Archive for March, 2010


Making Plans

1,139 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Inspiration, Travel

We’ve been daydreaming about building a cabin in the mountains.  It’s always fun to let your imagination run wild with the prospects of “What ifs” and “We coulds”.  There are lots of plans and kits for building a log cabin on the internet, but so many of them look… cabin-y.  Don’t get me wrong, they look inviting, but once I started thinking about how I’d like to decorate a cabin, not once did the thought of bear skin rugs cross my mind.

Luckily, there are some cool, modern cabins out there.


From The New York Times






No Comments   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Inspiration


I don’t think I’m alone in feeling more creative once spring begins.  Flowers are blooming and the world is getting colorful again.  I get the most excited from the light, though.  The longer days keep me going- the sun is up when I wake, and it makes it easier to get out of bed and get going.  The light sticks around longer in the evening, and I don’t feel like I have to wrap up whatever I’m working on and power down.

Of course, springtime brings more sun and less rain, so I’m more inclined to get outside, where I’m more likely to see something that inspires me.  My to-do list is filling up with fun projects.  What has the spring weather inspired you to do?

Image: Gretchen Lilly for littlememe


Terrarium Update!

No Comments   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Gardening, Photos


Saturday was a perfect example of spring weather; bright, warm, and sunny.  I decided to get out and pick up some plants for inside and outside my place.  I repotted the coleus and chenille plant, picked up some pansies and petunias for outside, and found some tropical plants for the window box- including a terrarium!


I didn’t think a terrarium would make me this happy; there is just something about looking through the glass into the little ecosystem.  I’m really tempted to pick up a little gnome to add to this living diorama.

 | Tags:

Low and Slow

968 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Food


When we were in Arizona, Brit made this amazing dinner- a Tex-Mex style salad with Tomatillo Ranch dressing.  Her inspiration came from a chain of restaurants in Arizona and Utah, Cafe Rio.  The other day, I had an out of the blue flashback  to that meal; I had to create it.  I did some digging around the internet and found some recipes.  I decided to go with the Sweet Pork Barbacoa salad with Tomatillo Ranch Dressing.

I used this recipe for the pork, these directions on how long to cook it in my Dutch oven, and this recipe for the dressing.  I ended up changing the pork rub a bit- I used salt, pepper and brown sugar.  I also poured half a bottle of hard cider in, and placed aluminum foil under the lid, almost touching the meat (this helps keep the heat in).  I’d forgotten how easy slow cooking is- you only need to spend a few minutes getting everything in the pot, and then it just cooks down.

I invited Marta over for dinner, and she and Brian both gave it the thumbs up, so I’ve put this recipe on my short list.


Marta brought over these GF sandwich cookies for dessert.  I ate them like the Cookie Monster.


Fun With the Dress Form: Crisp Cotton

No Comments   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Fashion, Photos, Styling


The spring weather has been such a tease; sunny but moderate one day, rainy and windy the next.  I am getting very antsy.  I just want to throw on a cute dress and hop on my Vespa!*


I swear on a stack of Girl Scout Handbooks that I will throw this ensemble on as soon as it gets over 77 degrees.

Dress: J. Crew

Jacket: Mossimo

Belt: Gap

Purse: Drika B.

Necklace: Claire’s

Shoes: Old Navy

*Vespas are more exciting than ’99 Corollas.


Unexpected Beauty

No Comments   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Photos, shopping

I was shopping at U Village today with my sister, when we came across this beautiful, detailed construction fence.



I was so impressed!  I’ve never seen such a work of art surrounding a construction project.  These little critters were all carved into the wood.  What a bit of unexpected beauty while shopping.


Dining Table Fantasies

No Comments   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Home Decor, Inspiration

I’d like to think that I’d have the cutest little apartment in the world- if I only had the money (of course, I wouldn’t live in an apartment if I had the money, but let’s get back on track).  Of course, money does not equal style, but I’m pretty confident that I have a good enough eye to put stuff together.


My reality is a budget that involves searching for decorating deals and hand me downs.  We’ve actually been pretty lucky with the furniture people have given us; well made, solid stuff.  Brian’s grandparents owned this dining set, and then his parents.  The major pros for this table are how sturdy it is, how timeless the design is, and that it can seat six with all the leaves.  The cons are the stains (meaning a mash up of wood stain), the upholstery, and the table legs.  The stain and upholstery are pretty easy to explain away- styles change.  The legs are what bug me the most- when you sit at the head of the table, it is impossible to stick your feet out, since the legs on this table are more like a fence.  Of course, I usually forget this after a few minutes, and have stubbed my toes too many times to count.

Inspirations for changing the dining set:


I like how this set is simple in the color palate, but the white chairs contrasting with the dark table top keep it interesting (image: Canadian House and Home).


This is a coffee table, but I lu-huv the hairpin legs.  I think this would be the simplest way to transform our table (image:

3rod-1 only sells one thing! Image:


Again, I’m digging the non-matching set (image: Canadian House and Home).


It’s all about the shape of the furniture and the color of the wood.  Not sure if our table has the lines to pull of something this simple (image: Canadian House and Home).


More Danish inspiration.  I could see our chairs upholstered this color and painted high gloss white (image:


We could paint the tabletop and leave wood on the sides.  Drooling over the chairs (Image: Canadian House and Home).


Hutch Update

No Comments   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Home Decor

Back in October, I blogged about turning a bookcase into a china hutch.  I didn’t really have much worth displaying, but I’ve picked up a few things in the past week that I’m happy to show off.


I got to Target at 8AM sharp last Sunday (I remembered Daylight Saving Time and everything!) and picked up this Liberty of London teapot and mugs (among other things).  Yes, I bought three mugs on purpose.  Because groupings of three look good, that’s why!


Behold my new GurglePot.  I found it at Value Village yesterday!  I’ve seen these in shops, and I’ve (kind of) wanted one because I like the design and I was intrigued at the idea of a noise making pitcher.  I don’t know if I’m pouring it wrong (is that possible?) or because it’s a small one, but the gurgling it makes is like one second long.  Oh well, it coordinates with the fabric on the hutch (total accident) and it was only $2.99!  If you visit the GurglePot website there is an audio of the pitcher being poured.


Fun With the Dress Form: Dreaming of Paris

1,478 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Fashion, Photos, Styling



When you live in Paris, you have no choice but to be chic and fashionable.  At least, that’s the impression I’ve gotten from everything I’ve read about the place.  I’ve also read that Americans stick out in an embarrassing way.  Hopefully this outfit won’t get you too many eye rolls Francais.

Top: A.P.C.

Skirt: Martin+Osa

Shoes: TOMS

Necklace: Claire’s

Purse: Coach


Fun With the Dress Form: Cool and Comfy

980 Comments »   Posted by gretchen |  Category:Fashion, Photos, Styling


You’re hitting the clubs, and you want to pass the dress code, but you also don’t want to hobble your way home.  These flats are chic enough to bring out at night, and leggings aren’t just for wearing under Union Bay sweatshirts any more.


Jacket: Vintage

Tank: J. Crew

Necklace: J. Crew

Handbag: Target

Leggings: Ann Taylor Loft

Flats: Jeffrey Campbell