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In Art/ best of/ Decor/ Design/ Entertaining/ Eye Candy/ Fashion/ Interiors/ Kitchen/ Weekly Finds

Best of (Vol. 4)

Spring is here! We’ve got all things sunny in our latest Best of.

1. How perfect are these for a spring brunch?

2. “Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy” and these shoes on my feet will too. Get them while you can…they are marked way down!!

3. Our Pom Pom Pillows are here and we LOVE this one. We have a special discount code for our readers. Save 20% with code POMPOM20 at checkout!

4. How cute is this dress?

5. This swing for lazy afternoons on the porch. They are having a 25%OFF sitewide sale through 3/31.

Hope it’s sunny in your neck of the woods!

In Decor/ Design/ Uncategorized

The Ultimate Guide to Countertops

Choosing countertops can be a daunting experience. There are so many things to consider. From the look to the durability and the price, it’s not always a simple decision. Did you know that there are different finishes to choose from as well? And did you know the finish affects the durability and look of the stone? I’ve worked with many clients to create beautiful kitchens and baths within their budget.  (Click on the image below to see examples of countertops from my projects).  I created an invaluable tool to help my clients when I take them shopping for countertops…the COMPLETE COUNTERTOP REFERENCE GUIDE. The guide covers the top 9 surfaces and even includes laminate…yes, I said laminate. It has come a long way and can be a good choice for a homeowner with a limited budget. I am now offering this tool to you for less than the cost of a cup of coffee.

My COMPLETE COUNTERTOP REFERENCE GUIDE will…

  • Save you time – No need to spend hours online doing research…it’s all right here. And it’s in easy-to-read charts and includes a shopping spreadsheet.
  • Help you make the right decision – Are you concerned about etching and staining? Or maintenance? Perhaps you have a limited budget, making cost your top concern. This guide gives you the pros and cons of each type of stone so that you can be confident in your decision.
  • Save you money – If your countertop isn’t maintained correctly or you pick something you aren’t happy with, you will spend more money to fix, or worse yet. replace it. In addition, I have included a couple of cost-saving tips.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In Art/ Decor/ Design/ Entrepreneur/ Featured Artist

Meet the Artist-Teil Duncan

We have been captivated with Teil Duncan’s artwork (another Instagram find) and had to share her with you in one of our “Meet the Artist” introductions. We love the story she tells with her paintbrush and wanted to know more about the artist behind the gorgeous work.

A little business…

CB: When did you notice that you had an eye and natural artistic talent?

TD: At a young age, my mom noticed the time I spent drawing, so she enrolled me in art classes after school for several years. When I reached high school, my art teacher, Mr. Robert Dozier, expressed a confidence in me and that lead me to pursue it even further.

CB: How did you develop your unique style and how would you describe it?

TD: Over the years of practice! I think a style can only emerge after dabbling in your craft for a long period of time, emulating artwork that you love, until one day your artistic “fingerprint” naturally develops.

CB: How or what do you to get started on a piece?

TD: I usually reference a photograph. Whatever subject I am thinking of taking on, I like to take advantage of the lighting and capture it in various angles. I refer to the photo with my paintbrush, then take many liberties manipulating the color palette and layering intuitive marks to build interest.

CB: Is there any advice you have for people looking to make a living with their art?

TD: Yes. Don’t hurry the process. Take the time to experiment. Don’t force something to work for the sake of gaining a social media presence. Put in the private hours of grinding and development. Seek out respected artists for feedback and affirmation as to whether this is a path worth pursuing for you specifically.

CB: What or who inspires you in your daily work?

TD: I love browsing through other well done artwork. Not only witnessing successful paintings is inspiring, but to see any craft pushed to its utmost potential is moving for me. A well-decorated space, a delicious meal, a song with a captivating beat; that pushes me to sharpen my product to its fullest potential.

CB: Is there any piece of work that has been especially meaningful to you or you are most proud?

TD: I am currently excited about my latest works on paper: my last figure collection and Charleston collection. The acrylic medium took on a different form on paper rather than birchwood and brought a new pulse of energy that makes me want to create more!

