My custom cabinetmaker is amazing

We moved the custom cabinet that i had built into the shop several years ago from the old shop into the new Whistling Elk shop…this piece is 8′ high and 17′ long…
This was another important part of my store opening plan – i wanted this piece to move with me because i use it every day to sell custom cabinetry and furniture.
It’s a major sales tool for my interior design business.

It is a great showcase for our picture frames and all my design books! Plus since it has 17′ of cabinets under the bookcase it provides much needed storage space.

My cabinetmaker took the built in apart, he and his helper carried the components over to the new shop (20 ft) and then they reassembled it! The whole process took him 4 hours! So not only can he build beautiful pieces – but he can move them and they still look Beautiful – that’s pretty amazing if you ask me!

Clocks and Draperies create a curiously beautiful combination

We re-created our clock wall in the new shop and now it greets you as you walk in the front door.
It is surrounded by our beautiful custom draperies.
It was part of my store opening plan for the new Whistlng Elk to have this room say “we do interior design, window treatments, color consultations” – it is a very pretty room so i think we were successful!

Little Paris Opens Quietly Today!!

Well, today was the day!

We opened Little Paris to the public – we still have a few kinks to work out but we decided to go ahead and softly greet the world!

Here’s a little virtual tour….its better to click on each picture to see everything – I didnt want to shrink them too much!

Have fun!   Here’s the entrance foyer/staircase.

Going up the regal staircase…

Looking up the staircase into the French Country Estate Room. 

The Paris Boudoir

Remember this Vanity that we purchased in June, I think…

There are two of these prints in Little Paris….so amazing! 

venice window pictures

This next series of pictures is from our Paris Apartment Room

We are calling this last room the French Country Estate Room…

as it just kinda took on its own easy going relaxed  feeling.

Well, that’s it….I will finish up the details and have the Grand Opening in Early September!!

one week to go til Little Paris opens!

Little Paris is going to open at the end of next week! 

It is finally almost ready!!

Little details are falling into place….

Window treatments made with tied up sheers…

Love this pink charger….

I want to move into my little Paris Apartment…

The bedroom portion of the Paris Apartment room is almost complete.  I finished the window treatments last night. 

 The cornice box is made of cardboard and painted with a white texture paint.  I love the light feeling of this room!

These pastel vases are so pretty!

  I would love to put them on my vanity.


Dreams of posie bouquets

Our little dream shelf in the Paris Boudoir is taking shape….

We have some Relax Lollia, and some pretty vintage paper and a little posie….

You dont have to spend a lot of money to make a shelf look pretty….just collect your favorite things and group them!  Add a posie!  Little Paris is full of little posie bouquets.

love the color of these hydrangeas!

even though they are silk….still pretty.

Little Paris Boudoir nearing completion!

the window treatments for the Paris Boudoir windows are almost complete…i have a few touches to add to the cornice boxes…but that is a surprise!

Last night I hung  readymade (!!) sheers which i trimmed with a 5″ bullion fringe and the drapes which are a beautiful striped silk  trimmed with a ball tassel beaded fringe…i must have fiddled with them for an hour  to get a look i liked…i got in these pretty little crown buckles and they look fabulous on the cord that i used to hold the drapes back…in the picture i have them scotch taped on (sorry bout that) – after i decided i liked it i attached them better!!!

My mom sewed all the pillow cases for the bedding…she does a beautiful job!  These are all Fabricut fabrics and the pillows are all filled with a 90/10 down fill – very nice and squishy! The beaded tassel fring is Robert Allen and the bullion fringe is from Brimar.  The little tassel at the top right corner is Trimland.

Under our beautiful casual swag (also made by my mom, Pat) I hung an shaped mirror that has a very vintage feeling.  

excuses, excuses

OK, I have been hibernating…at least that is my excuse for not keeping you uptodate…

I have been working on Little Paris a minute here and a minute there

…painting, organizing, moving things (that i shouldn’t be), planning etc.  Task by task i am getting there….

heres a few pictures -first  my ceiling medalion in the Paris Boudoir

K now for excuse #2 – my camera is on the blink…so the picture quality is not going to be pristine….sigh.

Here’s some images of the staircase that i have been adding to daily!

