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Friday, November 30, 2012

Fabulous Room Friday 11.30.12

{Image via Jenny Wolf Interiors}
This week's "Fabulous Room" is a glamorous and feminine New York living room by designer, Jenny Wolf.  First off, I love the windows in the space and the fact that they frame the tailored sofa so perfectly. The room also features a great mix of textures accented with a bit of pattern-- the diamond pattern on the rug, the trim on the pillows, the flokati rug-- everything works so well together. I also love that she's included a Chippendale bamboo chair along with a touch of Lucite. There are so many of my personal favorite items in this lovely space!
I'll keep this short and sweet today. I've been battling the flu for the past couple of days, so I'm feeling pretty groggy. I hope you've had a great week. Bon weekend!

Thursday, November 29, 2012


{We recently got new bedding and I love it SO much! I found the embroidered duvet set online and had the euro shams and duvet cover monogrammed by Lynne at The Monogram Market in Houston. My super chic friend, Hallie recommended Lynne so I knew I’d love her work. I also ordered a pair of pillows in my perennial favorite, La Fiorentina by David Hicks from Arianna Belle. The pillows are the perfect finishing touch for our bed!}

I finally gave in and joined Instagram! Better late than never, right? I resisted joining for over a year because I was worried about having another social media outlet to keep up with and was afraid that it would take a ton of time. Luckily, it’s turned out to be super fun, easy, and quick. I love checking out what people are posting and looking at their inspiring images. It’s so fun to play with the different filters and post my photos directly to Facebook and Twitter. I’ve taken some Instagram snaps since I joined a few weeks ago and thought it might be fun to share some of the things I’ve been up to.
{A Nook in my Home Featuring a Leopard Pillow I had Custom-Made by Arianna Belle.}
{My precious baby boy, Tate. Doesn’t he have the sweetest face?}
{Serena & Lily invited me to curate a round-up of my holiday picks. You can check out the feature here.}
{My super talented, life-long friend (we’ve been friends since kindergarten), Mimi just launched a fabulous social shopping site called That’s Foxy. They have so many stylish items, like this gorgeous necklace she sent me.
{I brought these lovely orchids home the other day. I love how they brighten up a room and look chic in any space. Keeping them alive is another matter, but I am getting better at it!}
{Nathan Turner is one of my favorite interior designers, so you can imagine how excited I was to learn that he loves La Dolce Vita! He sent me a signed copy of his book, Nathan Turner’s American Style last week. It’s so beautiful and inspiring. Stay tuned because I’ll be giving away a signed copy next week!}

Follow me on Instagram @LaDolceVitaBlog!

Strategies for Success: 6 Ways to Become Re-Inspired

Hello all you gorgeous readers! I'm Melanie Duncan, serial entrepreneur and founder of The Entrepreneuress Academy and I'm here to share with you my strategies for success. Have you ever found yourself in a rut? Nothing seems to really inspire you and you just feel kind of "blah" about everything? If you answered "YES!" You are not alone. Many of us suffer from burn-out. Because of the incessant stream of stimulation and information it is easy to find yourself exhausted and zapped. But have no fear, I've put together a list of simple things that you can do right away that will have you back in action in no time. Here are 6 Ways to Become Re-inspired:

1. Unplug: Trust me, as someone who owns multiple online businesses and teaches social media I have more than my fair share of an online addiction. Getting myself to detach for just a few hours, let alone days, is no small feat. But the rewards are incredible. Every time that I have forced myself to unplug for a few days I have noticed a drastic difference in the quality and enjoyment of my work when I return. It's a necessary and oh-so-enjoyable way to reset your focus.

2. Educate & Evolve: As much as I enjoy watching Hart of Dixie (and believe me I do), it doesn't exactly refuel my mind. When I'm in a funk I pick up a new book (you can see my favorite business books HERE), take a class or even go to a museum. I'm sometimes hesitant, but it's amazing how much it refreshes and reinvigorates me. Isn't it strange how little intentional learning many of us do after we have completed school? Now's your chance to change that and become the multi-talented person you've always dreamed of becoming!

3. Travel: It can be inconvenient and it's usually expensive but traveling will add breadth to your perspective and dimensions to your life like nothing else can. There is nothing like new places and new faces to advance yourself both personally and professionally. I can't tell you how many creative breakthroughs I've had while strolling through Central Park, or sitting on a bench in a park in Paris. There is something about immersing yourself in a new culture that challenges you to look your life and your dreams in an entirely new way.


4. Get Fancy: More and more people are working from home now, and the result? Sweatpant Syndrome. I know that your jammies are cozy, but never underestimate how much the way you look affects the way that you feel. I'm not saying that you have to wear your Loubutouins around the house, but just showering and doing your hair and makeup can give you more confidence and swagger that will increase the quality of your work throughout the day.

