Happinest: isn’t an illusion

It can be found in Verellen’s new line of lower priced upholstered pieces.  Sofas, chairs, ottomans, and benches, Verellen knows just how to put a smile on my face.  The Belgian based company is all about artisanal goodness.  They craft their pieces with love – I still cannot get over the fact that their base is located on a farm where chicken wander freely around the property, offering their support and contributing to the happy vide.


Happinest by Verellen Dreamy Club Chairs

I first learned that this new line would be released this summer at Artefact in Belmont, MA where Tom Verellen spoke about the companies history, craftsmanship in an age of mass production, and disposability over heirloom.  He talked about bonding customers to the brand for life, forming partnerships, and …. still being accessible.


Happinest by Verellen Dreamy Sofa

Here’s where Happiness comes into the picture.  Verellen, can only be found in a few select locations across the United States and it’s pricy.  In my opinion it’s worth every penny.  I have had my Verellen since my first flip and if I have my way – you’ll see it in number 10 too.  It’s perfection – it’s lines are sexy, its compact but sits deep, its graceful and welcoming after a hard day in the city.  It offers comfort, but it was not cheap.

Happiness quirk

Happinest by Verellen . Quirky Ottoman

Didn’t my ears perk up at the mention of their new – less expensive line.  A line that 20 and 30 year olds could afford, and begin a life long love affair with this delicious brand.  Not a vast collection, but one that will likely suit many tastes.  The names of each are fabu; Dreamy, Happy Modular, Love, Lucky and Quirky.  Of the five – I love Dreamy the best.  Interestingly I don’t love:  Love, and Lucky doesn’t feels boxier than I think Luck should feel, but there is something that is so Verellen wonderful about the collection- and I hear from Sue Marsh at Artesan that they have been tweaking the design to give this line – the lines that curve and embrace.


Happinest by Verellen . Happy Modular

It’s the happiest surprise I’ve had in a long time.


Home Sense : The hype and a whole lot more.

Lovely Liberty of London.  Those delicate, girly flowers are a recipe for unbridled happiness.  They signal summersaults, and cartwheels,  a run through tall grass, and laughter that’s so contagious all the troubles of the world are carried away with the gentle breeze.

I’ve worked hard to make a case for the girly in a masculine setting, but I have to say in this instance – I think the girls own it.  I have ideas about how to give it a rocker edge – that I’m not quite ready to share, but I think I could convince a city girl or two to wear it out for a night on the town, or decorate their home with it.  You’ll are gonna have to wait for that.

LL Bed

Feather Fan Edlyn Bed $2498. – $2798.

After my trip to Paris, I started seeing these iconic prints pop up all over the place.  The brand, which has a long history, began in 1875 when Arthur Lazenby Liberty borrowed 2000 pounds from his Father-in-Law to open his first store.  “I was determined not to follow existing fashion but to create new ones.”  Arthur said.  His concept had a momentum that would make any new business owner swoon.  From fabrics to fashion, home furnishings, accessories, and more, the store and its wares exploded.

J. Crew has been carrying Liberty frocks for several years now.  Calypso had them a few years back and now Anthropologie debuted their collaborative furniture line on 14 August, bringing upholstered furnishings to the states.  The collection includes 40 pieces, in addition to furniture it include bed and bath, and china plates.  There are 40 pieces in all, 18 of which hail from the Heritage archives.

A combination of traditional pieces and a more modern aesthetic allow you to be English Countryside or urban chic.  The palette is bold hues for the furnishings, which will bring a little garden to your indoor party.

LL sheets

Nina Taylor Sheet Set. $158. – $198.

There’s a reason these prints have stood the test of time.  We crave nature.  It grounds us, and reminds us that beauty and inspiration is all around.

Happy Saturday.

Fabric Softener: knocking down the hard edges in your home

I love crisp lines and modern pieces, but I’ve never warmed to the minimalist aesthetic.  Too much cold and not enough cozy.  Fabric, for me, is the key to having both.  Because I move so much, and windows sizes, and the challenges of floor to ceiling dimensions, and molding to casing dimensions are so unique to the space, I end up getting a lot of custom window treatments.  It is expensive.  I remind everyone that in my quest to flip 10 homes and make a million – a modest nest egg if I am going to live to 100 – creating distinctly different color palettes for each home is part of the fun of it.

Zimman’s . 80 Market Street . Lynn . MA:  Hundreds from which to choose.

Fun is a non-negotiable, because when all is said and done I will have moved roughly 20 times.  I will have lived in properties while they are being renovated more than 10 times (remember some go through multiple phases, separated by years).  Being covered in sawdust and searching for a fork to eat your Chinese Take-out under a tarp covered in sheetrock dust, on your hands and knees, after a long day at the office – is NOT fun.


Bring a power bar.

So you’ll have to indulge my desire to purchase the latest, and often trendiest in designer fabrics.  I do like a bargain so always have a trip to Zimman’s . 80 Market Street . Lynn . MA on my T0-Do List.  They have a dizzying selection from which to choose, and a Sales staff that are knowledgeable and design savvy.  From the low-end to To The Trade Only, if they don’t have it, they can get it.  That means that anything you can find in the Design Center in Boston, can be yours!   They are currently having a FALL SALE Event – 20% off any in-stock fabric (sorry – this doesn’t include anything from the Design Center) with the use of their custom services.  They will upholster pieces (and they will pick up and deliver) and fabricate custom curtains and/or roman shades.  Their service includes deploying an expert to handle measurements and later do the install.  These kinds of one stop shops are hard to find, usually require the use of a designer, and can be costly.  Zimman’s is a great alternative.


Preparing for a new life.

Other tips for economizing include semi-custom curtains.  I do this again and again.  I buy an off the shelf curtain in a versatile neutral, in linen, or silk, and then add a cording or trim in an accent color of my choice.  In the new condo I will re-use my white linen curtains (currently trimmed in a navy and white Samuel & Sons velvet trim) in the living room.  I will strip that off and replace with either tan or pink trim to complement my overall color scheme.


Turkish Linen …. I can’t wait.

Today I got the fabric for my sofa.  Zimman’s will come and collect it next week and make it new to me – all over again.  See, I can have new and OLD, all in one piece – so can you.