Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Trimming a shade

Here are a set of before and after pictures showing the effect a simple detail like trim on a shade can have on the overall look of a room...and a few other decorative touches...
(Yes, I know I should have had the light either on or off in both pics - well, I know that now. I'm still working on my before & after. I believe they took pics of the room before we converted from a gender neutral nursery to what you see today.)

This is one of the rooms for a client in Santa Barbara. This room is nearly complete - just one more detail (changing out the hardware on the dresser) to be added to the room.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Summer Solstice - Family Style

Growing up in Portland, OR, the summer solstice (9:03pm sunset) was always a pretty exciting day...the longest day of the year. When I was in London, during college - the day was even longer (9:22pm), then in Seattle, WA(9:22pm), it seemed to last forever. In Minneapolis, MN, also - a sunset of 9:03pm. However, it (the day) is not as exciting in SF. I think part of the reason is because people aren't exiting "the tunnel" as James Michener said. When you live in a place that is dark, more than not, you truly welcome the longest day of the year. However, true to my Portland roots - I made the most of the day...5am wake-up followed by Starbucks, Ava at daycare, meeting at 7:30am (3 lamps to re-wire for a client & couch color/fabric consult), 8-10am kitchen remodel - as-built measurements, a visit to Roche Bobois, lunch with a design colleague, a visit with a friend and meeting her new baby, and a definite highlight - picking up Ava, with Tony, to take her to Fort Mason and enjoy the heat and sunshine! We've had such a long winter, this week is incredible.
Happy Summer Solstice!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day!!

To all the dads out there - I hope you had a very special day!
A seriously involved daddy, Tony!
Family time at the zoo:
And a dinner courtesy of another great dad, in addition to tasted even better than it looks! Thanks Andrew!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

White Pouf

I'm looking for poufs...Here's one that I love...
Serena & Lily: $395, 12"H x 20"Diam.
But here is one that appears similar, for much less.
MarrakeshTHouse: $135, 13"H x 21"Diam.
There are a few others that I have my eye on...more to follow.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Past Perfect!

This past Monday Ava and I paid a little visit to Past Perfect on Lombard. I fell in love with this pair of chairs, covered in Fortuny fabric - $2,500/pair.
I think that they would look great in our place but after the wood is painted a different color. I would love to see them in a high-gloss white and then the fabric would really pop.
Loved this table! $475
Next up: this pair of marble lamps, for $450, lamps only.
However, they need new lampshades...hardback lampshades, like the ones shown here, don't make the lamps dazzle as they should! Also, the lampshades aren’t long enough for those lamps & as a result, the switch is showing. As Arina at Naomi's Lampshades said: "It’s like walking around with your slip showing.” The shade should cover the switch and the base of the harp. Here are a couple of shades that I think, style & color-wise) would effectively dress-up these gorgeous, marble lamps, as they should be:
The great thing about lamps: You can take them with you as you move through life & homes. You will always need to be able to see what you're doing and as such, you might as well spend the money to invest in something nice. Think of them as a basic set of diamond earrings or pearls. It’s fine to have imitation when you’re building your career but when you have reached a certain point, it’s time to pitch the cheapies and invest in the real thing – it equates to the home as well.

Friday, June 10, 2011

East Bay fly by

Did you ever read Bil Keane's, "The Family Circus”?
Do you remember Billy and his adventures around the neighborhood?
I'm sure a lot of you feel that way on a daily basis...For me, that day was Wednesday, after I dropped Ava at daycare. Billy's neighborhood as applied to the East Bay...what a productive day! Yes, shopping at the SF Design Center is great, I love it and I would love to say that everyone can spend that kind of money on furnishings...but they can't. I like to spend time getting inspiration and then seeing what else is out there.
I found a lot of stone that is absolutely gorgeous but on the furnishings-side, here are some of the highlights of some of the 'finds' I came across:
This wood is gorgeous and the more you look at it, the prettier it becomes. The only downside is that it’s in this honey-chestnut color that I just feel sort of ‘eh’ about…BUT in the right setting it could really work…this piece is $299, at ReStore/St. Vincent de Paul’s in Oakland. The best part is that all of the proceeds go to a good cause.
I like this pair of side tables:
refinished in a creamy, warm, green-grey, like Manor House Gray from Farrow & Ball:
In a distressed, dark stain, this country-style coffee table could be really nice:
For those of you lucky enough to have a backyard, how about some furniture:
I think the whole set was $499…Sears Outlet.
And then I got to Home Goods...that place is just fun. I see why David Bromstad loves it so much - COLOR SPLASH.
Ok...that's all for now...Happy Friday!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Ooh baby, baby...

