It’s Time to Mix it Up in the Kitchen!

9852_San-Circle_tabsite_015Are you thinking about updating your kitchen or perhaps you have the luxury of building your dream home and are working on the design of your kitchen!?! Mixing cabinetry finishes and counter tops has gained major popularity in the last few years! Not only does it create a custom look, but at times it can actually be an advantage to your design budget! I personally love this look because it adds character to your kitchen plus it can look as if you placed a piece of furniture in your kitchen – for example, if your island is stained in a dark color and your cabinetry is either white or a lighter stain, then the island pops and literally looks like a piece of furniture has been set in the center of your kitchen! If you want to take the mix of design up a notch then consider also installing a different countertop on top of the island than in the rest of your kitchen counter space! Mixing cabinet finishes and different countertops does take extra thought and planning, however if done correctly, your kitchen –  one of the main rooms used in every home – will be the ultimate conversation piece and entertaining space amongst your family and friends!

***Fun Fact: All of the photos in this post are kitchens from my Real Estate Listings!***

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I’d love to hear from you! Tell me about your great design ideas in the kitchen!

Keep Dreaming, Designing & Dwelling!!!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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Easy Tips to Help Sell Your Home this Summer!

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There are pluses to putting your home on the market every season but the summer is a great way to let your home, shine inside and out! Remember summer is a time when families like to relocate because of the break in the school schedule. June is just around the corner so if you are thinking about selling your home or if your home is already “on the market,” I hope these easy tips will help you make your home stand out from the rest of the inventory!

 

1. Two Words: Curb Appeal!

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First impressions are everything so when a Buyer pulls up to your property make sure that your home has its best foot forward, because I guarantee the last five houses the Buyers just toured sure did! Beautiful, crisp green grass is key. Make sure that your lawn is mowed weekly and take advantage of the bright summer colors by adding pops of color with either potted flowers or planted flowers in the ground – their little faces are a cheerful way to greet the Buyers as they arrive! Also, make sure your front door’s welcome mat is new and fresh and not tattered.

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2. Your Pool is Cool!

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If your home has a pool, the summer is a great way to emphasize its “cool factor”. Keep it sparkling by daily scooping out the leaves! Keep all outdoor spaces around the pool such as decks and terraces and out door furniture clean and de-cluttered!

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3. Air It Out!

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During the cooler fall and winter seasons we keep our windows and doors closed tight and fires lit to maximize the cozy feel, however if you did not air out your home during “spring cleaning” then there is never a better time than now! Throw open those heavy drapes, open your home’s windows and doors and let the summer breeze and sun flood your home! Get the stuffy smells out and let the light shine! With daylight savings providing longer days some showings may be during twilight hours so make sure the outdoor light is able to flood through the windows allowing your home to have a dream-like feel.

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4. When in Doubt – Paint!

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Perhaps you painted a room a color that looked amazing on the paint chip but after it dried it was not a hit. If you do not think it looks amazing more-than-likely neither will the Buyer. If a room or hallway has too many scuffs or wear-and-tear marks a fresh coat of paint will do your home a world of wonder! I would highly suggest using white paint – it looks fresh and clean and it does not give Buyers the chance to have an opinion about a color – they are able to use their imagination on how they would use the room for their lifestyle!

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5. Refreshing Cocktail!

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Who does not love a refreshing summer cocktail!? Non-alcoholic of course! Take advantage of the summer heat and have cold bottled water, ice-tea or a craft of lemonade sitting out for the Buyers. After looking at a string of homes it’s a kind gesture to offer Buyers something refreshing to “wet their whistle”! A summer cocktail will not sale your home, but the Buyers will leave your home with a positive feeling … which is key!

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I’d love to hear from you! Let me know your great ideas to get a home sold this summer!

Keep Dreaming, Designing & Dwelling!!!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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For Like Ever!!!

photo 2Valentines Day to me is all about LOVING Your Space, everyday! Make your home your wonderland by filling it with furniture, art and items that make you feel HAPPY! In honor of “The Day of Love” here are several prints by Super Rural that will be a great addition to your space or a fabulous gift to yourself, your love, your friend, your kids or your family! As you can see the prints come in a rainbow of colors and several neutral options that will all look amazing in any space from Modern to Traditional to Collectic!

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“For Like Ever” Prints

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“& Love”, “For Like Ever” and “You + Me” Prints

What do you LOVE about your space?  Do you do anything special to your home for Valentine’s Day?  I’d love to hear from you and know your ideas so leave me a comment below or swing by one of my listed social media sites below and share your ideas with everyone!

Keep Dreaming, Designing & Dwelling!!!

Cheers!
Cortney Bailey

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Lip-Smacking Good! The Final “Must Have” of Eight for Winter 2013!!!

