Month: May, 2012

Shou-Sugi Ban

So I am kind of obsessed with Shou-sugi ban which is a Japanese technique of burning wood to help preserve it against rot and fire. Typically this technique is not used on the exteriors of modern houses in Japan now, but is seen frequently in older more traditional homes. Over the past few years there has been a modern resurgence of this technique seen in some of the pictures below.

A few years ago my sister and I picked up six windsor dining chairs at a junk store in New York. They weren’t in the best of shape and definitely needed a little love. Having just discovered this technique my sister and I got to torching the chairs until they were a crackled charred black. We then sanded them down and applied oil to help seal them so they wouldn’t leave a black residue. Chic is the only word that I can use to explain how gorgeous these dining chairs turned out.

Occasionally I will pick up some wood bowls or objects at the thrift store for a few bucks and with my $20 torch that I got at the Home Depot I torch them and the end result is something a little more interesting than a $2 bowl from the Salvation Army.

I think we’re about to get a new round wood coffee table that I was thinking of painting a matte black, but this morning it dawned on me how much more amazing a huge low round coffee table would look a-la Shou-sugi ban



Dear Shoes… I love you xx

When it comes to shoes I’m not prejudice. I love them all! And amongst all the love that I have for shoes I still have enough room to squeeze in some more love for pinterest which allows me to pin shoes to my fashion board until my little shoe loving heart is content.


Camping Indoors

Thats it! I need a tee pee in my house! I would love to cuddle up in here with either of my loves, a really good book or the stack of magazines that have been sitting around collecting dust for months now. Definitely a chicer option than throwing some old sheets over the couch and chairs like I did when I was a kid.

via my ideal home.

Whats behind a name?

When I was pregnant and Zach and I were coming up with list upon list of baby names we decided that we were going to name the baby Arrow whether it was a boy or girl. Then one day I was walking home and it dawned on me that we couldn’t name the baby Arrow because Zach’s last name is Smith and there was no way that Zach was going to be cool with naming our baby Arrow Smith. I still think Arrow would make the cutest little girl name so someone please add it to your baby name list! So back to making lists we went and when we both showed each other the names that we came up with we had one name in common and that was Skye. Zach’s spelling was with an E and mine was without.

Zach’s reason for wanting to name him Skye was because he just had one of his albums mastered at a studio on the Isle of Skye. Seeming like a totally random place to have an album mastered he looked it up one day and lo and behold it is one of the most beautiful and magical looking places ever.There is no doubt in my mind that fairies, unicorns and all other magical mythical beings reside here. It is breathtakingly beautiful and although neither one of us has ever been there it really captivated both of us. Hopefully when Skye gets a little older we’ll all go there and visit.

On the other hand my reason for coming up with the name Skye was because for as long as I can remember Mr Blue Sky by ELO has been one of my favorite songs. You know that song that you hear in your head as you walk down the street,the song that narrates your life as if you were in a movie. Well Mr Blue Sky is the song that I hear in my head when I walk down the street. This is the lyric that I always sang to Skye while I would be holding him in the nicu. When I would finish singing I would tell him that this was his theme song now too.

Hey you with the pretty face
Welcome to the human race
A celebration, mister blue sky’s up there waitin’
And today is the day we’ve waited for

Both of our reasons for coming up with our babes name totally work for him from his sparkling happy personality down to his sky blue eyes. He owns his name. Somehow cosmically I feel like we both knew that this was the name for our child. He is beautiful and magical and he makes me want to dance down the street with happiness.

ELO – Mr.Blue Sky (Original Promo) – YouTube.


Staghorn Fern Envy

I have seen this picture of Julianne Moore’s garden a few times now and my ever-growing jealousy of her Staghorn Fern wall garden is maddening. I bought a Staghorn Fern last year at a Master Gardeners Sale in Balboa Park on a whim and I hate to admit it, but it’s been doing lousy ever since. I mostly blame the ugly gigantic building that is getting built right outside my back door that has more than blocked out all of our light and covered everything in a thick layer of stucco dust. We use to have thriving beautiful plants on the patio, but now what plants are left are growing in weird contorted mangled directions trying to get any bit of sun that they can get. Its sad. Starting tomorrow and over the course of the next few days the ugly green tarp and scaffolding that have been blocking out all the light are suppose to be taken down and the back of the building has been painted white. So hopefully (fingers crossed) we will get some nice reflection from the sun and our plants will start thriving again.

picture sourced from Design Sleuth: Julianne Moore’s Staghorn Ferns : Remodelista.

Bespoke Global Presents Kiln Enamel for Besotted Collection

Bespoke Global Presents Kiln for Besotted Collection on Vimeo

I have written about my twin sister Elissa and her husband Jay before. They are the creative masterminds behind Kiln Enamel. They use old world enameling techniques and mash them up with a very modern approach and aesthetic. Their work is visually breathtaking and at the same time there is such a technical aspect that I think anyone can appreciate. Each piece is handcrafted from start to finish and you can really tell that each and every piece is made with love and pride.

They were asked by Bespoke Global to design a light fixture for the Besotted Collection to be showcased at ICFF and to do a short interview on the light.

I couldn’t be more proud of them!

P.S. I am going to be doing my first giveaway soon and its going to be a piece from Kiln!

Currently drooling over…

This jaw dropping awesome necklace by Brice Garrett from his [in]flux collection made from wood, leather, zinc and thread. This is a view from the front and back of the necklace. I love how you could wear it both ways and get such a different vibe from the piece. Its sculptural and organic and I wish this was sitting on my neck right now!

Brice Garrett: [in]flux.

Urban Geode Street Art

How am I just hearing about this amazing urban geode street art installation right now? Considering I love all things geode and crystal and to throw street art in the mix! Well now we’re talking about something thats right up my alley. This geological street art project by A Common Name is going on around LA using paint and wheat paste and is installed in cracks and holes of buildings. The result is pretty spectacular and unexpected. If you go to the website you can see more installations and a map of current locations, but it seems more fun to me to find them by accident. It looks like I need to make a trip up to LA soon to see if I can find some of these treasures.

What a stud!

I am not a painted nail kind of girl, but I am kind of freaking out over how amazing these nails are! I probably like them so much because they remind me of the studded sandals from Zara that I blogged about few weeks ago and I’ve been eyeing the black studded heels from Jeffrey Campbell ever since I saw this woman try them on in a shoe store last month when I was in New York. I don’t know if any of these are the most practical “mom” shoes because you know I could seriously hurt my kid, but maybe the blue flat or the Zara sandals might be on the safer side.

1I 2I 3I 4I 5I 6I

Currently drooling over…

So so so in love with this gold-tone necklace from Deepa Gurnani. Its made from a braided  plaited fabric neck section and multiple gold-toned plates that create layered fish scale effect. Totally out of my price range at $603, but a girl can dream…

Deepa Gurnani Scale Necklace – L’Eclaireur –

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