FALLING DOWN THE STAIRS

 

So, the other night , I got up to use the restroom. I was sleeping in Phoebe’s room, keeping her poor lost kitty, “Gus” company.

The hallway was pitch black, I could not see my hand in front of my face. And I remember thinking, “No problem, after 12 years – I can do this blindfolded, I know this house LIKE the back of my hand!!!”.

I came out of the bathroom, and went to walk back down the hall to Phoebe’s room , I stepped…and my left foot went into open air..

“Phew I thought…that’s the staircase…go a few feet more…”,
…so with my right foot I took a confident stride, further forward, down the hall … but instead, I went …
into nothingness!!! Into the blackness….AND FELL.

I fell forward, down and kept trying to grab a rail, the stair, something but I could see nothing and nothing met my hand…flailing , I just kept going down. I tumbled down the stairs, like out of a movie, in slow motion and just when I thought I had gotten to the bottom of the 18 steps …. I flipped backwards…over the rail and down onto the floor below…flat on my back.

For a moment…I was stunned – the wind had been knocked out of me, I could not breathe…but in seconds I screamed and sobbed – “HELP!!! help! Damon! HELP!!!” I was afraid to move and I was not sure I could move if I tried. The room was spinning and my arms really hurt. And then I started shaking, SO hard it was almost like a convulsion but I was not cold.
Damon and Cooper ran down. It was established that I was alive. I could move my limbs…But my neck and my back hurt very bad and 911 was called and the rest is a long story that includes an ambulance ride and ends with good news, my spine is intact, I have no lasting head injury, just a big lump on the back of my head and the 50 odd deep dark bruises that keep popping up and filling in gaps in the story and which will all eventually fade. I hurt all over – I feel like I fell down a flight of stairs…cause I did. But I will be okay.

I am so very grateful to be alive. I am grateful for my husband and my son. My children at college. For Charlie the dog who would not leave my side. For the sweet recent JMU nursing school graduate named Emily who held my hand in the ambulance and put my hair back into a ponytail and kept me distracted with conversation. For the Martha Jefferson ER staff that were each brilliant, gentle, sweet humans. And the X-ray tech who helped me take off my necklace. And kept saying “I’m sorry if I hurt you.”
It was surreal. It happened in an instant.

Leave the night-light on. Always make sure you tell the people you love – that you love them. Even if you fancy yourself “not the mushy type” – figure that part out. Life can change on a dime.

XO

Leslie

DO YOUR OWN THING – HOUSE BEAUTIFUL – KATIE UKROPS -AND PINK!

HAVE YOU SEEN THE SEPTEMBER ISSUE OF HOUSE BEAUTIFUL?

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THE SEPTEMBER ISSUE OF HOUSE BEAUTIFUL

IS ON NEWS-STANDS AND IN MAILBOXES EVERYWHERE!

 WHEN I saw this issue at the Grocery store…I had to buy it on the spot (even though I SOMEHOW HAVE TWO subscriptions to House Beautiful!!) . BUT, I could not wait to flip the pages and find out where the amazing PINK HOME was. Imagine my absolute joy in finding out the home belongs to one of my biggest sources of HOME DECORATING inspiration – A VIRGINIA GIRL -Katie Ukrops!!!

INTERIOR DESIGN BY  RICHMOND DESIGNER SUELLEN GREGORY

If you google “katie ukrops” – my old country house blog will come up on the first page. I have been LOVED  her home since AN earlier version graced the pages of Domino Magazine in 2008

KATIE UKROPS - BM PINK CLOUD

KATIE UKROPS – BM PINK CLOUD

I was inspired to paint my living room Benjamin Moore Pink Cloud!

THIS MOMENT IN TIME was a turning point for me AND my approach to decorating. Up until that point, I HAD MY FAVORITES AND I knew what I liked but I was always getting so distracted and muddled by what others were doing…But the bottom line is – I have always loved pink.

I am featuring KATIE’s home…not so much to sway you to the PINK SIDE OF THE ROOM  (I am certain many would DIE before they put pink in their homes) but to impress upon you how important it is to do YOUR THING. Which is not always the “hottest thing” or the most trendy thing….but instead it is the  AUTHENTIC to YOU – THING

 PINK is not a color choice to which many subscribe but what I realized was that  I do LOVE pink and that MY home is MY home…and YOUR HOME is YOUR HOME and that is the wonderful thing. It would be such a boring cookie-cutter world if we all liked the same things!  Your home should reflect YOU. Not some MAGAZINE OR SOME BLOGGER OR SOME HGTV idea of who you want to be or wish you were but WHO YOU ARE – right now.

What colors do you LOVE?

What colors do you HATE???

What styles? And if you are struck down with decisional paralysis … find someone who GETS YOU, someone who can help you find YOUR style.

I realized that I when I was completely authentic and employed  my favorite colors …I was happier and much less apt to tire of my decorating choices.  Katie’s approach to pinks and pastels was mature and classic…right up my alley.

WHAT I LOVE ABOUT HER NEW LIVING ROOM – is that She did not “throw out the baby with the bathwater” but instead she has reupholstered and slipcovered her very beautiful, timeless and stylish pieces from  in updated colors and prints.

The High gloss pink walls – the icing on the cake – are not for everyone but I THINK THEY ARE VERY FUN!!!

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I HIGHLY ENCOURAGE YOU TO PICK UP THIS ISSUE OF HOUSE BEAUTIFUL – I HAVE A COPY IN EVERY ROOM!!! – IT IS A FANTASTIC ISSUE WITH SO MANY AWESOME PAGES OF RESOURCES AND DECORATING AND COLOR INSPIRATION. I THINK IT MUGHT BE ONE OF MY FAVORITE ISSUES OF HOUSE BEAUTIFUL EVER!

