It was a bit of a push, but we began the New Year in crisp, fresh sheets and a brand-new bed. Aron’s parents watched Hudson for a few hours while Aron disasembled and reassembled our old bed in a guest room for our friends, and I ran off to Macy’s to splurge on sheets* for our new one.
These photos are from a couple of weeks ago–biking in the Davis arboretum, and hanging out in the backyard with friends who were visiting from New York… in our new chairs! It wasn’t even cold, but we thought the scenario was deserving of a midday fire. Slowly but surely, new furniture is making its way to us. We found these chairs at Room & Board and are really happy with how they look with and without the cushions (especially key since we went with white). And we just learned that the rest of our outdoor furniture is arriving next week! More accurately, it’s arriving at the port of Oakland sometime next week–having made the long, slow boat ride from Bali, where we ordered most of it in August. I’m so excited! We pretty much just showed them photos of what we wanted and, a month or so later, they emailed us photos of a finished chair, table, etc. But it still feels so, well, unknown. On top of that, we had only seen our house once when we made the decisions we did. Fingers crossed!
Here are a few other things I’ve been thinking about lately:
Another anniversary today: Aron and I have been together 11 years as of today. Wowzers! Happy anniversary, love.
It’s been a long time since I’ve visited the Huntington Gardens. These lovely photos have me pining for a return trip.
What a thrilling installation! I wish we could see it in person.
Does anyone recognize this photo from Pinterest? I’d love to know the source.
A gift guide featuring Kids’ toys on Etsy.
Next weekend, San Francisco will play host to the Renegade SF Craft Fair and the Kindred Pop-up shop. If you’re in the area, you should check them out! Here are some photos from Renegade Brooklyn 2012 (and 2010).
Kelly put together her fantasy Christmas dinner–amazing!
Honey Buns. When I was a kid, I used to regularly eat something from the frozen section called Honey Buns by Morton and they have suddenly been on my mind again. Sadly, when I looked them up on BrandlandUSA:
“…There were Morton Pot Pies, Morton Creme Pies, Morton Cinnamon Rolls. But the real star was Morton Honey Buns. Morton Honey Buns came four to a package, and there was so much sugar on each that when you pulled the buns out, the sugar frosting was all over the package and the four came out like a brick. But the brand is gone, nowhere to be found. And since the launch of the BrandlandUSA blog, we have discovered it is one of the top searched for dead brands on our site. People far and wide are searching for Morton, but cannot find it. While we knew Morton’s was a personal favorite, until we launched the blog, we didn’t know how many others loved the brand too. Apparently, they are mostly searching for the Morton Honey Buns, and not so much the Pot Pies, though those get requests too.”
Do you remember them? The closest thing out there? Krispy Kreme donuts, microwaved for about 7 seconds. Now I’m hungry.
Have a good one!
I may have mentioned that being in San Francisco on Saturday for the Remodelista market made Aron and I wax nostalgic for New York–just a little bit. (It happens. No surprise, right?) So I don’t know if it was better or worse that Heath’s display space was filled with goods for the home and table by Brooklyn-based artisans and designers (many of whom we have featured on Hither & Thither in the past–like leather satchels by Marlow Goods, and a canvas tote featuring our favorite restaurant, candies by Liddabit Sweets, and Ginger Syrup by Morris Kitchen).
But in fact, what’s remarkable is that the handmade culture that really started thriving in places like Portland and Brooklyn has taken hold across the country, and we can enjoy these makers–as well as so many others–right here in California. I’m looking forward to discovering a whole new set of “makers” on this coast.
We drove into San Francisco on Saturday–it was gorgeous there–and headed straight for the new Heath shop to see what was on display for Remodelista’s third annual holiday market. A regular follower of the website, I had a feeling I would like (and covet) a lot of what I saw and of course I was right. There were some fantastic vendors–many of whose wares I recognized from online (often from Pinterest)–and all would be great inspiration for Christmas shopping if you’re a little stuck still. (I’d like some of those Turkish rugs and bright pillows, and some Book/Shop bookends, thank you very much!)
We walked out with Blue Bottle coffees in hand, talking about beautiful everyone there was (and maybe feeling a little nostalgic for city-life). Hudson walked hugging a new Peruvian teddy that looks a little like Chewbacca and that we all agreed was just about the softest thing we’d ever felt.
Pictured from top–Textiles: Virginia Davidson; Linen clothing and dolls: Jess Brown Design; Pillows: Whim and Caprice; Tree stamps: Brendon Farrell for Keeps; Caramel Corn: CC Made; Bookend/stands etc: Book/Shop; Alpaca Teddy Bear: MINT; Floral: Louesa Roebuck; Birdhouses: Studio Chad Wright; Dishtowels: Studiopatro; Ceramic Speakers: Joey Roth; Riding Boots: Steed Fine Hoarding and Tack; Airplant in frame: Airplantman Designs
(Also in attendane/not pictured: Ambatalia, HBG, Dagmar Daley, Erica Tanov, Heritage Culinary Artifacts, Julia Turner, June Taylor Jams, Le Feu de l’Eau, Lemon Twist, Maki Yamada, Muhs Home, Parfums DelRae, Plantspeople, Pope Valley Pottery, Richard Carter Studio, Rough Linen, Sara Barner, Small Trade Company.)
