Guest Vignette: Rashon Carraway

Y’all know him and adore him if for nothing else but his spiffy bow ties.  I am stoked to have Rashon Carraway aka Mr. Goodwill Hunting as a visitor today for my guest vignette series, where I ask fellow bloggers to share a vignette in their home and explain why it is meaningful.  As usual, Rashon combines his trademark eye for finding hidden treasures and a rather sweet story to great effect….

I’m not rich. Neither am I wealthy, but that doesn’t mean I can’t enjoy luxuries life have to offer. The picture that you can’t really see in this vignette, is a photo of me when I was in high school. I am pictured along side of former President George W. Bush during Boys Nation in the Summer of 2001.   When I met the president, I knew immediately anything was possible. Although I still doubt much of what I do, I realize there are people who support me daily such as my family and friends and that gets me through. The picture gets rotated out ever so often with family photos or photos of my dog Mr. Benjamin, who has the wildest personality.

Each piece in this vignette is from a thrift store, except the flower. The space really defines the vicissitudes of life as I see it. Many of us have a few dings and certainly a lot of history as relating to our past. However, with just a little creativity and a little work, our future can be exactly as a reStyled piece from a second-hand store…fresh and vibrant. In such times as these its my little piece of serenity.

I wholeheartedly agree.  Rather than dwell in the past, we can look to the present and “style” the future we want.  Thank you Rashon for sharing…..

So tell me, what future plans are you crafting?

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Guest Vignette: Big Beige Box

Time for another installment of Guest Vignette where I ask fellow bloggers to share a vignette in their home and explain why it is meaningful.  This week I am excited to have Courtney (don’t you just love her name) of Big Beige Box over to share what I think is a pretty awesome story……

When The Secret came out, many of my friends put together vision boards of their goals. I was, of course, way too cool to buy into some Oprah gimmick (because she obviously has no idea about what ideas work, right?) but there was one goal in particular that was tugging at my heart and soul, begging to be put ou there. In 2010, I had fallen in love with a man and a city so my life in FL was growing more irrelevant by the day.

 I had to get to NYC.

 I jotted down a simple phrase on the back of a business card I had made to promote my blog and identity as a designer. “NYC 2011.” I set the card on my desk and looked at it every day, reminding me of my goal.

 My goal came to fruition in April 2011 just in time for its cut-off date of my 30th birthday. Never before had I wanted something so badly and worked so hard. I rang in my 30th on the pavement of NYC and settled into Apartment #13 a month later. As I was unpacking my things, I came across this card.

I considered throwing it away, because the goal had been completed, but stopped myself. I found a frame and slipped in the card. This goal was too much of a milestone and that card meant too much to me. It is now displayed prominently on my bookshelf, and it reminds me that I can do ANYTHING if I put my mind to it.

Thank you Courtney for sharing!  Honestly, I got a little choked up when I read this the first time because I fully understand the drive to obtain a goal and leaving yourself visual “pep talks” to make sure you stay on track.  It truly is a lovely story and I am so happy that (1) Courtney obtained her goal and (2) she kept the card as a reminder that truly anything is possible if you try……

Okay, this is it for me for the week.  I apologize that I have been so quiet this last week, but between pitching two clients, preparing for a week back home in the Midwest, on boarding a new client and taking two classes, I am stretched to my limit and something had to give.  Here is hoping that my time back in Ohio and Michigan gives me some quiet time to reflect and recharge.

Have a great weekend and I will be back on Monday to answer the burning question, so many of you all asked …..exactly where does Courtney keep all his dishes?

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Guest Vignette: Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One

I love the internet….pure and simple.  It is one of the few mediums that brings people together across a variety of different barriers.  If it wasn’t for my blog, I would have never had the opportunity to meet Alycia of Tablescapes at Table Twenty-One.  We may have bonded over our love of pretty tables, but we became fast friends because of Alycia’s kind nature and her never-ending knowledge about running your own business as a second career.

I am excited that Alycia finally agreed to participate in my Guest Vignette series where I ask fellow bloggers to photograph a vignette in their home and explain why it is meaningful to them.  Here is Alycia’s contribution…..

