Friday, April 29, 2011

and the winner is...

Hi everyone!!  Thanks so much for all the entries and fun comments about paint!!  I ended up choosing option 4 which is Bungalow Taupe by Dunn Edwards.  I will upload some photos to show you the finished product next week. 

So, on to the winner!  The winner of the Aubrey necklace giveaway {via} is comment #43:

Kristan J

who said:

 I choose #2 ... i'm a swiss coffee (white) wall kinda of person so that's the closest :)

Kristan, email me with your custom info and I'll get that right out to you!

Thanks so much to everyone who entered.  I had so much fun reading all the comments!

PS Do you like {starfish} on facebook?  One fan is chosen on the first of the month to win any necklace of their choice!!  The May winner will be announced on Sunday!  You can check out the facebook page here.

Have a beautiful weekend!!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

what i've been up to...and a giveaway

{I have spent at least 2 hours staring at this wall hoping one will jump out at me}

Hello sweet friends!  Sorry for my lack of posting over the last week.  My days have been filled with Mother's Day orders, packing the last of the boxes and staring at paint swatches.  After painting all these swatches on the wall, I think I may have actually decided on one.  Whew!  So glad that's over!

I thought maybe we should have a giveaway to celebrate, what you do guys think?

Here is the giveaway question...if you were painting this wall {which is actually a whole room and stairwell and loft...} what color would you choose?  Let me know your answer in the comments and you will be entered to win one of the new Aubrey necklaces that were just introduced last week!  Yay!!

PS Please oh please for the love of all things holy don't say that you would pick the orange that it was to begin with.  I've invested way too much time to deal with that heartbreak.  Lie if you have to.  You have my permission :)

I'll announce the winner {and the final paint selection} here on Friday night...good luck!!

{the Aubrey necklace}

Friday, April 22, 2011

summer smoothies

I am in the middle of quite a busy season and with so much to get done, I don't always take the time to sit down and eat.  But, I can't afford to fill up on junk and crash a few hours later, so I have been making smoothies to keep me going.

If you'd like to make one, here is the recipe that I've been using:

4 Strawberries
1 Container Yoplait Original Peach Yogurt
3/4 Cup Crushed Ice
1 Banana
1/2 Cup Orange Juice

Combine contents in blender and blend until smooth.  Prepare to become addicted.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

well hello!

{gerbera daisies from our local famer's}

The Mother's Day orders are in full swing over at the shop, new designs are in the works {yippee - can't wait to share!!}, and we are in full pack mode. 

The other day Mark cut his foot and we realized we {mostly me} had packed the band aids {oops!} and then while I was getting ready for a girls night I realized that I had packed all my jewelry.  Oh, and I have been wearing the same 4 outfits for the last 10 days because everything else has been packed. 

I will be so glad when the move is behind us.

That's what's been going on over here, sorry for my scattered posts.  Hope you all are having a fantastic week!

Happy Thursday!! 

Sunday, April 17, 2011

the aubrey necklace

Image of Aubrey  Image of Aubrey
Image of Aubrey Image of Aubrey

The Aubrey necklace is brand new and I am loving it!  It was inspired by one of my sweetest customers.  She has placed many orders and needed something special to take to an upcoming bridal shower.  Together we came up with the Aubrey necklace {thanks for the inspiration Valerie!}.  

I loved how it came out so much that I decided to add it to the shop.  I think it is the perfect anniversary or wedding gift.  I hope you guys love it as much as I do!!

You can shop for the Aubrey {here}.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

happy spring weekend!

{we have been eating these yummy mandarins by the handful around here}

It's Saturday and spring is definitely in full swing around here.  It's so warm and beautiful today.  The boys and I spent the morning walking, finding rocks, splashing and messing around at the bay.  Now it's off to baseball and then we are headed to the beach to spend a long afternoon and watch the sunset.  I hope your Saturday is happy!

Friday, April 15, 2011

how to make a furniture plan

Disclaimer:  there are lots of other, more sophisticated ways to create a furniture floor plan, namely AutoCAD.  However, this is a quick and simple method anybody with a ruler and graph paper can handle and I find it to be incredibly simple and useful.

