Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Secret Bench, Lost Paradise

I lumber up the steps to the grand stone home of books & records dozens of times each year, past the Bench. One day, I had technology at my fingertips and snapped a moment in time, a moment of art imitating life & life imitating art. I love that.

Photo of Lea Vivot's Secret Bench, Lost Paradise, Ottawa, 2011.

 Have you witnessed life imitating art anywhere? Share it with me in the comments!

♥  leel

ps. be sure to check out yesterday's Design Sponge at Home Book Review & Giveaway! Don't miss out!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Design Sponge at Home -> a book review & giveaway!

Are you feeling it? That involuntary whole body yawn? Your compass pointing you in any direction that holds warmth and comfort and retreat? The need to come indoors and settle your weary ass down with a good book? Something with pictures to absorb and skim while drinking a warm beverage under a heavy blanket? Well I'm feeling it. Around here I refer to as November. If you are also crawling under the collective blanket of November, I might just have the perfect thing for you! 

You might remember a small little announcement of epic proportion I made in April regarding a certain project of mine being included in the Before & After section of Grace Bonney's bookchild, Design Sponge at Home. Well, guess what?! Yes, it's out! Yes, I have a copy in my hands! And no, I have not stopped flipping through, flagging projects to try, searching the reference section for suppliers and just oogling and absorbing all the amazing design finds. I carry it with me around the house. Not even kidding. 
Page 351!

 Where to even start?  If you have been to Grace's brainchild website, Design*Sponge online, you will have an idea of what to expect: a book full of creative finds, spaces and projects. (If not, well let me be the one to send you over. Go ahead. Check it out. Back? Ok.) First of all, the book itself serves as an accessory for any room. The perfect pop of colour for any side table or shelf. As you flip through it's easy to see that one thing is for certain, a designer clearly designed this book! The layout from cover to cover is so well thought out and enhanced with great side-tips in the margins (i love that!) as well as amazing photos and illustrations. It's timeless and organized and easy to navigate. It has a great flow from the photo driven Sneak Peeks at the beginning, where the inspiration lies, through to the meat of DIY Projects, Basics, Flower Workshop and Before & Afters and then onto my personal fave, the amazing Resource Guide section at the back.

Inspiration leaps off of virtually EVERY page. It's great to see how artists and designers have personalized their own spaces in meaningful ways that don't cost an arm and a leg. It's refreshing to see how others style their books, paint out trim, add a few pictures in an entrance way and make their spaces look unique and feel like a home. Not imaginary showrooms. Real homes real people live in. The book then provides project ideas and methods on how to actually personalize your own space. It never ends, people! Regardless of what design idea or project you are looking to take on, you can find inspiration and simple instruction for it in this book, which I really see as my new manual.

I'm pretty sure anyone would love this book. Guess what?! It just so happens the lovely people at Thomas Allen & Son, a Canadian Distributor and Publishing company, contacted me offering a free copy of the book as well as two more copies for my lucky Canadian readers! How fun is this? A great way to hibernate this winter and get your inspiration engines fired up? Yes and Yes.

All you have to do is leave a comment on this post by midnight (EST) Friday November 11! I will use a random number generator to pick winners, I'll e-mail the winners for shipping addresses and your book will be on the way. 

One comment per person please. Also, please make sure I can easily find an e-mail address to contact you!

Best of luck!

ps. If you missed Grace on The Nate Berkus show, check it out here!


Nov. 16th Update: Random.org generated #2 & #5. Both winners have been contacted and their books are on the way!


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