Curated Nest: Baby Lucy Style

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

In honor of Baby Lucy's recent arrival, I decided to round up some super stylish baby gear.
There's lots of fun sources for those of us who think babies should have just as much style as we do, and that their nursery should look just as good as the rest of the house!

1. Animal Box / Poketo
2. Kilimanjaro Pouf / Fine Little Day
3. Baby Fox Print / The Animal Print Shop
4. Giraffe Wall Sconce / Jonathan Adler
5. Themis Mobile / A + R Store
6. Gran Sweatshirt / Fine Little Day
7. Whale Cushion / Ferm Living

Function vs Style: Diaper bags

Monday, May 26, 2014

Don't we all wish we could look as fab as this mom-on-the-go?  Super high wedges, an all-white outfit... but realistically how long do you think she was carrying that chunky kid before she put him into an ugly stroller or he smeared ketchup on her dress and the look suddenly changed?  That said, it does look like she has a large tote that could really fit a lot of diaper bag essentials. 
Now that Baby Lucy has arrived, I've finally decided I need to upgrade my diaper bag to something more proper.  I generally hate the look of a diaper bag - too many pockets, not well designed from an aethetic standpoint and so many of them have juvenile patterns and scream "baby!" or "diaper bag!". Even though I mock the mom in the above photo, I can't say I don't aspire to that sort of effortless stylish ease.  So, for the past two and half years, in an effort to not carry a diaper bag,  I have been surviving with various totes, purses, and carry-ons that mostly did the job but had a lot lacking as well.  Many didn't have side pockets for sippy cups and bottles which made spillage a potential issue.  A lot of them had one large central pocket so things would get lost and were impossible to find (which meant wads of receipts, toy cars, and old gold fish swimming at the bottom).

With one child in diapers and one semi-potty trained I now have multiple changes of clothes, a diaper changing station, a portable potty, toys, bottles, sippy cups, and snacks to tote.  Seems like a better system of transport and organization is in order. That said, I still hate most of the diaper bags on the market and like the idea of something that still feels purse-like and classic and that can maybe transition out of the diaper bag stage of life later on.  Here are the contenders:

Filson Twill Carry-all: A classic stylish bag from Filson, this tote has the side pockets for drinks and large interior pockets that I like for organization. I like that it feels more like a purse but it's missing stroller clips. I also worry that it's not as wipeable as the others and would get dirty over time, but it certainly is timeless and would be something to keep around for a while.

Soyoung Charlie Diaper Bag:  This bag is super functional and certainly has all the bells and whistles I need.  I like color and military-inspired look but wonder if it sort of looks more like a gym bag or carry-on and is almost too masculine in feel (in other words, I'd still end up carrying a purse around too).  

Schoolhouse Electric Canvas Utility Bag: I like that this bag because of the color blocking and that it has a cross-body shoulder strap. It seems like the D rings could be used to hook up to stroller hooks and it has the side pockets for sippy cups and a nice big utility pocket.

KF Baby Urbane Diaper Bag: This bag is the most economical of all of the options and probably the most light-weight as well. I like that it looks like a large purse/tote and that it has lots of compartments for organization.  Still missing the stroller clips and cross-body strap though. And not sure if it would look sort of like a garbage bag in person.

Filson Tin Cloth Tote Bag: I love that this tote is classic, versatile and gender neutral (dad would totally carry this without a problem) - AND I could definitely use it much later down the road as well. It has the side pockets for sippy cups and bottles that I was looking for and I like that the oiled finish makes it wipeable and fairly dirt resistant.  On the other hand it doesn't have a cross-body strap and doesn't have stroller clips either (although I wonder if that could be solved by having a cobbler add a D-ring on either side).

Skip Hop Duo French Stripe Diaper Bag: this one is the most diaper bag-ish out of all of them.  But I do love the classic french stripe and that the size isn't huge. It's nice that it has a shoulder strap so I can wear it cross body and I also love that it has stroller clips (something I've never had before on a diaper bag but think could be useful - maybe?).  It's a little pricey though and I doubt I'd use it down the road when the kids are older.

Which do you prefer? Do you have others that should be contenders as well?

