Monday, August 27, 2007

Ann Sacks' Portland Home




"I don't view my house as an extension of my business; I view it as an extension of my family life. There's a big distinction there."

Ann Sacks, the tile godess, started her business after bringing back tiles from Mexico and selling them to friends who happened to love them. It grew and grew until she sold the business to Kohler (she continues to manage all aspects of design).



Her family built a kickass glass house on NW 23rd in Portland, Oregon. It's right above Dosha salon and spa, if you know the area.

Here are photos and a link to a profile courtesy of Seattle Times. Her house was on the cover and featured in House and Garden a few years ago. If anyone has links of better images of that great story, please send them my way.


http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/pacificnw/2001/1028/skyscraper.html

New decorno to drool over.

So, if you read the last post, you know I love Powell's books in Portland. We stopped there on our way from Seattle to central Oregon and I got 4 fantastic books, including:



This is more text-heavy than any decor book I have, but it's great. I loved reading how they think through the design process. The text is concise and well-written. A fast read and really well worth it.



This one I really loved. I love seeing how people really live in their spaces, as opposed to photos that seem super staged and empty and cold. Everyone from designers, to fashionistas, to the editor of Paper magazine, to Ruben Toledo are feastured in this book, so it's a nice cross-section of design-minded people. They also feature Julian Schnabel's place which is you saw Basquiat is yes just like that. Love, love, love this book. Published in 1999, but a lot of the home still look great. Now I know I won't be bored.

OH! One more thing... I read that Ian Schrager is teaming up with Mariott to do 100 hotels. What did we do to deserve this?? If I hear anything else referred to as a "lifestyle" (store/spa/resort/hotel/brand) I might vomit. Everything is becoming a little overdesigned. It's starting to make me itch and get hives.

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Off to the ranch.




Here I go, to my annual pilgrimage to the high desert of Oregon.

I am more than a little obsessed with my hometown of Portland. Central Oregon (pictures attached) is good, too. Not as good as Portland. Too country for me, but just arid and hot enough to make a good week-long vacation.

Oregon is truly God's country. Portland is incredibly progressive and has a regional government that has the magical ability to make a descion, like, "Hey let's build light rail by about 20 years before any other large city bothers to plan for increased strain on roads and transit..." and then Portland does it.

The rest of Oregon just pisses me off, though. There is no sales tax, so only property taxes fund schools and other essential services. In the last 20 years, a certain majority of Oregonians have decided that they don't have to pay for public services and keep voting down all kinds of tax reforms and increases. This drives me insane. The public schools have actually had to cut days off the school calendar because they've run out of money to operate them.



Oregon, with its ruggedly handsome beaches, a mountain that stays snowy in summer (thank you Japanese snowboarding tourists for spending your money on Mt Hood!), rivers that lash around turns and drops and give you the rafting ride of your life, farms that so easily bear fruit as luscious as you could ever hope for, and lives & cities that are affordable enough for people to enjoy themselves, eat out inrestaurants, meet up in pubs, start businesses that fulfill their dreams. Oregon is God's country, there is no question.

When I drive home and cross the state line and see the "Welcome to Oregon" sign, my heart does that virtual scissor kick of happiness. There is so much to love about the place that I actually feel guilty not living there anymore, like I have abandoned post as a native Oregonian. I can only hope everyone else there is so hopelessly in love with the place that they are looking after it the 51 weeks a year that I am gone.

Best things about my hometown:


1. Powell's Books - largest used & new bookstore in the country. An entire city block and about 4 floors of books, books, and more dusty books. I used to take the light rail downtown with I was in middle and high school and could spend a whole day here. Makes you want to read. And Portland is no doubt a city full of readers.



