Using Preserved Boxwoods In Decorating

I have been known to kill a few plants in my life, but that doesn’t stop me from using them in my personal home and design projects. I often use faux plants that definitely have to look like the real thing. But when I can find low maintenance options like succulents I jump at that chance.

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Preserved boxwoods are a great way to bring in greenery into your home if you are not into using faux plants.

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Preserved boxwoods are actually real boxwood plants that have been preserved using a dye and glycerin solution to prevent them for drying out and fading over time.

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There is some slight maintenance required to keep them from drying out – just a spray bottle with water every month or so. This keeps the boxwoods looking fresh and green

Although I have never actually done it myself, I am told the process is very simple to do it yourself. See instructions here from WikiHow. I often order my boxwoods from Bella-Marie.com. They have a great variety of sizes and styles in great looking containers.

Casa Vilora Interiors

Preserved boxwoods are great in cottage styled interiors and traditional interiors. They work great in kitchens and dining rooms.

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They are just wonderful to bring life and a touch of nature to your interiors.

Image Via Bella Marie.com

Image Via Bella Marie.com

 

Thanks for stopping by today.

Wishing You Beauty and Inspiration!

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Casa Vilora Interiors Project Featured In Apartment Therapy

Imagine, after a grueling 17 hour road trip from Katy TX to Ft Lauderdale, FL getting my daughter and her dog squared away for college; and then waking up to this in my newsfeed………….

Via Apartment Therapy Facebook Page

Via Apartment Therapy Facebook Page

………literally after about 3 hours of sleep.

Needless to say, I was super thrilled and screaming at the top of my lungs. My son’s bedroom makeover was featured in Apartment Therapy! :-)

Some of you may remember following the progress of Joshua’s bedroom makeover for the One Room Challenge in Spring. You can check out the big reveal here

apartment-therapy

I have forever followed, loved and admired Apartment Therapy. They are an amazing resource for not just apartment dwellers, but anyone seeking clever  and unique ideas for their homes without breaking the bank. Did you know that they have a book coming out in a few months? I have preordered my copy on Amazon

I am so honored that they chose one of my projects to feature. Yay me!! :-) :-)

You can check out the feature here

Feel free to leave a comment on the actual article as well. There have been some amazing comments….and some not so amazing ones :-)  – but I know it comes with the territory :-)

Thanks for stopping by today!

Wishing You Beauty and Inspiration!

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Decorating With Minted Art

Happy Monday Folks!

It will be a busy week for me as I get my daughter ready to head off to college in Florida, and my son ready for back to school on the 24th. Not to mention all the fun projects that I am currently working on. Life is good!

But I know most of you look forward to my weekly dose of design, so today I wanted to talk about one of my favorite resources –  Minted.com. I just wanted to point out that this is not a sponsored post, neither was I asked by Minted to write a review about their products. I am just sharing my personal opinions based on my own experience with their products

Image Via Minted.com

Image Via Minted.com

You might be familiar with their beautiful website, which is a great resource for beautiful stationery, art and décor, including pillows and fabric by the yard. In their own words “Our purpose in life is to uncover exceptional design from all over the world and bring this to savvy consumers who won’t accept anything else.” And you can definitely see that from the beautiful products they have available.

I mostly order art prints for my design projects. Their prints are an inexpensive way for me to create beautiful gallery walls for my clients. There are several categories to choose from ranging from abstract to drawings and everything in between. I love that they are very limited editions of each, and there are so many options available

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In most cases, I purchase prints from Minted, then I purchase Ikea Ribba frames and then have them professionally matted at Hobby Lobby. It is a great way to give the art an expensive look on a tight budget.

The above picture is a recently completed living room where I used several Minted prints. In this shot you can see two drawings against the grasscloth wallpaper

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And in this shot, all but three prints are from Minted.

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This is the living room/dining room in my personal home. The prints leaning above the mantel are all from Minted and the small one above the TV is also from Minted.

As you can see they have beautiful art and even curtains. They are definitely one of my go-to resources

Image Via Minted.com

Image Via Minted.com

Below are examples of fabrics by the yard

Image Via Minted.com

Image Via Minted.com

Image Via Minted.com

Image Via Minted.com

 

Check out their website and tell me what you think

Wishing You Beauty and Inspiration!

