Thursday, 31 October 2013

House Beautiful November 2013

House Beautiful has not been particularly inspiring lately...
But I thought you might like to see what's happening out there.

I don't understand this Kate Spade ad whatsoever.
Toast in a bowl?
Charger plate for a 4 minute egg?
I am a Luddite myself but puhlease, 
unless you are Obama and this is the nuke button phone,
 what gives?
I don't mind the nice flower in a vase but two forks and a spoon?
Is this table set for Howard Hughes or something?

Wallpaper must have played a truly important role way back when.
It was interesting to see these motifs and 
the little story behind them.

The tablescape monthly column always raises eyebrows.
Well mine.
You know what, I have loads of gay friends so I ain't judging.

I had to double take and go to the website to see the glory that is this porcelain floral sculpture.
I know in a perfect world fresh flowers are a must but 
I don't have a green thumb and weekly flower replenishment is just another chore for me.
But if it's good enough for Carolyne Roehm...

How stunning and you don't have to ever water them!
Check out his website.

House Beautiful obviously ignored my tweet to them about their Faux Lazy Throw Syndrome.
It isn't consistent from a psychological profiling point of view.
Why give up at the last hurdle when you tidied up everything else?
A tweet wasn't enough so a letter to the editor might be warranted.

This dining room looks like the "before" in a makeover feature.

With a view like that plus an infinity pool, 
why are the loungers facing the house?

I normally boycott anything referring to that book but 
I do like gray so did concentrate and the dog pulled me in.
I am noticing that I am attracted to 
deeply pigmented colors like the one below.
I find it very calming and changes depending on the light.
I love how the glass coffee table lifts this living room that could have been otherwise very boring.

I don't know how I feel about that lilac. 
Actually, I do.
  I feel like it's the decor equivalent of a sugar coma.

Some don't like houseplants but I think why be botanically prejudiced against plants that don't flower?

There is that fabric that Helen from Tissus d'Helene spoke about called L'arbre de Matisse.
I must use it somehow in the future.

I love the kitchen floor.

There is that rich pigment in the walls again.

House Beautiful did a rouse of flogging perfume by matching decor to scent.

Did not feel this kitchen.
Owner must be related to someone on the editorial staff.

I will put some images that didn't make the cut onto the 
pinterest board if you are interested.

Plus, the latest issue of Architectural Digest is out.
It is a whopper as it's an issue dedicated to art filled homes.
Would review it but it would be dull with me saying 
that it is amazing over and over again.
So for those who want to have a look can go to 
my Architectural Digest Pinterest board for a browse. 
Happy Halloween and 
have a lovely weekend! 

Monday, 28 October 2013

Blue Jasmine, her wardrobe, and the power of a Chanel Jacket

I adore Cate Blanchett and so I went to go and see the movie,
Blue Jasmine.

 I was excited when Jill from Everything Just So did a post on the movie and posed an interesting question about its theme.

Now before I start, let me preface this post by saying that my experience with this discussion regarding clothes is entirely my own. I have for the most part lived in large cities but I have also spent some time in medium sized cities and I think that clothes have a different significance depending on geography.

Suzie Bezinger, wardrobe stylist for Blue Jasmine
I thought the wardrobe stylist Suzie Bezinger for the most part 
did a great job portraying a certain type of 
wealthy and urban woman.  
The only outfit where I thought she over pitched it was when she put a Chanel jacket with an Hermes belt at the same time. 

 That was bordering on WAG and Real Housewives territory.
But then I realized that Jasmine was wearing this combo after she lost her financial and social status so perhaps it was based 
on a woman putting all her fashion armour and artillery 
to "face the world"?

Via Everything Just So
I also agreed with Jill that the Birkin bag was not used as a shield as the wardrobe stylist stated. Plus I think she erred a little in the way Cate was sometimes made to carry the Birkin was the way a very new purchaser of the bag might hold it which is with the flap over and/or the leather straps fastened.

It is customarily worn loose and open.
If not, it's silent code for nouveau nouveau or WAG.
(PS I am just the messenger, 
I am not the one who makes these rules.)

