Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Just Add Water

I loved this article in the Washington Post about a couple that doesn't live anywhere near the ocean, but created a "beach house" for themselves anyway. Lauren and Kevin Russell, the talented couple behind the furniture company Russell & Mackenna, gave their Severna Park, Maryland a fun and fresh beach vibe.

Thanks to Jeanette for sending me the link to this article! Click here to read more and see the slideshow of their home.

{This beach house-without-a-beach has me hooked! Hop over to the Hooked on Fridays party I'm throwing at my other blog to see what's making everyone else happy this week!}

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

HGTV Green Home in Port Lucie, Florida

Have you checked out HGTV's Green Home 2009 yet? It's in Port Lucie, Florida, this year. I have to say I wasn't crazy about it, but there were some things I really liked. The back porch, for example. I'd be taking naps out there all the time! "Where's Mom?" "Check the back porch. She probably fell asleep on that little bed again."

I like the color of the master bedroom, but doesn't it look a little small for two?

For more photos from the Green Home and see how people are voting in a poll I'm taking about it, click here. Register to win the sweepstakes from HGTV. Or check out last year's Green Home '08, which I personally loved.

P.S. Thanks for all of the nice birthday wishes you left for me on my Facebook page and on my other blog today! They made me smile. :-)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

A Cottage Gets Some Colorful Curb Appeal

The house on Tybee Island looked like this when designer Jane Coslick got to it. Then she worked her magic and transformed it into a fun beach cottage that has to be the cutest on its block:

I never would've seen the potential in the house that she did. Thanks to Posey, who left a comment tipping me off to Jane's website. Now my dream is not just to own a cottage by the beach, but to have it decorated by Jane Coslick!

If you love colorful cottages, check out the paintings that artist Fifi Flowers did of a pink one that Jane designed. You may also like the cute yellow country house from the movie "Baby Boom"-- I'm featuring it on my other blog for Movie Monday.

{Today I'm joining Metamorphosis Monday over at Between Naps on the Porch. Go see all the other before & afters people are sharing today!}

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Hooked on This Blue Sideboard

This is exactly the kind of sideboard I've been searching for to use in my dining room. I'm trying to get a beachy vibe in the room and this would be perfect! I found it at Wisteria and couldn't stop staring at it. So I posted it here so you could stare at it, too.

Unfortunately for me, it's $499, and another $100 gets tacked on for shipping. There are a few more important things I'll need to use that $600 for besides a pretty sideboard table, but hey, a girl can dream, right?


I thought it would be fun to join my own Hooked on Fridays blog party--something I host at the end of each week to celebrate the things that make us happy. Hop on over to my other blog to see what everyone else is hooked on today!

Egg and Nest Prints in a Home Office

Doesn't this look like a nice place to work?

The Nester is hosting a blog party today and everyone is showing off their feather and egg prints. I don't have any myself, but I love them, and today I spotted some in this home office designed by Sarah Richardson. See them back there? Here's a closer look:

Well, they're egg and nest prints, at least (no feathers). Sarah says this home office is used by a husband and wife team, so she wanted to make it a space equally feminine and masculine. I'm afraid I'd want this room all to myself, though. My husband would have to make other arrangements. ;-)

You can see my home office (much humbler than this one) here. Be sure to check out Nester's party and see how everyone used their feather and egg prints in their own homes!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

A Pretty Blue Townhouse

I love the new developments that make an effort to create some of the charm of older neighborhoods. This row of townhomes, for instance, is part of the Beacon Hill neighborhood being built in Cincinnati, Ohio. I was checking out their Longfellow model online and was surprised to see they decorated it in soft blues and yellows--not the dark and more traditional colors I was expecting. It gives it a light and airy almost beachy vibe. If I lived here, I think I could easily pretend there was a water view outside these windows!

I thought it was interesting how they lined the tops of the kitchen cabinets with apothecary jars. I've never seen anyone do this before. Not sure I like it, but it does add some color:

Do you like it? It makes me want to paint one of my rooms this pretty shade of blue. To see the rest of the rooms from this home and other models available, go to the Beacon Hill Townehomes website.

P.S. Today I'm featuring a kitchen makeover over at Hooked on Houses that I think you'll like. Check it out if you get a chance!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Fifi's Pink Cottage on the Beach

I love these paintings of a pink and yellow cottage on the beach by the artist Fifi Flowers. They're so bright and cheerful.

I wrote a post about Fifi Flowers' artwork here if you want to learn more about it. Or go straight to her popular blog or Etsy store.

Beach Chairs

I spotted these "Beach" chairs on the porch of a house for sale in Seaside, Florida. How fun are these? If the chairs were mine, I think I'd paint them yellow. Or a nice turquoise blue. How about you?

To see the gallery of photos these chairs came from, click here.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Classically Coastal Bath

Coastal Living is one of my favorite magazines when it comes to beach-house dreaming. Have you seen their online blogs? I enjoy reading Daily Catch, which featured this "Classically Coastal" bathroom recently.

I'm not sure how practical these mirrors are over the sinks, but I thought they looked interesting. And who wouldn't love lying in this tub?

