New things: quarantine edition

When I got the call that I would never be able to go outside again, I panicked. I full on thought I’d die alone in my apartment, with zero toilet paper. To combat this irrational fear I A. talked to some bozo men on dating apps to assuage my boredom and intense loneliness B. visited my mother C. secured said TP and D. bought a lot of stuff online.

Here is everything I have purchased since March 14. I remember this exact date because I was at my favorite bar that Saturday night, after being stood up for a date by a loser man, wearing a pretty top I bought to wear out with him, and thus went out with myself. And here we are in June and I while I have seen all my friends at least once, I have yet to reenter society. I just keep having packages delivered to my door.

In no particular order of arrival:

Home

  1. If you’re thinking of a new side table, I can vouch for this little guy. It’s incredibly heavy (it took 2 delivery guys to get it inside my apartment) and on so chunky and terrazzo chic. 
  2. It took me no time to decide I was going to bite the bullet and order from Target for my balcony outdoor loveseat this spring. Since we’ve been locked in our homes, why not be able to enjoy being locked inside while outside! I test drove it at the store during one of my “GET ME OUT OF HERE” grocery runs. It’s incredibly comfortable. Note to other single gals: it’s also incredibly heavy and not the most fun to assemble by yourself. But if I can do it, you can do it. 
  3. This is made of beans. It was a total impulse and it’s so fun to lounge on while sunning. Get it.
  4. Not pictured: I also ordered a few books: Little Weirds, Jenny Slate; The Truth Will Set You Free, But First It Will Piss You Off!, Gloria Steinem; Women, Race, & Class, Angela Y. Davis; How to Be an Antiracist, Ibram X. Kendi; Futura, Petra Eisele
  5. and a subscription to Doggie Lawn. My doggie loves peeing on it. You get a patch of grass delivered to your door every 2 weeks. I won’t get into if this is gross or not. It works for my dog and our needs.

Fashion

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I love this dress. Sister Jane.

Since we’re in Summer now (6/20 is literally 2 days away from writing this!) I’ll spare you the winter sweat shirt I ordered (my literal first ever. Like everyone else, I fully embraced lounge). 

  1. Testing the waters on crop tops. The puffs sleeves give me life. This is sort of one of those Man Repellar items that I am saving for when I feel brave (and venture back out into the world) on a date.
  2. These Zara jeans fit my 5’2 frame really well. I ordered pricier jcrew Point Sur High Rise Boyfriend Jeans and after returning them what seemed like a million times, never to find the correct size, I lazily settled on jeans that are too big. Now might be a good time to learn to wear belts… next purchase?
  3. I also ordered a pair of Reebok.
  4. This swimsuit got me lots of compliments and the most likes I’ve ever had in my life on Instagram. Ha.

Personal Care

  1. Remember how I said I thought I’d die alone? Well, I guess that explains the impulse vibrator buy. I’m not ashamed to say I bought one (if you must know, this isn’t my first. Won’t be my last. This was a fun and informative watch on vibrators I found by sexologist Shan Boodram). Dame has cute packaging which appealed to my design sensibilities but honestly, I wasn’t all that impressed with this thing. That could just be me though. It has high marks across the internet.
  2. I kind of bought Dr. Loretta moisturizer for the same reason as above: the branding. I am however impressed with this line of skin care and will continue to buy! I feel like my skin is radiant.
  3. This is my favorite mascara. There’s no going back for me. My lashes look long and at the end of the day, with warm water, it pulls right off. No more smudges. No flakes. No raccoon. Nothing. Ever. Again.

I guess that about covers it. My mid-March – June trapped in my apartment filling the void of loneliness shopping! 

New things!

I have acquired some new house things! Now what to do with them. Does anyone want to come help me hang my rice lantern (insert sweat drip emoji). Rachel Sanders was having a sale on the vases and I finally scored a blue lady! Super excited about that. And my sweet mama gifted me the kitty (now I have 4! ha) and lamp at Christmas. I keep going back and forth with what to do in my space. It’s hard to commit when you live alone and you’re the only person making decisions. Well, for me it is. I change my mind often. I’ve even become afraid to put new nails in the wall! Which is absolutely ridiculous because you can always fill them in. 

This is me wishing I had a partner to help with building projects. Where’s Mr. Man to go with me on Home Depot runs? 

 

2019 Holiday Gift Guide

Every year my mother asks me what I want for Christmas and every year I struggle more and more with what to ask for. When you’re a kid with zero money, the sky is the limit for your toy desires! When you’re an adult and buy stuff for yourself throughout the year, there is little to be left to desire come Christmas. 

Most of the stuff I see that I think I might want or you might want comes to my eyeballs through the wonders of Instagram. So here are some things from makers and shops and such you may not be familiar with. I’m game to know what you’re asking Santa for this year. Is it anything on this list? Better yet, who are you following that has the good stuff?

From left to right:

  1. Female body beeswax candle.  Who doesn’t love the female form?
  2. I’m told women love jewelry. I love bakelite/acetate whatever (are they the same thing?). You can find some dandy darlings on Etsy. I’ve followed Dear Golden for a long long time now (not so much into vintage dresses anymore but her outfit combos are inspiring). Another great company for acetate earrings is of course Machete (they will repair your earrings if you break them!).
  3. Rachel Saunders evokes that beige sort of lifestyle many of us want but none of us have. I enjoy her ceramics, especially this little woman vase. I love following her and watching her stories of creation and watching her flip through pages of 1970s pottery catalogs.
  4. If it weren’t for Instagram I wouldn’t know about this puzzle company! Currently they offer 4 images, and this one is super fun! I ordered myself the fruit. It’s somewhere on a mail truck making its way to me.
  5. I’m kind of obsessed with this pan.
  6. Athena posts pretty food pictures and we’ve both dined at Al Di La Trattoria in NYC. That makes me pretty cool, right? Kidding. But this is a lovely cookbook for that special someone that likes to create memorable meals.
  7. Simone Bodmer Turner…I don’t know how she does it but she makes these otherworldly sculptures. They are devine.
  8. For the interior design lover in your life, a yearly subscription to Ark Journal. They only publish twice a year. Each volume is like a book. Coffee table worthy.
  9. Murad Essential-C Day Moisturizer. This stuff is amazing. Get you and your mother sister brother some. They also have a gift box.
  10. Are you sensing a woman theme? I’ve been following Tina for a while and love her work. Once I ordered one of her catalogs just so I could have wee pictures to enjoy. A large print would make a great gift!
  11. I think this is so special and such a great idea. It combines my love of pottery and nostalgia! Maxine will create a vase for you with your objects. I first learned about this because RS did a collab. I’m particular to all the shells!
  12. I’m so impressed with what people are doing with polymer clay earrings. Studio Ramii is on fire.
  13. You can find Paloma Wool here and there. I like this sweater. It reminds me of the 80s.
  14. I don’t really smoke but I’ve been following this account. I’m not really sure why but they’re modern smoking apparutusseees are neat and they have fun modern packaging design! One of their pipe designs would make a great gift for the …herbalist in your life. I also really enjoy Summer School Shop. She makes a pretty shell pipe
  15. I love these rope candles and would be delighted if someone bought them for me. I can never justify buying candles. But as a gift!? Yes please. Sunday Shop has all kinds of beautiful things is owned by the same ladies as Logan and Killen Interiors.

Coffee table books to collect

[Looking for Pretty Things vol. 2? This is it]

Dearest Reader, bookmark this page. I will update it regularly as I learn of new coffee table books. 

Remember when Kramer wanted to make a coffee table book about coffee table books and the book itself was a coffee table (it had fold out legs). I still think that’s genius.

The books currently on my coffee table are In the Company of Women, The Finer Things, The Shell, California Desert, and Mastering Hand Building

I think if someone saw those books in my home they’d assume I A. Like successful women and celebrate them. Maybe I want to be one. B. I like interior design and nice things. C. I just might like the desert or geography. (I am obsessed with the desert). 

Prosper Assouline, culture/lifestyle publisher says, “It’s the idea of building a collection – these are not just things that are big and expensive; they give an impression.

Books are just like our clothes. They tell our guests something about us without us having to verbalize our interests. My clothes usually lead people to believe I’m “artsy” or “unique”. And I’m okay with that. For my coffee table books, I typically enjoy art and interior design books. They are full of beautiful inspirational pictures and look lovely sitting on the table/shelf. Anyone who comes to my home knows these are my interests.

When the Marie Kondo Netflix show aired, there was an article online about how she obviously didn’t understand this concept. Of how books tell people who we are and you don’t just throw them away! We collect books like we collect anything else we enjoy.  You can read it here. It’s pretty much what I just said. 

I originally started this entry with the idea of “why are coffee table books so expensive?” I suppose you have to ask yourself what the book is worth to you. Is it merely a dang book with paper pages that a tree had to die for or is it something you can derive pleasure from for many many years? Can you apprepriate the subject matter, the price it cost to produce the book, the type of paper used, etc? 

Some books at Assouline are works of art themselves. A massive limited-edition version of Gaia, Guy Laliberté’s images from space, is available on watercolor paper featuring 25 gatefold images, 90 illustrations and layered topographic embossing, all hand-bound and housed in a linen clamshell case for $7,000. 

