West Elm collaborated with another Brooklyn-based brand, Pelle Designs, on a collection of newly released lighting that I'm really loving. You definitely need to check out Pelle's original work on their site - it's fantastic. In fact, I posted their signature bubble chandelier as my Etsy Pick of the Day back in 2011. They've come a long way...
Athleta was having a swimsuit sale recently and I picked up this tank in black. I believe in getting healthy sun exposure as it is so good for the body, but I also want to protect my skin if I'm outdoors for an extended period. Even though I don't look quite like this model when I'm wearing mine, I still felt comfortable and confident. It's great for the pool, the beach, exercising - or simply active lifestyles.
Girls are powerful beyond measure, and too often we lack the confidence to fully embody our talents, our strengths, what makes us unique, and to achieve our true destiny. We are labeled (too emotional, too pretty, too loud...), pigeonholed, paid less than men for doing equal work (and often, better work), and made to feel that we should never be too successful because it might hurt the ego of a man. We are lacking significantly in the number of female leaders that populate the ranks of our top companies, organizations, and government. This video gives me hope. It will take a village, but we all need to put our efforts toward guiding girls toward math, science, and coding. They can change the world, but not without our support. A big thumbs up to these girls, and to the people who support them. #codelikeagirl
I am fascinated by the process of block printing textiles, so it's no surprise that I'm a fan of Block Shop Textiles - a Los Angeles based company started by the Stockman sisters who create original designs that are then printed by hand in India.
I'm not sure if it's the chocolate or the packaging that has me more excited, but Compartés certainly has my attention. For over 60 years these handcrafted organic chocolate works of art have been made in Los Angeles, with flavors from the traditional dark chocolate with almonds, to the unique white chocolate with olive and rosemary. Even the fabulous designer, Kelly Wearstler, collaborated on a collection with her signature sense of style. This is my idea of the perfect gift...a bar of chocolate.
Goop posted a recipe for Clean Granola recently and I gave it a shot. It's delicious. In fact, I've already made two batches. In short, it's a keeper. I used sucanat in place of the coconut sugar since I had plenty, and it's a flavorful, minimally-processed sweetener. It's also easy to substitute nuts if you have favorites. Since most commercially made granola is loaded with sugars, and many people gobble it up thinking they're eating something healthy - it's nice to have a recipe that is clean.
This recipe appeared on my Facebook feed this morning and I immediately placed the ingredients in my Vitamix (best kitchen appliance ever). It's undeniable the health benefits of turmeric, and this tastes just delicious. Win-win.
So often the affordable retailers all seem to be selling the same things. I was pleasantly surprised to see CB2 offering up some pieces that stood out from the crowd - a few of which are classics, reinvented.
I fell hard for the high quality, last-a-lifetime goods from Mill Valley, California-based, Guideboat Co. There are times when you buy something inexpensive knowing you will only use it for a short time; however, I'm finding myself more interested in buying fewer, better, items that will age gracefully.
On this past rainy Sunday, we decided to drive up to Springfield, Illinois for the day to see the Abraham Lincoln Museum along with the Frank Lloyd Wright designed, Dana-Thomas House. Abraham Lincoln is one of my favorite presidents, and this was a truly well done museum. We also stopped at the old Capitol building, which was the site of where Barack Obama announced Joe Biden as his running mate. The current Capitol building was stunning - with a statue of Abe out front. The only man as popular in Springfield as Abraham Lincoln is Frank Lloyd Wright. Wright designed what is known as the Dana-Thomas House in 1902. It is a spectacular 12,000 SF home done in the Prairie style. The tour is fantastic and gives you insight into the mind of this world famous architect. If you're ever in this area, I highly recommend making a stop at these places.
While exploring Detroit recently, I noticed a few stores carrying this local brand of candles. They have really clean scents and are made with soy wax. You can purchase via the website if you're not visiting one of the stockists.
I've had it on my brain for some time to get to Detroit. I have a collection of digital bookmarks and pages torn from magazines for restaurants, coffee shops, neighborhoods...and stories about chefs, artists, entrepreneurs - all making a difference to create a new chapter in the story of this...well, storied place. I wanted to see it for myself, and a last-minute opportunity presented itself - so I took it. I booked a room on airbnb late the night before, and was lucky to have it accepted immediately by the hosts. I arrived the following evening and spent the next 36 hours exploring (and having some good morning chats with my airbnb host about life...and life in Detroit). My biggest takeaway is that this is a city working hard to breathe new life into its punctured lungs. So many shops were dedicated to selling local goods and items celebrating Detroit - and I don't mean in a college bookstore kind of way. I had some truly fantastic food. I didn't get a photo at Rose's Fine Food (kicking myself) but the food was really good and the vintage diner setting was total eye candy. And Selden Standard was another I stumbled upon by accident. Really good food, and a guy named Terry who, they tell me, is across the street every day grooving and gyrating with his headphones on to his favorite Beyoncé and Madonna songs. I will tell you that the number of deserted buildings and beautiful churches with windows knocked out will take your breath away. And this city, just out of bankruptcy, has a long way to go. The city roads are in terrible condition due to lack of funding. This city has endured a hard kick in the groin, but they're not going without a fight. It's a place with so much opportunity, if you're willing to see it and jump in head first.
places I recommend:
Josh Duthie of Chairtastic reclaims old chairs by making subtle (and necessary) changes such as a new seat, new legs, or a fresh paint color. He also has some original designs that are pretty great, as well. How many times have you stumbled upon a great old chair, yet perhaps the seat was worn through? This is inspiring.
Photographer Gray Malin has enviably one of the best jobs. He photographs some of the most beautiful places in the world. I'm sure there's nothing like having his work adorn your walls to transport you to another place.
Last year when we visited Louisville, Kentucky we spotted the work of Frederick Chaffin. We wanted to stop by his studio, but it was closed by the time we got there. Here is some of his current work available on his website: