Bloggers beautiful abodes.....Elizabeth of Pretty Pink Tulips!
Good Monday morning to you! Hope you had a wonderful weekend. Ours was very relaxing, a lot of downtime which was a nice treat. And finally for the first time, I can say I actually tasted a tiny bit of spring this weekend....at last I think its arrived and I am hearing we might hit 70 degrees tomorrow!! So excited to be here today, featuring a dear blogging friend who is super stylish and someone I know many of us follow and adore. Please welcome the lovely.........
Pretty Pink Tulips is like one stop shopping for all things beautiful. Whether she is introducing us to a new artist, a fabulous new line of stationary, updating us on something gorgeous she is doing to her home, offering up a beautiful party favor idea, or giving us an inside peek into a wonderful event she has attended......it is guaranteed that whatever Elizabeth is talking about, it's worth the listen! I love her wonderful, effortless, elegant style and so was so happy she is joining us here today. I really enjoyed seeing all these gorgeous pictures of her home (some new things that most have not yet seen) and hearing her words of wisdom, so get your pen and paper ready and let Elizabeth take the stage......
1. How long have you been in your present home? Is this it for the long haul? Anything you would care to change if you could?
We have lived in this house for 6 years. Even though I love our home, I only see us staying here until our 2 boys are finished with high school. After that, I think I would enjoy downsizing and living somewhere in the South. I kind of feel like I am "caretaking" this house for the next family. Our neighborhood is ideal for young children, so once mine are gone, I think it will be time to leave. Of course, most of my plans have a way of changing....so you never know!
There is a lot I like about this house, but I think the lot is a little odd. It's a rectangle and the house is situated with yard on the sides and not much in the back. I would love a larger back yard and a larger kitchen. I have "island" envy, since I don't have one.
Luckily, we recently finished a renovation which enabled me to fix many of the things I did want to change. Such as, no covered entry into the house, a teeny tiny laundry room, no mudroom, a lack of a play space for my boys and their friends, peeling siding and a leaky roof!
Our new mudroom
2. If you could only live in two rooms of your house, which two would they be?
First, I think I would choose my bedroom because it feels cozy and I can see the tree tops. I find it very calming. Second, the kitchen/family room as it is open space where I can cook, work at my desk, the kids can do their homework, we can watch t.v. It is literally in the center of the house and where I begin and end every day.
The kitchen, family room is currently undergoing a transition to beach colors...sky, sand and ocean. Here's a peek at the fabrics I'm using.
3. How would you describe your decorating style?
I think my style has loosened up since I've lived in this house. (Perhaps because I'm raising young boys?!) I used to like things more formal. Now, I'm more interested in comfort and usability. Although, I still like things to look elegant and chic. So...."soothing and sophisticated", might be a good description. My color preferences are also shifting. Less beige and leanings toward gray and greige.
Landing and powder bath outside the new upstairs playroom
4. Do you have a favorite color scheme? What is it?
I find that I consistently like neutral colors for major pieces and then I can add color and texture with my accessories. For example, in the living room the accents are hot pink and chocolate brown.
I recently wallpapered our center hall with a neutral but busy print. I have a tapestry that we bought for the living room of our old home...but it just seemed to be the perfect large scale work of art for our narrow hallway. And, it pulls the colors from each of the rooms that feed into it.
My antelope stair runner is one of my favorite things in the house.
5. Favorite room of your house and why?
My favorite room is the one we call "the brown room" (because it's painted a dark brown). It's a great room for cocktails and conversation or just curling up with a magazine or watching t.v.
6. Best two tips you can give to anyone looking to tackle the decorating of their own home? Best two things to NOT do?
I think one of the most important things to consider is the "flow" of a home. Not only the physical flow, but the connection rooms have to one another. Tying the rooms together with paint colors or wallpapers that relate to one another is a great way to create a cohesive feeling.
I also think "layering" is a way to add interest and personality to your home. Stack the books, top them with a candle or object with some texture or reflection. Make sure things are not at the same level....vary things. Some high, some low...and then leaving breathing room.
