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Tracy Martin Taylor Tackles the TV (And How to Make Them Look Chic)


dmoms-tips4tv-hexagon 2Pictured above: 1. Kendall Charcoal from Benjamin Moore; 2. Phillip Jeffries Manila Hemp in Ochre; 3. Bamba Rushcloth wall covering from Schumacher; 4. Sherwin Williams’ Dovetail

By Tracy Martin Taylor

It’s fall. The obvious images arise of golden leaves falling, pumpkins appearing in everything from your front porch to your latte, and of course: football. In our football town/state this is serious. Despite our female-ness, many of us girlies love Sunday football. And I must admit the only time (I can think of) that I actually really scared my adorable little one, was when she witnessed me suddenly shoot straight up off the sofa while screaming at the TV during an unfortunate play. I think it was on fourth down but I digress. So here’s my design reality: the TV is a key part of the home.

TVs are like ceiling fans to the interior designer. We hate them. We know it’s Texas and a ceiling fan is necessary but we really (pretty please) wish that a stellar chandelier could live in your master bedroom instead. BUT even as a designer, I am pro-function so I support the necessities. A TV is a requirement and since we are in Texas where bigger is better; the TVs are growing as I write this piece.

Here are some ways to make the digital monstrosity co-exist in your home without fighting with the rest of your décor:

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We’re In Love With This Awesome Nursery (And You Could Win Everything In It)


pulp

Daniel Sheehan Photography

The talents at Dallas-based Pulp Design Studios have teamed up with two Seattle-based companies to create some seriously awesome nursery action. The contemporary yet cozy, gender-neutral space is on display in the window of Seattle kids shop Tottini and features furniture and accessories that will easily stand the test of time as your wee ones graduate to big kid rooms (well everything except the crib, that is unless you’re down with your big kids sleeping in a crib, and, if so, we say go for it…we won’t judge). And don’t even get us started on that giraffe wallpaper from Abnormals Anonymous. Nursery smursery. We want that in our dining room!

The design project wasn’t just a chance for Pulp to show off their mad skills. It’s also the promotion for a rather excellent giveaway. One lucky family will win all the goods from the nursery vignette (worth over $6,000). The contest is open to contestants nationwide. Go here to enter.

Oh and you can see more photos of that killer nursery here.

Tracy Martin Taylor Tackles All That Kid Art That You Don’t Know What To Do With


jonathan-adler-wall1-001

A chic gallery wall designed by Jonathan Adler

 

By Tracy Martin Taylor

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They can’t all be gems…

A reality discovered by new parents is that your child will produce an unbelievable amount of artwork, math worksheets, scribbles… you name it. In my experience, there are three stages of what I like to call, “Everything he/she creates is AMAZING.” They are as follows:

  • Stage 1: The Honeymoon Phase
    During this phase, every errant scribble your beloved little make is treasured. You are in awe of their raw creative talent. You can’t imagine throwing anything away. Ever. Clear boxes are purchased, and the guest room and/or hall closet begins to fill up with boxes crammed full of their masterpieces.
  • Stage 2: The Panic Phase
    In this stage the enormity of it all is beginning to sink in. Slightly. You still can’t throw anything away, but you begin to resent the need to build an addition to house your wee one’s works of art. You take no tangible action, but begin to experience jags of anger tinged with guilt. This stage is the longest.
  • Stage 3: The Balanced Phase
    You are officially in “acceptance,” realizing that (as with everything) editing is key.

 

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Tracy Martin Taylor Talks Plants


plants

1. glass planter  2. vintage McCoy pottery 3. Urbio 4. succulent terrarium 5. wall planter

By Tracy Martin Taylor

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I am not gifted when it comes to plants. I don’t remember most of their names, I don’t remember to water them, and in general I don’t understand them. So much so that after bringing home a growing sunflower plant from school, my little one said, “Mom, it’s ok. I know it won’t grow here.” I’m not even kidding. So I won’t pretend to have answers when it comes to botanical specifics because I’m certain you would see right through me. But despite my deficiency, I’m talking plants this week, as our little green friends are a key part of a beautiful home…inside and out.

My favorite plant is the Agave Cactus. Sporting the clean lines in much of the design I adore, these beauties have a dangerous quality (the tips will get you if you aren’t careful) that sort of insists that you give them respect. I like that. And fortunately, they require little in the Texas heat. I have one at my front door to greet the world. And I can basically ignore it and it continues to thrive.

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Stylish Solutions For Corralling Your (And Your Kids’) Books


Bookcases

By Tracy Martin Taylor

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Books, where do I keep thee?

There’s nothing like a good book on a Sunday afternoon. Am I right? (I think I remember doing that before I had a little one.) But seriously, books are comfy additions to our homes and certainly are a key part of decorating. The color, the graphics, and even the textures add a layer of interest to your space. Even those that have gone digital need a tome or two!

Obviously, the coffee table, side tables, consoles etc. beg for a Tom Ford edition to scream chic to your various visitors. But when it comes to actual storage, the standard shelving just won’t do.

