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Spring colors 2011

Gorgeous Spring Colors

Unlike women, men aren’t always able to articulate or even inclined to openly discuss their color preferences  for their home and apparel  fashion.  However, in my recent survey about mens’ throw pillow preferences, I learned that men have definite opinions about color and style.

Women are very different in their discussions about colors! We mention spring, fall, winter and summer colors almost daily and women like me tend to obsess about them. Every year, when Pantone announces the color of the year (Honeysuckle for 2011) I aim a paint brush at our front hall.  Professionally, because of my soft home furnishings business, Just for Looks Custom Drapery, it is imperative that I stay current on color trends. Practically, however, Dear Husband, with his own definite opinion about colors, helps restrain me through these color addictions.

For both men and women, current colors influence not only our wardrobe and home decor, but also our vehicle choices and even the advertising that we respond to.

Pantone is the leading  authority on color and provider of professional color standards for the design industries.  The PANTONE FASHION + HOME Color System is the foundation for which their seasonal FASHION COLOR REPORT is derived. PANTONE surveys fashion designers to collect feedback  on color collections, inspirations and philosophies.

Interestingly, as seen in the reports below there are only subtle differences in the colors for men and women in the spring line up as well as the fall line up.


Pantone's Spring Colors for Men

Womens Spring Colors 2011

Womens Spring Colors 2011

Here are the Fall Colors

Mens Fall Colors 2011

Mens Fall Colors 2011

Womens fall colors 2011

Womens fall colors 2011

Pantone presents really interesting and informative narratives about their choices in these detailed color reports.

I would love to hear which colors are your favorites and how you ARE or AREN’T going to add these colors in your home this year. Talk to me 🙂

What Men Really Want But Don’t Talk About- Pillows

Men Say the Darndest Things – Pillow Talk

Cotton Monster handmade Toy

Gertrudal by Cotton Monster on Etsy

Gertrudal Big Cotton Monster, ONE-OF-A-KIND pieces of art is just one cuddly creature of a whole collection, brilliantly designed and  handmade by Jennifer Strunge.  The best part is that these little toy creatures are constructed of recycled clothes, blankets and sheets, items that would otherwise be destined to the landfill.  Jennifer markets her monsters  at CottonMonsters on Etsy and they truly are irresistible. I’m deciding which one looks most like my grandson… strangely they all have a strong family resemblance.   Gertrudal reminds me of one of my older sisters…. OMG, did I actually write that???

Jennifer has done remarkably well with over 856 sales of these adorable creatures …. and remember that each one of them is one of a kind. Some of the following pictures are of her past creations but hurry and visit her store  as obviously they fly off the shelves!

Cotton monster Art

Cotton Monster Art

Cotton Monster Toy 3

Cotton Monster...Reminds me of an old boyfriend...eek!

Cotton Monster Art

Reminds me of my grade 3 teacher!

Cotton Monster 5

Cotton Monster...everyone should have one!

Now aren’t they fun? I really, really want one!  The problem is however, the pillow fairies are all freaked out and Geek is right proper ticked. He is so jealous that there is going to be something cuter than him  in this house. He’ll just have to suck it up but I will at least include his picture here.  Say something nice about him in the comments, he’ll feel better then. 🙂

Geek Pillow with Video Dreadlocks

Geek Pillow with Video Dreadlocks and Serious ATTITUDE!

Say something!

Owl Pillow

New! Owl Pillow at PillowThrowDecor on Etsy

Owls are all the rage in children’s decor so of course I couldn’t resist making these sweet owl pillows.  While I was thinking about my own grandchildren’s bedrooms, I wondered what  other fun things I could add to their decor. Checking out some of the handmade halls on Etsy I found some absolutely priceless treasures.

Children's Owl Picture

Owl picture by LittleMonkeyDoodles on Etsy

Here’s an absolutely delightful little owl that functions as a bookend

Owl bookend by Aprilfoss on Etsy.com

Owl Bookend by Aprilfoss on Etsy

owl bookshelf for little girls room decor

Owl bookshelf from The Wooden Owl on Etsy

And here are some love-birds sitting in a tree… delightful wall decal!

