Friday, May 28, 2010

Adaptability Is The Key To Life, Right?

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Earlier today, I was reading La Dolce Vita, a GREAT blog by Houstonian Paloma Contreras when I was tickled to see her post on Hanna Brooks Nation, a cute-as-a-button graphic designer whom developed what I consider quite possibly the most handy and innovative iPhone app, named POST.  POST is the modern answer to a busy gals {or guys} social life.....while of course our mothers taught us that a nice paper invitation and a handwritten thank you note are the only ways to go––and we absolutely employ that as often as possible–– but sometimes we need to do things quicklike and  here, Ms. Hanna grants us a new way to still have manners yet be efficient {and cute!}  all at the same time.....

Because, let's face it––oftentimes, life doesn't give us time to plan. Sometimes the thrill of spontaneity is more alluring than the well-thought-out dinner party detailing everything down to the minutiae and we just want to throw an impromptu gathering with out all of the pomp-and-circumstance {In three hours notice}. Why opt for dry text or email {with no pizzazz} stating: "Cocktails and hors d' oeuvres •• Starts at 6 in my garden" {blah! how boring!} When the brilliance of POST allows us to send that invitation just as quickly and with style! Look at a few of the designs that she has included in her package; they are absolutely adorable!!

I could not help but firing away to all of my friends immediately after I downloaded it. 

Doesn't this just make you so happy inside??

Don't hesitate, download this nifty {and thrifty} little app right now! It's only ninety-nine cents for gawd sakes! 

Hope you all enjoy it as much as I do––and have a last-minute gathering this weekend, you won't regret it, I promise!

Good weekend to everyone!




Monday, May 24, 2010

RUN To Your Nearest Computer/iPhone/iPod and Listen!!!

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photo via Cote de Texas

The gals over at The Skirted Roundtable  have outdone themselves this time.....I am SO JEALOUS (yet thoroughly excited for them) that they were able to garner an interview with esteemed designer (and one of my personal favorites) Ms. Mary Douglas Drysdale. 

Mary's voice is like velvet, her words glide effortlessly, and her coy laugh kept me smiling for the hour long interview. She's calm, steadfast and confident not to mention incredibly knowledgeable. You will not be disappointed! 

If you want to listen, log into iTunes and search for The Skirted Roundtable podcasts––or there is a feature on the SRT website where you can subscribe to the podcasts directly from the SRT blog. The ladies have offered us listeners a treasure trove of wonderful interviews over the past year and I just can't thank them enough––what a gift for all of us! 

To see more photos of Ms. Drysdale's  work, visit  Cote de Texas. Isn't it incredible that after 14 years there is nothing stale about a Drysdale room? Eternally classic! 




Friday, May 21, 2010

Prescription To Beat The Heat: Drink Champagne Cocktails Of Course!

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image via tipsytexan

Summer is here! {For South Louisiana at least} and y'all––it's HOTHOTHOT already. This is the part of the year where we enter the two-shower-a-day-minimum months and we could make meals out of the oppressive humidity because it's so thick you could eat it with a spoon. Not that I'm complaining dot dot dot. I really love where I live dot dot dot.  You should visit just not in summer.

I had this delicious drink the other night at a dinner party and just could not get enough so I have declared it my new official summertime libation. Champagne just makes me feel so tickly inside, so I've decided that is enough to cool me off in the languid Louisiana summer heat. Of course that's just an excuse I'm telling myself to be able to drink more of these crisp and bubbly's, but whatever!

Classic Champagne Cocktail:

Champagne of your choice
Lemon Zest (curled or finely grated)
Angostura Bitters
One Sugar Cube
Strawberry to garnish (b/c let's face it––everything is better with strawberries, right?)

The only super-technical aspect of this cocktail is the dousing of the sugar cube with the bitters––in other words, this is EASY––just like I like things b/c I am the laziest hostess you've ever met!

Tahdah!! You're friends will confirm you are the genius that you know you are. Everyone will have fun and get the giggles––Success!

Have a great weekend everyone!




Sunday, May 16, 2010

American Art Icon, Hunt Slonem––On The Bayou

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Hunt's body of work is mainly comprised of exotic birds, bunnies and the occasional tiger. Read on to see how special it is for him to grace us with a rare collection of flora and fauna scenes created just for us in southern Louisiana.

I was thrilled to hear that my fair city would be hosting an exhibit of paintings from renowned artist Hunt Slonem. Hunt is the kind of artist that never stops working. Ever. Part artist, part historian, part antiquarian–– Hunt glides ever so easily between big-city life and the quiet life of Louisiana plantation country and we consider him a treasured neighbor. He purchased the plantation, Albania, a few years ago from the original family of heirs and in a swift and smart move, allowed the film company that filmed "All The Kings Men" take over for a while and shoot parts of the film at the home.  So, if you ever watch that movie, be sure to pay close attention to the scenes, and you'll be looking inside Hunt's home!

