Monday, December 15, 2014

Moodboard Monday: Sister's Bedroom + Wisdom

It's not Monday, don't worry. But that's how we roll here at Belclaire House.  

Last week my sister asked me to help her pull together her Master Bedroom. It's a big space with a mishmash of stuff. She wanted a new bed, new pillows, lamps and bedside tables and she has a large space between the bed and the pocket door closets. The room is painted a pretty pale blue and the one thing she loves are the navy blue and white Greek key curtains. 

She gave me a great budget for a normal 25 year-old with a good job, which means we can actually purchase things , but have to be thoughtful about our spending. She's also just like me at 25 and gets easily distracted by fun, colorful, pretty things. So my goal is to help her avoid some of the design mistakes I made at her age, like thinking I can just recover something when I get tired of it. 

My advice to any young girls decorating their home for the first time is to keep the big things neutral, then bring in your whims with throw pillows and other accessories. Invest in art that you can put anywhere, and have one sort of neutral base color or color group from which to add on - for me this is blue and white. I'm making it be that for her because that's what we grew up with and we will never get away from it :) 

Soo now that you have all of the boring info, here's my design plus a few variations to show just how easy it is to change a look with pillows. I'd love to hear your favorite! 
Sisters Big Girl Room
How funny is that cow from The Animal print shop?? It looks just like her cat and is so her sense of humor. 

Other Pillow and Headboard Ideas

Pillow Mix: Fuzzy + Periwinkle

Pillow Mix: Mermaid + Pink

Pillow Mix: Pillow + Tiger

Pillow Mix: Les Touches + Ginger Jar

Tomorrow I'll give you a round up of some inexpensive headboards and nightstands I put together to help her complete this look. 

Thursday, December 11, 2014

On the Homefront

Hello friends! Just popping in with some bits and pieces from the home. 

A simple boxwood and tartan wreath on my front door. I finally got a wreath up after my friend who drives by my house everyday told me it was depressing that I had no Christmas decorations up. She was right. 

Someday I want to do this outside my house: 

I snapped that picture when I was home in Dallas.  It's so magical. Kip, this is what I'm thinking when I send you back to the store for more lights. 

A little mantle decor. It's nothing fancy, but I like it. I decided to purge a lot of the decorations that I didn't LOVE. Broken handme downs and things that I just put out in the past because I thought, "well, I have them!"  I think the guys at Goodwill probably think I'm helping some great aunt with hoarder tendencies on a weekly basis. 

The JOY* banner was an impulse purchase at Paper Source. I'm normally not one for lots of word decor, unless it's really funny, but this was soo sparkly and JOY is part of my New Year's Resolution for 2015 (see #joychangeslives). 

*Edward insists it says "jail" because as he says "it has the letters J and O. J. O. Jayoh. Jayle. Jail! It says jail!" 

We are putting our Santa out early this year (for travel reasons). Every morning Christopher stops in the guest room to say hi to him and hug his leg. It's so cute and sweet. He loves Santa! 

He also loves the birds in our powder room. 

Since it's Thursday, here's a little #tbt for y'all. 

Our old house at Christmas. That picture was probably taken with my Blackberry. We (Kip) had just put the wallpaper up and we were so excited. Little did I know that we would soon be moving. To a house with lots of great wallpaper nonetheless! 

This what I was envisioning with that room. Don't laugh. 

Jim Dear and Darling had great wallpaper in their old Victorian mansion in case you ever need inspiration. 

Finally, The Suze has a few more stockings to stuff this year! 

She ordered the same white velvet stockings I did. I can't say I love mine. They're fine but maybe a little dinky. At least, it won't take much to fill.  Guess I need to learn to needlepoint! 

Have a great evening! 

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

PSA: Blue & White Love at Furbish

Blue & White Love at Furbish

Y'all, I was just innocently browsing the goods at Furbish - one of my favorite stops on the inter webs - when suddenly my screen was awash with a beam of ethereal sunlight flecked with glitter and angels.  Jeff Buckley quietly sang Hallelujah as a single tear rolled down my face, and I knew I would have a proper blog post today.  Thank you, I whispered to the screen.

* This only the half of it.  You're welcome blue and white lovers.
** I received no compensation for this roundup of awesome goodies.  I just really love blue & white and Furbish.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Blue & White Pillows on Etsy

I have no business pillow shopping.  In my defense, I wasn't pillow shopping at all.  I was simply browsing Etsy for gift ideas when a hundred blue and white pillows found me and cried, "please take me home with you?"  It tugged at my heart strings, but I had to remain strong and focused.  I knew I couldn't give them the home they deserved.  And much like the innkeeper said to Mary and Joseph after their long trip to Bethlehem, "there's no room at the inn."  Wait, what's happening? These are pillows for cry in' out loud.  I'll save you from where I was going to take you with this post, but it almost led to a mood board for a super chic barn.

So for your blue and white pleasure, I'll share them with you in hopes that you might find something pretty that you'd like to take home.  Consider it my gift to you.  Click the image to take you to the Etsy listing.

Not Blue & White, but still fun.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Gift Ideas for Little Ones

Gift Ideas for Little Ones

I remember one day when I was a little girl going with my Grandpa Doobydoll (yep, that's what we called him) to M.E. Moses, the old dime store in Dallas' Snider Plaza.  For some reason, my Grandma wasn't with us and I remember the moment of panic I felt just before we walked in.  "I hope he knows he's supposed to get me something here," I thought. "Maybe I should tell him just in case."  And I did.  I specifically told him that it was something that all grandparents had to do.  And he said, "Oh really? Well, thank you for telling me."  I remember feeling very satisfied that I had just saved him the embarrassment of not following proper grandparent protocol when going to the dime store.  Really and truly, I believed I had done him a favor.

