Friday, April 29, 2011

No knock offs needed

There's a lot of buzz around who is designing dresses inspired by Kate Middleton's wedding gown. There isn't really any need because Romona Kevaza sent a grown down the runway during Bridal Fashion Week a few weeks ago that looks just like it.

As soon as Kate stepped out of the car, I thought of this post on Weddings Unveiled's blog, Completely Unveiled. I mentioned the Legends by Romona Keveza line a few weeks ago because it reminded me of my mother's wedding gown from the 1960s.

So, courtesy of the Completely Unveiled, possible proof that Romona Keveza is psychic...

She even got the veil and tiara right.
Romona's veil is more detailed and more beautiful, in my opinion.

A little volume where the train meets the dress seems like a close match, too.

What did you think of the Kate's dress?

More importantly, what did you think of Princess Beatrice's hat?

What do you think the guy on the left thought of the hat?

From The Hollywood Reporter

The hat now has a Facebook page.
[Share to Pinterest]

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Design House Thursday: The Designers

The 2011 Charlottesville Design House opening is just days away, on Saturday, May 7th.

To check out all of these wonderful people and their bios, check out the bios page on the Charlottesville Design House website.

I might get a sneak peek at the house this week...would you like to see some teaser images?

Design House Tour tickets are now on sale at the following locations:

Shelter for Help in Emergency Community Outreach Center
1415 Sachem Place, Suite 1
Charlottesville, VA 22901

Palmyra Country Store
4 Centre Court
Palmyra, VA 22963

Greenberry's Coffee and Tea at Barracks Road
1049 Emmet Street North
Charlottesville, VA 22903

Greenwood Gourmet Grocery
6701 Rockfish Gap Turnpike
Crozet, Virginia 22932

The events page on the Charlottesville Design House website has information about group discounts, lectures, and the Top Hat Gala.

[Share to Pinterest]

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

On my way to Charleston

Have you been to Charleston, South Carolina?
I'm making my first visit this weekend and I can't wait!

I'll only be in town for the weekend, but I'm hoping to get a few hours to explore. Unfortunately, the office has been so busy that I haven't had much time to research the food and shopping situation, which I've heard is fantastic.

Can you give me some advice about where to go if I have some free time?
I'm sure you can imagine that home stores are of interest!

[Share to Pinterest]

Monday, April 25, 2011

Changes in "the gallery"

I bought a print from a local artist back in January and have been meaning to get it framed and hung for weeks. With my busy season behind me, I finally got around to getting it done.

I used an Ikea frame (ugh...I have a love/hate relationship with that place), but took it to the local frame shop, The Great Frame-up, to have a custom mat made. I think this is the key to making a cheap frame look more expensive. The guy at the frame store studied all of his whites carefully to pick the appropriate color while the paint dweeb in me beamed at him. The mat was cut in a few minutes and the man taught me how to mat a print properly. Apparently, my established method (scotch tape or fun tack) isn't appropriate. Maybe I'll show you all his technique at some point.

Anyway, I was hoping to bring a little color to this:

That's the hallway between living/dining areas and the bathroom and bedroom in my place. I had filled the wall with animal sketches I did, but thought it looked a little sad without any color.

I bought this painting from local artist William Van Doren, who has been painting sunsets as part of a project called Moment and Horizon for many years. Select prints are for sale and I initially thought it'd be cute to get one from the day Marc proposed, but I couldn't find it. Instead, I was drawn to Tuesday, October 20, 2009...a date that has no significance to us. I just liked the colors and the painting seemed happy, but serene to me.

I originally thought I'd put the print up and rehang my animal sketches around it, but started thinking that a little more variety might be nice. So I hung one sketch and the moss covered letters I made a week or so ago. This isn't a permanent arrangement, in light of how dusty the moss might eventually become.

In progress...

I thought it would be easy to fill in the wall from there, but I decided to let the wall be for a while and see how I feel about it before moving forward. So, as of last night, here's how it looked (crocked M and all):

I think I'm going to let the "gallery" grow organically. I'm not going to lay out pictures to plan this out. As something strikes me as interesting, I'll give it a spot on the wall.

