Gone Fishin’

I’ve been writing weekly posts for quite a while now, so I’m taking some time off.  Gone cruising and maybe do some fishin’ or just laze on a sandy beach!

Casart Katherine Collection Boats on Kalamazoo, as seen on Slipcovers for your walls, casartblog

Boats on the Kalamazoo from the Katherine Collecftion

Casart-coverings_Katherine-Collection_ Quickie on the Beach scene

“Quickie on the Beach” from Casart’s Katherine Collection-

-  Lorre Lei

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If You Like Your Wallpaper, You Can Keep It; Period!

That is, IF it’s removable and reusable like Casart!

Here’s the “plan” we offer:

  • 52″ wide so less seams
  • Can be DIY-no expert needed
  • No paste
  • No glue
  • Easily repositioned for alignment
  • Easily removable without leaving a residue behind
  • Competitive pricing
  • Low “deductible” – correct measuring of space before ordering and proper prepping of surface prior to installing
  • Reusable-another time, another space, another application

IF YOU LIKE YOUR WALLPAPER, AND IT’S CASART, YOU CAN KEEP IT; PERIOD!  THAT’S OUR PROMISE AND WE MEAN IT!

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-  Lorre Lei

 

Downsizing Without Compromising

Is it possible to downsize without compromising?  I don’t think so.  Marni Jameson says the trick is to downsize up.  Marni’s idea of downsizing is: “an intimate home, but not a broom closet.  I want an easy keeper, with enough usable canvas for me to imprint my soul in three dimensions.”  She want to live in comfort, be close to some city life, but not so close that she can’t see the stars at night.  “I want gracious but not grand, lovely but not lavish, pretty not pretentious.”  Is all that possible?  Perhaps.

I have a friend who was recently widowed.  Originally from Missouri, she’s lived in New Orleans for the past 50 years.  She sold her home right after her husband died and has to move before mid-March.  She has friends and one son here, another in Missouri and a daughter in Arizona.  Her solution is to rent a 3 bedroom, 2 bath apartment for a year, enjoy the company of her friends, visit the son in Missouri during the hot, humid summer and the daughter in Arizona during the cold winter months.  She will be able to take most of her furniture that matters, give children anything they want, have a garage sale and donate what remains to a non-profit.  I think she has found a way to downsize without much compromise.  Here are some advantages to downsizing.

  • more freedom from taking care of unnecessary space and stuff
  • lower overhead, such as house expenses and property taxes
  • possibly more access to services such as markets, shopping and also less driving

Designer Becky Dietrich has a Houzz ideabook on how to edit your belongings.  It’s the beginning of a series addressing small items, clothing, furniture, etc.  Here’s the link to the first installment which tackles photos, kitchen and garden tools, seasonal decorations and collectibles.  I can hardly wait to see all of her other suggestions!

At Casart, we keep moving and downsizing in mind as all of our designs are removable AND reusable.  It may have graced a wall or an entire room in one home, but could find a new life in a new space in many ways-accent wall, bookcase backings, stair risers, covering a piece of furniture, applied to a folding screen, etc., etc.

Libby Langdon Chic Chevron Accent Wall-High Point Fall, 2013

Libby Langdon Chic Chevron Accent Wall-High Point Fall, 2013

Libby Langdon Daykeover with bookcase backings from her collection for Casart coverings.  Photo-Francesco Lagnese

Libby Langdon Daykeover with bookcase backings from her collection for Casart coverings. Photo-Francesco Lagnese

Casart custom Faux Tile Stair Risers, on Slipcovers for your walls, casartblog

Casart Coverings-MoRockAnSoul Collection-Diamonds In The Ruff

Casart Faux Tortoiseshell applied to furniture

Casart Faux Tortoiseshell applied to furniture

 

 

-  Lorre Lei

Will Season 4 Be The Demise Of Downton Abbey?

Could it be?  Will Downton Abbey finally have a conclusion?

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The 4th season just opened, fast-forwarding to six months after the tragic death of Matthew and it’s 1922, the Jazz Age. and the end of the Edwardian period.  Queen Victoria had reigned for the best part of the 19th century, and the Edwardian period heralded the beginning of a new century with a new king, King Edward VII, on the throne.  But his reign was to be brief, lasting a mere nine years.  Following the heaviness and dark colors of the Victorian era, people were ready for lighter, brighter, cheerful colors.  Wallpapers were florals of roses, lilac, wisteria, and sweet peas, with trellises, ribbons and bows.  Stripes were also typical, especially for bedrooms.  Dining rooms featured simple but rich patterns  such as a gold damask  Just think how easy it would have been to change out all those Victorian papers if Casart had been around then.

