Sunday, February 24, 2008

Pretty Spring Finds at Moving Designz...

Moving Designz Home & Cottage. Treat yourself to a beautiful home, with our lovely Spring finds.

For this weeks blog I decided to take some shots of our pretty instore displays. We've been busy for the past few weeks rearranging things for a fresh spring look. 'Cause sooner or later spring is bound to arrive. Hopefully sooner as this winter has been dragging on and on. We are so ready for spring and summer. In this picture (above) is our black and white corner with hits of pretty pink. We have some stunning vases and containers with a pretty black floral motif on them. Nice black felt bags with a damask print perfect as shoe bags, gift bags or little tote bags. They look very chic and pretty with demin outfits.

We've brought in lots and lots of seashells. This is a good example of how to do a nice looking and very simple arrangement using lady finger starfish, seashells, glass and pretty ceramics. We have another shipment due in March of lady finger starfish dyed in soft pretty shades of pink, blue, yellow and lilac. Also coming with that shipment is tree coral branches, which are really hip these days, and tiny little starfish. Note the tiny little blue ceramic birds, they've been flying off the shelves, parden the pun :)

We did this tablescape featuring bright yellows and robin egg blues. A couple this years hottest colour combinations. So fresh, so very pretty!

This display features our very popular fishplates a few of our silver starfish for that hit of bling. Also available silver sea urchins and little silver 3D starfish.

I love the pretty damask patterned teacup sets. They have a real vintage yet modern feel. I brought a set home and they are really nice to drink out of. We also have a really good assortment of placemats and some pretty coastal inspired dishes. It's a little hard to make out but the stack of little dishes have a starfish embossed in them. Perfect for little serving dishes or in the bathroom to hold soap. I also think they would make a great little dish to hold earrings or jewellery.

I love these frosted vases. They look very pretty with a votive candle or tealight burning inside. The branchy motif is very popular this season.

Above is our chocolate and pink table. Featuring Wildly Delicious Chocolate Sauces and Fondue Sets. The perfect hostess gift to bring to dinner. The pretty pink magnolia stems are brand new in the store.

More of our pretty fish inspired serving dishes. Aren't they adorable?

This is a sample of our new McBlooms Body Care display in pretty blue gift bags. These creams and candles smell heavenly, not too strong just perfect. The little green box with the white polka dots are filled with long candle matches.

Sheri put this display together on Friday. We have lots of seaside inspired accessories and artwork. The cream candle on the glass pillar stand is wrapped in strands of tiny little seashells. I think they are way too pretty to light, best just to put on display.

More of our line of green, blue and cream serving dishes with little shell balls tucked inside. I wish this picture was a little larger so you could get a good look at the white resin art plaques. These 3D beauties feature an image of a peony. One of my favorite flowers. I have 2 great peony shrubs in my yard, one is white and the other is hot pink. I love cutting them and bringing them into the house, this year I can bring them into the store for everyone to enjoy.

We have a good selection of these lovely glass cannisters. These are perfect for accessorizing your bathrooms, kitchens or laundry rooms. You can't flip through a design magazine these days without seeing them on the pages. Functional, pretty and inexpensive.

Here we are the shopgirls of Moving Designz. Me (in the back), Sheri (in front of me) and Stacy(to my right).

Thanks for reading, number of times I used pretty 13 :)

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Rooms that make me go hmmm...

I finally figured out the art of adding images to my blog. And it wasn't that hard I was just doing it the wrong way. I'll call it a blonde moment. Add pictures first, then add text, presto to a colourful blog. So from here on in I hope you will find my blog post much more interesting. I love looking at images of beautiful rooms. Today's posting is all about the bedroom, afterall we spend a great part of our lives sleeping and why not do it in style? I feel bedrooms should be private sanctuaries and these are some of the best designs I've seen.

These are rooms I just love and are easily achievable. And for me the best part of it is all of these rooms contain product, furniture and accessories that we carry or can order at Moving Designz.

Room 1. I'm calling this one upholstered chic. At the store our bedroom vignette is almost exactly like this room. If you like this room stop in for the button tufted headboard which we carry and can have custom made for you in numerous beautiful fabric choices. The glass side table and the crystal table lamp are very similar to products we carry. The lamp has proven to be a best seller for us, it's simple and beautiful.