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The eighth and final “Must Have” for Winter 2013 are lip-smacking but simple snacks!  If it’s just you, yourself and I or if you have an entire heard to feed these munchies will be yummy to everyone’s tummy!!!  Don’t forget the presentation of your scrumptious snacks is just important as the treat itself. If you are having a party for one be kind to yourself and put a little effort into the arrangement of your goodies. It goes without saying, if you are having friends or family over, staging your snacks is key to the overall vibe of your event – no matter how casual or grand your get-to-gather may be, remember it’s all about the appearance.

If you pride yourself in your culinary abilities or if you pat yourself on the back for being able to make popcorn I promise, you will be happy with the following ideas and so will everyone else!

Weelicious is a fantastic and over-the-top creative site for delicious, yet easy to follow recipes.  Here are a few amazing ideas for this winter!!!

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 Next, are some of my favorite snacks from Trader Joe’s and everyone loves them. 

  1. TJ’s Pizzas are great on a cold night and are super easy to pop in the oven!  After the pizza is cooked simply cut it into small slices and believe me, if you are entertaining several people, the slices will be gone before you can pop the next pizza into the over!!!
  2. Raisin Rosemary Crisps are great with cheeses and dips and are a little more unexpected than the normal, ho-hum cracker!
  3. The Three Layer Hummus by TJ’s will bring a little spice to your palate! It’s great with veggies or small pitas or pita chips.
  4. The last favorite item from TJ’s is their fantastic selection of cheeses!  My mouth is watering just thinking about their options – make sure you try the Italian Truffle Cheese – OMG it’s amazing!!!

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Speaking of cheese…next is a cheese board! If you have always loved cheese boards but are not sure how to put one together you can easily follow the example board posted! The more comfortable you become with boards you can begin to add meats, pastes, honey and various olives!

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Last are just a few tools to help make your snack presentation gorgeous! All the items are from Crate & Barrel and obviously they have hundreds of other options for you to choose from.  From top to bottom: Olivewood Cheese Board (small slices of pizza would work on this as well.), Set of Six Cheese Markers, Set of Three Cheese Tools and Large Rectangle Slate Board.

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Looking for great cheeseboards & tools?  Check out some of these great options:

Wood Cheese Board: Click Here

Slate Cheese Board: Click Here

Cheese Board Tools: Click Here

I’d love to hear from you! What are your favorite but easy to make winter snacks?  I’m always looking for new ideas so leave me a comment below or follow me on one of the social network sites below and share your ideas!

Keep Dreaming Designing & Dwelling!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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Let There Be Light! The Seventh “Must Have” of Eight for Winter 2013!

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The seventh “Must Have” for this winter season is pretty simple, candles!  Who does not love a great candle?  Not only do they make fantastic gifts, everyone looks like a super model in a candle lit room! If you want to bring a cozy feeling and achieve the look of warmth into your environment during the winter months, then crab your matches and light a candle.

Ideally, I’d love to fill my home with dozens and dozens of candles without having a fire risk, but since that is not possible here is an easy tip.  I like to purchase flameless candles and use them in the background or place them in  gorgeous votives like mercury glass.  Then, I use one good candle in each room of my home to give my “wonderland” a heavenly scent that is not too overpowering. I accomplish the perfect effect without much risk – this is especially important if you have kids, pets or are throwing a holiday party – no fire risk – perfecto!!!

Most of the candles shown in this post were found at Anthropologie, Target or Candle Delirium.  The rest can be found at unique boutiques.  Costco and Target offer good selections for flameless candles!

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Capri Blue from Anthropologie 

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Flameless Candles great selections at Target & Costco

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Aquiesse from Candle Delirium 

photo 1Melt a Target Exclusive 

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Voluspa from Candle Delirium 

I would love to hear from you!!! Leave me a comment below or on any of the social media sites I’ve listed below and let me know your favorite candle!  I am always looking for new ideas.

Keep Dreaming Designing & Dwelling!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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Natural Beauty! The Sixth “Must Have” of Eight for Winter 2013!

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Create natural beauty indoors this winter by using influences from the outdoors to create a beautiful homey wonderland indoors. Natural and organic elements now rule the roost!  From a single natural object, that can introduce a vignette to the current winter trend to an entire home filled with organic winter influences your house will echo the perfect blend of warmth and style that blur the line between outdoors and indoors! Bringing nature inside is my sixth “Must Have” for Winter 2013!

If you love the Earth’s no-fuss beauty, then simple displays of natural design is perfect!  However, if you tend to be drawn to more glitz and glamour then you can easily achieve the natural look by adding some shine – this is simply done by enhancing the natural design with anything from ribbon and bells all the way to glitter and lights! Just like applying make-up to a natural face, you can simply add a little mascara or you can layer on the fake eye-lashes, there is no right or wrong and the sky is the limit!!!

I have pulled all the “Must Haves” for this post from: Save On Crafts.

photo 2Tree Slabs Round Natural Wood & Reversible Wood Tree Slices

photo 5Preserved Boxwood Garland, Perserved Boxwood Wreath & Perserved Boxwood Topiary 

photoSilver Birch Branches, Curly Willow Branches & Brich Branches with Red Berries 

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Birch Bark Tubes

I would love to hear from you! Leave me a comment below or follow me on one of the below sites and share what natural designs you bring into your home – I’m always looking for new ideas!!!