A little personal…

CB: What is a favorite book you have read recently?

TD: I just read The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom for the fourth time. It’s worth reading every few years. Talk about inspiration!! It’s a story that took place during the holocaust of a family overcoming the darkest circumstances through their faith in Jesus. Highly recommend.

CB: Where is your favorite place to vacation?

TD: Hard to say. Probably Cashiers, NC. Something about that place tugs at my heartstrings. I love the mountain air, the antiquing, fireplace at night, coffee in the morning. Pockets of charm everywhere and only a few hours away.

CB: Your in box…9,999 or 0?

TD: Shamefully 9,999-in my personal email that is. Business email, 0-no thanks to me:-)

 

Find more of Teil Duncan’s work and her new, coffee table book, on her website and be sure to follow @teilart.

In Christmas/ Decor/ Entertaining/ Gifts/ Holiday/ Party

“Here We Come A-Wassailing”-Bar Cart Styling

We had fun styling our bar cart for you as inspiration for this festive party season- or anytime around your home, they are always in season (in our book;). Bar carts are both functional and stylish-a fun way to display and keep your unique glassware finds and your favorite spirits. We have some of our favorite accessories from our new line that are just right and ready to be added to your bar cart-or for your hostess with the mostess!

 

As a BONUS for YOU, when you spend over $75 you’ll receive a FREE WINE BAG while supplies last!

Find the accessories we used to style and other gifts here. Cheers!

In Art/ Decor/ Design/ Entrepreneur/ Featured Artist

Meet the Artist-Chambers Austelle

In this “Meet the Artist” series, we’d like to introduce you to Chambers Austelle. Chambers caught our eye on Instagram where we first saw her art. Her style and perspective are unique, making her portraits stunning. You definitely want to take a moment to look and study her pieces. We wanted to know more about Chambers and share her art with you!

Down to business…

CB: Regarding your art, how did you develop your unique style and how would you describe it?

CA: In college (CofC) my concentration was photography and I lived in the darkroom. Funny enough, I never photographed people. The images I would capture however were all about telling people’s stories, whether it was their home, personal items or a place. After I graduated, I switched my focus to painting. (Why? Working in a darkroom with film is incredibly expensive and I had always felt like I would end up being a painter, so I put all of my energy into painting) At first, I had no idea how to translate my ideas and thoughts through this new medium. I painted any and everything I could think of. At one point, I painted a portrait and everything kind of clicked, and I started painting in a way that was more of a personal investigation. As far as my style, it’s hard to explain how it developed, other than through practice, because so much of it is innate.

CB: When did you notice that you had an eye and natural artistic talent?

CA: Creating has always been a part of my life. I think you start realizing something is there when other people start telling you. As a child, you just do, and never really think about it. I’ve been lucky to have an amazing support system that always encouraged me artistically.

CB: What or who inspire you in your daily work?

CA: I am visual in every aspect of life. I notice everything and am often inspired by random pairings of objects and things I see throughout the day.

CB: Is there any advice you have for people looking to make a living with their art?

CA: First and foremost, believe in yourself and surround yourself with people that share that faith and encourage you. Reach out to people who you admire, do your research and remember, ‘Rome wasn’t built in a day.’ Perseverance is key!

CB: How or what do you do to get started on a piece?

CA: It really all depends on what has inspired that piece. Sometimes I start with a color scheme, other times the background or the subject.

CB: Is there any piece of work that has been especially meaningful to you or you are most proud?

CA: I think I’m most proud of new body’s of work. It sounds cliche`, but no matter how much you create, it’s always scary pushing the envelope and trying something new.

A little personal…

CB: What’s your favorite part of Thanksgiving?

CA: That’s easy! Green. Bean. Casserole!!

CB: Your inbox…9,999 or 0?

CA: Ha! Not 0, so I guess I’ll have to go with 9,999 (It’s 453 exact:)).

See more of Chamber’s work at her website.

