Etsy Find: Dinosaur Planters

March 9, 2016

The City and Us | Dinosaur Planters

What quirky little decor things do you have around your home? Any random colorful things on your shelves, hanging from your walls, lining your windowsills? The ones that add character to your space, spark conversation when friends are over for wine and cheese night?

We have two antique brass birds that catch the attention of visitors. I use one as a book end and the other one hangs out with the succulents. We also have a tiny gold-spray-painted unicorn figurine in one of the succulent plants that gets a lot of questions.

We’re loving these dinosaur planters from the Etsy shop Two Tress Botanicals. They’d be fun displayed on a coffee table, don’t you think?

The City and Us | Dinosaur Planters

The City and Us | Dinosaur Planters

The City and Us | Dinosaur Planters

The City and Us | Dinosaur Planters

Thoughts? Which is your favorite? I love the gold Triceratops and Stegosaurus.

See the whole collection of dinosaur planters, here.


(All images from Two Trees Botanicals.)

7 Pretty Platters 

September 1, 2015

Pretty Platters

Small platters are great for entertaining–serving appetizers, being a centerpiece, or a place to put a ladle so it doesn’t get lost in the soup. They’re also great for displaying pretty little things like jewelry and seashells. I’ve been using this metallic-glazed platter (pictured above) to organize and display my necklaces. Here are 6 others I like…

Pretty Platters

White pebble dish in platinum / Old havanna platter in white / Seagate platter / Old havanna platter in moss / Old havanna platter in mintGloriosa Serving Platter

Which is your favorite?

5 DIY Home Projects I Want to Try

August 19, 2015

5 DIY Home Projects

Last night I was simultaneously scouring Craig’s List for apartments for rent and browsing Pinterest for cute and easy DIY home projects. Since we’ve moved around quite a bit lately–this will be our third move in a year and a half, I haven’t felt that strong sense of home at either of our NYC apartments, yet. But one thing that I think will help build that homey feeling is a few cute and homemade decor pieces. So, here are five projects I’m excited to try (bonus: they seem relatively quick and inexpensive):

1. This hanging copper hat rack is so pretty–it doubles as wall decor!

2. This book planter DIY is a fun way to recycle old magazines.

3. I’d love to hang a few of these wooden triangle shelves on the wall behind our bed.

4. A rustic wall-mounted shelf to decorate with photos and trinkets, and to use for storage.

5. And these mini copper planters (by Ashley) add an industrial touch, which I love.

DIY copper planters

Done any fun DIY home projects lately? Or any you’re dying to try?


PS. How to feel settled in a new place and another quick and easy DIY home decor project.

Lupen Grainne Photography

August 12, 2015

Lupen Grainne Photography

Remember this post with the beautiful, vintage-like nature photography? Lupen Grainne’s photographs are some of my favorites, ever. I started following Lupen’s Facebook page around a year ago, and I love seeing her images pop up in my feed. Her photos are from all over the world, and she recently traveled to Greece and shared so many stunning pictures from her trip. Here are a few of my favorites (and I’d highly recommend following her on Facebook)…

Lupen Grainne Photography

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Etsy Find: Handwoven Merino Wool Blankets

August 11, 2015

Etsy Find: Handwoven Merino Wool Blankets

Have you found anything good on Etsy lately? I love discovering handmade products and beautiful shops on Etsy, which is why I also love writing this Etsy Find series for the blog.

Last night, I stumbled upon the Uruguay-based Texturable Decor shop. Everything in the shop is made with natural and sustainable fibers and fabrics, and the yarn is 100% hand-spun Morino wool. I’d love that deep blue blanket tossed over the back of our (future) couch. And this black and white, plaid checkerboard blanket reminds me of fall.

Etsy Find: Handwoven Merino Wool Blankets

How cozy would it be to wrap up in one of these and sip a cup of strong coffee?


(Images by Texturable Decor.)

Beautiful Linen Towels

June 11, 2015

I’ve been looking for new towels for what seems like forever. Where do you find good towels? Amazon was a black hole. Land’s End has these textured dot towels that I kind of like in grey, but they’re not really what I’m looking for. There are these Pottery Barn ones that are nice. Target has lots of options. And, then there’s Anthropologie, which, to no surprise, has the pretties towels ever (probably my favorite is this woven ombre one and this simple turquoise one is also a favorite).

But yesterday, I landed on Brahms Mount, a Maine-based shop that weaves premium cotton, linen, and wool blankets, throws, and towels. Their beautiful striped linen towels are exactly what I had in mind.

Pretty, right?

Where do you find good towels? I’d love recommendations.

Apartment Inspiration: Linen Bed

June 1, 2015

Linen Bed | The City and Us

In a couple months, we’re moving out of our Brooklyn apartment. While we haven’t officially started the process of looking for a new apartment (every few days, I’ll pull up Craigslist to see if anything catches my eye but no luck yet), I have been daydreaming about different decorating ideas for our new place.

Living in a studio often means the bed is front and center. And since we don’t have a couch, our bed serves as seating and is the largest piece of furniture in our apartment. One beautiful bed that caught my eye recently was the one pictured above from H&M Home. The linen bedding looks cozy and comfortable, and I love the dark grey duvet paired with light grey sheets and pillows. I also love the subtle texture of linen. I’d love to recreate this linen-bed look for our new apartment.

Here are a few more inspiration photos…

Linen Bed | The City and Us

Linen Bed | The City and Us

Linen Bed | The City and Us

Linen Bed | The City and Us

What do you think? Don’t you love the looks of a linen bed?


(Top three photos from H&M Home, second to last photo from b&f, and last photo from Moorea Seal.)

Vanilla & Fig Candle

March 5, 2015

Vanilla & Fig Candle

Dan and I burn candles regularly, and I love how they can make our apartment feel clam and cozy especially after a long day at work. For my birthday last fall, my friend gave me this Vanilla & Fig candle (seen here). And I love it. From Minnesota-based fragrance label Illume, the scent is “a perfect blend of lush vanilla, orchid petals, figwood and black mission figs.” How could you not want your home smelling like that?!


All Illume candles are hand-crafted from all-natural, food-grade ingredients like coconut wax and essential oils, and the ceramic containers are so pretty. Doesn’t this one look cute as a recycled utensil holder?

What are your favorite candles?


PS. Unique gift ideas including a travel candle.

(Images via.)

Do or Don’t: Monochrome Rooms

February 17, 2015

What do you think of these monochrome rooms? It would be an interesting challenge to decorate a whole room with one color, don’t you think? I love how Janne Peters incorporates pops of unexpected colors in each of these rooms. I especially love the beige chair in the purple room and the grey hanging lamp in the blue room.

Thoughts? Would you ever do a monochrome room in your home?


(Styling and photos from Janne Peters via Apartment 34.)

A Tip For Cleaning Jewelry

February 11, 2015

Tip For Cleaning Jewelry | The City and Us blog

Tip For Cleaning Jewelry | The City and Us blog

Do you have any tips for cleaning jewelry? When Dan and I picked up our wedding rings, our jeweler, Bill, gave us some tips on how to properly clean them. First, he asked me, “How do you clean your rings?” Oh…washing my hands doesn’t also count as cleaning my rings? I thought. “Um, I use generic jewelry cleaner.” I quickly responded.

But, honestly, there was maybe a handful of times that I actually used jewelry cleaner, and the only reason it happened was because my sister was cleaning her rings with jewelry cleaner. Following my sister’s lead, I cleaned my rings by dropping them into the jewelry cleaner container, giving it a quick stir, removing the rings from the container, and then brushing each piece with the little brush that comes with the kit.

Well, I think Bill sensed my inexperience with jewelry cleaning and proceeded to give me a few tips on how to clean my new ring. Here are his instructions:

  1. In the microwave, heat up 1-2 cups of water for 2-2 1/2 minutes so it’s hot. The hotter the better.
  2. Add about 5 drops of jewelry cleaner to the hot water and stir.
  3. Drop in your rings (or any piece of jewelry) and let soak.
  4. After your rings have soaked for a few minutes in the mixture, remove them and lay on a paper towel so they can cool for a few seconds.
  5. When they’re cool enough to pick up, softly scrub each piece using a toothbrush with very soft bristles. Bill suggested buying a toddlers toothbrush. (I got the toothbrush pictured above, which is an “extra soft,” from my dentist as a freebie and it works perfectly.)
  6. Dry off each piece of jewelry with a soft cloth. (The cloth pictured above came with our wedding rings and was made specifically for polishing jewelry. It’s similar to cloths used to clean sunglasses.)

Smart, right? I’d never heard of this trick of using hot water and jewelry cleaner before, but it works really well. And I’m happy to report that now I clean my rings every two weeks, sometimes once a week, using these exact steps.


PS. A tip for long-lasting lemons.

Blogmilk | Brandi Bernoskie