Decor, Paint

Hale Navy | decor

navy paint color cecyj

I love the color navy blue.  It’s naturally masculine but can be paired with pink, yellow or a fabulous textile and suddenly feel feminine.

I use it in my own home a lot and recently decided to paint the walls of my home office with it.  My goal was to use a rich navy wall color to make the space feel and look distinct from the more neutral gray & taupe tones I have elsewhere in our house.  I tested LOTS of Navy colors to try to find the perfect tone and threw them all up on the wall.  A good tip is to test the color in all corners of the room and as close as possible to the baseboards and crown molding so you can see how the lights and colors will interact.

the finalists:

Hale Navy – Benjamin Moore

Hague Blue – Farrow & Ball

Gentleman’s Gray – Benjamin Moore

Anvil – Martha Stewart

The winner was Hale Navy – Benjamin Moore.  It’s pretty dark and I was a little worried it would almost look black when it dried, but it truly looks pure “navy.”  The other finalists all seemed to pull undertones which I wanted to avoid.  I really wanted Benjamin Moore Gentleman’s Gray to be the winner (mostly because I love the name) but it had a bit of turquoise in it.

Domestic God(ish), Gift Guides

FINGERTIP FLASHLIGHTS | domestic god(ish)

cecyj toys gift guides

You should get these little fingertip flashlights from Restoration Hardware for anyone that enjoys smiling.

My boys and I had such a hoot with these little mini flashlights/toy light sabers/conversation starters on our 100 million errands after school yesterday.   I’ll end my story there because you should really make your own.  Seriously, so fun.

Domestic God(ish), Recipes

Turkey Chili | domestic god(ish)

turkey chili Fall recipes cecyj


It’s a little bit embarrassing how many cans I need to open up to make my Turkey Chili, but I still love this recipe because it’s really nice to be able to whip out a hearty, low fat homemade meal with almost all items I have in my pantry or freezer ready to go.  Enjoy!


1 green bell pepper

1/2 sweet yellow onion

1 clove garlic

1 tablespoon olive oil

4.5 oz can of chopped green chiles

1 28 oz can diced tomatoes

1 15 oz can tomato sauce

1 15 oz can cannellini (white kidney beans)

1 15 oz can pinto beans

20 ounces lean ground turkey

3 tsp chili powder

2 tsp cumin

sea salt & pepper to taste

scallions, sour cream & shredded cheese (all optional to garnish)



-In large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil and sauté the chopped onion, green bell pepper and crushed garlic over medium heat for 10 minutes, until onions are translucent, then transfer all ingredients to crock pot.


-Add 1 more tablespoon of olive oil to the large skillet pan, add ground turkey and brown on medium high.  Drain Fat.


-Stir in tomato sauce, chili powder, cumin, sea salt & pepper to taste, bring to boil then transfer to crock pot.


-Add can of chopped green chiles to crock pot.-Add can of diced tomatoes and beans (drained) to crock pot, stirring everything together.


-Cook on low 4-6 hours.  (I’ve done 2 in a pinch).


-Garnish chili with chopped scallions, sour cream and shredded cheese before serving.


The Green Table | Travel

travel cecyj blogtournyc

I’ve been missing my BlogTour NYC cronies lately so I was excited when I stumbled across this photo I took of lunch with Andrew Dunning, Arianna Trapani and Kate Baxter.  It was towards the end of a long and fabulous week.  We enjoyed good food and good wine and laughed that we were all “tweeting” lunch… but after a week of a social media blitz it became a bit automatic.

The food at Green Table was fantastic and well worth the short wait.  I’ve actually emailed them what feels like 100 times asking for the recipe for their veggie lasagna (which was one of the best veggie anything I’ve ever eaten) but I’m starting to think they might not want to share the secret sauce.  So instead, next time you’re in New York and wandering through Chelsea Market, stop at The Green Table for the Butternut Squash, Kale, Mushroom & Pesto Lasagna.  It was delicious although, I admit, it might have just been the splendid company I was keeping.

Life + Style

Zimmermann | life + style

Zimmermann cecyj

It’s springtime in Australia and they’re already getting ready for summer.

I’m obsessed with the new and interesting looks of these “itty bittys” by Zimmermann from Australia.  Feeling like this is exactly what “nothing to wear” should be. Interesting and, at a bare minimum, creates inspiration to hit the gym.

Happy SPRING Australia!

Domestic God(ish), Gift Guides

brinca dada dollhouses | domestic god(ish)

brinca dada doll houses

I came across Brinca Dada dollhouses in a toy store in Berkeley with my boys yesterday and my instinct was to immediately write a letter to Santa Claus…

Brinca Dada is a New York based toy company whose team is comprised of dreamers that believe toys don’t need to be noisy or flashy to be exciting.  Rather, they want their toys to be simply beautiful and fun.  They offer dollhouses inspired by minimalist architects such as Paul Rudolph and Tadao Ando.  They even have a dollhouse modeled after the The Kaufmann House in Palm Springs, designed by architect Richard Neutra.

I’m thinking I need a few pieces from the Brinca Dada dollhouse furniture line blown up to size for my real house!  Such fun.

Accessories, Decor, Gift Guides

Zara Home | decor

Zara Home Decor Spanish Company cecyj

Zara, the Spanish “cost conscious” fashion retailer for men and women, launched an online Home Decor site today in the United States.  Zara Home features bedding, bath linens and table linens in addition to some furniture, tableware, and decorative accessories.