Owl wall Decal

Owl Wall Decal by Moderndecals on Etsy

Do you have  anymore owl ideas?

Pantone Universe color is life

Pantone Universe - Color is life! Live it!

Did you know there is a color dedicated to your birthday?  Trendsetter, seductive and magnetic are the traits of violet,  today’s birthday color (February 6).

Check out Pantone’s Colorology to discover your color and special insights to your personality. While you’re at it check out the  Pantone Universe, a design-led collection for the home, the workplace and the road… Accessories and apparel you need in designs you want – and in colors you love, by Pantone, the author of the universal color language.

Decorate with pantone color

Pantone's Colorstrology- What's your Birthday Color?

Cheap Quality Pillows

Cheap Pillows Covers at $29

Cheap pillows aren’t necessarily bad pillows, nor are expensive pillows the best pillows. Cheap pillows are usually about inexpensive fabric and I managed to get lucky with being at the right place at the right time at my suppliers.  No matter how  low the price of a fabric is, if it is cheap, crappy material I will NEVER buy it… so relax.

In my drapery business, I have worked with fabrics ranging from $40  to $400 a yard so  cheap fabric is a relative term. Go crazy and spend $100 or even $1000 on new spring pillows because it is a lot cheaper than investing in new drapes, rugs, paint and a designer to put it all together for you. By the way… a designer is worth their weight in gold. Professional opinions can save you a lot of money!

With a collection of mix and match decorative throw pillows, you can add a fresh new atmosphere and a whole new accent color in a room.  Click through to check out some of the combinations I have put together for you. Tell me which ones are your favs!

Colorful spring pillows

Colorful spring pillows

These three look spectacular together (above)! Click on  Blue Geometric Pillow and  Spicy Stripe Pillow and Mod Floral Pillow for more info.

Modern Pillow

Mod Floral Pillow

The above Mod Floral Pillows look bright and cheerful along side the Zebra Print Pillow pictured below.

Zebra print Pillows

Zebra Print Pillows

These Colorful Suzani Pillows (below) are picture perfect together but even more spectacular with the Blue Geometric Pillows.

Richloom suzani print pillow in spring colors

Suzani Print Pillows

Colorful Tribal Pillows (below) pairs beautifully with the pink pillow with dots.

Southeastern Tribal Print Pillow Cover

Southeastern Tribal Print Pillow Cover

These Pink Pillow are so rich and gorgeous!

Dotted Pink Pillow Cover

Dotted Pink Pillow Cover

These three Pink Suzani Pillows are a statement all by themselves… perfect for a teen’s bedroom!

Pink Suzani Pillow Cover

Pink Suzani Pillows

Luxury Floral Cushions

Elegant and Romantic Floral Cushions on Etsy

It looks so luxurious and romantic!

Here’s one of the many silky, iridescent, floral cushions coming out in my spring pillow line.  Every time I walk past this one  I have to reach out, touch it and admire the shimmering woven flowers. You can make it your own handmade treasure here.

This fabric, “Swank “ comes in 4 colorways (green pictured) and can be found in the Private Residence Book. I have lined it, although it has a thick, rich hand and at 62 inches wide it would be ideal for pleated drapery panels and even light use  upholstery with12,000 Double Rubs. My daughter loves it too which surprised me as I expected that this would appeal to the ‘more mature’ homeowner… in appreciation of traditional classics.  Suggested retail is $55 per yard. This pillow cover is sample priced at $49.

Maxwell Fabrics, a “For The Trade” supplier located in Vancouver Canada, is one of the hardest places to tear myself away from.  It is my favorite showroom to visit for my drapery clients and even more so to select fabrics for my new collections of decorative pillows and  throw cushions. Rolls and rolls of dreamy fabrics on my cutting table are calling my name so I better get back at it.

By the way… here is a sneak preview of more throw cushions ready to be photographed!  What do you think?

Make Room for Hot Colors in New Cushions

Bright, Yummy Throw Cushions Coming Up Next

There’s nothing like curling up with a home decorating magazine to check out what colors are hot this spring, drool over unforgettable rooms and search for  fabulous finds, probably a spectacular decorative throw pillow for your kitchen bench or new bedspread 🙂 … and you can’t beat free and online! I love digitally clipping because it is just so much easier to file pictures in my idea files.

