April 26, 2013

Friday Giveaway!

Happy Friday! Today I am posting on Facebook and Twitter my monthly giveaway!
This month it is a custom 16x16 throw pillow. The pillow is white with black quatrefoil detail and silver accent. (insert is not included).

How to enter to win:

1.  Go to Facebook and "LIKE" Distinctive Design By Gina. (You must like the page to qualify)

2.  Comment on the post where you would put the pillow if you won it!

3.  SHARE the link!

That's it! Enter to win and share with friends.

The winner will be contacted on Sunday.

Good Luck!

DDByG will be donating 10% of design services & pillow sales to ONE FUND BOSTON.

April 25, 2013


I love New England. I especially love the season changing from winter to spring and especially spring into summer. It truly is my favorite  time of year here.

After a long day, I love sitting outside in our backyard at night, going over the days events with my husband while sipping on a refreshing cocktail.

This is one I found on Pinterest and  had to share.  I can't wait to try it out on a warm night. It is also a great drink to bring to a cookout or to the beach!

Raspberry Tequila Sangria


2 oranges
3 limes
1/4 cup sugar
6 cups ice
1 (10 ounce) bag frozen sweetened raspberries
1 cup silver tequila
1/2 cup triple sec
1 bottle of champagne
4 cups chilled lemon lime soda


1. Juice one orange and two limes to measure 1/4 cup juice each. Combine juices and sugar in a microwavable bowl. Microwave on high for 2-3 minutes or until sugar is dissolved. Thinly slice remaining orange and lime.

2. Add ice, juice mixture, orange and lime slices, raspberries, tequila and triple sec in a pitcher and stir. Add champagne and soda, stir gently and serve!

Yield: 12 servings

Design Your Life!

April 23, 2013


Using a needle and thread was never my forte. When I needed my pant hem fixed, well, my mom would sew it or I would go to the local tailor. My mom did try to teach me several times and I really wasn't interested in learning. So what a shock when I decided to take up sewing! With a machine of course! DUH!

It all began with a client bedroom.  It was one of my first jobs as a designer.  We needed FABULOUS throw pillows for the bed in a terra cotta color. Well, of course it was spring, not fall, and that color was not "in",  so coming across THE right pillow was not happening. Searching and searching and coming up empty handed with every store I went into or checked online, until I went into Zimman's Fabric in Lynn MA. Just as I walked in, bam, there was the perfect terra cotta print/fabric. One problem. We need it to be in the form of a throw pillow. Well that was it. I purchased 2 yards of fabric and went straight to the craft store for thread, pins and a sewing machine.

I sat in front of the computer for the next 2 hours watching video after video of how to sew a pillow with a sewing machine. Well, I got it first try! YAY me!  So of course with this expensive fabric I wasn't going to ruin it. I had to keep practicing. I had extra fabric laying around from other projects so I began to make different size pillows, envelope closures, zipper closures, I made as many as I could with the fabric I had.

I made 4 20x20 pillows for my client's bedroom and they were PERFECT! I couldn't have been happier with the result. I really had to give myself a pat on the back. She was thrilled!

So that's where it began. Today I make throw pillows for a lot of my clients. Especially those that have a specific idea of what they want and want a print or fabric that is only available to the trade.  I am working on drapery now!

 Here are some pillows I have recently made and put up on the website for sale.  I also make custom pillows with fabric selection, trim selection and in every size.

Indoor Pillow. taupe, white & gold floral 

Outdoor Pillow: blue & white swirls

Indoor Pillow: White with black quatrafoil print trimmed in silver.

Indoor Pillow: Yellow & White Moroccan print. 

Indoor Pillow: Black,grey and white chevron print.

One of my custom throw pillows will be up for the Friday Facebook Giveaway. It's a surprise which pillow! So, if you haven't already "liked" Distinctive Design By Gina on Facebook. Click HERE and make sure to like the page!

Liking Distinctive Design By Gina on Facebook is the only way to be qualified to win.  GOOD LUCK!



April 22, 2013

Our Newest Addition

After years of waiting and waiting, we decided it was time to just do it and add to our family! So we did! The beginning of April we welcomed our newest Baran, GEORGE.

You thought I was going somewhere else with that, sorry. Not quite ready...yet.

We are soooo in love with George. He has taken up so much of our time over the last few weeks we barely have any time to do much after work.  He is a French Bulldog and he is the cutest, smartest little guy. At 9 weeks I taught him to sit and come to his name (although he has "selective hearing" - ehhmm, ladies you understand).  We are working on "giving paw" and "rolling over".

He's been home for almost 2 weeks and has adjusted to life here in Boston very well. He loves his big sister, Bodi (chocolate lab) and although she wasn't very fond of him in the beginning, she has now realized he isn't going anywhere.  As of recent Bodi starting to take him under her wing. (or paw....) and teach him the ropes. He follows her everywhere. It really is so endearing!

