Monday, December 27, 2010

Monogram This!!

What is it about monograming that we love so much? I love this monogram for the wall in your child's room or office. The Roberto Cavalli Store at NorthPark here in Dallas has his monogram at the entrance and it is all done in Swarovski crystals. It is magnificent. We all know about monogramming sheets, towels and linen dinner napkins but I like to think outside the box and do more unusual items. Slip cover your dinner room or breakfast chairs with your monogram, luggage, photo albums...the list goes on and it's fun to receive and give as gifts something so personal. This year we made our own Christmas crackers for Christmas dinner. In each cracker we put a party hat, special gift for that person and monogrammed each cracker. Besides looking beautiful on the table each guest was very tickled to have their own and didn't want to open them!!!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas!!! Happy New Year!!

I'm taking a break for a week from blogging but will return the first week of January. I am doing a wedding on New Years Eve for 300 guests in downtown Dallas so will be busy with that but should have some awesome photo's of the celebration and flowers.
In the meantime enjoy yourselves and have lots of laughter and great food, surrounded by family and friends!!!
See you next year!! If you haven't become a friend yet now is the time to do so for this blog!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Holiday Parties!

This week I had a Christmas party and decided to serve a champagne punch. I made the ice ring for the punch out of a fancy bundt pan from Williams Sonoma and added some clemetines and cherries to the water. When it came out it looked so great that I decided to continue to make more and hang them as ice wreaths on a tree outside that had lights on it. In total I ended up with 6 wreaths to hang with berries and ivy in the ice. They last 24 hours on the tree and were a big hit with the guests. Different, easy and inexpensive!!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Dining Accents Delight Your Guests!!

Here are a few ideas from our friends at Pierre Deux These gilded pewter grape leaf designs are fantastic. I love the peach pit spoons and the coffee bean tea spoons. The napkin rings are gilded herbs.
When doing your tabletop think of different theme's and once you focus on an idea you will have so much fun finding the accessories to fulfill your design.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

'Tis the Season to Bake!!

Even if you aren't a baker it seems that at this time of year everyone gives some baking a try. With cookie exchanges, children and entertaining most people are up for the fun and the challenge. Part of the secret besides sticking exactly to the recipes in baking is having the right equipment. Go to to get some wonderful ideas and all that you will need for you and the the kids to tackle and have some baking fun!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Christmas is for Children 103.7 Lite FM @ Children's Medical!

This Thursday December 9th through Saturday December 11th please tune in and listen to 103.7 Lite FM as they present “Christmas is for Children”, the ninth annual Children’s Miracle Network Radiothon – a 33-hour life changing event raising funds and awareness for Children’s Medical Center. Throughout the inspiring and encouraging event, listeners will get a sense of the advanced pediatric care that is being provided to children in North Texas every day at Children’s Medical Center. The on-air personalities from 103.7 Lite FM will be interviewing children and their families who have received exceptional care at Children’s and will be asking listeners to call in and make a gift.

The holiday music and inspirational stories of children cared for at Children’s will really help you feel the true spirit of the Christmas season. Please share this with your family and friends and start a new tradition of making a gift that makes a difference. Volunteers will be on the phones today from 11:45 am until 2pm.
Today Jason Castro from American Idol fame was on singing Silent Night. Kimberly Schlegel Whitman, Steve Kembel and yours truly were on site decorating a wagon for the children.
Please call 1-877-719-5437(kids) NOW to start your donation tradition for Children's Medical!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Dazzling Jewels!

The holiday season is the busiest for the jewelery industry. Here are some fabulous books with amazing photographs, stories and designs. Maybe there is something here for you this holiday season!
Paul Flato was a name more recognized in Hollywood in the 30's and 40"s than that of Tiffany's. He grew up in rural Texas and went off to Manhattan where he worked for jewelers before opening his own boutique there. His genius lay in eccentric designs and unlikely color combinations. His clients where the who's who of the time. Fascinating story.
Cartier and America have been together now for over 100 years since Cartier opened their first store in New York City. Gorgeous photographs and makes for a perfect gift!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Fascination with Mercury Glass

