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Peony

Peonies 101 - Everyone's Favorite Flower

InteriorsLibby RasmussenComment

It's really no secret that peonies are some of the most prized flowers on the market.  All year round, we wait for those beauties to pop up in the Trader Joe's and Whole Foods for $6-13 a bouquet.  Which, as we know is a steal considering some peonies are $13-18 a stem in the off season.  But, I have to say the grocery store options pale in comparision to the beautiful arrangements that i-Fleur here in DC (and DMV) offers.  I've never seen a delivery arrangement more beautiful than these. (More details at the bottom of the post.)

Peony Facts

  • Peonies initially were grown for medicinal purposes.  They were used to treat headaches, asthma, and childbirth pain. 
     
  • Peony petals are edible. The petals can be parboiled and sweetened for use in teas, summer salads, or as a garnish for punches and lemonades.
     
  • The state flower of Indiana is the peony.
     
  • Peonies are often called “The Dolly Partons of the Garden”
     
  • Long ago, people believed that peonies protected them from demons.
     
  • Peonies are traditionally used for celebrating the 12th wedding anniversary.

Where Are Peonies Grown?

Interestingly enough, Alaska is the only place in the world that supplies fresh-cut commercial peonies in the wedding season from July into early September. Alaska? You may be asking yourself. Surprisingly, peonies could in fact be Alaska’s next big cash crop. Peonies thrive down to 60 below and require cold weather to flourish. A well cared for peony bush can live up to 100 years.

How To Keep Peonies Fresh

1. If you're buying, get the buds.  While they might not be pretty at first, you'll appreciate them more as you watch them grow and bloom
2. Keep them cool. As you would with other fresh flowers, stashing peonies in the fridge at night is a guaranteed way to help them last longer. 
3. Cut the stems at an angle and trim them every day. This will help maximize the water absorption and helps the flower get more water and nutrients. 
4. Change the water daily.  No brainer here - fresh water = fresh flowers
5. Make your own flower food. My Grandmother would mix sugar and water to feed her flowers and they always last longer. 

Where to Buy the Prettiest Arrangements

As always, I'm a huge proponent of supporting local businesses, particularly those owned and operated by women.  i-Fleur is an amazing and not to mention, a far less expensive alternative to 1800-Flowers or other floral delivery services for peonies.  The bouquet you see pictured here is the round petite option. And this stunning bouquet has lasted more than a week (far longer than the grocery store flowers mentioned above.) 

Be sure to check out i-Fleur's website for ordering as well as their social media channels.
Instagram  / Facebook / Pinterest 
Right now, they are also offering 15% off of their bouquets with the code SUMMER15

Happy Summer!

Photographer: Libby Rasmussen

Fourth Of July Party Inspo

Events, EntertainingLibby RasmussenComment

We love the idea of having a Fourth of July Party before the 4th. With everyone traveling and making their own plans, it's hard to get a solid group together for the actual holiday itself.  When we read that Mackenzie Horan, from Design Darling did just that, we felt inspired to do the same well, next year! 

How great are these navy and white striped directors chairs? Pssst, these are on sale!

The custom calligraphy place cards add such an intimate touch. And how cute are these coup glasses filled with raspberries? 

Playful watermelon stars on a USA cutting board - check out these great state cutting boards my cousin makes! 

Ahoy and ginger jar matches line the table with brass candlesticks, tulips and peonies. 

Again, what a great set up! Happy 4th everyone! 

Tablescape styling: Anna Rayner
Calligraphy: Jennings Ross
Photography: Kelly Christine

Favorite Vinyl

Shopping, InteriorsLibby RasmussenComment
image.jpg

So after years of owning a beautiful, record player, gifted to me for my high school graduation, (RIP) I finally caved and got a Crosley for convenience and well, because they are just too darn cute. I've racked up a collection of records over the past few years but got the itch to start accumulating more (thank god for Amazon!) Here are just a few of my favorites, old & new!

8 Ways to Upgrade Your Bathroom

Interiors, ShoppingLibby RasmussenComment
Source:     Nicolas Mathéus

1. Add A Bold Accent Color

If your one who is typically drawn to neutrals, try something new with the space in with an unexpected bold accent. This bathroom hits the nail on the head with the orange Hermes hat boxes and matching orange towels. The simplicity of the light fixtures and mirrors keep the striking orange accents and blue diamond tile from overtaking the space. 

2. Invest In Better Towels

If not for yourself, at least splurge a bit on your guests.  I keep a basket of nice, white Elizabeth Arden Turkish bath towels ($39) for when guests visit. You don't to spend a fortune, just have something for special occasions. 

3. Add A Small Piece of Furniture

Even if you have limited space, you can still integrate an great accent piece.  Garden stools are a great option for next to the sink, in the shower, or next to the toilet. They can be used as a small table for displaying books or flowers. 

4. Keep Fresh Flowers 

While this may seem obvious, I'm always pleasantly surprised when I see a bouquet of fresh flowers in a bathroom. It's easily the best way to keep your bathroom looking and more importantly, smelling fresh. 

Source:  The Decorista

5. Display Your Faves

Have a favorite scent? Love that vintage tray? Pair them together, and create a display of your favorite products. Be careful not to overdue it though. I keep all of my old Chanel powder compacts in this gold decorative box from Target. It's a great way to keep the things you love and use, out on display in a tasteful manner. Apothecary jars are a great option for storing cotton balls and q-tips. 

6. Change Up The Hardware

It's a common misconception that switching out the hardware in a bathroom will cost you thousands. In reality, there are a lot of great inexpensive options out there that can help you revamp your bathroom. Replacing knobs, drawer pulls, towel bars and shower heads can do just the trick. Gold fixtures have been on-trend for quite some time now with no signs of stopping. Here you can find the shower head set from above for less than $270. These gold cabinet pulls from Home Depot are chic and inexpensive as well. 

Source:  Homes to Love

7. Switch Up the Shower Curtain

If you're somewhat afraid of your shower curtain touching you in the morning, you should probably get rid of it.  Changing your shower curtain now and then is definitely a must. The shower curtain is also a great way to give your bathroom personality. Be bold, having fun with it. Choose a cool geometric print or my favorite, a fun palm print.  Don't forget about the curtain rings either. These come in so many shapes, sizes, and colors. The opportunities are truly endless. Tip: Make sure to hang the rod high to give the appearance of a tall bathroom. 

Source:  Dustin Aksland

8. Add a Turkish Rug

Yes, you heard me. Add a full blown rug!  Because nothing is more pesky than trying to stone-hop around on several wet bathmats in a bathroom. Unless you have a toddler who soaks up the floor during bath time, there really isn't much of a reason not to get a fun area rug. It's a different twist to tradition but as you can see here, here and here, plenty are partaking. The best part, the beautiful patterns in Persian or Turkish rugs only look better as they fade, adding character and sophistication to your bathroom.  

What bathroom upgrades are you thinking about making?
I know I have a few of these on my list.
Make sure to check out my SHOP page for more decorating ideas! 

Weekend Wishlist

ShoppingLibby RasmussenComment

Top
Burnin' for You Matches ($11)
Peony in Water ($45)
H&M Botanic Candle ($13)

Middle
Geo Cotton Pillow ($42)
Pottery Barn X Stool Ottoman ($199)
Small Canvas Clutch ($100)

Bottom
Petite Temple Ginger Jar ($65)
Sole Society Duffel Bag ($69)
Hanging Rattan Chair ($695)

Summer is shortly approaching (in spite the cold weekend here in DC) and we can't wait to relax outside and enjoy the sun. I love love love the hanging rattan chair from Serena & Lilly. 
What's on your weekend wishlist? 

Studio McGee's Pacific Palisades Project Master Bedroom and Bath

InteriorsLibby RasmussenComment

Studio McGee has been one of my favorite design firms for a while now, and they're showing no signs of stopping in their perfect design path. Case in point - this master bedroom and bathroom design.  We love the coastal look with the floor-to-ceiling paneling, and the crisp, preppy, layered textiles.  It's has the perfect touches of blues and greys without looking too beachy.  We can't get enough of that tub!