Sunday, August 28, 2011

First Haircut

Although she’s almost three and a half, our granddaughter, Moussia recently got her first real haircut. (Yes, I know this is a design blog but I couldn’t resist sharing). Hope you enjoy the photos as much as I enjoy being her Savta!
Above: before haircut...

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Coffee Lovers Unite!

Hi. My name is Rita...and I'm a coffee addict.

My friends and family know--I'm totally hooked. I get my fix twice a day. The Starbucks employees and I are on a first name basis. On my trip to Portland this summer, I chose the hotel that had a Starbucks in its lobby.

So here is a post dedicated to that wonderful beverage, and all the fun ways to drink it.
Here are some of my favorites.

I think these are great since they combine my love of typography with my love of coffee.
Left to right: Diner styling in a cream color cup with the word "coffee" embossed from Crate and Barrel.  The Etsy shop, Daily Grinder's mug says it all. Anthropologie's monogrammed mugs are a classic and great for that large cup of coffee.

Left to right: This mug is perfection from Starbuck's latest collection. You can't go wrong with this turquoise 365+ mug for only $2.99 at Ikea. This is my own coffee mug that I snatched up at Starbucks on sale for $1.99 a few years back-- love the peek of color on the inside.

Left to right: One of my favorite stores in New York is Fishs Eddy and that's where I found this New York Times crossword mug. How fun would this polka dot mug from Crate and Barrel be for breakfast? Love the earthy rustic feel of these Etsy mugs from kboriginals.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Silhouette Art

Years ago, there was a local artist doing silhouettes as a fundraiser for a school in our area. Fast forward about fifteen years later and these silhouettes of my son and daughter are still my favorite artwork in my home. I love the simplicity of the design, and that the artist captures the essence of the child with nothing more than a sheet of black paper and a pair of very sharp scissors!

Silhouette art is pretty hot in design these days. These paper-cut works of art became popular in the 18th century and have made a comeback. Here are some artists I found that are reasonably priced and do beautiful work. Consider one for your own home-- it also makes a great gift.

 Le Papier studio on

Le Papier

 Pretty Faces on


Friday, August 12, 2011

Direct from Mexico

I stumbled upon this web site six years ago when I was looking for a star light fixture for my front hall. It's become a favorite of mine for unusual home decor items that are hard to find--at least here in the Northeast. Here are a few of my favorites...

Clockwise from bottom left:

This is the Mexican Hanging Star fixture I chose for my front hall.  At under $100, it's well priced for a lot of impact.

As you now know from my previous post, I love anything round so these blue/green glass grazing balls would be great in a garden.

This Aged Tin Round Petal mirror would be charming in a bedroom.

How about a set of these Hand blown turquoise bubble glasses on a Chanukah dinner table?

These rustic iron candle holders would be very chic used as Shabbos candle sticks in a contemporary or rustic home.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The One Shape That Stands Up to Any Material

I’m not sure what it is that draws me to orbs of different sizes and materials. Maybe it’s the simplicity of the shape or the fact that it can take an ordinary material and transform it into something special.

Here are globes of different sizes and textures in my own home.

 These moss spheres were purchased at Pottery Barn a few years ago.

The large seashell sphere was a gift from The Bombay Company, the typography spheres were recently purchased at Pier One Imports. Each one symbolizes a letter from a member of my family.

A combination of marble and Mystic Chinese Chiming balls sit in a pearled bowl. 

I love the organic feel of these sliced twig globes from Michael's crafts.

I also love to incorporate the sphere shape outdoors in the garden…

 Zinc leaf spheres are from Restoration Hardware.

You can actually make these concrete garden spheres yourself. Check out to see step by step directions.

And, I found more great ideas on Pinterest...

 Fabulous display using antique pool balls.

Love the soft, organic feel of these balls of yarn.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Sun room, layer by layer

After living in this house for almost six years, I decided it was finally time to finish our sun room. What a difference a few touches like curtains and accessories can make!

Here is what it looked liked when we first moved into our home.

For the first layer I added a natural fiber rug, which works well in an enclosed porch.

Next came the furniture which I found on Craig's List. I painted the bamboo frames of the sofa and chairs chocolate brown. The cushions were reupholstered in a spring green cotton. (Wish I had "before" pics but this was done long before I knew I'd be blogging!)

Below is a detail of the coffee table that you may remember from my "What can you do with a place mat?" post. If you'd like to read about it, click here.

The most dramatic change was the addition of white sheer curtain panels. They soften the whole space, and change the quality of light that floods into the sun room.

Accessories add soul and personality to any room. I love incorporating organic materials whenever possible to bring the outdoors in.

It's a great spot to relax "bug-free" and still enjoy the outdoors.
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