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Serena Armstrong
Marin County, California
Interior Designer who enjoys finding the beauty in combining old with new.
Interests: running, cooking, hiking, reading, traveling, art, great restaurants, the beach, all things interior design
Recent Activity
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It's finally done! Let me show you around... Looking out from the kitchen doors to the gravel patio. We may add a barbeque later to the corner closest to the door. It's been stubbed with a gas and electric line, so it will be easy to add. The arbor is made of redwood and is chunky and simple. The walls throughout the landscape have been stucco'd with a light gray stain. I'm hoping that in a few months, the new plants will cover up our neighbor's fence. Oh look! It's a rare sighting! A teenager eating a blowl of cherries... Continue reading
Posted yesterday at FarmHouseUrban
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Well hi beauties. I have much to share with you. For starters, Luke graduated from high school last week. I held it together (for the most part) during the ceremony, but before and after...yikes, I should own stock in Kleenex. My second big news - and i will be sparse with the details for dramatic effect. For the past 3+ months, I have been working on the most exciting interior design projects EVER! Last but not least, there has been progress in my own house (what is that expression about the cobbler and his own shoes?) Several new pieces of... Continue reading
Posted Jun 20, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
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Well hi you... Long time since last post, I know. Besides being incredibly busy at work (LOVE-ing my current projects!), this past month I've been biting my nails as the college letters arrived on a daily basis. I am thrilled to announce that our son Luke has made his decision and will be attending George Washington University this fall!! We are so proud and excited to watch him embark on this new adventure! Although he will be very far from home, I am happy he'll have the experience of living on the East Coast! This was taken at the pre-prom... Continue reading
Posted May 10, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
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**Note: I wrote this on Sunday, and then thought twice about publishing it... I just read Vicki Archer's blog - French Essence (one of my must reads despite the number of unread emails that pile up). Anyway, today she wrote a very inspiring post about weight loss and it made me think we can all use a little 'just do it' encouragement! More fun decor stuff and LOTS of photos coming in next post! Until then... Here is a little vitamin to get your week started...It occurred to me today that this phrase which I use daily, is so embedded... Continue reading
Posted Apr 2, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
Thank you Karen!
Toggle Commented Mar 29, 2014 on The Perfect Bed at FarmHouseUrban
Hi Mary Ann! Sorry you had trouble leaving a comment! Thanks for the sweet message, Yes, we definitely need to connect now that you are in the bay area! xos
Toggle Commented Mar 29, 2014 on The Perfect Bed at FarmHouseUrban
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Hi to you! Things have been quite hectic around here lately! All good I'm happy to say. More later... As a follow-up to my last post - Donna's house sold right away! Yay! I recently received the following email from a reader: I love a simple white bed: just a duvet and a fitted sheet with wonderful pillows. I usually buy Pottery Barn sheets, but would like to indulge in something more luxurious without breaking the bank. Which brands do you suggest? Thank you… PS In your opinion, on a king-sized bed, what is the best pillow combination for reading/sleeping?... Continue reading
Posted Mar 25, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
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One of the most perfect jewel box homes in Marin County is now for sale. Ok, let me first say that there might be a slight bias, as this house belongs to my good friend Donna, but it really is even better than the photos. I have been inside many times and I would like to personally attest that it ALWAYS looks like this. Impeccable. To contact Donna directly about this house or any other in Marin (Donna is also a real estate agent extraordinaire), she can be reached via her website here which features other homes for sale in... Continue reading
Posted Mar 9, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
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I've said before I'm not that into clothes and I especially don't like shopping for them. Well something has shifted and this is no longer true. I have a little confession.... I find myself thinking about shoes sometimes a lot. And there's more. I have thoughts of entire outfits that I don't even have an occasion for. There I said it. Fashion fantasizing - I'm copping to it. That's the first step - admitting, right? One of the reasons for my shift is perhaps because the new trends are finally feminine and thus incredibly flattering!!! No more MC Hammer-style pants... Continue reading
Posted Feb 22, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
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It's been awhile since I've posted anything regarding the house, so here are some updates... The nook off of the kitchen is finished! This little space that used to be a wasted enclosed porch has become my new favorite spot! To see the 'before' as well as nooks that inspired this one, click here. The custom sectional is slipcovered in indigo Belgian linen... The coffee table is a vintage find and the rug is from Ikea. The glass cylinder lamp can be purchased on the shop website - click here. The pillows are custom. I had an extra pillow made... Continue reading
Posted Feb 12, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
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I keep reminding myself that despite the balmy temperatures here in California, it is still winter. Regardless of what the thermometer says, these are some of my favorite winter finds. Little bit of this and a little bit of that... enjoy! 1. Pendleton Blankets. When I was 16 I asked for a Pendleton blanket for my birthday. I'm sure my parents thought I was crazy, but they got one for me anyway. I still have it, love it just as much if not more, and it still looks brand new despite being on my bed from high school, through college... Continue reading
Posted Feb 2, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
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The weeks prior to the end of the year were a blur - a combination of work deadlines, social events and of course, the usual holiday craziness. There were a few highlights I thought I'd share... Shutterfly, if you aren't familiar, is an online company that imprints photos and on just about anything - cards, mugs, calendars, you name it. They did their Valentine's Day photo shoot at my house recently. It was really fun to see what happens the behind the scenes. The caterers were there at 8:00am to set up breakfast, then came back for lunch. As much... Continue reading
Posted Jan 18, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
Hi Maria, the railing and balusters are custom. I had them made by a local metal company. I think they may have been purchased from a catalog and then he tweaked them. If you have any specific questions, email them to me and I will do my best to answer them! thanks and glad you found inspiration here! Serena
Oh Pam, I'm so sorry to hear that. We're in it together sister! Check in often, ok? xo S
Toggle Commented Jan 10, 2014 on Bye 2013! at FarmHouseUrban
Welcome Leslie and thank you! I'm so glad you stopped by! Happy New Year! xo S
Toggle Commented Jan 10, 2014 on Bye 2013! at FarmHouseUrban
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Happy New Year to you, lovely readers! I hope you’ve had a joyous holiday season! I spent the week between Christmas and New Year's in Tahoe, re-learning to ski. It had been about 30 years, but lo and behold it all seemed to come back! All but the fearlessness. I like to go s-l-o-w now. There wasn’t much snow, but they made enough artificial snow for the beginning and intermediate runs to be open. The light blanket of white was perfect for me to carry out most of my lifelong cabin-in-the-snowy-woods fantasies. Crackling fire every evening, Scrabble games and hot... Continue reading
Posted Jan 6, 2014 at FarmHouseUrban
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Hey Pumpkin, Happy Thanksgiving to you! In keeping with the holiday we most associate with feasting, I bring you a recipe, a cookbook and a cooking/food blog I think you will adore. But first... Thank you my dear readers for sticking around and being so lovely always. When I hear from you it makes my day and fuels me to keep going. I wish each and every one of you a day of comfort, peace and joy and hopefully a delicious meal shared with those you love. I have told you about the Tartine Cookbook before and the story behind... Continue reading
Posted Nov 28, 2013 at FarmHouseUrban
Thanks Rae! I'm so glad you found inspiration! xo
Toggle Commented Nov 16, 2013 on Affordable Luxury at FarmHouseUrban
Thank you!
Toggle Commented Nov 16, 2013 on Affordable Luxury at FarmHouseUrban
LOVE your ideas and love you guys! xoxoxo
Toggle Commented Nov 16, 2013 on Affordable Luxury at FarmHouseUrban
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*Note: Technical difficulties prevented this post from being published when it was supposed to so it's a week late! Hi to you! Happy Week-After-Halloween-Fully-Into-Fall-Now! One of the things I miss most about my kids' younger years is how big o'deal Halloween is. We don't get any trick or treaters at our house, so now that I don't have ones of my own, I really feel like I'm missing the best part -- the candy! (kidding!). I may have to adopt...It has been a very busy few weeks both at work (note to self: post more about our projects!) as well... Continue reading
Posted Nov 15, 2013 at FarmHouseUrban
Thank you Cindy! you are so welcome!
Toggle Commented Oct 25, 2013 on Affordable Luxury at FarmHouseUrban
@Trin - thank you for reading and for your kind words! You made my day!! @yvette - will email you specs on the chairs. I like Frette sheets in Percale cotton.
Toggle Commented Oct 22, 2013 on Affordable Luxury at FarmHouseUrban
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I had this post in mid-completion when I read the new issue of Elle Décor dedicated to luxury. I enjoyed the letter from Editor, Michael Boodro who wrote about luxury not being synonymous with money. The term is often associated with affluence and can be off-putting especially during difficult economic times. The working title of this post before was “Great design doesn’t have to cost a lot!” I've been thinking about this topic recently, as there seems to be an emerging marketplace for beautiful, well-made, not mass produced, AFFORDABLE items for the home. I started to create a list to... Continue reading
Posted Oct 21, 2013 at FarmHouseUrban
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HI Anne, my tile setter sourced them. They are porcelain tiles, but look just like real slate. Much easier maintenance. I believe he purchased them from a place called CTW in Novato, CA.