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Decision 2012: Artwork

Decision 2012 might sound like some horribly misplaced political article or a terribly clean and unfunny Jon Stewart segment… but really it’s just my new household initiative. Adorn the wall with frames and then decide on some artwork, and get.it.on.the.wall. No spending months, years with empty frames waiting for the right thing to suddenly appear. Just make it happen. So pleased to introduce you to the  two new pieces of eye candy on the wall. First, I saw this fabulous ‘mermaid’ print on the blog of my favourite new obsession, the stylist Emily Henderson (seriously she needs a whole post dedicated to her and my stalking of her incredible style) but for now, I’ll keep it short. I love everything she does, she had some artwork on her blog. I saw, I liked and I purchased. In about a four minute turnaround. This is a completely foreign behavior, but apparently contagious because just a few short weeks later a great image of my Grandpa came through from an Aunt. They had found an image of him from on top of a Red Cross building in China during the War and with some clever help from my uncle they made a jpeg and literally THAT night, it was up on my wall. I’m planning on rewarding myself with more frames for the wall. And it’s because of this crazy behaviour that means I’ll never become President…Unless it’s of my own house and then I graciously accept the nomination. See ya at the polls David!


You can have your very own copy of ‘Married to the Sea‘ by Tastes Orangey for $25

However, I’m afraid you’ll have to find your very own cool & handsome Grandpa. He’s all mine.

 
 
 

Are you a Professional…what?

I’m fairly certain my obsession for a library card catalogue unit started way before they were cool. I love drawers and organization (despite being an INCREDIBLY messy youth)…I even had a metal drawer version that I stuck index cards in containing, ughm, super secret really cool things that I didn’t even know about. Well fast forward to the 2000s and, well, a wooden library card catalogue is on every designy/interiors bloggers list, isn’t it? Well.lookie.here what became the newest member of the  household this weekend! AND it’s best friend- a piece of old store signage. Way. Too. Excited. I very nearly brought home the entire word ‘TODAY’ as well. It was the same colour as the ‘H’ but in uppercase italics, which I have a bit of a personal relationship with that borders on frenemies. I love uppercase, and even have grown to love italics, but upperitalics. Nuh, uh.

Best part of the whole ‘adoption’ experience (one that included the handover of money) was when I was asked something to the effect of, ” Are you going to be using this professionally or just for decoration?” Ughm…well I don’t have a library, and I don’t use the Dewey Decimal System in my house YET…so does this count as decoration? I mean I’ll use the drawers for other stuff? Does rubber stamp pads count as professional? Trust me, this running inner monologue was as painful to be a part of  as it was to read and I ended up stuttering out something like, ‘oh,well I’ll use it, can I use it?… I mean i want to use the drawers…’ until my sister-in-law saved me from my own social awkwardness with, ‘she’s an artist’. Whew, he seemed okay with that response and off we went to find arty stuff to stuff in the drawers in case the professional organizing/library police come sniffing around Brooklyn anytime soon.

 
 
 

Owl do anything for you…

Happy Valentines Day to you, and you and you! I’m ashamed to say that our household doesn’t really celebrate Valentine’s Day…we aren’t ‘anti’– we just don’t put a lot of stock in any particular holiday (which is in contrast to my general love of details, decorating and gifts…but does fit nicely in with my too busy to do anything life. sigh). Thankfully, I have a husband and doggie that I love everyday and a stepmum who sends me lovely vintage valentine’s goodies so I can rest easy and just enjoy. Oh I feel loved!

This vintage garland which is now hanging from a very happy Rhino in our house is from RawBoneStudio and sports a lovely assortment of vintage Valentine’s Day cards reproduced on wool felt. My favourite bits of love are of course the owl, who says ‘Owl do anythig for you–why not wise up and say you’ll be my valentine?’ Not too shabby… but if sweets are more your speed you might enjoy the donut and cup of tea who pleads, ‘ Please Do-nut say No, be my valentine!’. Oh too cute! But, whatever you do this Valentine’s Day…follow the word of the little space cadet (top picture, on the left) and think, “Why should I keep this a secret?” Of course she says this while wearing her odd bell-jar-esque space helmet, little red skirt and looking through a ‘secret codes’ book. Be still my heart.