Okay, that aside, you might remember that we are moving to a new house and the big day is quickly approaching.  I am busy getting all my ducks in a row, which includes figuring out where we are going to put the furniture.  I am a suspicious that we might need to get rid of some furniture that may not fit in the new house and since I'd rather do that now before we move, I have been working hard on my furniture floor plans.

Making a floor plan of your space is a great way to get a better perspective and looking at your room from a birds eye view allows you to see things like walkways, scale, and balance that can be hard to see when you are actually in the room trying to make a plan.  If you have a room feels "off" or just uncomfortable, this can be a great way to figure out why it's not working.  I also like to make furniture floor plans when I am considering buying new furniture.  That way, I can "see" the new piece in the room before I invest in it.

Okay, ready to make a furniture floor plan?  Here we go.  You will need:

:: graph paper {I like the larger squares instead of the tiny ones}
:: ruler
:: tape measure
:: pen
:: highlighter

{Note: to make an easy scale, use 1 square of graph paper = 1 foot}


Step 1:  Measure your space in increments, stopping at each door, window or transition, making measurement notes and lines on your paper as you go.  Starting at one corner of the room and working clockwise seems to work best.  For example, in the photo above, I measured the first wall space at 12", so I drew a line over one square, then the wall goes in 12", so I drew the line going in for one square, then the wall went straight for 48" get the idea.  When you come to a door, make a note so you remember its swing direction.  Continue to measure and make lines and notes around the entire room.  When you come to a window, make a little symbol to show where the window starts and stops and assign each window in the room a number and make a note of it on your floor plan.  You can see my window notes above.  I put (w1), (w2), (w3), etc...

{Note: make a little note on your floor plan of anything you want to have for reference.  I noted the width of the mantle as well as the height to the ceiling in case we decide to put a TV there}

Step 2: On a separate page, create a "windows list".  List each window in the room and note the number you assigned to it in step one.  Measure the width and length for each window as well as the space between the bottom of the window and the finished floor {above finished floor = AFF}.  It's important to take into account how high the window is off the floor because you want to be sure you aren't placing a piece of furniture right in front of a window that goes to the floor.  That just looks awkward and it will block the light coming into the room.

Step 3: Measure all of your existing furniture that you would like to place in the room.  Number each piece, color them with a bright highlighter and cut them out.  Then, create a furniture reference list where you list the name of the piece {i.e. dining room buffet} and it's dimensions, along with the number you assigned to it when you made the templates

 Step 4:  Arrange!  This is the fun part.  Start with your biggest or most non-negotiable pieces {i.e. the bed, or the sofa} and work out from there.  Remember that a comfortable walkway should be at least 36" wide and that if you place a chair/sofa/bed, there should be adequate light {from hardwired overhead lighting or lamps} as well as adequate table space {for a drink, glasses, a book} for each seat.

Step 5: Create templates and add in any furniture you'd like to have {whether you can buy it now or not}.  Having the end in mind before you begin the room will ensure that the finished product is what you want.  In the end it will look thought out and cohesive, not choppy and haphazard.

Something that I like to think about while I'm placing the furniture is how each person will use the room.  If it's a Living Room or other Family area, be sure that each person in the family will be comfortable, not just the guests.  Whether you use the room to watch TV, read, play board games, complete homework, nap on the sofa, play blocks or whatever, be sure that the room serves all those needs.  If you have a child who likes to play on the floor, don't crowd the room with so much furniture that they get excluded. 

Here are some of the options I played around with for our new Living Room:


Or, you can always spend a Saturday moving furniture around and breaking a sweat.  But, I'm a geek at heart.  And, since I love office supplies and graph paper, I'll take this option!

Happy space planning!!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

a true friend...

