Stylin' Mamma: Sneakerhead

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

I used to walk miles in my three-inch heels.  Literally.  My second year out of college, my commute to work was a two-mile walk, and back in those days I wouldn't dream of messing up my look with tennis shoes, so I just walked in the heels I was going to wear that day.  

Up to 4 miles.  Every weekday.  In heels.

At some point I realized I was an idiot because: a) foot and back injuries, b) damage to my shoes (!), c) walking slow.  So I got some pink Adidas and rocked those for a few years.  Commute-only shoes, to be clear. 

Then I had kids and got wise to the sneaker game.  I am lucky that fashion kept up, too, and people like Phoebe Philo and Karlie Kloss started making sneakers cool again.  Now, my sneaks are my go-to picks on any given day, and my lust-list revolves around cool kicks.  

I don't need to tell you about the Stan Smith obsession sweeping the nation (see: every Instagram post ever).  Instead, for your browsing pleasure, a few more off-the-beaten favorites to take you from workout to work to play (and back again).
Adidas Gazelles (aka, not the Stan Smith)
Nike Blazer (that red shearling lining, though)
Superga Platform (stars!)

Bold Minimalist Dining Room

Monday, January 9, 2017

Happy New Years all, Kate Cabiltes again!

There are so many looks trending in the mid century or minimalist categories nowadays that it's hard to narrow down your scheme. This vignette captured by Brooklyn photographer Nicole Franzen emulates minimalist but bold with its contrasting blacks and whites and several large statement pieces. By focusing on the idea of "less is more" but choosing thoughtful furnishings and accents with unique quality materials, a luxe yet calm look is formed. Rattan or cane chairs look fresh with most any dining table and a light fixture consisting of multiple orbs can really ground a centerpiece. Adding an abstract painting and some fresh leaves can add a kick of brightness to your room.

Here's how to get the look in your dining room...

Satellite 6 Chandelier via Schoolhouse Electric
Neil Waters Bernegger Roots Painting via One Kings Lane
Kelly Lamb Ceramic Serving Bowl via Houzz
Odin Rectangular Extension Table via Design Within Reach
Safavieh Montauk Rug via Plush Rugs
Tayabas Cane Side Chair via CB2
Preserved Palmetto Frond Bunch via Terrain

Inspiration Image via Nicole Franzen

Re-thinking the kitchen

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you had a wonderful holiday season. It was a fun one for us - lots of family, lots of good meals and quality time. But I have to admit that I'm ready to get back to our routine and as with years past, I am so ready to take down the holiday decorations and get our house back to normal.  While spring and outside projects (painting! gardening!) are right around the corner, we still have a couple months of cold to trudge through. Aside from getting quotes on said outside projects, I am also focusing on a few interior projects over the next few months.  My big project is giving our kitchen a face lift.  If you follow me on social media you may have seen photos of my kitchen and thoughts on both cabinet paint color and hardware.  As a bit of a refresher, here is what the kitchen looked like before we moved in.

Here is what it looked like after we painted.

My main objective is to make the kitchen more useable and aesthetically interesting on a tight budget until I can do a larger scale renovation (including opening up the kitchen to the family room) 5-10 years down the line.  I have already added a farmhouse style island table that has made the kitchen way more useable.

Next steps are to paint the cabinets, replace the hardware, lighting and faucet and do a fun stencil on the floors.  Originally my thoughts veered in this direction.

But then I got sort of tired of the idea of white cabinets (which we had in our old house).  I had entertained a dark charcoal grey for the cabinets but realized that it was really competing with the black/brown speckled granite counters (not my favorites). Here is a photo of the test paint color and me testing some hardware options on a cabinet panel.

I then went back to the idea of white but still wasn't too happy with it.  That is when I came upon this concept image from Jenny Komenda.

I love the sage green. It feels modern yet classic. And I think the green counterbalances the red in the granite (sort of like how you use green concealer on a pimple).  I'm hoping it will make the counters appear more black than speckled brown.  I am going to do the uppers in white still and use some new hardware from my collection.  I also found these great barn lights that I think will spread the light out better toward the corners of the kitchen and plan to use a blackened metal finish on the hardware.

Its so funny - I went through so many iterations of kitchen cabinet colors and concepts but none of them feltquite right.  This one feels fresh and in keeping with the house.  It's nice to finally have a cohesive vistion. I can't wait to go paint shopping on Friday and get started on the project next week. Wish me luck!!!

