Some Like it Hot

My grandfather was a huge proponent of designing structures around the desert instead of redesigning the desert to accommodate his structures. As a result, the landscape’s colors and textures greatly influenced his décor, and apparently, mine. Believe me, I used to hate the desert. The dirt, the sweat, the coyotes, yada yada. But in my old age I've really come to appreciate its beauty and continuously find myself inspired by the things I used to take for granted. Who knew? Viva la desert!

P.S. Someone remind me of this post in two months when my face is melting off and I’m using my knees to drive because the steering wheel of my car is 2,000 degrees.


Weekly Whiteout

(photo styled by Lo Bjurulf, image via Emmas Design Blog)

This photo brings my pantry and its dreadfully packaged contents to shame. Bad pantry.


Table Dance - Yep, I'm Doin' One

In lieu of an inspiration board today, I thought I'd post a shot of the dining table we settled on. And then I figured you needed some context, hence, the other two shots. Now, for the disclaimers...our sofa. Eeee gad. It's VERY comfortable, but boy is it ugly. We're in the process of finding a more, ahem, stylish replacement but in the mean time, please be kind, dear friends. Also, the letter “M” on my mantel. I realize this trend is pretty played out, but I kind of love its color and texture in juxtaposition with the other items up there. And lastly, we live in a condo. While someday I hope to inhabit a gorgeous mid-century modern ranch home where my furniture feels completely at home, we love our little condo and do what we can with the space we have. Done and done. Now that that's out of the way, let me introduce you to the newest additions to the family.

As you know, after I came upon the Wegner chairs a new dining table was in order. We searched high and low for one that truly fit our space and well, West Elm’s 2x2 just won out in the end. It’s gorgeous in person, so much so in fact, that I’m currently having a very intimate affair with it. My husband doesn’t even mind. The Eames for Herman Miller fiberglass chair was a Craigslist purchase, and let me tell you, one of my better decisions. The seller had two so I nabbed its taupe counterpart as well. What can I say; I couldn’t break up the team, right?? It’s currently living in my office and getting to know my white Parsons desk. (Mmmm, lacquer.) Annnnnd, just when I thought I was spent after the two chairs, I saw the Paul McCobb Planner Group coffee table from across the room. It made eyes at me as did its side table sidekick, and well, you know where this is going. Sigh. Truly though, you cannot believe the condition all these pieces are in. The seller found them at an estate sale and it’s as if they’ve never been used. Glory be to the Craigslist Gods…

Okay, yawn, I’m sure you’re sick of me talking, er, writing, whatever. Just wanted to thank you for your help in choosing a table, and show you the final result! I promise to keep you posted on the sofa. The horror.


Frugal Fridays - Teak it Down a Notch

I know we all struggle with Ikea. Most days we equate its furnishings with college dorms, Craigslist, and our first apartments. (Ahem, studios.) But, truth be told, I LOVE me some Ikea. Just when I think I've graduated to higher-end design sources, the clean lines, simple design and low prices suck me right back in. And today's post illustrates why. The set may not be "grown-up" and it may not be teak, but I'd still rock it. That's right Ikea haters, no shame in my game!

P.S. Just think, with the money I'd save not giving in to Restoration Hardware's advances, I can still get my teak fix...during my first-class, five-star, 14-day trip to Thailand. Thank you.


Patio Approved

When my friends and I try to decide where to head for happy hour, my only requirement is that the location be patio approved. (Pool + shade + bar cart = automatic PA.) If MY patio came equipped with the items in this board, every hour would be happy. And possibly not sober. I’m just sayin’.

(photograph by Alicia Bock via Etsy, beach towel from Missoni Home via Unica Home, hammered acrylic drinkware and barrow bar cart from West Elm, tuuci exuma cabana at Design Within Reach, image via Apartment Therapy )


Beach it in the Backyard

I always say, if you can’t get to the beach, bring the beach to you. Okay, this isn’t exactly true, as I don’t think I’ve really ever said this before, but believe me I’ve thought it. The swimming pool, ANY pool, becomes your own private beach when you live in a place where 115 degrees is considered the average summer temperature. Besides, I wouldn’t dare rock these gorgeous sandals in the company of sand. Yeah, take that, beach.

