Saturday, December 20, 2014

Holiday Holiday!

(Scout wanted to help decorate, but she had little trouble with the tinsel garland...)

Woof, Woof, Woof, Woof
Merry Christmas to you and yours!  See you in the New Year!

xo. m
zoe, scout & fam

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Custom Framing an Original Bookplate with Framebridge

Have you guys heard about the new online custom framing company, Framebridge?  They offer quick, easy, affordable, and professional custom framing right from home!  I previously posted on how awesome their materials are, you can read about that here.  Today I am revealing my project: custom framing an Original Book Plate of an Osprey with Framebridge!!  If you've been wondering how it all works, read on:  I'm going to go through all the steps to show you just how fun and easy online custom framing can be!

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All you need to get started is your art piece, a measuring tape, and a smartphone.  Just add the Framebridge App to your smartphone and follow the simple directions: photograph your artwork, set the width measurement, and choose a frame!  They frame your piece in all of their frame styles so you can see how your art looks in each one.

The selections they offer are both classic and contemporary, perfect for any interior design project!  Not sure what to choose?  They offer a "Designer's Choice" option for those with less experience or little background in framing design, where a designer will choose the three best options and send them to you for approval!  Or to give you a little direction, try using the "Cheat Sheet:" it includes examples of different types of art and what frames go best with each one.

I selected the Georgetown frame with a white mat (you have a choice of white or off-white mat).  This piece is going in my Son's room (style board here, room reveal here), which is a Colonial/Frontier/Western theme and all the frames are either white or antique gold, so the classic Georgetown frame is the perfect choice!  Before you are done, you can add special instructions to your piece for the framer and you can even share your project with family and friends.  Here's how the preview looks up close:

My favorite part of the design process was using the "Preview on Wall" feature to see how the finished piece will look in the room.  It projects your project right on the wall, showing exactly how it will look!

Once you have ordered your frame and mat, you can select to package the item in your own secure packaging, or have Framebridge send you a mailer tube or a flat mailer box designed just for shipping art.  I wanted to speed up the process, so I choose to ship the item in my own packaging.

I used a sleeve around the artwork and taped the sleeve in the middle of a larger foam core piece (so it wouldn't slide around) then sandwiched it between the foam core, taped the foam core together, and slid it into a bubble mailer.  I made sure to write FRAGILE DO NOT BEND on the front an back of the parcel.  Drop the package off at a UPS facility near you and once that's done, all you have to do is sit back, relax and wait for Frambridge to do all the hard work!  Can't wait to see how it turns out!

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I was so excited when the package from Framebridge showed up on my doorstep!!!

Time to get the scissors and see how my project turned out!

WOW!  Look how secure the piece is inside the box!  I was very impressed with the package design and so was my Mechanical Engineer husband.  Nothing is going to happen to this piece!

I was, of course, very careful when taking it out: cutting the tape and removing the bubble wrap...almost there... it's so exciting!

...1, 2, 3, ta-da!!!

It's gorgeous!!!!  It looks just like the preview on the Framebridge App!  I am more than happy with the final result!  Take a look at how good the Acrylic looks too!  Some of you might be nervous to try Acrylic, but it's nothing to shy away from.  Framebridge uses an archive safe UV blocking Acrylic, a lighter and safer (shatter-resistant) option to glass (doesn't that sound perfect baby rooms?!).  Many Fine Art Museums choose acrylic over glass for those same reasons, not to mention it's perfect for large pieces and artwork that gets moved frequently.  I have always wanted to try Acrylic, and was so excited to try it here; and let me tell you, it looks great!!  It's crystal clrear and you can't even tell the difference between the acrylic and other pieces I have framed with glass.

How good does this Book Plate look in their Georgetown frame?!

To top it off, Framebridge sent along a Care Package which included a nail and hook, a card describing "Caring For Your Art," as well as some fun extras!  Framebridge went above and beyond and took care of it all!

I was so excited to hang this piece in my Son's baby room!  I love how it turned out, just stunning!!

