Sticky Frog Advent Calendar!

2 Dec

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Before I get into the point of this post, let me make two things clear.

1.) Between Thanksgiving and early January, my work schedule is typically a bit lighter. Partly because people are less likely to want to take on big home projects during the holidays, and partly by my own design (because I like to be more present during the holidays, and with my son having a whopping almost 20 days off of school, I need to be!). So, during the next month or so, this blog will naturally become less about decorating and design and more about crafting and kid and holiday themes.

2.) I love chalkboard paint. So if you don’t, you’re in the wrong place.

Phew. I’m glad we’ve gotten that out of the way. Now I’ll start:

I wanted to make my 4 year old son an advent calendar this year, and last week, I sent my husband and email detailing all the little gifts we could give him. He pointed out, and I think rightfully so, that it was too much stuff, which is something we struggle with having a little kid. So we decided we could still do the advent calendar without deluging him with 24 different knick-knacks that he’d never appreciate or use (and inevitably, lose). I ultimately decided to draw the calendar on the new/temporary chalk wall we have, and every day we’ll put a new sticky-frog on the date. Remember those? You throw them, and they stick to the walls. And the tv. And the stair railing. And the picture frames. And your parents’ legs. And hopefully not the sprinklers on the ceiling.

Sticky Frog Advent Calendar

For demonstration purposes, I’ve put the frogs on each number: in real life, there’s no way this would work, as my son would remove every single frog on day 1. But he sure does look forward to coming down every morning and finding out which color his frog will be. Is it his “first favorite color” (orange)? Or his “second favorite color” (purple)? Who knows.

Sticky Frog Advent Calendar

 

This works really well for our family because it manages the junk and tames my son’s sense of preschooler-I-want-it-entitlement.  I may even be “fun mom” and put a piece of candy up there one day. Maybe.

 

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

DIY Paper Fortune Cookies!

26 Nov

I posted a picture to Instagram a few weeks ago of some DIY paper fortune cookies that I made. A few people have asked how to make them.

DIY Paper Fortune Cookies!

The good news is, they could NOT be easier to assemble! If you have paper and a glue gun, it’ll take you less than 5 minutes to make a few.

Here’s a how-to…

DIY Fortune Cookies!

Didn’t I tell you that was easy? If you don’t have a glue gun (Wait: how can you NOT have a glue gun?) you could use a dot of regular glue, but I can’t stand holding paper together until glue dries so I use hot glue. I also glued a lot of the “prizes” to the inside of the “cookie”; folded paper (messages, bills) tends to stick just fine, but other things will fall right out.

We’re going to have them as part of our place-setting for Thanksgiving. I can’t wait!

DIY Fortune Cookies

If you find my paper choices gaudy, I should explain that I chose patterns that correspond to certain family members’ interests. I am MUCH more fond of fun than formality.

Enjoy this super easy and festive craft!

 

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

Happy Monday!

25 Nov

This weekend was a good one. I’ve been pretty sick (cold, cough, more coughing, bruised or cracked rib from coughing, horribly painful coughing, more coughing…) but am finally feeling MUCH better, and it was nice to have a break from a month of feeling yucky.

I wanted to share a few pictures from the weekend that I thought were fun. First of all, I was inspired by this DIY paper-bow tutorial I saw on Pinterest. It’s not in English, but it’s very easy to follow via the pictures, which are below.

DIY Paper Bows

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We made a few bows, and then we put one on the cat. Because why not.

 

Cat Bowtie

 

On Sunday, a long-time client of mine had a rug show at her gorgeous home. I snapped this photo of some of the rugs and a guest’s perfectly color-coordinated shoes.

rugs

 

Colors make me so happy. And so do bespoke cat accessories.

Enjoy the week!

 

 

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

You Do What You Can With What You Have: Holiday Decorating Edition.

20 Nov

Many of my friends and most of my neighbors are aware of the ever-present, pretty annoying, long-lasting construction project going on in my condo right now. To make a long story short, the building has some issues with waterproofing that are a result of not very detail oriented initial construction, and we’re in the midst of what we’re hoping is the final fix. Also, Pro-Tip: When installing window flashing, you want to position it so that it directs water outward, toward the facade, and not inward, toward YOUR HOUSE.

So now that we’ve covered that, let me explain…

About a month ago we were graced with this lovely tent.

Do What You Can WIth What you Have: The Holiday Decorating Edition!

Not only did it compromise the lovely light that we get through this hugely awesome window, but it upset my son because it exists in his “play station.” He came home from school and charged it like a linebacker. Not good. Though I can attest that it’s a pretty sturdy bubble. 

