Friday, September 28, 2012


In a previous post I talked about my design aesthetic and what words I would use to describe it. Textured would be right up there on the top of my list. I think its one of the basic design elements that give rooms a grounded, inviting feel. A connection to the real world we live in. I especially like textures that represent nature or in the case of these gorgeous pillows found here at West Elm evoke the sense of season. I would love to throw one of these on my sofa or leather chairs to announce that fall and cozy times are on the way. Out with the shiny silk summery pillows. Time to make a switch and I cant think of a better way to do it than with texture!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012


Well I guess you can tell from this post that I LOVE
zinnias. They have to be one of the most prolific and long lasting cut flowers of any species I know.
We buy them as seeds and plant several planters on the side of our house and here it is almost October and they are still going strong. I like the variety pack in all sorts of  colors, shapes and sizes. In thinking about the design question happening over at Little Green Notebook blog should we design our homes with a limited color palette or medium I think the zinnia selection at my home points out the limitations of such a tight strategy. The seeds come in a wide spectrum of colors which cannot be edited out in the planting process. If my color choices for my home absolutely ruled out orange or red I would have to ditch the zinnia idea. Or at least leave half of them languishing on the vine with no hope of making into my color schemed house. Instead I have the gift of flowers in my home pretty much on a daily basis throughout the zinnias VERY long season. They are above all FUN which I think adds a pop of interest and personality to any interior. k

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


I took this photo on our last trip to Mexico and whenever I need a lift I look into the eyes of this precious little boy who shared an eye to eye, heart to heart moment with me. Have a great day!

Monday, September 24, 2012


I came across these handcrafted book/sculptures from Jayson Home and Garden and well, they caught my eye. I thought they were really interesting and different. In other words I haven't seen them cropping up on any flash websites or on every other shelter magazine page I read almost daily. I get tired of trends. While I love deer antlers I have to admit I'm tired of their looming presence pretty much everywhere I click or browse. These sculpted books however were different. I could feel their uniqueness and originality. But would they pass my 'home invasion" test?  From loving, to wanting, to actually buying and integrating somehow into my already bursting home. Well maybe. My first question to myself is usually very simple. Other than the fact that I am attracted to the piece is it useful or is it art?  Well in this case definitely not useful  but yes they would qualify in my "art" category as each piece is wonderfully unique and handcrafted. I like that a lot. My next question would be, what if any  personal relationship do I have to the piece? On this question I am pretty brutal. I'm not a fan of things for the sake of things taking up valued space. There has to be something more to make the cut.  So in this case I would give it a yes. I am a huge reader. I LOVE books. Books define a significant part of my story. They are present throughout my home. There would definitely be a personal connection here. But the final question is tougher, more subjective and  challenging. Where do I see this piece in my space?  Would something else have to go to allow this new intruder an opportunity to shine? On this point I could waiver for weeks, sometimes months. And well, if I never manage to hit the buy button that action speaks for itself. So in the end only time and my current pocketbook will decide the fate of this "object art" and whether or not it finds a coveted space somewhere in my home. So what about you K style friends? What questions do you ask yourself before you hit the buy button? I would love to hear. Talk soon

Friday, September 21, 2012


Yes, I bought this little guy today. Not for me but for another little guy whose about to join me very VERY soon. Stay tuned kstyle friends. Cuteness is on the way. Talk soon

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Please Yes!

Did I buy this absolutely stunning sculpture for a beautiful blank wall in our backyard garden?? Well my kstyle friends there's a story here. When I first saw this piece while casually surfing online it was one of those stop you in your online tracks sort of moments. I mean seriously, it had my name on it and more importantly husband R's name on it because you guessed it, it wasn't cheap. Not cheap at all! The name of the piece was "Riverbed Dish" which again suggested a serious connection. After all there is a riverboat parked in our garage, river stones collected through the years line various garden beds in both front and backyard gardens. Many hours and days of our life have been spent floating the myriad of rivers in Oregon and the Pacific Northwest. We are river people through and through.Well you get the picture. This gorgeous sculpture found here at Wyatt Studio seriously called my name. So I began the process of acquiring this piece. Both R and I thought it worth pursuing. We contacted the artist and began a discussion involving everything from availability, to the process involved in making, to the time frame necessary to complete a custom piece just for us. Things were going well. I could feel its gorgeous presence and inspired conversations already happening at our next out door gathering. And then it happened. The deal breaker. Yep, I'm so sad to say this piece does not adorn our empty garden wall. There was a problem. Unfortunately a big problem and even I who tend to ignore the practical had to agree. You see the "Riverbed Dish" is made out of metal. It would hang outside. Outside in rainy Oregon. VERY rainy Oregon. The artist who is from California advised us that it would have to be treated for rust prevention. Not just once but probably every year, forever. I could not picture this gorgeous piece going to rust and I could not picture R and I year after year obsessing over every little spot that we did not take care of. I like aging on some things but not this. Rocks in the river  for the most part stay clean and shiny. For me this is part of their beauty. So sadly we did not buy this signature piece. At least not for now. Who knows, maybe someday we'll find a spot for it on another wall, in another place, in another home. But for now I will be content to share its beauty with you, my dear kstyle friends! Talk soon

