Last summer, my client expressed that she wanted her living room to feel very Parisian. An owner of a French theme coffee shop, and a frequent visitor of Paris, she wanted to recreate a relaxed elegance in her space to mimic the unique ambiance that is Paris. She also adores quotes, and was quite obsessed about having them all over her house, preferably in every room. We finally agreed on one elegant quote, in French, over a guild gold mirror displayed above her fireplace mantel. I then hibernated for a few days like most designers, looking for the perfect quote resource outside of hiring an artist to hand-paint something for her. After researching countless magazines, thinking I’d never find anything, viola! mission accomplished, I discovered Wallwords. Upon viewing their website, I quickly contacted a distributor and together we selected the perfect font style, color, and size using photographs and measurements of the clients’ space. In the meantime, my client spent days trying to figure out the exact quote she wanted. After days of indecision, she decided on the perfect quote. Within days, it arrived promptly, was effortless to install (20 minutes) and cost a mere $55 (including s+h). Best of all – it looked quite amazing. Wallwords do not stain or destroy your walls, a blessing for renters, because they peel right off when you vacate your space. They’re also great for homeowners that decide to repaint the walls or ditch the quote altogether – simply peel it off! I never thought I’d say this about press-on words, but Wallwords are absolutely stunning because they look hand-painted. I recently came across another removable typography company called Wonderful Graffiti. They specifically target interior designers by advertising in Interior Design and in the American Society of Interior Designer’s Icon magazine (where I found them). They also have professional typographers on staff to help customers customize the Graffiti to their space and been featured in several magazines and in the news. I’ve never dealt with them personally, so I can only suggest Wallwords since I’m aware of their final product, but I’m sure Wonderful Graffiti is worth looking into.
You never know, maybe you’ll be the next to install, “Eat Ice Cream and Run Naked” in your space, in French of course. Which is, by the way, what my client selected. Yes, I’m dead serious.
(photo: Wonderful Graffiti)
Drop. Dead. Gorgeous. No, not you, oh humble one. Your shoes.
Born in 1943 in the Canary Islands to a Spanish mother and Czech father, raised on a banana plantation, Manolo certainly wasn’t born into the life of a fashion designer. Now, however, the story has changed. This shoe designer is truly a living legend, not to mention one of the most commonly referred to designers in the entire “Sex and the City” series. Thanks to Carrie Bradshaw, Manolo quickly became a household name to ladies from coast to coast that were bored stiff with the suburbia department store brands, craving the big city shopping experiences that Carrie indulged in. True, most households can’t afford Manolo’s, but one can either dream, or max out their AmEx, which feels perfectly justified the first time you slip your foot into a ‘Costa Samba’ pump. The next best thing to owning a pair of Manolo’s? Owning his beautifully illustrated coffee table book, “Drawings”. Divided by decade (1970s-current), it gives you an overview of the evolution of his amazing line. With limited text, and the focus on bold illustrations, It will definitely appeal to design aficionados everywhere (like you!). This sexy book would also look smashing lounging gracefully as a featured piece on your coffee table. As you flip through each page, you’ll be in jaw-dropping awe at the large, full-color illustrations of shoes that Manolo is so famous for. I’ve entertained the thought of purchasing a 2nd book so I can frame some of my personal favorites for my walk-in closet (Yes, I decorate my closet. Currently, I have a collection of vintage hats on display). Manolo Blahnik Drawings is 11.7 x 9.2 x 0.9 inches and only available in paperback. The list price is $39.95, but I’ve seen it brand new on eBay and Amazon in the mid 20’s. Search under ISBN: 050028413X. Enjoy!
Today was a good mail day. Grabbing the Spring ’06 West Elm catalog, flipping through every page with eager enthusiasm for some sexy new products, I spotted one that I fancy very much. Well, okay, I found several, but the one that really sucked me in is the Overlapping Squares chair in Stem (shown). Also available in chocolate, the sidechair is only $159 and the arm chair is $189. Funny, I’ve seen it a gadzillion times in chocolate, but after seeing it in stem, I knew I had a crush. The geometric pattern reminds me of the Chinese Chippendale fretwork so popular in the 18th century and then revived again in the 1950’s. More and more mid century design is popping up, and I just love it. Other than stem, the only color I’d really like to see in this style would be a high-gloss white. But, I’ll take the stem. This is a fresh find!
One longing gaze at a display in an Anthropologie home store, and I want to run home, gut my pad, and start over again using *only* their swank stuff. Ever get that feeling? Or am I the only one that simply loves Anthropologie clothing and homewares? It’s just so lush. Whether it be the small things (cute iron hooks), or the big ticket items (everything else), I can’t get enough. For those of you not fortunate enough to live near an actual store (aka day spa for shoppers), you can drool online. They just posted their Spring ’06 line of housewares, so grab a tissue to wipe your chin. My current pick: the Silhouette 2D Cuckoo Clock in icy blue for $298.00, made in Italy.
Let’s face it, we are one generation of seriously spoiled peeps. Cassette tapes, movies on VHS, and IROC Z-28s are a thing of the past (thank God). iPods, high res flat screen monitors, diesel jeans, you know what matters in life, we’ve got it all. Especially, at least lately, good style. It’s everywhere these days. Even websites like Urban Outfitters have an ultra hip “Apartment” section featuring way cute items for your home. My personal favorites, “Your Dads Chair” (shown), in a soft Robin’s Egg Blue (also available in soft green) for only $500, and their entire line of throw pillows. Their retro sofa for $750.00 in rust is another must-see. I can’t help myself, I just want to sink down deep into that darn chair and flip through Domino magazine while listening to Michael Buble. Ah, the perfect lazy PJs-on-’til-noon, Sunday. Well, at least until I realize one can’t actually read anything in Domino magazine because it’s mostly advertising cool stuff I can’t afford… That’s why I love Urban Outfitters – it’s the baby sister of Anthropologie (same mother company), so they have great style, only a lot cheaper than it’s big sis. We also like something more when we can actually afford it.
Yes, I know. Everyone knows. Delia’s is strictly for tweens in incrediably small sized clothes (jealous!) aka the Olsen twins crowd. But, have you checked out their adorable line of roomwares? Okay, maybe they are a bit supertween, but if you have a good eye for mixing, you can easily snag a few things for your posh pad and no one would ever suspect that Mary Kate has the same thing… Delia’s website