Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Fabulous Lamps....For Less!

 Guys, Lamps are expensive. I'm sure you already know that,
but if not, you heard it here first.

Lamps that are actually attractive are even more expensive.
It's like retailers have caught on to the fact that you need more of this item than anything else in
your home.

With that in mind, I put together a list of pretty lamps under $250.

Take a gander.

 Regina Andrew "White Glass Ripple" table lamp, Macy's
Original Price: $300 Sale Price: $209.99

I love this white one, the shape is gorgeous and it's pretty, simple and glam.

Crestview "Starlight" Table Lamp, Macy's
Original Price: $160 Sale Price: $109.99

 19th Century Vintage Mercury Glass tall table lamp,

Mercury glass lamps add an extra something special to your rooms.
I love their antique look and soft lamp light makes them look wonderful.

 Bronze Pharmacy Lamp, Furbish Studio

This lamp, from one of my faves, Furbish Studio 
is so industrial and masculine. I love the bronze finish,
It would be perfect to add warmth to a room.

 Gold Gothic Revival Table Lamp, Shades of Light

This gold leaf quatrefoil lamp is so fun and modern, however
I think it would mix with antiques really nicely.

Peacock Aqua Glass Ball table lamp, Shades of Light

Turquoise is a universally flattering color.
This lamp would look fabulous no matter where you put it.

Ok, so now the frugalistas are rolling their eyes at me.
And they're all, "Lamps on a budget are well under $100!"

So here are a couple tips for lamp shopping under $100,
even under $50.

1. Scour your local TJ Maxx, Home Goods, Marshall's. They have great surplus stock of lamps that don't
sell in the department stores. I've found lamps for as little as $29.99. Sometimes they come with good shades, but if not, head over to Target and grab a simple white version for $15.

2. Look at antique malls, flea markets, garage sales, estate sales, etc for pretty vintage versions. If need be,
you can have them rewired, or find someone handy and have him grab a re-wiring kit a Home Depot.
Again, Simple White, Black or Flax Linen shades at Target work wonders.
Sometimes vintage shades are really cool, but more often than not they're stained and smelly.

 Happy Lamp Shopping!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Holiday Entertaining Extras

 Since every blogger and her mama is talking about Holiday Gift Guides right now,
I thought I'd do something a little different.

For a lot of people, the holidays aren't just about gift giving.
They're also about entertaining guests.

Anyone from your in-laws to your friends.
So I thought I would put together a list of five things to have on hand for guests.

The first is yummy smelling hand soap in a pretty container.
This seems obvious, but you go to so many people's homes where they barely 
bother to put a fresh bar of the 50 cent Dove out.

I love the cute packaging that Savon de Marseille comes in.
I think the lavender scent is extra yummy smelling.

If you buy ONE item for yourself this holiday season,

I swear they work.
Even on the cheapo $5 crap your stingy Aunt will bring over.

 Plus, they make a fun little sound with each glass you pour.

Pretty hand towels for the bathroom.
I love these two options from Leontine Linens.

 If you're not set to break the bank with Leontine,
try buying plain towels at your resident TJ Maxx/Marshalls
and having them monogrammed in a contrasting color for next to nothing
at a local monogram shop.
It's a cheap little upgrade and they make the towels just a bit more special.

 Pretty cheese knives.
I love this antiqued silver set from Pottery Barn.
They add a little glamour to your appetizer display.

I cannot stress this last suggestion enough.
Wonderful sheets for your guest bed.

You would not believe how many uncomfortable/scratchy sheet sets I've encountered at 
people's homes. It's the nicest surprise when you un-make the guest bed and the sheets are soft 
and lovely. It makes your whole experience better.
I love love love Serena & Lily sheets. They are so pretty and soft.
This new Carrot Diamondback pattern is darling,
and I'm a big fan of the Gobi embroidered sheets. I love the new coral colorway they come in.

If you're looking for a budget route, hop on over to the bedding section while you're picking up towels at TJ Maxx. They sell great inexpensive sheet sets.
The trick is to unzip the little plastic package they come in,
and stick your hand in to make sure they're extra soft.

Yes, I am the overzealous TJ Maxx customer that you've seen doing that.
Get over it, at least my guests are slumbering comfortably.

Happy Entertaining!

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Wedding Wednesday......A big pile of random.

How does everyone feel about my Wedding Wednesday's posts?
I know it seems sometime they're the only posts I get to each week.

