Friday, June 29, 2012

TGIF, 6/29/12 Edition

'Tis Friday again, friends, and this one is a little bit different than the rest because today Adam and I are en route to Vacationland (a.k.a. Maine) with Mom.

We're headed there to spent a quick weekend with family, specifically to celebrate the vow renewal of my cousin and his wife. I'm hoping that during the brief stay we can eat some yummy Maine food, like whoopie pies, red hot dogs and blueberries. Perhaps I'll even be able to find some bargain antiques, like I did at Thanksgiving.

See you all Monday. Wishing you all a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Meet the Artist: Eva Wylie

Recently, I stopped into the Philadelphia Art Alliance to enjoy an after-work gathering with friends and, while there, I couldn't help but notice the current exhibit from artist Eva Wylie. Her work captures the detail of small items within large-scale silkscreen installations, requiring its audience to stop and ponder each piece slowly and deliberately.

This piece, "Embedded Threads" can be appreciated from the closest to the farthest vantage points.

I am glad to have discovered Ms. Wylie's unique talent and am sure I'm not the only who would love to spend more time admiring the detail in each of these pieces.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Sizzling Hot, Hot, Hot June Sales!

Today is going to be a hot one across the nation, so why bother to battle these scorching temps?
Instead, why not find that perfect spot on your sofa, in the comfort of air conditioning, and treat yourself to a little bit of retail therapy? 

I've rounded up some of the best furniture and home accessories on sale across the interwebs to help you forget this June heatwave. 



I love a good summer sale!
Have you found any bargains for the home on the internet lately?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Plate Preference: Simple or Embellished?

Is it Wednesday already, friends?
Jeez, sorry for being M.I.A. on the blog this week. Work has been more than a wee bit hectic.

But back to the subject at hand: plates, dishes, china, whatever you call it...
do you prefer a simple or more embellished option for your table?


When Adam and I became engaged, I knew immediately that I'd opt for simple dishes. I registered for a set from of Heath Ceramics in both a soft gray and off-white. Our tableware is clean but refined and, though I'm no master chef, it allows the beauty of a dinner to speak for itself.

Haven't had enough of this conversation on china? Check out these unique takes on the tabletop:
(via Houzz)

So what's your take? 
Do you prefer a sparely-designed plate or one flourished with detail?

Friday, June 15, 2012

TGIF, 6/15/12 Edition

I am so excited to arrive at Friday, blog readers. 
Do you want to know why?

This weekend my husband and I are going to see the summer group:
The Beach Boys!
I'm thrilled. I'm a huge Beach Boys fan and, in particular, I'm in awe of Brian Wilson's incredible talent.
It just feels right to see this band on a warm summer Saturday.

But before we say goodbye to each other for weekend, I wanted to thank you all for reading my confessional about blog envy and feelings of inadequacy. Truth is, I certainly don't always feel badly about reading blogs or writing one--if that were the case, I'd stop and dedicate myself more to ventures like exercise or other un-fun things! I know firsthand that the blog world is filled with talented, kind, thoughtful human beings that want to connect with others in a meaningful, open way--and that realization always trumps feelings of jealousy or imperfection that creep in on occasion.

Thank you for your honest comments. I'm really so grateful that you would share your perspectives here.
If I could send you each a yummy bouquet of chocolate-covered fruit, I would.
That's how much I care.

'Til Monday, dear readers!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Do Blogs Ever Make You Feel Badly About Your Life?

I'm about to ask a frank question, so brace yourself:
Do blogs ever make you feel badly about your own life?

I mean, does your reality look like this?
(a blogger's perfect life: filled with cupcakes, parties, handmade cards and butt-enhancing jeans)

By and large, blogs are a source of countless hours of inspiration for me.
There is hardly a day that goes by that I don't smile ear-to-ear after seeing a project shared on a blog and  think, "Wow, people are so creative!" Blogs connect us to beautiful interiors, festive parties, artfully composed bouquets, unique letterpress stationary, adorable babies in hand-sewn clothing...all of which capture the imagination.

But, sometimes, it's hard for me to remember that blogs are, in large part, imaginations at play.
They're edited and groomed and styled.
They're a small fraction of a blogger's whole life.
They're often only the most pretty, most well-lit, most sparkly moments of a person's day.

Too frequently, I see the homes/parties/families/dinners/outfits others' share on their blogs and I think, "Damn, so-and-so has it all together. How do they do it? How is my life so far from perfect?"
I grant you, it is an incredibly self-centered notion to believe that someone's else success or good fortune is a reflection on my own. Life is not a zero-sum game, after all.

But as a reader of blogs, I find myself having to consciously dismiss the feelings of inadequacy that blogs stir up in me and, instead, focus entirely on the wonderful network of creative people I am connected to through blogging. The honest-to-goodness truth is that I am happiest as a reader when the veil of perfection is lifted and and a blogger 'keeps it real', so that's what I'm doing today: keepin' it real.
So, now I ask:
Do you ever feel badly about your life because of blogs?
How do you combat the feeling that your home/closet/children/culinary skills are inadequate when compared to those shared on blogs?

Monday, June 11, 2012

Rah-Rah for Red

I love the color red and can't apologize for the generous doses of it around my home.
While some champion the use of fuschia or mint or yellow, I am the biggest cheerleader for the color red.

My apartment is one extensive cheer in support for this bright and peppy tone, so I don't have to search far to find a delightful note of red in every room. 
(all images via Meet Me in Philadelphia)

Rah-rah for red!

What color appears throughout your home?
Do you have a particular color that you'd stand up and cheer for?

