Tag Archives: St. Louis

Upstairs Progress With A Little Art History

G.O. has been a busy guy upstairs,

painting the walls white + the woodwork a neutral gray/beige (a.k.a. “greige”).

So far, the hallway has been transformed from drab . . . .



. . . to FAB!

woodwork of gray

We chose Pittsburgh Paint’s Delicate White for the walls

Ghost Writer for the woodwork + wainscoting.

pittsburgh paint ghost writer

Yes, all this talk of gray + white

means it’s time for us to go down memory lane again,

with me, with my perm, + my gray kitchen cabs, circa 1985!

kay with gray kitchen cabs

I loved it then, I love it now!


Please.  How stunning is our beautiful, original door hardware with the greige?



Very stunning, especially so, considering its amazing before + after!

The beautiful pattern of that hardware is called Art Nouveau,

which was an art + architectural style in fashion between 1890 + 1910.

That makes sense because we think our house was built in that era!

Look closely!  There are ferns!



New England Today

Art Nouveau was inspired by natural forms,

particularly the curves lines of plants + flowers.

Well-known examples of Art Nouveau include the Metro Stations in Paris:

art nouveau paris metro stop

Yet more Art Nouveau awesomeness, closer to home,

is the former Carson Pirie Scott store in Chicago,

designed by architect Louis Sullivan,

who was Frank Lloyd Wright’s mentor:

carson pirie scott store

Sullivan also designed my personal favorite,

The fabulous Wainwright Building in downtown St. Louis:

wainwright building

This concludes today’s Art history lecture.

Did you know that I used to be an Art teacher, in grades 7 – 12?

Meanwhile, back at the Dutch colonial,

G.O. continues to restore the beautiful original woodwork,

literally one piece at a time!


I’ll share more photos, soon — so stay tuned!

More Red + White Signage

Yesterdee (that’s how they say it in St. Louis, I swear)

I posted about my collection of much-loved red signs.


My friend, Tal, gave me this for my birthday one year.

This birthday present from a few years back
rests on the woodwork in our kitchen.

A mere hour or so after I posted,

I realized to my horror (J/K) that I forgot to include

my most prized red sign of all:


This is 2-sided + says ROCKFORD on the other side.

We pretty much think this was in a bus or train station.

Why do I love it so?

Well, St. Louis is my homeland,

+ at the time, I lived 20-ish miles s.w. of Rockford, Illinois.

Speaking of “needing” something — how could I resist

(even though I think I paid $95 for it!!)

surprised boy

What can I say?  I was single at the time

+ could buy anything I wanted!

* * *

This happiness occurred when we lived in the groovy apartment

that I built above my old retail store.

My ST. LOUIS/ROCKFORD sign hung on the ceiling beam

just over my head in this snapshot from long ago:

christmas -- apartment -- kay in squalor living room

Circa 1993 — maybe 94

My plans for hanging it in our Dutch colonial project

involve yet another (future) beam,

which will hang between our dining room + kitchen.


Just above G.O.’s head.


Re: that beam.

I’m still on the fence about whether or not to investigate the price

they’re charging these days for salvaged beams.

Methinks I probably should.

Stay tuned.

* * *

Meanwhile, let’s have a look-see at another red+ white sign of mine:



I love this one, too!

I made it myself, back in my letterpress phase.

It was also the era in which I most recently had a brick+mortar retail space.

Here’s 1 of 3 that I made, hanging outside our shop(s):


Here’s the larger version:


Right now, these beauties (if I do say so)

are languishing in our cellar hide-a-way,

but I think these need to be included in our home + garden décor . . .

. . . if not here + now, then FO SHO in the Dutch colonial!

Stay tuned!


I just realized there are just 22 more days until Christmas!


surprised boy

I’m spending my days sewing like the wind,

making pillows as fast as I can

for the galleries + shops that sell them for me.

Like this, for them:

pillow -- l.a.

Co-op 28 Handmade + Vintage
1728 N. Vermont
Los Angeles, CA


* * * * *

Meanwhile, I steal a few moments at the bozoputer when I can,

as I’m trying to handle Christmas online.

Look at the old-fashioned gift stickers I ordered from an etsy seller,







People.  I am mad about their slightly industrial, retro office style — aren’t you?

My plans include using these with some kraft paper gift wrap

+ lots of red + white baker’s twine:

baker's twine

Speaking of etsy + baker’s twine, I also ordered some small cookie bags:

christmas gifts - the bakers something bags


I know!  How adorable!

Maybe we’ll bake Snickerdoodles

from my 60’s 4-H cookbook.

Stay tuned!  I could possibly take some photos + share the recipe!

You’ll thank me.

* * * *

Back to shopping.

Here we have the swell banner-style return address labels

I ordered for our Christmas cards, from another etsy shop,


christmas gift -- pumped on paper return address banners


Aren’t they wonderful?  They wrap from the front to the back of the envelope!


For our monogram, I asked for OK, which is kind of our ‘trademark’.

Get it?  Ole Olson + Kay?

* * * *

Last but not least, I ordered myself an early Christmas gift yesterday,

+ the UPS boy dropped it off at our porch just this afternoon!

Hey, look!  More baker’s twine!

