Saturday, February 24, 2007

Outside Outside Art

(images courtesy of the Andrew Edlin Gallery)
These photos by Martio del Curto of house-like architectural assemblages created by Canadian artist, Richard Greaves , are incredible. I'm in awe of the fragile precariousness of the assemblages, his use of discarded old building materials to create these unbelievable old crumbling architectures, like real-life vestiges from dreams. These photos too are so sad and fantastically and ghostly dreamlike at once. I've got to get some sleep.

Leaving for Paris

I've been lax in my keeping up with the blog. Was afraid this might happen so here I am. Been busy with trade-show stuff and all there is to do to get ready.
Am leaving Monday afternoon for Paris to do the Le Showroom tradefair to present my Fall 2007 Collection and the stress of getting ready is palpable. There's a lot of work that goes into producing an event where your designs are the focus and the aim is selling and making it look incredible.
Tonight I'm half way through packing, labeling pieces for the "pop-up boutique" where people can buy direct from a little shop they'll have set-up, and deciding which clothes to bring.
Only one two pairs of shoes this time-a big leap for me-boots I'll wear on the plane and a nice little pair of dove-grey suede bootie-pumps I just bought at Shoe Mania in Union Square yesterday to wear at the show.Packing list for a tradeshow:
-The Collection (about 80 pieces unless I make more between now and Monday)
-Linesheets/Pricelists/Posters for the booth (heavy stacks of papers)
-Press Release and Media Book/Notebook/Postcards (more heavy stacks of papers)
-Display blocks (the heavier my suitcase the better I always say) and display items including old coins, bullet shells, rusty nails, turquoise, and other fragile things to worry about packing
-Pins, nails/scissors/mimi-stapler/tape/paperclips/pens/calculator (in an excellent little plastic carrying case)
-International Adapter (for blackberry and computer)
-Powerbook and charger (for keeping up with orders and work at home and watching movies and blogging when the show gets quiet)
-Keys and door code for friend's flat
-Clothes (two pairs of jeans, a dress, a skirt and enough shirts etc. to make it work)
-Shoes (the pair mentioned above)
-Toiletries-small samples are just fine with me. Why would you carry giant bottles when samples pack so small, especially with big chunks of wood in your suitcase)
-an umbrella, because it will do nothing but rain the entire time according to Weather Underground
-One hundred little ballerinas (I wish)So that's it really. I'm almost ready but I'm sure I'll find things to do between today and Monday. I wish I was a hundred ballerinas.
See you from Paris-am psyched to EAT!
P.S. This site, Inspire Co. , is really cute and pretty! I like her blog a lot as well and some great stumbling through her favorite blogs-Found it while I was writing this and looking for pictures of suitcases to show I'm about to travel somewhere-didn't use it but...I love this extremely comforting picture of the ballerinas (cake toppers are some of my favorite things it turns out). I think her philosophy on gift-giving is right-on!


New New York Times Video "In the Studio With The Stooges" shows a little of Iggy and the Stooges latest album. Not sure about the new music but I like the part in the video where they list what "tricks" they do to "empty their minds" instead of drugs. Favorite? Feed apples to the horses at the park.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Food Stumbling and about a Gajillion food Blogs

Somehow I'm finding myself stumbling through food blogs tonight-a great release of pressure. I didn't mean for it to happen, but you know how it starts. You click on one great link, then gingerly click through and then through again and on to another and then find THE ONE and another one, then click through all of their faves and so on and so on and here I am. Every so often I turn to Jim who is contentedly surveying his E-Bay empire, to say, "Hey! look at this blog."
Top new favorites:Chez Pim: I relate to her palate, her smart way with words her beautiful pictures...her cheap eats guide to Paris restaurants. I've been clicking through her picks for about an hour now and am still hungry. I'm a sucker for pictures from markets. Can I get a woohoo for this lettuce?
101 Cookbooks: A journal by a photographer cook of the most beautiful recipes and accompanying pictures (or the most beautiful pictures with accompanying recipes) I've seen. This is really an incredible collection of vegetarian recipes that I can honestly say I can't wait to try. Look at these: the animal crackers and the thousand layer lasagne. This might be the most sensuous lasagne recipe that ever was.

And: Tastespotting sent to me by Kaelea. You click on a delicious looking photo and Viola! You're in a new food site. Hours of food filled fun.

