Saturday, February 22, 2014

Feeling Bleu...and a Give Away

If you're like me you're over winter and ready to bring some Spring color and decor to your home and table. I've been playing with my dishes, and dreaming of warmer days, green growing things, and creating new vignettes. Are you thinking that you might need some new place settings for Easter? Add to your collection of transfer ware? Or set a pretty tea?

Adrian at French Bleu Vintage 
is celebrating the coming of Spring with a wonderful Sale and Give Away.
A $35 gift certificate for one of you who enters.

A 25% Off Sale 
with the code SAVE25 at checkout.

Easy to enter:

1.Be sure and Like French Bleu Vintage on Facebook
2.Follow French Bleu Vintage on Twitter
3.Find something you would love to purchase
 with your gift certificate in the Shop

Then let me know with a comment for each. 

New items are being added daily.
Give Away ends February 28!

Have fun browsing the shop,

Friday, February 21, 2014

Be Inspired #177

Hey Everyone...
Welcome to Be Inspired!
These weeks are rolling by and it's hard to believe that it's time for another Be Inspired party. You all have not let the winter pounding get you down. It seems that everyone has been busy finishing up some fabulous projects just in time for Spring. Here are some pics of some of that great inspiration from last week's party:

Sometimes a pic comes across that you can just "see" featured in a magazine. This amazing Black Accent Wall from Dawn at Down to Earth Style has it all... Love the gallery wall, the great contrast of elements, and of course that dramatic black paint. I dared Dawn to paint the rest of the room!

This Simmons Steel Dresser definitely has a past.
Check it out from Denise at Pink Postcard.

There were so many great ideas in this post,
but the Slipcovered Ottoman from
Jamie at So Much Better With Age says it all.

Want a Restoration Hardware look?
Try this Dry Brush Painting Technique
from Melanie at Lost and Found

Love this wonderful creation, Finding Direction,
from Lynn at Blue Skies

You'll enjoy seeing this Vintage Dresser
and meeting Victoria and her adorable little ones at
 Trois Petites Filles.

And a tutorial for Ribbon Roses
from Lynn at Shabby Story.
Lynn always creates such beautiful things.

Thanks so much gals, for joining in!

Party Guidelines

  • Please have an individual link back to Common Ground within your post. I'd love to feature you. This is just part of the Party Etiquette.
  • Please remember to turn off word verification. I've tried leaving comments that didn't go through. I'm sure others have tried also.
  • Please no direct links to Etsy or Advertising.
  • Link up to three of your current posts.
  • Take a minute to visit a few of the other links.
  • Please be a follower of Common Ground.
  • Thank you to all of you who come over each week to link up to the party, I may not get to leave a comment, but I try to visit each of your posts. You are a never ending source of inspiration to me and others, so just know how much I appreciate each one of you!
    thanks so much for joining in
    and making this party so much fun!

    Have a great weekend, 
    Be sure and come back for a great Give Away from 

    Wednesday, February 19, 2014

    Cottage Plans

    I've been indulging myself in gathering together some house ideas. I guess it's not too early to be thinking about what we are looking for in a new home. We're still in the updating stage at the big house, but have made good progress on the inside, so it's possible that we would be ready to list our house by late Spring. So much still needs to be done, but while I'm busy cleaning out closets and sorting through kitchen stuff, I'm taking a little time to look for design ideas and inspiration for our new place.

    This next house will be the house we retire in, so we're thinking long term. We already know we don't want an "upstairs", but would like a partially finished basement for storage and a large family area. I want to be able to do all our daily routine on the main level, but have a place in the basement where we can all go as a family when we get together to watch a movie, or the guys hang out.

    And let's face it, we have lot's of stuff, so we need some storage. At some point when we're "settled" I'd like to open my Etsy Shop back up with some of my vintage goods. I have tons of dishes and fun stuff that need a home. I had hoped to start that last Fall but life had other plans.

    My hubby's a collector too, so he needs his own area for guy stuff...lot's of guy stuff. AND we live in "Tornado Alley" sort of, so all of us like a little basement hideaway in bad weather.

    Some of these plans show an upstairs, but I'm mainly looking for design elements. The peaked roof lines and use of decorative rock, brick, or shingles are what I'm interested in. Carriage House garage doors are another item on my list.

    Living in this smaller lease house has shown us that we can be happy in less square footage if we have access to storage in a basement. I really am enjoying the fact that all I need can be focused in a smaller more compact space. The kitchen and great room are the center of the house with a split bedroom plan that enables hubby and I to each have an office on one side of the house with the master bedroom on the other.

