Monday, October 31, 2011


Has anyone in America been watching The X Factor besides me? I am addicted. I have followed from the beginning, so I definitely have my favorites. The show airs at different times every week, as of now, and times are announced at the end of each show. I promise this new reality show deserves a spot on your DVR line-up. Below are a few of my favorites from the past 2 weeks. We are not far along so it isn't to late to jump on the boat. The X Factor airs this Wednesday, Nov 2 at 8/7C.

Happy Halloween

In case you need some last minute Halloween ideas, here are a few of my favorites....

I used this one last year and again last Thursday night for a fundraising event at our local art museum.  Instead of making the cut-out bats, I purchase a bag of decorative halloween pieces that I found for about $4.00.  It consisted of plastic skeletons, bats, and spiders that I hung off the branches.

 If you like wreaths, here is a cute idea:

 And in the spirit of Halloween, I came up with the card below to let my friends know I moved recently. I wanted to get my change of address out before the holidays begin (so all the fun Christmas cards come to the correct address).  It took a lot of treats to get the boys to pose, but it worked!

images: 1 & 5.  Good Housekeeping, 2-4 & 6-7. Martha Stewart Living, 8. Collect 5

For more great halloween ideas, check out Charlotte's post.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Do sweat the small stuff

One of my favorite parts of decorating is the hunt for and placement of accessories. My friends know that I love to search antique malls and thrift store to collect the most unique objects for my tables, chests, etc... To me, these small items make all the difference in the world. It's what really adds the personality and character to a home. An etagere is the perfect place to display books, boxes, art, small sculptures or anything else that you love.

This one above is perfectly decorated - not to crowded and not to empty.

This lucite etagere below is awesome!

These beautiful shelving units can be a little pricey depending on where you are looking. So, I suggest shopping in local antique malls, thrift stores, or consignment stores. I have been eyeing one down at a consignment store here, but really have nowhere to put it!

I have this small little etagere which houses my cable box on the bottom shelf. This was my solution to make the box "go away." They are so big and ugly and the wires drive me nutsy!

image sources:1-10/11/12 is my own

What a Stud!

My mother texted me last week requesting my Christmas List. Eeek! Isn't it still October?

Even though I haven't a clue about the majority of my wish list, one thing that I've wanted for a while is great stud earrings. I'm on the hunt for something that's less formal than pearls that will go from work to dinner out.

ShopBop has some great stud options, and all of these finds are less than $100. How great is that?

Tory Burch Small T Logo Studs $58

Elizabeth and James Architecture Cube Stud Earrings $75

Marc by Marc Jacobs Bolt Studs $48

House of Harlow 1960 Evil Eye Stud Earrings $60

Giles & Brother Nara Pave Studs $75

Low Luv x Erin Wasson Arrowhead Studs $25

House of Harlow 1960 Antler Button Stud Earrings $70

Marc by Marc Jacobs Logo Disc Stud Earrings $48

Juicy Couture Princess Studs $48

Tory Burch Small Domed Studs $58

Marc by Marc Jacobs Turnlock Studs $32

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Weekend in DC

This past weekend I went to DC and was reminded how much I LOVE THIS CITY. I truly regret not living here after college- it is such a great town! I love the history, the architecture and how it feels busy like NYC, but not quite as big. I wanted to share some of the fun things we did since we had some locals with us!

When we arrived on Friday evening, we went straight to my new favorite restaurant, Founding Farmers. This may be old news to DC locals, but I am officially obsessed with this place. We couldn't get reservations, so we happily sat at the bar for 2 hours, which was only bearable because of the cool cocktails, great appetizers and interesting atmosphere. For apps, we had the bacon wrapped dates, skillet cornbread, deviled eggs and bacon lollis (we were there for over 4 hours people). I had the Organic Cucumber Cocktail and it was deee-lish! It was made from vodka, cucumbers and cantelope.

Here it is in all its glory, next to another cool cocktail, Farmer Jon:

While sitting at the bar, I had a great view of the canning-inspired decor. I just thought these glass jars filled with various things like pickles, green beans, corn and carrots were so creative; goes perfectly with the farm-to-table thing and are so eye-catching. In case you were wondering, I got the Southern Pan-Fried Chicken, complete with waffles, gravy and mac 'n cheese. I still dream about this dish! Next time you are in DC, you must try this place- but get a reservation or you will wait like we did!

The next morning we walked around Georgetown to take in the sites and storefronts. I was so excited to stumble upon this Revolutionary reinactment- what is DC without seeing one of these??

Our host for the weekend, Julie and I (I am on the right)- yes, those are Pumpkin Spice Lattes!

Later that night, we met my friend from Alabama, Stephanie, for dinner. We chose Wolfgang Puck's first DC venture, The Source. This contemporary, Asian-inspired restaurant was fantastic! We had a variety of dumplings to start and then two of us got the filet (yummy!) and two of us got the scallops. Everything was fantastic, as expected from Mr. Puck. Here are Steph and I with one of the best (along with the cucumber one from Friday) cocktails I have ever had- the Asian Pear Martini- they only make a certain amount each night, so you know it is good! I definitely recommend this restaurant as well.

(That's Stephanie on the left and me on the right)

Our yummy entrees, the filet and scallops.

We ended our trip with brunch at Old Ebbitt Grill, a DC institution, and the obligatory White House pic. Okay, so I made Julie and Bethany go take one with me, but I know they are glad we did!

I'm headed to Tuscaloosa next weekend to visit Leah and see the Tide roll over LSU, so hopefully we will have some pics to share. Until then...happy Thursday!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


I have a special post today!!! My very close friend (Sissi Kasel),who I worked with a year ago in kitchen and bath design, got her very first publication last month. Not only was she published, but her exquisite design made the cover of a popular to the trade magazine - K+BB. This lovely bath resides in a beautiful home along the beachy stretch of 30A. Isn't it beautiful????? I'm a fan!!!! And, a lover of that rug! Congrats again Sissi!!!!

-posted by Leah Shea for Collect 5

Design Crush: Liz Caan

I keep seeing interior designer Liz Caan all over the place.  She has been featured in several magazines and blogs.  I  cannot get enough of the pops of color mixed with bold prints.  If you haven't noticed her yet or come across her work you should definitely check out her website:  Below are some samples from this Boston-based designer.