Wednesday, December 30, 2015

I have found my inspiration!

Hello!  It's me!  Hello...Can you hear me? Hello, from the outside!  Yes friends, I do believe 2016 is going to be a wonderful year because I have found my inspiration again.  Sorry for the tease, no this post is not about being inspired by the beautiful voice of Adele.  Though that could be partially true because I  have found myself pulling towards music quite a bit lately and feeling quite inspired by it.

This post is about finally feeling inspired and finding some direction with a few changes I want to make in my kitchen.  I absolutely love my kitchen, always have.  It's very large and very pretty if I must say so myself.  In fact its one of the rooms our guests gush over the most and want to congregate in as well.  Now mind you... all is not perfect in kitchen land, there are flaws.  Some of the flaws I just have to live with others not so much.  

Over last few days while waiting to take down the rest of Christmas I have found my inspiration.  Yes that's right, I am waiting. While I have taken down the kitchen Christmas decor, the rest of my house is still full on Christmas.  I have this crazy idea about taking things down before New Years.  I usually spend New Years day breaking it all down.  Last year I took everything down before New Years and let's just say, it wasn't a great year, Okay?   Sooo, this year we're sticking to New Year day breakdowns.    

Now back to my topic at hand before I bore you to tears.  I have spent the last few days thinking of ways to improve the cozy factor in my kitchen. I decided what I needed was curtains in the kitchen.  I need some textiles!   I love the Country French look I see in so many photos, blogs, pins, instas,etc.  I really want that look.  However, I think my look might be a bit more Country French Mediterranean, if there is such a thing.   I love florals and checks and such but I also love patterns and the colors of the sea.  My husband and I are sailors, so my heart also leans towards nautical as well.  Crazy mix huh?  Yeah, I know.  

Here are two different options of curtains I've been playing with that I could use in my kitchen. I've tacked them up to see if I would like having curtains before I invest in rods.   Both would work very well.  The lighter florals are some panels I had made for my dining room some time ago.  While I do like them I would need to alter the tops some as I'm not crazy about the plaid on them.  It's not a problem because the french doors are shorter then the window were so I've got the fabric.  The darker floral is yards of fabric I purchased years ago and never knew what I wanted to do with it.  I can see real possibilities here with both fabrics.  What do you think?  I also plan on strolling through some stores soon to see if anything else catches my eye now that I know exactly what I have in mind.

I have moved the smaller table over on the wall where the bakers rack used to be and love it.  I've got plans for shelves above this table.  I went to Hobby Lobby the other day and found some brackets that I just adore and they were on sale too.  I think the rustic brackets will go well with my chandelier and a few other accessories I have throughout the kitchen.  I chose brackets because I want to make a shelf that is deeper then most of the standard prepackaged display type shelves you see around.  Also they will be less difficult for hubby to mount.  Less difficulty means less fussy, and I like that!

Here's part of what has gotten me so bogged down with figuring out which direction to go in here.  I have these beautiful frenchy looking swivel bar stools that I just adore.  I have been searching for a way to bring them into the whole look without totally having to redo everything about them.  I would love to repaint them and my first thoughts were to paint them black.   

However, If I repaint them black then the seat cover is just not going to cut it.  I really don't want to have to redo the seat covers because well they are fantastically done.  They are a vinyl coated fabric and piped out and I just will not be able to recover these myself and don't want to spend money on having them redone professionally right now.    So how to mesh this look together has been the big question in my head for some time.  That is until.....I found my inspiration piece!

Did you notice it earlier?  I had it right in front of the drapes.  Ladies, I am so excited about this piece!!!   I also found it at Hobby Lobby.  I bought it fully intending to put in the den above my TV.  I had it sitting here in the kitchen and suddenly, I knew I would need to bring this color in throughout the kitchen to pull it all together.  I even think I can use this color of sea blue green on my bar stools and it will coordinate with the seat covers beautifully.  Can you say....Eureka?  This was definitely a Eureka moment. That's how I feel!  I already have several small splashes of this color throughout my kitchen but it's so drowned out by the black.  I just need to pop it back out again in a few larger splashes!  