(image via Truffle Girls, praia piquinia by christian chaize via 20x200, seaside tote from J.Crew, nail polish from Chanel, imogen sandals by Kate Spade, igloo chair at CB2)


P.S. Speaking of Beaches and Patios...

Don't miss the COCOCOZY giveaway and your chance to win a Jonathan Adler Capri Bottle Lamp! Ahhhh, blue and white. Check please.


Weekly Whiteout

(image via Manutti Furniture)

Mmmmm, yes please.


Decked Out

What’s functional, stylish and awesome all over? A great patio, that’s what.

In celebration of absolutely amazing weather here in good ol' AZ, I’ll be focusing on decks, patios and all things outdoor, all week long. I know you’re excited!

(red hot egg bird feeder from J Schatz, image via Fresh Home, I Love Your Style: How To Define And Refine Your Personal Style by amanda brooks via Anthropologie, thelermont hupton's off the wall mini flowerpot from A+R Store, format tray and ceylon pitcher from CB2)


Frugal Fridays - Babytastic

I love a beautifully designed nursery. What I don't love is how ridiculously expensive the furniture can be. I know people who have spent nearly a thousand dollars on a crib. Seriously, a thousand dollars?? That's just crazy talk in my book. Yet, I don't want to sacrifice style either. Hmmm, where to look. Brace's Walmart. Sans the less than chic bedding on the crib above, their Baby Mod crib and dresser have my name written all over them. Or rather, my baby's name. Not that I'm pregnant. Whatever, you get it.

(baby mod parklane 3-in-1 convertible crib and 3-drawer changer from Walmart, oeuf classic crib and 4-drawer dresser from Modern Nursery)


Stylish, Your Table is Ready

Friends, today I am in need of your help. A couple weeks ago, I found a SMOKIN' deal on four Wegner Wishbone chairs for my dining room. This purchase sent me into a tizzy and caused me to sell my existing set faster than you can say, well, fast. Unfortunately, I didn't really think it all through considering I now have four chairs...and zero tables. What are your thoughts on the four I've chosen for today's board? I have my favorites, but I'm keeping quiet until I hear from you! Mmmmm, Wishbone chairs. Delicious.

(wegner wishbone dining chair from Room and Board, 2x2 dining table from West Elm, odyssey dining table from CB2, parsons dining table from West Elm, teepee dining table from CB2)


Weekly Whiteout

(image styled by Susanne Swegen via emmas designblogg)
As a collector of items falling under both the "white" and "chair" categories, I feel pretty confident claiming this one as brilliant. As are the pillow, lamp, clutch and overall styling of this shot. Yep, I'm sure of it.


Bowled Over

Lately, this bowl has been haunting my dreams. Vampires, ghosts and serial killers don’t keep me up at night, but home décor? Yep, that’ll do it. You see, while I’d usually describe myself as a good, well-behaved consumer, I do occasionally find myself drawn to the dark side. In this case, it’s the intoxicating blend of pale, Swedish colors and shiny, gold interior that beguile me. “What’s so dark about that?” you ask? The $645 price tag, that’s what. Sigh. It’s not easy being good.

Stop staring at me, bowl.

(superordinate 6 antler chandelier by Jason Miller at Matter Matters, silk taffeta ribbon stripe drapery from Restoration Hardware, jackson sofa with chaise from Room and Board, grid bowl from Elements, smart coffee table from CB2, armchair 402 at Hive Modern)


Frugal Fridays - Ikatching

I’m all for a little ikat, but I’m also for making my mortgage. Luckily, Urban affords me both. Sweet victory.

(dexter chair from Company C, slipper chair from Urban Outfitters)


Who’s Ready for a Little Nookie?

I am, I am! Whether it be in the kitchen, under the stairs, or in the bedroom, there really is nothing better than a little nook. (What’d you think I meant?) I love how when done right, built-ins like this can transform a space into a quaint yet chic hideaway. I’m also dying for this chair. The lines are reminiscent of those old-school papason chairs, but the supple leather and stylish details thankfully keep it from being, well, a papasan chair. Because let’s be real, the only time that chair was acceptable was in our college boyfriend’s dorm…right next to the futon.

