CATHARTIC ART: True Feelings without Words

I absolutely adore spending a rainy afternoon in a local art gallery. I become swept into the emotions of each painting, each sculpture. I always end up leaving feeling refreshed and cathartic. 

Here are my top nine favorite works of cathartic art :

1. Banksy's Flower Girl. If you haven't watched "Exit Through the Giftshop," I have plans for you! This painter is incredibly mysterious.

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2. Gwen Murphy, Shoe Fetish.  My sister and I have always said that everyone is like a different shoe. I believe her to be very "Ked-like," while she maintains that I am a wedged sandal. These sculptures speak to that. 


3. John Singer Sargeant. Mr And Mrs Isaac Newton Phelps Stokes, 1897.  I like that this painting was forseeing women's liberty so early on. The facial expressions of the subjects are just so true.


4. Jacques-Louis David - The Death of Marat. One of the most famous of powerful paintings, this image captures the true sorrow involved in losing a loved one.


5. Sad by Antonio Mora Diez. There is no real way to describe how this image makes me feel. However, on too many levels, I can relate.


6. Andrew Wyeth, Christina's World. I could spend hours just engulfed in the beauty of his work. There is something so beautifully haunting about this painting.


7. Symbiosis by Marta Orlowska. It is so profoundly true- we work symbiotically with the creatures in our lives. We provide them with love and care while they bring us a level of joy and comfort we would not otherwise recognize.


8. Kevin Sloan, Consequences of Hypnosis. The realism combined with playfulness and whimsy really captures me. His work is incredible. I have spent hours indulging in his art.


9. Francois Schuitten, Comic Art. My heart sunk when I saw this. I wanted to scream, "Don't do it!" while helplessly waiting for what is next. This image shows the true characteristics of cats and dogs- the feline sits unphased while the dog panics.



The most influential contributors to your kitchen’s overall design are the cabinets. If your cabinets are old, dated, or just plain ugly, I have an easy solution for you!


Image Source: Curbly, Online

Many people are apprehensive about taking on cabinet painting DIYs, but we are here to tell you that there is nothing to be intimidated by. Once you follow these simple steps, you will be amazed at how so little work could make such a big difference.

DIY Friday: The Simple Way to Repaint Your Kitchen Cabinets

1. Empty and Remove Doors from All Cabinets. Once you have set up a “painting station” in your garage, back yard, etc., you are ready to lay the doors flat, and begin. It is important to have them flat to avoid drip marks.


Image Source: Handyman Club Online

2. Stay Organized. Put all knobs and other hardware in baggies and label them according to where they go in your kitchen. On the back side of your cabinets, label their location as well, in pencil. This will save you a lot of time when re-assembling, and it will keep them aligned perfectly.


Image Source: Wikihow, Online

3. Clean Your Cabinets. Take a spray bottle with some mild soap and warm water and wipe the surfaces to be painted. Removing dust and other residue will allow the paint to adhere better.


4. Sand Surfaces. If your cabinets are already painted or finished, it is important to sand them down to the wood so that you have a fresh surface to work with. It is important to sand because this can make or break the life of the new paint; you want it to last, right? There are many different types of sandpaper out there, so be sure to choose one that is right for your surface. Click here for a sandpaper guide.


5. Primer. Choose a primer that is made for the material you plan on painting. There are many different selections at your local home improvement store. Color is key, as well. If you are planning on painting your cabinets a darker color, you will want to prime them with dark primer. If you are planning on painting them a light color, white or light gray primer will work best. Now, take your brush and using long strokes, cover the cabinets with the primer. Remember that primer is only an adhesive, so it is okay if it doesn’t fully cover the surface, it may almost look transparent. Once you have applied the primer, let it dry.



Image Source: DIY Network, Online

6. Paint. Latex paints are recommended for kitchen cabinets. They are easiest to clean, and the color doesn’t fade over time. We would recommend an angled brush as well as a cabinet roller brush for painting. When painting the doors, it helps to elevate them from the surface you are working on, so you can get to the edges easier. When painting the cabinetry in your kitchen, be sure to tape off any surface you don’t want paint to get on. It is important to avoid dripping. Allow for all surface to dry completely before re-assembling. *Remember that it is not always necessary to paint the inside of your cabinets. 


