Wednesday, June 15, 2011

design obsession: lake house

i will be a bit "MIA" this week, as i am at a conference in minnesota. SO, in honor of the "land of 10,000 lakes," and to tide you over, feast your eyes on this incredible lake house, featured in house beautiful. this one's in alabama, but you get the idea. makes me want to escape and stare at the water for a good hour or two.

...happy sophisticating...

Monday, June 13, 2011

tidbit: lovely landscape

the husband and i did some yard work this's coming along!
we aren't quite HERE've got to have something to shoot for, after all :)

love the grand simplicity of it all--the boxwoods, the topiaries, and that porch? to die for.
photo courtesy of canadian house & home.

...happy sophisticating...

Thursday, June 9, 2011

tidbit: preppy paradise

this fabulous space was designed by none other than tommy smythe, the quippy & always entertaining "design sidekick" of sarah's house fame.

check out the full house tour over at apartment therapy!

if you haven't seen the hgtv show, do yourself a favor and sophisticate your dvr space.

fabulous design
witty banter
the comfort of your own home
something cooler than your current saturday afternoon plans

...happy sophistcating...

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

obsession: sophistcated cleaning products

i know...i am SUCH a dork. BUT i am a firm believer that a sophisticated home, is a CLEAN home. i couldn't title this one a "design obsession" because i feel i need to be more honest than that. i can get a little nutty over cleaning products. i'm publishing this post at the risk of everyone i know expecting my house to be spotless all the time...or knowing better and thinking i'm a hypocrite. truth be told, i am no "martha stewart," but i do love a good "tidy" and these products, oddly enough, make the process almost enjoyable!

...happy cleaning, er, sophisticating...
i think i keep clorox in business with these bad boys. SO easy--i use them on everything. counters, floors, walls...whatever. they are "all natural"--not sure what that means, but it makes me feel a little superior. fully compostable, not too smelly and work like a charm. these have a permanent home on the counter.

ladies and gentlemen, i present my secret weapon. the eureka quick-up cordless vacuum. this is a great "pre-deep-clean" or "in-between-deep-cleans" tool. with hardwood floors and two puppies, i use it almost every day and it is incredible! great on carpets, too!

this is hands down, THE best wood floor cleaner out there. spray and mop (with the fancy micro-fiber moppy thing that comes with it) and your wood floors have never looked cleaner or more conditioned. makes the whole place just sparkle.

i hate smelly cleaning products, but i love products that actually do what they are supposed to. so consequently, i am obsessed with williams sonoma pink grapefruit products. your house will smell so fresh...almost magical.

washing windows is my favorite. why? instant gratification! it was dirty, now it's clean. love. enter williams sonoma microfiber spray window washer. whaaaat? too fabulous for words.

this is a big "duh." these things are insane. you THOUGHT you needed touch up paint, but really, you just needed a magic eraser. i have these on hand at all times. keeps everything looking new and freshly painted.

it's just hand soap, but it cleans like a dream--no grimy residue--and smells SO fresh. even perfumeaphobes will admit...this scent is heavenly!

now tidy up ;)

Monday, June 6, 2011

tidbit: sunflower heaven

i have been putting off planting some iceberg roses...and these photos make me wish i could just fast forward to THIS:

ADORE the rustic diamond pattern. love the dining area nestled amidst the sunflowers. couldn't you just sit there for hours and hours?

love these planting beds and the old tin containers as planters. heaven!
photos courtesy of house beautiful.

...happy sophisticating...

Thursday, June 2, 2011

design obsession: barn doors

sorry for my brief absence--i was busy planning a commencement celebration for about 10,000 of my closest friends. :)

but i'm back! and with one of my favorite design obsessions to date.
barn doors.
i could go on and on.

before my husband and i purchased our little cottage, we put several offers in on the most fabulous loft spaces. i had BIG plans for incorporating some barn doors into our space but, alas, 'twas not meant to be. SO, here is a sneak peak at my inspiration photos.

i love them for the following reasons:
1. they are more interesting than your average door.
2. they are practical: now you see it, now you don't---with no bulkiness invading your living space when they are open.
3. they can go rustic OR modern.
4. they just look fabulous.

...happy sophisticating...


these make such a beautiful design statement, while being so practical. i LOVE the whitewashing.

yellow! what a fun way to infuse the room with color. and that track is a work of art in its own right.
photo courtesy of

such a fabulous, space-saving idea for an itty bitty bathroom. love the vintage, claw foot tub with the modern spout, and more modern barn doors.
design by max levy.

what a clever way to close off an indoor/outdoor space. perfectly weathered to match the decor.
photo courtesy of southern living.

what a way to jazz up a pocket door!
photo courtesy of sunset magazine.

made from oak wine barrels. wow.

a new way to hide kitchen clutter during a dinner party. LOVE that modern aesthetic.

i love that this warm wood is one of the only shots of color in the room. stark and industrial meets rich and organic. brilliant.
photo courtesy of house beautiful.

probably my favorite hardware of all time. so fresh and clean!
photo courtesy of house beautiful.

love love love this neutral aesthetic and love the wood detailing on the door! it looks like a union jack flag!
photo courtesy of habitat girl.

so fresh and modern!
by feldman architecture.

another shot of yellow. gorgeous!

i love how the blue is picked up by that artwork above the drafting table. love this color palate and love that hardware!

glossy red = fabulous!
photo courtesy of bestor architecture.

a more modern take---check out that hardware!
courtesy of bartels usa.

so rustic. so fabulous.
photo courtesy of design sponge.

this might be my favorite. the neutral aesthetic of the room is so serene---but what a brilliant way to handle two doors in a corner! gorgeous.
by darryl carter.