After about a month, they realized the existing windows will no longer work, so the search is on for new, custom, apparently very hard to find windows. I am no stranger to custom items, long lead times, and construction hassle. But ugh. And it was getting cold in here. So in this windowless hole, they put up a temporary insulated wall, which will grace our condo with its presence until the new year, when the new windows are finally here. It’s heinous.

Do What You Can WIth What you Have: The Holiday Decorating Edition!

My first thought was: MY HOUSE IS GOING TO BE SO UGLY FOR THE HOLIDAYS.  My second though a few seconds later was “Can I paint this?” So I asked a guy standing around and he said I could. Before he had time to go ask someone who could say “no” I painted it. With chalkboard paint. Bear with me here on this big black box…

Do What You Can WIth What you Have: The Holiday Decorating Edition!

I had about 1/3 of a quart left, and I used every single bit of it. The best thing about chalkboard paint is that one coat is enough, and if you do a spotty job, you’ll never know because the first time you use it you create an imperfect, cloudy/chalky finish.

I strung up some lights, and then my son went to town with the chalk.  The first thing he did was get a chair, climb up on it, and draw a sun and clouds. “Because they’re up high.”

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I’m really liking this “new” look. We’ll “Christmas-ize” it in a few weeks, and I think it will be a lot of fun. I might even miss it when it goes. Maybe. I might. We’ll see. I have to admit my craftsmanship is at 75%, but hey, it’s fun.

Just wanted to share this fun project, which turned a disaster into a fun, temporary installation!

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

Happy Monday: The Inherited Wall Mural Edition

4 Nov

I work with a lot of new homeowners who hire me to select paint colors and wall treatments. Usually, we are just switching up colors to suit the new owners’ tastes. Sometimes we’re trying to get rid of dated wallpaper, faux finishes, or wood paneling. And sometimes, if we are lucky, we uncover awesome surprises in the form of murals. One of those times was this morning at an early color consultation meeting.

Here are two murals that I can’t resist sharing. I’ll withhold telling you whether or not we covered them up…to each her own.

The first comes from a bedroom in a house that is, inexplicably, not near the White Flint metro station. If the scale is not clear, let me clarify: it was pretty large. 10 points for a realistic ceiling depiction.

Happy Monday: Inherited Mural Edition

The second is a stunningly accurate depiction of the Beatles in their Yellow Submarine period. It is AMAZING.

Happy Monday: Inherited Mural Edition

The details!

Happy Monday: Inherited Mural Edition

I have to say that the people who commissioned these must have been fun loving and artistic people. They certainly make my job more interesting.

Happy Monday!

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

Tabarka Studio Terracotta Tiles

29 Oct

I think I’ve mentioned Tabarka Studio and their gorgeous, geometric, contemporary, terracotta tiles on the blog before, but I feel compelled to mention them again since I’m seeing so many of their tiles on Pinterest. …and rightfully so – they’re spectacular!

Tabarka Studio

Tabarka Studio

Tabarka Studio

Tabarka tiles are handcrafted in Arizona from terracotta, come in a ton of geometric, ethnically inspired shapes (heavy on the Moroccan influences), and a bevy of colors. I recently used them in a bathroom project and the results were breathtaking; so breathtaking in fact, that we installed a pocket door so we’d never have to obscure the view for the client!

Bath_Studio1

 

Check them out here. I dare you to tell me you don’t LOVE them too!

 

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

Great Gallery Walls!

28 Oct

I’ve had a lot of questions about gallery walls lately: how to start them, what goes in (or is it on?) them, and are there any “rules” when creating them. Well, if you’ve worked with me or been in one of my classes before, you probably know my stance on “rules”: I don’t really do rules. Which isn’t to say everything goes – it doesn’t – but rather, I mean that there are so many conceivable ways to create a lovely gallery wall that I can’t even possible begin to list the process or tell you what elements you absolutely need. I can, however, give you a few suggestions and point out what makes a nice grouping. Below are some examples of great gallery walls, and some notes about how to emulate these looks. Enjoy!

 

Contrast is Key. I like the punch of a gallery wall that is white on black, or black on white, or white on white with bursts of color within the frames. Here are some examples of gallery walls that emphasize contrast effectively.

Great Gallery WallsWhite on Black. (via Eclair)

 

Great Gallery Walls!Color on White. (via Pinterest, source unknown)

Variation AND Repetition Go Hand in Hand. Got an interesting gold frame to incorporate? Great! Include a few additional gold touches. Have a bunch of thin frames in a single color? Great! Add more thin frames in additional colors. Get it?