2. Higgins Restaurant and Bar. Greg Higgins, chef, helped start the food/dining revolution in Portland. Local and fresh and refined and amazing. Some of the best service you could imagine. When in college, my boyfriend lived in walking distance, so we would frequent the pub attached to the restaurant. When his parents came to visit, we went to the restaurant proper, and the waiter brought us all kinds of tasty extras that we didn't order in that quiet knowing way. We were regulars, but cheap ones since we were broke college kids. They treated us like kings to make sure our guests (boyfriend's parents) were blown away with service. Lovely & gracious. This is why Higgins is still the best restaurant in town. Not to mention the food. Hoooo boy, it's good.

3. It's a walking city. I can take the train from Seattle, arrive and the gorgeous historic train station, and walk to the Pearl District and all that this great neighborhood offers, right in the middle of downtown. You can do an entire vacation in Portland without a car. Seriously.

4.Tugboat Brewery. Smallest brewery in the land. Charming. Tiny. Fun.



5. Strippers. Yeah, I said it. One of the goofy things about this nutso state is there are no real zoning laws, at least not as it relates to "vice." So there are strip clubs all over. Mostly in the burbs and the more white trash parts, but there is a great one downtown called Mary's. Because there are more strip clubs than hot girls in Portland, the clubs tend to employ a pretty democratic assortment of girls. Girls with belly fat. Girls who may have c-section scars. Girls who are sort of butch. It's a riot. My college friends and I would occassionally stop in and it was a hoot. We girls would chastize the cheap tippers and root on our little muffin-top strippers. Three cheers for good body image! Vegas this was not. More like hipster pole dancing.



6. A few decades ago, a big ugly freeway cut through the center of the city (Portland is divided in two by a river, the Willamette (say Will-AM-ette... got to stress the AM)... anyway, the freeway was parked on the banks of the Willamette and Oregon just decided, "Um, hey, let's tear that shit out and give the waterfront back to the people." Magic. Why can't Seattle figure that out? Because Seattle isn't brave. Period. Oregon is just naive enough to be dangerous. I love it.

7. 2 hours from the beach, 1.5 hours from the mountain, 3 hours from the desert. You kind of never have to leave the state.

8. Small businesses. Don't even get me started here. So many fun, small, unique awesome places to browse and buy and get inspired.






9. The McMenamin's empire. These brothers make "chain" a not-so-nasty word. The slowly built a small empire of brewpubs and movie theaters by buying and rehab-ing great old buildings and turning each into a fantastic neighborhood watering hole. Best spots include the Mission Theater... an old funeral home (so I hear) turned movie theater in which they've ripped out every other row of seats to install long skinny tables so patrons have a spot to put their burgers and pitchers of beer. The 2nd-run movies are only $2, making Portland a great place to live on the cheap. Also a huge fan of the pitch & putt golf course at Edgefield, a bed & breakfast just outside of Portland. The par 3 course starts at the little shack where they distill their own whisky and serve a full bar. So, you know, even if you are a bad golfer, you level the playing field since you're all a little buzzed before you even start.




10. Oregon leaves you hungry. Best part about Oregon? It's no NYC. It leaves you humble and hungry. You don't grow up thinking you've seen it all, because your provincial ass hasn't. Oregon is the best kind of home. Raises you right, leaves you wanting to see more, more, more, but welcomes you back home just when you've seen enough and want to come back to something familiar.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Thanks a lot, Ian Schrager.


Here's pic of the front desk at the Kube Hotel in Paris. Yes, that is a glass box outside of the hotel with 2 sad-sack reservation clerks held captive in their trying-too-hard workstation.

Who else is getting tired of hotels trying too hard? Any other groaner examples?

I stayed at the Husdon Hotel recently (which is nothing more than a youth hostel with alcohol) and they now have plastic-wrapped plastic cups in the hotel room. I called housekeeping and the woman on the phone actually said, "I know, I am sorry. It's kind of Holiday Inn, isn't it?" I was later told that it's because guests had recently taken to chucking their water glasses out the window to shut up the noisy patrons of the courtyard bar down below.

