Blue Bird Foyer

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A few years ago I had the opportunity to design a physicians office from the ground up.  It was 95% form and function (how big should the exam rooms be, where should the lab go, is it ADA compliant, etc.) and 5% design.  After the tedium of determining all of the building specifics, the interior design process was welcomed with arms wide open.  It wasn’t the most exciting project since a doctor’s office is expected to be sterile, both literally and figuratively.  But, I was able to have a little fun with the fabrics, hardware, and paint colors.  Though we went with a mostly neutral palate, we did put an accent wall in each exam room to liven it up a bit.  When it came time to chose the accent color, we chose a soothing light blue.  Since blue has a calming affect, we thought it would be perfect for patients with white-coat syndrome.

When I came across the above entryway, I felt a similar affect.  It’s instantly calming and peaceful.  And while the deep greenish blue color is tranquil, the choice of this color in a foyer is bold.  Couple the color with the vintage bird prints and the capiz chandelier, and it makes a statement that is both serene and striking.  Here’s how to duplicate a similar look:

  1. Rug – This honeycomb rug is reminiscent of the one used in the inspiration photo.
  2. Capiz Pendant – Capiz is perfect for an entry (and any space, if I’m honest).
  3. Planter – This planter brings in a pop of gold which nicely compliments the color scheme.
  4. Chair – This chair is gorgeous (also has a matching ottoman).  I should add here that I’m a fan of any and all decor that feature birds.  The first piece of decor I bought when I lived on my own was a shower curtain with birds on it.  I still have it and refuse to part with it even though I don’t use it.
  5. Bird prints – These are good.  Like maybe better than botanical prints good.  Also, see above bird comment.
  6. Console table – There’s not a table placed in this entry due to the size of the bird prints, but this would look perfect with smaller prints like the above.
  7. Tray – Because I’m unconvinced you can have too much capiz.  Also this would function great to house keys, mail, and miscellaneous other items that you end up carrying into your house but have no idea what to do with (does this only happen to me?).
  8. Globe – A nice compliment to this stately entry.

As I mentioned above, I have a penchant for all things bird and/or feather.  Here are a few of my favorites at the moment.

Bird Style Inspired Round-up » StyleEmulator.com

Mama Bird Shirt (I want SO bad.)  //  Feather Chart  (wish I had a spot for this)  //  Earrings

Necklace  //  Phone Case  //  Rug

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White Sneakers: Trendy or Classic?

Per usual, I’m 3 years late to a fashion trend.  Or maybe I was 10 years early, but I’ll get to that.  It’s not that I haven’t been paying attention to the white sneaker trend popping up all over the place, but I’m not a fan of how I’ve seen them styled.  I’ve never once seen them worn with a sundress, skirt or some other feminine ensemble and thought, “you know, those slightly dingy sneakers looks better than a strappy sandal or ballet flat.”  Take for instance Elsa Hosk’s outfit here.  She’s ethereal and elegant like only a Swedish supermodel can be, but just no.  I can’t with the shoes.

I can occasionally make an exception to my no-sneaker-and-dress rule whenever I see a pair of Converse styled with a shirt dress, but that’s it.  Never have I ever thought sneakers + dresses/skirts paired well together.

With all that said, I do like white sneakers paired with a pair of jeans and t-shirt.  At the beginning of every school year from junior high to my senior year of high school, I’d purchase a brand new crisp pair of white Tommy Hilfiger tennis shoes.  Those, a pair of jeans and a Hilfiger shirt were my school uniform.  #TommyGirl

Fast forward to now and I haven’t bought white sneakers in years.  Flip-flops and boat shoes replaced my need for a casual shoe.  However, with a toddler running around now and my growing intolerance of flip-flops, I’m planning to give into this trend–which isn’t actually a trend at all.  I’ll be taking the princess route, though.

I’m extremely picky when it comes to shoes.  After reading lots of reviews (and trying to find a pair that don’t look like mall walkers), here are the ones I’m currently mulling over:

  1. Converse – I think I’m only person on the planet who does not and has never owned a pair of Converse.  Even my mom owns a pair!
  2. Adidas – I’m not going to lie.  I’m basic and like these because of the rose gold.
  3. Superga – To further prove how basic I am, I like these because they’re the same pair Kate Middleton is wearing.
  4. Vince Camuto – I totally dig slip-on shoes in any form.  I also like that these are slightly different from the rest.
  5. Sperry – My beloved Sperry’s!  I’ve almost purchased these a handful of times, but haven’t pulled the trigger just yet.  They somewhat remind me of Keds and the geriatric set.  At the same time, they’re Sperry’s!
  6. Tom’s – Equal parts hideous and fabulous, I had to include a pair of Tom’s for consideration.
  7. Tretorn – Similar to the Vince Camuto pair, I like that these are different than the rest.  The netting is an interesting feature.
  8. Nike – I’ve worn all kinds of tennis shoes over the years, and none–NONE–are more comfortable than Nikes.  They just aren’t.  I’m actually eyeing these in the black/white combo, but like the white on white, too.