Gallery WallMostly black and white with small, subtle bursts of color. (via Pinterest, source unknown)

Great Gallery WallsJust the right amount of gold. (via just bella blog)

Size Doesn’t Matter. Really. You have big and small pictures? Ok. Want to mix them? Fine. Want to keep them consistent? Not a problem. Let it be what you want it to be: no rules.

Gallery WallBig frames, small frames, tiny clipboards – all fine. (via Design Traveler)

Gallery WallThis one has both varying object sizes AND is small in scope. (via Pinterest, source unknown)

Start With Something Specific or Functional and Let it Grow. I often start gallery walls with a single piece of art or photography or utility that is important to the end-user. You don’t have to complete it in a day or even a week. Just hang that mirror or tv or piece of art (at eye level, preferably, as it’s the most important piece) and let other pieces spawn off of it. 

Gallery WallBegin with a mirror and let the other elements fall where they may… (via The Fashion Medley)

gallery-wall4…or begin with a television – BRILLIANT! I’ve used this a few times myself. (also via The Fashion Medley)

What Do You Do With A Stair Wall? GALLERY WALL! Enough said.

Gallery WallSimple, cool. (via Pinterest, source unknown)

Gallery WallLove this. (via Elle Decor via Pinterest)

Oh, you’re  wondering about spacing? Well, I do have a simple rule for that. If you use all the same frames, you can space them equally but the look will be less “Anthropologie” and more traditional . If you use different, differently sized frames, space them HOWEVER YOU WANT, whether it’s super organized or more crafty and uneven.

Gallery WallDifferent frames = varied spacing. (via Pinterest, source unknown)

Gallery WallsDifferent frames = varied spacing. I love the leaning art on the ground here. (via Euro Style Lighting)

Gallery WallDifferent frames = same-ish spacing. (via Arkpad)

That’s a lot of gallery walls! Which is your favorite? I’m not sure I can choose!

 

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

Wonderful World Market Finds!

23 Oct

I love to use World Market to fill in accessories, lighting, and sometimes even small furnishings for my more budget-conscious clients. If I’m being honest here, I also like to use them for my own home. And I’m not ever one to pass up their awesome candy selection.

If you look hard enough, you’ll see that they really have the  “look for less” thing down. For example, this wood bead chandelier is  $199 at World Market and over $1,300 for a Regina Andrew version:

Wood Bead Chandelier Look for Less

 

And these blue linen dining chairs, which are $398 for a set of 2 at World Market, are $100 more per chair at Wisteria:

Blue Dining Chairs Look for Less

 

Here are five more fun finds from World Market that’ll set you back way less than other comparable items from more expensive retailers. Many are even good for holiday gifts, if you’re organized enough to be shopping in October. I’ve thought about it…but haven’t quite pulled the trigger. Enjoy!

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As an added bonus, they also have my FAVORITE candy: Hi-Chew!

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Have a great week!

 

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

Cranberries Galore!

9 Oct

I’ve been hearing about a neat installation/viral marketing thing that Ocean Spray, of cranberry fame, is doing today and tomorrow over at Union Station. For those of you who are not from or familiar with Washington, D.C., Union Station is our main train station, and the building is a stunning, gleaming white mixture of Classical and Beaux-Arts styles of architecture. My parents used to take me there as a kid and I still love the building. It usually looks like this (image via about.com): 

Union Station

Today, however, those fountains in front are filled with something other than water…

Union Station Cranberry Bog(image via Ocean Spray via Prince of Petworth)

2013-10-8-CranberryBog(image via Washingtonian)

Ocean Spray has made us our very own cranberry bog!

Isn’t it beautiful? I understand it contains 2,000 pounds of little red berries, and will be open only through today – so get there FAST!

For more cranberry-ness, revisit my post from a few years back about the lovely color here.

Or you can check out this lovely chair, beautiful pendants (from my favorite, Niche Modern), or pretty pillow:

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…or you can make this delicious looking cranberry martini!

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Enjoy the day!

 

 

 

Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

Starting to Look Like Fall…

20 Sep

Has it really been a month since I’ve blogged?

It’s been so long the leaves have started to change color! …As evidenced in this photo I took last week when my husband and I snuck away for a quick hike on the Billy Goat Trail.

Billy Goat Trail

When the weather gets cooler, I have a few essentials that I bring out: blankets, tea, a few throw rugs for cold floors (or the backs of chairs!), and pie plates for the inevitable baking that always comes with these food-filed months. Here are a few of my favorites: hope you can find some new ones that you call favorites, too!

 

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Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.