BITS & PIECES

Lindsay Speace Interior Design | Nursery

Lindsay Speace Interior Design | Wallpaper

If becoming an absentee blogger is a slippery slope I’ve been on the slip ‘n slide! Rather than holding myself to unrealistic expectations, this year I’m cutting myself some slack and posting only when inspiration strikes. We’re all spending our time on Instagram these days anyway, right? ūüėČ

I have so many projects I’m excited about in the works right now (thanks for the warm welcome Raleigh!) but I thought I’d share a peek at this sweet nursery that is almost ready for my soon-to-be youngest client’s debut at the end of February.

The wallpaper went up on the ceiling last week (complete with insane papered vents care of my talented installer!), a scalloped shade is being custom lacquered and gilded as I type, and pink buffalo plaid cornice boards with pom pom trim are next to be checked off the list.

As excited as I am to see this project come to life, I’m even more excited for my wonderful clients who will be welcoming their little girl home to this room. I hope she loves staring up at those beautiful birds!

DAYDREAM DECORATING

Lindsay Speace Interior Design Headboard | Bedspread | Lamp | Nightstand | Pillow | Rug

Our first southern snowpocalypse has me revisiting my country mouse daydreams. Staying in bed just a little bit longer would be so much better in this bedroom with a view of the snow covered mountains outside the window.

The chocolate brown and blues in that gorgeous oushak laid a chic foundation and basically begged to be paired with this wooden headboard which looks like it could have come from a New England antique store. Perfectly classic lamps sit atop weathered wood nightstands and pile on boho textiles to keep things from getting stodgy.

All that’s left to add to the equation are PJs, a good book, and this¬†gingham bedding. To everyone on the East Coast affected by the blizzard I hope you’re safe, warm, and snuggled up. If you haven’t yet watched¬†Making a Murderer¬†now’s the time to get that Netflix marathon rolling!

2015 GAME CHANGERS

I’m a marketer’s dream in that when I find something I love or that works¬†really¬†well I want to shout it from the roof tops and share with everyone I know.

I’ve come across some some amazing products and apps that have made my life better over the past year and have been wanting to share, so without further adieu, here are my 12 game changers of 2015!

STYLE/BEAUTY:

DryBar Buttercup:¬†This is by far the biggest game changer in my day-to-day routine. I bought this set¬†in November after zapping my T3 in South Africa (forgot about the voltage change–whoops!) I have really thick hair and the Buttercup took my dry time down to 25 min from 45! Reclaiming an extra 20 minutes of my morning¬†was well worth the investment. I’ve also noticed less frizz and more shine. Truly no complaints or regrets on this one!

FRAME Denim:¬†The most flattering and well-wearing brand of denim I’ve found.¬†These are my favorite black jeans (they actually stay black after washing) and these are my go-to everyday skinnies. They have the perfect amount of stretch but don’t stretch out–I hate when jeans start to sag by the end of the day.

Mizon Snail Repair Cream:¬†I’m¬†so¬†suspicious when people claim “miracles in a jar”, but this has been just that for me. This was my first stop on the K-Beauty (Korean Beauty) train and now I’m fully on board. I saw a dramatic difference in my skin–an overall glow-ier and more even tone. This is like Photoshop’s blur tool in real life.

Kiehls Midnight Recovery Oil:¬†I might be into K-Beauty lately, but I’m not into a 10 step routine. When I want to put in minimal effort and still wake up with happier skin I put a few drops of this oil on before bed. It was such a savior on our long haul flights to and from South Africa.

Betsy Burnham | Office

WORK:

Timer:¬†I spend a lot of time on the computer for my job whether it’s drafting floor plans, or sourcing products for a design scheme, and accurately tracking my time is essential. I think we all know how easy it can be to get pulled down the rabbit hole online and¬†I’ve found an old school timer to be the most effective way to keep to task. The one I use has intervals of 60, 30, 15, and 5 minutes and knowing I’m racing against the clock helps me to work more efficiently.

Wunderlist: I’ll always favor a written to-do list for my daily tasks, but for longer term to-dos I love Wunderlist. Each of my projects has its own list where I put down everything I need to do over the course of a project from start to finish. I also use it personally and¬†have lists for each place we want to travel and add notes whenever I come across something of interest like a restaurant, shop, or hotel in that country/city. You can also share lists which is super helpful for things like grocery lists or household to-dos.

