Thursday, October 31, 2013

" To bed, to bed said sleepyhead..."

Wow. A busy and long day...Linda and I left the store at 12:06 am...we both ache all over from lifting, climbing, toting, bending and's been a long 5 days. Every morning it's a bit harder to arise and each night our beds seem more inviting.

I did not take a single photo all day...what?!! Well, I did Instagram the time on my car clock as we were pulling in the driveway...

Today was this first day I felt a small light at the end of the tunnel. We had a great productive night with help from Ann and Lisa. Tomorrow should be the turning point towards completion. Ahhhhh.

Photos tomorrow I promise.

Goodnight. I'm headed for dreamland. Dreams of sugarplums, no doubt.

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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Santas and soup

My darling friend and former staff florist, Shannon, brought a crock pot of delicious soup for the staff today. It was a welcomed lunch break and gave us the energy to complete another days work towards the completed Christmas setup.

Linda dressed several windows with snowflakes and mercury glass ornaments while I worked with Ann to complete the organic section by the stunning tree Linda did last night.

Santas, nests, moss spheres, lanterns, trees, banners and garlands, many with a burlap common factor. Garlands were hung, more mantles dressed and box after box was broken down for recycling. Quite the day. Somehow, after three days of the late late shift, I'm rethinking the excitement of decorating my own home...we'll see.

Glitter jingle bells...oversized, in a beautiful bowl. Tie these in a wreath and listen for rave reviews.

Linda tied these beautiful real reserved moss wreaths on each side of the entry mantle. Simply beautiful.

I decked this mantle with my extra large pine cones housed in these large lanterns. A few ornaments and half a bag of snow later and they are the centerpiece for this design. Books, giant sugar cones, mossy spheres and a realistic giant pine garland later,voila!

Ann, working on the organic table, putting the finishing touches on the birdhouse. Expect the unexpected! So cool,

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A little long tray gets Fred's log cuts added in with a good sprinkling of artificial snow...and a few mini ornaments from Whitehurst, And all is well.

Now with the clock reading 1:14, I'm ready to refuel for another day tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Organic Christmas!

One of our trees this year has an organic theme! I love it...Linda tolerates it and showed great support to design the tree...I tried to take a photograph of it but it didn't interpret well...if you like the organic craze with burlap and lace, buttons and natural themes, we've got the cutest mix ever!

Day three proved to be a long day with plenty of interruptions (three print ad copies due today, each a different design.)1 Sneelock met me at the store to photograph multiple settings all put together yesterday with the ads in mind. They all turned out great and the final okay was given to Fred just a wee bit before midnight.

Linda worked on the organic tree most of the day between interruptions. I detailed another mantle, prepared for a big delivery tomorrow by clearing the path from bins, boxes, ornament piles and large baskets.

Here is a little peek at some of our creations today;

The front room window always creates a place for drama. One of my lushest garlands graces the mantle dressed with beautiful mercury glass vases filled with holiday green and succulents mixed together. Three center medium sized votives take center stage. I have a bit to do to complete this area but like the look so far.

Ann worked on the front window table using orange and white themed items. I have some one of the prettiest assortments of interesting glass this year than I have ever had. I hope you stop by to see!

These ceramic deer head/busts were a hit last year. Add your own branches for antlers...large or small. There is a wall mount too! I have one in my family room all year round. So cool.

Here you have a shot of Linda's organic tree. It was so fun to buy for, and there was a huge variety to choose from. Burlap, birds, nests, pine ones, deer, an owl or two, and paper document ornaments...each one more of a favorite than the one before. You will be inspired by the variety and ideas of how to use them.

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Just a little corner of the organic tree...I love it!

Birch and pine ones...

Nests of all varietys !

We made our list of must dos tomorrow and headed for home. Garlands, more tabletop creations, the French display cabinet and window sills Re all on the list for Tuesday. My cute painter came in tonight after I left to paint a dramatic accent wall for me! Who doesn't love a painter who paints for you T midnight to make a quick change. I'll always share his name with you if you ask!

I'm ready to turn out out the lights and have dreams of sugarplums for tomorrow's creations!

Come see the magic!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Haul Out the Holly

Whew! The second day of formal Christmas setup over. We got a lot done today...two trees completed by Linda and helpers while I detailed two mantles, several large tables and moved a gray deal of furniture and rugs with the help of Sneelock.

My joints ache.

But, at the end of the day, we checked off many major things off our list and are ready to tackle several more tomorrow!
Here are a few of the things we did today...

Ugh. It's 12:15 am and the photos from my phone have not many cute things to show and several funny ones! The only one to upload is the one of my new moto boots with seasonal glitter covering them...oh. Dear.

Here is a shot of what we will tackle tomorrow...the organic tree. You will love it. ( I keep telling Linda she will too...there isn't much glitter on that's not her personal favorite!

Here late my boots...sorry, not the best light. But take my word for it, they are a mess of glitter!

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There is la lot to do the next few days. We are hoping to make time to get to the grocery store for essentials ( like lunch!).

Hopefully the remaining photos will upload while I slip into a deep slumber and I can catch you up tomorrow night.

Good night. My eyes are closing.......

Sunday, October 27, 2013

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

At least that's what I always think before the 14 hour days start for 7 days of Christmas setup.

When I look around my store, I think it is the impossible task to complete this transformation within the week. I'm so thankful and happy that my dear friend and creative helper, Linda, is here this year. I blogged last year that she was absent due to breast cancer treatment. We have spent this time together for as long as I can recall, back to my first little Yardley store on Stony Hill Rd. I'm thrilled and filled with gratitude to have her back this year.
Her support and encouragement, sense of humor, wit ,and common sense make for a very productive and entertaining week.