Interior designer Michelle Lloyd Bermann equates owning a beautiful book with something you can’t afford: “You can’t buy the $1,200 handbag but you can buy the Manolo Blahnik book and sit down and drool over it.” 

So true. I can’t own a Matisse but I love looking at the pictures in the books. And if you really wanted, you could snip out those pages and frame them. The $100 book may seem expensive (I am admitting to you I have sticker shock with books), but think of the years of enjoyment you’ll receive! And think of the story you’re telling about yourself as you collect and line your shelves and tabletops with beautiful bound works of art in and of themselves.

A hot tip according to me when decorating with coffee table books: I like to have covers and spines coordinate with the other things that are on the surface. It’s especially nice if there’s black type. Black is a unifying color.

The New York studio of artist and designer Doug Meyer

Today’s Pretty Things are coffee table books that pertain to my interests. I’m sure you can easily figure out what they are! I’d love to know what large scale books you have lying around the house! 

Geometry for adults

I may have barely passed geometry in high school (thanks Coach Sharpe for being a terrible math teacher. I hope you were better with the kids on the football field) but I’m all about shapes now as an adult. I have been admiring geometric shapes for a while now.  I can’t really tell you what it is about them that is so alluring. I swear the simpler the better.  Perhaps it’s because we find shapes repeated over and over again in nature. As designers, it’s always the simplest forms that are the most impactful. I love me a triangle or a semi-circle. I spent a long time agonizing over this website’s logo because I wanted to incorporate many things I love, shapes included. I never quite arrived at the logo of my dreams but I think it’s evident I’m a fan of circles and lines.

I’m fully loving the world’s continued journey pushing the boundaries of geometry and design, the harkening to the 80s, to softer tubular lines. Melding the shapes of the 50s/60s with forms of the 70s/80s is giving futuristic fresh takes to everything from chairs to home decor. 

Here are some finds I’ve been eyeballing for my apartment. Some are true vintage and some are new takes on old classics – the line, the circle, etc.

semi circles

Mid-century Paintings

About 6 years ago when I became interested in interior styling, I began to note all the mid-century flooding the market. I liked it. Growing up I always loved decorating my Barbie’s plastic a-frame and gluing together cardboard houses for the less stylish neighbors to sit in (because the boxes I had available were never big enough to build anything Barbie could stand in). I played with vintage toys like Betsy McCall and wished I had all the pretty vintage dresses for Barbies that kids in the 60s had. I was always fascinated with the craftsmanship and attention to detail of vintage toys – real metal zippers! This probably began my love of mid-century. I just didn’t know what it was. My mother has always loved antiques and bought me a Victorian-style dollhouse when I was in grade school. That aesthetic informed a lot of my own decorating choices up until I started paying attention to my apartment in 2013 and started my first design blog.

I grew up in a house full of floral paintings and terrible family photos on the wall. There was no attention to or celebration of art. As I began to study mcm on my own, I began to love the wonky portraits. You’ve probably seen them. Th single girl, the solo man. Sitting there, staring out. I don’t know what it is about the 60s style of painting that captures me so. I suppose it is the impressionist style. I enjoy the loose brush work and bright but never harsh color palettes. That’s the sort of art I’m drawn to most – fluid, hurried lines.  Also, the use of a lot of blue. I like blue. Blue is calming and serene. I also like that the person is the sole subject of the painting, there is no fluff detail around them. These are simple works. 

I’m working on my collection of nude mid-century paintings. I was inspired by Sally Breer‘s LA apartment some years ago. Sally is a designer who also chooses each piece with a lot of thought and intention. Here are some inspiring mid-century paintings for you to enjoy. Some of these have sat in my favorites folder for a long time and are no longer available for purchase but you can still appreciate their beauty. It’s fun to go to antique/vintage stores and look for mid-century paintings in real life. No one wants them because they’re of some random person. All for the more for you and me! 

 

Pretty things vol. 1

Lately, I have been enjoying all things ceramic. I even ordered 100 pounds of clay so I could venture into the world of pottery. I’m working my way to lamps. 

Until I create my masterpiece, here are some pretty noodle vases. I’m kind of obsessed.

There is a large amount of interesting mid-century Japanese pottery on eBay. I would imagine it inspired a lot of these top designs. Do be sure to leave your favorite noodle in the comments below! I’d love to hear if you’re a fan of this trend. I wonder if I love it so much because I love actual noodles and my brain makes some sort of food connection. Hilarious. I also just enjoy the shape, the texture, and the pure beige of it all.