7. Re-assemble, and Enjoy! You will be amazed that you were able to complete this task in such a short amount of time, and make such a difference to your space. It isn’t always necessary to completely reface your kitchen cabinets, especially if your pre-existing ones are still in decent shape. Click the video below for a more visual tutorial.



We are all a little star-struck, fascinated by the jet-setting, luxurious lifestyles of the rich and famous. We can only imagine what it would be like to spend a day with our favorite musician and truly get to see their real personality off-stage. Some of us may have this opportunity at some point in our lives, but unfortunately most of us will not. But, here is a little peek into their pasts.

5 Celebrity Musicians: The Homes They Grew Up In 

1. Madonna. Currently she travels between her gorgeous homes in New York and London, but Madonna grew up in a modest, middle class home in Rochester Michigan. It was here that she was raised with her seven siblings, an all-American upbringing in a small town outside of Detroit. This four bedroom, two bath home is complete with a library and garage, and on 1.3 acres.You don’t  suppose that since we are living in a material world, is why Madonna had other plans for herself?


Image Source: Zillow Blog, Online

2. Elvis. The King of Rock and Roll spent the early years of his childhood in the small town of Tupelo, Mississippi in this small home, built by his father in 1935, with $180.00 that he had borrowed from his employer. It was a two bedroom flat, lit with just a single light in each room. The city of Tupelo purchased this home in 1957, and it is currently a museum that has been fully restored with period furniture. If you’re ever in the area, check it out!


 Image Source: Delsjourney, Online.

3. Michael Jackson. It is hard to believe that such a large family lived in such a small house. This little home in Gary, Indiana, was home to the Jackson children for most of their early childhood. Michael, born in 1959, was one of five children (hence the “Jackson Five”), and had a modest upbringing prior to fame. The town of Gary is an old mill town; quiet, with a small population. It is speculated that the Jackson children were raised by a “stage father,” who demanded they get their “Jackson Five” act perfected under any consequence.


Image Source: Flikr, Online. 

4. Johnny Cash. This small home in Dyess, Arkansas, is where Johnny and his siblings would reminisce about a happy childhood. His brother, Tommy recalled to a local radio station, “Mama was a great housekeeper, and she made it very homey for us.” Johnny was only three when they moved to this house that was situated on 20 acres of farmland. His family was relocated to the town of Dyess as a new start in an “Agricultural Resettlement Colony.” It is here that Johnny speaks about, in his songs about the Arkansas plains.


Image Source: WBUR Radio, Online.

5. Jimi Hendrix. The house that Jimi grew up in was on a neighborhood corner in the Seattle suburb of Renton, Washington. His father secured the home in 1950 with a $10.00 deposit, and it is where Jimi found his passion for music. He grew up there with his large family, who still to this day have fond memories of their childhood there.  Unfortunately in 2009, the home was demolished by investors based on complaints by neighbors that it was an “eyesore and had to be removed” from their neighborhood.


Image Source: The Guardian, Online


When we go out to eat, we usually anticipate being comfortably seated in a warmly designed space filled with booths, chairs, and tables, while being served a meal we wouldn’t otherwise have the time or patience to cook for ourselves at home. It is not very often that going out to eat is a deeply memorable experience, but we can guarantee you that if you had your Filet Mignon at one of these restaurants, you would never forget it!

Design Craze: Top 7 Unusual Restaurants

1. W’Duck Toilet Restuarant, Portugal. Who needs conventional chairs and napkins, when you can dine on a toilet and wipe your face with toilet paper? This little restaurant located in a small port town in Portugal, is a tourist attraction, to say the least. With a Mediterranean inspired menu, the food has received surprisingly good reviews!


Image Source: Ifitshipitshere, Online.

2. O’Noir Restaurant. Montreal, Canada. Hence it’s name, what you see in this establishment is, well, black. Their theme is about dining in complete darkness so to enjoy the flavors of the food. This is the perfect place to have a blind date!


Image Source: Travel Spotcoolstuff, Online.

3. Mountain Bahenec Wellness Hotel, Czech Republic. It is definitely best to consider who you are going to attend this outing with. Hanging out in close proximity to your fellow diners in tubs full of beer-infused bath water, while enjoying a top-of-the-line beer should be a relaxing time, indeed! Did we mention you have your own tap?


Image Source: The Wonderous, Online.

