Posted by Cobi on Wednesday July 22, 2015 at 12:21 PM
We’ve all said it - “All I really need is a corner!” - and sometimes it’s true! For example, one little corner in the hub of a busy household can make all the difference in avoiding missed soccer games and unpaid bills.
We tarted up a just such a corner in a busy family home - have a look…
The ghost chair is warmed up with a cobistyle velvet and silk-look reversible pillow (14” x 20”) $50.00. And basic white cabinetry was dressed up with some smartly chosen accessories.
cobistyle lidded storage boxes in faux leather and gold trim keep loose papers neat but within reach. ($120.00 for a set of 2)
cobistyle natural grass storage boxes corral everything from rubber bands to house plants and bring some low-key, natural texture to the area. ($75.00 for set of 3 nesting)
The impact of grouped accessories in like colours is always more than the sum of their parts. This cobistyle resin inlay decorative box is the perfect colour match to the lamp and our eye picks that up immediately. (8” x 5” x 3” $80.00) The crisp white faux leather tray with gold trim looks polished and clean. (20” x 14” $120.00)
This cobistyle glass gourd lamp is a beautiful shade of earthy yellow that’s highlighted by its fresh white shade and Lucite base. Definitely a statement piece. ($250)
Of course I love it when form meets function and what could be more-so than with a tissue box cover! Necessity meet Style. ($37.00)
Command central - ready and dressed for action, sir!
cobistyle decorative accessories are available in the best boutiques across Canada. Let me know if you are looking for something in particular and we will try to find it in your city.
Posted by Cobi on Wednesday June 11, 2014 at 07:00 AM
I had to share this….it’s a table setting on display at the wholesaler I work with for my decorative accessory line.
They often set things up so that the retailers you shop with, get inspired for their displays. I thought this table was particularly well done…
You know how I love blue and white as a decorating scheme, both is porcelain and in textiles…
Well I think people often struggle with how to blend it in at home, but look how great it works here with beautiful neutral tableware similar to what many of us own.
It just pops against the white, wood, silver, stainless and natural fabrics.
This is a great lesson in how things often work together that don’t necessarily “match”.
So next time you’re setting a table and cursing you don’t have everything matching, try adding something a little unexpected. It may give you the biggest surprise.
The cobistyle items above are the blue and white porcelain pieces, large blue glass vessels, everlasting flowers, mercury glass votive holders and decorative cushions. They are for sale in boutiques across Canada. Just drop me a line if you need help finding something.
Posted by Cobi on Thursday February 20, 2014 at 10:30 PM
I was invited to do a ‘tablescape’ at the GTA Home Show this week.
Here are some pictures I took during set up…not the greatest setting and lighting but you’ll get the idea…
It was fun to see all of that cobistyle together in one spot!
The only thing that wasn’t cobistyle was the table and chairs which was kindly donated from Alta Moda Furniture.
We draped the table in cobistyle bedding from Sears. First we laid out two white Willow quilts and then on top, a Willow duvet cover which has a nice blue flange edge. The size of the king duvet cover was perfect for the table and it’s so fun to see all the blue and white porcelain mix with it.
We decided to break all of the blue and white with lots of green in the flowers and a few accessories.
Instead of place mats we used a lacquer tray at each place setting.
They come in two colours of blue and so we alternated them which brings more interest than if they were all the same.
Little natural touches like the raffia wrapped glasses, bamboo chopsticks and decorative twig balls also give the colour a rest.
I love seeing the jumbled mass of pattern - a kind of visual chaos that’s tamed by the limited colour palette.
I also love seeing the white porcelain birds chirping around the table.
If you get a chance, check out the table for real this weekend! And surely we’ll soon hear the birds for real too!
Dare I say, happy Spring decorating?
Posted by Cobi on Wednesday January 08, 2014 at 03:22 PM
I’ve always been inspired by family photo and art walls.
The sense of a collage is more visually exciting to the eye than the usual placement of one or two pictures.
These are some of my favourites.
When we redecorated our master bedroom last year, I had a large blank wall to fill between our two windows and decided it would be a great place to showcase some of my favourite family photos and art.