What you shouldn't do is try or expect that you can decorate a house in a day, a week, a month or even a year. Sure, you can get the basics down, but it takes time to create a home....so enjoy the journey and let it continually evolve.
7. What do you think are the most important features for a kitchen? I've had every size kitchen...large, small and in-between. You can cook a great meal in any size, but there are things that are "nice" to have. In my opinion, a farmhouse sink not only looks great, but just makes doing the dishes so much easier. I also have come to love a really great gas stove. Basically, you need a space with some light and enough counter space to spread out a little.
8. How do you like to dress up a cocktail table and console in a living room?
I think these are great opportunities to use a tray and corral things. Start with a stack of favorite coffee table books - the subjects will give your guests a peek at your interests. Then, layer in candles, objects and either something metal or glass.
Coffee table in my living room - more formal
A bench in my family room...more rustic and informal
Coffee table in the family room
9. Any advice on the subject of lighting?
I love lighting...but I think it pays to mix it up. Recessed lighting is fine if it's on dimmers. Chandeliers can give heft to a space. Lamps allow you to bring in color and eye level lighting. And, then candles....lots and lots of candles. Everyone looks better in candlelight!
Dining room chandelier...set early in the day for a dinner party
Dining room chandelier..and candlelight (taken just before we sat down).
Some of my favorite new light fixtures are in my boys' playroom. It still needs some work...so this is definitely "in process".
10. Have a favorite paint color? Do tell!
My new favorite paint color is Benjamin Moore Edgecomb Gray (HC-173). We recently used this color in my kitchen/family room/mudroom/laundry room to create a cohesive feeling. It is a beige with a tinge of gray...so one of those "greiges". It is calming, warm and yet gives a little depth.
11. What are a couple of really simple inexpensive things you can do in your home to make it feel "homey" and inviting?
I think some of the things that can make your home feel "homey" and inviting are things you've seen above. First....the welcome mat begins at the front door. Make sure your entry is inviting. Pots of flowers, freshly painted front door, update your actual welcome mat. Next, get rid of the clutter and make sure things are straightened up. Sounds simple, but just having things in their place is calming. Finally, fresh flowers and aromatic candles enlist the senses. What I've learned is that all the things that make your home enjoyable to others are the very things that make it enjoyable for YOU. So, whether you're expecting guests are not....have your house "guest ready" and you will enjoy the benefits.
12. Fill in the blank- If money was no object, the very first thing I would buy for my home would be...........
OK...since this is a fantasy, I'm going to go for the very impractical dream idea of a swimming pool. I love the calming affect of water and would love nothing more than to sit by the pool relaxing and have a place for my boys to play. I love being outside when the weather is nice and perhaps winter has gotten the best of me. Umbrella drinks, anyone?!
Tina, this has been so much fun. I hope you and your readers have enjoyed the tour of my home!!
Told you she was fabulous! I loved learning what goes on in her head behind the process, and thought her advice and pointers were excellent and worth noting/ So agree Elizabeth, about the power of dimmers, gas stoves, candelight, farmhouse sinks and how much of an impact a welcome mat, flowers and a pretty painted door can have! Love your brown room...so cozy and looove that antelope stair runner! Every one of those wonderful details in her home is so beautifully and thoughtfully done.
I love to brag a little about my various blogging friends that I feature and one area where Elizabeth shines, amongst many others is flowers and entertaining! And you know I too love my flowers.....take a look at some of the wonderful creations she has done over the years in her picture perfect yard, rest assured something beautiful is always blooming over there!
And she always has the best and most chic ideas for party favors,gifts and fun party ideas.....
So be sure to stop over at Pretty Pink Tulips to get your "pretty fix" by signing up, if you aren't a follower already! Click here to visit. Thank you so much Elizabeth for sharing your beautiful home with us and to everyone else for stopping in....wishing everyone a fabulous day!
Don't forget only one more day to be eligible for the fabulous Safavieh shoe ottoman! If you missed it click here for details (you must comment on that post to be in the drawing) I will announce a winner tomorrow morning!!