Archive for the ‘Dining’ Category

A few days ago, while doing my grocery shopping at Kroger, I saw this.


Insert me stopping mid-aisle and backing up

I was at the Green Hills Kroger so I wasn’t at a Kroger Marketplace. I’ve only been to a Marketplace on the road but know some outlying areas have them. I haven’t seen Kroger sell dishes before and I was real excited about them being Blue Willow. Plus, there sale signs.


Here is the only picture of pricing that is readable.


After scrutinizing photos, here are the prices I’ve confirmed:

  • Dinner plate $5.24
  • Salad plate $3.75
  • Cereal bowl $3.75
  • Soup bowl $3.75
  • Large serving bowl $14.99
  • 14″ Oval Platter $20.24
  • Covered casserole $44.99

I think a grouping of Blue Willow can be really pretty on a wall.

blue willow hanging from michaelpennystyle


blue willow wall hanging plates with yellow chairs via house beautiful


However, I don’t think it looks great on your back.

blue willow back tatoo




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I recently dropped by a World Market while on the road, as the one in Nashville isn’t near our parts. While there I found some cute plates that are currently on sale.

Set of 2 for $12.78

Set of 2 for $12.78

The first two examples, the elephant and monkey, are my favorite and look particularly cute with their matching dinner plates. However, I’d alternate the patterns.

Set of 2 for $14.38

Set of 2 for $14.38

These are also available with matching dinner plates.

Set of 2 for $12.78

Set of 2 for $12.78

Here are all four patterns:


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Special delivery

Today, we are getting a special delivery from CB2. They are delivering three Tesso Bookcases and a Peekaboo Console Table.

We’re pretty jazzed about it.

The Mister and I were in Atlanta and were able to drop by CB2, as hoped. We’ve been looking for some type of storage for the dining room, which has been well documented here, here, and here. However, we decided against the built-in route after being led astray and deciding we needed to focus our “built-in” needs elsewhere (read the kitchen.) So, we looked at different shelving options. We considered open shelving and a few different shelving units. While we were at CB2 The Mister said he liked the way the Helix bookcase went over the floor molding which I hadn’t thought of but agreed with. Then, the nice people (seriously the CB2 people are super nice) told us that they had a special on delivery where they could take off the usual $89 in-town delivery price off our delivery cost to get them to Nashville. We decided to place our order after I checked with a friend of our’s who has been needing a bed. He ordered the Alpine Bed in gunmetal.

The three bookcases are going across the wall and the console table is going infront of the window.

The tables with the blue and white skirts and the art have been moved. Currently, our dining room looks like this.

We got some work to do during the holidays.

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I’m on the lookout for a round table for our dining room. I’m hoping to find one on Craigslist that is just right. This means it is 48″ in diameter or less, has a pedestal for support and can be painted. Here are some of my favorite painted dining tables.

Jennifer Lopez’s California home designed by interior designer Michelle Workman

Photo by Mikkel Vang, Published in House Beautiful and via Aesthetic Oiseau

Designed by Susan Jones

Published in House Beautiful and designed by Miles Redd

Ideally, I’d like to faux-paint our table in tortoise-shell like the one above. I’d like to live in that room. Folding screen, a touch of chinoiserie, ruffled curtains, saturated color – it’s one of my favorite rooms. Miles Redd is one of my favorites. I would like to speak to him about how awesome I think he is.

Yes, you are. Now, let’s start this friendship with you giving me a round faux-tortoise dining table.

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You’ve seen our dining room here and here. This is not a true “after” but the place has made some progress. So, I’m sharing.



This is the view from our living room.

We’ve stuck with our dining table, but we keep going back and forth on it. I still vote round table. We removed the rugs from the dining room and living room. They were beautiful but didn’t match. They are being store at The Mister’s parent’s home. We placed two tables, one in each corner, to create some balance and provide storage. The fabric covering the tables are IKEA curtains I purchased but we decided against using. I have left them “draping” as I don’t want to spend the time making them tailored. We’ve never tripped on them as the fabric is usually tucked/pushed/shoved to the side of the table and out of our way.  If they become a more permanent fix then I’ll change the fabric and make it more tailored. However, we believe we have found the answer to our storage problem. No, it’s not built ins. We decided to place those funds elsewhere.

This is the view of our dining room from our kitchen.

