cook | niçoise porch life.

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Salad niçoise is one of my go-to’s for back porch summer dinners, especially with guests. I like that guests can mix and match–add anything to their salad they like, and leave off stuff they don’t care for. It’s a win win.

And now that we’ve finally got back porch weather, bring on those entree salads. What are some of your go-tos?

f.o. | mrs. kim cross stitch

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For those of you that know me personally, I’m a Gilmore Girls fan. Amy Sherman-Palladino and Dan Palladino, the show’s creators, are my heroes. The pop culture references, book references, quick wit, and well -timed and brilliantly curated music selections were, and are, near and dear to me.

And so, when the opportunity to make a Gilmore Girls inspired cross stitch that didn’t feel silly popped up, I jumped. One of the show’s characters, Mrs. Kim, is anti all music that isn’t religious. And so, it was fitting to make a sign that declared she disapproved of my music collection, and hang it above a selection of our vinyl in the living room.

This pattern took one afternoon to complete–my favorite quick project with rich rewards. It fits in nicely with the rest of my art in the living room and I like that it can be kind of a cryptic message– so fun.

home additions.

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I’ve been hemming and hawing over floating shelves for my kitchen since I bought and moved in last June. I looked at Ikea and hated the quality–twice. You can see where I’d hang them from most parts of the house and I wanted something sturdy and substantial, something that “shows” and is a piece of art in and of itself.

Nothing stuck.

I found some amazing Japanese burned ones that blew my mind. Then, I priced them out. In my “forever” home, I thought.

So I went to a trusted source: Etsy. I support local, small shops and artisans who create incredible things every day (hello! I make, too). And why I never started there is beyond me, because I stumbled on Sound Side Carpentry and their amazing reclaimed barn wood pieces.

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Last weekend, we finally got our floating shelves delivered. We also purchased a hairpin leg stool that doubles as a million different things (which I love!): a side table, a stool to sit on when we have extra guests for a party, a plant stand for our cactus which traveled 3,000 miles from Phoenix with Sean to live with us in Boston last summer.

And it fits my eclectic taste. I would never want to walk into a house and know what store, and when in time, that owner bought and decorated everything. I spend a lot of time thinking things over and deciding where it should go and whether it makes sense. I love vintage antiques. Unique pieces. One of a kinds. I’ve even sometimes bought something that didn’t work right then but knew at some point, it would be a must piece that completes my space.

My floating shelves are amazing and finally let me display some of my bowls and glassware and vases and kitchen trinkets I’ve collected along the way. I get to show off some of my vintage Blakley Arizona cacti frosted glass collection (I’ve got more on my bar cart), too.

See more snaps from my home here and here.

 

hanging.

This past Sunday, I nodded into my favorite antiques shop in Manchester, NH. I love it because the prices are great and the mid century modern selections can be to die for. I got this incredible bookcase there for just $35.

This time around, I found this incredible teak hanging shelf in mint condition for the same price as the bookcase. We have since put it up in the living room above the record rack, and I’m so pleased with how it looks.

It’s a great spot to display some of the many little knickknacks I’ve collected along the way–a vintage brass sheep, a Navajo folk art pig, some small succulents, and of course, a Drake Saint candle.

Waiting for the perfect piece is so worth it. And, despite loving mid century modern antiques, my home feels very eclectic and not like we stepped into 1955. I love that about it.

porch life.

Finally, home feels settled. And after years of living in the city without proper outdoor space, I have not one–but two–giant porches. One facing east toward downtown in the back, and one facing west and the world’s best sunsets.

The back porch is a great place to enjoy an after work cocktail, or a book on a warm Saturday morning. I love that it feels like a living room. And our pooch, Jackie B, certainly loves it, too. I’m spending as many fall evenings out here as I can.

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Sean gifted me these amazing bronze piggy book ends last year for Christmas. We finally hung the mid century modern wood shelf my mum found us while she was antiquing.

Perfect spot to show off these oinks? I think so.

home.

We call it the hogan at Rozzie. You may remember when I announced the most important project in my life to date: home ownership.

Since my purchase, I’ve done quite a few things to get settled; a whole bunch of antiquing, placement and replacement of my many knick knacks, oh, and moved in my guy, who was living 3,000 miles away.

I’m really happy with where we are at right now. Minus an outdoor couch delivery for our back porch tomorrow, most things are settled. There’s still more art to hang on the wall, and eventually a new couch and another chair in our living room, but finally, at last, it really feels like home.

I love that I’ve been patient and found the right things–almost nothing in the house was purchased new. Instead, I favored brilliant mid century modern antique finds that maybe needed a little tlc and family pieces passed down.

What do you think? Worth much of the waiting? See more snaps from my home here.

mid-century.

This adorable slanted Danish midcentury modern bookcase I recently found antiquing (for a whopping $30!) is brilliantly residing in my new home’s long hallway. It’s also the perfect place to house my ever-growing Penguin Clothbound Classics collection, which are, in my humble opinion, the most gorgeous book designs.

What do I do when this little bookshelf can’t house them any longer in one nice set together?

diy stool.

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My mum was ferreting around in her basement and inside the old dark room and tool shop room my dad used to use, she found a rusted out utility stool that was clearly left behind by some workers 20 years ago when my parents had their house remodeled. It was in rough shape, having sat in that dark basement for decades.

She offered it up to me as a great place for someone to sit in my new kitchen when I’m cooking, or as a plant stand, if I was willing to do a little work on it to get it in shape.

All it took was about 20 minutes of sanding off all the rust and splattered paint, then cleaning it with a firm bristle brush. Once that was done, I slowly spray painted it in stages with a great jade green color, which we happened to have two cans of lying around in the garage for some unknown project.

Alas, after about two hours with this little stool, it was brought back to life. It now resides in my kitchen, the home of my large jade plant. But, it will be a great spot for someone to sit and have a drink while I’m cooking up some dinner. I also love that, while these are pretty popular these days, I didn’t have to spend a ton of money on one sold by some store–some sell updwards of $150.

What’s more, when my mum and I were recently antiquing in New Hampshire, one shop had several of these stools, as rusted out as mine, for sale for a whopping $70. I’m so excited to have scored this stool for free, and barely any work to get it to where it is now.

Recycling is the best, no?