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3/31/2015

April Happenings


Some cool things are happening in the creative world this month! Ikea will be kicking off their new Art Events in 2015 with a Street Art collection consisting of twelve posters by street artists from around the world. I dig street art and may indulge in a little impromptu installation myself from time to time ;) Since I became a Mamma I haven't been able to sneak out much lately, so these posters might just satisfy my thirst in the meantime...now which to pick? These 4 are my faves.


This new book of photography, featuring some never before released photos taken by Gisele Freund of Frida Kahlo just hit the stands. I adore Frida and any insight I can get into her life and home are treats indeed. I can't wait to get my hands on this!


Annnnnd the moment all of us bohemian interior lovers have all been waiting for! The New Bohemians by Justina Blakeney, the Jungalow queen herself is finally here on April 14th! Featuring the photography of Dabito of Old Brand New, this book is going to be a sumptuous feast for the eyes. I. Can't. Wait.

Also I have to admit I'll be clamoring along with everyone else to watch GOT, I mean...I need to know what that Jon Snow is up too don't I?
So what's the word on the street? Have I missed anything note worthy? Please let me know in the comments!

xoxo-Andrea

3/29/2015

Austin Airbnb Artists Abode


Hi! In case you were wondering, I haven't dropped off the face of the Earth.  I just came back from a very relaxing and inspiring week with the fam in Austin.  It was my husband's birthday today, so we decided to chill and celebrate all week long. We booked the sweetest little Airbnb guest house for our trip and I thought I'd share it with ya'll, since it was SO very pretty and colorful.

This was only our second Airbnb experience, and I am now officially hooked. You may remember our first stay {also in Austin} that I shared Here.  If you are looking for a chill and romantic getaway, you should totally stay there {they have a vintage Airstream to stay in too!}. We absolutely adored that space {and our hosts} but this time around our daughter is going through a phase where she refuses to sit in a high chair. She must be free, which makes for major restaurant challenges. So a full kitchen was a must.

My first criteria when I'm searching for a place is that it is decorated beautifully. What can I say, I am interior obsessed. Then I look for the other musts, like the amenities, location etc. I knew pretty much immediately when I saw the photos of this place that it was a perfect fit for us. It certainly did not disappoint in person either. It was not only beautiful but had a really mega positive vibe going for it too. I don't know if it was the light or that the decor colors were representin' the full chakra spectrum or something in the Spring air...but I was feeling the love in this place. It just felt really Peaceful and Happy and Invigorating.

Traveling has a way of jostling me out of my comfort zone and then zapping me with inspiration. Staying in the homes of fellow creatives just elevates that aspect of traveling so much more. I'm smitten with this Airbnb thing if you can't tell.


I'm not usually a fan of taxidermy but my daughter loved the "jackelope". She zeroed in on it the moment we walked in the door and said "Hop! Hop!". I can't imagine how she knew that. Her little brain just blows my mind all the time. She'd wave to him and say "Hiiii!" and "Byyyee!" whenever we would come and go. Which was so cute I could die. So the jackelope can stay.



The one bedroom guest house was situated in a private corner of the large lot, right behind the host Gigi's studio. We had a groovy little seating area right outside our door that made it feel like our own little oasis.

The space itself was a perfect balance of modern and vintage. The wabi sabi touches of salvaged and vintage, like the turquoise tile in the bathroom, original advertising art and wooden chairs balanced out the ultra modern cabinets and concrete floors in the living area. The bedroom was a riot of color with its mounds of pillows, kantha quilts, gypsy rose carpeting and sari paneled windows. It really was a little bit magic.




The kitchen was fully stocked, complete with a blender for our smoothies and perfectly seasoned cast iron skillets. I was in heaven. I mean, you don't get any of that in hotels. I love that you can really get a "feel" for a place when you stay in someones home too. Hotels can feel so stagnant and removed from the authentic energy of a place.
We were in a spectacular location with everything Austin has to offer within walking distance or a short drive away. We spent one afternoon hiking and picnicking at McKinney Falls which was a 16 minute drive from our room. Multiple vegan and organic restaurants were just around the corner for dinner take-out. It was a seriously prime location, which I'm sure our host pays dearly for. Another reason we prefer supporting the local people instead of a chain hotel.
I've always loved traveling and hotels were always kind of a necessary bummer part of it. Cold atmospheres and lack of amenities can make you yearn for your own home and miss out on the benefits of traveling. When you are comfortable and getting a great nights sleep it's so much easier to enjoy and explore, don't you agree? I used to dread hotels, now I can't wait to book my next trip!




