At the end of 2014 I was given the opportunity to work with Invaluable.com, an online auction that sells art among other items, to create a room around a painting available from their site. Since I love art & design I was excited to take up the challenge. I chose this hot pink painting of Audrey Hepburn and decided to create a bedroom that combined retro glam & modern style. Whether you’re looking for inspiration for your stylish young lady or are treating yourself to a bedroom makeover, who better to turn to for inspiration than a style icon? As Ms. Hepburn famously said, “happy girls are the prettiest”, and a cozy place to get your beauty sleep is a great place to start.
So in honour of Audrey & her timeless glamour, here’s the room I designed. See below for details.
I just want to say that, every single person has their own style and vision for when they decide to makeover an area of their home, whether that be the bedroom like me, or their dining room needs some sprucing up with some classic and rustic Hickory Furniture, their kitchen could use that lick of paint and some new faucets it has been dying to have, or the utility is looking like it still is in the 1800s, your vision is your own, and you should never feel like you have to makeover your home in a certain way to go with ‘trends’, you have to live in it and love it and that is the most important thing. So take some inspiration from the pictures and notes you see online, but if you want to mix modern with classic and wooden sculptures then you go for it! Dream the way you want with your home and let it be your sanctuary when you close that door after a long day.
There are brilliant pieces of furniture out there that can bring your home into a new style or maybe just add to the one you already have, experiment with that, maybe even try stuff you didn’t think would work before, you never know, you could be onto a winner there and actually create something that hasn’t been done before! Take that chance and see what you come up with, and never feel like you have to have your home the way you see it when you are internet browsing, it is yours and that is something to be proud of.
Before I wind down posting for the holidays I wanted to share some photos of our house in all it’s Christmas glory! We only get to enjoy the tree, lights, stockings, and decorations for such a short time so I wanted to make sure I take it all in before it all comes back down again in January. I tend to stock up on decor on boxing day and pick items that go with an existing theme or catch my eye (penguins have a special meaning in our house and come out year after year, no matter what). So a penguin or two tend to get added each year for the next.
I stock up on basics at favourite stores like Homesense, Superstore, etc and will buy more delicate and fancy items after the holidays from stores such as Restoration Hardware and Hudson’s Bay. I also am lucky to have access to a floral wholesaler for fresh flowers, greens, and budget- friendly vases and filler.
This year I went with a traditional red & green colour scheme and chose specific elements to carry throughout the house: tartan accents, fresh Christmas greens, & clear glass vases with white ‘snowy’ filler. See the end of this post for Where to Buy.
The ‘fancy tree’ (aka Mom’s tree): We’ve only put a few presents out to see how Ari would resist them. So far so good!
Quick & simple decor idea:
Glass vases with filler of your choice & a branch of Christmas greens
In addition to the ‘fancy tree’, we also do a family tree that’s decorated with all of our sentimental ornaments- no theme here but love & memories!
It’s getting to cooler weather- Fall is almost here! Once I get over my initial sadness that Summer is coming to an end, I embrace the warmth and coziness that Fall brings into our seasonal decorating. Of course, we have pieces in our home that we like to keep up all year round, and many suppliers of wall art such as Bumbleajx.com provide products that should be kept up all year. However, it is nice to embrace the seasons and adjust the aesthetic of our homes depending on what time of year we’re in. You may have other furniture to decorate in the house such as your sofa or your curtains, or you may even want to get a brand new set of made to measure rugs to really bring that fall warmth into the home. That’s the great thing about redecorating; you get to choose exactly how far or how seasonal you take it. You may want to have a makeover to celebrate halloween even further, and you may want to even get some new blinds to fit the them, these blinds might make the room appear larger. I’m working on some ideas for my home that I’ll be sharing on social media soon, but until then here are some simple ideas I love to incorporate Fall elements into your home decor- happy decorating!
Entryway & Porch
Fill lanterns with items such as pumpkins, gourds, leaves, branches, & candles- beautiful on tables, in a vignette, or as porch decor.
Use a seasonal wreath & some Fall branches to add a warm & welcoming touch to your porch.
Seasonal Fall mums, pumpkins & a bale of hay arranged together add a country- style touch to porches and decks.
For a more contemporary look, seek out ghost pumpkins or artificial versions- if you love a little glitter, covering them in glitter is a fun touch.
To mix contemporary & traditional, combine white elements with the warmth of reds, oranges, and yellows.
I hope this gives you some inspiration and shows you that adding seasonal touches doesn’t have to be fussy or expensive! oxox TPB
I am going to be honest: this post was intended to tell you all about how to plan a birthday party (or any special event, really) that was both stress- free and as cute as those photos you covet on Pinterest and Instagram. I’d be lying if I told you planning Ari’s first birthday was stress- free, but as this post hopefully shows, you don’t have to spend hundreds of dollars to have a great party. In fact, kids birthday parties can be relatively simple to organise, as long as you know what you’re doing. For example, photo booths are an automatic winner at most parties, and you can easily rent a booth from somewhere like https://photoboothvancity.ca/birthday/ to make your child’s party even more fun.
