March 31, 2009

Antiquing in Round Top

I made my maiden voyage to Round Top yesterday to shop at the Marburger Antiques Fair. I'm exhausted, it was a blast. Mom got a pretty oil painting and I got a little chair...there will be more by Saturday, I'll keep you posted, literally. (I'm going almost everyday this week between work and looking around for my first client - just a bachelor friend who is living in an old bungalow that he just bought which is completely empty).

March 29, 2009

Tagged: I'm It

My friend Megan over in Auckland at Pink to Green just tagged me. I've never been tagged before, fun!
Miss Ga Ga

1. Respond and rework. Answer the questions on your blog, replace one question you dislike with a question of your own invention; add a question of your own.
2. Tag eight other un-tagged people.

What is your current obsession? The thought of buying our first house and the search to find it!

Do you use canvas or plastic bags when you go shopping? Canvas (I try).

Do you nap a lot? Not so much currently, but when we were traveling, they were the best! When you're not working, naps start to fit into your schedule like breakfast.

Who was the last person you hugged? My husband, he's sweet. He went to California today.

What’s for dinner? Takeaway pizzas because we had a late day antiquing at Round Top!

What was the last thing you bought? A little chair and an oil painting for my Mom's house.

What are you listening to right now? Is it bad that I love that 'Just Dance' Lady GaGa song?

What is your favorite weather? Blue skies and sunny with a slight breeze, not too blazing hot, but pretty warm. Oh, and rain when I'm sleeping, which happened last night and I woke up not knowing where I was, what day it was, or what I was supposed to do get the point.

What’s on your bedside table? The White Man's Burden, Elle Decor, the jewelry I had on today and ice water.

Say something to the person/s who tagged you. Megan, best wishes on your move, the south is the best, I know you'll love it! Change is always good!

If you could have a house totally paid for, fully furnished anywhere in the world, where would you want it to be? A rusty, old, farm type, barn house in Provence. It would have white sofas and exposed beams, colorful old carpets, gorgeous pottery everywhere in the kitchen and linen curtains. You could smell lavender at all times which is growing like weeds in the garden. Then you could walk down the cobblestone path to the morning market to pick up flowers, fruit, veges and bread for the day, grabbing a coffee and a croissant for the walk home. Drives down to the beach on the weekends, and every now and then long train rides up to Paris for a bit of the big city. Everyone speaking French all the time!

Favorite vacation spot? Tough one, it's a tie between Lake Verret, Louisiana and Millbrook in Queenstown, New Zealand.

Name the things you can’t live without. My family, friends, yoga, coffee, sunshine, travel and magazines.

What would you like to have in your hands right now? A hot cup of peppermint tea.

What is your favorite tea flavor? Peppermint

What is your favorite book? The Alchemist

If you could go anywhere in the world for the next hour, where would you go? Paris

What did you want to become as a child? I wanted to be a marine biologist, to scuba dive and swim with all the dolphins and creatures of the sea.

What is your favorite sport to play? Is yoga a sport?

What was your favorite concert you attended? Fly My Pretties was pretty cool and different, love those NZ bands!

What is your favorite flower? Tulips, Lilies, Peonies.

What are the top three things you must have in your carry on?
Rosebud, Any Magazine, and a Moleskine.

Tagging: The Wisteria House, Makeshift Life, Under a Paper Moon, You Are My Fave, Bandelle Blog, A Bloomsbury Life, Cakewalk,
From the Right BankLink

Pretty in Pink

I love this house. Sorry about the pics, they are scanned. When our shipment came from New Zealand a few weeks ago, I sliced open the box "desk" first. Sitting on the very top, about to be sliced, were about 20 tattered and torn pages, ripped from Vogue Living: Australia. They were just stuffed into the box at the very last minute. I couldn't possibly leave the country without these pages and I could see my desperation and panic in saving them at the last minute by throwing them loosey-goosey in the box! I had a big crack up at myself, and then got a bit aggravated at my complete disorganization. Vogue Living, by the way, is one of my very favorite shelter mag's. I think I'm going to order myself a subscription here in Houston now that Domino is gone. Ok, now for the good stuff...

I'm totally obsessed with the rug. It was the first thing I noticed, old kilims patched together. You can get them at ABC in NYC...I totally want to take a trip to New York and pick up one of these rugs while I'm there. I also love the Zettel'z' Love Letter Chandelier light, I always thought one of these would be cool in a kitchen with recipes and drawings by your children.

