Thursday, December 30, 2010

Holiday Hiatus

I'm bound for southern climes with the family for a couple of weeks. We wanted to get a trip in prior to baby #3 arriving. I figure they are a bit easier to care for "in" vs. "out". I'm hoping the view from our room looks a little like this:

{ ahhhhhhhhh..... }

Bags packed? Check. Sunscreen purchased? Check. Pile of good books & trashy mags? Check. Sinatra, the Siamese cat, & house well-taken care of? Check. Ahhhh... I love vacations.

Friday, December 17, 2010

12 Days of Christmas Finale

There are only 7 more shopping days 'til Christmas so I am going to combine the last 5 days of Christmas lyrics into one.... EIGHT maids a milking, NINE ladies dancing, TEN lords a-leaping, ELEVEN pipers piping, TWELVE drummers drumming. Phew! That's a crowd:

{ stained glass colouring page ~ click HERE to print out }

There is A LOT going on in this picture which is usually what happens around our house during the holidays. (Who's kidding who here, there is ALWAYS A LOT going on around our house!)

One of the few people who can take a picture of my chaos & make it look wonderful is Becky Chalmers of Bee Chalmers Photography. Check out her website. You will be amazed.

{ gift certificate for photos by Bee }

Becky's sessions produce great photos & you have fun doing it. She is not scary, not even a little bit. Trust me. If you want a gift certificate in the mail in time for Christmas you need to order by December 19th (this Sunday). Check with Becky {604-317-1693} for more details. I'm planning on getting belly shots done in the new year. CAN'T WAIT!

Another gift idea for your little lord-a-leaping or lady dancing is dance lessons taught by Alix of Pink Petal Ballet. Alix is fun, funny, smart & Paulina so looks so forward to her weekly lessons.

{ Paulina as a candy-cane princess }

A stocking stuffer... wine charms with the 12 days of Christmas. Buy on Etsy at Wilma & Betty:

{ so your maids a-milking don't mix with your pipers piping
...unless you want them to! }

Are you thinking of a drum set for that budding rockstar/drummer drumming? If you succumb, make sure you get the earplugs {or would a framed vintage ad work instead?):

{ Slingerland Drums }

To finish off this post I'll leave you with a series of images showing homes wonderfully decorated for the holidays & ready for a slew of guests (including 8 maids a milking, 9 ladies dancing, 10 lords a-leaping, 11 pipers piping, 12 drummers drumming plus!) or a small gathering of your closest friends & family:

{ chandelier decorated by Domino }

{ design*sponge's wall tree }

{ beachy tree by Coastal Living }

{ Apartment Therapy's gold & silver theme }

{ recycled plywood tree featured on Apartment Therapy }

{ Tobis Decor's Christmas hearth }

{ Lonny Magazine's mantel }

{ Charlie Brown Christmas tree from Shelter Design }

{ Elle Decor's Christmasy kitchen }

Merry Christmas, blogworld!!!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Decor & Gift: Seven Swans A-Swimming

"On the 7th day of Christmas my true love gave to me... Seven Swans A-Swimming".

I spent 2 years in England as a young girl, one of which was on the Isle of Wight living aboard a refurbished Norwegian fishing schooner called "Nylund". (For more info click on my parents' website Clarks Maritime.)

{ Nylund under full sail }

I remember the swans around the Isle of Wight and they weren't much friendlier than the geese I've encountered. However, they do look beautiful & are a good starting off point for gift suggestions. So here goes...

Pier One has some glass swan ornaments that would look lovely in bird-themed tree.

{ swan ornaments }

{ both images above from Country Living }

Or would your true love enjoy a getaway to Victoria & Swans Hotel? Located near Chinatown & Market Square, Swans is a great spot to make your homebase while in Victoria.

{ Swans ~ early 1900's }

{ Swans present day }

{ View from Swans out to Victoria's Inner Harbour }

I have a soft spot for Etsy & have sourced artwork from various Etsy shops that would suit our swan theme. This one from BalletArt shows incredible movement in it's rough grace:
{ Black & White Swan }

This one from Ching Levy Studio is peaceful & calming & would suit a library or den or a spot where your recipient would sit & read with a cup of tea:

{ Swan Lake I }

Sweet without being sickly so, this print from The Black Apple is one of many of Emily's creations I would love for a child's room.

{ Springtime Parade }

There is also this vintage image which I found at LabelStone in magnet form. Perfect for a stocking stuffer but a larger image would be wonderful framed in a kitchen, pantry, cottage or cabin.

{ White Swan Canning Label }

An inexpensive digital download from Found Objects provides you with a 8"x5" image you can print onto hand towels, fabric for pillows, whatever your heart desires! Could be used as a theme for an upcoming wedding or milestone birthday invites.

