I've been sooo excited to tell you all about this, and now the time has come!!!
A few months ago I was contacted by a person I had never met about a new business she and her husband (and a host of others) were creating. She described it as a marketplace for all things vintage – cars, jewelry, clothing, homes (yes homes!) and of course, home furnishings. They were selecting "Style Makers" who each had a certain look and style, to showcase their wares under individual storefronts on the website. At first, I didn't think it sounded like the right fit – I pictured a giant virtual flea market – or worse – a garage sale! After a few phone meetings, and emails I soon realized that was not the case. Far from it. Second Shout Out was created to for the hip consumer who has an appreciation for the finer things that have timeless beauty and permanence.
The site just went live, but the official launch is not until mid-September.
Please hop over to spend some time and peruse all the wonderful treasures on Second Shout Out and let me know what you think!
It's been a whirlwind around here this past week! Take a look…
Saturday – Margaret and I attended the motherlode of estate sales. Here are just a few of the treasures we scored…
It turns out the house belongs to George Lucas and the occupant was his personal Assistant for the past 30 years. The most incredible part was that he wrote Star Wars on a legal pad in one of the upstairs rooms! Goosebumps, I tell you. I look forward to sharing more soon.
Sunday – Father's Day
Monday – Met with reps to see new products for the store and clients. New smaller items – tabletop, accessories and hostess gifts coming!
Placed orders for a new client's 'FarmHouseUrban" living room.
Beachy Striped Wool Dhurrie
Simple Slipcovered sofa
Awesome Coffee Table
Tuesday – Went to a former client's home to start working on a new project. Great to be working with her again and her gorgeous home.
In the early evening, I headed up to St. Helena to visit girlfriend Cristine. Tuesday's is her Bocce Ball night, so I met her at the Bocce Ball park. They take Bocce very seriously in wine country.
Afterwards, we went to the new restaurant French Blue, designed and owned by Howard Backen (the architect whose work I have admired for.like.ever.)
Wednesday – Margaret and I worked on the online store. Fine tuning the look + feel, getting all the product images uploaded, the descriptions written, making sure measurements and pricing is accurate takes a loooong time.
Still tweaking the logo…
In the afternoon, I made a stop to my woodworker's shop to check on the prototype for a new piece for the FarmHouseUrban Home Collection. Here is a sneak peek at the FarmHouseUrban dining table!
Thursday – Stopped in to check on the status of a kitchen and family room renovation I've been working on. It's been a really fun project and I can't wait to show you more photos when the space is complete.
What to do with a monolith of a fireplace when the client doesn't like stone or wood? Raised panels in a geometric design!
Deciding which shade of warm gray…
Friday – Made a quick trip to the city to my favorite discount fabric store to look for a tweedy woven for an ottoman. I didn't find anything, but did end up in the waaaay back intrigued by these retro (retro as in they've probably been here since the 60's, not new retro) Hawaiian prints. Perhaps it has something to do with watching "The Decendants" recently?
I'd love to make big pillows out of these for outdoors. They're not made of acrylic fabric, but at $8 per yard, even if they lasted one season it wouldn't be a huge loss. My sewing skills are a bit rusty (plus, hello, I have no time!), so I guess I'll have to pass.
Here's to a relaxing Sunday! Hope you have a chance to put your feet up today!
BROOKLYN! In the past few years, I've noticed many shops, restaurants and businesses popping up in Brooklyn. I had to see for myself what all the buzz is about, so my friend and I spent a day exploring. We got a recommendation from our cool waiter the night before, to visit 'his neighborhood' - Williamsburg, so that was our first stop.
In addition to the abundant cheese and salami selection, they also sell hand crafted chocolate – the perfect sweet treat to round out your impromptu Brooklyn picnic. This display of chocolate wrapped in a colorful palette of beautiful papers caught my eye immediately. It turns out the small company - Mast Brothers - is located right around the corner and is open to the public for tours of the chocolate making process. We hoped to fit it in, but didn't have time. Next visit.
