2.27.2013

Dress to Decor: Oscars 2013

There were some amazingly beautiful gowns on the red carpet this past Sunday, am I right? Where else can you wear a gown like the one Jennifer Lawrence was wearing but the Academy Awards? Never mind that her dress was so voluminous that she tripped over it on stage– she played that off so well. She's hilarious.

After these award shows, I like to play a little game with myself to see if I can find rooms that reinterpret the amazing fashion as home decor. It's always a challenge!

Jessica Chastain

Reese Witherspoon


Naomi Watts

Catherine Zeta Jones

Amanda Seyfried


* Cheers to being halfway through the week! *

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2.25.2013

We Accidentally Bought a Dining Table- Again!

I'm nothing if not an opportunistic shopper. I like to go to thrift stores just for fun to see if they have any treasure. Usually if I'm actually looking for something like I was this weekend– a filing cabinet– I can't find it. Does this happen to anyone else?

Anyway, this weekend we decided to check out a street in a nearby suburb that has six thrift stores. I figured it would be the Park Avenue of thrifting, but I was wrong. The stores weren't great, and hardly any of them had furniture at all. Most were filled to the brim with clothes, which doesn't do me any good since I like to look for home stuff at the thrift store.

Discouraged, I decided to swing by my tried-and-true thrift store, CCA Resale, who always has a big furniture section. And an hour later, I walked out with a filing cabinet new dining table. How does this stuff happen?!

Well, let's see. Right when I walked in, they told me they were offering 40% off one item in the store because they were celebrating their 40th anniversary. That piqued my interest right away, of course.

The front of the store was filled with what seemed to be brand new dining tables. Turns out that this thrift store gets a weekly delivery from Haverty's, who likes to donate their floor models. I was specifically drawn to these two because they were done in my favorite finish– driftwood.

Lakewood Leg Table from Haverty's

Lakeview Gathering Table from Haverty's

Each table is still sold at Haverty's right now for $900. Here they are, calling my name:


As much as I love a bar height table, our current dining chairs are regular height, so I was interested in the lower, rectangular table. I looked at it closely and couldn't find any damage. (Yay!) Then I googled the product name on my phone so I could see how much it was selling for. You've got to do your research, right?

The thrift store price was half off normal price, so $450. When you added the 40% off coupon to the equation, the price came down to $270. That equates to 70% off the regular $900 price. Not too shabby!

The husband was waiting outside in the car, so I told him to park the car and come in so we could look at the table together. If you've been following this blog for awhile, you know that we bought a new dining table just over a year ago at the Pottery Barn outlet. It was an awesome bargain and a really nice table, and I've enjoyed it ever since. I didn't know I needed a new table until I saw this one that I liked more. That happens to me a lot. Haha!

We decided we could probably sell our current table on Craigslist, so it wasn't really a risk to buy a new table. I felt like the driftwood table was more "me" than our Pottery Barn table, probably because I love that grey finish so much. Plus I knew it would coordinate really nicely with our driftwood dining chairs from World Market.

The husband was easily convinced because he knows I'm always right. Ha! I wish. But he liked the price and thought the table was solid and well-made, so he agreed to the purchase.

We got the table home, and it made itself right at home.






What do you think? Do you like it better than our Pottery Barn table? I'm happy to report that I sold that Pottery Barn table on Craigslist immediately and it found a very happy home. Everybody wins!

* Happy Monday *
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2.22.2013

Randoms & Happy Weekend

Hooray for Friday! Do you have fun plans this weekend?

We are looking forward to hanging at home after last weekend's trip to Orlando. If you follow me on Instagram (JordanG106), you saw some Epcot pics! It was very fun but VERY cold. I had to go into the Disney store to buy a beanie for my poor, freezing head. I never thought I would need one on my Florida getaway! I'm amazed I was able to find this plain black one without a Mickey Mouse on it or something...

(I was being my usual self–a big dork– in this picture. We stuffed ourselves inside a red phone booth in the "England" section of the world tour at Epcot.)


***

I'm on the hunt for a filing cabinet. Exciting, I know. Ideally I would love to stumble upon an awesome vintage filing cabinet with some industrial character. I saw this one on Craiglist and loved the bright color, but there is no way I would pay $200! How about $20 instead?


My "filing cabinet" search did turn up this beautiful antique cabinet on Craigslist. Isn't it COOL? I would love to have this but I don't have $1,800 to throw around and I have no place to put it!