Of course, now I've got to also find the right paint to use that matches this color.  Lucky for me this little iron piece will be easy to haul to the paint store for the exact match. I'm so excited I can hardly contain myself to get started.

I love when a plan comes together, don't you?  Yes, you do too....I've seen yours and they are beautiful!  I just want to thank all of you again who inspire me so much with what all you do.  I love seeing your photos and getting inspiration for myself. That is so much of what this blogging is all about for me.   I hope maybe to share a little inspiration as well from time to time.  
And because I thought you might like to hear the music too....

Now, if you don't mind, I've really got to run because you know I just can't hold back any longer.
Have a beautiful and blessed day friends, even if it is cloudy and rainy outside.
Hugs and Waves!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Clean up Monday

Good Morning Blogworld!  It's quite the dreary day outside again here in South Carolina.  We sure have had our fair share of rain this year.  In fact it's been one of the most unusual winter weather situations that I have ever seen.  All the rain and warmer weather temperatures sure has invited quite a bit of mold and mildew to pop up everywhere.  I have been doing all I can to stay on top of it, but gosh, enough already!  

Let's move on to bigger and brighter things, shall we?  How was your Christmas?  I really hope it was nice, ours was wonderful!  We have had what has felt like two continuous weeks of celebrations at our home.  It's been so busy that it's been almost comical to see the dog go retreat to our room for her own self imposed timeouts away from it all.  I say almost comical because she also hasn't been feeling very well and has gotten sick to her stomach a few times.  I am watching closely to see if we need a visit to the vet or if she has just overindulged much like the rest of us.  

Ooops, I promised to move on brighter things now didn't I?  Sorry about that!

Sooo, moving on!  Here's what is left of Christmas in our kitchen. The decor is all down now and I gathered up all the candy and put them all in this clear jar.  I am hopeful that Mr. and youngest son home from college will see them now and get to them quickly.  They really need to go bye-bye, know what I mean? 

Have you started putting away any of your Christmas decor yet?  Yesterday, I worked on the kitchen.  I still have 3 more rooms to do but it sure feels good to have one step down. I don't know why but for some reason I was feeling like I was on a plaid candy land overload in here.  Maybe it has more to do with candy overload but whew the plaid was getting to me too! 

 I also have another reason why I took down Christmas decor from this room first.  I want to get started on a little switch a roo.   I am going to move this small table in our kitchen entry over near the kitchen table where my bakers rack currently is.  Then I want to add floating shelves on the wall above it.  I've seen so many of you sharing your shelves and I love the look.

I've had this bakers rack here for awhile now and while I do love it, I feel it's a bit large.  It was fine when I had the round table in here but now that I have the longer rectangular table it seems a bit tight.  I am hoping the smaller buffet style table I have will fit this space better without sticking out to far.  We shall see anyway.  So that's the plan for today on this dreary day.  To shift more things around and possibly scout out some shelves.  That's the plan unless I get distracted, again, because....

I've saved the brightest of all news for last.   Look what I got for Christmas!  Y'all I am just so excited about this.  It's an embroidery machine.  I have wanted one of these for soooo very long friends.  Some of you may recall that I have worked in not just one but two embroidery shops in my retail history.  I was always on the retail end of things, working in the storefront and taking the orders for custom work to be done but not actually doing the embroidery.  Don't get me wrong, I loved working in the store, yes mam!  I can honestly say I have never been interested in learning embroidery as a trade, but as a hobby I am all for it.  I am so excited about this because now I will be able to continue to enjoy the creative aspect of embroidery.  I am also excited because hopefully one day I will have grands that I can spoil with monogrammed items and I get to learn how to do it now, waaay before that happens.  