Three new  lifestyles magazines you absolutely cannot miss this weekend are Matchbook MagazineRue Magazine and Lonny Magazine.

Free Online Home Decorating magazine

Matchbook Magazine... I really really enjoyed it!

Rue Magazine an free online home decorating magazine

Rue Magazine...spectacular pictures inside1

Free Online home Decorating Magazine

Lonny Magazine... I Love this one too

Its hard to take your laptop in the bathtub for reading unless you set it on the counter and use a remote control. Or, call room service for your morning coffee (dear husband) and hop back into bed with lots of cushions and luxuriate in the online scenery.

One day my pillows are going to be pasted  between all the pages of these magazines.  Martha will probably call for lunch too!

In the meantime… I can’t even begin to measure which one is the best, so read them all and  tell us  which one you like best.

Cheers Christine

Yellow Home Decor

How could you add yellow to your home decor?

A Creative Mint is one of the many inspiring design blogs that I read and Leslie’s post the other day, with this extraordinarily beautiful yellow flower and butterfly, was such an eloquent apology for a long absence from her blog postings.  I asked if I could borrow it because I too have been delinquent and thought I could use her poignant message to slide in under the door and hope that no one noticed me missing.

Everyone’s world spins out of control for different reasons. My whole universe downsized since retiring from a 26 year career in real estate. Some days I’m not sure I’m even on the same planet as everyone else but my GPS tells me I am. So what could possibly turn my world in the wrong direction and clog my creative spirit?

  1. Laptop motherboard melted and took all my passwords with it including the key to this blog.
  2. Sewed too many dark fabrics which dulled the light in my workroom. Made me SAD.
  3. Switched to organic coffee which doesn’t have the same  “on-steroids-turbo-charge”.
  4. Sewing machine needed re-threading and  it its a real bi**h to fix… so I bought a new one. The CD manual got stuck in my old laptop.
  5. Reading too many BHG  ” Big Ideas For Small Spaces” which results in brain poo … its true… your brain shrinks with age.

Yes… its all true. I now realize how distracted I have been lately. The simply beautiful reminder for me in Leslie’s picture (above) is that I’m so lucky to enjoy a rapidly growing clientele while indulging my creativity in my drapery / sewing business.  I often feel like a butterfly directed only by scents and sights of a beautiful garden. That yellow flower is so fitting too. Yellow inspires optimism, enlightenment, and happiness. It promotes energy and sparks creative thoughts.

So having said all of that, I now have a very good reason to visit my favorite showroom at Maxwell Fabrics today to check out yellow fabric for my Spring Collections. 🙂

How about you? How would you add some yellow in your home decor or in your life? Make sure you stop by and read A Creative Mint too!

yellow daisies at Maxwell fabrics

Yellow daisies at Maxwell fabrics

Statement pillow Gimme Coffee

Statement Pillow with Attitude

This statement pillow was a painful inspiration during  an early morning power outage and I blame it all on Bob!

5 am is normally when I wake up and unless I can quietly amuse myself (with a book or magazine) I get up and slip out so I don’t disturb my Dear Husband.  My normal routine is to turn the heat up, open  my laptop and while it is powering up, I put the coffee on.

This morning however, I got caught up in checking my emails, which of course led me  to clicking on the silly foolishness regularly found in @bobborson ‘s blog.  Bob is  a highly accomplished architect  who hits  funny bones with stories like how to shoot a rubber band. This morning’s post, Architects Bingo Card was deliciously funny for at least 5 minutes until I realized the coffee maker wasn’t on yet.

I ground the  coffee,  selected strong, pressed ON, then …flick.  It was terrifying to think about spending  the next two hours  in the dark, with no coffee and no internet.

Plan A. While I prefer Starbucks, I decided Tim Hortons would be better because they have a drive-thru and wouldn’t mind my jammies.  Zoom zoom! I was out the door, into the garage and with my truck in gear I pressed the launch button….nothing happened. It never occurred to me that the  garage door wouldn’t open. I know, I know, I could have pulled some string-or-thing to manually open the door… if only I’d have paid more attention to dear husband.

