I felt so inspired as I looked through The Unicorn Diaries that I couldn’t simply save it for myself, it’s a blog meant to share so I’ve decided to make it the decor8 blog of the week. I’ve been so taken lately by soft colors of plum, pink, gray, pale mocha, beige, muted yellow, and gold to replace silver for at least a few months. I cannot stop thinking about texture from nubby raw silk to fine vintage French linen and thick knitted wool throws. Ahhh.
Watercolor pastels, texture, candlelight (it’s been getting dark here at 4 pm each day), necklaces with multiple vintage-inspired charms (tiny Eiffel towers, owls, ribbons), and layering my clothes (blouses with frilly cap sleeves over turtlenecks for instance). I’ve also been big on layering my socks, which is fun because here in Germany they sell these gorgeous crocheted footless socks that are meant to be layered over socks with toes and they look so pretty with heels. Another layered look I love is mismatched china in a buffet, a stack of patterned tea towels on the counter, and a bed with many patterns and colors layered into a big fluffy wonderland of comfort.
And there’s more. Much more. Like ornate Moorish-inspired tile work, ethnic patterns from Turkey and Morocco, wooden bird cages (in white) with twinkle lights inside atop an old wooden cabinet. And speaking of light, I love it filtered light through windows at midday… and photographing it to remember the glow for a bit longer. The smell and beauty of freshly fallen snow. We’ve had our first snow already and it was quite a treat. Swans on the lake and the rippled patterns of the water as they float by. Tim Walker. Still. A Fine Frenzy. Still.
I’m also thinking a lot lately about hats, my husband started this because he keeps insisting I buy a cute hat for winter, t-strap heels, plum tights, Mint & Vintage, candles that smell like baked goods, art journals, mini paintings, movies with gorgeous sets, ballerinas in white puffy tutus, Kindred, old books and portrait paintings, and a new bakery that just opened nearby with two large crystal chandeliers and fresh baked buns topped with candied walnuts, cardomon, and cinnamon. Mmmm. Perhaps I can photograph it and share this special little bakery with you tomorrow, would you enjoy seeing my new favorite place?
Though these are all things that have been on my mind lately, it seems another blogger shares some of my passions and this is exactly why I want you to visit The Unicorn Diaries in England because her blog is so visual, romantic, and somewhat emotional — I really, really think you will like it because it makes you feel like a very young girl again and sometimes that is what all grown up girls need. :)
What are a few of your favorite things at the moment?
(images from the unicorn diaries, more gorgeous images here)
I’m always fascinated with end of November through New Year’s here in Germany… the winter activities are non-stop and most are outdoors which I think enhances the mood so much more than indoor festivals. Who wants to congregate indoors for a winter fest when you can stroll outside in the crisp winter air, twinkle lights and candles all around, hot mulled wine in hand (drinking alcohol on the streets is a-okay here, totally legal), bundled in your chunky knit scarf, shopping handmade crafts and toys from the locals. No one does it like the Europeans this time of year, especially here in Germany.
The Weihnachtsm?rkte begins on November 27th and lasts until mid December and it’s beauuuutiful. Imagine old villages, cobblestone streets lined with food and artisan carts, the smell of candied nuts, gingerbread, and nutella crepes in the air, indulging on fresh crispy pomme frites with mayonnaise. It’s heaven and definitely something I enjoy when I’m here. I’ve been watching the city set up everything for the past few days, anticipation is growing! I’ll try to take some photos for you and show them on decor8 in a few weeks if you’d like to see the winter fests. Tomorrow we are expecting snow – goody! Snow makes it all so much prettier and romantic. Thinking of snow, I always envision lace snowflakes (I have some that I like to hang in my windows all winter long) and white lacey doilies because they’re so delicate and magical. When I hear the word doily two words come to mind: Winter and Weddings. I see doilies as items you pull out to celebrate something. They line boxes filled with baked goods, they sit beneath some of the most gorgeous cakes, one cannot think of them without imagining a party of some kind. Most people do not like winter so I think that is why it’s so important to go all out and have beautiful wintery things in your home during the colder months so that you don’t start feeling too sorry for yourself. I get a little blue around February and that is when I usually entertain more and break out the tea and cake for girl’s day at home because seriously it gets me through. And of course where there is tea, there are doilies. :) See what I mean. They are so festive!