(image from Rum Magazine via DecoFabulous on Flickr, luxor wardrobe by Bloomingdales, lights up! woody at Design Public, luna chair by Copenhagen Living, persimmon vases from Jayson Home & Garden, artist's tenet rug at Anthropologie)


Weekly Whiteout

(images via Skona Hem)
Normally, I only post one photo per Weekly Whiteout, but I'm willing to make exceptions if various circumstances arise. These circumstances include but are not limited to: bribes of cold hard cash, children with dimples who beg me, a personal request from Brad Pitt (That's right, he's still on my list.), and stumbling upon glorious white abodes I would likely commit crimes to inhabit. Welcome to the stage, circumstance No. 4.
P.S. Remember this post? It's the bedroom in this very home. As if it couldn't get any better?? Overachievers.


Work it. Own it. Love it.

Scrubbing the kitchen floor aside, I try not to do anything half-assed. I mean, if I’m going to wash my car on the outside, I may as well vacuum the interior right? And, if I’m attempting to cook my husband dinner, there’s no way it’s going to be something I’ve already made and put in the “success” bucket. Nope, if I’m doin’ it, I’m REALLY goin’ for it (lucky husband). This is kind of how I felt when I saw this room on Apartment Therapy. Anyone can throw up some pink paint and deem their tastes feminine, but this? This takes it to a whole other level. A level even Elle Woods would respect.

(image from Apartment Therapy, cleaned lined sofa from Pieces, silver leaf wire pendant from Pieces, artwork by Dallas Shaw via Haute Design, crystal cocktail shaker with swirl martini glasses at Linley, Hermes enamel bracelet)


Frugal Fridays - Ruffles at the Ready

With spring around the corner, I'm finding myself drawn to all things light and airy. Clearly, ruffles are an obvious choice. A quick search revealed this adorable shower curtain from Horchow...for $212. Rigggght. If I were even considering spending more than $100 on something like this, my first stop would be Anthropologie. But, as with most other rational people I know, I am NOT. What I am instead considering is getting my hands on Target's cheaper, albeit it equally as adorable doppelganger. And to think my mom used to tell me being fun AND cheap wasn’t ladylike.


Crazy Train to Colortown

I come from a long line of pale Swedes. I’m talkin’ the smattering-of- misplaced-freckles- sunburned-despite-45-SPF-face-flush-like-a-tomato-when-I take-the-stairs-at-work kind of pale. This being the case, you’d think I’d be obsessed with things like lipstick and colorful home décor. Not so much. I’m a chapstick and white lacquer kind of gal as you well know by now. However, I have a feeling that colorful shelves like these might add a refreshing dose of excitement to my life. Either that, or send me into a tailspin of crazy similar to Jack Nicholson’s character in The Shining. Hmmm, tough call.

(colorful bookshelves via Colour Lovers, bella pencil cups at See Jane Work, large square pillow “Park” pattern by Lena Corwin, henley floor pillows from Crate and Barrel, terra console table from West Elm, "why you should buy art" by William Powhida via 20x200)


Weekly Whiteout

(image via Sweet Paul)

Category: Things that should be in Erika's home.

Survey says: white flowers of varying heights, perfectly-picked fruit, and that dish. Oh, that glorious dish.


Cheap Thrills

It’s no surprise I love the thrill of the hunt. Scouring Craigslist, eBay or Last Chance for the great fashion/furniture/accessory find of the year is a favorite pastime of mine. HSN, however, is not a place I frequent for such finds. Note to self…it should be. I’ve mentioned Nate Berkus’ great line for them before, but that’s when I thought it couldn’t get any better. (Seriously, $29.95 for a decent pillow is pretty reasonable.) And then? Dun, dun, dun, those pillows went on clearance. For $7.95 and $5.00. News of this magnitude is dangerous ground for me. Usually my heart starts racing, palms begin to sweat, and before I know it, I’ve purchased 50 pillows in each color because the price is just too good to pass up. This time, however, I’m reigning in my crazy and passing the deal on to you. Because let’s be honest, everyone deserves to save a little coin these days, and nobody likes a perfectly good guest room turned harem. Unless of course, you’re into that kind of stuff, in which case might I also suggest this pillow

( tree of life bowl by Waylande Gregory via Elements, geo side table from West Elm, trellis wallpaper from Ballard Designs, ice chandelier via ABC Home, Nate Berkus™ pieced tie navy and breen boudoir pillow, and navy and white square pillow from HSN, seabury sofa from Pottery Barn)

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