House Beautiful

Currently Loving {12.30.18}

GREETINGS from the Arctic Tundra!! Hope you guys had a great holiday and that your pants are tight and you’re logging lots of time with loved ones and still in your fuzzy socks (like yours truly).

I feel like I’ve heard every other person I know say they’re taking off until January 7th, which I think (if you can do) is A BRILLIANT IDEA… cuz this is what 2018 felt like:

So fun, but INSANE. So, I’m trying to pull a January 7th myself. I haven’t slept past 5:30am in ages and I slept a cool 10-12 hours a night (like a LOG) when we were home for the holidays, then would fall asleep sitting up watching movies during the day in my cocoon of sweatpants. I didn’t even know I needed it but man, it was stellar. And now that we’re home, I just want to spend some time with my boys – whom I feel like I have neglected this year because I was never not on a plane and when I was home, I did not exercise good work-life balance (whoops)… So today, I turned on my out of office and am going to Spring clean, relax, ski, sleep, and drink gallons of green juice to counteract the carb-rabbit-hole I went down this past week. I also have resolutions on the brain – one of which is blogging more frequently. I swear it’s good for the soul. What do you guys want to see more of, btw?

On that note, let’s play a round of Currently Loving – shall we? (Pssst! Click on the images to link to their sources).

First of all, these tamales are the best things you can buy at Costco right now.  We have friends coming in for New Years for a few days to hang and ski, and we bought a slew for easy breakfasts: with over medium eggs + avocado + Cholula? BOOM. I’ve already had them for breakfast and lunch today. Ask me how my green juice initiative is going.

Look at the door glazing (and hardware) detail:

So beautiful. I wish I dressed like this more often… (those boots are bananas, btw)…

Instead, I dress more like this on the reg. PS, these are the best sweatpants I have ever owned.


Hands down THE most beautiful side table I have ever seen. I am so jonesing for this for my office – I reached out to the artist, Christopher Stuart (who’s a hop-skip from my hometown in Indiana!) but I may have to wait till I hit the big(ger) leagues for that bad boy… $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

Who wants this for dinner tonight?

The most beautiful plumbing suite in the history of ever, from Barber Wilsons & Co. The Brits know wassup.

Have. you. ever. in. your. life.

One of the prettiest rugs I’ve seen in awhile. Just used it in a project I’ll show ya this Spring 😉 Drift Home is probably my new favorite rug outfit for Moroccans in particular. The shop owner, Nataliya, is also a GEM.

I also love this one – “Inca Trail.” I never met a pink rug I don’t like. I think lilacs and rosy hues throw a lot of people, but you know why I love them? Because so many of us decorate with so much blue and green – so many cool colors – that I feel like a little warmth & whimsy on the floor can be a really beautiful complement to those.

Pink isn’t everybody’s thing, but in general, I do find that clients get really caught up in feeling like evvvvvverrything needs to match – or just in one color palette or style altogether. Which – when you install an entire space that way – the room falls really flat (e.g. all greys, all “industrial modern” furniture, etc etc). This is where the trust factor comes in and if you’re working with a designer, you gotta pour yourself a stiff cocktail and let go of the reigns. I mean… if you don’t listen to me, listen to the inimitable Summer Thorton (Cliffs Notes: the part covered up at the bottom is: Matching is for amateurs.”)

Totally reminds me of the master shower we did at Casa Covet Living – may actually be the exact same tile. But looks like they used copper plumbing fixtures, which is an unexpected and really beautiful choice!

Still my favorite armoire ever. I’m opening up a new(er) office that’s an Elk-Ave-facing storefront in about a month and trying to decide between doing one or two of these (plus some tile storage somewhere) or custom cabinetry. New office in a WHOLE OTHER post though…

Holy Hell, that’s a dress.

Pulled this from the Covet Living archives ca. 2010 – I have no idea how I ran across it, but I still love it so.

My new favorite fabric from Beata Heuman. I just twisted my homegirl in Charleston’s arm to have her little boy’s euro shams done in it – and I’m not even horn-tooting when I quote her reaction – just reminding you to trust your designers, people: “THESE ARE BAD ASS! Good call Ballard – I adore. Seriously the coolest fabric in the history of ever.”

Dying over these for our Hawaii trip in February.

Also, I sprung for my first Kiini on Shopbop over Black Friday cuz they had a bunch of separates on super clearance (like $30 a pop) and I’m now a believer. The detail is meticulous and the fit is superb. I’ve been pinning them and putting them on wishlists for YEARS – bout time I ponied up.

Speaking of getting in a bikini… I have posted these Pumpkin Beer Pretzels with Chipotle Queso no less than 75x and never made them. I’ll start Operation Hawaii as soon as I slam a few of these on New Years Day.

Doesn’t get much more straightforward than this. If you’re a person who makes resolutions, this is probably a good place to generate some idears.

Fresh new score for a client’s bathroom. And if it doesn’t work there, there are a few other folks in line for it. That shot of green is SUPER rare to see. We almost got one like this for Karrie’s nursery but some ho bag snatched it out from under us and I never thought I’d see another one.