If you have a gallery wall, did you plan it out and hang everything at once or did you hang a few things and let the rest get filled in over time?
[Share to Pinterest]

Thursday, April 21, 2011

2011 Charlottesville Design House Designer Profile: Heidi Brooks

The 2011 Charlottesville Design House opens in just two weeks! I hope you're getting as excited as I am to see the results of the designer takeover of a beautiful, old farm house in Crozet, Virginia.

This week, I'd like to share a few images of projects recently completed by Heidi Brooks. Heidi was part of the 2010 Design House and is back this year. This year, she'll be be working with her mother, Richmond based designer Penny Crandall, to transform the entrance foyer, stairwell, and upstairs hall (it's a tiered space...a really interesting layout).

There's so much eye candy here that I'm just going to let the images speak for themselves. Let me know what you think in the comments.

Can you tell this is hunt country?

As always, Chris Scott was the amazing photographer who produced these images. I'm so grateful to him for sharing his work on this blog!
[Share to Pinterest]

Monday, April 18, 2011

Easter garland from Modern Parents Messy Kids

In some casual surfing last week, I came across a picture of an Easter egg garland made from paint sample cards. After some searching, I found the blog that originally posted the project, Modern Parents Messy Kids.

After downloading an egg template (how nice of them to provide that?), I made a cardboard stencil to help me mark off some "eggs" to cut. I usually pick my paint with a fan deck. I didn't realize paint sample cards had gotten so big! I'm starting to think of other projects for these things.

My bone folder (a new purchase for my recent crafting attempts) has a paper piercer in it. I don't know the craft application for that, but I used it to poke holes in my eggs. I used the string covered cans I made a while back to provide some cushioning for this.

I was a little nervous that my eggs were perfect ovals, but when you see the end result, you'll realize that it doesn't really matter too much.

Here's an "action shot" that Marc took of the paper piercing.

I bought some thin, hemp string at the craft store (90 cents with one of those coupons) and threaded the string through the holes punched in each egg.

After A LOT of cutting and threading, I had a garland that was large enough to string across the mirror over the living room sofa. I don't usually decorate for holidays (other than Christmas). In a condo, there isn't much room to store decorations and I'm not one to clutter surfaces with knick knacks. I think this is a cute way to decorate for Easter without fake grass and bunnies.

Do you decorate for every holiday?
[Share to Pinterest]

Friday, April 15, 2011

I'm not the only one...

I'm not the only one with weddings on the mind, it seems. I don't know why I get this magazine (I had a feeling my brother and sister-in-law were behind that, but it was actually my aunt who sent the subscription!), but the March issue's cover was so charming and serene that I had to scan it.

Happy weekend!
[Share to Pinterest]

Thursday, April 14, 2011

2011 Charlottesville Design House Design Profile: Victoria Pouncey

As the 2011 Charlottesville Design House, which benefits the Shelter for Help in Emergency, gets closer, I hope to share a few more designer profiles with you. Today, I get to introduce you to Victoria Pouncey and share one of her recent projects with you.

I met Victoria through last year's Charlottesville Design House. I was amazed by the bedroom she created out of a second floor laundry room at the house (the house had two laundry rooms, so it made sense to turn one into a more function space). I couldn't forget the paint color she used, either. It was Farrow & Ball's Mouse's Back. It was a beautiful color in a beautiful space.

Today, I get to share a space that Victoria recently completed. This living room used to be one, cavernous space. It was renovated to allow for a second floor library. As you'll see, the space still feels bright and open, but Victoria has given it a bit more warmth and character.

S&C: You worked for Christie's for 17 years before going into design. What prompted the change? What was the transition like?

VP: My husband and I have a five year old daughter so when she was two, we began to think about leaving New York. I have some family members who moved to Charlottesville, and it seemed like a great place for a family. As for the design aspect, I had always loved art and design -- my mom was a decorator -- and with my background at Christie's, it just seemed like a natural transition. I knew I wanted to start my own business and have a flexible schedule while my daughter was young.

S&C: How would you describe your design aesthetic? What would let people know that Victoria Pouncey was behind a room?

VP: I would say that my design aesthetic is a mixture of the antique and the modern with a touch of glamour. I love metallic finishes and mirrors and mirrored furniture. Lots of books and hopefully, a great piece of art.

S&C: What is your favorite design resource in Charlottesville?

VP: I have found some amazing things at The Eternal Attic!

What is your favorite design resources outside of Charlottesville?