I discovered a street in one of our neighboring suburbs that has 7 thrift stores on it! I'm going to go on a mega-thrifting adventure tomorrow as I search for the perfect filing cabinet. 

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If you have an extra 30 minutes, you should check out this NY Times article about how junk food is scientifically engineered to be addictive. It's a fascinating read. (And you'll really need 30 minutes because the article is THAT long!)

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My brother is a high school basketball coach at our old high school, and his team made national news this week when his team (Franklin High) passed the ball to a special needs player on the other team (Coronado High) so that he could make a basket on senior night. It was a really touching moment. It's supposed to be on CBS Evening News tonight! I don't know if my brother will be featured, but he said it was an amazing moment that he'll never forget.

***

* Have an amazing weekend! *


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2.19.2013

A Bit of Wedding Awesomeness

Whew!

I'm sorry for the lack of blog posts lately– last week I had a business trip in Phoenix and a personal trip to Florida for the wedding of one of my oldest friends. We got back last night. The week before that I was in Washington, DC for work. There wasn't really time to take a breath, let alone blog!

Anyway, I fell in love with a particular element at my friend's wedding and couldn't wait to share it with you today. She was going for a classic, Southern plantation-inspired wedding with lots of cream, white and burlap. She told me she would be using a lot of magnolias, but I had no idea it would look like this:

Follow me on Instagram at jgrantham106!
The florist transformed the poles of the tent into magnolia trees using grapevine and the branches of real magnolia trees! Isn't the effect fantastic? It's the coolest wedding element I have seen in a long time. They had four trees surrounding the dance floor.



The southern theme carried into the bridesmaid bouquets, each of which were wrapped with a monogrammed handkerchief. As the matron of honor said, "The only problem was that we couldn't use the hankies when we teared up!"


The sweetheart table had a beautiful flower arrangement and monogram, too. There were potted magnolia trees on either side of the table.



The entire wedding was stunning! Here are a couple of other fun ideas I stole from the event:

• Use pictures of the bride and groom at different ages on each table to correspond with the table numbers (bride and groom at age 7 on table 7, age 14 on table 14, etc). 

• Give out fun, personalized sunglasses to keep the party going late into the night. They make for great photo opps!


The best part was reuniting with my best friends from childhood! I haven't lived in Florida since 8th grade, but I can pick up with these three like I just left. It's an incredible blessing to still be friends 13 years later.


I hope you had a lovely weekend! I'm grateful to have a bit of downtime between road trips so I can catch up on things around the house. The husband has his spring break coming up, so we're working on a list of honey-do house projects I can share with you on this blog. 

* Tired Tuesday *

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2.11.2013

Valentine's Day Gift Ideas for Your Man

Valentine's Day is four days away. Do you have a little something picked out for your other half?

Yes, there are hearts on some of these items– but they are man-approved hearts! Very subtle, masculine hearts...

Valentine's Day Gift Ideas for Men


First of all, men don't like to buy themselves socks. So if you're going to get them a small gift, you can't go wrong with those. If your other half insists on having a recliner, if may as well be this super sleek and stylish one from West Elm. That leather would get better with age! My husband is a huge fan of Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey, and every guy likes to feel cool by having designated "drinking" glasses. (Or maybe just my husband?) The old-school Stanley thermos is stylish in that I'm-not-trying-to-hard way that most men (and women) are always trying to perfect. It has fantastic reviews on Amazon.

If you're going to buy him boxer shorts with hearts on it, the manliest ones are black and white. Speaking of shorts, I've heard my husband rave on and on about those Under Armour ones above, so they must be pretty good. He wears them all the time to coach football in the crazy Texas heat. That gear clock from ZGallerie just screams Man Cave, doesn't it? Those Man Cans not only come in masculine scents, but each purchase gives back to the less fortunate. Now that's a quality gift.

Lastly, we all know the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. I've given my husband that basket of cookies before– they were gone instantly. That Beef Jerky kit is amazing... I'm definitely filing that away as a future gift idea. I feel like beef jerky is a man food, just like a cranberry walnut salad is a woman food. Right?!

* Manly man gifts *
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2.09.2013

Randoms, FREE Valentine's Day Prints & Happy Weekend

Traveling to Washington, DC for business made this week fly by in a blur! I have a few days to rest and recuperate before I go to Pheonix on Sunday. I'm racking up some serious Rapid Rewards points this month!

