A Dallas Home Goes Modern and Artful

First-time homeowners Matt and Mary Emma Hawthorne orchestrated a modern remodel of the Dallas house like experienced professionals. Their secret? A crystal-clear vision and lots of research. Matt says, “We wanted a fresh, intentional space prepared for our artwork and artifacts.” Mary Emma adds, “But we wanted to do it right the first time.”

Both Matt and Mary Emma possess a similar layout aesthetic, letting them move ahead on their remodel with a unified vision. Matt, an expert photographer, provided a computing eye for detail, colour and space. Mary Emma, an artist, attracted her keen understanding of texture, layering and organic forms. Together, this young couple produced a modern gem with a handmade feel.

at a Glance
Who lives here: Matt and Mary Emma Hawthorne, their 1-year-old son, Oliver, and cat Parker
Location: Lake Highlands neighborhood of Dallas
Size: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths
That’s interesting: Mary Emma’s father is a lifelong art collector and awarded the family lots of the pieces exhibited in the house.

Sarah Greenman

The Hawthornes spent the first five years of the union in a small apartment filled with hand-me-downs, saving their pennies for some time when they can create their own dream space.

Sarah Greenman: Tell me about your decorating Procedure.
Mary Emma Hawthorne: After forfeiting for such a long time, it had been this fun to pick out furniture and fittings.
Matt Hawthorne: We see furniture as artwork also. When we had been making initial decisions about furniture, we chose a blueprint and cut out furniture contours to scale and moved them around on the paper until we had the ideal configuration. Everything was planned.

SG: How would you describe your own personal aesthetic?
MH: That is tough. It is a lot of things. Urban. Modern. Organic. Eclectic. Minimal.
MEH: I seek out authenticity. Some of the “artwork” in our house is just real artifacts from our journeys. A drum from a box or Indonesia from Ghana. We enjoy things that are real.

Art: “Water Well,” by Mary Emma Hawthorne, dining table: Bo Concept; seats: Design Within Reach; bookcase: Expedit, Ikea

Sarah Greenman

SG: How did you realize that was the ideal house for your renovation?
MH: We wanted a house that had no prior renovations. Why pay for updates which you’re only going to take out? It was built in the 1950s, and we enjoyed the floor plan. We dissected each house that we looked at and knew that this one would best match our vision.
MEH: We spent a lot of time in each home. I believe what I enjoyed the most was that the face of the house was directly across, accentuating the clean-line texture.

Art (far left): Beast sculpture by Patrick Mehaffy and “Nana” by James Havard

Sarah Greenman

SG: After you chose the house, how can you decide on a contractor?
MH: We went with Scott Powell of New Leaf Construction since he was confident he could do exactly what we wanted within our budget.
MEH: We just sat down and chatted with builders. Some of them had their own ideas about layout which didn’t jive with what we wanted.
MH: We were very picky.

Sofa: Gus Modern; java table: Anthropologie

Sarah Greenman

SG: I understand you were on a budget. What was your greatest steal?
MEH: The 3 globe pendants dangling in the kitchen. I used to be a screen coordinator at Anthropologie and got them for $30 apiece rather than the first $200.

Bar Condominiums:
Sportsman’s Guide

Sarah Greenman

The excellent room is anchored by a huge piece of abstract artwork by Dirk de Bruycker, which greets guests as they enter the front door.

Sarah Greenman

Oliver just celebrated his first birthday and loves to scoot around the house. He is, building a escape down the hallway to his bedroom.

End table: Crate & Barrel; lamp: Bo Concept

Sarah Greenman

Oliver’s area is filled with vintage toys and whimsical artwork, much of it created by Mary Emma. The red screen-print above the crib is by Evan Hecox.

Crib: Walmart; dresser/changing table: Oeuf

Sarah Greenman

Wire baskets under a wooden chair provide storage room for Oliver’s books and trinkets. The silver roadster from Design Within Reach was a present.

Armchair: Small Castle, Baby Bliss

Sarah Greenman

Oliver’s playthings are neatly tucked away on shelves by Ikea.

SG: How has your home’s design changed since you’d Oliver?
MEH: It has not. After we were pregnant we had been nervous. Spaghetti on walls! But I couldn’t care less today.
MH: The house stands up. If Oliver bangs a toy on the wall, I believe “uh-oh,” but it is fine.

Sarah Greenman

Although the hallway bathroom is small, it is inviting and well appointed. Mary Emma points to the countertop and says, “This is a struggle that I won. Matt wanted a different whitened, but this white has little flecks in various earth tones. It goes great with the wood floors.”

Sarah Greenman

The guest area doubles as a workplace. The artwork above the bed is among Mary Emma’s first functions.

Sarah Greenman

The office is a clean, compact space. The framed Polaroids above the desk were shot by Matt. See Matt Hawthorne Photography for much more of his photography work.

Desk, drawers: Ikea

Sarah Greenman

Mary Emma’s desk can be from Ikea. The seat is a discovered object she obtained while working at Anthropologie. The artwork above the desk is by Cody Hudson. It was a present from Mary Emma’s father purchased at The Public Trust a gallery at the Regional Deep Ellum neighborhood.

