For the love of French Country Design.

For all the lovers of French country and all things Vintage.

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Naughty Forties….

 

So my bestie got a running start to the infamous “Naughty Forties”. With Mine only a few months away, I wanted to look back on this event and not only admire my handy work but a friendship that will hopefully see us into our Fabulous fifties, sexy sixties and beyond. Chantal is what you would consider a outrageously lavish and OTT kinda girl, nothing is ever in half measures and if this is how I would describe her personality her birthday party would be nothing less than magical with a little too much!

Theme: Burlesque

Dress: Sexy and stylish

Colours: Black, gold and cream with loads of style and glamour

The stage was set in her beautiful french style garden, a simple layout of cafe’ style tables and lounge area lite by soft candle light set the stage for a beautiful evening.

The stunning desert and cake table had peoples jaws on the floor. A cute vintage style swing was made up for photo booth opportunities.

I also tried my hand at a cheese cake – cake..it came out so beautiful and if I am to admit, I am a total cheeseaholic! I think this just might be the cake for my upcoming party.

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I think the party will be one to beat, we has the best evening and my beautiful friend dress by me …. of course looked fabulous! happy birthday my Biestie, thank you for all the love and friendship over the years. Cheers to you sexy lady!

Woodland’s baby shower

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You know life can be crazy sometime, but sometimes life can give you unexpected opportunities to let your inner child out and just play.

My neighbor whom is now a very good friend of mine, often asked me to style her parties. This one was particularly fun as the party was held in honor of her sister’s first baby.

The theme WOODLAND’S seems to be all the rage now…but it was sooooo much fun.

Check out the hand made mushrooms and all the detail with moss and raw wooden boards and of course the cutie little animals.

Delicious eats were presented on one center table and a stunner of a cake took center stage.

 

Boy’s to Men

As a mother it is never easy to make the transition from baby to child to pre-teen and oh dear I say it adult! One of my latest styling jobs had my most fun yet.

The client:

A mother of two growing boys.

She wanted to surprise her boys with their new room.

Key words:

  • A place for them to study
  • organization
  • they need to grow into the room
  • functional but must look appealing
  • A place to keep all her boys books (they have loads)
  • industrial look with elements of vintage

The room had been outdated with old baby furniture that had long since past it’s expiry date.

A custom industrial wall shelve and double desk combo was installed into the room, new head bards, linen, curtains and for a pop of colour some stunning duck egg blue industrial style chairs and bed throws.

I find the industrial look can be quiet cold, so adding elements of vintage pieces with the old books and suit cases along side vintage inspired maps brings the look together.

Don’t you just love the glass cloche/spider …so cool! Now the boys have room that can inspire and grow with them…

A French Country Christmas

 

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My absolute favorite time of year! Decorating our home over Christmas allows me an opportunity to bring out the “bling”. I am closeted “bling” girl. As much as I love the soft tones and patinas in old vintage pieces as secret side of me is always shouting for something a little more dramatic.

Out come the tree and on goes the french Christmas carols…Its a beautiful big tree, faux of course. I love unpacking the boxes and finding all my treasures that I have grown so fond of. Each ornament has a story to tell and one works so beautifully next to the other all in shades of cream, gold and sliver.

Since our reno we are able to hang up our Christmas stockings and of course there is a story to tell with these. Years ago when Nuno and I first got married, I saw these beautiful stocking in white(of course). I bought one for Nuno and I and and I bought an extra two…for our kids that we would have…very special as for the last few years we have been so blessed to fill them up for our precious babies.

The tree is hung with these darling ornaments and some very special pieces from around the world Barcelona, Paris, London, Bruge to name a few. The latest edition is this sweet little bird in in a nest from out trip to Franshhoek Western Cape.

This year I commissioned a beautiful hand made chicken wire house from our local wire subculture. He did such a wonderful job. Now it sits centerpiece on our table flanked by two moss covered reindeer just to finish the festive look.

Now onto planning our Christmas table…

 

Fix it with Flair

In June of this year, I finally plucked up the courage to enter our kitchen reno into one of SA design DIY magazines #Tuis/home #fixit. I have been buying the magazine for years and always admired the reno’s that were featured. In fact it was many of them that peaked my interest in adding bricked up units and concrete counter tops.

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Much to my surprise there we were, Top 10 and Then top 5. The top 5 contestants all found our selves at a beautiful wine estate in Paarl, Western Cape #lebac…What an amazing treat…I was totally blown away by the fact that not only was our hard work recognized but we got a wonderful break from our crazy city life and got utterly spoilt!

We arrived at the venue on the Friday afternoon around 1pm and quickly ran into our interview. There was a panel of 5 judges, the editor of the #tuis/home #fixit magazine, a DIY guru, design editor and the MD of #buco #timbercity (DIY specialty store) the sponsor for the event. The interview was super chilled and I think Nuno and I had a great time reminiscing about all the ups and downs we experience during that time.

After that we had some free time so we wondered around the venue and had a quick nap before we all meet for an informal pizza and wine dinner. We got to met all the contestants and judges. It was the perfect setting to get to know everyone and I think we made some good friends along the way.

