Thursday, June 28, 2012

A little French flair

I am always attracted to items with French flair.  Parisian dress and decor make me want to slow down and enjoy an espresso (which I drank soon after I purused this store).  There is a vendor at the Canton Street Antique Market in Roswell that draws inspiration from our European friends.

This recycled canvas bag ($38) would be a great carryall for the summer.  It wouldn't matter if you got a little sand or dirt on it, because it is already worn in -

I love the French language and really wanted to buy a French book -

I have a soft spot for pretty hardback books.  If I remembered more of my high school French, I would have purchased this one (although I might go back and buy it just for looks) -

I don't know what you would do with this wire cage, but it would give an authentic look to a French country kitchen -

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

It's heating up

It is getting hot and humid enough in Atlanta that I want to wear a flowy white dress like this -

Alas, I don't have one.  So, I would have to make one, but I have way too many projects in the pipeline right now.  Therefore, I will just have long, flowy thoughts today.  I like the plaid shirt on the guy standing next to her, too. 

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

I can see your ankles

When I was in Europe last summer, I saw some men and women wearing pants with elastic around the ankles -  

I have since seen this trend arrive in America for women (usually in a cropped-leg version), but I was doubtful for it to catch on with men.  However, it seems the American men have adapted it by rolling up their pants legs to the ankles -

I am guessing that this trend will not trickle down to the masses but may encourage men to wear a slimmer leg on their pants -

Nigel Barker and J. Alexander from America's Next Top Model

What do you think?  Will the men in your life ever roll up their pants?

Monday, June 25, 2012

What I would buy today if I were buying clothes

It's a cute, unique, colorful, comfortable dress.  What more could you want for the summer?  If you would like to buy this dress, go to  If you want to know why I can't buy this dress, go to One Year.  But don't feel bad for me.  I have enough stuff.  (Although, I am tempted to make it...but then again, I have enough stuff.)

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Matchy- matchy

Years ago, "matching" was the rule in fashion.  

Then, "matchy-matchy" became an insult.  It became about mixing prints and colors that complement each other and create an overall look -

Then, "matchy-matchy" made a come back with some retro and classic styles -

So, into which camp do you fall?  Do you like to mix prints or would you rather match?  (Note: All of these photos were taken within the same year, so I think you can do whatever you like.)

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Beauty emerging from the ruins

A few weeks ago, I created a mess (by mistake) -

I had glued pretty paper onto the canvas but had to rip it off because it was bubbly.  I finally figured out what to do with my disaster -

I ripped out some more pretty paper and glued it on (this time more carefully) to create a border.  Then, I taped photos into the center of each paper.  I like how the photos are framed by the "antiqued" areas.  It is beauty emerging from the ruins.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

3D inspiration

This week, I've found inspiration lying underneath this canopy of trees in our front yard -

I love how it's 10 degrees cooler in the shade and how the branches and leaves and light intersect to create interesting patterns.  I found these feathers on the ground.  The way their color goes from white to gray to blue reminds me of a blue ombre dress I once tried on.  It was a very simple shape with beautiful color.  I wish I could find some of that fabric now.

Lately, I have also been intrigued by clothes with different shapes and details like the clothes made by Renske Solkesz as shown on her blog.  She spent a year making her own clothes, so I feel a little bond with her.  Her clothes are interesting without being flashy.  She talks about using 3 dimensional elements in her design, so I thought about her when I saw this piece of bark -

It looks like a sculpture to me.  It comes from this tree whose bark is continually peeling off.  I don't know if that is OK for the tree or not, but it is really pretty -

I have a few "normal" looking projects in the pipeline, but after that, I'll see if I can come up with something more creative...

