Thursday, March 28, 2013

The Easter Egg...How Do You Decorate Yours?

Here's a fun little project just in time for Easter.  Some creative was to jazz up your eggs.  All of these ideas take no time to create.  Share your creative egg decorating ideas with us.

Decoupage or Hand Painted Egg

The Studded Egg...BLING!

Blueberry Egg with White Pen Design

Black & White Egg

Chalkboard Painted Egg

Floral Decoupage Egg

Fabric Scrap Egg

The Natural Egg

Create an  Inspiration Message Egg

White Egg with Silver Pen Dot

Brown Egg with White Pen Designs

Solid Color Egg with Gold Painted Tip

Brown & White Egg with White & Black Paint Pens

White Egg  Embellished with Lace and Trim

Try Silver Paint and Robin's Egg Blue

White & Brown Egg with Pink and White Speckles

We'd love to hear about your egg decorating creations.  Happy Easter to All!

Monday, March 25, 2013

WOWing Your Entry and Foyer

First impressions when entering a home can welcome your visitors and guests. There are a few inexpensive solutions to updating your entryway whether it be large or small.  Here are a few issues that will take away from the WOW factor that I notice when I walk into a home for the first time.
  • Lighting
  • Wall Color
  • Area Rugs
  • Stair Runner

Lighting is always an
issue especially if there is no natural light coming from the front door and there are no windows in the space letting in the light. Changing out your entry light to a brighter light that allows down lighting for the smaller entry way will brighten up the space.  The ordinary flush mount ceiling light blocks light from
Change out flush mount lighting
up the space.
Open exposed bulb lighting
Adding a hall table if the space allows with a mirror adds interest and warmth to the foyer entrance. Open lighting and white woodwork will make the space appear brighter and not as dark.
 Another easy change to brighten up the foyer entry would be through the paint color.  If a deep dark saturated color is used in a smaller entry with no natural light, the space will appear smaller and a bit more confined. 

Dark Entry

A lighter wall color will make the space appear bigger and brighter.  White or a shade of, is always a safe way to go. Color can always be added through the use of pictures and artwork in the entry area.

 The finial touch would be through accessories such as a hall table, sconce lighting, florals and pictures.  Colorful pictures and fresh flowers will always make the entry warm and inviting.  Area rugs or runners can be used in a larger space.  However, if the entry foyer is small, removing area rugs and runners will also make the space appear larger.

Don't neglect the entry way of your home, make this first impression space as warm and inviting no matter how small through lighting, color and accessories.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

What is the Value of Hiring a Professional?

What does the word professional mean? Does it mean doing your job well and being educated in the field you are working in?  Does it mean you have a college degree to perform your job well?  Being recognized and acknowledged for your work accomplishments? Or does it mean the way in which you conduct yourself with clients and the public while you are tying to perform your job to the best and fullest capacity that you as a professional have been trained?

All of the above are good questions, and besides searching for the formal definition (of which I have), here is my take on functioning on a professional level both  in the business world of the self-employed and in corporate America.

Schooling an proper education of course add to the term professional.  However, it takes many years of hard work and labor in the industry of which you have chosen to become a professional.  Mistakes are made throughout the years and not only in the beginning stages of a career path, ongoing errors and mistakes are what makes a professional just that continually learning along the way.

None of us come out of an educational institution with the title professional; not doctors, dentists, lawyers and the list goes on. The title, respect and reputation has to be earned to be called a professional.

I look at the world of professionals in many different ways.  Professionals I work with are skilled plumbers, painters, electricians, contractors, laborers, construction workers, store and business owners and manufacturer's reps. as well as professional marketing and computer professionals. These people I consider "professionals" and may or may not have a college education.  That being said, I would never throw them off my team of preferred vendors. Because on my team, I know I have the most skilled laborers in their field and have earned the respect and reputation to be called a professional.

These professionals I mention are exactly that. They have worked in the trade for many years. Quality contractors, whether it be the blue collar worker or the shirt and tie marketing person,  all deserve the respect  on a level of professionalism for their knowledge and education gained from years of experience.  These qualities and attributes should account for something.

Professionals have the knowledge and know-how to get a job done from beginning to end and the proper steps that need to be taken for a successful project outcome. 

When a professional is hired, the client or customer should already know that they are paying for their expertise and expertise of the vendors that the professional may contract with in order to execute the job in a professional manor. Being a professional means fulfilling responsibilities of time and project management.  If a professional is hired, let them do their job, this is what they are being  payed for.

What is the value of hiring a professional; why settle for the cheapest possible solution.  This only winds up costing more money in the long run.  A professional is skillful and does their job well.  They know what glitches may arise during a project because they've performed this job many times in the past.  There is an added cost value to hiring a professional.

Here are some facts that go into the cost of paying for a hired professional:
  • You are paying for a value of the relationship with the hired professional and their vendors.
  • You have hired a professional for their expertise to complete a job. Requesting the professionals vendor resources and products in which goes into the job as a whole should not be considered.  The goal and the successful outcome of a professional job includes the creation of the projects products and vendors proposed for the completion of the job.  If the service was something that could have been handled without the professional, then why contract them in the first place?
  • It may not be product you are paying for, it is also the professional advice and service of which the professional was hired.
  • One question a professional may always ask is this "is there a budget we need to work with?".  Try to establish a budget for a project.  A true professional is willing to work within the proposed budget. Being upfront and honest with the professional alleviates unnecessary time spent that could eventually cost more in the end.  The professional should be aware of your budget.  
A true professional will always treat their client right and fair and in turn the client will receive quality results.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Chenille Loving with Sister G

Recently I've been bombarded with design projects.  All good and loving the consistency.  While designing at my laptop I see a scroll of emails beginning to pop onto my screen.  Hmm, my sister is having a design dilemma.  "Which white bedding should I buy to go with my new sea-grass headboard?"  OK not one email but multiple with multiple bedding links to view.   This has to wait I thought until I was finished with the project at hand..

Scrolling, scrolling and more scrolling the choices were all white and all the same with slight variation in design.  Nothing hitting me until I reached the last link.  OMG (did I just type that), Chenille!  "I love Chenille" was my return reply to Gina.  This set me off so here I go again on a sentimental journey down memory lane.
Matlessee with chenille trim and chenille pillows

The chenille yarn technique was believed to originate in France in the 18th century. Chenille was created and introduced in the 1830's by Alexander Buchanan who was a foreman who worked in a Paisley Scotland fabric mill.  Chenille consists of a pile of different lengths of yarn and twisted together.  This processcreates the softness that we see and feel in chenille bedspreads and robes.  Chenille is primarily made up of cotton and this style of the tufted chenille bedspread became widely popular in the US during the 1920s and 30s,

Chenille used as a slipcover with pillow

I remember the beautiful chenille bedspread my mother had when I was a child.  White with blue, pink, yellow and green florals.  It was so soft and cuddly feeling.  Her spread pattern was just like this chenille bath robe.

Beautiful colors of aqua and deep salmon chenille

Chenille patterns in aqua

Soft chenille morning jacket

 Not only was chenille used in home decor, it was quite popular in fashion.  Bathrobes, outing jackets and capes were a popular trend.

Chenille cape in white and blue sail boats

Creative DIY multi colored chenille Easter eggs

Chenille throw makes a quick chair slipcover

There are so many uses for chenille fabrics.  Accent pillows, slipcovers, and DIY craft projects become fun and stylish when using a fabric that has a history, a fabric from the past.  See what's in your mother's linen closet, I'm sure chenille will shine through!