Wednesday, September 30, 2009

in bloom

my orchid bloomed!! i totally ignored it and it bloomed - go figure!
well im off for the wedding - see you back here on monday.


Monday, September 28, 2009

a well rounded workspace

i'm totally loving this combo!!!! recently ive come to the realization that - with the etsy shop, my final year of grad school, this blog and a multitude of other projects i need a home work space.
thought living in a teeny tiny apartment has its advantages - like being able to vaccaume the entire place from top to bottom in under 15 minutes, making space for every part of your life can be a challenge- the traditional desk is out, and so is a wall mounted desk that come out at an angle. none of these options has been exciting or practical. but this weekend i was flipping back through some of my archived Domino magazines and came across and article on living in a studio apartment - and i got inspired!! i tried to post this inspiration but the file was too big! HA seems everything in my life is meant to be small.

what i love about this light fixture and what makes it perfect its that it can simply be hung on the wall and plugged in - a lovely way to create a directed light source with out the ability to install a pendant light in a rented apartment its tops!!

along with the table above - this one can also be found at ikea - i love the lines and the center hole is a perfect way to keep all the cords and wired corralled!
the last part of the inspiration requires a mix of vintage chairs - with the fall and back to school i've been having a thing for vintage wooden school chairs - here are a few i found on etsy that i think will fit in nicely!

Sunday, September 27, 2009

simple sundays

my first california tailgate experience, it was amazing! people even had fresh flowers and candelabras set up - my kinda tailgating!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

fruits of labor: swedish meatballs

with fall fast approaching i thought i would share one of my favorite cool weather dinners thats easy enough to make on the weeknights. this is a dish i have been eating since longer than i can remember, and it has been passed down through the women in my family- i love it so much i though i would share it with you all.

this recipe is for two plus some for lunch the next day, its also a great appetizer to bring to a party with some pretty toothpicks and napkins! and you can make them a day ahead.

1lb of ground beef (highest quality)
1/2 cup of bread crumbs
1 tbsp of minced green bell pepper
1/2 small onion minced
1 egg
a conservative 1/2 cup of milk
2 tbsp of dried thyme or 9 springs of fresh.
salt and pepper generously

combine all ingredients well in a large bowl, then take a small pinch of the mixture between your index and middle fingers and thumb take a small pinch of the mixture and roll into a nice ball. it should be approximately the diameter of a quarter

in an extra large frying pan melt 2 tbsp of butter to coat the bottom of the pan over medium high heat and begin to add your meatballs, turn frequently so that all sides become nicely browned and they are cooked through. when all of the meatballs have been cooked turn the pan up to high and deglaze with about half a bottle of dark beer and reduce for a nice sauce, you can also use water. i love to serve them with mashed potatoes and a crisp green salad.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

bowled-over beautiful

lilfishstudio via flickr

i have this crazy affinity for wooden bowls - they are beautiful and utilitarian and are capable of being used from generation to generation. There are many different styles of wooden bowls but my favorite are the old turned wooden bowls - so called because they are carved down from a larger piece of wood as they spin or turn

wooden bowls have been a kitchen staple for centuries in many places all over the world - they have been used for chopping, resting dough, mixing and many other uses - all of this work leaves signs and that coupled with amazing grain, like the one above - give these old bowls amazing charm and character

found via pure style home

though they can be used for prep work in the kitchen they also look gorgeous displayed or i love to use them to bring my favorite summer salad over to a friends bbq or on my table to serve light lemony pasta

above is my mom's collection of turned wooden bowls, she has been acquiring them for years, when she is not using them they sit beautifully stacked in the familyroom, making a lovely and simple display.


jamelah via flikr
just think of the possibilities for these beautiful bowls!!

Monday, September 21, 2009

chic crate&barrel barstools

this is a crazy week here at cottagfarm - but i wanted to take a minute to share these barstools with everyone! crate&barrel has done it again - the turner barstool: rustic, industrial, simple and classic while still being super chic!! one of my favorite feature is that the seat actually turns so you could use them at an island and at your table!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

pardue perfection

check out this fabulous artist, her work is so pleasing and looks good enough to eat. immediaty i am drawn to the texture of these works, part textile, part nature illustration, part wedding cake and wholy gorgeous!

Eugenia Pardue is the artist and she uses a range of tools including dental and cake decorators to manipulate the monochromatic acrylic paint in a variety of ways. Her suggestions of natural motifs through out the work remind me of that cult classic fabric crewel - only these paintings poses a sculptural element that gives them a presence on the wall that crewel could never achieve.

The sophisticated uses of negative space and the almost relief like sculptural elements, give these pieces a simple and understated elegance without compromising their ability to hold the viewers attention.

dynamic, luxurious, perfectly monochromatic - how beautiful would these look hanging against a charcoal grey or slate blue wall!

fanatic about felt!

with fall fast approaching felt seems like an appropriate material to think about - it also seems to be making an appearance in multiple facets of my life recently, from home accessories to fine art pieces, to construction materials - but this shop is hands-down my new favorite way to use felt!
another felt fact you may find fantastic - its the oldest fabric known to humankind! crazy huh, the mighty felt has been around for it all! felt remnants have been found dating back to 6,500 bc!!!!!! i love that, its so humble, utilitarian, durable but in the right hands can still be made into the loveliest of lovely things - check out what alicia of AAliciaAccessories has been doing with this amazing fabric over at her shop -

i can't decide, just the hint of gold mixed in with the rich charcoal for understated elegance, or the pure white for versatility and the ability to join the mix as either formal or casual?!!

how decadent - who would have believed felt could have such richness wouldnt these be stunning on your winter coat!

and if you cant get enough, you can even dress-up your pillows with felt too!

- yes i want one of each please! its too hard to choose just one

Monday, September 14, 2009

a modern farm table

so im fantasizing today about not living in a tiny studio in the city, but about a big old farmhouse in the country - especially one with a long, long scrubbed wooden dining table - so that i could cook for all my friends, eat, drink wine and make general merriment - here are some images so you to can share in my little country dinner party fantasy!! ive found some lovely things to keep you occupied while your at the table too! check out these hand designed linens by elisabethbentz

as usual im loving the combinations of modern, traditional, rustic, formal and above all simple - and im finding that i just cant escape blue and white as one of my favorite combinations, it always looks fresh, crisp and clean, but there are so many possibilities! guess thats why its been a favorite for centuries -

from the home of designer darrylcarter

Saturday, September 12, 2009

delayed gratification - a bright idea

we all know how good instant gratification can feel - that sense of having achieved something or obtained something in almost the exact same moment we first desired it - its satisfying to say the least - but what about the opposite what about obtaining something long long after that first moment of desire??
this is my moment of delayed gratification, ironically enough it comes in the shape of a light bulb - a light bulb lamp - and im inlove!!! i say love because after two years of waiting the lust has surly died away and now i just love this lamp - yes i waited 2 years for this lamp - its was more expensive than i was willing to pay and so i've been patiently waiting, checking back and watching from a far - so imagine my surprise and elation this morning when i went in just to check on my lamp and found that it had been marked down - 50% down - i snatched it off the shelf like a little kid at a candy shop and marched triumphantly to the register - i must have had the stupidest grin on my face the whole time cause the shop keeper kept looking at me strangely - and i didnt even say a word though i practically ran home with it! so i wanted to share it with the world now - and here it is!! and im sharing assuming you all wont think im crazy because i assume you too have experienced some form of delayed gratification-

aaaaaaahhhhhhhhh sweet victory!!!!