The site feels warm and interesting.  A few items from Zara Home I’m feeling…

Zara Home Decor cecyj

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Art, Bathrooms, Bedrooms

Brown Design Group | decor

I was not familiar with the Brown Design Group before my visit to the Santa Barbara Design House and the Guest Suite they designed.  Now, their work is permanently imbedded in my brain.

Founded by Ryan Brown, the Brown Design Group is a residential and commercial interior design firm with offices in Los Angeles and Santa Barbara, California.  The Guest Suite they designed at the Design House was superb.  They used neutral colors with bold pops of pattern and extraordinary art to make the space feel hip but completely approachable.  Team Brown let me dig a little deeper and ask a few questions about their work in the Santa Barbara Design House and about the firm.  I hope you enjoy…

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The Brown Group is…

Obsessed with:  LIGHTING.  ”Life should be on a dimmer…”  We love to find vintage fixtures and give them a new breath of life.  Lighting fixtures should tell a story and feel like they have been in the space forever and everything else came after.

Inspired by:  LIFE.  Every project presents a new challenge and we always say that the architecture of the home, paired with the people who live there, determine our design approach.

Traveling to:  THAILAND.  After many trips to Europe and South America for pleasure and buying, we are headed to Asia for the first time to see what we can find (and bring home) from there.

Headed to:  MERCADO DE LAS PULGAS for fantastic design accessories.  It’s in Buenos Aires but has some incredible architectural salvage pieces and unique European and post-war items that are impossible to find elsewhere.  Good luck getting it back though…


Grabbing dinner at…

LAUREL HARDWARE in Los Angeles (yes, the old hardware store on Santa Monica Blvd).

PEASANT in New York for incredible dinner.  PASTIS for a little loud, Parisian lunch.

SPQR in San Francisco for great wine and dinner or at CONTIGO for tapas

Using this textile:  Many of the Faux Leathers from Innovations make their way into our designs due to the incredible quality matched with durability.

We also use a lot of Perennials outdoor fabrics for draperies and Schumacher for gorgeous prints.

Using this paint color:  Our default white is Dunn Edwards Bone China DEW 339.  It is the perfect white, without being white.  It has a warmth to it.  We used Farrow & Ball in the design house which is fantastic for organic colors and classics.  Personal favorite is Sherwin Williams Gauntlet Grey SW7019.

Santa Barbara Design House

Q + A 

Art Decor Cecy J

Cecy J Lighting Decor

Q:  Tell me the inspiration for the guest suite and bathroom?

A:  The guest suite occupies a substantial, private area of the 2nd floor of the house. The perfect place for a weekend guest to feel like they are on a “get-away” rather than in someone else’s home.  We wanted the room to feel collected and warm.  There is so much to explore in the room between amazing artwork and colorful travel and design books that you have a sense of escapism.  We wanted to create spaces throughout that allow you to feel like it is more than a bedroom: a writing desk, a hanging chair for reading or a lounge chair on the balcony for sipping your morning coffee.

Lighting Decor Cecy J art

Q:  The pattern of the rug brings adds depth and interest but does not control the room.  Where can we get one?

A:  The rug is bold but it gives scale to a large room.  Most of the other patterns in the room are very geometric when you get up close.  This one is more organic.  The black of the rug really echoed many of the other elements in room that otherwise may have disappeared.  Black became the accent color which is always a powerful move.  It didn’t hurt that it is a design by the acclaimed Diane von Furstenberg exclusively for The Rug Company which creates and carries some of the most unique and incredible contemporary rugs around.


Accessories Decor Cecy J

Decor Cecy J

Brown Decor CecyJQ:  The colors are so neutral but impactful, I get the sense this is consistent with your design philosophy?

A:  Our general palette is almost always neutral.  We mix warms (tans, taupes, creams, and chocolates) with cool neutrals (whites, greys, black)  which alone give a room depth.  This makes a bright pillow or a colorful piece of art really shine.  It also provides a timeless look which can easily be updated or changed with a few key pieces.

Brown Decor CecyJ bathroom

Bathroom Decor Brown Cecy J

Brown Art Bathroom Cecy J Lighting

Bedroom Decor Art Lighting Cecy J

CecyJ Art Decor

Q:  I love the swing in the corner of the room.  What was the inspiration?  Where can I buy one for my little boy’s room?

A:  It was originally intended for the exterior balcony but it filled an otherwise difficult corner inside the room perfectly!  It is available in a variety of finishes and materials (the one shown is a Chilewich fabric graded for outdoor use!) for $680 through Fusion Home in Ventura.


Cecy J Art

Q:  Art is everywhere in the guest suite and you included some truly fantastic and fresh pieces.  What artist do you consistently use for projects?

A:  The art in this installation should be the envy of every art aficionado.  Supplied by Paul Rusconi Studios, LA based art dealer and artist, the collection included over 45 pieces of framed artwork of incredible Robert Rauschenberg photographs, Andy Warhol, Robert Mangold, and Caio Fonseca pieces.  All of the pieces in the collection are extremely important in the gallery art world.  The series of Rusconi originals that line the gallery hall stopped every passerby to read and marvel at the witty, and sometimes provocative, wording sprawling across the walls.  All artwork available through Paul Rusconi Studios 310-658-8410.

If people don’t have a big budget for artwork, we are also fans of taking your favorite old family photos and enlarging them and framing them simply in a collection with an oversized matting.