Sarah Greenman

Atop her desk is Mary Emma’s prize possession: a paintbrush that once belonged to abstract impressionist Agnes Martin.

Sarah Greenman

A low-lying platform bed covered in a strong grey quilt, either from Crate & Barrel, is the centerpiece of this master bedroom.

Art: Waddy Armstrong (over headboard), Mary Emma Hawthorne (next to TV); lamp, side table: CB2

Sarah Greenman

SG: Where are your favorite places to look for home products?
MH: We enjoy Design Within Reach, West Elm, Bo Concept, global markets while traveling and small, interesting boutiques.

The master bath is simple, practical and monochromatic with a double sink and a huge glass walk-in shower.

Sarah Greenman

There was no backyard landscaping once the family moved in, so that they brought in 10,000 pounds of dirt, built a short retaining wall by hand and installed grass. Potted succulents, aloe and agave anchor the edges of the patio.

Painted brick, dark grey trim and bright green grass create a pure framework that showcases the home’s crisp, clean curb appeal.

Sarah Greenman

Mary Emma retains Oliver while Matt leafs through a few of his art books. The excellent room, with a view from the bay window, is a favorite spot for the Hawthorne family.

SG: what’s your advice to homeowners interested in remodeling at a modern style?
MH: Don’t rush it and don’t be trendy.
MEH: We often see modern remodels that seem cool at first, then quickly become obsolete.
MH: And do your research. Make sure your contractor is on precisely the same page. His answers must be in line with the homeowner’s vision.

Do you have a creative, modern home? Share it with us!

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Picture: Just How Much Does Your Building Weigh, Mr. Foster?

Even in the event that you don’t know who Norman Foster is, chances are you’re familiar with his work. Take a moment to look the Swiss Re Tower in London or the Hearst Building in New York to refresh your memory — remember now? It’s fairly tough to forget Foster’s unique appearance.

“How Much Can Your Construction Weigh, Mr. Foster?” Traces the existence of the British architect — from his life in Manchester, to his education at Yale, to his very first company in London, to his worldwide triumphs. The documentary is distinguished by its striking cinematography and extreme narration, which only emphasizes Foster’s extraordinary work. But what’s even more fascinating are the pieces of insight that the viewer gets into Foster’s persona. His love of flying airplanes, his personal dress and his distinctive hand drawings are all part of what creates his apparently effortless architectural style.

“How Much Can Your Construction Weigh, Mr. Foster?” Opens at New York’s IFC Center Jan. 25, 2012.

First Run Features

The enigmatic name of this film comes out of a well-known question that American inventor, architect, author and all-purpose genius Buckminster Fuller once requested Norman Foster. Both had a fantastic friendship, and Fuller was always challenging Foster’s views, particularly in the domain of sustainability. Fuller once requested Foster how much one of the buildings weighed. Of course, he didn’t have an answer then, but Foster figured it out a week or so later. By answering the question, he realized that most of his building’s weight has been stored in the unseen concrete areas of the structure — a complete waste of material. To Foster, powerful design was tied into layout which has been lasting and was eco friendly, and he strongly believed that his buildings should do the most with the least way possible.

First Run Features

Directed by Spanish documentary filmmakers Norberto López Amado and Carlos Carcas, the film was created by Antonio Sanz and Elena Ochoa. Although creating a film on Foster was something the supervisors and directors had discussed within the course of many decades, it didn’t quite click until they moved to a trip to Foster’s newly assembled Beijing Airport — what is now the most significant building in the world.

The filmmakers meshed with Foster and his group, and determined that producing this film was a must. “I’m not an architect, nor do I consider myself someone who understands architecture,” states Carcas. “So for me, the main issue in this film is’Why should I care about architecture, and also what does it matter to me?'”

Above: The Millau Bridge in Southern France

First Run Features

The film covers Foster’s life, career, architectural achievements and worldwide influence in fantastic depth. The majority of his primary work is shown at some point in the film, but many of his more famous pieces are discussed in detail. The Hearst Building in New York, The Reichstag in Berlin, the Millau bridge in France, London’s Swiss Re Tower (pictured here), the HSBC Main Building in Hong Kong, along with the Wonderful Beijing Airport are all examined in terms of their structure, inspiration and architectural technique.

Above: The Swiss Re Tower in London

First Run Features

The cinematography in this film is just striking. The camera moves slowly, frequently drifting through foggy skylines as the edges of Foster’s epic designs are slowly revealed. All of Foster’s major works have been shown from incredible angles, and in ways which most people would not see unless they had been right there. Each framework highlights the magnificent intricacy of the design. As somebody who had only the smallest bit of experience with Foster’s job, it was jaw-dropping to see such shots — it’s hard to imagine how beautiful these buildings have been in person.

As a unique contrast to the big and bold shapes of Foster’s buildings, his most delicate hand-drawings look many times throughout the movie to illustrate the structures and techniques he is describing — and frequently his clearly labeled sketches clarify concepts better than the more complex computer renderings. His drawings are extremely controlled — there are no wasted lines or movements — just like his buildings.

Above: The HSBC Main Building in Hong Kong

First Run Features

Above all else, this film leaves the impression that Foster is an artist. The film explains how Foster constantly carries around a pencil and paper, just in case inspiration strikes — and as an artist, he finds inspiration in the strangest places.