Pocket:¬†Before Garrett introduced me to Pocket I perpetually had 6+ browser windows open and I’m 100% sure¬†it wasn’t doing me any favors in terms of productivity or overall mental clarity. Pocket is basically like Pinterest for articles. Whenever I come across something I want to read, I save it to Pocket and tag it based on the category and topic so I can easily find it later. No more open tabs for things I “definitely want to read later”.

Yoga

HEALTH/FITNESS:

Classpass:¬†I’m a late adopter on this one, but Classpass has been a total game changer for me in terms of getting back into an exercise routine. I had a favorite barre studio I went to regularly in DC, but when we moved down here I¬†got lazy and post holidays it was time to make a change. I signed up for Classpass last month and have¬†loved¬†exploring¬†different studios here in Raleigh. I’ve narrowed it down to about 5 favorites which means with Classpass’s 3 visit/studio rule I can get in a work out 15x per month at my favorites. Three to four workouts a week is realistic for me, but I can always add in new studios or types of exercise along the way if I want to up my workouts/month. It’s such a value for $79/month!

Headspace:¬†If you’ve been interested in trying meditation but are kind of weirded out by the process or don’t know how or where to start I would highly recommend Headspace.¬†I’ve been using it for almost a year now–you can start with a 10 day free trial to learn the practice–and I really notice a difference in my focus and reduction in my anxiety levels when I am meditating. An added bonus, the instructor has the most adorable accent!

Globe Trotter Luggage

TRAVEL:

Luggage:¬†My sister gave me an amazing¬†wedding gift: a piece of luggage of my choice. I did tons of research and decided on Briggs & Riley because of their excellent reviews and lifetime warranty. After a lot of waffling, this is the piece I ended up going with. The rolling duffle with a zip-off compartment is genius. After¬†11 flights in 2.5 weeks during our South Africa trip, I feel confident in saying I put mine through the ringer and it handled like a dream.¬†No damage at all, and the medium was big enough to handle everything I packed while being light enough for the smaller planes we took. Better yet, I was able to use the zip-off compartment to segregate dirty clothes which was so key for a long trip. We’re planning on getting one for Garrett, too.

Hotel Tonight:¬†When I need a last minute hotel, Hotel Tonight has become my go-to. A hotel clerk actually tipped me off to the the app to help me find a better rate when I was booking a room day-of–isn’t that so nice? Anyway, I’ve used it to find amazing deals (at non-shady hotels) in NYC, DC, & VA, but you can search anywhere! Lately I’ve been keeping my eye on deals in Charleston. I should also add that it doesn’t have to be for same day booking, now you can look a week or two in advance. This isn’t sponsored, but if you’d like $25 off you can use my code: LSPEACE2 and I’ll get $25, too.

Hopper:¬†I’ve been using Hopper to find the best deals on airfare. You simply put in your travel details–departure city/arrival city/dates–and Hopper finds the best deals. My favorite part of the app is that it advises if you should book now or if prices will likely drop in the future. If they might drop, just save the trip and Hopper will keep searching for deals and send an alert when it finds the best price/time to buy. It’s like your own travel agent working silently in the background!

I hope some of these may be helpful to you, and if you’ve stumbled across any game changers of your own please share!

THE CASE FOR A COLORFUL SOFA

Conventional design wisdom dictates keeping your larger pieces of upholstery neutral to provide a transitional backdrop; meaning most people are steered to white, off-white, beige, and grey. I love a blank canvas¬†as much as the next person, and neutrals¬†do¬†allow you flexibility if you like to switch it up often, but here’s the thing, neutral isn’t your only option.

You’re not a design deviant if you secretly think you’d love a moss green velvet sofa but your mother-in-law, best friend, HGTV,¬†favorite blogger–whoever–told you it would be “too bold” or you really should “stick with neutral”. The truth is, you won’t be as limited as you might think you will be by choosing color.

I could make a convincing argument for just about any color being used as a neutral in a room, and I could definitely come up with at least three design schemes to show you how unlimited you are, but I’ll let a few of my favorite rooms below do the talking.