The next morning was the Gala event held in honor of the #fititwithflair2017 #fixit #tuis/home. There was stunning table decor, diy demos and interview where we all stood up and faced some hilarious quotes from our interview…I am now officially know as a scavenger…Thanks to my lovely husband…Yes I am a sucker for a great bargain!

The gin tasting was the highlight out of all the demo’s …surprised I was not called the gin queen after that!

As the day drew to a close and all the interviews and entertainment subsided, it was time to announce the winners…

Nuno and I landed ourselves in 2nd Place and we could not have been happier!

The winners Jaques Muller and Justin Duckit…So well deserved! These guys  poured their heart and souls into their home and we wish them all the best for the future.

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Thank you again to #Tuis/Home Magazine and #Buco for such and incredible journey and one Nuno and I will cherish!

 

Romancing the home…

For me there is nothing better than to go outside to my garden a pick a bunch of beautiful roses and other seasonal flowers to place on the night stand, coffee station or kitchen counter tops.

I love a showy garden but sometimes I feel that to leave these beauties there for just a fleeting glance seems some what unfair to them.

Last year I tried my hands at Dahlia’s and boy was I surprised…They simply are stunning and bountiful. They truly are a great cut flower, due to their growing habits the more you pick the more you get.

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I love the mix of roses and sweet peas, to me this made one of the most striking arrangements I have made. I find the tendrils of the sweet pea quiet whimsy.

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Bulbs also tend to make a beautiful cut flower, Tuber roses are not only beautiful but fill the room with soft fragrance similar to the well known and well loved magnolia.

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As a small child I would go out into the garden and pick the last rose in the garden to put next to my bedside table (much to my fathers dismay). My little Luna has picked up on the habit and is forever picking flowers and bringing them into the home. I often remember the look on my dad’s face when I see my prized rose not in a plastic cup…but one look at little Luna’s face and I melt.

Here are some posies I created for my bedside table. I love going to bed at night and the sweet fragrance from my fresh cut flowers gently take me to sweet slumber.

Here are some tips I use to keep my flowers lasting:

  • cut early morning or late in the evening – never in the heat of day
  • have a bucket of water ready to place your cuttings in
  • add a teaspoon of bleach into your water
  • remove all leaves that will be in contact with water as these decay and pollute the water.
  • replace water daily to keep your flowers fresher for longer.
  • Enjoy their beauty.

happy cutting…

 

The potting shed

 

 

The idea of a potting shed came to me when I felt my love for my garden took on a life of it’s own.

I had a garden shed at the bottom of the garden, straticially placed near the pool and next to my rose garden.

It was previously used as a garden shed, no doors and full of mess. An interim idea was to create a pool house for the kids to change and house all the swimming pool paraphernalia.

Now that my garden hobby has turned into somewhat of a garden obsession! I want to turn it into a beautiful french inspired potting shed,

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Some fabric inspiration for the curtains, I want to make this place a feminine space. Somewhere I can just be me and do what I love best.

This is the before…. stay tuned to see the after…

before

Alfresco luncheon

A simple lunch with the neighbors I told my husband…lol it certainly took on a life of its own… Knowing myself…of course it was not going to be a simple lunch!

I set off to decide on a menu, colour scheme and I knew from the get go it would be centered around our pergola and we will be dinning Alfresco!

Beautiful french ticking napkins, white hydrangeas from my garden and a simple wreath from an olive tree. I picked lemons from the veggie patch and lay a simple but elegant table setting. The perfect occasion to add a bit of bling…out came the crystal glasses.

My guest were welcomed by some wonderful award winning wine #Bonnievale” crisp and absolutely yummy!

A charioteer platter served under the grape vine pergola. Gave all my guest a chance to chat and mingle before lunch was served.

lunch followed the alfresco Italian theme, home made Chicken Parmesan. My very own recipe…

it was so delicious and totally took my guest by surprise at how fancy the meal looked.

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now on to the best part of any dinner party … Desert!

simple and delicious Vanilla Pannacotta with Berry coolie.

Bar raised, what on earth will I do for next years Neighbors lunch?????

I will post all the recipes for this menu in my next post…

Under the stars

Just an ordinary week night and a bottle of stunning  wine from a beautiful wine farm in the Cape #Babylonstoren. (We will be visiting the farm on our trip to the cape in November) with #fixitwithflair2017.

In true South African style we decided on a Braai. (for those who are not from SA – better known as a Barbecue)

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Nuno and I built the pergola/braai area as our first Reno and  after not knowing what to plant over the pergola I finally decided on Bougainvillea white and pink. The boganvilla has had 3 years now to start canopying over the pergola, I think a decision well made…I sat back and enjoyed the fruits of our labor as the fairy light and bougainvillea gave us such a performance.

What could be better than good food, good wine and some sparkle!

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https://www.babylonstoren.com/

 

 

4 little bunnies

They have arrived! The most stunning little bunnies I have ever seen and they fit perfectly into my garden.

The kids had a ball helping me put them in the garden and they each choose the one that represented them. Super cute moment.

It is going to take a few years for the Buxus to grow into shape, but I am sure I am going to have fun working them in the forms. Now just to find the right companion plant to sit around their feet…

Check out my little helper Luna…