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LETS TAKE A LITTLE TOUR OF KATIE’S HOUSE – COURTESY OF HOUSE BEAUTIFUL

THIS DINING ROOM  GIVES ME SO MANY IDEAS FOR THE NEW HOUSE! THE LIGHTING! DIVINE!

HOUSE BEAUTIFUL KATIE UKROPS SPET 2016 DINING ROOM

HOUSE BEAUTIFUL KATIE UKROPS SPET 2016 DINING ROOM

THE UKROPS DID A RENOVATION OF THEIR HOME ADDING AMONG OTHER THINGS A NEW MASTER BEDROOM

THE UKROPS FAMILY RECENTLY DID A RENOVATION OF THEIR HOME ADDING AMONG OTHER THINGS –  A NEW MASTER BEDROOM – HOUSE BEAUTIFUL KATIE UKROPS Sept 2016

KATIE UKROPS LIVING ROOM 2016

KATIE UKROPS LIVING ROOM 2016

KATIE UKROPS HOUSE BEAUTIFUL 2016

KATIE UKROPS HOUSE BEAUTIFUL 2016

Maybe it is because we both love pink, maybe it is because we both just sent daughter’s to college…or that she owns an Art Gallery – named “QUIRK”  – but I think Katie and I could be friends…!!

PHOEBE QUIRK 2013

PHOEBE QUIRK 2013

XO

Leslie

FORMICA180FX CALACATTA MARBLE COUNTERTOPS – FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

THE KITCHEN MAKEOVER 

took a little over 2 years and was completed in 2013.

MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE

MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE

I FIELD questions via this blog or email every week…

REGARDING OUR KITCHEN FORMICA 180 FX MARBLE COUNTERTOPS

……….so I thought it might be helpful to list the TOP 10 Q&A’s…

1.Q – Do you still like your countertops?

1.A – YES. Love them still.

 KITCHEN MAKEOVER

KITCHEN MAKEOVER

KITCHEN - 2016

KITCHEN – 2016

2. Q. have your Formica countertops stained.

2. A. NO…The countertops have not stained

CUTTING BOARD!

CUTTING BOARD!

3. Q. Do you have to use a cutting board?

3. YES, you should use a cutting board with sharp knives on the Formica counter tops. I have skipped a cutting board when making the lunches…just cutting a sandwich is fine, but the kids have made some fine scratches when NOT using a cutting board and cutting with sharp knives.

kitchenisland1

4. Q. How noticeable are the corner seams? 

4. A. We have only one seam in our Formica 180fx countertops. It is on the L – shaped corner by the mixer. It lays flush and has never stood out to me. Proper installation is crucial here.

FORMICA 180FX CALACATTA MARBLE CORNER SEAM

FORMICA 180FX CALACATTA MARBLE CORNER SEAM

FORMICA AMORE EDGE

FORMICA AMORE EDGE

5. Q. Calacatta Marble– is yours the “etched” finish or the “gloss”? I don’t think I want the etching but that is the only selection I can find….THANK YOU !

5. A. Our countertop is “ETCHED” . I will confess, when I very first saw a sample size – I did not like the way the etching appeared. It looked strange to me…with all the little “divits” but all worries were in vain because  in the finished version…they are NOT visible and the matte finish keeps scratches from appearing. I will go on record and say “YES I like the etching”.

FORMICA180XAEGEAN7

it is nearly impossible to see the etching when the finished product is installed.

6. Q. I am putting Formica Calcutta formica in my new home. Having trouble finding a good white color for subway tile and white paint for cabinets. Any suggestions?

6. A. There are a millions options. For subway tile – the stock “Ice White” subway tile by Olean works great. Our cabinets are painted Benjamin Moore “Mountain Peak White” which works well with both the subway tile And the counter-tops.

THE KITCHEN ISLAND OFF TO THE SIDE AND TUCKED INOT ITS OWN LITTLE CUBBY!

THE KITCHEN ISLAND OFF TO THE SIDE AND TUCKED INTO ITS OWN LITTLE CUBBY!

7. Q. WHAT KIND OF SINK DO YOU HAVE with your Formica Countertops ? 

7. A. We have a Kohler drop in, VAULT Large single kitchen sink with Single-Hole faucet drilling. I was encouraged to choose a “top mount” sink which in a way made the decision making easier because there were fewer options I liked. I have since been told that under mount sinks can be used if installed properly . There are more options available including sinks which are post formef and flush with the counter tops but as I have not researched those I will just speak to what we have and I STILL ADORE this sink!!!

8. Q. Have you had any problems with these countertops?

8. A. We have had no real problems but there is one ISSUE which bears mentioning…and I confess I was counseled about before I chose my edge profile and chose to ignore. (naughty me) It was suggested that I choose an edge profile which wrapped around the post-form wood base and extended underside. This keeps water, (especially near the sink) from dripping around and then being absorbed into the underside wood, causing it to swell. I went with an edge profile which just stops abruptly at the edge and painted the underside with many coats of water resisted paint. And we have had some swelling just in front of the sink.

KITCHEN with amore edge

KITCHEN with amore edge which we changed to AEGEAN – long story.

