Saturday, November 6, 2010

A Designer Confession

So I went to Daltile on Thursday with my mom to get some ideas and tiles samples in preparation to redo my kitchen tile and the such after the holidays...and I came to realize...I am a designer that can pick out finishes, furniture and all the fixings for a client, but it is a whole different ball game to make a decision on the design direction I want to go in my OWN KITCHEN!!! I guess it is a good thing that I am giving myself a time frame of a few months to make up my decision...just hope I am happy with it after it is all installed!!! Got on the web this morning and found some more inspiration...I am thinking subway tiles at the back splash with some small accent tile detail and tile on the counter tops, very light and airy as my kitchen is very dark. But I did see some black cabinets while I was searching...oh the decisions!!! Take a peak at some of the pictures I found for inspiration...what do you think???

Loving the light toned counter top with white subway back splash and contrasting grout. Really give it a different look. I also like the bisque toned cabinets...a great contrast to the back splash.

This kitchen has white subway tile backs plash and white cabinets. Like it, but I think I am liking the photo above more...there is more contrast in the finishes above...

And here is a totally different look...but I AM LOVING IT!!! The contrast between the black cabinets and white subway back splash is such a statement and a modern approach to a tradition subway back splash look...I am just not sure my small little kitchen can handle the black cabinets...Loving the wall color too!!!

My husband always said that this was our project house where we could try stuff out...more to come!!! I will share some of the colors and finishes that I pulled from Daltile after I go back and get more SAMPLES!!!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

A little Halloween Before and After...

Well it has been a little toasty here in the central valley of California, but I did it, I got out the box of fall decorations. Tomorrow is the first of October and there is only one way to start off the holiday season...with some sweet little pumpkins, a little fall garland and wreath. Take a peak at the mantle before and after...what do you think? favorite black mirror, watercolor that my grandmother made in college and a orchid flower arrangement. Also, a great spot for the things around the house you don't want a 2-1/2 year old to touch!

After - a little bit of orange, cream and black to get the family into the fall season. Here's hoping for some fall temperatures!!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Kitchen Redo?

I am in the middle of contemplating the redo my kitchen...

The cabinets are a dark wood that looked good when we purchased the house, but now look dreary and are in some need of freshening up! The avocado green tile is something we were willing to redo when we purchased the home almost 3 years ago, but with the economy and two new kids to the bunch...needless to is still AVOCADO green.

I have been looking at so many different ideas...granite countertops, wood countertops, tile countertops...subway tile backsplash...

Here are some of the ideas I have been pulling for ideas lately...

I love the idea of wood countertops...there is something so RICH about them. I think that if I painted the cabinets a creamy white color it would update them and then pop the wood countertops even more. I love the idea of beadboard as the backsplash, although I have see some beautiful tile lately too.

So here are my thoughts on the kitchen for today.I will share more very soon and hopefully make a decision on my design direction so I can start on my budget!!!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


It feels like forever...but I finally had a chance to get out my sewing machine and sew my pillows for the family room!!! Remember when I posted that I found a beautiful green velvet fabric awhile back? Well that fabric and a great print that I found at Home Fabrics is what I made my new pillows out of. I just love them because they compliment the color of the sofa, which has been a huge challenge in the past, especially when trying to bring in the blues and greens that I love!

More to come soon, hoping to move around some artwork in the house...including the area above the sofa in the family room...stay tuned!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

So today is a special day...three months ago I had my precious little boy.

I can still remember getting up that morning with back pain; going to the doctor to get checked later in the afternoon, planning out my drive there so that I would not be in the middle of a contraction; going to the hospital in denial, thinking I would be in labor until the next day, to only deliver him three hours later without drugs...and finally seeing his little face on my chest after I delivered handsome little man.

There have been many sleepless nights, occasional tears of frustration, but above all complete and total happiness. It is so wonderful to see his adorable little gummy smile, the way he lights up when he sees his big sis, and his sleepy little face on his daddy's chest.

Love you little make me so happy!!!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Karis' room...take one

I was going through some photos and came across this super sweet photo of my daughters room about three months after she was born...

I will always love the room that I designed for was so fun to find the adorable bedding by My Baby Sam...trying to make sure that the bedding was a neutral as possible, because after multiple ultrasounds, I was still not sure that she was going to come out at a girl.

I painted most of the rooms a pale blue and accented the crib wall with blue and green stripes, because I was not in the mood for pink (you should see her room now)...and opted for dark stained wood furniture that had a little curve to it.

I am so fortunate because my sister-in-law had a rocking chair and ottoman that I was able to have and paint a chocolate brown color and have my amazing grandmother sew new cushions for it.

The artwork for her room was inspired by her bedding and were actual shots of the paisley design placed in frames from Aaron Brothers.