In Art/ Decor/ Design/ Gifts

Take a Walk on the WILD SIDE

We’re a little partial to the wild side over here! Kathy’s detailed leopard illustration has been a favorite pattern in our fabric and wallpaper collections for some time now and recently the leopard reign expanded to our new gift line on the best gifts and accessories. Have you seen our leopard keychain?! We think whether you walk with leopards big or small, you can’t go wrong! Have you taken a walk on the wild side yet?

You can find our entire Leopard Collection here. Go ahead…Take a Walk on the Wild Side!

 

In Decor/ Design/ Entrepreneur/ Featured Artist/ Featured Retailer/ Uncategorized

Meet the Entrepreneur/Artist Series-Shelly Kennedy

Today we are featuring Shelly Kennedy, artist and shop owner. Shelly Kennedy is a published stylist, decorator, and artist. Starting in 1997, Shelly grew Drooz studio {drooz.com} as a wholesale art business for 10 years- selling decorative accessories to stores, designers, mommies and Hollywood celebrities all over the world. Her custom decor has accented the homes of celebrities such as Rachel Ashwell, P.Diddy, Jada Pinkett-Smith, Dylan McDermott, Courtney Love, Kate Hudson, Johnny Depp and John O’Hurley. She now works from her studio – painting, designing, and crafting… focusing on licensing and creating original and custom work. Her exclusive designs have been sold thru wonderful retail partners such as Garnet Hill, Layla Grayce, & Land of Nod. Her work has been seen on the set of television shows as NBC’s FRIENDS, Modern Family, and Extreme Home Makeover. Along with creating traditional wall art, her designs have adorned such items as rugs, piggy banks, nite lights, dish sets, birthday hats, necklaces, growth charts, pillow and placemats. Her designs have been seen on the pages of People Magazine, Country Living, InStyle, Better Homes & Garden, Coastal Living, Rachel Ashwell’s “Shabby Chic” as well as many other magazines and decor books. With a love for beautiful spaces and entertaining her homes & studios have been featured by This Old House, Design Sponge, Where Women Create, Where Women Cook, Mary Englebreit’s Home Companion. She lives in her hometown of Skaneateles, New York with her husband, 2 teenage children, and her French Bulldog puppy, Lewis. A self-professed chronic nester, she can often be found renovating her 1896 farmhouse, mixing colors & mixing cocktails, and spending way too much time on social media. Over the years, Shelly has worn the many hats of RETAIL. At the age of 16, she landed her first job as a “shop girl” at a florist/giftshop in her hometown. After catching the retail “bug” she also worked as a Sales Rep for a giftware group in the Midwest, a Merchandiser & Display artist, as well as a Buyer for a chain of gift stores in Chicago. She then managed her own wholesale art and giftware company for over ten years.

From Kathy

I first met Shelly at a branding/gifting event in New York around 2005. At that time, Clairebella was a juvenile products line and baby products were the focus of the event. I was a huge fan of Shelly’s work and was really excited to get to meet her in person. Shelly was very gracious and we have kept in touch a bit throughout the years. It has been fun, following her on Instagram as she opened her brick & mortar gift store.

Q & A

CB: How did you get into the industry?

SK: I’ve been in the giftware industry for over 20 years! My first job out of college was for a rep group in Chicago at the Merchandise Mart. I had the entire Chicago and North Shore market. It’s then that I got the bug big TIME for consumer goods, creative gifts and decorative accessories.

CB: Is there any part of your work that has been especially meaningful to you or you are most proud?

SK: Currently at the shop I am very proud of my line of greeting cards-I love hearing the customers laugh out loud as they browse the card wall (most of the cards are pretty sassy and mildly inappropriate!) I try to fill a void in the “normal ” greeting card market-congrats on getting your drivers license, braces off and getting rid of that shitty boyfriend. Sympathies for the loss of your wisdom teeth, cat, and bad habits. It makes my day when a customer says “OMGosh-this is PERFECT! I NEED to get this for…”

CB: Regarding your art, how did you develop your unique style and how would you describe it?