Picture: “How Much Does Your Construction Weigh, Mr. Foster?” Opens at New York’s IFC Center on Jan. 25, 2012. More

Eames on File: The Architect and the Painter

See related

Design Calendar: What to See and Do in July 2012

Whether you’re interested in finding new artists or speaking architecture, choose a design event below for motivated.

Inform us What’s in your creative calendar? Let us know about your beloved July design events in the Remarks.


EXHIBIT — Through August 12, 2012
Suprasensorial: Experiments in Light, Color, and Space
Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.

Sometimes you Only Want to violate the rules and touch the artwork. In the Hirshhorn Museum’s “Suprasensorial” exhibit, you’re invited to do precisely that. Engage your senses in an interactive wonderland of neon lights, mirrored passageways along with noise. Installations from five revolutionary Latin American artists wonder the best way to observe the art because you become a part of it. Highlights include Jesús Rafael Soto’s “Blue Penetrable BBL”(photograph), an immersive square jungle of blue hanging nylon strings, and Carlos Cruz-Diez’s “Chromosaturations,” three distinctively lit rooms which change hues depending on where you look.

Hours: 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m. daily

EXHIBIT — Through Sept. 23, 2012
Skyscraper: Art and Architecture Against Gravity
Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

Although Chicago was named the birthplace of the skyscraper in the late 19th century, the lure of building constructions sky high has always analyzed physical, technological and material limits. At the latest exhibit at the Museum of Contemporary Art, artists dig to the individual longing to build through the clouds with video, film, sculpture, painting and photography.

Hours: Tuesday, 10 a.m.–8 pm; Wednesday–Sunday, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Price: Free (kids under 13) to $12; free on Tuesday for Illinois residents

Photo: “Portable City: Hangzhou, 2011,” © Yin Xiuzhen, courtesy of The Pace Gallery, Beijing

EXHIBIT — July 14–Sept. 5, 2012
New Function by Akio Nukaga
Heath Ceramics, San Francisco

Known for his elegant, contemporary pottery, Japanese master potter Akio Nukaga is coming to San Francisco; his job will be the first show at the new Heath Ceramics Theater and showroom. The show will feature Nukaga’s hand-thrown strands and strands broadly inspired by cubism.

Meet the artist at the opening reception from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Saturday, July 14. Then at 2 pm on Sunday, July 15, visit his technique in the potter’s wheel.


EXHIBIT — July 12–Sept. 8, 2012
Come In! Les Femmes
Architecture and Design Museum (A+D), Los Angeles

The next installment of A+D’s summer exhibition show, “Come In! Les Femmes” includes work by 25 female musicians across all areas, transforming the museum into an interactive gallery. Artists include furniture and fabric designer Tanya Aguiñiga (photograph) and Amy Jean Boebel.

Mingle with the artists and snack on food truck offerings in the opening reception on July 12 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Hours: Tuesday–Friday, 11 a.m.–5 pm, Saturday, Sunday, 12–6 p.m. (closed Mondays)
Price: $10 general, $5 students, A+D members free
Buy tickets Ahead of Time

Uhuru Design


EXHIBIT — July 20, 2012–Feb. 3, 2013
40 Under 40: Craft Futures
Renwick Gallery, Washington, D.C.

“Craft Futures” features the work of 40 artists younger than 40 in celebration of Renwick Gallery’s 40th anniversary. The selected works reveal the value of contemporary sustainable practices.

Select works from the exhibit also provided inspiration for distances in the Washington Design Center’s DreamHome. This Coney Island–motivated lounger by Uhuru (photo) motivated the dining area.

Hours: 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m. daily (closed December 25)

SHOW HOUSE — July 22–Sept. 3, 2012
2012 Hampton Designer Showhouse, Water Mill, New York

As if spending some time in the Hamptons in summer weren’t enough of a draw, take a look at this year old designer show house, presented by Traditional House magazine and become motivated by the inner transformation of a traditional shingle-style home. Over 20 designers worked to outfit every square foot, from the butler’s pantry to the breakfast area. Proceeds benefit Southampton Hospital.

Hours: 11 a.m.–5 p.m.
Price: $225 gala preview party; $30 admission
Buy tickets on line


TALK — July 11, 2012, 7:15 p.m.
Houses+Origins, by David Stark Wilson
Menlo Park Library, Menlo Park, California

Join San Francisco Bay Area architect David Wilson of WA Design because he presents his newest illustrated publication and leads a discussion on homes designed and built in the exceptional California landscape. A native of Berkeley, California, Wilson creates modern buildings which explore how substances, shape and color experienced in character evoke resonant answers in the built environment.

To learn more, email [email protected].


EXHIBIT — July 13–Aug. 26, 2012
Unfinished Business: 25 Years of Discourse in Los Angeles
WUHO Gallery, Los Angeles

With the aim “to open up a rich and potentially provocative dialogue,” an upcoming exhibition at the L.A. Forum for Architecture and Urban Design takes a look at two decades of the organization. The forum has functioned as a place for architectural discourse since the 1980s, and by revisiting the history of its programming and books, the exhibition aims to delve into the advancement and projection of architectural expansion in one of the country’s liveliest urban environments.