Partly because I enjoy them so much-----Sometimes I think I should give up and just start a completely wedding related blog. And partly because Wednesday just seems to be a day where I can blog every week. I feel like I'm over the "hump".

I don't have anything really specific to contribute for this Wedding Wednesday, so I thought I'd give you a peek at my latest wedding inspiration that I've been pinning.

I'm jonesing for a few things right now.

 The first is black and white stripes, mixed with pops of gold.
It's so French and chic to me.

Simplistic, yet glamorous.

And I love an unexpected use of really natural looking centerpieces.
Lots of greenery and organic florals.

Going with the natural florals theme, I'm loving an 
incorporation of lavender.

And a completely outdoor wedding, complete
with strung white lights over the lacquered dance floor.
Weather permitting, of course.

I'm loving the idea of a formal event in a natural and understated setting,
adding touches of glamour with white lights, gold accents, and pretty details.

Every time I think about my ideal scenario,
I find myself conjuring images of Marie Antoinette (the Sofia Coppola version with K. Dunst, natch)
at her summer house, throwing lavish, but understated dinner parties.

Happy Hump Day!

Monday, November 19, 2012

A Tour of Fredericksburg

Every couple has their "place".
If I had to pick one place that's special to Brian and me as a couple,
it would be Fredericksburg, TX.

We started going there shortly after we began dating,
mainly because we were looking for a place to go for President's Day Weekend.
We needed something semi-close since we were only planning to go for one night.

And that was it for us.
We haven't stopped going back since.
I'd been once before as a little girl, but I barely remembered it.

I wrote about our first trip here.
And a return visit here.
I love that it's a quaint little country town.
But there's great wine and food.

And since we're both German, 
we LOVE that aspect of it.

I usually start getting the itch to visit in the fall, 
because it's the best place to go when the weather is cool.
We have a little routine when we go there.

We usually leave Fort Worth around 7:30 am, which lands us in Fredericksburg
around lunchtime.
We'll check in to our B&B and then head to lunch at Silver Creek.
They have a great patio, usually with live music on Saturdays.
Yummy, and casual German food and great beers.

 After I've given Brian a couple German beers,
I can usually convince him to browse with me through red,
a fabulous little vintage-modern home and gift shop.


In the afternoon, we'll head to wine tasting at our two favorite vineyards nearby.

Grape Creek vineyards is first.
I actually prefer it to every other vineyard in Fredericksburg.
The wine is fabulous and the atmosphere is perfect.
They have the best outdoor patio.

We usually head to Becker Vineyards in the early evening,
right as the sun is about to set.
They have wonderful wine as well, and the perfect patio for a beautiful Hill Country sunset.

We usually have dinner at Der Lindenbaum
a truly authentic German restaurant.
You feel as though you've been transported to another time.
It's magical.

We usually end the night with drinks at either House. Wine. 
or Lincoln Street Wine Bar.

They're both awesome in their own ways. House.Wine is small and intimate with a carefully curated menu. Lincoln Street has a great patio, a wonderful cheese selection, and great wines.

That's our unofficial trip "itinerary".

One thing I place major emphasis on before we take each trip to Fredericksburg is 
finding a great Bed and Breakfast to stay in.
Of course they have hotels, 
but it sort of defeats the experience of being in a quaint Hill Country town.

I am LOVING this B&B I found on VRBO recently,
It consists of two little cottages which you can rent separately or together.

And just look how picturesque it is.

It reminds me of something you'd find in New England.
So fresh and charming.

What's your favorite vacation spot?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Wedding Wednesday......A Paris Fantasy

 They say it can be very hard to take your eyes away from
a train-wreck.
I have the opposite problem. I have a very hard time looking at awful things,
but when something is really beautiful, it's hard to avert my eye-balls.

Such is the case with my most recent discovery of wedding inspiration eye-candy,
It's amazing.

It's written/photographed by an adorable French/American couple 
that are engagement and wedding photographers in where else,

Now, let's be real, most photographs are going to be pretty in
a backdrop like Paris.

But there's something about the easy, understated glamour that these artists bring 
to the mix.

Side note, How chic is this chick's outfit?
It reminds me of Anne Hathaway in Paris during Devil Wear's Prada

All images courtesy of One and Only Paris Photography

I've got to say, this blog immediately launched me into a pie-in-the-sky
fantasy about getting hitched in Paris.

If you are planning to get married across the pond, give this fabulous
couple a call.
If not, make sure you visit their blog so you can at least fantasize about a wedding
in Paris.

A girl can dream, right?