Saturday, April 26, 2008

So pretty

Gwenyth Paltrow is one of my favorite current actresses. She always picks interesting roles and is just so beautiful. I love that she keeps her private life private and is very well spoken. Here she is in Rome promoting a new movie -isn't she beautiful! So fresh looking! One of my all-time favorite movies stars her, 'Great Expectations'; Also love 'the Talented Mr. Ripley'. Check them out if you haven't seen them!

photo via PerezHilton

Friday, April 25, 2008

Wedgewood 'Cuckoo'

The china of the week for this week is one of my favorites (probably because growing up my parents had a set of this) - it's called 'cuckoo' and is made by wedgewood in the 80s. It's part of their colonial williamsburg series. These are really charming - I have 2 teacups and saucers and a little biscuit plate of this that I use for my everyday tea. It's a sturdier china so I don't feel like it will chip easily and it's just so pretty. This is pretty hard to find as it's so popular. I would love to have a whole set of this someday.

The perfect house?

How does one define one's style? What makes us like one thing over another? We chalk it up to personal taste but it can be hard to break down into pieces. For every home we love, there are many things we may like about it and numerous things we may dislike. Is there such a thing as a perfect house?
Take for example this house from Peter Marino

I look at this house and know that I love it. I love the symmetry, I love the materials ( stone, slate), I love the simplicity of the massing and the simple garden. I love the stateliness of it. I love the big windows! I do not like the sheer size of it, this is a house for a robber baron with a large family and numerous servants, not for me! I don't like those little shutters on the second floor windows on the wings. I don't like that it seems rather institutional and plain.

Look at Garrison Keillor's house. Charming, right? This house isn't boring -it's rather charming isn't it? I like the covered loggia at the entryway, I like the interesting dormer on the front and the steep rough lines. I like the red brick with limestone details. I'm not a fan of the way the roof just sort of ends undramatically. I don't like the mish-mash of styles. I don't like that the front entryway isn't very pronounced. I don't like that this house seems to FILL the lot and feels claustrophobic.
Check out the palatial Sap Mansion

Beautiful, right? It looks like one of the French King's built this back in the 18th century. We all know why I love this - it's that french historical style I love, except it looks BRAND NEW -that bothers me. It's too crisp and perfect. Those large entry courts might have been common in the 18th century -but now they LOOM in front of the house and are so unfriendly ( not to mention NOT green!, in more ways than 1 ). Also -unless for state functions -why is the house so big? And whats behind that plain boring wall on the one side of the court? In 100 years if this house is still standing ( it's so big, was the quality of construction meant to last?) I'm sure it will be more appropriate looking.

Check out this house via Cote de Texas. Totally charming right?
I mean, who doesn't LOVE this house? It's not too big, not too small, it's open to the BEAUTIFUL gardens. But for me personally, I'm scared of all those plantings right on the house -will that bring bugs inside? And I don't know that I want a clock tower right on my house. The garden is a little formal looking for me too.

Check out this cute cottage
I love the front porch, but maybe it's a little small? And do I want to climb up all those steps everyday, especially with groceries?

So is there such a thing as a perfect house? It's such an individual choice. I suppose every house has it's good points but maybe also little things that you concede on. On what qualities do you chose a house? Location vs. price, style vs. comfort, size vs. quality. Maybe after years of living in a home and constant tweaking you get it to a point where it is 'perfect' but what for? Once perfection is acheived, is it satisfying? Just some musings going on in my head and an excuse to post some pretty pictures :-)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

The mount continues

Curators are still desperately trying to save 'the mount' from foreclosure. I've made my contribution, have you? It's tax deductible AND they only will take your money after your pledge if they raise enough to save it.
I loved this image of a hidden door from the husband's study into the wife's study.
Read the entire article about the house and why it is important here at Slate. Via Stylecourt.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

what do you think?

I have one stand out piece that I can't bring myself to get rid of from IKEA ( i was slowly ridding myself of the ikea junk). I really like the lines of this bjursta sideboard that I use as my media center -but the knobs are really boring. I went to anthropology and as a tester bought 3 of these square glass pulls - do you like them? do they go? Any opinions would help! I'm thinking if i keep them I have to replace the lower 3 knobs as well ( anthropology only had 3 of these, ugh ). Sorry for the poor picture, it's not on their website!
UPDATE: I've decided to return these pulls -the search continues!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

suprise party!!

This is hilarious! She's quick on her way to replacing Tina Fey on SNL!

Beautiful House

In the May/June 2008 issue of Southern Accents is a diamond in the rough in the first few pages. Just a small article -but big on ideas, intelligence and STYLE. Coincidentally, this is oddly similar to my 'dream house' which I designed fully a few years ago and have been meaning to blog about at some point (or better yet build when my ship comes in).

The front facade

It's the really odd combination of modern and Palladian / neo-classicm that I love and that is so hard to find. Designed by Jeff Dungan in Birmingham for the designer, Richard Tubb, the house has a minimalist limestone facade and a mix of rustic wood and highly finished bronze...finishes. The best part, floor plans!

The interior was designed to be very open to allow for a lot of light; I especially love the interior balcony off the bedroom into the 2 story living room! the interior 'balcony' off the bedroom into the living room

I won't bore you with the pictures of the basement family room which features the generic 'industrial' style so popular now with developers but that could easily be 'fixed' to fit in more with the architecture of the building and detailed like the living room.

the 2 story living room - beautiful windows!

All pictures courtesy of southern accents and my scanner ;-)

Monday, April 21, 2008


And you thought your commute was bad? Check out the daily rush hour in Tokyo's subway! This is REAL!

Sunday, April 20, 2008


Sunday I watched a few movies from a boxed set of Fred Astaire / Ginger Rogers musicals that I got for christmas and had totally forgotten. I love these old movies and never understand when people don't appreciate them! The writing is witty, the sets are fantastic and the stories are so much fun. What more can you ask for? While watching 'Shall we Dance' I was struck by the beautiful interior sets - extremely elaborate for the most part considering some were on the screen for mere seconds! They were all very similar in style too -a lot of continuous elements. please excuse the poor picture quality as I took them on pause with my digital camera!
This was probably my favorite interior - Ginger's hotel room in paris. I love that mantel! Notice the wall murals behind the fireplace - very similar to the ones in Fred's room shown at the top of the page! Love the chandelier and sidetables too!
The same murals from a different angle - so chic! I love how the metal fireplace shines!
Probably the most impressive set was only in the movies for about 5 seconds - this scene where Fred tap dances in the boiler room of the ship!
This stylish and PALATIAL room was the living room of Ginger's NYC apartment. Another chandelier and another fireplace!
The movie was really good, AMAZING dancing and just really fun! Check it out if you havne't seen it!