4. Disaster Cafe.  Lloret de Mar, Spain. Though one of our greatest fears is an earthquake, the diners at this restaurant actually pay to experience one while they enjoy their meal. And not just a small one, either. Every diner experiences a (simulated) 7.8 level quake at some point while dining on a variety of different culinary cuisine. A word of advice: don’t wear your nicest attire; it is said that many drinks are spilled here.


Image Source: Republica Blog, Online.

5. Kayabukiya Tavern. Utsunomiya, Japan. The owners of this restaurant were sick of the turnover that comes with service staff in the restaurant industry. So, they trained monkeys instead. In between delivering your food, their monkeys jump around, sit on your head, and twirl in circles playfully. Live entertainment at its best! Watch the video:

Video Source: Youtube, Online.

6. Hajime Restaurant. Bangkok, Thailand. The menu of this restaurant specializing in Japanese delicacies, has a twist. Your meal will be brought to you by robots. That’s right, robots! The owner, Lapassarad Thanaphant invested over a million dollars making her dream a reality. As if being served by robots wasn’t enough, they dance for your entertainment as well!


Image Source: Koolgrub, Online.

7. ‘S Baggers. Nurnberg, Germany. This restaurant is definitely innovative, to say the least. Diners are instructed to order their meals on touch screen computers provided at their table. Once prepared, they are send down a roller-coaster type device from the kitchen above to your table top!



We have been seeing photo-print fabrics on the Runway, but they are becoming increasingly popular in Interior Design. There is something so vibrant and interesting about seeing a photograph on a material, able to bend and move while maintaining its stillness. So, how can we apply this trend in our space?

Here Are Our Top 5 Computer Generated Finishes in Interior Design:

1. Wallpaper. There are many new photo-realistic wallpaper patterns on the market now, some which can be used to make a space appear larger or for a focal point. You don’t suppose the Greeks and Romans were onto something when the Trompe d’oeil was the interior fashion trend?


Image Source: Nicedecors, Online.

2. Furniture Upholstery. With today’s technology, you can display your favorite image on your furniture. Talk about making a statement!


Image Source: Fresh Home, Online.

3. Flooring. It has become a popular trend mostly in commercial design to put a Google Earth image on your floor. What an appropriate place for it, pictured here, at an airport!


Image Source: GizMag, Online.

4. Curtains. There really are no limitations as to where you can put digital images, as long as they are placed on something flat, and tangible. More importantly, there are no limits as to what you can have printed!


Image Source: Meat Artists, Online.

5. Pillows. Probably the most common photo-image printed items that are trending right now are throw pillows. You can find almost anything printed now, so the design sky is the limit! Here are some of Pure Home’s picks:





We typically put some thought into gift buying, pondering what the receiver may hope for, anticipating the look on their face as they open their presents from us. But, ironically, we don’t put a whole lot of thought into wrapping these special offerings.

Here are 7 Creative Ways to Wrap Gifts. Your receiver will relish in delight as you hand them a beautifully packaged endowment!

1. Old Photos On Paper. This is a simple statement that will be meaningful to the recipient. All you need is some old photos and a printer. Perfect for small gifts!

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Image Source: Sweetpaulmag, Online.

2. Brown Paper Bag. There is something so timelessly classic about wrapping a gift in brown paper. It gives you a clean palette to work with, and you can add many decorative touches of your choice!

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Image Source: Topinspired, Online.

3. Hamburger Wrap. Okay, so this one is a little over the top. But, I had to post it.There are suppliers of sesame seed bun and burger print paper! I’ll bet you could do this with regular paper in similar patterns. This is perfect for the occasion when you have to wrap a lot of gifts. You might as well make it funny!

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Image Source: imgur, Online.

4. Crayon and Paper. This is the perfect way to wrap a gift for the creative person in your life. All you need is some plain white paper, and a basic set of crayons!

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Image Source: Craftfoxes, Online.

5. Heart Cut-Out. This is such a clever idea! All you need is to wrap your gift twice- the outside layer with half-hearts cut and folded outwards. I’d recommend using a utility knife as opposed to scissors.

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Image Source: DailyWT, Online

6. Word Search. Print out a word search of your choice online, with the keywords you would like to circle on your gift, according to the occasion. Use festive markers to circle, and viola! Your own creative touch.

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Image Source: Notonthehighstreet, Online

7. Newspaper. Look through your old newspapers for a fun and interesting article, and use that as the theme of your wrapping paper. Since newspaper is a fairly neutral palette, you can add some touches of whimsy with ribbon, fresh pine, or decor of your choice!

