Saturday, December 3, 2011

Cookie Of The Day!

Happy Saturday. I hope you are having a lovely weekend. This weekend we are: getting our Christmas tree, making home made snow globes, and of course making Christmas cookies! The cookie of the day is a simple Sugar Cookie! Recipe brought to you by Real Simple, there are two variations to this recipe, a spiced cookie and a citrus flavored cookie, visit the website to get the full recipes!

Makes 40 cookies| Hands-On Time: 20m | Total Time: 2hr 45m



  1. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and granulated sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in the egg, then the vanilla and salt.
  2. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour, mixing until just combined (do not over mix). Shape into a 1-inch-thick disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.
  3. Heat oven to 350° F. On a floured surface, roll the dough ¼ inch thick. Using lightly floured 2- to 3-inch cookie cutters, cut the dough into shapes, flouring the cutters and re rolling the scraps as necessary. Place 1 inch apart on the prepared baking sheets. Sprinkle with decorating sugar, if using.
  4. Bake, rotating the baking sheets halfway through, until the edges just begin to brown, 12 to 15 minutes. Let cool slightly on the baking sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. 
I will post photos and directions for homemade snow globes next week!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Design Tip: Drapery

 As an interior designer I frequently get asked how to choose drapery, how many and what size panels are needed, what length they need to be and where to mount the hardware. Today I wanted to answer these questions in my design tip of the week:
  • Drapery panels should be 2 1/2 to 3 times the width of the window, each
    panel should be 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 times with width of the window. The wider
    and fuller the drapes the more dramatic they will appear.
  • Drapery panels should end either: above the window sill, directly below the window
    sill, end an inch above the floor or pool about 6 inches at the floor for a dramatic,
    full appearance.
  • Drapery rods should be 8-10 inches longer than the width of the window so
    that you can mount them up to 5  inches to each side of the molding.
  • Make sure you have space for sometimes large finials or end caps at each side!
  • Always make sure you have drawback space to open the drapes completely
    to let in the natural light.
  • Mount drapery hardware 4 or more inches above molding to visually add 
    height to the ceiling and to show off beautiful crown molding.

    The dark color and deeply gathered creases give these drapes a dramatic and tailored look! The hardware is mounted at a height to emphasize the molding. Not much space to tie them back...
Remodel with us
The combination of tailored drapes and the valance gives a formal and traditional aesthetic...

Coco + Kelley
I have always loved when drapery hardware is installed hidden in a cove above the windows. The hardware seems to disappear and the drapes look like they go on forever! These end about 1 inch above the floor and are a semi sheer to give visual privacy yet maintain the natural light in the space...

Elle Decor
These drapes are fantastic! I love everything about them...

  Drapes can be hung in an alcove on a continuous rod to trick the eye into
thinking the window wraps around the entire alcove!

House Beautiful
 These drapes are long and pool at the floor which gives a comfortable, warm feel to a space...
    Unknown Source
    Comfy and casual...
    House Beautiful

    These crisp white drapes are providing a partition between two spaces, I think it is a great way to divide a room or enclose an area (a studio apartment!) and what a fun way to tie them up!

     Drapery can be a great way to bring in pattern and texture into the design of a space. By using bold horizontal stripes it gives the appearance of a wider window...I think these are so cool!

    Janie Molster
      All in all drapery can be a great way to warm up a room, give privacy to a home on a busy street, dress up or dress down a room or add pattern to your design. There are so many options and this is just a mere tip to get you started in the right direction! I love comments and questions so please email me anytime at! I look forward to hearing from you!

    And on a sweeter note here is the cookie of the day Chocolate Hazelnut Cutout Cookies courtesy of Sunset Magazine. I plan on making these over the weekend, yummy...