Cate Blanchett Carolina Herrera Woody Allen Blue Jasmine
Looking amazing in that Carolina Herrera dress
But otherwise Suzie Bezinger got the uniform of a well to do and urban socialite down pat.  Carolina Herrera, Fendi, and Alberta Ferretti were the main staples of Jasmine's wardrobe.
Vogue Daily — Dress the Part Blue Jasmine
Via Vogue
Actress Cate Blanchett prepares to film a scene from Woody Allen's new feature-length film at Shreve and Co. jewelers at Post Street and Grant Avenue in San Francisco, Calif. on Friday, Aug. 10, 2012. Photo: Paul Chinn, The Chronicle
This is the sort of wardrobe that goes into future fashion anthologies.
We all have a uniform even if we are not in the military.

It's like Emmanuelle Alt's "uniform" I discussed here.

But this movie awakened in me the power of clothes.

Jasmine may have been broke; 
financially needy enough to take a job as a shoe salesman in Manhattan risking bumping into her former social circle.  
But she understood the silent power and masonic entry into a niche in society gained by wearing a Chanel jacket and a Hermes bag. 

Wearing a Chanel jacket seems to convey the following:

I am elegant.

I want to be portrayed as elegant.

I am a good girl.

Forget the past, I am a good girl now.

You may be as wealthy as me but I take myself seriously unlike 
you wearing, hmm, what is the name for them again?
Ah yes, jeans...

I really want to marry your son and 
will be a good future daughter in law. 
I promise.

Via Ingredients of Style
I do have a great sense of humour but 
I will not be the one cracking the jokes.

I can't be bothered to think about what to wear at lunch so
 let me just put that Chanel jacket on. 

But I must say that this movie is a must see for not only the clothes but the acting is superb all around and 
I do think Cate Blanchett will win the Oscar!

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Mews News - Reno update Part 2

Not that most of you keep tabs but I have been a little stressed lately.  My builder who I mentioned was a "character" in Part 1 of my house renos had an accident.
He fell about two stories.

Luckily, nothing serious happened. 
He is a lucky chap. 
But he could have died or 
at least broken something from the fall.

Look where he fell from.

Do you see that chipped bit of the mini ledge on the landing?
He hit his shoulder and his head on that 
which broke his fall before the floor did.

True to his style, 
he was in a bit of shock but instead of going to A & E, 
he went to the pub and medicated with 4 pints and recounting the incident to everyone which is a form of Irish therapy I suppose.

But the scale of the fall doesn't really translate.
This is what my staircase used to look like before the renos.

Never really liked the space to be frank.
It is out of proportion to the rest of the house in my opinion 
but Mr CSW loves the spaciousness of it.
 I also dislike the woodwork on the banisters but 
I suffered from not finishing up decorating work within 6 months after we finished our last renovations 5 years ago.

But staircases back then were built to be comfortable rather than squeezing every foot to be "usable" space.

We no longer have this skylight as we have built another floor on top of this.

This is the framework for the new floor.

The room below is the bathroom for the new floor with a storage cupboard just behind it which is to be accessed from the staircase.

The new terrace is below right but 
we have tarpaulin over it to keep the area water tight.

Mr CSW with some of the builders.

The terrace with the drain.
Mr CSW has been a very competent project manager
 and has been on site every single day.

Measure twice and cut once!
But don't get the wrong idea, 
he has never even put up a shelf.

I was doing quite well with morale and
adjusting to a new neighborhood but 
I hit the renovating wall around the time of my last post.
I just got completely overwhelmed with the project, the new home and area, living out of suitcases, not being able to find anything, eating too many takeaways because I don't feel like cooking and my builder's injury.

I haven't been social to the point where I had to pull out of some social events due to sheer exhaustion.

But I also have "choice" fatigue. 
Everything is in flux.
One minute we plan on doing the basement excavation and then we decide to delay and see how things go in a few years.
My neighbor's basement excavation which was rather disruptive...

But that makes an impact on the type of kitchen we have as we would have to get a whole new one if we plan on doing another project in a few years. 

So anyway that is why I have been quiet of late.
I am regrouping now and getting over this pity party and get back to normal very soon!

Hope all is well with you and 
look forward to being back to normal next week!  
Have a great weekend.