Rose Gold

I've been super into rose gold jewelry lately, and have been excited to see the metallic trend being translated into housewares as well. From statement pendant lamps to shelves to a pretty amazing bed, rose gold is a modern way to add some glamour to your décor. Here are a few of my favorite spaces. Image from domaine.com

Mixed metals add depth to this marble-covered kitchen.

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Tom Dixon's iconic lamps bring in light and add interest to a neutral Scandinavian dining room.

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This amazing shelf would look just as at home in a bathroom as in an entry way.

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A rose gold-framed mirror is a subtle take on the trend.

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Though it's not cheap, Michael Varian's stunning copper ink wallpaper would be perfect for an accent wall.

Image via shopsweetthings.com

Spotted in L.A. bakery Bo Nuage, these angular bar stools are stunning against black and white molding.

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Exposed pipes add storage and visual impact to this neutral kitchen.

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Modern yet traditional, this incredible bed frame makes a bold statement.

Home Design: Modern Pastels

Though it's been a while, I think I'm going to try to get back into more home design posts. Though we don't have any plans to move (or redecorate) any time soon, I've found a lot of inspiration on Pinterest and am loving all of the pastels I've seen lately. No longer reserved for kid's rooms or Easter eggs, pastels are making a comeback. Thanks to modern shapes and geometric prints, baby blue, light pink and mint green can brighten up a room and add a pop of color without being too overwhelming–read on for some of my favorite products.

This ceramic Mint Geo Vase ($30) would look stunning with a bouquet of white tulips.
Thanks to its sleek design, the pale pink Arper Duna Lounge Chair ($831) doesn't feel too sweet.
This mouthblown Austrian crystal pitcher and tumbler set for Lobmeyer (from $65) adds subtle color to the table.
Balanced with neutral white and gray, the Pietro Throw (approximately $140) would work just as well in your living room as in a nursery.
This multi-use cutting board ($37)–it can also be used as a trivet and serving platter–is an affordable way to embrace two trends in one: pastels and geometric prints.
Thailand-based Studiomake purposefully makes each gold-plated bowl ($68) flawed to emphasize the beauty in imperfection.

Black & White

I've really been feeling Scandinavian minimalism lately. I think it could be this crazy winter we've been having, but I love the simple, neutral color schemes and variety of textures that the Swedish and Norwegians seem to do so well. I put together a roundup of a few black and white items I've been coveting lately (and I might need to buy that blanket for myself!)

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You might also notice a few changes around here: I decided to do a little redesign to (hopefully) keep the site user-friendly, while making it look a little more modern. I'm still working out a few kinks, so let me know what you think and if you are having any issues!

 

Minnesota Pride

I'm always proud to say that I'm from Minnesota – to which the most common response is usually "You don't have an accent at all!" (Believe me, it comes back as soon as I land at MSP) But something has changed since I moved away from there. Once considered a flyover state, Minnesota has become an actually cool destination – with restaurants, shops, and hand-made products to back it up. Of course, those of us who are from the Midwest have long known that Minnesota is pretty great, but it's nice to see the rest of the country give it a little recognition as well. Here are a few of my current favorite companies, all the better because they are based in my home state:

Red Wing Shoes

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A classic American brand, Red Wing Shoes have been around for years, but they seem to be having a well-deserved resurgence as well-made, good quality products have again become valued. If you're in the area, the town of Red Wing is definitely worth a visit as well – charming Minnesota living at its best.

Faribault Woolen Mill

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Minnesota's oldest mill was started in 1865, and their legacy as a family-owned company has been revitalized with new designs and the same commitment to quality. I'm coveting one of the wool throws, which start at $135 and come in many different beautiful patterns.

Pierrepont Hicks

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A launch story that I love particularly because it involves both Minnesota and Brooklyn, Pierrepont Hicks was started by Mac & Katherine McMillan (she's from my neighborhood in Brooklyn, he's from Minnesota) as a quest to find the perfect tie. They have since expanded the brand to include shoes, outerwear, and blankets (how great is this Track Parka with the wool hood?)

Leather Works Minnesota

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Started in 1999, this St. Paul-based company makes minimalist (and very affordable) leather accessories, including wallets, key chains and best of all, slingshots. I love the simple designs and the fact that every design is made-to-order in their workshop.

Duluth Pack Store

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My family has visited the flagship Duluth Pack Store in Duluth on pretty much every single trip we have made up to the North Shore (which, when I was growing up, was 2-3 times per year). There's a reason they have been around since 1882 – their products have a lifetime guarantee, and they really mean it. I have always loved their bags (like the navy tote pictured above), but they also make excellent clothing and other accessories as well.

Fall at Zara Home

How is it November already? Except for the fact that Halloween already happened and it's now about 45 degrees outside, I'm pretty certain that it should still be August. So while I try to distract myself from thoughts of Thanksgiving (plans TBD for the moment), I thought I would share a few of my favorite items from Zara Home's fall collection. I'm a huge fan of Zara Home – like H&M, they have a ton of very affordable options in many different styles, and inventory changes frequently so there's always something new. zara

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I am definitely wishing for some gold flatware to add a little holiday sparkle.