Hours: Thursday, 1–8 pm; Friday–Sunday, 1–6 p.m.


FESTIVAL — July 20–22, 2012
Artscape, Baltimore, Maryland

Each summer, Artscape invites thousands and thousands of Baltimoreans outdoors to enjoy a visual feast of performance and art. See ordinary sedans transformed into art bits and stroll through “At-TENT-ion”: 20 tents turned to thought-provoking “secret worlds” Also on display are 16-foot-tall metal interactive sculptures designed by artist Christian Ristow; each sculpture comprises one of the major facial muscles to convey an androgynous individual face.
See the full program

Hours: Friday, Saturday, 11 a.m.–9 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m.–8 p.m.

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For the Boys: 5 Homes With Masculine Energy

I write this ideabook with my tongue placed firmly in my cheek, as whenever I attempt to strike a few man-centric subject, folks write in and say”you could tell a chick attempted to write this around dudes.” Well, busted, however, these are seriously chic spaces where real guys really dwell. In reality, four out of five of these are bachelor pads, with no table made out of a keg in sight.

Scot Meacham Wood Design

This San Francisco condominium was inspired by fashion, particularly by one of the homeowner’s tasks as a stylist at Ralph Lauren. A rich leather couch, a bearskin throw and pillows covered in suit cloth give the space a warm and manly feeling.

Scot Meacham Wood Design

Metallic finishes, a Chinoiserie cupboard and more menswear-inspired cloths on the window treatments prevent matters from getting rancid.

Scot Meacham Wood Design

An expansive dining room outside extends the house’s living room outdoors. See the rest of the home


This Pacific Heights home was supposed to be minimal, unique, and also have European flair.


An 8-foot-long fireplace keeps the crisp space hot, as do unique accent pieces similar to this classic black rain drum.

What’s a proper bachelor pad with no guy cave? This dark media room is comfortable and trendy. See the rest of the home

This stunning flat in San Sebastián, Spain knocks my socks off. A mixture of vintage, modern and contemporary pieces reside in harmony against a white walls, trimwork and ceilings.

Dark-colored textiles add a manly feel to the bright guest space.

This is still one of my favourite moments of photo styling. In reality, it inspired an entire ideabook about the Seven Deadly Sins. This shot served as gluttony.

See the rest of the home


This smart L.A.-based blogger, Dabito, has gathered and curated an impressive collection of thrifted vintage treasures. These bits are arranged throughout his home in a means that makes it seem easy (it is not).


A set of his own etchings and lithographs, as well as artwork given to him by friends, decorate the walls.


Things like an alpaca blanket out of Ecaudor are cozy not just for Dabito, but also for Beatrice Arthur, a star pet.

See the rest of the home

estudio gutman lehrer

Ultimately, we’ll travel down to Buenos Aires to get a peek at a small but luxury attic. This gorgeous space takes advantage of every spare inch without consuming a bit of polish. There is even a gallery to gaze at above the bed.

estudio gutman lehrer

The home was retreat from the hustle and bustle of city and career demands. Therefore, a custom platform bed bedecked in soft textiles was crucial.

estudio gutman lehrer

While this resembles a slick bar, it is really a fully-functioning kitchen. Appliances and supplies are integrated into the wall and cabinets. See the rest of the home

Pattern Play: Masculine Ruggedness Modernized
Masculine Upgrade: Ladders in the Home
Make Your House More Man-Friendly
The Gentleman Cellar: Anti-Man Cave

See related

Design Calendar: Things to See and Do in June 2012

From a rooftop exhibit at the New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art into West Coast design festivals, you will find an assortment of inspiring things to keep your home looking refreshing this summer. Bookmark this guide, grab a friend and make some plans to escape and get motivated.

Tell us What’s in your calendar this month? Let us know about your favorite upcoming design occasions below.


EXHIBIT — During November 4, 2012 (weather permitting)
Tomás Saraceno on the Roof: Cloud City
Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

Climb and walk throughout the Met’s latest rooftop summer commission: Tomás Saraceno’s Cloud City. The reflective, interconnected constellation of contemporary structures is an impressive web of Plexiglas, steel and tension cables reminiscent of an urban jungle gym. The Argentine installation artist explores habitable networks based on interconnectivity, and while you ponder the ways that we occupy and experience our environment, you are going to find a pretty sweet view of Manhattan.

Hours: Tuesday–Thursday, Sunday, 9:30 a.m.–5:30 p.m.; Friday, Saturday, 9:30 a.m.–9:00 p.m.; closed Mondays (except holidays, Thanksgiving Day, December 25 and January 1)
Price: $25, $17 seniors, $12 students, 12 and younger, free


FESTIVAL — June 14–24, 2012
Los Angeles Film Festival

Calling all cinephiles! Whether documentaries, short films or music videos are something, the Los Angeles Film Festival has something that you see. One of the many films to be screened, the documentary Beauty Can Be Embarrassing (photo) by manager Neil Berkeley follows artist Wayne White’s career, extending from New York’s East Village into the set of Pee Wee’s Playhouse into the thrift shops of Los Angeles. The Summer Showcase Provides a look at the summer’s most talked-about independent film releases on the festival circuit, including Sundance romantic humor Celeste and Jesse Forever, starring Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg, to the world premiere of L.A. “dramedy” It’s a Disaster, with America Ferrera and Julia Stiles. Also on the lineup is Pixar’s newest animated feature, Brave, starring a red-haired Scottish heroine.
Watch the schedule for screen times and places

