Friday, February 12, 2016

Our Valentine's Day Dinner Plan



While most years Ryan and I have looked at Valentine's Day as another opportunity to get dressed up and spend a night on the town, ever since moving into our new house we have slowly started transitioning into total homebodies. Maybe it's the fact that it's been so cold outside and our fireplaces, cozy blankets, and cuddly pup make our home feel that much more cozy, but to be honest, there's nowhere we would rather be than our little yellow cottage!

So this year for Valentine's Day we will be staying in, opening a bottle of wine from our last trip to Italy, and making dinner together. Thanks to my vegetarian diet plus the fact that our wedding is just a little more than six months away, we have been eating very, very healthy. We decided to ignore the wedding diet for the evening and instead have indulgent night of comfort food. As an afternoon snack we're going to have butternut squash, mushroom and fontina nachos with crispy sage. For dinner, a simple salmon filet roasted with olive oil, sea salt, and pepper, John Legend's famous macaroni and cheese, and roasted carrots and onions with fennel and mint. And last but not least, homemade chocolate cupcakes with sea salt buttercream. A cozy night at home with Ryan, Yoda, and some delicious food? I can't imagine anything better!






Thursday, February 11, 2016

Gallery Wall Inspiration


Ah the ubiquitous gallery wall. While certainly nothing new in the interior design scene, I will always love a gallery wall as I think it's the perfect opportunity to allow guests to learn more about you as a person. Plus, while I most certainly can appreciate a minimalist philosophy when it comes to many aspects of my life {I'm in the middle of reading The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and it is literally blowing my mind}, I will always be in the "more is more" camp when it comes to decor. I just love a home that feels lived in and that every corner you look at has a new story to tell about it's owner.

We had a gallery wall at our old rental, and while I was generally pleased with the results, for our new home I want it to be a bit more intentional. On one hand I most certainly don't want it to feel too matchy-matchy {which for me rings false, as a gallery wall is supposed to show off your most prized possessions - not a bunch of prints you picked up just to fill space}, but on the other, it's easy for it just to seem haphazard. Quite honestly, I think ours may have leaned a bit more towards the latter as it was a rental and I was more concerned with hiding my lumpy walls than I was with creating a perfect reflection of our taste.

Searching for inspiration I've pulled some of my favorite gallery walls, from über eclectic to neat and tidy. I think for me, I like when the pieces are unique with a few added textural elements but some kind of commonality tying them together {be it a similar color palette, medium, subject, or frame}. Even if there are a few odd pieces thrown in that don't necessarily "fit" the mold, I think it helps to use a critical eye while picking the pieces you are going to include.

What are your thoughts on gallery walls? Love 'em? Or are you totally over them and ready to embrace a more minimalist look?



Images via {1} {2} {3} {4} {5} {6} {7} {8} {9} {10} {11} {12} {13}

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Our Honeymoon Part III: Santorini


Last but not least, for the final stop of our honeymoon we will be spending five days on the magical island of Santorini {a destination that has been on the top of my bucket list for many, many years}. After researching the options I decided that Oia, with it's chic ambiance and postcard views, would be the perfect town for us, and thanks to my travel buddy Sara's recommendation we will be staying at the Katikies Hotel.

Katikies—a complex of bridges, cubist cottages and infinity pools—hugs the dramatic Caldera (a volcanic rim) and affords astounding vistas. The white washed rooms have classic arched ceilings and majestic views of the Aegean Sea, which can be enjoyed from the each room's private terrace. With three infinity pools, a champagne bar, two restaurants, and jaw-dropping views, Katikies Hotel will be the perfect way to end our honeymoon!

PS - If you didn't get a chance to check out where we will be heading for the first leg of our honeymoon you can take a look here and here.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Interiors :: "The Intern" Set Design


Ryan and I don't see a lot of movies in the theater, so whenever we travel abroad I use the flight as an opportunity to catch up on my new releases. While watching The Martian, I started getting distracted by the movie the passenger in front of me was watching, and though I tried to stay focused on my screen I just couldn't seem to look away. I finally realized why I was so captivated - the movie had one of the more gorgeous set designs that I had ever seen! When I got home I looked the movie up and quickly realized why I loved it so much. Of course, it was because "The Intern" was directed by none other than Nancy Meyers {the woman can do no wrong!}

The main character's gorgeous Brooklyn apartment was inspired by Jenna Lyons' much pinned Brooklyn home. Beautiful architectural details such as ornate mantles, intricate molding, high ceilings, and built-in bookshelves are balanced by modern, rustic, and industrial elements to create a space that feels elegant yet approachable. While all the rooms are enviable, the kitchen is what really shines for me. To learn more about Meyers' design process and to read more about the home, head over to Architectural Digest for the full article. 

Friday, February 5, 2016

Our Honeymoon Plans Part II: Lake Como


Though we have spent several weeks in Italy, we have never been able to make it far enough north to visit Lake Como. The pristine lake has long been a favorite European holiday destination and has been featured in films such as Casino Royal, advertising campaigns, novels, and regularly by the media {thanks in part to George Clooney owning a famous villa there}. Over the years I have daydreamed about visiting {as evidenced by this blog post}, and in the back of my mind I kept telling myself to wait, and maybe, just maybe, we could go for our honeymoon. I'm absolutely thrilled to say we will be doing just that, and will be spending three days on Italy's most beautiful lake.

When looking at hotels, Ryan and I both agreed that the Grand Hotel Tremezzo was the perfect place for our dream vacation. With over 100 years of history, the iconic hotel is located in the heart of Lake Como, with unparalleled views of Bellagio and the stunning Grigne mountains. The hotel, which sits adjacent to Villa Carlotta’s famed gardens, is an authentic Art Nouveau palace that in addition to it's beautiful grounds, several restaurants, killer views, and ornate Italian furnishings, is known for its amazing floating pool.

We plan to spend most of our time enjoying the gorgeous property, but will definitely be spending an afternoon exploring the picturesque town of Bellagio. And a trip to Lake Como wouldn't be complete without a scenic boat trip on the Grand Hotel Tremezzo's beautiful restored wooden speed boat. Going to Lake Como is an absolute dream come true for me, and I feel so lucky that we are going to be able to make, what for so long felt like a complete fantasy, a reality.

PS - If you didn't get a chance to check out where we will be heading for the first leg of our honeymoon you can take a look here.