WCAF Expo Recap – Part 1: What to frame besides art…

As you may recall, late last month we hosted a team of fabulous design bloggers in Las Vegas for the West Coast Art & Frame Expo. It was a fantastic event full of amazing wall decor inspiration – we came away with so many ideas, we just had to share them here with you…

The first outstanding theme we noticed was a plethora of out-of-the-box items transformed into art, thanks to custom framing. It was amazing! And it really goes to show that if you love it, it can become art. No matter what! Here are some ideas we saw while at the show were:

custom framed map
image via ADC Fine Art

Maps! Maps are a fantastic item to custom frame – it could be a map from a trip you took, a map of a region with pins of places you’ve lived, a map of the city where you were born… So many great options that could be especially meaningful to you!

custom framed vacation
framed by Kelly Gallery Art & Frame
custom framed tickets
framed by Fastframe Bentleigh

Event memorabilia can be really fun to have custom framed! We saw so many wonderful examples, and in this category, just about anything goes. You can have a 3d souvineer framed in a shadowbox, or tickets from your favorite band’s local show, along with photos, playbills and tiny trinkets combined with photos create beautiful displays, and will become great talking points in your home.

custom framed china
designed by Affiche en Tête
by Larson-Juhl

Pretty plates and china offer art options that look stunning when custom framed. Perhaps you have only one unbroken cup or saucer from your grandmother’s tea service… Have it custom framed! Love a particular china pattern, but only have a piece or two? Have them custom framed so you may enjoy them each time you pass.

custom framed antique blouse
designed by Wade Maxx Art & Framing
custom framed baby items
via Martha Stewart

Some of the sweetest custom framing examples we saw were custom framed baby clothes. And what an amazing way to bring something out into your home that means so much to you, while also acting as artwork?!? Christening gowns, wedding accessories, baby shoes, even vintage swim suits and handbags would all be absolute showstoppers when framed by a professional.

custom framed autograph
designed by The Great Frame Up – Oak Park

Autographs may seem like obvious choices when it comes to selecting things to custom frame, but pair that autograph with a photo or piece of memorabilia that has a connection to the autograph, and you have something truly memorable. Even the kid’s Disney autographs would make for fun and personal art for their spaces!

custom framed fishing lure collection
designed by Bradley’s Art & Frame

custom framed spoon collection

Dust off those boxed up collections and give them the royal treatment with a custom frame design! Simple silver spoon and fishing lure collections look like a million bucks with a beautiful layout and custom framing. Perhaps your collections have been passed down and their current method of display isn’t quite your style? Have your local custom framer create something perfect for your home and lifestyle. Even vintage antiques can look fresh and modern with the right frame design!

So – have you been properly inspired yet?!? I know we are! Now we’re just looking around to see what we can have custom framed for our clients… It’s a beautiful way to incorporate a special memory into an interior design. A win-win.

If you need help creating an interior that speaks to you – and incorporating uniquely custom framed art in to it, look no further than the steve mckenzie’s design team; we’d love to work with you to create something truly special!

The Perfect “Rx” for a Valentine’s Hangover

We’ve been experiencing some very chilly weather here, and if you’re like us, looking to hibernate and stretch out Valentine’s weekend a bit, look no further than this fabulous recipe for Vanilla Fudge… After all, as you can see from the photo below, it’s the perfect “Rx” for whatever ails you!


This recipe is shared by our great friend and steve mckenzie’s team member, Kim Crosby, whose mother is always “in search for the next best recipe.” She and her sister love the fact that it’s written on their mother’s eye doctor’s prescription pad, and must be at least 35 years old! A classic for sure!!

Since it may be a bit difficult to read from the image, here’s the full recipe:

Vanilla Fudge

3 cups white sugar

1/2 cup white karo syrup

1 cup milk

1/2 lb. butter

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 to 1 1/2 cup chopped nuts

Bring all of these ingredients together in a mixing bowl, and beat well, until all is incorporated. Transfer to a heavy-bottomed sauce pan and stir, continuously over medium/medium-high heat until the mixture boiling and has reached 232°F, when checked with a candy thermometer. Pour into a buttered dish (an 8×8″ cake pan works well) and cool completely. Once cooled, slice with a thin knife and enjoy!

This fudge makes a lovely gift, and would look especially beautiful presented on our R. Wood Studio Antipasto Platter…

r. wood studio antipasto platter

A big thank you to Kim for sharing this favorite recipe of her family’s and for the fun story accompanying it! Wishing you all warm thoughts and vanilla fudge filled dreams!

Once you’re up and about, we invite you to visit the steve mckenzie’s showroom and take a look at some fabulous new finds we’ve recently brought in. We think they’ll have you looking even more forward to Spring!

Valentine’s Day Greetings from steve mckenzie’s

We hope you’re all enjoying a day full of love with those most special to you, even if you’re far apart.

Happy Valentine’s Day from all of us at steve mckenzie’s!