Love that Chinese emerald green, remember? Also the screen is amazing, which is from Singapore. I find all of the colorful aboriginal artwork so beautiful.
There's that rug again! The owner describes her space as this, "I wanted to celebrate Sydney. It is a joy to wake up to the beautiful morning light, the airiness. You feel quite calm in here. It is like a jewel box in quite a frenetic, mad little place. It is close to the harbor and watery and tropical. You wouldn't find it in London or Melbourne or New York." I'm absolutely dying to go to Sydney now!

I really love the bedroom, it's so calm and soft. Her bed is a 19th century piece from Lille, France. The full length plantation shutters that lead to the 'boudoir' (a sunroom where she has two arm chairs facing each other under a marble mantelpiece) make my heart skip a little!

Ok that's all. I love the use of white, but with all of the color and personality. I also love the contemporary lines, which in this case feel so comfortable because of the ethnic and Asian accessories and details. Mmmmm....
March 27, 2009

Happy in Houston!

As of yesterday afternoon Tim and I are both employed! We beat our April 1 dead line, (just) so sorry to our friends in Bali we are hunkering down in Houston for a while! I'm working as a design assistant at an interior design firm, and Tim is working for one of the big oil & gas guys (and by guys I mean gigantic company)! Yay for Houston and a new start (and income for the first time since August)! Next we'll be moving on to the House Hunt...and I want visitors and I want to decorate!

Image: Katya de Grunwald
March 25, 2009

Southern Dreams

Sometimes Tim and I day dream about maybe buying a lot in New Zealand instead of a house here in Houston. You know, just to sit on for a little while. Wouldn't that be divine? Nothing too serious, it's just one of those fun, "What if?" kinda questions to dream about and to think outside of the box a little bit. Here are a couple that have me drooling these days....

Church's Bay, Banks Peninsula - South IslandRedcliffs, Christchurch City - South Island
Lower Shotover Road, Queenstown - South Island (This one is too pretty to show only one pic) (ps, it's down the street from here)These last three are in our favorite area, Golden Bay (the north of the south island).

Ruby Cliffs, Nelson - South Island
Tasman Bay - South Island
Takaka - South Island
Ok, I'm done now. Off to my second day of work, with this end in mind!

In Love: Jacques-Imo's

This week Courtney has written about her picks for New Orleans must-see's, and Eddie asked for tips of places to go, things to see in the Big Easy. Reading both of those posts had me missing New Orleans and thinking about my fave, Jacques-Imo's. This will be quick since I'm a little busy this week, but I can't go to New Orleans without a fun night filled with cajun food and lots of drinking at Jacques-Imo's. Tables take forever to come by, and although the food is good, it's not the very very best of what New Orleans has to offer. However, it's so New Orleans, and I love it. If you have to wait 3 hours for a table, it's no big deal, just join the street party and order some mojitos! You can have the Fried Grits & Stuffed Shrimp late night!

The owner, Jacques Leonardi, is always pacing around outside half drunk, coming up to your table to flirt a little, bringing you a special drink, chatting with you like you've been best friends for years. It's that kinda treatment that makes New Orleans and Jacques-Imo's unique. If you're going down south...don't miss it!

Me & my sis Kate with Jacques (the night before my wedding)! So fun!
March 24, 2009

Dance Moves That Rock

This video makes me want to have kids. Enjoy, Happy Tuesday!

A Japanese Treat

Sweet Miss Mendi surprised me with a little present, something she'd seen on my blog! It came in the mail last Friday....perfectly packaged, darling presentation!
A Chidoriya World boxwood comb and colorful clutch purse! I was so excited, the comb is gorgeous and makes your hair feel so soft and fine. The clutch is the perfect accessory to an all black outfit, or jeans and a snug white tee shirt! Thanks Mom ;)

Have a Seat... my new little $20 cane seat chair! Isn't it cute? Picked it up off the side of the road at a garage sale this weekend in the Heights neighborhood of Houston. It's sitting here at my mom, Miss Mendi's, house right now where we currently reside.

I'm thinking later on if I'm bored with it au naturel, I might apply a little of that Ralph Lauren Metallic paint to it like this one in the home of Lindsey & Kristen Buckingham.

March 20, 2009

Spring Fashion = Pretty Interiors

Miss Mendi and I popped into Saks the other day, the spring clothes were so colorful and fresh! Nanette Lepore's Spring 2009 collection had me obsessed. I love every piece!

I was impressed by the mix of colors in this 'exotic silk top' , and I thought, these colors would look great in interiors too...

A old fashioned wing back chair could be updated with this great fabric from Rubie Green.

I love these Chinese glazed pots in turquoise and emerald green from Circa Trade. They can be used anywhere!
This sculpture is of a Ming style house facade, isn't that cool? Circa Trade has unique items from all over Asia...I think collecting cultural items from traveling make a home so unique.