AEGENA EDGE PROFILE...LOOKS THE MOST "REAL" BUT DOES NOT EXTEND UNDER THE COUNTER TOP THIS...ALLOING FOR WATER TO BE ABSORBED INTO THE WOOD BASE, WHEN IT DRIP AROUND THE CORDER. THE CAN BE LESSENED BY PAINTING THE UNDERSIDE WITH A HIGHLY WATER RESISTENT COATING OF PAINT WHEN YOU INSTALL.

AEGEAN EDGE PROFILE…LOOKS THE MOST “REAL” BUT DOES NOT EXTEND UNDER THE COUNTER TOP THIS…ALLOING FOR WATER TO BE ABSORBED INTO THE WOOD BASE, WHEN IT DRIPs AROUND THE EDGE. THE CAN BE LESSENED BY PAINTING THE UNDERSIDE WITH A HIGHLY WATER RESISTANT COATING OF PAINT WHEN YOU INSTALL. THE “AMORE” EDGE GOES ALL THE WAY AROUND AND LOOKS GREAT.

9. Q. Does the marble pattern look “fake” in person? 

9. NO. In fact, we had our dishwasher replaced and when the serviceman arrived he frowned and sighed and said “OH! I was not told you had marble countertops…I will need to go get a different drill. ” He was standing one foot from them!!!

This being said…I have never tried to fool anyone, I really just like the way they look..they are a digitalized photo of marble…they look clean and were the perfect choice for our kitchen makeover.

FORMICA180XAEGEAN6

10. Q. I love these countertops !!! Where can I get Formica 180x countertops in Calacatta Marble?

10. A – We got our countertops at Home Depot. We bought them “uninstalled” for $14 sq/ft (installed was $30 sq ft) and then paid our Mr Fix it  ($200) to install them. They can be purchased via Lowes as well. There are also many COUNTERTOP  manufacturers like Hartson Kennedy  What I discovered is that much of your success in getting these countertops DEPENDS upon the fabricators local to YOU . IF your store tells you they are unavailable, or cheap and a bad choice , or unavailable..please tell me the name of the store and I will contact my Formica Rep and he will follow-up. ALL of these stores have been trained in selling and fabricating these counter tops and the should be available in the US stores.

KITCHEN MAKEOVER

KITCHEN MAKEOVER

Thank you for all of your thoughtful comments and questions. I have loved sharing this experience with you guys. I never dreamed it would connect me to some many of you who are all trying to create a beautiful kitchen space on a budget…and I value all of feedback!!!

Leslie

QUESTION: I FOUND A BABY DEER?

baby-deer-1-500

RUPERT – Photo by Jeff Moore.

Once….I FOUND A BABY DEER. NO,  NOT the deer above, the baby deer above is a deer named “Rupert” that was delivered via c section, 3 weeks early, after his Mother was hit by a car.

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This photo is so you can see how TINY the deer was that I saw.

No...This is how I came to see a baby deer:

I was driving down the street, and saw, what I thought was a cat come out of the tall grass near the side of the road. Except, as I got closer…what I saw was standing right at he edge of the road, was the tiniest baby deer I had ever seen..like the size of a toy stuffed deer…he was so very tiny and wobbly…I immediately stopped. And all kinds of things ran through my head…

“Where is his Momma?”

“Is she the deer I saw get hit the other night?”

“Are we going to have a baby deer for a pet?”

“What should I name him?”

hingsmakemehappy.tumblr.com

My “Fantasy” Pet…I could name him…”Bambi?” from: Thingsmakemehappy.tumblr.com

Slowly…..I stepped out of the car, and he just stood there…like a deer NOT in the headlights…just stunned and probably too tiny to even know what to do…slowly..very slowly…like still photographs connected into one movement..he began to turn away…and then he stumbled back  into the tall grass. and disappeared….Instinct told me to leave him alone….and so that is exactly what I did.

Fast forward to Later that same day, when the kids got home from school, I said “GUESS what I saw…11″ and then….”Lets go see if MY baby deer is still there!!!”

But first…Phoebe did some googling, to find out how we should proceed and what we learned was fascinating…and stopped us in our tracks…

Baby deer are born in the late Spring, when the weather is milder. When they are born, they have NO scent. NONE. This lack of a SCENT is highly protective from predators….because ALL of their predators have poor vision and see only in black and white and rely on scent to find their prey. The Mommy deer DO have a scent ….they have the babies and then leave them, and ONLY come back to feed them and even consume their waste, as it has nutritive components for the new Mother. The babies mostly sleep and grow. This goes on for weeks, until the babies grow strong enough to keep up and run away from their prey.

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SO IF YOU see a baby deer, ABSOLUTELY DO NOT TOUCH IT! Not unless you know for certain the mother is not coming back. YOUR scent will alert predators and be a death sentence for the deer.

One article said if you see a baby, leave it, and come back to the spot the next day..if you come back and the baby is crying, then probably the mother is not coming back and you can take the baby to the proper wildlife refuge…otherwise…let nature do her thing…

I was sad to find out that Rupert,  the tiny deer above, did not survive…he was just too tiny. But a few weeks after I spotted my baby deer, I saw my him with his Momma, hanging out in the tall grass, playing with the lightening bugs in the warm summer evening air…

Hmmm.learn something new everyday!!!

Leslie

HAPPY “PLATINUM” BIRTHDAY – TO ME !

another year

ANOTHER BIRTHDAY!!!!

I HAVE COINED A NEW TERM

TODAY IS MY PLATINIUM BIRTHDAY ( me and Cynthia Rowley!)

This is when your Birth YEAR (in my case 1958) and your current age (58)…

are the same..!!!

I say BRING IT 58!!! Life is good and I am happy to celebrate another year!!! AGE is just a number and truly a state of mind.