Speaking of Rapid Rewards points... If you are a member of the Southwest Airlines loyalty program and like to get points any way you can, I recommend doing a couple of things to get extra points:

1) Sign up for Rapid Rewards Email Updates. Today's email alerted me that I can get 1,250-3,000 extra points if I buy Valentine's Day flowers through the Southwest/Teleflora partnership. If you're going to buy flowers anyway, you might as well get bonus points!

2) Sign up for Rapid Rewards Shopping. If you're an online shopper, you can earn all sorts of points on the items you buy.

3) Sign up for Rapid Rewards Dining. We eat out a lot, so we've been earning extra points by going to some of our favorite restaurants that are partnered with Southwest. Macaroni Grill is the main one we visit (half-price wine on Thursdays, woohoo!).

We also have the Rapid Rewards Credit Card, which is how we earn the majority of our points. We also scope out the Southwest website for deals on hotels and rental cars when we book trips. The other day we got 1,000 points for buying our TurboTax through their website, which was great because we always do our taxes with TurboTax anyway. Win/win!

I'm not being paid by Southwest to mention this stuff– just thought I would share how we try to make the most of that rewards system. 

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Last weekend I made some pink and white tissue flowers just for kicks. Aren't they cute? Just a fun little touch of pink for Valentine's Day...


***
I got bored on my flight back from DC, so I decided to make some simple Valentine's Day prints. You can download them and print them out for your own house!

This first one was inspired by Duck Dynasty, one of our favorite shows. Let's hear it for wholesome TV! (One of the main characters always uses the phrase "Happy, happy, happy."
 Download this print for FREE here.  
I call this one "Love Nest." 
Download this FREE print here.


***

Check out these links for Valentine's Day projects on this blog from past years...










And of course our latest chalkboard door, decked out in the languages of love.


Last year I made these heart cookies out of Oreo Cakesters, and my husband basically thought they were the best thing ever created. This year I'm going with these peanut butter & Reeses heart cookies. They look AMAZING, don't you think? I'm a sucker for anything with Reeses. 

theartnaptime.com

Well, I'm off to start packing for my next trip... Have a great weekend!

* Sleep-in Saturday *
 


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2.06.2013

Dress to Decor!

Last year, I started re-imagining my favorite Hollywood gowns as rooms. Now that the fancy gowns are out in full force again, I thought I'd try again with some of my favorite looks I've seen lately.

diane kruger

dress to decor

jessica chastain

amy adams

Fun, right?

I can't wait for the Golden Globes and the Oscars so I can drool over more fabulous dresses!

* Still in Washington, DC... It's far too cold up here! *

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2.04.2013

My Work Space

Good morning! I'm in Washington, D.C. for work this week, so please forgive the random posting schedule. Next week I go to Tempe, Arizona for work and then to Orlando for a wedding. It's going to be quite a whirlwind month!

I decided to put my thrifted brass campaign-style magazine rack in my home office/art studio, so I thought I'd share a few pictures of what my tiny little work space looks like right now.

It's a small nook tucked between our living room and dining room. The previous owners closed in a small patio to make this office space.



I haven't had any theme in mind with this room– just surrounded by little things that I love.


My art and office supplies are thrown into small metal buckets from the Target $1 section. I have a piece of ribbon strung above my desk where I can clip some of my illustrations and favorite photos. 


I love how that picture really shows off our textured walls. NOT! Oh, 1979... 

The floor is covered with a cowhide I picked up at the Canton flea market.
 

"Look Mom, I'm invisible!"
 

The wall opposite the desk feature Ikea cabinets that hold our books and more of my art supplies. It's impossible to have too much storage!
 


It's a very functional little nook, and it's one of my favorite spots in the house. None of the other homes in our neighborhood have this little room since the previous owners did it as an addition, and it makes a huge difference in how big our living/dining room feels. I know some of our neighbors also want to close in their patio so that they can have additional living space like this. (A lot of us in this neighborhood have very similar 1979 floorplans– lucky us!)

I'm really happy with the "bling" that the brass magazine rack brings to the room. It's just a little unique touch that gives the room more personality, and I love that. I should mention that I painted the interior with black paint so that the raw wood wasn't showing anymore. It's much improved!

In case you're wondering, here's where I got the other things in the room:

• Desk and chair: Pottery Bark Outlet
• Wall-mounted magazine rack: Marshalls
• Cabinets/bookshelf: Ikea
• Acrylic easel: CB2
• Pencil art: Pottery Barn
• Rug: flea market
• Brass magazine rack: thrift store
• Metal buckets: Target
• Desk lamp: HomeGoods

* Happy Monday! *



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