We’d love to show you some love on your next visit to our showroom – mention this blog post for a sweet treat next time you’re in the store!

steve mckenzie’s Partners to Design Serenbe’s Tiny Artist Cottages

If you follow steve mckenzie’s on Facebook, you may have seen that over the past few months, Steve has been working with our friend, and fellow designer, Kerry Howard to create inspiring interiors for two brand new tiny cottages for Serenbe, slated to be used for their Artist In Residence (AIR) program.

(photo by Cody Guilfoye)
(photo by Cody Guilfoye)

With Steve being an artist himself, this project has been especially rewarding, and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to share the completed design with you all! We first announced our participation in this project in this blog post, which offers a bit of background on Serenbe’s AIR program their partnership with Auburn University’s Rural Studio, where the goal of creating low-cost and inspiring living solutions began.

(photo by Cody Guilfoye)
(photo by Cody Guilfoye)

Many people had to join together to make this project a reality – after all, there were some lofty goals put in place for all involved! Not the least of which was designing the cottage interiors in a way that would inspire a plethora of artists who are fortunate enough to participate in Serenbe’s AIR program, while maintaining a realistic view of what future cottages would look like, when not given the opportunity to work with interior designers.

(photo by Cody Guilfoye)
(photo by Cody Guilfoye)

Because these cottages will work as examples for future Rural Studios dwellings, Steve and Kerry wanted to ensure their designs work to make the most of these unique dwellings. They donated their time designing and installing the interiors, while a number of vendors, including Verde Home, Selamat Designs, R. Wood Studio, Cherry Hollow Farm, Cosentino, Bosch, Workstead Design Shop, Marmoluna, TOTO, Top Shop stone, AuthenTeak, and Robert Allen, all donated products and materials to make the team’s designs come to fruition.

(photo by Cody Guilfoye)
(photo by Cody Guilfoye)

For a full look at Serenbe’s new artist cottages, check out this article from Atlanta Magazine. To learn more about Auburn University’s Rural Studio’s program and how these cottages provided a real-world example for them as the program expands, see this story on inhabitat.com. Finally, this article from Mother Nature Network beautifully highlights the cottages themselves. We’re so grateful this collaboration has been so well received and we’re honored to play a role in the project’s success!

(photo by Cody Guilfoye)
(photo by Cody Guilfoye)

If you love the artsy, eclectic feel of these cottages, and would like to bring a bit of this lovely look into your own space, please contact the steve mckenzie’s design team today!

steve mckenzie’s Winter SALE Extended… Up to 75% off!

It’s time for us to make room for all the fabulous new looks that will be arriving soon. We’ve extended our Winter Sale through February 13, and there are deep discounts on select rugs and floor models, up to 75% off!

steve mckenzie's winter sale

We look forward to seeing you in the steve mckenzie’s showroom soon, so you can take advantage of these limited time savings!

Top Valentine’s Gifts for Him & Her

Can you believe it’s already February?!? For us, January just flew by… It was a busy month filled with business trips, including our time at West Coast Art & Frame Expo, and events. But, it was a fun month filled with friends, new and old. Now it’s time to show some love to those who are most important to you. Whether you’re thinking BIG, as in a Valentine’s engagement, or just a little something small, as in a special token for your friends, now’s the time to shop!

Our Valentine's window, designed by Xavier Neuner
Our Valentine’s window, designed by Xavier Neuner

As you can see from the photo of our Valentine’s showroom display, there are plenty of pretties to be had this holiday! From lovely tea towels to beautiful books, and even some Valentine’s-appropriate party details, such as paper straws and cocktail napkins, we have something to help with your celebrations.

Here are a few gift highlights we have in stock – for both him and her:

Bench-made leather notebook covers by Colsen Keane
Bench-made leather notebook covers by Colsen Keane

Does he love to write – or perhaps he always keeps his work notebook handy for reference? Add some style to his every-day accessory with a beautiful leather notebook cover. These bench-made notebook covers are crafted with the highest quality leather by Colsen Keane and will last a lifetime!

Rings by Grandmother’s Buttons

These vintage-inspired rings are actually all adjustable – so no worries trying to find the ring size of your loved one! While the gift of jewelry is always a lovely idea for Valentine’s day, these special pieces really tell a story. Individually selected jewels are paired with stunning settings and handcrafted into timeless rings. These pieces offer an especially heartfelt sentiment for her.

Moleskine notebooks

And now the gift for everyone… Moleskine notebooks! Pick up a set for a friend, or break up a pack of three to add in your teacher gifts! These simple, paper notebooks feature small, graft lined pages and are sized to fit in pockets and purses alike. The ideal place to keep a to-do list, Moleskine notebooks are available in a variety of colors and would be a perfect gift for just about anyone this Valentine’s day!


Finally – a bonus holiday treat… A cheeky card! Go the traditional route and share a note of love, friendship, appreciation; the right card can help you say anything. We have a fantastic selection of beautiful and unique Valentine’s cards – there’s sure to be something for anyone you’re looking to share a special sentiment with.

Come on in to the showroom today to take a look at all of our Valentine’s gift options and don’t forget about our complimentary gift wrapping. We’re here to make this Valentine’s day a special day for all!