Mount Vernon Part One (of Many)

This home in Washington County is so special.  The homeowners and I (and their architect and builder and many wonderful craftsmen) have been working for some time to see this beauty finally emerge and boy is it emerging to be everything we hoped!

Every site visit I am so excited to see it come to life and near completion!

 

Is there anything better than the smell of sawdust and fresh paint and the sound of saws and hammers!  Not to me!  

These colors are soft but fresh and feel so organic and fitting to their landscape, especially with the wildflowers still blooming just outside!

Most of the house is painted BM Pale Oak, SW Eider White with dark accents of SW Dorian Gray and SW Classic French Gray.  And SW Peppercorn in one very special room!  We may be discussing a drinking game with the aim of naming these colors!  The top color is custom just for the lady of the house!

I like to think Mr A. Hayes Town himself would approve of this color palette, I am so pleased with how they play of one another and the natural light. Not all my doing, the homeowners did a lot of samples and comparing colors, total team effort to get to this point.  Houses like this don’t just happen! I couldn’t help but think of this famous image of him today when I saw this Duxbury and Classic French Gray paint on the walls!

More to come including some wonderful exterior photos and brick flooring and grasscloth.  Also I am hoping the homeowners will let me share some of the tips and tricks they learned in researching some historic Natchez, Mississippi, paint colors!  They did their homework. It’s been such a joy to be a part..amazing team of architectural design, builder, craftsmen and more.  Including Fischer Tile of Brenham Texas and JM Floors. I can’t wait to see the lighting via True Blue Home installed and marble via BRENHAM AREA MARBLE in place.

#mountvernon #hollymathisinteriors #buildinghousesbuildinghomes

Round Top 2019


Round Top is in full swing..this is an oldie but goodie with precious Rachel and Clover of NewStory Media..so much to do, so much to share.  Check here and here for show times and lot of info.  I know it can be overwhelming but just hit the road, pack a hat and extra jacket, grab some water and boots and just head out and see what you can find!  You can tell how long ago this was by the bubble necklace lol!

 

Round Top Pop Up- Front Porch Friends

Looking forward to “popping up” this Friday and Saturday (march 20 & 30) in Henkel Square with good friends Jamie Sawicki Art and Suzanne Jones of Holland and Birch Jewelry.  Suzanne is coming in all of the way from Birmingham tomorrow…so excited! Jamie is bringing art both large and small from Houston.  Friday evening the annual The Gathering event will be going on in the square as well!

I will have a few design “leftovers” to share and some fresh pillows arriving just this week…  but mainly I will just be hosting these two sweet ladies on this lovely front porch right next to Pie Haven in Round Top’s historic Henkel Square.

Sharing some images of some of their pieces..I love their work but love hanging out with them even more!

Come and join us..we will be there late on Friday night after The Gathering event!

Love this photo from the first Gathering at Round Top event in 2015 hard to believe its been FOUR YEARS!

 

2019 travel dreams + Provence ed.

I love this sacred time between Christmas Day and New Years/back to school time.  Sure I work a little here and there but I really try to keep plenty of time for reading, kid/dog snuggles, naps and reflection.  I am trying to be gentle and realistic about goals while making room for dreams.Top of the list is the elusive “work smarter not harder” idea and aspirations of trading traffic and hustle for travel that is ‘less freeway’ and more joy and inspiration!  Yep, visualizing/vision boarding/being intentional #allthethings of spending less dinero on Amazon and saving for trips like below.  I think we are all more and more about experiences and less about stuff! Am I right?? I have to remember this while in Sephora and Target in 2019!

Today is so wet and gloomy in Texas as you can see in my photo above, what better time to dream of Provence and Marrakesh??!!YEP, I am a mother and small business owner but I WANT TO TRAVEL!  

I’ve been talking to my friend Mary Baskin recently about her Vagabond trips abroad.  And they are so special and unique. Sure there is shopping, but its good insider, local type shopping with stories about families that have been making ribbons for generations and true craftsmanship with soul! This is not your average tour.  It looks so amazing Mary! She is a seasoned pro y’all!

All of these beautiful photos were take by our mutual friend Ragan Cain. Ragan is the epitome of the modern day Southern belle! Smart and kind all while globe trotting and adventure seeking! Lovely both inside out out! You can follow Ragan on Instagram.  She ENJOYS + loves both beauty and life and details and people!  Seeing Ragan’s shutterfly albums has been such a treat.  So fun seeing the perspective of things she admires and takes pictures of along her journeys… Ragan, you make this homebody want to put on a scarf and GO! You should publish a coffee table book of your adventures!

