Tuesday Tidbit: Never Decorate When You Are…..

Tuesday Tidbit: Never Decorate When You Are…..




Super Happy???

Humm….did I just say that? Super Happy???

Let me just throw this out there:

Has there ever been a time when you were super excited and you bought something that didn’t look so great two weeks later?

I call those Vacation Clothes Moments “VCM’s”

You know…when you are in Nantucket and buy the cutest pants, not the reds which are appropriate anywhere imo 🙂 but the ones you can ONLY wear in Nantucket during a few months. They usually involve maps & whales…


When you are in Mustique and the white linen something calls you……and then you realize that $$$$ for a simple something that you can only wear in Mustique…..might not have been the best idea

Sometimes we do the same thing when it comes to our homes

Now, this might be fantastic as an art installation, but no amount of champagne & caviar should convince you that you need this in your main living area.

ESPECIALLY when it comes to our homes

We get super excited & are SO SURE that the “Insert Any Item Here” will look perfect on our entry hall table. Besides, at $$$$$$ it’s “such a deal” ;)!

Tuesday Tidbit: Do you have any “Don’t ever decorate when you are ———?” stories to share?

Can you laugh about them now?

I would so love to hear!!

I can not be the only one….

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann


PS: Make sure and sign up for our Beta Test Website! We have an awesome group & YOU need to be a part of it!! Don’t worry, I think we’ve sent out 4 emails over the past months while in test format. Link HERE.

Thursday Spotlight: 2 Simple Tips to Grand Thanksgiving Style

Thursday Spotlight: 2 Simple Tips to Grand Thanksgiving Style

Thanksgiving upon us

Wish I could “bend & snap” my Table + Home Decor into existence

But even with helpers…no avail…

Why I like SIMPLE + PRACTICAL counsel = real STYLE

Here are my Top 2 Simple Tips to achieve Grand Thanksgiving Style

1. Go with multiples. LOTS of multiples.

Curious Country Creations. Martha viewers already know. What I am saying is that Grand doesn’t have to be Ormolu…tho I do have a place in my heart for that ;)…

One of my clients this season is using wheat stalks. Tied, varying heights + locations. Placed in tole cachepots which have pride of place all year long, the multiple component is what makes it look grand.

Another simple multiple = white pumpkins

I know, you’ve seen it done. THE POINT = groupings by color + type work! Even an old collection of tacky pilgrims can be staged well on a table if they are all spray painted ivory & stripped of their cheesy clothing! Grand is a visual read. Small spaces can be entirely grand. This image from Home Ideas Design.

2. 21″ Wide Geo Mesh

Seriously fabulous stuff

It’s miracle cream for the home decor business


The visual is a simple pencil skirt + top in a matching color with statement necklace.

Ribbon = outfit

Multiples = statement necklace.

My color this season? Pale Yellow + Raffia with Gold

These work with the colors in my own home + transition Thanksgiving to New Years. Notice the price? $10 per roll. Sweet.

Offray is my favorite brand, but any brand will do.

 There you have it. 2 Simple Tips.

Cool Part? If you are behind the 8 ball…there is still time to pull this off nicely 😉

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”™

xo Ann


Thursday Spotlight: How to Customize Your Design Spaces with Retail Product

Thursday Spotlight: How to customize your design spaces with retail product – some take away nuggets when shopping catalogs but going for a high end look

Yesterday we had a fabulous Design Seminar entitled: My Catalog Life. This was one of those things (the Seminar) that morphed out of many conversations, lots of laughter and a talk about being a closet Home Goods Addict among a group of seriously fashionable women. Many of whom would ‘NAAAVA’ admit they actually go…well, outside of the studio that is ;)!

We will ATTEMPT to edit the video and get it COMPLETED by END of November. We will definitely need to consolidate some of the materials into a downloadable format and may have to re-film some of the segments where laughter drowned out logic…!…

Check out our Twitter Feed from yesterday. @couturechateau is the handle and #couturechateautip was our hash tag.

At the wrap up yesterday, someone suggested an e-book or work book in addition to the take-a-way binders that were part of the Seminar. I like that idea! Time to get to work Ann :)!!…and team….!…

Some of the bite size nuggets:

1) WHEN you design from catalogs, setting the color palate FIRST creates a natural envelope which makes editing furniture options EASIER. The big catalog and online retailers have already done the hard “color work” for you. Take advantage of it and don’t reinvent the wheel. Save your customization of color for the accents – but make the broad color choices for walls, ceilings & floors FIRST. Get them painted and be done. This is in contrast to how we typically approach a highly custom project where a paint color may need to coordinate with an antique rug coming from Turkey or a custom fabric from India.

Many of the big retailers have paint collections or partnerships with large paint companies like Benjamin Moore…don’t reinvent the wheel IF you are customizing your spaces from catalogs

I am ok with that. Designer Permission = Granted!

2) EDIT your retailer/catalog choices for the major pieces of furniture to no more than 4 for a single space. Be brutal. Match overall scale of furniture arms, seat heights & accent tables to within 10%-15%. You can play with accent pieces, but get the Foundation Seating pieces right and the layering will come more easily.

If you are customizing from catalogs – only use the most trusted and reliable retailers for your big pieces. Stick to 4 catalogs max when combining those foundation pieces. Any more and your room will look cluttered with too many disparate details

I am ok with that too! Designer Permission = Granted! (hint…we follow this percentage rule on custom jobs as well;)

3) MIXING is an art. We shared tools for practicing with Retail product – @Olioboard – @Pinterest – and encouraged TIME DEADLINES for “playing design” and EXECUTION START DATES for “actual project design”….meaning you don’t get to design the room on a piece of paper, pin it to the room’s door and wait for 5 years! Get off the stump, get started, plan, finish and get on with the custom living :)!!

Mixing is an art. Take cues from great retail displays. Note scale and texture mixes – subtle matches that “speak to each other” but don’t scream

I am WAY ok with that. Designer Permission = Granted!

Those are some of the bite size pieces from a fabulous day. I will keep you posted as this is a subject near and dear to me – I DO believe passionately that there is custom inside of just about anything…from the Tree Stump Table on our Pinterest Board (Follow this board from our Seminar – we keep adding!)

Arteriors Home. I love this table…but can you imagine it in a deep lacquer green?! I can…so fabulous…

– can you imagine that in a deep lacquer green?!- to the Red Acrylic Chairs from Target

Available at Target – how fun to put a decal cutout – custom of course and use these in a study room for teenagers!

I “see” a fabulous white decal on the back side as it sits in a desk area where teenagers work at computers…

Happy Thursday. Spotlight is now on YOU! Let us know what you think of this!! We had a great response but we were only 8!!…

Live a custom life. There is only one you.

xo Ann

Tuesday Tidbit: We Love Tweed in Home Furnishings!

Tuesday Tidbit: We Love Tweed in Home Furnishings!

Ralph Lauren Tweed Fabric

We love using Tweed in Home Furnishings. Above is Ralphs Fabric…does anything look familiar below?

As Fabulous on Shams as it is as a Suit !

I like Tweed because it gives dimension without overpowering pattern…subtle but classic!

Subtle Texture, Subtle Pattern…LOVE it!

What is your Tuesday Tidbit on Tweed? Love it or leave it?

xo Ann