Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Paint It Black.

The Rolling Stones told me to Paint It Black.

So I did.

Quite a few of you also suggested I paint my bathroom black. Remember? Click here for a reminder and the Before photo.

Actually, I used chalkboard paint on the walls (if it's good enough for Jenna Lyons...) and glossy black on the tub. The chalkboard paint is not quite flat and not quite glossy and it reads somewhere between black and the deepest blue.

I tried black feet but it looked blah and I was going to replace all the towel bars, etc., with polished nickel or chrome but we're in a Depression people so I decided to go with the brass since that's what I have (except the lights go either way - I just haven't found anything I like yet). Fresh new white towels are on order from Restoration Hardware (I went here and got 10% off my order which also reduced my shipping - yay for discounts!).

So I think I'm in the market for a gold/gilt mirror (which is why my daughter's 1st grade artwork is on the floor - for frame color reference) - that is, unless I can have chrome lights and mirror and everything else brass? Light ideas? I love this combo - she mixes chrome and gold and more; more of a beach look but you get the idea. Opinions?

Monday, April 27, 2009

It Pays to Recycle. Literally.

In the city of Wilmington, Delaware, we are paid to recycle. Your ginormous recycling bin has a bar code which is scanned every time your recycling is picked up. You accumulate points which can be redeemed for everything from gift certificates to discounts at local retailers.

I just got this for free from Amazon with my recycling points:

How jealous are you? You should really go to Recyclebank.com and see how you can get this in your city or town. It's single-stream recycling: you just throw everything in one bin; no separating whatsoever.

I love this book. Here are a few of my favorite images:

I love the lived-in, really individual look of most of the castles homes.

That's it for today. I'm busy painting my bathroom (still). I'll give you a sneak peek later.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

I Owe Gwyneth Paltrow An Apology.

When I first heard of GOOP, her blog, I was like, right. You're going to give me all your wisdom and sage advice on life now that you've given birth and won an Oscar and married a rock star, all while chewing on that silver spoon? Give me a break.

So I signed up for the newsletter because, really, how was I going to make fun of her if I didn't have some actual anecdotal evidence to provide the laughs? The problem is that I like her blog. And her recipes. And her recommendations for under-the-radar places to stay and to eat (fabulous if not overpriced for the average rabble) in the U.S. and abroad. However, I can honestly say she works out too much. Ha.

For instance, I want to make everything in her recent newsletter: grilled zucchini and bruschetta; slow-cooked tomatoes with fresh mozzarella... I mean, how good do those artichokes look? And I want to have lunch at Le Voltaire in Paris and eat avocado and grapefruit salad (one of my faves). I am not a vegetarian ( I was for years) but I eat mostly veggie food because that is what I love. (And while ice cream isn't vegan, it's totally vegetarian.)

Anyway, if you're interested for blog fodder or just interested, visit GOOP here.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day.

I loved this song when it came out in 1990.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Did You Watch Grey Gardens?

I was fascinated by it - by both the house and the women. Here's a photo of the movie house.

Taberandrew flickr

This is a photo of the actual house in East Hampton, NY, restored today.

Here is a photo of the original from the inside looking out.

This photo shows the actual property in its eventual state of disrepair. Posing in front is Edith Bouvier Beale, Little Edie, Jackie Kennedy's cousin.

Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange did a fabulous job recreating the real-life characters from the Maysles brothers original 1975documentary film "Grey Gardens."

Here are some photos of the set interiors. I am in love with the cane chairs and I want desperately to see the kitchen (the only kitchen shot was in the dark at night).

As you can see, this photo depicts years of neglect.

This was the actual photo taken by Sally Quinn (who now owns it with her husband, Ben Bradlee) before their restoration. Mind you, this was after Jackie and Ari Onassis fixed it up so it was habitable. Sally said she touched a key on the piano and it went right through the floor.

The NYTimes has done a few articles on the house. You will want to click here for the link and also look up the slideshow to the Secret Gardener in the lefthand Multimedia column.

After I watched the movie on DVR, I stayed up late watching the original movie on YouTube. You can click here to see it. Additional parts are listed on the right side.

