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Friday, February 26, 2010

Luggage Holder

Do you like my luggage holder? My suitcase is currently resting on it while I pack for my upcoming New Orleans trip.

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I fished it out of a neighbors trash heap. It used to look like this:

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A bit of sanding, heirloom white paint and jute webbing transformed it.

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I adore jute webbing. (Also known as burlap webbing.) It’s humble beginnings associate it with upholstery shops. I recently bought a huge roll of it.

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I’ve been collecting images on how other wonderful bloggers have used it. Super talented Debbie Hodge created this beautiful bag.
I have seen floor rugs, as well as upholstery for ottomans created by jute webbing strips that are woven. This darling table runner by Tara Dennis is also a cute way to use webbing.

The Breathing Beside Us website offers many beautiful burlap treasures for sale.

You can add burlap webbing to almost anything to up the cuteness factor. I love Susie’s idea.

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Just one more reason why we all love Layla.

Rhonda created the cutest laundry tub skirt.

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The possibilities are endless (and quick) for these sweet napkin rings made by Abigail.
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I have also seen the webbing used for numerous wreath styles, as well as other seasonal touches, like this gorgeous mantle decor created by Jill.
I love the texture on these pillows from BH & G
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Are there any other ideas that I have missed? Leave me a comment or email photos to . As I am soon leaving for my cousin home in New Orleans the  contest will open for two weeks. 
So what is the Freebie? Well of course you will get a few yards of the burlap webbing. I also plan on going shopping at many wonderful stores in New Orleans and will pick up two of everything that I purchase for myself.

Here is one of my pre planned purchases:

UPDATE: The random number generator has selected Olivia from “Olivia and Me” as the winner! Congratulations Olivia! Please email me your address.


Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Desperate Housekeeping~A trifle hilarious!

Delicious yellow cake made from scratch, strawberry preserves and real whipped cream. It was indeed, quite delicious I must say. But there is a story about this desert and how it parallels life and reality. My friend Jackie threatened to turn me into the blogging police if I didn’t write a post about it. 

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I have a friend whose grandmother recently passed away. I responded to this heartfelt loss as women have for centuries, I decided to bake a cake for her. Not just any cake, but her favorite: pineapple upside down cake.  Let me assure you that there was no boxed cake mix involved. There wasn’t even canned pineapple, only fresh ingredients. It was the REAL deal through and through. The prep work took a good hour. Long before the timer went off, my house was enfolded by the most aromatic, wonderful smells. I went to go pull my cake out of the oven and it was then that DISASTER struck! You know how the top layer (that is actually on the bottom of the pan) is created by a yummy mixture of butter and brown sugar? Well I am here to tell you that it can be quite slippery. So much so that as I pulled the cake out of the oven it took on a life of its own. My masterpiece decided to try and make a run for it out of the pan and literally became airborne, proceeding to do a mid air 360. It was as if the event was put on slow motion and somehow I managed to do a culinary ballet of catch and it PLOPPED back into my cake pan and looked like this:

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Have you ever cried over cake? I almost did. Because truth be told I really didn’t have the time to make this cake, let alone another one. I had school projects, work deadlines, soccer practice and dinner to still contend with. Crumbs were EVERYWHERE!  The wind was so knocked out of my sails that I just turned off my oven, closed the door and took Sweet Boy to practice. As we were returning home he turned to me, as a previous witness to the tragedy, and said “I am so sorry about your cake. What are you going to do?” It was then that I decided to do what women have for centuries when given lemons. You make a trifle. But what about the mess that I had no time to clean up?

Enter in the Dachs O Matic 360.

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That’s right, I got my precious pup to do a portion of the dirty work. Martha Stewart would be horrified, I know.

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PETA let me assure you that no Dachshunds were harmed during this ahem, alternative to actual housekeeping. Indeed the action shot proclaims that this was one happy and satisfied pup.

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Ok, I’m ready. Let me have it. Take away my apron~please.


Friday, February 19, 2010

Beautiful kitchens, baths, and other interior loveliness.

Last Sunday I took the Willo Home Tour here in Phoenix. In the previous post I shared several exterior shots of some truly delightful homes. Let’s take a peek inside. First up, kitchens! I loved the soft green on this kitchen’s ceiling. 
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The plate rack is great.
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This kitchen was located inside a 1930’s bungalow. The well done remodel really kept the feel of the place.

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One word: countertops~sigh!
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This was my favorite kitchen so you get another shot. :)
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Next up are bathrooms. I love the lighting and that they kept the original 1930’s wall tile.
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This mirror provides such a luxurious feel.
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I really adore using old chests and buffets as bathroom vanities.
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I would happily do my laundry here.
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Isn’t the grasscloth wallcovering so fresh? I too use old pictures in my hallway and it is the one thing everyone who visits comments on.
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I loved this ceiling detail.
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Original lighting ~ swoon!
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Modern lighting~ gasp!
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This is a great drapery solution for a corner window.

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I love this flagstone wall. A padded headboard would make a lovely contrast.
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Love the wingchair inspired headboard and the colors ~ yum!
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I’m off to paint a $20 Craiglist find which I will reveal soon.
Have a blessed weekend,

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Willo Home Tour

Smack dab in the middle of central Phoenix lies an oasis also known as the Willo District. Here you can find small architectural gems that were built in the 1930’s and beyond.Willo 001 Throughout the neighborhood you can see Pueblo, Spanish, Monterey and Mission styled homes.

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There are also storybook cottages such as the Tudor and French Provincial styles.  Willo 031 As always, the ever popular Ranch style can also be spotted.

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The bubbling fountain and large picture window at this home captured my attention. Willo 042 Is there anything lovelier than a bright geranium in a clay pot?

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Of course there was period appropriate automobile eye candy as well. Willo 003 You really cannot beat the architectural details that come with an older home. This scalloped detailing made me sigh with happiness.

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Of course I am always drawn to vignettes of the secret garden variety.

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Do you hear the whisper of “Relax and enjoy a good book.”?

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Perhaps you’d prefer to dine al fresco.

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Or roast some gooey marshmallows.

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For those of you still slumbering under a blanket of snow, here are a few hopes and dreams that spring will soon arrive.

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On a separate note, last night I donned a $3.00 purple sequin dress from Goodwill and passed out candy to the Mardi Gras parade crowd. My sweet reward was being crowned the Westgate Mardi Gras queen. Here’s a snapshot of Sweet Boy and myself getting ready to ride the float.

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Have a majestic day!

The Duchess of Decor