Friday, April 30, 2010

Friday flowers

Good morning!

I have to clear something up, which is actually a bit embarrassing! I received the Happy101 Award from Frances from the gorgeous blog Beautiful Interiors And 18th Century Style! I had mixed up her first name with Anita from the blog Castles, Crowns And Cottages! So please just in case you've got confused....
So go on over and check those gorgeous blogs out, you will not be disappointed!
I am sorry for the mix up!

Yesterday was such a blustery day! Sunny, but oh - so stormy, it reminded me at times being at the shore of an wild ocean!
But inside it was just gorgeous to watch! Having some windows open, I loved the breeze!

First picks from the garden! Lilacs and azaleas and some lavender (from a potted plant)!

Have a sunny weekend!

Love ~ Victoria

Thursday, April 29, 2010

My Thursday almanac

This spring is all about colors! I am so in love with great contrasts, happy tones and smiling rooms!


And here is as promised my Happy 101 Award list! Your blogs make me happy!

Belgian Pearls
Ahhh La La
Living It At Home
Life In Graz
The Zhush
Fashion And Other Fancies
The Neo-Traditionalist
My Notting Hill
Little French Nest

I admire your happy creativity and colorful imagination!
Please list 10 things that make you happy! If you want award 10 others or do as you like, it's an award after all, not a chore!

Have a wonderful Thursday!


Pictures as indicated, via InStyle mag., dresses via Anthropologie, (bedroom Donna Griffith picture as well)Amy Butler room (fabrics), book bundle via Wisteria, others my own.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Being appreciated

Being appreciated is one of the feelings which makes people very happy! And it is something I remind myself often to let others know as well. My children, my husband, my friends. And how much I appreciate all the gifts of life!
It is a reward for things we do for others. In the best cases we work for ourselves and others! Being appreciated for who we are is most wonderful and sometimes appreciation comes unexpected, like the "Happy 101 Award" I just received from Frances over at the darling blog Beautiful Interiors and 18th Century Style!

I feel appreciated and writing this blog becomes more then a personal fancy.
Thank you Frances! Your blog is so enchanting and filled with something more then beautiful interiors: Wisdom and a warm heart! It makes me so happy coming from you!

This image is from Anita's blog Beautiful Interiors and 18th Century Style header...

10 things that make me happy?

1) My family: the kids and my husband make me happy.

2) My friends old and new!

3) Sitting at a beach and listening to the sounds around me.

4) Travelling - everywhere to discover history, art, architecture, nature, people.

5) Playing piano and listening to classical music. No restrictions apart from 12
tone music...

6) Creating something beautiful every day - my interiors, my artwork,
my home, my family life.

7) A day filled with sunshine and warmth, inside and out.

8) Reading a great book in which I can immerse myself completely.

9) Writing: my blog, letters, my notebooks.

10) Having time to myself once in a while!

This list is compromised because there is so much more which I would like to squeeze into these 10 points, but I do not want to bore you! I realize many of those things I share with others. And this is also the beauty of it. There are so many similar things, we all appreciate and things that make all of us happy!
Being surrounded by you all is one of them!

10 new blogs for the "Happy 101 Award" will be selected tomorrow!


Pictures as indicated, my own and google image Beach, woman reading.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Design project 2009- 2010

This project began innocent enough. A friend of mine and former client ask me to help with the move of her parents household from a 5-bedroom house they had lived in for 50 years into a new appartement.

Facade of the old house

Help to prepare to downsize and make the new place comfortable and easy to live in.
This was in February 2009.
We began with a view of the existing house, then the new apartment - a two bedroom condo near their daughter and with a to-do list in order we could get started.

Images of the old home

I began by selecting pieces I thought suitable for the new home, we worked out a plan to sell, sort and discard. I went on a treasure hunt in their basement and found many thing worth taking to the new location. It took many hours of clearing and packing and finally they moved in June 2009. Before that we gutted the apartment, located in a well kept building from the sixties with walking distance to shops and train.
The project kept growing: After some consideration they added the complete renovation of the two existing bathrooms, painted the place, put in wall-to-wall carpet, by requirement of the management.

The future home...

While renovating...

Simultaneously we selected window decorations and track loads of new furniture, while keeping an eye on existing pieces, artwork and decorative items which had been collected by the client over a life time!
I wanted to give them an updated style, without estranging them from their pieces, they had loved for many years. Almost everything holds memories, a story or history!
They have a lovely collection of original artwork, many paintings we had to find wall space for without overwhelming the much smaller space.
There were some road blocks along the way. Fabrics we had ordered came back not available anymore, a sofa ordered in March was delivered with the wrong fabric in October and arrived finally in March 2010!
We had curtains made, inches shorter then needed...well, let's say the fair share of difficulty given the size of the project.
I love how we found our way to connect and to listen to each others ideas. How eventually the husband said, lets do as Victoria says... after viewing 100 coffee tables and not coming to a decision...Yeah! Victory with the coffee table. Compromises and adjustments along the way and here is the result!

Entering through a small entrance you reach the vestibule, a pleasant space to arrive at home. Chair, side table, bench and chest are new. Floor lamp existed as did all the art work. I found this gorgeous mirror in the basement! Ceiling fixture from the old house, a transformed gas light...

View from the entrance area into the living room. Master bedroom and bathroom to the left.

In the living room we brought the side tables, mirror, all table lamps, the wonderful wing chair, which got new lovely upholstery from the old house. The two peach colored armchairs came straight from their as well! No need to do anything, I had found the small lyra table in the basement, had it restored and voila, makes a lovely conversation area next to the new - new (!) sofa, separating the seating area from the door to the balcony and the writing desk at the window. The coffee table and side board are new.

The peach colored arm chairs were the beginning of the color scheme...we took our clues from there, matched the green velvet of the sofa, the cushions and the upholstery fabric on the wing chair. The curtains in living room and adjacent dining area are similar in color but different in pattern. The side chair as well a found one in the home, the desk came, lamp and all the accessoires.

View towards the den.

Looking into the dining area.

The dining set and side board are new, the chandelier came from one of the home owners former bedrooms, we found these lovely wall sconces and I thought they were a perfect fit next to the amazing oil painting from the 19th century.

The darkest room in the new appartement is the den, we made it cozy with blue gray walls and a fun floor covering. A lively pattern lifts up the space. The recliner, sofa bed and floor lamp are new, everything else came from the former den. This room perhaps is still the closest to my client's former house, almost similar in size and layout.

Glimps into her bathroom. Our strongest budget consideration went into these two bathrooms. We wanted clean fresh lines without breaking the bank.

We discussed lengthly the pros and cons of a second bathtub in his bathroom and in the end decided on a new walk in shower.

We have thought of every detail in the new space, we considered many options and the result is a warm, comfortable appartement, were my clients feel at home, surrounded by many of their lovely collections and some practical and new things, which they grew to love quickly!

Thank you for your patience dear reader, this project had me occupied for a long time and I loved working on every aspect! Now we all are very happy with the results.

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