There’s a wealth of gossipy speculation on line and loads of tidbits about the characters, the actors, the costumes, the food staging, on and on.  Here’s the most significant speculation about Abbey’s future.   Julian Fellows, Abbey’s writer, is said to have declared, “I don’t want to see our actors with walking sticks and powder in their hair.” so I don’t think it will continue into WWII. (I read it here) However, there’s a lot of material for episodes covering the next 18-20 year period.

Here are a few of the juicier things I learned researching for this post.

The cast all have an odor about them due to the wardrobe policy that forbids washing the garments for fear of destroying their authenticity.  Sophie McShera, who plays the cook’s assistance, Daisy, revealed, “They have these weird patches, which are sewn into the armpits and which they wash separately.”

PBS has a wealth of Abbey articles you can purchase from DVDs to totes and books.

pPBS3-16864333t130Here is a link to a wonderful tongue-in-cheek piece by Fred Albert that appeared in Houzz.  Downton followers will have many laughs reading it.

The Edwardians usually ate 4 meals a day: breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner.  All dishes were cut in the kitchen and brought to the table on serving plates offered to each diner by servants.  Downton Abbey food stylist, Lisa Heathcote, explained how a traditional Edwardian Christmas meal would comprise an eye-watering six course meal.

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In the meantime, you can dine like Lord and Lady Grantham at your own estate.

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I’ll never complain about preparing my standing crown pork roast with popovers and plum pudding again!

-  Lorre Lei

 

Are You In The Number?

Do you live in one of the 10 most interior design-savvy cities in America?  Elite Fixtures conducted a study last July to determine these cities.  They started with 50 potential candidates based on population, median home prices and proximity to design schools.  Then they established an objective ranking methodology based on the following:

  • How many interior design professionals per capita? (Houzz)
  • How many interior design professionals / square mile (Houzz)
  • How many interior design businesses per capita? (Yelp)
  • The presence of a top ranking design school. (More schools = more points)
  • The ratio of the average living room remodel cost vs. annual income.
  • The ratio of the living room remodel cost vs. home value.
  • The ratio of the average décor spend vs. annual income.
  • The ratio of the average décor spend vs home value.

The goal was see if they could answer the most important question of all – how much disposable income is being spent on interior design?

Here are the winners.

# 10-Denver image source: David Lauer Photography

# 10-Denver image source: David Lauer Photography

#9 Washington, DC Image source: Sightline Art Consulting

#9 Washington, DC Image source: Sightline Art Consulting

The nation’s capital is also a national center for the arts.

#8 Miami Image source: Charles Neal Interiors

#8 Miami Image source: Charles Neal Interiors

Miami is home to many of America’s rich & famous.

#7 Durham, NC Image source: Southern Studio Interior Design

#7 Durham, NC Image source: Southern Studio Interior Design

Durham residents spent the highest amount of their income on interior remodeling.

#6 San Francisco mage source: Culbertson Durst Interiors

#6 San Francisco mage source: Culbertson Durst Interiors

San Francisco has top design programs, internationally acclaimed art and architecture.

#5 Atlanta, GA Image source: New Mood Design

#5 Atlanta, GA Image source: New Mood Design

Atlanta has the most interior design professionals per capita on this list

#4 New York Image source: Lucy Harris Studio

#4 New York Image source: Lucy Harris Studio

New Yorkers, living in one of the most population-dense cities, are very conscious of making the most of their living space.

#3 St. Louis Image source: S&K Interiors

#3 St. Louis Image source: S&K Interiors

Perhaps because St. Louis has the most affordable homes on the list, owners don’t skimp on design costs.

#2 Chicago Image source: James Thomas

#2 Chicago Image source: James Thomas

Not surprising that Chicago, with 3 top design schools, is right up at the top.

And the winner is…

 

#1 Boston Image source: LeBlanc Design

#1 Boston Image source: LeBlanc Design

Bean Town is known for being highly cultured, despite its nickname.

In conclusions, Elite Fixtures had this to say.  “We suppose it’s not too surprising that colder cities (where people spend more time indoors) have a higher affinity for interior design. The North East and The South — places known for not wearing white after Labor Day — also made an excellent showing in our list of design conscious cities.”

Reminds me, have to check to see if I put my white shoes away for the winter!

-  Lorre Lei

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