At any rate, tired of trendy hotels, I recently stayed at a total 2.5 star Hilton cheapie hotel and it was great. I was actually able to make myself coffee in the room and not have to order it up for $16. How novel. It was nice to know I wasn't paying for a backlit glass floor in the bar or paying for 70 Stark Ghost chairs scattered all over the lobby. I just paid for a truly comfortable bed and a place so quiet no one had to throw anything out the window to get the trying-too-hard guests to shut the hell up.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

What are your favorite design/decor books?

Let's trade lists. I have some favorites, but I need new inspiration. Here's one rule, however: No one is allowed to add that new Florence Broadhurst. It's kind of like how they just give you RSTLNE on Wheel of Fortune. We know you're gonna say it, so let me just name it now as everyone's gimme.

Below are my current faves. I can't wait to see your lists in return.










(Just added based on recommendation in the comments section offered up by GirlMeetsGlamor. This book looks so great.)

(Yeah, yeah... I know it looks like shameless commerce to actually embed little "buy it now" links to Amazon, but I always wondered how the Associates program works and here was my chance to test it. It's pretty cool. Here's a link to it if you want to add buy links to your page and make some cold, hard cash to fund your decor and book addiction: Join Associates. I was stunned how easy it was to sign up and get the code to paste into Le Blog. Enjoy.)

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

DEAR ABBY Part 2: More wall solutions for Marissa at J'adore Decor




To follow up on the last post, I found the pics from the Blueprint article re: blowing-up-your-pictures-and-ephemera idea that I posted on Marissa's J'Adore Decor blog... here it is for your viewing pleasure.

Do we like this idea?

I found the pics here, but the Martha Stewart link is broken. If anyone has the text and printing resource info handy, please let me know and I will post the link.

http://bblinks.blogspot.com/2006/07/diy-photo-enlargement-projects.html

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

DEAR ABBY (DECORNO VERSION): What to put on my walls?


New decor blogger Marissa asks:

I am in desperate need of things to cover the walls in my apt. I recently moved in with my boyfriend and the walls are blank and a lot of my personal art is "too girly". We have a beautiful hugo guiness drawing that we bought together- but that is it. crazy. so im trying to think of some inexpenisve solutions (this is only a rental, so we cant paint the walls unfortunately). The wall over the sofa is my main concern because the ceiling is really high - like 20 ft. I was thinking maybe something like this - just purchasing the frames from pottery barn and maybe using some personal photos of sunsets in different color ranges. is that cheesy? Any other suggestions?

Image from Domino mag, by way of Marissa's blog, www.jadoredecor.blogspot.com

Antony Todd




Love, love, love his modern and spare vibe.

These snaps are from his website: www.antonytodd.com

The latest issue of Vogue Living (Autralia) has a beautiful spread on his place.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

The Testy Tastemaker, Mayer Rus


Please tell me you read the last page of House and Garden (actually, please tell me you are now reading it cover to cover since for the last two years this magazine has been ON FIRE and it's quickly becoming as lust-worthy as Elle Decor...lil' miss perfect editrix Margaret Russell is like the Tracy Flick of shelter mag editors... she couldn't put together a bad issue if she tried, but she should watch out because H&G is nipping at her heels, as is the pre-school younger sister Domino, of course).

Rus, I think, used to be the editor of Interior Design magazine, and he first made my heart flutter when Sheila Bridges did a quick feature on him during her short-lived and much-missed "Designer Living" show on Fine Living TV. He had that kind of campy and fabulous NY apartment where people live in 400 sq feet of space, and because they have no possible reason to splurge on, say, a car, they buy ridiculous things like $1200 Hermes ice buckets. I LOVE that shit. It's like using Le Mer on your cracked heels. BECAUSE YOU CAN.

Rus is your classic over-the-top design hag ready with a drink in hand and a bon mot to keep you laughing. His editorial hand is all over H&G magazine, but it's his raucous and bitchy "Testy Tastemaker" column at the back of the H&G that really kills me. I love him.