Liberty Post has done quite a few posts on this eccentric couple. Find her recent post here and click various links for previous posts and references. There's a blog devoted entirely to Grey Gardens and its inhabitants: here. Visual Vamp has some great photos and information, here. As well as A Bloomsbury Life, here.

Looks I have some ordering to do on Amazon.

Friday, April 17, 2009

The Real HG, 60's Style.

HG declared the year 1965 the year of PINK, as you can see by the cover the the September issue. Bamboo was big, as was flamestitched fabric. Plantation shutters and Parson's tables were also in vogue (click on photos to enlarge).

Pink wasn't the only color of the year. Colors were divided into Sweet Pales, Subtle Smokes and Bright Accents. The room above combined the subtle smokes of putty walls and mushroom ceiling with a "burst of azalea on the armchairs." They considered the green at the time to be a subtle neutral as well as my favorite, timeless neutral, leopard.

As you can see, skins were "way in" in a room of espresso and mushroom with an ultramarine accent.

"Off-white plus off-black is the newer, more subtle version of the classic contrast of opposites" as seen in this living room. More skins, a Venetian mirror over the fireplace and chinoiserie screen in the corner. With the exception of the fabric being corduroy - Belgian linen corduroy - this room looks pretty modern. Oh, yeah, and the ruched festoon curtains? Hopefully that will stay a 1965 and Munsters trend.

This photo is from the September 1964 issue. "Off-black plus white plus color" equals fabulosity!! All these zebra rugs have me wondering if Margaret Russell has been in this business longer than we think. :-)

Hope you enjoyed this blast from the past. There's more to come.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

One Groovy Flashback.

My daughter brought me home a present yesterday: an old Partridge Family album. Yes, an album!! (She has a record player because they're cool again, apparently.)

So, for some humpday fun, let's take a trip in the wayback machine:

And for the kids, here's the version on my daughter's iPod by Less than Jake:

If you want to know the truth, I wanted to be Laurie more than I loved David Cassidy.

Speaking of Gray...

I am in love with this room*, the office of Alexandra Wentworth and George Stephanopoulos in Georgetown. Their house in the new Elle Decor is refreshing because it is not a cliche plus there are lots of shades of gray.

Kudos to The Ice Queen, La Russell for the current issue**. I have passed on the last two issues of Elle Decor due to the uninspired redundancy within. Now this is what I'm talking about.

*Of course, I picked up the sample of this color and the chip bears no resemblance to these walls.
**Only one zebra rug in the entire issue!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Why Is Color So Hard?

The first thing I did this year was remove the Ralph Lauren pelmet and drapes in my bedroom (compliments of the previous owner) and replace them with linen drapes. I also repainted my bedroom from dingy gold to (oddly) brighter gray.



The sitting area, before (and before I cleaned :-):

After (please ignore ribbons on topiaries; from holidays):

Problem: now I don't like the color. It's BM Revere Pewter and it's greenish gray. The bathroom is limestone with Coastal Fog walls (also a greenish gray) with off-white trim. Here's the master bath:

The hall leading to the bedroom is white but up the stairs is that goldish wallpaper so the gray clashes.

I want to repaint it this color or sort of a French Gray. Thoughts? Color recommendations? Comments?

Monday, April 13, 2009

People Who Live in Little, Tiny Glass Houses...

Tovah Martin terrarium

I was at Terrain the other day and there were about 15 women making terrariums. It was the prelude to a booksigning by Tovah Martin, the author of "The New Terrarium."

When I was a kid, on my walk to elementary school I walked by a small white house with a garage that was converted into a greenhouse of sorts. Mr. and Mrs. Schmidlap lived there. They grew cacti and hens and chicks and my friend Angie and I would stop there after school and would often come home with the fruits of their labors.
Smith and Hawken

They created little terrariums which fascinated me even more than the cactus flowers. I am enamored of them and they were the only things at this year's Philadelphia Flower Show that mildly interested me. Sadly, I do not have a green thumb. But the beauty of these also lies in their easy care ways.

Kindra Clineff

All they require is a little dirt, some moss, pebbles perhaps, miniature plants... et voila: your own tiny secret garden. I wonder if I can find some rotting miniature columns and mini broken statues? Even just placing a cloche over an orchid or an African violet turns it into something special.

