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    Sophie's Shoppe Blog

    Pillow Talk

    Pillow Talk

    There are so many ways to make a house look and feel like a home, and my favorite: PILLOWS!
    I probably love them so much because there are so many ways to play, from texture to color and print and everything in between.

    Shoot, some pillows even have sequins these days.

      
    First two inspiration images are from Kit Kemp's "A living Space" ($50.00) and currently in stock at the shoppe!

    If you were to walk into my home, you would see color everywhere. Color gives off a certain inviting and cozy warmth that I crave in a living environment.  I find color to not only be very inspiring but different patterns even give off a certain energy.

    Luckily, we've got some options at the shoppe that have been fun for us to play with when merchandising our various furniture pieces.

    I personally LOVE this complimentary color scheme on our "Bamboo & Rope Bench", now $438.

    Burnt Orange 20x20 Heirloom Velvet Pillows: $73 each

    Gold Albion 18x18 Pillow: $74

    Blue 20x20 Crochet Pillow: $142

    White 20x20 Woven Pillow: $97

    Green 22x22 Marni Mallard Pillow: 92

    Design books like "Fox-Nahem" ($60), "New Minimalism" ($24.95) and "Interior" ($65) offer countless inspiration and more subtle ideas.

    I love the idea of bringing in color with the decor and furniture itself.  Plus, check out the blanket.... I want to curl up on this couch ASAP. 

    Who knew greys could be so elegant...

    We did.

    18x18 Dip Dyed Pillow: $88

    White 20x20 Woven Pillow: $97

    20x20 Cream Crochet Pillow: $142 

    If these pictures didn't get you inspired to revamp your space, then I don't know what will! Remember, just have fun with it and listen to your intuition when deciding what will suit your space. 

     

    Flavor of the Week

    Flavor of the Week

    Recently I gave myself a personal challenge in hopes to gain some useful skills.  I want to be more comfortable in the kitchen and more knowledgeable about the ingredients I use.  The challenge was simple: find recipes that I can actually follow with ingredients that are easily attainable and realistic to have around.  None of this “1/2 teaspoon of cayenne paste” nonesene.... I mean, what even is that and will I really ever use it again or am I going to have a full bottle of ‘whatever it’s called’ expiring in my pantry?

    Despite the simplicity of my new challenge, progress has been slow because of social life, energy levels post-working all day, convienece, you name it.  But that’s the whole point...no more excuses and a lot more getting my pots and pans dirty! 
    I also personally believe that every cookbook should be filled with photos, if nothing more than to compare your own attempt at the dish, but half the appeal of food is in the presentation.  So as I was flipping through “Chloe Flavor” ($27.99) the image of the Corn Carbonara immediately caught my eye (pg 140).  I was sold after reading the recipe because I already had 9 out of the 10 ingredients in my pantry at home. Awesome!!!
    Seriously I fell in love with this cookbook because of how simple everything was laid out to be.  Such easy steps to follow all the way down to prepping the ingredients.  Everything was fresh which made it fun and felt good to cook with.  The only ingredient I had to buy was the cherry tomotoes and something about coming home with fresh produce already makes me feel more accomplished. 
    I used my stacking measuring cups to portion everything out and keep it simple to add one by one as the pasta cooked. (Hand-Painted Measuring Cups $24) I even puréed my own sauce to complete the Carbonara (and I’m definitely not the sauce-making type).  I mean it y’all...so easy!
    The finished product was nothing short of delicious.  I was very pleased to see a pot full of leftovers for my assured midnight snack and following lunches.  I recommend keeping a tea towel ($14) nearby to help with the handling of hot pans and the inevitable splash zone when straining the noodles.  I paired my pasta with potatoes and pan-seared salmon, because frankly, both needed to be cooked.  No complaints though, the combination made for a perfect dinner.  Who says you have to eat veggies everyday anyway? ....Don’t answer that.
    Anyways, I hope y’all enjoy and find something that inspires your next kitchen crusade!
    Check back to keep me accountable! :)

    Minty Fresh for Spring

    Minty Fresh for Spring

    Finally! The trees are full of leaves, the mornings are crisp and the days are warm. 
    It is FINALLY time for SPRING!
    I don’t know about you but for me, spring is all about being outside, taking in nature and its growth, and of course...cocktails. 
    I love this new self-watering herb kit the team discovered earlier this and started carrying here at the shoppe in time for spring! Choose your favorite...from mint, cilantro, basil, and parsley, each for $32!  These all-inclusive kits are not only super nifty and neat looking, they are spot on for the season!  Herbs need warm weather and lots of sunlight to be healthy so the timing is just about perfect to start growing some goodies.
    The setting up process is simple, but pay close attention to the directions.  Different seeds require different amounts of light and oxygen, so depending on which herb you are planting, you will want to heed the instructions to see which technique to use during the seeding step.  
       
    I LOVE plant life but couldn’t decide which herb to grow. With the weekend approaching, I flipped through a few cocktail cookbooks and got inspired by some of the yummiest looking recipes in a few of our new bar books. (“Forager’s Cocktails” $14.95) ( “The New Cocktail Hour” $22).  But if neither of those have any recipes to quench your thirst, we have tons more to choose from!
    Happy growing!!
    -jen

    Decorating your home with the natural benefits of plant life.

