Ikea Meets Yardsale Minimalist

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Every Wednesday I help readers solve design dilemmas in my Just Ask category, one of my favorite categories on the blog. I woke up to over a hundred design questions from readers, wow. I was inspired by this question to share ideas for designing on a budget using lower price furniture and re-purposed yard sale pieces. Ikea came right to mind; great design, in stock and well priced. This table can be found at Ikea, The Docksta Dining Table ($199.00). Combine it with dining chairs found at yard sales or re-purposed chairs from Grandma’s old dining set for a chic eclectic look. Read more

Serious “It” Factor: MackeyBlue, Hoboken

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I know I have said it before but one of the best things about being an Interior Designer is that I get to constantly go shopping for my clients. For me space-planning, color scheme development, furniture and fabric selections are all easy. Finding that perfect piece (the wow factor) to build a design around or accessorizing a room with vintage treasures, not so easy. I love combining my clients family heirlooms with vintage pieces that have history and character. You can’t rush this process, you can’t run out and buy history and character off the shelf, you have to search for it and recognize it. Enter in, Karen Marsh of MackeyBlue located in the heart of Hoboken, NJ. A Friday Find that is a designers dream. Read more

Pippin is Vintage Perfection; NYC

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Holiday shopping puts us all to the test but I have to say one of my favorite things about it is finding just the right gift for that special someone and then seeing them wear it again and again. I started a shopping category on the blog to share my fabulous finds and today I want to share one of my favorite shops in New York City for vintage jewelry, Pippin Vintage Jewelry. Located in the eclectic Chelsea section of NYC their street is known as “thrift row” and it is a real gem (hehehe a pun).

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Green & Glorious Gift Guide

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Happy Weekend! This weeks Friday Find is a green gift guide that I stumbled upon today while trying to get a jump on my holiday shopping. I “try” to live green and design green but it can be challenging and costly at times. This catalog fulfills my desire to give gifts that are hip and my desire to live green (or slightly greener). I also like my gifts to have a real wow factor reaction. Today I found just what I was after with this holiday gift guide by Treehugger.  The wow factor is the level of uniqueness these gifts have coupled with the minimum impact they have on our earth, doesn’t get any better than that. 
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Batik Fabric Fantasy: Katherine Rally Textiles

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One of the best parts about my job as a professional designer is that I get to shop for my clients everyday. Before I had my kids I taught Interior Design at the college level for a brief period and would joke with students that you have to love shopping to be successful at this career but it is actually true. You need to be able to seek out and find that latest trend or discover that tried and true classic piece of furniture that suits your clients needs perfectly. This means constant research and constant shopping, love it! Today I am sharing a fabulous find that I stumbled upon working on a recent project where I needed to specify fabric for pillows that would pull the entire room together. This fabric had to be unique in material, design and origin because it would not only complete the design but it would become a conversational piece for my clients to share with their guests. Katherine Rally, Fabric and Pillows.

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The Farmhouse Store:Westfield, NJ

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Did you ever pass by a store hundreds of times, always wanting to stop in but never having the time? For me, this is that store. The one where I slow down each time I drive by to catch a glimpse in their window. The Farmhouse Store is located in the picturesque town of Westfield, New Jersey and it is a real find. Read more

Restoring The Faith: Restoration Hardware Re-Invented

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Yesterday I received the massive Restoration Hardware catalog in the mail. I don’t know if anyone else has noticed, but WOW a huge style change has taken place!  For years I have specified their furniture for my clients;  having a similar feel to styles at Pottery Barn and Crate & Barrel it appealed to a wide market. Today, I am having difficulty getting any of my clients to see past the moody color schemes and monster size pieces of furniture. As a designer it is a very different story, the new line is pure eye candy. While school shopping at the mall the other day with my daughter, my heart actually skipped a beat when we walked by RH. I just stopped and staring into the windows, with that glazed look in my eye, like a kid looking into a candy store.

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Chelsea Thrift Shop:Housing Works

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Recently my daughter attended pre-college at The Fashion Institute of Technology which is located in an eclectic neighborhood in NYC called Chelsea. If you haven’t experienced Chelsea before be sure to stop by some of these favorite spots, Chelsea Market and High Line Park. She commuted by train but I took the opportunity to meet her after class to fit some shopping in. We stumbled upon this fabulous thrift store by Housing Works and I wanted to share some of the finds. This place is unique because it combines a nice mix of furniture and designer clothing. Typically I find thrift stores seem to be stronger in one area than another but this place was a real find. What an easy way to give back and get some good stuff. Housing Works engages in relentless advocacy in pursuit of their mission to end the dual crises of AIDS and homelessness. Feel good shopping, I love it. Check it out!

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Quick Fix: HomeGoods

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Lets be honest, when it comes to accessorizing our homes this typically happens when we have nothing left in our budget and our patience is wearing thin. One of my solutions to this problem is to take a run to HomeGoods, they have an ever-changing selection of intriguing accessories and furniture. I go to find those pieces that can complete my design or even to inspire a renovation. The HomeGo0ds blog is also a great place to find tips about the latest store finds and design topics. Check out this article on accessorizing your coffee table HERE.

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