Ahoy!

May 7, 2012

I am embarking on a bittersweet journey that I had not anticipated. Some of you may have followed my post-divorce, monthly house makeover project in House Beautiful in 2010. I made the transition from a 5,000-square-foot, 1880s shingle-style house to a midcentury modern “ranch burger,” as Steven Drucker called it. Court Hill Farm—this was home from 2001 until 2009. It was a wonderful, if enormous, house, with an extraordinary view. Its eight bedrooms gave me lots of opportunities to...

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Let’s Take It Outside

May 1, 2012

  Summer is slowly creeping around the corner, and we’re ready to tackle it, shackle it, and hold it hostage for as long as we can. In the meantime, we’re prepping our porches and patios for the season of outdoor entertaining, and found some fun, preppy-esque options that would look great just about anywhere. Take a peek, and add suggestions in the...

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Carry On

May 1, 2012

If you’re like us, you love a practical, roomy, everyday bag you can use to cart around work files and supplies, a wallet or smaller purse, your emergency hair and makeup kit, an umbrella, toys and snacks for the kids (and maybe a few for us), and even gym clothes or a pair of flats for walking. When it comes to versatile totes that can stand up to daily abuse and still look crisp and cute, nothing beats cotton and canvas. Lucky for us, these bags have come a long way from their boat-tote...

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Ready . . . Set . . . Relaunch...

May 1, 2012

  We’ve been having a blast bringing you a weekly dose of Annie’s shopping and product tips, entertaining ideas, how-to’s, decorating advice, and inspiration. So we’re pleased as a spiked summer punch to announce that there’s plenty more where that came from—plus all-new features!—when our newly redesigned blog launches next Monday, May 7. Stay tuned to Fresh American for all the topics you’ve come to love and even more design-insider tidbits, including a weekly column on...

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The Preppy Prince

May 1, 2012

When choosing a high-contrast palette for a room, it doesn’t get much easier on the eyes than blue and white. This classic combination can go bold (think cobalt and snow) or gentle (say, periwinkle and ivory). Our favorite is the tried-and-true pairing of navy and white, remixed to preppy perfection by New York City designer T. Keller Donovan. Donovan generally favors white walls, against which he pops geometrics, toiles, and florals on navy, marine, and cobalt fabrics. Although he likes to...

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Well, Well, Wellies

Mar 27, 2012

The weather may have suddenly (and eerily) warmed up here in the Northeast, but we’re not fooled. We know we’ve still got a wet, chilly spring ahead of us, and we’re ready to take it on  . . . in a pair of preppy-tastic wellies, of course. Check out the ones on our wish list for this...

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A Little on the Side

Mar 27, 2012

Maybe the term side table implies something that’s a bit of an afterthought, but we like to think of these useful pieces not only as great places to store stacks of our favorite books and magazines, but also as decorating real estate for all our not-ready-for-prime-time treasures and as a way to balance out and create a polished space. Here are a few tips for choosing the perfect end table. 1. Proportion is key. If you have a large space and large seating, your end tables should be...

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Where the Boys Are

Mar 27, 2012

There’s a fine line between cute and kitschy, which is why kids’ rooms can be so difficult to decorate. If you want your son’s space to be a fun, sporty, Bob the Builder–free zone, take some cues from this Long Island boy’s room, designed by former fashion designer Jarlath Mellet and featured in the April issue of Coastal Living. Mellet began by echoing the stripes found throughout the rest of the house on the rug, throw, and reversible quilt. She also played with the layering of...

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Big Bangle Theory

Mar 27, 2012

If there’s one truth we feel confident of, it’s that you can’t ever have too much jewelry. When was the last time you regretted having the perfect pair of vintage earrings to go with the new cocktail dress you bought for your friend’s wedding, or wondered, “What can I possibly do with this statement necklace?” The fact—fact, we tell you!—is that jewelry serves many purposes. It jazzes up our favorite outfits, it’s another outlet for self-expression, and it makes us look...

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As Good as It Gifts

Feb 17, 2012

Sure, buying gifts for someone with exacting tastes can be a bit, ahem, stressful, but we prefer to see it as a Mission: Very Possible that we’re happy to accept. So if you’ve got a preppy princess in your life, click this way for some great gift ideas. For the Yogi Prep:                           For the Fashionista...

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Mac and Cheese, Please

Feb 17, 2012

A plate of warm, gooey mac and cheese is, as Julia Child put it, the stuff of life. Okay, so maybe the famous tippling chef didn’t actually say that, but we’re pretty sure she’d have loved the new generation of mac and cheese—in all its sophisticated, flavorful glory—as much as we do. When you’re pining for a midwinter meal that reminds you of home and family time, whip out your cheese grater and fire up the stove, the oven, and even the slow cooker (yes, the slow cooker!). Try our...

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Watch Out

Feb 17, 2012

From tote bags to Top-Siders, the types and numbers of preppy accessories are almost endless. But one of our favorites is the wristwatch, not just for the functional factor, but also for its ability to instantly inject a bit of pep and personality into an outfit. And let’s face it: it’s a whole lot more fun to check the time on a cute and colorful watch than it is on a clunky black cell phone. Try one of these prepster...

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