Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Tip of the Week: Spruce it Up!

Facebook Southern Living at HOME with Heidi Milton: "Spruce it up!! Your front porch or door step, I mean... sweep thoroughly, power wash if needed, and swap out your planters for some of the fresh new ferns (check out Home Depot for a great selection and price point). And don't forget the ultimate accessory for your entrance: a door bucket. My favorite? Our Flower Market Door Bucket... an oldie, but a goodie!"

Your front porch is the gateway to your home for your friends and family. Put your best foot forward by giving this space a little extra attention during spring. Pollen, spiderwebs, and dust from spring breezes can collect easily, so I make a point to spend 10-15 minutes a week giving it a once over with the broom or power nozzle on my hose. The hose works best and you can multitask by watering your newly planted ferns at the same time. If my door bucket contains permanent flowers (best for longevity) or greenery, I can pull them out and give them a quick rinse at the same time. Add a crisp looking doormat and you're ready to welcome your guests for spring!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Tip of the Week: Beauty IS in the Eye of the Beholder!

How cliche, right?  Not so much.  I recently spent a delightful evening at an Art Auction to benefit Special Olympics of Georgia.  The auctioneer travels, with art in tow, all the way from New York, his carefully "pre-selected" pieces loaded on trucks for the journey.  This year the pieces were all framed works-- which I adore--but I was hoping for a few sculptural pieces as well.  At any rate, I was struck by the same question, drifting on the surface of conversations throughout the evening:  will this piece "go" with the rest of my decor/other art pieces/paint colors, etc?  As an amateur art collector, self-proclaimed art enthusiast, educated art historian and lover of decorating and redecorating, I have a piece of advice when it comes to purchasing art for your home.

Buy what you love.

Simple, right?  I can hear the "buts" already-- but where would I put it? but what if it doesn't match? but will it look good?  The reasoning behind my advice is truly simplistic.  If you love it, you will find a place in your home for it.  If you love it, whether or not it "matches" is really beside the point (and you may find yourself parting with other decorative pieces that suddenly pale in comparison to your treasure.).  If you love it, it will look good to YOU.

William Morris wrote: "Have nothing in your homes that you do not know to be useful and believe to be beautiful."  I would venture to say that what we find beautiful also inspires us, nutures us, and comforts us. And our home is a haven for inspiring, nuturing, comforting the ones we love.  Do it.  Buy what you love, what inspires you and brings you pleasure.  All your "buts" will fade away when you do.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Tip of the Week: Lighten Up!

Spring is right around the corner, so lighten up!  The secret to lightening up your decor is in glassware.  Swap out your urns and ceramic or iron pieces for clear glass containers.  Mix and match your old florists' vases with simple glass hurricanes, candlesticks, and even high ball glasses right out of your kitchen cabinet.  Simple grocery store bouquets bring fresh inside on the cheap... or go the freebie route and use clippings from your own yard (or your neighbor's with permission!).  Any type of greenery or early spring blooms housed in glassware will instantly brighten your space.  My favorite is my Southern Living at HOME Hemingway Hurricane... it holds everything from a fresh bouquet to our collection of corks from celebratory bottles of wine or champagne.  I never have to worry about it "working" in my decor-- it's like a little black dress: perfect for every occasion.

Oh, and don't forget the importance of clean windows!  Winter's buildup of dust, water spots, and grime can minimize how much daylight gets in.  The benefits of daylight and sunshine to the human spirit are well-documented.  It energizes us!  Squeeze every ray of sunshine you can out of these late winter and early spring days and let it flood your home with new energy. 

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

New Style for SLAH Parties this Spring!

"So you want to host a party, but your friends and family are reluctant to commit. They're short on funds or on a tight budget and feel badly that they might not be able to purchase products to help you earn your hostess rewards. Sound familiar??

In this economy, who couldn't understand their position? I know I can, so I have revised my party style for this new Spring catalog. Not only does our new catalog have many new lower priced products (some even under $10!!), but the products, as always, speak for themselves.

My new party style is simply a trunk show, displaying a sampling of our beautiful products along with a few ideas on how to decorate or use them. No presentation will be given, but I will be available to answer any questions and give additional ideas for decorating or gift-giving as needed. And, of course, I will be happy to give away a door prize or two to add to the fun.

In short, my revamped party style is a 'come one, come all', no pressure situation for your friends and family. After all, the point of having a party is to spend time with your friends, right? I'm sure they will all find something they want--and can afford-- in our new Spring catalog, and when they do, YOU will still reap the rewards!

I look forward to putting on a Southern Living at HOME-style trunk show for you and your friends! Contact me to put a date on my calendar!

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Just What You Need on a Chilly Day

My new favorite product from our Spring Southern Living at HOME catalog is our Oversized Scrollwork Throw.  It is proportioned so generously, even my slightly oversized husband can cover himself completely with it on the couch!  And the fabric is beautiful-- a chenille weave that is soft to the touch, but has alot of substance, too.  It's like being covered by a beautiful soft rug.  You can get yours through me for only $79.96... you'll know the quailty once you've got it in your hands.   And of course, it's Southern Living, so need I say more?

Click here to view my online catalog.  The Scrollwork Throw is found in the Entertaining and Decorating section of products.  Tell me what you think!