BAR None

I’ve always wanted to have a permanent place to set up a bar in my home, but I never had enough space to quite justify it. Until now! I visualized something small, nothing grandiose or that would require construction. The bar cart is the perfect solution. Portable, easy to manage and just enough space to house the necessities.

I love the blue top of this cart and the contrast of colors.

I love the blue top of this cart and the contrast of colors.

This simple set up works beautifully alongside a collection of carefully  curated artwork.

This simple set up works beautifully alongside a collection of carefully curated artwork.

For those who prefer to keep their bar under wraps when not in use, an armoire is a great alternative to a cart.

For those who prefer to keep their bar under wraps when not in use, an armoire is a great alternative to a cart.

I love the bright hues of this cart and its playful use of storage for paddles and ping pong balls.

I love the bright hues of this cart and its playful use of storage for paddles and ping pong balls.

To get started I stocked up on just the basics. Gin, whiskey, vodka, tequila, cointreau and mixers.

To get started I stocked up on just the basics. Gin, whiskey, vodka, tequila, cointreau and mixers.

The Little Pink Book of Cocktails, a trusted advisor.  http://www.amazon.com/Little-Pink-Cocktails-Madeline-Teachett/dp/1604331216

The Little Pink Book of Cocktails, a trusted advisor.
http://www.amazon.com/Little-Pink-Cocktails-Madeline-Teachett/dp/1604331216

Once home to a dentist's tools of the trade, our cart is now chock full of pain relievers. Found at Dora

Once home to a dentist’s tools of the trade, our cart is now chock full of pain relievers. Found at Dora

I have a thing for puppets. These little guys would make the perfect party favors for young and old alike!

I have a thing for puppets. These little guys would make the perfect party favors for young and old alike!

 

Jeffery the whale was purchased at Brown in Houston.  He cheerfully pops the tops off when called on.

Jeffery the whale was purchased at Brown in Houston. He cheerfully pops the tops off when called on.

I used several sizes of trays to corral like items and decorative objects.

I used several sizes of trays to corral like items and decorative objects.

A cutting board serves a dual purpose–keeping spirits in line.

 

We positioned our cart right outside the kitchen and next to the den. That's all for now, happy hour calls!
We positioned our cart right outside the kitchen and next to the den. That’s all for now, happy hour calls!

A Small Master

The farmhouse has two bedrooms.  One is much larger, brighter, closer to the one toilet in the house, and has taller ceilings.  This doesn’t matter much to the 5′ tall resident, but to the one that is well over 6′, you’d think it would.  We opted for the other bedroom.  With slanted pine ceilings and a pine floor, it reminds me of small bed and breakfasts I slept in while traveling in Austria and Switzerland in high school.

I am always attracted to smaller spaces.  I actually have fantasized about living in Bilbo’s hobbit hole.  I was a bit surprised, though, about Jim’s desire to make it his bedroom.  He likes room for his long legs.  For him, it was the view of the mountains and the sound of the acequia running.  Once the decision was made, my mind started to plan.  I knew it would be fairly easy to fill.  Here are a few pics…

 

small master

small master

pillows from Anthropologie

pillows from Anthropologie

elk antler from Arroyo Seco Mercantile

elk antler from Arroyo Seco Mercantile

collection of favorites on my bedside table

collection of favorites on my bedside table

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Year’s Eve in Hamburg, Germany

I’m not one for hitting the bars on New Year’s eve, but this being our first New Year’s living in Europe, we decided to travel to Hamburg to celebrate 2014. Only a 45-minute flight from Copenhagen, Hamburg is a beautiful city with a rich history. The city is divided into several neighborhoods (Eimsbuttel, St. George, Mitte West, Eppendorf/Harvesthude, HafenCity, Schanze, Mitte East and Altona/St. Paul)  and is just the right size to spend a long weekend exploring.

IMG_1108The Rathaus, a stunning example of Neo-Renaissance architecture, is home to the city’s government offices.

The bar inside the Rathaus.  The perfect spotto enjoy a cocktail after a long day of sightseeing.

The bar inside the Rathaus. The perfect spot to enjoy a cocktail after a long day of sightseeing.

Get your dog on!  It would be a sin not to try one of these mouth-watering sausages during your stay!

Get your dog on! It would be a sin not to try one of these mouth-watering sausages during your stay!

Mitte West Hamburg neighborhood. Home to high-end shops Binnenalster lake and some of the city's best markets.

Mitte West Hamburg neighborhood. Home to high-end shops Binnenalster lake and some of the city’s best markets.

