Graffiti in your home

What do you think about graffiti? Around the city, everywhere?

Well, I usually feel very sorry for old fancy houses that got ugly-fied over night with just random stupid scribblings. Some of the original sandstone or other material is so hard to clean and the graffiti never will come off. What a shame!

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This one is kind of cute, especially all the natural colors surrounding it – but it is illegal and did destroy the original wall.

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But I do like these. I found them on walls and doors in China and Argentina.

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Having an artist spray a work of art directly onto your living room walls – would you do that?

The more I think about it – the more I like the idea!

Does anyone know a good graffiti artist in the Houston area?

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Glass tiles are up

The backsplash consisting of small glass tiles is up and I took several pics that day. It looks so fresh and clean!

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Looking closer you can see two different color tones – light shining through the outer tiles and making them look so much brighter.

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To confirm our suspicion our fantastic Angel took her magic key chain (“Hero of the Day”)…

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… and did some testing, blocking the light with her hands.

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So now we are debating how to paint these tiles on their outer areas to stop the light from shining all the way through the tiles. Do you have any thoughts on this? Any experience?

Texas – patriotic

The first morning on the recent Texas trip started very patriotic!

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Then of course we had to get these Texas shaped Tortilla Chips!

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The Starbucks gift card for Texas lovers.

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Ikea displaying not only the US and Swedish flag, but also the Texan one.

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Now we are debating, if we should add a Texas flag emergency house number to our curb.

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lemon dreams coming true

For almost 20 years now I promised myself to one day have a lemon tree in my yard. But the climate was never right for citrus plants. So in Texas, my dreams are about to come true.

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Lemon dreams.

Many, many years ago I took a vacation to the Greek island of Corfu. Our guide book was recommending a quaint little seaside restaurant known for its tasteful preparations of the daily catch from the sea. But what inpired me the most was the one little extra sentence where it said: Sometimes the owner lets pick his guest lemons from his yard….

We had a great day trip, a wonderful lunch and indeed we got to pick lemons. That made me so happy! I had never picked lemons from a tree before in my life – I was in heaven. It just felt so different than picking apples, cherries, berries. Picking lemons felt like paradise to me.

Whenever we travel to the US now I make sure I buy meyer lemons or key limes to take home with me in my suitcase. I told you, I am known for schlepping things back from my trips! At home I bake yummie treats immediately or I just squeeze them and then freeze the juice.

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So lemon tree shopping feels better than shoe shopping to me. Can you believe that?

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What makes the whole mission now even more complicated is that we also found out that we could grow peaches in Texas. And pomegranates. And all sorts of citrus – from pomelos to kumquats to grapefruits.

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I am in citrus heaven! Walking down the blooming citrus aisles…inhaling the scent…can’t get any better for a citrus lover.

My bounty from my latest trip. Key limes and Meyer lemons.

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Do you have experience with growing citrus?

would you like to go inside?

I just passed this house yesterday while running errands in town and had to snap a picture.

Would you like to live in a house with such an entrance? The engraved little animals are kind of creative. So happy that our Texan house has a regular door and I will never complain about it.

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So I am very happy to have just a simple, wooden door. We recently picked out new door knobs.

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Can you guess which one we picked for our front door?

the thing with decor trends

The decor trends. Well, we all know what they are. It is just amazing to observe the trend setting industry – it is so transparent. A trend is born, we see some eager early adapters and then we see the crowds follow and the early adapters withdraw and make snarky comments.

Beautiful styles become trendy, then get overused, then get dissed. What a shame!

Come on! Who are you to judge other peoples homes? It is way more brave to live in an individual and creative home than to rush from trend to trend and then finally burn out, design -wise I mean.

Take cowhides for example. They were considered redneck until they appeared all over the blogosphere and then later on pinterest of course. Stained, zebra-striped, gold-speckeld. Now it seems it is a staple in every home, even Ikea carries them. Overused by the million. So should I get rid of mine? Just because I am not special and unique anymore?

I say: no way! We bought ours in Argentina and we hunted thru so many stores there for the right color, then schlepped them back in our suitcases. A friend lived in South Africa and brought hers back with the move. So of course, they are staying – emotionally valuable.

So if you stil like the overused Morrocan wedding blankets,

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the Benni Ouran rugs,

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the chevron pattern,

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the  all-over-the-place Serge Mouille lamps,

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the endless beach scene prints,

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even the inflationary flea market oil portraits.

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go for it if you feel like it and keep it – guilt free. Because you like it – not because it is a trend! It is your house after all.

Stay true to your style and likes and dislikes and don’t let anyone judge your decor choices. Do you decorate your home for others? Do you buy a rug to impress? Do you pick art based on others opinions? Or do you even pick your friends based on their interior styles?

I really hope not.

So decor trends coming or going – be yourself and do what you want in your home. Be brave and be individual! This will make you happy.

I hope the future will bring more and more unique homes – away from the perfect. Try to add more personal touches, having some funky things sitting around your house. Things that make you laugh when you pass them on a daily basis.

If everyone followed their heart, trends would not have a chance. Forget about  “tastemakers” and get to the bottom of your own taste.

How do you fell about trends? How do you handle the overexposure? How do you stay individual?

kitchen is next in line

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The kitchen cabinets have a new coat of paint, the naked island is still naked and the appliances are ordered.

Now we can go ahead and have the countertops and backsplash installed. “We” means our Angel on site will oversee the install since we are so far away.

This is our new faucet. By Hansgrohe.

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Out of all the faucets on display we both went straight to this one and loved it. Easy choice – coincidently we picked the German brand out of all the others. It must have looked familiar somehow. So renovating Euro Style is possible in Texas!

And of course we were only running around headless during our last trip and forgot to pick it up for the countertop install. So here comes our Angel again. She is wonderful. Otherwise a little mishap like this would turn into a much bigger issue when remote remodeling.

This undermount sink will come to us in white! It has already been delivered to the tileshop for fabrication of the countertops.

update: the sink had a crack. We had to re-order, re-schedule, more delays. The real facts behind remodeling. Those that you do not see in the before-after pictures.

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The placement of the faucet! What a discussion. In the middle of the divider or the middle of the whole sink? Finally we settled on the version with the most alignment, ha, ha. Aligned with the cabinet doors beneath and not aligned with the sink divider. The second version would have meant that you would have had to move the faucet every time you wanted to get the water running without it hitting the divider. And that does not look aligned!

The backsplash, glass tiles. We will use white grout.

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I have to admit, I do not like granite. I know, I know – everyone loves it, the more pattern and streaks the better. I am the opposite, the more busy the counters the less relaxed I will be working in the kitchen. And trust me, I spend hours and hours and more hours in there…

So – the counters have to be simple. We agreed upon Silestone in an off white color with a touch of grey. Excuse the bad quality of this pic with my phone.

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Also, the counters will be thicker than average and no round corners for me. Just slightly eased, almost a 90 degree angle. Like in his picture.

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Have you remodeled a kitchen recently? Did you have unexpected issues to deal with?

Easter decor

I like to decorate for the season, but mostly one or two areas. As eager as I am in the beginning as bored I get after a while and the stuff can not make it’s way fast enough down into the basement until next year.

I rather go big in scale and add one thing than a huge cluttered collection of different tiny little pieces. Or instead of just one tiny candle holder I will add a dozen to make a statement. It all depends on the price of course and I am very lucky to have access to a very reasonably priced whole sale decor store. Paradise that is!Image

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Do you decorate for the season? Or are you so over it already?