525  //  smitten travels: cayucos

cayucos-airbnb-sarahshermansamuelA few weeks back Rupe and I headed up the coast to meet up with some friends in the darling little beach town of Cayucos. It is situated just north of Morro Bay, not far from San Luis Obispo and about halfway between LA and San Francisco (which is where our friends were coming down from). We filled the weekend with walks on the beach, wandering around the town, antiquing, good food, and lots of laughs (you know, all the important things in life. :)).

california-road-tripcayucos-beach-2-sarahshermansamuelcayucos-airbnb2-sarahshermansamuelWe found this special Airbnb rental that felt part Swiss Family Robinson, part Wes Anderson film set (the bedroom is pictured in the first image). The nautical themed 2 and 1/2 story house (for real there was a half floor with about 4 foot high ceilings, between the top and bottom floors, perfect for kids to crawl into and with enough beds to sleep the Duggar family (ok not quite)) was just a few blocks from the beach and had this lovely back patio where we spent Saturday night, grilling, dining al fresco, and chatting around the fire.

cayucos-beach-sarahshermansamuelcalifornia-road-trip2morro-bayWe also took some side trips to towns like Morro Bay, (photo above) where we had a delicious breakfast at Dorn’s and San Luis Obispo, where we dined at Taste and Big Sky Cafe, as well as stopped by the Madonna Inn for a little color therapy in all shades of pink (photo from the dining room 1 image up on the right). I have yet to stay the night there but the secret kitsch loving side of me is dying to test out one of their ridiculous(-ly awesome) themed rooms, each on is different!

Our favorite foodie stop in Cayucos was Ruddell’s for the smoked fish tacos (which I actually couldn’t eat being pregnant and all, but I can attest that the smoked chicken taco’s were delicious :).

Images by me (iphone) more on instagram (I’m @sarahshermansamuel).

To see more of our travels, check here.

524  //  from the weekend: making room for baby

11.24.14-weekendThis weekend we finally moved most of our clothes into the new closet in our bedroom and out of what will soon be the nursery, starting to make room for baby. We also had a couple nice meals out, watched some walking dead (I don’t know how we got into it but am totally hooked and am having crazytown dreams because of it), and had our driveway and front walkway demo’d to get ready to pour a new one. We also picked out the winner of the Thanksgiving Tablescape giveaway. Congrats Carin!

Photos by me via Instagram (I’m @sarahshermansamuel)

523  //  my (bump) style: stripes & plaid 2 ways

mixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuel27 weeks and counting with this bun in the oven! I can not believe the third trimester is here. Switching gears from my pattern mixing on the table to pattern mixing in my wardrobe, I’m sharing how to combine plaid and stripes two ways and both looks work with or without a baby bump. :)

mixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuelmixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuelmixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuelAdding a holiday worthy plaid to your wardrobe can be easy as layering on a scarf. The pattern is bold enough that even in a small accessory it makes a big statement. In order to keep the rest of the outfit from fading into the background I chose a graphic stripe to compliment the large plaid.

mixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuelmixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuelmixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuelmixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuelmixing stripes and plaid 2 ways // bump style // sarah sherman samuelFor this look, with the black skirt as a base I have added all the pattern on pattern fun on the top. To make the plaid and stripes mixing extra easy on this one, I’ve kept with the common palette of black and white. A combo I can’t seem to get enough of lately.

Look One Sources:  Scarf by Old Navy // Dress by Asos // Feather Bracelet by Monserat de Lucca // Ankle Boots by Matt Bernson

Look Two Sources: Pencil Skirt by Old Navy (the version I have is no longer available but can find similar here) // Plaid Blouse by Old Navy // Striped Jacket by Cartonnier from Anthropologie // Cuff by The 2 Bandits // Ankle Boots by Matt Bernson

This post was sponsored by Old Navy. Check out Old Navy’s latest fashion lineup in store or online at oldnavy.com.
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522  //  Thanksgiving Tablescape Ideas & Giveaway

holiday table ideas & giveaway // smitten studioholiday table ideas & giveaway // smitten studioIt is probably no surprise that one of my favorite parts of the holidays is setting up a pretty table to gather around. It doesn’t have to be over the top or heavily themed, but I like to pull out the gold flatware and add a few unique pieces to make the table a little extra special. I’m calling this year’s a “natural luxe” tablescape.

To help you re-create a similar look I’ve listed a few ideas to try on your Thanksgiving table and I’ve teamed up with two amazing brands, The Citizenry and Suite One Studio, to give away these gorgeous pieces so that one lucky winner can get a head start!

thanksgiving table ideas & giveaway // smitten studio

holiday table ideas & giveaway // smitten studioholiday table ideas & giveaway // smitten studioholiday table ideas & giveaway // smitten studioIdea 1: Layer multiple dishes and napkins for extra depth.

For a holiday table I usually like to start with a charger, then add a napkin, then dinner plate and usually top it off with something decorative (like the pheasant feather) at each place setting. This table got its’ extra layer of luxe with the gold rimmed dessert plate and gold rimmed bowl that would be perfect for a little amuse bouche.

holiday table ideas & giveaway // smitten studioIdea 2: Create a centerpiece from the produce aisle.

Thanksgiving celebrates a time of harvest and bounty so why not create a centerpiece from the farmer’s market or just the produce aisle at your local grocery store. To keep it looking tasteful I stuck with a monochromatic palette. I love the texture of the artichokes which I used to make the bulk of the arrangement and then added in pears, gourds, and a little eucalyptus to fill it out.

holiday table ideas & giveaway // smitten studioholiday table ideas & giveaway // smitten studioIdea 3: Keep it neutral but play up textures.

This year I stuck with a neutral color palette and relied heavily on the patterns and textures of all the natural elements to up the luxe factor. Black, white, brown, and gold make for a rich color combination but bringing in the textures of the cow horn tumbler, pheasant feather, marble tabletop, cowhide rug, and wood grain planter take it to a whole ‘nother level.

The Citizenry & Suite One Studio Giveaway Details…
One winner will receive:
1 set of 2 Cow Horn Tumblers
1 Handcarved Adia Wood Planter
1 set of 2 Gold Rimmed Bowls
1 set of 2 Gold Rimmed Dessert Plates

TO ENTER: simply leave a comment below saying which tablescape idea you’d most likely try out, or a favorite one of your own, AND then enter here.

Entries must be posted by this Friday, November 21st. One winner will be chosen at random. Good Luck!

Sorry, limited to US readers only. Winner will be contacted by email once comments close and then announced on the bottom of this post soon after.

Images by Sarah Sherman Samuel

Additional Product Sources: Gold Flatware by West Elm // Gold Chargers by Target // Black & White Napkins by A Sunny Afternoon // Brass Goblets are vintage // Ceramic Cake Stand by Suite One Studio // Black Plates by CB2 // Table by Organic Modernism // Chairs are vintage

UPDATE: The giveaway is now closed and a winner has been selected. Thanks to everyone for entering and congrats to Carin Doliva.

521  //  from the weekend: los alamos

los alamos // alamo motel // sarah sherman samuelMy parents are visiting from Michigan this week so we took them up to a darling little tiny town Los Alamos. It is about two and half hours north of LA which makes for a great weekend getaway and you know I like me some weekend trips. We stayed in The Alamo Motel which is the newest addition to the Shelter Social Club roster. It is in the process of getting renovated and we were lucky enough to snag one of the new rooms. If you plan on going sometime soon, it is a good idea to request one of the renovated spaces as there are still only a few (and completely adorable).

A few of our favorite spots from the weekend were…

To Eat:
Full of Life Flatbread 
Bob’s Well Bread Bakery

To Drink:
Muni Wine Tasting Room (right at the hotel)
Babi’s Beer Emporium

To See:
Oceano Dunes (about 45 mins north)
Ostrichland (feed some ostrich and emus)
Antique Shops galore

Images by me via iPhone & instagram (I’m @sarahshermansamuel)

520  //  Pear Hard Cider Sangria

pear-cider-sangriapear-cider-sangria2For the first time, Rupert and I are sticking around LA for the holidays. While I will be missing me some Michigan, I’m pretty excited about starting some new traditions with our growing family and celebrating with our friends out here.

While my expecting party of 1.5 won’t be partaking in the cocktails this year, I am already planning my contribution to Friendsgiving and this Pear Hard Cider Sangria is at the top of the beverage list. Target‘s new holiday collection will also be helping me to make sure the presentation is as tasty as the drink.

pear-cider-sangria4pear-cider-sangria3Pears are a fall favorite and make this twist on sangria (made with hard cider instead of wine) fit for a Thanksgiving cocktail hour. For this recipe you can make most of it in a pitcher ahead of time and then add the hard cider just before serving.

Pear Hard Cider Sangria Recipe

Ingredients:
1 cup quartered and thinly sliced unpeeled bartlett pears
1 navel orange—quartered and thinly sliced crosswise
1 cup apple juice, chilled
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup pear brandy
One 22-ounce bottle hard apple cider, chilled
Ice

Instructions: In a pitcher, combine the pears with the orange, apple juice, lemon juice and brandy. Just before serving, add the hard cider. Serve in tall glasses over ice. Cheers!

Product Sources: Round Gold Tray from Target (in-store), find similar (in silver) online here // Small Gold Bowls from Target // Cutting Board by A Sunny Afternoon // Rectangle Gold Tray from Target  // Tall Tumbler Glasses from Target // Brass Cocktail Picks from Lawson Fenning

Images by Sarah Sherman Samuel

This post is sponsored by Target. Shop Home Décor for modern luxury made easy.
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519  //  a sunny afternoon for apartment34

a sunny afternoon for apartment34I am so excited to share that I’ve partnered with Apartment34 for their new holiday shop! Apartment34 is a lifestyle blog and inspiration haven based in San Francisco. They’ve teamed up with 10 of their favorite artisans to create limited edition pieces for a fine curation of giftable goods and I couldn’t be happier to be one of them! I made this new octagonal board which you will find over in the shop which launched yesterday.

Below is the list of the incredible designers and artists that they are showcasing.

Hackwith Design House
Vrai and Oro
Rebecca Atwood
Emily Johnston
Sketchbook Crafts
Chapman at Sea
My Trick Pony
Julia Kostreva
The Citizenry
A Sunny Afternoon (woo hoo! ;)

Image by Aubrie Pick for Apartment 34

518  //  from the weekend: getaway with friends

cayucos beach // sarah sherman samuelOn Friday we drove up the coast to Cayucos to meet some friends and share a little beach rental for the weekend. They live in San Francisco so Cayucos worked out perfectly for us to meet halfway between our two home cities. I’ll share a bit more of the trip once I gather up the photos (you can see a few more here). We had the best time enjoying the small town pace and catching up with old friends. Hope you had some time to re-charge as well. x

Image by me via iPhone & instagram (I’m @sarahshermansamuel)

517  //  4 amazing nurseries

4 amazing nurseries // boulevard b nursery  // smitten studioI haven’t quite settled on a direction for our nursery yet, but I have made a “baby” pin board from which I’ve started gathering inspiration on all things design for the little one. In the process I have looked at probably hundreds of nursery tours and while I am trying to figure out which way to go (light and airy or dark and dreamy?), I came across these 4 personal faves that serve up some serious originality.

4 amazing nurseries // reath design  // smitten studio4 amazing nurseries // amber interiors nursery  // smitten studio4 amazing nurseries //  inspiration  // smitten studioFreaking beautiful right? :) What are you favorite inspiration sources for the littles?

Happy Friday! x

Room 1 by Rosemary van Zandvoort via Boulevard B. // Room 2 by Reath Design with Sharon Montrose for The Animal Print Shop // Room 3 by Amber Interiors  // Room 4 via Le Petite Florilége