French Cottage

Ever since I can remember, I’ve wanted to live in a “country cottage” as we Midwesterners so affectionately call any home that is quaint, cozy, bright and airy, and full of fresh flowers. Luckily, I stumbled upon an apartment that fit the bill for decorating in such a manner. Without the floral wallpaper and couches, of course. Gotta keep it real.

While there may not be a white picket-fence on your walk up to my door, there are many other things that bring me to feel as if I am in fact living in my dream cottage: bright walls, crisp flowers, white linens/towels, and a few equestrian pieces here and there. Luckily, I did not own any furniture of size before moving and deciding on my “life theme”, so I am starting fresh-as-a-rose, if you will.

My general idea is to keep most things white/tan in color, only adding bright accents through fresh flowers (hello hydrangeas!), and novelty items. I’d also like to throw in some antique equestrian accents (bridle coat hanger, anyone?).

Here’s a few pictures of what I’ve acquired:

Re-purposed Vintage Trunk:

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If you follow me on Instagram, you have already seen this nifty little trunk that I came across on Craigslist! I was instantly in love with it, and thought it would make a great “hope chest”. No, I am not 12. I just like the idea of saving special things for the day when I am married. Too LHOP (Little House on the Prairie) for you? Sorry I am not sorry. 😉

Equestrian Magnifying Glass and Letter Opener:

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I came across these two items awhile back when Cole and I were shopping an interior design store that was going out of business. I thought they would be the perfect addition to my ever-expanding at home office!

Butcher-Block Island:

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What can I say? I love everything about this island! My friend Elisa responded to my cry on Facebook for the need for additional counter space since I literally have one counter (behind island) to prepare food, etc. on. I have already used it, and it’s the perfect height/size. Thanks, Elisa!

Ferris Wheel:

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This is probably one of my favorite items in my apartment right now. Seattle has an amazing Ferris wheel downtown, so I felt that it would be representative 🙂

Restoration Hardware Housewarming Gift (from Cole):

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I am so happy that my boyfriend has an eye for design, friends. I mentioned to him what look I was going for, and he delivered! It probably helps that he is a Creative Director, too 😉 Major boyfriend points for him (only redeemable if you’re reading, Cole).

Ottoman (project):

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This ottoman (and an identical sister ottoman) were found a few weekends ago at a Madison Park garage sale. I can’t claim credit for them, because Cole had the “eye” and recommended that I get them. I am thinking of re-painting the wooden part white, and possibly re-upholstering the tops with a fabric something like this print…except possibly in blue and yellow or blue and white. Thoughts/recommendations on this one?

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So, there she is in a nutshell. Progress in the making! I am trying to work slowly and just let ideas come to me…there is nothing worse than rushing design and regretting what you’ve bought! If you have any suggestions/recommendations for anything else, I’m all ears. My next highly unrealistic project considering I am not a seamstress is to learn how to make curtains out of french linens…after all, Pinterest says it’s possible.

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Have a great Friday!

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E’claire has been sitting here patiently waiting for me to fill her cyber pages for nearly a month! There is no time like the present, so here we go!

Note: I am still working out the “kinks” and layout/design features, so please bare with me!

I suppose I will just jump right in and blog about the recipe that I hope to make this weekend for Easter: carrot cake. If you know me on a personal level, I have probably told you on more than one occasion of my affinity with carrot cake. In fact, it does not even have to be cake; I do not discriminate against carrot muffins, carrot loaves, carrot bars, or carrot scones for that matter. Pumpkin lattes? I’ll never, ever turn one down. Now that you are up-to-speed on my love for carrots (giggle if you know I am a natural “ginger” and think this is the reason I love carrots), let me take you through the preliminary ideas I have for this said cake.

Easter Carrot Cake

My love for cooking and baking does not come from a love of eating the final product most times. Do not get me wrong, I love my recipes, but more times than not, creating an artistic component is what excites me most. Just like fashion, cooking and baking can have a style all their own. I am fairly new to plating and presentation, but could get lost on Pinterest for hours looking at recipes, visualizing how they would look on my plates, and dreaming of taking pictures of them (it’s ok to judge me, yes).

Naturally, when making a carrot cake came to mind, I immediately pictured cute little carrots made of frosting, spring flowers, and frostings made of bright oranges, yellows and a touch of purple just because it happens to be my favorite color, duh. Here are a few pieces of inspiration from Pinterest:

Carrot Cake Bars from Cooking Classy

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diy carrot cake toppers

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Paula Deen Grandma Hiers' Carrot Cake

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And for a few laughs…

The cutest carrot cake

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Hopefully I can think of something creative like these cute cakes/cupcakes! If you have any ideas, I would love to hear them, or if you have made a carrot cake that was awesome in the past, I would love to know the recipe!

For now, I will be dreaming of my creative carroty concoction!

E’claire