Design*Sponge Book Signing: LA

Posted by Jesyka D'Itri Marés on 1 Comment

306495_2346975086101_184396615_nI had the pleasure of going to the Design*Sponge book signing here in Los Angeles on Wednesday night. I was very excited to meet Grace Bonney, and have her sign the book I preordered!
I was late of course. Actually, I drove by it on time, but it took me 15 mins to find parking. Funnily enough, it was at the anthropologie that is closest to my house by miles, but I have never been to it. Why? Because it is in Beverly Hills, and even though Sherman Oaks is a border city, the fastest way to get there is to take canyons and if you want to park anywhere it will cost you in both time and money. I’d rather drive the extra miles on the freeways to Glendale or Topanga for my anthro fix. Although, now that I’ve been there I can tell they have a large selection of merchandise, so it might be nice to pop over there when there is no traffic and there might be parking. But still. East Valley wants an anthro people! Put it next to our UO. Thanks. ♥

I always enjoy anthropologie’s displays. Even Tyler does! We both routinely take photos of them. I think I’ve already said this here somewhere, but anthro is my favorite store, and has been since I was FIFTEEN (when all my peers were like OMG Contempo! Wet Seal! Forever 21! … Forever was totally different in the 90s ppl), and I walked into the flagship store on 3rd street. I don’t even know how many were around then, but it was 1997, or maybe 98. I felt like someone had walked into my brain, determined my aesthetic turned it into a store. Finally a store for ME, except, totally not in a 15 year old’s budget (and not really in this just-turned-29-the-other-day’s budget either…). I still have the first thing I ever bought from there — years after first walking into the store — a green pinstriped skirt. In college, my decision to choose visual anthropology as a second major may have even been 1% influenced by this store… (but mostly, I think it was because I had a similar “it’s like they are in my brain!” moment when I took my first anthro class). My dream while-in-college job was to be an anthro display artist, but alas, I got stuck as a waitress (see below). So, naturally I had to take in the displays here, and don’t you love that fringe at the top of those walls?! Made out of jersey, probably just from old T-shirts bought at a thrift store or something. Jersey does that wonderful bending thing at the edges that makes it drape so nicely when it has a raw edge (if you know anything about knitting, you know you can’t straight knit the right side with out it curling—this is called a “jersey” knit), which is why it lends itself so well to those cool fabric necklaces. Of course, I just thought of doing this sort of treatment on the projector wall in my house, and I see it at anthro before I can get around to doing it, but whatevs. Confetti System’s influence is really going strong! I’ve also ben thinking about stenciling our pendant table in the kitchen. It is horribly scratched and since it will be our main “dining” table, it needs some love! I was happy to see this idea in action at anthro…

Andy Richards was also there with a few of her friends, and so we got to design-geek out together. I saw Joy Cho right before I left, who was looking gorgeous and adorably pregnant, but I totally chickened out of having a photo taken with her, or even saying hello! I didn’t want to come off like a stalker… I suppose I’m much more star stuck by the internet famous designers than celebrities. I was a waitress at a famous biker restaurant, The Rock Store, on Mullholland. I waited on James Cameron, Ewan McGreggor, Arnold Swarz., have given “Jay” his coffee, etc… well, I could go on all day about all the celebrity connections to my family and my life (connections which pretty much everyone in LA has), but needless to say, despite all of these comfortable interactions with well known celebrities I get much more excited about being in the presence of design stars (and possibly J.K. Rowling–what is she keeping from us in her head?!). And I also understood that Joy is pregnant, and might be uncomfortable and doesn’t want to be hounded by admirers. But mostly I chickened out… And did I chat with Grace? Nope! I just think about how she must be tired and talked out. I’m probably not giving her enough credit though, because really—she’s doing a book tour! I’m sure she wants to chat with people! Andy asked if I mentioned my features and of course I didn’t! What if she didn’t remember? She can’t be expected to recall everything that has  been on her site. It would be embarrassing for both of us… This is totally the only thing I am shy about. Really, I’m a confident woman, honest! >.<