I'm sure by now most parents know what they are getting their kids (or what they are not getting them).  I think I have successfully convinced Edward that a bearded dragon might be a 7-year-old present so if Santa doesn't bring one, it's only because he's not allowed, too.  I'm pretty sure he's buying it because he told all of the TSA agents at the airport the other day.  I did make the mistake of describing "coal in your stocking" as being like getting some rocks in your stocking.  Because Edward would be happy to receive a bag of rocks (boys) he interpreted it to mean that Santa throws rocks at you if you are naughty! I mean, what?

Anyway, these gift ideas are more for those of you who are buying gifts for other people's kids and want to get them something good.
Hanna Andersson Sleeper Marine Stripe - These are so cute and make great gifts because they are not necessarily in every parent's budget for kid PJs.  The zipper is key.  Great for busy parents who maybe don't have time to change their kid out of their PJs before they leave the house.

Sweater Knit Baby Blanket - You can never have enough baby blankets.  They get dirty and fall on the ground in parking lots and who has time to do all of that laundry.  I love the pop of citron on this one.

Mini Trampoline - I have this in my living room after I was unable to convince the boys that the springy part under the sofa cushions was not a trampoline.  It doesn't take up too much space and they can jump all they want.

Dress-a-saurus Rex - Kids love dress up and these are great because they can't outgrow them next year.  That's cute that they put girls in the dino costumes.  They also have butterfly wings. I once pitched such a fit when I went to get my tonsils out because they gave me train pajamas, that they actually didn't do the surgery.  Just saying.

Squishy Toy Egg - My kids love squishy toys.  We have ALL of them ever made.  Edward has asked for a squishy gorilla and a squishy platypus (?), but the squishy egg is the best Santa could do.  At least with boys, squishy toys are always a winner.

Good Luck Minis - These are super tiny so may not be good for little ones, but Edward loves these.  I'm learning that just like girls love to put things in their purses, boy like to put things in their pockets.  These are perfect for that.  I found these at Hobby Lobby as well.

Little Bean Nap Mats - These are the creation of my super stylish sister-in-law.  They come in lots of different patterns, are all organic, have an attached pillow and blanket and are easy to roll-up.  My favorite thing is the little pocket where you can put the pacifier, a love note or even one of the Good Luck Minis above.

The Book With No Pictures - This is the cutest book.  Every time I read it to Edward he laughs hysterically.  It does say "chicken butt," which I don't love but I use it as an opportunity for Edward to put me in time-out (kids love to do that).  The point of the book is that parents have to read every word on the page.  It is really silly.

Magformers 30-piece Set - Apparently these are all the rage.  They are a little pricey, but I've read that it's worth it.  This is the kind of thing parents often want to get for their kids, but can't always justify, which is why it would make a great gift.  (I did get these for Edward because he loves building things so Nanna and Grandma Suze hold your horses ;))

Wooden Fish Stacker - The colors alone are so pretty, but these are also extremely durable and feel safer than plastic.  We have the wooden blocks and my kids love them, but I think the Honey Bear (who is now 16 months!) would love these for the stacking component.

Gracie Cat by Hazel Village - These Hazel Village animals are my new go-to baby gift!  My sister-in-law gave the Honey Bear Owen the Fox when he was born and he sleeps with it every night.  It's safe to put in the crib with babies and he would use the arms and legs as a pacifier.  It says hand wash, but I throw in the washing machine all of the time.  They have all different animals with cute little stories.  They are the best!

Mermaid Dress - Because who doesn't want to be a mermaid??

Zingo - We play this game all of the time.  Edward always manipulates it so he can win.  It's very easy and a great learning tool.  It's great for four and five year olds.  Also, Edward's preschool teacher has her masters and said she read a study that the one thing most prison inmates had in common across the board was that they didn't play board games growing up.  So there's that.

Cyril Sloth - this might be more of a gift for me.  We don't need another stuffed animal.  I have a hard time getting rid of them because how do we know they don't have feelings? Blame The Velveteen Rabbit.  Anyway, I see this guy everywhere and just want to take him home.

Waiting Is Not Easy - We bought this book the other day and will probably read it every day until Christmas morning.  I love the Piggie & Elephant books because I get to use my theater voice and Edward thinks they are hilarious and makes me act them out with him.  This one is super cute and I think my favorite of all of them because of the end (which I won't give away).

And while we are talking about giving and toys and kids, I wanted to share this book/new tradition we are starting this year.

Edward's Elf brought it to him direct from Santa after he saw how much Edward loved putting money in the Salvation Army buckets.  It's really a cute book about giving that comes with a special "giving bag" and a keepsake bell from Santa.  Basically, your child gathers toys and clothes to put in the bag and leaves it under the tree.  Santa will come and take everything in it (and I added that he might leave him a little treat in return).

While I want my kids to find joy in giving, I also understand that when they are young it is often really hard to grasp that every one isn't living in the same kind of household.  Their little world is so tiny and comfortable, which is such a blessing, and I hope it gives them a solid foundation so they can go out and help others less fortunate.  This book really is a great starting point for little ones.  I also love that it uses Christmas magic to encourage children to get into the spirit of giving.  And who doesn't want an extra visit from Santa?!*

*Actually, me as a little girl.  I was terrified of Santa.  I had no idea why once a year a grown man was allowed into our house by way of chimney while we were sleeping and no one seemed to be at all concerned that something could go terribly wrong.