Hope you enjoyed this "How To" Custom Frame Online with, be sure to check out their Website and App.  Try something of yours out - it really is too much fun!

xo. m

Thursday, December 11, 2014

A Living Room With Invaluable

I recently discovered a wonderful new website for buying Fine Art Originals and other items,  They have unique art pieces, antiques and and more for sale.  Best of all, a majority of their paintings are signed originals!  (I even found two original Edgar Payne paintings!!!!  I'm in heaven!)  In this post, I designed a Style Board around a work of Original Art from Invaluable.  I was able to browse their selection and pick a painting that inspired me.  The piece I picked is an original unsigned oil painting called "Portrait of a Cavalier" by Daniel Mytens the Elder {9}, c. 1629.  Visit Invaluable's painting page here for more great works of art.

As far as contemporary originals go, small pieces start at around $800 (which was the price of this piece at auction when I started writing).  This painting is a different category altogether, being a priceless antique, but I just wanted to give you a frame of reference if you are unfamiliar with shopping for original paintings.   This artwork in particular is incredible beautiful, a nice size AND it comes with a gorgeous frame!!  Anyone can buy a print for $20, but owning an original, with real paint and canvas - it's priceless!!  There's nothing like getting up close and personal to an original painting with the thick paint, visible brush strokes, luscious texture and details.  I know it can seem expensive and daunting at first, but saving up is so worth it!  Plus it's like having a museum in your living room!

I designed this room specifically around this work of art {9}.  I wanted to keep the feeling moody and dark, so I chose a dark blue paint color.  I brought out the gold of the frame as well as the green and raw umber tones in the clothing into these two pillows {4} & {6}, and the rug {15}.  I also tied the wall color into the rug {15} and into this pillow {5}.  The blue pillow adds a nice contrast and pop with it's pattern of light and dark and really compliments the wall color.  I kept the wood cabinet {7} and leather chair {11} dark, to keep the moody feeling.  The rug {15}, with it's texture and filigree, and the Lyre {13} both have lighter tones which accent the gilded frame.  This would be an excellent room to display guitars in for those with a musical touch.  Loving the Cast Iron Switch Plate Cover {1}, and the worn Vintage Cream Can {16} (which could also be used to store umbrellas!)

Stop by Invaluable to see what other amazing antique art finds they have to offer!

xo. m


Monday, December 1, 2014

Tyger Tyger Burning Bright | Nursery

The title here is from the Poem, "The Tyger," by William Blake.  I took a few english classes in college, and this poem by William Blake really stood out to me - probably partly because Blake was also an artist.  He illustrated his writings like this one {6} and even some passages from the Bible.  

Read the poem, "The Tyger,here.  

I just can't get enough of this stunning tiger print {15}, so I had to feature it again today (also featured here).  The Acanthus Pendant Lamp {2} is gorgeous, and believe it or not, it's affordable too!  I LOVE library lights!!  Check out the Bookshelf Light {12} and the Swing Arm Sconces {3} - both of them are shown in Brass tones.  I created a new Pinboard all about Brass Fixtures you can see here.

The crib shown here also converts into a beautiful toddler bed!!  I love rooms that can grow with children, and this room with it's convertible crib and sophisticated details is sure to do so!

More inspiration on this theme here:

xo. m


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Wild Child | Nursery

I love this wallpaperZebras shown in in Black, by Scalamandre!!  I have seen so many cute interiors with it, more specifically, {this one} and {this one}.  I was inspired to create this board mostly after seeing these adorable {leggings} which match the baby blanket {15} shown here.  LOVE the other adorable tiger baby blanket {7}; the print reminds me of children's book illustrations.  I'm a sucker for cute stuffed animals, how perfect is this white tiger plushie{11}?!

Also, {this blouse} is just perfect for a little wild child.  I love all the clothes in {this} Etsy shop:

Very excited about the upcoming collaboration with Framebridge, see post about it {here}.  AND stop by my Fine Art Blog ( on Wednesday for some Pre-Raphaelite Art Inspiration!

