Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Craftsman Cravings

With my career I am in on average 1,000 homes a year so I've seen lots of decorating style (and lack there of) as well as lots of new homes and lots of old homes. Personally, I'm not impressed with new builds. They are often cold and uninviting, boring and predictible. Not to mention most new homes are in developments where there are only a handful of possible home designs which doesn't allow for any individuality. What's the point of having a home exactly like a dozen others just across the street? This is why we have a home built in 1950 we wanted our home to be unique, full of history and welcoming. We were happy to see scuffs on the real hardwood floors, the rattle of a loose pipe and the knowledge that no one will have the exact same home we do.

My father always wanted to live in a Craftsman style home and that desire was passed to me as well. I love the open beams, the cubbies, the large windows, the open but yet cozy feel. Not to mention they would be at least 80 years old so full of history and character. In the 8 years I've lived in Licking Co I've been in lust with such a home in Granville. I would purposely go the long way through the village just to lay my eyes on this house. It's perfect, from the paint to the glorious hedge of white hydrangeas that flank the front. Well, on my (long) way to a home visit in Granville a few weeks ago I saw a heartbreaking sight; a for sale sign in the yard of my precious dove grey Crafstman castle. This was heartbreaking because it's one thing to love something you can't possibly have because it's owned by another and it's another to know that the thing you want is up for sale. What is even more heartbreaking? To know you'd have to sell organs, turn tricks and drive a Brink's truck to afford the place.

With a heavy heart I share with you photographic bliss. This is my first view into my beloved dream home and despite it being somewhat more modern than my taste I adore it. It makes me ache with visual delight and it's worth sharing.

I could definatly walk up these everyday.

Check out more pic's here.

I'll give you a moment to get feeling back in your knees now that you've seen the asking price. It's a moot point that E and I could ever afford such a divine abode so I will avoid the long way until I see it's sold and then I will rekindle my Crafstman cravings. (Ok, I'll hate the new owners just a bit too.)

PS.....Did anyone else notice anything familiar about the interior design?

Friday, July 3, 2009

I still have 174 days, don't rush me

While E and I were out shopping, lunching, enjoying each other I got the wild idea to find some vintage flags to put in the flower urns to celebrate the 4th. Today is the 3rd, not a good day to begin decorating for the 4th. After 3 stores of nada I gave up. I couldn't even find small fabric flags that I could have made "vintage" by soaking in coffee or tea! (I did have a moment of fear that forcing a vintage patina on Old Glory would be a heinous act against American freedom. Then I realized that even those who are conservative about such things would allow such an act in the pursuit of cuteness.) Please pretend this is nestled in with my already patriotic red geraniums, waving gently in the warm charcoal scented July breeze. I give you my word as the rockets red glare and the bombs bursting in air gives proof that I will shop earlier next year.

During my flag pilgrimage I stopped at Hobby Lobby. I checked and double checked the summer holiday flags. As I was leaving I thought I should check a few of the other aisles. As I started deeper into the store I started to notice a theme. Lots of red, green, silver, gold objects; candles, wreaths, place mats. As I turned the corner past the autumn decor I saw something horrific, mind boggling, heart breaking, down right disgusting....prepare yourself...I saw...oh the horror....there they were...gasp....CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS everywhere.
You're checking the calendar aren't you? Yes, you're right it's only July 3rd. There are still 174 days until Christmas yet Hobby Lobby has 5 aisles FULL of bulbs, trees, skirts, and tons of Santa themed hoo hah. Now I love Christmas as much as everyone else. I like decorating for Christmas most likely more than everyone else but even I feel that shopping for Christmas decorations in July is a bit much. I still have 6 months, don't rush me. What happened to enjoying the lazy days of summer, the crisp evenings of fall and the anticipation of Christmas magic? Has the joy of the season really become second to getting a good deal on a wreath you buy in July? I just think there is something fundamentally wrong with shopping for a Christmas tree in capris, in July.
Ok ok, part me really wants to go back to Hobby Lobby and get some decorations. I can't get another good decorating idea on December 24th and have another flag experience now can I?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

If you've got a pot to plant in.