Favorite click throughs?: The Scent of Green Papayas: A great listing of food blogs by Asian women.
Also this just in from Tastespotting: a link to news that China has issued a stamp that smells like sweet and sour pork for the New Year of the Pig. YES China! YESSSSSSSS!
And then found this recipe for green tea cookies from the Smitten Kitchen which reminded me of Masae and Harriet, who's delicious green tea cookies prompted them to open a cafe called Leaf Cafe in Iowa City, Iowa. It's been open for a month and I hear Iowans are breaking down the door.
Which just reminded me of this super dense and impeccably organized food blog, Obachan's Kitchen, that Sandy recommended to me. It's really given me a lot more insight into Japanese cooking and eating and food preparation. I love it.Also loving Becks and Posh, (writing in this link here about Zuni Cafe in San Francisco, see below!) Love the world they've created, the recipes and the picks and makes me miss the Bay Area a lot. We may have to visit with Sandy and Craig in May if I keep on reading this blog.Finally I'm going to get myself the Zuni Cafe Cookbook. Pim and many click-throughs has reminded and convinced me at once of this. I've been making their Roasted Chicken with the Bread Salad recipe (the one you have to wait half and hour for at Zuni for and worth every minute) since I bought a Saveur Magazine with an article about Judy Rodgers. (Guess you can get it on-line as well, like I've done for you here-you won't regret this--I've been soaking currants and shallots in vinegar for my dressings ever since).
All thanks to An Obsession with Food. (Thanks!)

My Valentine's Day Diary

Original plan (see below) where we tried to order lobsters from Maine Lobster Direct (see post below) on the 13th for delivery on VD was foiled! The company informed us they were buried under snow and couldn't process any orders since they couldn't send any orders out! Oh Maine, how you vex me!
Plan B: Go to Whole Foods and pick up some crustaceans and D.I.Y it.
Then came morning and the snow! It kept coming and blowing and sleeting and it was brutally coooold. We had no choice. I had to get my printing done for the first show this weekend, Train: Platform 2 and Jim was lovely enough to come with me.
We rode the 7 train via Long Island City for a quick errand in midtown and headed down from there. It was 1:30 pm and we were hungry. I suddenly had a hankering for moules frites, or garlicky, white-winey and perfect french fries. We got off the 3 train at 12th St. and 7th and slipped down Greenwich Ave and inside Cafe de Bruxelles, which is notorious for their frites (they were written up in Saveur magazine for them). I like it's old school French-Belgian via the West Village vibe. Best part? We had the whole place to ourselves because of the cold and bluster. We ordered champagne, ate mussels and a boudin blanc (a delicious French white sausage) and sat for a few hours while the wind kicked up outside and the waitstaff prepped the room for whatever evening on-slaught was to come. We had some Belgian chocolate cake and had a grand old relaxing and snowy afternoon. (Excellent cake!)
Headed back through Williamsburg, picked up some lovely roses and went home. We blew up the aero bed in the living room and watched Breakfast at Tiffany's which was on TV. I hated the part where she puts Cat out of the car in the rain. We broke out our backup pâte and some more champagne around 10 pm, fat and sassy and having had a wonderful day.
Time for Chinese New Year.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

My Valentine's Day Plan

I got it. I'm going to order lobsters from Maine Lobster Direct. We got married up in Blue Hill, Maine, so lobster is romance to us. We actually did this last year but traditions are good for relationships.
We'll go for The Captain's Feast
It includes:
1 Medium Lobster per person (avg. weight 1.35 lbs)
1/4 lb. JUMBO Shrimp with Cocktail Sauce
8 oz. of Clam Chowder or Lobster Bisque
"Jewell Island" Cheesecake
Maine sea salt, Metal shell cracker and seafood forks, Bibs, Wetnaps, Gift Message and Cooking Directory.

The lobster is terrific too--it's superfresh and they send you seaweed and sea salt for the water. And bibs. We had a lot of fun cooking it up, much better than eating out, amateur night anyway out there. I'll stop into Whole Foods in Union Square on the way home and pick up some oysters as well and to Trader Joe's for a bottle of Cava. Feel free to steal this idea. You won't regret it.

New Daily Reading and a Lovely Day

I'm busy. Overwhelmingly so these days. I even stopped reading my Daily Candy blasts unless the titles are really enticing. But I have two new favorites, Juli B and Refinery29. Juli B is sleek and spare. Great style, great format. Refinery 29 is more delicate and beautiful and has great shopping tips that actually make me want to shop. A great 30 second respite from the grind. Trunk show went great yesterday--Elizabeth Jagger (Mick and Jeri's Daughter) bought two pairs of earrings--The Squirrel and Acorn and the Double Lockets.Fantastic! The day was filled with so many inspiring and creative women.

