Thursday, August 5, 2010

Music to Design By

I am working away in my home office today. On the to do list is to design window treatments for my wonderful clients, "Mr. and Mrs. Smith."

They like clean simple lines, nothing too fussy, with not a lot of trim or embellishments. We have installed Hunter Douglas Silhouettes in the family room and the living room - and they love them.

Silhouettes provide just enough softness, light control, and privacy. In fact "Mr. and Mrs. Smith" could probably stop at the Silhouette level but I think that the space needs softness that drapery panels will provide.

It is a beautiful summer day and I am enjoying a little music as I sketch a few ideas. i am a huge fan of sketches. Sketches really help work out all the little details and are a wonderful tool to help clients get a feel for how something will look.

I thought you might enjoy some music for your work day too. A little something to design by...

A little John Mayer

"Mr. and Mrs. Smith's" Living Room

Kasmir Silk 1040 in Caramel for the window treatment and I am hooked on this Kasmir Taj Mahal Finial.

I love glass finials!!

Sketch 1

Sketch 2

I will keep working away....


Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Fun Stuff for the Day

I, like other designers, am constantly on the look out for "things." I am constantly searching and scanning for what is beautiful, or unique, or what just speaks to me.

On one level I receive instant gratification from seeing something wonderful; my heart skips a quick beat and I smile - just to see something pretty. And on another level I am always working, always searching for new materials or ideas for my designs.

Funny how the creative mind works. Or maybe it's just my mind...I see a chair, or a table, or a piece of wall covering, and in a flash ... I can feel and see the imaginary room weave together.

Interior design is tactile too. When I shop, I am touching everything. I probably drive store owners absolutely crazy. I need to know how it feels. Smooth, rough, sharp, soft, fuzzy....

We designers are so fortunate! We have one of the BEST JOBS IN THE WORLD!!! We have the opportunity to work with all the FUN STUFF!!!

And in that vein, I thought I would share a few fun things that I saw this morning while perusing a catalog with my morning coffee. Hope you like my Tuesday morning pics. :)

Okay, I like this chair. Take off on my all time favorite - the classic Mies van der Rohe Barcelona Chair.

I need to feel the upholstery - love the coffee sacks as fabric - love the graphic (ex typographer that I am) but are they itchy?

(and the lamp - its gotta go!)

Love this stool! I know... I know... stools everywhere...overdone. I still like them - especially this one. Good size @ 16"d , flat top, indoor and outdoor, recycled aluminum, and a good price.

How fun is this?? In my fantasy world I could make all these individual flowers in my spare time. Continuing with my fantasy, I will sew them together this winter while the snow is flying outside and I am curled up in front of that new fireplace my hubby is going to install.

This bag is available in yellow and brown. I would opt for the brown - I like the contrast. Could be fun to change the scarf.

Hope you like my pics for the day.
I am off to design pillows. Seriously, I am!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Early August in the Garden

Guess who's coming to dinner at Sandy's garden???? Yep! Bambie.

Our main garden is fenced. I dug down 9" and buried chicken wire to keep our monster groundhog and the deer out. Our far back garden is not currently enclosed. It's trouble.

We have deer droppings all around the corn. They are just waiting for it to get ready. I was that close to having corn this year. Our plants have quite a few ears and I was so hopeful.

My friend Mark suggested that I try Liquid Fence around the corn - so I ran to the store and bought some. I marched out to the corn and began spraying. OMG - how disgusting is this stuff. Smells like a mixture of urine, feces and skunk - if you can imagine that. It is supposed to stop smelling after an hour or so...and it did. Thank goodness (I expected a visit from our neighbors.) It was just difficult to apply - not for the faint of stomach.

And perhaps it will work. I have not seen damage from the deer. I did however catch someone else chomping away - big as life on Sunday morning. Read on to see who....

Liquid Fence

My happy crop of tomatoes. Look out, we are going to have a ton. In the past I have canned tomatoes but lately I have just frozen them - seems easier.

The tomatoes are growing well. I have just a few brown leaves. The vines are heavy with fruit, and I do mean heavy. The mortgage lifter tomatoes are huge! Can't wait.

