Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Mary Carol Garrity Fall Home Tour, Part 2

Welcome back for part two of last weekend's fall tour of Mary Carol Garrity's beautiful home in Atchison, Kansas.  You can see part 1 here, which featured the interior.

Today, we're going to visit the garden, beginning with the screened in porch.

I get so overwhelmed in some of these spaces, especially when I'm trying to take it all in while surrounded by dozens of chatty women.  I overlooked this little fellow until I was reviewing the photos after I came home.  Look at that little pumpkin he's holding.  So sweet!

The southeast exposure is probably what allows her to use such lovely pieces in an outdoor area, especially in stormy Kansas. Mary Carol mentioned that some storms rolled through during the open house on Friday afternoon, and the tornado sirens were activated. She recalled the next day, "I have all these people in my house, and I don't want them to see my basement!"

While this lantern and the urn separately are lovely pieces, putting them together makes quite a statement. 

There's one of those orbs again.  I know I'm going to regret not buying one.

Many of the items she was featuring were already sold out by the time I arrived Saturday afternoon, but I did study this take on a baker's peel as a charger at Nell Hills.  This would be an easy DIY knock-off.

Another orb (sigh).  I looked at the birds at the store.  I really liked them.  A lot.  They were about $35 each, so they didn't come home with me.

However, if she was selling this wine-toting statue, he would have come home with me, regardless of the price!

Alas, he must be from her personal collection, not for sale in her stores.  Isn't he adorable?

Speaking of adorable, this little fellow is also precious.  I love how he seems to be studying something in the leaves.

One thing I really like about Mary Carol's style is how effortlessly she marries together current trends with the tried and true, like this wire lantern set on a very traditional iron birdbath. 

A closer look...

One comment I overhear from other lookie-loos is that Mary Carol's style can seem cluttered.  That's OK.  It's her home, and she's obviously comfortable in it.  Regardless, I think she sets a good example of how to let your home evolve, where to invest money in timeless pieces, and how to use today's decorating fads as fun, pretty accents.
If you pin, please be sure to give Mary Carol credit for her work.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Mary Carol Garrity Fall Home Tour 2012, Part 1

The autumn-like weather yesterday was absolutely wonderful, perfect for driving to Atchison, Kansas, for the fall home tour of Mary Carol Garrity, founder of Nell Hills.  This tour featured only autumn decorating since there will be another open house in November for the holidays!  You can see the spring tour here and last year's autumn tour here, which also featured Christmas decor.

The stairs to her home were flanked by two large lanterns.  Notice the pumpkin inside perched on top of a small mercury glass pedestal.  Love that!

I'm always in awe of the architecture of her home.  Atchison is filled with historic homes and grand buildings, a lasting legacy of the city's prosperity during the overland trade period of the mid-1800s and early industrial era of 1870-1900.

Most of her fall decorating was the abundant use of floral stems, pumpkins, and pinecones.  Mary Carol said in the past she and her decorating team used pipe cleaners for constructing the displays, but now they use zip ties.
Mary Carol named a few trends for decorating this season, including mercury glass, and she said that "orbs are the new lanterns."  These orbs were flying out the door at her two shops, Nell Hills and Garrity's.
I couldn't decide how I felt about them.  I'll probably regret not picking up one.  Let's go inside!

All the sparkle wasn't limited to mercury glass.  Check out this huge silver bowl.  Besides the colors, I think I love decorating for autumn because it's so easy.  A good faux pumpkin can be prettier than the real thing.  Gourds last for weeks.  Twigs are free, and pinecones can be a one time investment (and good for Christmas decorating, too).

A small den is off the grand foyer.  Don't let this photo fool you.  It's a dark, masculine space, but I love all of rich textures.  Mary Carol almost always has a display on top of her cabinets, like this dough bowl overflowing with the colors of autumn.  By the time I find one of these at a price I'm willing to pay, the trend will be long gone.
In contrast to the den, the living room is filled with light.  Not much new here by way of comparison this fall, but I did admire the mantel.  Notice how the asymetrical display frames the artwork, the twigs wrapping around the image.  Gorgeous!
Let's check out the dining room, which always promises to be dramatic.
Remember the secret?  Zip ties!
Lots of mercury glass on the table.  I always see those over-sized martini glasses at hobby stores, and I think they look so tacky.  Here, they are actually pretty.
After all the grandeur of the exterior, the foyer, the living room, and dining room, I'm always happy to see the kitchen.
As in most historical homes, the kitchen is pretty darn small!  I happened to catch it when no one was in there so I could get a good picture.  Even though it's small, it is full of practical style.
And yes, those glass containers filled with dishwashing liquids aren't just for looks.  They appear to be used everyday.  Who wouldn't love to cook here?

Be sure to check back on Tuesday for the garden tour!
If you pin, please be sure to give Mary Carol credit for her work.
I'm linking up...

Monday, September 3, 2012

Another Fine Mess

As I left my studio this evening...

One project underway, one waiting in the wings.

I finished one stained project this weekend.

An old plate, which is my favorite paint palette. 

Spool of thread from sewing a button on in hurry Sunday morning. A pile of fabric that will some day become a quilt. Some day. Can of oops paint for the benches I rescued when a neighbor was putting them out for trash day. Three benches. One painted, so far.
Despite the mess, this is my happy place.