Not all green food is good for you!

19 Mar

I’m not Irish but I too got caught up in the St. Patrick’s Day festivities.

There is always a coffee break at our quilt guild meetings and last Thursday it was my turn to take some treats.



my photo



The recipe for these cupcakes was actually called “St. Patrick’s Day Cupcakes” and called for a box of pistachio pudding mix to make them green!  Topped with cream cheese icing they were delish (even if I do say so myself).



via Better Homes & Gardens



What would St. Patrick’s Day be without Shamrock cookies?  I was wondering if my cookies  would turn out like the magazine photo…



my photo



My photo was taken after baking and I think they turned out pretty good!  Would use more food coloring next time to get more green but the peppermint flavoring was a big hit.

Recipes available here.


Green food (especially those loaded with sugar!) – makes me smile.

Have a safe and happy weekend.


Friday’s Smile

11 Mar

There you are walking through a home admiring the beautiful graphic wallpaper, gorgeously banded drapery and the ‘to-die-for’  fabric on the chairs and ………. is that a 4 foot pagoda in the corner?????



Andrew Raquet via House Beautiful


I love the idea of adding an item to your décor that is going to stop people in their tracks.

Visual interest.  The unexpected.  Sense of fun.  Whatever you call it ………I’m a huge fan.  It makes me smile.


Simple Changes or Complete Transformations – design simply works.


Flying High with this Aviator-themed Pendant.

10 Mar

Just spotted this unique light fixture at Home Depot(.ca).  Fixture particulars can be found here.

Hampton Bay CP4103SN via

If you have an aspiring aviator in your midst, I think this light pendant would be a perfect room accent.  Pretty hip with its frosted glass, acrylic wings and satin nickel accents – not your usual toddler piece that gets old after a couple of years!  No need to wonder if it will fit in with your color scheme either – bonus!

Next time I’m at Home Depot (love this store) I’m going to see if they have one in stock.  I’m contemplating how this would look in a grown-up’s game’s room?  What do you think?

Simple Changes or Complete Transformations – design simply works.


Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel

9 Mar

via Google Images

During our recent short trip to Edmonton, AB. we drove the scenic route through the Rogers Pass and Banff National Park.  While tootling around the town-site my husband made the discovery that I had never been inside this National Historic Site and immediately drove us over there to rectify the situation.

Although it looks like a castle, it has never really functioned as one.  Built by the Canadian Pacific Railway it has always operated as a hotel.  When Fairmont Hotels & Resorts bought the hotel, they did extensive renovations and corrected a construction mistake made when the  entrance and lobby were located facing the river side. (The architect is said to have declared “you built my hotel backwards!”)

Built in 1887 following the plans of architect, Bruce Price, it was originally a 4 story wooden structure in what has been described as Scottish Baronial Style.

circa 1902 via google images

From 1903 to 1928 there were many wing and tower additions, a couple of fires, wing duplications and the addition of stone cladding from nearby Mount Rundle.


This photo (above) was not dated but appears to be before the 1906 reconstruction.  That’s Mount Rundle in the background.

circa 1929 via

The plans for the central tower is credited to Walter Painter, the chief designer for the Canadian Pacific Railway.     The hotel was winterized in 1968 and has been opened year-round ever since.

my photo

Don’t you just love that stone!

my photo

This is the lobby where I’ll check in next time I visit Banff!

my photo

Sorry for the grainy quality of this photo (just had my pocket digital) but I love, love, love this chair.  The back on this baby is veeery high.

via Google Images

via google images

via Google Images

How about these bedroom interiors for some inspiration for your next reno or refresh project???

I know that a lot of people just jump to the design magazines for decor inspiration (nothing wrong with that!), or stop in at every show home they see (also one of my favorite things to do), but don’t pass-over the opportunity to stop and drool over the interiors (& exteriors) of hotels – historic or not.

via Google Images

Simple Changes or Complete Transformations – design simply works.

High Self-esteem? – Friday’s Smile

4 Mar

I enjoyed watching the t.v. series “Sex in the City” if only to see what outrageous outfits Carrie would appear in!  The two subsequent movies didn’t disappoint either and I watch the first one over and over whenever it appears on my satellite channels.

I’m sure no one is happier than Candace Bushnell who wrote the novel that started it all.  If she was a starving writer before she certainly isn’t now!

I recently ran across an article in House Beautiful where Candace is interviewed regarding the renovation of her New York apartment.  Of course there were fabulous pictures but this one stopped me dead in my tracks.



via House Beautiful


Yes, that wallpaper in the powder-room is Candace’s face repeated over and over, again and again.

What does her husband think (really) ?  What do you think?

Quite frankly I’m flabbergasted……. and it makes me smile.



Lame Name.

3 Mar

So far it’s working name is “Drop” but hopefully this contest will get the creative juices flowing and someone will come up with a better name for this funky looking hook.  Could it be you??



via Normann Copenhagen



Simply go here to read the contest rules and find out how to enter.  Eezy-peezy.   Don’t wait too long though because it seems that if multiple people come up with the same cool idea, the winner will be the one who posted on N.C.’s Facebook page first!

Thank you Dwell magazine for alerting me to this neat new hook design by the Swedish design firm Asshoff Brogard.   This next picture may take a minute to load…..but it’s worth it.



via Asshoff Brogard



Good Luck!

Simple Changes or Complete Transformations – design simply works.


27 Feb

No, not the dreaded calculus or periodic table.  Whew, so glad that kind of “home” work is over with!

I’m talking about the work you do from home.  What does your workspace look like?  Is it working for you?  Did you labor over the planning of your perfect space or did it just evolve over time?

Now that I’m in a new space (again), I’m feeling the need to mull it over this time.  Plotting and planning (picture wringing of hands here) as I unpack and put away.  I have taken over a spare room and as I push furniture pieces around the room I’m realizing I need to paint some pieces and change out some pieces.  Need pretty storage solutions and need a wow factor.


What would  plotting/planning be without inspirational photos???

closet work station via Real Simple Magazine

I need more than a closet but the use of space and color is fantastic!


via house to home

Note to self:  use wallpaper to inject some movement, use photo & magazine boxes to hide “stuff” and maybe think about a fabric project (bulletin boards).



via Real Simple


Aha!  Magnetic boards and rolling carts……………hmmmm.


via Pottery Barn

Eureka!  What a great space!  All that storage (gonna need more file drawers!)   Love how the slanted roof just adds to the cozy feeling.  Oops, I don’t have a slanted ceiling…..guess I’ll keep looking.   All white furniture……..hmmmmm.


via Lonny magazine

via Martha Stewart

via Lonny

via Pottery Barn

The Bedford Project Table from Pottery Barn – this could be part of the solution.  Note to self:  look for pretty area rug.


Do you have a great workspace at home or an inspirational photo that you’re working toward.  Please share!

Simple Changes or Complete Transformations – design simply works!