Stylin' Mamma: Problems

Thursday, May 22, 2014

You can say it: I have a shoe problem.  I know.  Everyone who knows me knows.  This week I promised myself an "unsentimental shoe purge" and I came up with 3 pairs.  3 pairs out of -- easily -- 75?  More?  Some I wear more than others, some I haven't worn in years, but shoes are that ONE item of clothing that will always, always come back around.  I feel sick when I go to buy a pair of black knee-high boots and I think about the gorgeous black knee-high boots I had right after college that would be PERFECT.  Why did I get rid of them???  Because the heel seemed clunky?  Because the shaft start to feel like an awkward height?  Why didn't have the foresight to know: they will come back around?
So I have a shoe problem that extends beyond collecting to hoarding.  But here's a dirty secret: I also have a denim problem.  When you are a mamma, it is easy to fall into a denim rut.  When you are a Stylin' Mamma, you keep trying to break out of the denim rut only to find yourself gravitating to stylin' denim: High waisted!  Floral print!  Zip-leg!

I need to get a grip.

This summer I'm deep into my denim shorts.  I'm wearing 'em sporty, and I'm wearing 'em chic.  Playground?  Nike Frees (yes, those again), durable watch, aves, and a perfect pullover. Writers' meeting?  Button up, jacket, flats, and headband (what can I say?  I'm into them.).
Oh, and p.s.: I'm totally in love with these shoes.  

What's your problem?


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

I love chairs. The more the better. I get itchy if all the chairs around a dining table match. This is a personal preference, I realize. But hopefully you can see what I'm talking about with this cool dining room via Domicile Blog.
The chairs are so different they aren't even in the same genre.... Rustic metal farm-style chairs and Hollywood glam ghost chairs... But it all works because the accents around them pull it together. 

There are casual accents, like the wood plate and flower vase, but there are also glam accents like the leaning artwork and sleek storage console. The dining table seems to be a combination of both, with a white gloss finish to glam-up an otherwise heavy and rustic table. 

Mix and match styles all you want, just be sure there's balance and you'll end up with a beautiful space.

Pendant / Hive
Elephant Art / ZGallerie
Landscape Art / Fine Little Day
Geometric Art / West Elm
Dining Table / Nest UK
Yellow Chair / Cult Furniture
Ghost Chair / DWR
White Bowl / CB2
Wood Plate / Crate & Barrel
Storage Console / Ikea

WELCOME: Lucy Zhi-min Davis

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

For those of you who haven't already seen via Facebook or Instagram, Lucy Zhi-min Davis arrived on her due date: May 14, 2014 at 7:30 pm. She is a little peanut entering the world at 5 lbs 13 oz and 19.25 inches long.  Lucy is doing great already topping 6 pounds and giving us lots of smiles (or is it gas?).  Her big brother is thrilled and constantly wants to kiss "his baby", although we might have to set a daily kiss quota.  If the blog is a little silent for a while, you'll know why, but I'll try to keep you updated with fun content from our contributors while we get situated with the new little one.

CURATED NEST: 50 shades of green

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

If I had to choose a favorite social media platform, it would have to be Instagram. As a visual person, it's so fun to scroll through and be inspired by traveling, food and home design from both your real friends and virtual friends.
This perfect piece of green architecture was captured by Bonnie Tsang, one of my favorite people to follow on Instagram. It got me dreaming about every shade of green...

1. Zig Zag Throw / CB2
2. O.P.I. Green-Which Village / Hair Care USA 
3. Green Accent Chair / Modernics
4. Coffee Maker / All Modern
5. Ceramic Light / Anthropologie
6. Art Print / Society6
7. Wishbone Chair / Dot & Bo

- Cori

A Backyard update

Monday, May 12, 2014

I get a serious case spring fever every year when the weather warms up and planting season arrives. All I want to do is go to the nursery, buy a bunch of plants and spend my day outdoors gardening (gardening to me is so much more cathartic than other DIY type projects like painting and sewing).  Being 10 months pregnant at this point has been a bit frustrating but I've managed to get a fair amount of gardening done and acted as foreman for one large hardscaping project. Last summer I showed you our back yard progress and what I was envisioning for it down the line. Here is what it looked like:

And my pipe dream.
I still like the idea of the arbor, the carriage lantern and painting the garage door.  But I have since changed my mind on the plantings and decided that instead of a monotonous row of evergreens, a few ornamental trees with plantings underneath will add enough privacy while providing more interest.  That will be a photoshop project for a future blog post. I was gearing up for these planting when Bryan started running back behind our garage into our rubble and poison ivy laden far back yard.  Here is what it looked like (from the real estate listing when we bought our house).