$13 individual films
Purchase tickets and passes online

FESTIVAL — June 22–24, 2012
Dwell on Design
Los Angeles Convention Center

Feast on contemporary design in the form of tens of thousands of products, presentations, home tours and presentations in this year’s Dwell on Design, celebrating the theme “Modern Beyond Expectations.” Highlights from the three-day occasion contains a rope installment from the Oyler Wu Collaborative, a screening lounge featuring short films on industrial design and architecture, in addition to winners of this prestigious Swiss Design Prize.
Check out the full schedule

Hours: Friday, 10 a.m.–8 pm; Saturday, 10 a.m.–6 p.m.; Sunday 10 a.m.–5 p.m.

Tappan Collective

Chateau Marmont Photograph, Gia Coppola – $200

ART SHOW — June 9, 2012
The Tappan Collective Group Art Show and Launch Party
The Jeffries Building, 117 Winston St., Los Angeles

Two young creative graduates in the University of Michigan have teamed up to Supply an Internet platform for others to find emerging artists. To kick off their new internet venture, they’re placing on a launch celebration featuring artwork by photographer and filmmaker Gia Coppola (photo), photographer Clara Balzary-Flea, The Stillhouse Group and several others in downtown Los Angeles. Enjoy refreshments, meet the inspiring entrepreneurs on the other side of the site and take home that ideal piece for your sterile wall.

Hours: 7 p.m.–11 p.m.


EXHIBIT — During June 3, 2012
Stories in Form: Chair Design by Portfolio Center
Museum of Design Atlanta

Have a seat, or reimagine what it means to do through the eyes of design students studying the history of modernism. The Museum of Design Atlanta has partnered with Portfolio Center to honor the background and design of this chair. Pupils were challenged to combine their personal history with design background, exploring the delicate balance between old function and their new imaginative journeys.

Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 10 Gamble–5 pm; Sunday, 12 p.m.–5 pm; closed Mondays
Price: $10, $8 seniors, $5 students and 17 and younger, members free

FESTIVAL — June 23–July 8, 2012
London Festival of Architecture, U.K.

For two weeks this summer, London will become “The Playful City,” indicating ways where both Londoners and visitors can be active participants from reinterpreting recognizable places through new installations and cartoons. This curated festival redesigned three big hubs and multiple public spaces to encourage physical fitness at the spirit of the Olympic Games and interact with all the city’s historic buildings in new ways. “Date a designer” by simply enrolling in a free 30-minute consultation, explore a treehouse or select a walking tour to find that the city’s hidden architectural gems.
See the Entire event schedule

FESTIVAL — June 2–3, 2012
Sunset Magazine Celebration Weekend
Menlo Park, California

Research the grounds of Sunset magazine’s Bay Area headquarters for the yearly weekend festival celebrating West Coast gardening, food, travel, home and garden. Love food tastings, chat with garden and home sellers or sip locally made wine. There will be plenty of things to see and do, from a cooking demonstration of grilled Dr. Pepper pork flatbread from the Food Network’s Guy Fieri into a workshop on travel photography using your smartphone.
Download the full schedule

Hours: 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Price: $16, $14 seniors, 12 and younger, free; discounts available

FESTIVAL — June 11–17, 2012
San Francisco Design Week

Proceed an open-studio crawl and peek in the studios of Apparatus Architecture, Gensler and Lunar Design, or attend an exhibition presenting new typography from young Swiss designers. Celebrating the diverse creative community of the Bay Area, San Francisco Design Week is an initiative by AIGA SF in partnership with local professional design chapters to emphasize and increase public awareness of innovative design work. Events happen all around the city.
See the Entire schedule of events

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Guest Picks: Baby Your Walls

With baby number four (my fourth boy) about the way, I have nursery on the mind. I’m constantly on the lookout for ways to customize my newest little man’s space. Obviously, even with boys, I can’t help but”ooh” and”ahh” over a number of the more girly prints, so I have thrown in a few of those, too.
— Rita from Fighting Off Frumpy


Children’s Art Print Poster, Mustache by Pumpkin & Butterfly – $23

This print makes me laugh — what is far better to look at all the time than something that makes you laugh? It’s perfect for my dudes.


Love String of Hearts Folk Art Print by Tascha – $14

What a sweet picture! It’s just so unique. I love the unusual crackle finish along with the girl’s small heart-shaped lips.


Nursery Art Print, Homes by Kathy Panton – $16

The vibrant colors and swirling patterns in this film are mesmerizing. Plus, who doesn’t love cute little houses?


Alphabet Nursery Art, ‘Alphabet Soup’ by Sugar Fresh – $32.50

This is just so clean and contemporary looking, in spite of the traditional decoration theme. I love that the artist can perform customized colors, so this piece can fit perfectly with whatever scheme you have got going on.


Owl Baby Nursery Art by Missprint Design – $18

This small owl is cute! It’s a fun and lively print, and it is totally customizable with color along with your kid’s name to boot.


