SPOTLIGHT: ALLIED MAKER

 

Today I want to share one of my favorite lighting companies, Allied Maker.  Owned by a husband and wife duo, their team of artisans make some of the most beautiful lights I’ve ever laid my eyes on.  I’ve rounded up some pieces I’m especially loving but you really have to see the whole collection, and if you have a minute I suggest checking out their Instagram story highlights– the albums called “Installed” and “Outgoing” showcase the pieces in a way that their website doesn’t.  You can see how beautifully crafted, well designed and all around lovely the pieces are.  Did you look?  Are you equally obsessed?   Ugh, I want them all and have the budget for maaaaybe one if we use candles for all other lighting in the house.  (Yep, totally realize this is a very privileged problem to have and yet still weeping over lights that will never be)!  I’m basically writing this post in the hopes that one of you have an unlimited budget for lighting in your remodel and buys them all and then DM’s me photos.  Please?    xx- Sarah

DO OR DON’T: WHITE FURNITURE IN A FAMILY HOME

Hi friends!  I’m sorry I’ve been so quiet around here lately, I’m in the thick of the final stages of design/sourcing for the Ojai house (phew!) and these last minute decisions have been all-consuming!  I’ve enjoyed every last second of the process and hunting for the materials, finishes, etc and I can’t help but wonder how I’m going to satisfy that creative fix when this project is completed!  I guess I’ll cross that bridge after we’ve moved in and I’ve completed the decorating.  I mentioned casually to Lou the other day that maybe one day we could sell this house for enough and could tackle a ground up build?!  He did not find that amusing.  Oops!  Probably best to not start making plans for another house before you’ve even moved into your current project!  I am a special kind of nuts.

Which brings me to a critical question that has been haunting me- can me make a white sectional work in an open concept living room with a wild toddler running amuck??  Generally speaking we haven’t changed much in our house since we brought Teo into it- those cream colored curtains I so worried about are still hanging and still in great shape.  We removed a rug from under the dining room table but I am ready to put it back- I feel like we’re past the messiest stage.  But a couch, a white couch, with a toddler whose feet are generally covered in dirt, whose hands are usually at least partially covered in some sort of snack remnants- it feels like maybe that’s just plain nonsensical.

BUT, the heart wants what the heart wants and the heart wants a white couch in spite of practicality.  What I am looking for here is for you to talk me off the ledge and tell me it would be INSANE.  Certifiable even!  C’mon, help a madwoman out!

As a thank you gift I present you with these inspiration photos of beautiful spaces with light colored furniture.  I hope they inspire your own designs and that those of you with messy toddlers won’t hate me for this.  I’m in the boat with you!  Let’s just say eff it and get white couches, wanna!?!  xx- Sarah . (photo sources: 1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 //

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Ojai Kitchen Inspiration

I’m thick in the midst of kitchen designing, and so I thought I’d show you some of the spaces that are serving up so much of my inspiration!  I’ve never designed a kitchen (well, I’ve re-desinged about a hundred in my head but this is my first chance to actually see one brought to life!  I’ve had so much fun with it, and only occasionally lay in bed second guessing my every decision and agonizing over options.  Totally normal to lose sleep over a remodel I think, right?!

So far (budget permitting) my plans are a light warm wood custom cabinet with no hardware- lowers only, with a couple of small floating shelves.  I’m hoping and praying we can swing integrated appliances and a thick countertop (I found a great product that looks very much like carrera marble but is durable AF!)  I want the kitchen to feel modern and clean- especially important because we’ll have an open floor plan.  I’m so excited that we’ll get to have a big island (does that represent the American dream these days or what?)  It’s a pinch-me moment for sure that we’re doing this project.

Honestly, when I was in my late 20’s I thought we would NEVER buy a house in southern California.  I thought the likelihood of us being able to remodel a house would be along the same likelihood that we’d fly to Mikonos in a private jet for a quick holiday and hang out with Beyonce on a yacht.  Truly, it’s one of my wildest dreams come true.  I don’t mean to say this in a bragg-y look at how lucky we are way but to tell you that I’m living a dream right now, one that I thought would NEVER happen, and that goes to show you that life is unpredictable and you can’t know what goodness is ahead for you.  I’m also telling you that because I am just so excited but also so humbled- these past few years have taught me that things can change in an instant and you’ve got to really appreciate every moment that you’re healthy and your loved ones are healthy and you’re given the incredible privilege of another day loving your people here on this amazing planet.  This has gone way off course from kitchen design but that’s how I roll these days I guess!