What is Mercury Glass? Mercury glass, also known as silvered glass, contains neither mercury nor silver. It's actually clear glass, mold-blown into double-walled shapes and coated on the inside with a silvering formula, which is inserted though a small hole that is then sealed with a plug. A few manufacturers did, for a time, try to line their glass with a mercury solution; this practice was discontinued due to expense and toxicity, but it helps explain the origin of the misnomer.
First discovered in early-19th-century Germany, mercury glass was used as an inexpensive and tarnish-free substitute for silver in such objects as candlesticks and doorknobs. It then gained favor in France and England, where it was made into useful household wares like vases and goblets, and in America, where it was turned into glass vases, goblets, tankards, sugar basins, tumblers, and even spittoons. Some critics condemned it for "looking too much like mirror and too little like silver," which is precisely what people liked about it. At worst, mirror attracts a few vain glances, while genuine silver attracts thieves. Appreciation for the inexpensive baubles rose, until the advent of the lightbulb: in "modern" light, no burglar would mistake glass for silver! We are seeing mercury glass the last few years in many of our popular stores and especially during the holidays, but this doesn't have to be displayed just at this seasonal time of year. Enjoy it all year long and no polishing!!

New York Society Parties!

Ever flipped through the New York Times society pages on a Sunday morning and wondered what’s just over the shoulders of a well-dressed attendee? A new book, New York Parties: Private Views by Jamee Gregory offers an intimate look at such stylish spaces and their most fretted over fêtes. With her latest book, Gregory, a philanthropist, seasoned entertainer, and contributing editor at Elle Décor, delivers a deeper look into the spectacular homes she visited in her first book New York Apartments: Private Views by capturing them while at their most spectacular — when filled with elegant flower arrangements, soft lighting, the aromas of good food, and the conversation of friends.Read More

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Timeless Tartan!

A timeless tradition that never really goes out of style, is festive tartans in clothing, tableware and home accessories. Plaids are wonderful to decorate for the holiday season and the winter ahead. The festive tabletop
means all your holidays meals will be done in style!!

Christmas at the White House

Who doesn't love orchids! They have butterfly-like blossoms and vivid jewel-tone colors, and monochromatic arrangements are very effective, especially if there are enough textures (rough, smooth, spiky, et cetera) to make the composition lively. I like the way they have incorporated trailing vines and feathery foliage into the bouquet “to create dimension and add lightness.” Containers in leaves, moss, or stems of wheat to make the container and the arrangement become one entity are especially stunning. I am a big fan of threading arrangements, dancing branches to add a sense of movement. Look closely at the container to see that detail.
Credit: Official White House Photo by Pete Souza, courtesy Flickr; Arrangements by Kevin Allen

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

To Veil or Not to Veil that is the Question!

As far back as the first century, women complemented there wedding tunic's with bright yellow or red veils to fend off evil spirits. By the early 19th century, head-covering cloths made of intricate lace popularized by the European elite had come a must have for the American society weddings. The longer the veil the wealthier the family. Today there is countless options and lengths. A veil can make a dramatic difference in transforming the simplest dress into a stunning bridal outfit.

Gotta Love the Vintage!!

Wouldn't it be fun to scout for the set design of the television hit show Mad Men? With that show the vintage look has become more appreciated and popular. Here are several pieces that take you back immediately to a different time. The gold and black finish on the vintage cocktail table is a Mid 20th century design and the telephone is from the 1940's. Check out the pullout drawer on the telephone to hold your favorite telephone numbers!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

My Passion for Design!

Just released today, November 16th features over 350 photographs and shots from Barbra Streisand's Malibu home!! Barbra didn't want to write a memoir so this is a peek at her through her design to see her style and taste.
Great gift for the holidays!

Monday, November 15, 2010

Boho Charm!!

This colorful, outrageous chandelier makes quite the statement in a room! There is a smaller version as well for lower ceilings and two light wall sconces. If you are looking for drama and making a statement this is the chandelier for you!
It's always fun to do the unexpected!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Shimmering and Reflective Silver!

There are certain occasions were we really want to pull out all the stops to create a memorable setting. The holidays are a perfect time since that is when many of us do most of our entertaining. I love having the sparkle of silver on the table and am not sure why I'm so intrigued with antique trophies but I love to use them as vases or all together in mass. I also have silver wine goblets and just put a hydrangea in each one and have them marching down the table. So get the sterling polished and use it all!!

Sensational Centerpiece

Floral designer Jane Packer is known for arrangements that are rooted in simplicity but never stiff or staid. I normally wouldn't use bromeliads in an arrangement but this one is fantastic. Jane began her career with a small flower shop in London’s West End and eventually launched flower schools in New York, Tokyo, and London. For those not lucky enough to attend a four-week course in person, her book Jane Packer’s Guide to Flower Arranging is the next best thing. Divided into three parts (Flowers to Give, Flowers for the Home, and Flowers for Celebrations), the book covers everything you need to know to achieve professional-looking results, no matter the occasion.