I made these while I was fooling around at Terrain. The oneon the right doesn't even have anything living inside it. I didn't buy the one on the left because after I added everything up it came to about $100. Apparently, Terrain doesn't understand there's a recession going on.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Finery.

Me and my brother, Jim, circa 1965ish. He was always in a little man suit.

My mom and my Aunt Sharon. All dolled up for church.

Me, my brother and Charlie, Easter 1970 or so.

Enjoy your day!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Oh, Great.

Zillow off by millions in the Hamptons

And I thought Zillow was just going to keep its wildly inaccurate information to itself. Wrong.

"Real estate Web site Zillow.com on Wednesday announced plans to launch co-branded real estate Web sites with 180 newspapers nationwide, powered by Zillow.

With this relationship, newspaper Web sites will now include Zillow’s powerful search functionality, whereby users can enter any home address, neighborhood or locality and find Zestimate home values, recently sold homes, homes for sale, open house listings and local market data, on a co-branded version of Zillow.com."

For the complete story, go here.

I have looked up my property on Zillow. It has the sale price incorrectly listed as the price from two sales ago (a difference of $256,000!!). I have contacted Zillow three times to try to correct it, but there really is no one to contact. So the price remains inaccurate based on inaccurate information.

It also compares single family homes to attached dwellings and makes no distinction between neighborhoods. And while you can correct some information yourself by claiming your property (such as number of bedrooms or square feet), you cannot correct inaccurate sales information.

Have you ever looked up your property on Zillow? Is it accurate? Is is close? Do you think it sucks as much as I do? Do you have tips for correcting mistakes? Do you want to participate in my class action suit against Zillow?

Find Zillow here.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Rescue Me, Denis Leary.

It's back on FX tonight!

I got hooked on this series last summer in reruns. My dreamboat Denis Leary plays Tommy Gavin, an effed up NY firefighter dealing with the aftermath of 9/11.

Continually confronted by ghosts of his past - literally and figuratively - he tries to end his self-destructive ways and repair his broken relationship with his wife.

Lots-o-drama with Susan Sarandon and blast-from-the-past Tatum O'Neal. But who cares about them?


I love him and his filthy mouth. Always have.

Tonight at 10 pm est.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Sunday Night Confession.

My favorite gift ever was the bike my parents gave me for my 8th birthday: a Campus Green Schwinn stingray with green and silver banana seat, stingray handlebars and fabulous flowered basket. And dig those pants, will you? I had my own ideas about fashion from an early age. In the basket, my dog Charlie.

I have no idea what this gift is from earlier the same evening but, clearly, I was hoping for the green bike. Take a gander at that decor: the pine paneling (which I believe is in vogue again), the burnt orange shag carpet (which is not) and the hobnail milk glass compote on the end table (Eddie Ross anyone?). And not to be missed: the Early American furniture!!

Fast forward to 7th grade, apres Christmas, where Charlie and I are admiring my new pink plaid pants. Second only to my favorite pair of pants ever: purple crushed velvet a la Prince circa 6th grade. I used to wear them to the bus stop in winter and they would freeze solid; they literally crunched when I sat down. I loved them so...

You'll notice the same Early American chair as in our previous house, now paired with brown and white toile curtains (I could swear there were war scenes) and Federal-style lamp. If you could only see the objets d' wall art flanking the fireplace: eagles made of glued-on sequins. I will have to find a photo for you.

Oh, yes. Focus upper left. Eagles with glued-on sequins created by my mother.

My dad, Mike Brady, would kill me and never speak to me again if he knew I was posting this photo of him. Luckily, he doesn't read my blog. I keep telling them and they keep saying, "Blog? What?" I say, "Never mind."

My aunt, however, reads this and will be laughing her ass off about now. xo as

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Now Here Is A Magazine I Can Get Behind

Click on logo to enter

is a carbon-neutral online magazine which focuses on composing a collection of beautiful, inspiring ideas and designs from all aspects of life: fashion, art, design, literature and culture.

Wow. I love the internet. This is the wave of the future (hear that Conde Nast??!!). Speaking of magazines, Domino is officially off-line. I am so pissed that I didn't save every photo in its archives. And now it's too late.

I'm also trying out a new typeface today for fun.

And, no Raina, this isn't an April Fool's joke.

Related Posts with Thumbnails