Cottage Bedroom Garden Chandelier

January is such a weird month in the Cottage. The greenery outside is gone and all the winter holiday decor is  packed away. The house just feels kind of bland and lifeless. Usually we see the overflowing grape leaves through the windows over our built-in bed, but in January and February we're stuck looking at the barren vines and the line of homes nearby. I decided to make a small greenery chandelier for the bedroom to cheer up the space a bit.

I do tons of handmade projects here, but I'm not a particularly patient person, so I tend to lean towards DIY-lite. This chandelier was quick and simple:

I got the smallest chandelier I could find on Wayfair and made sure that the lightbulb holders were still large enough for a standard small pot. I clipped all the electrical components off the fixture with garden clippers, leaving me with the perfect platform on which to put the pots. 

I debated between white or clay pots. I ultimately chose terracotta, which corresponds with the color of the built-ins.  We suspended the fixture from the interior wall of the skylight, and voila! We love it.

I was tempted to get succulents (I mean, look at those colors!). But in a tiny space like ours, I generally opt for simpler palettes to help the room feel uncluttered. But to each his/her own! There are endless beautiful options... 

Idyllwild Weekend

Idyllwild. You. Are. Magic.  This has been the best weekend getaway from LA-- we traveled from the sand to the snow in fewer than 3 hours. 

Big thanks to Tysa Designs and Lou & Grey for providing me with the best winter-wear on short-notice. And thank you, Smoke & Honey Magazine, for teaching us about the town.

Pictured: Brooke Lyons, Casa Joshua Tree, Eliz Wilson, and Rachel Mae Furman.

South Florida Vacation

Before heading home to the Cottage after Kanapaha, we took a little mini-trip down to Miami leading into New Year:

We stayed at The Standard Spa in Miami Beach. The staff was incredibly helpful and friendly (especially you, Frank Zapata), and Adam and I had such a relaxing 3-night stay.

A highlight from the trip was visiting The Walton House, where Adam's mother got married. The setting is a botanical-lovers paradise, and I couldn't stop swooning over the twinkle-lights and blue wooden doors throughout the grounds. It was such a perfect place for an intimate and extraordinary wedding. 

Below are some of my favorite moments from Miami, including The Standard, The Walton House, and Whisk Gourmet (mmmmm, grits...):

North Florida Vacation

I love our Cottage, but as it's our live/work environment, it's always good to get out and adventure. 

This Christmas, I decided to return to my childhood home in Kanapaha, Florida for the first time in three years. Luckily my folks come to LA all the time, but nothing tops visiting in them here:

Sometimes I can't believe I grew up here. It's a wet prairie, surrounded by a live oak forest. This is my parent's immediate backyard. It was just as magical as I remembered it being, and at the end of the week-long vacation, I wasn't ready to leave. (I definitely won't wait three more years to return again.)

When I wasn't clipping botanicals from the garden to decorate our dining table and holiday gifts, I stopped by some gorgeous local sites with my 2½ year-old nephew, Finn. I'd definitely recommend the Kanapaha Botanical Gardens and The Florida Museum of Natural History to anyone staying in the Gainesville area.

If you're interested in seeing more photos of Kanapaha and this region of Florida, I recommend checking out the work of my friend Mac Stone-- his Insta is one of my favorite accounts.

Sophee - Cottage Rescue Pup no.2

Back in August, we adopted another dog-- this time from Much Love Rescue. She was three months old, and was going to be put down after being a cosmetic testing animal. Luckily, Much Love saved her. They provided her with some necessary surgical procedures, and planned to put her up for adoption once she healed.

Adam and I initially intended to foster her... but we fell victim to a serious case of #FosterFail. We fell in love with Sophee immediately, as did Stanlee:

It was a tough start with little Soph-- she's had a run of serious bad luck and health issues. But, after months of routine trips to the vet (general and emergency), she finally seems to be on the mend. By mid-Jauary, we hope she'll be enjoying a healthy re-start.

Thank you Jax & Bones and Healthy Spot Marina del Rey for Sophee's new, custom bed in "Gatsby Grey". It looks beautiful in the Cottage, and both she and Stanlee use it constantly.

Here's to 2 (loud) dogs and 2 (large) humans living in 362 sqft and still loving each other endlessly. 

More photos of the pups are available via our IG hashtags:  #🐶sophee / #stubsandsoph / #stanleestubs 

This Is Ground Video

I love everything about This Is Ground-- their team, products, branding, story, and influencer collaborations. I find so many similarities between TIG designs and our mindset here at the Cottage. Keep things simple, clean, useful, multifunctional, and adaptable. (We have so few belongings here at our home/office, but I think that Adam and I have every TIG product ever made.)