I have loved the Cameron Lamp from Visual Comfort since somewhere around the beginning of time. It is sadly insanely expensive ($3300), but a girl can dream. You know I swoon over anything white, sculptural and made of natural stone (trimmed in brass).

This paint color is to die. Amie Corley’s portfolio is saccharin-filled and swoon-worthy.

I have major JOMO and I wish I was sorry about it.

Found this antique dough bowl last week antiquing in Carmel, IN. You know I can’t say no to a lilac-y pink patina (but I did say no to the $495 price tag). Wondering if I should go back to Round Top this year? I thought it was kind of a bust last year, but also not sure I have the will power to stay away from a 10-mile long antique festival. It’s the thrill of the hunt.

We ALMOST used this tile (Tabarka’s Palio) in Karrie’s kitchen 3 years ago, and we both love it still. Saving for my next extra special project (*cough* Jamie – should we entertain for Cade’s bath?!)

Vintage Gerald Thurston for Lightolier lamps, as seen on 1st Dibs about 8 years ago… I think I sobbed when I realized they were $7000 for the pair… then a few months later, found the exact same ones in white (!) at an antique store in Chicago for $500 DOLLARS FOR THE PAIR. To this day, it felt like stealing. I would cry tears down my leg if I ever saw the black version with the finials intact, comme ça.

New ring swag for Christmas!

Dying over this guy! Guglielmo Berchicci for Kundalini. Say that 7 times fast.

Have a Happy, HAPPY NEW YEAR! And, if you’ve made it to the bottom of this post:

a) Bless you, and

b) For real – if there’s anything you want to see (or see more of) in 2019, let us know!! Is it Design Tips, DJ playlists, Renovation advice, Fashion, Fashion Recaps (PSST! The Globes are on next Sunday 1/6!), etc? Ask and you shall receive.




Karrie’s Holiday Gift Guide 2018

To Steph’s point about how we’re old AF and need more material things like we need holes in our heads, I’d like to counter by saying: True. We’re old AF. But there’s no better way to feel young again than by ignoring all the things you need (booooring) and instead writing all the things that you just wannnnt. And after a year in which I rented out my uterus for 10 months only to then have to take care of said tenant round the clock, Imma just be selfish for a bit and pretend Xmas revolves around me and what I want. Here’s my list of what I’m jonesing for!:

Clockwise from top left:

1 – Lioness Palermo Blazer – I’m totally digging the double breasted look I’m seeing on all the basic b*tches this season. Very 90s. I like.

2 – “Iris” Hoops by one of my favorite brands out there, Able

3 – Elite Mirror Oval 8 Brush – A makeup brush for $67?! Yes, I know it’s crazy… Who the f*ck do I think I am putting a $67 makeup brush on my Gift Guide? But this is supposed to be the Grand Poobah of makeup brushes, designed to flawlessly blend foundation, bronzer, contour shades (if you’re a Kardashian) on your haggard little face. Yes please!

4 – Instant Pot  – Maybe the closest thing on this list to something I actually need. And I don’t need it… but I would use the living sh*t out of it, for real.

5 – Also from Able, the “She’s Worth More” bracelet, handcrafted in Nashville with signature hand-stamped plus signs to show support for #PublishYourWages.

6 – This rainbow hued Alidia ring from Bauble Bar – Cause who can’t use a happy little rainbow to look down at throughout the day? By the way, this ring keeps selling out, so pre-order now to get to you or someone you love by Dec 21st.

7, 8, 9 – Three (!) entertaining/cookbooks: “Kathryn at Home” (SUCH a good book, if you love her vibe, which you do, because you read this blog and are smart); my home slice Ina Garten’s newish book, “Cook Like a Pro”, and Tiffani Thiessen’s “Pull Up a Chair: Recipes From My Family to Yours” (side note: Did anyone watch her now-canceled show on Cooking Channel? It was actually delightful).


10 – T3 Professional Styling Wand – The Indiana redneck hillbilly cheapskate in me can’t plop down over $100 for a curling iron, but maybe someone else will???!!!

11 – A good, trusty pair of booties for Fall/Winter, from Dolce Vita

12 – A grown up camera, instead of relying on my older iPhone to capture important moments in my life, especially now that I have a nugget to document.

13 – A gift certificate for a massage – At the risk of sounding like a broken record, because I think I’ve put this on every single one of my gift guides, I just really really really love massages, and I really really really need them. Sooooo I would really really love if anyone reading this wanted to grab me a sesh at my fave spa!

14 – A gift certificate to Face Haus, which is basically Dry Bar, but with deliciously relaxing facials… all for a super reasonable price.

15 – Also from Able, these “Tonal studs” are pretty, delicate, but also make a statement!

16 – Beastie Boys Book – I can’t remember a music memoir I’ve wanted to read as much as this one. And it sounds different, in a good way: “Alongside the band narrative you will find rare photos, original illustrations, a cookbook by chef Roy Choi, a graphic novel, a map of Beastie Boys’ New York, mixtape playlists, pieces by guest contributors, and many more surprises.”