So what about you?  Do you have any of the above?  Any recommendations for me?

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Patio Party

Well, hi!  Sorry to go MIA for the past couple of months.  I had some national projects due at work and, given the current political climate within the healthcare industry, it took longer than I anticipated.  Couple that with a super active toddler and life has been busier than a beehive to say the least.  But like the warm weather, I’m back!

Speaking of warm weather, I’m excited for lake days and dinners al fresco with friends and family.  One of my goals at the beginning of the year (my new year’s resolution, if you will) was to have more people over to my house.  Community, fellowship, and friendship is something that, as an introvert, I don’t fully foster with those around me.  My new neighbors recently had a “sunset appreciation party” where they invited everyone in the neighborhood over for hors d’oeuvres, homebrewed beer, and to get to know one another better while watching the sun set over the lake.  We didn’t get to stay long because it was the baby’s bedtime, but it ended up being a really nice time and inspired me to host more events at my house.  That’s where I found the catalyst for today’s look.  I came across this patio on House Beautiful’s Instragram feed, and was instantly inspired.Striped Tablecloth

  1. Tablecloth – Could this tablecloth be anymore fun and summery?  See more options below.
  2. Director’s chair – I’ve only seen director’s chairs used at a dining table a handful of times, but it always look so chill and laid back.  I can’t imagine any other chairs looking as good as these do.
  3. Cups – These cups add more color and texture while not competing with the tablecloth.
  4. Plates – The same goes for these plates.
  5. Napkins – The color is toned down a bit with these napkins.  These could easily be used for a more refined party with a pretty navy and white toile tablecloth or the like.
  6. Galvanized tub – These tubs are an essential for backyard parties.  Your guests will appreciate having easily accessible drinks.  How many times have you had to prop a cooler lid up on your knee while fishing through the various assortment of cans/bottles (when all you really want is a bottle of water) while juggling your flimsy paper plate filled with food?  Clearly I never have.  *eyeroll*
  7. Hydrangeas! – How do I make the heart eye emoji from my keyboard??  My neighbor’s light blue hydrangeas are beginning to explode and it makes me so happy.  Hydrangeas definitely scream summer.

Here are a few more striped tablecloth options.  I really like the bottom left hand corner with the ~fringe~.

Striped Tablecloth Round up >> StyleEmulator.com

Bed Bath & Beyond  //  Bed Bath & Beyond  //  H&M (love this one, too)

Bed Bath & Beyond  //  Bed Bath & Beyond  //  Walmart (Pioneer Woman)

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White House Black Market Looks for Less

In real life, I work an office job (that is currently taking over my liiiife!) which means every day I have to dress like the boss lady I am (ha).  As such, I’m always on the hunt for decently priced work clothes.  I find that if I look professional, I feel professional.  Always dress for the job you want next, right?  With that said, I don’t like paying half my hard earned paycheck on clothes.  Sure, I’ll spend money on quality items (dress pants, a pair or two of nice shoes, a few tops), but I do like trendier professional items, too.  I have no problem spending less money on those.

White House Black Market is a retailer I often turn to for inspiration.  Their looks are perfect for the working woman who wants to look upscale and on trend, yet professional and ready for business, too.  White House Black Market doesn’t have terrible prices per se, but some items are a bit more than I prefer to spend.  Below I’ve put together two White House Black Market looks for less.  I hope they inspire you, too!White House Black Market Looks for Less » StyleEmulator.com

First outfit: Blazer // Nordstrom Rack, Floral Cami // South Moon Under, Pants // JCPenney, Shoes // 6pm

Second outfit: Top // New York & Co, Skirt // Nordstrom, Heels // Old Navy

And speaking of work, I may be posting a little less frequently over the coming weeks.  The first quarter of the year is always the craziest for me (I do strategic healthcare planning), and with renovations going on at my house and my sweet one year old, I’m running out of time to do anything!  Thanks for understanding and thank you for being here. 🙂

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Get the Look: Ballard Designs Living Room