Monday, June 18, 2012

Holey jeans

When I was in middle school, my best friend gave me her old pair of jeans that had bleach stains and holes all over them.  I thought they were gold.  They were so comfortable and, I thought, super fashionable. I remember wearing them to lunch with my mother at a restaurant, and she was horrified. "But, Mom, they're in style."  They looked kind of like this -

...except these jeans cost $230 on 

Now, I wouldn't even consider wearing ripped jeans to a real social event, but lately I have seen photos of famous women wearing them with nice outfits.  A friend told me that ripped jeans never go out of style, but they seem particularly in style at the moment. 

I wish this New Yorker wasn't talking on the phone, because I really wanted to ask him if he bought his jeans with the holes or made them himself -

His jeans look like he took them off someone who died in battle.  However, the question is -

Would you wear holey jeans for something more than just "hanging out"? 

Friday, June 15, 2012

Across the street

It's nice to have neighbors across the street who make their yard look pretty.  I think the combination of these flowers with the ferns hanging in the background on the front porch look particularly Southern.  I don't really like ferns, but they make me feel at home.  They remind me of my childhood.  Are ferns Southern or do people hang them on their front porches in other parts of the country?

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Go with your gut

I have trouble making decisions.  I will have certain feelings about something, but I can't explain them.  So, I spend a long time thinking rationally about my decisions and end up making the wrong decision.

I recently painted my daughter's bedroom pink and then made a head board (or what I call a corner board) for her bed.  I debated for a long time over the fabric for the corner board.  I initially was drawn to one fabric but decided that it was too thin and not wide enough.  So, I used a fabric that seemed more appropriate -

I felt uneasy about this fabric from the moment I ordered it but wrote off my feelings to nervousness about the size of the project.  It turned out well...but it didn't feel right.  Every time I walked into her room, it bothered me.  It was too much pink with too many black lines in the print.  It jumped out at me and didn't feel balanced.

There are few things that I hate more than re-doing something that is already completed, but I couldn't stand it any longer.  So, I went back to my original fabric (Amy Butler "Fresh Poppies" in fuchsia)-

Now, it feels more like a bedroom.  It feels more English country side.  Since I like to balance everything with a dose of modern, I'm going to use a gray and white zigzag fabric for the roman shades -

I did have to deal with the issues that initially made me decide against the floral fabric.  I had to iron this 100% cotton fabric several times and had to sew pieces to the bottom to make it big enough.  However, it wasn't as difficult as I had imagined. 

According to Jonah Lehrer in How We Decide we often think too much which "causes us to focus on all sorts of variables that don't actually matter."  He recommends that on matters of preference and in areas in which you have experience, don't think so much.  Go with your gut.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Wrap dress - Part 2

I have loved wrap dresses for a long time.  I think they are elegant and classic looking as well as flattering on everyone.  After purchasing a few at Macy's and H&M, I dreamed of owning a Diane von Furstenberg wrap dress.  She is considered the "inventor" of the modern wrap dress, but her "inventions" cost a lot of money.  Last year, I found one at a consignment store in Buckhead -

Then, I dreamed of making my own.  I started with a pattern that was for a fully lined cotton dress.  It wasn't exactly what I wanted and was wearable only after sewing the skirt completely closed in the front and adding a tank top -

This week I adjusted a pattern that I found here to make a knit wrap dress -

Now I have enough wrap dresses to last a life time.  Next I'm going to work on one for my mother.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Barnsley Gardens

My family and I just returned from our spontaneous trip to Barnsley Gardens.  Just an hour north of Atlanta, it is an easy drive -

Its quaint cottages and beautiful surroundings make it look like a movie set.

I'm a little obsessed with "walking cities".  Although this is not a city, it is a place in which you park your car and walk everywhere.  It is relaxing and quiet and beautiful -

Barnsley Manor was built in the 1850's by Godfrey Barnsley -

It now looks like this -

My daughter said that if we lived there, this is where she would sit everyday to look out the window -

I don't think we will ever live there, but it would be a really cool place to have a party.

We had a full day of activities wandering around the plantation, swimming at the pool, and playing games like bocce ball -

...and croquet -

...but the girls' favorite activity was horseback riding -

We packed it all in to two days and one night, but it was the perfect amount of family time.