On a completely different note, I wanted to share with you all that Ari (who you may have read about here) just launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund his brand-new radio show and podcast, called Off Campus. The show consists of interviews with people from all different career paths and walks of life, talking about their first year out of college and how they got to where they are. They're trying to raise $12,500 by December 4th, so please take a minute to check it out if you're interested (Also you might see a cameo in the Kickstarter video of yours truly). To learn more about the radio show, click here, and to donate to the campaign, click here.

On Bar Carts

mg_4698About a year ago, I was obsessed with getting a bar cart. It probably came from reading too many home design blogs and watching Mad Men, but I couldn't get the idea out of my mind. I scoured Craigslist for months, but since I didn't really want to spend more than $50 on a cart, that limited my options. After what seemed like ages of looking, almost ready to throw in the towel and give up the search, Ari found one at the 6th Avenue Flea Market for a mere $20. Naturally, I was overjoyed and couldn't wait to get it home and move all of the bottles of liquor out of the closet. I don't drink cocktails all that often, but when I do, I at least want them to look pretty. _MG_4701 Keep reading for a few styling tips and a roundup of bar carts!

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Styling:

  • I like arranging alcohol by height so that you can best see each label.
  • Add other cocktail-related items, such as shakers, fun straws, and books to mix up the visual impact.
  • If you don't have room for a bar cart (or don't want one), another great option is to create a bar area by putting all of your bottles on a tray and displaying them on a bookshelf or countertop.
  • I like to keep my glassware on the bottom shelf altogether, but if you have particularly pretty glasses that you want to display, put them out with the bottles.
  • A bar is something that can be built up over time -- don't feel like you need to go out and buy 20 different kinds of alcohol at once. I have been adding to this collection for a couple of years, and you can start with just a bottle of clear alcohol (such as vodka or gin), one bottle of dark (such as bourbon or whiskey), and some bitters (essential for Manhattans, Old-Fashioneds, etc.). If you have the money or inclination, you can also add something a little more unexpected -- such as St. Germain or Aperol, both of which can be used in a number of different cocktails.
  • Other things to have on hand, especially for parties: lemons, limes, club soda, tonic, vermouth, and of course, plenty of ice.

H&M Home Collection

I'm a little late to the game, as H&M's home collection has now been available for several weeks, but I couldn't resist posting about it anyways. My expectations weren't super high, but they surpassed all of them by far. Inexpensive linen sheets? Chic candles? Beautifully styled photos? Check, check and check. I can't speak to the quality of all of the items, but with many pieces coming in at under $20, it might be worth picking up a few things to change up your décor. Here are a few things I have been eying:

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All images from hm.com. Layout created exclusively for 124 Park.

5 Ways to Make Any Dinner Feel Special

_MG_4791When I was growing up, my family ate dinner together pretty much every night. As we got older, it became a little more difficult between sports, play rehearsals, and any of the other many social obligations of high school, but my parents always made sure that it happened at least a few times a week. One of my sisters or I would set the table, Mom or Dad would be cooking, we would turn on some music, and let the phone go to voicemail. For all of us, it was a way to reflect on the day, to decompress and enjoy the food in front of us. Since leaving home, I've come to realize that this isn't always the case -- and between my busy work schedule and the many take-out options in New York, sometimes dinner doesn't feel quite so special. So when I do have time to relax and have dinner (or take-out), here are a few things I've come up with to make any dinner feel like an occasion: _MG_47341. Light some candles. This is an amazingly easy way to dress up any table, and it's usually very inexpensive (Ikea is great for stocking up).

2. Use cloth napkins instead of paper. I always prefer the look of cloth napkins over paper, and they are much more eco-friendly!

3. Turn on some music. This is one of my favorite ways to set a mood -- for dinner parties, I particularly like the Motown and Adele Pandora stations.

4. Use your nice china. Of course, I only bought matching plates a few weeks ago (I finally decided that now that I am 25, I can have matching plates. I'm feeling very grown-up), but if you are lucky enough to have separate sets of dishes, use your fine china for an everyday meal. What are you waiting for?_MG_4798

5. Have a little sparkling wine. Somehow, many people think that champagne or prosecco are only for special occasions, but when you can find perfectly decent bottle of sparkling wine at Trader Joe's for $5, why save it? Of course, this may have something to do with the fact that I studied abroad in Bologna, land of the apertivo, or the fact that despite being 100% Norwegian in heritage, my dad and uncles are convinced that we are Italian. Either way, I can't think of anything much better than sipping a chilled glass of prosecco on a warm day (ice bucket is certainly not necessary -- though I scored this one at Housing Works for $8! And I think it adds a touch of elegance to any table).

What do you do to make everyday events feel special?