Friday, March 29, 2013

I Heart Gold Mirrors

Whew!  This week has been pretty crazy, with the pre-Easter church bustle, combined with a fun dinner party and Jady's parents coming into town.  There is so much going on that I completely forgot it was my day to post on Wednesday!  Literally didn't even occur to me once.  Thankfully we are pretty relaxed about things here at Mel & Liza:)

The Kochs' trip up to see us all meant that in order for them to stay with us, I needed somehow to turn the upstairs room that has been our power tool/paint can storage/tiling workshop room into real bedroom... in less than three days.  Even though we hadn't really decided what look we wanted exactly,  I had to make some fast decisions in order to create something remotely acceptable-- and sometimes necessity and a super short deadline is exactly what I need to get things done!  

Of course I didn't want to be completely utilitarian about the design, so I decided to choose something for the new room to elevate the elegance factor slightly (mostly to help distract from the fact that we're still storing a huge pile of boxes and tools in there!). So I went on a hunt for a gold mirror at a low price, diligently checking out second hand, thrift and antique shops whenever I passed one and had a minute to peek in.  Because I knew it would hang over a dresser, I was hoping to find a horizontal mirror to fit the space-- and was thrilled when I came across this one.

I can't wait to show you what we pulled together (in the nick of time!).  Stay tuned for next week's before and "after" photos:)

Have a great weekend!



Thursday, March 28, 2013

Smalls Buds, Big Impact #2

Last Friday we had a lovely dinner party with just a few new friends. So, while I was in the flower market on Friday I picked up one bunch of rananculas and one bunch of wild white flowers, with lots of green. I thought, this 30 dollars worth of flowers would get me just a few bunches, but I ended up with 9 small arrangements throughout the house. Flowers always keep my place feeling fresh, even though our apartment is over 100 years old. 

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Urban Gardening

With Easter just around the corner, we have begun to prepare St. Georges Church for a fabulous Easter service. Since winter has not left us entirely, our courtyard has begun to look pretty dead.  What to do, REPLANT. Fortunately we are two blocks away from the best farmers market in the city, we have plenty of varieties to choose from. I decided to select a mix of perennials, bulbs, and gardenia. The gardenia smells so lovely and is perfect for Easter. 

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Easter Decor

With Easter just around the corner, it was time to make our holiday sign. Each time a holiday comes around our dear friend Anna V decorates our door (here & here) with S, and I just buy the supplies. Luckily we had plenty of glitter and just needed some inspiring paper to get us going. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

Birthday Partying it Up

We have had the best time having my sister in law, Lindsay, live with us since she moved to Louisville from NYC last month.  I keep saying it, but it's so true, that with her here every night is a party at our house!:)  Moving is always so overwhelming, especially to a new town with a new job, and I have been so impressed with how she's jumped right into her new life.  This weekend we celebrated her birthday with an official party and a house full of friends.

Our party consisted of a group of 10 ladies, plus Jady (who loved every minute of it!), so I went with white and pink for the decorations.  Thanks to LGN for the balloon inspiration (I just straight up stole that one!) -- I love the clusters of gradually intensifying pinks, which I tied together and to the railing with raffia.

Lindsay wanted an elegant feel for the party but not too formal, so I set the table for a special occasion but added more casual elements like decorating with raffia and passing the main course family style.   Also, everyone hung out in the kitchen before dinner and kept me company while I cooked, helping to make the whole event fun and relaxed. 

The flowers we picked up while grocery shopping at Costco and Kroger-- pink lilies and white hydrangeas-- plus some sprigs of dried eucalyptus branches I had left over from Trader Joe's a few weeks before.  I love the feminine, springy effect, and all for much less than a pre-arranged bouquet at a florist.

Celebrations for loved ones are the best!  



Friday, March 22, 2013

Vintage Buttons

Since we are just a little over a week away from Easter, I have quickly been working to pull our outfits together for the big day. I can't wait to share our fun Easter picnic in Gramercy Park, all I have to say is the meal is going to be simple with a tinge of nostalgia. 
I digress. Last week my mother sent a dress to Sophia from the Gap, the dress was a little too big so when I went to exchange it, I found a fabulous dress coat in robins egg blue that I just could not walk away from.  The coat was priced at $55 and marked down to $30.  It was a must have, plus the coat is quilted inside, sure to keep S warm.  All that being said, I did want to add a personal touch.  Remember my upgraded Gap sweater here?  Since it is Easter, I thought to make some button changes that would personalize the coat. 

