Tuesday, August 4, 2015

My Farewell Post {on this blog}

This post has been a long time coming and I am so thrilled about what's to come! For quite some time, I have been thinking about switching my blog design and overall focus. I have used blogger for so long and it's been great. But I am now ready for a change! Since Amber B Design is my business, I have decided to organize and stream line things a bit better. My blog page will always be called Simple Dwellings. {I have a special place in my heart for that name.} But the overall site and main page will be more Amber B Design focused. I will continue blogging as a way to showcase my work or any time I want to check in and share. But my site will be focused on my business and will be organized in a more user friendly format. I have decided to switch to word press and I'm so excited to start using the beautiful features it has to offer.

If you are starting a business or want to add a more professional look to your existing on line presence, I suggest looking for talented people that can make your work shine. For me, that was hiring a web designer and photographer. Britt Douglas is the amazingly talented web designer I chose and I am so thrilled I did. She creates amazing work and I can't wait to show it all to you, soon! I met Britt a couple of years ago at Blog Podium. She is as sweet and down to earth as she is talented. I told her then, that I would love to have her design my new site. {See, I told you this was a long time coming. I have been thinking about this forever!}

I first found out about my photographer, Sarah Heppell, when I drove by her studio and saw her sign. I looked up her site and the rest was history. We met soon after and she came to our home and created photography magic. She is truly a talent!! Here are some more sneak peeks from the photo shoot at my home, that you will see on the new site:

All Photos by Sarah Heppell Photography

that's me looking productive!  :)

we ended the photo session with a carrot cake celebration!

It feels bitter sweet to say good bye to this blog, where it all started in 2011. But I know I am heading in the right direction for me and my business. I am excited for what's to come and I look forward to checking in with you all and sharing my design thoughts on the new site, very soon! I have added a new e-mail address, that will be the primary e-mail for the new site. It's amberbdesign@gmail.com. Feel free to write me an e-mail there, as it will be the main one from now on. This blog will still be up for some time, so feel free to check back and look at any of the pages you wish! I will make sure to announce when the new site is live. EEK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, July 17, 2015

Bringing the India Hicks Brand into your Home

Blogging can bring you a sense of community and friendship. By starting a blog, I have been able to "meet" like minded people who share the same passion for design that I have. With those common links already in play, it is easy to form quick bonds with people. I was recently contacted by one of my very first blog friends, Amy, about this amazing new opportunity she is now a part of. Amy was one of the first blog friends that reached out to me and asked if she could feature my home on her blog. I was so excited for that opportunity. And she might not even know this, but she was also one of the first that encouraged me to try my hand at e-design. And for that, she has always had a special place in my heart. So when she told me she was a rep for the new India Hicks brand and wanted to introduce me to some of the amazing new products, I jumped at the chance to reconnect and see what the products were all about. India Hicks is the daughter of famed interior designer, David Hicks, and has also made a name for herself in the design world. Here is a little bit about the company, as seen on the web site:

Our vision for the company is to share our exclusive range of well-crafted gifts, fragrances and accessories directly into the heart of the home, defying the traditional shopping experience, by selling these collections through networks of entrepreneurial women and our dynamic E-commerce site.

I love that India is the ambassador of this new brand and inspires women to become entrepreneurs themselves.

I am now the proud owner of the beautiful India Hicks Island Style book...

I cannot put this book down! The colorful, beautiful pages instantly sweeps you away on vacation. India and her family live on a small Bahamian island that is so inspiring and breathtaking to see! The interiors in this book instantly make you want to pack your bags and head to the coast.

I could just move into these serene rooms!

This party just looks so inviting and chic!

The Prince of Wales is India's godfather and also wrote the forward for the book. India was a bridesmaid (back row, third from left) and just wanted to be out of the fancy dress and back into her comfy jeans!

This gorgeous bedroom has the ever popular David Hicks La Fiorentina fabric on the front pillow and chair.

I could go on and on about my favorite images from this book. Also, the story behind life in the Bahamas is so amazing and would make a great summer read!

I am also now the proud owner of the stunning love token called 'Oyster.'

In Britain, it's a tradition to engrave coins to give to friends and loved ones. This has been in practice for over 400 years and it's actually the size of a British Pound coin! This jewelry piece has a heavy weight to it and is made so well. I chose the phrase 'the world is your oyster.' I have always loved that sentiment, because it reminds you to follow your dreams. I think it's important for my kids to always know that, too. This love token is just one of many special jewelry pieces available on the site! This token can be paired with any necklace you have, or you can choose one from the site, like THIS. To visit the site and do some shopping through Amy's page, start HERE. In addition to shopping, you might also find your next entrepreneurial career!

Thank you so much, Amy, for introducing me to this amazing and inspiring brand!

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Bathroom E-Design Reveal - Before & After!!

I am so excited to show you this before and after today! A while back, a wonderful e-design client, who I have worked with on some rooms before, contacted me about putting some love back into their downstairs half bathroom. She wanted a more serene, spa like vibe and was definitely ready for a change.


Short of changing the vanity mirror and pedestal sink, they pretty much replaced everything else! My clients couldn't wait to take the tile off the walls and floor. They were also looking to change the wall color and bring a softer, more modern look to the space. Here is the design plan I came up with...