I used to be (and still am in many ways) very in the box. Or for this post I suppose I should say in the pot. Anyways, there was a time when I would have only planted things in garden approved containers; the ground, gorgeous black or iron urns, or terracotta pots (mmm, nothing is better than aged terracotta, the blissful mossy patina of time and weather just makes my butt cheeks tingle, I digress again.) Blame it on age, reading entirely too many home decor mags, or Martha, but lately if I can put dirt in it, I want to plant something in it. The desire to garden and grow only recently came over me as well. Now I feel lost without a few smudges of dirt under my nails or the familiar ache of my back from a bit too much bending and stooping. It would be wise of E to not allow me to ever purchase a rototiller unless of course he doesn't want any yard to mow. I could easily become one of those odd little old ladies who has some sort of plant in every inch of her yard. The woman who can name, even the Latin name, every single bloom and cares for them more than her own children (or dogs.) Ok, so I might be a tad like that already as I did shed a few sorrowful tears over the recent Ortho-ing of my butterfly bush(at my own hands) and it's subsequent wilting and pitiful state . I am praying that I get good garden juju and it blooms this year. I have been showering it with lots of love and gentle caresses and of course no more Ortho is allowed in that area.

Yesterday E and I ventured to Thornville where The Urban Farmhouse awaited. I found this little gem a few years ago when it was The White Cottage. EVERYTHING was white, shabby chic and a bit pricey. In the last year or two the current owner, Lisa, renamed it, revamped it and has some really amazing finds. She has a beautiful blend of vintage and reproductions all of which are very affordable. I try to go out every weekend and see what new treasures await, my mom lives in Thornville so that helps my addiction. The last time I was at "The Farmhouse" I noticed some vintage sap buckets and fell in love. At first I thought they would make adorable little trash cans (which I plan on getting at least one more for that purpose.) Then I realized what cute little vessels for a mini herb garden and for $10.00 you couldn't find something so sweet and precious anywhere else.

As I was perusing Lisa's shop I came across a vintage floating minnow bucket and had an idea. I really think that if my life where a cartoon I would have a light bulb over my head quite often, granted it would most often be only a 20 watt, but I do come up with some 100 watters now and then. I just loved the 1970's print on the side of the minnow bucket and knew I'd come up with something so I picked it up as well.

After a quick trip to Home Depot here is what we have.

Old Pal made a pretty good little planter. I just opened up the lid, filled it with dirt and planted this precious little trailing plant. The name of which I cannot remember. (See I'm not that little old lady just yet.) I think even Paul Hanly would be proud of my little planter. Who is Paul Hanly? I don't know but I now own his floating minnow bucket. Here's hoping Paul caught many a fish with this beauty.

Can't forget that sweet little sap bucket. It was just big enough for rosemary, basil and parsley. Just planting the basil made me giddy with the joy of knowing we'll soon have fresh basil and tomato sandwiches. Don't get me started on the rosemary, the fresh lemony piney deliciousness, no chicken is worthy of it's beauty.

Peek a boo parsley, sticking it's sunny verdant face out of the hole the sap spigot would fill.

It makes me happy to give simple things like minnow and sap buckets the important purpose of housing such beautiful things. Lisa has a ton of those sap buckets, Home Depot has tons of flowers, I think we all know what I plan on doing next weekend too!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

They don't smell like chicken to me!

I told Lilly Bean to leave my hen and chicks alone, I think she knows that hen means chicken, she now can't go outside without giving them a sniff.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Regardez mes oreillers! (Look at my pillows!)

I am sometimes overwhelmed with the need to create. To get my hands dirty and make something out of nothing. Ok, I really don't like getting my hands dirty but I do like creating things. I also HATE spending money on something I know I can make myself. Take this for instance. Yes, it's super cute but I would never pay $32.00 for it. Well especially not now, when I made this for $3.00!!

And this one for $3.00!!

The first one has a little edging issue but I plan on fixing that tonight. The bigger one came out great.
These are made with my new love; unbleached cotton aka muslin. Where has this wonderful product been hiding all this time?? It's so affordable too! It ranges from $1.49 to $3.99 a yard. Here I used the $3.99 muslin because it had a darker color, less yellow than the $1.49 and it was a bit heavier weight. By the time I got the stencil, paint and brush the total cost per pillow is $3.00! I am a firm believer that decorating with things you love is most important and second to that is affordability.
I also made the other two pillows in the above picture. The grey one is damask and the greenish one in the far back is burlap. Now that one, was a good thought but not so great at completion. Burlap does not make good pillow covers, no matter what HGTV says. I plan on scrapping that one this weekend for another design on the muslin that I'm cooking up. I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Enjoy Co.