You can read him here



Rus should be more famous.

More white hot rooms (ok, and one blue one)...



I am a big fan of white rooms... I have this weird, tortured, diabolical struggle in my deepest self between a love for old things and a hatred of sentimentality (in both personal expression and decor). So, my answer is to live with stark black/white/brown palate so that the old things I love look more sculptural than "shabby chic" (dear god, I hope so).

Here are examples of what really does it for me. I have a few more photos to add (stay tuned) but the first is just white hot. And the other, well, I just really want that table. I could put that to good use in my old Tudor home. Not sure HOW, but I am sure I could find a way.


Above from article Written by Bernadette Baczynski • Styled by Nicola Marc
Photographed by Angus McRitchie


Borrowed from brilliantasylum.blogspot.com (from her tear sheets, origin unknown... email me if you can help with a credit)


Above, Kate & Andy's Spade's shack, courtesy of allthebest.blogspot.com
It's totally preppy meets dowager-chic, which I love.


(Anne Coyle, featured in Elle Decor, March '05) ...by way of http://www.blackwhitebliss.blogspot.com, via girlmeetsglamour.blogspot.com

Uh-oh... we've become THOSE people.


Oh snap! Ye olde fiance bought us an Xterra since we both drive retarded cars. He drives an Audi TT and I drive a VW bug, so we both have cute little round cars that don't really help us when we're driving around with his awesome 12 year old son... especially when said kid is now bigger than me. The back seat of an Audi TT is nothing but the waiting room for your next clausterphobia attack. And there is no way I was giving up the front seat to accomodate his growing-every-day strapping blond Teutonic kid. Nuh uh. So Jon was thinking of selling the Audi, and getting a new, bigger sedan-ish convertible kind of car to satisfy his car lust, but here's the thing: I am not even a car person, but I really think the Audi TT is a classic in the making. I didn't think Jon should give up his beloved ride. So we got an old Xterra, but now we are the 3 person house with 3 cars. What is wrong with us?*

HERE'S THE GOOD NEWS! Sorry environment, but I am *THRILLED* that we added this brawny treasure to our sorry street-parking-only trove because now I actually have a vehicle with which to haul home antiques and junk. Seriously, I look at that evil SUV and swoon with the thought of all the Fremont Market loot I can bring home now.

Greed conquers guilt one more time. Shame on me.


____
* I can't drive a stick. This might answer "why don't you sell the bug." I am a big ninny and for the life of me, I can't learn to drive one. Right after I am done learning French, I swear I will learn to drive a stick. In the meantime, when Jon has to haul Nick and friends to games, etc. he has to have the Xterra at his disposal. I suppose I could sell the bug and bus to work. I might consider that actually.... greed beats guilt only for a moment... and then I have to wrestle with having a small fleet of gas hogs sitting outside of my house. Oy.

Are you reading this? Well, why the hell not?


So, like, she totally shows us up because she can photoshop stuff into her pictures and can build little web widgets like an animated "Before & After" section on her blog, but instead of hating on her blog (jealous much? um, yeah...), I really love what she's done with the place.

About them: "Ariana & Jeff Falerni, newlyweds and first time homebuyers. Ariana is a web designer and Jeff is a toy designer & illustrator and neither of them knew anything about owning a home or renovating one when they bought the house in May 2007. They still don’t really, but with the help of others they’ve learned a little bit on the way..."

I hate linking off my blog in a post because invariably, 30% of you jump ship and then run around blog land, kicking dust up on my face as you chase after your shiny new penny. But in this case, it's worth it, because her blog is very cheery and I am a sucker for before and after photos (aren't we all?).

So... here's your link, kids: www.becoming-home.com
Run along now. See you tomorrow when you (hopefully) remember to come back for a visit. Oh, and don't forget to check out my update on my 4 day weekend in beautiful San Juan Island, below.

