Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Paint can be tricky.  Add to the mix the lightening effects of painting exterior surfaces, and I become frozen with indecision.  Whatever I choose, I’m stuck with it, and so is everyone who drives by and/or visits my barns.   So here I sit, paralyzed with indecision as the warm summer painting season passing by.

A mere six years ago, when we purchased this property from my family, we had the barns painted.  Feeling nostalgic and wanting to honor the past, I simply had them repainted as they had been all my life:

IMG_3862

Classic white with dark green trim.  If you travel up and down Buckeystown Pike, you’ll find barn after barn painted this same way.

DSC_0001

 

But the job was done poorly, and now, after only six short years, we’re faced with the need to paint again.   And I’m itching for a change.

I’d really like to move on to this look:

barn paint

railings-trends

 

Farrow & Ball’s Railings is an great choice.  I attended one of F&B’s color seminars, where I learned to go 2 tones darker for exterior color, as the sun washes it out, making it appear much paler outside than it does indoors.

700_farrow-and-ball-railings-color

Here’s Railings as a trim color – so beautiful.

There is no comparison for richness and fullness of color to the Farrow & Ball paints.  And here’s another choice – but paler:  Downpipe:

downpipe

downpipe against red brick

I really like this color in combination with the red brick.  Our house (which could also use fresh paint) is red brick, and I’d like consistency throughout the property.

Farrow & Ball downpipe

This image above is F&B’s Downpipe against Cotswolds stone.  But doesn’t anything look beautiful against Cotswolds stone?

 

 

Amherst grey

And then there’s Benjamin Moore’s Amherst Grey.  So elegantly sharp with it’s crisp white trim.

amherst grey benjamin moore

 

Or, Benjamin Moore’s Kendall Charcoal.  This image gives you a great look at how color can change.  On the cards, Kendall Charcoal is darker than Amherst Grey, yet if you compare these images, they appear to be almost the same color.

 

Best Exterior Outdoor Green House Paint Color, Benjamin Moore Black Forest Green, Gardenista

And here is Benjamin Moore’s Black Forest Green.  Try to envision this barn with crisp white trim framing the small door, and outlining the detailing on the large barn door.

You see how it goes?  I just need to choose and get on with it.  But whatever I choose, it necessarily eliminates all those other beautiful, tempting choices.

It’s just so hard to decide . . .

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this vexing issue!

Thanks for reading,

Virginia

Vintage America

Here’s a favorite collection of vintage Americana images from Chartreuse & co.

Enjoy!

 

DSC_1745 DSC_1816 DSC_1887 DSC_1888 DSC_1739  DSC_1827  DSC_1880 DSC_1746  DSC_0023 DSC_0287 DSC_0304 DSC_0302 DSC_0001 DSC_0278 DSC_0224DSC_0002  DSC_0121 DSC_0204 DSC_0003 DSC_0009 DSC_0010 DSC_0049 DSC_0054 DSC_0102 DSC_0095 DSC_0203 DSC_0195 DSC_0193 DSC_0155 DSC_0046 DSC_0006 DSC_0014 DSC_0308

Enjoy your summer, and have a Happy 4th!

Thanks for reading,

Virginia

Inspired store decor

2013_holiday_438

I really don’t like malls.  They’re all the same stores, same basic layout, same corporate look.  But every now and then (yes, especially this time of year), I’ll drop in.  When I go, my favorite in this area is Tyson’s Corner/Tyson’s Galleria – mainly because they have the best Apple store in the area AND Anthropologie.

But, much as I love both those stores, there’s still a bit of that corporate-ness to them (this shop window, is just an example of what I’m saying).

And then I found Free People:

IMG_3820

Firstly, I just love these spectacular doors.  And it’s the details that make this for me:  the gravel “pavement” with the cute bike parked outside, the bronze doors that look like it’s a pavilion plucked from the Tuilleries Gardens in Paris.

IMG_3814

And then you walk in to hardwood floors (no big surprise, or exception there), charming clothes and accessories, and – here’s the part I love – handmade holiday decorations!  Yes, the staff at Free People made this adorable pom poms them selves, and set up this charming display.

