Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Girl's Bedroom & Bath

On my last visit to Sea Glass Cottage, I spent a little bit of time sprucing up my daughter's bedroom (which also serves as a guest room when she's not here).

Sadly for me, my daughter transferred to a college in New York which makes her visits home during the school semester rare, so her room is perfect for guests.

The taupe linen headboard and white beachy furniture were already in place when we purchased the house, so I had visions of making this an all-white or white and aqua room -- until my daughter got wind of my plans.

She put her foot down. And sent a text.

"No white, mom! Any color but white!"

Okay. I'm flexible. What about white and aqua?

"No. I'd like green, please."

Green it is.

Her bedroom is cozy and has an en-suite cottage-style bath (that is white and aqua ~ I like to compromise!)

This cute starfish pillow and the taupe shell pillows were the inspiration pieces to build the room. And 100% daughter approved!

I'm not crazy about the rug, and I think I will eventually replace it with a sisal rug. However, it's sturdy and it's an outdoor rug so it is standing up to the sand that is dragged in on the first floor (easy to sweep and vacuum).

Looks like someone wants some attention!

Love this little bistro style chair.

Her bedroom is separated from the bathroom by a pocket door.

I love her bathroom. Bright, fresh white beadboard, white floors, marble counters, and old-fashioned, cottage style wash stand and fixtures. 

Just a touch of light aqua on the walls above the beadboard.

Another pop of color with an aqua starfish.

Fresh white subway tiles in the shower stall.

Her room is right off the entrance hall and across from her brother's room. If you missed his nautical room makeover, you can click on this link.

I hope you enjoyed taking a little tour of my daughter's room at the cottage! 

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Across the Blvd.: Snickerdoodle Sunday

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Favorite Things #3 -- Everything Fall

What comes to mind when you think of fall?

I close my eyes and feel cool, crisp air......I smell woodsmoke and spices....I see glorious rich colors of amber and golds.....the sunlight is golden and mellow.....I feel the soft textures of fuzzy sweaters and cozy blankets...I crave apples and pumpkins and all of nature's bounty.

I celebrate fall! So in honor of this very special special day, the first day of fall, I'm sharing a few of my favorite autumn things.

Make the House Smell Like Fall
  • One of the first things I do to celebrate autumn, besides pulling out pillows and decor, is to stock up on fresh candles. I love Yankee candles, and add fresh scents with every season. I always have a candle burning in my kitchen when I cook, and in the evening when we are settled in the den to read or watch television, I enjoy the ambiance of a candle on the coffee table. 
My current fall scents that I am enjoying are Autumn Leaves and Apple Pumpkin:

  • If you don't use candles but still like the house to smell like fall, a simmer pot is perfect for a cool, cozy evening. I fill a pot with a few cups of water and add orange peels, apple peels, lemon peels, whole cloves, cinnamon sticks, a few drops of vanilla extract, pumpkin spice, nutmeg, and whatever else I might have on hand. (Herbs such as bay leaf, rosemary, and lavender are good, too!) Simmer on low, making sure the water does not completely evaporate.

Make Homemade Flavored Coffee
  • I love flavored coffee, and pumpkin spiced coffee and lattes come out seasonally, but they can get expensive! I make my own simple version of flavored coffee with the regular blend I have at home.

You can make either instant coffee or fresh brewed coffee flavored by adding a few dashes of two items you probably have in your spice cabinet: ground cinnamon and pumpkin pie spice. You can experiment with amounts to see how strong you want the flavors.  If I am making a cup of instant coffee, for example, I add a heaping spoon of instant coffee, about three dashes of cinnamon, and a dash or two of pumpkin spice, and add hot water. For a full pot of fresh brewed coffee, add coffee grounds, about a teaspoon each of cinnamon and pumpkin spice, (more if you want stronger flavor) gently stir to mix, and brew as usual.

Make Homemade Bath Products
  • Now that I've got the house smelling spicy delicious and my cup of pumpkin spiced coffee is steamy hot, I'm ready to look up some fun fall DIY recipes. Here are two projects I found on my DIY Body Products pinterest board that I am ready to make for a luxurious spa bath experience:
Pumpkin Spice Soap:

  • This easy and delicious smelling soap recipe for a relaxing fall evening bath is found on Happiness is Homemade.

Vanilla Pumpkin Body Scrub:

Here's to a wonderful fall filled with all good things, the beautiful bounty of nature, and a season of gratitude and thankfulness for all our blessings!

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Decorating with......Beautiful Bottles & Demijohns

Question: What is one decor item that looks beautiful in many style homes -- modern, traditional, french country, farmhouse, coastal, rustic, and shabby chic?

Answer: Beautiful bottles and demijohns! (Demijohns are large bottles encased in wicker).

Regardless of your decorating style(s), bottles and demijohns bring color and texture to the home and can be used in so many creative ways.

Since we are transitioning into the fall season, I've put away some of my bowls of seashells and coastal pillows to bring in some warmer tones for fall. Sea Glass Cottage is our home away from home, so I'm keeping things low key-- just a few earth-toned pillows in the den and a demijohn vignette on the coffee table.

Since I'm keeping things very simple here, I've turned to a few of my favorite home decor blogs for more inspiring ideas, and I'm happy to share with you some stunning ways these creative bloggers have used demijohns in their homes.