Anyway, the book! Is it too obvious to say love this book? Well, too bad. I love it. The first thing I noticed about it is it has a beautiful gold foil illustration on the cover. It has hundreds of pages of house tours, every one with details as inspiring as the last. It also has pages of DIY projects! But I would have to say my personal favorite thing about this book is the flower workshop! Okay, can you handle more background info? For some reason this post is full of it… I’ve done floral arrangements a few times in my life; when I was in college and working a production artist for an event design company, I would get called into the floral department periodically when help was needed. I would say about a third of my time was spent there! Also, my aunt and uncle own a by appointment only flower shop on little Santa Monica across from the Peninsula hotel (very close to where this book signing was). I helped them do my sister’s wedding flowers, and then I did my own wedding flowers. But when I bring home flowers from Trader Joes I am never pleased with my arrangements, so I find the flower workshop section very useful! It has all sorts of tips on vases, fillers, textures, and instructions on how to make virtually any arrangement possible! There is also great DIY basics section with guides for everything from rewiring a lamp, sewing tips,  and how to paint furniture, and a guide to assessing your used furniture which I have already put into action. There is also a terrarium how-to which I will SO be doing soon. :)

This book, along with the Domino book, is a book that everyone should have in their home. These home tours are not the homes of the rich and famous; they are mostly the homes of everyday people, who have lovingly filled their homes with everyday objects. And that is what is so wonderful about it, and about what I believe the internet has done for interior design. We are no longer  subject to thinking that our homes are not beautiful if they don’t look like they got spit out of a catalogue or if they don’t look like the houses of the rich and famous. The internet gives us glimpses into more and more homes, whereas before how many real homes did you see? Even out of all the people you know, whose homes have you actually been inside of? With websites like Design*Sponge, we see multiple real homes a day, and we realize all can have a beautiful home! (I do wonder if this will fuel “fast-fashion” in the home though…)

Check out the trailer for the book. I don’t know if I’m just emotional right now, or it’s the song, but I totally almost choked up watching it.

The Midas Touch

Posted by Jesyka D'Itri Marés on 10 Comments

Firstly, I must say I love gold. Yellow gold. I definitely feel like the only woman under 50 with a gold wedding set (albeit, with a platinum setting). Moreover, I’ve got a thing for white & gold. I’m making a few direction boards (I think that’s the best way to put it) for our living room + workspace. Each board will have 3 items in common: our couch, our black-brown billy bookcases and our blue curtains. Everything else can come or go, regardless of whether or not we already own it. This is the first board I made finished for living room + workspace. It completely revolves around saving The Hutch.

Saving the hutch you say? Yes. We’re very dedicated to making the wall the hutch once occupied into a faux built-in w/ bookshelves. Currently, it sits on the wall opposite, but I’m not really sure how to make it work in our new layout (not that we have settled on one yet); it certainly won’t be ideal. Also, I feel like it’s a little difficult to make it work with our curtains, although I think this board helped me to see past that. When I made the paint color on the hutch, I just kinda followed my gut, so I didn’t consider what I had already going on… So, there is the possibility of selling it, and surprisingly I’m TOTALLY okay with it. I’m not attached to it. I feel like it was a really fun turn around and if I sell it, I might be able to invite more where that came from!

Of course, now that I have made this board, keeping it wouldn’t be so hard now, would it?

(*if it’s crossed out, we own it*)

1) Our Hutch: Yep. The starting point. Gotta make it work with the curtains.

2) DwellStudio Vintage Plumes in CamelI’m a huge DwellStudio fangirl, and this just sits so well with everything on this board. Yellows? √. Teals? √. Powdery gray blue? I can’t really tell… But tons of bonus points for having a peacock motif to double back to the anthro pillow… This fabric = EXPENSIVE for a girl who is used to quilter’s cotton prices. If I bought it, it would be used sparingly and in places where it can make the most impact.

