Pumpkin curry (via abeautifulmess.com)Oh man, I love a good curry. Trey and I have a spot in Springfield (Thai Express for all you locals!) where they know our order without us having to say it—two orders of red curry with tofu. Sometimes I get extra veggies and no rice but other than that, it's always the same. 

But this post isn't about red curry, or take out. It's about a super easy pumpkin curry that you can throw together in minutes at home. There's really not much that's traditional about this dish; it just combines the flavors of pumpkin with coconut milk and spices that are somewhat reminiscent of many Indian dishes that I enjoy. It's a bit of a hodgepodge, but it's really good. So I thought I'd share. :)

Pumpkin curry (via abeautifulmess.com)  And you can serve this over any rice (I used brown long grain basmati here) with sautéed vegetables or prepared tofu.

How to make pumpkin curryEasy Pumpkin Curry, serves two.

8 oz. pumpkin puree
1/2 onion
2 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon olive oil or ghee
1 can (13.5 oz) coconut milk
1/4 teaspoon cardamon
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
salt + pepper to taste
cilantro and pumpkin seeds (pepitas) to serve

Mince the garlic and finely chop the onion. Sauté in the oil or ghee for 3-4 minutes until softened and fragrant. Add the coconut milk, pumpkin puree, and all the spices except for salt and pepper. Whisk together and cook over medium heat until everything is warmed through. Taste and add salt and pepper to your liking. 

Pumpkin curry (via abeautifulmess.com) Pour the sauce over rice, vegetables, or tofu (or all three). Garnish with some cilantro and pumpkin seeds. Enjoy! xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

Palm Springs HomePhoto via Apartment Therapy

Hey, friends! I just realized that even though I've been sharing a lot of home stuff, I completely forgot to share my inspirations with you for our new home! Sorry about that! "Moving brain" is a real thing—I have forgotten a lot of important things lately. (face palm x10) 

Anyway! I'm really excited to share this with you. My style has evolved a lot since we bought our previous home three years ago. It's funny though, because a lot of things stayed exactly the same! I still love gold. I still love yellow. And for the second time, I chose to start out with a lot of fresh white walls. So I think there will be some similarities as well as choices I intentionally repeat because I was so happy with them. On the other hand, three years later I have a lot of new inspiration, and I have a better idea of what I want to do in each room, floor to ceiling, from the very beginning this time! 

If you need a refresher on our before home, click here. We made a video on the day we got the keys, sharing almost all the rooms. It already looks COMPLETELY different (mostly because there is zero carpet now). 

Colors—I stuck with my old method of choosing one base color story for the entire home

Color storyI am excited about this color scheme because it's light and airy. I really wanted something with a bright/neutral base so that I could change up the details season by season. I want to focus on a lot of texture for the permanent pieces, instead of color. 

We won't limit ourselves strictly to these colors. It's more of just a general direction to help me get started! 

Elsie's color storyMuses—

Palm Springs Palm Springs + Jonathan Adler (photo via DesignLoveFest

Read more about this obsession here

Dorothy DraperDorothy Draper 

If I could be 1% this confident, I think that would be amazing. 

The Surf LodgeThat floor inspiration, you guys. 

The Surf LodgeThe Surf Lodge 

I sometimes describe myself as "zero percent bohemian", but I make an exception for wicker and rattan, which I am obsessed with! 

As you can see, I am embracing a lot of retro inspiration. I want to have bits of that, but also an overall cozy vibe. I don't want my home to be too fancy. I guess if I had to describe my big-picture goal with the decor, it would be to make it really photogenic (an obvious necessity for a blogger and Instagram addict like myself), but then I would also hope it would feel really comfortable and easygoing in person. Because I don't want to live in a white box.... hmm... unless maybe that white box had lots of pillows and a cozy fireplace. Haha! 

Outdoor spacevia Fresh Home and The Beverly Hills Hotel. 