SK: I originally developed art for babies and nurseries. Bold, bright, crisp lines, saturated colors-classic images with modern twists that look and feel carried through when I branched into teen art, home decor and gifts

CB: Is there any advice you have for people looking to make a living with their art?

SK: 1. Create daily. Sketch.  Keep notes, document your ideas well (I have journals over 20 years old filled that I still flip through from time to time) 2. Document finished work well. So much of the work of an artist is sold and given away-keep good records of everything! Makes sure you are building your portfolio along the way-invest in good photography 3. Research! Research! If you are looking to get into licensing-find companies you like-do they design in-house? Or license out? Who do they work with? Do you like the quality of their goods? Do they seem to promote /support their artists?

CB: What is your favorite part of having your store?

SK: It’s my HAPPY place. And I think (I KNOW) it’s becoming the happy place for others…(last year a very good customer was browsing in the shop. She looked a bit “down”-she explained that her best and longest friend had just passed and that she consciously drove to DROOZ because she knew just being there would make her feel better)

CB: What or who inspires you in your daily work?

SK: Just trying to stay FRESH and ahead of trends! It motivates me to always be thinking of my next idea, finding the next big thing-no time to rest!

CB: When did you notice that you had an eye and natural talent for this field?

SK: Always. I’ve always loved it! Even as a little girl playing with Barbies I have more fun creating bedding, artwork and lamp shades for my Barbie dolls (vs their clothes)I love color, design, interior design-all of that has played heavily into the development of my brand. Seeing my art and designs as components of an entire room or special event. The look of my art flows through into my own home, decor and shop selections. Bright, bold, fun, not too serious. Sassy. New and vintage, classic and vintage.

CB: How does your background as an artist influence the items you pick for your store?

SK: I’ve always been drawn to the small mom and pop companies-brands developed and grown by the owner; with their creative drive, blood, sweat and tears! I like supporting the little guys. I’m a little guy 🙂 Examples: Hester and Cook; Pure Home Apothecary; Curly Girl Designs; Clairebella. For my shop, I try to find unique, small batch, handmade items. I like trendy, current and relevant-but I try really hard to find things that aren’t commonly found in our area. I like pretty and practical-form and function!

CB: What is your favorite gift to give?

SK: I think a gift should be something you wouldn’t consider buying yourself-a true luxury item! A facial, a massage, a bottle of reallllly good Tequila or a box of super decadent dark chocolates

CB: What is a favorite book you have read recently?

SK: Latest: Profit First by Mike Michalowicz; Old Favorite that I’m always flipping through “12 Secrets of Highly Creative Women” by Gail McMeekin. Great stories and motivation and lots of little inspirational quotes through the book on the sidelines.

CB: Your inbox…9,999 or 0?

SK: 9999! omg.

at the store…

additional creations…

in her home…

Find more of Shelly and DROOZ follow them @DROOZANDCOMPANY.

11 In Decor/ Design/ Giveaway/ Uncategorized

Giveaway Time

We are hosting a wallpaper giveaway-Win 2 Double Rolls, $380 value. It’s the perfect time to give a room a refresh before the holidays!

To enter: Comment on this blog post or instagram post for your chance to win. For additional entries, tag a friend.

Closes Thursday 10/25 at midnight est. Winner announced Friday morning, 10/26 via social media.

 

In best of/ Decor/ Design/ DIY

CB’s BEST OF…

We wanted to take a little time to share some of our favorite things with you in our new blog series Best of . These are things that have caught our eyes, we’re personally enjoying & other bits that we just have to share.

1. We like (love) ourselves some leopard over here and can’t get enough of these fun shoes for fall! Have you tried adding any leopard to your fall wardrobe?

2. Kathy had a quick mini project in her pantry last week and found these great vinyl tiles to put on the floor. A quick, cute and cost-effective solution she found at Lowes.

3. Everyone’s decorating for fall and we are loving all these cute doormats that are being added to front stoops and porches.

4. Someone had a birthday this week! Cheers to Kathy!! And to birthdays passed!

5. Who doesn’t love a big box delivered to them?! Here is a sneak peek at just one of the new products coming this fall!

Enjoy your weekend!