{my bestie, Bets}

a true friend tells you when you look tired

a true friend tells you when they are worried about you

a true friend tells you that they are so proud of you

a true friend knows when something is wrong before you ever say anything

a true friend tells you that you are the "hot friend"

a true friend goes to teeny bopper concerts with you since your husband is too embarrassed to

a true friend stays up with you for the middle of the night sob

a true friend encourages all your crazy ideas

a true friend talks you down from the ledge when your hubster inadvertently shrinks your fave new dress and you're so mad you think you might actually fly through the roof

a true friend talks to you on the way to see your parents in the ICU when you have no idea what you are going to arrive to

a true friend stays up in to the wee hours eating Ben and Jerry's and talking about everything under the moon

a true friend always picks up the phone

a true friend makes you laugh until your cheeks hurt

a true friend comforts you when you realize you made a really bad decision

a true friend sits in the hospital waiting room with your hubster while you have emergency surgery

a true friend cries at your disappointments and says "I'm so sorry" and genuinely means it

a true friend tells you how happy they are for your success

a true friend is the one who knows it all...and loves you anyway

Bets and I have been friends for, um, forever.  I adore her.  She knows it all.  She could write my biography and I could write hers.  We have lived together, seen each other through lots and lots and LOTS and I know we will have side by side rocking chairs in the old folks home together someday.  That girl is true blue.

And, we are going away for a girls trip for our birthdays this year!!  In case I haven't mentioned it, I am SUPER excited.  I've never gone on a girls trip in the entire 8 years I've been married.  Crazy, right?!  I've never left the boys either.  But, I am turning 30 {!!} this year, so that calls for something BIG.  And, since Bets and I both have birthdays in May, we decided to go away for a long weekend.  I am so looking forward to laughing, talking late into the night, shopping, margaritas by the pool and spa treatments....aahhh...I just booked our room and I am counting the days!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

sunset cliffs

One day last week the boys and I walked down to Sunset Cliffs to watch the sunset.  I snapped all these pics on my phone, so the quality is not the best.  When we got there, Reid quickly found a spot and was happy to perch, find some rocks and wait patiently.

Grant got a bit fussy after awhile so we had to head for home before the big finale.  We are pretty lucky that we get to see some beautiful sunsets around here.  {Look at those chubby fingers!  Is there anything sweeter?} 

In the summer, all the locals head down to the cliffs, perch and wait for the sun to set and then clap when it finally sinks into the sea.

It's a beautiful tradition, but it always makes me giggle to think about people clapping for the sunset.  

This was the pose I got when I said "Show me your sweet face"...hmmm.  {Note to self: time to retire this too small shirt} 

Oh, there is the sweet face. 

On the way to the cliffs.

Which is your favorite, watching the sunrise or watching the sunset?  I {obviously} pick sunset.

Hope your Wednesday is beautiful!!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

another giveaway!

Do you read Simply Seleta?

Her blog is filled with inspiration for designing a beautiful life.  And it's gorgeous just like her.  My head is buzzing with ideas every time I visit.  You should definitely check it out.  And, guess what?  She is having a {starfish} giveaway over there!!  Head here to enter.

Happy Saturday, sweet friends!  The hubster and I are tackling the garage this weekend - eek!!  Pray for us!!

Friday, April 8, 2011

pack and 3 box method

Hi guys!  Happy Friday!!

So, I've been trying to spend a bit of time each day getting ready for our big move {well it's not really that big actually...our new house is only 3/4 mile from our current home} and for me this move is about getting rid of the things we don't need, and fulfilling my New Year's Resolution.  Even though the new house is about the same size, I feel like we have a lot of clutter and I don't want to take it with us, so I am trying to toss and purge more than I pack.  

I thought I'd share my "3 box method" with you.

Here is what I've been doing:  I tape up three moving boxes at a time and line two of them with big plastic yard bags.  One box is for packing, one is for give away items {goodwill, etc} and the last one is trash.

When the trash box is full, it's gets emptied and a new bag goes in the goodwill bags get loaded in the back of the car when they are full.  It's made getting rid of stuff so much simpler.  I don't want to spend a lot of time and energy to pack, move and unpack items that we don't truly need or use. 

Here are some photos from the other day when I worked on my shoe collection.

I gathered all the shoes in one spot and started sorting into each of the three boxes: pack, give away and toss.  It kind of felt like going shopping, I found lots of shoes that I had forgotten about.
Like these cuties:

They went right into the pack box.

But, not all of them made the cut.  Here are a few of the 30 {!!!} pairs that I happily bid farewell to:

Sequined Coach tennies that are cute, but never get worn and the Juicy Couture tennies that I bought at the Nordstrom half yearly sale.  I was so sure I'd wear them.  Well, it turns out...not so much.

