Archive for ‘Decor’

September 14, 2014


One of the hardest things for me to do is pull together a great vignette. So when I do manage it, I have to take a million pictures to document my success.


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The first is our coffee table vignette. I had searched far and wide for a tray that would fit our large, octagonal coffee table. I was looking for something that would both fit my style and either be circular or square. Not an easy feat. There are lots of rectangular trays out there, but the unusual shape of my coffee table begged for something more symmetrical.

It was during a normal grocery shopping trip that I found myself at our local Asian supermarket. This supermarket has a large section dedicated to housewares. I had never perused this section before and I was quite surprised to find so many beautiful items at low prices. I found the bamboo tray among stacks of woven baskets for a measly $6. Compare that to the $50 tray I had my eye on at West Elm.

All of the other items in this vignette I already owned, including the gorgeous white vase. I have no clue why that thing has been sitting in a cabinet wasting all of its loveliness to the darkness. Actually, I do. Cats.


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The second is our Master Bathroom vignette. This space is teeny tiny and hasn’t changed a lick since the vanity was installed. This vignette is still not done, but the minor additions have made my time in the space much more enjoyable. I bought the faux orchid for $10 at TJ Maxx. I’ve had the Matisse print for a while. It lived in our Master Bedroom for a time before I decided it just wasn’t right for the space. It has since been living in a closet. Again, I have no clue why.

So. Fun stuff. Things that make me smile.

December 9, 2012

I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas

In previous years (2011, 2010, 2009), I haven’t felt very inspired by my Christmas decorations. So for the majority of 2012, I marinated on what kind of decorations I wanted. Growing up, I was always fond of my dad’s 7 foot cactus that he decorated with strings of chili lights. I brought up several similar, unusual ideas to Rob, including decorating a fiddle leaf fig, but he was sure he wanted a more traditional tree. So we compromised on a white tree.

I love it. The stark contrast between the tree and the ornaments took some getting used to, but I love how it simply acts as a backdrop to our sentimental ornaments.

I already had some bronze ornaments purchased from Hobby Lobby during our first Christmas, that I still loved, but I picked up some larger sized ornaments to add interest. The new white tree has a bit of a purple undertone to it, so I grabbed some purple ornaments to ease any clashing that it caused. I also picked up some fabric to act as a tree skirt. It’s a modern plaid with purple-toned grays and mustard yellows, which perfectly compliments the purple ornaments and the yellows I have through the house. Too bad I only purchased one yard when I should have purchased three, oops.

I also DIY’ed my own garland. First was wood beads that I simply strung onto fishing line. I didn’t buy enough of the wood beads either, so I’ll have to make another trip to Hobby Lobby. Woe is me (she said sarcastically).

The second garland is cinnamon sticks and star anise strung on that same fishing line. I purchased the spices in bulk bags from a local Asian market. Fun Fact: I used star anise as decorations at our wedding reception. So the spice has a special meaning to us.

Speaking of our wedding, we celebrated our 5 year wedding anniversary this year in Disney World, where we spent our Honeymoon (of course). We have made a tradition of visiting some Disney resort every year since and we always pick up an ornament or two. This year’s official ornament we had custom painted to commemorate the anniversary.

And Rob picked out a Pixar ornament for himself.

Speaking of Rob, we were given an ornament that belonged to Rob’s grandmother featuring Rob himself. Don’t you just want to pinch those cheeks? I do it daily…

I had to include this image of last year’s Disney ornament from our cruise. The way the light shines through the blue-colored glass makes my socks go up and down.

I had a few ornaments left over to spill around the house. I continue to fall in love over and over again with the bronze and purple ornaments. I can’t, and won’t, get over them.

I’m much happier with this year’s decorations. Next year, I hope to elaborate on them. A Nativity and Advent Calendar are on my To Do list!

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August 7, 2012

Antiquing, etc.

Catching up on all the small changes that have happened at the house on Penny Lane.

You may remember my fluff post back in June about hanging part of a set of birds in the master bathroom. The other part hung un-remarkably in our bar area for a couple of months before it found its proper home above the master bed.




June 14, 2012


I was working on posting another project when I realized a mishap. Going back to square one on that project, but should have something by the weekend. Until then, here’s some fluff.

I had this picture from when I was planning on doing a moisture damage post about our master bathroom.  There ended up not being much to show except for this – our new dehumidifier and “old” wall decor.

I bought the birds as a larger set from a local dealer. This space is so small (hence the high angle) that it truly needs art to bring some personality in.

I love it.

See you in a few days.

October 26, 2011


Let me start by saying that I love my church. Rob and I are part of a small community of truly wonderful people who I can’t describe as church-friends. I can’t even describe them as regular friends; they are family.

Last week, some members of Rob and my family moved back home to North Carolina. The Teals were in our lives for just a few years, but they had a huge impact on us and we are very sad to see them go (although their visits will be that much sweeter).