Fine Art Bird Photography Print Flock by Bomobob – $85

This film includes a cool, retro-hipster vibe that is softened by the fluffy white clouds against the blue sky. I dig the peaceful feeling that it rains, and I’m pretty certain a baby could, too.


Carnival Photos Nursery Art, Turquoise, Ferris Wheel by Bomobob – $45

This isn’t just 1 picture; it is a pair of eight, and it is just so magnificent. I love the color scheme, and the theme is joyful and surprising for a nursery.


Cherry Blossom Orchard, Tree Art Nursery Print, Wonderland by Raceytay – $210

This is stunning. I can’t imagine a prettier theme or colour scheme for a little girl’s nursery.


Trafalgar Rabbit Catch A Falling Star by Trafalgar’s Square – $20

Simple and sweet, this cute little bunny grabbing a falling star could be perfect for either gender.


Nursery Art Print, Little Red Car by Simply Sublime Baby – $14.95

This tiny red car is so adorable. It’s a nice, cheery, non-fussy piece of art. Additionally, I’m a sucker for anything that can be personalized. My boys will love this.


Nursery Art Print, Ever So Sweet by SophieBella Photos – $14

The vintage feel makes this piece a standout, and I love the colour combination.


Personalized Definition Typography Nursery Art by Announce It In Design – $15

I completely adore this piece for two reasons. First, I’m a word nerd, and dictionaries make me salivate. Second, you can personalize it with whatever adjectives and nicknames you desire, taking the customization mode beyond the name.


Alphabet Paintings by Over Da Crib – $150

The bright, bold swirls of colour make for this intriguing statement. Additionally, they are not so babyish that they’d look out of place when the nursery isn’t a nursery .


Personalized Nursery Art With Baby Pictures by Celadon Home – $200

This isn’t your normal wall art, and that is exactly what I love about doing it. A vintage songbook together with the modern lines of this frame make this an intriguing conversation piece.


Summer Bird Tree Painting Art Print by Sascalia – $18

I adore the colors, the flowers and that adorable little bird nestled directly at the fork of the tree! This film would add such a spring-like feel to a room.


Nursery Art Print, Monsters by Pituda – $18

I wouldn’t normally consider monsters as a nursery theme, but this monster is so stinkin’ friendly and adorable.


Automobile Display in Mini by Katie Lloyd Photography – $50

As the mother of 3 boys (and yet another on the road ), these cars are a staple in my home. Maybe if this cool and colorful print were hanging on my wall, I could tell folks that the cars strewn across the carpeting were just there to highlight the art.


Nursery Decor, Whimsical Fine Art Photography by Carl Christensen – $30

This is just another fairly atypical — or at least, surprising — piece of art for a nursery school. I adore its retro look and the comparison of the glowing blocks from the weathered wood.


Daybreak On The Farm Acrylic by nJoy Art – $84

With all these colors in this adorable and cozy farm landscape, you can tie it in to just about any colour scheme. And these sheep are cute!


Boy Nursery Art I Love You to the Moon and Back by Hop Skip Jump Paper – $20

This picture is so peaceful and serene. In the sleeping birdies into the way in which the moon and stars look virtually vaccinated against the backdrop, this is something I would love to have hanging on the wall.

Next: The New Look of Nurseries

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Guest Groups: Soup Essentials

Soup — of all types — is my favourite meals. It’s also something that I write about and photograph quite frequently for my website. This month’s set of things consists of things that I love for the soup-making kitchen. I have found stylish serving pieces, cookware with pops of color and a few things to make your soup demonstration really unique. Tami from Running with Tweezers

West Elm

Mug with Lid – $8

Versatile for casual soup meals or hot winter drinks, the coaster doubles as a lid to keep the contents warm.


Simon Pearce Brookfield Spoon Rest – $35

This isn’t your typical secondhand spoon rest — it’s sleek, minimal and modern.


Porcelain Pottery Bowls in White and Golden Yellow by Suite One Studio – $52

Suite One Studio makes a number of my favourite ceramic bits for both photos and dining at home.


Vitamix 5200 – using Compact Container – $449

I’d be lost without my Vitamix. It’s the most used appliance in my kitchen — nothing compares to the texture of soups created in this thing.

Le Creuset

Le Creuset – 8qt. Stockpot – $80

A large-capacity stock pot is a must-have my kitchen. Le Creuset has choices that are vibrant and classic.


Vegetables From An Italian Garden: Season-By-Season Recipes – $39.95

This cookbook lives in my kitchen in colder months. It’s so much inspiration for using seasonal produce.

Pottery Barn

Antique-Silver Ladle – $29

Amazing such as this ladle, can make viewing simple everyday sauces seem unique.


ELLY Dish Towel – $3.49

The vintage vibe of those towels makes me happy, and at less than $4 for four of them, you don’t care if they have stained with canned berries.


Big Double-Handled Soup Bowls – $32

I love these double-handled soup crocks for hearty french onion soups and stews. They are oven safe so you can melt cheese and toast bread on top!

Emile Henry USA

Flame Top Round Dutch Oven/Stewpot, 7qt. – $235

I adore my Emile Henry Stewpot. The 7-quart capacity makes it easy to cook huge batches of soups and stews in a lightweight pot.