Train station in Mitte West.

Train station in Mitte West.

The Flakturn VI.  Commissioned by the Third Reich during WWII, it served as a shelter for more than 18,000 people during the air raids. The 3.5 meter thick walls were considered impenetrable. Today it's home to recording studios and is also a live music venue.

The Flakturn VI. Commissioned by the Third Reich during WWII, it served as a shelter for more than 18,000 people during the air raids. The 3.5 meter thick walls were considered impenetrable. Today it’s home to recording studios and is also a live music venue.

Side Hotel Lobby.  Located in the Mitte West area of Hamburg, the Side Hotel is the perfect home base to see the city. The glass atrium and ight installation was designed by Jan Stormer architects.

Side Hotel Lobby. Located in the Mitte West area of Hamburg, the Side Hotel is the perfect home base to see the city. The glass atrium and light installation were designed by Jan Stormer architects.

Mutterland, a packaging freak's dream!

Mutterland, a packaging freak’s dream!

Confection Heaven.  The large neon pink pig drew me into this shop along Hamburg's trendy shopping district.  Launched by designer and restauranteur Jan Schawe, Mutterland is home to all things made in Germany. Sweets, coffee, tea, fine liquors and cleverly packaged chocolates make this shop a must see.

Confection Heaven. The large neon pink pig drew me into this shop along Hamburg’s trendy shopping district. Launched by designer and restauranteur Jan Schawe, Mutterland is home to all things made in Germany. Sweets, coffee, tea, fine liquors and cleverly packaged chocolates make this shop a must see.

Bootshaus, a lively bar/restaurant along HavenCity's waterfront.

Bootshaus, a lively bar/restaurant along HafenCity’s waterfront.

HafenCity is Hamburg's most recent redevelopment project. The mixed-use development combines residential and commercial spaces in what was once abandoned warehouses lining the waterfront.

HafenCity is Hamburg’s most recent redevelopment project. The mixed-use development combines residential and commercial spaces in what was once abandoned warehouses lining the waterfront.

 

Cafe Paris offers a perfect view of the Rathaus. A popular spot with locals and tourists alike.

Cafe Paris offers a perfect view of the Rathaus. A popular spot with locals and tourists alike.

One of Hamburgs many canals within the City Center.

One of Hamburgs many canals within the City Center.

 

Styling with Winter Whites

In keeping with my new minimalist design aesthetic, I chose a palate of white, silver and grey for my holiday colors. Editing was a big issue since I’m transitioning from my familiar cozy cottage look into something more modern, simple and clean.

I love wreaths made with unusual materials like this sheet music one I found on Etsy.

I love wreaths made with unusual materials like this sheet music one I found on Etsy.

Candles are always lit during the dark winter months in Denmark. I keep them handy in jars and baskets.

Candles are always lit during the dark winter months in Denmark. I keep them handy in jars and baskets.

A wire dome cradles sheet music and rolled wrapping paper.

A wire dome cradles sheet music and rolled wrapping paper.

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Glass bookcase found at Uncommon Objects in Austin, Texas.

Glass bookcase found at Uncommon Objects in Austin, Texas.

Living Room Window Display

Vintage silver ornaments make a simple and classic display. Ornaments from Fil de Fer Antiques in Copenhagen.

Vintage silver ornaments make a simple and classic display. Ornaments from Fil de Fer Antiques in Copenhagen.

A white cactus thrives in the window alongside old books and candles.

A white cactus thrives in the window alongside old books and candles.

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Bedroom Window Display

Cacti arranged in gray and silver pots compliment a jar of old photographs and books.

Cacti arranged in gray and silver pots complement a jar of old photographs and books.

An attractive and easy way to store old photos.

An attractive and easy way to store old photos.

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Bedroom Entry

The vintage disco ball reflects the morning light at our bedbroom entry. The little mermiad, was purchased at a junk shop on 19th Street in the Houston Heights.

The vintage disco ball reflects the morning light in our bedbroom. The little mermiad was purchased at a junk shop on 19th Street in the Houston Heights.

I have a thing for mermaids. The real Little Mermaid is just a kilometer from our apartment.

I have a thing for mermaids. The real Little Mermaid is just a kilometer from our apartment.

19th Street Pop-Up Shop

Hello!  I feel like a slacker because I haven’t posted anything lately.  It’s mainly because I have been swamped with my tiny “store” in the 19th Street Pop-Up Shop.  Originally I began with my own jewelry line but then I thought it would be fun to add artists from New Mexico that I have met this year.  If you are still needing to do Christmas shopping, please come by!  We are located next to Retropolis on 19th St in the historic Heights.  I’d hurry, though!  Half of what I brought back at Thanksgiving has been sold!

