Sunday, May 31, 2009

bee aware

I have been hearing about the honey bee crisis for the last year or so, but lately I have really been noticing the problem. The bees I actually see seem weak, hovering low to the ground, or fallen in my garden and along the streets. My friend Ashley stepped on a dead bee today getting out of the pool and it reminded me of this very serious problem. We rely on honey bees for at least one-third of our food supply, so when honey bees are in danger we are all in danger, and over the last three years more than one in three honey bee colonies have died. I discovered the website help the honey bees a while back from a link that was on the Haagen Daz website. I really am not sure how I ended up on the Haagen Daz website but I am glad I did, because  help the honey bees  is  a really well done and informative site about the honey bee crisis and ways you can help such as planting a garden and supporting local beekeepers. 

Friday, May 29, 2009


I just started working on a master bedroom for a couple. The woman has always wanted a canopy bed, but her husband thinks they are too feminine. I have pulled some of my favorite canopies that are not as fussy to try and convince him. 

I love the simplicity of these canopies and of the whole room. 

I love this bedroom! The furniture is masculine but the De Gournay wallpaper is gorgeous.  I also think the girl in the photo will not hurt the cause. This has been a favorite of mine for a long time from Elle Decor.

Ok.. A little fussy but I thought the colors and furniture in the room are masculine enough to balance it out. I think the whole room is a perfect design at the JK Capri.

Here is a very similar room, but the colors are muted. this is a more serene bedroom.

I couldn't help it, I have always loved this photo from Domino Magazine.

Love this and I think its the perfect mix of masculine and feminine from Domino Magazine.

This one is a little more country, it seems very cozy.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

barry the freshman

Lisa Jack, a photography major and fellow student of Barack Obama shot these pictures when Barack was just a freshman in college. Imagine the stress after he became a serious contender for presidency,  I can't even imagine the pressure of  looking for these negatives after almost 30 years! In fact I am sure there is a funny story about Lisa's early quest to find these photos, she had to have been ripping her hair out! Lisa is now a psychology professor and a therapist living in Minneapolis, she shot these pictures with Barry the freshman back in 1980, and  was thoughtful and smart enough to wait until the election was over to release the photos. In Lisa's recent interview for the LA Times, Lisa says, "There was nothing out of the ordinary about the session," although it did impress Lisa that Obama (barry) had taken the initiative to bring his own props: the hat, the leather bomber jacket and cigarettes you see in the photos above. " he obviously thought about how he wanted to have his picture taken," she says. I am so excited to see these photos in person, come check out the show this weekend at M+B Gallery!

M+B Gallery
Lisa Jack
Barack Obama: The Freshman
May 28th -July 18th 2009
Opening Reception Thursday May 28th 6-9pm

ring ring ring

I thought the water ring stains were the end of my French antique burled wood nightstands. Until I read the NY Times Article this week Removing the Rings. Turns out these rings can be removed with regular mayonnaise and hairdryer? That sounds too good to be true I know, but it actually works and its so much more cost effective than refinishing an entire piece and compromising an original antique finish.  Let me know if this trick works for your stubborn wood stains as well as it worked for mine. 
1. If its a new stain try and evaporate with a blow dryer on a low setting. Sometimes doing this will simply evaporate the moisture right out of the finish. 
2. That did not work for me so I had to get a little more serious. I wrapped a rag around my finger and dipped it in mayonnaise, then I gently massaged the mayonnaise into the white rings and the stain eventually disappeared.
3. If that doesn't work, leave the mayonnaise on the stain for a couple of hours and every once in a while, work it in to the stain. 
4. If that doesn't work try using lemon oil with a steel wool pad. Ok I have to admit the steel wool pad on my night stands scares me so I would do a test on the back before trying this step. 
5. I would probably give up on this trick if it hasn't worked so far. I am just being honest ;)

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

black tie pinatas

I just noticed these confetti pinatas on a Cup of Joe and I am now inspired to throw a party. Jesse and I throw parties all the time where we have a taco truck come to serve food. They are always a blast, the food is always amazing and its such an easy set up/clean up situation. I am sure that these confetti pinatas will definitely get the party started!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Friday, May 22, 2009

how much space do you waste?