Back to civilization.

I am back from my extended weekend with my mom (and my fiance who joined me on Friday) on San Juan Island.

We camped at Lakedale Resort which is my kind of camping. You're just a 10 minute walk from the "General Store" which sells wine, coffee and candy bars. That's about as hardcore as I can get outdoors. The market on the way into town is also pretty much as good as you would find in Seattle, so of course we packed camping essentials like fajita fixings and eclairs. That's how we roll, yo. Of course, it wasn't until it was too late that we found out about the "canvas cabins" they now have at Lakedale. We could have avoided the hassle of a tent by sleeping in one of these:


The San Juans, if you're not from the NW, are a small group of islands off the coast of Northern Washington State, not too far from Canada, really. In the way that we think of New England as being classic American coastal living, so are the San Juans. The Island are big enough to sustain small farms (mostly gentlemen's farms of really essential crops like wine grapes and lavendar and then other farms raising essential animals like... alpacas). The place is really gorgeous.

The Town of Friday Harbor is the kind of town the rest of the islanders hate on since it's somewhat touristy, but at least the crowds are concentrated so the islanders can go about their business elsewhere on San Juan, Lopez, and Orcas Islands.

The antiques shop on the island is called Funk & Junk, an admittedly riciculous name, but there are some good finds, always. I somehow, heartbreakingly, left without buying the old metal "ST CATHERINE'S HOTEL BUS STOP" sign, which used to queue up the line at the hotel on Catalina island off of California. I love how junk just gets around. I also passed on 8 perfect linen napkins, mostly on principle. Everything there is a tad overpriced. Oh well.

I am confident I will regret passing on the bus sign. Maybe I will call, pay, and ask them to hold until I return.

We checked out Roche Harbor (below) and had drinks outside on the deck. They have made so many improvements over the last few years. It might actually be overdeveloped now... but on an island that doesn't have too many really nice amenities, it's pretty much the jewel of the place. Worth going, for sure.









You good people left 8 very nice comments about my Jil Sander rant... that was very sweet to come home to. I am glad I didn't bore you will my tale.

What did everyone do this weekend? It rained on SJI, so it's cold and damp here. It's that almost-fall feeling. I am sure you all sat around in the sun and worked on your tans in CA, and Texas and everywhere else.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Long weekend, no access to Le Blog.

Today, I am taking off for 4 days to camp on San Juan Island (one of the most beautiful places I have ever been. Seriously).

So, I leave you all with the kind of blog entry that BREAKS ALL THE RULES:

1) It's SUPER long.
2) it has only one measly photo.
3) It's not about decor.



So, my little lawbreakers and design fiend friends, I really hope you enjoy it. It's a true story about how I met my favorite perfume.

See you all on Sunday where I will update with more bitchy design-y things, as usual.


************************


If you want to eat less, wear Jil Sander perfume.

If you want to feel somehow magically more cultured, sophisticaed, elegant and grown up, wear Jil Sander perfume.

If you want to feel civilized, wear Jil Sander perfume.

But if you want a crazy Australian to accost you at your workplace, when you're a 20-year-old college girl working at a coffee shop, definitely accept the unusual gift of a bottle of Jil Sander perfume.

My favorite perfume was given to me by a rough-faced Australian patron of a coffee shop that helped me pay my bills during college. I worked in Portland, Oregon at a corporate kind of coffee shop in the business distrcit downtown. One of the best parts of the job was that various sorts of suits worked nearby, so even though I woke up every weekday morning at about 4:30am to get up and go open that damn shop, just a few minutes invested in curling my hair and putting on some lipstick meant that (coupled with, of course my charm and, well, unfortunate DD breasts that seemed to pop out of my barista apron) I was guaranteed to earn an additional $13/hour in tip. In a coffee shop, these are GOOD tips, I tell you.