To see more beachy baths like this one, visit Daily Catch and see what they're talking about today.

P.S. My blog friend Susan Lang is giving away a copy of her book Designing Your Dream Home. I read it and loved it! Leave a comment on her site to enter.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Kelly Bensimon's Hamptons House

I have a confession to make. I watch "Real Housewives" on Bravo TV. All of them. I have seen every season of "The Real Housewives of the O.C."--even the most recent one, which was pretty much insufferable from beginning to end. I cringed all the way through the ridiculous girl fights between NeNe and Kim on "The Real Housewives of Atlanta." And lately I've been watching Jill, Bethenny, Kelly, Ramona, Alex, and The Countess duke it out on "The Real Housewives of NYC:"

I don't know why these shows stay on my DVR schedule. I don't understand why I continue to watch, even as the women on them make me want to throw something at my TV screen.

Well, one reason is probably the real estate. I love seeing where these women live. Check out Season 2 newcomer Kelly Bensimon's Hamptons house, which we've seen on the show and is now on the market for $10.9 million:

(Click on the photo to enlarge.)

For more information, check out this post by the Real Estalker.

In other "Real Housewives" real estate gossip, the Countess is splitting from her Count after discovering his long-term affair, and they're selling their Hamptons home for $9.5. If I can track it down, I'll be sure to let you know.

Click here to take a peek into more celebrity real estate over at my other blog.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Beach House for Sale: Ivy Cottage

This little green cottage in Seaside, Florida, is on the market for $1,099,000--which is considered "a surprisingly low price" for the neighborhood.

The 1,480 square-foot cottage has 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, and lots of potential if you have an extra million lying around to spend on it. To see the real estate listing and the rest of the photos, click here.

A Fridge Fit for a Beach House

When I spotted this retro-looking Big Chill fridge, I knew it was just the thing for my (future) beach house. And then I saw this one:

Friday, April 3, 2009

Rachel Ashwell's Shabby Chic Beach House


Shabby Chic creator Rachel Ashwell recently moved from a house with over 4,000 square feet into a beach house less than half the size. She told Oprah that it made her realize she isn't "a big house person."


"Less is so much more. In the case of this room, the sofa, a couple of clutter," says Rachel. "I really find it easy to decorate with pastels starting with a platform of white on the walls, the sofa, whatever, and then layering in your color."


Rachel says there are few things no home should be without: "Candles not too far burnt down, yummy flower arrangements, a chandelier, and lovely china."

{Photo source:}

Nantucket-Style Home in Indianapolis

This home was featured at the Indianapolis Home-a-Rama that I went to recently, but despite the Midwestern location, it had a nice beachy vibe. The 6 bedroom, 8,000 square foot showhome built by Executive Homes had a stained-cedar shake exterior with stone and white trim. Builders Pete Gray and Jeff Keck worked with designer Michele Boggs of MB Designs to create "the essence of Nantucket living." Here are some of the photos I took of it:



A cozy sitting room off the master bedroom:


The kitchen:


Barrel-vaulted ceiling in the hearth room off the kitchen:


Designer Michele Boggs says that the home's Nantucket style and abundance of windows inspired her "to decorate in a simple palette of green, white, and brown, bringing the outside in."

To take the full tour of this home, go to Hooked on Houses, where you can also see the other four homes featured in the Indianapolis Homearama.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Hemingway's House in Key West


As an English major in college, I studied Ernest Hemingway. I admit I wasn't all that interested in his novels--I was more into writers like Jane Austen and George Eliot, to be honest. But I think if I had seen the house Hemingway lived and wrote in during the most prolific time of his career--with those gorgeous yellow shutters!--I might have paid a little more attention in my Modern Lit class.


According to the Hemingway Home website:
Legend has it that Hemingway owned the home from 1931 until his passing in 1961. The Spanish Colonial style home was constructed of native rock hewn from the grounds and boasts the first pool built in Key West. The pool, built in the late 1930's, cost $20,000. This price prompted Hemingway to take a penny from his pocket and press it into the wet cement of the surrounding patio and announce jokingly, "Here, take the last penny I've got!" That penny is still there.



Ernest Hemingway with one of his cats, whose descendants still roam the grounds of the property today:


According to the Hemingway Home website:
The story goes that Hemingway made the acquaintance of a sea captain who owned an unusual six-toed tomcat. Upon his departure from Key West, the captain presented the cat to Hemingway. Today many of the numerous cats that inhabit the grounds still possess the unusual six toes.
To see more photos from Hemingway's home in Key West, check out Carl Miller's gallery.

Beach Kitchen Love


I love everything about this kitchen from Southern Accents, from the pale blue tile to the yellow lemons on the marble counter. A kitchen like this might even inspire me to cook now and then!

Welcome to My Beach Cottage Fantasy

Welcome to my beachy cottage fantasy! You may already know me from my main site, Hooked on Houses. My dream is to someday live in a cottage by the beach--but in the meantime, I'm going to live vicariously through Beach Cottage Love. If I find a beautiful home near the water somewhere in the world, then I'll be featuring it here. I hope you'll come along and dream big (and beachy) with me!

{To see the gallery of porch photos that this one came from, click here.