Wednesday, September 19, 2012


A little background and an update. Those of you who have followed kstyle in years past remember that I have three sons. Three amazing sons who are all doing very interesting things. The young son pictured above, formerly known as "waterboy" will now be referred to as "the climber" on this blog. The middle son formerly known as "the photojournalist" will still be referred to as the "photojournalist". And as you might have guessed "the photojournalist" who is now 6 years into his career with the Mail Tribune in Medford, Oregon took the photos of the "the climber" in the images above. My oldest son who currently owns a tourism company in Manzanillo, Mexico will still be referred to as "the Mexican". His life has been one big photo op which I have been privileged to witness and enjoy and so I hope will you.

So you might ask. What does this have to do with my blog post title which is Personal/Design. Well in a word everything! The current 'it" word on the decorating scene is personal. Spaces should be personal and then some. They should tell the story of who you are, where you've been, what you care about. Out are the perfectly designed showplaces that look beautiful, gorgeous in fact but have no real reference to the people who live within their sterile spaces. So how do you go about this? How do you make your home beautiful, true to your aesthetic but also personal? Well, there are many ways of course. Some expensive and involving a lifetime of travel or serious collecting. Or perhaps you come from a family with generations of antiques and interesting curiosities which you have been honored to receive and revere.

But if you're like me and none of the above really apply what can you do to create this ambiance, this sense of personal "history" in your home? Well one way, one very effective way is with photos.Not just any photo,
not the cliched I've seen this a million times boring photo, but the deep down, deeply layered, drop dead personal photo. This deserves a space on your wall or on your bedside table or yes even tacked up on your kitchen frig.

So yes, I know I have a bit of an edge in this department given that my son is a photojournalist and award winning photographer. But and this is a big but. Anyone can do it. With a decent camera and a good idea wonderful, personal "art" for your home is just a click away. Take the photos above. It started with a simple idea. I asked my son, "the photojournalist" to "shoot" a climbing sequence of his brother,"the climber"  for me for mother's day, (sometimes you have to milk it) and even better to find somewhere if possible to do it with our beautiful city (Ashland) in the background. And I wanted it in black and white. Just the pure essence of the experience and the place in focus. And this is what I got and this is what I did with it and now I have something deeply personal, layered and yes beautiful on a wall in my home. I love it and I hope you do to.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

My Design Aesthetic

K's Garden Summer 2012

I love thinking about this. In truth I think about it way too much. But here's the thing. When I ask myself how I came to arrive at my current design aesthetic I know one thing for sure. It involved a lot of thinking! Somewhere along the line the notion entered my head that I should care about my surroundings. That I should take notice of the visual world presenting itself to me on a daily basis. And that is what I have done. Every single day for as long as I can remember. From the interior of someones home, to the inside of a bathroom stall I took it all in. Noticing everything. This became routine, second nature. This was key to developing my personal aesthetic but there was more to it. Much more. I was not formerly trained. For me this was a personal journey not a professional one. I would have to knock around this arena for awhile on my own without the benefit of a set of rules to guide me. Did this make it harder or easier for me? I will probably never know the answer to this question. In any event the next stage of my journey involved decisions. Tough decisions. Okay I noticed "it" but did I like "it", was I attracted to "it" or did looking at "it" make me want to gauge my eyes out? And if yes to any of the above the bigger question loomed. Why? What was the deeper connection causing my reaction, good , bad or indifferent. This was much harder to know and while I have made progress I expect this part of the journey never really ends. So what is my design aesthetic you may ask? What words would I choose today to describe it? There are many of course but I will try to edit the list and fittingly my first word would be---


As the "new" k style evolves I would like to talk about each of these words and the concept behind them and what they mean to me and perhaps you! 

What words would you use to describe your aesthetic. I would love to hear.

Monday, September 17, 2012


Hello Kstylers,

Yes I know I have been silent for awhile and you might think I left the blogging scene entirely but that would not quite be true. I have definitely been around. Lurking around that is and watching quite intently from afar. I have seen new blogs arise and older ones reinvent. But mostly I have missed participating. The interaction, the "noise", the hustle bustle of design driven conversation. I would like to participate from time to time. To engage once again in this gorgeous arena. Maybe a little less often, and with a more personal slant but YES count me in.

Saturday, September 15, 2012