I  have both short-term and long-term goals. We've committed to staying in this home for seven years (till I'm forty, gulp!), so I feel like I have time to do anything and everything, but it has to happen one day at a time. 

Above is a bit of my outdoor inspiration. Painted brick, an epic wrap around porch, an outdoor fireplace and some concrete block walls. We're doing zero outdoor projects this year, but hopefully we'll get started later next year. In the meantime, I'm enjoying collecting inspiration! 

Pink tablevia SFgirlbybay

I have a big project ahead of me! I'm excited to share it with you a little bit at a time. Hopefully this inspiration post will give you an idea of the styles that are inspiring me right now and what direction I'm going for. What's cool is that even though I feel like I have a crystal clear vision of what our house will end up looking like, I know it will change and evolve as we go. That's just how it works! 

On a side note, I am curious to see if and how living in Nashville will influence me. You know I'm a hardcore Dolly Parton lover (have a giant Dolly art project planned already), and I'm definitely going to buy my fair share of brass horseshoe things from eBay, but beyond that, I don't know. Only time will tell! 

Follow me on Snapchat (@elsielarson) for daily progress reports! xx- Elsie 

Apple Ginger Tarte Tatin (via abeautifulmess.com)Every year around this time I share some kind of version of an apple pie. It's sort of a tradition for me. In 2011 we made baked apples together. In 2012 I shared a spiced bourbon apple pie (adding bourbon to recipes was, and is, a passion of mine). In 2013 I shared a cheesy apple pie—so good but, yes, kind of weird. And last year in 2014 I shared a crustless apple pie you can make in a slow cooker. 

So, yeah, I'm definitely not a purist when it comes to apple pie or baked apple treats in general. What can I say, I like changing it up all the time.

Apple Ginger Tarte Tatin (via abeautifulmess.com)  This year I didn't bake an apple pie (although I might sometime this year for family, seems pretty likely). I've always wanted to make a classic apple tarte tatin because they are so pretty when I see them in cookbooks and I've never had the pleasure of being somewhere where this is served. So I just wanted to try it and see what it was like. 

Oh man, you guys, this is NUTS delicious. The apples basically turn into candy while you cook/bake them. So good. I am definitely going to make this for friends sometime just because I want to BLOW THEIR MINDS (and taste buds).

I really can't take much credit for this dish. Since it is a traditional dish, I was working from a recipe found in Dessert of the Day. I had to change up the ratios because I had a different size cast iron pan than what the original recipe calls for. Plus the original uses pears instead of apples. But other than that, it's pretty darn similar. If you like desserts, check out this book. It's big and full of pretty food photography, which is what initially drew me in. I certainly haven't tried everything from this book, but this recipe turned out great. So I have a feeling it's a winner. :)

Easy apple tarte tatin recipeApple Ginger Tarte Tatin, makes one 8 inch round pastry. Serves 4-5.
Adapted from Dessert of the Day

1/2 sheet puff pastry, trimmed to fit just inside your pan
3 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup sugar (granulated)
2 granny smith apples
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon finely chopped crystalized ginger
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
ice cream to serve (optional)

Peel the apples and slice into thick pieces. Melt 2 tablespoons butter in an 8inch oven-safe pan (I used a cast iron skillet for this). Sprinkle the granulated sugar over the melted butter. Arrange the apple slices on top. Let that cook on medium/low heat for 6-8 minutes. The apples will begin to release liquid and the sugar and butter will begin to bubble a little.

In a small bowl combine the brown sugar, chopped ginger and cinnamon. Sprinkle over the apples. Place your trimmed puff pastry over the top and carefully tuck the edges in with a fork. Prick a couple holes in the puff pastry to allow air to escape.

How to make apple tarte tatinBake at 400°F for 22-25 minutes. The puff pastry should look toasty and golden brown, but not burnt. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes.

