from {vignette} to {outfit}

Last week I posted this dreamy outfit.  I soon realized after posting that I knew why I gravitated so much to the fashion ensemble.  It  reminds me so much of my vanity vignette.  All the same elements are there, slightly modern, a little vintage, and subtle girly.  Yes that is me alright.

Vanity project posted here.

from {Grey} to {Plaid}

I am finally getting to post this project.  I made a roman shade using Jenny’s tutorial.  I would recommend this method if you are working under a tight budget or decorating a rental.  It’s an inexpensive but temporary solution to window treatments.

I love the new plaid shade.  A lot more youthful and fun don’t you think?

Gotta run now.

See you next week!

xo

The Tale of my Crib

This post took a little while to write, and I warn that it  is a long one.

I found out that I was pregnant in the middle of my fourth year Architecture semester.  The prior year was absolutely grueling.  I believe 90% of the remaining class pulled all-nighters every other night of the week.  But fourth year was supposed to be the easiest year, with work intensifying again in fifth year.  This did not calm my nerves about my unplanned pregnancy.  But as most women do, the announcement that I would be having a girl replaced my anxiety with excitement.  I had always dreamed of having a baby girl, and I immediately bonded.

Quickly, I was overcome with an urge to nest.  Everything I thought about revolved her nursery, with the crib being at the top of the list.  I have learned that it is in my nature to always want something different and what could be more different from a circular crib?  I found a diy instruction package on eBay  that claimed it was, “…easy-foolproof instructions.”  It was perfect for me, being that i had mediocre carpentry skills.

I walked into our school woodshop, with instructions in hand, and walked up to the woodshop manager, Tommy Joe.  He was of asian descent with a thick Texan accent and a stern face.  Tommy Joe had been a master carpenter who had run his own business at one point but had given it up in his later years to retire in the school system.  I softly whispered and extended my hand, “Hi, I am Dulce and was wondering if you could help me make this crib.”

He examined my printed tutorial thoroughly and finally said, “Yes I can, but the instructions are not correct, we can make it better.  We can start tomorrow, after studio, every day for 2 hours each day.  We should complete the project in two months.”

 Faster than I could respond a ‘thank you’, he walked away, leaving my faulty instructions on his desk.

Week One, Day one-5 months pregnant:

Tommy Joe had made a list of supplies that included crib hardware, raw lumber, and plywood.  He said raw lumber would be the most economical way to build a ‘heirloom crib.’

“Heirloom?” I asked a bit puzzled.  “I was thinking I may want to sell after the baby grows up…”

“Oh no, Dulchi, you are going to love this crib.  You will never rid of it,” he said sipping on a diet Dr. Pepper.

Later I went to a local lumber yard and selected walnut lumber that came in logs.  My $400 receipt that came from my student loans made it official.  I was committed to building the crib for my little one in my growing belly.

Week two-5.2 month pregnant:

Smells are quite strong when you are pregnant.  I began to familiarize myself with the smell of burning dust that came from the industrial Sander, the sweet aroma of Tommy Joe’s Dr. Peppers, and the strong odor of his chew tobacco.

The kind man oriented me through the shop.  I learned how to use machines like a table saw, drill press, hack saw, planer, lathe, etc.  First task on the list was to cut down strips to make the curbed rails that would be glued into place by a ‘jig’ that Tommy Joe had made the night before.  I cut the timber into strips and then hand planed them  shaving off excess wood with a machine that worked like a manual pencil sharpener.

This process would take weeks.  It became a usual sight to see me walk into studio covered in finely shaved walnut from head to toe.  But it was fun to get to know Tommy Joe, he was an interesting man.  He was an architecture major while young, but his father became ill and he dropped out to take care of his family.  He never married.  Came close to it once but she changed her mind and it broke his heart.  He was close to retirement age when I met him, and he talked a lot about his regret of never having children to pass down his skills.  Hiding behind a stern voice and demeanor, was a very sweet man, I soon began to understand.

Week 9, 6.2 months pregnant:

Weeks passed that turned to months.   My life at this point consisted of: Classes. Studio. Shop. Work at home. Sleep. Start over.  Work load in my studio was somewhat reasonable as rumored.  Even so I had to work until 2:00 am at times. It is the sleepless grind of an architect.  When I first stepped foot in the shop, my belly was barely there.  Soon it was in the way and made it hard to work around. My feet looked like I was baking bread inside my shoes, swollen and fat from retaining fluids. This was the most awful and painful part.  But I had a deadline to meet and that was priority.

Week 12, 7 months Pregnant:

I asked Tommy Joe, “what happened  to 2 months?” No response…

The deadline that seemed like it would never come was given an official date by my doctor who scheduled me for an induction.  Close friends and my then boyfriend helped on final pieces. But still, Tommy Joe and I were working on the ball finials of the crib up until the very last-minute.  I left the woodshop at midnight and was scheduled to start labor at 6am.  My feet could not be happier.