This is what the boxes looked like after the shoe pack and purge.  Just one box {plus 2 little boxes} of shoes packed, one box to toss and one to give away. 

Of course, I also kept out a few pairs that I am going to need over the next couple of weeks.

I am feeling seriously happy about my progress.  This weekend we are tackling the garage...I am going to need lots of coffee!! 

Thursday, April 7, 2011

and the winner is...

Reid would like to announce the winner of the coffee and {starfish} giveaway...

Jessica, who said:

"i {heart} the frapiccinos (especially in the summer)...flavor really depends on my mood."
Jessica, please email me with your necklace choice and custom instructions.  Congrats!

I had so much fun reading all the comments from everyone who entered the giveaway this week.  I think we are definitely going to be having more giveaways around here! 

{winner was chosen by - good thing too because I would never have been able to choose!  I would send you each a free necklace if I could!}

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

sweet silhouettes

You all know by now that I adore Emily over at Jones Design Company, right?  Well a few weeks ago, look what showed up from that talented girl:

I love, love, love them.  She captured my boys perfectly. 

I love the tile background and I love the navy and light blue...oh, and I love that their names are printed on them.

{Reid looks completely irritated in this shot, but at least it's a good profile pic!} 

Have I told you that I love them?  I do.  Emily doesn't list these in her shop, but they are available on custom request.  I sent her a photo and she turned it into a masterpiece.

Like I said, she's crazy talented.  They came printed beautifully on very nice, linen like heavyweight cardstock.  Lovely.  And priceless.

Now the tough part...where to put them!  I have so many ideas of places they would look fabulous.  I am thinking that I would love them best in a simple white frame.  Since we are moving, I am going to pack them up and wait until we get settled in the new house to decide for sure, but here are some of my ideas for places to hang them:

In the boys bath
In my office
Above the door to each of their rooms
On a gallery wall
Above their beds
Hung together above a dresser with a lamp on either side

Thanks again, Emily!  The prints are fabulous!  Have you visited Emily's shop?  She creates some pretty amazing art prints. 

Here are a few of my faves:

I love the idea of this one in our new Master along with some wedding photos.

And, how cute would this one be on a family photo gallery wall with our last name and initial?

{And, because we all love a giveaway, you should know that Emily gives away three free prints a day over there!!  Yeehaw!!  Every time you place an order you are entered to win!  A new winner is selected daily.}

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

hi! let's have a giveaway!

If you've been around here for long, you know that I am always doing giveaways at other blogs {and I do have a giveaway at a super fabulous blog coming up later this week, so stay tuned!}.  But, I've never hosted one here.  Sort of by accident actually.  So, what better time than right now?!

The winner will get to choose any necklace from the shop.  I want to make it super fun, so I thought I would combine two of the things I am most passionate about: coffee and jewelry. 

{the Madison}

Lately I have been seriously addicted to Peet's Coffee Large Caramel Freddo.  Yum.  Honestly, I could have three a day, because they are that good.  Before that it was Starbucks Venti Caramel Frappuccino with an add shot affogato. {that means they throw a hot shot of espresso on top of the Frappuccino to make it extra strong...right up my alley}.

So, what is your drink?  I think it's fun to hear what other people drink at Starbucks or Peet's or Coffee Bean or tell me yours in the comments below and you are entered to win!  I will add a $5 Starbucks card with your necklace when it ships!

Caramel Frappuccino®  Blended Beverage

If you don't drink coffee {what?  you don't drink coffee??}  tell me your favorite morning ritual.  Mine is,

I'll announce the winner here on Thursday night.

Monday, April 4, 2011

big big news

Happy Monday!!  Today marks the first day of our week long school Spring Break and I am super excited to get some extra time with Reid.  It's such a hustle bustle around here in the mornings {school starts at 7:40!!} so it will be nice not to be under the pressure cooker for a few days.  We don't have much planned yet...maybe Sea World, the Zoo, and a few Beach Days if the nice weather we've been having sticks around.

Okay, on to the big news...