    We really want new construction, or almost new, without a lot of trees or large yard. We're just not into it anymore, and Hubbs isn't and has never been, a fan of yard and garden fun. I was always the one that mowed and did the flowers and shrubs. I enjoyed it, but that's just not happening now. Just give me a small yard with a fence, a patio, a tree, and I'll be good to go.

    I'm not a fan of huge houses, with huge rooms. I can appreciate those lovely rooms, but I don't feel totally comfortable in them. I love a cozy space where you can curl up next to a fire and have a cup of tea. We're not big "entertaining" people so no need for large spaces for parties. The largest soiree I would want would be a "Girlfriend's Lunch", or a small dinner with family, that's about it.

    One element of the English Cottage Design that I love is the timbered porches, posts, and gables. (see below). The multipaned windows with a transom or arch and shutters, always get my attention.

    We're planning on building or buying "affordable and efficient". We're thinking around 2000 square feet give or take on the main level. I DO want a sunroom so I'm going to probably have to do some bargaining for that.

    We want to be free of a mortgage so we can do some traveling at some point in life. Having a larger home with a lot of outside maintenance just doesn't thrill us any more. We'll leave that to the younger couples with some kiddos still at home.

    So that's some of my inspiration for our new home. I have lot's of ideas for inside, but I've realized over the years, if a house has good bones you can add elements here and there to personalize it and make it your own.

    All these homes can be found at their source on my Pinterest Board,

    News on the home front... We have the granite counter tops in and new French Doors to the sunporch at the big house. We went to an open house on the street behind us and visited with a realtor that we were familiar with. He lives in our subdivision and has listed and sold many homes in our area. We're not ready to list, but feel like he will be our choice when the time is right. Things are rolling along, and the better weather will encourage us and help us get some outside work done.

    I think the very top sketch with the gray rock and shingles is my favorite, but when it comes down to a choice, we always pray for God's leading and timing. So wherever and whatever we end up with, I know it will be where we are supposed to be. I'm just hoping God likes little English Cottages. te he.

     I'll be joining in with these great parties:

    Wow Us Wednesday at Savvy Southern Style
    Inspiration Exchange at City Farmhouse
    From My Front Porch to Yours
    Share Your Cup at Mrs. Olson's
    Grey Dey Thursday at Petite Michelle Louise
    Fabulously Creative Friday at Jennifer Rizzo
    Home Sweet Home at The Charm of Home
    Feathered Nest Friday at French Country Cottage

    If you haven't checked out the goods at The Marketplace
    then just click here.

    Today's Sponsor

    Tuesday, February 18, 2014

    The Marketplace: Etsy and Boutique Showcase

    Hey there you all, hope you had a great weekend! We have had some beautiful days late last week, and we're looking at 50's and low 60's all  this coming week, so we're ready to dance a little Spring Jig here in the lower Midwest. Valentine's Day has come and gone...can Easter and Spring be far behind? I'm on the lookout! Here are some wonderful items that were in the link-up last week. gotta love anything with birds and/or flowers!

    Oliver and Rust

    Marionberry Cottage

    Delightful Curiosity

    Nostalgic Artifacts

    The Penny and the Pearl

    The Zoe Bird

    And say Hello to Today's Sponsor

    Thanks gals so much for joining in!

    Party Link Guidelines:
    This is a linky party that is for items that are FOR SALE only. You don't have to have a blog to link up. If you have a blog post about your items that's great too, but they need to be available to purchase. Please try to link to the individual item that you are selling if possible. Please be a follower of Common Ground and if you have a blog it would be so nice for you to grab the image below to share somewhere on your blog. (not mandatory). Remember the link is up all week, so please stop back by to check out new items being listed. Thanks so much for sharing all your great items with us!

    Have a great week,

    Friday, February 14, 2014

    Visual Valentines

    I love to go shopping, and part of the fun is checking out the store window displays, especially the holiday ones. Creativity and Visual Displays go hand in hand when it comes to merchandising, and what could be more of a challenge that taking a large empty space and transforming it into a shopping fantasy. It's been awhile since I've been shopping in St. Louis, but I was wondering what kind of Valentine fun I was missing. Anthropologie and Louis Vuitton are always ones you can count on to be out-of-the-box amazing. Here are a few images from some Valentine Inspired store window displays...

    all images from my Pinterest board, Valentines

    and here are a few images of Valentine fun from blogposts, past.

    And just to round things out,
     I decided to go ahead and display my red transferware in my new old/cupboard.

    Have a wonderful Valentine's Evening...

    hug hug
    kiss kiss,

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