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Replacing an Old Friend

The coffee table in our living room is one of my favorite things, partly because of its pretty shape and brass details, and partly because Jady picked it out for us at a flea market in Berlin years ago, and it has made many moves along with us ever since.  The only trouble with it is that it really isn't big enough to work as a true coffee table, and I've been wishing I could magically enlarge it to fit the space.  I'm definitely still loving the look of the glass and gold or brass, though...

Kendall Wilkinson Design


Vintage Scout Interiors

Slemasko & Verbridge

Here is our little traveler-- still a prized possession after all of these years.  Just not large enough to handle hors d'oeuvres for a crowd.

I ran across this beauty at Colonial Designs recently and love the mirrored top.

This gorgeous table boasts real gold leaf and a marble top (along with a price tag to match).

Here is a more affordable option with an antique gold finish and pretty finials at each corner.

I love this one from Horchow.  Gilded bamboo? Yes, please.

I'm not sure we'll make a move to replace the table we have anytime soon, but I'm keeping an eye out for just the right one-- just in case:)



Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Sunshine in the winter months

Today is officially spring, but it could not feel further away. Here in NYC, we had snow and sleet Tuesday and Monday.  But, who says you can't have spring right in your own home. A friend and I went to the flower market on Monday and picked up a few blooms that were sure to brighten any home.  

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Bathroom Designs- Mirror Wall

Since we finished tiling the floor in the master bathroom a few months ago, not much has changed in there.  Once we brought the space up to an essentially functional level we moved on to list of pressing projects around the house.  But now we're thinking it's time to circle back around and to finish our bathroom.  

The first step to wrapping things up in here will be to reinstall the woodwork-- that's right, we still have no baseboards!  With my new mitre saw and nail gun, cutting and attaching the boards shouldn't take too long and will be a quick, satisfying job (I say that, but I still need to DO it:)).  But the pressing question for our final project in the bathroom is what kind of mirror do we want over the vanity?

One idea I love is to create panels of mirror covering the whole wall, with each mirror framed in with wood trim.  (Full disclosure: in one top corner of our vanity wall there's a spot that's pretty lumpy from back when we extended the wall 10 inches to create a bookshelf.  We did the drywall ourselves, and it turns out sanding joint compound is maybe my least favorite job ever... so I never did sand it enough to make it look right.  Which is why a plan like this, which would cover the entire wall, is essential.)

Memento Designs

Better Homes & Gardens

House & Home

Another great option would be to cover the whole wall in a large piece of mirror or even a group of smaller sections to create one big mirrored surface.  The bonus here is that it would lighten the space by reflecting the window across from it and make the room feel larger.  I love these next two photos, which show mirrored panels held together with pretty brass mirror tacks.

Bradshaw Designs

Tracery Interiors

If we did install a single piece of mirror to cover the space, a fun way to add interest and personality could be to hang a mirror on top, or in our case a pair of them.  I'm currently obsessed with the one below...

Huntley & Co

Gerald Pomeroy Design Group

One final idea I've been throwing around lately is to install a medicine cabinet over each sink.  One look at the state of our countertop would tell you that we could certainly use a little more storage space, and I always love how a medicine cabinet keeps things within easy reach.  But I don't want to give up the idea of the whole wall of mirror...  So now we're thinking maybe we have the huge mirror cut with two spaces for installing the medicine cabinets...  Since we would want mirrored cabinets, the overall effect would look like we had hung two mirrors on top of the large one, just with hidden storage inside.  

Crisp Architects 

Here are a couple of mirrors that would be so pretty hung as a pair over the larger mirrored background.  I love this Venetian one from Wisteria.

Or this pretty Ribbon Panel mirror:

Medicine cabinets most often come with simple mirrors and clean lines, which I don't mind.  Here's a pretty one with a little bit of a twist.

Home Depot

And then you could go all out with this gorgeous Afina Medicine Cabinet.  Amazing.  Yes, please.



Monday, March 18, 2013

Monday Party Settings

Hello Monday!
Today I in the flower market making some fun plans for an upcoming wedding. With all this dreary New York weather, I could use a touch of spring.  I thought since its such a gloomy Monday, I would post a little more on Henry's party. I love all the bright, reds, blues, pinks, and oranges.  Our settings were full of color!

Friday, March 15, 2013

Lazy Friday Mornings

Since Jady's job as a minister necessarily means that weekends and work weeks don't follow normal patterns, his day off doesn't fall at a typical time, either.  Friday is our day of sleeping in, lounging around and sitting around sipping coffee by the fire together (because it is still so cold here-- spring, we're ready!!).  I love these mornings, particularly, when no one has to rush off and we can stay in our pajamas until lunch.  

Raleigh has the right idea... We are loving this sunny Friday morning!

Wishing you all a great weekend.

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