We did not name her until we got to meet her and landed on the name Karis Grace. I was able to find some ADORABLE letters for her name in the Curlz font from a custom lettering company. I painted them a chocolate brown and hung them with chocolate brown and white stitched ribbon.

Looking back this was a super cute room and I am a little bummed that it is now my son's room... a little more masculine, with different bedding and accented crib wall...but I am glad that I took this photo to remember how cute it was!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

I just LOVE spray paint!!!

Take a look at what I am up too...a little bit of spray paint can go a LONG way...check back soon and I will share with you what I am doing with all this white spray paint fun!!!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Custom Artwork for my little girls room...

I always have had a difficult time selecting artwork for our house, so when it came to selecting artwork for my daughter's room I looked...and looked...and looked...and could not find anything that grabbed me.

At the time, my daughter was almost two, and my husband and I had started singing her the ABC's and counting 123's. I had seen some really cute ABC designs from different sites, but could not find anything in the right size or colors
So, trying to be crafty with a limited knowledge of Illustrator, I tried to make some artwork myself and this is what I came up with...

Inexpensive bedding from Target that I was trying to match colors too

ABC Artwork print that I created

123 artwork that I created

This was a great little project. I was able to use some existing Aaron Brothers frames that I had and I had them spray painted a white semi-gloss color. The mats were existing from previous artwork that I had in the frames and I popped the art printed with some really cute hot pink stripped scrapbook paper from Michaels.

I searched high and low for sweet fonts that were feminine and legible. I was able to find some free fonts over at

All in all, I think they turned out pretty cute. The best part about the whole project is that I am able to sing the ABC's and count the 123's with Karis whenever we are in her bedroom!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Karis' Second Birthday...a fluttery event!!!

I have wanted to share with you the best second birthday party I have been to for a long daughters!!! She turned "2" back in April and it has taken me a long time to put together this post to share the details...but at least I have a chance to share it!!!

At the time I was nine months pregnant, on a budget (the design business is not what it used to be) and was inspired by other crafters out there and wanted to try out some of their tutorials and see if I could do some of the decor by myself.

We decided on a butterfly theme, I did cutouts of butterflies in lime green, hot pink and pink for centerpieces of moss and pink terracotta pots. I did a "Happy Birthday" banner with tissue poofs in lime green, pink and hot pink and found the best favors for the kids at Michaels and Target. Butterfly, lion and frog masks that my sister and I hand painted for each for the little ones and magnifying glasses and butterfly nets for a dollar each at Target.

The day was beautiful and sunny and all of the kiddos had an amazing time snacking on pinwheel sandwiches, fruit and sugared treats, while playing with their magnifying glasses, bug catchers and customized butterfly, lion and frog masks.

My favorite part of the party was getting to help Karis blow out her two little candles with my husband on her butterfly cake...all in all, it was an amazing day!!!

Cupcakes for the kiddos

Fresh flowers from my moms garden and vibrant colored tissue puffs

Karis' happy birthday banner with tissue puffs
and terracotta butterfly arrangements

Butterfly center pieces, magnifying glasses and butterfly masks

A special thanks to all that helped put the party together!!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

My birthday present from 3 Little Birds Boutique!!!

This weekend I received a wonderful email from my friend Kristen over at 3 Little Birds Boutique. It was a note letting me know that my birthday present was on it's way! I was so excited because she had told me in an earlier email that it would be one of her BEAUTIFUL hand stamped jewelry creations; and then she attached a link that made me smile...because it celebrates my two little ones, Karis and Tyler.

Kristen has created beautiful pieces of jewelery; including necklaces, earring, paper products and her upcoming children's line...take a peak at her website and be sure to become a follower of her blog where she talks about crafting, her Etsy obsession and motherhood!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

It's a green thing...

While out yesterday picking up some new flowers and ribbon for my little hair bow business, I sauntered over to Home Fabrics to see what they had. I can always find something there to peak my interest and the ultimate need to but for fabric to redo something around the house; although these days I have to put it in my memory bank for later, as time is something I don't have a ton of these days!

While walking through the aisles looking through the bins I found the most BEAUTIFUL color of GREEN velvet. So excited to find it because I have honestly never seen this beautiful color of green in a velvet rich. I bought a yard to make some pillows and a yard of white fabric for Karis' nightstand (more on that later).

Upon bringing the fabric home, I started looking around and noticing that I AM A GREEN FREAK!!! Take a look at some of the decor below...

Entry with fabulous green paint and artwork by Tika Solnar Phipps

My super attractive 70's avocado green oven (you know you are jealous) :)


Dining room table filled of green apples and a green place mat I scored for $1.99 at Target!