Keep Dreaming & Designing & Dwelling!!!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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Toss Me a Throw! The Fifth “Must Have” of Eight for Winter 2013!

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Who does not love to snuggle under a warm throw during the winter?  Well, I know I sure do!  Even in Southern California we have super chilly nights and one of my favorite things to do is to wrap myself up in a cozy throw and either sit by the fire, watch a movie or enjoy a nice glass of wine or a mug of hot chocolate, and yes sometimes I get to do all at the same time!

Having a collection of throws literally tossed around your home is such a great way to embrace winter and is my fifth “Must Have” for the 2013 season! Throws always give a home a comfy feeling and make every one feel welcome.  Besides the practical use, throws are a great way to add a pop of color, texture and layering to almost any room.

Below you will find four amazing throws that will dress up a couch or chair! A quick tip is that I love to snatch up throws right after the holiday season is over as many of them will be on sale – score!

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CocoCozy Logo, priced at $333.00

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Furbish Studio, Herringbone in Pink, priced at $90.00

Unknown-2Serena & Lily, Pom-pom Aqua, priced at $128.00

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Jonathan Adler, Zig Zag Alapaca, priced at $295.00

I’d love to hear from YOU! What are some of your favorite ways to cozy up during the winter time?  I’d love to hear your ideas so leave me a comment below or on one of the site’s listed below!!!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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Not Your Grandma’s Humidifier! The Fourth “Must Have” of Eight for Winter 2013!

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Winter can bring out the best and worst in us all! It’s a festive time, yet the cold weather and extra heat, that we all need to stay warm, can be damaging to you and your home! Depending on where you live, dry or cold climates, you probably experience chapped lips, cracked hands, and a dry face that needs extra moister, plus a body that requires lots of water to keep it hydrated.  As you turn up the heat and light the fireplace inside your home, the same dryness that happens to your body applies to your furniture and hardwood floors! Eeeek … let’s not let this happen to you or your home!!!

My fourth “Must Have” for Winter 2013 is a humidifier! You may be a little shocked by this pick and ask why is this a “Must Have”?  I agree, it may not seem as fun as my other must have items, but it definitely serves a great purpose – and they actually can be very creative! Humidifiers don’t have to be boring, they actually are packed with a lot of punch, and are able to alleviate some of the minor but irritating causes of dry and cold to hot air – especially in the winter months. Cold air contains less moisture than warm air.  When you turn your heating system on, the blowing air makes a home even dryer, which can cause damage to your body and your home’s wood elements!

There are so many different humidifiers to choose from and I would suggest you research the various brands before you buy one, however just like most home appliances, humidifiers come in all sorts of creative shapes, amazing colors and perfect sizes. They are not just your Grandma’s humidifier they are now modern and sleek!

Here are a few of my picks! Just like my last few “Must Haves” the modern humidifier can be purchased at various price points … gotta love that!

photoGizmine Middle Colors, pricing from $119.00 – $179.00

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Oskar, $159.00

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Crane, $39.99-$49.99

Do you use any of these modern Humidifiers?  If so let me know what you think in the comments below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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The First “Must Have” of Eight for Your Winter Home 2013 – You’re Welcome!

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You don’t have to roll out the “Red Carpet” to make a great impression but you do have to make a great first impression! Your front door really does set the tone to the rest of your home sweet home!

My first must have for Winter 2013 is a fresh doormat! No matter if you are pinching pennies or have a bottomless budget you can make this happen!  I promise you, you want all visitors, family, friends and even your delivery person to actually feel welcomed to your home and not think … “oh well” when they set foot on your threshold.

Your home can be perfectly pristine inside but if your doormat is faded or unraveling your first impression may be a flop. Let’s not let that happen!  Here are a few ideas for all budgets:

Target‘s Mohawk Home Koora Circles: $9.99:

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Amazon $36.00:

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Frontgate‘s  Lion Crest Monogram Starts at $99.50 & up:

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I’d love to see your doormats!  Whether they are traditional, seasonal, DYI etc … show me and leave your comments below!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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Top 8 “Must Have” Items to Make Your Home Ready for Winter 2013!

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The Winter Season means something different to everyone!  Maybe you are looking forward to January 1st when you can start fresh with new goals or perhaps your kiddos will be home for two to four weeks for winter break.  Maybe you celebrate Hanukah or Christmas and are looking forward to entertaining family and friends or you simply love to cuddle up by the fire during the plummeting temperatures … or if you are like me who grew up in Northern Texas where it snows and freezes but you now live in Southern California you find any excuse to light a fire and buddle-up in a cozy blanket and create your own winter!

Over the next eight blog posts I will list the top eight items to have to make your home ready for Winter 2013!  No matter if you just want to have your home ready for yourself and a couple friends or if you are having a huge winter bash these eight items will leave your home memorable and inviting!

Cheers!

Cortney Bailey

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