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STYLE AT HOME

The owners of this home lived in Paris for ten years before relocating to Vancouver. I adore the white foundation with pops of — you guessed it! — pink and navy so I decided to pull a few pieces from my boutique to show you how to get the look chez vous... 

What's the predominant color scheme in your place?


P.S. I am trying desperately to win a contest to meet with Shark Tank's Daymond John. This is a major opportunity for my little business and I would be so grateful for your support! All you have to do is re-pin this pin onto one of your Pinterest boards. The five companies with the most re-pins will be shown to Daymond today at 5 p.m. and I would love to be one of them! Thank you to everyone who has re-pinned, retweeted, etc. I am forever grateful!

SUMMER PICNIC

I'm not sure how I've only just discovered The Cherry Blossom Girl but it's instantly become one of my daily reads. The Paris-based Alix has some of the prettiest outfit pictures I've ever seen and her snapshots of the city remind me of my semester abroad in France. How stunning are these photos taken in the Jardins de Bagatelle?
They make me want to slip into this dress, pack a picnic, and head to the park! I do have a vintage picnic basket that hasn't seen much use lately. What are some of your favorite summertime activities?

P.S. If you have a spare moment, will you do me a quick favor?!

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HUGE FAVOR!

I hate to beg for favors here especially when you've all been so supportive of my newest venture but some opportunities are worth it! My family and I are huge fans of the show Shark Tank during which entrepreneurs pitch their ideas to a panel of successful venture capitalists. Shopify, the company that powers my boutique, is running a Pinterest contest where five entrants with the most re-pins will be in the running for a one-on-one meeting with Daymond John. Who knows what that could do for my baby business! So that's where you all come in...

I will be forever grateful to all of you who click over and re-pin the ever-popular coral candelabra from my boutique! The contest closes in 24 hours and some of the other entrants have been promoting for up to two weeks but hey, I like to live on the edge! I know there are quite a few of you who use and love Pinterest and I'm confident that together we can get Design Darling in the top five. What do you say?

To sweeten the deal, I'm going to give away a coral candelabra to one lucky reader who re-pins and leaves a comment saying they've done so below. Thank you and good luck!


CURRENTLY COVETING

Pink, polka dots, shoes, shoes, and more shoes... Just a few girly girl items I'm itching to add to my wardrobe this week!



(1) Me Too bow ballet flats — a seriously good deal! (2) Chance Co. Cali boatneck
(3) Ban.do ostrich pouf (4) Loren Hope turquoise earrings — a summer must-have!

What's one thing you're currently coveting?

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SLIM AARONS PHOTOGRAPHY

I've been coveting several of his books for a long time so it was a nice surprise to stumble upon an online gallery showcasing the work of photographer Slim Aarons. I'll continue to dream of investing in one of his prints but in the mean time here's a little eye candy for us all to enjoy... 

Nice Pool (Palm Beach, 1955)

Family Pool (Lake Forest, 1960)

Sea Drive (Nassau, 1967)



Garden Party (Miami, 1970)

Poolside Gossip (Palm Springs, 1970)

Aarons explained his work as "photographing attractive people doing attractive things in attractive places." Wouldn't you kill to hang one (or more!) of his works in your home? He certainly has me wanting to hop on a plane to Palm Beach...!

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BOOK WORM

My collection of coffee table books is growing by the pile thanks to insane discounts and impulse buys on Joss & Main and One Kings Lane. I tend to check out novels and other less decorative reads from my local library but these spaces from Lonny have me wanting to expand my book collection in every which way...

{Lynn Nigro in Lonny January/February 2011}

{Laurann Claridge in Lonny April/May 2010}

{Elizabeth Bauer in Lonny June/July 2010}

Tell me: what kinds of books do you invest in? Are there any life-changing reads (or at least really pretty covers!) you'd recommend adding to my collection?