Overall, everything worked out and I was happy that my hard work paid off, but there were a few bumps in the road on the way (the hubby and I totally ended up fighting as we juggled all the day- of prep for the family party). For any Mom planning a birthday party, or celebration- or for any lady who has a shower, wedding, or other special event to plan, I hope this gives you an honest & realistic idea of what is involved.
Proceed With Caution!
Like so many friends I know, it started with Pinterest. I pinned ideas that I loved and before long had more than a few ideas about what I wanted to do, a theme, and how all the little touches would make it perfect (this process very much reminded me of planning my wedding, and how easy it is to get carried away with ideas). It isn’t hard to get excited- and overwhelmed- by all of the cute and beautiful ideas out there for special occasions. But I have learned that like so many things, you have to prioritize. It’s easy to get carried away!
Break Up the Celebrations
I am very lucky to have some wonderful friends that I wanted to share the occasion with, and knew that it would be best to split up the celebrations into a friends party and a family party (the family party alone would be around 20 people!). I decided to go with pink and gold, with Minnie- Mouse inspired polka dots and decor.
And now for the fun!
The Decorations Tip:Save money by making some or all of your decorations. Get creative with dollar store staples such as streamers, tissue paper & ribbon- the options are endless! (I made tissue tassels & streamer curtains that made a big impact without dropping a lot of money). Keep decorations that can be re- used for other parties & celebrations (like multiple birthday parties!)
I carried the pink, gold, & polka dots throughout both parties, re-using some of the decorations for both. A fun bonus was the Minnie Mouse balloon sculpture courtesy of Coco Globo balloons- it was the perfect fun finishing touch I was looking for.
If you’re looking to entertain your guests with talented performers, you could use Headliner to find a band that suits your party’s atmosphere. You only really need to focus on sorting some entertainment if you are hosting the party at your home. If you are having a party at an indoor play center, for example, there is no need for entertainment because the venue provides that in abundance!
The Family Party
The Friends Party
Thank you to Coco Globo for the Minnie Mouse balloon sculpture!
The Goodie Bags Tip: Keep these fun favours budget friendly by combining some homemade goodies with 1 or 2 larger items.
I did slightly different bags for the lil ladies & gents (but all had some sugary treats for the parents, including some homemade candy skewers!)
For the lil gents:
Bow tie from Cutie Pie Boutique
Candy skewer & lollipop (for Mom & Dad!)
For the lil ladies:
Clippie set from Cutie Pie Boutique
Candy skewer & lollipop (for Mom & Dad!)
The Food Tip: Don’t be afraid to ask for some help with the menu! I was fortunate to have my Mom and Mother In Law help with the family party and one of my girlfriends contributed beautiful homemade cupcakes for the friends party to help offset the cost & work.
The cakes lovingly made by my mama in law! (I LOVED the smash cake!)
And the gorgeous cupcakes my friend made for the friends party- eek those bows!
The freebie cake from our local Thrifty’s (you get a free cake when your lil one turns one!)
Even though these ideas show girly colours, you can easily swap them to suit the colours of your theme. I hope some of these ideas inspire you for your next special event- whether it’s a birthday party, shower, or wedding! oxox TPB
I want to say how grateful I am to Cutie Pie Boutique and Coco Globo for helping me make these celebrations extra special. See below for info.
Cutie Pie Boutique- adorable hair accessories & rompers for your little lady! Etsy Store Facebook
Coco Globo- amazing balloon sculptures for all your special events needs! Website Facebook
On May 25 I was invited by my friend Nicole Picco (check out her amazing design work in my coverage of The Show 2014!) to go to Portobello West at the Creekside Centre in Vancouver. This event gathers local artisans offering up everything from locally designed/ created decor, clothing, jewellery, cards & papergoods, and edible delectables. It’s brilliant to see people being so inventive with jewellery design, making sure that you get the best products to design your own around helps, looking at wholesale sterling silver jewelry to see how buying in bulk could help your business.
Check out some of the amazing locals I met & I my favourite picks from PW
Recover Me Design
Cute designs created using re- purposed & eco- friendly fabrics. My fave was this neon pink pineapple pillow- I can’t get enough of it! How cute would this be tossed on your couch for Summer? Visit their Etsy Store for more.
Along Came The Fold
If you’re looking for a fresh item to add to your decor how about these beauties from Along Came The Fold? A really unique concept- origami- translated into an attractive & functional design for lighting. Each piece comes wired & ready to hang. For more visit their website here.
Using vintage fabric from clothing & decor items, Salvage Style re- purposes fabric & other finds into coveted items. Seeking out funky patterns like the one on this ottoman, this company brings the old into the now– with style! Other items including vintage- inspired paper goods & table hockey magnets available. For more visit their website. (Check out Salvage Style in our Father’s Day Gift Guide!)
Sohia Kim Clay Art
Want to make your morning coffee even better? Drink it out of one of Sophia’s beautiful birch bark- inspired mugs. They are stunning and look like the real thing. A perfect rustic chic addition to any kitchen. Visit her website to see more of her work (there’s more then just mugs!).
