• Blue Eye Brown Eye Calligraphy Workshop

    Yesterday, I was able to do two things I’ve been dying to do:

    #1. Attend a workshop at the designlovefest studio.

    AND

    #2. Begin to learn calligraphy.

    Blue Eye Brown Eye Calligraphy Workshop

    (Lauren Essl, Me, & Bri Emery – Photo by Cortnee Brown)

    I guess you could say I killed two birds with one stone? However, I’ve NEVER really favored that saying . . . especially since “Jenna” means small bird in Arabic. ANYWAY, the workshop was everything I had hoped it would be. Lauren Essl of Blue Eye Brown Eye was our fearless teacher and might just be the most patient person I have ever met in my life! AND her calligraphy skills are out of this world; makes a creative designer like me pretty green with envy. You can check out my very questionable penmanship abilities via my Instagram account [@luckylittlemustardseed]. I do feel confident saying, however, that with a little practice, I might actually develop a new skill. The other highlight of my day was meeting designlovefest’s very own, Bri Emery. I didn’t really get to talk to her a whole bunch, but man, I thought I was already impressed with her blog, but her studio!? WOWZERS! It’s such an inviting space. I could totally live there.

    “The world is my workshop. It is not my home.” – Abbas Kiarostami

    Thanks again designlovefest for hosting and Blue Eye Brown Eye for such a wonderful workshop – I will definitely be attending another one sometime [maybe Blogshop?] AND will continue [of course] to recommend both of you to my fellow San Diegans ;)

  • Bruschetta Couscous

    With running an upholstery business, writing a blog, and managing our household, I’m ALWAYS in a need for something simple for supper! And that’s why I adore Trader Joe’s so much. It has a wonderful assortment of groceries that allows a foodie like myself to invent just that = easy recipes to feed me and D. So, here is my latest concoction >>> Bruschetta Couscous!

    Bruschetta Couscous

    Ingredients:

    1 box Trader Joe’s Israeli Couscous

    1 tablespoon Trader Joe’s Garlic Flavored Olive Oil [for couscous prep]

    1 jar Trader Joe’s Bruschetta Sauce

    1 – 6 ounce container of Trader Joe’s Crumbled Feta with Mediterranean Herbs

    1 cup fresh basil, bruised

    Directions: Cook couscous according to the package’s directions. Chill. Pour in the sauce. Add cheese and basil. Toss and serve either hot for supper or cold for a picnic!

    “Couscous – the food’s so nice they named it twice.” – Dale Denton, Pineapple Express

    Well, I hope your tummy thinks its as yummy as I do – I don’t believe you can really go wrong combining those types of ingredients ;) CHOW!

  • Cement Care

    I am a true believer that cement belongs in every home. I mean I know it’s involved in the building process! I, however, am talking about it from an interior design aspect. It just adds a nice industrial element to any space. BUT, sadly for most people, they don’t know how to care for it, thus kind of making it a turnoff when you’re trying to pitch the whole idea. So, today, I thought I would give you a quick run-through on how I care for it; that way you have THIS for possible future reference . . . and our dining room table is due for a little TLC.

    Cement Care 1

    This is one of my personal favorite pieces in our home. We purchased it over a year ago from CB2 and have loved it ever since. It’s contemporary, has clean lines, and is sturdy as all get out = all-important attributes when talking about furniture. Anyway, with cement furniture, you need to be prepared for “character” marks. As in, our table will not look the same as it did the first day it was delivered. Why? Well, we all know you can expect a little wear and tear on any furniture over time, but cement has pores that like to absorb stuff like water, oils, etc. YOUR saving grace will be to use coasters/placemats AND to wax it every three or so months with beeswax.

    Cement Care 2

    My personal preference in beeswax is the Howard brand Feed-N-Wax Wood Polish and Conditioner in Beeswax & Orange Oil. Yes, I do understand it’s technically for wood but it has the same effect. Trust me :) it’s fine. I also love the Rejuvenate Chamois & Microfiber Polishing Pad, because you can use one side for application and the other to buff some shine. Okay, now it’s time to get down to business.

    Cement Care 3

    The first step in this process is to take a damp cloth and wipe down the entire surface to remove any sort of dust, debris, or if you’re like our household, Hazel’s bristly English Bulldog hair :( you don’t want to be rubbing junk [does that sound dirty? lol] into your table. Okay, now wipe down the surface once more ONLY this time with a dry towel to eliminate any extra moisture. Capish?

    Cement Care 4

    Immediately following, squeeze a generous amount of the beeswax onto the microfiber side of the pad.

    Cement Care 5

    Apply the beeswax to the entire surface in a circular motion. Please don’t forget to include all sides and any sort of legs. They need love too ;)

    Cement Care 6

    The surface should look nice and shiny. Let stand at least 20 minutes. Then wipe off any excess wax. I’ve never had to do this, but incase you WERE very liberal in your application, I thought I’d mention it.

    Cement Care 7

    Next, take the chamois side of the pad, conjure up some elbow grease, and get to polishing!

    Cement Care 8

    “I came from a real tough neighborhood. I put my hand in some cement and felt another hand.” – Rodney Dangerfield

    Isn’t she pretty? I hope this helps cancel out your fears of owning cement furniture. I just LOVE our dining room set so much – can’t imagine our home without it!

  • Style Crazed: More Patterns Please!

    When it comes to fashion, knowing your own individual style is THE most important thing.

    For instance, I tend to gravitate to easy looks with lots of pattern power.

    POW-POW!

    I mean take this #stylecrazed as an example.

    Style Crazed: More Patterns Please!

    Glasses: Ray-Ban / Dress: Anthropologie / Clutch & Heels: Kate Spade New York

    This dress was an instant obsession of mine as soon as I saw it – one of those “I must own you or I might surely die” pieces. It’s almost as if I’m wearing a piece of Frank Lloyd Wright’s brilliant stain glass. And the material . . . OH, THE MATERIAL! It’s heavenly = silky to the skin and [I must add] pretty wrinkly free. Then you add a trusty clutch and some cute heels, AND, well, you’ve got yourself a look that’s bound to get some attention ;)

    “Life’s too short to wear boring clothes.” – Anonymous

    So what types of clothing do you fancy?

  • Before & After: Hairdresser Chair

    Unknown territory can be a scary thing . . . especially when it comes to upholstery.

    Before & After: Hairdresser Chair

    This #beforeandafter is a hairdresser chair I recovered for my girlfriend, Mitzi, who has the best/most captivating/refreshing style of anyone else I know. I met her over two years ago through the Oceanside Museum of Art and have been friends with her ever since. ANYWAY, because of her wonderfully FUN taste, this project was an important growth opportunity = I had never sewed vinyl before NOR had I ever disassemble and reassemble a mechanical chair. Now, I might be slightly crazy and a little too advantageous ;) I know I tend to take on projects that I technically [probably] shouldn’t be taking on, BUT I do it just the same!

    “If everyone waited to become an expert before starting, no one would become an expert. To become an expert, you must have experience. To get experience, you must experiment! Stop waiting. Start stuff.” – Richie Norton

    How else am I supposed to learn if I don’t take a chance on ME every now and again?