If you have any kitchen design tips you’d like to share, I’ll take em!!!!  Seriously, I know lots of you have walked down this road before and if you have any regrets about your kitchen choices can you share them with me (and others) so that we can learn from your experiences?!  I would be SO grateful!  My biggest worry is that it will be done and I’ll not be in love with it after all of the time, trouble and expense!    Ok, check out some more of my inspiration below!  xx- Sarah . {Image Sources:  1  // //  3 //  4 // 5 }

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Sweet Potato Noodles with Chimichurri and Bacon

I haven’t had a chance to write a health update post, although it’s on my short list!  Without getting too much into it I’ve been doing some time on the AIP diet.  It’s similar to the Gaps diet in many ways, and if I had done the stages of the GAPS diet I think it would’ve been equally effective.  Unfortunately I suspect I have sensitivities to eggs and dairy, so being on full GAPS wasn’t serving me optimally.   Man oh man the path to healing is definitely not linear, but I’m healthier than I’ve been since I received my Crohn’s diagnosis in 2011.  BUT, like I said, I’ll go into this more soon!   For now, I’m happy to be sharing a recipe I created to satisfy that comfort food craving for the times when pasta is not an option.  Say hello to sweet potato noodles with bacon and chimichurri (I would not be mad if you threw in an avocado either!)  This dish feels decidedly decadent, but it’s healthy and won’t leave you on the couch bingeing netflix and wishing you could take back that carb-fest!  So that makes it pretty much perfect in my book!  Be honest, have you ever met a bowl of noodles you didn’t love?  I have yet to.  I hope you enjoy!  And if you have any favorite AIP recipes that you’d love to share I will kiss you, I’m getting so bored of my go-to’s!!  xx- Sarah

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Mandy Moore’s Dining Room Featuring Our Sal Print!

Hi my friends!  I hope those of you stateside had a great holiday weekend!  Ours was mellow, and cozy and just the right mix of friends/adventure and good food!  I hope you all had just as much goodness, if not more!  I have a recipe post coming up for you this week, and some interior inspiration that I think you’ll love, but I’m popping in today to share this gorgeous photo of Mandy Moore’s living room (an outtake from the Architecture Digest cover story)!!  Our sweet friend Sarah Sherman Samuel is the genius behind the design, and was kind enough to introduce Mandy to this photo that Lou took before we officially added it to our print shop late last year.  We waited months to see the enormous print styled, and my jaw hit the ground when that moment finally arrived.  What a stunning dining space, right!?  EEEEK!  A true pinch-us moment!  We couldn’t be more excited to see our print in such an amazing space!  I strongly recommend you do your eyes a favor and head to Sarah’s blog to see all the tours of this incredible house, and watch this video  of Mandy giving a home tour- you’ll be left fantasizing about a mid century dream home for daysssss).  More soon!  xx- Sarah  {Photo by Trevor Tondro}

 

Ojai Fixer Inspiration

Happy weekend my friends!  I am SO happy to tell you that every last item on Alyssa’s wishlist was purchased in just over 24 hours.  YOU ARE AMAZING!!!!!!  Truly, thank you from the very bottom of my heart.  There is nothing better than a good solid reminder that you belong to a community of like-minded, big-hearted, kind and gorgeous people.  I’m humbled to be a part of this.  And Alyssa…excited and grateful doesn’t even begin to cover her feelings.  Let’s just say there were lots of {happy} tears on both our parts.

Now, onto the business of being inspired!  I’ve become a reinvigorated Pinterest maniac lately and one quick look at my pins will show you what I’m feeling the most these days: neutrals, organic materials, clean minimalist modern design.  And most of all, WOOD.  I’ve been trying to convince Lou that we can never have enough wood (that’s what she said!) . Right now we have plans for wood floors, wood cabinets, wood beams on the ceiling and wood windows!  Ahhh!  It’s a dream come true!  My dream home is in the forest, but there aren’t really “forests” to speak of in coastal southern California so I think covering every surface in wood is my attempt to create that forest-house feeling.  Ok, so here’s some spaces that are really inspiring ours…. what do you think?  xx- Sarah  {so much more after the jump}

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