 Mary and all of her contacts abroad that help her coordinate these adventures keep the groups small and the experiences non-touristy and slow paced so you can SAVOR the food and culture and beauty! SO many photos of Ragan and her friends laughing in her album and her savoring good drinks, and food, even lounging in a hammock.  Not how I remember some of my early European adventures; I am ready for a redo!

They see some of the best the landmarks and sites but also the rare and unexpected. And at a relaxing, fun pace.

Many of you know I have worked hard to dial back my “work travel” even working less in nearby Houston and def dialing both out of state work (except Maine, well and one in Lafayette ha, I am trying y’all).  God has truly answered prayer in 2019 bringing me MORE local work here at home in the Brenham/Round Top, TX area.  But its like once I gave up pushing to drive to work in the big city and accepting every project offer in other states, an opportunity has come up to travel abroad in the summer of 2019!  or even 2020!  

 I am still not sure if this 2019 trip with Mary Baskin and Vagabond will work out for ME but maybe it will for YOU and it is on my DREAMIN’ list. Who wants to dream and think about going with me?? What is on your dream list?? Where would you like to go and do?? Cooking time in a real French country kitchen? flea markets? high fashion back door tours?? Learning more about antiques or local culture?  I love that they don’t just do flea markets or shop. 

       This trip is as life should be, a mix of all things wonderful!

See more about Mary’s Vagabond International trips here including dates and more photos and info.  

And watch for a Part II on this post, I just couldn’t fit a sampling of  Ragan’s Marrakesh Vagabond tour 2018 photos in this post and I WANT YOU TO SEE!  Thank you again Ragan for sharing a bit of these amazing places through your eyes!  What joy!

And if you are wondering if this is the same Mary Baskin that I instagrammed about recently the answer is YES!  She is a Texan just like me and she has a charming place called The English Merchant’s Inn in Waxahachie, Texas, a small town near Dallas!  Mary is having a great social media class coming up soon in February and she has mentioned doing some US City tours as well.  I am watching her closely, I have long admired Mary and I am excited about hanging out and traveling with her more.  TEACH ME MARY!

 

Merry Christmas from our home to yours

These guys are my home, no matter where we live, or how cute or not cute the house may be… So glad our lives still come to a halt each year to focus on what really matters, take a deep breath and refocus.  So grateful for our faith and traditions to ground us in this crazy world.

Most grateful for the birth of our Savior and the hope and love His birth brought into our world! Without Him nothing we do or have is possible.

#MerryChristmas2018

        Rejoice in not just good times but tough times too for they produce perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out His love into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, whom He has given us.…and the Holy Spirit comforts us in our time of need. –Romans 4:5 (hmi translation)

photos by James Pharaon Creative

Garage Expansion + air hockey + shopping

I am working on a paint post and instagrams for online and local shopping faves but had to jump in here and share some cute photos and faves for kind of unchartered territory for me…garages! Or also known as “what I am obsessed with today”.. So in this effort to make my trek to the washer and dryer less scary, I found these inspiring images…Won’t be taking the door down and doing carriage doors for a while but maybe one day!  And look below, you can leave the door in place and still be chic!

Source

It won’t have a live edge table or workspace for me unlike this gorgeous space.  But there may be a punching bag coming and an air hockey table in my boys future and a funky chair or two.  I keep envisioning the 70s show basement but with you know, white walls and better pillows.  We will see.

The truth is, we haven’t had an attached and closed-in garage, well ever.  Our last house had a great garage, brick and awesome but it was across the driveway and rarely used by anyone other than Nana and her organization and storage.  The 1940s  home we lived in for years and years had a charming little garage but it was open somewhat on one side, a bit like a carport, it was strange but cool. But not lending itself to a room type use.  Until our latest move this past spring.  

I found some great inspiration here via Simple Home Simple Life’s article on, yep, CONVERTING A GARAGE space!

The one below is a great example of still storing tools and not insulating and keeping floors non painted and bare (some people actually put wood down or laminate..not me) And this color is everything, makes me wish I had gone dark, except the outside of our house is very dark. Love the big plants too!

