Tuesday, June 28, 2011


Never met a road trip I didn't like....

Something about the open road and unlimited time to listen to
my many max-ed out ipod music libraries makes me giddy!!  So for the next four weeks I will be posting a bit less but hopefully with lots of great material from stops along the way in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia and Florida. 

Here are a few random VACA pics....Enjoy!

Seagrass covered stairs at the beach club??  Luv it! 
and those wide leg pants are to die for!!

You could have a VaCa anytime in this cozy daybed!

Hmmm.....hope there aren't any big boat wakes around the corner but love that
they are thinking about sun protection.....

Caftans are definitely in my near future!! 

and here are some deep thoughts to ponder.....


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Million Dollar Decorators Recap...

I'm always puzzled by people who hire "professionals"
and then micro-manage them instead of letting them do their job. 

Tonight's episode featured the Shannon Max Factor and her "beach house" which looked
more like a scary pseudo Mediterranean furniture store vignette. 
The only statement that saved her was that the furniture was purchased with the house. 
Whew!  Trust me....it was GOD AWFUL!! 
Thank goodness she hires Kathryn Ireland...
All she does the entire show after telling KI that she wants the entire house remodeled in 8 weeks and if she can't deliver she will have to hire someone else blah blah blah is second guess every suggestion KI offers.  She insists that KI include fabrics that KI knows have no chance of coming in 8 weeks....Hello! 
Doesn't this client realize KI is THE QUEEN of textiles and might have just a LEETLE more experience in these matters having worked with textiles for most of her adult life????   Mind boggling!!

The only excuse I can make for her is that she is preggers which can cause obsessive nesting tendencies but that being said I hope she lays off a little and lets KI do her thang. 
(I will give Shannon a little slack because KI is perpetually late and frazzled when she does finally arrive)

On the total opposite of the spectrum is MLB working with the lovely Tamara Mellon. 
Here is a client/designer partnership that works wonderfully. 

Tamara trusts MLB to some up with something fab for displaying her
gold splattered Jimmy Choos and he does. 
She doesn't get overly involved or dictate what color the shoe and bag pedestals be, she doesn't interfere and whine when she doesn't get her way...she listens and trusts MLB implicitly and the results are perfection.

In the middle we have Mary McDonald with Jill Roberts
(of Seaton which I ADORE!!)
Their cardigans are HEAVENLY!

Jill wants to trust MM but is having control issues.  Meanwhile I was shocked that the painted floor cost $8k??  Seriously for about a 600 square foot room??  I could totally get that done for $2k. 
Anyhoo they go back and forth and MM being the pro that she is knows that eventually when EVERYTHING is in the room Jill will love it and she does of course. 

MM decorated Jill's Seaton boutique and it is adorable...here are a few pics...

I can't tell you how many clients I have had that see a presentation, then go round and round looking for EVERY possible element like I don't know what is out there and then circle back to exactly what I presented in the beginning.  Seriously if I had a dollar for each time that happened I could afford to put in that million dollar rooftop pool MLB suggested for Tamara's NYC apartment!!  The moral of the show?  If you trust your decorator enough to hire them then go with their instincts about what will work in the space and you will end up with something fabulous or "delicious" as MLB would say :)
You don't second guess your lawyer, you don't question your gynecologist, you don't question your mechanic....your decorator is no different.  Do your due diligence and look through their portfolio.  Where did they study design?  Where have they travelled?  Could you live in their spaces? 
Are they all similar or do they reflect each client's personality and lifestyle? 
If they are all similar do you admire their aesthetic enough to live in it everyday? 

Ask those questions BEFORE you hire them then trust them to do what they do best.  
It will be a lot less stressful for you!


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

More Favorite Etsy Picks!

Shopping on Etsy is like shopping the world 
without having to travel!  

I find SO many great artisans of just about any genre.
Here are a few of my latest finds....

