Friday, September 23, 2011

The Kloster House #2

  I’m excited about sharing with you part two of the Kloster home. For those of you who missed it, you can view part one go here. I’m sure you’ll find this post to be equally as inspiring. This time I'd like to share a few of the rooms that I missed on my last post as well as her special backyard oasis.

Follow me . .  . Let’s do this thing . . . :-)

Christy’s formal dining room is located at the back end of the home. The open French doors lead you in from outside. As you pass under this arbor cascading with Star Jasmine and dainty white roses,   look closely,  and you may can catch a glimpse of her vintage crystal chandelier. Every time you turn a corner,  there’s something new to see in this lovley home.


Once inside the charming dining room to the left is a large carved gold leaf mirror,  below the mirror, a wonderful garage sale find that she styled with three handy storage baskets. She mixed two different types of antique chairs with slipcovers for a unique look. Her elegant tablecloth is circa 1930’s. 


Her spacious master bedroom is loaded with a vintage antique collection.  She used a pair of chests at each side of the bed   (we love the extra storage and added visual height) as opposed to bedside tables typically much lower to the bedside. 


Christy says, “everything is worth saving.” She appreciates the special charm in recycling and reusing vintage pieces.  I heart this vintage settee,  I swoon over it’s curved back and carved wood details.


For added panache the doorway draped with soft linen invites you into the spa-like bathroom.


The  mosquito netting above the soaking tub and new hardware add a certain elegance.


Outside, a spectacular backyard with . . .  yep . . . .  you guessed it more antiques. :-)


Every nook and crannie in her home is made for nesting.  By using a wrought iron daybed, she created a cozy entertaining area for her friends and  family. She hangs a vintage chandelier from a tree branch.

For even more panache a wrinkled burlap table runner cascades to the floor. A darling black metal fireplace is perfect for those cooler So-Cal nights.


Deeply colored petunias are displayed in a beautiful split terra cotta planter,  that wraps around a tiered rack’s center post.


In So-Cal we embrace the outdoors at this time of the year,  September/October.  We’ll have many more warm outdoor days ahead into November. This beautifully outdoor styled daybed is as creative as ever,  perfect for an afternoon snooze.


Soft gold and floral pillows look excellent against the green landscape.

Do you happen to know anyone with a bed in there backyard ??? lol


Photography courtesy of Jennifer Grey of The Old Painted Cottage.

Do you have a vision of how you would like your home to look?

Do you need help putting it in motion?

For design inquires email


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

DECORATIVE pumpkins with velvet

As each September day passes it starts to feel more and more like fall. I just love the feeling in the air of the seasons changing. Here’s a sneak peak at my fall decor. I created a quick fall display with these handmade velvet pumpkins! They are crafted out of vintage velvets,  flea market finds. These vintage inspired pumpkins have become quite the blogging buzz.  It seems as though everywhere you turn someone is posting about it, they have become so popular you can even purchase them at Bloomingdales.

I just love the rich colorful fall colors . . .


I filled my pumpkins with mostly rice (for a nice weighty feel) and a little batting. Remember to save your pumpkin stems for next year,  I was able to snag a few at our local pumpkin patch. But these babies are hard to find,  my favorite is the rich green color stem!!!! My heart be still . . .


I made a few of my pumpkins kind of squatty, so they would look similar to the fresh fairytale pumpkins I love so much! 


Have you started your decorative fall juices flowing yet???


My dear friend and blogger extraordinar Jennifer has been featured in Better Homes and Gardens CHRISTMAS IDEAS. She  put together this amazing Christmas decor. I was really caught off guard when she selected my Etsy shop (Bella Inspirations) to be featured along with her special magazine feature. I am honored to be featured along with some incredibly talented artists, thank you Jennifer!!!


Tried and True Texture . . .

My hand woven ribbon and matelasse fabric tree skirts are stenciled “Oh Holy Night the stars are brightly shining.”

tree skirt

Do you have a vision of how you would like your home to look?

Do you need help putting it in motion?

For design inquires email


Monday, September 5, 2011

Head Turning Kitchen

Hi y’all  I know it’s been awhile,  so let’s get caught up . . .