One of my favorite summer breakfasts is an egg, cottage cheese, fried potatoes and FRESH TOMATOES! YUM!!

We have harvested some new potatoes and they are the creamiest potatoes I have ever eaten. These are replants from last years crop that sprouted. It worked! I just dug the trenches and planted the sprouting babies. They grew like crazy and have now died back.

The evil, wicked cucumber beetle.

It eats the leaves, stems, and root structure, destroying plants. See the squash stem below.

I have gotten a few squash from my plants and they taste great but my supply is about to end. The cucumber beetles have attacked the plants and left behind wilt. Note the stem - it is totally disintegrated and the plant will starve and fall off. :(

Black beans. They are growing like crazy and have lots of beans on the plants. There is damage from the Japanese Beetles. The bean pods are starting to turn yellow. I will keep tracking them to determine when to harvest for drying.

What is happening this year with Japanese Beetles??? It's like a plague or something.

Black beans in the pod.

Blue Lake Green Beans.

We have had a wonderful crop and it's still going strong. We keep picking but can barely keep up. I think they are on the menu again tonight. I need to search for an exciting green bean recipe.

Red Peppers.

These are growing well. The shape is throwing me off a bit. I thought that I planted red peppers...and these may get there but the elongated shape makes me think of a hot pepper.

Wonderful crop of cabbage. We had coleslaw last night that was so fresh and tasted excellent.

Yummy Coleslaw

1 small head of cabbage, shredded

1/2 c. chopped green pepper

1/2 c. chopped onion

3 tbs. mayonnaise

2 tbs. vinegar

1 tbs. sugar

1/4 tsp. salt

4 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled

In a large bowl combine cabbage, green pepper and onion. In a small bowl combine mayonnaise, vinegar, sugar and salt. Pour over cabbage mixture and toss to coat. Cover and chill for 4 hours. Stir in bacon just before serving.


It's outside the fence so it's in the danger zone. I think it has a week or so to go. Will it survive?

THE GROUNDHOG! %$#@&%!@*&!!

Seriously, this creature has tortured me for 5 years and he just won't go away. Why should he? I feed him so well.

We bought a have a heart trap to catch him and take him away to a groundhog playground somewhere else. Instead we caught a possum, many squirrels, a raccoon, and then a skunk. That was the end of trying to catch him. The skunk was difficult to get rid of.

I hadn't seen him all year and hoped that he had passed away from old age and we were FREE!! Not so. I saw him early Sunday morning chomping away on the fallen apples.

An hour or so later...I saw a stalk of corn waving in the distance just above the ground...I crept over to see what was happening. The fat groundhog was merrily eating away at an ear of corn with the stalk broken over. UGH! He ran for his hole and dived in.

I, in turn, ran into the house and collected all the used cat litter that I could find to pour down the hole. A pioneer would simply shoot the thing and make it into stew or something.

I helped my uncle skin one when I was about 8 or so. Maybe that's why I'm a vegetarian now.

See video below for how I feel. It's a fantasy.

So, I checked the Internet once again for remedies. I suppress the fantasies of buying a gun and shooting it; instead I bought Epsom Salt and went around the garden (on top of the gross liquid fence.) Gun...Epsom Salts...Gun...Epsom Salts. I would probably shoot myself - it's safer with Epsom Salts.

I will reapply often. :)

My happy corn waiting to get ripe. Out of desperation to beat the rodent to our bounty, we cooked some fresh corn last night. It was just a bit early but still yummy.

Nice size corn patch this year. Wish it was fenced.

See where someone has eaten the silks?

And on a happy note...the marigolds that I grew from seed are huge and lovely.

I was able to cut flowers last night and make a few vases for around the house. That's what brings me joy.

Happy Summer!!

PS-Just returned from New Hampshire and Cape Cod. Did you see that they have sharks in Cape Cod? I had heard about the sightings and I understand that the sharks are in the area to dine on seals. I saw 3 seals at the pier in Chatham swimming and playing last week. Hope they stay safe.

Monomoy Island