Tuesday, September 28, 2010

guest room mood board

i’m a very visual person, so when i start decorating any room in the house, i always create a mood board (a technique i picked up from yhl).  before i started using mood boards, i used to send all these different e-mails to myself from each store’s website so that i could remember items that i liked.  but, since this was a little confusing and hard to keep organized before, i hate to think of what a mess it would be now on baby-limited sleep.  i would also (and still do) create shopping lists at each of the home décor store sites that i frequent. 

if a brick and mortar store exists for whatever i have chosen, i usually end up picking it up in person.  but, i actually really hate shopping and hate crowds even more, so online browsing definitely beats hoofing it around town to a million different stores in my free time.
for the mood boards, i use powerpoint to copy and paste pictures of the items. since i do about 99% of my home décor window shopping online, i also embed a link back to whatever websites that i found them on so that i can easily keep track of price changes and availability.

without further ado, here's the guest room mood board:

Thursday, September 16, 2010

method to the madness

one of the items on my labor day weekend to-do list was renovating my guest room. i managed to get a lot done, but i have to admit that i am still not completely finished. this was my first project post-babylove, and guess what i learned? a) babies don’t like the sound of a drill b) babies don’t like competing with home decorating for mommy’s attention, or c) all of the above. if you guessed “c”, you win the prize.

thankfully, my husband was able to keep her pre-occupied for most of the day. but it was still very slow going just because i am the murphy’s law magnet when it comes to anything do-it-yourself related.

hopefully, i’ll be able to reveal the completed room this month, but until then, here’s a little peek into how the design idea for this room came into being:

i really love the décor eye candy that a nice hotel room provides. my husband and i did a lot of travelling last year, and at each place that we stayed, i tried to figure out what it was that i liked most about the rooms so that i could recreate it in our guest room back home. even though i like the basic “blank slate” that hotels provide, i knew that i also wanted to add details to personalize our space and give it a comfy feel.  i loved the casual comfort and local décor in this cabo san lucas hotel room:

the peek-a-boo window looks into the bath area

view from the other side

but i also really like the ornate feel of this room that we stayed in for a friend's wedding.
my guest room reno kind of stalled out for awhile as i tried to figure out what i wanted to do with the room. then, since the space was fully furnished (although not decorated the way i wanted) it got totally pushed to the backburner when i got pregnant and started planning babylove’s nursery.
i ended up deciding that i wanted the guest room to have a modern but eclectic “world traveler” vibe.  i also prowled the internets looking for ideas. things really started to gel for me when i found these two pictures:

the first picture is by designer waldo fernandez and WOW! i am in love with the colors and the contrast between the clean lines and bold geometric patterns and the livable furniture.

the second picture is kinda sucky because it’s a picture that i took with my phone while i was watching tv. i was laying in bed one night watching the the dvr'ed last episode of the hills when i literally had to rewind, then pause, put down my sleeping baby and take a picture of this lovely scene at kristin’s alleged house. even with the source list, i don’t have a major television channel bankrolling my decorating budget, so i wasn’t going to simply buy everything that she had.

for me, half the fun of recreating a room that i love is being able to find similar items and get the same look for a fraction of the price.  kinda like this, but for your home instead of your wardrobe.  hotels have deep pockets and get price breaks for buying in bulk so there’s usually no way that i’m trying to buy the exact items that they have.

so that's a little overview of how the design of this room came together.  once the room itself is together, you can see if i was able to pull it off.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

james bond swag

it's been a while since my husband and i have been to the movies together. we have netflix, so unless a movie is supposed to be really good (like, the last two twilight movies, both of which i saw at the theater despite having to endure frequent pregnancy-induced bathroom breaks)* we usually just wait for the movie to come to us rather than going to it. i had seen commercials for the movie, takers, and immediately liked the "look" of the movie. because of the baby, we couldn't go see it on opening weekend, which i usually like to do. but, this past friday, my sister was nice enough to watch babylove for us so that we could go on our little movie date.

we ended up going to a theater at the local outlet mall since it was closest to her house. we ended up lost in teenage date land, plus we missed the first five minutes of the movie (boo!). the plot, about a ring of sophisticated thieves, was decent enough, but it was well worth it just to take in all the visuals. in addition tothe clothes, flashy cars and the man candy (which i totally did not notice btw), the guys' homes had the coolest design schemes, very james bond swag. i couldn't find good screen shots of them from the movie, but here are a few pictures so that you can visualize:

there was also this really cool rat-packish lounge that the group would hang out in with dim lighting, dark leather furniture and built-in wall safes and vodka martinis (shaken, not stirred).

one of the more climactic scenes in the movie took place at the historic roosevelt hotel in hollywood. we actually walked right by the hotel on our trip to lala land in june, but didn't think to go in. i kinda figured it would have outdated decor and furniture with hard cushions that you can't get comfortable on no matter how hard you try. missed out on that experience.

so, that was my take on takers, lots of eye candy of various types and a fun date night for all involved.