We found ourselves back in Berkeley this weekend, drawn toward the Bay in our quest to buy a car. We were successful–hooray!–and since we had to drive home separately anyway, I lingered on Fourth street a little longer than the fellas to browse. The succulents (a current fixation) drew me into The Gardener. Had we not just made one of the largest purchases of our lives, I might have been tempted to buy something, but I instead satisfied my consumer tendencies by snapping photos with my iPhone.
Joanna’s post the other day about favorite wallpapers included a link to her article for Martha Stewart on Hudson’s old nursery space and it felt especially timely to look at those photos again: I had just framed and hung a piece of his old wallpaper for a collage wall I’ll be slowly adding to, in his new room. One of his walls is entirely covered in cork, so that it can evolve with him.
It was so nice to see this go up and feel like Hudson recognized his old animal friends (he clicks with the horses and trumpets with the elephants). And I love that a piece of that teeny little first bedroom came with us.
I’d say his is the most “finished” room in the house, but it still has a way to go. I’ve been revisiting some of my favorite kids’ spaces on my Pinterest boards for inspiration.
Something I was really hoping I might run into at the Alameda Flea was an under-appreciated stash of Architectural pottery. No such luck. I think folks are pretty tuned in to these planters’ appeal (and value): a pair of vintage pots is on sale on 1st dibs for $1600. Vessel makes new ones in the $300 range, but that’s still wild! Aren’t they beautiful, though? I’d just take the plain white cylinder like he’s holding. Nothing fancy. Okay?
Here are some other things I’ve been thinking about sharing this week:
We got to the Alameda Antiques Faire a little later than is ideal. Somehow it takes us at least an hour to get out of the house, no matter how much strategizing we do the night before. Add to that the reluctance to wake a sleeping toddler early and the hour drive to Alameda from Davis and–shazam!–it’s suddenly 9am. Suffice to say, we probably missed out on some of the best scores to be had on Sunday.
Still, we had a really nice time looking around–especially for rugs–and came home with a beautiful 60″ George-Nelson-bench reproduction. And some very nice readers stopped to say hello and welcome us to the west coast! How nice is that?!
Here were some of my favorite sights…
Of course the stunning views of San Francisco, across the bay, were one of the best parts of the morning. Somehow we’ve been really lucky lately when it comes to flea markets in amazing locations (like this one and this one).
P.S. We brought along detailed measurements of our home just in case. I love this “prepare for serendipity”-kit Victoria assembles for flea market hunts.
Have you read Jenny’s cleaning schedule? When I first saw it, I have to admit I thought it was insane! And then I kept reading and realized it’s the most brilliant plan. (And I’m clearly not the only one–that post has 1,943 comments!) I told Aron about it and next thing I knew it was posted on our fridge. I only realized this, however, after we’d had a babysitter and two friends over: I was so embarrassed! What are we? College roommates?!
But I have to be honest. I haven’t stopped thinking about it! It’s so brilliant! Especially this bit about baskets: “I zip through my house every night with this basket, throwing in every misplaced item, then going back to each room once and put the things back where they belong. It takes me just a few minutes to pick up a day’s worth of clutter this way. No more running back and forth and back and forth from room to room putting things away. Try the basket method—you’ll never go back!”
We have a cleaning service coming to our place today (part of a most-wonderful housewarming gift from Aron’s parents) so now seems like the time to get some sort of routine in place. I think the fact that Aron is excited about it tells you just how good I am as a tidy homemaker. Ha!
Baskets at the ready! I’ll be adding watering the plants and skimming the pool to our list. You?
Aron always teased me about how many times I used the phrase “our 500-square-foot apartment” on here. It just felt necessary to reiterate. I.e. “No, Hudson doesn’t sleep in our closet because the other room is a wine cellar. We have a small, studio apartment.” But in truth, 500 square feet is only notable in New York because there were three of us. 500 square feet is perfectly reasonable and even roomy, in New York.
Notable is 250 square feet.
Erin writes a series about how to co-habitate in 250 square feet on her site, Reading My Tea Leaves (and does so beautifully–the living and the writing). It’s completely inspiring to me: every object that comes into her space must be carefully considered. Tiny living requires a great deal of editing.
We always cheated a lot: boxes at the parents’ house, memorabilia in storage… but I’d like to think we did get some good practice at editing. The challenge is to keep hold of that skill and put it to use when 1200 more square feet suddenly become available. Sentimentality is a… you know… and I’ve got it bad.
P.S. On that note, I’ve been meaning to watch the Graham Hill talk Joslyn references here. (“Editing is the skill of this century.”) Have you seen it? I’m guessing it might conflict with my Pinterest obsession?
[Photo by Erin Boyle for Reading My Tea Leaves]
We finally made it over to the Herman Miller Pop-Up Shop on Wooster–celebrating the launch of the furniture manufacturer’s new collection–and just in the nick of time: the shop is only open through this coming Sunday, July 1st. The huge space had curated vignettes throughout, combining both old and new pieces. It was such a pleasure to browse, even if nearly everything was beyond our reach. They were even so welcoming to Hudson, offering him Fort Standard blocks and an event poster to color–which seemed so fitting with the furniture collection’s goal to truly be used for modern living.