We ate lunch at a great place around the corner called 'Egg'. It was a recommendation from the guy at the cheese shop. Despite the name, I don't think there were any breakfast items on the menu. I took photos of the amazing sandwiches we had, but the photos looked like doo doo, so you'll just have to trust me!
The latter part of the day we walked around Park Slope. We loved the neighborhood/family feel and great variety of restaurants and shops, stopping for a refreshment at, of all places, a gourmet beer shop. If you look closely at the photo above, you might see why.
The photo below as well as this article listing this ice cream sandwich as one of the 10 best in ny area, is posted on the door.
If you're into beer, this place will make you very, very happy!
Instead of taking the subway back to the city, we decided to walk across the Brooklyn Bridge.
On our way we passed a mall of sorts. The stores are all converted shipping containers.
We were so enamored with Brooklyn, we came back on our last day to visit the Brooklyn Flea.
If I wasn't going straight to the airport, here's what I would have picked up.
All this chaise needs is a little fabric love! It is practically the same as the one I have in the shop. Mine was also a flea market find.
Last Thursday we celebrated the opening of the store as well as the arrival of the most exquisite collection of antique french pieces. They include mirrors, trumeaux, engravings, botanicals and art. The pieces were made by a French couple I met last spring – he an antiques dealer and she – a restorer of plaster moldings as well as an artist. Combine the two talents and the results are the most gorgeous pieces made with fragments from the 16th-18th Century restored with combinations of new and old wood, mirrors and plasterwork from 100+ year old molds.
Next week I will highlight each piece. They each deserve their own moment in the spotlight. After all, they're quite old and have travelled very far! In the meantime, Here's a peek. This one – my favorite – might not stay in the store very long. I'm dreaming about it for our future powder room with all it's crusty aged glory. Against a black wall perhaps…
Setting up the crepe kitchen…
A hard decision narrowing down the crepe selection. My daughter Lily helped. We went with 2 savory; ham and mornay (cheese sauce), and caramelized onion and mushroom with bechemel, and 2 sweet; Nutella and strawberry and sauteed apple with caramel.
Surprising how well the crepes paired with the champagne!
And let the party begin! Photos from the party will be on our Facebook page later today. Click on the link at the top of the blog.
I missed the Alameda Antique Fair last weekend, but that's okay since I've been hitting some great estate sales lately. I've been on the hunt for vintage treasures for the store. The problem is that I've grown so attached to each one…
French watercolor. Je t'aime.
Cast plaster box with cherubs on the top and pretty turquoise color inside. I found out that it was made by an American company with an Italian name – Borghese (no relation to the cosmetics company). It has the label on the bottom. They made many boxes in different styles throughout the 1940's – 60s.
I've had a slight obsession with pewter since I was a teenager and saw a collection of pitchers at a friend's house. This little pitcher, I was told, is actually English hotel silver, but it looks so much like the expensive pewter pieces made by the company 'Match' that I had to have it. The crooked top only adds to the charm.
Sets of vintage knives. I love giving old one-of-a-kind things like these as gifts. The bigger knives are stamped with "Shreve and Co" from the old grande dame jewelry store still in business in Union Square in downtown San Francisco since 1852. Underneath is vintage French fabric with an embroidered "M" monogram about to be transformed into the most heavenly pillows.
It rained today and was really cold. About as far from a spring-almost-summer day as it could get around here. I needed to get the creativity going, but the weather was putting a damper on it. Taking a cue from the blue/gray light and the moody vibe outside, I snapped a few real life still life's.
My newest antique acquisitions – painting of roses with black background circa 1910 and an alabaster and brass lamp with scalloped shade.
The space we call home is a reflection of who we are. Each of us deserves to live in an environment that nurtures and provides comfort and peace. Creating a home and a life you love starts with surrounding yourself with things and people that make you happy. It’s not about fancy things or being perfect, it’s about appreciating the beauty that is accessible to us all. This blog is my journal for celebrating the all the beautiful things that inspire me. I hope you will visit often and will be inspired too!