Lessons From The Garden: What My Wisteria Shrub Taught Me


Good morning all! August is here! Can you believe it. Where did July go? It has been very hot here until last week when we had cooler temps.   I started attending to the flower beds. Wisteria was growing out of control.  Some weeds were as tall as flowers.  What started out as a few minutes of weeding quickly became two days. I immediately got sick with a summer cold which took me out for another three days. Before I knew, the week had gone by with no blog post and little done at home.


There are small lessons in ordinary days. The Wisteria shrub was growing at a few inches a day it seemed. I passed by it a several times a day. I really didn’t want to deal with it. I wanted to delay cutting it back because I was wishing it would produce flowers. What I learned, if it’s not producing results, cut it back. The Wisteria shrub looks healthy again and cutting it back was exactly what it needed. Wisteria plants can take 5 to 15 years to produce flowers. Life lessons come when we least expect, but need it most.

As I enjoy the last few weeks of summer and return to regular schedules and routines, it is worth evaluating what’s not working and what needs to be done to get results and  who will stick by to support and encourage set goals.   Gardening is good for the soul, but  like anything else, too much too soon has its drawbacks.

Thanks for stopping by.

Ivy de Leon

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Three Pendant Styles To Wow Guest In The Kitchen


Regina Andrews Large Globe Pendants

Designing my dream kitchen is going to take dollars and time.  I’m crushing on gray cabinets.  Our kitchen has too much brown going on with the stain cherry shaker cabinets.  When a major overhaul of the kitchen is not in  the near future, small changes such as changing the kitchen lighting make a big impact.   I’m sourcing for pendant lighting for over the kitchen island to jazz things up. The lighting needs to fit the Cape Cod style of the house.  Although, we live in the country, there is nothing rustic about our kitchen.  The kitchen has a more formal feeling.  Let the search for kitchen pendant lighting begin.   The lighting being offered today is gorgeous. There are many finishes, sizes, and price points.  These three pendant  styles are sure to wow family and guest.

kitchen lighting OB

Goodman Hanging Lamps by Thomas O’Brien

pendant lighting

Darlana Lanterns Earl F. (Sandy) Chapman for Visual Comfort

Darlana lantern

Do you have a favorite?

Ivy de Leon

Via Decor Pad

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Make It A Positive Monday

Monday flowers pink and white ivydeleon.com


stay positive quotes that inspire ivydeleon.com

what to wear pinstripe dress ivydeleon.com

Happy Monday friends! New day, new week, stay positive!

What to Wear:  With summer weather expected to be hot, a dress is my first choice to get ready for the work week.  One piece to pick up and go.  I’m crushing on the belted pinstripe cotton dress from Nordstrom.

What to Read:   The Incalculable Value of Finding a Job You Love,  Frank, Robert H. “The Incalculable Value of Finding a Job You Love,  New York Times, July 24, 2016, on page BU6 of the New York edition.  A great article for college graduates starting out and those of us starting second and third careers.  It’s never to late to start doing what you love.

Ivy de Leon

Thanks for stopping by.
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Here Comes Fun!


girls night out

Cheers to the weekend!  Cocktails and shoes and a few good friends sounds just like the weekend I want.  Nordstrom is having their Anniversary Sale!  Shoes therapy would do me good.  NYNow  is currently at the Javits Center so I’m looking for something comfortable. Come to think of it, I’ll need another pair for High Point Market.  You know how it goes… Hope you have a wonderful weekend.

Ivy de Leon

via wehearti /wauwandlulu

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Power Monday: Inspiration, design and fashion

We are better together.   All of us–you and your team, you and your fellow makers. Not one of you is the same and not one of you could fully replace the other. In my humble experience, we are ten times stronger when we take advantage of each others hard work by coming together for a united effort.   — Amy Howard


desk crush ivydeleon.com


pink dress what to wear Power Monday ivydeleon.com

Alexa Chung

    HVN Collection Launch -Pink gingham.    A great look for ladies that lunch.

WHAT TO READ:  Amy Howard is a designer with a signature paint line.  Her blog is beautifully written and inspirational. /  DESK CRUCH: Desk is based on a vintage Jansen model; the lamp is from Gerald Bland, the chair is from Mecox, and the photograph is by Deborah Turbeville.  Interior decorator Christopher Maya tailors J. Christopher Burch’s getaway in Southampton, New York. via  Architectural Digest  / WHAT TO WEAR: Pink gingham Dress via Harper’s Bazaar

Thanks for stopping by.


Ivy de Leon

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Try This Easy To Serve Summer Sangria

summer sangria ivydeleon.com

Summer is in full swing.  Enjoy the flavors of summer with a delicious peach and mango sangria that is easy to make and serve.  Williams-Sonoma Peach and Mango Sangria mix with a touch of tangy citrus makes everyday a sunny, tropical celebration.  The 24 fl. oz makes a traditional or non-alcoholic sangria.

summer sangria ivydeleon.com

Just add white wine, then garnish with sliced peaches and limes.  For non-alcoholic coolers, combine the mix with sparkling water.  Served chilled over ice.

Make a beautiful presentation with this generously proportion punch bowl set, from Hayneedle.

Peach Sangria Summer ivydeleon.com

The beautiful glass is entirely handcrafted.    The set includes 1 punch bowl which holds 7 quarts, 6 punch cups and a glass ladle.   I love it because it is dishwasher safe for easy clean up.

Peach summer sangria ivydeleon.com

Punch bowls have made a comeback from the 1950’s.

cocktails peach summer sangria ivydeleon.com

The punch bowl help guest serve themselves, giving me more time to mingle.

Peach summer sangria ivydeleon.com

Cheers to the weekend!

Ivy de Leon


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How To Create A Welcoming Outdoor Entertaining Space

Outdoor spaces are an extension of the home.   Creating an outdoor dining area that is inviting and comfortable is easy if you find the right pieces. Make it functional to lounge, dine, entertain and linger with family and guest.

I tend to keep things simple outdoors with classic blue and white.  Melamine dishes and acrylic glassware are practical.  A few more must haves for entertaining outdoor are tablecloth,  placemats and cloth napkins.


Fresh-cut flowers on the table from the garden or store bought flowers is important.  I’m really enjoying having a garden.


A  whimsical pitcher keeps the table fun.


Ralph Lauren serving pieces are so chic.   Lanterns and candle holders are ready to light up the evening when the sun goes down.


Plenty of pillows for comfort and lingering always.  With some styling,  HomeGoods  helps me make my outdoor entertaining beautiful and affordable.

Ivy de Leon


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Power Monday: Empowering Women In Business

Good vibes


fringe sandals

WHAT TO WEAR: Wild Thing fringed suede sandals


WOMEN IS BUSINESS:  Panel discussion “Empowering Women in Business”   ELLE DECOR Vice President and Group Publisher Kate Kelly Smith, Pollack’s Design Director Rachell Dorris’s, Wellspun’s Managing Director, Dipali Goenka, and SoulCycle’s SVP of PR and Brand Strategy, Gabby Etrog Cohen.  Below are my takeaways.   Link to the discussion in its entirety

  • Do what you love and the path will open
  • Take little seeds of wisdom where you are in your life
  • Mothers, let go of the guilt.  It will always be there.
  • Start the conversation that kindness is great for business
  • Believe /Be Yourself /Have some guts/ Use Technology
  • Encourage others/ Collaborate/ You are only as good as your team member

Ivy de Leon

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Perfect Pairings Of Wine and Design In NYC

Adam Japko Esteem Media  elizabeth Atlanta Homes Magazine

Adam Japko of Esteem Media and Elizabeth Ralls, Editor in Chief of Atlanta Homes and Lifestyle magazine.

Recently, I received and invite for an evening of Perfect Pairings with a Southern Flair with Adam Japko and Elizabeth Ralls.  Pairings meaning wine (Adam writes the blog Wine Zag)  and Southern Flair meaning design, add to that mix three fabulous brands  JLCreate (John Lyle Design), Fromental and CL Curated.  I was a little curious, wine and design?  With Adam, there is always an element of surprise to his collaborations.

Adam Japko, legendary for his wine pairings, offered his expertise on a whole new level.

wine and design Prosecco wine and design 3 ivydeleon.comwine and design 5wine and design 2 ivydeleon.comwine and design 8

Selected vignettes and pieces from the Fromental, John Lyle Create and CL Curated collection were “paired” with wines hand-picked by Adam.

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 Flatiron Design Collective Offices – Fromental, John Lyle Create and CL Curated


Wallpaper: Fromental –   Table: John Lyle Create –  Rugs: CL Curated

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wine and design Bella Casel

Love  the luster of  the rug on the wall by CL Curated

Just as great design brings a feeling of relaxation or energy by its form, color and texture, so does a great wine.  Wine brings calm and excitement by its grape, region, color, taste and smell.   I never thought of it this way.  It sure is a fun way to introduce a design to a client.

Elizabeth Ralls, Editor in Chief of Atlanta Homes and Lifestyle magazine was also on hand to share beautiful designs featured in the magazine. Design styles come together to appeal to the homeowner making them feel at home.  Complexity and balance are all part of great design and wine.

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I hope this is the first of many wine and design events introducing great brands and pairing them with delicious wines.  Thanks to Adam, Elizabeth and the Flatiron Design Collective.

Ivy de Leon

Images: Courtesy of Andrew Joseph PR





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Independence Day Outdoor Entry Makeover

Independence Day is just around the corner.  We are also getting ready to celebrate my mother-in-law’s birthday.  I want to make an inviting entry for family and friends.   I’ve been busy sprucing up the backdoor entry to the house. The floor boards really needed some cleaning and painting.

www.ivydeleon.com outdoor floors paint

A good wash and scrub removed most of the dirt.  After letting the boards dry, I applied Cabot exterior stain in Drift Gray.   As you can see below, the door needed decorating help too.

www.ivydeleon.com outdoor spruce up

Red, White and Blue flags and door banner set a patriotic outdoor entry.

www.ivydeleon.com outdoor patriotic style

www.ivydeleon.com outdoor patriotic style

Since we live in a Cape Cod style house, a touch of nautical decor and lanterns give the backdoor a summer beach feel without going over the top.

www.ivydeleon.com outdoor patriotic style

With sourcing at Lowe’s and HomeGoods our outdoor entry is welcoming and guest ready. Happy  Independence Day!

www.ivydeleon.com outdoor patriotic style

Ivy de Leon

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