My good friends, John and Rebecca,  have resided in their dazzling hillside So Cal home since 1994.  They were kind enough to allow us front row seats for their spectacular kitchen reno. 

This photo is their original 1967 kitchen in all it’s glory.

Before . . .


Rebecca spiffed up their original  kitchen twelve years ago.  She painted all the cabinets Beach Basket White and replaced the hardware,  giving her kitchen a clean and fresh look,  but it was still her dream to someday have a complete kitchen makeover.

After first reno . .


Approx. one year ago,

She decided it was time to say buh-bye!

After some hardcore demolition the room was completely gutted.

(The exposed framed wall seen below is the same wall seen in the two above images.)


So began the designing process . . .

There was some structural work to attend to first. Which would include, raising the ceilings and closing up the wall to the far right,  while opening up wall w/ proposed new sink.


 Proposed new kitchen plan


and here’s what they eventually came up with . . .

I was inspired instantly by this dramatic kitchen and knew I had to write about it. Rebecca brilliantly selected all of the rich design elements in her new inviting kitchen. She resourcefully shopped and not a detail has been spared!

Shall we . . .


Dark Chocolate cabinetry contrasted by rich polished Carrera marble. The magnificent stainless industrial style six burner range is a gas stovetop and electric oven. The range was a second,  that she snagged. She had a few scratches removed and saved a big chunk $$.   I just love the continuous line of the cabinets all the way up to the ceiling. I’m such a sucker for crown molding.


Her previous kitchen had two small ceiling light fixtures original to the home. Now she has a plethora of recessed lights, under counter lighting and two charming drop pendants. She even had a new stainless trim made to enclose the microwave oven,  nice touch!

Beautiful paneled doors on the new family friendly built-in refrigerator,  flanked by two bright and sunny windows. Rebecca is quite handy with a sewing machine (among many of  her talents), and  whipped up the stripped silk valances in just a weekend! More on the valances later.


The kitchen now has two sinks. Remember back in the days when the washer and dryer were in the kitchen,  well this 1967 kitchen had just that.  When they removed the washer and dryer, they were left with instant plumbing for a second sink, and opted to keep the existing sink for a prep sink. The raised countertop above the sink houses three convenient bar stools,  perfect for entertaining.   She swiped her stainless dishwasher from her old kitchen before the reno.

The striking vein cut porcelain floor tile repeats the veining pattern in the Carrera marble,  ingenuously placed on the diagonal. We’re talking class!!!

New Sink



Existing sink becomes a prep sink, for fresh cut hydrangeas from her garden.


Custom built-in silverware drawer . . .


I added some accessories to the countertops: I grouped together these lovely candlesticks. The backsplash is Carrera basket weave, both timeless and elegant.



The Carrera stone countertop runs the entire length in both directions for a seamless corner. . . expert craftsmanship. Seen below in this back corner.


Between snapping photos we munched on homemade lemon scones. They were Delish!


I helped out with a few designer tricks. I advised Rebecca to hang the window treatments to the ceiling.  Seen below, you are looking at the backside of the window treatment. To create this look,  use 1”x 2” lumber with the fabric stapled on,  and “ L” brackets to attach the valance. For a more finished look,  you could first staple a smaller fabric piece to cover the exposed board.


Before . . .


After . . .


Photography courtesy of Jennifer Grey of The Old Painted Cottage.

A dream realized . . .

A huge thank you to Rebecca for sharing this story of their renovation. 



Source List

Paint: Pours Stone-Dunn Edwards

Refrigerator: Warehouse Discount Center                                      $3,000

Range: DCS Range, mfrd by Fisher Paykel Company                  $6,047

Backsplash tile: (eBay) Carrera basket weave                              $286

Island and Counters: polished Carrera stone                                major dollars

Cabinets: Modern Chocolate, flat                                                    $9,000

Cabinets:  installation                                                                            $1,000

Light pendants:  (Home Depot)                                                         $114

Glass/ installation in cabinets                                                              $225

Floor tile: Vein Cut Porcelain                                                                $622

Window treatments: Jo-Ann Fabrics                                                $80

Pantry door: ( Home Depot) special order door w/reeded glass

Sink faucets:


For design inquiries,  write to Laurie at