Picking the Perfect Hostess Gift!

We are entering the giving season on so many of our time, money and energy! A wonderful gift that keeps on giving is Kimberly Schlegel Whitman's Tablescapes book ...Setting the table with Style. What is wonderful about this book is it has many creative ideas for all occasions not just Thanksgiving and Christmas. Anyone who entertains would appreciate this gift as it will give them ideas for their next dinner party, buffet or gathering. The photographs are beautiful and inspiring and it is easy to pack if travelling. Other hostess gifts to consider are personalized stationary or a handwritten note stating the donation you have made to a charity on their behalf. Of course a bottle of wine is always appreciated but let's try and be creative in your giving this year. Let me know of your hostess gifts that were a big hit!!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Beverly Hills Modern

This home is in the hills of Beverly with an amazing view of the Pacific Ocean and downtown LA. The dining room has sliding windows from floor to ceiling that pocket into the wall. Perfect for the weather in Southern California. The silver drum lamps have gorgeous crystal chandeliers that add sparkle and interest in the evening.
The chandeliers are from Italy. The home is done all in white and silver and was a fantastic project to work on. The guest bath has a clear glass sink that is also a fish tank, also from Italy. No one leaves that room without being surprised.

Shake up your Holiday Party!!

What can you do to put an interesting spin on your Holiday Party? Start a tradition of giving beautiful favors to your guests every year. You will never have a problem with guests rsvping!! Some simple ideas are to give white winter bulbs like paperwhites wrapped in holiday cello and festive ribbon. Another idea is to package up some bath salts. A fun website is, they have cube formulas to drop in the bath and fizz called, less stress, muscle ache, go to sleep, detox, etc.
If you are doing a cocktail party plan on two and half hours. Old style cocktails are back so besides wine lets try egg nog and brandy, hot chocolate and a whiskey tasting. For food why not try a risotto bar? You can cook the risotto ahead of time and then offer different fillings: fresh mushrooms, shaved truffles, asparagus, roasted artichokes. The table needs a fresh arrangement so fill a silver vase with red ilex berries, red tulips and green hydrangea. Depending on where you live you may want someone to oversee coat check so your guests coats aren't piled on top of each other. The time is now to get your invitations printed and out for the holidays!! Remember have fun and plan ahead!

Friday, November 5, 2010

The Bridal Bouquet

When deciding what type of bouquet you would love for your wedding you need to consider a few things. Is your wedding formal, a garden wedding or seaside? The more elaborate the dress, the simpler your flowers should be, go with a monochromatic palette. If possible use some of your favorite flowers , your floral designer will be a great help here knowing what is in season. I love this gold bouquet as it is different and gorgeous for a fall/winter wedding.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Junior League of Plano Holiday Gift Market

On your mark get set...GO!! This is the event to start your holiday shopping. 'Neath the Wreath is held at the Plano Center, 2000 East Spring Creek Parkway in Plano. There is everything here from children's clothes, jewels, decorating items and one of a kind items.
Tom Thumb stores are selling tickets for this event and for more detailed information please go to
Please come and support the Junior League of Plano as this is their major fundraiser for all the projects they do in our community!!

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Silver Wrapped Furniture

Don't you just love these furniture pieces? The amazing craftmanship is evident in each piece. The handfinshed accent pieces are a combination of silver and nickle and are hand wrapped.
What a sensational finish to any room!!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Handcrafted Fresh Greenery

There is nothing like the fresh aromatic mix of fresh fir, cedar, boxwood and hydrangea. Restoration Hardware is offering garlands, swags, centerpieces and wreaths but can only be ordered by catalog or their website. This fresh elegant greenery is grown and hand made in California and Oregon. Each piece retains it's beauty for 4-6 weeks and can be used indoor or out. For more information and to see their entire collection go to

I like to use fresh depending on the situation but I also add my own flair to the pieces.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Speaking of Wine Cellars...

Yesterday I was in an antique store looking for some interesting accessories for some clients when I came upon this fun, custom light fixture which would be perfect for a wine cellar. It is custom made from a French antique wine bottle holder and then made into a funky lighting chandelier.

Dallas Sample Sale Not to be Missed!!

