Entryway Progress and Inspiration

22 Apr

The first night you paint your door black you may have multiple micro anxiety attacks when you walk by thinking, “Oh no, the door is open!” And, “I hope the dog didn’t get out!”

Those thoughts wear off and they are worth it. Easter Sunday, I crossed paint the door black off of my to-do list. I did not take a great before shot, but you can see a glimpse of our previously white door when we installed our ceiling medallion. Unfortunately, due to HOA restrictions and my inability to get matching paint, the exterior of our door still looks shoddy.

Black & White Entryway Inspiration

When I controversially decided against buying a gorgeous chandelier at Round Top, the one reason I was able to walk away was that I kept my high-contrast vision in mind. Below, I’ll share with you my mental inspiration board for the tiny room.

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Home Tour Update

18 Apr

As promised, I added another room to the home tour page, so head on over there for more photos.


Thanks for reading,

♥ Dominique



Fort Worth in Photos: Main Street Arts Festival 2014

15 Apr

If you haven’t noticed, projects have slowed around the Paolini household, to my husband’s pleasure I am certain. Our weekends have been full of road-trips across Texas. From congratulating Anthony’s brother on securing his residency at Mayo Clinic, and meeting our newest nephew in Houston, to antiquing in Round Top, and most recently visiting family and friends, and revisiting Main Street Arts Festival in Fort Worth- and our schedule isn’t slowing down.

I do enjoy adventuring, regardless of how long my project to-do list gets meanwhile.

If you live within road-trip distance, you should try to make it to Main Street Arts Festival one year. It used to be a tradition I enjoyed immensely when I lived in Fort Worth. I have included images of a few of my favorite pieces this year.

Dolan Geiman, the artist behind the mixed media below, is an artist Anthony and I have really enjoyed since we first saw him at Main Street in 2012. Since then, He’s done work for Anthropologie. He has also been commissioned by YouTube.


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Everyone Should Have a Good: Tomato Sauce Recipe

11 Apr

Bear with me for a moment as I do just a bit of that gag-inducing type of bragging. Pasta sauce has been on my list or recipes to make and photograph for the blog (not a brag). I had no idea when it would fit into our schedule as it in since I had a retirement dinner to attend for a coworker, and a weekend trip planned, among various other very normal and boring things I needed to take care of (not a brag). Wednesday night, I came home from my work dinner and my husband had made a batch of scrumptious pasta sauce for me since he knew it was on my to-do list (major brag).

So, Ala Anthony, here’s a recipe for Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Sauce

Roasted Red Pepper Tomato Sauce | Gusto & Grace Blog

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Round Top Antique Show

8 Apr

This past Saturday, Anthony and I drove east to a tiny town, population 90, to browse a gigantic antique fair in hopes to find a few treasures for our home.

Little did I know what I would be getting us into…

Round Top Antique Fair | Gusto & Grace

I heard Round Top Antique Fair was large, but there was no way I could have prepared for what turned out to be nearly 6 miles of antique stores and booths.

The thrift shops in Austin can be fruitful, but I have not found a great local source for antiques yet so I was eager to purchase some “oldies but goodies.”

I came home empty-handed, but I took a few photos of a few of my favorite things.

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Home Tour Page Is Live!

4 Apr

I leave new blogs within a minute if they are not easy to navigate. Paying attention to the way I navigate new blogs has led me to make a few changes to Gusto & Grace.

I have noticed that while I love blogs that have categories so I can get a heavy dose of topics that interest me, I also love it when blogs have static pages that give a good overview of the blog. It is normally the static pages that prompt me to click on other links and posts to explore the blog.

So I present the first new static page of Gusto & Grace: Home Tour. I hardly consider my home decorated, but I always love looking at other people’s spaces and what they have done, even if they are a work in progress. Go check out the new page in the menu bar below the header.

Gusto & Grace Dining Room Progress Tour

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Chocolate Chip Cookie and Buttercream Push Pops

1 Apr

Chocolate Chip Cookie Push Pops http://gustoandgrace.wordpress.com/2014/03/31/chocolate-chip-cookie-and-buttercream-push-pops

I saw a few push pop cake pops pop up on party blogs last year and was certain they’d be the next cupcake. Boy, was I wrong. Regardless, I’ve been wanting to make a creative batch of the nostalgic treat since I saw them. With my cookie-loving husband in mind, I opted to bake mini chocolate chip cookies, sandwich them with buttercream, and top them with sprinkles. Chocolate Chip Cookie Push Pops

I found my push-pop containers on clearance at Target, but I have also seen them at Michaels, and on Amazon and Etsy.

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DIY Campaign-Style Frames

28 Mar

If you haven’t noticed, I dig inexpensive wall art (see free Prade Marfa printables here and $2 Marbled artwork here). While I would love to collect a few museum-worthy pieces, my financial priorities just don’t lie in art right now.

Ikea is my go-to for frames, but I’ve been wanting to “hack” my dining room frames lately. I opted to avoid the trendy campaign-style makeover for my nightstands, but still have a secret love affair with brass corner brackets.

In the spirit of inexpensive art, I give you upcycled campaign-style frames.

DIY Campaign Style Frames

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Modern, White, Geometric Console

25 Mar

A majority of my home furnishings are hand me downs or Ikea pieces; all of which I am extremely grateful for, most of which I hope to upgrade slowly. This week, Anthony and I finalized design plans for a new media console we commissioned a friend to build. Swap number one!

The inspiration is a piece, pictured below, that I saw on one of the design blogs I follow. I fell in love with the piece immediately but the dimensions were wrong for our living room, and the price was not pleasing either. We also were not looking to buy a new console… White Gaultier Console The inspiration console is a lengthy 76 inches and a short 23 inches high, the same height as our current console. While there is not anything offensive about our current console it looks squatty with our 20 foot vaulted ceilings and does not do much in the way of hiding the unsightly cords with our TV mounted on the wall. Here’s our setup now:

Console Before www.gustoandgraceblog.com

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Uchi Inspired Chopstick Holders

21 Mar

Forgive my absence for the second Tuesday in a row. This week, my husband told me I wasn’t allowed to blog “work” because of my birthday.

I got spoiled rotten for my birthday this year. This has truly been the birthday that never ends.

On Monday night, my husband took me to not one, but two, restaurants I have been wanting to try in Austin: Uchi for dinner, and Qui for dessert.

Which brings me to the easiest dinner party DIY. Don’t you love simple brilliance?

One piece of paper (2×3.5 in.)

One medium circle hole punch

One pair of chopsticks

Uchi Inspired Chopstick Holders www.gustoandgraceblog.com

You can make this easy, disposable, chopstick holder using any plain or patterned cardstock, to match any color scheme. You can write your guests names on them in calligraphy, or stamp, emboss, or print them.

Easy as birthday cake.

Thanks for reading,

♥ Dominique


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