Lately, I have been drooling over Kelly Wearstler’s fabulous Malibu beach house, recently published in Elle Decor. I’m sure the weather is to blame, as I’ve fantasized abandoning the long, cold winter to spend a week in a place like this.
Kelly Wearstler’s Malibu Living Room, from Elle Decor
I have always coveted Kelly Wearstler’s dramatic style. Melding influences spanning the 60s to the 80s, she mixes modern with vintage effortlessly. When you see a Kelly Wearstler room, you KNOW it’s a Kelly Wearstler room, even when she forgoes her signature use of bold color for neutral elements. Inspired by her latest project, I designed a living room that’s easily sourced and friendlier-priced.
When working with a blank slate for a living room, I find that it’s easiest to choose a sofa first – the largest piece of furniture – and design around it. The popular Piazza velvet sofa from CB2 in the perfect neutral shade of greige (i.e., beige and gray) anchors the room. Its soft and wide shape, perfect for leisurely naps, creates the laid back Malibu vibe.
Cb2 piazza storm velvet sofa, $1399
Leather butterfly chairs seem to be ubiquitous as of late. I love this original take on the look – the white leather with contrast stitching somehow nails the fancy-but-casual ideal.
White Leather Butterfly Chair, $229
Pretty much everything in the Nate Berkus line at Target works in this room, like these understated glam studded throw pillows.
Nate Berkus Decorative Pillow with Studs, $20
Graphic black and white prints and sculptural gold pieces on the walls play off the neutral furnishings…
Nate Berkus Starburst Wall Decor – Gold, $28
Society6 Abstract Ink (Black on White), from $15
For lighting, the effortless drama of this linen pendant lamp at CB2 is a no-brainer.
Cb2 linen pendant lamp, $60
These pseudo-nautical rope mirrors are reminiscent of a beach house by the water.
World Market Connor Rope Mirrors , from $30
Matching side tables in a dark shade add symmetry and break up the lighter colors in the space.
Ennis Side Table, $140
Wearstler-ize it with sculptures in varying sizes.
Set of 2 Aragonite Obelisk Towers (Peru), $43
A soft, oversized pouf in place of a hard top coffee table makes the room feel softer and more relaxed.
Safavieh Pin-Striped Large Beige Cotton Fabric Poof Ottoman, $185
The typical Kelly Wearstler room has a graphic rug that ties it all together. There are plenty to choose from in Safavieh’s affordable line of plush rugs on Overstock. This gorgeous retro-classy square rug is a winner.
Safavieh Retro Grey/ Ivory Rug (6′ Square), $135
If you love Kelly Wearstler like I do, this beachy living room captures her essence. Stay warm!
The average college graduate is currently saddled with at least $30,000 in student loan debts and this is often accepted as unavoidable reality for many students. However, this does not mean that you need to resign yourself to this fate in your own life. The best way to avoid crushing student loans is to live frugally and save whenever you can, for instance by using coupons from Discountrue. Thanks to those you will be able to pay less at such popular stores as Kohl’s and Neiman Marcus, but not only.
Make sure to check the offer and you will be certain to find something suitable for you. Other than that, what else can a person do to avoid student loans? Read on to learn more!
1. Pick A School You Can Afford
A college degree is no longer a guarantee of immediate prosperity. So, while a college with a high tuition may seem like a great idea, picking a less expensive one will leave you with far less student loan debt over the long haul and if you really want to learn something you should be to do that no matter where you are. Before applying to a college, be sure to research how much it will cost to obtain a degree. It’s good if parents can remain involved during this part of the process to provide their child with assistance in selecting a school that works for their budget and spiritual support.
2. Develop a Four Year Plan
College expenses should be viewed as a four year plan, as opposed to assessing them annually. The plan that is developed will depend on how much you have saved. While it may make sense to split your accrued monies over all four years, this can lead to a major cost gap during the latter years of college. These gaps often cause families to turn to much pricier private loan options, which lead to much higher student loans.
3. Start With Community College
If you are willing to study at community college for your first two years of school, this can cut down on student loan costs dramatically. Research the community colleges you are considering and make sure that your credits will be able to be transfered once you have obtained an associate’s degree. However, less financial aid is available to transfer students in many instances, so this is a strategy that requires a great deal of planning.
4. Ask About Financial Aid
Students who need help paying for college should do everything in their power to find as much financial aid as possible. We’re talking about money that will not have to be paid back and these grants are a lifesaver when it comes to diminishing student loan debt. Financial aid offers are typically negotiable and additional help can also be available after enrollment has been set. Outside scholarships can provide assistance, but make sure that they won’t cut into your aid offers.
5. Accelerated Degrees
If you’re willing to put in the extra work, you can actually finish your degree ahead of schedule. While a student must take at least 12 credit hours a semester to be considered full time, the majority of colleges allow their students to take up to 18 credit hours while paying the same amount of tuition.
Furnishing a space is always first priority, but choosing what artwork to display is equally important. Switching out your art is also one of the easiest ways to change the feel of a room. Sculpture takes that one step further, a bonus design element that adds another dimension to any space.
I must admit I thought I had enough with the taxidermy trend, but then I discovered the White Faux Taxidermy shop on Etsy. I could spend hours looking through their whimsical (and reasonably priced) designs. Unconventional animals in an endless array of colors make for the ultimate wall sculpture.
Hang this jackalope in white and gold over an entryway.
Jackalope with Gold Glitter Antlers, $65
Go nuts with this hot pink unicorn.
Magical Pink Unicorn Head, $100
Or go with the black resin faux bison head for a totally cool look.