A couple of gourd shaped lamps from Christopher Spitzmiller would look nice, you can choose any glaze you like, a light pink or soft coral would match this top!

A lime green throw like the one above would be pretty on neutral slip covered sofa!
March 19, 2009


Tim and I watched a very moving documentary last night, Blindsight. It follows six Tibetan teenagers who climb a mountain near Mount Everest, Lhakpa-Ri peak, 23,000 feet high, an expedition led by Erik Weihenmayer (the blind guy who summited Mount Everest). All of the kids were blind, lead by an American blind climber and their blind German teacher. The group ends up spending the night at the Everest Advanced Base Camp, an incredible feat. Oh man, it was a tear jerker, and very inspiring.

The Tibetan climbers are:

Sonam Bhumtso - "One Hundred Thousand Beautiful Lakes"
Gyenshen - "Victory"
Dachung - "Little Moon"
Kyila - "Happy"
Tenzin - "Keeper of the Buddha's Teaching"
Tashi Pasang - "Lucky"

Those are the meanings of their names, aren't they beautiful? In Tibet, blind people are ostracized because it is thought that blind people are by demons. Or that one must have had very bad karma in a previous life in order for them to be blind in their current one. Families and villages shun children who are blind. Sabriye Tenberken is a German woman (blind) who arrived into Lhasa on her own, bought two horses, and eventually started a school for blind children. She traveled through Tibet and the Himalayas searching for children she could rescue and teach. She wrote the first Braille text for the Tibetan language and she's a Nobel Peace Prize nominee. She teaches her kids to read, and write, and they are able to speak 3 languages.

I have such respect and admiration for the Tibetans. They are true to their culture, their spirituality and refuse to give up on their pursuit and struggle for freedom. Last year when Tim and I were in Dharamsala, we were able to witness the lives of Tibetan refugees. Thousands of them live in the small village of Dharamsala, India where they are waiting until one day they can return to Tibet. We visited the residence of the Dalai Lama, and the Tibetan Museum, and Norbulingka.

We talked to a group of guys around our age who owned a small cafe. (that was a bad picture, and my batteries ran out right after that...) They were so cool, all of them wearing "Peace" t-shirts with the Tibetan flag on them. They can't travel outside of India, because they can't get Tibetan passports; only Chinese passports are available for the people of Tibet. The refuse to have a Chinese identity through a passport. Because they live in India, they are eligible for Indian passports, but they refuse because they aren't Indian. This silent but powerful protest was amazing. I was overwhelmed by their cultural pride, and I was so impressed by their decision to stay true to their heritage. I felt so guilty thinking about how easy it was for Tim and I to travel to any country we dreamed of going to, how lucky we are, how good we have it. This movie was another reminder to me of how lucky I am. I have my health, I can see, I have political freedom. It's a reminds me to remember Tibetans, learn about their culture, to help educate other about their situation, and help them preserve their heritage by not forgetting them. The Tibetan Children's Village, a school for Tibetan refugee children in Dharamsala is below: (pretty powerful right?)

March 18, 2009

Shanghai Tang Home

Have you ever heard of Shanghai Tang? It's a clothing company out of Hong Kong, known for its exquisite tailoring and beautiful silks. They are most famous for their silk pajamas and embroidered robes. They are, "The Leading Edge of Modern Chinese Chic". Shanghai Tang is currently the only Chinese luxury brand.

I love these bracelets. Everything 'Shanghai Tang' is COLORFUL! Every time I'm in Singapore, I make sure to pop into the Shanghai Tang shop at Takashimiya for a visit. The fragrance inside the shop is divine, and the store is so inspiring. It is full of bright, happy, gorgeous colors. Each shop is vivid and rich with reds, blacks, lime green, fuchsia, turquoise and yellow.

I went to the flagship store in Hong Kong, what an experience! If you are ever in Asia, make sure you source out a Shanghai Tang, it designer Asian at its best! Not to mention you can pick up yourself an amazing souvenir! I would recommend any of the items below...

Now, right now I'm obsessing over Shanghai Tang's things for HOME. The accessories are a great way to add color to your house. The pieces are contemporary, but can be used even if big black lacquer wedding cabinets aren't your look. I have that frame above in black, but I love the yellow too!

Those candles smell amazing, and aren't they so pretty? I wouldn't even be able to throw away the box!

Mugs, lacquered boxes and beach towels! Love it all!

Finally these throw pillows are my favorite. I can see them on a black lacquer four poster bed with all white bedding...and those colorful silk lantern lamps like the ones below on the bedside tables. Lamps can be found at Asian Design House.

I'm totally into this Chinese Glam!!! Are you?


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