5. Play with People: Sometimes we just need a reminder to reengage with the people in our life, or a push to reach out to someone new. Many of us feel that we have to find ways to inspire ourselves, when really just being exposed to other people's perspectives and thoughts is incredibly inspiring. I suggest a mix of both old a new. Make sure to spend quality time (i.e. detach yourself from your cell phone) with those you love. And set a goal to go out to lunch or coffee with 1 new person each month. Even when work is fierce, force yourself to schedule time with people both inside and out of your industry to keep yourself connected and engaged.

6. Mix It Up: A lot of times, feeling uninspired is due to getting stuck in too much of a routine. Try eating something different for breakfast or work from a new place. If you don't want to change what you do, just move around the order that you do it in. Normally make your phone calls in the morning? Try making them in the afternoon instead. Want to try a real game changer? Don't check your email until 2pm each day. Sound impossible? I tried it and it was a serious game changer for my productivity. So there you have it - 6 ways to become re-inspired. Pretty painless right? I didn't even tell you that you had to stop eating those macarons or hit the gym! Now it's your turn. Leave a comment below and share what you do to get out of a funk. I look forward to reading all of your fabulous suggestions. xx Melanie
Images via Pinterest

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Get the Look: A Modern, Glamorous Bedroom

Hi all! Arianna of Arianna Belle here, back this time with a new series focused around how to 'get the look' of our favorite inspiring interiors.

I've had this bedroom saved in my inspiration file for some time now. I love that it evokes a sense of clam and coziness and at the same time, is chic with a touch of glamour. The overall neutral color palette is tranquil, the grasscloth on the walls brings in beautiful texture and warmth, while the details throughout, such as the nailhead trim on the headboard and the greek key design on the nightstands, add interest. Below I've sourced pieces that would help achieve a similar look:

bedroom image source: lonny magazine

Jet Set: The Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa
Hello LDV readers! Brendan here of (BAD) Blog About Design. I am so happy that Paloma asked me to contribute to a new series featuring amazing hotel getaways and fashion picks. For my first travel location I decided to take us to Colorado for some winter fun. With the holiday's fast approaching, I find myself wanting to be inspired by some fantastic ski and spa locations. The Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa is located in Beaver Creek, Colorado. (ABOVE) It's set to take in the views of the mountains and great ski slopes. The hotel's architecture blends both Medieval European and Rocky Mountain styles. (BELOW 1) The Mountainside Bar and Grill is one of the hotel's many restaurants. I find the interior design to be so relaxing. It feels like your walking into your Living Room. (BELOW 2) The Mount Lincoln suite is my favorite room at the hotel. The interior design makes you feel like you are staying at a mountain resort, but also has a modern fresh feel. The standing lamp, orange modern sofa all play into a more simple design. (BELOW 3) At the end of the day guests can enjoy S'mores at the firepit. What a beautiful view. I'm ready to start packing! 1 2 3

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Giveaway: Win a Ticket to Design Camp! CLOSED

I am so excited to bring you this giveaway! La Dolce Vita has partnered with Design Camp’s founders, Lori Dennis and Kelli Ellis to offer one lucky reader a free ticket ($1,297 value) to the next Design Camp in Atlanta. In a nutshell, Design Camp is comprised of two days and nights of learning, designing, connecting, lunches, cocktail parties and life long relationship brand building. The first Design Camp in Austin last month was a big success with over 120 attendees.
The two-day Design Camp seminar is hosted and instructed by Celebrity Interior Designers Lori Dennis and Kelli Ellis, with special guests segments led by local and national industry experts in niche fields. The next camp in Atlanta from January 30th -February 1st will be held at the Fox Theater. Atlanta Homes and Lifestyles will be the media sponsor and they’ll have a fabulous line up of talented and seasoned speakers including Ronda Carman, Susanna Salk,  Adam Japko, and many more inspiring members of the design industry.

The course is tailored for design professionals and design aficionados. Each day runs from 9AM-6PM and is broken down into 8 segments per day. Drinks, Snacks, Lunch, and Cocktail parties are included. By the end of Design Camp, attendees will have the confidence and ability to run successful modern-day design careers, execute magazine- ready interior projects, take their careers to an entirely new level, network and collaborate with local suppliers and colleagues.

I am personally planning to attend the Design Camp in Atlanta and hope to see some of you, including the lucky winner of this giveaway there!
1. To enter the giveaway, simply leave a comment on this blog post telling me why you would like to attend Design Camp.
2. Leave ONE comment on this post between today, Tuesday, November 27, 2012 and Tuesday, December 4, 2012. A winner will be announced on Wednesday, December 5, 2012.
For Extra Entries:
3. Follow Design Camp on Twitter and tweet about the giveaway with a link to this blog post for another entry (follow La Dolce Vita on Twitter in order to show me your tweet). It is up to you to return to this post to enter your additional entry after tweeting about the giveaway.
4. Become a fan of Design Camp on Facebook. It is up to you to return to this post to enter your additional entry after becoming a fan of the Design Camp page on Facebook.
Anonymous entries will be ignored, so please include your e-mail in your comment. Your e-mail address will never be used for anything other than to notify you if you are the winner.