HAPPY PLATINUM BIRTHDAY TO ME

HAPPY PLATINUM BIRTHDAY TO ME

XO

Leslie

APARTMENT THERAPY HOUSE TOUR

I am so excited to share with you this wonderful news!!!

Untitled

OF 

MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE!

WELCOME!!!

WELCOME!!!

IT WAS A LONG TIME IN THE MAKING. 12 years to be exact, but when I read the article I felt so proud of my home and especially of the TLC that we put into it. I have an homage to this home, the place where life happened and precious memories were made, that will serve to I hope remind others that home is where the heart is.

ME AND CHARLIE- the big boy

ME AND CHARLIE- the big boy

…and the dogs…kids…cats…LOVE lives here. 

my old country house

my old country house

LIVING ROOM

LIVING ROOM

VISIT APARTMENT THERAPY FOR THE FULL TOUR AND SOURCE GUIDE!!! apartment-therapy-logo

THANK YOU APARTMENT THERAPY!!!

6624dd1e88e21980d01b18a56690a179-1

Leslie

NOW TRENDING – POWDER BLUE

I DO SO LOVE MY PASTELS

AND POWDER BLUE IS NO EXCEPTION

I HAVE BEEN WATCHING THE FINAL SEASON ON DOWNTON ABBEY (AGAIN) THIS SUMMER AND EVERY TIME I SEE THIS POWDER BLUE ROOM I WANT TO GET HOME AND PAINT A ROOM THIS COLOR!!!

DOWNTON ABBEY MASTER BEDROOM KENSINGTON BLIS "oft, beautiful, tiffany blue walls (although depending on the lighting, this color ranges from a powder blue, as in this pic, to a more robins-egg blue), four poster canopy bed, ornate gilded mirror & sconces..."

DOWNTON ABBEY MASTER BEDROOM KENSINGTON BLIS “Loft, beautiful, tiffany blue walls (although depending on the lighting, this color ranges from a powder blue, as in this pic, to a more robins-egg blue), four poster canopy bed, ornate gilded mirror & sconces…”

I HAD A FEELING WE WOULD BE SEEING MORE OF THIS LOVELY PEACEFUL COLOR AND RIGHT ON SCHEDULE…AND AS IF IT KNEW HOW MUCH WE NEED SOME PEACE…

THE POWDER BLUES ARE EVERYWHERE!

BENJAMIN MOORE POWDER BLUES - BLUE BONNET, CLEAR SKIES, ICY BLUE, ICY MOON DROPS, LIGHT BLUE, MORNING SKY BLUE, OCEAN AIR, TEAR DROP BLUE AND SKYSCRAPER

BENJAMIN MOORE POWDER BLUES – BLUE BONNET, CLEAR SKIES, ICY BLUE, ICY MOON DROPS, LIGHT BLUE, MORNING SKY BLUE, OCEAN AIR, TEAR DROP BLUE AND SKYSCRAPER

SOUTH SHORE DECORATING BLOG

SOUTH SHORE DECORATING BLOG

YELLOW AND BLUE

YELLOW AND BLUE – PINTEREST

EWING BLUE

EWING BLUE

BLUE BONNET

BLUE BONNET

BLUE BONNET HOUSE BEAUTIFUL

BLUE BONNET HOUSE BEAUTIFUL

MARIO (AKA NEROSUNERO) SUGHI Blue and Cream, 2012 archival print on bamboo paper limited edition

MARIO (AKA NEROSUNERO) SUGHI
Blue and Cream, 2012
archival print on bamboo paper
limited edition

CLEAR SKIES

CLEAR SKIES

KATE SPADE COURT CYNTHIA PURSE

KATE SPADE COURT CYNTHIA PURSE

LesliHouse0020

COUNTRY CLUB BY LESLI DEVITO

KIDS BATHROOM - photo Cramer Photos OCEAN AIR AND CLEAR SKIES

KIDS BATHROOM – photo Cramer Photos OCEAN AIR AND CLEAR SKIES

OCEAN AIR

OCEAN AIR

Corine-Maggio_La-Jolla-Beach-Cottage- Photo By: Chipper Hatter Photography 3 / 14

Corine-Maggio_La-Jolla-Beach-Cottage- Photo By: Chipper Hatter Photography

Chango-and-Co_Park-Slope-Brownstone - Photo By: Ball & Albanese

Chango-and-Co_Park-Slope-Brownstone – Photo By: Ball & Albanese

OCEAN AIR HOUZZ

OCEAN AIR HOUZZ

LAUNDRY ROOM - OCEAN AIR AND MOUNTAIN PEAK WHITE

LAUNDRY ROOM – OCEAN AIR AND MOUNTAIN PEAK WHITE

MORNING SKY BLUE

MORNING SKY BLUE

PINTEREST - BLOGLOVIN

PINTEREST – BLOGLOVIN

 

ICY BLUE

ICY BLUE

SHOP STYLE

SHOP STYLE

ICY MOON DROPS

ICY MOON DROPS

PINTEREST

PINTEREST

J Crew Chateau Parka in Vintage Sky

J Crew Chateau Parka in Vintage Sky – I WANT THIS COAT IF THEY BRING IT BACK THIS YEAR!