The whole retirement thing is nothing but a big scam! When I hung up my wedding design [business] hat two years ago, everyone led me to believe I would be able to sleep in and then enjoy long, leisurely lunches with my friends. They said I would be eager to learn something new like tennis or Israeli martial arts to work those lunches off before heading to meet still more friends for martinis. They said I would be able to spend more time with my husband and become the glamorous, trendsetting lady of leisure I used to be. Lies! All lies! My so-called “retirement” has been more work than running a design store ever was! I get up earlier, go to bed later, and the time in between is a whirlwind of activity. Lunch is usually scarfing down a sandwich in my sweats while folding clothes. I see my husband for about 10 minutes in the morning before he scoots out the door, and another hour at night before we both fall into bed exhausted. There is no tennis court in my future, and martinis are more like…well, to be honest…just swallowing a handful of olives and taking a swig right out of the bottle because I don’t have time to stand there and shake.


This vignette is a corner of our little library that offers 10 minutes of solace each afternoon.   I fix myself a cup of tea or coffee and just sit there. (OK, you got me…it’s brandy in the cup!) I may stare out the window plotting my escape from suburbia.   I may catch up on my correspondence (uh, yes…some people still write letters despite the advent of email!), or I may just swoon to the strains of Frank Sinatra and Engelbert Humperdinck. (Hush! I like Engelbert!) What makes this corner my favorite place is that I am surrounded by memories of family members from generations past. To my right is the violin played by my maternal Grandmother in the 1920s, then my mother, my first cousin, and finally my second cousin who is now in his 30s. The strings are fragile with several missing and the bow is worn, but I love it. On the wall to the left of the desk is a portrait of my paternal Grandmother as a child at the turn of the last century. Next to that are the high school diplomas earned by my paternal Grandfather and Grandmother in 1912 and 1916 respectively. Living in rural America as they did, earning a high school diploma was something of a big deal back then. Judging by the size of those bad boys, it must have been like winning the lottery! My Grandmother actually went on to earn her college degree which was a real coup in those days!

I am grateful for all that I am and all that I have in this life. To be able to sit for 10 glorious minutes each day to enjoy my retirement surrounded by mementos from those who came before me is a blessing.

Indeed Alycia, you truly are blessed!  I love that Alycia has been able to carve out a niche in her home filled with personal antiques that serves as a restful retreat.  Thank you Alycia for sharing!

Do you have a special place in your home that is your “zen corner”?  Drop a comment and tell me where those cozy corners are in your home.

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Guest Vignette: Adventures of an Almost 40 Year Old Intern…

Because I am all about shameless self-promotion, be sure to check out the give away I am doing this month where you can win a $50 gift card from Pier 1!

Okay now that is out of the way, I wanted to take a moment to reintroduce an on-going series for the blog called “Guest Vignette” where I am asking various bloggers to showcase vignettes in their own home and explain why they are meaningful.  While the series is a fun way to get a snapshot into different bloggers’ design styles, it also is a great reminder that a home is all about how you personalize it – without personal objects in the space, it’s a house.  It’s all about how you layer in those personal things that makes it a home.

I am tickled to have Holly of Adventures of an Almost 40 Year Old Intern  as my guest today.  Like myself, Holly found her calling in life a tad later than most but she has made up for it with a vengeance.  She enrolled herself in design school, promptly scoring a sweet internship in Los Angeles.  If that wasn’t enough her mad DIY skills have grabbed the attention of Nate Berkus (she was on the show too!), Design*Sponge, Apartment Therapy and a slew of other design heavyweights.  Today Holly is sharing a vignette in her Los Angeles living room…..

 

Well, I love this vignette because it incorporates so much of what I love…  A great piece of vintage furniture, a cool graphic printed fabric, fresh orchid, and quirky artwork that is meaningful to me.  For the last year I have been bloggin’ about starting over as an intern and pursuing a career in interior design and this vignette is the first project I did in the quest to revamp my apartment right before I made that big decision. I was obsessed with artwork collage walls, saw many done on HGTV and in my favorite design magazines,  and I wasn’t sure I had it in me to create one of my own. And then one Saturday I just spent the day planning it out on my living room floor and nailing it to the wall. I have been lucky enough to travel to a lot of cool places in the world and have collected random pieces of artwork on these travels and never got around to properly displaying them. So now my groovy vintage fan purchased at a market in Buenos Aires, pieces from a couple of artists in Prague, a photo taken by a really cute guy in India, and a pic of my little nephew with his bright red hair, among other pieces, all live in the same place! And it was the success of this vignette that helped me gain the courage to try my hand at interior design and make the crazy decision to work for free to get experience. Oh, and the groovy original Bertoia chair in this vignette??? Well, it is one of my very first super fabulous vintage finds! I paid $150 dollars for this beauty (and a matching one) 21 years ago at a vintage store in Ann Arbor, Michigan. That was such a huge amount of money to me at the time (I was 19 years old), and way before I understood the value of a great investment piece!