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INTRODUCING KLURY

I have a friend who swears by the "something in, something out" rule as it pertains to her wardrobe. Before she splurges on something new, something else has to be donated, sold, or tossed! It's a great way of editing your wardrobe to reflect what you love right now and weeding through the clutter of things you'll never wear again, which brings me to my one of my amazing new sponsors: Klury. This luxury fashion exchange is perfect for those of you who'd like to trade in that cocktail dress you've only worn twice and those looking for designer items up to 90% off! Umm, I think that covers all of us, right?
To sell on the site, here's how it works:
1. Upload a description and picture of the item you'd like to sell.
2. Receive quote within 24 hours.
3. Accept quote and mail item with pre-paid postage label.
4. Klury authenticates the item and sends you cash or store credit within 48 hours. 
Basically all the pros of consigning without the wait of knowing whether your items will sell! It also makes for a pretty incredible shopping experience. This Alice + Olivia dress (which I remember seeing on Shopbop not long ago!) is 54% off and this Kate Spade top is just $65. Check out the site here and let me know what you think!

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SPARROW NEST SCRIPT

Lately I cannot get enough of Etsy. I could spend hours scouring new-to-me shops, bookmarking favorite items, and adding new people to my "circles." There is so much talent out there and I'm constantly discovering something else to love! You already know about my infatuation with calligraphy so imagine my delight in discovering the darling designs of Sparrow Nest Script...

Isn't the lettering just perfect? Plus the range of colors is pretty amazing. Imagine a drawer of these goodies at your desk! A dream come true.

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THE START OF SUMMER


I hope your Memorial Day involves pretty houses, cute puppies, and cool cars. Cheers to the start of summer!

*Images Abigail Ahern, Aerin Lauder, and source unknown — please holler if you know the original!

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PAJAMA PARTY

Aren't Sundays the best? At least when they're followed by a Monday off ;) I'd like to be lounging around in this...
Super cute and totally comfy. And am I crazy to say that I'd roll up the sleeves and wear this as a beach cover-up as well? Get yours here and have a wonderful Sunday!

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HOW TO DECORATE A SMALL SPACE

...I'd say that's a pretty fair assessment of this apartment tour published a couple years ago in Traditional Home. The decorating process was a collaboration between mother-and-daughter team Suzanne and Lauren McGrath. Lauren's first apartment called for decorating on a budget in a small space, a reality to which most of us can relate! I love the seamless mix of inexpensive Ikea finds and storied family heirlooms.
I also love that Lauren's nightstand doubles as a vanity! Such a smart use of space. And lucky for all of us the McGrath ladies have a fabulous blog and a brand new book so we can learn their style secrets. What are your favorite tips and tricks for small space living?

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WEEK IN REVIEW

Thank God it's Friday! And for most of you the start of a long weekend. Cheers to that! Here are a few snapshots from the past week...
Spent an afternoon in Rowayton complete with ice cream cones and puppies. Oh, summer, I love thee.
Proved that Rory fits inside my K. Slademade clutch. I mean... I will be carrying both with me everywhere this summer.
Reading material for the train? I prefer the newest J.Crew catalog. I'm particularly coveting these
Chassity was kind enough to book Drybar appointments before the start of Blogfest! Seriously this place is my current obsession. You choose your desired look off of a menu (I went with the Mai Tai!) and pay just $40 to walk out the door feeling like a rockstar. And Drybar founder Alli Webb happened to be in New York that day! Meg, Erika, and I even got to pose for a picture. Hello, starstruck!
Insanely gorgeous peonies at a Blogfest event at Hearst Tower. So inspiring to listen to panels hosted by the editors-in-chief of House Beautiful and Veranda!
The Elle Decor show house was nothing short of amazing. And I got to chat with Lee Kleinhelter, owner of Atlanta boutique Pieces and designer of this fabulous space just off the foyer. She even remembered me from our occasional chats on Twitter! Maybe it's because I was wearing the same top as in my profile picture ;)
Meandered through the National Stationery Show with the darling Sarah and stopped at her friend Catherine's booth. Her shop Printerette is just as charming as she is!
Since then I've been catching up on sleep, orders, and emails, in that order. My sweet dad picked these peonies from our garden and put them on my desk in a Design Darling vase! It's the little things :)

What have you been up to this week and what are your plans for Memorial Day weekend? Have a good one!

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HOW MUCH MAKEUP DO YOU WEAR?