Our little guest house studio was the perfect size for us, although it does sleep up to five comfortably. The main house is available for bookings as well. If you are planning a trip to Austin, I cannot recommend this place enough. It is smack dab in the middle of all the action and just a quick jaunt away from tranquil parks and swimming holes. The perfect vacation spot really. Our host {the artist in residence} Gigi was accommodating and wonderful to stay with. Oh and I must mention how mega clean it was! I'm a bit of a neat freak and this place was above and beyond on that tip. I find hotels often disappoint in that area as well. I think when you are staying in someones home, they are more likely to treat you like they're own personal guest. Know what I mean? Are ya'll into the Airbnb thing yet? I was totally hesitant about it at first, but am now a dedicated convert. You?

Hotels can keep their overpriced under-equipped rooms. I'm staying at Gigi's :)


Update! Airbnb has a cool new feature that allows you to visit and book this listing right from this page! Check it -

Austin Artist's Hm. in Hippest Area in Austin

House in Austin, United States. My home was 1 of 6 featured in Tribeza magazine on Austin vacation rentals. Welcome! Please read the whole description before checking availability. Rates change during special events and certain months.. I'm a licensed innkeeper in Austin Tx., ... View all listings in Austin

xoxo- Andrea 

3/19/2015

Inspiring Artist : Leah Fraser





Today in honor of Springs' official arrival, I just had to share a {new to me} artist with you.  Leah Fraser is a Sydney based painter and sculptor and she has captured my heart with her otherworldly works.  I am always a fan of the female form in art, as well as representations of the natural world and these paintings have all that and more. The fantasy and folkloric scenes, complete with botanical beauty and Earth goddesses have me drooling.  Her vases and vessels often adorned by roughly cut semi- precious stones and crystals are absolutely dreamy delicious too. Something about the serene color palate she uses has me imagining one of these in my bedroom. I can almost hear the sound of the water rippling and trickling and smell the blooms in that last painting...I can dream right?

xoxo-Andrea

3/15/2015

My Rental Kitchen Pantry Upgrade + Ikea Shelf Hack

Yellow Shelves


After my recent kitchen face-lift, I got super motivated to finish brightening up the weird room or breakfast nook that's connected to my kitchen.  It's a rather bizarre "dead-end" room that I'm assuming the builder in the 70's intended people to put their dining table in. This makes absolutely no sense to me for many reasons... One, it is completely cut off from the rest of the house; you have to pass through the kitchen to get to it. Then, your elbows would practically be rubbing on the orange peel walls while sitting down to eat, the room footprint is about 8 ft by 8 ft.  It also has a soaring 22 ft ceiling {all the way to the second floor} with a pass through window into the master bedroom. Why!!?  Besides being a death trap, this window allows the pleasant scents of dinner to infiltrate your nice clean sheets in the evenings, and breakfast noise to infiltrate your dreams in the mornings. Oh, and a gaping hole in your bedroom wall for no good reason. But wait there's more. It was painted in the most awful shade of chocolate milky brown, dirty flat paint, like ever. So awful, I didn't take 'before' pictures of how awful it was. Yuck.
The whole room just makes no. damn. sense. But with a less than 1200 sq.ft. home, we can't afford to waste any space.
When we first moved in, The Room inevitably became a catch-all for junk because it had no defined purpose. I have been determined for months...actually years now to make it into a usable and valuable space in our home. The answer had eluded me until recently, when it dawned on me that I could make it into an extension of our teeny tiny galley kitchen as well as a desk/studio space {I recently shared my finished studio space HERE}.

: : My Inspiration : :

Yellow Kitchen Shelves

We started by plugging and insulating said bedroom hole/window to prevent any jumping deaths/fried onion scented sheets. There was another perfectly reasonable place to put our dining table so no worries there. I repainted all 22 feet of them soaring walls in a fresh but warm white, by myself, like a lunatic. My muscles still hurt but man it was so worth it.
I started the hunt to find some kitchen pieces that would make a functional work space and add plenty of much needed storage. Unfortunately thrifting the pieces for this project wasn't really realistic. I eventually settled with some Ikea pieces, the scale of them was just right and I couldn't argue with the price.
The kitchen cart is a smaller version of the one in the inspiration picture above. It's just the right amount of additional prep space we needed and the handy drawers house all my kitchen linens.
The galvanized metal shelves were a no brainer at $14.99 a piece but I wasn't crazy about the finish. I knew right away I wanted to paint them a bright color and toyed with a few different ideas before I saw that bright yellow door and then I knew I had to have the yellow.  It's definitely a step outside my usual color box but it makes the once dark and dreary room so bright and happy now! I also added the rail with hooks to hang all my pans and it makes my life so much easier now that I don't have to dig them all out of a jumbled pile on the daily.