IMG_3815

And I’m always a sucker for incorporating natural elements in displays of any kind.

IMG_3816

And don’t they just plain look fun to make? IMG_3818

These pretty cones are a nice complement (not sure if they made these, too).

IMG_3819

I was surprised to find this level of personality in a corporate store.  Kudos Free People.

Happy Holiday shopping to you!

Thanks for reading,

Virginia

Snow!

What better to put you in the Christmas spirit than a December snow? And we’re already on our second one here in Buckeystown, Maryland! I’ve lived in this area all my life (eg. a very long time . . .) and cannot recall a December with two early snows, especially over 6″ (the mid-Maryland definition of a decent snow).

So how am I celebrating this natural phenomenon? Sipping french vanilla coffee, in pajamas and slippers, ensconced in my down-cushioned sofa, watching the snow fall outside our wall of windows. Ahh, contentment . . .

IMG_3877

What I awoke to this morning:

IMG_3874

And a few images from Sunday’s snow:

 

 

 

IMG_3875

IMG_3862

IMG_3861

I think the 14′ Christmas tree, which I struggled all month to decorate (and keep upright!), looks spectacular the way Nature has trimmed it.  The ultimate flocking!

If you got some snow, I’d love to see pictures of it!

Thanks for reading,

Virginia

 

Gift wrapped fun

I love wrapping gifts.  I love the paper, the ribbon, the tags.  I love folding the paper around the box, selecting and tying on the ribbon, selecting the just-right tag or embellishment.

We have a great selection of ribbon now, so I totally indulged and wrapped up a few packages – here’s a look:

DSC_1323

Kraft paper makes such a great base for decorating your packages. These two velvet ribbons take a twist on traditional Christmas colors – love the effect.

DSC_1324

Two shades of brown create a tone-on-tone effect against the brown kraft paper. The velvet really pops here because of the contrast in texture to the paper. Love how the fat little winter bird pulls it all together.

 

DSC_1325

I used printed green paper tape, and then complemented it with these beautiful shades of green and blue velvet. The sweet little birds define it as a holiday package.

 

DSC_1326

Here’s an unlikely grouping, which I think works well. Because the paper is busy, I’ve stuck to just one color of ribbon. The green wreath on the paper speaks to the holiday spirit, and the darling little bird tag spells it out. So pretty.

 

DSC_1327

Truth be told, this one is my favorite. It’s simply the vintage chalkboard wrapping paper we carry everyday, combined with simple, cotton ribbon. The shapes, textures, and colors are just perfect together.

DSC_1329

The ribbon is even more fun, as it’s wrapped on these wooden spools.

 

All in all, it was great fun, and totally put me in the mood to get all my gifts wrapped and under the tree.  I’d love to see some of your holiday packages.

Happy wrapping!

Thanks for reading,

Virginia

With the leftovers polished off, and a good bit of Christmas shopping behind us, we’re gearing up now for the last Chartreuse & co event of the year!  I admit it’s a little bittersweet.  I love transforming the barn, and watching each dealer re-think his or her vision of the holidays.  It gives me such a rush to walk through (as I did last night), shooting pictures of all the beauty.   And now, it’s the last time for all of 2013.

Here’s the best of what I saw just last night.  There’s more coming in every day, so check out our website, www.chartreuseandco.com, for daily updates.

DSC_1133

DSC_1134

DSC_1135

DSC_1147

DSC_1150

DSC_1151

DSC_1152

DSC_1154

DSC_1155

DSC_1161

DSC_1166

DSC_1169

DSC_1177

DSC_1179

DSC_1180

DSC_1182

DSC_1183

DSC_1184

DSC_1185

DSC_1186

DSC_1187

DSC_1191

DSC_1193

DSC_1194

DSC_1195

DSC_1196

DSC_1197

DSC_1202

DSC_1206

DSC_1208

DSC_1210

DSC_1211

DSC_1214

DSC_1216

DSC_1217

DSC_1220

DSC_1221

DSC_1223

DSC_1226

DSC_1227

 

DSC_1231

 

DSC_1235

DSC_1237

DSC_1238

DSC_1239

DSC_1240

DSC_1242

DSC_1245

DSC_1246

 

DSC_1249

DSC_1250

 

DSC_1252

DSC_1253

DSC_1255

DSC_1256

DSC_1258

DSC_1259

DSC_1260

 

DSC_1262

DSC_1263

 

DSC_1265

 

DSC_1282

DSC_1284

DSC_1288

DSC_1291

DSC_1296

 

DSC_1303

DSC_1309

Thanks for reading,

Virginia

The sideboard was also my grandmother's, and also in exactly the same spot where she had it.