WHITE RAIN

WHITE RAIN

VINTAGE HOME

VINTAGE HOME

LIGHT BLUE

LIGHT BLUE

SUSAN WALSH - BLUE PARROT

SUSAN WALSH – BLUE PARROT

POWDER BLUE NURSERY

POWDER BLUE NURSERY

MY DOMAINE

MY DOMAINE

TEAR DROP BLUE

TEAR DROP BLUE

HOUSE OF SMITHS

HOUSE OF SMITHS

JOYBIRD IS HAVING A 20% OFF ALE RIGHT NOW! BRAXTON SOFA

JOYBIRD IS HAVING A 20% OFF ALE RIGHT NOW! BRAXTON SOFA

YELLOW AND BLUE KITCHEN

YELLOW AND BLUE KITCHEN

BIRDS EGG BLUE CEILING DARK GRAY FLOOR

BIRDS EGG BLUE CEILING DARK GRAY FLOOR

94c6d9f3c44fbb09e3a567be2e7176e1

SPRING SKY

SPRING SKY

SKYSCRAPER

SKYSCRAPER

contemporary-bedroom HOUZZ

Køkkenet er fra JKE Design

Køkkenet er fra JKE Design

ROTUNDA PAINTING SKY BLUE

ROTUNDA PAINTING SKY BLUE

AND FINALLY – THE GIRLS IN THEIR PROM DRESSES….OH HOW I MISS THESE GIRLS…

PROM PHOEBE AND CARLY AND THE POWDER BLUE SKY AND DRESS

PROM PHOEBE AND CARLY AND THE POWDER BLUE SKY AND DRESS

BENJAMIN MOORE POWDER BLUES - BLUE BONNET, CLEAR SKIES, ICY BLUE, ICY MOON DROPS, LIGHT BLUE, MORNING SKY BLUE, OCEAN AIR, TEAR DROP BLUE AND SKYSCRAPER

BENJAMIN MOORE POWDER BLUES – BLUE BONNET, CLEAR SKIES, ICY BLUE, ICY MOON DROPS, LIGHT BLUE, MORNING SKY BLUE, OCEAN AIR, TEAR DROP BLUE AND SKYSCRAPER

Leslie

MONDAY MAKEOVER – 10 TIPS FOR CHOOSING A SOFA

CHOOSING A SOFA 

sofa

IS A FUN problem to have – BUT OFTEN DAUNTING TASK!

HERE ARE 10  THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN CHOOSING A SOFA.

1. LOCATION /ROOM SIZE – WHERE IS IT GOING AND WITH WHAT?

2. BUDGET

3. STYLE

4. ARMS

5. SEATS

6. PILLOWS

7. SKIRTED OR VISIBLE LEGS

8.DURABILITY

9. COLOR

10. SLIPCOVERED OR UPHOLSTERED

MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE LIVING ROOM

MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE LIVING ROOM

1. LOCATION / ROOM SIZE, LAYOUT, DOOR AND WINDOW LOCATIONS, other furniture and  AND FLOOR PLAN ALL PLAY A HUGE PART IS DECIDING WHICH OF THE SEEMINGLY MILLIONS OF SOFAS TO PURCHASE.

SOME QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF : WHERE IS THIS SOFA GOING?

IS IT GOING TO BE ….IN THE FAMILY ROOM, LIVING ROOM, AND HOW MUCH TRAFFIC WILL IT NEED TO WITHSTAND?

WHAT ARE THE AGES OF THE PEOPLE (AND PETS) WHO WILL USE IT MOST? I remember watching as my toddler wiped her runny nose on the sofa cushions edge – which came conveniently to nose-height – and it was a blessing that those cushions could be laundered!

PHOTO BY SARAH CRAMER

PHOTO BY SARAH CRAMER

CONFIGURATION – DOES YOUR ROOM HAVE 4 WALLS? OR AN OPEN FLOOR PLAN?

LIVING ROOM - MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE

LIVING ROOM – MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE

WILL THE BACK OF THE SOFA BE VISIBLE?

DIANE BERGERON

DIANE BERGERON

WHERE IS THE LIGHTING IN THE ROOM?

MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE - LIVING ROOM - SPOONFLOWER FABRIC DRAPES

MY OLD COUNTRY HOUSE – LIVING ROOM – SLIPCOVERED SOFA

IS THIS ROOM THE CENTER OF THE HOUSE…OF DOWN IN THE BASEMENT?

THIS IS AN OLD PHOTO I FOUND ON PINTEREST WITH A DEAD END LINK. IT IS PROBABLY ONE OF MY FAVORITE PHOTOS OF ANY SPACE. IT EPITOMIZES MY DESIGN TASTE

THIS IS AN OLD PHOTO I FOUND ON PINTEREST WITH A DEAD END LINK. IT IS PROBABLY ONE OF MY FAVORITE PHOTOS OF ANY SPACE. IT EPITOMIZES MY DESIGN TASTE

ALL IMPORTANT QUESTIONS TO ASK YOURSELF BEFORE YOU MAKE THE PURCHASE….AND FOR PETE’S SAKE – MEASURE YOUR DOORWAYS AND STAIRCASES!!!

PINTEREST

PINTEREST

3. BUDGET.  BUDGETS AND TASTES VARY AND CAN DICTATE OPTIONS.  BUT NOWADAYS – A TIGHT BUDGET IS NOT A BARRIER TO STYLE.

EMILY HENDERSON DID A GREAT “SOFA” POST WHICH INCLUDES AMONG OTHER VALUABLE ADVICE ” GENERIC SOFAS NOT TO BUY” AND A FEW DOZEN GREAT SOFAS UNDER $1000!!!!

THERE ARE SOFAS FOR EVERY BUDGET AND EVERY WEBSITE HAS SALES! WATCH FOR DISCOUNTS…AND COUPONS AND MARKDOWNS.