    Makes 54 sandwich cookies - Total Time:


    • 1 cup butter, softened
    • 1/3 cup sugar
    • 3/4 cup cornstarch
    • 1 3/4 cups flour
    • 3/4 to 1 cup chocolate hazelnut spread such as Nutella


    • 1. Preheat oven to 350°. Beat butter and sugar in a large bowl with a stand mixer until well blended, or whirl in a food processor. Add cornstarch and flour and beat on low speed, or whirl, until dough comes together and is very smooth.
    • 2. Divide dough in half. Roll each portion between sheets of parchment paper into a 1/8-in.-thick round. Stack and freeze rounds on a baking sheet until dough is firm enough to cut, about 20 minutes.
    • 3. Lift off parchment, cut dough with a floured 1 1/2- to 2-in.-wide cutter, and transfer to ungreased baking sheets, spacing slightly apart. Gather scraps, refreeze, and re roll as needed.
    • 4. Bake cookies until light golden, 10 to 14 minutes, switching pan positions halfway through baking. Transfer to racks to cool.
    • 5. Spread half of cookies on flat sides with a generous coat of chocolate hazelnut spread, then top each with a second cookie.
    • Make ahead: Up to 3 days, stored airtight.
    Enjoy the cookie of the day and check back this weekend for more yummy recipes!

    Thursday, December 1, 2011

    Happy December: Cookie Of The Day

    Happy December! During the month of December I plan to post a cookie recipe everyday along with my regular posts to get inspired for Holiday baking. I wanted to start with a family favorite we call "Bonnie's Tea Cakes", after my Grandmother Bonnie. The Traditional name is: Russian Tea Cakes or Sugared Pecan Balls and the recipe is courtesy of Real Simple magazine. These cookies bring me back to my childhood, I highly recommend them. If there are any picky eaters or nut allergies you can make them without the nuts for a delicious alternative!

    Makes 36 cookies| Hands-On Time: 25m | Total Time: 1hr 20m



    1. Heat oven to 350° F. Spread the pecans on a rimmed baking sheet and toast in oven, tossing occasionally, until fragrant, 6 to 8 minutes; let cool. In a food processor, process the pecans until finely ground.
    2. In a large bowl, whisk together the ground pecans, flour, and salt; set aside.
    3. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and ⅓ cup of the sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in the vanilla.
    4. Reduce mixer speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture, mixing until just combined (do not over mix).
    5. Shape the dough into balls (about 1 tablespoon each) and place 2 inches apart on baking sheets.
    6. Bake, rotating the baking sheets halfway through, until just beginning to brown, 12 to 14 minutes. Let cool slightly on the baking sheets, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
    7. Place the remaining ⅓ cup of sugar on a plate. A few at a time, roll the cookies in the sugar to coat.

    Monday, November 28, 2011

    Dream Home: Mid-Century Modern With A Twist

     The dream home I wanted to share with you today comes from Jessica Helgerson Interior Design, in Portland, Oregon. I was so excited to share photos of this mid-century modern home. I think it is a wonderful example of reinventing a traditional ranch style home into something ethereal and serene. The house has amazing architectural bones and the talented Miss Helgerson always maintains integrity to the original design.

    I would love to hear what you think of this design! I think it is fantastic...

    A black and white color scheme is very crisp and classic. 
    The accents of green and natural materials add an organic element to the spaces.

    Gotta love the storage in this huge island. Everything has a place in this kitchen!

    This wallpaper is so perfect for this home, adding a touch of nature and whimsy. 
    I really like the wall mounted faucet, saves precious counter space.

    I love symmetry in interior design. 
    The split vanity and mirror mounted faucets are so practical for "his" and "hers". I love the use of an unexpected material on the cabinets. Kirei board is an engineered product made from the stalks of sorghum which is a unique and fast growing grain.

    Look how sweet the child's room is? I wish I could see more photos...I imagine it is fab.

    All photos courtesy of Jessica Helgerson Interior Design. Be sure to check out the other amazing designs from Jessica Helgerson Interior Design, she is very inspiring to me as an interior designer.

    Thanks for stopping by!