Room 2. Doesn't this room invoke feelings of a coastal hideway bedroom? I love it. Note how simple the mantle arrangement is. This image has me wondering what is outside the french doors. I'll assume it's a beautiful deck and a stunning view to the sea.

Room 3. Another great example of light and airy done to perfection. It's the simplicity of the room that really gets me here. The all white palette is hot hot hot and a definite design do. Add some hits of colour on the bedding and voila, simple chic. Having the all white background makes this room the perfect backdrop to any number of your favorite colour combinations that you may choose to change from season to season. I could envision changing out the quilt for a faux fur throw and changing the bolster to a sumptious velvet for a cosy, warm winter feel. The chandelier here is simply amazing. We have a new line of light fixtures and if you like this one, talk to us about ordering a similar one for you.

Room 4. For those of you who love neutral this is builders beige done right. The wall colour could be Benjamin Moore Monterey Tan or Butter Cream. The contrast of the dark wood tones and the frames on the artwork really make this room feel indulgent and rich. Again we see that the bedding is kept light and the colour is added with the use of throw pillows and tailored bedshams.

Room 5. Talk about focal point. Don't you just love the mirror over the bed. I ordered several of these from The Gift Show, they should be arriving later in the month. Aged gold is a really hot finish right now. As is the circular starburst motif. The pale walls, bedding and then the richness of the bed frame are all in stark contract with the walls. Over and over again we see pale bedding contrasted with pretty throw pillows.

Room 6. In this room we are seeing the poster bed again which is another hot look. The quilted bedding is another product we carry if this look is something you like. We also have the exact same table lamp which comes in 2 finishes, silver or oil brushed bronze. I like the way they placed the artwork over the headboard. Visually your artwork should take up about 2/3 of the space and be hung 5-6" above the headboard to create balance and symetry.

Bedroom 7. Another upholstered headboard, this time with nail head stud detail. If you have a room with your bed placed between 2 windows this is how to make it work. I like the hotel chic bedding with the simple embroidered edges. We carry this bedding at the store in 7 different colours. I like how they've added so many rich layers and detail to this room. The balance is perfect.

I hope you've enjoyed and have been inspired with these beautiful room images. What I like the best of all, is that these rooms are decorated in a classic style. None of these rooms are trendy which means these looks will last for years. In the market new bedroom, view our suppliers website

So after looking at all of these beautiful rooms I have to ask the question, which is your favorite and why?


Friday, February 15, 2008

Designer Daze

I hope you all enjoyed my Valentines post. I enjoyed writing it. I thought it might be interesting to write a post on what a typical day is like for me at Moving Designz. I think it was last month when I read how 3 different designers from across Canada spent their days in Canadian House and Home. So I figure why not share with the group? :)

Today is Friday and the end of a long week full of interesting projects, people and new product coming into store...

To start my day I get going a little late, after all it is Friday. I never feel that guilty about getting up late anymore. Once upon a time I did but working 7 days a week I feel I am allowed to enjoy the luxury of walking in late now and again, afterall I am the boss. At least I think I am. Oh what the heck, might as well say it out loud, I am the boss.

The first thing I do every morning is go for my coffee hit/high. It's totally and I mean totally impossible for me to start any day without having 1-2 cups to get me going. I need my caffeine fix, doesn't everybody?

I'm just starting to get myself going with 1 cup under my belt when my cell phone rings at home. It's Sheri (who by the way is always ontime, I'm so lucky because at times I feel I was just born late, I think she knows that by now). Sorry, I digress.

The phone call is from clients who I was supposed to be meeting with next week. Yesterday I left them a phone message asking if it would be possible to meet at their home 10:00am today to review fabrics I've picked out for window treatments and upholstery. (yesterday I was trying to get ahead of the game). I did not hear back from them by the end of my day yesterday so I did not book them in or plan on meeting them. I get their phone number and call them and explain that since it wasn't booked I wouldn't be able to make this morning. Fire out... on to second coffee.

Now that my cylinders are all fired up it's time to head to work. Walk in late 10:30am, people are in the store so I sneak into my office unseen by most and get on to todays business. First up, check email, respond to emails, look at stack of pink message slips on my very cluttered desk. Then I immediately start prioritizing what to do first . This is a hard step but totally necessary.