Friday, June 8, 2012

TGIF, 6/8/12 Edition

I've had a super busy week, so I admit that I haven't had enough time to spend in blogland.
I did, however, sufficient time to obsess over a few things that I have to share before signing off for the weekend.

A few things I'm obsessed with this week:
Ever since watching the Ryan Gosling movie "Drive" two weeks ago, I've been obsessed with the '80s synth feel of the soundtrack. In particular, the song "A Real Hero" by College featuring Electric Youth has been on loop during the work week.
(via Youtube)
Do your ears a favor and check it out.

I recently made the switch from Laura Mercier's Tinted Moisturizer to Chantecaille's "Just Skin" tinted moisturizer and I cannot overstate my love for this stuff.
(via Nordstrom)
I'm an uber-fair lady (seriously, I'm white), so I have a hard time matching colors to my skintone but I found that the 'Alabaster' shade has worked perfectly. It actually makes me feel prettier.

While in Chicago, Adam and I bought ourselves a gift to celebrate our first anniversary (a "paper" anniversary, I believe): a linocut of "Flowing Hair" by Henri Matisse.
This treasure lives in our bedroom. Isn't it lovely?

Final obsession o' the week: Amanda Peet's home in Vogue.
(via Vogue)
Her home was featured in Domino years ago and I love that she's stayed true to the cozy California look that I loved so much. Be sure to check out the whole spread here.

But enough about my obsessions: I hope you all have a wonderful weekend.
Lots of love sent your way from Philadelphia.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Irving Penn's "Flowers"

Recently I discovered a series of photographs that master photographer Irving Penn produced in the late sixties, which were part of a now-out-of-print book that I'd die to own, called Flowers
If I could track down a copy for less than $300, I'd study every delicate details Mr. Penn captured from each flower in large scale. Feast your eyes on a few of these floral delights:

(all via Google and Hamiltons Gallery)

How fantastic would one of these floral prints be blown up to a dramatic scale?

As it turns out, I'm not the only one who loves the artistry evident in Irving Penn's flower photography. For one, Mr. Penn's fuschia peony photo figures prominently in the offices of Aerin Lauder's new lifestyle brand, Aerin.

Yasmin Le Bon, model/wife of Duran-Duran's Simon Le Bon, has her own Penn poppy to display.

Isn't Irving Penn's collection of floral photography simply gorgeous? 
Anyone own a copy of Flowers that they'd like to let me keep on long-term loan? :)

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

But Where are the Red Curtains?

In April, my husband Adam and I started watching the early '90's show "Twin Peaks" created by David Lynch. I think it's safe to say that Adam and I were obsessed, which resulted in the show dominating our television screen for the better part of the month. 

Though the show only lasted two seasons, "Twin Peaks" introduced me to the quirky, atmospheric style of David Lynch who certainly has a way with creating a sultry-but-ominous mood. So, imagine my curosity when I heard the filmmaker had created a signature suite in the Hotel Lutetia in Paris!

Naturally, I pictured the "David Lynch Signature Suite" looking like the 'Black Lodge' from "Twin Peaks":
Nope. There is nary a red curtain to be found.
Instead, the director's suite evokes the Art Deco style of his 2001 film "Mulhullond Drive".
(all via Architizer)

Hear the director talk more about the suite here:
(via YouTube)

So, tell me: does the signature "David Lynch Signature Suite" seem like a place you'd like to stay?
Do you like to see how artists like Lynch reimagine their visions through new ventures, like hotels?

And, if you know Lynch's style, do you think these accommodations complement his work in film and on tv?

Monday, June 4, 2012

Trip to Terrain

On Saturday, the weather was temperate and clear. I was dying to get out of the city for a little natural inspiration, and where better to find some environmental ingenuity than at Terrain, which is about 30 minutes outside of Philadelphia in Glen Mills, Pennsylvania.

If you haven't yet heard of Terrain, it is a beautifully operated garden center/store/restaurant/event space that is owned by Urban Outfitters Inc., which also owns Anthropologie, and you can see a similar attention to detail throughout the store. The use of wooden pallets and a rusty mailbox are all intentional styling choices that add up to a rustic and highly-inventive spot for plant- and idea-gathering.

I'd been to Terrain several times before, but this was the first time I really stopped to admire the clever ways plants were paired and presented. I have to note that, someday, I hope to have a patio where large-scale ferns can grow and provide shade.
 These red wire garden chairs and companion bench were such an irreverent pop against all of the green.
 After perusing the plantings outside of the main store, we headed in to see the beautifully styled vignettes that invite shoppers to stop and consider each and every item (and, hopefully purchase them!).
 A large room known as "the conservatory" sits at the very center of the Terrain shop, which was decorated with punched metal lanterns and draped linen panels.
 Can't you just imagine dining al fresco in a spot just like this?
 Terrariums were featured all over the store.
I loved this collection, which was set up as you walk into the main shop.
 Aside from being a fabulous place to get ideas for interior and exterior plantings, Terrain stocks a host of plants that I'd never seen before. For example, these tiny plants resembled a creeper that would grow lush and soft between flagstone pavers. Their blooms were soft bulbs of color.
Anyone know what these plants are called?
 This bromeliad caught my attention with its technicolor appearance.
 And my heart went all a-flutter when I saw several pots of mountain laurel, the state flower of Connecticut and a plant that grows in abundance in my home town.
Are you curious what I walked away with?
I bought a fern and a Carriere Freres Industrie 'lily of the valley' candle, which I wish I could share with you because its scent is heavenly.

If this post wasn't convincing enough, let me explicitly state that I think a day spent at Terrain is not a misspent day. I walked away inspired and wanting to have my own garden sooner than later.
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