Smart Stick Hand Blender – Green – $32.99

While I don’t feel like distributing the Vitamix, or I am making soup in tiny batches, so I whizz things up in the pot along with my Cuisinart immersion blender. I am in love with this kelly green color.


Weck Canning Jars – $3.95

I utilize Weck glass jars for soup storage. They’re so minimal, allow the soup shine through the glass and don’t discolor or take on odors like some plastic storage containers.

Bed Bath & Beyond

Round Canape Plates – $4.99

I love the notion of gussying up plain white soup cups using picture saucers or charger plates. These would be a fantastic conversation starter in a dinner celebration.


Bernardaud “Dune Blue” Soup Tureen – $790

While I tend to lean toward nominal dishes and serving pieces, I am a sucker for a beautiful tureen. The color of this one makes me swoon.

Ace Hardware Outlet

Hot/Cold Food Jar 10oz. – $8.92

I am now in love with this vintage-style thermos. It’s a stylish way to take soup for lunch, picnics or road trips.


8-piece Spoon Coffee Mug, White – $15.80

I love the concept of having a set of these for entertaining. They are a really fun way to present a flavor or soup course.


All Clad Stainless Steel Simply Soup Establish – $189

This set is a great gift idea for a soup lover — the All Clad metal ramekins are extremely exceptional.


Ramen Spoon and Fork – $14

Specially created for a ramen noodle restaurant in Japan, this “spork” is a super neat kitchen addition for lovers of Asian-inspired soups.


Culinary Growing Kit – $69.95

Fresh herbs are always a touch I add to my soup recipes, and indoor herb blossoms allow you do this yearlong.

Bella Cucina

Spouted Pourer – $11

1 thing that I love to do when entertaining is pour soup to guests’ bowls in the table. It’s an easy touch that makes soup look fitting for a dinner celebration.

Next: Baking Stations Make Cooking More Enjoyable

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Guest Picks: I'll Have a Blue Christmas

You won’t be feeling blue once you break away from tradition and celebrate the Christmas season with this fun, fresh and trendy colour palette! Whether turquoise, teal or aquamarine, blue is the “it” colour this season, and it couldn’t be easier to integrate it into your holiday decoration.
Heather and Vanessa from In the Picket Fence


Beaded Christmas Ball, Paisley by Meredith Dada

We love the combo of chartreuse and blue in those handmade beaded ornaments. The paisley design is stylish and traditional at exactly the exact same moment.


Jester Teal Candleholder – $5.95

Can’t you just picture this with all the delicate glow of a candle shining through? Placed atop a mantel or just on a side table, this is certain to be a bit you use year after year.

Modern Holiday Decorations – $14.95

Having the blues does not have to be a bad thing when it is possible to buy a number of items for your holiday decoration at one time. We love this combo of aquamarine silver and gold.

Eclectic Napkin Rings – $40

We think this nod to one of our favorite feathered friends is the best way to add a bit of glamour into your holiday table setting this year.


Blue Christmas Yarn Wrapped Wreath by Morning Songbird – $42

We turn to our entrance doors to set the stage for our decor. Hanging this joyous and fun blue yarn wreath will let your visitors know that you plan on using a “blue Christmas” this year.

Modern Charger Plates – $18.95

Chargers are a terrific way to spice classic white or ivory china. These will add the perfect touch of blue for a table setting and can be used throughout the New Year’s Eve parties too.

Cost Plus World Market

Blue Flour Sack Kitchen Towel, Set of 3 – $9.99

We adore the colour palette of those kitchen towels from Cost Plus World Market. Sitting on the kitchen counter or in the pub area, they don’t just be convenient for casual holiday spills but also add a festive touch of blue into the area.


Place of 12 Teal Beaded Picks

We love how items similar to this can be utilised in a variety of methods in your property. Add them into a Christmas tree for a few frosty blue sparkle, or bunch them together in a large vase for a big visual effects. The possibilities are endless!


Elroy Ornament – $2.95

This fun and amazing ornament is perfect all on its own, but we love the idea of utilizing it as a napkin ring or perhaps a decorative detail on a wrapped gift.

Eclectic Decorative Pillows – $29.95

The sparkle does not have to end if the holidays do! We love this stunning beaded pillow will bring a touch of glamour to your decoration all year-round.


TableTopics ‘Dinner Party’ Conversation Starters – $25

Forget awkward lulls in the conversation or having to listen to Uncle Joe’s corny joke for the umpteenth time. These Table Topics cards will fill in the gaps and help you get to know your family and friends a bit better. You could be surprised — or fearful! — with everything you find out. Either way, it will be a vacation to remember.


Metallic Gold and Blue Tasseled Christmas Tree Skirt by Deer Camp Creations

We are pretty sure we would not want to pay this up with gifts. This magnificent Christmas tree skirt with an icy blue pattern can definitely stand by itself. We enjoy it so much we could just wear it ourselves.


Gold Snowflakes Fill-In Invitations – $9.95

We absolutely love to play hostess during the holidays, and we think these beautiful invitations would be the perfect way to kick off the season of entertaining in style.


4×6 Beaded Sequin Frame – $42

A frame such as this shouldn’t just be put out for the holidays. We love how it meets the joyous and fun requirements of the season, yet it would be equally as beautiful to welcome the warm summer breezes.

