Monday Mood

September 29th, 2014

It’s Monday – what mood are you in?

At Home in North Carolina

At Home in North Carolina

Noble

Pronunciation: \ˈnō-bəl\

Having qualities that people admire…  And so much about this room is admirable – from the Andrew Moore “Four Trees” photograph to the custom made love seat and ottoman and the light, airy palette!

Photo: living room

Thom Browne in Wonderland

September 26th, 2014
Look #1

Look #1

Thom Browne’s fashion show are always over the top spectacles and the Spring 2015 collection did not disappoint.  Not only was the audience treated to models posing in tableaux vivants showcasing the leisurely pursuits of summer – sunbathing, sailing, butterfly collecting – but also to the heady scent of a verdant green lawn being mowed by a male model wearing a mint bowler and suit and fishnet stockings.  Then came the clothes…  a fabulous mix of tailored restraint (Browne is known for his slim suits and “mankles”) and eccentric excess (feathers hovering over a jacket like butterflies and a dress made of woven fishing line trimmed with mink.)

Look #2

Look #2

Look #3

Look #3

We love the sunglasses fashioned out of leaves and flowers and the hats, oh the hats!  Thirty different styles created by the genius milliner Stephen Jones in all shapes and sizes.  Rumor has it that it took Jones and his staff all summer to make the amazing headgear…  We think the Mad Hatter would be in awe of the workmanship and creativity.

Look #4

Look #4

Look #5

Look #5

While most of the outfits seem a little out of this world, there are a couple of individual pieces that caught our eye like a little boy jacket in garden tweed and a pleat front skirt with 3D floral jacquard.  We’d be placing our pre-order on M’oda ‘Operandi which is featuring the collection through next Tuesday if only our budget would allow.  Oh well, at least we can spend time admiring these beautifully made fashions instead of our money!

Look #6

Look #6

Do you have a favorite look? Wishing you all a colorful, fashionable Friday and wonderful weekend.

Photos: 1 – 6

Who’s in the Mood for Fall Food?

September 24th, 2014
Fall Flavors

Fall Flavors

We are!  The air has definitely taken on a chill with evening temperatures now way below 60…  perhaps it’s time to put away the grill and fire up some fabulous fall food.  Sweet Paul makes it very easy for us to plan a cozy candlelit dinner filled with all the yummy goodness fall has to offer – earthy mushrooms, peppery kale, tangy apples and juicy pears.  Soup to start, followed by a fresh salad and a beautiful roast, and, of course, dessert.  While we’re huge fans of a crisp rosé in the summer, this is a meal best paired with a hearty red like a Bordeaux or Barolo.  So pull up a chair and join us for a fall feast…  As Paul would say, “here’s to chasing the sweet things in life” and eating them, too!

Portuguese Kale and Chorizo Soup

Portuguese Kale and Chorizo Soup

Black Salad with Wild Rice, Blackberries & Goat Cheese

Black Salad with Wild Rice, Blackberries & Goat Cheese

Candy Pork with Apples & Pears

Candy Pork with Apples & Pears

Roasted Broccolini with Winey Mushrooms

Roasted Broccolini with Winey Mushrooms

Marzipan Baked Apples

Marzipan Baked Apples

P.S.  Is your mouth watering yet?  All the recipes are linked below in the photo credits.

Photo: magazine, soup, salad, roast, vegetables and apples

Monday Mood

September 22nd, 2014

It’s the first day of fall – what mood are you in?

Anemones and Roses

Anemones and Roses

Enchanting

Pronunciation: /enˈCHantiNG/

Delightfully charming and captivating…  This beguiling autumnal setting is brought to you by Nessa and Clementine, the creative minds behind Made in You.  Ravissant, non?

Photo: tablescape

Posy Palette: Fall Jewel Tones

September 19th, 2014
Fall Flowers

Fall Flowers

Fall in New England is always such a colorful time of year as vibrant mums decorate doorsteps and leaves turn crimson, orange and gold.  With cooler days (and sadly, grayer) days ahead, this is the season to invest in lush jewel tones to warm up your wardrobe and interiors.  These colors can instantly add a touch of cozy elegance when layered with neutrals and there’s nothing like a pop of emerald, sapphire or ruby to brighten your day.  Barring covering yourself with real jewels (so wish we could!), we’ve come up with some fun options that won’t break the bank.  We’ve already invested in this beauty (the color is scrumptious and goes with everything)…

Marlow Bag

Marlow Bag

and plan to step out in these pretties soon.

Vanessa Flats

Vanessa Flats

Jewel tones are perfect from head…

Lavender Lust

Amethyst Hues

to toe…

Wrapped in Rubies

Wrapped in Rubies

and let’s not forget the ears!

Adventurine and Topaz Leaf Earrings

Adventurine and Topaz Leaf Earrings

Happy Friday and wishing you all a be-jeweled weekend.