Carefully run a butter knife around the edge of the pan in between the pastry and the pan, helping the pastry release. Place a plate over the top and (carefully—don't burn yourself here) flip over. A few of your apple slices might stick—mine did. Boo! But don't fret because you can still just carefully remove them from the pan and place them back into place. No biggie.

Apple Ginger Tarte Tatin (via abeautifulmess.com) Serve warm with ice cream or maybe a little whipped cream. Or you can serve it without any additions, it's plenty sweet as is. :) So glad I decided to finally make one of these—thanks for letting me share. xo. Emma

Credits // Author and Photography: Emma Chapman. Photos edited with A Beautiful Mess actions.

above: living room of designer Antonia Hutt featuring William Haines's Brentwood Chair

Hollywood Regency is known for its glamour, drama and new twist on old classics. The style became popular in the 1930s during the golden age of Hollywood. William Haines designed homes for movie stars that made them larger than life with sleek low-lying furnishings and sumptuously dressed walls and windows, while Dorothy Draper's larger-than-life personality filled great halls and hotels with bright colors and big, bold patterns. Hollywood Regency gradually entered homes across America with the popularity of key elements, like tufted sofas and modern Greek and Egyptian influenced fretwork, patterns and furniture silhouettes. The style has been going strong since the 1930s and has evolved a bit with each decade that it endures.

above: entrance to William Haines Interiors


Known as the father of Hollywood Regency, William Haines was first an actor who was eventually ousted from Hollywood because of his refusal to deny his homosexuality and enter into a sham marriage for the sake of the studios. His friendships with Hollywood starlets launched him to popularity as a decorator for the elite, eventually designing furniture that is still available to the trade today, like the beloved Brentwood chair that was inspired by the tapered, splayed legs of Grecian chairs.

Brentwood-chairs-william-hainesabove: Pull Up chairs, a variation on the Brentwood chair, designed by William Haines

William-haines-time-capsuleabove: William Haines time capsule home as seen at LA Home & Style

Key elements in Haines's Hollywood Regency include neoclassical elements, rebirthed from mid-19th century European designs, as well as rich textiles, sumptuously tufted seating, and dramatic elements like oversized sculptures, bold colorways, or over-the-top feminine touches. His later work became more streamlined and a glamorous variation on mid century modern styles, as seen in the Brody house pictured below.

William-Haines-Brody-House-1950above: Brody house living room designed by William Haines

Annenberg-sunnylands-homeabove: original master bedroom at Sunnylands designed by William Haines

William-haines-interior-modern-productsAdd some Haines Hollywood glamour to your space with these modern pieces:

1. Trellis Pillow
2. Ivory Keystone Pillow
3. Slipper Chair
4. Golden Age Lamp
5. Nesting Tables
6. Dog Statue
7. Brentwood Curved Sofa
8. Gold and Acrylic Bar Cart

Greenbrier-stairsabove: The Greenbrier Hotel designed by Dorothy Draper, photo by Gemma & Andrew Ingalls


Dorothy Draper, the mother of Hollywood Regency style, was a decade-defining decorator of the 1940s who freshened dark and tired period styles with fresh coats of white paint, black lacquer, and loads of oversized botanical prints and stripes. Her bold and often feminine color schemes modernized baroque and regency styles, softening and simplifying them to create a unique, Americanized version of traditional period style.

Draper's Regency style was a bit more traditional, though perhaps bolder, than the sleek, glamorous styles of William Haines that became more mod as the decades passed.

Dorothy-draper-interiorsIn Dorothy's day, if you weren't a modernist, a decorator's goal was usually to perfectly copy period styles of bygone eras. Dorothy took a bold twist on traditional decorative elements, playing with contrast and scale. Ram's head pediments were simplified in their form, enlarged, and given a fresh coat of bright white paint. Paneled doors were simplified with simple contrasting squares in black and white color schemes. Stripes, floral chintz and banana leaf prints were exaggerated to add a bold vibe to carpets and wallpaper.

The bold, quasi-traditional style of Dorothy Draper transformed the interior landscape of America, her influence injecting homes and public spaces with a fresh jolt of color. She also helped create the profession of interior designer and had a tremendously successful career in a day when ladies just didn't work outside the home. Draper's work was popular in high society and graced the halls and gathering rooms of the era's popular hotels, clubs, and Manhattan row houses. She also wrote for Good Housekeeping, influencing other decorators and housewives all across the U.S.

Greenbrier-hallways-2above: Greenbrier Hotel by Gemma & Andrew Ingalls / Victoria Magazine / below: Michel Arnaud for The Baltimore Sun

Greenbrier-orange-roomGreenbrier-hallways-1above: the Greenbrier Hotel by Cooper Carras for Matchbook Mag

Dorothy Draper's work can still be seen gloriously displayed at West Virginia's Greenbrier Hotel, as shown in the color images above. If you'd like to add some of her style to your home, check out this Dorothy Draper inspired collection of interior elements below:

Hollywood-regency-dorothy-draper1. Banana Leaf Pillow
2. Baroque Mirror
3. Floral Curtains
4. Brass Table Lamp
5. Slipcover for Ikea Ektorp Sofa
6. Campaign Nightstand
7. Geometric Pillow Cover
8. Tall Lidded Urn
9. Short Lidded Urn
10. Tufted Slipper Chair
11. Copley Chair in Dorothy Draper's Brazilliance
12. Mirrored Brass Tray


Hollywood Regency has become a far reaching style through the decades, donning many faces along the way. In the '70s it blended well with mid century modern styles particularly in California, à la Palm Beach style. Check out Trina Turk's dining room below to see an example of this, as well as the later work of William Haines.

Trina-Turk-1970s-Home-Haines-Chairsabove: home of Trina Turk featuring William Haines chairs above: Ford home designed by Darren Brown in the '70s

Ford-bedroomHomes from the 1970s are known for their heavy doses of pattern—to put it nicely! Pattern on the walls, patterns on the windows and patterns on the furniture. David Hicks was a British designer who masterfully blended the funky pattern-laden '70s style with preppy tailored Hollywood Regency designs.

David-hicks-patternsHicksonian, a fabric design by son Ashley Hicks / Hicks' Grand Wallpaper / La Fiorentina, a fabric design by Ashley Hicks

David-hicks-roomsabove: designs by David Hicks

Check out that carpet in the room above! Pretty bold. Hicks' style is so iconic and really blends well with the aesthetics of stylish cult movies from the '70s, like Harold and Maude and The Shining, movies most certainly influencing modern film makers like Wes Anderson (think The Darjeeling Limited) and David Lynch (Twin Peaks—think The Red Room).

David-hicks-bedroomabove: bedroom design by David Hicks in the '70s


Designers are still infatuated with the drama and glamour of Hollywood Regency style. For modern interpretations, check out the spaces below. Popular modern designers who've put their own spin on classic Hollywood Regency designs include Jonathan Adler, Kelly Wearstler, Miles Redd, Nate Berkus, and many more.

Jonathan-adler-and-Miles-Reddabove: Jonathan Adler / Miles Redd

Elle-decorabove: Elle Decor above: home of Marjorie Skouras via Apartment Therapy / Lonny

Joe-Nahem-Greenwich-Home-for-Architectural-DigestJoe Nahem design via Architectural Digest

Modern-dorothy-draper-4above: Tobi Fairley / House of Honey / below: Domino

Modern-dorothy-draper-domino-magazineA-beautiful-mess-dorothy-draperabove: Shannon Smith for A Beautiful Mess / below: House Beautiful / House Beautiful

Modern-dorothy-draper-house-beautifulSo much glamour and tons of inspiration! Does this inspire you to add a little glamour to your home? -Mandi

Credits // Author: Mandi Johnson. Images: Noted individually.


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