Grandin Road

Martha Stewart Flights of Fancy Gold Stocking – $39

No coal for all these stockings! This unique combination of gold and turquoise will make a statement on your mantel this year, and we know they’ll be just as beautiful when filled to the brim with Christmas goodies.

Tiffany & Co..

Tiffany Blue Box® Charm – $250

This is our kind of ornament! It may be dangling from our wrists instead of our Christmas tree, but once we see that famous shade of azure, we’ll know we were certainly on the “nice” list this year!


Gilded Tapestry 5-piece Place Setting – $195

What about this fresh spin on traditional vacation china? This beautiful place setting is just one we’d want to utilize year-round, even if they are just holding takeout.

Grandin Road

Ashley Pencil Christmas Tree – $169

It might not be for everybody, but we’d be remiss if we didn’t at least stick it out there, correct? We think this bright and cheerful tree takes “Blue Christmas” into an entirely new level.


Home Blue Floral Quilted Table Runner – $17.99

Something as simple as adding a runner can bring an original touch to your decor. We love this just captures the heart of winter with its arctic blue tones and simple branch layout.

PFI Western

Could there be a more appropriate way to celebrate with a “Blue Christmas” compared to a toast to The King for this Elvis Presley Blue Christmas Cabernet Sauvignon? We think that this Napa Valley wine is a fun and one of a kind gift for the Elvis fan on your list.

Dreaming of a White Christmas
Make a Fashionista Christmas Tree

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2012 Color Trends: Using Red in Your Kitchen and Bath

This 2012 Color Trends series is about five hot colour trends projected for the year. In particular I will be showing you how to integrate them into your toilet and kitchen in a way which is logical for your preference and your home.

Red shows up on pretty much every 2012 Color Trend report. Sherwin-Williams sees reds burning brightly, from deep fuchsias into red-oranges. Yolo Colorhouse and Behr see 2012’s reddish as earthy and rustic, more evocative of clay compared to flame. Benjamin Moore sees the spicy side of red for 2012.

The previous rules of reddish pairings are broadening too. It punches the hell from white or cream, but feel free to pair it together with different neutrals like stainless and walnut, in addition to colors which may not have occurred to you in the past, including those in red’s colour family, such as purple and pink.

Move as large or small with red as you feel comfortable in your space. Here are a few splashy and sensible fashion ways to do it.

More 2012 Color Trend Suggestions: Orange | Blue | Green | Purple

Snaidero USA

If you absolutely, passionately enjoy red and plan to remain in your home indefinitely, by all means, knock yourself (and your guests) out.

Red cabinetry, particularly premium European red cabinetry, is a very private, very lasting investment. This highly effective choice demands you to turn down the volume on all of your kitchen choices. If everything is a focal point, then nothing is a focus.

Dallas Renovation Group

Talking of focal points, you are able to integrate red cabinetry with only an island. This island adds a punch of colour to the surrounding creamy neutrals.

Know more about this particular kitchen

Glenvale Kitchens

Another big-commitment way to incorporate red is through your appliances, most commonly on a range. Unlike stainless steel, you’re (hopefully) not going to go red for every one of them. Choosing paneled and hidden models for your other appliances would be the way to go when adding a dramatic color like red.

As you would with reddish cabinetry, keep the other colors in the room neutral.

Tatiana Takaeva

Red on a countertop creates a strong statement. I have yet to design a kitchen with red countertops (and can’t see it happening), but a pinch of this hot trend colour works nicely on an island or in a powder room. Both thrive on drama.

Niche Interiors

Red tile may produce a strong design and trend statement in your bathroom or kitchen. If you fear you’ll tire of it in the future decades, incorporate it strategically in accents, as revealed here. You do not require a totally reddish shower or kitchen backsplash to create your point.

Modern Chandeliers

You adore the glass jar mild trend, but you won’t wish to have the exact same style that all your neighbors have. Add colour; it makes your glass jar uniquely you.

Paint is a fantastic way to add a colour trend to your space, particularly when it is a high-drama colour like deep reddish. If you tire of it down the line, it is comparatively simple and affordable to change.

Sharon Portnoy Design

You’ve heard (and perhaps tired) of accent walls, right? How about accent insides instead? The deep red back of an open maple or birch cabinet really can warm up their cool blonde tones. It also functions as a sudden color punch within an otherwise neutral space.

One of the simplest, most temporary techniques to incorporate red to a toilet or kitchen is with furniture. While you’re unlikely to take a brush or spray can to your cabinets, painting a chair or counter stool red is a fun and amazing move. Dining chair slipcovers and banquette accent cushions may have a similar impact in exchange for very little work or investment.


GelPro Crocodile Red Gel Mats | Gel-Filled Comfort Flooring Mats and Kitchen Mats – $99.95

Red accents can serve a function, in addition to a colour punch. Since your kitchen may benefit from a comfortable mat, why not get one in a dynamic color and feel? Red towels, cafe curtains and counter tops may also add colour tendency to your own kitchen.

Sangria Hues: Punch Colors for the New Year
Will a Red Bathroom Make You Blush?
Shade Pop: Bold Red robes

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