How is your day going? If you’re looking for inspiration (as I was), spend some time in your local bookstore in the cooking section. Oh my! There are so many great titles releasing right now as the holidays roll in. I found a few that I scooped up immediately, one is called La vie en rose by Murielle Rousseau (heavenly French recipes!) with illustrations by Berlin-based artist Stefanie Roth and the other is Gemüse and Gemüse by Delphine de Montalier (a vegetarian cookbook, gemüse means vegetable in German). With food photos to die for, styling to learn from and even some personal references to family along with pretty illustrations, they are both such inspiring cookbooks. It’s dark here now and well, I just removed my precious new books from their bag in my somewhat dark living room so excuse the poor lighting. But I couldn’t wait until tomorrow to share — the ‘feeling’ may be lost and no doubt I’ll be onto other things! :) So here’s a few snaps of what inspired me today…
I can’t wait to crack them both open and start preparing meals for Fall. But this post isn’t a book review for either of these titles, it’s merely to say that the cookbooks in your local bookstore may be a great place to look for inspiration. The presentation of food in newer books seems to be stronger than ever — styled beautifully with food so enticing that you wish each page had a scratch ‘n sniff sticker so you could experience the smell of each recipe to go along with the visuals. ha ha. :) No seriously, the photos really draw you in and make you want to cook but even more… they give you ideas for color palettes and even styling ideas for the home. I was looking at one and noticed how beautifully olives looked with turquoise dinnerware and hadn’t given it much thought before today… now I’m thinking of how nice it would be for presenting a meal or setting a table. So, need some inspiration and unable to find a decorating book you really click with lately? Try a cookbook, you never know what could come out of it — in addition to a great meal of course!
And a BIG P.S. on this post because I hope major booksellers everywhere read these words and put this into practice immediately… it’s popular here, at least in the bookstores I’ve visited, that books that have photographs in them — like coffee table books, cookbooks, art and design books, etc. have a “customer” copy on top a stack of shrink-wrapped copies. I LOVE THIS. I have been telling my husband for YEARS when we were living in the states that bookstores should have a customer copy and then all the others should be in shrink wrap. Why? It made me feel annoyed with people would take books into the restroom, cafe, or even just sit in those chairs at large booksellers for hours, breaking the spines, bending pages, etc. and then not buying them. It was getting so bad in our local Barnes & Noble that I would only go to flip through a book that I was interested in and then I’d go home and buy it on Amazon because at least that way I knew the book was new – it would arrive unused and in shrink wrap. I once bought a book for $50 and it had a coffee stain on a few of the pages! Now that I’m in Germany, I go to the bookstore and find my idea in practice and let me tell you, it’s a great idea and not just because I had it. he he. It truly makes buying a book a wonderful experience again because well, I want to be the first to crack it open and smell that fresh book smell. :) Does this sort of thing matter to you?
(images: holly becker for decor8)
Sometimes all you really want to do is to wear extraordinary girly-cute clothes, sassy high heels and surround yourself with nothing more than pastel French macaroons and decadent cupcakes. Marie Antoinette style. Which is precisely the look I think the stylist here was going for when these shots were produced for Vogue Girl magazine in Korea back in 2007.
Finding these images for the first time today on the style blog, Fashion Nation, I felt like the time was just perfect for me personally. Gee… being a girl is such a treat, is it not? I think we all need to give ourselves a bit more girl time. Spend quiet moments browsing perfumes, take a moment to dine or have tea alone in your favorite spot, purchase a gorgeous little something to wear to bed, enjoy a night out with your lady friends… we girls need this sort of thing. Take it from me, as I just had a most lovely ladies lunch today with a most dear friend, you simply must buy out time to do something fantastic for yourself either by yourself or with a person who doesn’t stress you out or bring you one bit of negativity. It’s so refreshing to enjoy these special breaks and will make you feel inspired and refreshed like you wouldn’t believe. And doing it on a Monday is priceless… sets the tone for the whole week I think. Try it sometime and let me know if it made your week a little sweeter to take a break on Monday to do something you-specific. :) Hey, being a little self absorbed or spoiling yourself now and then can be a really nice thing. I vote we do it more often!
(images: vogue girl, korea, 2007)
I recently heard from a talented textile designer in Boston, Seema Krish, and had a first look at her newly launched website and felt excited to share her work here today. Seema translates traditional Indian techniques of applique, hand block printing and embroidery along with memories of her childhood into fabrics that are modern and lively — of course words cannot fully describe this sort of thing, one needs to see for themselves… So here, have a look… :)
I want these pillows above for my bedroom! So badly! If you’re familiar with Calvin Klein Home, Jack Lenor Larsen, Robert Allen and Donghia fabrics (RA and Donghia being two of my personal favorites of to-the-trade fabrics) you will be impressed to know that Seema has had her hand in designing for them in addition to her new line of textiles that I’m sure will be a hit. I personally love her pillow collection, especially in her anjeeri, sona, rani pink and peacock blues colors. Gorgeous, and of course I find that she’s used Hindi words to name the colors in her collection most fascinating… especially to learn what each of them means (learn here).
Psst: Have a glance at her blog, Textile Swatches, or perhaps spend an hour there (like I just did!). What an informative blog!
(images: seema krish textiles)
I was just invited to attend Cut & Paste in Sweden, an international exhibition of contemporary collage and assemblage, taking place now through October 10, 2009. I wish I had known sooner because I would have loved to see this! If anyone reading attends and gets some great photographs from the exhibit and would like to share them here on decor8, please let me know. I’ve been a huge fan of collage since 6th grade, so an exhibition like this would be right up my alley. I hope to attend lots of art shows next year as I start to feel my way around, I still feel like I’m walking around with my head in a cloud and my brain keeps telling me that I’m flying home in a month or so, since I’m only used to staying here a few months each year. Now that I’m sticking around for awhile, I’m hoping to make some fun travel plans for 2010 that will include some really great shows that I can share here. :)
Sandra Müller, Germany.
I loved browsing the submissions they received for their postcard competition *view here* – so creative ! And if you’re in Sweden and can make it to Stockholm, definitely check this out!
(images: cut & paste)
Remember You’ve Got Mail? Awwww.