Maps in Decor

As a departure from traditional artwork, maps can make a wonderful statement in your home. Depending on your interests, you can use nautical maps, street maps or vintage schoolhouse maps to adorn your walls. Their beautiful topography can inspire the entire color scheme for your room as shown below.

Feature them in their entirety as a wonderful conversation piece!

Decoupage them to the walls to create a sense of texture.

Or use a graphic map inspired tile in your shower!

You can cut the map up using a grid system and frame them out as shown below.

If you are big travelers, do what this couple did and put up a world map and put a pin in for each spot you visit (one color for him and another for her)!

Living on the coast, I have used nautical maps in decor on many occasions: to cover a large bulletin board in a playroom, to cover books in a beach house and to decoupage onto an old dresser top for a little boy's bedroom. Nautical maps are for sale at coastal sporting goods stores and vintage maps can be found on eBay and in antique stores and flea markets. Do you have any creative ideas for using maps in decor?

~Images: 1) Traditional Home 2) Elle Decor 3) Domino May 2007 4) Domino December 2005 5) Pottery Barn 6) Courtesy of Little Green Notebook Blog 7) Unknown 8)Keller Donovan 9) Domino March 2009


Hunting & Fishing

Well, my version of hunting and fishing that is...combing junk stores, flea markets and antique malls! I wanted to share with you some of my recent finds from my hunting trips but I need to start by apologizing for the quality of these photos. (I desperately need a nice camera! It makes all the difference.) Hopefully I will have more after photos ASAP. I usually intend for these things to go to clients but they often end up residing with...you guessed it...moi!

Tobacco basket with a Lake City, SC label. I will probably hang it on a wall as a piece of art, much like the photo below...

And an iron gate I found in Savannah, Ga that I hope to back with an aged mirror. How fabulous, right?

An old farm spool that my carpenter is turning into one or two tables.

The Chinoiserie style dresser will be repaired, lacquered and finished off with new hardware. Love the Bentwood stool! Here it is in a room setting...

Some discounted fabric remnants that were too good to pass up...fabulous ikat print...aqua mohair....and this pink David Hicks print by Ashley Hicks is so much fun!

Great chevron trim remnants (perfect for pillows), cool shaped coral button and some fun vintage mother-of-pearl square buttons!

This Henredon parson's style table was a steal at $5 and will look great painted out but for now it lives here in on my landing....

(p.s. the "o" is actually a zero from the old Roper Hospital sign and p.p.s. the wonderful shrimp boat watercolor was created by my very talented father!)

I love the detail on the legs!

These old iron pieces have a great shape!

Before: Console

After: Console

~Images: Domino April 2007 and Kay Douglas' Florida Beach Home


For the Constant Gardener (or the Non-Gardener Like Me)

I know I am not the first blogger to cover this topic but I was sourcing a garden stool today for a client (to use as a shaving bench in her shower) so they were on my mind. An interior design trend for the past few years has been to use these stools as side tables, nightstands or extra seating in a pinch. It is always nice to break up massive amounts of wood furniture by having another material like ceramic to add some interest. Likewise for adding a shape other than square or rectangular furniture.

I love layering them in front of other tables like this...

Garden stools as side tables, coffee tables and nightstands...

I also like to layer them under a console table like this...

My favorite source for ceramic stools is Emissary (available to the trade only). Their varied collection is what put this company on the map back around 1989 . If you like anything you see, email me at sidney@eclectic-idg.com for a price. Or you can get your own knock-off version for cheap via any of the companies below, many of which are having end of summer sales. Beware however that most versions are heavy as all get out!

~Images: 1) styleathome.com 2) Designer Mary McDonald 3) Designer Jennifer Marsico Domino April 2007 4) House Beautiful Oct 2009 5) Domino Dec/Jan 2009 6) Domino April 2008 7) Coastal Living May 2009 8) Ashley Whitaker courtesy of Little Green Notebook


Movies & Design

I am a huge, huge, huge movie buff. I love movies for the entertainment factor, obviously, but I also love them for the entire creative process that envelopes them. If you think about all that goes into the production of a movie from screenplay adaptation to casting to location scouting to set design to wardrobe creation to trailer development, I would love to do all of it! My dad has always teased me that The Oscars are like my version of The Superbowl.

As you can image, I have always dreamed about doing set design. While working at a retail shop in Charleston, I met a production assistant for the film The Notebook. I bombarded that poor woman with so many questions that I ran her out of the store! Before she left she was nice enough to invite me to watch them film a block away on Pitt Street. One of the coolest experiences of my life! [Should I not admit that?] It was fun to see how they transformed our quaint little Mt. Pleasant village into a 1940's storefront.

Anyway, there are certainly some iconic films when it comes to set design: Somethings Gotta Give, The Holiday and Father of the Bride are the films that my clients mention most often. All of which, were created by famed director Nancy Meyers who is a god when it comes to depicting stunning dream homes that are undeniably timeless. Learn more about this talented director in this article via Silver Screen Surroundings blog (great source!) or here on imdb.com.

Can you guess which photo is from which movie?
Answers: 1) Somethings Gotta Give 2-4) The Holiday 5) Father of the Bride 6) Somethings Gotta Give

I cannot talk about movies without mentioning a few of my obsessions. Hitchcock and Dorris Day films, both of which I discovered in high school and both of which require their own entire post so I will refrain from getting started. However, I also grew up watching James Bond movies with my dad and my brother and although I enjoyed the plot; over-the-top bad guys, high-tech gadgets, and kitschy one-liners, I especially loved watching the films. The Bond series spans over five decades (and counting) so each film captures the trends of the times in regards to fashion, furnishings, architecture and technology.

Dr. No (1962)

Moonraker (1979)

Casino Royale (2006)

Have a movie you love for the set design? Let me know!

~Images: Courtesy of Silver Screen Surroundings Blog, Urban Grace Blog and hotflick.net


Pillow Talk

"Oh and by the way, I threw away all your little throw pillows. Yea. Cuz throw pillows suck. They serve no purpose. They're purely decorative." -Reuben Feffer

I once had a client tell me that she didn't want the new bedding in her master suite to be too "Along Came Polly"....meaning full of unnecessary pillows. I literally laughed out loud. And I totally agreed with her. Even as as designer, I understand that no one wants to spend "two years of their life putting on and taking off pillows." So my question to you is...how do you like to dress your bed?

With your pillows layered?

With your pillows stacked?

With only your sleeping pillows and shams?

With one large decorative pillow?

With a couple of decorative pillows?

With a bolster?

With round decorative pillows?

With euro shams only?

Or with a mix of euro shams and decorative pillows?

However you like to dress your bed, stuffed animals past the age of 10 is...not...ok.

I am sorry but no rebuttals are allowed on this issue.

~Image: 1) Courtesy of allmoviephoto.com 2) Elle Decor 3) House Beautiful Feb 2004 4) Unknow 5) Dream Bedrooms 6) Coastal Living May 2009 7) Southern Accents 8) Decor Mag 9 and 10) Southern Accents 11) Unknown