Fabulous Kim from Savvy Southern Style has a gorgeous home with a mix of comfortable vintage and french country style.  I love the way she used these beautiful bottles to add height and style to a bathroom hutch.


Kim also uses demijohns as lamps, both the glass bottle and wrapped in wicker. Do yourself a favor and go do a search for "demijohn" at her blog. You will be in heaven as she is a collector and uses demijohns extensively in her design style -- she'll even show you how to make an inexpensive and fabulous demijohn lamp!


Next, we move to the rustic beauty of Kathleen's gorgeous home at Faded Charm. She features a demijohn in her entrance hall ~ don't you just feel a warm welcome into her home with the charming and vintage styling in her entrance hall?



Wonderful Jenna at The Painted Apron is an extraordinary artist, entertainer, and designer who sets the most creative tables for her parties! Her blog is a gold mine of themed parties, decorating, and out-of-this-world recipes. Just look at this beautiful tablescape she created with elegant wine bottles and a large demijohn as the centerpiece.


Here are some other ideas I've gathered from home decor blogs:

                              ~use as a vase with seasonal flowers
                              ~group on the hearth by the fireplace
                              ~on bookcases (on top and on shelves)
                              ~on top of hutches and kitchen cabinets
                              ~in a large basket or tray
                              ~as lighting pendants
                              ~on the porch
                              ~lined up a staircase
                              ~add battery operated white lights inside
                              ~on a mantel

And check out my demijohn pinterest board to see other great ideas for using this versatile decorating item.  I think I just might start a new collection!

(**Thank you to Savvy Southern Style, Faded Charm, and The Painted Apron for permission to use their photos.**)

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Starfish Cottage: Your Inspired Design

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Master Bath - A Work in Progress

I've been a busy little bee, working hard getting the master bath in order.

As I may have already mentioned, the previous owner had a very dark, earth-tone color palette in place. Completely the opposite of my vision for the cottage, so taking down heavy window treatments, dark wood-tone shelves, and dark framed art and decor has been the name of the game. I wish I would have thought to take a before photo with all the dark wood, but I was so anxious to get rid of the dark and let in the light that I forgot.

Here's a little tour around my now light and bright master bath in crisp white with touches of seafoam green.  (See, I really can do another color besides blue!)

(I can't take any credit for the upgraded materials -- marble counters, white subway tiles, etc... These materials were already in place from a remodel a few years ago. I absolutely love them, so no change there.)

 I really like that the cabinet doors and drawers were removed.....the fabric and towels add color and soft texture and give the room a "cottage" feel. Baskets behind the fabric hold all of our toiletries, so it's all neatly organized and handy.

These beautiful coral bottles are a focal point in the master bath -- they really grab your attention when you walk in.

I adore my soaking tub -- a warm bath with rose and vanilla bath salts, a candle,  and I'm in heaven!

My make-up area -- an old painted dresser with a glass top to store my makeup and hair tools. From this vanity area, you step up to the bath tub and sink area. Across from this dresser is the shower stall.

More glass display bottles topped with pretty seashells.

Some white orchids add a soft touch.

I'm still working on the window treatments for the two windows and adding some art to the walls, so when those are done,  I'll post the finished results.

This is the fabric I am working with to make valances and window treatments -- I think it coordinates nicely with the skirts over the sinks. We shall see.......

Thanks for visiting and touring my master bath at Sea Glass Cottage!

                                  Starfish Cottage: Your Inspired Design

Monday, September 14, 2015

Post cards from the Past

On the third floor of the cottage, right outside the master bedroom, is this corner piece that I am using as a curio cabinet to store my vintage collections. I don't have many things, just a few interesting beach-themed items that I've picked up here and there.

Today I am going to share with you some lovely vintage post cards from the past.....

I have an old, leather bound photo album with black pages to store and display my collection of beautiful vintage "by the sea" post cards. I use photo corners in the album so that the post cards can easily be pulled out to read the messages on the back.

Let's take a closer look at some of these charming turn-of-the-century messages that someone long ago sent to a friend or relative.

Aren't they just the sweetest little girls? I love the way the sender in 1906 wrote in French all around the edges, on the little girl's bloomers, and in the background. I wonder what it says about the little girl who has an arrow pointing to her?

I love examining the stamps and postal marks -- the next post card was written in 1908 in Freeport, Illinois.

"Ethel" sent another post card to someone at the same address:

One of my favorite post cards is this one below which features two bathing beauties in a "bathing machine." Proper young Victorian or Edwardian ladies did not remove their clothing at the beach in public! It was not allowed and not at all proper. Bathing machines were available along the shore for fully clothed women to enter the shelter and remove their clothing in privacy to protect their modesty. Either a horse or humans pulled the machine into the water, and the ladies exited out the back, far away from the prying eyes of young men on the shore.

I love this one -- these men can't help taking a peek at the bathing beauties of their time!

For a little history of Victorian bathing etiquette:

I've also framed some of my collection so that I can enjoy them whenever I walk by the curio cabinet.

I hope you enjoyed strolling down memory lane, seeing some beach post cards from the past. How different things are today!!

Have a wonderful week, and thank you for dropping in at Sea Glass Cottage.

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