Once I have this part of my day under control I head out to see what's up in the store this morning and say Hi to Sheri ( who knows I've snuck in thanks to the chime from the back door announcing my arrival). Sales are good so far this morning despite the weather. The store empties out, so we take out the fabric books and analyze my choices,with Sheri, for next weeks clients( the ones from this morning). It's always helpful to me to have a second opinion especially an agreeable one :)

We spend some time reviewing them because they all work and are so beautiful. I call my seamstress and get what I call a guesstimate on the cost of the estimated cost of labour and material for this project. This is a very important step and will be followed up by a proper quote in writing. Getting the numbers on paper and in writing is essential to CYA. Designer lingo for CYA = cover your a#$.

11:30, Yesterdays clients come in to return samples, ask a few more questions and clarification on what we are doing at their home and also their second home. Both homes I've been involved with over the past month. This not so little project started out with choosing finishing details for their cottage but now they are also updating their primary residence and needed more advice. Very nice people, it's a pleasure to work with them. They like everything and that's always a good thing.

12:30, clients leave, Sheri goes for lunch and I take over in store for the next hour. People come and go and I hear stories of what the are doing in their homes and help choose accessories for this and for that. It's really nice meeting people and sending them home with lovely things. No time to return calls. No time to do paperwork.

1:30, Sheri's back, so it's my turn to go and have lunch. Head home, down the treacherous driveway and grab a quick bite. With the weather we've been having my driveway is pure ice, all 300' of it. Getting to the door in high heels is a task in itself! Thank heavens for my butler greeting me at the door with a glass of Pinot Noir and a gourmet lunch. He's such a gem. Just Kidding. Eat quick( leftovers), let dog out and in. Must get back to work for 2pm. I have to get ready for 2:30 appointment in the design center.

2:oopm, Stop at Tim Hortons on way to work, one more caffeine fix to really get me going. I'll have one medium double double please.

2:10, Back at work and hurriedly getting all samples together, along with pricing lists. I have 20 minutes to get my thoughts and plan together and prepare for this meeting. (check email again). In reality, I have been preparing for this all week and coming up with a really cool design plan for this client. She is a friend, a physician and one of the most sincere people I know. I like her and want to make her new office space unique. Mail comes, I receive package of curtain rings for Monday's client. These curtain rings are a story in themselves and I'm not even going to go there. Problems with curtain rings are never good.

2:35, In she walks relatively ontime, after all she is a busy lady and she is on call today. I am amazed she's not later which I had fully expected. She's another lady who launches. LWL. (thanks Nancy Beth). Our meeting is a long one. Lots of decisions, her new space is going to be great. I think having these decisions made will make her life easier.

4:35, Meeting over. Hey, it's Friday and I had a thought I might be able to escape early but since I know we're on a tight time frame I figure I better get this project's Finish Schedule together. One more thing to cross off the list. I like crossing things off my list, lists are important to me and crossing things off the list works for me. For the next couple of hours work on Finish Schedule and furnishings quote. Compose email, attach spreadsheet, send email, and it's time... to go.

6:15, Done the week is over, my day is over, maybe? Leave office, go to store(and I'm not going to say which one but it is Friday night afterall), driveby to check out our latest display window. Feel it might need a little tweaking, pull back in, rearrange window display. I really am too much of a perfectionist. And I know this... but knowing this about myself does not stop the behavior.

7:15, Have one last look around, turn off computer, set alarm, shut off lights, exit back door, head home.

I love my job and enjoy every hectic minute of it and this is my typical day. Tomorrow, yes, I will go back in at my leisure, I must clear my desk and get a head start on next week...

I wonder what my butler will prepare for breakfast...

Have a great weekend!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Fun with Chocolate

It wouldn't be Valentines Day without thinking about chocolate. The food of love.

Initially I wanted to write this weeks blog about that delectable sweetness called "chocolate" and how we are putting our best chocolate treats on sale just in time to give to your loved ones and sweeties. ( I'll cover our sale at the bottom of the blog) Then I began doing a little online research about chocolate and what I was reading was not only interesting but was putting a big old smile on my face. Did I tell you I love the internet? The things one can learn from good health news to funny quotes, jokes, the history of chocolate, and the sexiness of it all. I'm going to share some of the favorite things I've discovered about chocolate.
Enjoy all things Chocolate!

