Tuesday, October 31, 2017

My Fall and Thanksgiving Centerpiece Recipe

Looking for some inspiration? Don't have time for decorating your entire home in a Fall Décor? Well who does?  I have a quick solution for you and if you ONLY do this one thing and you place this one thing in the middle of your dining table, buffet or entrance console you will have your Fall Decor done and in the bag! Then you can get on with life and enjoy the season of Thanksgiving. 

Bay Laurel Leafs are so fragrant and beautiful.
This simple but stunning table decoration will last for an entire month on your table (or where ever you place it) and will surely impress your dinner guests when you are ready to entertain.

Armed with fall produce (from your super market), fallen leaves and branches and a few “already have it” finds, you can easily transform your table into a harvest-inspired haven.  Here's what you'll need....

One Large Plater (like the one you serve turkey on)
Eggplants, Pomegranates, Artichokes, Pumpkins of varied colors and sizes
Nuts (in shells) /Walnuts, Almonds
Bay Laurel Branches

Turkey or Pheasant Feathers

PUT IT TOGETHER: Center the largest of the vegetables on the plater. Pictured here is a large white pumpkin on a white plater. Add the smaller vegetables around it. Insert short small twigs of Bay Laurel in-between the vegetables. Toss in as many nuts as you can.  Layout more Bay Laurel branches on the table and circling the plater. On top of the branches add a few more pumpkins in a random order and add more nuts. The final step is to insert the feathers in and around the entire centerpiece.
DESIGN TIP:  If your tablecloth is dark in color use a white or ivory plater to contrast.  If the tablecloth is light do the opposite, use a dark plater. The idea is to bring texture and contrast. 

Need more inspiration give a look at this post and be inspired!


Thursday, October 26, 2017

How To Decorate with Chintz In Your Home

Chintz is a cotton fabric that can be either a solid color or a beautifully printed floral or stripe. But what makes it desirable is the finish which allows it to be wiped clean. In the 1980’s everyone wanted the English Country look with rooms filled with it. Laura Ashley sold millions of dollars worth of the fabric! But like many good things, its appeal came to an end until now. It’s back and for good reason, its beautiful! 

Photo via Pinterest, Stripped Rooms
 I love the entire composition of this wall...bold beautiful black and white striped walls, the modern black high gloss mirror, the glamorous gold sconces and those stunning chairs!

It's the fabric on the chairs (above)  that defines the chic style of the elegant room! Known as Chintz, it's polished finish makes it a perfect choice for using it on seating. And though it is widely popular in the 80's it's now enjoying a return to home fashions in a huge way! 
Photo via Pinterest Chintz Pillows

 Flowers are not for everyone but who wouldn't like these two pillows on their sofa or bed! 

This is a room in Mt. Vernon, a good example of just how much Chintz fabric was used by our founding fathers!

 Want to add a bit of Chintz to your room? Give us a ring and we'll bring beautiful Chintz samples to your home! 

Call 925.862.9064 or email us at Toni@MarieAntoinetteInteriors.com 


A little history about this beautiful mesmerizing fabric....

"Chintz was originally a woodblock printed, painted or stained calico produced in India from 1600 to 1800 and popular for bed covers, quilts and draperies. Around 1600, Portuguese and Dutch traders were bringing examples of Indian chintz into Europe on a small scale, but during the century English and French merchants began sending large quantities. By 1680 more than a million pieces of chintz were being imported into England per year, and a similar quantity was going to France and the Dutch Republic. These early imports were probably mostly used for curtains, furnishing fabrics, and bed hangings and covers . It has been suggested that wearing them as clothes began when these were replaced and given to maidservants, who made them into dresses, and also that they were first worn as linings.
With imported chintz becoming so popular with Europeans during the late 17th century, French and English mills grew concerned, as they could not make chintz. In 1686 the French declared a ban on all chintz imports. In 1720 England's Parliament enacted a law that forbade "the Use and Warings in Apparel of imported chintz, and also its use or Wear in or about any Bed, Chair, Cushion or other Household furniture"." Read more at Wikipedia

Friday, October 13, 2017

4 Designer Styling Tips That Will Make Your Home Feel Like I’ve Been There

Many decorators and designers have their go-to tips that they use regularly to make homes look beautiful. Well, I am no different, so today I’d like to share my top 4 styling tips that I use time and again for quick results that get noticed. These foolproof ideas can solve many of your design dilemmas in almost any room. Try them, like them, keep them! You’re welcome!

Make the plant large and full and it will always look at home. Via Pinterest
1.    THE CORNER PLANT. Some designers will tell you putting a plant in an empty corner is a huge no-no, suggesting that an empty corner means the room wasn’t correctly arranged or planned out in the first place. But I often find that plants get forgotten when it comes to designing rooms. So I say, if you ever have a free space for a lively green plant, don’t be afraid to use one.
The trick to ensuring that your corner plant looks like an intentional design feature and not simply an accident is to go for something large and leafy enough to hold its own against your other furnishings. For best results, choose a simple but chunky container that’s at least 3 to 4 feet tall, so that the plant visually fills the floor space and wall space.

Books are wonderful for adding height, texture and interest. There is no such thing as too few books. Via Pinterest
 2.    STACK THE BOOKS. Besides being great brain candy, having attractive books on hand gives you the tools to correct endless little decor dilemmas.
Is a vase or sculpture looking too small and wimpy? Sit it on a book or two, and suddenly it’s a precious object on a pedestal. One bedside lamp shorter than the other? Use a few books to add height where needed and achieve a perfect symmetry. Wherever you have an empty shelf, or a ho-hum display that could use a little accessorizing, simply pull out a great oversize book or two, and you’ve got endless options for decorating like a true stylista.

When art is displayed off center or asymmetrically it adds a sense of drama and interest.
3.    HANG ART OFF CENTER. Is that favorite framed keepsake a little too small for the wall? Not when it’s off-center on purpose. Anyone can hang a perfectly sized piece centered over a sofa or bed, but if you have a must-display piece that doesn’t happen to be the right dimensions, try hanging it off to one side and a little low for a quirky asymmetrical look that feels artistic. The same strategy works on a shelf or mantel, or over a table. Just remember: “low and off to one side,” and let that otherwise wimpy piece become a stroke of decorating genius.

The perfect way to add a sense of casualness to a room, just throw one or two of these on the bed, sofa, chair or all three! Via Pinterest
4.    THE THROUGH BLANKET. A gorgeous throw blanket is the decor equivalent of the garnish on an exquisite meal, giving a room a sense of life, casual elegance and a dash of color or texture. I’m an avowed fan of classic white linens, but a throw blanket spread quickly over the foot of the bed in the morning lends an inviting air that you’ll appreciate when you come back at night. Don’t get too fussy with a throw blanket. After all, it’s called a “throw” for a reason. When everything else in the space carries clean lines, a casually tossed throw provides some needed softness. Invest in a high-quality, natural-fiber blanket with rich color and an enticing hand-feel, and you’ll be able to use it in different rooms for years of style.

These are just 4 of my favorites! I have so many more! If you tried them but still are not satisfied with the way your room looks, don’t fret! Contact me and we’ll schedule an appointment and I’ll bring so many more styling techniques that will make a huge difference in the comfort and esthetics of your home.