Sunday, September 18, 2016

New Drapery in the Living Room

Can this weather be any more gorgeous, considering we are well into September? I am not the only one trying to cling onto the last days of summer. With regular watering, the heatwaves have actually been good to all the plants around the house. 

The same DIY Petunia Lantana Million Bell flower basket from August is still unstoppable. 

Inside the house, I've been on the hunt for a console table for our kitchen dinning room. I had a minimalist glass and metal number in mind, like this. However, I really didn't want to fork out that much for a piece of accent furniture that I wasn't sure 1) if it was going to look good in that nook; 2) if I actually needed it there. And then I came across a lookalike, the Ikea Vittsjo laptop table for $40. Though the fixed shelf annoyed the heck out of me, the size of the table is perfect and it gives me an idea of what the real deal would look like, and it costs close to nothing. 

Picture below: the Ikea Vittsjo laptop table as a console table in my kitchen dining room. These vintage blush pink Luminarc stemware are my Kryptonite. 

The shot below captured a few of my favourite things in my house: the vintage Dedalo Murano Spiral Torciglione glass chandelier, the antique shield-back dining chairs, and Egon Schiele's self portrait poster which was given to me by the generous Prague National Gallery at the Fair Trade Palace. 

Now on to the new drapery in my living room. It was on my 2016 project list to replace these blue drapes. I still love them except that as a dominant color, blue makes it so much harder to layer in other colour accents than white or different shades of blue and grey. I fantasized having a moody floral fabric like Schumacher's Pyne Hollyhock but eventually decided to go with a more neutral and versatile option.  

So here they are, my new living room drapery made of pure Dupioni silk in a creamy white shade. I had them custom made by a local seamstress. They are double width (104") and pinch pleated. You can find similar ones (without pinch pleats) at Pottery Barn

I freaked out a little as they were being installed yesterday. It was a cloudy day so the drapery appeared in a much darker shade. My eyes were used to those blue ones so the different shades of white in a room would take some getting used to. I was also concerned these new drapes would take the room from "blue" to "blah". And then when I woke up this morning to the glorious sunshine filtering through the new silk drapes which cast a soft glow on the entire room, all my worries and doubt went away. 


This is what I wanted, a neutral palette for me to switch in different colour accents at will. Now I just need my coffee table to complete the transformation of this room. 


Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Summer Sale

We are only a few days away from September...where did the summer go? This cooler air really sent into the fall decor mood. And that means, it's time for summer sale here at AM Dolce Vita! All the items here are in mint, like new or brand new condition. You can either direct message me or order some of them from my Etsy shop. 

Category A: Pillows

Pillow #1: Schumacher Hothouse Linen in Mineral Grey on both sides, 17 x 17 inches, $80. SOLD! 

Pillow #2Schumacher Hothouse Linen in Mineral Grey on both sides, 17 x 17 inches, $80.

Pillow #3Schumacher Hothouse Linen in Mineral Grey on both sides, 17 x 17 inches, $80. SOLD! 

Pillow #4: this gorgeous charcoal and yellow floral pillow in duck cotton is perfect for updating your fall accessories, 18 x 18 inches, $28. 



Pillow #5: pair of Hollywood Regency style Black Pearl Silk Velour Angled Patchwork Pillows, 18 x 18 inches, $90. 


Pillow #6: Braemore Emperors Garden Blossom Chinoiserie pillow, 19x19 inches, $25. 

Category B: Decor Accessories

Item #1: Blue White Fine Porcelain Vase Chinoiserie, a nice collectible piece, 13in height  x 6.25 diameter (widest part), $80.



Item #2: Celadon Crackled Gourd Porcelain Vase, Height: 12.25", Lower gourd diameter: 7.5", Upper gourd diameter: 5.25". Appraised at $1000-1200. For sale at $160. This vase weighs a handsome 8.5 pounds, so it might be challenging to ship. Local pickup is preferred. 



 Item #3: Nate Berkus for Target Gold Brass Bird Decorate Bowl, this item has been discontinued. 6.5inch in diameter. $20. 


Those are all for now. Hope you like what you are seeing. 




Sunday, August 21, 2016

ELTE and H&M Home

August has been good to me. I managed to check off the rest of my list for the living room, big accomplishment for someone who suffers from chronic procrastination and OCD. 

It's been a while since I hit up ELTE. This shop just gets me. Everything in it speaks to me, so much so that I had to take home the very first thing I laid my eyes on, this handsome Vista Alegre Carrara Marble bowl. 