Here are some of my favorite options:

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Tracy Martin Taylor Takes On The Big Kid Room


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(Tracy’s go-to pieces: 1. Bold lighting 2. Sleek furniture 3. Colorful pillows 4. Chevron)

 

By Tracy Martin Taylor

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When a little one is on the way, mamas love nothing more than to obsess over how to make the new addition’s room just perfect. If you’ve had a child already, you look back and realize that with the first one, you likely over thought it a bit, procuring many things that turned out to be unnecessary. When I was working on my own daughter’s room, I “over lamped” (big time) in an attempt to offset the fact that it was in a relatively dark space with only one window. I was convinced it would be a cave if a lamp wasn’t strategically placed on every available surface in the room. In a shocking turn of events, I quickly realized that a tiny one doesn’t really need stage lighting (I exaggerate…or do I?) to comfortably exist in their space. Lesson learned.

Another thing you quickly realize is that they don’t stay little very long. You hear your friends say that and you think you get it but until you watch your little one go from sweet and smiley to asking questions like “how old do I have to be to start driving?” you think they are going to stay in that crib forever. So, strategic nursery decorating is key. Nurseries should grow with the kid. Be strategic with the big stuff and know you can tweak accessories, bedding, drapes, etc. to change the feel. Here are two of my key strategies…

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Get The Look: Sharon Blumberg’s Inspiring Art Space


Sharon copy

I had lunch at my friend artist, mom, and Chooze Shoes founder Sharon Blumberg’s house earlier this week and left with a serious case of playroom envy, specifically “incredibly awesome art space/playroom envy.” I snapped a pic with my trusty iPhone and asked Sharon to give us a little background on the space. Here’s the 411.

 

“My husband and I wanted to create a space stocked with many different materials, where our kids are free to be creative. I was inspired by an art center I saw on houzz, and my husband helped me realize the vision for the space. I painted a very inexpensive piece of peg board, and we attached it to the wall. All of the containers and rods were purchased at IKEA. We fill the containers with everything from crayons, markers, and paints, to glue, scraps of random fabrics, and pieces of old toys that can be used for art projects.

I strongly believe that all kids are born creative and their creative minds flourish when they are provided with opportunities to express their imagination. My kids love the space, as my 11-year-old son notes, ‘It’s just awesome because everything we need is right where we can see it.’ The kids like to sit at the table and make giant messes that lead to amazing projects!”

 

Get Sharon’s Awesome Art Space:

On This Rainy Cold Day We’re Dreaming Of Pretty Patios


patio

(Tracy’s patio picks: 1. Malm fireplace 2. RS Barcelona Paper Eiffel accent stools 3. Trina Turk pillows 4. Kettal Maia hanging chair 5. Shoji Modern solar-powered lanterns)

 

Sure it’s drizzly, and cold, and grey…but it won’t be for long. It’s Texas for the love of Pete, it could be 100 degrees next week. Rain be damned, it’s time to start prettying up the patio. Lucky for us Ryan did a little roundup of lovely pieces for eating al fresco earlier today on the D Home blog, and our D Moms design maven Tracy Martin Taylor is here to share her tips, tricks, and finds for creating a comfy and chic outdoor space.

Enjoy!

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By Tracy Martin Taylor

Here in Dallas, we have some clearly defined seasons. There’s football season, State Fair season, and duck-into-the-air-conditioning-and-hide-from-the-sun’s-punishing-rays season. And then there’s my favorite season of all – spring.

When spring fever strikes, and I find myself hungry for fresh air and greenery, I follow my instincts and head for the nearest outdoor space – my patio deck. Even though we’ve been neglecting these spaces for the past few months, it’s now time to celebrate the season in our very own pieces of backyard paradise. If your outdoor haven is in need of some seasonal sprucing, then I have a few recs to make your outside time more fab. After all, it should be party worthy, right?! Grab the littles, clear out the cobwebs, sweep away the old leaves, and pick up a few key pieces that you can put to good use before the Texas summer scares us indoors once again.

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Found: Killer Storage Baskets for Just 20 Smackers


basketsRemember the Land of Nod African-inspired storage baskets of my dreams? Well, I was at my friend Brittany’s house recently and she immediately showed me those beauties to the right that she had recently acquired.

They’re just as cool/sturdy/big as the Land of Nod numbers, but they ring in at a mere $20. That’s less than I paid for much lunch today friends. (I spend way too much on lunch…for the record).

She snapped hers up at HomeGoods on MacArthur Blvd. in Irving (the best location according to Brittany, and she knows her stuff).

I feel a road trip to Irving in my future… Just saying.

These Land of Nod Storage Baskets Are Just The Thing to Assuage My Obsessive Compulsive Tendencies


charming-baskets-snakes-not-included
Much like the lovely Carissa Byers, I am not so much a fan of the clutter. Granted, I don’t posses her steel will when it comes to purging possessions (or acquiring them in the first place for that matter), but I’m trying friends, I am.

In the meantime, my M.O. is to stash everything away in boxes, baskets, and bins (I live for a good box, basket, and bin), and luckily there’s no shortage of stylish, functional ones to chose from. Earlier today I spotted a post on Jenni Kayne’s always awesome blog Rip and Tan featuring several chic neutral specimens that would look fantastic in a den or living room. But for the kiddos’ room, I’m digging these “Charming Baskets” from Land of Nod. A whimsical riff on the African baskets spotted on Jenni’s blog, they’re big, sturdy, and, at $45 and $89 respectively, they won’t break the bank.

I’m in.



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