Black Resin Buffalo/Bison Skull Head, $60
Your lonely desk is begging for this pair of sleek black onyx obelisk sculptures. They remind me of the object in Led Zeppelin’s Presence, if you’re into that sorta thing.
Handcrafted Onyx ‘Black Towers’ Obelisk Sculptures, $50
Some sculptures can also be hung from the ceiling, adding another layer to an often overlooked area. The Guggenheim museum shop carries a nice selection of mobiles, which remind me of Alexander Calder’s kinetic sculptures.
I’m partial to the Futura Mobile, designed by Ole Flenstead in 1970 to “resemble sick black planets in harmony with their smaller, orbiting red moons.”
Futura Mobile by Flensted @ GuggenheimStore, $75
The kid at heart will love the LED Prey Model construction toy. With 16 buildable bug models in one kit, have a blast rebuilding your light up sculpture whenever you feel like it. This thing looks like fun for all ages, but displays like a piece of art suitable for grownups.
LED Prey Model Kit, $40
If you have a sculpture you’re especially proud of, maybe it deserves its own pedestal. I like this Reflection Pedestal from ZGallerie (they also happen to have a nice selection of sculptural pieces). Place it in an empty corner for instant pizazz and an interior design-y feel.
Reflection Pedestal, $130
No matter your taste or style, there is a sculpture out there for you. Get creative, don’t be afraid to get a little weird, and most of all, have fun!
(and send me a pic when you hang your new Tiffany blue moose head)…
originally posted on ibby.com
Every year the holidays seem to come earlier and earlier, but if you’re planning on hosting any holiday parties or having friends and family crash at your digs, it’s best to start getting things together so you can actually enjoy yourself when the time comes. So to help you out, I’ve put together a list of double duty holiday decor: beautiful things that make the holidays a little bit sweeter, but aren’t holiday-specific. These goodies will last you through the Winter season and then some. Think of them as gifts to yourself that keep on giving.
I’m a huge fan of the bar cart. Full disclosure: I have yet to own one myself. However, I’m five minutes away from getting the Threshold Wood and Brass Finish Bar Cart from Target. This thing is versatile enough to be used as a kitchen cart or a bookshelf when the party’s over.
Threshold Wood and Brass Finish Bar Cart , $130
My aunt had the cutest napkins with turkeys on them when she hosted Thanksgiving this year and it made me smile, so to pay it forward, I found these. The Marimekko trees are a non-committal holiday napkin print that work for any Winter celebration.
Marimekko Kuusikossa Napkins, $6.95
Tired of everyone having to throw their jackets on some bed? Anthropologie’s Antler Wall Hook adds an instant ski lodge look while keeping everything organized.
Antler Wall Hook, $79
If you own an air mattress, please do all of us guests a favor and throw it away already! Unless space is an issue, we would like something that doesn’t feel like sleeping on…air. The Austin White Bean Bag Chair looks like something I could sleep late on, and look fashionable while doing it. Its modern white quilty look makes this a year-round chair that doesn’t need to be stuffed in a closet when guests go away.
Austin White Bean Bag Chair Bed, $175
This King Cube Ice Tray may look unassuming, but it makes everything better. When I first discovered this gadget, I ended up getting several for myself and a few lucky people as a “just ’cause” gift, and they love me forever because of it. It produces extra large ice cubes that melt at a glacial pace (sans global warming). Also, these are the kind of ice cubes served with an overpriced drink at a gorgeous bar – throw these in an ice bucket at your next party and your guests will definitely notice.
Red King Cube Ice Tray, $8.95
Music seems to be an afterthought at many a family holiday gathering. But the right music can really set the mood, especially when you (or other guests who like to DJ) can easily stick an iPod or iPhone into this fun color changing speaker.
iHome Color Changing iPod/iPhone Speaker Dock, $65
Christmas lights are not just for the tree anymore, like these Starry String Lights from Restoration Hardware that I’ve been drooling over forever. I want to cover everything I own in this stuff. Take that, Australian family whose Christmas light display can be seen from space.
Starry String Lights – Diamond Lights on Silver Wire, $15-99
Happy holidays, and don’t forget to treat yourself!
originally posted on ibby.com
Functionality and style haven’t always gone hand in hand in certain parts of the home. Home offices are often relegated to wherever there is an empty corner available, while garages are usually left to toil with their original layouts and don’t come within a country mile of qualifying for a renovation.The need for solid, efficient storage areas is always present for homeowners, but many balk at the thought of improvements due to the impersonal and incongruous style of big-box store products or what they see to be incompatible elements within their home designs. For the sake of your own efficiency and productivity, it’s time to dispel the myth of the difficulties of customization around your office and garage!
photo credit+ California Closets
With modern technology making it easier by the day to get work done from home, it’s essential that you’re able to keep your vital items and documents organized. Customizing a space that includes a personalized home office storage solution tailored to your tech needs will save you valuable time and remove all of the headaches that are synonymous with at-home projects, such as items going missing or clutter building up. With things like cable management systems or new cabinets dedicated to various supplies, you’ll know that your space will be ready for use at any moment, and will look great too!
photo credit: California Closets
Garages don’t have to be the bane of your home. Plenty of companies are able to help homeowners explore the unused potential in these multipurpose areas with customized garage storage solutions. With all of your boxes and outdoor gear safely stored away in closets of your design, chances are, you’ll be able to cross your garage off of your list of annual spring cleaning chores. Let your garage make a positive contribution to your home’s style as well!
photo credit: California Closets