June 14, 2011


‘Tis the season for magnolias and I’m loving it.

{Every once in a while my husband surprises me with one}


There’s something about magnolia trees that is just completely Southern & romantic.  They transport you somewhere wlse.   (Unless that is, if you’re already at a gorgeous Southern antebellum estate.}
(image from arborday.org}
According to wikipedia and the University of Florida’s website, Magnolia trees are one of the most ancient trees we have today, with fossils dating back to 36-58 million years ago.  They were originally native to the Asias & the Americas (particularly the East Coast) and Europe, but the Ice Age destroyed the ancient European forests.  The American Southern Magnolia was  reintroduced in Europe in 1731 when it was discovered.  They became extremely popular and are now the most commonly planted shrub/ tree around the world.
I wish I had a magnolia tree.  One day.
{photo via landscapeplantsbycliff.com}
{Steel Magnolias: Shelby “got” magnolias…  she planned to float them in her pool at her “blush and bashful” themed wedding, although I don’t quite remember ever seeing the pool at the wedding in the movie.}
When I have my hands on a magnolia bloom, I’m weird with it.  I literally just put my face in it & breathe it in.  For a long time.  It’s “Heaven” as my 3 (almost 4!) year-old says because he’s heard me say it so much.
{I even have my husband take pictures of me holding them}

I sleep with it mext to my bed and I can smell it all night long when I’m drifting in & out of sleep.

They make me so happy and their smell just sort of makes stress melt away.  This past week was INSANITY.  Work has been really busy for both me & my husband, and we had to take Justin (our 18-month old) to the ER because his fever got so high & he was having mini seizures & vomitting.  (I didn’t know that’s what was going on, I thought he was having odd twitches as he was trying to sleep in my arms, and although that was scary, I’m so glad I didn’t know they were seizures at the time.)  His fever has been up & down all weekend and my parents watched our 3 year-old for us.  During one of the down points Saturday evening when Justin was aleep & we thought he was all better, my husband surprised me with a magnolia bloom.  It hung out with us pretty much all night.  I literally fell asleep smelling it, and I woke up to a completely brown & crunched magnolia underneath of me in bed.   ah vell!  You only get them for a little while.
It was for all of these reasons that I wanted to create a magnolia – patterned textile.  The vibe of magnolias is such a free, casual & relaxed elegance and I wanted to make a fabric with that feeling.  It really fits with the setting around here.  (Virginia & DC are filled with magnolia trees.)  I worked with my super-talented my friend,  Kat Wright, who painted this beautiful painting in oil from my very junky sketches:
{Isn’t she amazing!!?)}
It then became this on linen:
I played with the colors and created 4 other colorways, including china blue:
I’m working out the final kinks in pricing, fabrics, etc. and am hoping to have the fabrics available to sell in my online store July 15th.  Like I’ve mentioned before, creating high-quality textiles on linen in small runs is much more expensive than I’d originally guessed it would be.  Prices will be around $90- $115/ yard for linen and I’m looking into cotton options.
Here’s a peek at the banner for the new online store:
I hope you had a great weekend & if you have a chance, find a magnolia:
My husband’s taking Justin to the doctor today so fingers crossed for my little Tootaline.
Also, my friend Jill Sorensen of Marmalade Interiors and creator of Live Like You is offering Pure Style Home Readers 10% off of her newest design personality, Earthy Modern:
Enter discount code: EARTHY10 for 10% off until June 20th!
 Jill has launched an online store where she has created room designs for different personalities & styles.  You can view the designs for free and purchase everything in the plans right at Live Like You.   Congratulations to Jill & her new venture & thanks so much for the discount!!
xoxo, Lauren

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