I love sharing photos of places that inspire me--and I think it's even more fun when they are homes from different countries. It's so interesting to see how other cultures decorate! For example (although I'm probably generalizing way too much), Scandinavian homes are usually more spare and modern, with lots of white, black, and natural woods, while British homes are usually cozier, with more florals, lace, and vintage details. On the other hand, with the internet and the availability of inspiration these days, decorating styles are becoming less area-specific. Many people (myself included) like to blend lots of different styles into their home--a modern Danish nightstand next to a luxe French upholstered bed...why not?! I have to admit, I don't know much about the Brazilian design, so when Bruna Lourenço and Paula Passini (two interior designers from Sao Paulo) sent me this apartment tour, I was really excited. The apartment is actually Paula's own home...a light and bright space with lots of natural textures, indoor plants, and a boho vibe. It's gorgeous!
When Paula and her husband Pedro bought this apartment, the structure was in a bad shape--after all, the building is from the 60’s. A lot of things needed to be changed, but what really caught their attention were the huge windows that go from wall to wall in almost every room. In Paula's words, "Nothing beats the pleasure of having breakfast in a sun-filled space." So to emphasize natural lighting, Paula removed most of the walls in the living area, creating an open kitchen and airy spaces.
Since they were already changing and breaking stuff, the couple decided to replace the tiles and repaint everything – and during the process they discovered a brick wall behind the sofa. What a nice surprise!
The renovation was so intense that Paula had spent almost all her budget before buying the furniture. She improvised with DIY projects, like the pallet coffee table, tables and armchairs inherited from her parents and in-laws and a few new pieces. To forget Sao Paulo’s concrete jungle, the couple tried to create a home inspired by nature and the beach, putting comfort before anything else.
I'm so inspired by this apartment, and now I feel like I need to see more homes from Brazil! Which works out pretty well, since Bruna and Paula have their own blog, Histórias de Casa (House Tales), all about real homes in Sao Paulo. I started scrolling through it yesterday and loved it so far, so I'll have to spend a little more time diving in over the weekend. Obviously, there are a lot of stylish people in Sao Paulo!
One of my favorite details in the apartment is this wooden hand model, holding up the light. It reminds me of college...I studied Industrial Design and had one of these. I don't know what happened to it, but now I want to get another one and do something similar! So cute.
What's your favorite detail of this home? Do you like looking at homes from other countries? And if so, do you feel like you can tell a difference, or do you think that interior design is blending together to the point where there isn't really that much geographical distinction anymore? I'm curious!
All photos by Histórias de Casa.
Yesterday, the weather in Seattle turned from crisp-and-cool to freezing-chilled-to-my-bones-cold. It definitely feels like winter is just around the bend! In fact, last night Ben and I wanted something dessert-y so we went for a little walk to the froyo place by our house. We got all bundled up and left the house, and after we walked about half a block we looked at each other and were like, “it is WAY too cold for froyo--what are we thinking?!” So we ran back to the house (literally) and made hot apple cider. Anyways, with the time change, darker evenings, and colder weather, I’ve been craving soup. I have about four or five soup recipes that I use regularly, but I thought it might be fun to try something new this week, so I looked through my Pinterest archives and found some recipes that look amazing. Mmmmmm. Which one should I try first? Do you have a favorite soup recipe to share?
1. Tuscan white bean & vegetable soup - This one’s vegetarian! With all those yummy ingredients and some crusty bread, I don’t think I’d even miss the meat.
2. Creamy white bean stew with smoky bacon - But of course, anything sounds even better with bacon. This recipe looks absolutely dreamy. I’m practically drooling as I write this.
3. Posole - This is my friend Renae’s recipe…pretty much everything she makes is delicious and she always raves about this dish, so it’s about time I try it!
4. Lemon chicken stew - I love anything with lemon, so this lemon chicken stew intrigues me. And I love that it’s a one pot meal…cuz dishes are the worst!
5. Chicken & dumplings - This is is literally Ben’s favorite soup, but I’ve never made it before. In fact, I’d never even heard of it until I met Ben. I always thought of dumplings as the Asian kind (which Ben calls potstickers). Anyways, I should probably try and make him some chicken & dumplings one of these days. I'll win myself some major wife-points!
See more recipes I want to try here.
It’s already the second week of November, which means…it's time to start thinking about gifts! If you’re looking for an idea that's unique, beautiful, meaningful, and still reasonably priced, you should check out the shop Centime. They have a bunch of lovely options for delicate, personalized jewelry that would be perfect for a friend, a sister, your mom, or any special woman in your life. I got to review a couple pieces, so I can totally vouch for the quality too!
The necklaces above are the ones I got, but below are a few other options that I think are beautiful.
1. Signature necklace: I love this one. You can get anyone’s signature turned into a custom necklace, so you can keep their name and their handwriting close to your heart at all times. So sweet! / 2. Monogram necklace / 3. Coordinates bracelet: Get the coordinates of any place you hold dear stamped on this bracelet--the location of your first kiss, your wedding, your first home, etc. / 4. Stackable name ring: These are so cute, and I love that they’re stackable. So if you have several kids, you could get a ring for each one and wear them all together! / 5. Engraved infinity ring / 6. Personalized birthstone ring / 7. Two-finger name ring
Here’s a closer look at the two necklaces I got: the initial coin necklace & the classic nameplate necklace with our wedding date stamped on it. You can choose the lengths of the chains, so I made it so I could layer the necklaces together if I want to. The nameplate necklace is 16” long and the initial coin necklace is 18”.
For more personalized gift ideas, check out their website. Which one is your favorite?
Thanks to Centime for partnering with me on this post!
I want to get your guys' opinion on this decorating faux pas: putting a rug on top of carpet. Is it a "oh hell no, never ever" type of thing, or do you think it can work in certain situations? The reason I ask is, I'm considering putting a rug in our bedroom to add a bit of color and cover up some of the carpet. We rent, so ripping up the carpet is not an option. I personally don't really categorize anything as a "never ever" when it comes to decorating...if you try to play by all the rules, you'll never have any fun with it! But even though I think rugs over carpet could hypothetically work, I'm not totally convinced that it does. So I gathered up the best examples I could find...ranging from "hmm, that's not that bad!" to "ooh, I think I like this!" What do you guys think? Yes or no? I'm still on the fence.
In a room that already has carpet, a rug isn’t really needed for the normal “practical" reasons like comfort or warmth. But it can still be used to define a space, unify a room, and add color and pattern.
Sooo…what do you think?