What's Going On Behind The Scenes

As we go into the weekend, I'd love to share some behind-the-scenes blog happenings with you all. One of the most exciting things going on is that my blog is getting a facelift! A new website design by Katelyn Brooke is on its way - she created this moodboard before starting into the new design to make sure that we were on the same page in terms of my new blog's style. She nailed it!

My new logo was designed by Kelly Christine Studio - it has clean lines and a feel of simple elegance that is just what I was looking for:

I also got a photographer involved in the gig. She was super patient and didn't charge me a dime. Many thanks to my oldest daughter for my new blog photo:
And I'm switching to a new blogging platform and will no longer have Google Friend Connect on my new site so if you've been following my blog that way, now would be a good time to subscribe for notifications of new posts by email instead. You can do that here:

Subscribe by email:

In other behind-the-scenes news, I've been trying to finish up some projects that stalled out over the summer. It's been almost six months since I decided to replace my fireplace tile but I still haven't found "the one". I'm determined to not have to decorate around that old blue tile again for Christmas so I'm on a mission to get it done asap. I'm loving the options for patterned cement tiles that I've recently discovered - this one might be a winner - so gorgeous!
{Cement Tile Shop}
I'm also back to working on the finishing touches of our home office. After striking out on finding pre-made drapes, I've been searching and searching for the right fabric to make my own. I even took a trip to the mothership of fabric stores - Mood in NYC. I was surprised to find that their home dec fabrics were in a new space below the main store and everything was hung up and organized. (A huge difference from the crazy stacks and stacks of fabric in the rest of Mood).   
I found fabrics for several other projects at Mood but nothing for my office drapes. But I just ordered a sample of a fabric that I'm thinking might be it. Fingers crossed.

And while clothes shopping isn't nearly as fun for me as shopping for my home, my girls and I have been doing a bunch of shopping this week since clothing is tax-free in CT through Saturday. I've had some great luck at Banana Republic lately. Between a shopping trip there before we went on our Florida vacation and a second one this week, I came home with these five great pieces: 
navy dress / necklace / jacketlace top / striped dress
The navy dress was the biggest surprise of the bunch - it looks kinda boring on the hanger but is so flattering when you try it on and it's a great piece to accessorize with a fun necklace. But my favorite is definitely the hacking jacket - I'm pretty sure that I'm going to live in it this fall. The back of the collar is a cream colored wool and it looks so cute when you pop it up! #80sflashback But friends don't let friends pay full price at Banana. They have 40% off all of the time - right now there is a 40% off online-only discount with the code BRGET40 through Sunday 8/24/14.

And before signing off for the weekend, I wanted to share one other piece of fun behind-the-scene news. My friend Kimberly (remember, the girl with the amazing taste who designed this killer office) is hosting a girls-only VIP trip to Round Top Antiques Week in Texas this September. The trip includes a stay in a beautiful nearby farmhouse complete with swimming pool and hired chef as well as insider tips and discounts for shopping Round Top. And the best part is that Kimberly will personally help you scour her favorite Round Top spots and find the treasures that you're looking for. 
You can find more information about this amazing opportunity {here}. Please go so I can live vicariously through you :)

Hope you all have a great weekend - we are going to be living up our last few days of summer before it's back to the routine with the start of school on Monday. See you next week!
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A New Fire Pit for Our Back Patio

There are so many reasons why I'm sad to see this summer come to an end - one of them is that the weather has been amazing week after week. Sitting outside on our patio to enjoy a cup of coffee on weekend mornings and eating dinner at our patio table in the evenings without the typical summer heat and humidity has been a true treat. But I know that colder weather is around the corner (but please. pretty please. don't let it be like last winter...) and we've enjoyed our patio so much that we'd love to keep using it as long as we can. So with that in mind, I've started hunting for a great fire pit.  

Before I show you the fire pits I've found so far (because maybe you're on the search for one too!), I'd love to show you where it will be going. You can consider this a "before" tour because I haven't done a single thing to our patio since we moved in a year ago. No pillows, no cute side tables, nada. But I've got some great bones to work with as far as the patio itself.

You can step right out onto the patio from our kitchen but there's also a stone walkway leading to it from the side of the house. Hope will lead the way...
My husband is our resident landscaper - he deserves props for keeping those boxwoods framing the patio beautifully shaped:
This is where the fire pit will go - surrounded by these four chairs in place of the coffee table:

You all know my decorating style pretty well by now so it probably won't surprise you that I'm looking for a fire pit with a simple design and rustic elegance. My favorite is this Iron Oxide Patina Wood Burning Fireplace from Lowe's - the flat ring around it would be perfect for resting happy hour cocktails! The only problem is the price - maybe it will go on clearance?
I also found some great copper fire pits that would develop a beautiful, weathered patina over time. And they're reasonably priced. My favorites are Amazon's Hand Hammered Copper Fire Pit:
and Target's Smith & Hawken Copper Cauldron Fire Bowl (currently on clearance at under $160):
The best steel fire pit I've come across is Target's Woodland Fire Bowl, which is about the same price:
I'm looking for a wood burning fire pit but if any of you are looking for one fueled by propane I love these two options from Restoration Hardware - their Woodgrain Propane Fire Table, which is cast from cement to look like stacked rough-hewn beams, is beautiful:
and their Lava Rock Propane Fire Bowl is also right up my alley:
So what do you think - are any of these looking like "the one" to you? Now that I've narrowed it down to these favorites, I'm leaving the final decision to Mr. Driven By Decor so help the man out with your input, would you?!
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Shopping For Lighting: A Fabulous Online Source

When I'm designing a room, one of the first things that I think about is lighting - the right amount of lighting and a showstopping fixture can make all the difference! You all know me well enough by now to have figured out that I'm perpetually either redoing a room in my house or helping someone else make over their own space - which means that I'm always on the hunt for fabulous lighting.  And when I find a new source for lighting with a huge selection and reasonable prices, that's something I'm going to share. So I'd love to introduce you to Farrey's Lighting and Bath.

Farrey's has some truly fabulous fixtures. And just as importantly, they are a very reputable online source with an A+ rating by the Better Business Bureau, a 110% low price guarantee, no hassle returns (no restocking fees), and free shipping on most orders.

So let's get on to the fun stuff - ogling all of the beautiful fixtures from Farrey's starting with their chandeliers - these are a few of my favorites:
1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9
And if you're looking for fabulous swing arm lamps (I'm obsessed with these!) or sconces, check out these beauties:
1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10

You'll also find pendants, ceiling fans, table lamps, floor lampsflush mounts, and every other type of lighting you may be looking for:
1 / 2 / 3 / 4 / 5 / 6 / 7 / 8 / 9 / 10
So what do you think - beautiful stuff, right? Do you have any favorites??

This post was sponsored by Farrey's but all opinions about their lighting are completely my own!
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