Barr-Co. apothecary candle K. Hall

apothecary candle
K. Hall Designs
St. Louis, MO


Of course, I wanted this candle because of its vintage apothecary style,

+ because they’re made in my beloved St. Louis.

The good news is that the scent I ordered — their new Fir-Grapefruit — is beyond divine!

In fact, the November ’13 issue of  Lonny magazine named it their SEASON’S BEST SCENT!


lonny magazine cover -- november 2013


You have heard of Lonny magazine, haven’t you?

It’s online.  It’s free.  It’s the BEST THING, EVER!

Go there now + thank me later.

lonny magazine cover


You’re welcome!


Vintage Post Card Shower Curtain Happiness

Since I’m so prone to multi-tasking,

it was a natural for me to engage in just that, earlier this a.m.,

by shopping online while enjoying the Thanksgiving Day parade on TV.

Wheeee!  Look at this adorable Dachshund balloon

from the 1950 Macy’s parade!




Here’s a peek at my beloved Dachshund, Chloe:

chloe in bike basket

Awwww!  Isn’t she cute?

And don’t you think her vintage bike basket is terrific, too?

It reads ‘KELLEY CO. SINCE 1953’,

+ I found it at our antiques mall, right here in town!

* * * *

But I digress.

Let’s get back to my shopping happiness.

Since I’ve been thinking + blogging about our bathrooms,

I decided to look for a new shower curtain or two.

Here’s a close up snapshot of the one that is in our current bath:

Restoration Hardware.

HOT + COLD Roller Rings
from Restoration Hardware.

It came from the Mart of Wal + probably cost me less than $20.

I loved it for its woven blue stripes + general Ralph Lauren-ish-ness.

Methinks we  need a change, though.

I’d like to step it up a bit, style-wise,

+ spring for something a tad bit more unusual.

For example, I totally dig the vintage post card style of this one:

curtain of shower -- st. louis riverfront

DENY Designs

I do love my St. Louis + that arch!

Since I also love the Cardinals + their ballpark,

this one had me swooning!

curtain of shower -- ballpark + arch

DENY Designs

How’s that possible?

Last year I bought this very same image in a print

from this etsy seller:


st. louis print from etsy

My print came in red, as does the shower curtain,

which is what you might think I’d have ordered, stat.

I almost did.

However, I thought that, since I already own the print,

I’d opt to keep shopping.

Here’s the shower curtain I think I’ll buy:

curtain of shower -- close up of Chicago

DENY Designs

Once again with the vintage post cards,

+ what makes it even better is that it includes

lots of my favorite U.S. destinations!

Wouldn’t it be fun to be infused with a bit of wanderlust

every time we shower?

I think so.

If you think so, too, chances are they offer favorite your city.

curtain of shower -- Portland

DENY Designs

Wayfair.com DENY Designs

DENY Designs

Wayfair.com DENY Designs

DENY Designs

Or your favorite road trip:

curtain of shower -- california

Yay!  The Pacific Coast Highway!

Would viewing this render me car sick, though,

like what tragically happened to me

during my initial journey on said-same?

Lesson learned: always take some Dramamine

when you find yourself in a car somewhere outside of (flat) Illinois!

Baseball + Espalier

Yay — SPRING is here!  It’s Opening Day for my Cardinals + the Cubbies!

The 'new' Busch Stadium, finished in 2006, has a cool view of the St. Louis arch.

The ‘new’ Busch Stadium, finished in 2006, has a cool view of the St. Louis arch.

There's talk that the Cubs might leave Wrigley + head to the 'burbs!

There’s talk that the Cubs might leave Wrigley + head to the ‘burbs!

  While today my heart is in St. Louis . . . I’m as busy as a bee, sewing pillows at home (near Chicago), instead.

Speaking of pillows, I gave my niece + her husband their own custom pillow on Easter.

Speaking of pillows, I gave my niece + her husband a custom pillow on Easter.

For my baseball fix, I’m listening to the Cubbies’ broadcast on WGN radio, while I toil.

Don’t be confused —  it’s never ALL work + no play for me . . .

. . . not when there’s Pinterest in my little world!

I swooned when I spied this charming Paris flower shop pin this a.m.!

french flower shop

Sadly, the closest I’ve gotten to visiting Paris is when House Hunters International goes there.

Ooh la la + note to self: put some pretty annuals in baskets!

Speaking of pretty annuals, late last month, I drug some of my peeps on an outing to this awesome garden center in St. Louis:

bowood farms

bowood farms exterior


I ‘splurged’ + bought myself a 6-pack of violas . . .

violas blue

. . . while wanting, instead, one of their topiary houseplants . . .

Bowood farms topiaries

. . .  OR, even better yet, one of their espalier apple trees!

espalier against stone

As you can see, espalier is training fruit trees or shrubs to grow in flattened form.

espalier + boxwood

espalier criss-cross

Instructions for espalier can be found online, if you’re interested in trying this in your garden. (I am!)

Isn't this illustration adorable?  I'm sorry; I don't know the source.

Isn’t this illustration adorable? I’m sorry — I don’t know the source.

A small, young fruit tree can be had for $20-ish, no?

However, if you need more instant gratification,

you can spring for a pre-trained plant at a high-end garden center like Bowood Farms.

I think they start at $150 + go up.

Is that too much?



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