My Favorite Room: Brooke Giannetti

Hi everyone! This is Brooke from Velvet & Linen and Giannetti Home.  I am so thrilled to be here at La Dolce Vita! Thank you, Paloma for inviting me to be a part your  "My Favorite Room"  series. My favorite room at the moment is our Master Bathroom in our Channel Islands Harbor weekend home.

This gorgeous bathroom at Chateau de Moissac was one of the European bathrooms that inspired me to  turn our Master Bathroom ....

image source

from this...



to this.


I noticed that most of the European bathrooms that I loved were built using simple neutral materials such as limestone and plaster. Rarely did I see ornate mosaics or intricate tile work. Most likely these rooms were designed this way because they once had other uses, but whatever the reason, the result was a calm, serene atmosphere.

To create the same soothing feeling in our bathroom, I also chose simple, neutral materials. For example, in the shower I selected  pale limestone slabs on the walls, aged limestone on the floor, and clean sheets of glass.


Like the pieces in my favorite European bathrooms, special antiques became the focal points in the room.



My pewter tub is the other "Queen" in the room, demanding attention. 

Lighting was kept simple as well: a couple of sconces on the wall, a Circa Lighting "Petite Paris Flea Market Chandelier" in the center and two vintage pendants above the sinks.


Similar to the pieces in European bathroom, most of the furniture and fixtures in my bathroom aren't built in. This allows my bathroom to be easily altered. For example, recently when we decided to live in our weekend house full time, we realized that we needed more storage. Because our tub was free standing, we  simply removed the tub and replaced it with this French cabinet. My bathroom design holds up even without my tub. IMG_2204

You might be wondering what happened to my tub.  It is in storage, waiting to be placed in our bathroom at the new home we are building, Patina Farm.

Who knows? I may have a new Favorite Room soon!


I hope you enjoyed My Favorite Room!

Thank you again, Paloma for letting me share "My Favorite Room" with your readers.




Monday, November 26, 2012

LDV Gift Guide: For the Entertainer

We all know someone who is a a spectacular host or hostess—the type of person who makes you feel right at home and at whose soirees you always have the best time-- the type of person who thinks of every last detail for a fabulous fete. Does this ring a bell? So what does one give a thoughtful entertainer? An equally thoughtful (and stylish) gift, of course!






{1. Mark & Graham Monogrammed Ice Bucket | 2. iomoi Custom Tray with Handles | 3. Jonathan Adler Greek Key Dessert Plates | 4. Rab Labs Lia Bottle Stopper | 5. Oscar Wilde Decoupage Tray | 6. Gold Chevron and Confetti Paper Placemats | 7. Serena & Lily Flame Pedestal Tray | 8. C. Wonder Ikat Nesting Bowls | 9. Compagnie de Provence Extra Pure Figue Soap | 10. C. Wonder Ikat Apron | 11. Address Embosser | 12. Diptyque Vetyver Candle | 13. Sur la Table Holiday Beverage Jar | 14. William Yeoward Corinne Martini Glasses | 15. Vintage Cocktails Book | 16. iomoi Cocktail Napkins}


This Week’s Quote


Thursday, November 22, 2012

Giving Thanks

{Stunning Thanksgiving Table by Tory Burch}
Happy Thanksgiving, dear friends! I just wanted to take a moment to let you know how profoundly grateful I am for your readership and support throughout the past five and a half years. You all have inspired me beyond measure and have given me the strength, courage, and encouragement to spread my wings and take on new challenges and you've given me an outlet that feeds me so much creatively. I know how busy everyone is these days, so I thank you from the bottom of my heart for taking the time to visit La Dolce Vita each day.

{Wisdom on Gratitude by Ralph Waldo Emerson via Paperless Post}

This year, as every year for the past twelve years that I've known my husband, Fabian, I am extremely grateful to him for being my rock and constant supporter. He has encouraged me and cheered me on through every adventure, always by my side to guide me and make me feel loved. I am also tremendously grateful for my sweet dog, Tate. He has shown me unconditional love and has taught me to be a total animal lover. I'd never known how special a bond with a pet could be until Tate joined our family. Speaking of family, I am so thankful for our wonderful family. We've been through a lot this year, but have made it through with our love for each other and faith in God. I am also very thankful for my wonderful friends-- both old and new-- you know who you are! You are all so kind and have such generous spirits. I've learned so much from each of you and cherish our friendship.
I hope you have a wonderful and safe Thanksgiving filled with love, fun, and lots of good food!