ONE of my ABSOLUTE favorite Furniture companies to come on the scene in the last few years is JOYBIRD! .

3. STYLE –   “STYLE” REFERS TO THE SOFA SHAPE. THERE ARE SO MANY DIFFERENT STYLES WHICH REFLECT EVERYTHING FROM TRADITIONAL DECOR TO MORE CONTEMPORARY AND MODERN TYPES OF DECOR. THE BEST SOFA STYLES, IN MY HUMBLE OPINION ARE TIMELESS – NO MATTER WHAT STYLE THEY ARE…

..HERE ARE A FEW BASIC BIGGIES…FROM WHICH MOST SOFA STYLES ORIGINATE.(all the diagrams and descriptions below are from DOMINO)

THE DOMINO BOOK IS HANDS DOWN MY GO-TO FAVORITE DECORATING AND DESIGN BOOK !!!

THE DOMINO BOOK IS HANDS DOWN MY GO-TO FAVORITE DECORATING AND DESIGN BOOK !!!

HANDS DOWN THE BEST RESOURCE BOOK EVER!

Slipper Streamlined and unfussy, like an elongated slipper chair, this option is made more for entertaining than lounging. Usually lean and open, it does well in small spaces.

SLIPPER
Streamlined and unfussy, like an elongated slipper chair, this option is made more for entertaining than lounging. Usually lean and open, it does well in small spaces.

ENGLISH ARM THREE SEATER Rumpled, yet aristocratic, this British country-house staple has soft, deep cushions and low arms that make it ideal for TV watching.

ENGLISH ARM THREE SEATER
Rumpled, yet aristocratic, this British country-house staple has soft, deep cushions and low arms that make it ideal for TV watching.

 I ADORE This “ROBIN” sofa FROM JOYBIRD with English Arms below is GORGEOUS and I am dying to get is made up in pink!!!!

FRENCH SETTEE Often seen in a Louis XIV style, this regal option is delicate, formal, and architectural. The exposed carved-wood frame provides a structured contrast in a room of heavily upholstered pieces.

FRENCH SETTEE
Often seen in a Louis XIV style, this regal option is delicate, formal, and architectural. The exposed carved-wood frame provides a structured contrast in a room of heavily upholstered pieces.

TUXEDO- A signature of society decorator Billy Baldwin, this sofa is luxurious yet decidedly no-frills. A straight profile (the arms and back are the same height) give it a more masculine feel. Works in any room, modern or traditional.

TUXEDO- A signature of society decorator Billy Baldwin, this sofa is luxurious yet decidedly no-frills. A straight profile (the arms and back are the same height) give it a more masculine feel. Works in any room, modern or traditional.

MODERN More sculpture than sofa (this one is a mid-century design by Vladimir Kagan). This piece can float in the middle of a room.

MODERN
More sculpture than sofa (this one is a mid-century design by Vladimir Kagan). This piece can float in the middle of a room.

CHESTERFIELD This 19th century English design features tight tailoring, a high back, rolled arms and tufting. In leather, it's clubby and masculine.

CHESTERFIELD
This 19th century English design features tight tailoring, a high back, rolled arms and tufting. In leather, it’s clubby and masculine.

SECTIONAL Casual, with a '70's lounginess. Good for establishing a sitting area in a loft. Minimizes the need for other seating. A version with legs cuts the bulkiness.

SECTIONAL
Casual, with a ’70’s lounginess. Good for establishing a sitting area in a loft. Minimizes the need for other seating. A version with legs cuts the bulkiness.

KNOLE (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH THE FSU MASCOT!) This style is named after a grand house of King Henry VIII. Super-classic and formal, but very cozy and sheltering. Hinged sides untie and drop flat so you can lie down.

KNOLE (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH THE FSU “NOLE” MASCOT!)
This style is named after a grand house of King Henry VIII. Super-classic and formal, but very cozy and sheltering. Hinged sides untie and drop flat so you can lie down.

Dating back to the 18th-century British designer Thomas Chippendale, this piece has an old-world sophistication but also looks surprisingly modern in a solid linen fabric. SKIRTED OR UNSKIRTED.

Dating back to the 18th-century British designer Thomas Chippendale, this piece has an old-world sophistication but also looks surprisingly modern in a solid linen fabric. SKIRTED OR UNSKIRTED.

PHOTO BY SARAH CRAMER - CAMEL BACK SOFA

PHOTO BY SARAH CRAMER – MY VINTAGE CAMEL BACK SOFA UPHOLSTERED IN BLUE GRAY VELVET

KATE SPADE SRAKE TUFTED SOFA!!!!

KATE SPADE SRADE TUFTED SOFA!!!! CHECK OUT THE SITE FOR MORE OF HER NEW FURNITURE LINE!!!!

4. ARMS – 

…HERE ARE some TO MUDDLE THROUGH!

DREXEL HERITAGE ARMS

DREXEL HERITAGE ARMS

MADE.COM RITCHIE SOFA WITH COLORED BUTTONS - DROOL!!!

MADE.COM RITCHIE SOFA WITH COLORED BUTTONS – DROOL!!!

DECORPAD

DECORPAD – TRACK ARMS SLIPCOVERED

5. SEATS, CUSHIONS – NUMBER – HOW MANY??? DO YOU WANT ONE BENCH SEAT CUSHION, TWO CUSHIONS OR THREE…AND WOULD YOU LIKE “T” OR AN “L” CUSHION OR A “SQUARE/RECTANGLE”  STYLE? WHO KNEW IT COULD BE SO COMPLICATED.

