelf decor with small lamps or strings of lights. Make sure you hide the cord so that is isn't cluttered or visually distracting.

Hopefully these tips will work for you. If you still struggle with loving the display you have created, have someone else do it for you using these tips. Sometimes its just better when you don't do it yourself!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Friday, March 26, 2010

I LOVE these little Etsy videos! 

Friday, February 12, 2010

Valentines Day: Creative ideas

Valentines day can be so cliché and cheesy! Its a holiday that most people despise for more than a few reasons. Women have bad memories of being alone and feeling neglected. Guys hate it because there is so much expectation for them to be romantic and spend money. Some e think Valentines day was created by card companies and it's over rated. 

Personally, I believe that Valentines day originally comes from the pagan holiday called Embolc. The pagans believed that the month that is now February was sacred because it meant new beginnings. All the animals were becoming fertile, and all the trees, grass and natural life was peaking out of the winter. They worshiped a goddess at this time called Briged. She was a goddess of fertility.

Some theorize the holidy originated in ancient Rome - with a holiday called Lupercalia, which also had to do with fertility. I think Lupercalia was part of the evolution of the day we call Valentines day. It is celebrated with different names and rituals all over the world. I think it is lovely and it is one of my favorite holidays.  Its cheesy, fun, romantic, exciting and it has an amazing history. I do agree  that the holiday has been overtaken by hallmark. Thats why I think its important to come up with ideas that  are thought out, home made and unexpected. You can't "treat every day of the year like Valentines day", peoples lives are too busy for that. So, its nice to have one day to celebrate love, fertility  and new beginnings. 

 Here are a few ideas that might help you enjoy this holiday with your beloved. These ideas are sexy, creative and even inexpensive. 

Spa Night
Suggested ingredients for spa night: Candles, scented message oil, bath salts, music and rose petals.
For this night, make sure you have a clean bathroom and bedroom. Send your love out to the store to pick up something or tell them to wait in the other room. While they are out, set out lots of candles around the bathtub and in your bedroom. Spread the rose petals all around the bathtub and the bed. Fill the tub with hot water, add the bath salts and light the candles. Fill the evening up with a relaxing bath together and take turns giving each other massages. I'm sure you will figure out other things to do! You can add chocolate strawberries to the evening as well. Even more romantic bonus idea: make the strawberries together during the day as a romantic activity!

Picnic at Home
How to have a picnic in your living room: gather together finger foods. At my local grocery store they offer olives, cheese, bread and other easy sexy foods. Get a good bottle of wine. If you have a fire place, light it, if you don't, light candles and pretend that you do. Lay a soft blanket out on the living room floor. You can toss rose petals around the blanket for the romantic cheesy factor. Put all the finger foods on a nice platter and place it on or next to the blanket. Have fun feeding each other or just talking and reminiscing on why you fell in love in the first place!

Scavenger Hunt 
This one takes a lot more effort and pre-thinking! Hide little notes all over the house, one leading to another. You can have a mini gift with each note, like a flower, bottle of wine, strawberries, chocolate, message oil, or what ever you want. At the end of the hunt, leave a card with a heartfelt note about how much you love your love. You could also leave a bigger gift but its is not necessary. To begin the scavenger hunt, you could write a note on the bathroom mirror or underneath your loves dinner plate. Get creative with this one, you could use it to lead them to what ever you want.

Meet at a hotel bar
Sometimes when two people are a team in life, daily life becomes a routine and your home may not feel sexy and romantic. This valentines idea may help to make you really feel like your on a date. After work on Valentines day, meet at a hotel bar and pretend that you are meeting for the first time. Make up a scandalous story about why your there. Have a few drinks together and see where it leads!

Spell it out in candles
Instead of roses or flowers this year!
For this one, you will need to purchase a jumbo package of tea light candles. Use the candles to create a love message on your living room floor or dining room table. Even a simple I LOVE U will work. This is a very romantic and passionate gesture. 

A sweet email
There is nothing like getting a real love note from your love! For some reason most people find this hard to do. Get over your pride, and put everything you love about your person into an email! Send it during work hours on or before valentines day. Tell your love that you want to have a romantic valentines day with them and this is the kickoff. If your feeling frisky, add a few naughty things to the email but mostly make it about why you love them. This valentines idea might be the best one yet!

Bake together
this is an easy romantic way to spend time with your love on valentines day. Make heart shaped cookies or chocolate covered strawberries together! Leave the clean up for the morning if the melted chocolate gets you going! Or keep it rated PG if you have kids and have a fun family Vday!