Photo: flowers, bag, shoes, eye shadow, nails and earrings

Fall-ing for Jayson Home

September 17th, 2014
Indigo Ceramic Flowers

Indigo Ceramic Flowers

Actually, we fell for Jayson Home – “where beautiful things aren’t just a passion, they’re an obsession” – many years ago and the lovefest continues to this day.  We eagerly await the arrival of the catalog each season and dream about layering our homes with the store’s edgy yet elegant wares.  The Fall 2014 collection is beautiful…  indigo blue, apple green and pumpkin orange add pops of color to the warm hues of natural wood and horn.  Fall for us means getting cozy and entertaining friends and family by a fire so why not do some shopping before the season starts?  Here are some things we’re adding to our fall list…

Valley Cutting Boards

Valley Cutting Boards

Large Suzani

Large Suzani

Bronze Mercury Glass Collection

Bronze Mercury Glass Collection

Green City Market Cookbook

Green City Market Cookbook

Verbena Jardin Soap

Verbena Jardin Soap

Are you falling for fall yet?

Photo: flowers, boards, suzani, glassware, cookbook and soap

Monday Mood

September 15th, 2014

It’s Monday – what mood are you in?

Delightful Dahlias

Delightful Dahlias

Delightful

Pronunciation: \di-ˈlīt-fəl\

Highly pleasing and charming…  We agree with Thomas Jefferson when he said, “No occupation is so delightful to me as the culture of the earth, and no culture comparable to that of the garden.”  May you delight in whatever occupies you this week!

Photo: dahlias

 

 

“Green” Acres

September 12th, 2014
A Grand Colonial

A Grand Colonial

Connecticut Cottages & Gardens celebrates its 10th anniversary this month and we’re thrilled that one of the articles features a project we worked on last year with our client, the talented New York-based interior designer Paul Stuart Rankin. This beautiful home sits on what was once a 14-acre dairy farm and has been in the same family for the past 50 years.  While it was formerly used as a summer house, the clients wanted to convert it to an all season residence where they could entertain family and friends.  Having completed three major design projects with Paul, the couple knew he could bring his elegant touch and create a comfortable and welcoming home.

A Welcoming Entry

A Welcoming Entry

A Lovely Living Room

A Lovely Living Room

Needless to say, the main house needed a bit of updating and with the help of architect McKee Patterson, it was brought into the 21st century.  Interior spaces were altered to create a more open feeling, a rear addition built for a new kitchen, breakfast room, family room and master suite above, and a new screen porch was added to take in the views from on all sides.  The best part is that all of the alterations were done with eye toward sustainability.

A Beautiful Bedroom

A Beautiful Bedroom

A Perfect Porch

A Perfect Porch

Even the land was thoroughly renovated – pesticides were removed, apple orchards restored and a greenhouse built to provide vegetables and herbs year round.  You would think that a 9,000+ square foot home with out buildings and a pool would not fit the definition of “eco-friendly” but in this case, you’d be wrong.  Solar panels heat and cool the fresh-water pool; rain water is collected for irrigation; geothermal wells provide air-conditioning and heating; and a windmill help with electrical usage.  Who knew a property that looks so traditional could be so modern!

A Wonderful Windmill

A Wonderful Windmill

P.S.  Full disclosure – the flowers photographed in the home were all fresh as our designs were a later addition.  If you would like to read more about this project, click here.

Photo: house, entry, living room, bedroom, porch and greenhouse

Fall Reading List

September 10th, 2014
Art Flowers

Art Flowers

A week back at school and already the boys are complaining about their mandatory reading list – Lord of the Flies, To Kill a Mockingbird, For Whom the Bell Tolls - you know the ones!  While we never had a problem with the “classics” in high school, our boys think there are so many other authors they rather read.  Needless to say, we’re jealous that they get to spend time reading even if it’s for homework so we’ve decided to carve out a hour minute or two in our busy day to tackle our fall reading list.  Here are a few fashion, floral and design titles we can’t wait to delve into…

Dior - The Perfumes

Dior – The Perfumes

The Artisinal Home: Interiors and Furniture of Casamidy

The Artisinal Home: Interiors and Furniture of Casamidy

Robert Couturier: Designing Paradises

Robert Couturier: Designing Paradises

Valentino: At the Emperor's Table

Valentino: At the Emperor’s Table

When Art Meets Design

When Art Meets Design

What’s on your reading list this fall?

Photos: Art Flowers, Dior, Artisinal Home, Designing Paradises, Valentino, and When Art Meets Design

Monday Mood

September 8th, 2014

It’s Monday – what mood are you in?

Hilfiger Bath in Florida

Hilfiger Bath in Florida

Bananas

Pronunciation: /bəˈnanəs/

Silly or a little bit crazy…  According to Milton Glaser, “There are three responses to a piece of design – yes, no and wow!”  Is this “wow” or “whoa”?  Would love to hear what you think.

P.S.  The wallpaper is scented, too!

Photo: bathroom