Sunday, February 28, 2010

Rhapsody in Turquoise

For years now I have been obsessed with this chandelier, posted tonight by Dagny at Beautiful Living. I wanted it for my back loggia in our last house. But yes, Dagny, it is crazy expensive. So I was determined to make it! Until the rest of my life got in the way. But the fire to possess something beautiful of which I have no real need has ignited in me once again. I am indeed going to recreate it and blog all about it. And you my dear followers are going to hold me to it! 

Friday, February 26, 2010

Ah, Spring!

Sorry, I know many of you are still knee deep in snow. But out here in Los Angeles, it's a breezy 69˚. My only complaint is that my winter wardrobe barely made it out of the closet! You East Coast gals have no idea the fashion boredom we suffer for all this sunny weather. All the things I never got to wear. Only Kate Moss can pull off the Hunter wellies with shorts. Plus this early Spring means early mornings for this light sleeper; newly hatched baby birds do start at the crack of dawn. But if you aren't crying for me yet... it's only February 26th, and I just realized I can't ignore the dirty garden furniture and all the pots to be replanted another minute. Good bye "Winter." Did I mention this also means I need to start thinking about Pilates again...

All this Spring Fever has me craving my favorite color combination: PINK and GREEN. I will forever love my daughter's bedroom, above. To me, it's the quintessential little girl's room. I actually started it the day I learned it was a girl! And I love it as much ten years later.

This morning I came upon a very similar dose of girly freshness via Blair Friedeman at delightbydesign. Blair posted some pictures from San Francisco designer Palmer Weiss' portfolio, which I'm crazy for! I love the crispness of these room and the fresh ladylike palette. Can't you just see Mrs. Weiss' Southern roots?

A final note on pink and green, I happily found this Mary McDonald room from Feb '09 Domino. Don't you just love this "audaciously preppy den"? Talk about crispness. It makes me feel like I'm back in the seventh grade, drooling at the Papagallo store.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Chinese New Year Have Happy Ending

So I guess it's about time to report on how the Chinese New Year party went. It's actually taken me a bit of time to recover. I blame the cleaning supply fumes I sucked up while trying to remove all the hoisin sauce and lychee martinis from my floors. (Or maybe it was all the lychee martinis I sucked up). Whichever... it was a raging success. How can you go wrong with karaoke and vodka?

I finally decided to tackle some of those nagging 'to do' projects. Okay, so it was a temporary tackle. Just said a little prayer no one would try to snuggle my Year of the Tiger pillows and be stabbed to death with quilters' pins. I absolutely loved the way these pillows pulled my entry together. These chairs flanking my front door are 1930's from my favorite store, Empiric in LA.

I hung this dragon, along with a bunch of lanterns in the entry...

Remember my Chinese Valentine table sketch. Here it is in real life.

Those ugly, shabby chic birdcages from Michaels transformed beautifully. Grabbed turquiose beads and just attached with gold florist's wire. The addition of the red candle was so Shanghai chic! The whole lantern effect was truly magical at night.

These little figurines were a lucky find at a local antique market. And just the right touch of blue.

I painted this little sign with cherry blossoms and a bluebird and added the description of the ginger pink champagne. Still few takers; again, the vodka was the runaway star of the party.

Think it was a success!

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Chinese Valentine Table Sketch

Potential table design for the buffet. Once I cleared out my studio of all supplies, inspiration boards, etc, I was shocked by how much pink lay behind, like that lamp. So I'm going with pink and Chinese red as a color scheme. It's also the night before Valentine's Day, so perfect. To keep it from looking too much like a kindergarten party, I'm adding black and turquoise, and of course gold. I found these little, rather hideous, shabby chic white bird cages at the craft store which should look beautiful once I gold leaf them and hang turquoise beads from the bottoms. I'll attach those to the cherry blossom branches (got my pruning shears) and fill each with a little red votive candle, they'll mimic all the red lanterns I'm hanging from the ceilings. They whole effect should be very Shanghai Chic. Off to buy Chinese brocade.

Chinese New Year Count Down!

Okay, so I've been invited into this dinner club. Quite intimate-14 couples! A bit overwhelming, but it sounded like lots of fun. The only stipulation was that I host the first month. Well, that was January. On the heels of Christmas? Really? I finally pulled it together for February and, in an effort to redeem my tardiness, I promised a themed blowout-- a Chinese New Year extravaganza. Really I just wanted an excuse to indulge my love of all things Asian and to do a cute evite with that beautiful watercolor of a tiger. But it seems people took statements like, "surprise guests will perform ancient Chinese arts" to heart. I was referring to my 11-year old son, who has just learned the Chinese Diablo yo-yo in P.E. class. Anyway, needless to say, pressure is on to really bring it for this party. I think somewhere in my party planning euphoria I even asked everyone to come in costume.

So...I took a first trip to LA's Chinatown with my girls a couple of weeks ago. The boys were happy to stay home and watch football. We picked up lots of cheap, pretty things and for a week or two I basked in the glow of my good time management. But somehow my complacency has caught up with me so here I am hoping to pull it together in the next 4 days! Last night I sketched out the tablescapes. We'll set up the buffet in the dining room which, in this new house, has to double as my studio/home office. (Yes, reorganizing all that for the party was just loads of fun.) I've done my usual: made lists, sketches, resisted the urge to shop without very specific plans (must watch over-spending), and hopefully it will all turn out.