    Decorating with Plants

    Spring is in the air! With the sunshine out and warmer days ahead, it's always a welcomed transition to open all the doors and windows and feel the excitement of life bloom from those cold, dark winter days. It was our last new moon that I began weeding and tilling the garden, to prepare growing food for the Spring+ Summer. ....Snap peas, kale, swiss chard, lemon balm, bok choy... just a few of my favorites to add to any dish. I find that working and being around plants evokes a sense of serenity and oneness with nature.

    It's that sense of feeling that also has my house beaming with plants and bringing a liveliness to my space. House plants are good for your health; they release oxygen into your home, control humidity and purify the air. On top of all the health benefits, botanics are one of the hottest interior trends at the moment. One of my longest living plant babies is a standard Sophie's botanical: the Victorian Leaf Bird's Nest Fern ($21). This spider-like plant unfurls from the center up and brings a blooming brightness to any space. Mine loves the bright, indirect light it receives from the morning hours, in my kitchen. Moist soil is a must for these, so they require a little more TLC and in turn exudes a lot of life. 



    Other fantastic, and far less needy plants, are succulents! Everyone is talking about how these guys are making a come back. Listen y'all, they never went out of style! These low-maintenance plants are perfect for any smaller space that needs a pop of life and color. Avoid buying soft succulents; the hardier specimen, such as Echeveria or Sempervivum, are going to be much easier to keep alive. Did you know that most people kill succlents by over-watering them? The truth is, the more you neglect it, the more it thrives! Only water succulents when the soil is dry. Always *soak* the soil when watering; do not use a spray bottle. Most succulents do well in full or partial sun, but they love 30%-50% shade in the mid-summer heat. Indoors, they prefer a bright window, but if you see stretching or discoloration, they need more Vitamin-D. (aka: sunshine)... It might sound like a lot, but they truly tend to take care of themselves! Check out our 5-votive candle holder ($68) with the succulent+moss combo. This one is perfect for a dining room table or kitchen island!

    Looking for a plant that doesn't require much light or water? Check out the stylist ZZ Plant (Short for Zamioculcas Zamifolia) This African species is virtually industructable! Add it into one of our cute, small palm leaf ($28) or seagrass baskets and toss it on your desktop or next to the couch. It tolerates low light and minimal water well. This is the ideal plant for your low-light office. We know everyone is on the hunt for a plant like this.



    My all time favorite house plant is my tropical, birds of paradise plant. Well, it's more like a tree. I bought it at about 3'5" tall and it now towers over me at 6' ft. This one has what I like to call "elephant ear" leaves and sits like roayality in a bright, south-facing window, to receive optimal light. It's the focal point of my living room and is often the host of conversations.

    You find that living with plants will teach you how to create bespoke beautiful botanics for your home or even your office. It's perfect for those in an urban city, where outdoor space is limited and pollution levels are high; or for those who prefer to bring nature into their suburban homes. Caring for plants is a therapeutic and stress-relieving activity. I find that living with plants makes us more harmonious and brings life and stimulates creativity within the interior of our homes. Happy plants, happy home~

    xx,
    Zeen

    Living In Color

    Living In Color

    Let's talk about COLOR. It's unavoidable; color is in every crease of this colossal world. Rarely does something hold so much power, but color can literally change your mood, make food appear more appetizing and homes more inviting. Groups come together over color, from sports teams to slightly more rowdy gangs. Children ask Santa for the jumbo Crayola box, women ogle over the array of nail polishes at salons and men drool over the bright and shiny finishes of sports cars. Colors makes us feel things and color helps us express ourselves.

    As an artist, color is the coolest thing. And I don't just mean the greens and blues of the color wheel...

    For me, the creative process begins and ends with color, and the best part...it's all at my fingertips! I have always loved working with my hands, crafting and whatnot, but it is especially magical to have a clean canvas and a world of color to mix and play with. Each color can be so inspiring if you let it.

    I absolutely love this quote box at the shoppe right now ($342). Something about it makes me feel so whimsical and important, which is a feeling we all should know every now and then!  Even the creamy brown color palate makes me feel good. It is clean and full of potential and reminds me of home. 


    Speaking of home -- my studio proudly BURSTS with color, and I am lucky enough to have plenty of windows so the natural light can illuminate all the good stuff going on within those four walls! For me, inspiration comes from everywhere, and usually when I am least expecting it, but my studio space definitely sparks the most within me. All those colorful paints, posters, plants, and pictures just buzz with energy and get me excited to work on new projects. With all these components going on though, it is super important to stay organized, especially if I'm trying to be productive in said space. I love the chaos of my inspiration wall, which is really just a collage of images that move me or pique my interest, but my paints have a stricter setup...


    I'm a sucker for containers, so obviously my tin container (which conveniently has enough compartments to store each slice of the color wheel) is my most-used piece in the studio. (Tin container w/ compartments $78). Being able to see all the colors while having them organized and separated is a huge perk to the creative process, let me tell ya! 

    Art ( and life ) are supposed to be fun! Ultimately it is about what works best for you.  If you're a cheetah print person, go for it!!! Mix and match those prints as they fit and if you prefer to chill out with the cool colors, that's totally cool too. 

    It's about YOU.

    -jen