My birthday get-away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!

By , October 29, 2010 12:13 pm

I recently celebrated my birthday. It was a wonderful day full of adventure. One of the ways, I get my gardening/nature fix, is to get out into the wilderness of Oregon. What better backyard than our gorgeous state parks! I couldn’t think of a more fantastic venue for my birthday. To further illustrate my endless youthful energy…ha…I thought a bike ride through the Gorge would be the perfect activity!

ready4 My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!Our path: The Mosier Twin Tunnel Trail in the Columbia River Gorge. This trail is for everyone – walkers, runners, families and is even handicap accessible!

map My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!
fall colors My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!

gorge view1 My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!

birthday view1 My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!

light at the end of the tunnel1 My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!Yes! There is light at the end of tunnel! Love this shot!

pinecones1 My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!I love how whimsical these pine cone sculptures are! We just stumbled upon them…in the middle of nowhere!

picnic1 My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!What a gorgeous place for a pit stop…

Picnik collage e1288311065225 My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!Images via Double Mountain Brewery

We ended the afternoon gobbling up some fresh wood-fire pizza and washing it down with a couple of  delectable beers at the lovely Double Mountain Brewery in Hood River. I have to mention that hung on the brewery’s walls was some breathtaking photography of Hood River and the surrounding area by Blane Franger…go check out his portfolio here.

So you are probably wondering…okay so when do I jet off to Luxembourg? Well…let’s just say I had a little “stay-cation” from my laptop via my friend’s blog…so much fun…wanna go on a “Vicarious Vacation” too? Check it out here!

All in all, I had a fabulous day and I want to thank all of you who so graciously sent me birthday wishes!

Don’t wait for your birthday, get out in your state parks and play!

6F07637979F15E8C7C4F65EE7E3DDDC2 My birthday get away, from the Columbia Gorge to Luxembourg!

Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardin

By , October 27, 2010 2:48 pm

Today, I wanted to feature one of my favorite people – Julie DeJardin.  I met Julie when I was working as a designer for Neil Kelly and she was the president for the National Kitchen and Bath Association. She’s an amazing designer, a dear friend and she really knows how to downsize in style!

Julie recently moved into Portland’s beautiful high-rise – The Metropolitan.  She loves her new space, the view and the ease of living in the Pearl District but the kitchen, well that had to change. Renown for her amazing culinary skills and love of entertaining, Julie quickly realized that her kitchen – the heart of her new home – simply wasn’t up to par. With the ease of an artist with a brush, she pulled out her measuring tape, a pad of paper and began re-designing the space.

Check out the before shots…dull and dark.

Picnik collage kitchen before e1288205612966 Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardin

And after…modern, clean and fresh!

no reflection Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardinafter 2 Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardin

It would have been near impossible to match the wood tone of the current cabinetry, so Julie ingeniously added these stunning high-pressure Italian laminate cabinets in a stormy gray, to provide even more storage.

after 3 Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardin

Julie gets kitchens. I mean she really gets them. And when it came to her own kitchen she knew exactly what to do to meet her needs both functionally and aesthetically.  Check out some of the details…

Picnik collage storage e1288207563767 Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardinBy being creative with her space she gained a whopping 11.5 linear feet of  base cabinet storage. Now everything is easy to find and easy to reach!

backsplash Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardinThe sparkling back-splash is a combo of polished and brushed metals, interlaced with crystal clear glass. Sourced locally at Pental Granite & Marble.  Gorgeous isn’t it? The snowy white Caesarstone Quartz counter tops provide the perfect contrast to the dark cabinetry.

IMG 4892 casters1 Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardin

Think that island is just an island? Think again! Julie added casters to the unit, so it can be moved into different configurations to suit her entertaining needs. It’s a dining table, buffet, bar and workspace! How’s that for multifunctional design?

bar no reflection Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardin

By removing an existing wall, this elegant bar elongates the kitchen and adds sparkle and flair! Every girl needs a lovely place to whip up her favorite cocktail!

Picnik collage view e1288206765268 Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardin

Nothing but the best for Julie’s appliances – a Viking fridge, Miele oven, Wolf cook-top and a Blanco micro-edge sink, all make this kitchen perform like a pro’s. Not to mention that whipping up delicious meals with this view is simply inspiring.

Julie’s artfully designed kitchen shows us, that when executed well, small spaces can truly meet all our needs!

Want more inspiration? Check out some beautiful compact kitchen designs here.  Does your kitchen meet the needs of your lifestyle? What would you change?

