Monday, April 30, 2012

Quote of the Week

“Growth means change and change involves risk, stepping from the known to the unknown.” 

 {IMAGE SOURCES: 1|2|3|4|5}
I chose this quote today because I've been facing a lot of change in my life lately, which can sometimes be scary. But we'll never grow if we don't step outside of our comfort zone, right? This quote is so great because it can be applied in many different ways...change in the home / your decor; change in your career; change in yourself...

Friday, April 27, 2012

Happy Friday!

So glad to have made it through another week! I'm running out the door to meet a client this morning, so for lack of time to do a proper post, I'm sharing some recent pins that caught my eye and inspired me in one way or another. Have a great weekend! Any fun plans? Meet you back here next week :) xoxo - Julie

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Kitchen Makeover: A True Transformation!

We all love a good makeover, right?! It's just so fascinating to see how something can go from ugly and dated to shiny and new, whether it be an entire home, room or piece of furniture. This kitchen makeover is one of the best transformations I've seen in a while. It was designed by Style at Home editor-in-chief, Erin McLaughlin. She took the cluttered, claustrophobic kitchen with patterned wallpaper, brown wood cabinets and dingy ivory accents, and breathed new life into it. Focusing on white as the main color, Erin incorporated soft shades of watery blues to add contrast and keep the space from feeling too stark. What do you think? It's hard to believe that the before and after photos are of the same space! Click here to view the entire kitchen and read up on exactly how she transformed it. 


After! Amazing, right?!

Photography by Virginia Macdonald

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Inspiration Snapshot

I stumbled across this gorgeous living room and immediately pinned it for inspiration! Designed by Annsley McAleer of Annsley Interiors, this living room is fresh and inviting. The simple color palette really pops against the white walls and beautiful ceiling detail. Notice how she used (2) rugs in the space? It looks like the room has dark hardwood floors and she lightened things up with a large neutral rug then a small accent rug to bring in pattern. I'm always drawn to these colors...they're in my apartment (accented with pops of orange) and similar to what I did for the baby's nursery, which I'll be sharing SOON! What do you like about this space?


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Getting it Right: How to Successfully Mix Patterns

I met with a young couple last week for a design consultation and one of their main frustrations was how to mix patterns in their living room without it looking like a hodgepodge. I find this to be a common issue with many people, especially since there isn't one single "formula" to successfully mix and match various patterns and colors. However, if you take into consideration a few tips and things to look out for of when selecting pillows, rugs, and upholstery, it may be easier to pull off than you think! Once you start taking a closer look at spaces that successfully mix pattern, you'll notice that there will always be a balance of small, medium, large prints. I usually try starting off with the largest pattern first (usually on the drapery panels, area rug or upholstery), then layer in the medium-scaled pattern, followed by the smallest and / or solid patterns. Here are several great examples on how this can be done...

This eclectic living room has several different patterns going on but they all work together well. The largest is on the drapery panels and the design has more of a whimsical feel. The rug features a medium-scaled geometric pattern to give the room a modern touch and anchor the space. Smaller geometric printed pillows are mixed with a bold stripe on the upholstery. (Image source)

The subtle paisley pattern on the duvet cover keeps the space feeling feminine. It's paired with simple toile pillows banded in a bold navy blue. And the largest pattern is on the bench - you can never really go wrong with zebra print! (Image source)

The dining chairs have (3) different fabrics - a neutral one on the back, solid texture on the seat and bold geometric on the inside back. The tablecloth has a small pattern which adds to the eclectic mix. (Image source)

The bold chevron patterned rug really anchors the room and is where the designer used the largest pattern. Next wold be the medium sized lattice print on the chair. Then they layered in solid and smaller printed accent pillows in pops of color. (Image source)

The large-scale wallpaper print creates a focal point in this dining room, which is balanced out by medium scaled drapery panels (large polka dots and  medium stripes), and a nearly solid green rug. The solid rug and simple furniture keeps the room from feeling overwhelmed with pattern. (Image source)

How do you feel about mixing together several different patterns in a space? Any other tips or tips you'd like to share? 


Monday, April 23, 2012

Quote of the Week

"Color, texture and pattern, when combined 
with even just a few accessories, are every 
captivating room's secret weapon." 

- Susanna Salk, Be Your Own Decorator

{IMAGE SOURCES: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5}

Friday, April 20, 2012

Design Book Review: French Flair, Modern Vintage Interiors

You can never have too many gorgeous design books, right? There are stacks of them all around my apartment and I refer to them often for inspiration. When Rizzoli offered to send me an advanced copy of a FABULOUS new book that just hit the market, I was thrilled! The book is called French Flair, written and photographed by author and photographer S├ębastien Siraudeau. This book brings together the most unique and stylish interiors across France. From over 100 locations, it's packed with hundreds of stunning images (700+ pages worth!) of rooms decorated in an array of styles, each a fantastic find to take away design inspiration from. If you love the look of vintage and flea market finds mixed with modern and eclectic pieces, you will want this book! I took a few photos of my copy to give you a taste of what to expect...I know many of you will love what you see :) Pick up your copy here. Have a lovely weekend. Hope you're doing something fun! xoxo - Julie

"Let yourself be guided through the extraordinary destinations replete with French panache and inspiration...from rural guesthouses to charming antique shops to seaside retreats; enjoy them from the comforts of your own home or use the address book to plot your course to visit these rare and exceptional places in person." (Taken from the introduction).

{All images from the book French Flair}

Decorating Publisher: Flammarion / Distributor: Rizzoli 
ISBN: 978-2-08-020094-5

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Baby Bump Update + Fashion Cravings

Only 4 weeks left until I'm due! It's hard to believe my pregnancy is almost over. It's been an amazing experience and one that I've enjoyed very much (thanks to zero morning sickness and feeling great 99% of the time!). Everyone has told me the last month is the most uncomfortable and I'd have to agree. Simple things like putting lotion on my legs, getting off the sofa, or sleeping comfortably have become increasingly difficult. Aside from being able to move around freely once the baby is born, I'm really looking forward to wearing NORMAL CLOTHES! As soon as I can, I plan on hitting the gym full-time to work on getting my body back to what it was pre-baby (or close to, hopefully).

It's been hard seeing all of the adorable spring / summer clothes and not being able to buy anything, so today I've rounded up some fun items that I look forward to wearing in just a few short months (don't know about the bikini, but I had to include it for motivation!). What summer styles are you looking forward to wearing? What's your go to outfit on a warm spring or summer day?
A recent photo of me, taken just 2 weeks ago. I got a great deal on this dress last year at Loehmans and I was happy to discover that I could squeeze my pregnant belly into it! The shoes are from Target (comfy, cute and totally affordable).

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6
7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13


Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Designer Spotlight: Samantha Pynn

I recently discovered Samantha Pynn and adore her work! She's a decorator, stylist and the host and principal designer of Summer Home on HGTV Canada. She's also the Contributing Design Editor for STYLE AT HOME magazine. Her work is fresh and modern with a classic twist - right up my alley! I sifted through her portfolio and wanted to share some of my favorites with you. What do you think about Samantha's style? Click here to view her website and complete portfolio. Who are some of your favorite designers? I'm always looking for new names to feature right here on Belle Maison!

PHOTOGRAPHY BY Virginia Macdonald}