We spent the day sorting, unpacking, moving, planning, reviewing and creating...long into the night. As we left the store, looked around at the day's accomplishments and counted the days left to complete the setup, we couldn't help but fret a bit about how much there is to do. Four trees designed to make one sigh...every mantle dressed, garlands hung, lanterns filled, wreaths dressed and tables packed with glittering branches ,snow and ornament filled glass vessels. If we hadn't done this year after year, we would think it the impossible task.

I spent much of the day putting disclaimers on the appearance of the store to all who entered...and this is why;

Box after box of glittering ornaments and branches...'s really overwhelming.

Another room awaits the magic touch...

It goes on and on...

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...and on.

I had a great team today with my staff members to help...Jackie, Kelly, Lisa, Brian, Patty- each one digging in to meet the design deadline. So, we're on our way to the 2013 Christmas Season at Black-eyed Susan. With a wing and a prayer ( and 6 more 14 hour days, we hope to complete the transformation within the coming week.

I'll try to keep you posted with some enticing g photos...come see the magic.

Monday, October 21, 2013

High Point Market 2013 Day 4

We had another day of style sightings and fresh inspirations.

Each of us experienced tender feet but pressed on in stylish shoes...we had multiple comments almost hourly regarding the orange rolling briefcases...wish I had a secret stash to sell.

I have noticed that there is an abundance of fabulous ottomans and I thought I would share some of my favorites with you. Look for color, shape, pattern, size and form....every one more darling than the next! Ottomans can be used as small benches, extra seating, foot resting or simply a stylish accent. It seems to be a key ingredient in today's current room. Pick your favorite and give me a call!

Kilm covered ottoman in front of bench...

I love this ottoman used in conjunction with two corner chairs to make an interesting conversation stylishly thought out.

Color, pattern and shape!

(Another view, ignore the sun factor),

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Color and texture + unique shape. Use as small benches for extra seating.

Cutest ever pink! Naturally, Linda spotted this one.

Stripes make this interesting, and the length a bit different.

Two small ottomans take the place of chairs...

This oversized ottoman was unique done in leather with nail heads. It could double as a table.

These round ottos were upholstered in natural alpaca and very posh.

...another view

Rounded corners and chrome yellow...holy smokes!

faux leather in gray and orange, swivel chrome base! I ordered these for the store...and one for myself!

Longer ottomans seem to be trending as well, this one in linen with an unusual leg treatment.

Two square ottomans with boxed cushions, metal framing. Use them as stand alone or pull them into the room as seating.

Extra large ottoman in an exaggerated pattern, oh so cute! I'll take one, please.

This X-leg ottoman was upholstered in a fabric that could have been used for couture...a tweed like pattern in gray and chartreuse with stylish texture.

Another oversized square ottoman used as a coffee table...comfort for all!

Used in a previous post, but I love this idea...four matched small ottomans alternating colors...makes one big square. Great idea.


long bench ottoman in a cool graphic pattern and, what better than chartreuse. There is still a lot of this out there. (I'm sure happy about that!)

So that's my last market report. We have one more day, but will leave straight from market to head back to Charlotte. We have been entertained by the ridiculous and inspired by the sublime. I'm ready to implement the new ideas and styles for the next 6 months until the April Market. You'll find new merchandise at the store beginning to come in and I'll show you new ways to arrange your rooms. It's all about style and presentation.

Hope to see you soon!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

High Point Market Report Day Three

Just as the rest of the design world, rugs have taken a turn towards modernism with bold color and pattern. We spent a good portion of the day shuffling client fabric memos and juggling the ipad, notes and paint memos for the perfect match. That can drive a crazy man my darling father would say.

I will have to say that we met the challenges quite well , finding fabulous choices for about 10 projects. Chartreuse, cobalt, taupe, greige, chrome yellow...all colors in our current projects. The design industry always seems to present the most current collections at Market time and we were not disappointed. Ahhhhhhh....

Perfect for a yellow and charcoal bedroom...

This one was soooo fun to search for. The pallet delighted everyone who helped us and we found so many perfect selections, it will be hard to choose!

Possibly for la young man's bedroom in Bucks County...or...

This one....or....

This colorful and cool one!

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This is an example of interesting graphic pattern with bold contrast...I was thinking it might be a good choice for my master bathroom.

There seems to be even more mid century influence in most design. This sofa was patterned after one of my retired sales rep's father 's sofas! They named it the Kempner after him! Great pricing and great style. Young modern professionals like this, and who wouldn't? It will be a great starting price point as well. Look for this and the matching chair to show up on my sales floor!

Great example of a mid century chair in bold marigold !

This "his and her" chair brought back memories of the stylish vintage chairs I found a few years ago in Connecticut. I had them reupholstered in a handsome gray strie velvet with an orange contrasting welt and used them in the Princeton Designer House. I reluctantly sold them...why?!

Pops of red can be seen as a popular unexpected with this pale sea salt colored sofa and shag rug.

I'm a big fan of mirrors as art. This one is spectacular! What's not to like?

Most of you know I occasionally have to document "what not to buy"....well, what do you think? Linda sat down to give you the proper scale. Color good...nothing else. Oh. My.

This curved white sectional ( cool for sure, read yesterday's report on white!) caught my eye and note the vibrant punches on the pillows.

We had a full day for sure and felt satisfied with our hunt. It was reported that the attendance at Market is 75,000. I guess that explains crowded elevators, long lunch lines and waiting for shuttle buses, along with the expected backup of orders that are written.

Tomorrow is planned with an aggressive list of "must-sees". I'll let you know if we stay on task!

And just for the record,I'm rethinking what shoes to wear for the fourth day of trecking...