Some of the engineers and lawyers and computer types were particularly kind, either in an avuncular way or a more flirtatious way. Australian Guy, however, came out of nowhere. He showed up one day, he had a lot of simple and basic questions for me. Are you from here? Are you a student? He was so tall - maybe 6' 5" or something, and he had this massive head that looked as though he had been in the passenger seat during an accident and his head somehow got shoved into the glove compartment. Of course, as tall as he was, this was not possible. My box-head theory didn't hold up. He wasn't ugly, he just wasn't put together quite right.

One day he came in and he kind of jogged or skipped in. Not in a joyful, but a frenzied kind of way. He stopped and handed me a bag from Saks and asked me to have it. I looked inside and there was this matte black box. It looked expensive. Considering where I grew up, it was. No one in my family ever walked into a Saks (except me, and I didn't buy anything there even when I did dare to go in). I thanked him. He seemed so happy that the coffee girl kept it.

All hell broke loose with my throw-away boyfriend and I must confess that I just bluntly told him, even when he was crying, that it wasn't a big deal, I didn't even like the guy, and I was going to keep it.

If you've ever smelled the stuff, you'd know why.

Ok, let me back up. For one thing, the boyfriend wasn't WORTH keeping. Ok, he was the nicest guy, but he was dumb. Really dumb. On my first date, we went to this fantastic hipster (CAN those two words go together?) Mexican joint called La Cruda, and he picked up his laminated menu and ordered - - I spell this phonetically for you now - - the taco "Plah-tay." Say it with me: "Tah-ko Plah-tay." Most of us would just read the menu and order the Taco Plate, but whatever.

So, moving the story along here, Boyfriend = Dumb.

So when I smelled this Jil Sander, I was all of 20 years. I lived in a rented room that wasn't legally a room. Like, if the city knew someone was renting this to me, they would be fined. It was tiny. It was all I could afford. But it was in this beautiful apartment. This apartment was my first taste of some better way of living - at least in my mind, anyway. The floors were wood. WOOD. Your heels would click on the floor when you came home. How elegant. The woman who let me this room was tall and lean and a photographer. She "had an interest in chairs," (I once heard her tell a client), which is to say she let her even more fabulous friend store her furniture in our apartment while she was traveling. And these chairs were older than my grandmother and they were gorgeous. The other 20-something (who rented a ligitimate room) was also equally amused that we managed to live in a place with far more taste than we deserved to be around.

So this Jil Sander perfume was like the way this life should smell. I bought a vintage red satin coat around this time and this coat, with red lipstick, and this apartment with it's sexy click-click-click heels-on-floors sound and my non-legal-room's glorious street-facing balcony was as cool and sexy and sophisticated as anything I had experienced. And this beautiful bottle with its I-AM-A-SERIOUS-PERFUME golden hue (not some wussy clear-colored dimestore perfume) was as beautiful as it smelled. The bottle is like serious jewelry. Or great architecture.

Of course, it's just a $65 perfume. I now look at it and think, with handbags breaking the $1000 mark, this is cheap stuff, no? But it's not. It's great. And if you want to eat less, and feel cultured and act sophisticated, you can wear this and achieve that. It's perfect.

Australian Guy was a little weird on day 2. He was even more jittery and my coffee shop manager, who was also kind of like an older sister, told me to just give it back. She was prone to high drama and, again, she was proving this. But I listened.

On day 3 he came into the shop and I gave it back. I told him it was so lovely, but that I had a boyfriend who took his kind gesture as an overture, and maybe it was best to give it back. Out of respect. He wouldn't take it. His eyes started to water. He just said no and he walked off.

A few days passed. I kept making coffee. Lattes, lattes, lattes. So much milk. When you work at a coffee shop behind that massive espresso machine, waiting for each of those stainless silver carafes of milk to hit 140 degrees you stand there, with your weary wrists, and you think, holy fuck, this is just so much milk. Ok, so it's not a very deep thought, but it's like 6am when you're doing this and it explains now why all my co-workers think I am a simpleton at Starbucks when I order, always, a tall coffee with room. You just gotta keep it simple.