In a few weeks, we are moving to a new house {eek!!}.  At first, I will admit, I was not super excited.  I love our house and I am not a big fan of change.  But, this is a good and necessary change and I am finally starting to get excited about it.  Plus I have started packing.  And purging.  More purging than packing so far, which I am totally happy to report.  Given my New Year's Resolution, this move is a perfect push to get me to my goal.

I finished the Master Bath over the weekend and today I will start working on the Master Closet.  It's pretty scary in there.

We will still be in the same beach town.  Reid will still go to the same school.  The new house is less than a mile away from our house now.  Except for the space we'll be living in, not much about our day to day life is changing.  And, the new space is super cool.  I will post some photos soon!

I am going to be sharing lots and lots of projects with you in the new house.  The first one is going to be my adventure in painting the oak kitchen cabinets white.  I am hoping to have this project completed prior to our move in, but we'll see.  Have any of you done this?  The cabinets are in great shape and the butcher block counter has been recently re-oiled in a dark stain that I think will totally pop once the cabinets go white.  I am planning to use this product, which I hear is the new best thing ever when it comes to painting cabinets.  If any of you have used it, I'd love to hear your feedback!

I picked out Restoration Hardware's Slate paint color for the Kitchen, Dining Room and Sunroom.  It's already up and looks amazing, but I think it will look even better once the cabinets are painted. 

My mom is also helping me sew window treatments which I am super happy she is willing to do {thanks mom!} because there is a crazy amount of windows that need covering and the cost of pre made panels adds up pretty fast.  I have been looking at fabrics from - they seem to be the cheapest out there, and they stock some great patterns.  If any of you have another online fabric resource, I'd love to hear about it!

My evenings are currently consumed with packing and purging.  I am learning quite a bit about moving tips especially from the FlyLady.  I read her chapter on moving in this book and I am following all the tips.  It's incredibly practical.

I have started a punch list of items that need to be completed around here before we move {i.e. take down art and patch and paint holes}.  I have also started a moving notebook, which I am hoping will keep us organized and keep all the important notes in one spot.  If you are an experienced mover and have any tips, please send them my way!!

I promise lots and lots of projects and inspiration when we get settled, but right now my mind is not on crafting.  I intend to pack my glue gun, fabrics and other miscellaneous artsy crafty supplies this week, so for the time being, I am not going to have any What I Made Monday posts.  It will just be my regular old posting, plus you'll probably hear lots of talk about this move.  I hope you don't mind!

I hope you all have a fantastic Monday!!  Wish us luck!!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

the quest for the perfect pendant light

Hi friends, happy Sunday!!  Want to go shopping with me?  I am in search of a great {and affordable} set of pendant lights for the {starfish} workshop.  The space is long and narrow with a white open beam ceiling.   

Here are a few of the options I'm considering:

FOTO Pendant lamp $29.99

I like this one because it has an industrial vibe.  Since it's from IKEA, the price is pretty awesome too.  I think the dome shape will give off quite a bit of light.  But, does it look too much like a heat lamp at a fast food restaurant??

OTTAVA Pendant lamp $29.99

I love, love, love this one.  Again, the aluminum finish and again an industrial vibe.  And again IKEA. 

MINUT Pendant downlight $29.99

This one reminds me a bit of paper lanterns, which is a look I love. 

Globe Pendant

This one feels clean and bright and I think it could go with a lot of different styles.  I can see it working with industrial or girly, or a combination of the two which is my favorite look.

Short Drum Pendant

And then there's this beauty.  I love that it feels a little more homey, and less industrial.  A little warmer.  But, it's also a bit spendy.  

Fisherman Ceiling Lamp

We have one of these pendants in each of the boys rooms.  I love the nautical look.  These fixtures put out a ton of light and the price is great too.

Glass Pendant Shade with Adapter

Another one that feels simple and clean, and super bright.

Large Rectangle Hanging Capiz Pendant Large Rectangle Hanging Capiz Pendant

I think these capiz one's are so gorgeous..but they are on the pricey side and I also worry a bit about how hard it would be to keep them clean...hmmmm

 Retro Honeycomb Drum Shade Pendant - 3 Colors!

I think I might be in love with the pop of color and pattern on this one.

 Geo Zipper Drum Shade Pendant - 3 Colors!

And how cool is this pattern?  The pop of orange makes me want to get right to work.

So, which one would you choose? 
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