yesterday you saw the progression of our shelves from downright awful to whatever means much, much better. the lion’s share of the work was done by the interior design whiz named jen dipasquale, but she used things i already had around the house in addition to a few new items. here is all of the info!
— MIDDLE —
i’ll tackle the easy 1/3rd first – the middle one. the painting is an oil done by my aunt locke, who was so very talented and a local artist here in atlanta. she had such an eye for color. this painting has always been special to me, but especially now since she is not with us anymore. it makes me so happy to see it take such a strong presence in our living room.
jen hung it with wire and what looked like a picture hook…maybe she can explain what she did further in the comment section!
the stacked national geographics came from my mom’s garage. they are from all kinds of different years. i am so glad she kept them!! however, jen said you can always find them at goodwill.
— LEFT SIDE —
just a quick note about the books – i needed a LOT more books than we had to fill the shelves. i made several trips to goodwill and would look for books that a) i might want to read one day and b) had the right spinal tone. goodwill charges $2.50 for hardback books and they are like new – a steal!! what’s great about the hardbacks is that they can serve as two colors – the book jacket has one, and the naked spine is usually a totally different hue. and a bonus, now when i need a new book to read i just visit my own personal barnes & noble in the living room.
top shelf: family portrait from rinne’s newborn session, framed by laura negri photography. sea fans from scott’s antique market; i have had them since i first moved into the condo five years ago. i think they were around $10 each…maybe not even that much.
aqua shelf: urn/planter was $5 from a garage sale in my neighborhood a few months ago. i loved the color of it. cross with turquoise and silver was a gift from my friend shannon.
red shelf: framed wedding invitation was a gift from my friend sara. little dish that holds shells…the shells were from a trip to fripp island a few summers ago, and the dish was like a dollar at an estate sale i think, many years ago. it has had many uses over the years, ranging from candy dish to spare key holder. the little picture is of me and my mom. small wooden crosses i think came from a christmas dinner with rbb’s family a few years ago.
black and blue shelf (insert corny joke about how it beat itself up): sphere was $15 from scott’s in march when jen was here, although my mom saw it and said that she had a whole box of whatever those things are in all different sizes…my dad brought back a bunch from vietnam in the 70s. anybody need one??
brown shelf: box with mother of pearl lid is from homegoods, maybe $24.99? sea urchin (perhaps?) was around $9 from a shop right outside fripp island; he’s lost a few arms but keeps on kicking! silk picture frame on the right (not shown in this frame) is from heery’s too in downtown athens during a home sale back when i was in college…OMG, so long ago (circa 2001).
p.s. i got the diary of a cat book as summer reading for paquito.
— RIGHT SIDE —
top shelf: more sea fans! cow painting is an oil given to us as a wedding present from merrell and wilson. i recently got it framed at artifacts (they are the best!).
orangey/red shelf (see above full length image): picture frame is from sam flax and little silver dish…another estate sale. needs to be polished but it goes better with the shelf color with a little tarnish :)
green and yellow shelf: little vase is from webb marsteller a few weeks ago. small oil painting was a birthday gift from jen that i hung with a small nail on the back of the shelf. iron planter is from an estate sale…i have a set of two of those guys and LOVE them. i think it was $15 for the pair. now if i could only keep what i put in them alive (that succulent is way dead).
pink and purple shelf: mercury vase was picked out by jen at scott’s in march. silver michael aram picture frame was a wedding gift and holds a picture of my dad.
bizarre trivia note: in this photo, my dad is sitting in a rocking chair on my grandmother’s front porch in the exact same spot (coincidentally) that rbb proposed to me in august 2008 (he passed away in october 2007). i just realized that little factoid!
white and black shelf: silver dish is another michael aram piece; it was a wedding gift. white owl pitcher was a birthday gift from betsey (she knows how i feel about the wise creatures!).
bottom row of shelves: well, we had to hide the kid c-r-a-p somewhere, right?! these shelves are really long and shallow, so i could not find one bin/basket/etc. the exact right size to save my life. i luckily happen to stumble on these grey burlap baskets at the container store though – two fit perfectly on my shelf, hurrah! they hide children’s books, cars, plastic pianos and the like.
— HINTS —
- you don’t need to spend a lot of money on accessories for shelves. most of these items were $15 and under! and i want to also give a big shoutout to all of my friends who, as exhibited here, have excellent taste and give me such beautiful gifts. thanks y’all!!
- frequent estate sales, garage sales, goodwill and antique markets to find inexpensive treasures.
- you can never have too many books!
- grouping things by color is an easy, fast way to visually organize your shelves.
- use what you have. the things you think you are lacking, you probably have in a closet! for instance, that small silver michael aram bowl. i had been using it for dips while entertaining and keeping it in its little velvet bag, but there is just no need for it to live in a dark closet its whole life.
- give yourself some kind of storage element, especially if you have children. that low shelf is just asking for grimy hands to upturn whatever is on it…so that had to be a total kid-friendly zone. i love that i can pretty much throw the kid stuff in the baskets and it’s hidden.
of course, an enormous gracias to jen…girl, i owe you at least twenty letterpress stationery orders by now. thanks for sharing your dead-on style with me!!!