Lots of inspiration which I have needed..hard to believe we have lived here since March. So this latest house we have moved into is mid century (1950 exactly I believe) and it has a classic NARROW one car garage right off of the kitchen.  And y’all, it’s barely big enough for my SUV, its not a big car.  At all.  If I put NOTHING ELSE IN THE GARAGE my car would fit but then where would all of the amazon boxes and other projects go??? And how would I trek huge baskets of laundry to the fancy washer and dryer area of the “room.” We do have a decent shed out back for overflow storage.  But this attached  garage space is also our LAUNDRY ROOM, yep the washer and dryer are in there..and its been a little scary and dark.  When we first moved in, not even finished out…some yucky sheetrock but not insulated or complete.  What it does have are two cute, original windows.  So today I had it painted white after Mr Handyman put some outdoor siding on the walls (cheaper than shiplap, sturdier than sheetrock).  It looks a little stark right now but with a few dark accents I think it will cozy up.  And I am determined to not try to make it too nice know what I mean.  I will share photos soon for now brainstorming with all of these inspiring images!

Trying to be realistic however, despite amazing articles and image like this below! But I am learning you can be inspired and implement in small doses!  It’s all smoke and mirrors after all. or at least a good filter maybe . . .  We probably won’t do the reclaimed gym floors or sky lights but yes a punching bag maybe (I have heard 14 year old boys need and love these), etc..

This below is lovely but these floors are probably not sustainable for just anyone’s life right? Unless you use some major marine epoxy or something..maybe worth researching if interested but I will be going with porch paint gray!

Lia Chavez home in NY Times

So here at home, the boys each have a room and we have a large living space but Drew’s room is small (he chose it of the two because it has a little en suite bath)..but when he has a friend over I feel like they are really crowded.  Hunter could also use some space to hang out other than my sofa or bed; SO I think this will be a great place for a boy space Does anyone have any thoughts on boys and air hockey tables????  They are easy to find on Craigslist which kind of scares me that must mean people regret them…but it will be in the garage after all;  Maybe they will enjoy a while then I can pass on to the next parent.

This shot above and below make me feel like I don’t have to take down the door and track asap..hey it looks industrial right?!;  More cute ones on LOVE HOME DESIGNS a new website to me and notice the floors look like polished concrete…I am planning on painting mine with porch paint but I am noticing many leave them bare just add a rug.

Dear Hancock is one of the fave transformations I found…probably because their before photo looks so much like mine did! Minus the open ceiling, darn!

You can read more about their project  on DesignSponge.  They are such a cute company I had not even heard of, bless the internet.  Now I will say their ceiling is ambitious and I am not sure where any insulation may be but it is purty purty!

See, bare concrete floors don’t you think?? But with an amazing rug.  I will probably be using a natural rug the dog might have gotten sick on before, hey I tried to clean it.  ALSO, I love their black stove idea shown below…again the pipe and actual wood-burning may be a little ambitious for me but I saw one of these little cheesy-fish stove heaters at my local ACE and I am sure Amazon has more;

Like this, maybe I could fake a black pipe..it needs a pipe to work!  And that is not an affiliate link!

 

These cuties below are darling and what I would have gravitated to before becoming the proud mama or big strapping rowdy boys (and a dog) but they are not exactly boy friendly, just sooo cute! and the ivy totally inspires me along with the potted tree.

This one is so California..love it!

Source

and I have to end with this one from the Boston Globe photo by Eric Roth, I mean y’all I thought these were Schumacher drapes at first blush, in the GARAGE, but on second look I think they are just very similar to Chenonceau, what do you think??  and those are fancy carriage doors;

What do you think?  Air hockey or foosball, no room for ping pong I don’t think?  How do you use your garage space? Who is going to say white in a garage is crazy first???  Come on y’all!  Gift ideas on the Instagram coming soon, along with paint and so much more,  so follow for my favorite book, online and LOCAL #downtownbrenham and True Blue Home picks!

and I promise to follow up with my garage progress, next year!  Before I move again maybe!  No seriously this will be a SLOW FLIP and praying we will be home here settled for a good while! #homeiswheremypeopleare

Downtown Brenham holiday

Come visit!

S. Baylor and Main Streets ON THE SQUARE in Brenham, Texas!

 

 

   

 

Coming soon~Downtown Brenham

 

Coming soon to Downtown Brenham @ 101 South Baylor Street….

A collaboration with Willmark Custom Homes and Holly Mathis Interiors.

  Stay tuned for details!~

Modern Farmhouse Feature

Thank you Modern Farmhouse magazine for this recent feature of my Texas cottage. 

This home was featured last year in Country Living but Modern Farmhouse, a new magazine from the editors of COUNTRY HOME, revisited it with a new twist.  Thank you to Buff Strickland for the amazing photos and Becki Griffin for styling as usual.  And to the homeowners AA & Tina Hodde for all they have done for my family and the restoration of this property. 