Selamat Designs Side Table

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

I bought a fun table for Lucy's room to go along with her love seat back when we were doing the One Room Challenge.  Caning is super popular right now and I love the texture it introduces into a room.  I chose the Bodega Side Table from Selamat Designs. Here it is on our original concept board. I love the way it looks here.

If you haven't taken a look at Selamat's offerings yet - so much cool stuff and a great collection with Justina Blakeney of the Jungalow.  As I was putting together Lucy's room I encountered an issue when I decided to keep her dresser in its original wood tone instead of painting it and suddenly the side table was starting to compete with it.  In the end I switched her side table to the silver stump from our room and relocated the Bodega Table to our master bedroom.  It really rounds out our little reading nook!

It's been so cold out recently that I love the idea of cozying up with a book here (now to find the time)!  How has your holiday season been going?

Warm Holiday Guest Room

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Happy Holidays all, Kate Cabiltes here!

As a host with holiday guests you know of certain must have guest essentials to stock the room with, but striving to outfit a room in a cozy way can make all the difference in truly making guests feel comfortable. The country home of Ashley Putman featured on Southern Living several years ago (as well as numerous other blogs and publications including Lonny) provided endless inspiration to me when seeking out cozy winter vignettes for my own small spaces. This guest room featuring the classic Pendleton blanket is filled with warm cozy neutrals that give off an eclectic beachy mood as well. To get the look, pull rattan or seagrass elements, lots of stripes, and a few kitschy knick knacks and you have the look. White paneling on the ceiling or headboard add additional coastal vibes. This is a look that can work year round but is appreciated even more during the cold Northeastern winters!

Here's how to get the look in your guest room...

Lotus Flower Capiz Shell Chandelier via Houzz
Birch Story Wall Art Print via Minted
Seagrass Table Lamp via Boston Interiors
Fouta Yarn-Died Stripe Sheet Set via Serena & Lily
Glacier National Park Blanket via Pendleton
Davidson Tufted Headboard, Talc Linen via One Kings Lane
Helado Throw via The Citizenry
Wire Bird Figurine via Target

Inspiration image via Southern Living

Lovely Lamps with Barbara Cosgrove

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Hi all.  Well, you've seen the nitty gritty of how Lucy's One Room Challenge room came together. Another one of my favorite pieces in her room is the table lamp from Barbara Cosgrove Lamps.  Lamps are a really hard part of the design process for a lot of people.  So many spaces rely too heavily on overhead lighting, but table and floor lamps are key to making a space feel finished. They add an extra layer of light - a warm glow - and allow you to vary the lighting in the room by the time of day and situation. Not only that, but lamps give you more functional focused lighting whether its for reading, putting on makeup or working on the computer. The other problem people encounter is the scale of their lamps. Usually people veer too far in one direction selecting lamps that are way too small for the space.

For Lucy's room I knew I wanted a task lamp for reading at her sofa area.

I also wanted a lamp on the nightstand.  The Mythic Llama Lamp from Barbara Cosgrove was just the right piece. It's large so it has presence but it's not too tall since the nightstand itself is pretty tall already.  It has a certain funky unexpected quality that I love in introducing in kids' rooms.

I've rounded up a few more of my favorite Barbara Cosgrove Lamps for your perusal.

From top to Bottom / Right to Left:

Study Lamp: These are the unsung heroes of so many interiors. The tall candlestick shape works well on a console where you need a little light or sparkle but don't want to take up too much visual space.

Brass Orb Lamp: Love the neoclassical lines of this beauty. She'd also look amazing with a black shade.

Star Lamp in Wood: Love how sculptural this is. It is so modern yet has such an iconic shape.

Extra Large Double Gourd: A classic lamp and great way to add a shot of color to any interior.

Dots in Boxes Lamp: This lamp feels so architectural and the light shining down on that texture is sure to give a dramatic effect.

Building Block Weathered Lamp: Beautiful and classic with a nice square shape which is a bit different than your typical table lamp. Definitely a statement piece.

I am a collector / hoarder of lamps, art and chairs, so writing this blog post will likely inspire a few new additions. Do you have any cool lamps in your home?

Stylin' Mamma: PJ Dressing

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

I am not going to lie to you: this PJs-as-fashion moment is speaking to me.  Not in the way that the athleisure moment speaks to me -- I wear my workout clothes to work out, thanks.  More in a kind of elegant-yet-comfortable way that can translate to the office, or (dare to dream) Date Night.