Get the Look: Ballard Designs Living Room » StyleEmulator.com

Ballard Designs living rooms are stylish and timeless.  This living room above is a perfect example of Ballard’s mastery at interior design.  The mix of bold patterned pillows, light furniture and pops of gold work together to form a posh living space that will be fashionable for years to come.  Ballard also runs a wonderful design blog, How To Decorate.  You’re probably already reading it, but if not make sure to check it out.  It’s a treasure trove of design tips and tricks.  Here’s how you can emulate the Ballard Designs living room above:

  1. Sofa // One King’s Lane – As always, we start with a clean and crisp white linen sofa.
  2. Pillow // Bed Bath & Beyond – This pillow brings a classic leopard pattern into the room.
  3. Print // Bed Bath & Beyond – This print emulates the original frond print.  It’s black instead of white, but on Ballard’s How To Decorate blog, they recently did a post on why you should have dark elements in your room to contrast lighter elements.  Super interesting read on how the eye moves around the room with the contrasting elements.
  4. Bookshelf // Kohl’s – This simple bookshelf provides plenty of room for books, vases, and plants.
  5. Tray // Bed Bath & Beyond – A gold tray for the coffee table.
  6. Olive tree – These trees are gorgeous and a perfect touch of greenery.  They also remind me of topiaries.
  7. Print // Society6 – Another gold leaf art option but this time with a white background.  Available in multiple sizes.
  8. Vase // Bed Bath & Beyond – Another pop of gold for the coffee table or bookshelf–wherever you prefer.
  9. Coffee table // Target – This tufted coffee table emulates the one in the Ballard Designs living room.
  10. Pillow // Amazon – I’m totally digging this Greek key pillow!  I found it a few weeks ago when I was putting together another room.  I ended up going with a different pillow, but hoped I’d have a room I could use it in.  Bingo!  It would look perfect with the leopard pillow on the linen couch.
  11. Rug // Overstock – I love how soft and light this rug is.  It’s not overly bold, but brings the right amount of pattern into the room.
  12. Chandelier // Rejuvenation – I’ll be honest that I wouldn’t have chosen this chandelier for this space.  It’s a touch too modern for the room.  However, you may like it so what does it matter what I think?  😉  The original Ballard chandelier is currently on sale for about the same price as this one.

See you on Wednesday with a fashion look for less round-up and back again on Friday with another home design post!

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Black and White Modern Living Room

Get the Look Black and White Modern Living Room » StyleEmulator.com

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Part of me has always wanted to live in an ultra sleek modern apartment complete with sharp lines, minimalist decor, and a cold feel.  I wouldn’t mind a view of a city, either.  There’s just something so appealing about the monochromatic feel of it.  These spaces certainly don’t appear lived in (where is all the stuff?), but they are calming and super cool.  And clean.  So incredibly clean.  You better believe you aren’t allowed to wear shoes in this living room.  Here’s how you can emulate this black and white modern living room in your own home:

  1. Couch // Urban Outfitters – A super modern couch defines the space.
  2. Pillow // Bed Bath & Beyond – This pillow is one of the only items bringing in color and pattern.
  3. Art // Etsy – Abstract art is, obviously, the only type of art allowed here.
  4. Coffee table // Overstock – This diamond coffee table is ideal for contemporary spaces.
  5. Chair // Overstock – This split back chair not only has a modern vibe, it can convert from sitting to lounging for more seating.
  6. Rug // Overstock – Shag rugs are my absolute favorite.  They feel so good underfoot.  This gray shag rug adds a bit of texture and a touch of warmth to the space.
  7. Snake plant – These plants look so unique.  Perfect for a modern setting.  Also, they’re hardy and can handle being neglected if you’re one of those who forgets to water your plants (like, ahem, me).
  8. Pillow // Amazon – The bold stripes on these pillows emulate the originals.
  9. Planter // 2Modern – This planter has a modern silhouette and is perfect for a snake plant.  It’s also available in several different sizes and colors should you want to add more color to your space.
  10. Floor lamp // Lord & Taylor – This light absolutely belongs in a modern room.  In any other setting I’d probably find this lamp to be a bit much, but it’s perfect in this room.
  11. Vases // domino – Decor is minimal in this black and white modern living room.  These vases do the job of adding a touch of ornamentation, while also fitting with the overall aesthetic.

I had a lot of fun looking for a floor lamp for this black and white modern living room.  There are so many good and funky options out there that, again, would probably only work with a modern style.  Here are a few I was drawn to:

Modern Floor Lamp Round Up » StyleEmulator.com

Home Depot  //  Bed Bath & Beyond  //  Kohl’s

Bed Bath & Beyond  //  Target  //  Amazon

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