The embroidery machine I have is a Brother PE770.  I have been scoping this machine out for sometime  and doing all the comparisons.  Like for years!  I feel it is the best choice for me based on what all it has and can do.  I decided on this one because the machine I would prefer, the Babylock, starts in the thousands.  I was not opposed to spending more for a good machine but I wasn't keen on the idea of spending thousands on something that I don't even know if I'll be good at.  After working with excellent embroiders you tend to be a little picky on your embroidery.   This machine has everything I need for what I want to use if for.  I think that's important to know right off the bat.  I has a larger 5x7 hoop to start and you can buy a larger one to use beyond that.  I feel like most of what I need for me personally will fall in the 5x7 hoop size.   It also has a USB port for me to transfer designs or fonts that I want to use after downloading them from my computer.  I am currently checking into a few different softwares for editing and learning all about them as well as about my new machine.  As much as I want to jump right in and stitch something out, I am taking it slow. 

 One of the best things I have also found is the amount of support I have been able to find for this machine.  I first started finding youtube videos online that others had made.  Then I found a few very active support groups on Facebook all specifically centered around the Brother PE770.  Interestingly enough there are several Babylock owners in the group as well.   I think that's because they also use the same PES files and have similarities to the Brother machines.  I even read that someone said that Brother and Babylock are like Ford and Chevy.  I don't quite know if that's true or not but sure did make me happy to read.  I especially have been very pleased to read how so many people in the embroidery groups who are doing professional embroidery still have their Brother PE770 even after adding newer more industrial machines.  They refer to the PE770 as their little backup workhorse.  Yay!  I feel so good about this choice and really don't want to screw it up.  I want to read and learn as much as I can about this to get it right.  Now that the holidays are winding down I hope to be getting a jump here soon.  Woohoo!

I truly hope all of you also had a wonderful and blessed Christmas as well.  I would love to here if you did.  I would also love to hear your thoughts on the shelves above the table as well.  Thank you so much for visiting.  

Hope you have a wonderful Monday!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Silver and Gold Christmas Dining Room

Were in full celebration mode here at The Decorative Dreamers house, how about you?  We've already started the celebrations at our house last Saturday after hosting Christmas for my husbands side of the family.  It was so nice to be able to see everyone and to have been able to do so without being stressed from work this year.   I love working retail and I do miss working, but I have to say that it has really been a blessing time of year.   I have been able to slow it down and focus on the little things and that has meant quite a lot to me and to my husband as well.  He always takes the week before Christmas off and is thrilled to have me home with him this year.  He also has always been one of my most treasured blessings!

My dining room is one of my favorite rooms in this house.  I love it for so many reasons.  One reason is because of the location of the room in this house.  It is to the left when you enter our home as most dining rooms are but because our house sits so much higher then the street when you look out of the windows it overlooks the whole yard and just feels so open.  I also love that it has another door that leads into the kitchen.  Because the view is so enjoyable I have never put blinds in this room.  I do finally have curtains but since this room is so rarely used they always stay open

I also love that this room is large enough to accommodate a big table which I now finally have.  It has enough space for additional pieces of furniture for serving as well as a Christmas tree too.  When I started this tree it was primarily to showcase my collected Lenox ornaments.  I started collecting one of them each year starting when my husband and I first married.  That was in 1988 and we now have quite a full set.  I decided they would be best complimented with silver and gold and so the dining room tree came to be.

This year I added the gold angel wings that I got from after Christmas sales last year.  I actually had forgotten I had them until last week when I came across them while organizing my Christmas decor storage.  They are quite large and really pretty but I think they would have been better if I had put them on first so they would be more in the background.  I do love them though!

I read a blog this morning that talked about focusing on details this Christmas.  Not necessarily with regards to decor but with regards to special visions that create wonderful memories.  I loved this bit of advice.  I really want to do this not just for the holidays but for everyday!

