Favorite Things {part 2}

For {part 2} of my Favorite Things series - see {part 1} here – I’ve asked a few blog & design friends to share their favorite thing in their houses. favorite things part 2

I hope you enjoy the mix of pieces they’ve shared – some DIY, some family treasures, and some repurposed pieces.  Also, be sure to take time to check all of these ladies’ amazing websites and blogs – I guarantee you’ll be inspired!

Christine Shepard ~ Iron Gate Interiors

Christine is a Certified Window Treatment Consultant (CWTC) and the owner of Iron Gate Interiors.  All of her products are expertly sewn with custom fabrics and one-of-a-kind details.  “As with many seamstresses, my love of sewing and fabrication was passed down from my mother.  As a young adult with a home of my own, my mother gave me my grandmother's old Singer and the drapery fabrication began.”

I actually met Christine while I was in high school!  I was a high school athlete and she was our school’s athletic trainer.  We've stayed in touch over the years, and as I’ve started my own design business, Christine has been a wonderful friend to turn to for advice and inspiration.

Family Rules Sign

It is difficult for me to choose my favorite thing in my home…..I have spent years making our house a home for my family and at each turn there is something that has a happy memory or special meaning for us.  I would say, however, that the family rules sign above our fireplace would have to be at the top of my “favs” list.  To me, this sign represents the qualities I want my children, as well as my husband and I, to treasure, and it gives us a daily reminder of the direction we’d like to take in life.  I love that it is such a statement piece.  A piece that not only looks beautiful, worn and loved, but one that can convey the feeling and character of those who live in our home.

family rules

I subscribe to several design/living blogs and came across Tara and her husband, Andy, at Between you & me.  I loved her musings as well as her sense of style and her commitment to her faith.  About two years ago, Tara featured one of her signs in one of her blog posts, and I think they started receiving orders like gangbusters.  She and her husband, Andy, began making multitudes more these custom signs in their driveway – to the point that once they had to stop production for a time because it was taking too much time away from their family/children.  I was fortunate to get my order in “under the wire”, and I believe they are back in production, so check it out!

family rules

Karen Guard ~ Darling Octopus

Karen is a graphic designer and a treasure hunter. “I hunt thrift stores, yard sales and flea markets to find the most unloved vintage furniture pieces and make them pretty again. I blog about all my furniture re-do’s at www.darlingoctopus.wordpress.com, write a do-it-yourself column in R•Home magazine, and teach paint techniques and furniture up-cycling classes at the Visual Art Center.”

I had the pleasure of hearing Karen speak at R•Home's Holiday event back in November. She is so creative and transforms other people's trash (literally ~ she'll take pieces off the street!) into amazing pieces.  I've enjoyed following her blog and learning from her tips and ideas.

Little Butcher Block Island

When we bought our 1920’s house, one of the things that really drew us to it was that a previous owner had a knocked a wall out of the kitchen. No longer was there a small galley kitchen, but a really open first floor with kitchen, dining and living rooms all flowing together. Of course, the kitchen is still smallish compared to modern day construction, but that is one of the reasons this butcher block is so perfect. It is the perfect size for a little mini island.

My husband’s parents had owned the butcher block for years, bringing it with them when they moved cross country from California. They weren’t currently using it but couldn’t bear to part with it. So when we bought our house it wasn’t too hard to convince them that it should have a new home. I love the solid wood chunkiness of the butcher block, but mostly I love all the good times that we’ve had around this piece of furniture. We are pretty serious about food and when we have people over, everyone heads straight to the kitchen. We’ve spent countless evenings sitting with friends around our little butcher block island crammed full of yummy snacks and drinks.

butcher block

Lindsay Cowles ~ Lindsay Cowles Art

Lindsay Cowles is an abstract artist “inspired by raw texture, movement and colors found in nature blended with many of the similar elements recreated through interior design.”  After spending time in New York and California, Lindsay returned to her hometown of Richmond, VA to follow her passion of painting.

Lindsay and I were introduced through a mutual friend and she invited me in to her studio at Plant Zero.  After our meeting and seeing all of her amazing pieces, I left feeling inspired and energized.

Louis XV upholstered bed

My favorite piece is my Louis XV upholstered bed from 1800s France.  It’s a unique piece that tells a story from a different era.  I found it in Richmond, VA at Thomas Hines Antiques about 10 years ago.  When I came across the bed it was covered in a very old tattered fabric and I had to envision what it would look like reupholstered.  I was drawn to the intricate carving on the headboard and footboard and the unique curved shape of the footboard.  The great thing about this bed is that it can work well in a contemporary setting.  I absolutely love pairing antiques with modern art.

Louis XV bed

Erin White ~ Richmond Thrifter

Erin is a stay at home mom of two (ages 4 and 1 1/2).  She's a University of Richmond grad (woot woot!), and taught 1st grade before having her kiddos.  "I LOVE shopping thrift stores, salvage yards, goodwill, etc.  My husband is tired of me bringing home new 'projects' from all these places!  I started a blog to share all the great furniture and decor finds that I didn't buy, but that I thought my readers might like!  I also share a project or two of my own."

I stumbled upon Erin's blog over a year ago and have loved following her as she shares her incredible finds.  Being a fellow Spider, I knew she would have good taste ;)!  Erin also has a booth with the pieces she finds at Class & Trash, so go check her out!

Card Catalog

I'm so excited to be a part of this blog series!  My house is full of favorite things, so...let me tell you, it was very hard to pick just one!  I'm an avid thrifter finding treasures at my local thrift, consignment and Goodwill type stores.  My blog is a way to share my finds and any makeover projects I complete on them.  Ladies and Gents, I have found some serious treasures along the way so picking one favorite thing is like asking me to pick my favorite child!  Can't be done!

 But....I will say this little guy holds a very special place in my heart.  A friend from college who reads the blog saw it at an auction and snatched it up for me.  She knew a card catalog was on my thrifting bucket list and I will be forever indebted to her!  At first I thought I would paint it since the drawers were different colors but when I put it in the checkerboard formation I fell even more in love.

Thank you so much for having me Cathy!  Thrilled to share my favorite thing!  Hope you all like!!

Christine ~ Park House Love

Christine lives with her fiancé Devin and their two crazy dogs in Northern California.  “I love anything and everything DIY and am gradually turning our house into a home one project at a time.  I have a devout love for pretty fabrics, herringbone, the color greige and perusing flea markets, thrift stores and garage sales for my next project.”

Christine and I met when she emailed me with a question about the chair my sister and I reupholstered.  I’ve enjoyed following Christine’s blog as she shares DIY tips, recipes, and the details of her upcoming wedding!

Fireplace Hearth

My favorite thing is our new fireplace hearth that Devin and I retiled ourselves in a herringbone pattern using black slate.  Not only is herringbone my favorite pattern, but I love that we did it ourselves.  The fireplace is the focal point of our open floor plan living/dining space and is the first thing your eye moves to when you walk through the door.  My next project is to paint the fireplace white so that the slate really pops and so that I have a blank canvas to add pops of color to in the living room.



A huge thank you to all of these wonderfully talented ladies for participating in my Favorite Things series!  Don’t forget to visit their websites / blogs and be sure to leave them a note saying ‘hi’.

Iron Gate Interiors  ~  Darling Octopus  ~  Lindsay Cowles Art

Richmond Thrifter   ~  Park House Love 

° What is your favorite design / inspiration blog or website?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram