ANTHRO-APOLOGIA

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Sorry, this post has nothing to do with defending Anthropologie. Who would want to read that? I just needed a snappy title that tied together Anthropologie and ancient Greek because I majored in Greek and Latin. Oh and because one of our past jobs snuck into Anthropologie’s new home catalog!

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Not only that. When asked what her favorite space she’s ever styled is, Anthro’s Kim Ficaro had this to say: “To be totally honest, after 10 years of doing this, my most favorite space was on this shoot! The first week we shot in a small house upstate. We made garlands of carnations—the most underrated flowers—and hung them in the attic rooms, which had beautiful peeling wallpaper. The downstairs room of the house was a pale grey and we created a living room that you could stay in all day, using lush plants and the carnation garlands.”

That’s the house we totally redid! We rescued that beautiful peeling wallpaper from layer upon layer of tacky grandma wallpaper (and plastered over the unsightly parts so the nice parts would appear beautifully peeling)! We plastered that living room pale grey. And we did a million other things, turning that grandma house into an Anthro-worthy backdrop.

We received zero credit, so forgive me for bragging here.

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GO WEST

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Well, it’s been almost eight months since our last blog update. Oops! So what have we been up to? In January, we found ourselves down in Tennessee redoing a kitchen for the lovely Beth Kirby (aka Local Milk). Then we headed back north to redo a big farmhouse in the Catskills. Photos of both projects on the way!

But more importantly, summer vacation! My mom and I had a chance to road-trip around Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, and New Mexico. Wow. What an absolutely breathtaking part of the country. It’s impossible not to take thousands of photos, but I did manage to edit them down some. Hope you enjoy as much as we enjoyed our time out there!

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A couple of bison grazing in the early morning Yellowstone fog. We woke up super early one morning hoping to see some wolves, but instead saw a grizzly playing in a tiny little snow patch by himself (through someone’s scope from about a mile away!) and also saw a ton of bison. Not “buffalo,” apparently–that was just an early nickname since they looked a bit like true buffalo from other parts of the world (water buffalo, etc). Who knew!

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The stunning view from the top of the stairs at Jackson Lake Lodge. The story goes that–back in the National Park system’s infancy, when the Tetons remained rather untouched and mostly in private hands, and the town of Jackson was in a sad state–John D. Rockefeller Jr. had a picnic lunch one day before this very same view. He was so blown away that he decided to buy up as much of the private land as he could (for later donation) and to build a hotel in just the right spot so that every visitor would be treated to the very same view upon arrival.

More from the Tetons, Bluff UT, the gorgeous Mabel Dodge Luhan House, and more after the jump!

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WE MADE THE LIST!

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We’re thrilled to have been chosen as one of Interior Design Magazine and Morpholio Board’s “15 Inspiring Designers to Follow on Instagram”! Let’s be honest: it’s the closest we’ll ever come to winning a design award, since you probably need to submit yourself for stuff like that and we just barely meet our deadlines as it is, even without extracurriculars. So we’re very flattered by any recognition!

Nominations for the list came from Annie Block, Deputy Editor at Interior Design Magazine, as well as Caroline Williamson, Managing Editor at Design Milk, Amy Azzarito, Managing Editor at Design*Sponge, Holly Becker, Founder of Decor8, and Diana Budds, Associate Editor at Dwell Magazine. The article celebrates the launch of “Board 2.0″, a new kind of platform for creatives of all types.

Check out the list over on Interior Design’s site here!

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A MERRY LITTLE EVERYTHING

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The day after Christmas has always been a little heart breaking to me. As a child, the thought of waiting 364 days until Santa returns was unbearable, but even as an adult, I can’t help but feel that something magical has vanished and suddenly all that’s left in its place is the thought that winter, the real bleakness of it, has only just begun. Sigh.

It’s so tempting to just curl up into bed with no honest plans to leave until Spring, but this year (like everything) I find myself wondering what I can do to make the cold days a little more bearable. But with a trip to Hawaii not in the works, and new snow boots waiting by the door to make their debut, I know that the only place the warmth is going to come from is a fire, the heat turned to full blast, or my own little shivering heart. Life in those precious weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas seems to be fueled by a frenzy of glitter and goodwill. People love to mumble about trimming trees and baking cookies and wrapping gifts for other people, but I have to believe that it’s part of the Christmas cheer equation. Hide behind your Grinch face if you must, but I know that tasting the first homemade cookie made you smile, especially if it was mom’s recipe, or maybe something new you came up with yourself. And there’s a reason that the tree looks a little more special when you go chop it down yourself, or when it’s hung with ornaments that each have a little story to tell. The more love you put in, the more love you get out. And that simple equation is the only thing that’s going to keep us warm for the next few months.

So hold your loved ones close. Treat yourself to a cup of hot chocolate and put extra marshmallows in for the 3 year old you once were. Stay up past midnight to watch the snow start falling, and spend an entire Saturday in your pajamas writing letters to your favorite people. Be in awe of yourself and the things that your two little hands can make. Take the time to create little moments of beauty, and most importantly, share them with everyone you can. Because with the days so dark and cold, we need all the light we can get.

And now, from me to you, some Christmas moments of beauty. And my most successful (and easiest!) shortbread recipe of the season.