I couldn't believe my luck when I went out just last week to find a new tablecloth to fit my larger table.  I found exactly the color and size I wanted at the first place I went to.  It is an off white color with silver metallic threads throughout.  I love TJ Maxx!  I thought for sure they would have been sold out already but I guess since it's larger in size I was still in luck.

Speaking of silver, this year I even made time to polish the silver.  Now mind you we will not be using this silver tea set but since I was polishing my silver serving pieces I decided to polish this set up as well.  I love how shiny and sparkly it is!

Our marble buffet table also sparkles as well this year.  It's the perfect place to display my Fitz and Floyd. I love unwrapping these pieces every year!   

 I actually have used this tray several Christmas's to serve ham.  I think I may have to retire it from serving duty though because I noticed it is starting to loose some of it's coloring around the edges.  I just can't bare the thought of seeing it all worn and rubbed off, but gosh the ham sure does look good served on this pretty platter!  

I purchased this manger scene from the Atlanta market this year.  It was from a vendor who sold handmade ornaments from Peru.  They are just spectacular.  Can you imagine making this by hand?

Okay, I just have to share this little tidbit tip I used this year.  Early in the season even before I set out any trees or Christmas decor.  I pulled several pieces of my silver serveware and displayed them in a utensil dish.  I did this so I would see them and remember to get them polished before company came.  I am so glad I did this.  I had them in another utensil caddy then switched them over to this one since I needed the caddy for silverware.  I already had this metal container and then I found a glass container I already had as well that fit perfectly.  I love this look and it matches a larger metal piece that I usually use on the dining table for floral displays year round.  I think I will now keep my serveware out and handy all the time now.  That way it gets used as well as serving a decorative look appropriately in the dining room.   

  I hope you have enjoyed the tours of Christmas this season.  I hope to do more blogging again now that I more time to do so. 

QUESTION:  I have a bit of a dilemma that I hope someone will help me with.  My son has restored one of my older more expensive laptops that crashed many years ago.  It is now totally restored and free of any old pictures and virus's too.  I could use it again to blog but am very concerned to do so since I have been through several laptops that mysteriously developed virus's that caused them to crash totally.  I have also recently deleted several blogs I followed because they were causing my blog feed to be filled with strange blogs that were not only phishing but some that were x-rated.   I currently use a chromebook but am unable to use photoshops (Picasa) on this without a great deal of hassle.  I have been using my phone for photos and my blogger app to post them, then editing the words on the blog with my chromebook.  If I go back to my laptop I can use my camera for better photos and be able to edit them and tag them as my property which is important to me.  The question I guess I have is how can I prevent these virus's from creeping in again.  I am hoping some of you will take the time to share what measures you use to prevent this from happening.  I am interested in hearing what you do not just with malware but with anything you can do on blogger to prevent this as well.  

As always, thanks so much for stopping in again today. I really appreciate it and hope you'll come back again sometime if you'd like.

  Most importantly,
 I want to wish each of you a very Merry and Blessed Christmas!
Jesus loves you!

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Christmas all around the house

Hi Blogger Friends!  Today I am so excited to share my whole house with you now that it's all decked out for Christmas.  Tis the season, and in the spirit of giving and sharing I've decided to join several linky parties.  Oh what fun it is, to sit back for a moment and enjoy all the pretties that others are sharing of how they decorate to celebrate the most wonderful time of year.  I'll be attending the following parties at; All Thru the House Christmas Tour of Homes

Come on in sweet friends! It may be nearly 80 degrees outside but inside it's a cozy winter wonderland!

The first thing to welcome you in the foyer of my home is the manger.  I couldn't think of a more welcoming scene to put in my entry way.  The message of the baby Jesus birth coming to save us is one of the greatest most inclusive and unconditional acts of love ever.  I want others to feel that love when they enter my home.

This message is why I like to go all out at Christmas.  This is reason enough for me to pull out every bit of effort I can to celebrate.  It's all about sharing joy and celebration with those I love.

