If you happened to read any of my baby related posts before Sailor was born, you know that I was perhaps a little too concerned about losing my design aesthetic in my home when making the transition into parenthood. At first, I couldn’t possibly wrap my head around how I could keep my all white, clean lines, and sharp design details with a baby flinging food and other messy substances around the house all the time. Also practical baby gear is usually ugly, and that’s a real shame. While she’s only 6.5 months and just starting the solid food journey, I’m sure I’m in for some challenging times ahead. Regardless, it’s been my mission to find the baby products out there that will keep my home vibes in tact. I didn’t even know if I wanted to get a high chair at first. I know a lot of families just get a seat that clips onto the table or go without one altogether, but as we were getting ready to start her on solids, it seemed like a high chair was going to be unavoidable logistically. But a whole piece of furniture that’s basically no smaller than an adult chair sitting out in our apartment 24/7 just needed to fit into the aesthetic or it wasn’t going to happen. Call me high maintenance…
Enter: the bloom fresco chrome high chair. When I discovered that this chair existed, my design conscious heart eyes were a flutter. Not only does it look like the chicest kind of baby spaceship orb capsule and comes in a whole array of colors, it has several settings to mold to your baby’s needs as he/she grows well into the toddler years – from recliner seat, to two choices of removable food tray when they’re sitting up, to a booster seat at the dinner table when they’re older kids, which of course helps justify the investment – insert toothy emoji (sorry husbands!). Seriously though, while it might be one of the pricer items on your baby gear list, it’s a great one for the registry because they sell it at a lot of stores (like Amazon, Nordstrom, and Bed Bath & Beyond) – some of the colors are more affordable than others. The bloom website of course has the most color choices. I had to seriously hold myself back from getting the black and gold version but the chrome just matched so well in our home. The rose gold seat pad adds a nice warm touch, and I can always switch it out for a black, white, or silver one for a different look, or if this one gets too gross after our solids adventures really go into high gear (though I will say it’s quite easy to clean). I’ve even seen photos of dining tables with a few of these for their various aged kids and you’d barely even know at first glance that they were kids chairs. I LOVE a company that keeps adult friendly design in mind when making baby products, and can’t wait to share more of my favorites with you guys! Baby proofing is just around the corner, so that will be the ultimate design challenge. Wish me luck – I’m seriously scared.
I’m so sooo excited to finally get to show you guys these special, personal photos from our newborn/nursery shoot with our dear friend Heather Kincaid two weeks after Sailor was born. A big thank you to 100 Layer Cakelet for featuring this shoot today as well! Looking back at these now, I almost feel like I’m looking at three strangers in a way. With a new baby, everything is constantly updating and progressing and changing so much from the day before and this feels like a totally different time, even though today she’s still only just over 3 months old. One thing I remember so vividly about this day was being kind of shell shocked, to be perfectly honest. It was the first time after she was born when we tried to do something that required us to get up that morning and be somewhat functioning human beings. I remember feeling so incredibly tired, puffy, overstimulated, and confused. I held Sailor and while I felt so lucky to stare and at this incredible thing I was so proud to call my own, at the same time I almost felt like I was playing a role of “new mom.” I was in love, but also in so much pain (see this post if you don’t know what I’m talking about) and all the emotions were still just so new that I could barely even identify them. Ian on the other hand was cool as a cucumber (he’ll be offended by that analogy because there’s basically nothing on this earth that he hates more than cucumbers) and I watched him swaddle her and hold her so naturally, and felt like he was way ahead of me in conquering this new parent thing. Now I see how that was such a special and raw moment to capture as new parents and I’m so glad Heather was there to do it (with her very own newborn in tow no less! She’s a total pro at both her craft and being a mom).
Now, about the nursery! Putting this room together was essentially the project that brought me to a zen place throughout my pregnancy. While I had felt so out of my element in kid-prep, I kept reminding myself that I could do mommyhood my own way, starting with the nursery. It was important to me that this room be a place us adults would enjoy. Not only would we spending a lot of time in here, but it’s also still the room where all my own clothes are held in the closets and where I get dressed everyday (if you follow me on Snapchat @thelifestyled then you know all about this struggle). So it literally is partly “my” room too. Not surprisingly, I didn’t want a lot of color. I wanted it to feel fresh and light, with some playful yet sophisticated touches. Modern and minimal (lots of lucite and clean lines) with boho accents for texture and softness.
My mom also played a big role in bringing this vision to life since many of the nursery’s best elements were handmade by her. Namely, the white wall hanging made out of leather and feathers (!!), the adorable quilt with little shapes we designed specifically to suit Sailor and me, a linen embroidery piece with lips in different pink tones (framed on the gallery wall), and the yarn mobile over the chair. These and many other of her crafts are all becoming available on her new Etsy shop, Elm Street Textiles. She’s taking orders for custom pieces too so hit her up if you see something you like, and definitely keep checking back for new listings. My mom is one of the most creative people I know and I’m so happy to have her handiwork as a part of Sailor’s room.
When we moved into our apartment last year, the inspiration was flowing for how I wanted to decorate the different rooms. We love this place for the many areas that are drenched with sunlight and have more of a “house” feel. Sadly, the bathrooms are not those areas. Frankly, the bathrooms are dark, windowless, and definitely have an “apartment” feel with lots of basic, nothing-to-write-home-about fixtures. It’s not worth investing money into any permanent aspects of the place since we don’t own it, so any updates we do have to be in the accessory realm. I made it my mission to upgrade this bathroom as best I could with an all-white look to keep it feeling light and fresh, and little pops of black for some minimalist accents. I also decided that no product that wasn’t pretty to look at was allowed outside of the cabinets. I scoured all the beauty brands that were not only good products, but had well designed packaging that would serve as decor on the counter.