3) boston functional library wall light: For my wall of bookcases or to go over a corkboard. Will I buy these exact ones? Um, not unless I score a crazy deal. But they are my inspiration. :)

4) Anthropologie’s Cloisonne Chrysanthemum Pull: I actually already have one of these, because I bought it when I was choosing knobs for the hutch. It has been in a “return” bag for six months now. I can use these on the bookcases or other places that need new hardware.

5) IKEA SANELA Curtains: These look so blue on IKEA’s website, but they are much more teal in person (I color adjusted accordingly for this board). Perhaps it is because mine are 3.5 years old they have replaced them with a more clear blue? Whatever. We have six panels and they aren’t going anywhere. Since they are the only thing that I refuse to replace, all the color inspiration comes from here. Or rather, must tie back to these. Also, mayhaps I want to paint the curtain rods gold?! Could def be overboard. But it could also be awesome.  >.>  /  <.<

6) IKEA BILLY Bookcases: I lurve them. Who doesn’t?! I have memories of my parents buying white ones when I was a child and IKEA meant I get to go swim in plastic balls. We have three in black-brown. Four will fit perfectly on our wall. We don’t know the exact combo we’ll have yet, but I did buy two extension units yesterday! I have plans to put some fancy pendant pulls on the doors. :)

7) Brass Table Lamp: This is gorgeous. I’d love to have two on a console table behind the sofa, but it has to remain simply inspiration…

8) My Awesome Chesterfield sofaOH this is the most expensive thing we have ever purchased for the house, and I don’t think it was even that much, considering what we got;  $900 + $200 (?) for the nail head trim. We had it made by custom sofa design, here in Los Angeles. I believe we had it made in the grade 3 fabric queen, buckwheat color. It is microfiber and, although I  usually have super crunchy mama tendencies,  I have to say this fabric is AMAZING! Everything, and I mean everything, wipes off of it. Ketchup, pen, red wine, crayon… you name it, I’ve wiped it off of this couch. I’m always astonished by how it ends up so clean! Great for a couch, great for kids.

9) Anna Maria Horner Stencil Seaweed Embroidered PillowIt brings the yellow in. And we all know how much I ♥ AMH so I like to see this to a homage to all of the AMH that was once in this room…

10) Sunburst Mirror: I bought this from Target in store for $17.99. It’s totally not gold. I had to spray paint it. However, I discovered yesterday that Layla Grace carries pretty much the exact same mirror. Given that the photo is essentially the same (except Target put in a digital gradient to fake out a mirror), I’m willing to bet Target knocked off the mirror that Layla Grace carries. Also, I’m willing to bet that the mirror from Layla Grace is actually gold. The mirror from LG has 17″ on Target’s mirror, but Target’s costs a whopping $290 less.
Target’s Home ORB Sunburst Metal Mirror
Layla Grace’s Sunburst Wall Mirror

11) Anthropologie’s Iridescent Plumage Pillow: Teal velvet to match the curtains, and a little of the powder blue from the hutch, and yellow to compliment the golds. I fear I may have to actually shell out for this to tie the whole room together. Luckily, as my brother is working at UO again while he goes back to school (good for him!), I have the friends and family discount card back in my life. YAY! It’s been too long.

12) Arteriors Othello Iron/Mirror Coffee Table: While we can’t (ever?) afford this exact table, it would be our inspiration. The hubs is set on building a coffee table (*squee* I just get really excited that he’s into a project with me…)

13) DwellStudio Gold Triangles Glass Vases: These things are rightfully getting a lot of love on pinterest. I’m not short on the love. I’m also thinking of adding gold to my apothecary jars somehow.

14) Globes: I love globes. I have one, and I want more. I’ve ALWAYS wanted to wallpaper my office w/ one wall as a map, but I still don’t think it’s the right time for that. (Although, I feel like globes and maps are trending, so I do hope I still want to do that when the opportunity finally arises.) This globe is particularly beautiful and I love the stand, and you can bet I’ll be scouring flea markets for something similar.
From bellalulu vintage on etsy.

15) DwellStudio Tubular Burst Object: I’m in love with this burst object. It’s like a little brass tree. I want a huge one for my future backyard. And this one to put on a shelf and stare at it all day.

