Friday, October 26, 2012

Charlottesville Weekend

A couple weeks ago the boy and I went to Charlottesville for UVA's Homecomings weekend. It was a pretty spontaneous decision to go. I had been telling him how I missed Charlottesville and wished I was going down for Homecoming. We had a busy month coming up that would make it tough for us to take another trip this fall, so he called around and miraculously found a room at the Red Roof Inn on the Corner. It totally caught me off guard and left me grinning at my desk at work. He's a keeper.

Saturday morning we packed up the car and made the drive down tree-lined route 29. Immediately after we checked in, we headed over to a friend's room on the Range, where we had a great time tailgating.  UVA students traditionally tailgate on the Lawn (although it seems they put the kibosh on that on the undergrad side a bit), which is the central fixture of the University and is headed by Jefferson's iconic Rotunda. The Range is a row of historical rooms of either side of the lawn reserved for grad students.

We picked up some tickets on the way over to the game, where we hung out long enough for UVA to score twice and sing the Good Old Song. And then Maryland scored again and our group left. A lot of other schools like to knock UVA on the football front. To this I say: meh. The football team is by no means the numero uno reason anyone (except perhaps the football team) goes to UVA, it's a bonus. If the team wins, we have a great time. If the team loses, we still have a pretty good time, as was the case that day. And yes, my outfit was cute. I wore this orange shirt from Banana Republic, an orange and blue scarf, jeans, and riding boots. Wish I had a picture. 

After the game, the we picked up some Bodos bagels, coffee, and put on some warmer coats in preparation for the Young Alumni Reunion. For $7 each we got to enjoy all you can drink beer and all you can eat food, and dancing in the middle of Grounds (campus). The event has gotten really popular, although this was my last year as a young alumnus (tear). Again, wish I had a picture. 

Sunday morning we got up and went to Take it Away, one of my favorite sandwich places in Charlottesville. It's a lot like the Cheese Shop in Williamsburg, VA.  I've heard that they have the same owner, but I can't find any sources to confirm it. 

After enjoying our sandwiches across the street by the Rotunda, we snapped a few photos.

Isn't the Lawn beautiful? The Rotunda was under construction, but I just love the pavilions. Each one is different and its own study in architecture. The gardens behind them are especially cool. The gardens on the east side of the Lawn cascade down a hill and are wild and whimsical. And the serpentine walls aren't just for aesthetics--they actually provide a strong structure so that the walls can be built one brick thick. There are a lot of interesting facts about the Lawn that I'd love to nerd out and tell you, but I'll stop. You can learn more about it here.

After my photo stop on the Lawn, we headed up (literally) to another one of my favorite Charlottesville spots, Carter Mountain Orchard. I actually don't care at all about apple picking, I just love the views from the top of this mountain. And they have amazing apple cider donuts.

The mountain was PACKED. It seriously took us about 30 minutes to drive up the hill, and we parked what seemed liked forever away from the Apple Barn. They were even discouraging people to go to other orchards via their facebook page:

As you can see, it was totally worth the wait.

After Carter Mountain we headed to another Bodo's Bagels location and got one last meal before we left town. 

I wanted to go to U-Fab, a discount fabric store in Richmond and Charlottesville, but it is unfortunately closed on Sundays, so we didn't make any more stops. On our way home, we stopped at my parents house to celebrate my little brother's birthday. 

It was a whirlwind of a weekend, but totally worth it. Charlottesville in the fall makes me so happy. Virginia can be But one thing is for sure: it is gorgeous. I seriously love this place. I highly recommend all you DC transplants take some time to explore all the Commonwealth has to offer, and that Charlottesville be the first stop on your list!

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Favorite Pinners

Now that I'm in design school, I frequent Pinterest these days more than ever. Gathering inspiration, be it from interiors, outfits, art, or photographs, is critical to my success in my current classes and the program itself. Pinterest helps me organize that inspiration very easily (I've been on Houzz a lot too). If you follow me, you may have noticed that I am pinning things for "ID Project [whatever]", which means that I'm gathering images to use as inspiration or materials to use in my intro to interior design and color theory classes. I realized through all this pinning that there are a few pinners who tend to pin items that are very much in line with my style.

While I really like many different styles, there are some images that I'm just drawn to. Many, many of those images are pinned by Bryn Dunn of Bryn Alexandra Interiors and Jenny Komenda of Jenny Komenda Interiors. Not surprisingly, I tend to visit their blogs daily. Here are just a few of their pins that have caught my eye.

Source: via Bryn on Pinterest

Source: via Jenny on Pinterest

IDo you have any favorite pinners?

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Mood Board: Gray + Gold + Aqua Bathroom

In one of my classes, we are spending the entire semester designing a small home. The first project was a bathroom. While I had to present the design with a physical design board that contained included floor plans and elevation drawings, I made a mood board so that you guys could get the gist of the design. When I designed it, I wanted the room to have timeless, elegant bones without looking too generic. It's fairly neutral, which makes it easy to add pops of color with a small vase of flowers, artwork, or other items that are easy to switch in and out as you please. Enjoy!