Don't forget to stop by my pin board for Toddler Bed ideas for this room, and for other Wild inspiration:

xo. m


Monday, November 17, 2014

Online Custom Framing with Framebridge

Have you heard about the new online custom framing company, Framebridge?

 They make custom framing convenient right from home on your computer.    Never sacrificing quality by using only the highest craftsmanship and materials, and all with a fast turnaround.    I'll be partnering with Framebridge over the next few weeks working on a custom framing project and documenting all the steps along the way.  You'll be able to see how safe, quick, easy and convenient it can be!

Not to mention, it's great for us moms, with little to no time, Framebridge makes custom framing a reality.  They can even print your personal photos, frame them and mail them to you right from their shop (including Instagram photos), how convenient!  Thinking about what to get friends and family for Christmas?   You could have a photo or a piece of artwork custom framed through Framebridge, a special gift indeed! 

The website is gorgeous, easy to navigate, and fun!  It's great if you are an artist too, what a wonderful company to refer to clients, many of whom have little to no experience with custom framing.  Additionally, people who have always wanted to try out custom framing, but never have can rest assured, Framebridge takes care of all the hard parts for you, so you have nothing to worry about!  And best of all - they do everything for one great price!!

Having a background in Fine Art and having worked at a framing company before becoming a full-time working from home artist, I know quality when it comes to custom framing!  If you need more proof: all of their materials are archive safe, a majority their frames are made of hardwood, and all pieces automatically come with UV protection!  Meaning, your art is in good hands!

So please stop by the Framebridge website,, and in the meantime, look forward to the post I will be collaborating on with them soon!

xo. m

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Tiki Room | Bathroom

 Loving this wallpaper by Hanson & Co.!  This board was inspired by the gorgeous photograph of the toucan and the brass hexagon towel ring.   Brass fixtures can be absolutely gorgeous with the right color scheme.   Here against all the black and kelly green and warm wood tones, brass fixtures work really well.   I was recently asked if it is okay to mix fixture materials/finishes, and here's my openion: I think it is okay to do as long as you have some unity.  Notice the fixture on the sink is not brass, but all the other fixtures shown are and I think it works.   In terms of unity I would recommend getting a brass towel bar to match the rest of the wall fixtures, like the one shown below:

  In this board, I was imagining the black wall color painted on a Craftsman style wall moulding.  I love Craftsman moulding!  The simplicity of it, with it's characteristic large planks and gaps, is a nice contrast to all the texture from the wallpaper.  Let's talk flooring:  I would go with a very dark gray or variegated black 12 x 24 tile and off set the layout.    A hexagon floor tile would be a nice touch also!  Be careful with solid black floor tiles and dark grout, it could make the room look awfully dark.  Whether you go with dark gray or black floor tiles get a contrasting grout like a medium to dark gray or lighter gray, as shown in the style board above.  White grout might be too striking, so toning it down is a good idea.  Using a contrasting grout will make sure there is some visible pattern/texture to the floor.  This bathroom with it's striking wallpaper and dark tones is not for the faint of heart.  In this case, go bold or go home!

 Hope you enjoyed this bathroom inspiration just as much as I do!

 Mix-and-match with these ideas from my Tiki Room pin board:

xo. m


10.  Ottoman

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Wilderness Workspace

A little workspace inspiration today!  This version is for a girl, but if you change out the notebooks {14} and the headdress {7} for something more boy, this space would work great for a boy too!  I love the idea of having an air plant on the desk {11}, I have one on mine and I adore it.  It is pretty hard to kill, and would make a great first plant!  {3} and {14} are DIY projects, I especially adore {14} -- what a cute way to customize and label notebooks!  Outdoorsy Paint by Numbers {10} work well in this space, so you can get creative and try some others out too.  