To cut a long story short, I had my baby girl and now she is six.  Six years later, it’s up again, used by her little brother.  I am so happy that both my children got their use out of my handmade crib. It was a real labor of love, true in every sence of the word.  Sometimes I wonder if either of my kids will really appreciate the crib.  I wrote about this here.

Whatever the case is, when they want to be smart teenagers, instead of using the cliche “I walked 50 miles in snow tale”…I have a better story.  I mean I did work on this an estimated 150 hours while preggers.  I wonder how that compares to La Petite Maison?

And if you are reading this Tommy Joe, a huge thank you!  I could not have done this without you-xoxo.


Oh my Chandie

I have been on the lookout for a faux bamboo, pagoda style chandelier for some time.  I have stalked Craigslist, eBay, and estate sales with no luck.  If you are not familiar with this style of light fixtures, here are some gorgeous examples:


{All chandies via}{via Lonny}
{via House Beautiful}{via House Beautiful}

These beauties go for 500+ dollars on eBay.  That is insane and totally out of my budget. This weekend, I hit the jackpot and here is my uber-lucky inexpensive find:



It is huge, measuring 31″ in diameter!  The man who sold it to me told me that it belonged to his late mother.  The great lady had a decorator pick it out for her house in the early 70’s.  She took it with her from house to house and loved it so.  How sweet to know that someone treasured it as much as I will.
But now, I have a new dilemma.  It s huge, as I stated before.
Should I:
a. Hoard it until I purchase a home with a larger dining space or…
b. Use it its large glory and break proportion/scale rules and use it in my small dining space?  Rules are made to be broken, right!?
Decisions, decisions….
I will keep you posted.
*****
So what do you think?  A or B?  What would you do?

Martyn Lawrence Bullard: International Designer of the Year

…well that was last year.

Nonetheless, i just got news that the most flamboyant character of Million Dollar Decorators, will be speaking in Houston.  I am just dying to hear him say, “Daawling…”  I wonder if he is as colorful in person as he is on TV.

So if you are in the industry and would like to come, sign up, space is limited.  I will be sitting front row, with camera in hand…I know, I am such a dork.

See more here.

Playing with my Etagere

If you didn’t know any better, that kinda sounds naughty, huh?

After  coveting a gold etagere for what seemed like forever, I finally have one.  I am still working on the styling.  I would like to add vertical placed books with brass bookends and find a taller piece of sculpture to replace the Domino Book of Decorating on a stand.  But overall, I love the way that I can collect things and display them on this with the piece still looking light and non-cluttered.  Plus it fills an entire wall which can be costly to fill with art.


Oh and it is still super gloomy over here. It poured on the birthday party this past weekend. It turned out better than I thought and I got to spend time with some people who I don’t see enough. Good times.

Rain, Rain, GO AWAY!

Sigh.  I planned on having a wonderful outdoor birthday party.  The forecast says 80% chance of rain….ugh!  I hate to replan things and resort to plan B.  But what can you do?

Anyway, here is a tiny peak into my little one’s birthday.  The invitation is meant to look like a bandana- which you’ll see more at the actual birthday.  These were wonderful to make.  I have to say invitations are my favorite thing to make graphically.  They definitely set the tone of the party.

Gotta run now, more crafting to do.

xoxo

me

If I were an Outfit

I would be this:

{via}

I rarely talk about fashion.  Since having kids, I have stopped caring so much.  But I am trying to get back to my former self.

This palette screams me-neutral nude tones along side a subtle leopard print with touches of blush and accented by gold stripes.

Lovely.

My bedroom has this same subtle romance thing going on and I love how understated it feels.

*****

More light posting for this week. I am crafting up a storm getting ready for my baby’s party.  Hope to share some pictures next week.

xoxo

Me.

Little Man Birthday

I planned on sharing some little man birthday pictures early in the week, but time escaped me.

He’s ONE!  And in other big news, we have a walker!  Yay!

My little man is growing up.  Such a bittersweet feeling.

*****

Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday dear….

Rue: Wendy Shwartz

Have you read the new Rue?  It is probably no coincidence that the spaces that most spoke to me were those designed for children.  I am in midst of planing my son’s first birthday while simultaneously working on finishing touches of his room.  Crazy month.

Little being spaces are my favorite.  You can push concepts a little more than in adult spaces.I love balloon shades in children’s rooms.  So much so, I do.  I must learn how to make some soon.

{All pics via Rue}

The littered toys here make me feel so much better about messy kids rooms.  I have to admit that I can be a little mommy dearest when it comes to toys all over the floor.  Kidding-just a little.

Have you checked out the new Rue?  What are you faves?