Then and Now

 

My Mom is my everything. My best friend, my sounding board, my ride or die. The one who gives me tough love when I need it and tells me to be gentle with myself when the days are hard. We’ve always been close, but it was only once we no longer lived in the same house that I began to appreciate the things that once annoyed me. The way she always put me first, how fiercely protective she can be, and even the amount of discipline she instilled in the way she raised me.

 

1981

My mom was made to be a mother, my mother. She had me at a young 22 years old, but was wise beyond her years after some difficult family circumstances early on in life. But once she gave birth she never really looked back – we went everywhere together, did everything, and were sidekicks. We still are.

 

2015

I wanted to give her something extra special this Mother’s Day, something that represents how we began and how far we’ve come as mother and daughter as well as friends. I chose two of Artifact Uprising‘s Instagram Friendly frames, each of them measures 8 x 10″ and is deep set with a gorgeous walnut finish. In the first she’s holding a one and half year old me in her arms at my cousin’s baptism, and in the second we’re crouching in together at Mother’s Day brunch two years ago.

 

 

Both of these photos were already in my Instagram feed, so I only had to connect the channel and voila – no uploading necessary. I know these two museum quality frames will be something my Mom cherishes for years to come, and I love that we can add to them in the future with more shots of the two of us!

This post sponsored by Artifact Uprising. All words and opinions are my own, as always. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep Design Crush creating fresh content! Enjoy 10% off your order through May 9th with code AUxMOTHERDAY17.

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April Favorites

 

1/ Tea Tree Oil
I’ve been using this stuff in multiples ways, including in my diffuser and on blemishes.

2/ PureAir 50
This little plug-in ionic air purifier is amazing. It cleans 350 sq. ft. of air by removing odors and reducing bacteria and viruses with activated oxygen. I have mine next to the cats’ litter box – the danger zone! – and noticed a total elimination of smell within about 15 minutes. It emits a kind of white noise sound when turned on, but I quickly got used to it.

3/ Lamb’s Ear
After years of admiration, I added one of these perennials to my porch collection. I’m hoping to keep it in a pot rather than have to plant it in the ground, but only time will tell how the plant tolerates it.

4/ Froozer Blue Aloha
These super natural treats are basically a frozen smoothie in a tube. They’re super tasty with only 35 calories and 9 carbs, which is a necessity for snacks with this type 2 diabetic.

5/ Common Goods Lavender Linen Water
I’ve been using this on my bedsheets for a few years now, I’m a real sucker for anything lavender scented as you may have noticed. This linen water is scented with 100% pure essential oil, is plant based, and biodegradable.

6/ Function of Beauty
Everyone’s been chattering about this line of shampoos and conditioners can that be personalized to your hair’s specific needs, and I’m here to report that the hype is 100% true! I love it and may never use another brand ever again. (Grab $5 off your order here.)

7/ Round Taper Planters
This spring I had to replace the large bamboo planters I’ve used for the past several years due to normal wear and tear. I wanted something simple and affordable that would complement my new black shutters and came across these fade and weather resistant ones at Target. They’re available in four colors and seven sizes! (I also have four of the 6-inch ones indoors)

8/ Vineyard Hill Naturals Cardamom & Fig Candle
You might think this scent sounds a bit heavy for spring, but it’s quite the opposite. And the soy-based candle’s jar is one I’ll definitely be reusing with that Greek key pattern.

9/ Spruce Cleaning Wipes
I’m kind of the worst at keeping my electronics clean, and these little wipes are a fun reminder (those faces!) to wipe everything down – they’re also great for your eyeglasses. Made in the USA, free of harsh chemicals like alcohol and ammonia, and vegan.

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20 Pillows to Change Up Your Home’s Spring Vibe

There are three pieces of decor I switch up for spring and fall – bedding, rugs, and pillows. These are pieces that are easy to swap out to freshen up the feel of your home, as well as ones that don’t have to cost an arm and a leg. (Don’t get me wrong, I’m not running out twice a year to purchase new ones, rather just bringing them out of the guest room’s closet.) I tend to stick with a lot of neutrals so the switch may not be noticeable to anyone else, but even just a change in pattern makes me happy!

 

Cersei Decorative Pillow // Forma Pillow // Frayed Shaped Pillow Cover // Fringed Diendra Pillow

 

Geo Pillow // Indro Cushion // Linework Woven Decorative Pillow // Ligne Particulier Pillow

 

Macrame Diamond Pillow Cover // Nautique Pillow // Pleated Chevron Decorative Pillow // Roped Pillow

 

Bali Throw Pillow Collection // Stitch Stripe Pillow // Texture Knot Decorative Pillow // Totem Cushion

 

Vacita Pillow // Villa Stripe Pillow // Wallace Sewell Kente Crewel Pillow Cover // Zurich Geometric Throw Pillow

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Daydreaming About A Frames

Sarah Abbott

While I’m 110% in love with my house, I also know that it’s probably not my forever home. Sometime in the next few decades I really want the experience of building from the ground up. And while my architectural taste runs the gamut, lately I find myself really drawn to a-frames and their steeply angled rooflines and modern yet cozy vibe.