I feel more and more at home in our new hometown and I am so grateful for God’s hand and His people on this journey! 

I love the article title I must admit and I love how they worked in my love for draperies and how i push them on my client ha! and how i do exactly what my mother tells me!

The last line of the article is pure gold..Happy Mother’s Day nana..you are always right..well almost always;;;

Thank you Aubrey and Mitchell Davis for helping with the lovely door and Robinson Landcare for help with the yard..y’all are the best!  Window blinds are by selectblinds.com   

Bodhi (like a grass) in the top down bottom up style shade (privacy lined is private enough unless you want black out) is one of my faves, the exact color in this article in on backorder but very similar is the Tortiouse coral!

And Hunter Buns..you are a star!

‘Holiday at Home’ class photos + 2018 movies!

So in early November this very special class finally happened and it was beyond what I even imagined.  By working with Downtown Brenham and their wonderful people and historic facilities, the amazing talent of Mr. Keith Taylor and local legend and classic “go to” for furnishings and accessories, Hermann Furniture, we were able to create something truly special! Big thanks for Natalie Lacey Lange for capturing the day!

Prep began days and weeks before gathering ribbon and florals, real and artificial from near and far…literally!  Faux fruit below on left, one of my fave things we used in the event is from Hermann’s Furniture just steps from where the class was held in Barnhill Center, ribbon from Michaels of all places, and fresh magnolia straight from Arkansas!


The goal of the event was to talk about and be inspired by the movie we watched the night before, Nancy Meyer’s The Holiday, and delve into the ideas of what makes the holidays truly special for our families and gatherings….and how to achieve that feel and beauty while maintaining sanity! Jude Law on the big screen, the English countryside covered in snow with its hygge coziness, and the beauty of the historic Simon Theatre on a Friday night, all prepped us for even more beauty and fun all day on Saturday!  And I loved seeing our attendees visit and enjoy one another, we had people from New York, Louisiana, all over Texas and of course, Arkansas!

I also knew the with the tough events of 2017 I wanted to focus on more than just “stuff” and ribbons but the heart of why we decorate at the Holidays..the meaning of it all and a new word we had fun pronouncing crazy ways…. HYGGE!

Everyone received a copy of the cute little Hygee book and we learned a bit about what the Danish have known for years regarding candles, comfy socks and blankets, warm drinks and soups and soaking up time with the ones you love!  Some might say we Southerners just call it hospitality and maybe so but there seems to be another layer and depth to this word I wanted to incorporate and explore on this day before going into the holidays!

The class portion of the weekend was held in the ballroom above the Simon Theatre, which is all part of Brenham’s historic Barnhill Center.  The vision, fundraising and hard work that went into restoring this large building is such a testimony of local love/community and preservation, all things I care about so deeply so it was an honor to coordinate and do an event in this space! It truly is a jewel in our little town and place of many weddings and special events.  They have these wonderful chairs on site for events so all I had to do was add some buffalo check and blue and white!


The ballroom looked so pretty! Blue and white, twinkle lights, fresh magnolia,jewel tones and the best pimento cheese and pie from Royers Cafe.  A good combo for a good day indeed!


So many people worked together to make the event shine,  especially this handsome fella who harvested beautiful magnolia from NW Arkansas and drove it all the way to Texas for us to gush over and admire.  Keith Taylor you are an amazing talent, force and good person!  You make me laugh so hard, you call me on my BS, self doubt, you make me think and dig deep and you talk just like I do.  We were meant to be buddies and collaborate! But y’all this is a lot of work and a lot of miles and he came to our little town just for this event! And he is a hard working machine! I mean who does that..who drives that far to help a friend with a class???! So grateful!

{Oh and those fantastic pine cone stems behind our heads in the photo above, straight from Hermann’s and artificial…one of my fave memories of the weekend is watching Keith stride across Alamo street to and fro Hermann’s with goodies for the class…he and Jennifer def hit it off!}

While we like to think all things are bigger and better in Texas, the fresh magnolia that Keith “imported” to Texas was truly some fine and lush magnolia. It was so pretty many of us thought it was artificial.  It is simply a different species and climate than we have down here and it was joy to see him create with such lovely natural materials.  He also shared his wiring and construction secrets, ribbon philosophies and other tricks and tips including freedom to NOT be afraid of the ribbon aisle at the Hobby Lobby.  