 

 

 

 

 
 
 

A little story about…an elusive scarf



Oh Madewell…we’re going to come to blows soon. I’m batting ‘oh-for-five’ at the moment with you. Despite dedicating a significant portion of my income to you lately I keep guessing wrong as to what I should be paying full amount for (as I love it enough to not want to risk it being sold out) or waiting to pick it up in the sale. I think everything I’ve bought full price has entered into a very well priced sale state…whilst the pieces I loved but thought wouldn’t, have sold out! Number one on this list is the elusive storyteller scarf collection. I work across the street from Madewell…dangerous I know…and have literally been eyeing up the red/teal/green/orange map scarf for months. When I finally thought, ‘sod it…I obviously like it enough to splurge’ it’s gone! As are all the other scarves from the collection that use maps, typography and other fabulous bits and bobs in great colours to add glamour and cheeriness to any outfit. You can read a bit more about how they created the collection here on their blog, which will make you fall in love all the more. They literally cut up maps, and made collages, using real glue…in this day and age? Very impressed!  So please bring back the storyteller scarves Madewell…or be prepared to tell me another story. Perhaps the one about a new scarf, yet to be released, that I’m going to like even more than the previous ones. I like that one…and I promise I’ll buy it full price this time, so stop punishing me.

 
 
 

Oh Deer, stuck inside a winter wonderland

No need to flee to the weather channel to figure out if New York City has been covered in snow…sadly we haven’t. But there is a little winter wonderland present in the flat right now. At first I thought I might be a bit late since Christmas is over and the decorations are all packed away…but on second thought, winter hasn’t even arrived here yet, so why should non-Christmassy winter stuff be shoved away (and because I have no idea how to pack them!). These lovely little ‘snow globes’ for lack of a better term were a real project of many inspirations–one part Anthropologie, one part Martha Stewart, one part family and voilà!

I had saved Martha Stewart’s tutorial for snow globes ages ago…and then when I saw these variations at Anthropologie with my sister-in-law we set about picking up mason jars, salt and pepper shakers and glitter. Then at Thanksgiving I went home and my stepmum had picked up all sorts of lovely bits like bell jars, dishes, moss, deer and even…a pillar box! Crowning touch if I do say so myself. I picked up a few pinecones in Riverside Park and that was it– a little piece of nature (and england) in NYC.

Along the way we learned the following useful facts that might help you if you were to take this on:

1. Using artificial snow  as a base builds up a nice shape. We then used fine white glitter on top for the sheen. I also dripped some glue around on the ridge of the deer and the top of the pillar box so some glue would stick on top…

2.  Don’t shake the salt shaker…unless you’ve made sure the holes are covered. Oops.

3. Schleich animals have a nice ‘vintage’ look about them and can be found MUCH more easily (for instance at Michael’s) than proper vintage characters…trust me we’ve tried!

and last, and certainly most useful…

3. Small town train stores have a lot of small figurines…not ice skaters unfortunately, but they do a cracking business in homeless people and prisoners….so ughm depending on the theme of your winter wonderland that could be ughm…well frankly useless.

photos by pillar box post. lamp & table from West Elm

 
 
 

Present(s) & Correct

Tis the season to be a pop up shop, or at least it is if you want to be something brilliant and beautifully styled…Latest on the London scene is one of my favourite online shops, Present & Correct. They are a London based, online stationery shop that specialise in everything that makes me inexplicably want to have a 35 foot long desk. But as for some funny reason they don’t have that as their mission statement, I think they would probably define it more like stationery, vintage products and handmade work from designers all over the world. As expected the translation of their tone, quirk and design elements worked brilliantly in their mini classroom, choc-a-block with goodies like cardboard desks, giant pencils floating in the window, chalkboard, library cart of vintage books, red post box (for letters to Santa…) and the giant stencil shop name in the front window. A shop truly deserving of some square footage…

After getting a bit starstruck talking to Neal, the extremely talented designer/illustrator behind the shop, I spent my time pointing out nearly everything to David for my Christmas list. In the excitement, I decided to bring home a little present, of a pack of paper goodness, a bit early. The envelope is stuffed with vintage ephemera like tickets, stencils, cards, labels etc…all those things as a designer that you think ‘oh if this only looked like classic ticket..’, to then think, ‘but what does that look like’? It will pay for itself several times over I’m sure of it…you can get your own goodies here or make the rest of your own Christmas list—there’s still time!

To visit the shop, get down to…

5 Back Hill Road, London EC1R

The seasonal classroom open now until 21st December. Monday – Saturday 12-6.30pm
Open until 9pm on thursdays (with mulled wine, hot Ribena and satsumas)

Can’t get enough of Present & Correct? Check out these past posts for more:

‘Back to My Desk…’

‘From the Desk of…”

‘Clip It, Clip it Good’

‘Bouquet of Newly Sharpened Pencils’

Images by pillar box post