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Image Source: Blissfullycontentlife, Online.


When looking at old paintings and photographs, I often find myself looking past the person or subject in the photo, and into the background with hopes of getting a glimpse of what life was like during the time the picture was taken. More specifically, what people’s homes looked like.


I love how in old impressionistic paintings, interiors reminiscent of times past can be seen. I love looking through old black and white Victorian photographs that are candid and not staged. From old paintings to photos, our interiors leave lasting impressions, whether they are intentionally captured or not.

Here Are My Top 5 Authentic Interior Captures from the Past:

1. Jean Alaux.  ”Louis Vincent Palliere in His Room at the Villa Medici.” This painting is of the artist’s room, while staying at a hotel in the early 1800′s. In looking at this painting, you can see that there are many interior trends from that era that are still popular today. What a great example of timeless design.


2. Old Dormroom Photo, 1915. I found this old photograph of a dorm room to be fascinating. These three women figured out a way to capture their image in the mirror, while still being able to showcase their proudly decorated gem at Brown University.


3. 1930′s Kitchen. This beautiful photograph of Lucille Ball is reminiscent of the fully-tiled, frilly curtained kitchens of its time. Even this famous actress knew her gender-stereotyped place in the home during this era!

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4. 1950′s Tupperware Party. Party on, ladies! This photo shows what the classic tupperware get-together looked like in action. In the background, you can see the lovely wall sconces that were oh-so-fashionable, and the natural stone fireplace look that had taken the nation by design storm.


5. 1980′s Family Dinner. This image may not mean anything to you, but when you look into the background, it most likely would if you lived in the 80′s. No, that is not a flat screen t.v. above the fireplace. Back in the “olden days,” framed art went above your mantle. The beautiful vertical plastic blinds paired with the brass chandelier screamed 80′s decor, if you ask me.


How I Was Inspired By a Simple Statement


Just like most people, I jot down my New Years Resolutions on New Year’s Day. However, I have found that for me personally, I tend to have a delayed start when it comes to moving forward with them. So, why, you ask, am I bringing this up? Because yesterday, my friends, is when I started mine. Just under two weeks late! It just took a little inspiration, is all.

This past Saturday, I decided to take a “me” day. I allowed myself to sleep in, watch old movies, and embrace the sheer invention of stretch-waisted pants. Taking a day like this can be challenging for me; I adore my job, so to step away from it for a few hours is a pursuit in itself. I read Kafka, ordered take-out, and gave myself a mud-mask facial.

In a moment of silence, it happened. I was inspired.  That spark of motivation. The sheer catalyst I have been waiting for to get moving on those goals of mine. I was scrolling through Pinterest, looking at “beautiful quotes” when I came across this image:

Just like that, I made up my mind. I want the “future me” to be grateful for a fit, healthy body. I am going to get in shape this year, and nothing can stop me! On Sunday afternoon, I laced up those running shoes that have been forgotten in the back of my closet, and hit the pavement.

It’s amazing how different your surroundings look when you allow yourself to be present. I live in the small waterfront town of Des Moines, Washington, on the outskirts of Seattle. It is a quaint little town with family-owned shops and restaurants overlooking a breathtaking view of the Puget Sound. While jogging the boardwalk, my total lack of being in shape was distracted by the rustic old houses, scenic beachfront, and crisp oceanic air. Rather than feeling like it was a chore, I embraced the moment and actually enjoyed it!  Instead of feeling exhausted, I was inspired to make this a way of life.

It amazes me that such a simple quote could have inspired me in such a way. There was just a profoundness to it that got me off of the sofa and out into the fresh air! The great motivation of this small quote brought me inspiration to look at other quotes, this time, by my favorite fashion icons.

Here are my Top Five Fashion Icon Quotes:


 ”Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, ‘I’m possible!’” – Audrey Hepburn


“We must never confuse elegance with snobbery.” -Yves Saint Laurent


“Success is achieved by those who don’t know that failure is inevitable.” – Coco Chanel


“Women often try to tame themselves as they get older, but the ones who look best are often a bit wilder.” -Miuccia Prada


“Imperfection is beauty, madness is genius, and it is better to be absolutely ridiculous than to be absolutely boring.” -Marilyn Monroe