We love our mocs by Minimocs. Local handmade fashion for your tootsies that you’ll wish came in your size. Available in a array of colours, you’ll want to buy one of each. (My favourite are the metallics, but thier new aqua mocs have been a hit too!). You’ll feel good about supporting this husband & wife team while helping keep your lil one in tip top fashion. (Tip: how cute would these be as a baby shower gift???). Head over to their website to see the latest colours.
The Naked Squirrel
Ok- first of all: how much do youlovethis name? Offering up goodies like screen- printed Ts and jewellery- all created locally- The Naked Squirrel has cute & fresh designs perfect for anyone looking for support local in style. (I had a hard time choosing which photo to feature!) Check out their website for more.
Seema’s Jardin de Fleurs
These are not your grandma’s scarves (although I’m sure she’d LOVE them!). Hand- dyed gorgeous pieces by Seema herself, you’ll have a hard time picking a favourite. (Mine were her marbled scarves- STUNNING). More info on the Jardin de Fleurs Facebook Page.
It’s the time of year when everywhere you look you see half naked bodies rocking the latest swimwear fashions. If you’re going to strut your stuff in the near- buff (like that lil poem???) why not buy from a local co like Ocean Folk? I loved their fresh colours & designs- no more online suits for moi!
Go to their website to check out what’s up for grabs this season.
My Inner Fire
If you’re looking for an alternative for the infamous YVR yoga brand, check out My Inner Fire. Not only are the pieces designed & created locally, they’re a more affordable fashion choice for your inner yogi. AND you’re still supporting a local fashion label while doing so. If you’re going to rock yoga pants mama, make a statement while doing so! More amazing pieces for guys & gals on their website.
The Hive Printing
A print shop with a fashion sense. Funky combo? Yes. Funkier clothes? Even better. I love the concept of The Hive Printing- taking their main business endeavour (printing) and turning it into a multi- faceted brand by offering up Ts and other pieces (like tea towels & bags) with designs by local Vancouver artists (and some of their own designs). All with a twist of YVR. (Their Stanley Park T also made it into our Father’s Day Gift Guide!) Check out their website & Etsy store to get your hands on their awesome work.
Bethany Rae Clothing
You know one of my passions is supporting local Moms. By purchasing from local line Bethany Rae you’re supporting 2 at once! Operated by Bethany Rae Cornish (hence the name) and Katherine Neufeld, this company offers up comfortable clothes disguised in fashionable pieces. Clothes designed by Moms, for Moms? You can’t get much better than that. Go to their website to view their current pieces.
Another great line by local Mom Henrietta, the name translated from Filipino means rainy season. Pretty fitting for a company based in Vancouver, no? Her designs are cute (and offering up pieces for the whole fam) with a purpose: a portion of the sales from Tagulan are donated to educate kids about agriculture in an urban setting (ie community gardens, urban chickens, & local produce). Dig those RADish BEETS & check out their website (you’ll see what I mean when you get there).
FOE AND DEAR
Looking for some fresh & unique jewellery? FOE AND DEAR has you covered. Something lovely for yourself and even some classy pieces for your hubby (Their tie bars & money clips are a great idea for Father’s Day- check ’em out in our FD Gift Guide!). I love that each piece is unique and will compliment a variety of styles. Go check ’em out on their website.
Irit Sorokin Designs
If you love jewellery inspired by nature take a look at Irit Sorokin’s work. With pieces that combine natural elements such as turquoise and agate, her designs show off some of Mother Earth’s finest work. Visit her website & find jewellery that makes a statement
How cool is this star of anise necklace by AdorNation? I couldn’t get over this piece- I’ve never seen jewellery inspired by a spice before! Who could resist wearing this to spice up an ensemble? (Sorry I couldn’t resist!). Made in small batches, these sterling silver pieces would be a lovely addition to any jewellery collection. Scamper over to their website & Etsy store to see more of this made in Vancouver goodness.
Looking for some natural skincare without the laundry list of ingredients? Have a look at what’s being offered up by angelicaroot organics. My Mum stocked up while we were at PW and I’m looking forward to hearing what she thinks. Baby & kid products available too. For all available products check out their website
Sweet decadence inspired by a raw food diet. These put the purple box chocolates to shame (you know who I’m talking about)! Finally a cocoa treat that’s vegan friendly with the rich taste of the cream based goodies. I love the passion that founder Audrey has for her craft and enjoyed hearing how she changed careers to chase this dream. Free from gluten dairy, refined sugar, & soy. Check out this lovely lady’s work here.
Helping to connect people with their communities DOZE makes volunteering a collaborative activity. Hosting DOZE Days that bring locals & visitors together, this creative organization coordinates with local charities and non profits to help bring awareness to various causes and encourage community involvement. In addition they create & showcase collaborative art that is featured throughout the city; they also host photo contests encouraging entrants to ‘capture the essence’ of YVR. A great organization to look into as we approach the Summer Holidays & to encourage your family to get involved with their community. More info on the DOZE website.
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