  I know most of you attending these parties understand that because I have already been enjoying some of your beautiful homes.  Wow!  You ladies really know how to do it up right!  I love looking at all your pretties because they inspire me so much.  I probably tune in to blogs more this time of year then any other because there is so much to see and appreciate.

Let's walk over to the dining room now.  I keep a silver, gold and ivory theme in here.  This is the only room I haven't done a full post on yet, but it's coming soon, I promise.  One of the things I'm going to enjoy the most is using our new table with family this year.  I got our table this summer at an estate sale being held just down the road.  I still hope to find additional chairs one day that match, I have 6 would prefer 8.

I kept things fairly simple in here with just a few splashes of frosty faux greenery.  I love the sparkly look of snow on greenery don't you?  

 I have been enjoying seeing so much real greenery among many of your homes this year.  It's so positively beautiful!  I would really love fresh greenery but it's a bit too costly for me this year.  I could have sneaked out in the backyard and cut a few cypress branches but I'm thinking with all the rain and warmer temps we've had this year that would not have been too smart.  I've already heard warnings on our local news about those who have real trees need to be on the look out for ticks this year.  Can you imagine?  Yikes! 

Now let's pop into the kitchen, okay?

It's candyland all the way in here.  Yum! Yum!   This year I added a new slimmer then ever tree so I wouldn't have to eliminate any furniture pieces.  I was so surprised about how many ornaments actually still fit on this tree.

We have a new little one coming this year who is a toddler and I absolutely cannot wait to see his face when he see's this room.  I may just have to let him hold one of the elves too!

I have been enjoying the coffee bar so much after I added a countdown calendar on my chalkboard. I was inspired to make my own after seeing a premade chalkboard countdown at Target.   It's amazing and kinda scary how quickly the days have flown by since I started counting down.

Before we walk into the den let's poke our heads in the half bath.  I know it's kinda weird, but I wanted you to see how I finally found the perfect spot for my pink mercury glass Christmas trees.  Since this bathroom has a rose garden type theme I was so thrilled when I realized how cute they would look in here.  Love when that happens!

Okay now you can go on into the den!

One of the best tips of inspiration I have gotten from blogs was a tutorial that I saw last year.  It was on how to do multi layered ribbons for the Christmas tree. I did it last year and let me tell you this was so easy and so fun! It's also probably the main reason why I just knew I had to do new ribbons this year.

I still kept the den in a very rustic and woodsy feel but with a bit of a different spin.   It's now a more updated look with a modern mix of plaid and cheetah.

Crazy I know, but y'all I just love it!  For me it's so fresh and colorful!  There were several changes I made in this room because I was inspired by others.    One more idea I used was when I was inspired to add more vintage looking Christmas balls after seeing a beautiful kitchen picture on pinterest that used them all around the room.  So likewise, I decided to spread some around too!

The last stop on the tour today will be on my screened porch.  I hope you like Mermaids!

It's a Nautical wonderland out here!  We love this little porch and are sure to be enjoying it quite a bit this Christmas.  It's so unusually warm this year but what a blessing!

I say it's a blessing because I've been able to get caught up on the cleaning and repainting and maintenance that I would otherwise have not been able to do this time of year.

So as we sit outside this Christmas and enjoy these warmer temps we will also be able to sit and remember summer vacations past while looking at the ornaments on my Nautical tree.  I can hardly wait until everyone gets here and we can start to reminiscence!

Well that' wraps it up friends!  I didn't share any of our outdoor lights but they out there.  LOL!  IF I can I will try to do a seperate post on those as well.

Thank you all so very much for visiting today!  I really hope you enjoyed the tour.  If you enjoyed this tiny bit of inspiration I've shared and want more please be sure and pop by any of the following for more beautiful sights from all over!
All Thru the House Christmas Tour 
The Scoop
Inspire Me Tuesday

Wishing all of you a very Merry Christmas this year!