Friday, January 28, 2011

Valentines Day Inspiration from Mary

While in Atlanta this month, my friend Lynda served us a delicious berry sauce over brie with crackers as an appetizer. Her sister, Mary, had brought it back from Michigan during Christmas and given Lynda a jar. So I have to credit Mary with inspiring me to pursue this Valentines idea. I guess it's very appropriate since Mary grew up in Michigan with her maiden name of Mary Mee. Now how cute is that for a Valentine's inspiration - she kept that name until sweet Jeff did marry, Mary Mee! Now they live happily in Atlanta, near Lynda!
I loved that sauce so much that I ordered 3 cases for the store for Valentine's Day gifts. Of course, we had to embellish the label and top a little bit with a few Romancing the Home touches. This sauce, a confection of cherries, raspberries, blackberries, and lemon, is delicious with ice cream, cheeses, pound cake, and waffles. For Valentine's Day, we used a heart shaped cookie cutter to cut the waffles into heart shapes. We have embellished this Valentine's Breakfast idea with pink roses, petite little dessert cloches, and sweet little cherubs. A full selection of the cloches and the fantastic Mixed Berry Sauce is available at the store.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

New Mor Products arrive at Romancing the Home

Mor Cosmetics has just introduced a yummy new line of body cremes, lotions, hand soaps and soap, that smells so good you want to eat it! I am not sure if the Neroli Clementine, Basil and Grape, Honey Nectar or the Black Current Iris is the best, but all the scents are delicious. The body creme is a luxurious thick consistency that instantly makes winter hands feel like you have been in the tropics. The packaging is bright and a great mood enhancer as we go through our dreary winter days in Chicago. Lot's of new products are arriving daily to help you enjoy being inside your home during our cold winter days.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Cameos and Chocolates

Cameo's - so feminine, so timeless , so elegant and when made of chocolate- so, so sweet! We are starting to plan a few parties for our Romancing the Home customers and I saw this article in Country Living about chocolate cameos. So I ordered the molds and spent yesterday creating these lovely ladies. I am not sure what their end use will be - maybe on a cupcake? The larger ones are actual chocolate boxes and would be divine containers for a raspberry mousse with fresh raspberries. The faces are so translucent and it's hard to tell the difference between the real cameos and the chocolate ones. While time consuming to paint the faces, the results were worth the 2 hours I spent making them. They would be perfect for Valentine's or Mother's Day. Pink and chocolate - a match made in heaven!

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Look What's Coming to Romancing the Home

Just got back from a 8 day trip to Atlanta for the January gift show! After much delay due to the winter ice storm, we finally made it - via standby on Delta , the Marta, and 2 very nice guys from Kentucky that rescued us and our luggage from the train station and hauled us up the hill to our newly found accommodations, as we couldn't make the final last miles to Lynda's house due to the awful ice on the roads. What a trip! But in spite of the terrible weather, new merchandise was purchased and is on the way back to Chicago! These pictures are just a peak into the delicious new things that Jill and I purchased at the Atlanta Market. We a planning a pale oatmeal, blushy pink, and slate blue palette for one side of the store, and the other will be filled with richer colors - brown, red, black, anchored with tasty new Jan Barbaglio dinnerware and home decor. Jan has debuted beautiful etched glass dinner plates, with a crest, and layered them on a nickel charger. Perfect for large ottomans, we ordered a new line of over sized trays in blacks and reds. This trip was particularly good for artwork- we love the four panels of the map of Florence and purchased many similar pieces of artwork- great crests, black and white portraits, and a fun rendition of the 3 monkeys. And as one of our biggest selling categories, we are bringing in several new candle lines for the season, in addition to new scents for our old favorites. We found additions to our imported line of French foods - a basil olive oil - to die for- and a Chocolate Candied Orange Peel spread, and let's not forget the flavorful Truffle Sea Salt. We purchased many new lines for the store and are especially excited about the new dinnerware lines and table linens. Overall, it was a productive trip, with lots of new things coming to inspire us! The jewelry has already arrived and as usual, is priced right and trend right- come take a look!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Royal Treatment

Black and white graphics are very popular decorating motifs, especially busts of famous people and french writing. We just changed our front windows to black and white transferware, parchment covered books with portraits, and a great toile printed chair. The combination of all the black, grey and creme tones look great when mixed together. Mercury glass votives add sparkle and a warm glow to the setting. Containers of dried white hydrangeas provide a soft romantic touch. All of these soft colors create a serene, calm environment.