A Beautiful Valentine

This is my favorite perfume. En Passant by Olivia Giacobetti for Fréderic Malle (nephew, I believe, of Louis Malle). I visited the tiny shop on Rue de Grenelle in Paris to see the source--I had found it at barney's origianlly and was blown away--It was a pretty classy joint with modern Saarinen chairs, walnut walls and glass cases filled with limited edition perfumes. They had big glass tubes, vapeurizers or odorama chambers you could stick your face in and feel the full effect of the smelly stuff. A Wonka-esque experience at best.
But the scent is white lilac, and, like most good smells reminiscent of something you love, for me it's that fleeting week in Spring. The lilacs just bloom and you pass them by, walking back and forth over and over again to suck in the sweetness, until the neighbors see you trying to pick one with and you just act cool. My mother loved lilac and lily of the valley and so did my Oma, my grandmother, so that probably has something to do with my love affair with this (Not cheap) stuff. (according to the package there's also watery notes of orange tree leaves, cucumber and wheat. The sense of smell truly is the strongest sense, so much so it made me shell out $100 to be absolutely lovely.
It's a perfect scent as are many of Fréderic Malle's editions created by master perfumiers.
Take the fun little questionnaire on the website to find out which of his perfume editions suits you the most. Go to Barney's! Ask for some samples! (This Lipstick Rose is very pretty too!)

Thursday, February 8, 2007

These are the Top Valentine Sellers this Week

Above: Lumiere Necklace with Locket
Above: La Vie Imaginaire

Plus the Fobs (see below) for the man in your life. If your order comes in by Monday, I'll ship for you for free!

Karen Walker and a Semantics Query

Looking at the all the Fall 2007 Collections all week on-line and while paging through New Zealand Designer Karen Walker's Fall Collection on NY Mag , I clicked through and found her fantastical website for the first time.
Look at this shoot for her jewelry line*! It's perfectly quirky and a quite magical, no? I also love that she has a Collection for The Eastern and Western Hemispheres. No taxidermed animals were harmed in the making of these pictures is my guess.
*Or is it "jewellery", a comment by Britishess knitwear designer, Ruth Cross , who asked me if I spell the word wrong purposely! Ruth, by the way, is coming in next Saturday for the Designers and Agents trade show and possibly to knit the town red.

Photoshop Googly Eyes & More Gift ideas from Bonbon

I've been up since 5:30 am, since Jim left for the airport--he's going to Portland, OR for the weekend to shoot a fishing trip for I'm not exactly sure what reason. These two tradeshows are looming larger, and I had a hard time sleeping anyway thinking about how my linehsheets need to be finished by next Friday and I still had a lot to do to make them happen. So, I scanned all the Fall pieces this morning--I scan instead of photographing each piece because it's just easier and looks fine for the linesheets. Then, I decided that I should add some new charm pieces for Fall, to grow the Les Historiettes Collection. Now, 17 hours later I'm not sure I like what I did, so I may not use them at all. Sometimes my days go like that. Large periods of time that end up having been futile in an effort to satisfy some impulse that I think might work.
Key Fobs and Black Dahlia Bracelet from Bonbon Oiseau Spring Collection.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

Wrong Date!

The Therapy Trunk Show is on SATURDAY the 10th! Not the 9th like I blasted 300 people today. Showing with Hortensia Handknits. Her company and her beautiful clothes were just written up in CITY magazine.
OK. I have an overwhelming amount of work to do for the next week so here I go.

Circular Thought

Just avoiding work and so perusing the ever-lovely blog/site Design Sponge, actually the first blog I ever met, and found a guest blog by Joy. Loved it so I clicked through to Joys Blog, "Oh Joy" and saw that she wrote about Ann Wood (see below) last night as well. Cool.
Ann Wood must be in the air.
Joy? if you're out there I'm in love with your truly beautiful blog!

Anthropologically Speaking

When I'm around Union Square, I try to stop into Anthropologie for inspiration. It's like stepping into a perfectly orchestrated world of magical craft-superstar displays, carefully chosen collections of feminine clothing with a European retro feel, homey homewares, sexy-sweet lingerie and a great collection of well-chosen books. I'm impressed by the way this company has developed, over the years, a successful original aesthetic, elevating the cliché of shabby chic and flea market excitement into a delicate, almost precious experience for a sophisticated urban market spanning age-lines. It's an aesthetic experience that appeals to my sense of fantastical nostalgia across price brackets. And it's great for one-stop shopping.

I was there on Saturday afternoon after the Ruffian Show at the National Arts Club and I loved some of the new pieces for Spring. My two favorites was the one (above), the centerpiece I thought, looming large and long facing the entrance. Too long for 5'1" me but this one could work for a late Spring day in Southern Italy with my basket of bread, daisies and Euros:
It is very Sophia Loren running along after her lover's car up a warm sunny white-washed hill circa 1962, yelling, "Ma mi Amore!!!!" She bounces back though--how can you not in a dress that pretty?

Shoes at the stores usually sell out pretty quickly but respect to the buyer for the wonderfully original choices. The website is the best bet to actually purchase shoes. These two are my favorites. I've always wanted a pair of blush suede slingbacks and here's a really purty pair.