Of course, as we left, Aron explained that he watched in horror as Hudson dripped blue drool–on his shirt, thank goodness–from the crayons he had spotted (and of course sampled) while simultaneously listening to me get a quote of nearly $15,000 for a nearby cream-linen sofa. Yeah, good stuff.
Herman Miller Pop-UP, 68 Wooster St. Open Monday through Saturday, 11 am to 7 pm, and Sunday 12 noon to 5 pm through July 1.
The Renegade Craft Fair moved to the waterfront in Williamsburg this year, and between Saturday’s Smorgasburg, Williamsburg Walks (the closure of Bedford Avenue to cars), and the craft fair, the East River Park was a madhouse!
After walking a few rows, there are always a few trends that feel way overdone, and a few gems that stand out from the, ahem, screen-printed maps of Brooklyn.
Hudson made out the best. (And he, deterred by the sea of legs, didn’t even stick around!)
A few of my favorite booths this year: (Pictured from top) A. Heirloom; Farrah Sit; Au Retour; [maps?]; Muny; Sweater Toys; Seven Acre Toys; Yard Sale Press; Little Hip Squeak; The Sill; [Paper Cut Maps?]; Helveta Vyotlag; Yard Sale Press; Soor Ploom Clothier; Sol del Sur; and Remedy Quarterly.
(And not pictured) Two Arms Inc.; Enormous Champion; Glass Cathedrals; Pip Squeak Chapeau; Little Hero Capes; Mimi Kirchner; Courtney Webb; Fleet Co. Leather; North St Bags; Morris & Essex; Thief & Bandit; Lauren Haupt; Broder Press; Miniature Rhino; and Girls Can Tell.
Also: some of my favorite photos from the East River Park before it was developed, and as home to the Brooklyn Flea
Today is our closing date! We signed the papers and that 1964-Streng house in California is officially ours! I can’t believe it. I’ll have to take a lot more before photos when we move in this September in anticipation of sharing some good “afters.” We will practically be starting from scratch with furniture, so it’s going to be a big (but fun) task figuring out how to fill and personalize a whole home. There’s a pool–and a jacuzzi!–so maybe we’ll mull it all over while swimming laps! Ha!
I recently met Deborah Needleman (the founding editor of Domino Magazine) and so was inspired to pick up her new book at Anthroplogie. I love it so far and I’ve just begun. My favorite tip from the chapter I’ve finished is (roughly) that the best lighting will evoke candles. Seems simple, but it’s making me look at fixtures in a whole new… ahem… light. What are your favorite sources of inspiration for decorating/furnishing? I have a feeling there’s a lot of pinning in my immediate future.
A few years ago, New York Magazine revealed that this graffiti-covered old bank on the Bowery (that we all probably thought was abandoned or filled with squatters) is in fact a single-family-home. A photographer, Jay Maisel, bought it in 1966 for $102,000–all 30,000 square feet, all 72 rooms.
Today (or, more accurately, when the story ran in 2008), agents estimated the resale value anywhere between $35 and $70 million.
Maisel still lives there, with only his wife and daughter. Isn’t that wild? I still can’t believe it. Every time we walk by I try to imagine this family going about their lives inside. But can you imagine growing up there? I think it would be too scary! Check out NY Mag’s slideshow; their exterior shot (below) gives you a much better sense of the building’s scale than my instagram shot. Seriously: It’s that entire building!
[Bottom photo by Leigh Davis for New York Magazine]
Between Caracas and Porchetta, Butter Lane and the Big Gay Ice Cream Shop, there are plenty of reasons we often find ourselves on the block of 7th street between First and A in the East Village. And each time we’re there I find myself wishing we had more time to linger and look around in a neighboring design boutique called Still House.
The owner and curator, Urte, has lovingly assembled collections of home accessories, jewelry, and gifts–mostly by local artisans or up-and-coming artists. Her background in jewelry-making seems to lend to her eye for the delicate. Minimal wood-shelving bears geometric glass vases with air plants and other succulents among items like leather goods and carved pyrite. It’s such a beautiful, hand-selected assortment of items. And such a lovely addition to an already stellar block!
Still House, 117 East 7th Street
Whenever Ashley and I fly out of New York, I’m hoping to get a view like this one from Jamie–such a treat when it happens.
I know we are heavy into the baby and home themes, but we are having an open house this Sunday from 12-1:30pm, so if you, or someone you know is interested in buying a studio in New York, send them our way!
Hope you have a great weekend!
[Photo by Jamie Beck]
We may soon be proud owners of a 1964 Streng Brothers-built home!
We don’t want to jinx it, so more details to come (and in fact we’re flying to California later this week), but I’ve been doing some sleuthing into the history of Streng built homes in the Sacramento Valley (and finding a few great articles and sites). I love how quintessentially Californian these mid-century modern homes are.
These past few weeks have been wild–and I’m guessing the next few will be, too!
[Brochure scan image c. Atomic Pear’s Flickr]