Thursday, August 18, 2016


I love IKEA, even though I don't personally own much of anything from there beyond a few Ribba frames and my beloved salad spinner. This is mostly because it's such a long drive from my house to the nearest store so getting anything larger than a salad spinner back home is a problem, and probably also a blessing. 

A sweet couple (and dear friends) got two of these chairs and the ottoman second hand. They are super comfortable and there's still plenty of life left in the furniture but the covers were showing their age. This family has one medium kid, one little kid and a baby on the way so this stuff needs to pull its weight for the next few years.

They chose washable 10 oz cotton duck for new slipcovers in blue/gray with natural piping. After pre-washing it has a soft, slightly rumpled look that is relaxed but not sloppy.   

Here they are before: I'm not sure why IKEA does their corner pleats this way, but it's not ideal in my opinion.   

And here they are after, picture two identical chairs since I only have one...
I like my box pleats much better. Also, they have a crazy complicated way of slipcovering the ottoman with miles of zippers and velcro that would make taking it off and putting it back on exhausting and exasperating. Three little kiddos are exhausting enough so I used a streamlined  process ala Pottery Barn and Ballard Designs with a one piece slipcover that pops off to wash. 

Sadly this exact style is no longer available but IKEA does have a similar one with the same dimensions but narrower arms. It's a good thing the store is so far away because I have all sorts of ideas now! 

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Hail Joanna Gaines

Here are a couple of very un-professional shots of some roman shades in a breakfast room inspired by everyone's hero Joanna Gaines.  

This is the second home I have worked on for these young homeowners. It's so fun to see their style and taste evolve.

You wouldn't know it from my pictures but this is bright and sunny space. 
They chose a natural woven fabric with  widely spaced navy ticking stripes. They liked the look of stacked folds so I used spacers between the shade rings on the back. This style limits the amount they can be raised more than a flat roman shade but that wasn't a problem for these homeowners. We used blackout interlining to block the intense morning sun.

They're currently auditioning fabrics for a window seat cushion so stay tuned for more from this charming home. 

Tuesday, July 19, 2016


Nothing says classic country style like toile ("twahh"). Waverly's Country Life pattern has been around forever and is available in numerous colorways. 

Toile is most effective in large quantities and particularly popular for bedrooms and cozy dens. I would love to do a baby girl's nursery in the  pink & cream version.

This chair slipcover is part of designer's project for a client's bedroom.


This fabric has a huge repeat, obviously, and because it's so graphic, placement and flow of the images is pretty important. This is my first time doing a "waterfall" skirt. It was a little more challenging but really makes a big difference in the finished look. A horizontal line of cording around the chair would have interrupted the design and been distracting.  

I had a little fun and picked out a lady who didn't appear on the inside back or seat and featured her on each arm. 

A king size duvet cover and shams in this toile  and two of these cornice boxes were also part of this project. Hopefully I'll get a picture of the finished space and all the pieces together. Design and fabric from Gayle Widdowson with Art of Design.

Friday, June 10, 2016

Pretty Woman- Chair Edition

When you spend an inordinate amount of time with furniture, you can begin to apply human characteristics to them. Well, I do anyway. 

 So in my weird little world, this chair is Julia Roberts at the beginning of Pretty Woman, awkward, a little tacky, and out of place in fancy settings...

And voila, with a few yards of creamy slubby boucle fabric and a tailored skirt it's sophisticated enough to work in just about any setting. Well done to the owner who saw the potential in this little gem. 

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Windows: The Look for Less

This is a peek into my own home. My dining room (which was originally a formal living room) and sitting room/office (originally the dining room) needed a little love. I was happy with the furniture and rug, but the curtains were from three houses ago and I've never been crazy about them here. There are three windows in the dining room and one in the office.

My style is pretty simple and I prefer using texture and contrast over lots of color or pattern. I decided to go with a super inexpensive creamy cotton twill for window panels in the dining room and a roman shade in the adjacent sitting room/office.

Wide greek key trim in black & khaki - also inexpensive, from Hobby Lobby!-finishes them perfectly and is classic enough that even I won't grow sick of it. 

Note- This room really needs a chandelier but cannot make a decision on which one to buy. 

I used a single width of the fabric to make the panels. With three windows in the room, I didn't feel they needed to be any fuller.  They are lined with regular lining. I debated either using a heavy napped lining to make them really luxe, or no lining at all to make them more casual, but in the end decided to go with a standard inexpensive lining fabric (which still was as much as the twill!). I went with double euro pleats because they are my favorite.


With a 40% off coupon, the trim for 6 panels and the shade from Hobby Lobby was a little over $100. You could easily spend A LOT more on trim and I love the way it looks.  

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Equestrian Chic Wing Chairs

 Here's a frumpy little couple that were in need of a face lift. 

They're both burgundy but are not a matching pair. The one on the left is straight and streamlined while the one on the right is more curvy and voluptuous, kind of like many human couples. 

They arrived with two different blue & white fabrics, a stripe and a paisley. It goes against fashion advice but I knew that the skinnier chair would want to wear the stripes while the curvy one would prefer the print. The owner requested skirts for both.

Note- these are not expensive fabrics, like $10/yard not expensive. No one would ever guess that these are the same chairs. 

The paisley is an indoor/outdoor fabric from Waverly's Sun n Shade line in the "Paddock Shawl" design. It's also available in regular cotton decorator fabric, which I would prefer to use for a slipcover if asked. I'm quite sure the owner didn't realize it was outdoor fabric when she ordered it. 

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Linen Tub Chairs with a Graphic Twist

According to the owner, this pair of rocking/swivel tub chairs are the favorite of everyone who visits. I have to agree, they are like a sweet little hug, that rocks and swivels, what could be better?!!

She is decorating a new place and replacing the reds and oranges of the old one with mostly neutral and earth tones and more of a coastal vibe. These tub chairs got slipcovered in chocolate brown metallic linen with one side of the seat cushions in a graphic heron pattern that is featured prominently on her window treatments and upholstered dining chairs. 


Each seat features a different type of heron in the center. 

And here they are with the cushions reversed...

And here's a (poor quality) shot of the back view: