Last Friday, we had our monthly meeting for our new Cookbook Club. Each month, one of the girls hosts a dinner party in their home and the rest of us bring one recipe from the pre-selected cookbook or cooking magazine of their choice. Over the past two months, each hostess has also taken the opportunity to write about their cookbook selecting process, what they did to prepare for their guests, or whatever else was on their mind. This month, Tami was excited to host Cookbook Club in her new home and selected one of her favorite DIY gurus (Martha Stewart, of course) and her magazine as the starting point for this whole event. So without further ado … we introduce our very own Tami!

Written by: Tami

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Ever since I moved into my new place, I have been excited to get the opportunity to host. I also feel like these types of events are great motivation towards making sure your new home is ready for guests. A big part of my preparation was putting up pictures on my walls, accessorizing properly, and purchasing my last pieces of furniture. I chose Martha Stewart’s Living as my “cookbook” and the rest is history.

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I knew right away that I wanted to use this magazine for more than just its delicious recipes as this particular publication is packed full of decor ideas as well. I began by creating a “Friendsgiving Menu” on craft paper (just like Martha’s on page 25) which instead of being placed on my wall acted as a runner on my dining room table. I also used page 84 as inspiration for my overall color scheme and the way I displayed each candle and flower arrangement.

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I was immediately drawn to this wheat which I purchased at Gelson’s for it’s seasonal appeal with a little edge.

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Small flower arrangements were added throughout the front part of my apartment as well as lit candles to make my guests feel at home.

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Many delicious recipes were used from this month’s magazine as well as other traditional Thanksgiving side dishes.

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As the host, I felt the need to make a main dish. I felt like it would have been nice to make an actual turkey, but settled for a turkey sandwich instead. Someday, I will be brave and cook a turkey, but this was not that day. The monte cristo sandwiches, however, were delicious!

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No dinner party is complete without dessert which is why I am so happy Kathryn decided to make a pie. It would have been a shame anyway to have a magazine full of pies on the cover and not to be able to indulge in any. This pie was absolutely incredible! I recommend you try it immediately! In fact, if you want to recreate our entire menu from the night, it included:

Turkey Monte Cristo, pg 20

Autumn Tian, pg 153

Chocolate Mousse Pie with Phyllo Crust, pg 155

and wine (of course)!

As December is sure to be a busy month for all, our Cookbook Club decided to resume in January. Though this does not mean you have to do the same. If you happen to continue during the month of December, good for you! No really, that takes a large amount of determination, and we want to hear all about it! What cookbook or magazine are you planning to use? Check back with us later this month and we will announce our pick for January. Until then … keep on cooking! Happy Thanksgiving from Side by Side Design!

 

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Tami is a single girl in the city (LA that is!), and a few months ago she found a new apartment to call her own. Although she loved living in Brentwood, Tami knew that she needed a little bit more space, a less cluttered more adult home, and above all … a kitchen! She did have one before, but it is not the easiest thing in the world to cook without counter space and a full size oven. Therefore, she began looking elsewhere and found what she was looking for in Sherman Oaks (not to mention crown moldings, all new appliances, and granite counter tops).

Next, Tami got excited for changing up her home decor. She ditched her old couch, added a new dining room table and chairs as well as a fun gallery wall (seen on  Monday’s post, DIY: Create a Gallery Wall), and bought a few new accessories to finish off her overall Parisian look. Luckily, Tami knew just who to ask for advice when choosing throw pillows and bar cart accessories. With the help of Lauren, they made this apartment (which already had beautiful finishes) into a home that truly fits Tami’s style.

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This chamsa collection brings Tami good luck as she enters and exits her space.

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A soft place to rest after a long day is very important to this city girl. Therefore she knew she had to switch out her stiff Ikea couch for a nice new sectional. Not gonna lie … she got a great deal as well! It pays to have an Interior Designer for a sister. She knows all the best places to shop!  A gorgeous new lamp and white linen shade along with a tray full of candles and a few pictures in frames adds a Parisian fullness to this black lacquered end table.

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Funky fur, ruffled, and sequin pillows add to the eclectic nature of Tami’s space.

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A collection of photos are paired with large silver candle stick holders and a fun canvas print on Tami’s mantle. This adorable antique stool was found by our father. We added spotted fur to make an extra place to sit.

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A low media cabinet fits perfectly under Tami’s gallery wall and is just the right height for her TV. We love how shiny the bright white finish is.

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These chairs weren’t meant to go with this awesome table, but we love how unexpected of a combination it is. How can you go wrong with lacquer, leather, and fancy acrylic legs? This antique silver mirror followed Tami from her last place. It is one of her favorite flea market finds.

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Another awesome flea market find turns into Tami’s new “bar cart”. Wine bottles and accessories are paired with a vintage decanter, beautiful silver goblets, a shiny black cake stand, and lots of candles.

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Tami feels like she waited too long to have a “real kitchen” again, and this one truly makes her happy. It has plenty of cabinet space, counters to prepare meals on, and a brand new dishwasher. You might not think any of these things are a big deal, but you would be surprised that in LA many apartments come without.

In honor of Tami’s new kitchen (and newly decorated space), she invited the girls over for Cookbook Club this past Friday. We cannot wait to share the details with all of you and showcase how Tami dressed up her Parisian living space even more than it already was to entertain her guests. Check back with us on Friday!

 

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About a year ago, Tami took on a really fun project. Gallery walls are all the rage right now, and she was dying to add one to her space. Since then (as you know) she has made a move to a new apartment and her gallery wall that she had started collecting for is finally complete, but that is not to say that the process was an easy one. In this post, we would like to take you through Tami’s steps towards creating her own gallery wall and give some tips along the way for those of you hoping to create your own.