VP: New York. I could spend days in the D & D building. I also absolutely love Archivia Books.

S&C: When you start the design process, what elements have you most excited? Are you a paint person? Love furniture? Art? Fabrics?

VP: Fabric and furniture. I usually find a fabric that inspires me and then I take it from there.

S&C: Your background makes me wonder when art comes into your designs. Do you know what you are looking for even before you see it?

VP: It depends. I don't really decorate around art because an amazing work of art can go anywhere and be beautiful. I love Old Master paintings in very contemporary spaces.

S&C: Who are some of your favorite designers and why do you like their work?

VP: I like Darryl Carter's work because he is so masterful with neutrals. On the other end of the spectrum, I like to study Alessandra Branca's bold use of color, even though I gravitate to a more neutral palette. And I love her shop in Chicago.

What was the last thing you bought for you home?

VP: A work by the Dutch artist Hendrik Kerstens which I will have in the design house.

S&C: Is there anything you've been hoping to use in a clients home? Maybe a color scheme, a style, pattern, or special piece of furniture or art?

VP: I would love to do a metallic ceiling. I also have a new fascination with art deco light fixtures.

We've seen your board for the porch at the design house. Any hints about how you're using those elements? I love the fabric you picked!

VP: Thanks. The gray and ivory striped fabric is for window treatments and the embroidered fabric is for a pair of chairs.

Thanks to Victoria for taking the time to answer my questions and to Charlottesville based photographer Chris Scott for these wonderful images!

You can come see a Victoria Pouncey room in person next month at the 2011 Charlottesville Design House in Crozet!
[Share to Pinterest]

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Wedding Wednesday: Bridal Fashion Week

I'm getting more questions and advice about my wedding gown than ever right now. One of the more interesting pieces of advice I've heard is that once you have your gown, you must stop looking at them. Perhaps that's good advice for some, but I find it totally impossible. I know what I'll be wearing on my wedding day, but still enjoy seeing gowns on blogs, TV shows, and in bridal magazines.

For the past few days, I've been enjoying tweets from the Bridal Market, which is like fashion week for the bridal industry. Darcy Miller, editor of Martha Stewart Weddings has been posting iphone pictures to her blog for the past few days. The editor of Bridal Guide is doing the same via Twitter. The very best coverage of all seems to be coming from Weddings Unveiled Magazine (yes, I've mentioned them before...when I find something I like, I tend to gush over it).

Editor Emily Howard's twitter feed has been chock full of pictures and commentary from the shows. It's as good as having a play-by-play announcer. Within hours, the magazine's blog has professional pictures (far better than the camera phone shots others have posted) of every look. There's so much eye candy!

Pardon to departure from home talk, but here is the first (and possibly only) set of Small & Chic Bridal Fashion Awards. Click the links to see the full collections on the Weddings Unveiled blog. They are still posting ones have appeared since I started writing this blog entry!

Best Use of Asymmetry: Amsale

The "I Could Stare at this Collection All Day" Award: Reem Acra

The Glamour Award: Romona Keveza

Okay, it's not bridal, but click through to see the rest of the amazing collection. GREEN is coming! Mark my words.

The Pretty Award: Rivini

Every single dress is pretty. Love it.

The "Your mother's wedding gown might be cool after all" Award:
Legends by Romona Kevaza

 This looks a lot like my mother's wedding gown from the 1960s.

Best Use of Color: Oscar de la Renta

The "I would like to live in your studio" Award: Modern Trousseau

The Confidence Award: Marchesa
 Click through to check out dresses so gorgeous the models can stand on cardboard and look great.

The "This collection is too pretty for there to be empty seats" Award: Anne Barge

Forgive me, but I have three less than gushing awards to give. I'm no expert, but even I have noticed some interesting things about these three collections:

The "Didn't we see all of these dresses last year" Award: Watters

I swear half of the dresses in this collection are "inspired" by last year's Vera Wang collection
(or maybe even the White by Vera Wang collection)

The Departure Award: Priscilla of Boston
What is this? If this is where they go, I'm afraid for their future.

The "What Happened?" Award: Monique Lhuillier

Some stuffing gowns, but why does some of Monique's collection looking more like Pnina Tornai's these days?

All images from the utterly amazing blog, Completely Unveiled,
written by the editors of Weddings Unveiled magazine.
[Share to Pinterest]