Lucky for me, I have a dear friend whom is a dear friend of Hunt's, and the rest is history! I had the pleasure of spending time with him at Albania, which is located about 30 minutes from Lafayette in a small community named Jeanerette. The scale of this place is almost incomprehensible. Its more than stately, it's beyond magnificent and immaculately well taken care of––Hunt would have it no other way!

Albania Plantation

Photo Courtesy of

Photo Courtesy of Ellen Kennon

Hunt loves vibrant colors––his use of bold hues partnered with leaving the original millwork untouched makes for one enchanting combination. The walls are rich, vibrant and velvety; while the woodwork is aged and enameled with one-hundred-fifty years of layers.  

Photo Courtesy of Ellen Kennon

Photo Courtesy of Ellen Kennon

Hunt is no stranger to the deep south, having attended Tulane in New Orleans back in the 1970s–– and I think he's captivated by mystical quality of the Cajun culture; we agree with him very well––so in this exhibit, aptly named "On The Bayou" it appears that in a gesture of true southern hospitality, he created paintings specifically influenced by the swamps of Southern Louisiana. What a gift! 

This exhibit runs through December, so be sure to make it to the Hilliard Art Museum in order to view this wonderful collection of 9'x9' paintings by Mr.Slonem––we owe it to ourselves not to miss it!

There is also a beautiful 48 page book to accompany the paintings that can be purchased here

Hunt has published two other fantastic books filled with eye-popping color and images so irresistible, I say just buy them already. His love for Victorian and Gothic furniture is bizarrely intriguing and sheds a glimpse into to the mind and private life of one of America's most prolific artists. Well worth the read, I think!




Tuesday, May 11, 2010

This Kitch Ain't Missin' A Stitch

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Seriously? Looks like I may be saving up for a bit longer for the kitchen re-do now that I've seen this.

I will battle anyone to the bitter end who says that all white kitchens are a trend––I firmly believe that they are a staple in fine estates and the classic finishes will outlast almost any fly-by-night furor. My heart pittapatta'd when I saw this on Decorati today. What extraordinary talent Ms. Williams has! I LOVE that she respects tradition, yet blends a smidge of modernism into her interiors––a great approach to being ahead of the curve, agree?

I mean, this is probably hands-down, one of the most functional kitchens I've ever seen. What luxury! I'll remember this next time I bump into the dishwasher door while carrying a hot pot on the way to the sink, or shimmy my way between the fridge and the entrance into my kitchen when Mr. Hotpiece has it open scrounging for bachelor food. 

Notice the graceful curve of not only the island, but the corner curio piece. No space was wasted whatsoever and everything appears to have a place––large, deep drawers; two workspaces; plentiful seating. This is marvelous! 

To read the whole story {and it's written quite well thanks to Karin Edwards}, check it out on Decorati here.



Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Knock-down, Drag-out on the Campaign Trail

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Campaign furniture––have you heard of it? Did it perplex you when you first heard the term? I know that it confused me when I first heard of it years ago! 

Simply put, Campaign Furniture is {mostly} antique modular furniture made to be broken down and put back together with ease in case your family had to split town faster than Marie Antionette changed shoes.

This furniture became not only popular, but necessary in times of war. Families and military generals–– not to mention politicians truly on the campaign trail–– needed accommodations, and what better than to have all of the accouterments of the good life to take with you?

The joinery and marvelous craftsmanship within these pieces are second-to-none and the engineering is purely brilliant considering there were no machines, AutoCAD or schools teaching Industrial Design! All of these things had to be broken down quickly, compactly and still be able to ride in style after many miles and moves! From great big armoires to small benches, there wasn't a detail overlooked when designing the furniture.

If you know me, or have read this blog over a period if time, you know how much I looooove 1stdibs. Now, {pretty much} every heavy-hitting antiques store is accessible at our fingertips. I could spend days looking at everything, dreaming up how I would use each piece in a clients home, lusting after all of the things that I want. You know––torturing myself and taunting my willpower at every turn.

I raked over the selection of Campaign furniture to offer of some tasty images for us all to drool over. I love the lines of everything. It's straightforward-meets elegant-meets functional-meets masculine-meets grace and refinement. What do you think?

All images courtesy of 1stdibs


I would love to use this in place of a sofa in my sunroom. Truly magnifique!

This daybed is SIXTY GRAND! Not kidding! I mean, it's a beaut and all.........

I love how this secretary pulls double-duty as a vanity and a desk. You know that this was commissioned by the owner to suit his particular needs. I love that!

If I remember correctly, I think this style is a favorite of Albert Hadley in his interiors. I think I've seen him use it in a few homes. I love the frankness of it. 

And every weary traveler needs a bar for a cocktail at the set of dusk, right? How about this cute portable bar to get the job done? 

They even thought about the girls! These are garishly precious aren't they? Like, hmmmm. Cugly. Cuteugly.

Stunning chest of drawers made of camphorwood––so masculine, you know this man handled biznass.

This rosewood bookcase has such and anglo-indian feel to it. What a statement piece. 

Have a great week everyone!