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The first step was to collect prints and frames that all went together in one cohesive look. Tami started by purchasing this adorable watercolor flamingo that she had been obsessing over for a long time. Chandeliers have always been a favorite of Tami’s, but ironically she has never owned one. However, a few years ago Tami splurged on two photographs of gorgeous chandeliers (seen on our previous post, Revisisting: Gothic Shabby Chic Apartment). To stick with the theme of “Tami’s favorite things”, she added two more watercolor prints that were LA inspired to last year’s Chanukkah wish list. Her family was more than happy to gift these two additions to her gallery wall as they knew it was something she truly wanted. Next, she collected different sized black and white frames from all over (including Aaron Brothers, Ross, and Michael’s). She decided to throw in a couple glossy frames for a chic effect.

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The next step was to add text to the gallery wall. Tami decided to use a quote that was currently speaking to her life in her new space as a way to tie the whole wall together. Tami hopes to always “be a flamingo in a flock of pigeons”. Each letter was hand stenciled by Tami herself onto canvas paper.

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Painters tape is one of Tami’s best friends. It truly served its purpose in this project as well. Together, we placed tape around each frame and then used it to map out the gallery wall. As this was our first time doing something like this, we definitely learned a lot! Here’s a big tip from someone who learned it the hard way: Make sure to measure very carefully ahead of time. We ended up moving the tape several times until it was in the right spot. Luckily painter’s tape is easily removed and replaced, and although this was annoying it was worth it in the end.

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Once we got each piece in place, we were able to step back and see how it all looks together. We love the watercolor details throughout, the small pops of color, and the all black and white frames. Tami is so excited to finally have this gallery wall as a permanent part of her home and can’t wait to share the rest of her space with all of you. Check back on Wednesday for a look at Tami’s Parisian living space.

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It’s Friday! Time for one of our favorite things … food! With Thanksgiving just around the corner, we figured this was the perfect time to share a special pumpkin recipe we created. Last year (right around this time), we used the recipe found here to make pumpkin fudge for a family gathering. Our Brother-in-Law has severe allergies to many types of foods and for some reason we thought this would be a nice alternative for him since he can’t eat regular pumpkin pie … boy were we wrong! It turned out he couldn’t eat this either, but it’s a good thing because we completely botched the fudge! It didn’t end up having the consistency we hoped for and ended up just tasting like regular pie filling without the crust. As you know (and we have mentioned in many posts), we do not claim to be the best bakers around, but we do feel we are two very creative girls. So, we took this as an opportunity to take another failed experiment and turn it into a delicious treat.

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We began by filling the bottom of small plastic cups with broken up graham cracker to create the crust we were missing.
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A layer of the pumpkin “fudge” was added to the middle. To skip a step, just add your favorite pumpkin pie filling.
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Each individual cup was topped with Cool Whip and a sprinkle of cinnamon.
We ended up serving these pumpkin pie shots at another family gathering and we are so glad we did! They tasted amazing and were super easy to make. We hope you have enjoyed this edition of our weekly Food Fridays post, and that we have even possibly given you a new treat to try this Thanksgiving. Do you have a favorite pumpkin recipe that you would like to share? Leave a comment below with the link or your own unique recipe. We can’t wait to hear from you! Have a great weekend from Side by Side Design!
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Now that we have officially showed off our new website, we have had lots of people inquiring about our business model and what Side by Side Design is actually all about. Although we could sit here and recite our mission statement word for word, that is not necessary. When we say that we do Interior Design, most people can relate and understand what that means. However, while planning for our business, we knew that we wanted to add another component to take this kind of design one step further. We have found that almost all of our clients love to entertain and choose to dress up their space for each event they are having. Besides the fact that we already loved event planning, we figured who would better know our clients’ tastes and needs when it comes to styling their own homes for a special day, and that is where the Side by Side Design concept began.

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We decided to create a fictitious home dinner party in honor of Thanksgiving to show off this very concept. We also plan to use this post to show our process and give you a few buying tips for a project like this.

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The first thing we do is to pull inspiration photos for how we envision the finished event. We love this inspiration photo for its classic elegance. There are so many fun details yet it looks effortless. The house is the perfect backdrop for this gorgeous table setting.

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Our next step would be to find some sort of special detail that makes this event unique. We felt these pheasant plates from Pottery Barn (now on EBay) added to the natural quality of the design and created some interest at each place setting.

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Once we have the key design elements in place, it is time to select our rentals. Town and Country was the perfect fit for this event as they had just the chair we were looking for.

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We loved the table cloth so much in the inspiration photo, that we knew we needed to find that shade of linen. Luckily Sferra had it in their Festival line.

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We found this idea at Martha Stewart Weddings and thought it could be fun to tie in name cards with lavender bunches for each place setting.
 
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If this were an actual project, we would of course hire our favorite florist Kayla from House of Magnolias to make flower arrangements reminiscent of this gorgeous tablescape. We would periodically place one of these marble footed bowls filled with fruit to fill in the space.
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Every elegant table deserves lots of gorgeous candlelight, and we like the mix of these tall gold candlestick holders with the dark gray glass votives.
We hope this helped clear up some lingering questions. Of course, as this is meant to be a Thanksgiving dinner table and there’s no place for food on the table, we would come up with an equally gorgeous buffet for each dish to be properly displayed. If you still have questions about us or our design work, please leave us a comment below or fill out our client inquiry form on our website’s contact page. We are looking forward to next week’s festivities and hope that all of you have a beautiful Thanksgiving.
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