Yellow Kitchen Shelves

The metal shelves were super easy to paint, once I figured out which paint to use.  I was fooled the first time by the wide color selection at the home improvement store of Valspar paints and ended up buying 4 cans of it.  It was so awful to use I had to quit after twenty minutes, everything but the shelves was covered in yellow paint over-spray and the chemical smell was unbearable even while wearing a mask.  So if you're planning on spray painting anything, go with Rustoleum {like I did the second time around} . It was hands down a superior and much less stinky product . I used two cans per shelf and could have probably used one more to make them really perfect.

Yellow Kitchen Shelves

The entire project cost a total of about $160, which is a damn good price for a whole new half kitchen addition if you ask me. I love that I have a entire new temporary kitchen where there wasn't one and that I can just take it all with me and re-purpose it when we move.  Between the new white paint on the walls and my yellow shelves it's hard to believe how dark and depressing it was before.  We use the space constantly now and I've even added a cozy chair to the other corner to hang in while my daughter plays drums on the pots and pans on the rug.

Yellow Kitchen Shelves

Yellow Kitchen Shelves

I still have some perfecting to do once I rearrange my cabinets and I'm excited to add some finishing touches to the room like hanging plants and some new window treatments. When I get everything pulled together, I'll do a post of the complete finished space. So what do ya'll think? Am I crazy with the yellow or what?
xoxo-Andrea

3/10/2015

White & Wooden Loft Beds


I have a wish-list of things I would love to have one day in a home.  Details like a dutch door, natural pond pool, transom windows, interior courtyard, skylight above the bed, or a built in loft bed.  You know the romantic type of things that make a place really special?  Maybe even a little magic?
A built-in loft bed is one of those magical type of details because it captures the imagination the way a tree house does. Especially if it is built from natural and rustic wood.  Not only does the loft evoke a childlike, tree house whimsy, but the space beneath is very cozy and fort-like as well.
I got to thinking of built in loft spaces like this as I painted the {very high} walls in my breakfast nook.  I couldn't help thinking the soaring ceiling space would be much better used with a loft space there instead.  If we owned this place I would be enlisting my husband to build me a secret loft bed hideaway there for sure. I like high ceilings but not that  high. I'm more of a fan of cozy nooks and crannies.


In some small room situations a loft bed would also open up floor space for much more important uses, like hanging a hammock. The wood frame would be able to hold the weight of hanging the hammock without the holes on the wall as well. I suppose you could get away with hanging a hammock below a kids pre-made loft bed if it was heavy duty enough.  Hmmmm...the ideas are brewing now.  You could basically create an entire guest room out of a tiny nook, if the ceiling height allowed.


I would, of course, take it totally over the top and drape curtains and fabric all over. I'd pile on the colorful pillows, textiles and rugs and add some soft lighting. Hanging and vine-y plants would be the icing on the cake, and would add to the tree house feel. Then all I would need is stacks of books, some favorite music and I wouldn't come out for hours and hours.


I just love the look of these wooden loft beds when they are painted white. It is so dreamy and the freshness of the white balances the rough texture of the natural wood. You could easily fake this look with a non built in, natural wood bunk/loft bed. IKEA stocks this one that you could bang up a bit and paint white. Then hang some macrame planters on it and around it. Some hooks in the ceiling to hang a curtain and you'd pretty much have the coolest set up ever.
OR- If you are super handy or have someone super handy to help you out, you could build something like this.  It actually doesn't look like a very difficult project and would come together great with some salvaged wood for more character.


How about ya'll, do you have any fantasy home features you dream of? Or do you have a unique feature in your home now that you adore? I'd love to hear about them!

xoxo-Andrea

3/05/2015

Color Pop! Brightly Painted Doors, Furniture & Woodwork




Just dropping in with some bright color inspiration and a glimpse into what I'm working {breaking my back} on right now... Hint- It's bright and it's one of these three colors above.  I should be finishing up in the next couple days and I'll have a post to share with ya'll about it then!

In the meantime, what do ya'll think of these boldly painted pops of color?  I just love the idea of painting the inside of a door or woodwork in a vibrant hue!  In the right situation it would certainly hide some ugly and add loads of character.  Since I'm renting and can't paint anything permanent, I'm settling for a couple pieces of furniture instead. I must admit I'm loving the results so far! Stay tuned for the full reveal soon! Stay cozy my friends.
 
xoxo-Andrea