Have a fabulous day!

6F07637979F15E8C7C4F65EE7E3DDDC2 Small Kitchen Design by Julie DeJardin

Small space : Big Impact with FLOR tiles

By , October 15, 2010 1:24 pm

Have you heard of FLOR? They are an innovative flooring company that has developed modular flooring solutions that have big impact! Perfect for small spaces, these ingenious carpet tiles will add serious style to your rooms! Check out some of my favorite looks…


R348000012 99069 1 e1287116717355 Small space : Big Impact with FLOR tilesR347000030 99068 1 e1287116808681 Small space : Big Impact with FLOR tilesOr more traditional…

R344000036 99063 1 e1287116919450 Small space : Big Impact with FLOR tiles1249402500 100865 1 e1287116998841 Small space : Big Impact with FLOR tilesFLOR’s wide selection of styles and colors has something for everyone.

1384252500 102360 1 e1287117082978 Small space : Big Impact with FLOR tilesWhite carpet under an eating area? Crazy, right? But when a spill happens, these durable little tiles come right up so you can hand wash the stain. Can’t get it out? Order one new tile instead of replacing a whole rug! Love that!

They even have tiles that will work outside…

P00530250E P00167 1 e1287117443976 Small space : Big Impact with FLOR tilesSuper easy to install too! Just snap the tiles together and you are good to go. From wall to wall to a small area rug, you can reconfigure the tiles as your needs change – flooring that can downsize with you! Brilliant!

Check out their great site here and their inspiring blog here.

Happy Friday!

6F07637979F15E8C7C4F65EE7E3DDDC2 Small space : Big Impact with FLOR tiles

All images via FLOR

Apartment Therapy in a Book

By , October 13, 2010 9:39 am

I’m sure many of you love following the extremely successful and inspirational blog : Apartment Therapy.  Never heard of it?  You must go take a look. It is chock full of fantastic ideas and home tours of some really incredible spaces.

For all those considering downsizing, it is an absolute necessary stop on your internet search. However, not everyone likes to get their information online so….why not check out this new, gorgeous book by Apartment Therapy founder, Maxwell Gillingham-Ryan.

511XmrsaA+L. SS500  Apartment Therapy in a Bookbigbook02 Apartment Therapy in a Bookbigbook03 Apartment Therapy in a Bookbigbook04 Apartment Therapy in a BookFull to the brim with imaginative solutions for small spaces, storage and organization, it may have you looking at your home in a whole new way! Maxwell believes that small spaces or size constraints actually opens up your creativity, forcing you to think outside the box. Since downsizing really involves a re-invention of your lifestyle, I really appreciate his fresh approach and I think you will too.

Want to add it to your library? Click here to buy.

Is there a small space in your own home that is begging for a makeover? Could it be more functional or even multi-functional if you looked at it with a new perspective? Look around you might just get inspired!

Have a fantastic day!

6F07637979F15E8C7C4F65EE7E3DDDC2 Apartment Therapy in a Book

All images via Apartment Therapy

Get your Design fix – online.

By , October 8, 2010 8:52 am

Beginning the process of downsizing, we often look to the interior design world for inspiration and ideas but as more and more design magazines fold, internet or E-magazines are showing up on the radar.

I love curling up with a good design mag and a cup of coffee but the reality is that the technology of the day trumps the costs of running a traditional publication. While good ole’ paper mags are not going extinct immediately, I have tried to relish in what some of these E-mags have to offer.

So…pull up a comfy chair, your laptop or iPad (my favorite), a cup of something warm and peruse the eye candy virtually.

Some of my favorites:

Lonny Magazine has stunning photography, is artfully edited and informative too!

cover lonny Get your Design fix   online.lonny mag2 e1286472341678 Get your Design fix   online.Another new e-mag that has surfaced is Rue. A stylish blend of fashion and design, this one is worth a peek. Check out their premiere issue…here.

rue cover Get your Design fix   online.rue 2 e1286473154750 Get your Design fix   online.For a one stop shop and healthy dose of inspiration check out An invaluable wellspring of ideas and resources, where you can sign up for free and create your own design files. Very handy!

remodelista Get your Design fix   online.

While you mourn the loss of Domino, House & Garden and O at Home, drown your sorrows in the beautiful virtual interfaces of these up and coming online magazines.

Happy Friday!

6F07637979F15E8C7C4F65EE7E3DDDC2 Get your Design fix   online.

Panorama Theme by Themocracy