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MINI-MAKEOVERS: Better with Kittens

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Yes, I used a cute kitten picture to lure you in. But it’s going to be totally worth it! We’ve been working on a mini-makeover the past few weeks, turning a barren apartment into a haven for a do-gooder client who absolutely deserves a place to relax at the end of the day. We finished up most of the work in the wee hours of the night, but I was able to snag some shots of the bedroom before the sun went down. And of course, a photo of the adorable kitten she was fostering at the time. Enjoy!

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after-bed1More pics (including what the place looked like before we started) after the jump!

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NEW FINDS in our ETSY SHOP

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If you thought we were bad about updating our blog, clearly you’ve never seen our Etsy shop! Today’s the day.

We’ve capitalized on Cyber Monday in a big way, and by that I mean we posted a handful of new finds in the shop. Just about everything we found somewhere in our travels, fell in love with, and bought because we couldn’t not buy it, and because we’d probably end up using it in a design job someday, right? No, not right. We love all these finds so much it’s hard to part with them, but our hoarding days are coming to an end. Which means we can pass the legwork- and financial-savings on to YOU. So head on over and check them out.

A QUICK KITCHEN FACELIFT in MASS.

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As usual, it’s been way too long since our last blog post. We’re really going to work to change that in the new year. Seriously! We mean it this time! There’s just something about designing and executing everything ourselves that doesn’t leave much time or energy for photographing and documenting our work as much as we should. Especially when we have to pull a couple 12+ hour days in a row to meet an end-of-job deadline.  But believe me when I say we’re working on it! We even have an Etsy shop update and a website update in the works.

Until then, here are some photos from a little job we’ve never posted on our own site (though you may have seen it on Remodelista a few months ago): Justine Hand’s kitchen. What a whirlwind! We had less than five days and a $3,000 materials budget to work with, so it might have been some of our fastest work to date. But it turned out beautifully.

Big thanks to Justine for letting us use her beautiful photos!

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Big Indian REVEAL Revealed

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Last week we had the honor of sharing our Big Indian project with the world. In case you missed the beautifully done feature on Remodelista, be sure to take a look. We owe a huge thanks to Justine Hand for putting so much care into entire piece, and for taking the time to so eloquently explain the insane amount of work that went into the project.

It’s always so exciting to have these big projects revealed. We spend so many months working in isolation, doubting ourselves, sweating, sanding, etc, that it’s so thrilling-and slightly nerve wracking!- to throw the cover off and say, here it is! This article in particular was a total stunner, and I found myself bragging to complete strangers about the feature, something I swear I never usually do. So really, be sure to take a peek at it.

Luckily for all of you die hard fans out there, I am a compulsive picture taker, which means that even though Remodelista filled their post with tons of pictures, there are still tons more to share! So now, for your viewing pleasure, a personal peek into our Big Indian project, with some never-before-seen final shots. Enjoy!

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kitchen_03-blogTons more photos after the jump!

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JERSEY ICE CREAM CO to HEAD WEST

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Yes, yes, yes it’s all true! We are packing our bags, leaving our lousy winter coats behind and heading west to a place where the grass may truly be greener. We’ve been secretly planning our big escape to west coast for months, maybe forever. I remember reading in some book, or lost article a brilliant quote. It went something like, “There are two types of people in this world. People who live in California, and people who wish they lived in California.” Based on a personal study of one, I would say that quote is completely true, and I have big hopes about transitioning from a wisher to a liver. As in, one who is living their big, glorious, beauty filled life in California.

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That all being said, we are happy to announce that we are on the hunt for our first California project. Just to really get the word out, I am going to resort to shouting. WE ARE ON THE HUNT FOR OUR FIRST CALIFORNIA PROJECT! So if you, or someone you know, lives in CA and has a renovation or design project that we might be able to help with, let us know! As always, we are up for a challenge, so don’t hesitate to overwhelm us with something that you might think is a little nuts. It’s the crazy things that we get excited about. Please send all requests and questions to jerseyicecreamco@gmail.com, where we will be checking our email compulsively.

California, here we come!

Stay TUNED!

When we last left you, the little full-of-potential-but-currently-devoid-of-any-charm cabin in the Catskills we were working on looked something like this:

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“Not great” doesn’t even begin to cover it. But now we’re done!

Actually, we’ve been done. We packed up and (begrudgingly) shipped out of the Catskills just before Labor Day, and we’ve been neglecting our blog ever since. As usual. And when I say neglecting, I mean neglecting so willfully I can’t believe I’m even doing this right now. Not that I haven’t wanted to! “I should really do a blog post” is a thought that has popped up in my mind every day and then sunk back under only to resurface just as surely the next day. But here we are! Sort of.

The entire house is going to be on Remodelista next week, so unfortunately you’re going to have to wait a few more days to see what we did with the place. It’s a shame we aren’t better about documenting the process, because I’m not even sure the before and after photos will do justice to the amount of work we did.

We moved walls–lots of them. We spent days in a crawl space no taller than a foot in some places, redoing pretty much the entire house’s plumbing since we decided the bathroom had to move. We demo’d a big ugly kitchen worth of big ugly tiles, laid some new subfloor, and then we sanded, stained, cut, installed, and poly’d brand new hardwood floors. We built furniture, modified antique pieces from Brimfield to work as kitchen base cabinets, built open kitchen shelves, and tore out the sagging kitchen ceiling. We painted, painted, painted, and painted some more. And that’s probably doesn’t even cover half of it.

In the end, we took this place, with it’s oddly-shaped, barely functional rooms…

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…and turned it into this place:

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So stay tuned for the after photos! We can’t wait to share them with you all.