We found these two art prints at a boutique in Florence and are by far my favorite additions to the space. I love how they add some “unbasicness” to the main wall. We also added some plants to bring some life into an otherwise stark space, along. A luxurious candle, like this one from Byredo and a nice room spray (obsessed with this one from Diptyque) can also do wonders to the overall feeling of the room when I come in here.
Today I have a fun and SO easy DIY for you guys. Wall art has been the bane of my existence lately as there’s so many walls that need some love in our place, but good art can be pricey and hard to find. A little DIY can go a long way to add a handmade touch to the home, and make you look really crafty and cool to top it off. These boho wall hangings are great because you can make them as big, small, long short, colorful, neutral, complex, simple as you want. Plus the supplies are really inexpensive and easy to find. All you need is some yarn (I just picked up 5 skeins of black/gray/cream and still have so much left after making these two), craft rings, scissors, and a glue gun if you have it but it’s not necessary. Happy crafting!
When it came time to start thinking about our baby’s nursery – I have to be brutally honest – it took me a minute to get excited about giving up the room that was previously planned to be my studio/boudoir/closet. I always wanted a studio/boudoir/closet! Although when I started to think about the fun we could have turning it into a stylish nursery (and also still my closet since there’s literally nowhere else in the apartment for my clothes to go), it started to feel a lot more exciting. This is our room to design especially for our little one exactly the way we want to, and that’s a fun project no matter how you slice it. There will be a studio/boudoir/closet room in my future – I guess I’ll just have to wait a little longer for it.
While a girl might seem easier to design for, it’s actually a bit harder for me. I tend to gravitate towards more masculine baby things like robots and dinosaurs, and I don’t want a nursery that feels overly girly. After all, this is a room I’m going to be spending a lot of time in too. So rather than load it with pink, we’re opting for a mostly white room with a mix of textures, and occasional pops of black, gray, and bright coral. I want the room to have a few boho touches to soften it up (like a macrame wall hanging, plush rug, and crochet crib skirt), but still with a lot of the structure, high contrast, and clean lines I love so much. So far, all we have to show for it is this inspiration board but it is instrumental in helping us get ready to start the process. I will say it helps to have an interior designer friend like Jessica, who after hearing about some of my scattered ideas, brought them to life and then some in this design (and just wait til you see her adorable new baby boy’s chic nursery!).
We’re just about to start bringing in some pieces and I’ll be keeping you guys posted on the progress. Here we go!
It seems crazy to already be thinking about the holidays when we just wrapped Halloween this past weekend. However, how many times have you felt like you had nothing but time to buy gifts and within a second, it’s December 22nd? Every time? We can avoid that this year by getting a head start on gifts well before Thanksgiving. I’m starting this year’s holiday gift guide series with one for the hosts in our lives. We all have holiday dinners and events that we don’t want to show up empty handed for, and I’m sure we all have a friend or family member who love throwing soirees and would appreciate little luxuries to amp up their party game. These gifts are ones that keep the hosts duties in mind, like a treat for their bar or a new touch of home decor. Just a little something sweet to show appreciation for being invited and will certainly ensure that you’ll be invited back.
There were few things one could do to get me to decorate pumpkins again after a glitter extravaganza a few years ago left me feeling exhausted by the idea. While they were so lovely to have on my table through Thanksgiving, the remnants of glitter and glue I kept finding around the apartemnt weren’t as cute. Last year I just rounded up some white pumpkins and kept them as is which was nice, but felt a little lackluster after awhile. I love fall, especially the time surrounding Halloween, and this year it was time to resurface my pumpkin decorating side.
The 2014 pumpkin decorating Catherine is no longer into glitter, so this time they needed to be a little bit sleeker and edgier. A color palette of black, white, and gold seemed perfectly appropriate to match my home decor and it kept the costs from getting too out of control (I guess I keep a can of gold spray paint around at all times now). All it took for these guys was the spray paint (I went with a matte finish for the white and black), acrylic paint to use with a brush for any of the touch-ups or designs, and painters tape to section off areas for the color blocking. Studs and push pins make the easiest embellishments on pumpkins because they just slide right in and stay put. I already have a craft drawer full of studs and just got these push pins (and everything else) at Blick. Any art supply store would probably have you covered for this stuff. The studs are a little harder to find but try JoAnn Fabrics or ordering them online. I got mine in the garment district downtown LA at a store called Bead Factory Inc. This was a fun DIY and much easier to clean up than the glitter. The best part is that they will last well beyond Halloween – no carving, no spiderweb designs. How are you decorating for fall this year?
One of my favorite parts of September is the back-to-school excitement in the air – something that never goes away even when we’re long past our student years. Shopping for school supplies used to be something I looked forward to for months. I loved nothing more than to pick up fresh pencils, pristine new folders and notebooks. Thrill of the year. Even if you’re not headed back to school this month, it’s fun to give your desk a little update with some fun new office supplies. No Jansport backpacks or Five Star binders here!
Choosing the perfect wedding gift can sometimes be equally as tricky as finding the perfect outfit. Sure the registry is there to make things easy for us, but sometimes you run into roadblocks. The item you have your eye on has already been purchased, or maybe you just feel that couple would appreciate something with a little thought and creativity behind it. I’m actually a fan of registries because when people get married, they want to build their own perfect home rather than a hodgepodge of random people’s tastes. It’s a way to make it very easy on their guests to pick out something you know for sure they want. But sometimes – and you’ll probably know when it’s one of those times – it’s just nice to go off the beaten path. I recommend only doing this if you feel you really know the couple’s style and are comfortable choosing something that suits them and their home. These are a few items that you likely won’t find on a wedding registry but are sure to make memorable and stylish gifts for the wedding, or even the shower or engagement party.