Just before they left, the church celebrated the Teals by hosting an art show for Mr. Teal’s work. I was there taking pictures of the event, while my dad and Mr. Teal commiserated over the lives of artists. When asked which piece was my favorite, I pointed to a piece entitled “Flag: An Orphan’s Pride”. I’ll let Teal tell the story behind the piece, but my initial reaction to the piece was centered around the material that was used to paint upon – denim. Denim is such a basic material, accessible by most everyone. But this piece of denim, tattered at it’s edges, was made unique by a self-described orphan who obviously saw the beauty in this mundane fabric.

Apparently, word of my fondness for the piece spread and last Saturday, while thinking heavily on what wall art to hang above my dad’s cabinet, “Flag: An Orphan’s Pride” was given to me at the request of Teal. I knew instantly where it belonged.



I had actually contacted Teal a few months back asking if he would ever do commissioned work. It was for this exact spot that I was inquiring for. The best part is even if I had commissioned a piece, it would never have been as perfect as the flag is.

October 23, 2011

Fall Decor

It took me a couple weeks, but I finally finished staging my fall decor. Yes, it is very, very, very sparse, but I plan to build my collections over the years. This is only phase 1.

The items I have so far are the painted faux gourds, some real dried out gourds that my mom gave me – which I hope will multiply in the next coming years – and a couple of crows purchased from Michael’s.

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September 11, 2011


I’m proud of my papa. After years of being a graphic designer, he ditched it to become a starving artist. He’s still an artist, but no longer starving as he is now the creative director for Wisteria, the online home decor store. He asked me recently (in a blog comment, no less) to photograph any Wisteria items I have in the house on Penny Lane with the potential of featuring them on Wisteria’s blog, Vine.

I get a nice family discount, but have not received any other perks from Wisteria for this post, although I will accept discounts on some pieces I’ve been eyeing (provide a Christmas list right, Dad?).

So here’s a shot of the living room featuring a handful of my Wisteria items.

Wisteria items: white enamel stools, gray wicker basket, glazed porcelain lamb

I didn’t place that basket, that’s how perfectly this shot laid out. I have two of the gray wicker baskets. This one is the catchall for cat toys. It’s too cute when Jin jumps in it to find his desired toy. The other basket we use as a laundry basket. We also have a couple sets of water hyacinth baskets. They are scattered about the house to organize small items. I use one to neatly contain my makeup products. Baskets are an item one can never have too many of. Just saying.

June 19, 2011

Hung Art

Today I had the opportunity to finish a few decorative tasks around the house. One was spur of the moment and the others had been lingering for weeks.

The first all started when vintage-loving friends of ours came in town. Two of us decided to check out a nearby vintage store that’s 50% interesting stuff, 50% shabby chic, typical Oklahoma crap. Of course we each found some items to take home.  My find? A big, wooden spoon.

I seriously love it. But we all know I’m strange. I really liked the calendar strip that had occupied this spot previously, but this just takes the cake for me.

The next had been a lingering item. Rob’s parents had gifted us some decorative plates from Peru. Once I realized the were decorative, I knew I had to showcase them in some way. Unfortunately, they sat for months in a stack on our counter, decoratively. Today, I finally decided to to hang the plates.

I never would have thought I’d be the type to hang plates.

The last was the never-ending fireplace nook. It started out with adjustable shelves that I attempted to work with. Next was the stretched canvas. I’m hoping this will be the end of that journey with maybe some tweaks of the contents.

The collection is 4 pages from a vintage botanical book framed in shadow boxes. Can you spot the mishap? The second frame from the bottom. I had a very difficult time putting the frame back together. After fussing with it for 10 minutes and seriously working up a sweat, I realized I had attached the page upside down. I tried to fix it, but it was seriously wedged. When I have more energy, I may try again.

I love it anyway.

April 2, 2011

On Trend

We went on a church retreat last weekend. Few realized how on trend the interiors were.

the “ladies’ cabin” fully lined in particle board, complete with matching adjacent bathroom.


image courtesy of LoftLife


image courtesy of Hindsvik


image courtesy of Arch Daily

February 24, 2011


Rob and I made a weekend trip to visit my dad in Dallas. We had a great time. There was good shopping, good Vietnamese food, good Mediterranean food and good conversations.

I came away with a bunch of great stuff for the house, which I will milk for all its worth by discussing them in installments. First, books.

Rob loves Half-Priced Books. Especially the giant one in Dallas. Saturday night after dinner, we spent the rest of the evening shopping for books. We all found something we wanted. Mine was “decorative” books.

If there is one thing I have learned to decorate with, it is books, even if it is just horizontally. As you all should know by now, I love this living room.

living room of Derek and Michelle Sanders

Well here’s another angle that shows off their use of books in decoration.

living room of Derek and Michelle Sanders

Stacking books? I think I can do that.

Now, let me start out by saying that so many people can argue with the use of books as decoration because they are being chosen purely for aesthetic reasons rather than their content. That’s where my interests come in handy: art, design and gardening. All good looking things… if done right at least.

With Half-Priced books pricing, it was hard to leave with just two. That Swiss furniture book is still calling my name. But I certainly don’t regret the books I did purchase.

“Vincent Van Gogh” by Marc Edo Tralbaut

“Vincent Van Gogh” by Marc Edo Tralbaut

“The Orchid” by Mark Griffiths

“The Orchid” by Mark Griffiths

“Artfully” stacked.