Rather than deal with the commitment of hanging things directly on the wall, I splurged on 3 IKEA pictures rails ($16.99 ea.) and hung them staggered on the wall.
Then I went to work framing some pictures and pieces that were lingering around our house.
I thought I’d want all matching frames originally but quickly realized the variety creates interest.
I’m really happy with the result and the fact that as the kids change I can add new shots.
Now I just wish I had more room!
Posted by Cobi on Monday November 18, 2013 at 06:00 AM
• cobistyle products
I’ve neglected our living room for the past few months. No point listing excuses why, but we use this room very little in the good-weather months and I guess it’s just too easy to ignore.
Once the winter comes I want to make it cozy and welcoming again and so the first thing to do is reorganize the book cases.
As you can see, Bob and I love our books and obviously I never really figured out what to do with all of them after a piano arrived in the living room last year. What a mess!!
And so a few weeks ago I started to cull. I got rid of ones that were just too dated or redundant.
And I added some of my favourite blue and white pieces from cobistyle.
The repetition of the blue and white porcelain breaks up the books and adds a nicely unified decorative element.
Plus I find blue and white looks great any time of year - with reds and oranges in the fall and at Christmas or with summery yellows and greens in the fair-weather months.
The ginger jars are not just pretty, but make sturdy bookends.
And I fill planters with either real plants or fake - depending on what’s on hand.
It definitely looks better when the books have a little breathing room and something pretty to break up the monotony.
Plus, I now have a nice big new donation to make to Goodwill!
Posted by Cobi on Monday December 03, 2012 at 06:00 AM
We all need a little inspiration sometimes. Enjoy!
Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St Nicholas soon would be there.
The children were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads.
And mamma in her ‘kerchief, and I in my cap,
Had just settled our brains for a long winter’s nap.
When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,
I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.
Away to the window I flew like a flash,
Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.
The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow
Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below.
When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer.
(I am so doing this for Bob!)
With a little old driver, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment it must be St Nick.
More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,
And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name!
“Now Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!
On, Comet! On, Cupid! on, on Donner and Sam (I couldn’t find anything with Blitzen on it)!
To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!
Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!”
As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,
When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.
So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,
With the sleigh full of Toys, and St Nicholas too.
And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof,
The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.
As I drew in my head, and was turning around,
Down the chimney St. Nicholas came with a bound.
He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,
And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.
A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,
And he looked like a peddler, just opening his pack.
His eyes-how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!
His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!
His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,
And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow.
The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,
And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.
He had a broad face and a little round belly,
That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly!
He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,
And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself!
A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,
Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.
He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,
And filled all the stockings, then turned with a jerk.
And laying his finger aside of his nose,
And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose!
He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard him exclaim, ‘ere he drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!”
Posted by Cobi on Monday November 05, 2012 at 05:59 AM
I’m so pleased to finally have my necklaces hung up and organized so I can see them!
I bought these hangers a long time ago and was waiting for our bedroom to be painted for me to hang them up.
I hung them behind our door which is in a small entry hall to the room.
The best part is that they’re out of the way but still visible. I’m terrible about buying things and never wearing them - hopefully this will help.
I know it isn’t an original idea but I kind of thought it was a bit unique, until I went on the internet (of course), where I found necklaces hung on shower curtain hooks on drapery rods…
On fabric covered boards with tacks…
On all kinds of coat hooks…
On peg boards…
On an old rake head!…
And even as an artistic element in a room.
Oh well, I may not be unique but at least I’ll be wearing a nice necklace.
Posted by Cobi on Monday October 22, 2012 at 07:00 AM
Like most people, I have a love/hate relationship with luxury brands.
One point for the “love” side, is the packaging.
The colour and quality has such substance - a shock in our throw-away society.
Just as the Tiffany blue box has become an icon, so has the Hermes Orange box.
Designer-types are famous for reusing their orange boxes in their offices - to store things but also show off the number of purchases they’ve made at the famous store.
I have a few such boxes but prefer to keep them more hidden.
No, these are not my boxes (big sigh).
Mine are filled with ephemera….old birthday cards, paper souvenirs from weddings and funerals, special photos. Imagine 100 years from now, a great-grandchild will be going through the box, filled with this and that…
I also love the colour.
It’s an inspiration in decorating.