{ French Swan No 22 Rue Jolie }

For the hard to buy, funky types this retro Swans travel bag may be just the thing:

{ book bag or carry-all }

And last but certainly not least, if an Aston Martin is good enough for James Bond it's good enough for me ~ Aston Martin's new 4-seater:

{ The Cygnet }

Does the apartment building pictured & Daniel Craig come with??!!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Gift & Decorating Ideas: Six Geese A-Laying

On the 6th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me Six Geese A-Laying...

Really? Geese A-Laying? If it's the goose that laid the golden egg, great. But the geese I've come across have always been a bit grumpy & nippy. Perhaps they are worried they'll be force fed & slaughtered for fois gras.

Here are a few suggestions in keeping with our goose theme...

A bottle of Grey Goose vodka from France:

{ Grey Goose Lineup }

Looks absolutely delish served up as a peppermint froth cocktail (click HERE for recipe)

{ Peppermint Froth Cocktail }

Or for 1980's retro enthusiast, take your pick of Goose, Iceman or Maverick in TOP GUN . The movies or cds are available at Chapters.

{ 1980's hotties }

Canada Goose jackets are THE BEST. I finally gave in last year & got myself a winter jacket & I went with Canada Goose. I have never had a good quality snow jacket before. I always spent my money on dressy wool winter jackets (which I looooove). But I do love my Canada Goose:

{ and who's to say you can't wear a dress underneath?! }

A good pillow & comforter make your night's sleep that much better. Want goose down? It's your choice... but this bed looks super comfy (& I love the fact it wasn't made!):

{ unmade bed }

Katrin Wiehle is an Danish illustrator. While I was searching the internet I discovered her sweet goose pattern. I'm not sure if it is a print or can be made into material or wallpaper but I love it!

{ geese pattern }

It would be perfect in a child's room as a roman shade or as wallpaper on a feature wall in a mudroom (in place of the maps - which I do LOVE!):

{ High Street Market Mudroom }

I think mudrooms are often overlooked rooms for design efforts. But I digress... what would you use that goose pattern for?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Decor & Gift Ideas: 5 Golden Rings

"On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me... Five Golden Rings." Wow! Nicely done, true love! Here are Baker Hill's gift suggestions for the 5th day of Christmas:

I'd love a stack of these Tiffany Celebration Rings:
{ Tiffany's stackable rings }

For the budget-conscious, these alternatives from Stella & Dot are wonderful options:

{ stackable band rings }
{ stackable deco rings }

Contact Leslie Smith or Jennifer VanderMye (Stella & Dot stylists) to place your order.

And for you big spenders out there... how about a gift of Olympic 'ring' tickets to London 2012 or Sochi 2014? I remember the thrill of hosting the Olympics in Vancouver. A once-in-a-lifetime experience:

{ Opening Ceremonies Vancouver Olympics }

Turning to more design-related gift ideas, I think this table from PB Teen is suitable for any girl's room & fits into the 'ring-ed theme':

{ Circolo Nesting Tables }

I also have a soft spot for this Kelly Wearstler fabric:

{ Imperial Trellis }

It's not technically RING-design but if you see it in the repeat it's RING-like. And even though it's been out for a while, it's still one of my faves. I used it in our master bedroom in a grey.

Are polka dots in keeping with our ring theme? My friend, Charmaine & her Yellow Bird Paper Greetings company has a fine selection of cheeky yet sophisticated placecards highlighted here, just waiting to be set on your holiday table:

Yellow Bird also has a wonderful selection of cards for every occasion. This charmer may be necessary after the rash of Christmas & New Year's Eve engagements:
{ Congratulations indeed! }

Happy shopping, blogworld!

Decor & Gift Ideas: Four Calling Birds

"On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me... Four Calling Birds". My online research tells me that the word "calling" is a deviation from 'colly' or 'collie' birds which refers to a 'blackbird' or 'crow'.

This little blackbird is quite festive with her red boots & fancy hat on. She looks as though she is heading to a Christmas party & would suit a whimsical room:

You can purchase online at Nayski's Little Gift Shop.

Or for the country/rock music enthusiast, Sheryl Crow's new album is available on iTunes or in stores:

{ 100 Miles from Memphis }

How about dishes? These could be a little precious but I think they'd suit someone with a more classically elegant home. What do you think?

{ plates & footed dishes }

I discovered them online at Olive & Cocoa.

And I found these darling blackbird necklace & earrings on Etsy. Very sweet!

{ tiny blackbird earrings }

{ tiny blackbird necklace }

Now I wouldn't necessarily have been drawn to this blackbird themed fabric from Andrew Martin right away:

{ Elspeth silk; Andrew Martin }

However, check out how fab it looks in this room:

Sold? SOLD!

And to stuff in a stocking, Santa-style? This sweet little handmade pin from In My Backyard:

{ blackbird fabric pin }

I wonder what the fifth day of Christmas will bring us...