I digress. Again.

Well, dutifully, I made that coffee, as I had for two years and I chatted with my customers and I looked out the big wall of windows and got drinks ready for regulars as I saw them walking up to the door (this is what you do to earn the all-important extra measly $13 per hour). For all my well-intended scouting out that window, I didn't see him at first. I heard him. I hear a wild banging on those windows and I whipped my head around. I think everyone whipped their heads around. And there was Australian Guy, madly banging the windows with his fists and making this wild noise. Some mix of laughing and wailing and yelling. He was screaming at me while making his way down the window, banging on the glass as he moved closer to the door. Amanda, the manager, made it to the door in time to lock it. I don't think he was actually heading in. I think he was just going to have his fit and move on.

Occasionally, Vogue or Elle or Harper's writes about some society woman and her signatures - maybe a pair of singlasses, or a favorite brand of linens, or, occassionally, her fragrance. It's always some fine patrician connection, like, "Fracas is what my mother wore..." or "I first bought this in Paris as a young woman..."

When W comes to interview me... you know, when everyone realizes what a style icon I am, what can I tell them about this signature scent, this thing I still believe is one of the most beautiful things in the whole world? I guess I tell them that this favorite perfume, this most defining scent, this perfume most matched to my tough and headstrong personality, was offered up by a square-headed Australian sociopathic stranger. Glamorous, no?

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

What's your indulgence?


I really have a thing for lilies and I get fresh flowers for the house every week. It's a must.

What's your thing? Do you have a landscaper? Housekeeper? Any indulgence your parents might roll their eyes at, yet you feel is a total must for your own happiness or sanity?

I'd rather be here today than at work.




Photo snatched from cool blog housemartin.typepad.com

Monday, August 13, 2007

Why are we home obsessed?


We're all home obsessed. And tonight I hd my biggest challenge. My fiance wanted to have a dinner party as a going away for a good work friend. All Sunday we cleaned and primped. We never have guests except family because it's just easier to meet people out for dinner.

The whole time I was thinking... If I am so obsessed with home, why is it such a production to have people over?

So.... why are we home obsessed? Do you like drop in guests? Do they terrify you (like me)? Why?

What do we really want, after all. What are we going to do with these beautiful houses?

Tell me about entertaining... is it terrifying or exhilarating? What are your tricks, recipies, tips?

Lustworthy necklace from Sonya Ooten.


I first saw her at Barney's and her stuff continues to get more inventive.

I want this delicate "fishnet" necklace.
sonyaooten.com

Are candles the new cats?


Seriously... someone said that recently. As though candle-obsessed women (now that you can buy them everywhere from 7-11 to Duane Reade to high end stores...) are like old women with a house full of cats.

I like unscented church pillar types in winter to give the house a glow, but if I want something with a kick, I go for this. Archipelago Havana. So smoky and spicy and masculine and yummy.

What are your favorites? Any Dyptique fans? Is it worth the $50?

Sunday, August 12, 2007

I don't usually love her particular style, but somehow I love her...


Let's talk about Charlotte Moss again.

I don't love traditional floral print wallpaper. I don't love rooms where the wallpaper and the fabric are the same print. It's just too much. And yet, I love Charlotte Moss because she's very sure of herself and has a specific point of view. And she has that cool, over-40 hair chic hair... hair that says, "I get an invitation to the ball at the Costume Institute and you don't." Philanthropist, rich-bitch, power hair. She's just so polished and cool.



And, um, those are BOUND VOLUMES of Vogue magazines. BOUND. Ri-fucking-diculous. When I start having back issues of Elle Decor and House & Garden bound in leather, that is the day I have truly made it, my friends.





Photos from the New York Social Diary