Don’t you love how Holly’s collage wall is more than just a fun way to hang art?  I like that the wall chronicles her adventures in life and can only imagine the conversations between her friends that the collage has sparked.  Thank you Holly for sharing!

You can check out other Guest Vignettes, here and here.  Be sure to also check me out on Facebook and Pinterest as well as Twitter.

Don’t forget to enter the Pier 1 Give Away for your chance to win a $50 gift card!

Guest Vignette: Ten June

I have a treat for y’all today.  My friend and fellow Centsational Girl contributor, Michelle of Ten June is here today to participate in my ongoing “Guest Vignette” series where I ask fellow bloggers to photograph and describe a meaningful vignette in their home.  Michelle’s home is warm and cozy – the culmination of her approachable design style and keen eye for easy but high-impact DIY projects.  Today she shares with us a vignette in her Atlanta living room……

Hello hello! The name’s Michelle and I’m the author of the DIY design blog, Ten June. As all of you know, my friend Courtney here is the king of all things “detail”… his vignettes and tablescapes are so inspiring! With that said, I’m excited that he asked me to stop by and share the little details of my favorite vignette from my house.

I’m sharing a space from my living room. Seated next to a wall filled with bright white plantation shutters (that I just repainted!) are two slipper chairs from Target. I love the khaki colored basketweave fabric- it’s the perfect neutral color for the space. In between the chairs is a set of painted nesting tables that I thrifted from Craigslist. These guys were a score for $20! I painted the tables a glossy navy blue, which brings in the bold color that I used to paint my adjacent dining room walls. The nesting tables are topped with my grandmother’s vintage milk glass lamp and some of my favorite design books.

I love this bright space next to the windows- it’s the perfect place to curl up with a good book or to relax and watch some television. I love changing around the books and pillows to switch the look of the area up every once in a while. It’s definitely one of my favorite spots in my home!

I love that Michelle was able to incorporate her Grandmother’s milk glass lamp into her vignette.  It is the perfect foil to modern and linear details in the vignette plus it adds that bit of nostalgia that I believe every house needs to make them a home.  Thank you so much for sharing Michelle!

So do you have a special accessory or furniture in your home that you inherited?  Leave a comment and tell me about it!

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Guest Vignette: Me, You and a Wiener

If you don’t know Bri of Me, You and a Wiener, then my friends you are missing out.  The blog is highly irreverent and highly entertaining  and showcases Bri’s highly awesome design skills.  If you visit for nothing else, go for her hilarious self-drawn cartoons that highlight her various DIY projects, random musings and adventures.

I have come to count on Bri as my dose of reality in the blogosphere.  She never sugar coats and always puts it out there like she sees it which you need at times.  So when I was tinkering with doing a ongoing series of guest posts where I ask other bloggers to photograph and describe a meaningful vignette in their home, I ran it past Bri to gauge her reaction.  Fortunately, she liked the idea; so much so that I convinced her to kick off the series.

Here is Bri’s vignette and her explanation on why she finds it meaningful…..

This is a big ass vignette, that picture in the back of the ocean be San Fran. We took a few trips up there when were still stationed at Beale AFB. I miss Cali a lot so I keep a few pictures around the house that remind me of all the great places  my buddies, Wayne (hubby) and I enjoyed while we were still stationed there.  I’m not one to really have special objects that I treasure (besides my dog tags, because I’m thankful I still have them), what I treasure most are pictures of friends because they serve as good conversation starters when family and friends come to visit. Especially when they are of your best friend who is a dude wearing your weave that you accidentally emailed to the whole base. Bahahahaha

I “heart” Bri’s vignette but absolutely LOVE that the whole vignette was inspired by the small picture on the console table.  Her explanation brings this seating vignette to another level and I can just imagine Bri sitting in the chair, strolling down memory lane right before grabbing the joysticks and kicking your ass in Gears of War 3.

So are you tired of me plugging the Shabby Apple Dress Give Away yet?  You won’t be if you are the lucky winner of an awesome (and free) party dress for the holidays.  Be sure to enter!

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