Custom Watercolors from Natty Michelle Paperie

April 16, 2014

Last week I posted about our house hunting journey and the neighborhoods in Atlanta complete with a custom map from Natty Michelle Paperie. (It’s so cute, right?) Natalie is a talented artist, so I wanted to show you more of her work. Take a look at Natalie’s site & Etsy shop, too!


Natalie paints the loveliest maps for weddings, anniversaries and special occasions. The traditional first anniversary gift is something paper. I think a custom map of where you first met (or first kissed!) would make a sweet first anniversary gift. (Ladies, forward this!) I loved this custom NYC map that Natalie painted for a couple celebrating their first anniversary. The boyfriend wanted to commemorate their first date, complete with all the places they went, complete with a little yellow taxi, of course.


Natalie also paints custom maps of your favorite places in a special city or town, or to illustrate a move. How cute is that custom We’ve Moved map! Speaking of, I need to do one of those. (Mental note!)


A Timeline illustration is another neat idea, perfect for an anniversary gift or even as a save the date. I love Natalie’s handwriting and style!


And besides maps, Natalie also does house portraits, thank you notes, and all kinds of “whimsies” like rubber stamps, iPhone cases, pins and magnets. Um, gnome magnet? Yes, please! See all the whimsies here.




I hope you guys enjoy Natalie’s work as much as I do. She is an absolute pleasure to work with. Check out her shop, read the blog, & follow along on Instagram for a behind the scenes peek.


DIY Easter Eggs

April 15, 2014

I can hardly believe it’s time for Easter already! I made these floral Easter eggs last year and I still love them this year. The thickness of the flowers on the thin eggs is a really neat detail. I suppose it’s time to make another batch!

DIY Floral Easter Eggs 1 DIY Floral Easter Eggs 2 DIY Floral Easter Eggs 3 DIY Floral Easter Eggs 4

See how I made them here.

Garden Guide: Wisteria

April 14, 2014

I don’t know about where y’all live (northerners, I’m sorry, I know this isn’t true for you!) but it is prime time for wisteria in Atlanta right now! There are trees, porches, power lines, and abandoned buildings covered in blankets of light purple, grape-shaped petals. I think it’s funny that we see it everywhere for a couple of weeks and then it disappears. Michelle’s illustration this week won’t disappear! You can get it in her Etsy shop here.

Floral Illustration- Quince


Keeping in mind that we normally see wisteria growing wild, with little human intervention, here are a few tips if you do want to grow wisteria on a pergola, wall or fence.

Sun: Loves lots of sunshine! 
Soil: Wisteria can grow in poor-quality soil, but it prefers fertile, moist, well-drained soil. (Don’t we all?)
Water: Wisteria is kind of wild, so mature plants only need rainwater. But keep cuttings or baby plants well-watered.
Prune: Good luck! Wisteria flowers on last year’s growth so prune after blooming in late spring, and be careful if you prune in early spring!
Size: TALL!

Get this tulip print Michelle’s Etsy shop here.
More Garden Guides here.



Neighborhoods in Atlanta

April 9, 2014

Atlanta is a big, sprawling city. When chatting with long distance friends, or even locals, I always find myself explaining the interstates or drawing an air map. I wanted to explain it all to you guys too, so I needed a fancy map! I asked the lovely Natalie, of Natty Michelle Paperie, to illustrate a map of our Atlanta. Here’s a little bit about the neighborhoods in Atlanta, our house hunting journey, and how we make this big city work for us.


Since the sprawl and the traffic in Atlanta is so, so awful, and Allen (and I spent the majority of the past four years commuting), our first priority was live close to work. Not because we’re workaholics, but because we value a better quality of life than two hours in a car everyday. We based our search on that priority and worked our way around the map. Read on for a little detail about where we looked and where we ended up.

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Making Progress

April 8, 2014

We’re slowly but surely making progress at the house. I have a long list of what we need and plans for each room, but it’s a slow and steady task. When I was at home in North Carolina over the weekend, we stopped by the Mitchell Gold Outlet (such great stuff if you’re in the area!) and at my treasure trove of a storage unit.


How cute is that teal sofa? It’s not for our house, but so stinking cute.


I love this skinny 1-drawer piece. Not sure where I would put it, but I love it…


progress_storage unit 2  

And at the storage unit, there are some gems hidden back in the back! This doesn’t look like much, but it’s really a fabulous bunch of chairs and a huge dining table that is going to be our dining room table eventually. It’s a mahogany double-pedestal table and four Queen Anne’s chairs that will look great in our dining room.

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Garden Guide: Tulip

April 7, 2014

Tulips are one of the prettiest, diverse spring flowers. There are solid colors, two-tone colors, variegated colors, double petals, bowl shaped petals, rounded petals, pointed petals, and serrated, frilly petals… I love them all. You can get this gorgeous print in Michelle’s Etsy shop here.

Floral Illustration- Quince

Sun: Tulips like sun, sun, sun!
Soil: Tulips actually favor sandy soil.
Water: They prefer dryer soil, so don’t water often and well-drained soil is best. Though you can’t help an extra rainy season!
Prune: A few weeks after blooming, just chop off the browning leaves and spent blooms. Don’t do it immediately after blooming, because the leaves can still take in vital sunshine to feed the bulbs. If healthy and happy, the bulbs will bloom again year after year!
Size: Depending on the variety, anywhere from 4 inches to 20 inches tall.

Get this tulip print Michelle’s Etsy shop here.
More Garden Guides here.