My friend and colleague, Cameron MacNeil, once did a story for House & Home magazines on matching paint colours to prestige packaging - he chose Fiesta Orange (27/701) from CIL to match the famous Hermes orange. I always thought a dressing or powder room would be amazing in it ~So daring, dahling!~
Martha Stewart did it in a hallway…
I love this more contemporary version…
As my own ode to the famous Hermes Orange, we did some wonderful leather-like accessories in cobistyle. A magazine or wastepaper bucket…
Tray (and coasters not shown)…
Perhaps Santa will bring you something in an Orange box this Christmas…or even better - some cobistyle!
Posted by Cobi on Monday August 27, 2012 at 07:00 AM
Summer decorating is special.
There’s a simple ease about it that makes us all say “ahhhh”….
I tend to think ‘country’ when I think summer…
But not everyone does. Some think ‘exotic’…
And far off places…
Even if they live in a downtown apartment.
But that’s the beauty of summer.
It is what you make it.
And hey - there’s still enough time to make this - one of the cutest, cheapest ideas I’ve seen in a long time!
Enjoy the last unofficial week of summer 2012!
Posted by Cobi on Monday August 13, 2012 at 06:59 AM
Ginger Jar: A Chinese porcelain jar with a wide mouth; domed lid and often a bulging, spherical body.
Although the Chinese traditionally used the jars to store a variety of goods, they acquired the name “ginger jars” because ginger was one of the most common spices exported to the West.
Today designers use ginger jars for display and decorating.
Of-the-moment American designer Ruthie Sommers chose this vignette for a recent portrait…gee, I wonder why? The mix of pretty blue and white porcelain, with powerful blue/black leather, is fresh and fun looking.
At this time of year, blue and white porcelain looks amazing outside, and it’s practical because it doesn’t rust or rot like metal and wood.
Of course it looks just as good inside loaded with blooms from the garden.
When buying a ginger jar, be sure to ask if it’s water tight so that you can remove the lid and use it as a vase.
What I love about blue and white porcelain is that it’s so quick to mingle. Look at it here in a rustic farmhouse setting…
And here in a contemporary, art-filled, classical home…
And here in a very traditional hallway….
Nothing phases blue and white - it’s like that friend who can mix equally well with royals and rebels alike.
Speaking of royals, Ralph Lauren has always used blue and white porcelain in his home line…
And I expect we will at cobistyle too. Here are just a few pieces in the current line:
Lots of pieces to mix and match…
Blue and white does love a party ~ it’s definitely at its best when grouped…
And with a classic decorating style like this, it looks like the Chinese will be exporting Ginger Jars for many years to come!
Posted by Cobi on Monday June 18, 2012 at 07:07 AM
What I like about the female brain is that it works laterally. Men would never get the idea of ‘Table Scarves’. But women do! We introduced Table Scarves into the cobistyle line this Spring and they’re a hit! Have a look:
Plus we all know women will shop anywhere for anything - home in a fashion store - fashion in a home store - who cares?
If it’s pretty - lay it on me - literally!
Of course we’re suggesting you use these gorgeous scarves on your table…
Or at parties…
They also look great over a chair…
But when the mood suits - make your table share! And wear it like you’re a 9’ model!
And like celebrity ‘it girl’ Sofia Vergara…
I love this pink/red combo from an American dept. store…
Our scarves tie great and are a generous size (bigger than this)…
They bring pop and pizazz to a plain outfit…
So what’s my home wearing this spring? Just let me check my closet…
And what am I wearing? Let me check my table. I knew you’d get it.
Posted by Cobi on Monday May 07, 2012 at 07:00 AM
My daughter became a teenager over the weekend. She loves anything to do with the arts but particularly music. Her main birthday gift is a piano (her little keyboard just ain’t cuttin’ it any more).
As I’ve been trying to figure out where to fit a piano into our home - I started to look online for inspiration. Of course the best inspiration comes from a grand…
And although our living room housed a ‘grand’ when we purchased the house.
I managed to fill up the room with furnishings so that the only realistic option is an upright upright (for the pocketbook too).
I expected most pianos to be black…
Or dark wood…
But on a quick search, I found every colour of the rainbow.
