Decorating

Wine Barrels in Home Decor

Sunday, June 5th, 2011

I’ve had wine barrels on the brain ever since we began our plan to spruce up the upper patio.  They’re easy to get here in wine country, and they make the easiest and cheapest planters.  Just about everyone I know locally has a wine barrel for a planter, and I grow tomatoes in mine every year. 

Last week, I made a quick trip to my favorite source for wine barrels.  I had a few projects in mind, one coming up later this week!  A short time ago, they were only $10 bucks, but apparently they’re in high demand abroad hence the price increase.  But still, at $20 dollars for a half barrel, that’s a good price considering the amount of hours that go into the making of one single barrel (see below), and the many uses for the staves (the strips of wood bent to form a barrel).    

wine barrels

Rustic and reclaimed wood is all the rage in home décor.  We’ve seen tree stumps show up as endtables and pallets reinvented in all sorts of ways in interior design over the past few years.  Wine barrels are getting their fair share of reuse too. 

When used as just the right accent in unexpected ways, wine barrels are a fantastic source of reusing real French or American oak.  I love the pairing of natural wood tones with casual furnishings, they always work well together.  I also love seeing products made from reclaimed wood placed in formal settings or in contemporary spaces ~ they have a way of keeping the space from feeling too predictable.  When juxtaposed against anything modern and glossy, reclaimed wood can take center stage.

New wine barrels have a shelf life of 3 to 6 years for aging wine, depending on which vintner you ask.  Most become planters, yet others get turned into some amazing accessories.  I was excited to see so many creative uses for a used wine barrel when I went looking around the web. 

VivaTerra sells several products made out of barrels, like this beautiful stave bread bowl ($95)

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Alfresco Entertaining

Wednesday, May 11th, 2011

G’day friends!  I’m so happy to be back home in Cali, catching up with my family.   Today I welcome contributing writer Michelle from Ten June to share her insights on making the most of your outdoor spaces with ideas for stylish entertaining.  ‘Tis the season! 

This article is like a breath of fresh air for me, filled with images of beautiful spaces that are sure to inspire you for your own summer soiree, so take it away, Michelle! 

“It’s almost that time of year again. Time to bring out your grill tools, pull out your picnic baskets and grab the bug spray.  As our days grow longer and there’s more daylight to enjoy, the best place to spend your spring and summer is none other than the great outdoors.  One of my favorite aspects of spending time outdoors is hosting a great outdoor party.

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Lonny Mag

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Better Homes & Gardens, 100 Ideas

The key ingredient in outdoor entertaining is fun.  Whether laid-back or slightly formal, there should be nothing stuffy about an outdoor party!

 

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Master Minded

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

You’re all going to think I’m cah-ray-zah-eee.  Cuckoo.  Send me to the funny farm.  But let it be heard all across the land, I’m doing even more tweaking in our master bedroom.  After months of debate, it’s been settled that we will be keeping much of the dark wood antique furniture in the space including two dressers and an armoire.  The dark wood pieces are a little old fashioned for my taste, so I’ve got to design around them and give the space more modern appeal.  

I decided to freshen a bit more with the colors I love: gray, blue, green, white and bronze, and also bring in some textural elements like the woven shades I had cut today at Lowes, plus some other linen textiles too.

I’m also making another huge change.  Don’t freak out, but I’m painting over last year’s stenciled lattice wall.  *audible gasp*   Yes, I am actually going to do it.  I have to if I’m going to change the paint color in my room to coordinate with the new bedding, but fear not, the good news is I still have the stencil and I can always recreate it again. 

There is a method to my madness.  I’ve been in love with this mirror and this bedding for quite some time, so when I discovered I could snag both at a discount I took the plunge.  I reason if I spend 30+% of my day in my bedroom, it should be a reflection of everything I love.  And the mister too.   I’m supposed to say that.  (Got to factor in the husband’s tastes too, nothing too floral or girly, right?)  

Just recently I found this bench at Home Goods, but the zebra fabric didn’t work for my room. Now it’s now recovered in spa blue velvet (a score at $3 for a remnant) and the legs refinished in Krylon’s ‘Caramel Latte’ spray paint, plus nailhead trim too. 

 

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