Tree planting then got put on hold and the aforementioned large hardscaping project ensued. The back area had to be cleared out and trees had to be trimmed and cut down (to let more light in and deter the poison ivy from growing back).  And since we were clearing out the back area, we had to move forward with the next step of putting down whatever we were going to put down since if we didn't everything would grow back as well.  If you follow me or Scott on instagram you would have seen this progression of photos (what you don't see is the ridiculous pile of gravel that Scott and our volunteer friends had to wheelbarrow from the front of the driveway to the very back of the yard). The nice thing is that despite the back breaking labor, the volunteers still seem to be friends with us and the toddler boys seemed to have really enjoyed rolling out the landscape cloth.

We used all the extra stone rubble we found to edge the "pool" of gravel and had some stepping stones donated by a neighbor.   What amazed us in the process was how large the space is we have back there.

Here are the stepping stones and what it looks like from the deck.

Next in what will undoubtedly be a multi-stage multi-year project will be planting a perennial shade garden around the "pool" (dogwoods, japanese maple, bleeding heart, hostas etc), adding a fire pit and maybe a picnic table and string lights..... and of course the trees for privacy along the fence.

Hardware Installed: Valerie Grant Interiors

Thursday, May 8, 2014

A while back local Summit, NJ interior designer Valerie Grant purchased some of my hardware for her own home.  The house itself is stunning with views of the city and was recently featured in the Summit tour of homes. Valerie had me over the day before the tour to see the hardware installed and take a few shots of it in place.  Here is our T-02 knob in satin brass installed on a vintage hutch in the guest room. I love that she used it in a horizontal orientation. I'd always thought of it being used with the acrylic going vertically, but I see now that it can go either way.

And here is our T-01 handle and F-02 knob in polished chrome on her daughter's desk.

The most unusual application was how Valerie used my F-01L handle on a large tray on her family room ottoman.  I'm thinking I might have to get some trays made to sell on the site.  What a great idea.

Thanks for sharing Valerie!

Stylin Mamma: If You Can't Beat 'Em

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

I have two colleagues who run together a couple of days a week, and when they run, they look SO cute.  Like catalogue-cute.  So cute that after a weekend run they have been known to stop for mimosas and do a spot of shopping or something, completely un-self-conscious and all a-glow from the workout.
Now, I like to think I have mastered Desk-to-Dinner dressing, but Sweat-to-Sauvignon Blanc dressing is another skill set entirely.  For one thing, it requires an investment in one's workout attire that goes a step beyond, say, recycling 14-year-old college t-shirts or only buying from the seconds bin at Ross.  But lately I have been thinking that Stylin' Mammas such as ourselves could learn a thing or two from this workout-clothes-as-street-style way of dressing.  

Because -- let's be honest -- our lives are basically one long sprint.

It was in this spirit that I made my first foray into (gulp) Athleta and bought a pair of shimmy shorts, a sexy tank, and a go-anywhere cropped sweatshirt.  

With a pair of Nike Frees, wayfarers (I'm obesessed with these in leather!), and an iPhone case that can hold a spot of cash, I am good to go for the burn while looking sleek and put-together.  Then, with a quick splash of water on the face, I can ditch the sweatshirt and switch to my fave new glad-flats for an easy weekend summer look.  

Form, meet function.  Now, pour me that mimosa.


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

The best interior design doesn't rely on just one style, but rather a mixture of design styles. This home is modern, yet eclectic and it all works really well together.

The wire pendant lighting and modern furniture, paired with a colorful area rug and quirky wall art sets up a really great combination of design styles. 

This space is making me want to add a little eclectic style to my modern apartment. 
If you feel the same way I do, here's how to get the look...

Large Wire Pendant / Dot & Bo
Wire Pendant / Dot & Bo
Collage Wall Art / Lisa Congdon
Iceberg Wall Art / Lisa Congdon
Accent Chair / Danish Modern L.A.
Sofa / CB2
Coffee Table / Hive Modern
Area Rug / The Rug Company
Small Storage Units / West Elm