1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5   |  6  |  7  |  8  |  9  |  10  |  11  |  12  |  13

1. A dark wood vanity like this one from Home Depot anchors the space and looks like a solid piece of furniture instead of a built-in cabinet.

2. Classic carrara marble hexagon tile with lots of gray in it like this sheet from Marbleville adds interest to the floor and reflects light beautifully.

3. A simple roman shade made from this geometric navy indoor-outdoor fabric by Waverly adds some pattern and softness to the room, while resisting mold, mildew, and other stains.

4. Antique brass faucets in a traditional shape like this one from Home Depot give some warmth to the metal fixtures and stray from the usual chrome or polished nickel.

5. Antique brass wall sconces like this one from Restoration Hardware carry the antique brass up the wall and add a little glamour to the room.

6. Two chrome-framed pivot mirrors like this one from Pottery Barn mix up the metals and look more custom than one large mirror.

7. Marble subway tiles like these from Daltile continue to the use of carrara marble but change up the shape in the shower.

8. An antique shower head and faucet like this set from Home Depot brings the antique brass into the shower.

9. Gray textured towels like this one from Target pick up on the gray veins in the marble.

10. A slab of marble like this one from Daltile surrounds the tub.

11. Oil rubbed towel bars like this one from Lowes carry the darkness and contrast of the vanity throughout the space and prevent antique brass from over-powering the room.

12. An antique brass drum pendant like this one from Restoration Hardware adds a little light and romance over the bathtub.

13. A deep, white soaking tub like this one from Lowes gives the room a classic finish in a modern shape.

Monday, October 1, 2012

My Search for the Perfect Leopard Flats

I'm not one to wear animal prints in my clothes very often, but I love an animal print accessory. Now that it's fall and the air is getting cooler, it's finally appropriate to break out the nice, deep leopard prints. I especially love leopard print shoes. This fall I've been on the lookout for the perfect leopard flat, but it's been a lot harder than I've expected.

I guess my criteria has been a little strict. I'd prefer something with a pointed toe, since it can be dressed up a bit more easily than a ballet flat, and looks great with pants, skirts, and dresses. While I've found a few contenders, my grad student budget has ruled some of them out already. Here's a list of the shoes currently in the walking running.

J.Crew Janey Calf Hair Flats

Photo from J.Crew
I realize that this is a silly first pick because these don't have that pointy toe I'm looking for, but OH MY GOD I love them. The gold heal...the rich color...they are just beautiful. The only problem? Um, the $298 price tag. And let's be honest, while that gold heal is gorgeous, it's going to be out of style pretty soon, making the price an even bigger deal. Oh well, a girl can dream can't she?

Steve Madden Vegass Flats
Photo from Piperlime
These flats are really what I'm looking for. They have a pointy toe and the fact that it doesn't have black trim makes it even more versatile. The only thing that's stopping me, again, is the price. Well, let me revise: It's the the price in combination with the quality. I just can't bring myself to spend $90 on flats that get 2.5 stars on Piperlime. The quality just doesn't match the price. I can only justify spending $90 on shoes if they're a good investment (the last few times I bought shoes that expensive, they were a pair of black Michael Kors pumps, and a pair of running shoes).

Steve Madden Eternnal Flats
Photo from Piperlime
These flats are very similar to the Vegass flats, and I really like the gold studs on the back. But again, based on the reviews, the current $70 price tag just doesn't match the quality. I might consider them in the $40 range, but not $70.

Steve Madden Croquet Flats
Photo from Zappos
Rounding up my Steve Madden picks is the Croquet, one of the many tuxedo flats that seem to be all over the place these days. I hesitate to buy these because while the style seems classic, the fact that they're everywhere this season makes me worry that they will just look tired next year. So even though the $56 price tag is more to the tune of what I'm willing to pay, they just aren't versatile enough. Plus, I tried them on at DSW while I was wearing athletic shorts and they just don't flatter my bare legs enough, so I couldn't wear them with skirts and dresses.

Mossimo Black Vianca Tuxedo Flat

Photo from Target
I actually ordered these at the beginning of the season because at $20, I was cool with them being trendy  and a little less versatile. But they were just too stiff and too low quality, and I knew that would probably be a problem. My feet just can't handle that anymore unless I'm wearing sandals. My friend Heather at Pineapples and Pearls ordered them and has a plan to make them more comfortable, so I'm eager to see if she can get them to work.

Nine West Speakup Flats
Photo from Nine West
I saw the Speakup in the Nine West store last weekend, and I think that these are really the ones I'm looking for. They're solid with more support than the Steve Madden options, and they have a sort-of pointed toe. They have a very classic look that I know I could wear for at least two seasons. At $80 they're still a little on the high side for flats, but I'm one coupon away from snagging these.

Crocs Kadee Leopard Flats
Photo from Zappos
These Crocs are a great option since they would be super comfortable and they are only $35.

Hahaha, just kidding! I could hardly even type that. Sorry guys. I am all kinds of silly this morning.

Have you scored any cute shoes lately? Do you own any of these above shoes? Know where I can score a deal on the Nine West shoes? I wish they were on Piperlime today so that I could get 20% off.

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