I purchased two things on Saturday: A cool and original apron for Sandy with fluttering red petals on thick white woven cotton and this book for my five year old niece Sophie, who loves princesses, pink and stories,
The Princess and the Pea by Lauren Child. I loved this story when I was a kid and haven't thought about it in a long time. This is a cheeky and wonderful version of the story and part of me wants to just keep it myself but it's a pretty perfect valentine for Sophie. Can't resist good illustration and these have been cut out and then photographed in incredible little diorama settings, reminding me of the Terry Gilliam school of animation/illustration (one of my greatest childhood influences--the animations in Monty Python's Flying Circus-I still get excited about them). The back pages actually illustrate how it was done, using painted cornflake boxes, setting up the backdrops for the characters up using tweezers to move things around for photographer Polly Borland to photograph.


I love this clam card from Egg Press. Ever since I dressed up as a clam in the 2000 Mermaid Parade in Coney Island, I'm sold on the cuteness of clams. I'll have to find those pictures.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Love Birds

My friend Sarah, who designs Plunket and Pivet handbags, gave me an Ann Wood handmade bird for Christmas. We were showing back in December at the Gift on Grand, a holiday market organized by the fine ladies from the beautiful shops, also on Grand Street in Williamsburg, Sodafine and Therapy (where I'm doing a trunk show this Saturday-see below!)
She chose the little cardinal for me and out of the many, many beautiful birds she brought to the show, it turned out it was the one I wished I could buy for myself. (Thanks again Sarah!)
These birds are so gorgeous that I can't stop looking at mine, which sits on my coffee table perched on a little jar but I think these pics speak for themselves. Ann's display at the show blew me away--a beautiful 3-mast ship made from vintage fabric and papier-mâche I think-- which is why I was so happy tonight to come across her blog! There is so much love breathed into each one of these beautiful birds, I can't wait to see what comes next on her website. I think they'd make ridiculously gorgeous Valentines. I'd love to use them for a Bonbon Oiseau display or photoshoot sometime...Ann? are you out there?

All Business

Mary made this incredible invitation for me for the two tradeshows I'll be doing soon.
She's an amazing designer--I'm really happy with the way they turned out. Now I have to go to East Side Copy on 13th Street (just off University) in Manhattan. They're down to earth, fast and pretty compentent and they did all my linesheets, invites and posters for the last tradeshow. I think I'm going to print my Valentines Day cards there as well. This took me 5 minutes in Photoshop. Going to print them on matte paper about 2x3 and put them in little glassine envelopes. Easy.This grassroots trunk show invite happening this weekend (see below!) took me a bit longer since I'm not very good at Photoshop and my designs are always off-kilter (see jewelry as proof). You can really see the difference between my goofy invitation and Mary's Pro invite. But I'm in a hurry and I have a lot of things ahead of me for the next two weeks, graphics wise and beyond! I guess I'm really drawn to those old-fashionedy fonts and mixing little girl pinks with lavender.
Hope you can make it! Go to for subway directions.

Valentine's Day Trunk Show

Saturday, February 10th from 2pm-5pm
at Therapy, 115 Grand Street
in Williamsburg

Monday, February 5, 2007

Fleurs for your Valentine

Now's the time to think about flowers. I'd think about ordering them to ship, especially if you want to make a lasting impression (of some sort), like sending flowers to her office or to her mom, Do this as well if you can't buy them from the subway guy or the shopping cart ladies on your way home from your job. Just order them from your desk now and they'll arrive when you want--you've planned ahead this way which also will gets you points I'll bet.

I found two I'd recommend, from the top: I've never ordered from them and they are a bit more expensive, but I like that they are one of the few I found that farm organically and are Veriflora certified. Check out their practices and learn more about their company: Learn more here. How much more loving can you get? I'd be impressed.
And below:

I like ordering flowers from Martha Stewart, not only because she employs a number of my friends in her various departments (Hi Ada!) and I did a trunk show for her marketing department over the holidays and thought everyone was very nice and talented, but because her flowers are super high quality and won't die after 24 hours of looking pretty. They also come in great saveable vases, the price is comparable with some of those other flower sending companies AND the offer of 15% off your second purchase is pretty good. You can send some to Mom as well as your girl (or guy) or both your girlfriends (or boyfriends).

These two are my favorites. Love the soft feminine colors of the roses and this unusual variety of Gerbera Daisies are fantastically fun, as orange and pink are apt to be.
I actually cut out one of her flower ads and left it on the table for my husband. When he didn't notice it I said, " Hey, I ripped that out for you in case you want to send some flowers to your mom or something". His reply was, "Thanks Nerd".