16) Zig Zag Tray: I don’t actually own this tray. I have it on this board to represent the gold and white chevron box I made, and all the other things I could make like this. Also, it’s a thing of beauty and deserves recognition. What I particularly love about this tray is how the chevron is offset, which is very similar to the contact paper I used on the hutch.
Gold Leaf Zig Zag Tray by Susan Dwyer of up in the air somewhere.

17) Brass Boom Floor Lamp: I don’t own this exact lamp, but the one I own is very similar. I bought a brass boom floor lamp about a year ago from Home Goods. Then I returned it, because it was missing arm, and all they had left were some oil rubbed bronze ones, which I reluctantly bought and it definitely really just looks black. I’ve been thinking about spray painting it brass/gold/what-have-you to brighten it up. This is low on the priority list as it looks fine as-is too.
Image: edwardian boom arm floor lamp via circa lighting.

18) Danish Modern Lounge Chair: I need more mid-century in my life. I have one dresser that I bought in 2002, and that’s it. I feel like it also helps the room from being too sweet (my biggest problem with the hutch). A yellow chair is what I think this room needs, if we go with this board. It would be fun trying to hunt a couple of these down for an affordable price! :) (I suppose if I really just need some chairs, these could work).

19) Gold Metallic Pouf: I just need one of these in my life. Extra seating when we need it!

20) DwellStudio Gate Azure/Cream Rug: Normally I love a rug to have a zillion colors in it, but something about the way this coordinates w/ the hutch and the rest of the richer colors elsewhere makes me attracted to using this here. Oh guess what? SHOCK. Out of my price range again. Sooo, you know the drill, let it inspire you or stalk it until it becomes affordable (for you)!

21) Saint-Raphael Travel Poster: I bought this  in college when travel posters were all the rage. (I think I bought from World Market, but  there are plenty on the internet). I always wonder about keeping it, but Tyler pointed out that it totally works on this board! And it does, especially with the gold IKEA frame. I’ve always loved that tree!

Now, looking at this board I feel: (green=pro, red=con)
• I’d be extremely pleased if it came to life…
… yet I still feel like I can push it a little further!
This came together effortlessly, leading me to feel like I’d actually be able to make the room effortlessly.
• I am nervous about having a limited color pallet. This would be the most limited pallet in the whole house. Where are the reds??! How will my rainbow bookshelves look?
The limited color pallet will help the room look less chaotic considering all that will go on in this room.
What color will I paint these walls? I’ve really been leaning towards a pale teal blue for the curtains to pop off of (the background color of the board; making the background color the paint color is an idea I got from laybabylay. What a good idea! You can really get an idea how things are affected by the wall color), but I fear it will clash horribly with the hutch, and I don’t like the idea of one wall being a different color! We will already have the. whole back wall covered by dark bookcases. Thoughts anyone? Bueller?

Living + Workspace Series:
• (09/15/11) Living + Workspace Layouts
• (10/04/11) Building Our Own Coffee Table
• (10/13/11) Living + Workspace; Built-in Sketches
• (11/11/11) Living + Workspace Update
• (11/14/11) Bookcases 
• (11/22/11) Painting a Projector Screen
• (03/30/12) Before + After: Antique Lamp
• (04/06/12) Before + After: Front Door
• (06/19/12) Living + Workspace: Current Layout and Mood
• (06/20/12) Living + Workspace: A Revealing Update



Paired Hearts: Stacey + Anthoni

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 This invitation set from Paired Hearts features burlap and fabric cut outs stitched onto heavyweight letterpress paper! Beth also made the table cards and programs in the same style. My favorite detail is the fabric flowers! I just love them.

A Laelia Outfit #16; Goodbye Summer

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As we are experiencing our last few days of summer here, we are sad to goodbye to Laelia’s bathing suit for a while.

swimsuit: Janie and Jack
ruffle trimmed terrycloth hoodie: BabyGap
sunglasses: Janie and Jack  

Also, I just added a little illustration + graphic for these posts. :) I’m going to add it to all previous Laelia’s outfits as well!

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