Call your friends and family, I’ve kept a plant alive for a few months. Yes, I’m going to count it. I, too, am impressed and excited about it. 

This is the view if you are going to sit at the dining table, which is unlikely as I don’t have dinner parties. I’m getting there. However, I will allow you to take a moment and respect my napkins because I made them. Not all of them. I made the horse printed ones. Remember, we only use cloth napkins


Dining table: West Elm
Dining chairs: Pier One. We purchased them on clearance approximately three years ago.
Needlepoint seat cushions: Tuesday Morning. My mother gave them to me for Christmas after much lusting over them. This was maybe five years ago. I hadn’t move out yet but she is well aware of my unwaivering love of needlepoint.
Chandelier: Restoration Hardware – here
Art: Yes, that is the $20.oo find from here. It’ll be gone soon.
Stripe tray under plant: IKEA
Butter dish: West Elm
White bowl with napkins: Pier One
Napkins: The white napkins are all cloths from Dollar Tree. The horse printed napkins I made from vintage fabric I found at the flea market.
Stacked placemats: Pier One purchased at the same time as the white bowl
Blue and white fabric: IKEA curtains
Pink table runners: IKEA
Bamboo shades: Overstock
Curtains: JCPenney

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I love graph paper. Seriously. We get along really well and always have. My mother used to purchase graph paper for me and I would sketch for hours. I would sketch room layouts and houses. Usually, I’d draw out the house floor plans and then I laid out each room. I remember drawing many houses with large, curving staircases. It was the jam.

I still do this. My notebooks, particularly those I travel with, are littered with diagrams of furniture, floor plans and basic good times. I will draw the same room multiple times – sometimes they are different but sometimes I just want to be sure it looks right. It’s pretty awesome and I feel like doing it right now but I’ll refrain. Instead, I will share my most recent sketches. (Keep in mind I’ve probably drawn something else since I drafted this post.)

 The first image is of The Mister and I’s four dining room options.

We liked option C the best, so I created a  quick page with more detail.

This page served a larger purpose of listing questions for the carpenter, as it is unlikely I’ll be able to meet him due to my work schedule. I love The Mister but he’s not as detailed orientated as I am.

We decided against the full wall of storage – Option A and referred to here. We were fearful it would look imposing and it would eat a lot of our floorspace. Option C was preferred as it provided storage and The Mister likes the idea of a bench or a banquette (if you’re nasty). The inspirational for it was here.

Did anyone pick up on the Janet Jackson reference?

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If you build it…

You get two posts today because we have a carpenter coming by to check out our dining room. If you believe this sounds familiar it is because this post started the same way. Unfortunately, we chose that carpenter. He kept having “other projects.” He would be on the road. He kept moving our timeline. He moved to Texas. He didn’t pan out and he still owes us $100.  It look months to get to this place. Many firm text messages have been shared as he has refused to answer our calls since we gave him a deposit. Unsavory words can be inserted here. If you meet a man named Doug Spann – tell him he still owes me money.

Let’s move on.

The gentleman coming today was suggested by co-workers. Friends are the best way to find people/places/things to do which we’ve learned. Of course, we’re (I’m likely in charge of this) sharing  inspirational photos from here and here. However, I have new images and explanations of some “oldies but goodies.”

I like the mix of open and  closed storage. Additionally, I like the “shelf” the closed storage on the bottom provides. We would like a mix of open and closed storage across the dining room wall. Ideally, we could use it as a buffet.

I want our shelves to be adjustable. This would allow me to have extra space on the bottom shelf (like above) for when I want to display larger items or use it as a buffet.

The closed storage doesn’t necessiarly have to “jut” out much if the shelves are adjustable as I could use their entire depth for display. To keep from taking up precious floorspace I would like overlapping or sliding doors on the bottom.

The sliding doors could have pretty hardware like these (above) built ins from Katie Ridder. Of course, I considered mirror placement. I thought about putting mirror on the back of the open storage and/or on the faces of the sliding doors like the ones below from Nuevo Estilo. I’m not sure about either location.

Here are some kitchen cabinets with mirrored backs.

Not only are we considering the wall of open and closed storage but two corner cabinets. I’ve planned it out in my head and I could be super stoked about the storage possibilities. We have no garage or basement. We need places to put holiday decor, random books The Mister buys, my Goodwill treasures stuff.  However, I’m concerned that it may look more like a pantry than a dining room. Is there such as thing as too many built ins?

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