I freehand painted this railing using a stencil for the little gold details – my yardstick and

tiny little paintbrush were my best friends! I added the swirl on top of the railing yesterday – i really love it!

This swag will hang at the head of the bed with side draperies…

and finally, i am ready to hang these cornice boxes over the windows….

they are made of cardboard with wood trim and a little texture paint.  

There is a crown for the top middle but i havent attached it as yet.

Stay cool!

The devil in the details!

I’m still painting!

Yes, the devil is in the details…but if you want perfection – ya gotta go for it!

Had my mom cut me a few stencils from architectural pictures i collected…then used parts of them randomly.

Here’s the beginning of the faux iron staircase railings!

Just finished drawing this in today and will start painting on it tomorrow!

Happy Fourth!

Everyone needs a little pink

I just finished painting the “Paris Apartment” in our Little Paris shop…

it’s a beautiful shade of pink called Cotton Candy!

 If you ever told me i’d be painting pink walls in any room of mine – I’d have laughed….

but yes people can change and adapt.  I really love it.

Here’s some pink inspiration for you!



Yes I am truly loving the pink!!!

So now two rooms of Little Paris are on their way to completion….

Happy Father’s Day all.

New artwork just arrived at The Whistling Elk

Yesterday we got in a large shipment of artwork….

here’s a pretty piece that would fit right into our Little Paris shop….

These next several pieces are all very Whistling Elk….very tuscan – rich colors – warm and cozy…


This pretty picture is a favorite already….it will be hard to part with it!

And i usually dont buy art featuring people!

Switching gears a little – here are some smaller pictures exquisitely framed….great for little groupings with other architectural details mixed in

The two pictures following are amazing – they are 4′ x 6′ – very impressive! 

They make you feel like you are right there on the patio!


There is more but you will have to come and see!

Paris boudoir gets a fresh coat of paint

So i just finished priming the walls of the Paris Boudoir!  

This brings Little Paris a step closer to opening day.   Painting is great therapy…

you can think about anything you want and get the job done at the same time

with very satisfying results.

Now I have the final coat of ADAGIO on – if I was in love with this color before NOW i am over the top!

It’s beautiful, soft, inviting, soothing and the perfect backdrop for the furnishings

set to go into the Paris Boudoir.

The mantel too is ready for gilding and for the appliques that will be strategically placed on it.  Tomorrow.

Dont you just love the little red cup…I guess painting is thirsty work!

Benjamin Moore’s Adagio is greyer when well lit by daylight and bluer in the evening when the sun sets.  A very

adapatable color.  Enjoy your Sunday – I’ll be painting later after closing…

Vintage vanity is the first find

I found a beautiful vintage dressing table…

it turned up a little early but i just had to have it for Little Paris!


It’s such a pretty creamy yellow…with gold trim.   And the mirror is amazing!

 Of course we displayed out favorite perfumes from Shelley Kyle on it.

It’s going to be gorgeous in our Paris Boudoir…which i just primed yesterday.

I plan on finishing up the general painting early next week.

Distracted while shopping for antiques….

Yesterday I was out shopping for antiques and ran into the most gorgeous babbling brook!  It was so pretty and

 refreshing and made the greatest rushing sounds….lovely

I found some great pieces for Little Paris too…and have some decisions to make about a few larger pieces of furniture. 

Some of the small pieces follow…hardware, books and a great compote.

Window treatments enhance the beauty of a room

I’ve been busy installing window treatments for clients this week….here are some of my favorites.

This goblet pleat panel is trimmed with rouche (brush fringe).  It’s a trellis pattern silk from Fabricut and the color works

so nicely with the wall color in this dining room.  These panels just frame a very large series of windows (almost 12′ across).   I wish i had taken a close up of the hardware which is amore…the rod is a

rustic brown and the finials and rings are an antique iron finish.  I love this hardware!

This casual swag below is in a beautiful master bathroom….it fits right in with the elegance of the room!  It’s a trend fabric

 with an RM Coco beaded tassel trim.  The beads are almost black and add a little glitz!


I did take some close ups of this one….




Installing these treatments has made me impatient to start the sewing projects for Little Paris….I have some of the fabrics

 and trims already – its so hard to keep myself on track.  I want to move ahead but have to keep reminding myself “all

 things in good time!”