And of course he is so fun to listen to and learn from and he truly gets the core heart behind creating beauty and home.  Keith showed us step by step how he takes a basic, inexpensive faux garland or wreath and then uses that as a base to add fresh magnolia!  He also showed us how to use magnolia leaves for simple arrangements in different vessels and talked about his experience doing “magnolia magic” for Southern Living magazine in freezing temps!

And he says the wedding aisle is the place to go for the best ribbon NOT the holiday ribbon section.  The wedding supply area is where he found much of the ribbon we worked with including this navy ribbon above the red cording and navy and white ribbon shown below and on the ginger jar in top photo.  

Keith showing us how to pinch and wire the ribbon and snip…we talked about shoestring bows and 1-2 loop bows and no bows, just flowy ribbon wired to the tree at different points. I think many of us felt like he gave us some “ribbon freedom” with how to use and decorate with ribbon and leave behind the “Texas huge bow” legacy many of us feel bound to at the holidays.  I mean big bows are fine, but he def showed us more and some fresh ideas that we all savored.  At one point he was talking and there were women on the floor sitting cross legged to get closer and see and others videoing with their phones.  We know magic when we see it!!

I’ve spent a fortune on Midori and other ribbons and not seen them shine with the “visual movement” like Keith made these ribbons dance. Note how the ribbon below on the trees is just wired onto the tree, no actual bow or just a loop or two here and there mainly just flowing, but anchored ribbon.  That is how I need to begin 2018, flowing but anchoredl

The indigo looking ribbon in the middle photo is from Michaels!  It looks so John Robshaw to me!


Yes indeed, the beautiful ballroom in the Barnhill Center above the historic Simon Theatre was the perfect setting for this day. Such beautiful light in this huge space!

Kristen Leigh Calligraphy did the envelopes and placecards on papers from Hermann’s and they turned out so pretty!

The tables were decorated with blue and white plates, brass chargers, unique brass flatware; and a mix of pressed glass stemware and glasses both vintage and new, some from World Market!  And of course buffalo check!

Lemon cypress trees (from Lowe’s!) and artificial cloved oranges from Hermann’s showed a mix of real and artificial decorations as well as high and low.  The “class” tables were decorated with high and low mix of blue and white jars from Hermann’s, antiques shops and my collection, even Amazon and TJ Maxx!  It was truly a mish mash of favorite things for the holidays: buffalo check, pops of red with blue and white and fruit, jewel tones and fresh and faux greenery alike.

We also had several vignettes in the room including these chinoiserie wing chairs from Hermann Furniture, they have so much bamboo look pieces right now which I love! I pulled in the vintage rug for a pop of red and hygge warmth, and Keith’s magnolia and perfect bow on the Kraft package along with pillows completed this area!  Keith, Jennifer Hermann and I agree, Kraft wrapping paper rules! 

You can see below how we had the east side of the room set up for class space and the west side for our lunch…it was so nice to have so much space to enjoy!  Good light, tons of windows, wood floors and chandeliers…just a dream setting for an event like this!

After lunch Jennifer Hermann spoke to us more about ‘trends and traditions’ and some of her favorite things from Market this year, she also shared about mixing paper products with real china for the holidays. Hermanns has some of the cutest paper goods, wood cutlery and napkins both cloth and paper. She also talked about doing extra holiday seating on the back porch or patio, something we can easily do in our climate!  Love that and she brought my favorite green picnic table they stock to show that idea! After the close of the class we all walked over to the store and saw just how much they have in stock and the variety!  I really love that were able to use faux pine cone stems and trees from Jennifer and mix with the real magnolia from Keith to show that there really are no rules when it comes to real versus artificial and mixing it all together.  I enjoyed working with them both so much! I have been a fan of Hermann’s for years so it was a joy to collaborate!

I could go on and on about this event, it truly was a combo of my favorite things: a good Nancy Meyer film, a historic venue, small town charm, talking about the heart of the home and holidays, fun people, talented friends and business owners, all mixed in with blue and white ginger jars, yummy pimento cheese, pie and ribbon!  Thank you Downtown Brenham for working with me to host this event along with Keith Taylor and Hermann Furniture.  I think we all had a great time!

And they have some really great movies and fun planned in 2018 at the Barnhill Center’s ballroom and Simon Theatre, including an upcoming wedding show, and some awesome movies perfect for girls night out or a good date night.  Seeing a favorite film in this restored theatre really is special and was one of my favorite parts of the entire weekend!  

Check here for dates and show times.


And later in the spring look what is coming up at the Simon Theatre…oh yes..PATRICK SWAYZE! He is even better than Jude Law AND blue and white ginger jars combined!




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