Friday, September 29, 2017

Renaissance Man

Yesterday Steve and I drove to Ojai to visit a young man we haven't seen since he went off to college 30 years ago.

We parked beneath a giant oak tree and entered a property alive with creativity.

Scott began taking pottery classes when he was an engineering student at the University of California San Diego.

He worked as a mechanical engineer for 7 years, but this Renaissance Man needed to be working with his hands.

For the last 20 years Scott has been honing his craft.

Seven years ago Scott moved to Ojai, California and bought a piece of property 

that is a work in process.

An old barn sits at the back of the property

and I hope he never touches this chippy goodness.

I am curious what plans he has for the outhouse.

The potter's wheel is in the main house, but there is so much more going on outside.

This is the wall of one of the work spaces - the vines that appear decorative are actually hops he grows for making beer.

Two different varieties of his three world class home brews were tasted.

I remember Scott as a teenager interested in space camp and surfing so I was totally surprised to get a glimpse of Scott's varied interests.

He recently finished building this kiln using his engineering skills.

He is refurbishing a guest house on the property by himself,

but it's taking a lot of time

because Scott is making every single tile for the kitchen himself.

He made this beautiful hollow, wooden stand up paddle board in the style of Tom Blake.

He raises chickens and grows veggies -

of course I love the color palette of his crops.

The gardener in me fell in love with his flowers -

 how about these sunflowers!

Before we left, we strolled through this building to pick something out and I was torn between white or colors.

We settled on this beautiful two toned jug.

It was so fun to reconnect with someone who was just 18 years old when we last chatted.

And, we hope he invites us back for homemade pizza from the outdoor pizza oven he built.

 You can check out Scott Chatenever's work at Village Potter.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

A Softer Palette

With some of the best summer days still to come, I"m not ready for fall decor,

 but I am ready for a change

 and the guest room was my first target.

While thinking about what I wanted to do in the guest room, I came across this photo on Instagram and I remembered the old window I had in the shed.

That same evening I found this chunky wood garland in one of my favorite local shops.

My goal was a look that will take me through November when I can decorate for Christmas.

I shopped the house for neutral objects -

for now there are bottles in the birdcage, but I'll soon be adding little white pumpkins.

Next up was updating this chippy old door.

My daughter and grandson were visiting a few weeks ago and she commented that a bench in the guest room would be nice.

I am absolutely certain she did not mean a bench filled with tchotchkes.

The big basket will be perfect to gather everything up to clear the bench when KC and Andy come for a visit later this month.

All summer long, the room was decorated in primary colors, but now it's back to a softer palette.

The garland of shells strung across the headboard that drove guests nuts when they bumped the headboard has been replaced with greenery to break up the wall of white.

This room had changes over the summer when Steve sold 2 of the paintings that hung in the guest room.

I need to slap some Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in pure white on the dresser but I started changing things in the living room and this happened!

I don't know why I do these things to myself, 

but I know that I need to get my body in action and finish the living room if I want dinner tonight.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Blowing Away the Cobwebs

 The other night Steve pointed out to me how long it's been since I have written a blog post.

I welcomed the motivation and decided to "blow away the cobwebs" and get myself into a blogging groove.

I spent much of my summer in the garden.

This is the first summer in years that I've been able to water my garden and watch it bloom.

Canna lilies popped up all over the garden 

and are still blooming.

One small cosmos plant went crazy 

and has taken over the yard.

I too went crazy planting seeds, buying nearly every plant at the nursery

and tucking them all over the yard.

Actually, they start out on the front yard bench for a week or two and then they get planted.

The flowers beneath the living room window grew so tall that I had to move the old red chair so it could be seen.

Steve likes riding his cruiser to check the surf so I put the flowers in a basket that he can quickly remove before he takes off.

I have taken time to stop and smell the flowers

and stretch out on a chaise reading.

I blame this little guy for my lack of blogging or creating - he and his mama were with us for nearly a week.

But, I did make new chaise covers in white.

I had the big red pillows, but I made the little pillows from fun tea towels.

I chose the white background so I can change up the pillows through the seasons - Halloween pillows will be next.

And now, that I am refreshed

you'll be seeing my comments as I get back to reading blogs and the plan is to post weekly.

That might be difficult because September was ushered in today with a perfect weather and there will be more to come, but I'm up to the challenge!

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