Buffalos are such magnificent animals, I would love to paint them someday -- had to pick an art piece that included one {6} especially since they are one of the animals featured on the gorgeous "Animal" wall paper shown here by Beware the Moon.  Baskets like this one {15} are great for organization and still show off what's inside it, love the idea of storing notebooks in it!  Other ideas on what to put in it could be a pencil pouch, school books, stuffed animals, pillows or a blanket.  Don't be afraid to combine a few things!  Check out more creative ideas for this room on my Pinboard, {here}.

xo. m


Tuesday, October 28, 2014

New Baby Gift Guide for the Eco-Conscious Mom! (Gender Neutral Too!)

Organic & Gender Neutral, you cant go wrong!  With Christmas around the corner, and Baby Showers too, thought this inspiration might come in handy.  These items are from my favorite Etsy shops, so don't forget to visit the shop where you can see more items along the same lines!  

Everything really speaks for itself here, but I just want to highlight a few things:  I have bought teether toys like the one in the top left before, but this one crinkles!!!  My son is 4 months old now and anything that crinkles is an instant hit!  Cute organic teether + crinkle = 1UP!  I included a fun "Hello Baby" card and Confetti too if you need inspiration for a special greeting.  Love recycled glass jars like this one - perfect for mom's who like organization: great for storing binky clips, snappis and other small baby items.  Last item I want to point out is the Organic Cotton Teething Necklace for Mom -- what a way to make her feel special thats also baby practical too!  With friends and family adding little ones, hope this gives an added kick of inspiration to your baby gift shopping list!

xo. m

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Click Here for Links

Thursday, October 16, 2014

The New Yorker | Nursery

LOVING this board today!!  So much to talk about here.  I got a request for a Custom Style Board from a reader, and I was just tickled!!  She wanted a design for a little girl, but didn't want things overly girly, with more neutral colors.  She has this awesome contemporary bear fine art original (not pictured) - I wanted to tie in the bear so I threw in a few different bears and other animals {5}, {9}, {11}, {15} and {23}.  I also pulled out a few things from her favorite boards, the pendant {1} from {this board}, the wood accents inspired from {this board}, and bright color pops and animals gleaned {here} & {here}.

Have a crush on {this} cloud mobile.  I want one for our son's room to hang above the changing table since he LOVES the mobile over his crib.  Isn't it darling??  

I am such a big fan of illustration, especially vintage illustration - and let's get real, this is a CITY people, so featuring the vintage "The New Yorker" cover BIG and LOUD as the center of attention over the crib was appropriate.  I was inspired by {this image} which has the same poster!  Just adore {these textiles}, any of them would go so well here, and they are all wonderfully neutral!  How about this brass A {8}, Art Deco anyone?  Great Pinterest board on Art Deco I follow {here}.  This one is an ornament - why not re-purpose as wall art?  Other great A's: Typography A {10} and Marquee Sign {12} are featured as well.  I find I can never get enough of sharing of baby's name and precious initials!

 For the aqua wall color I was envisioning it only being painted on 1/3 of either one or three of the walls.   See {this style board} for the same idea and  read the post for links to images examples of a partially painted wall.

How great is the giant Wall Mural of the Manhattan Skyline {18}?  If you've got a blank wall and don't know what to do, maybe a large photographic wall mural would be just the right touch!  I was inspired by the image below, from this blogger {here}.

Love the rustic brass tones captured in the industrial pendant, bed frame, and throw, as well as subtle teal undertones in the pillow and lamp.  The grey pillows really bring out the mural here!  Lots of texture going on too.

The Grey Star Pillow {22} on my board does the same thing, and had to throw in those neon colors against that gorgeous black and white!

This wall hanging is gorgeous and would also be a nice addition to the room {NYC 1958 Subway Tapestry} - it is on sale now for a great price and going fast.

One last touch that would be great for this space: why not try this easy DIY magazine rolling storage solution pictured {here}, & how about upgrading to {pink casters}!

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Just way to excited, collaborating is so much fun -- always love to hear from my readers!  

Thanks again for reaching out, you know who you are!  ;)

xo. m

More inspiration on my "The New Yorker" Pin Board {here}.


17.  Gold Moccs

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

It's just a bunch of Hocus Pocus...

