Friday, March 21, 2014

Seven Spring Spruce-Ups for Your Home

Is that your mouth watering?  Maybe it's in anticipation of our seven spring spruce-ups for your home.  Right?   
I didn't think so.  Yes, those Easter eggs look delicious. Would you believe they're skinny cake balls created by Skinny  You can find this clever recipe there. 
It made sense to start with a treat first. You deserve something edible to look forward to after you complete your Lenten fast. Can you believe it, you're already into the third week?  Congrats!

We're so glad you're checking off your spring list right along with us.  We marched into March brimming with ideas, and what sprang forth was our iCafe Woman Moderne Spring-To-Do List.  We hope ours has prompted you to start your own. 

Oh happy day, spring has officially sprung!  

"I will lift up my eyes unto the hills from whence cometh my help, my help cometh from the Lord who made Heaven and earth." Psalm 121

Miracles and Blessings ... Kiki here ... I'm back hosting today's text-webisode:  Seven Spring Spruce-Ups for Your Home.  Today, I'm fortunate to have some help from my iCafe Woman Moderne Divas:  Nessa, Monie and Jade. 


How could our to-do list leave out where the heart is? 

It could also be where the nightmare is, and a bulldozer would be the answer.  You don't know what I would give to wake up in my dream home, sooner than later.  

Nessa's home took a little beating two snow storms ago.  I'm sure she has plenty of company.  Nessa, we'll save that for another text-webisode.  Today, we're taking baby steps in our spring home projects.

Right.  Baby steps now ... bulldozer later. (laughing)

If you followed our Spring-To-Do list:

1. You rebounded on a mini-trampoline and discovered a lighter and brighter you.  
2. Office bling and spa touches punched up your office/cubicle with glam and helped you de-stress.  

3. This summer I won't have to resort to threats to get my kids reading.  Reading fun comes to play with some smart ideas and it's taking me along for the fun.

4.  Who's Afraid of Victoria's Secret swimwear?  Not me anymore ...thanks to their new sport styles and swimwear for real shapes.  I just ordered my tankini.

Monie, are you threading beads?

5.  Don't look so surprised.  I took Kiki's advice and found the craft girl inside of me, and a new way to chill.  I can't believe I'm making jewelry.  You're all getting bracelets for your birthdays.

6. Lenten fast food alternatives kept me away from the junk food cravings.  I can't believe I'm into the third week and I haven't downed a single jumbo bag of potato chips.  I also can't believe I'm digging Kale chips ...can't get enough of them.

7. Is that hat new?

Yep, I found a cute spring fedora fast.

8. I hope I find my maxi dress just as fast.  This Saturday, I'm shopping for an orange or yellow maxi.  It's high on my shopping list.  This spring, people will see me coming and going. (laughing)

(Bulgaria Textile)

Five Spring Spruce-Ups 
for Your Home


1. Stripe Your Wall or Floor.
Liven up a drab room with stripes.  You can make it as subtle or bold as you like.

(Inspiring Homestyle)

I saw this beautiful light and dark wood striped floor at Prairie Perch.  I'm doing this in my kitchen.

(Prairie Perch)

Or you can take the budget-friendly route and paint a wood floor or use a hardy linoleum.


2. Get a Bold Shower Curtain.


 (Leslie Donnelle Inner Strength pop shower curtain)


3. Make a Home Coffee Station.

I'm in the process of making one for my sun porch.  It'll be my homegrown cafe for when the girls come over.  

My husband gave me a Keurig for Christmas.  Eventually, I'll order a latte machine to add to it. I found an old china closet at the Goodwill that came in two pieces.  I'm adding a shelf on either side to display extra mugs and bottles of coffee flavorings.  I'll also put a towel rack inside the door.  I may try to decopage it to add more interest.

You can use almost anything to create a coffee station.  Make it easy on yourself and simply convert a portable butcher block island into a coffee station, or designate a cabinet section to your coffee love.  But if you're handy or know somebody that's handy with tools, you can replace the butcher block with a quartz or marble remnant on sale at a home store and add shelves and S-hooks.  A little ingenuity goes a long way.



(Cobabe in Suburbia)

(The Magnolia Mom)

As you can see from our examples, you can make it as simple or as fancy as you want.


4. Add New Window Coverings

This would probably be an investment, but it would certainly spruce a room up.

Here's an innovative way to add interest to your windows and French doors from Purl Decorative Coverings

Stained Glass Film

Printed Window Film of Sand and Seashells 

5.  Add a Mural of Your Favorite Vacation Spot.   

The one above is also from Purl Decorative Coverings.



6. Spruce Up Your Dish Collection.  
Find affordable dishes that'll brighten your meals and remind you it's springtime.  I love these eye-catching melamine dishes I found at Home Stories.

You also can't go wrong with Macy's Spring 2014 Fiesta Dinnerware.