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3 Simple Ways To Help Prepare Your Middle Schooler For A Successful School Year

Happy Monday my Lovelies! :-)

So on Saturday I finally got school shopping done for my 13 year old son, Joshua, who is about to enter 7th grade. It was tax free weekend here in Houston, and everyone else was out school shopping for sure. $587.08 later, I can’t say that I saved that much. I am not sure if the long lines in Old Navy was worth it, but savings is savings, right?

My son has a learning deficiency, and so each school year I have to really help him stay organized and focused. I help him by creating an environment at home that makes it conducive and enjoyable for doing homework and reading.

Here are three simple ways that I help prepare my son for a successful school year.

1) Create an area designated for homework and school stuff

I really have to stay on top of Josh when it comes to homework. He is not the most organized, and he loses interest easily. He has to constantly be reminded to stay on task. When he does, he is quite a remarkable kid who does very well, but he needs that extra push

Casa Vilora Interiors

Casa Vilora Interiors

I recently re-did his bedroom, and one important element was to create an area designated for homework. It was very important to infuse his personality and a little inspiration to keep him motivated. He loves basketball and he loves to paint, so I was sure to include some items related to those hobbies on his desk. I also thought it was very important to create this area by a window. Kids thrive on natural light and fresh air, and when they are doing a less than enjoyable task like homework, a view out the window is not a bad thing. But the most important element is organization. I included the trays to organize his homework. The homework calendar will be pinned to the wall once school begins, and his closet has a filing drawer with folders to file away paperwork. There is also plenty of bookshelves for his books and magazines, to encourage him to read more

Here I did a homework loft for a client a couple of years ago

Katy Interior Designer

This area is used by a couple of teenagers. It helps to keep them organized and they can even help out each other as they work together on homework.

The bulletin board is a great way to post reminders for homework or special projects and school calendars. The trays are great for organizing paperwork.

I strongly believe that when kids have an area to call their own, that sense of ownership helps with their confidence which in turn helps them to want to succeed.

2) Create an environment that makes it easier for them to interact with you at homework time or just to talk about their day

I am going to be honest and admit that I think that the school system relies way too much on parents involvement at home with kids and homework. I strongly believe that parents should be involved in their kids’ education for sure. But there is so much that they leave to parents that I often wonder what the teachers get paid to do. I know some of you will disagree here, and that’s ok. But the whole point here is to be available to your kids when they need help at home with school work

Because of Josh’s learning deficiency, I make it a point to make it easy for us to interact after every school day. The atmosphere and room setting can help or hinder that time together. The more organized, comfortable and visually pleasing, the better.

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My kitchen is where my son and I often interact when it comes to homework. He will either sit by the breakfast bar in the above picture, while I do the dishes.

Or………

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He will sit in the morning room area (former breakfast room) and ask questions about homework, or just talk about his school day. I often hear stories that I probably wouldn’t normally hear if we did not hang out in these areas while I prepare dinner and wash dishes. I really treasure these moments.

My daughter is about to go off to college, and looking back, I wish I had done more of that with her. She was an excellent student; very-self directed and independent, so I didn’t have to make that special effort with her

Here in the picture above, the table actually can easily adjust to a dining table height if Joshua wants to do homework here. It just makes for a cozy mommy/son area

3) Boost Their Confidence

This takes on many forms depending on your kids’ personalities. It could be getting them involved in sports, or some church activities like Joshua likes to do.

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It could be dressing them for success. Just as adults dress the part for the success and confidence, some kids find confidence in the way they dress for school. There can be a negative side to this as well, but for the most part, dressing well helps with their confidence…..especially in the adolescent stage

Encouraging some hard work, and introducing them to what you do for a living also encourages their confidence and their own desire to succeed in school

Casa Vilora Interiors

Joshua has been my unofficial summer intern this year. I actually hired him for simple tasks in my design studio. I have been paying him $30 a week to do simple tasks like organizing my sample library, filing paperwork, helping me create my to-do list for the day, and even janitorial duties. He only works a few hours, 2-3 days a week :-)

He actually really enjoys it, and he does really well with the tasks I assign him. I can tell that it boosts his confidence as I praise him for a job well done. It also gives us another opportunity to interact and bond. It has been a lot of fun having Josh on payroll. :-)

What are some things you do to help your kids’ succeed in school?

Thanks for stopping by today!

Wishing You Beauty and Inspiration!

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