Make a play list
Pick out all the songs that make you think of your love. All the cheesy romantic songs and the sexy songs that make you feel randy! Put them all on a c.d. for and write "happy Valentines day, love songs for my love" on it in red. 

These are just a few romantic Valentines day ideas. If your feeling super romantic, you can do all of these activities for one Valentines day! Whatever you do, remember to embrace love and appreciate your loved ones!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Fun design from Etsy...

I have the big green painting of New York that is in this video. There is just a tiny glance of it through another room but it was fun to see it in someone else's cool mid-century home!


Friday, January 29, 2010

Experimenting with Mixology

I have recently noticed a trend in mixology going from the old traditional drink recipes to more experimental ones. More exciting ingredients are starting to pop up in drinks at trendy bars and restaurants. Ingredient like rose water and strange vegetables are making there way into the spot light. I looked around on the internet for some more creative mixes that I could make at home and I didn't find much so I decided to experiment for my self.  These ingredients were what I already had in my refrigerator. I think this recipe came out nicely. Its not to sweet but has a unique kick that I don't often find in alcoholic beverages. If you make this drink just right, it is hard to pick out any of the ingredients on there own. They simply become a new entity together. 
I really want to start experimenting in savory drinks rather that sweet ones, so my next endeavor may include something like liquid smoke or bacon. :)

Adonis Martini Cocktail

about 1/12 of an orange with the peel on
about a 1 * 1/2 inch slice of ginger peeled 
a 3 * 2 inch cucumber chunk peeled
1/4 jigger of grenadine
Hendricks gin 
2 and 1/4 jigger of gin
1/2 jigger of jager
Crushed Ice 
about half a shaker

Add the orange, ginger, cucumber and ice together in the shaker. Use a muddler to grind these ingredients together until the fruit and veggies loose there shape and meld into the ice. You will need to use a little elbow grease. Once everything is muddled together and it almost looks like an icy, add the liquid ingredients. Put the lid on the shaker and shake the hell out of it. Use all the muscle you have. I want your whole body involved! This is one of the most important parts. Don't be a pansy and shake that thing! Now, time is crucial here, you don't want to much ice melting in your martini or it wont be a martini anymore. strain the mixture into the glasses and garnish however you like. Some ideas might be an orange slice or a toothpick with a chunk of orange, maraschino cherry and cucumber. You could also get more creative and garnish with fresh rosemary.
If you want to cool your martini glasses before hand, you can get them wet and stick them in the freezer for about 15 min before you begin to mix your drink. 

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Saturday night fever

Saturday night I attended a pub-crawl that is put on annually by the Brickyard guys in Wichita.  Usually there is a theme and this year it was old Thrift store clothes. Luckily, my basement is pretty much an old thrift store, thanks to Harmonious Posh so I ended up supplying many of the outfits.  We went to about 10 dive bars, did a lot dancing, a lot of walking and a lot of drinking. It was like being in old Vegas! Here are a few pictures of the night and the outfits that people sported...



Thursday, January 21, 2010

What's hot this spring in fashion? Designer looks from Etsy!

I love looking at magazines for the newest fashions of the season. The sucky thing is that most people can't afford the designer clothes! I pride myself in being a savvy shopper, so today after looking at some runway photos of 2010 spring fashion I decided to do a little experiment. I analyzed the designer runway fashions and put together  items on Etsy.com to copy the designer looks.  Take a look at how easy it is to create designer looks with inexpensive Etsy finds!

Cynthia Steffe

Fashion show photo/runway collection
Mercedes Benz fashion week New York
spring summer/2010

The next 5 photographs are from Etsy.com. If you are interested in purchasing anything shown, simply chick on the link beneath the photo.

Fashion show photo/runway collection 
Mercedes Benz fashion week New York
spring summer 2010

                                                    Vintage 80's dress from Etsy                                             


Fashion show photo/runway collection
Mercedes Benz fashion week New York

Fashion show photo/runway collection
Milan fashion week
spring/summer 2010


Fashion show photo/runway collection
London fashion week
spring/summer 2010



Fashion show photo/runway collection
London fashion week
spring/summer 2010

PORTS 1961

Fashion show photo/runway collection
New York fashion week
spring/summer 2010


Swim collection photo/runway collection
Mercedes Benz New York
spring/summer 2010