Right now we just love to play with him and take a bazillion photo's. He is changing everyday. Currently he has 1 ear straight up but the other is slowly catching up.
 Here are a few pics to share.

His favorite toy, his lion baby. Trying to find a good place to hide it.

First car ride....to the vet.

Sleeping on Derek. 

George sleeping pose. Upside down or head hanging off the bed.

Just being George. This was his take on his 3rd day home.

Trying to organize my magazines and of course he starts to teeth on them!

In his pen with Bodi keeping him company

Wild Bat Pig!

Chewing on everything he can. Can't wait for the "teething" stage to be over!


Licking peanut butter out of the Kong pacifier. 

Our next mission... To get him to DANCE...yes dance. Just like this guy. 

More pics of George to come as he grows with our family! 

Design Your Life!


April 19, 2013

Outdoor Oasis

Who is loving this time of year? Especially those of us in New England! Our winter was LONG and finally all the snow has melted. I love the warm sun shining, hearing the birds chirping & seeing that green grass grow!  It brings a feeling of renewal, starting over and have that hop in your step. Spring is here..FINALLY!

With the spring time arriving comes the outdoor maintenance, all the stuff you have put off for the last 7 months. Although I love designing for my clients, I am truly looking forward to putting my design skills to work on our own backyard. I can't wait to plant the garden, spruce up the front yard with fresh flowers, adding new accessories to the backyard and making the oasis we will enjoy spending our free time.

My colors scheme this year is very neutral. Tans, whites, brown & black with pops of green. Calming, serene and classic is the look I am going for. I am the ultimate deal shopper when it comes to these things. I spent so little money that you wouldn't believe me when I told you. Let's just say I got 4 pillows, a 10ft umbrella, 2 lanterns, and a 5x8 rug for under $200. Yes, that means no guilt if I decide next year to change it up a little, which we both know I will do ;)
Here is an idea of the color scheme. The patterns I am using are more modern. No floral although I do love stripes!

 Our big purchase this year was the gazebo. We were planning on building a pergola off the back of our home but this year neither of us really have the time to invest in building it so we decided to spend just about as much as it would cost to build one and bought a gazebo from Lowe's.  The good thing about this is it will only take Derek a few hours to put it up rather than a few days to build and paint a pergola (always looking out for my husband- wink).

Styling and putting the space together is the fun part. We are placing this by the pool so that we can sit in the shade, sip our drinks and watch our chocolate lab jump into the pool over & over & over again.....I can't wait!

What are you looking forward to do to your own outdoors? Whether you have a back yard or a porch or a patio, always bring the design of your home out & expand your living space.  Our soul loves the vitaminD.

Design Your Life!


April 18, 2013

Boston Strong

It's been days and I still can not wrap my head around what has happened. Our historical, magical city is forever changed.  Marathon Monday and Patriots Day are celebrated like most major holiday's in our lovely state and someone ripped that away from us..... temporarily.

Hearing about the awful events on Monday afternoon was shocking. As I worked, I was frozen. I didn't know what to do with myself.  It brought me back to that awful day of 9/11/01 and I was just overcome with fear. This was happening in MY city.

Shaking, I picked up my phone & one by one called and texted everyone I knew that was in the city. I had accounted for all my friends that were celebrating Marathon Monday like they do every year,  luckily they were not hurt or near the bombing.
Unfortunately, too many people were not so lucky. Grief stricken families are coping with the loss of loved ones and the recovery of those that were critically injured, both of whom will never be the same. Their lives changed forever.

My husband Derek works in Boston, he is a State Tropper ( aka police officer), for those not from Beantown, he was the one that told me that a bomb went off at the finish line. He was in the city working and immediately went to the scene. He was off the grid and hours went by with no returned texts or calls from him.  I thought to myself "what if another bomb goes off!"   Finally he called, he was ok. Those hours were some of the longest of my life. I can only imagine the pain of those families that never got the return call or text because their loved one was not coming home.

Although we grieve for what happened to our city we must also be aware of the heroism of the first responders. The State Police, Boston Police, Boston Fire Dept, EMT's, Military and those everyday people running towards the bomb site, THEY are why there are more lives that were saved that day. Those men & women are true heroes.

My husband Derek wears many uniforms.  He wears the blues when he serves our state of Massachusetts as a police officer, Camouflage when he serves our country and Black when he is on search & rescue.  He is an Iraqi War Vetran & he is my hero. He has been in the city since Monday, only coming home to sleep for a few hours. He wouldn't have it any other way. I am so grateful to call him my husband. Everyday he makes me proud.

Boston is resilient, Boston is strong, Boston is our city and NO ONE messes with us. 

The people of Boston have come together and been an amazing example of a strong support system within state and community. I am PROUD to call Boston home.