"L" AND "T" CUSHIONS WRAP AROUND THE ARM OF THE SOFA.

“L” AND “T” CUSHIONS WRAP AROUND THE ARM OF THE SOFA.

RECTANGLE AND SQUARE CUSHIONS SIT SQUARE ON THE SOFA

RECTANGLE AND SQUARE CUSHIONS SIT SQUARE ON THE SOFA

6. PILLOWSAND just as you can have NO pillows and a tight back you can have – 1, 2 , 3 or a bunch of back pillows –

burgundy and cream walls

PLUM AND BOW “ANNETTE” MAROON SOFA FROM URBAN OUTFITTERS $798 MODERN SCRILL ARM WITH 3 SEATS AND 2 PILLOWS WITH BUTTONS.

REGARD MAISONS PINK SOFA

REGARD MAISONS PINK SOFA

FOUR SEASON'S

FOUR SEASON’S FURNITURE – SARAH RICHARDSON COTTINGHAM MEADOW FABRIC FROM THE PILLOW COLLECTION – GREAT SOURCE FOR PILLOWS!

DESIGN SPONGE - I LOVE THIS!

DESIGN SPONGE – I LOVE THIS!

7. SKIRTED OR VISIBLE LEGS, – I LIKE A MIXTURE OF BOTH ….LEGS ARE CONSIDERED A BIT MORE DRESSY…BUT LOVELY SKIRTED ONES ARE BEAUTIFUL TOO….DESIGNER TRACI ZELLER HAS A RULE OF THUMB THAT IF THE SOFAS ARE SKIRTED SHE SELECTS MORE LEGGY TABLES….

DON’T EVEN GET ME STARTED ON THE DIFFERENT CONFIGURATIONS THERE ARE KICK PLEATS, DRESSMAKER PLEATS, EVEN RUFFLES…YOU CAN CAVE MULTIPLE PLEATS, JUST CORNER PLEATS…OR A CENTER PLEAT…!!!!!

TRACI ZELLER DESIGNS -

TRACI ZELLER DESIGNS – SKIRTED UPHOLSTERED ROLLARM SOFA WITH 3 CUSHIONS SEAT AND BACK

PHOEBE HOWARD

PHOEBE HOWARD – PARIS CLUB ARMS, L CUSHIONS, CORNER PLEATS, SECTIONAL SOFA

8. DURABILITY – THIS MAY SEEM LIKE AN OBVIOUS CATEGORY, WHO DOESN’T WANT A DURABLE SOFA?  BUT SOMETIMES YOU JUST NEED A 3 YR SOFA, (THINK COLLEGE APARTMENT…) OR YOU KNOW YOU WILL SWAP IT OUT WHEN THE KIDS GET OUT OF DIAPERS AND YOU JUST WANT SOMETHING TO FILL THE SPACE …A SOFT PLACE FOR EVERYONE TO SIT …IN A ROOM WHERE ONLY YOUR FAMILY GOES. –

THIS "9 BY NOVOGRATZ" SOFA/FUTON IS $399 AT WALMART!

THIS “9 BY NOVOGRATZ” SOFA/FUTON IS $399 AT WALMART!

IN OTHER CASES, YOU CONSIDER THIS SOFA TO BE AN INVESTMENT, WORTHY OF EXTENDING YOUR BUDGET TO ACCOMODATE A PIECE OF FURNITURE THAT IS NOT ONLY WELL MADE AND STURDY, BUT CLASSIC VS TRENDY, WITH A TRADITIONALLY INSPIRED FRAME AND LINES, IN FABRICS WHICH ARE TIMELESS AND HOLD UP TO HEAVY WEAR.

REMODELISTA

REMODELISTA

RESTORATION HARDWARE - BELGIAN LINEN SLOPE ARM SOFA - SINGLE CUSHION, SKIRTED AND SLIPCOVERED!

RESTORATION HARDWARE – BELGIAN LINEN SLOPE ARM SOFA – SINGLE CUSHION, SKIRTED AND SLIPCOVERED!

9. COLOR/ FABRIC – AGAIN THIS IS NOT ALWAYS SOMETHING YOU HAVE LOTS OF FLEXIBILITY ON…BUT WILL THE SOFA BE YOUR POP OF COLOR? OR WILL IT SERVE AS A BACKDROP TO ALL OF THE OTHER COLORS IN THE ROOM – WITH ART, RUGS AND OTHER PIECES TAKING FOCUS?

GEORGE SHERLOCK SOFA FROM JENNA LYONS BROOKLYN APARTMENT

GEORGE SHERLOCK SOFA FROM JENNA LYONS BROOKLYN APARTMENT

JOYBIRD HEATH LOVESEAT - OVER 100 COLORS TO CHOOSE FROM!

JOYBIRD HEATH LOVESEAT – OVER 100 COLORS TO CHOOSE FROM!

PINK YUMMY - NYLON PINKSY

PINK YUMMY – NYLON PINKSY- CONTRASTING PIPING ADDS WHIMSY AND STYLE…LOVE THE BROWN AND PINK!!

10. SLIPCOVERED VS UPHOLSTERED –  I REFUSE TO BELIEVE THAT THE ONLY OPTION FOR YOUNG CHILDREN IS LEATHER… THERE AND SO MANY DURABLE FABRICS OUT THERE AND SUNBRELLA MAKES INCREDIBLE INDOOR OUTDOOR OPTIONS THAT THE POSSIBITIES ARE ENDLESS.AND I LOVE SLIPCOVERS!!!