 

my space at the 19th Street Pop-Up shop

my space at the 19th Street Pop-Up shop

 

Petit Mouton — my own jewelry line that is inspired by the American Southwest — its unique history, its physical beauty, and the spirit of its inhabitants, both past and present

Petit Mouton

Petit Mouton

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cote de Chamisal — Marie Twarogowski’s wonderful handmade soaps and her delightful felted animals

one of Marie's burros

one of Marie’s burros

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Becca Porter — I first purchased one of Becca’s dolls at my favorite toy store, Twirl in Taos, last year.  She also makes a wonderful fishing game and precious ornaments, a mini version of her dolls.

Becca's hand-stitched felt dolls

Becca’s hand-stitched felt dolls

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marcia McEachron – wire sculptures inspired by Calder.  They make the most amazing shadows, too!  Check out Marcia’s website to see her amazing public art projects.

Marcia's wire sculptures

Marcia’s wire sculptures

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Embudo Fabric Design — Joan McDonald has been designing and painting fabric since 1975, and silk-screening potholders since 1992…

Raven

Raven

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I hope you will swing by to see these creations in person.  They are all very special, as are the people who make them! And, sadly the 19th Street Pop-Up Shop will be gone after the holidays.  However, I am very excited to announce that after many months of patiently waiting, I have been given a spot at Heights Antiques on Yale beginning January, 2014.  I will continue to sell the work of these wonderful artists, along with my finds to and from Llano.

Speaking of LLano, here is a pic of the farm this Thanksgiving.  Sigh.

 

farmhouse this past Thanksgiving

farmhouse this past Thanksgiving

The Reading Nook–Swan Design Elements for Zone 1

To kick off my first project, I decided to tackle Zone 1, which is the first room after the entry and the smallest living space in the apartment.

Room Dimensions:
13.5 feet (4.11 meters) x 10 (3.048 meters)

Space Challenges:
Low inverted ceiling
Radiator to hide
Space opens to kitchen and main living room

Design Goal:
Create a relaxed and playful reading/conversation area

Colors:
Oranges, pinks, browns, yellow, pale blue and charcoal gray

Textures:
Wood, leather, metal, laminate wool and cotton

The Assembly Line–Product Lineup

Paulo mendes chair, purchased at Bodie and Fou, London

Paulo Mendes chair, purchased at Bodie and Fou, London

 

To round out the nook, we opted for a simple sofa that can be converted to a bed for extra guests.

To round out the nook, we opted for a simple sofa that can be converted to a bed for extra guests.

It’s all about the Little Things!  Yesterday: A vintage potato chip stand.  Today: A fun way to display family photos, ephemera and artwork.

The parrot is from Rockett St. George--www.rockettstgeorge.co.uk/‎, The number 5 was purchased at Kuhl-Linscomb in Houston and the vintage mask was a flea market find.

The parrot is from Rockett St. George–www.rockettstgeorge.co.uk/‎, The number 5 was purchased at Kuhl-Linscomb in Houston and the vintage mask was a flea market find.

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I found these vintage metal signs at the Round Top Antiques festival last spring.

I love rusty, old signs. This 1962 Texas license piece will add a quirky note to the space.

I love rusty, old signs. This 1962 Texas license plate will add a quirky note to the space.

Ice Queen Crown / handmade via etsy. I have this little gem wrapped around a long vase filled with old photographs.

Fun painting I found at Installation's Antiques in Houston.

Fun painting I found at Installation’s Antiques in Houston.

 

This little guy is a perfect fit on my day sofa. Handcrafted by Donna Wilson, a Scottish designer residing in London. www.donnawilson.com
This little guy is a perfect fit on my day sofa. Handcrafted by Donna Wilson, a Scottish designer residing in London. www.donnawilson.com
The Acapulco chair--a classic!

The Acapulco chair–a classic!

Finding the right size/shap coffee table for this space was a challenge. This Danish piece works perfectly! Found at Illum Bolighus in Copenhagen.

Finding the right size/shape coffee table for this space was a challenge. This Danish piece works perfectly! Found at Illum Bolighus in Copenhagen.

Hand woven rug from Bolivia. Hand woven rug from Bolivia.

Reading Nook Reveal

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The finished space. Ready for a good book!

The finished space. Ready for a good book!

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