Any fashion enthusiast worth her salt will post some caveats around PJ-dressing.  These are my Top Three:
  1. Nice shoes, nice hair, nice sunglasses, nice bag: REQUIRED.  Your clothes can be comfortable but the rest of you needs to telegraph chic.
  2. Fit is everything.  Keep the cuts trim and cropped, not baggy or oversized.
  3. Fabric is also everything.  This is not the time for cotton jammies.  Opt instead for satins, nice wools, or high-quality knits.
There are really two ways to take this look: one is in the direction of knitwear.  With a structured satchel and a pair of sleek flats, this is a great alternative to a pantsuit for work.  I like to choose two pieces in the same color (such as the gray outfit pictured here), or in two complementary, neutral shades (tan and cream, for example, or black and white).  If your day calls for something a little more formal, then a sleek heel with a pointed toe adds length and glamour.

The second option, for holiday-party drama, is PJs-as-tuxedo.  For this look choose a dark or jewel-toned color palette and a slightly cropped, slightly flared pant.  A strappy sandal or bejeweled slide finishes it off.

Too much?  Too soon?  Riff on the look (and reap many of the same comfort benefits) by pairing a tunic-style sweater with wide-leg cropped jeans for day, or a satiny PJ-style shirt with skinny jeans and heels for evening.  

Winter Scandi Living Room

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Hi, it's Kate Cabiltes!

I have been obsessing over Scandinavian interiors the past few months and with winter approaching the coziness of many scandi-style homes is bringing me endless inspiration. This dreamy living room spotted on Pinterest is filled with layers of texture and pattern making it a bit busier than your typical Scandinavian room that is characterized often by minimalism. The furniture and decor is streamlined and neutral and the colors are predominantly neutral and white, creating a mood that reads warm and fresh. One of my favorite parts is the fur throughout - it kicks the relaxation vibes up another notch, making it impossible not to think of yourself lounging in the chair with a book and tea in hand.

Here's how to get the look in your living room...

Gemma Crystal Tiered Chandelier via Pottery Barn
Scandinavian Christmas Poster via Etsy
Kubus Candleholder via By Lassen
Starlight Candle Lantern via Wholesale Mart
Slab Marble Coffee Table with Antiqued Silver Base via CB2
Mongolian Lamb Fur Rug via Amazon
Sherpa Shag Chair via Gotahav's
Burgunda Aiko Pillow via Lulu & Georgia
Tulu Khaki Pillow via Amber Interiors

Inspiration image via Daily Dream Decor

- Kate

More thoughts on Exterior Paint Color

As we enter the height of winter, that means one thing.... spring is around the corner! I know, it's hard to imagine as forecasts of snow are now on the horizon. But now is when you have to start planning your big spring projects. And here at Chez Davis our big spring project is going to be painting the exterior of our house.  Just as a reminder here is what the outside of the house looks like now (sans the new picket fence).

In a previous post I'd explored the idea of a more historic color scheme including painting the window sashes dark.

While I love a dark window sash, it just won't work with our existing storm windows. I next thought about a grey palette.

I like the direction but it seems a little bland.

There is a sort of peacock blue house around the corner that I love so I thought this might be fun.

But then circled back to an even darker grey with a few more colored accents.

I'm totally on the fence. I think I need to experiment with actual swatches when the weather warms up.  What do you think?

Bed Basics with Leesa

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

One of my favorite things about Lucy's room is her new bed.  I love the Jenny Lind bed from Land of Nod but what I really like is how comfortable the entire bed due in large part to her new Leesa Mattress.  There are several companies out there that offer a foam mattress that ships to your door and that you can try for 100 days. Leesa's mattress is definitely the best of these options.  Here is the Leesa Mattress when it was delivered.

We  got the mattress a little before the bed. Having it shipped compressed into the box made it so much easier to store until the bed arrived. If you recall, Lucy was very surprised when the bed was delivered and assembled.

But once we put the mattress on and she got to roll around all over it she was sold!

Dressed with linens from West Elm and Ikea, the bed is casual and comfy. 

Lucy's still stuck in the crib for as long as we can pull that off, but she is becoming more and more eager to try out her big girl bed.  And for now it is a great spot for naps, and bedtime stories.

Thanks to Leesa for such a great product and for making Lucy's room so comfortable and inviting.