Sunday, July 10, 2011

It's the Little Things

It's the little things that bring beauty to a smaller home.  Large, flamboyant "stuff" is jarring and out of proportion in tight quarters.  Simple everyday objects are an especially beautiful way to add light and color to Jewel Box® spaces.

This morning I cut these white Anabelle hydrangeas and elephant hosta from my garden and arranged them in an old glass vase.  Fresh fruit from the grocery store sits on the black cabinet.  I especially appreciate this fleeting beauty which only lasts until my boys eat the fruit.
(Yes, that is me on the left taking this photo.)

The green hosta foliage highlights the vibrant white hydrangeas.

Don't be afraid to 'change things up'.  I often move my fruit platter from the bay window, to the dining room table and back to black cabinet in the course of a week. 

Simple kitchen dish towels can be inexpensive and practical works of art.  These lemon towels hang in my powder room above lemon scented soap brought back from Italy by a dear friend. 

Close up of kitchen dish towels used in my powder room.
A topiary on the powder room window ledge adds another touch of color and complements green lemon leaves in the dish towels.
Topiary reflected in the powder room mirror.
I firmly believe it is important to bring beauty into any space where you spend time.  Not only will it make you feel better, but you will be more productive.  These framed tulip postcards, hang on the wall of my small office.  The frames are from Blick Art and tulips are one of my favorite flowers.

The colors of this thin geode slice have always fascinated me.  Along with polished rocks found in my garden, this stone has followed me from job to job.  Here they rest on a black filing cabinet.
Geode and garden stones.
Photos I took of an old Alaskan copper mine, on a trip to visit my brother, hang above the file cabinet.

Close-up of copper mine.
And this is a favorite photo of the Amalfi.  Again in a simple black frame.

Amalfi photo detail.
A gorgeous paper weight I received from a good friend over 15 years ago occupies the corner of my desk. 
One of my favorite office accessories.
And of course, the most beautiful thing in my life, my family, is captured in photos on shelving directly across from my desk.

May you carry beauty into all the small spaces of your life!



  1. ... loved catching a glimpse into your lovely home genevieve...when we can place our friends in an actual place they seem so much closer as we think of them...not one note was false here...a truly beautiful home...and i must say your boys are indeed your real jewels...

  2. Your hydrangas are always soooo pretty. I picked a few last week from and they only lasted a day. Don't know why- I was so looking forward to at least a week of those glorious blossoms. Oh well - the Cosmos are making a grand appearance - I think I will just leave them alone!0

  3. Sure wish we were neighbors - our tastes are so similar. I love tulips and those anabelle's - I just clipped some from my yard today.

    Your postings brighten my days. Simple ways to present such beautiful things in our lives. I have a paperweight collection and you have inspired me to think about tucking them around the house rather than the group display on my antique desk.


  4. Oh Kelley, you are too nice about the hydrangeas! Let's see how long they last. Mine don't last that long in the house either.



  5. Laney, Your compliments mean so much because they so genuine! And I love the ellipses you use between phrases. Thanks for bringing your poetry to Jewel Box!


  6. It would be so much fun if we were neighbors. We have so much in common and our boys do too! How is their summer going?

    If you ever get a chance, send pictures of your paper weight collection. I'm sure everyone would like to see them.


  7. I would never have thought of bringing hosta leaves into the house, and I have several dozen hosta. I'll have to cut some tomorrow.

    Would it be possible to do a post on boys sharing a room? I have two boys who share, and although I know one of your sons is now off to college, I'm wondering if you have any tips to impart!

    Thank you!


  8. Hi Crystal,

    Thanks for stopping by. I've always liked using hosta foliage, as an add on to flowers or on its own for a simple green arrangement. Let me know how it works for you.

    And I will absolutely do a post with tips on children sharing a room. I've been meaning to do that for awhile.

    Thanks for your comment,


  9. "I often move my fruit platter from the bay window, to the dining room table and back to black cabinet in the course of a week." I think that when this is your best design tip, you need to take a blog break. Lol.

  10. Hi Anonymous, Yes, I publish both good and bad comments as something can be learned from most points of view. Re: moving the platter back and forth; often, once a location is found for an accessory or object, many people won't move it or use it even if it is better suited elsewhere for a short time, such as, a party or as part of a daily routine. And so my point about moving a piece around.

    Thanks for stopping by.

  11. Your home is so tasteful and lovely. I enjoyed seeing all your personal little treasures. So much nicer than going to Hobby Lobby and picking up random items. Could you share with us the color of paint you used in your bathroom? It is a nice, neutral backdrop for your accessories.

  12. Your home is so lovely and soothing. I enjoyed seeing all your little personal treasures. Much more meaningful than going to Hobby Lobby and purchasing random knicknacks. Would you mind sharing the paint color you used in your bathroom? It's such a nice, neutral backdrop for your accessories.