Calm and Collected: Wood Tones

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Welcome to a new week friends!  The kiddos started a new school year once again and it's back to the daily grind of things. Since the beginning of August, I was imagining how this week would play out. Thinking if I'd be uncertain with my time and this new schedule. But it was proven pretty quickly that I was ready and willing to get back into content creating about all the things that have been filling my brain lately. 

So, today I'm chatting about one of my most used elements in interior styling ... and that's wood tones. Let's face it, I not only use it constantly in my design plans, but also in my fashion accessories; a.k.a, my Cult Gaia handbags! Perhaps, it's my way of showing my appreciation for nature. There's just something about the organic nature of wood, the unique grooves, the charming imperfections and the tones that have me forever intrigued.  

Especially with spaces that are coated with crisp white walls, wood tones provide warmth and coziness to what would typically be a stark and bland space. If you have the budget for it, I love its use in a kitchen island or with dining room furniture. Simply add an accent table, functional tray, or bench placed at the front entryway or foot of your bed, for a look that's calm and collected.

It works beautifully with all metals too, such as brass and copper ... what's not to love! 

For the past few months, I've also been on Pinterest, pinning dark and moody spaces, from cabinetry to paneled walls and exteriors. I just love the look of wood tones paired with charcoal navys and soft blacks. They're the right balance for these darker spaces, even adding that vintage-esque appeal.

When it comes to selecting a particular finish or stain, I personally tend to lean towards pine or walnut finishes (natural or dark) because the grey hues are versatile and classic. It really compliments both lighter and darker wood pieces that you might already have in the home. 

As a rule of thumb:  When mixing wood tones, I like to create an eclectic collection with typically no more than 2-3 different finishes in one space. There's usually a distinct color variation between the pieces, such as a dark walnut console with white-washed decorative boxes up top for personality and dimension.

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I've rounded-up some wood pieces of all scales, that can beautifully be incorporated in and throughout, to bring a bit of nature and warmth into your home. Enjoy!

Warmly ~


Current Artwork & Print Favorites

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Lately, I've been finding new ways to spark inspiration in our ever evolving home. The dining area has turned out to be the main place I turn to for inspiration, which overlooks handsome oak trees and the cutest cottage homes in some of my most loved colors. There's also a little corner near the window where a vintage flower stand holds a thoughtful selection of odds and ends that I like to switch out as my inspiration changes.

It's the perfect landing spot, just before leaving the house for a final look at my outfit of the day, a little toss of the hair, and a quick glance of our sentimental "Darling" sign behind, that preps positivity for the day. It's moments like these in the home that I want to create more of, particularly in the hallway and the master bedroom.

"Darling" Wood Sign | Metal Floral Scroll (Vintage Find)

 Madewell Woven Crossbody Bag

McGee & Co. Market Basket 

For the most part, I have a neutral color palette running throughout the home, with earthy tones and blush pink as an accent color. Coastal blues and emerald green have been growing heavily on me this season, so I wanted to find more ways to incorporate these colors where I could. The best way I felt was to create a well-thought out collection of artwork and prints to tie everything in! 

Prints have been a design element I've been meaning to add in for months. I just haven't had the time or patience to hone in on exactly what I was looking for. So, I finally buckled down and searched online this week for artwork and prints that would marry beautifully with my existing decor. After toying around with many styles, it turned out that florals would be a must have on my list, along with these pieces that have currently caught my interest:

Other's I've been considering: 

Be sure to also take a peek at MintedRifle Paper Co., and this darling shop on Etsy, Hearts of Colors, to see all their other amazing prints. How do you like to stay inspired and is your home a place of inspiration for you? I'd love to know your thoughts!

Warmly ~


HEALTH + WELLNESS: Self-Care Practices for the Everyday Gal

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Home on Coronado Island

From the start of a new month, August has been filled with joyful moments, thanks to a long awaited vacation back to my home state, California. It had been two years since my sisters and I have been together in the same room, and it only took but a minute for us to start spilling out our best jokes, while gathering over a fresh stack of homemade chocolate chip pancakes.

Our conversations were refreshing, insightful, and grown-up. We were older now, parents in the midst of raising our school-aged children; and for my youngest sister, a newly promoted business gal, waiting to begin a new phase in her life. We stepped back from the chaos of trying to have life all figured out and came together for sisterly bonding and family fun. It turned out to be the best vacation I had been on in years, but also brought about many unexpected emotions to light.

These spurts of emotion made me realize that I had taken too long to recharge and unwind. My mind was overwhelmed from daily life and all the running around. It was undoubtedly a juggling act between motherhood and being a wife, my work in interior design, and growing my blog. And not once could I give my 100% commitment, to any one thing I was trying to grow. There wasn't enough time, let alone any time to care for myself.  One thing I needed to learn was that my happiness, health, and well-being had to come first because that's what's required for everything else to be great!"

A glimpse of our Airbnb Home in San Diego

Serenity at Best on a San Diego Pier

Oh, the priceless teachings from a brilliant woman Sheri Salata, former Executive Producer of the Oprah Winfrey Show and Co-President of Harpo Studios and OWN. After rekindling my love for podcasts this Summer, I came across an interview where she promotes that self-care (through 7 pillars) is the key to creating your best life. That the savviest and most respected women in the future, will be the ones with the most quality of life. This resonated with me deeply because as a woman and mother, we tend to feel as though we are being selfish in wanting to aid ourselves. And once we build up the courage to finally do something for "ourselves," we think it involves an afternoon at the nail salon or going out with a group of girlfriends. However, it's much more complex than that. This is one of the lessons I want to grow from, as I wish to achieve happiness and success with myself, my family, and with my creative business ventures. 

After much thought, reflection, and self-assessment, these are the ways I will gradually incorporate self-care in my daily routine and I hope these practices will be helpful to you as well in your everyday life:

1. Start each day with a calm mind. How often do we wake up every morning thinking about all the endless tasks we need to do for the day? Instead, approach each morning as a way of becoming the best version of yourself. Enjoy some quiet time with a healthy breakfast and a good cup of jo, stretch and mediate, go on a brisk walk. Implement a simple routine that will take away your anxieties and replace it with something that will create a more productive day.  

2. Remember to be kind to yourself. There will be times during the course of a year where you feel doubtful or feel like you're still a million miles away from reaching your goals.  It can be frustrating and disheartening, with wonder of where to go from here. But we have to remind ourselves that greatness is a process. I can't expect success to happen in a few months or even in a year. Don't be too hard on yourself, especially if you're doing the best you can. Easier said than done, but with an optimistic mindset, it will fuel us to achieve much more, rather than hold us back.

3. Set a small personal goal that will build up your self-confidence. For me, I have challenged myself to workout 15 minutes a day during the weekdays. I am horrible at keeping up consistency if my workouts are too long. But what I do know, is that I can always make room for 15 minutes in my day to concentrate on my health and well-being through exercise. Not only will this boost my self-confidence levels, but it will also give me a sense of accomplishment. 

These are only three small, but mighty practices that will help achieve daily self-care for ourselves and my hope is that these practices will turn into positive results, with success flourishing in all aspects of our lives. 

Warmly ~


by mlekoshi