I don't know about you but cosmetics and skincare are just not my specialty. Ask me what dress to wear to dinner or which pillow looks best on your sofa and I can come to a decisive conclusion in seconds. But reading beauty recommendations in a magazine makes me completely overwhelmed. There's blush, bronzer, eyeliner, eyeshadow, foundation, highlighter, lip gloss, lipstick, mascara, moisturizer, toner... Which brings me to the question: how much makeup do you wear?
I'm usually a blush, chapstick, and mascara kind of girl... on a good day. But I received a sample of NARS tinted moisturizer when I bought my Clarisonic Mia (which I highly recommend) and I loved the way it made my skin look and feel — less pale, more smooth, and not too heavy. Added bonus: I was discussing makeup with my friend Sarah and she confessed that she loves NARS for its pretty packaging as much as I do.
Now because I've tried the sample I'm debating ordering the full size but I really have a hard time splurging on beauty products! But then I see makeup tutorials by some of my favorite bloggers and think I must be missing out since everyone has at least a ten-step morning routine and looks way more put together than I ever do. 

So tell me: how many of the blush / bronzer / eyeliner / eyeshadow / foundation / highlighter / lip gloss / lipstick / mascara / moisturizer / toner / whatever else I'm forgetting categories do you touch upon? What's your morning and evening regimen? And how did you go about discovering your can't-live-without products?

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*Images one / two 

SUMMER SHOPPING LIST

A pretty sundress, the perfect wedges, and stripes galore... That about sums it up:

(4) Kate Spade wicker basket (now on sale!) (5) Tibi striped tank

What's one item you're itching to add to your summer wardrobe?

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SHOPBOP PROMOTION

You already know about my obsession with Shopbop so I'll spare you the lovey dove and cut to the chase:
That's some serious saving! Personally I'm contemplating this maxi dressthis peplum top and this pretty green number. Shop to your heart's content here with code BIGEVENT at checkout and be sure to let me know what you get!

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#BLOGFEST2012

This week I'm excited to spend three days in New York meeting some of my very favorite bloggers who have flown in from all over the country for Blogfest. We kicked off with cocktails last night and let's just say I have a feeling it's going to be a very fun three days!
{Clémence Poésy in darling Miu Miu pumps for British Glamour}

What's one thing you're looking forward to this week?

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EENY MEENY MINY MOE

You've probably noticed I tend to gravitate toward solid colors and simple patterns like polka dots and stripes. That's probably why — as much as I love the colors and shapes — I own very little Lilly Pulitzer. But when I saw these three skirts in pretty eyelet and classic stripes I had an instant change of heart toward the brand...


ONE // TWO // THREE

They all come in multiple color options and would look effortlessly cute with a plain white tee. Which one do you like best? I'm convinced the striped number belongs in my closet!


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POOL PARTY

This weekend I'm looking forward to a favorable forecast, a Preakness party at my friend Shelly's house (you can bet I'll be wearing my new hat!), and maybe even taking a dip in the pool. Speaking of...
...how gorgeous is this backyard by Amy Howard? Flowers, hedges, and the perfect pool — yes please. Happy weekend to all of you! 



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LITTLE MOMENTS

As part of my efforts to live in the moment, I've been making an effort to capture some of the lovely little moments in my day on Instagram. This week that's meant a favorite nail color, a family dinner, and lots of pretty products from the boutique...
(1) Leopard and zebra matches and the #ThingsWeLove pencil set packed up for a customer
(2) Essie Fiesta, navy link bangle, and sparkly Toms for my sister's softball game
(3) Coral candelabra and ginger jar matches for Mother's Day dinner 

(5) Rory is the cutest distraction, um, ever
(6) New Port Winsor tunic that I seriously cannot wait to wear
(7) Embroidered pillow from the boutique that's pretty perfect for summer
(8) Monogrammed salt and pepper shakers (in my parents' monogram!) that make me smile

Every now and then it's nice to stop what I'm doing and actually appreciate my surroundings. What's one little thing you're loving lately? 

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DEVON BAER SUMMER 2012

Just when I thought her collection couldn't get any better, the darling Devon outdoes herself with stunning new arrivals for summer. Let's just say my credit card won't be safe for long...
The St. Barts tunic is as chic as can be in hot pink and navy silk with contrast gold piping. 
The color block ruffle dress features an unexpected navy blue collar. Two pieces in my all-time favorite color combo? I think I've died and gone to heaven.
And then there's the tulip skirt (also available in aqua!). I don't think I would ever take it off! P.S. These and these just came to live with me and they are even more fabulous in person! Check out Devon's full collection here and let me know which pieces you're most anxious to add to your wardrobe!

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