7.  Plant a Rose Bush in Memory of a Loved One.

(Monday's Rose)

If you plant one in a few weeks, you'll have your first bloom by early Spring.  Remember to make the most of Spring, it only comes once a year. 

Take the time to smell, hear, see and taste this spring and summer. I promise you, they will be moments well spent.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Four Spring Fashion Trends or Ageless (Faithful) Classics?

It's true, life seems to travel in one big circle.  What once was, can return again with a twist.  When it comes to fashion, that's a good thing.  It's great to have designs that defy fashion gravity and always look good, stylish and can work well with different age groups, depending on the cut, hemline and accessories.

1. Shift and Tee Shirt Dresses ...Always a Fashion Pleasure
Our Oscar Award-Winning Actress Lupita Nyong'o (12 Years a Slave) and Oscar Nominated Actress Naomi Watts  could hit the runway themselves in this long-sleeved knit version of a tee-shirt dress and shift dress.  Flip through an old Sears & Roebuck catalog or Simplicity Pattern book packed away in the basement ... and I'm sure you'll see these designs.  Grandmothers are notorious for not throwing things away.

That was Then...

I'm digging the bold pattern of this Emilio Pucci maxi, but there's a lot going on with this dress design to fit our spring 2014 trend.  (however, the bold pattern in our 21st century spring colors would work.)  

Let's look at the design.  You have the ruffled striped hem and sleeves, an empire waist and a collar that reminds me of a nehru collar like the 1960s Bleeker Street nehru collar dress below.

(1960s Nehru Dress - Ruby Lane - A Bleeker Street Design)
Our Millennium versions are simpler, but with surprises.  And just like back then, you'll see a lot of shift, tee-shirt and maxi dresses strutting bold designs this spring.  IMHO (In My Humble Opinion) they would go great with the popular sixties go-go boots.  After the winter we've had, I'm sure nobody wants to see boots this spring.

This is Now

What you will see are bold patterns pairing up in unexpected ways.  You'll see what I mean in a minute.


As always, Kiki sends Miracles & Blessings ... I'm Cocoe Dominique and excited about hosting today's iCafe Woman Moderne text-webisode:  Four Spring Fashion Trends or Ageless (Faithful) Classics?  I'm not surprised Kiki picked me to host today's text-webisode.  I'm sixteen and a fashion model, who's  convinced she was supposed to be born 30 years ago.  Let's just say, I don't wear the typical clothes of my generation, well ... sometimes ... but mostly no.  My fraternal twin, Christiane, can attest to that and loves calling me ... lame, embarrassing and ... oh yeah, corny. 

Lame or not, any given day, you'll see me sporting a maxi ... not today's Old Navy version, but the original deal from the sixties and seventies. I get them from family members, my favorite vintage spots, church bazaars, flea markets, Good Will and the Salvation Army.   

But you didn't stop by to hear about me, here are four of 2014 (I promise!) Spring Fashion Trends that are still making fashion waves.  Think Spring ... simple lines are what we'll see as  temperatures climb.  Simple designs in dresses, suits, blouses and pants in pastel and florescent colors.  They'll team up with the bold patterns and bright colors of accessories. 


2. The Clutch and Chunky Necklace - Simple Accessories in Bold Colors and Accents



3. Trench Coat - A Fashion Staple Next to the LBD
Who hasn't seen the trench coat in standard tan, shiny, in leather, pleather, plaid, animal print, geometric patterns ...  So we're not surprised to see them emerge in soft pastels.  Well, not exactly emerge, since the trench has never left the fashion scene and never will.  It's been short, mid-length, below the knee and a maxi.  We'll see varying lengths this spring.  Hopefully, there won't be a need to wear one for too long.

 (Vogue - Pinterest)

4.  Bold Patterns that Say Wow and What? 

Floral jeans with a tomato red dressy coat?  I warned you about the pairings, but the look is definitely a wow.  It's different and bold and simple ...all at the same time.  Can I get a what ....what?"

Keep these tips in mind when spring clothes shopping:

1. Pick styles that can punch up what you already have, especially if you have a budget constraint.

2. Step out of the fashion safety box.  Experiment and pick what works for your personality and shape.

3. You're not supposed to look like the magazine model and plastic store mannequin.  You should look like you imitations please.

4.  Have fun ...and make fun of the clothes you think look better on the hanger.  Always seek out fashions designed for real figures.

24 Years Ago...

 (Emilio Pucci - Vogue 1990 - Voguepedia)

Today - 2014 New York's Spring Fashion Week...

 (Clover Canyon at New York Fashion Week Spring 2014)

I can see a matching clutch with this outfit, so cute!  As I said earlier, fashion runs in an awesome circle ... like a merry-go-round. 

You can get on and off as much as you want.  Sure, you can repaint the horses or switch them out with a newer model, but they're still a part of the merry-go-round and still fun to ride.  Enjoy this spring's fashion ride.