I'm crazy for feather earrings.....
found these and bought them a while back...
Warning: they fall out easily so you will need an earring back to hold them on securely but I get compliments
EVERY time I wear them....
Little Bird Blue Long Feather Earrings
Only $30!

Little Bird Blue Long Feather Earrings
Get them here!

Druzy Statement Ring....
Gold dipped deep purple druzy statement  ring

Only $98!
Gold dipped deep purple druzy statement  ring
Get it here!

Hand Dyed Silk Skull Scarf .....
hand painted silk skull scarf - extra large square - navy blue
Only $121
silk scarf  with hand painted skulls - large square - pink
Get it here!

Remember Macrame?? 
I know...you're thinking owls with wood bead eyes......Scary right??
But these macrame rings are adorable!! and only $22 so you can buy more than one....

macrame rings

macrame rings

Get them here!

Ikat Throw Pillow for $15.70?  Sheesh!!! 
You can't even buy a yard of Ikat fabric for that much...
18 x 15 inches Uzbek Ikat pillow cover - fully handmade item

Lot of two 17x14 inches Uzbekistan Uzbek Ikat pillows

Lot's of bang for not much buck at $38 for two!

27x14 inches Uzbek Ikat Extended pillow cover - fully handmade item
Only $29 for this beauty!!

Get them all here!

What's not to love about Etsy??  


Monday, June 20, 2011

Random Italian

I need a shot of Italy.....PRONTO!
I'm going through withdrawal and miss the architecture, amazingly well dressed men and women, towering Cyprus trees, zippy motos, afternoon espresso and gelatos, and of course the marvelous food and wine. 

Although I'm not at liberty to jet off today,
I found a few photos and things that might do the trick temporarily.
Hopefully they will bring a bit of Italy's sunshine your way!

It's funny how things stick in your mind but I fondly remember
visiting this market on a trip to the Amalfi coast...

A sunny terrace in Capri...Nadja Swarovski's to be exact...

Her charming coral and emerald dining room....

Isola Bella...a private Italian Island owned by the Borromeo Family....

The breathtaking grotto at Isola Bella...and yes those are all tiny shells and stones!!

The Salon Grande is Grande indeed and decorated like the most exquisite wedding cake....

The gardens of Isola Bella....
Photos via W Magazine

JK Place hotel Capri

Something about this I love...maybe because it's in Italian and looks like Branzino fish???


These sandals will make you feel Italian!
Tuccia di Capri is featured in O Mag this month but their store in Miami has been around for a while...
The girls behind it moved to Italy to study shoe making and founded TDC once back in the states. 

Starting July 25th Henri Bendels will feature them in their store and
you can get a custom pair made while you wait!

Henry Bandel

And last but not least.....

Private villa Forte dei Marmi

I sat here and had one of the most memorable meals of my life at the
Bistrot Forte Dei Marmi in the coastal town of Forte dei Marmi...

Fond memories I won't soon forget!


Thursday, June 16, 2011

Black Attack....

Today I'm drawn to black it seems...
from traditional to modern 
black is where it's at...

 Hopefully these photos will 
inspire you to add a little to your palate...

I'm jones-ing for a set of these.....
I would use turquoise or lime green shades!!
(Or antique mirrored shades - Duh!)
From Currey and Company

The black frame on this chair accentuates 
its geometric shape...
From Christopher Guy

There are SO many reasons I love this foyer
from Windsor Smith....Lovely!

Love black in a kitchen! So Glam!

The grandfather of the sconces - me likey!

Don't we all look better in black and white photos?!

Oh yes....I managed to find a black dutch door!
I did mention I have a "thing" for dutch doors didn't I?

Sassy black kitchen with....a-hem.....

Black and cream combo

Wear a tiny black Manhattan on your finger!
From Noir

A luxe black patio....

Gotta love a black lacquered front door...

This black bed has got it goin' on and "makes" any room it is in!

Rug from Wisteria

Black office chic....

Usually houses like this are white so I find this
black one very intriguing!

OK....you get the idea :)

Until next time...


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