This years Dallas Sample Sale is bigger and better than ever! Besides being a great time and getting access to the Dallas Market Center it has something for everyone. It's your holiday shopping at it's best with low prices on gifts for the home, children, holiday decor, clothing and much more. Set aside November 12-14th for the fun.
Free Admision! Open to the Public. For more information go to

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Beautiful Wine Cellars

In the last several years if there has been a popular room added to an existing home it is the wine cellar. They come in basic storage of the wine to elaborate ones as seen in these photographs with a network of alcoves and hallways. It isn't just a place to store your conveted wine collection it has become the place to entertain. Many wine cellars have dining areas, mini kitchens, wine related art hanging, corking space and of course state-or-the-art storage. The atmosphere is already for your dinner party and sets an inviting, exciting tone. The last one I had built for a client stored 700 bottles and they had a wonderful time at wine auctions and generally collecting and finding some fantastic bottles to share with family and freinds.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Changing your Fireplace!

Right now one of the residential projects I'm working on is renovating a home office. It was hunter green and burgandy when I first saw it straight out of the '80's. I have removed the old green tile and wood fireplace and replaced it with the sample photo shown. The change has been tremendous to the room so if you are tired of that fireplace there are many options to choose from to bring your room up to date and inviting.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Getting ready to Entertain for the Holidays!

Can you believe we are at the last week of October already?
That means the holiday season is just around the corner and the best way to enjoy them is to plan ahead and be prepared. Our favorite catalog, Horchow list the top 10 entertaining essentials so check and see if you are ready for your next gathering.

There is also a wonderful new book out titled "New York Parties: Private Views by author Jamee Gregory. In this book she shares 15 different parties by some of New York's top-tier hosts. You will find some wonderful tips and ideas as well as easing any of your fears of entertaining. Always remember it is about getting friends together to share a meal and laughter...and that is one of the greatest gifts of all.
Go to for stylish glamour for your table.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Tying the Knot!

There are so many exciting collections, ideas, shoes, jewelry for weddings any more it is hard to know where to start.
J.Crew has just joined the bridal business with thier own salons in selected markets....sorry not in Dallas yet!
Once a week I will write about the trends and what wonderful ideas I have used or come across that will bring your own personal flair and style to your own wedding.
I welcome your questions and will also discuss the many aspects of planning your wedding.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Color is a Major Element in Scale of a Room

Color is one of the defining elements of a home. Make a statement through bold, saturated tones and coordinate with accessories. Dressing a room is all about details, simplicity, suitability and proportion. When dealing with scale of furnishings and if you aren't sure always scale up and not down.
Never judge a paint color until it is dry and you have two coats on the wall.
See this seasons color palette....go to

Friday, October 22, 2010

Hooked on Houses

We are all curious on how the celebrities live and what their homes are like. Well the site below takes you to the Top 10 Celebrity Homes for 2009. They all come up and you get to guess who lives where based on a clue they give you. Have fun with it. And remember having money doesn't always translate into the best designed house!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Paris Hotel Boutique

Looking for vintage china or silver to create a one of a kind table for the holidays? Visit Paris Hotel Boutique where the owners have collected amazing antique pieces that give your dining experience old style glamour. The owners attend auctions when grand hotels either close or renovate and buy amazing pieces. I love the neoclassical chairs in this photo which came from the Crown Room at the Fairmont in San Francisco.

Visit this link to see their store and all they have to offer! www.parishotelboutique/store/lobby.php

Monday, October 18, 2010

A Passion for Interiors

Carolyne Roehm has worked in the fashion industry for many years and clearly understands style, elegance and grace. I have all her books and love them all and I'm sure so will you. Her lastest book "A Passion for Interiors" will be in stores on November 9th. Check out her link and see how you can get a signed copy!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Last chance to dine in the garden!!

Autumn doesn't have to be defined by orange, brown and reds. The green from the Granny Smith apples and the hydrangea's along with the silk tablecloth set the tone beautifully. Twigs, berries and the brown leaf shaped china make this a gorgeous table for an Indian summer lunch or dinner.

This time of year there is plenty of non-floral elements to use on your table. I did a party in Napa Valley this time of year and used fresh olive branches, bittersweet,flowering oregeno, rosehips, grapevines, pomegrantes and cuttings that I had no idea what they were but loved the texture and color.

Here in Texas right now there are fields of sunflowers and berries on the roadside. Have some fun and be creative!!