Making healthy eating choices. Chocolate is good for you... yes it is.

Dark chocolate possesses the highest antioxidant content of any food. Chocolates contain iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and, in milk chocolate, calcium. But it is the antioxidants and the flavonoids which boost good HDL cholesterol levels. Green tea, black tea, red wine, and blueberries all contain flavonoids, but none are as high as chocolate. One ounce a day is enough.

Chocolate is a Vegetable: chocolate is derived from cocoa beans. Bean = vegetable. Sugar is derived from either sugar cane or sugar beets. Both are plants, which places them in the vegetable category. Thus, chocolate is a vegetable. To go one step further, chocolate candy bars also contain milk, which is dairy. So chocolate bars are in reality a health food. :)

Chemically speaking, chocolate really is the world's perfect food. - Michael Levine, nutrition researcher.

There are four basic food groups: milk chocolate, dark chocolate, white chocolate, and chocolate truffles.

What famous people have to say about chocolate.

After about 20 years of marriage, I'm finally starting to scratch the surface of that one [what women want]. And I think the answer lies somewhere between conversation and chocolate. - Mel Gibson

Biochemically, love is just like eating large amounts of chocolate. - John Milton, actor in The Devils Advocate

Let us celebrate our agreement with the adding of chocolate to milk. - Homer Simpson

I probably have some sort of chocolate five times a week. There's definitely a change it does to the chemistry of the body. It's my favorite feeling. I live for it. - John Travolta

I never met a chocolate I didn't like. - Counselor Deanna Troi, Star Trek: The Next Generation

I owe it all to little chocolate donuts. - John Belushi

Chocolate one liners

Do not Disturb! Chocolate fantasy in progress.

Nothing chocolate.... Nothing gained.

Here, have some chocolate. Feel better now?

Coffee, chocolate, men... some things are just better rich.

Chocolate jokes

For the serious chocoholic, chocolate is better than sex. If you believe that, you REALLY need to meet that special someone who can change your mind. If you HAVE met that special someone and still believe that, I REALLY NEED to know you get your chocolate!

A man found a bottle on the beach. He opened it and out popped a genie, who gave the man three wishes. The man wished for a million dollars, and poof! There was a million dollars. Then he wished for a convertible, and poof! There was a convertible. And then, he wished he could be irresistible to all women... Poof! He turned into a box of chocolates.

An elderly man lay dying in his bed. In death's agony, he suddenly smelled the aroma of his favorite chocolate chip cookies wafting up the stairs. Gathering his remaining strength, he lifted himself from the bed. He slowly made his way out of the bedroom, and, with even greater effort, forced himself down the stairs, gripping the railing with both hands. With labored breath, he leaned against the door, gazing into the kitchen.Were it not for death's agony, he would have thought himself already in heaven: there, spread out on the kitchen table, were hundreds of his favorite chocolate chip cookies.Mustering one final effort, he threw himself toward the table. His aged and withered hand painstakingly made its way toward a cookie when it was suddenly smacked by a spatula."Stay out of those," said his wife, "they're for the funeral." (I know this one is in bad taste but doesn't it make you smile? )

Put the chocolate in the bag and nobody gets hurt.

Historic facts on chocolate... thank you ancient Mexico

Chocolate history starts out in Latin America, where cacao trees grow wild.

The first people known to have made chocolate were the ancient cultures of Mexico and Central America. These people, including the Maya and Aztec, mixed ground cacao seeds with various seasonings to make a spicy, frothy drink. ( Is it any wonder that my favorite country to visit is Mexico?)

Those gory scenes in Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘Psycho’, were all about the all chocolate syrup! Wasn't fake blood, it was sweet old chocolate. Although the scene finishes in about 45 seconds, it took 7 days to get that shot done perfectly!

Here’s another fact. Not just 10 or 50 but chocolate remarkably has over 500 flavors in it! No wonder it tastes so good.

Chocolate and Sex

I couldn't end this blog without touching on the percieved aphrodisaic powers of chocolate. I looked again to the internet to find some answers... first we begin again with the ancient Mexicans.