Ever since New York Times featured an article called Think Small back in February 2007, Jesse and I have been fantasizing about buying a peice of land in some untouched part of the country. It would preferably be near the water, and within driving distance  where we could plop our own little prefab "tiny house," just to get away for a weekend.  Maybe thats why we love the Carneros Inn in Napa Valley so much. Every guest room at the Carneros Inn is an individual pre fab house with a great outdoor area,  appointed with high thread counts, a flat screen TV, and a fireplace. Who needs anything more? Lately their has been more talk about "tiny houses," between the green living boom, and the nation's financial crises the notion of downsizing is all the rage. Mimi Zeiger's new book "Tiny Houses" couldnt ask for better timing. Every house featured in her book "Tiny Houses is under 1,000 square feet.

How much space do you really need?

have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

throw out fifty things

That is the inspiration for Gail Blanke's book "Throw Out Fifty Things"  The book is about clearing clutter, and it acts as a coach during the process of clearing. Throwing out 50 things may seem easy but the point of the book is that one thing can mean cleaning out your entire medicine cabinet, or matching all of your single socks and getting rid of all the ones you can find a match for, or going through your entire pantry and getting rid of expired food and anything else you won't eat, it can mean digitizing your entire CD collection. If you don't have any plans this holiday weekend take advantage of the extra time. This process can be time consuming, but worth every minute. I do advise everyone interested to read this book, however I have listed some tips that I have learned:

1. Label 3 trash bags or large boxes with TRASH, RECYCLE, and DONATIONS, I added and additional bag labeled TO SHRED. Take these with you on your clearing journey. 
2. When getting rid of magazine collections ( i know can be painful) go through them and tear out anything you want to remember and put in binders with files. Hold on to any Domino Magazines though they are going to be worth something. P.S. you can find all recipes online from any cooking magazine.
3. When clearing your medicine cabinets get rid of medicine that was used for old ailments. Keeping them will just let your mind allow you to get sick again. Clear it!
4. Keep a log of what you are tossing so you know when you get to fifty.
5. Don't be afraid to toss old photos that are out of focus and didn't come out right. Put them in the TO SHRED bag.
6. Get some small baggies out to keep  jewelry or other small items together that you may want to donate.
7. bring some tape for busted garbage bags or busted boxes, having all the supplies with you will keep you from getting distracted when you need and have to go looking for it. 

Let us know what you want to throw away and give us tips you may have for tossing.

Monday, May 18, 2009

roberta who?

Welcome to Los Angeles! Roberta Roller Rabbit!

Roberta Roller Rabbit is hitting the Brentwood Country Mart by storm! What started out as a "pop up" store has now become a fixture in the Brentwood shopping circuit. Roberta already has a store in NYC, one in East Hampton, and now a 3rd in the Brentwood Country Mart. It was after Roberta Freyman found her favorite bolt fabric covered in brightly colored rabbits that Roberta Roller Rabbit was born. As soon as you walk in to Roberta Roller Rabbit you are immediatley struck with an explosion of color that will brighten your day.  She carries the most gorgeous tunics, childrens clothes, pajamas, throw pillows, quilts, tablecloths, and napkins. Best of all she carries upholstery grade fabric at $15-$20 per yard. I am so excited to use her fabrics on my next project.

Table cloths and napkins featured in this months Elle Decor. 

Love these bolster pillows to put a finishing touch on an all white bed.

Great throw pillows. The striped one in the middle was also featured in this months Elle Decor.

Some of the fabrics have been made into drapes. Love this print.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

work it

I have a few new clients, so I have been spending  a lot of time in my office the last few days. I decided to post about some of my favorite office accessories, some of these items I already have and love, and some I really want :).