India Hicks Pink Sofa

McGrath II Pink Sofa

Ann Mashburn Pink Sofa

Miles Redd Red Sofa

Tilton Fenwick Orange Chaise

Ali Cayne Yellow Sofa

Southern Living Green Sofa

Sofia Coppola Blue Sofa

Caroline Sieber | Vogue

Tory Burch Peacock Sofa

Zhush Navy Sofa | Domaine

Aerin Lauder Purple Sofa

After that glorious ROYGBIV of sofas are you convinced yet? I’ll admit, you do have to be more thoughtful if you decide to go with a bolder sofa. It’s definitely not an impulse buy, and you’ll absolutely regret it if you try and plop a peacock blue sofa √† la Tory Burch in a room without thinking how it will relate to the other elements within it and the surrounding rooms.

With that said, don’t be afraid to let your personality shine through. It’s okay to not be “conventional”.¬† The photos above all embrace color, but are still all very classic to me–your house won’t be a circus. Take stock of what colors you gravitate towards or already have in your home, or better yet, hire someone to help you. ūüėȬ†I’m making it a goal to have at least a few colorful sofas in my projects this year.

Cheers to the year of the colorful sofa!

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COUNTRY MOUSE

The weather has gotten chillier which has only upped the ante on my desire for a cozy spot to hibernate. I’ve always thought if we had the opportunity to buy a little retreat I would want it to be by the water, but lately I’ve been thinking being a country mouse certainly has its own appeal.

This weekend I was browsing Rita Konig’s beautiful new website¬†and was thrilled to find some new-to-me¬†photos of Deborah Needlman’s country house in upstate New York. If my inner country mouse needed any persuading this gorgeous spot all but sealed the deal.

Deborah Needleman's Country House| Rita Konig

I think what’s most appealing about the idea of a country house is the opportunity to go in an entirely different design direction than what feels appropriate in our city apartment. I would love to furnish an entire home with antique and flea market finds.

Deborah Needleman's Country House| Rita Konig

Of course, I wouldn’t be able to resist adding in some of my favorite textiles here and there. I’m imagining a lot of Colefax & Fowler,¬†Carolina Irving, and¬†Kathryn Ireland–linens in subdued hues that are a departure from the saturated colors and patterns I generally gravitate towards.

Deborah Needleman Country House | Rita Konig

With touches of Rita Konig’s signature design insouciance the home is feels inviting rather than stuffy. The patina of antiques add warmth and the unpretentious arrangements of pieces let you know you can sit and stay awhile.

Deborah Needleman's Country House| Rita Konig

The brass articulating sconces feel very of the moment even though these photos are years old–I’ve had this bathroom image saved forever and somehow never connected the dots that it was part of Needleman’s country house.

Deborah Needleman's Country House| Rita Konig

I just love an inset niche in a shower.

Deborah Needleman's Country House| Rita Konig

If we ever buy an older home, painted floors are happening in some capacity–I’ll be saving this photo for reference. The white with wood feels like less of a commitment than some of the other examples I’ve seen over the years.

Deborah Needleman Country House | Rita Konig

I’ve written about Marianna Kennedy’s lamps before¬†and this red one with its purple shade is the perfect foil against the chocolate toile wallpaper.

Deborah Needleman Country House | Rita Konig

It might be counterintuitive, but I find a sloped ceiling in a small room to be the perfect opportunity for wallpaper to create an enveloping cozy space.

Deborah Needleman Country House | Rita Konig

This desk scene is another longtime favorite from my inspiration files. The combination of the black walls, bamboo matchstick blinds, tortoise frame, and French desk with bentwood desk chair is a primer in the art of the mix. If you have to bring your laptop to the country, this is the place to do work.

Deborah Needleman Country House | Rita Konig

Then, when you’re done, why not head out to the cutting garden and do some informal arranging in your soapstone sink? I know, it’s perfect.

Deborah Needleman's Country House| Rita Konig

Set your new arrangement out on the patio and enjoy dinner al fresco!

Anyone else ready to completely forgo city life and become a country mouse? At the very least it’s given me a goal to work towards–especially since we’ve been hearing such great things about the mountains in North Carolina.

We’re hoping to get an Asheville weekend on the books and I’d love your recommendations if you have any!