*since my husband is not a twilight fan, i had to disqualify him from attending with me...i'm sure he really cared. ;-)

Friday, September 03, 2010

labor days

for a while after i had my little one, each day was consumed by everything baby-related.  by the time i had fed, bathed, dressed, changed, fed, played with and put the baby to bed, i would look up and my entire day would be gone.  things started to get a little better….until i went back to work.  then i ended up a sleep-deprived zombie shuffling through each phase of my day until crashing in bed each evening.  five and a half months in, i’m happy to report that i’m FINALLY getting back to normal and feeling more like myself.  which means i’ve got a ton of projects planned for my new-old house that had fallen by the wayside during my baby growing/birthing.  my physical energy level still hasn’t quite caught up to my mental, so for this upcoming holiday weekend i’ve picked just a couple of projects that i hope to get done without pooping out.

redo the guest room
our guest room has come a long way.  for a good year or so after we moved in, it was that room where the door basically stayed closed because i was too embarrassed to let anyone see the stash of boxes, unopened wedding gifts and random stuff that we had in there.

get rid of some clothes
i already have a little box of clothes that i’ve been meaning to take to goodwill for the past i don’t know how long.  before i got pregnant, we had planned on doing a big overhaul of the closet in our master bedroom and i’ve been using the fact that it hasn’t happened yet as an excuse to hold onto a bunch more clothes that need to go as well.  after reading this post i might try to add a few more things to the box.

i have several piles of clean laundry lying around that i need to hang up and put away.  my husband, who has a ton of clothes, is really great at doing the laundry (read: he is great at operating the washer and dryer). from there, the clothes usually end up living on the couch or the guest room bed until he needs to wear them.  i’m a little guilty of this as well, but  in our defense, the current closet setup kind of sucks.  hopefully after the reno it will be more functional and easier to use.  in the meantime, i still need all the clean clothes off of the bed so that i can make my guest room nice and lovely for all of those nice, lovely house guests that we hardly ever have sleep over.

that shouldn’t be too much for me to get done in a three-day weekend, right?

wishful thinking

Thursday, September 02, 2010

type a

 in addition to being a new mommy of my sweet little babylove, i'm a full-time worker bee and also volunteer with a few charity organizations in the houston area.  i've always been the type of person that loves to give back.  i do feel very blessed and grateful for everything that i have.  but even when i had nothing but time,  there's something that i've always liked about getting out and helping others.  all throughout my pregnancy i was on the go-heading to this meeting or that gala or using weekends to catch up on phone calls to this and that committee.  with a new baby taking up what little free time i have, you might wonder why i even bother to keep up the extra-curriculars.

most of the charities that i have worked with focus on some sort of health disparity, which is an issue that i personally find really interesting.  i also really like the networking aspect of meeting people from different backgrounds and having the shared experience of making a change in the community.  for the first time since i went back to work (in early june) i finally feel like i'm getting back to my regular self.  but even though i have had to cut down on a few outside commitments, i still can't seem to get rid of my addiction to multi-tasking.  that being said, i do place a lot more consideration into how i choose to spend my time.

lately this has led to my (slight) frustration in how things are playing out with some of my organizations.  i'm naturally a very motivated, goal-oriented person and i get super focused when it comes getting the job done.  on the flip side, i get a massive brain itch that i can't scratch when others can't seem to do the same.  yesterday, a girlfriend of mine asked me if i am a type a personality.  now while the definition does contain some parts that i don't have any problem with, calling someone type a isn't exactly regarded as a compliment.

i try to be a pretty self-aware person, so although i can cop to having a bit of that in me, i'm usually repeatedly reminding myself to take a step back, breathe, and play my role instead of trying to take things over and do them the way that i think that they should be done. 

but, just to make sure, i decided to take a personality test (i know, how "type a" of me).  i was glad to see that i am NOT a strictly type a person, but that i have a mixture of personality types.

courtesy of: http://discoveryhealth.queendom.com/type_a_personality_access.html