This seahorse paper weight was a birthday gift from my friend Andre Vippolis. It is from OK in Los Angeles.  Every time I see it in my office it makes me smile. Thank you Andre this is one of my favorite things in my office! BTW, check out Andre's impressive photography portfolio...

Hable construction has the best office storage solutions. These bins come in a variety of colors, and they look great on a shelf filled with art supplies etc. These bins are definitely on the splurge side, and I have yet to use them in my own office, but I have used them in a few clients offices. They come in all different sizes and they are great for art  supplies, and any other stuff that you want to keep at an arms reach that might otherwise cause office clutter. I put paper luggage tags on them to label the contents.

I love these Rhodia note pads. I started using them in drafting class and fell for the clean design and color.  They are really practical for me because they are filled with graph paper and they are sturdy enough to throw in my bag during the day. 

I love this "heavy weight tape dispenser from Unica Home. Its heavy enough to anchor the tape so its easier to cut a piece with one hand.... And it looks really cool too.

I use these gold paper clips from Staples, I use the jumbo ones for clipping swatches and ideas together to present to my clients and I use the small ones for office papers. Its a really inexpensive way to give your office a signature.

I like to go monochromatic and have all the same color pencils in the cup on my desk. For now, I have regular # 2 scantron style pencils, but I might have to splurge for these See Jane Work pencils in white. I think they add a sense of order to the office. 

Add ImageI found this lamp at an antique store a few years back. Its a great task lamp and it adds a little vintage charm to my office while still keeping it modern. 

Please post any great things you have in your office that I can post.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

barefoot in the kitchen

If anyone watches the Barefoot Contessa you know that her kitchen is always pristine, organized and she always seems to have the best kitchen tools and accessories. I am a regular viewer of the Barefoot Contessa and I have taken note of some of my favorite things in her kitchen. With the help of her website and a little research I have tracked down what she uses and where to find it. Now what could be bad about that?
These glass mixing bowls keep Ina super organized on the show. She is able to prep the food ahead of time and keep them in the these simple little bowls from William Sonoma.
The kitchen Aid mixer Ina uses comes in all colors. This mixer is a staple on Ina's show she uses it almost every episode. I have the same one I got as a wedding gift.. I didnt think I would use it half as much as I do. I love it. We even have the same color :), white. You can also purchase this at William Sonoma

Ina uses All Clad pots, she recommends to start with small and medium sauce pans and 8 in and 12 in saute pans. These are available at William Sonoma.

I love these simple black oven mitts and pot holders that she uses from William Sonoma. They come in every color but they are so "Ina" in black, here is a less expensive version from Ikea

For Dutch ovens Ina uses Le Creuset. From watching her show I am always admiring her white Le Creuset Dutch oven its so modern and clean. Pictured above in her kitchen she has an orange one but I personally like the white one she uses on the show. She finds so many uses for this Dutch oven. Also available at William Sonoma

Apothecary jars like the ones pictured are lined up on Ina's countertop filled with: flour, sugar, brown sugar, and other daily Ina essentials. I have a couple in my kitchen where I store almonds and other snacks that I want easy access to. You can find these at Stonewall Kitchen.

These are all expensive items for your kitchen, but according to Ina they all last a lifetime. Its almost impossible to buy all of these things at once, but if you start collecting one by one you will soon have an Ina equip kitchen!

Please post some of your daily essentials that you can't live without. 

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

brownie points

Numbered List
The Sartorialist posted this picture of her friend in the brown jacket today and it got me thinking about incorporating this cool clean masculine look into a room. I have always loved brown with true white, or blue white, or another cool pastel. Brown adds warmth and depth against a clean, modern background. Using brown against a clean background is a good way to give something a masculine quality without it feeling heavy and weighed down. I love the way they use brown accents amidst stark white walls at the James Perse Store below, also the equestrian brown leather sofa with white cushions. Its so clean but still has a warmth to it.