The stork is knocking at the door, he is dressed to the nines because a baby girl is about to arrive!
One of my favorite things: baby showers, I absolutely LOVE them! It's so exciting to see the mom-to-be surrounded by her closest friends, her moms and all the gifts.
The gifts are always tiny and very thought-out. Especially when a majority of the guest list consists of new moms...Today I had the pleasure of co-hostessing a shower for one of my closest friends, Kristen, with Kate & Anjali.
Here are some of the fun pics from the event. Kristen's shower was at Crown & Crumpet The owner, Amy and event coordinator, Kim, were fantastic to work with. I highly recommend this venue for any pending baby/bridal showers or little-girl birthdays. Of course, the interior design of the place is over-the-top and yes you could do some editing but I love every inch of it! The food is delish, but the design more so - I could eat it up like a spoonful of sugar.
The Moms:
Kristen, always remember:
Some favorite gifts:

Please come visit us again!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Favorite Quote of the Day

Tony and I watched Million Dollar Decorator this week on Bravo...that show came to mind as I just re-read the House Beautiful interview by David Keeps of Ruthie Sommers.

“I’m over the idea that a decorator is anything more than a decorator. You sit on the floor with clients, talk about chairs, push fabrics. Lifestyle architect? Tastemaker? Please. If you have taste you never even say the word!”

I love it! The whole article is great - she really tells it like it is...she's so honest and candid.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Wine Wednesday

Cougar Town had its season finale last Wednesday (so sad we're now stuck with repeats). However, this finale was also a finale for Tony & my "reason" to have a glass of red wine. Instead, I'm enjoying a delicious glass of my favorite Pinot Gris from Oregon, courtesy of Searles Ridge Vineyard…owned by Jim & Bea Searles. The 2010 vintage has just been released and it’s already my most favorite of all the vintages thus far.

Inspired by my tasty beverage, I thought it would be fun to relay their wine story, by interviewing Jim. For those that might be interested, read-on.

JLID: Tell me how you came to be the owner of a vineyard…

JS: When we moved into the property on Germantown Road in Portland, OR it was a house with 10 acres of trees:

It had a great southerly exposure and I always loved the look of a vineyard. So we started clearing 3 acres over the next 4 years and planted grapes!

This clearing also necessitated the need for rock walls and reshaping the land so it could be farmed so over the 4 years we put in over 500 tons of rock walls and 750 dump trucks of dirt for the terraces.

JLID: When did you plant the vineyard and how much did you plant?

JS: We cleared the upper vineyard in 1999 and planted in 2000 we cleared the lower vineyard from 2000 – 2004 and planted in 2004.

JLID: How many acres are currently planted and how much wine does that yield?

JS: 3 Acres currently yielding 100 cases a year but as it matures (and the birds leave it alone we should get up to 300 cases a year.

JLID: The Willamette Valley is predominantly known for its Pinot Noir, what prompted you to plant Pinot Gris?

JS: Pinot Noir is the most prominent, that is true, but Pinot Gris is the second most popular varietal in the region. At the time, Bea (read: my mom/his wife) liked white wine and Pinot Gris; unfortunately she now likes reds so I drink the white and have to buy the red. ☺

JLID: What’s the process involved in creating a vineyard?

JS: Blood, Sweat, and tears – you basically need to have a passion for working the dirt and growing things. Coming from a farm heritage I was missing working in the dirt and it drove me to do it. It certainly was not for financial gain as last year I grossed $7,000 and invested $19,000 – so you can say we are a little upside down!

JLID: What made you decide to have someone else produce and bottle your wine?

JS: The first wine I produced would not have qualified for even good cooking wine – you need good grapes but you also need to understand the chemistry – I was learning but found John Derthick who is a UC Davis viticulturist grad and he was much better at it than I would ever be. So if I wanted to be true to the grapes I needed an expert and John is the man!

JLID: How did you choose Lujon over other producers?

JS: John was the winemaker at Helvetia Vineyard and I met with them to share my first major crop. They would make and bottle the wine and we would split it 50/50 – John then started Lujon and I hired him to do our wine exclusively because he is that good!

JLID: Looking back at yourself with the power of hindsight, what would you tell your younger self?

JS: Nothing differently other than don’t expect it to be a moneymaker!

JLID: Who do you sell your wine to? Or in other words, where do you sell your wine?

JS: To friends and family – it is a small amount of high quality wine and we never have any problems selling what we produce.

JLID: So even if you sell all of the wine you produce, at current production of 100 cases, you're still in a net loss position...that's a tough spot to be in. On one hand, I understand that as a small producer you probably care more about selling all of it than none of it, at a higher price. But on the other's nice to at least breakeven, have you thought about changing the per bottle price?

JS: Once I develop a following I can consider it, last year I gave a lot of samples away so hence the low return – this year I will do less of that.

JLID: What is the wine selling for this year?

JS: $180/case or $18/bottle.

JLID: How would you describe the 2010 release?

JS: Strong fruity notes, nice palette and finish! It is delicious, especially on a sunny day with some great cheese!

JLID: How does this vintage differ from past years?

JS: Not as sweet – which is good, alcohol content is 12.5% versus 13% and 14% in prior years.

JLID: What are your plans for the future development of the vineyard?

JS: Sit back, mow, spray, harvest, and enjoy!

If you’re interested in purchasing some wine from Jim, he can be reached at:
M: 971-235-4698
If you're in SF, please feel free to contact me.
M: 415-407-1565
The Roosevelt Elk particularly enjoy the vineyard!!