Just some haunting inspiration for this Halloween.  Don't forget to cozy up with some apple cider and watch Hocus Pocus (my Halloween favorite)!  Art fun-fact: one of my art professors was a Visual Development Artist behind the film and expertly painted some of it's most iconic moments!!! #JamesHegedus #VisDev #ArtGenius  I was astounded when he pulled out his original concept paintings for the film.  Simply grateful for the opportunity to study with him!  (more on my art blog)  Matt and I love house hunting and do so all year, every time we see a large estate or overly extravagant house, we always say "They'd probably make us drink cider and bob for apples."  

Happy Boo-ctober!

xo. m

1 || 2 || 3 || 4

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Shutterfly Personalized Address Labels

Have some fun non-board inspiration today!

Just ordered these gorgeous address labels, compliments of Shutterfly.  Can't wait to address envelopes with these!

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I took this picture of our son at 3 months, can't get over those curled up toes!  3 months is definitely my favorite so far - our son is so easy to entertain: he smiles at his and my reflection in every mirror, consistently grabs and plays with toys, and generally enjoys looking at everything!  The dogs have definitely become a focal point, especially when they wrestle!  Fetch is also completely mesmorizing, and not just for the dogs.  

Our son simply LOVES his organic scrappy dog from Under the Nile (pictured here), and so do I, what great colors -- thanks Lynn!

xo. m

Monday, October 6, 2014

A Mantle For Every Season

  This has been our mantle all summer.   If you're like me, you like things neat and tidy and don't like to store a lot of extra decor.  If something doesn't fit in your house, out to Goodwill it goes.   All of my mantle decor fits into one box labeled "mantle" that we keep in the garage.  I rotate my mantle decor by seasons; I have decorations for Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.  But with only those holidays, it leaves nine months of the year undecorated.  Since I have limited space to store the rest of the decor, I need a mantle design that fits all seasons, a mantle that works for every non-holiday month of the year.

 This mantle, with it's subtle colors on top and a bright pop on bottom...spring flowers and simple frames, meets the bill and fits every season!   With a few changeable elements this mantle can keep you entertained all year.

 These glass flowers were made by my glass blowing professor from San Luis Obispo, George Jercich.  George works with glass for a living and we commissioned him to make these for our wedding cake topper.  I love the sentimentality it adds to the mantle!  There are so many 3D glass artworks that would be a gorgeous addition and add a personal touch to this mantle.  If you are from the bay area, artists from Bay Area Glass Institute often sell work at the Stanford Shopping Center.

The absolutely gorgeous glass hummingbird is by artist Shawn Tsai and was purchased at the Kings Mountain Art Festival, a fair that takes place annually out in nature, surrounded by gorgeous Redwood Trees in Woodside, CA.   It is a simply fantastic art festival one of the best I've been to and I definitely recommend going.   If you want a hummingbird or another fantastic glass piece, visit Shawn at one of his upcoming events.

I was gifted this desk calendar at Christmas.  It makes an easy decoration that's also practical.  The best part is it changes monthly, giving the whole mantle a new feeling so you never get bored.  Plus you can get a new one every year!  Perhaps one of {these} customizable desktop calendars from Shutterfly would be fun to try!

Also pictured are a glass block frame with my son's baby picture (you could also have photographs printed directly on an acrylic block like {this one}), and a clay keepsake craft with an impression of our son's baby foot print!  You can pick up similar kits at your local arts and craft store or online.  We used {this one}.  Some other gorgeous options: {here} and {here}.

Having framed pictures on the mantle enables you to switch out the pictures easily, a quick way to freshen up the whole design!  I buy all my prints at Shutterfly, I think they do a fabulous job with color and print quality (and I am very picky when it comes to my prints).  

Another way to liven up the mantle with fresh colors every month, is to change out the colors of the candles!  I keep a bag of candles stored in a handy place so I can easily switch them out if I need a different feeling.  I find a variety of colors will go well, since the felt pom-pom garland compliments almost every color.

Hope you enjoyed this versatile mantle decor inspiration!!

xo. m