 

via Design Milk

 

Dwell

 

via Hi Consumption

 

Alpine Modern

 

Sunset

 

Airbnb

 

Zillow

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My House Got a Facelift

 

While I’ve shared plenty on the updates of the interior of my old, partially-flipped house, there hasn’t been nearly as much done on the exterior. Why? Simply put it’s more intimidating. But back in January I vowed that this is the year that things would get done, and I’ve started off by partnering with Mid-America to replace and add shutters to the front of my home. Mid-America is a leading manufacturer of siding accessories, and they also offer the largest selection of exterior home products in the industry, so I knew both me and my house were in the right hands.

 

 

Prior to now only one window had shutters of any kind, the large one on the first floor, front and center and a little to the left. They were wooden, measured incorrectly, and too short. The attic windows looked fine as they’re a more interesting design and flanked by shaker wood siding, but the trio on the second floor just looked… sad.

 

 

But no longer! From the street it looks like my house got a facelift. The good kind.

Every window was measured correctly this go around and the shutters installed like a dream with just a drill, screwdriver, and hammer. Mid-America offers a wide range of shutter styles and colors, all low maintenance with no painting required. They’re impervious to moisture and insects, which is something I highly value as the owner of a house that’s 117 years old, and made right here in the United States. I chose their straight top all louver shutter in black for all four windows and couldn’t be happier with the quality or end result.

 

 

On the list for 2017:
• landscape the small front yard, dispose of one hundred river rocks
• replace the porch light fixture with something more modern
• strip and paint back deck
• sand and repaint porch swing

Longterm plans:
• build wooden porch up to door height, railing, stairs
• have slate roof repaired
• landscape backyard
• replace porch roof support columns with a sleeker design

 

 

Get a load of the full-on before and after! Looking back the house seemed so incomplete without Mid-America’s shutters. Eventually I’d love to add sets to the windows on the back and east-facing sides for the full effect, but until then I can’t help but smile each time I pull into my driveway. Onto the next project!

 

This post sponsored by Mid-America. All words and opinions are my own, as always. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep Design Crush creating fresh content!

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Let’s Talk Pergolas

The to-do list for my home is a mile long, but near the top is the addition of a pergola. If you’re unfamiliar, a pergola is an architectural element originally used in ancient Greece and Rome to better define an outdoor space that’s gaining momentum in the current day. It usually consists of parallel colonnades that support an open roof of girders and cross rafters.

Pergolas are great privacy and shade solutions because, really, there are no rules. They can be built out of wood or steel, with a traditional or modern design or somewhere in between. Add fabric panels to the sides for additional privacy, let vining plants climb up to and cover the roof, add solar panels, or top it off with a plexiglas covering for protection from the rain. Your pergola can be freestanding in the middle of the backyard or built on top of a porch or deck, or maybe you’d just like to build one over your old concrete patio. See? Not many rules here.

I’d like mine to be similar to the second one below, but the wood painted white instead of black to keep the heat to a minimum during summer. Honeysuckle would climb all four colonnades and wind around the girders where it would mingle with strands of lights with edison bulbs. I’d have a few planter boxes on one or two of the sides that would blend in, and maybe a canvas tarp that could be attached to the four corners for shade on especially hot days.

But I haven’t put much thought into it.

 

Better Homes & Gardens

 

Helt Enkelt

 

Almost Makes Perfect

 

Homes to Love

 

Style Room

 

Better Homes & Gardens

 

Ernskie

 

Decoist

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Purpur

 

I love ritual, and Purpur looks like it would lend itself to such things instantly. Roxanne Flick‘s conceptual graduation project to create a tea set inspired by the beauty of nature and art is stunning. Using the form and behavior of the flamingo, Flick designed a kettle, teacups, and sugar and cream bowls made from porcelain, oak saucers and an oak, glass, and granite table.

 

 

 

 

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Boobs!

Viva la feminism! No part of the human form should be taboo, and I love people and companies who stand for that thought in tasteful, tongue in cheek ways. Best of all, several of these shops donate a portion of proceeds from each purchase to organizations that give back!

 

Boob Hook by Thing Industries

 

Boob Necklace by Melopepo

 

Boob Pillowcase by Gravel and Gold

 

Boob T by Never Fully Dressed

 

Boobies Collar by Shed Brooklyn

 

Eyes on You Tee by Egg Press

 

Female Support System Brass Hook by Kaye Blegvad

 

Free the Nipple Brooch by Pretty Ugly

 

T(it) Shirt Original with Beading by Still Here

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