Thanksgiving is a day dominated by an iconic meal. Here are a few tips I’ve learned over the years for making it easy and tasty:

1.  Have drinks and appetizers ready for when guests arrive (or, if you’re not having additional guests, about an hour before you plan to eat).  NOT fancy ones – you don’t want to overwork yourself on this stage of the game.  But if you haven’t planned for this important step, the crowd gets restless if the main event is not right on time.  (I’ve learned these lessons the hard way . . .)

My current favorite drink recipe:

489499

Chartreuse cocktail

2 parts Gin

1 part Chartreuse liquor

1 part Rose’s Lime Juice

Sprig of fresh rosemary

fresh lime juice

Fill shaker with ice.  Add spring of rosemary first, then the wet ingredients.  Shake thoroughly.  Pour into a chilled martini glass or over ice in an old-fashioned glass.  CAUTION:  it’s a strong drink, which is easy to dilute as much as you like with chilled Sprite.

2.  Make your home as fresh, beautiful, and inviting as you possibly can.

Have music softly playing throughout the house – never underestimate the power of music to set the mood.

Burn softly fragrant candles throughout the house.

Create a simple, easy centerpiece (for table or buffet):

  • Go outside and clip some greens and branches.
  • Gather fruits from the grocery store.
  • Stack cake plates into a tier, place the fruits on each level, and trail the greens through them, and down to the table/buffet.
  • Underlay it all with a burlap runner.
  • Top it with a mismatched collection of candlesticks filled with autumn-colored candles, and your dining area is decorated.

3.  Accommodate the need for football.

It’s too big a deal to ignore.  Have a tub of beer and soda on ice, plus basic chips and salsa/dip in the main TV-viewing area.  The serious fans care about nothing else.  Let them have their day.   But, make sure this activity is away from the main dining/conversation area.  The not-so-serious fans need their day, too.

4.  Provide a great menu.  Don’t try getting fancy.  This is a meal at which everyone has basic favorites.  Be sure you’ve got ‘em covered:  turkey. mashed potatoes, gravy (homemade), assorted vegetables (this is where you can experiment some), sauerkraut, cranberry sauce (I prefer the jellied variety), stuffing, apple pie, pumpkin pie garnished with fresh whipped cream or ice cream, really good coffee (illy brand is best)

5.  Roast the perfect turkey.

images

Forget the brining, deep frying, and voodoo.  Here’s what makes a tender, juicy, roasted turkey:

  • Remove giblets, etc., rinse turkey inside and out.  Pat dry.
  • Place in large roasting pan and brush on a thin coat of olive oil (I use extra virgin).
  • Generously season with freshly grated sea salt, black pepper, herbs (I use italian – oregano, basil, thyme, rosemary, margoram).  I put enough herbs over it that it’s practically coated.  (It’s a big, fat bird.  It can handle it.)
  • Place pats of butter on the bird.  I place 3-4 over the highest part of the breast, plus a couple of the legs, and any prominent points.
  • Cover with a loose dome of tin foil (my grandmother’s secret to a juicy turkey).
  • Roast at 325 degrees according to times listed on the label.  (Butterball.com has a great chart on their website.)
  • 30 minutes before the turkey is fully cooked, remove the tin foil, allowing the bird to brown nicely.
  • When finished cooking, let the turkey cool, recovered by the tin foil, for about 15 minutes.
  • Enjoy.

Follow these 5 steps, and when you finish them, as you sit around the table, enjoying conversation and the last bits of pie, you’ll be relaxed enough to enjoy it all.

Happy Thanksgiving,

Virginia

 

 

 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 494 other followers