So many ideas, my ears are ringing. I will post a picture of our purchase once we have it and hope that you will all say, “Bravo!”
Posted by Cobi on Monday December 19, 2011 at 06:00 AM
I trust you’re all busy bees, creating…
…in your home this season.
If it’s like my place, it feels more like a hurricane.
Baubles and beads are hanging everywhere.
Even from the rooftops!
I might as well serve them up for dessert!
They’re in every nook and cranny!
Even a few disco balls have gotten in on the act - “you’ve gotta move your feet when you feel the beat!”…
But wait - what about something homemade?
There’s still time to needlepoint a pillow if we work all night!
Or at the very least, make a snowman and dress him just right!
Whatever you do this Christmas, remember to smile.
And don’t even THINK about escaping the Peace and Joy of Christmas.
You know you’d miss every crazy minute of it and so would I.
Posted by Cobi on Monday November 07, 2011 at 06:00 AM
I once read about a study that was done on how to get your kids to read. Was the key, reading to them every night? Making them read to you? Starting them young? What was the key to teaching kids the joy of reading? The scientists were very surprised to find that none of that mattered as much as one very simple thing. Having books in the house. By simple virtue of having books in the house - not even kids books - children turned out to be the biggest readers. The adults in the house didn’t even need to be huge readers themselves - it was simply the number of books in the house that made the difference. That being said, I can’t imagine a house full of books without an owner who loved to read. I imagine it’s just another life lesson of ‘actions speaking louder than words’. Kids or no kids, books are a wonderful addition to any house.
They not only add depth and character, but beauty as well.
I’ve always loved the idea of a ‘dining room/library’. It’s a great way to give a seldom-used dining room more purpose, and what a rich atmosphere in which to dine!
Black shelving is dramatic…
…but I’ll always be a sucker for white.
Bookshelves make for a double-duty room divider if you’re short of space.
And they provide a natural backdrop for bringing colour into a room.
For some, that means serious colour!
But for dabblers, books make wonderful pedestals for objets on tables…
Or on chairs…
And of course, coffee tables…
Books can even make a coffee table!
Or side table!
Books are a great way to warm up a mantle-scape…
Or fill in a big empty hole!
Wherever you choose to display your books, they’ll help make your house, a home, and it’s probably the easiest thing you’ll ever teach your kids.
Posted by Cobi on Sunday October 09, 2011 at 07:00 AM
If you’re hosting the turkey dinner tonight, have no fear - cute fall tabletop ideas are here!
This image is stunning. The orange paper lanterns look like giant pumpkins overhead and I love the idea of bringing tartan to the table through napkins and blankeys. We should all have a collection of old wool tartan blankets to pull out in the fall!
Here’s another cute idea - pull out old family photos to use instead of place cards. What a great way to get people to the table!
And enjoy memories of family no longer with us.
If you have a box of price tags from the dollar store - create instant place cards by slipping them over the stem of a pear.
If you don’t; a little piece of twine works well with any kind of tag and fruit…
No tags at all? How about metallic pen on an apple or pomegranate? See - no excuses not to tart up the table!
If you’re more of a ‘professional arrangement kinda gal’ just make sure it’s gorgeous and bountiful like this…
Or buy a bunch of mixed flowers at the grocery store and cut them really short to create your own arrangement…
I love this skinny table set with old and new pieces. Classic and lovely.
Here’s a fun little craft if you own carving tools - these gourd vase and bowl ideas are sweet…
If warm tones aren’t you, don’t despair - purple looks amazing with fall colours…
As does crimson! It’s fabulous and unexpected alongside yellows and golds…
Try using unexpected items on your table or convert things, like candle holders, into props and pedestals.
Head out to the garden for some branches - understated elegance in a glass vase.
Or just lay one beautiful branch at each place - Bittersweet is perfect…
No branches? How about a simple piece of raffia and a wooden bead? See … no excuses…
Fall foliage also looks amazing in a glass vase - no fuss, no muss, no cost.
And here’s a perfect kids table anyone can do with kraft paper, crayons, a few pears and pots…
If you aren’t hosting this year, don’t miss out - do up your mantle and light a crackling fire …
And then take a moment to give thanks for all of your many blessings…