I have to admit it is good to know this at the ripe old age of almost 32...I love to try new design ideas and colors around the house, but have realized that I go back to what is tried and true to me and my design long as it has some GREEN in it!!!

More to follow on the green velvet wheels are spinning and I hope to have time to make what I am planning on and sharing it soon!!!

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!!!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Designer inspiration...

I LOVE this blogger and designer...Her name is Michelle and her blog is called Three Men and a Lady . Michelle has some creative designs that she has placed in her home and her DIY tricks are awesome!!! They are also affordable, fun and very creative.

My favorite space in her home is her living room. I LOVE the contrast of the dark paint color against the creme drapes and sofa, such a crisp look. The striped sofa pillows are gorgeous and pop with color against the sofa setting. The mosaic fireplace is complimentary to the wall color and the storage and TV unit are wonderful...what a true entertainment unit should be with pillows and all!

Want to know my favorite items? The DIY ottoman and the black and white photos above the sofa seating GORGEOUS!!!

Take a look at Michelle's blog here. What do you think of the striped walls in the foyer??? I think it is to die for!!!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Time to get back to it!!!

Today was the first day that I actually felt like I needed to go for a walk. I think that some if had to do with the fact that one of my high school friends just finished a marathon and she had her daughter in March and she looked fabulous!!! So I decided that it was time to get going since it has been 7 weeks since my little guy entered the world and I honestly do not want to have to buy more clothes in a larger size...every mommies dream right?

So today I took my daughter with me in her Bob stroller and we walked down to the store to pick up some bread, a baguette, bananas and sun chips. We walked a total of mile and a half and it was only about 80 degrees (it will be 102 today).

IT WAS GREAT!!! Karis and I chatted and when she was busy eating her o's, saying "hello" to neighbors or just hanging out, I was able to think...which has not been happening too much lately. I realized that walking will be a great way to just think and figure out what the next step to many of my thoughts should I just have to keep it up!!!

More to come...and maybe a photo later of the two of us on our walk

Friday, July 23, 2010

Oh Wow!!!

Cruising along the internet this afternoon looking for some great ottomans and came across this AMAZING interior to beautiful to not share!

It's from the Traditional Home website and it's all about elegant and GREEN spaces. I LOVE the black lacquered fireplace accent wall, the beautiful deco style fireplace, the seating...I would love that sofa. AND did you see the light fixture? It is made from balsa wood, it's dramatic and SO amazing...what a statement.

So many great elements and a fabulous color scheme! Okay...on to look for ottomans!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Time for an Ottoman...

I purchased a lovely and sophisticated (in my opinion) coffee table and end tables from Crate and Barrel a few years back.

The set is great, modern, dark wood and a shelf for storage...all that I wanted in a coffee table and end tables. And now almost four years later the coffee table is starting to show it's wear now that we have two little ones that use it as a breakfast table for her O's and milk and a storage unit for many children's books, an old recipe bow for crayons and a few of my fleeting design magazines. So where I am going with all of this? I think it is time for an ottoman...something that looks great, easy to wipe down and storage would be a bonus!!!

Pulled a few options...what do you think?

I think I see a theme...rectangular and boxy...which might work until the kiddos decide to stop using our current coffee table as a breakfast bar!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Another Fabulous Weekend...

We had a wonderful weekend...we enjoyed pool play time on the patio making lots of splashes... farmers market where we picked up fresh peppers and squash... family dinners enjoying fresh corn and home grown tomato salad...chubby baby arms and first smiles...another fabulous weekend!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Been away for a few weeks, we welcomed our second little one, Tyler, on June 2nd and could not be happier!!! Remembering sleep deprivation and overall tiredness from our first experience 2 years ago and adjusting to it as best as we can!

So grateful for the blessing that our little boy is and amazed at the transformation of our 2 year old daughter, she is changing every day!

Getting inspired and a little antsy around the house and have so many ideas of what I want to do and attempt to accomplish on a shoestring budget...till then!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Check out this great hair bow set I just did for a customer, so cute!!!
Check out my etsy site if you are interested in a set of your own:

Monday, May 10, 2010

Design on a Shoestring Budget...

I graduated with my degree in interior design eight years is crazy to think that it has been that long. For those eight years, I have worked for a local interior design firm designing and managing projects for medical offices and hospitality facilities. Every project has been exciting and a true learning experience.

My husband and I purchased a home about two and a half years ago when I was four months pregnant. It is a TRUE work in progress and fixer upper in my eyes. It has great bones, a great school district and a HUGE backyard.

I hope to share with you over time the inexpensive ways that we are attempting to update our home and also share our family as it grows...(I am currently 9 months pregnant), and maybe slip in a little bit of my wares, as I am an amateur hair bow maker.

I hope you can enjoy my posts!!!