I was so happy when one of my contacts at MSLO sent me the December ’08 issue of Martha Stewart Living today. I’m not that fond of the cover but I really all of the fun projects inside… especially the gumdrop people (I want to make the mushrooms shown here and place them in cupcakes) and all of the beautiful doily projects on pages 150-157. The magazine is worth the $5 for those 7 pages alone, SWOON. It definitely put me over the edge as far as inspiration is concerned. Here are a few images to whet your appetite but I don’t want to give away all the good eye candy on my blog so you’ll need to buy the magazine for the full effect (and for the project instructions) or visit the MS Living website since some of them are posted there.
Other noteworthy clippings from the December 2008 issue of Martha Stewart Living include a spread on beautiful pink amaryllis (in case you’re not a poinsettia fan, I prefer the look of amaryllis myself), ways to use left over wrapping paper (on clothespins for instance), and adorable gumdrop characters (I’ll take the mushrooms, please).
Look for this issue on newsstands now, it’s a beauty despite the red and green cover which I really dislike because it reminds me of a 1980′s Woman’s Day or something… Sorry Martha (like she cares what I think, he he), I can’t love everything you do. The magazine just doesn’t look pretty on my coffee table and that’s how I measure whether or not I like a cover. Are you as fussy over magazines coordinating with your decor? I would have loved to see this issue with a lavender and white cover with touches of gold and a dash of red for instance… Less traditional and more fresh. Remember that December issue of Blueprint in pink? I really loved that.
MUST. HAVE. MORE. DOILIES. Interested in MORE doily products and projects? Don’t miss Doily Love! It’s a HUGE post featuring doilies galore that I wrote this time last year but it’s still totally current. You may also like this DIY project, a Wintery Snowflake Mobile.
(images taken by holly becker of a personal copy of martha stewart living magazine, december 2008)
I rarely devote an entire post to music but last night I went to one of the best alternative/indie concerts here in Hannover that I’ve seen in a while, A Fine Frenzy aka Alison Sudol a talented singer/songwriter/pianist from America. My husband wrote a really sweet review of it this morning on his blog (and he wrote about the pursuit of perfection in his post, you may really enjoy reading it).
I cannot possibly top his words I’ll just keep it simple and say that I really, really enjoyed Alison’s performance and encourage you to check out A Fine Frenzy, buy her CD “One Cell in the Sea”, and support this girl because she is brilliant. She’s touring Europe right now, you may be able to catch her live if you’re on this side of the pond. Tour dates here.
Her lyrics are magical, her voice is like silk, and her energy and enthusiasm for music is completely inspiring. She’s charming and gracious and seems to really enjoy speaking to her audience, another highlight for me since attending shows where the band barely speaks except to announce the title of their next song can make me feel like I’m sitting behind a wall of glass. Them. Me. Alison is welcoming and also very modest, she acts and dresses like a lady — I respect that about her style. Last night I felt like I was in Alison’s living room hanging out watching her play her piano despite the fact that I was in the 16th row in a very packed theater. She called Hannover a, “beautiful city” and thanked the audience for making someone very far from home (west coast) feel quite “at home”. That pleased me immensely.
If you love twinkle lights, warm cozy evenings at home, a fire… A bit of magic and whimsy, you will adore Alison’s music. Here is the song she opened with last night, Come On Come Out. Turn up your speakers and enjoy.
Psst: Alison designed the sweetest t-shirts for her tour, get yours here.
(images from a fine frenzy)
I’m loving the discounts today but I need to take a break for a moment to enjoy the fabulousness that is Katya de Grunwald who lives and works in London. This lady is a brilliant photographer, magical, intoxicating, her still life interior photography really captivates me as does her fashion portfolio… Heaven.
With editorial work that has appeared in publications such as World of Interiors, The Independent Magazine, Elle Decoration, The Telegraph, Martha Stewart Living, Exit and House & Garden, with recent clients that include Megan Park and Quadrille Publishing, it’s obvious we aren’t the only ones smitten by her work. Each photo tells a tale… I am so inspired by her work today as it really made me feel a creative spark and now I’m eager to work on a few photography projects this week… Hope Katya has given you a creative lift today too!
(images by katya de grunwald)