I like to shop, really like to shop. Ask E he'll be happy to tell you all about it. I will put this disclaimer out though; I never buy anything more than $20-30.00 without the accountants (E's) consultation. My favorite places are vintage or home stores and even better those that combine both.

Earlier this week I was taking the dogs to Granville to the dog park. First, for those that haven't experienced Granville, Ohio let me tell you a bit about it. Granville is an amazingly lovely little village with historic homes and people who actually wave at you when you drive but. But, Grahhhnville (insert snooty accent here) is very affluent, matching Land Rover's, live-in nanny, summer house in Europe kind of rich. Well on my way out of town I had an out-of-body experience when I saw this.

How could you not be affected by this sight? Look at the landscaping, the color of the building, the attention to detail, the fact that they took a 1950's gas station and made it into this amazing little nugget of home interior bliss!! My eyes first beheld Enjoy Co. on Tuesday and I had to wait a dreadful 3 days to experience it's beauty. E, of course, always willing to indulge my adventures was willing to go with me to check it out.

We were happily greeted by the owner Monique Keegan who is a tiny, bubbly, adorable and vastly talented woman. She's the kind of person that if you ask people about they either envy, love or hate her (I for one go for love and envy.) She had on simple jeans and a grey shirt and was just adorable. She was also oddly familiar looking to me. While Eric and I looked around I again had the "I've seen these things before" feeling. By the time we had made it through the store it hit me how I knew this woman and her store. I was one of her groupies! One of my other obsessions is magazines especially Country Living and Martha. Last fall Monique's home in Grahhhhnville was featured in Country Living and I was enthralled with it. I loved the dark but inviting gloominess of it, the green accents, the vintage medical and industrial supplies. You check it out and tell me you aren't moved by it, Monique's Grahhhhnville home can be found here. I was so swept up by her home that we painted our living room in the same colors as she has in her home; Ralph Lauren Winchester, a dark grey green and Dovecoat, a taupey green. I told Monique about my devotion to her and her style and I'm not sure if she was flattered or thinking about filing a protection order against me. I have since learned that Monique's husband is a contributing editor for Country Living and that their cottage will be featured in an upcoming issue. I am a DITHER with anticipation!!

Let me tell you more about the products filling Enjoy Co. Adorable, memorable, unique, conversation inducing and obscenely expensive. No offense to Monique or her shop as I plan on frequenting it often but I am not of the ilk or financial standing of her clientele. I for one cannot afford these at a price of, prepare yourself, are you sitting down, perhaps you should alert an adult to your location in case you need assistance. They are just coasters, remember that when you hear this. Oh, yes, the price, those lovely and adorable (and VERY easily recreated) coasters come in at a whopping $110.00!!!!! Are you still with me? Can you speak, can you breathe? Ok, good. I also saw this at Enjoy Co. and am pretty sure that some unbleached cotton, a well made stencil and some black paint and wallllll-lllllllllla I can make that too!

I think after seeing the coasters you know that we left empty handed but I have an arsenal of ideas just waiting to come to fruition. I of course will keep you updated on those projects and supply pictures as well. Only if they don't suck though.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Virginal Voyage

I succumbed. I caved. I surrendered. As E would say, "resistance was futile." I am one of "them." My name can be written in the annals of the Internet. I, Beth Rutter, am a blogger.

I had entertained the idea of blogging before, I mean come on, EVERYONE is doing it. I had Myspaced for years which I wasn't impressed with. Then again since I'm not 17 and looking for a start to my online porn career I don't think Myspace was space.

I think I can blame my fall on two things; shopping and Facebook. We'll take shopping first. I was shopping today (spoiler alert; this blog will often revolve around this topic) and while I was at my new found panty wetting mecca of all things gorgeous and over priced I realized that I really had no one to share in my delight. E of course was there but he doesn't get all verklempt over such things as I do. "Yeah, pillows, uh huh." Seriously, can you see why I need an outlet?

Now on to Facebook's part in this perversion. I can find ways to blame my devious acts on specific people or I can just say one simple phrase. "Everyone else has one!" So in a moment that even Veruca Salt would be proud of, I wanted a blog and I wanted it now and here it is!

Ladies and gentlemen I will try to entertain you as well I can. I can't promise you'll laugh, or cry, or be enlightened but I'm pretty sure along the way I'll offend someone. It may just be you.