Picture below: are these Dahlias the prettiest?



If money was no object and I had a giant house, I would be taking all these home. So dreamy! 

Oh and this pair of Scandinavian take on Windsor chairs in a brass frame and lamb wools. I NEED them in my bedroom, stat. 

It was really hard to stay focused on what I was there for, a coffee table. So here are the options: a round two-tiered one, a tad too small for my living room. 

A nesting gold number but I wasn't too keen on the legs. 

A marble top and brass frame stunner. 

A two-tiered rectangular which came very close to what I had in mind, except for the silver finish. 

And then this, the Boulevard coffee table in a lucite frame with brass corners! I took a pass on this one a few times because 1) I thought I wanted a square one; 2) it's the same size as my current coffee table i.e. too small. But then it dawned on me that I didn't need a square one because I was never going to make the styling in my living room symmetrical. I could easily have two seating areas which would make the layout more intimate. 

So after months of poring over stores and websites, I finally decided this was the coffee table. I can't wait for it to arrive in September. 


Now on to H&M Home. If you are looking for inexpensive and very of-the-moment decor accessories, this is definitely the store for you. 

How fun is this leopard-print collection? 

I took home this black and white checkered pillow. It totally works in my foyer. The exposed brass zipper is just so trendy. 



I hope to be back to post about the new coffee table and drapery soon. 


Friday, August 12, 2016

Our Nordic Trip: Stockholm in 12 Hours

Yes you read it right. 12 hours was all we had to spend in Stockholm, which was one of the ports of call during our Nordic cruise. 12 hours was also surprisingly ample'ish for us to see almost all the things we wanted to see. 

No words can describe the beauty of this city. So much so that I immediately wanted to go back for a longer stay. Stortorget (Swedish: The Big Square) in Gamla Stan (old town) was our first stop after we were let off the ship. 

Picture below: Stockholm Norrbro Bridge overlooking Rosenbad. We walked by the palace area enroute to the old town. 

One can't say they've visited Stockholm without an obligatory shot of this landmark. I figured out a perfect vantage point to take panoramic pictures of the building - go to Google Maps and follow this coordinate 59.326011, 18.061498 on Norra Riddarholmshamnen 5. You can thank me later. 

Picture below: The iconic colourful buildings in Stortorget. The most ornate one is the facade of the red Schantzka Huset (the one with stepped gable), built in 1650 and decorated with a porch with figures of Roman soldiers.

Picture below: quiet streets leading to Stortorget.

Don't you just love such a creative landscaping design? 

A Romanism-styled building at the corner of Storkyrkobrinken and Högvaktsterrassen, I wanted to guess this used to an opera house? 


From Storkyrkan, we took a scenic walk across Norrbro to NK Stockholm. Nordiska Kompaniet is similar to Hudson's Bay in Canada or Nordstrom in the US. 

Picture below: Nordiska Kompaniet.

The entire department store has an art deco vibe. I was immediately drawn to the home section. 

Strangely enough, I was also very attracted to their grocery store. Talking about one-stop shop right? 

We had a quick lunch at Nordiska Kantinen on the 4th floor. The food was fresh, healthy and delicious, perfect for people on the go. Hot beverage and salad bar were complimentary. 


We stumbled upon King's Garden (Kungsträdgården) on the way which was a pleasant surprise. The blooming field of blue Catmints and giant globe Alliums was mesmerizing. 

Not sure what happened here - either this granite bunny sculpture was pushed over or it was simply a Swedish humour? 

Our next stop took us to Skeppsholmen, and boy, was I happy we ended up spending the majority of the afternoon there. That wasn't the plan as we intended to get to Djurgarden earlier. If waterfront views are your kind of scenes, you'd definitely want to spend some time on Skeppsholmen to take in the unlimited harbour breezes and savour the serenity. 

Picture below: Vasa Museum.

We took a long and slow walk down the Östra Brobänken along the water. That's where you can spot all sorts of ships and boats. 




Djurgårdsbron (bridge connecting Djurgarden and Ostermalm) lends the best perspectives for photoshooting the mainland. 

Stockholm was by far my favourite stop during our Nordic trip. Everything there looked so good including the Nordic sky. The only downside to watch out for is the traffic in and out of Gamla Stan which seemed to be impossible - it felt like rush hour anytime of the day. So budget extra time if you are driving or taking any public transportation. 

Picture below: traffic was so congested in the palace district that mounted police had to manually divert vehicles. 

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