Interview: Fireclay Tile

 
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We're thrilled and honored to be featured on the Fireclay Tile blog today with a lovely interview about our Garden Cottage project. Read all about it here.

New Collection: Opalhouse by Target

 
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Target launched their latest collection called Opalhouse and I'll be honest, it's kind of amazing. Think Anthropologie style at a quarter of the price. Yeah, kind of amazing. I could easily say "one of everything, please", and not have too many regrets (their styling and merchandising is pretty spot-on), but remember: the thing with Target, and with all retail stores, is while the merchandise looks fantastic in the photos, the bottom line is you don't really want your house to look like a Target photoshoot. The key is to pull out the best from each source and mix-and-match so your home gets a lovely, well-curated, nicely-blended look that feels personal and has that je ne sais quoi that makes it uniquely yours. So after a first I'll-take-it-all pass narrowed down with careful consideration, here are the items from Opalhouse that I'd add to the mix in my house:

54" Minsmere Caned TV Stand  Classic caning makes for a natural but clean look.

54" Minsmere Caned TV Stand Classic caning makes for a natural but clean look.

Tansy Strap Headboard with metal Frame  Here's a great example of how to mix-and-match your decor: with the all-Target styling shown here, this whole look is pretty over-the-top, but take the headboard out and use it in a toned-down bedroom and it becomes a really cool, interesting piece.

Tansy Strap Headboard with metal Frame Here's a great example of how to mix-and-match your decor: with the all-Target styling shown here, this whole look is pretty over-the-top, but take the headboard out and use it in a toned-down bedroom and it becomes a really cool, interesting piece.

Floral Print Shower Curtain Yellow  I don't actually use a shower curtain (see my bathroom  here ) but if I did it would be this one!

Floral Print Shower Curtain Yellow I don't actually use a shower curtain (see my bathroom here) but if I did it would be this one!

Macrame Stool  foot stool, sitting stool, storage stool: the possibilities for this little guy are endless. I might even get two!

Macrame Stool foot stool, sitting stool, storage stool: the possibilities for this little guy are endless. I might even get two!

Velvet Tufted Stitch Quilt  If you're looking for some glam, look no further than a velvet quilt. Instachic in that not-even-trying way.

Velvet Tufted Stitch Quilt If you're looking for some glam, look no further than a velvet quilt. Instachic in that not-even-trying way.

Panther Peel & Stick Removable Wallpaper  Removable Panther wallpaper? Be still my heart...

Panther Peel & Stick Removable Wallpaper Removable Panther wallpaper? Be still my heart...

Indochic Melamine Dinner Plates  Always use your best china, and when you're dining al fresco, always use fun, colorful Melamine so you don't have to worry about dropping them.

Indochic Melamine Dinner Plates Always use your best china, and when you're dining al fresco, always use fun, colorful Melamine so you don't have to worry about dropping them.

Round Velvet Floor Pillow  You can't have too many floor pillows, especially when they're this pretty (and only $30).

Round Velvet Floor Pillow You can't have too many floor pillows, especially when they're this pretty (and only $30).

Pom-Pom Lumbar Pillow  I love a good pom-pom.

Pom-Pom Lumbar Pillow I love a good pom-pom.

Floral Earthenware Vase  and  Earthenware Bubble Vase  I love these Matisse-like patterns, and that dark green is spot on.

Floral Earthenware Vase and Earthenware Bubble Vase I love these Matisse-like patterns, and that dark green is spot on.

Papaya Kitchen Towel  I'm not usually a fan of punny little sayings but this one made laugh.

Papaya Kitchen Towel I'm not usually a fan of punny little sayings but this one made laugh.

What about you? What are your favorite items from this great new collection that might find their way into your home? 

Splurge & Steal: Spring Refresh

 
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Spring has sprung! The flowers are blooming, trees are budding, birds are singing, streams are rushing, sun is shining! Spring always gives me the wiggles as I emerge from winter hibernation and start to feel the energy of the world waking up and coming alive again. The first real weekend of sunshine and warmth I flit around the house throwing open windows and doors to let in the fresh air and sunshine, I dust off the counters and finally sort through the piles that have gathered on my desk and floor, I rearrange the furniture, fluff the pillows, change the duvet, and generally give my home a good old fashioned spring cleaning. It feels AMAZING. Of course 2 weeks later everything is back to it's dusty chaotic self, but oh for those first few days of glorious Spring!

Here's 5 easy ways to help make your home so fresh and so clean for Spring:

1. New Sheets

Nothing says fresh like crisp, new sheets, amiright? I love color pretty much everywhere but for my sheets I'm a big fan of white. Simple, clean, fresh. You can almost smell the sunshine from them drying on the line (even though they were dried in the dryer and then left overnight because I forgot about them).

Splurge: Coyuchi 300 TC Organic Percale Sheets  

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2. New Duvet Cover

Time for Winter's warm-and-cozy to step aside for Spring's bright-and-cheery. We're talking color and pattern, statement-making, eye-catching, jump-out-of-bed-and-get-this-day-going! Also, preferably floral because who doesn't want to sleep in a bed of roses?

Splurge: Marimekko Ojakellukka duvet set

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3. A New Flower Vase

Nothing says Spring like fresh flowers, but you gotta have somewhere to put them! The right vase will serve you well all Spring (and Summer...and heck, Fall and Winter too).

Splurge: Koik Ceramics

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4. New Outdoor Seating

Sun's out, you should be too. A nice little table and 2 chairs is all you need to make a spot to enjoy your coffee in the morning, tea in the afternoon, and wine in the evening.

Splurge: Fermob Luxembourg Collection

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5. New Throw

I'm all for a big, fluffy, wooly throw to curl up under in the Winter, but when you need a little something extra to chase off the chill in Spring, fluffy and wooly are more like itchy and scratchy. Instead I reach for a woven cotton or alpaca throw that feels soft and fresh while still wrapping you in warmth, kind of like a nice hug.

Splurge: The Citizenry Cascabel Throw

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What's in a name?

How do you pick a name? For your business, your child, a pet, or a product, it's a tough and lasting decision. I wrestled with this for a long time when starting my business: did I want to include my own name (KJ Designs?)? Did I want it to be descriptive of my services (Inside Interior Design?)? Or to evoke a certain feeling (Nest Interiors?)? Or to have a profound, deeper meaning (...?)? As I was tuning-in to other design companies, I noticed a lot of them had an "&": Crate & Barrel, Serena & Lily, Zack & Fox, Room & Board. You get the idea. I liked the "&". It felt inclusive and definitive, friendly and familiar. So what was my "&"? That was a no-brainer: You & Me. My business is about working together with my clients to actualize their dream home. It's a collaborative effort, one that works best when we bring our individual expertise and vision to the project and put everything into a big pot and stir it around and create something that is bigger and better and more beautiful than what either of us could have done alone. I can't tell you how much I am inspired by my clients, how much I love hearing your ideas, browsing your Pinterest boards and Houzz books, seeing the furniture and artwork you hope we can somehow incorporate. That weird lamp from your kooky great aunt that doesn't really go with anything but you just can't get rid of it? That's my favorite part of your project. It's the You that sparks my creativity. Without you there would be no me. So the essence of this business is really You & Me. YouMe. YuMi. Yumi.