Heard of Mexican Emperor Montezuma? He drank liquid chocolate before getting busy in his harem.

So does it have magical powers on our libitos? I very randomly took this off a site debating its effects. I'll let you decide.

Despite scientific difficulty in proving chocolate an aphrodisiac, it does contain substances that increase energy, stamina, and feelings of well being. The reality is that chocolate makes you feel good and induces feelings of being in love. Everyone appreciates receiving a gift of chocolate from a loved one because it makes you feel loved. Perhaps the historic euphemism associated with chocolate is what really provokes people to feel it is an aphrodisiac.

On sale at Moving Designz this week you will find our Wildly Delicious Chocolate Enrobing Sauces, Saxon Dark Chocolate Bark and Luxe Chocolate Fondue Sets all at 20% off.

Thanks for reading and a very Happy And Chocolaty Valentines Day to all!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Living a Colourful Life

So, it's been a few days since I've been back from the big city and our buying adventure at The CGTA show. Well, what a trip! I'm totally excited with all the wonderful things we saw. This show was one of the best I have been to in the last couple of years.

I bought a lot of stuff and gals, that was just at the mall. No I'm kidding, no really I am not. I had to take some time to buy not only great stuff for the store but some nice things for yours truly. Nothing like going to the mall in the big city... I highly recommend Sherway Gardens when you're staying in a location near Pearson Airport, like we were. It's well worth the $20 cab fare.

Back to the show... The emergence of colourful accessories in home furnishings is all the rage. The green movement is in full force with lots of pretty natural greens and enviromentally friendly products. Yellows, blues and reds are also very hot, hot, hot. And brown is still going strong as the new black. We saw quite a few bright orange accessories, as well, but I find bright orange a little hard to do in most spaces so I passed on that. However, I did find that I really liked the newest take on orange, which is a very pretty coral colour, expect to see it at Moving Designz.

We also have decided to upgrade our girlie department and we're bringing on the glam after the success we had with the pretty girlie accessories we brought in at Christmastime. Afterall who doesn't like pretty things?

This means delectable lip balms, hand and body creams, soaps and the most amazing smelling candles. We picked up a line called McBlooms, check out their website at The scent is amazing, pure and fresh, not too purfumey (is that a word?). And the coolest thing is the packaging, done in Moving Designz in-store colours. Think Lemongrass and Ocean Air. We love it!

All us gals need jewelry, right? 'Cause look out we are bringing in the bling! Lovely, lovely jewelry. We just couldn't resist and I am so excited at these finds. Cool, sparkly necklaces with pendants to complete your outfits. We also ordered stunning wide 1" bangle bracelets made from mother of pearl in hints of pink, blue, yellow, cream and white. If these go well and I fully expect they will we'll be going full on with more.

Oh and not to be forgotten, we also picked up the coolest caps around. Tired of wearing ordinary ballcaps? So were we... so we are bringing in the best alternative we could find. Our ballcap/hats are going to blow you away. Moving Designz caps are hip and chic and will hide all those bad hair days with style and glam.

I know what you all are thinking, did you get the goods for our houses? Yes, we did. Beautiful duvet cover sets, luxurious hotel chic bedding, and cozy coverlets. Colour, colour, colour! Solid wood occasional pieces, coastal inspired accessories, colourful glassware, candles, side tables, vases, artwork, mirrors, plates, orbs, and all sorts of wonderful finds. I actually shopped 'til I dropped and then some. It's crazy when you forget all the things you bought but at the end of everyday I knew WE DID GOOD.

Most of this spring collection will be arriving on a weekly basis. We've already been busy rearranging the store to accomodate all the new stuff.

For you who follow the weather here on PEI and read my rantings on the weather, I missed the ice storm. While away, at my home, there was no power for 2 and a half days. We lost quite a few tree branches but all in all we were lucky to come out relatively unscathed. I was so glad to be all cozied up in my Toronto hotel room. And the thought of coming home to no electricity isn't exactly appealing. On the flight home I sat with a Canadian celebrity/icon of daytime television which turned out to be pretty interesting. He to lives here and travels to work each week so all in all it must be a pretty great place to live despite our winter weather. And he's a weatherman!

Thanks for reading. It's still snowing.