DWELL STUDIO MODERN BUNGALOW INDOOR/OUTDOOR - ROBERT ALLEN

DWELL STUDIO MODERN BUNGALOW INDOOR/OUTDOOR – ROBERT ALLEN

LOVE THESE SLIPCOVERS - HOUSE OF TURQUOISE WATERCOLOR FLORIDA

LOVE THESE SLIPCOVERS – HOUSE OF TURQUOISE WATERCOLOR FLORIDA SLIPCOVERED MODERN SHAPE SOFAS WITH STRAIGHT ARMS AND 3 BACK CUSHIONS.

the decorista - Megan Hess's amazing living room

the decorista – Megan Hess’s amazing living room

AND FOR PETES SAKE – HAVE SOME FUN!

OVERWHELMED? YEAH, ME TOO!

BUT ISN’T IT BETTER TO CONSIDER ALL OF THE OPTIONS? I THINK SO, EVEN IF IT TAKES A LITTLE MORE TIME.

EMILY HENDERSON’S THEORY AS TO WHY SO MANY “MISTAKE” SOFAS GET PURCHASED IS BECAUSE THEY ARE 1.  IMMEDIATELY AVAILABLE AND 2. INEXPENSIVE...BUT SHE AND I HAVE FOUND IS THAT IF YOU SHOP AROUND YOU CAN GET A GREAT SOFA FOR A DECENT PRICE…AND ONE YOU ACTUALLY LIKE – NOT SETTLE FOR!!!

SO HOW DO YOU CHOOSE A SOFA? WITH SO MANY CHOICES? AND SO FEW DECENT PLACES TO GO SHOP AROUND WITHOUT LOSING YOUR MIND?

MY SUGGESTION IS TO VISIT SITES LIKE PINTEREST, HOUZZ AND THERE ARE SO MANY GOOD ONES THAT FEATURE LOTS OF HOMES -…. I LIKE EMILY HENDERSON,  DESIGN CHIC,  AND OTHER STYLIST, DECORATORS AND DESIGNERS  – VISIT THEIR SITES AND JUST WANDER THROUGH THEIR ARCHIVES. PIN THE PHOTOS THAT SPEAK TO YOU – COLLECT PICTURES OF SOFAS THAT YOU LIKE!!!!

HOUSE OF TURQUOISE

HOUSE OF TURQUOISE

ONE OF MY PERSONAL FAVORITE “IDEA” RESOURCE IS THE BLOG  HOUSE OF TURQUOISE –  SHE FEATURES PRIMARILY DESIGNERS AND THE ROOMS AND HOMES THEY HAVE DESIGNED, SHE HAS THOUSANDS OF LIVING ROOMS FEATURED IN EVERY STYLE IMAGINABLE!!!!!

DO YOU HAVE ANY SOFA STORIES???? DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE STYLE??

HOW DID YOU CHOOSE YOUR SOFAS???

ONE OF MY FAVORITE PHOTOS EVER!

ONE OF MY FAVORITE PHOTOS  AND SOFAS EVER!

XO

anthr

Leslie

REUNION REFLECTIONS

LAST weekend I went back in time

to 1976. 

40 years! and celebrated my 40th

HIGH SCHOOL REUNION!

PHOTO BY Sherrie Wharthon McClendon

PHOTO BY Sherrie Wharthon McClendon

It was CRAZY! It was surreal. REALLY SURREAL!

I have a core group of girlfriends that I have kept in touch with over the years, weddings, babies, funerals, birthdays and reunions. We all stayed together…and every single minute was pure bliss. TRULY.

ME AND MY GIRLS

ME AND MY GIRLS – Robin, Lynn, Jill and Jan – (and Elizabeth’s head on a stick!) IF you are not in attendance-  you get taken everywhere – your head on a stick! traditions!

JANS WEDDING - JILL, LYNN, ELIZABETH, JAN, MARILYN, ME AND JAN'S SISTER PEGGY,

here we are at JANS WEDDING – 32 years ago tomorrow  JILL, LYNN, ELIZABETH, JAN, MARILYN, ME AND JAN’S SISTER PEGGY,

It was wonderful to REconnect with and in many cases getting to acquainted with classmates that I had known, but barely…sharing stories and bonding over this moment in time that we shared once upon a time and that now holds such a treasured place in all our hearts.

me and Robin

Me and My Buddy and partner in crimes of fun – Robin!

There were the awards…married the longest, most grand children and most famous – one person won all three of those awards – Wade Boggs….my esteemed classmate who wrote in my annual  “You are my favorite and if I ever get season tickets you will be the first to get them!” …

This little life goes so fast. A minute ago I was a teenager…kind of silly, kind of shy and insecure and still ready to take on the world.  IMG_7341

Quite often, I would look at the person in front of me…confused …and then I would look at their name tag with their high school photo and that would jog my memory and who they were – all came back to me. Who they are – stood in front of me – having lived 40 compacted and convoluted years of highs and lows and loves and losses – too many to reccount…but all of them – who had once just been…”the daughter…or the son .of…” had become some many people to… so many people…and I could not help but think how special it was to have a memory of them BEFORE all the names and the titles and layers.

IMG_7351

One of my most talented classmates who was an oscar nominated Film editor for almost 30 years made a movie…from collected super 8 movies and photos…that left no eye dry and took us all back…hearing our young voices…seeing those smiles…and seeing us so young…like it was yesterday.

IMG_7346

Now I am back in the present. But the warm hugs still press into my heart and each face, each beautiful face I treasure.

photo by Sherri Wharthon McClendon

photo by Sherri Wharthon McClendon

Hail oh Hail Plant High!

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