I was thrilled when the TIG's founder, Mike Macadaan, asked me to do a short video for his company, showing how I use their products in the Cottage. It turned out beautifully, thanks to some amazingly talented people behind the camera. 

Select behind the scenes photos shot by Olivia Katz.

Small Space Hosting via Parachute

Parachute is one of my favorite local companies. Based a block off Venice Beach on the cutest little walk-street, they make the most luxurious bedding basics. I've worked with this company several times in the past, from styling photoshoots to designing their Abbot Kinney pop-up storefront in summer 2015. 

Jump to their blog to see some of my small space hosting tips!

Santa Monica Weekend Bike Ride

Today in the Cottage living room

New York City (Fall, 2015)

I always miss New York. For a couple years, my ex and I lived in a tiny apartment in the East Village. It was a fantastic neighborhood, and a really cool little 1-bedroom. I wish I could've kept it. Since then, I've continued to work regularly with companies based in Manhattan. I try to head back as often as I can to visit those clients face-to-face, and to reconnect with one of the greatest cities on Earth.

I usually stay in an Airbnb, but for this particular trip I checked into the NoMo SoHo. It's a really unique and comfortable space-- I would definitely recommend it.

I couldn't have picked a better time to visit. The foliage was violently orange, and the High Line path wasn't too packed. I visited the new Whitney, the Met, saw some small shows, visited my friends at One Kings Lane, and dined at some of my favorite spots (including The Butcher's Daughter in Nolita). I also spent some time with a friend in Irvington, one of the cutest towns ever. It was the perfect trip.

'Til next time, NY! (Click on the image below to view the gallery in IG.)

LA Fundraiser

On September 19th, Adam and I attended the annual Face Forward Fundraiser here in LA. We were introduced to this non-profit by our close friend, Bonnie Somerville. This organization helps survivors of violent and disfiguring crimes put their best face forward after after suffering from extreme domestic abuse. Their stories are heartbreaking, and all too common. This event and silent auction helped raise money for future patients and their reconstructive surgeries.

Rent the Runway generously provided me with this gorgeous nha khanh Isabella Gown. I am 6' tall and like to wear heels, and it was absolutely perfect. I 100% recommend it. It's completely elegant, simple and timeless.

Pennsylvania Wedding Client

I had the joy of decorating a 300-attendee wedding in a tiny town in Pennsylvania this summer. The bride and groom wanted to use as many repurposed/recycled and natural items as possible. This helped them keep the budget and environmental waste to a minimum. We worked hard, but had a great experience creating simple decorations using clippings from the region, empty bottles and various furniture and items from nearby homes.

I owe a big thanks to a few incredible companies that helped me pull off everything else:
• Thank you Forget Me Not Rentals for the beautiful handmade tables and mix-and-match chairs, as well as the gorgeous mixed tableware.
• Thank you Build.com for providing us with numerous strands of stunning cafe lights. They were absolutely perfect, and guests commented on them all night long.
Urban Decay, we are so grateful for the amazing bridal party makeup you provided. All the ladies used the items, and still rave about them.
Dot & Bo-- we loved the gardener's bar cart, as well as the lovely lanterns!

Create & Cultivate Chicago

In just a few years, Create & Cultivate has turned into one of the most important conferences for female entrepreneur's in the digital space there is. The founder, Jaclyn Johnson, is a dear friend and mentor of mine, and I'm both proud and in complete awe of what she has created. 

I had the great fortune of speaking at C&C Chicago in August. It was a beautiful production, a whirlwind experience, and a invaluable experience that introduced me to dozens of hardworking, creative individuals.

Parachute Home Pop-Up on Abbot Kinney

Parachute Home is one of my favorite local companies. They make quality bedding basics that look both simple and completely luxurious. 

They invited me to design their summer pop-up at Milkmade on Abbot Kinney. It was a small space that filled the storefront window, along with an outdoor "garden" area that had to be stowed away every night when the shop closed. 

The trick was to balance the Parachute brand (along with their summer motif) with the hosting business, Milkmade. 

Our greatest shopping resources for styling the scenes ended up being Etsy, Urban Outfitters, Zingara Trading Company, and Wayfair.

It turned out wonderfully, and the pop-up enjoyed even more success than projected.

Thank you, Parachute (and Milkmade) for having me!

Image sources: Whitney Leigh Morris and Parachute Home