Plan B.  Under the front seat of my truck I keep a transformer thing which I plug my laptop into for  recharging. The water in the coffee maker splashed out a bit as I bounced down the stairs with it in my arms. With it parked on my lovely leather seats I plugged it in to the transformer and then plugged the transformer  into the cigarette lighter.  Brilliant! When I started the ignition there was a brief flicker of light on the coffee console and then nothing. I tried lifting the coffee maker up high enough so I could read its wattage… more water splashed out. I wasn’t sure if  I could get electrocuted but I knew for certain I would gas myself if I didn’t turn the truck off.

Recycled Burlap Pillow

Recycled Burlap Pillow

Plan C. Surely with two gas fireplaces in the house, one of them could heat the campfire peculator … except that I had never noticed  both operate on electric ignitions. Figuring out how to light them manually wouldn’t be hard… I would just Google it. My Blackberry internet connection at home is poor but reception can be boosted if I stand on top of the motorhome. … except that it is in storage. Thank goodness we kept its 50 foot extension cord  in the garage! With one end plugged into the truck transformer I threaded the 50′ of cord up the stairs and into my office. Yay!!!! the modem powered up!

It seemed like  forever for the power to come and when it did I trampled Dear Husband to get to the coffee maker.  Gimme Coffee NOW was all I could think of all day.

Bob,  I don’t know if I should be hanging you with blame or giving you credit for a new collection of fun, silly pillows

Recycled Burlap Pillow

Burlap coffee pillow to share with friends

Handmade Christmas stocking

Handmade Christmas Stocking or Door Swag

Christmas stockings and pillows are heaped up in every corner of the studio with trims and tassels trailing behind me down the hallway.   Fun Christmas memories keep me working at warp speed getting ready for Christmas shows and seasonal shipments out to my retailers.  It’s seven weeks until Christmas and I’ve always loved the “getting ready”…

Christmas Elf Stockings

Christmas Elf Stockings

Unlike my brothers and sisters, I never learned to be a proper Christmas elf. I was the youngest and always too little to do anything except polish shoes. In European tradition, every December 6th, Saint Nicholas filled our polished shoes with candy.  A lot of pressure for a little kid…a lousy job would have resulted in Black Peter (St. Nick’s helper) filling our shoes with coal.

Handmade Christmas Stocking

Trimmed Christmas Stocking

Growing up, my memories of Christmas preparations started with my sister Kay secretly stitching fabric scraps for Barbie clothes while my eldest sister Em stood guard in the kitchen over sheets of cooling peanut brittle.  My brother  hiked into the  bush with an axe  and scouted out our Christmas tree and cedar boughs for the wreaths that Mom would make.   My eldest brother, hunched over a wobbly table with an old, dented, goose neck lamp and recessitated  clocks, watches and radios he’d collected during the year.  Left over pieces, and there were always a few, joined the other dead and missing mechanical parts in a box under his bed with which he was always creating something new. He was a steampunker way ahead of his time.

At night I listened for sawing and hammering from Dad’s  shop.  I desperately tried peeking through the keyhole hoping to preview doll beds and skateboards drying on the bench.

Ahhh… I can almost smell Mom’s almond, crescent shaped cookies…

Enter this week’s pillow giveaway … What do you remember about getting ready for Christmas?

Recycled Jeans Christmas Stockings

Christmas Stockings for Mommy, Daddy and Baby - Jeans Recycled

Up to 3 entries to have your name in this week’s draw for a decorative throw pillow or a Christmas stocking (up to $40 value) in my Etsy store.  Winner will be by random draw, next Friday evening November 12.  Canada and US shipping included.

1) Tell us in the comments what your best getting ready for Christmas memory is.

2) Tell us in the comments that you subscribe to this blog by email or  “Google Friend”

3) Tell us in the comments that you “Liked”  PillowThrowDecor.com Facebook  Page

Let me be the first to wish you a Happy Holiday Season and  a truly Merry Christmas.

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