The Design Plan

I knew that the new lighter wall color, stenciled top walls, wainscoted lower walls and new marble flooring were going to be the game changers. Everything else was the icing on the cake. Are you ready to see the afters?!?


Can you believe it's the same space? My clients worked extremely hard to make this bathroom reflect their style. They did the work themselves and did a phenomenal job!! The best compliment on Instagram was a reader asking if that was wallpaper. It's a stencil and you can purchase it HERE, in small. Thank you to my clients for allowing me to share their hard work. Bravo to you both!!

Friday, June 12, 2015

My Photo Shoot Reveal!! {Sneak Peek}

I am over the moon excited with how my recent photo shoot turned out, that I had to share some sneak peeks with you! Not too long ago, I decided to make some changes with Amber B Design. This summer, I will be getting a new web site and switching to word press. {If you have any experience one way or another with using word press, I'm all ears!} So with those new changes, comes a new look. I decided to reach out to a local Central New York photographer and see if she could come over and take some head shots as well as some photos of our home. I worked with Sarah Heppell, of Sarah Heppell Photography, and I'm so glad I did! She made me feel at ease throughout the whole process. I am not one for posing for pictures, so if she could make me look unafraid, she's a genius in my book! I will be waiting to show most of the photos for the new web site, but here are some amazing examples of her work...

All images below taken by Sarah Heppell Photography

Our Dining Room

Our Family Room

Our Living Room

Isn't she incredibly talented?!? I love how she can capture the simplest moments and turn them into something magical. I love how the vase of flowers in the dining room is in focus, while the background fades. I also love how she photographed the dinosaur that my son painted, when he was younger. :)

And here are some head shots that might make their way onto the new site, as well as onto my other social media accounts...

When we were taking the last picture, she said she wanted to make sure she didn't position me so that it looked like I had antlers coming out of my head. :) Right at ease! Well done, Sarah!

If you live in the CNY area and need a photographer for any reason, Sarah Heppell Photography is your girl! Visit her site HERE for more information!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

More Updates on #projectvintagegem !!

I am excited to show you even more recent updates over at #projectvintagegem. We have busy plugging away, installing items as they arrive and making this house into a home. It is such an amazing feat, getting to see a home from start to finish. When my client moved in, she was starting with a blank slate. Over the several months we have worked together, we have seen her style unfold into a place where she now feels at home. To start back from the beginning for this project, visit HERE. Here are the most recent updates...

In the master bedroom, the rug has arrived, along with the stump side table and new art...

The dresser mirror was also installed last week...

And the sconces are up on either side of the bed...

On the way into the foyer, you can see the new map art, as well as the wine rack vignette...

And the new leather swivel chair arrived in the living room...

Once the sectional and a few other accessories are in place, we will have a full reveal of this home, along with professionally photographed pictures! That part will be so exciting. And I know my client will finally breath a sigh of relief after all of her furniture arrives! She has been so patient through this process.

Thank you to my client for allowing me to share these pictures!

Friday, May 8, 2015

{Partial} Reveal of #projectvintagegem !!

I am so excited to share this partial reveal of #projectvintagegem today!! I went to my client's house earlier this week, to bring a carload full of accessories and items to style the place up. We are still waiting on a few key pieces before we call this project complete, but I had to share the amazing progress we made. It is always fun to look back at where the project began, so we can see just how much was accomplished so far. You can follow along from the beginning with the link #projectvintagegem or click HERE to see more of the back story of the apartment. Here are the dining and living rooms when I first visited her loft style apartment...


And here is the progress so far...


Excuse the grainy phone pictures! I promise better quality reveal photos when the project is complete! The buffet zone holds so many of her dishes, which was important with the tight cabinet space in the kitchen. Since we were not able to drill into the brick, I proposed we lean this oversized print on the buffet to ground the zone. I love the juxtaposition of this art with the lamps. The brass candlesticks were an antique find. I love the collected over time feel they bring to the space, even without candles inside. They add a sculptural punch on their own.

To the right of the buffet is the eating area. The new custom banquette has become a favorite spot for my client to sit. The plaid rug is everything in this space. Once the sofa and club chair arrive, you will be able to see the room as a whole and fully appreciate the power of this patterned rug.

This gorgeous console will go behind the sofa, once it arrives. If you follow me on instagram {amberbdesign}, you may have already seen these beautiful blue and white urns I found at Home Goods. This was the project I bought them for!! The small iron and marble table will go next to the leather club chair, once that arrives.

Above, is a little sneak peek of the hallway leading to the foyer. I love the oversized blue map art near the rustic brick!

For the master bedroom, we went for a calm, serene vibe.


The only thing that stayed in the bedroom was the bed. This is a fun transformation, getting to see the design board ideas come to life!


I hope my client enjoys relaxing in this space! We are still waiting on some items to arrive in here, such as: the dresser mirror, ottoman and side table for the arm chair and bed sconces. I also need to get back over there and finish steaming those linens! I cringe when I see the wrinkled duvet, but I will fix all that. :) We have come so far, starting with just the bed.

I hope you have enjoyed the partial reveal of #projectvintagegem !! More pictures to come... I promise!
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