Shabby chic shutters speak to casual elegance

Old shutters and doors look fabulous to me…whether you just lean them somewhere or nail them to the wall – like i did in my bedroom!  (I’m all for easy installation).  These are just “leanin” in the shop right now! 

They are such a great color…very shabby chic and rustic (actually the more beat up they are the better i like them) These could work in a formal setting too.  Just love their ambience and style.  

These would be swell in the Paris Boudoir or the Paris Apartment in our new “Little Paris”….but sigh…we wont be open til September…and they are here now.

Make a design statement with a beautiful mirror!

Yesterday we brought some beautiful mirrors onto the shop floor (I should say lugged as they were very heavy…the detail is amazing though!  Always worth the trouble!

The picture above is a catalog picture so we snapped a few other photos after depositing it in its new home in the shop.  The iron top is so pretty – very simple yet elegant.
This one doesnt look that great in the catalog photo yet in person its beautiful and it would make a great leaner mirror at 73″ high.  The picture below is the same mirror where we leaned it in the shop.
The mirror below is one that truly has presence…the frame is so wide and the ornamentation so regal.



Here it is in the shop – leaning at 60″ high it reflects everything around it! 


Ok i know this one seems  small after all those big ones but it really is a beauty too.

I cant wait to put this one in the Paris Boudoir on the little skirted Dressing table. 

We didnt get this one but i included it cause its a favorite and it will probably be here again soon!

Mirrors truly make a room more beautiful and we love making a design statement with them.

Courage to make a change


A friend was incredulous that i was starting a new business in these turbulent times. It got me thinking….and reminiscing.  When i started my first business i really had absolutely no idea what i was getting into (i didnt actually know that at the time…it hit me later when i realized how lucky i was to still be in business). What i do know is that i did follow my heart….and i had a lot of luck!

It took a year of planning and a lot of courage to actually quit my job and head out into the unknown land of no paycheck…and it took an act of fate.  That act of fate was a simple thing – a budget revision…but just one too many.   I remember marching into the boss’ office and giving two weeks notice.  It was a good decision.

At the time it was like opening a door…



A beautiful door to open…

That was 22 years ago and it occurs to me now that i have never looked back.  The first business took a full year to plan – this new one took shape almost instantaneously.  Oh, my!  As to the economic climate….i look at this new business as a way forward, like hedging a bet.  The current business will  be the incubator but then they will work in conjunction with each other quite nicely.

Just got the new biz card…its so exciting!

Coming Soon!

So I am wrapped up in details as i posted recently but i know that in my mind they are already worked out.

But, i am ready to walk thru another beautiful door….



This whole process is an amazing gift.   To be immersed in something new is a truly wonderful and rejuvenating experience.

Details, details…

I find myself thinking incessantly about all the details that i have to oversee to accomplish the opening of the new shop, and planning like crazy – writing orders, making timelines, overseeing each piece of the project so no detail gets lost in the shuffle…here are some favorite details of mine.

my photoThese two doors are attached to a great console cabinet.
my photoThis is a such a pretty stenciled door – i am trying to figure out how to remove it and put it in the new space.

veranda magazine april 2011
Love the boiserie style molding on the walls!
Source: Veranda Magazine April 2011

my photoCrowning detail on a 9′ bookcase.

joanna innes
from Joanna Innes "The New Paint Magic"

Love the way this armoire is painted…completely makes it amazing.
Source: Joanna Innes The New Paint Magic

my photoLove the lacey look of the orchids.

my photoAn old shutter nailed to the wall is a great backdrop for this corner.

my photoThis vanity is very pretty with a soft muted gold painted molding.

my photoOh just love this old chandelier and the beaded shades give it just the right touch.

my photo

my photoThe lionhead gives this old looking urn just a little something more.

my photoSweet tray of trinkets.

my photo
my photoA simple stencil makes this lampshade more special.

my photoThis pretty beadingis attached to the most amazing lamp shade.

Hope you enjoyed these details as much as i do!

Chandeliers are like jewelry

crystal chandelier

…the right one is amazing in a room – the crowning glory!

One of my favorite chandeliers…the Mayfair…when we have it in the shop we hang it low for impact. So pretty. The perfect balance of iron and crystal.

currey and company chandelier
currey and company mayfair chandelier