Friday, January 30, 2009

Flowers in NYT

When I opened yesterday's 'Home' section of The New York Times, I couldn't figure out the curious floral arrangements in an otherwise minimal loft. I thought to myself that if they had been the homeowner's misguided idea of "styling" that surely the producer or the photographer from The Times could have gently suggested that something else might be better for the shots. However, deep within the text of the article about the SoHo loft the provenance of the larger-than-life bouquets was revealed. "Mr. Azari’s son, Behrang Azari, 25, a musician and floral designer known as Johnny B., whose aesthetic contribution is the many flower groupings throughout the place — black lilies, pink amaryllis, golden Chinese lanterns." I am sure that Mr. Azari is very talented, but he obviously hasn't ever styled for many photo shoots before and I am afraid he missed the mark. It sort of warmed my heart that the NYT went ahead and shot the loft with the arrangements anyway and was tactful to describe them as an "aesthetic contribution."

Another Reason to Hate Ratner...

A post on Brownstoner yesterday indicated that the Carlton Ave. bridge could be closed for up to another FOUR years. This is yet another thing that makes me angry about the Atlantic Yards project. When I first moved to Fort Greene, I could walk across the bridge to Prospect Heights, but the bridge was closed about a year ago. Now, if I want to get over the Yards, I need to walk up to Vanderbilt or down to S. Portland. Cutting neighborhoods off from one another for four years seems unacceptable to me, but I guess there isn't anything that can be done about it. Here's the post from Brownstoner:
DOT cut a much more generous deal with Forest City than was initially made public and ESDC perpetuated the myth to the appelate court, according to a fascinating and detailed expose yesterday on the Atlantic Yards Report. ESDC first told the public in 2007's Final Environmental Impact Statement that the bridge would be closed for two years. A Freedom of Information Act request by AY Report's Norman Oder, however, revealed that Forest City has three years to complete the project with another two years tacked on in the case of an "unavoidable delay." "The reconstruction of the bridge was not necessary," Council Member Letitia James said. "Governor Paterson should return the bridge to a state of good repair and reopen it immediately to the community."
Contract Gives FCR Three Years (And Maybe More) [AY Report]

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Colleen Plumb at 20x200

My friend Elizabeth and I were talking about 20x200 this past weekend E. had just ordered a print from them and was waiting for it to arrive. In the meantime, she sent me a link to this new photo, 'Amish Horses' by Colleen Plumb that was just put up on the site. It's really lovely, isn't it?

Paper Love!

I am so proud of my friend Alison, who has opened Paper Love, a stationary shop in Park Slope. Alison and I worked together a ways back at the now defunct Budget Living, and have been friends ever since. Our careers have criss-crossed over the years, and it makes me happy that she's wound up with a shop of her own in my neck of the woods. If you have a chance, stop by this Saturday to order Valentine's Day cookies from our mutual friend (another Alison). Here's what Alison has to say about the V-Day treats:
Along with the delicious bevy of paper sweetness in the shop now, we're excited that Allison Micarelli of Brooklyn's own Sweet Cookie Company will be here this Saturday, January 31st and Saturday, February 7th to take cookie orders for Valentine's Day! Stop in between noon and 2 to catch her.
Below are some images of products from Paper Love. Check out her blog right here: Paper Love New Arrivals.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Espresso Makers


Last weekend when I went to make espresso for my friend S. and I, I discovered that the rubber gasket on the pot had gotten so old that it no longer made a proper seal. I have an old Bialetti stovetop espresso maker like the one above, and I am happy to find that I can order a replacement gasket pretty easily (though I plan to check at a local coffee store first to avoid shipping costs, if I can). While the Bialetti makes good coffee, I was spoiled over the holidays by my parents' fabulous Breville espresso machine like the one below. I must say that if I ever have a kitchen with a lot of counterspace, I would be more than happy to have an electric espresso machine like the Breville. It makes great coffee, and unlike some inferior machines, it foams milk almost as well as a professional machine. (Trust me, I served coffee for most of the 90s, so I know a thing or two about steaming milk.)

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Creepy or cool?

One of the joys of a weekend upstate is a chance to scrounge around at the flea markets. On New Year's Day, I was pleased to discover that the Flea Pit was actually open. I was shopping for some freelance craft projects, but my co-shopper was looking for things for his new apartment. I found some of what I was looking for and he left with a set of four chairs for $60. We were also both sort of entranced by these deer hoof lamps. At $150 for the pair, they weren't exactly a deal, but they would certainly make great conversation pieces. What do you think are the creepy in a fun way or just down right creepy?

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Sewing Machine Table Sink

I snapped this picture at the flea market the weekend before last. I thought this was a neat idea: A sink made out of a piece of marble and a the base of a sewing machine table. I've seen plenty of sewing machine tables used as occasional tables (in fact, my parents used to have one), but I've never seen one converted into a sink. I imagine it wouldn't be too hard to make one, you'd just need to have the piece of marble cut to size and then fit it with a sink. I think that this was in the Reclaimed Home booth, but I am not sure.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Yes We Did

Yes We Did. Yes We Did. Yes We Did. Above is an image of our new president that I took while volunteering in PA earlier this year. Yes, I was that close to him, and yes, it was amazing. While I am elated and planning to celebrate today, I am ready for him to get to work tomorrow. There's a lot to be done.

Monday, January 19, 2009

DIY Toilet Paper Holder

Remodelista has a post about this toilet paper roll holder being sold by a company called Wire & Twine. They want $35 for it. Pretty funny, right? I've seen similar t.p. holders in bar and restaurant bathrooms all over New York. While I think selling one for $35 is nuts, I do think

Wallpaper Dresses!

I still receive regular emails from some of my home/interior design contacts. I always love getting emails from Anne Martin, who handles publicity for several wallpaper lines. A recent email included links to these amazing dresses made out of York wallpaper. Here's what Anne had to say about the dresses:

Wallpaper has always been in step with fashion -- now more than ever – and York Wallcoverings drives the point home at Heimtextil. The centerpiece of York’s booth is five mannequins adorned in silhouettes ripped from current pages of Vogue and InStyle. The difference? Each dress is crafted from designer wallpaper, and hand-stitched with all the detail devoted to haute couture.

As many as 700 pieces of wallpaper comprise just one of these clever cut-out confections which, after their Heimtex debut, will make appearances at other shows stateside throughout the year.

I wish I were in Frankfurt to see them in person. Hopefully one of their "stateside" appearances will be in New York. They're pretty amazing aren't they? Here are links to dresses: Flocked Floral, Selene, Carla, Boccaccio and Linework Floral.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Reclaimed Home

Another vendor from the indoor flea market whose card I grabbed was Phyllis Bobb's Reclaimed Home. She had an interesting mix of pieces, including a beautiful vintage Eames lounger and ottoman and a pair of vintage goose-neck lamps that I really coveted. She's also got a blog right here that is a fun read. I'll definitely be bookmarking Phyllis for regular reading.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Flea Market Find

While we looked at lots of things at the indoor flea, we only walked out with one thing: This tiny painting of a floral arrangement. Here it is above where you can see how big it is and as a close-up below in which you can see the details. I was looking at it and wasn't even planning to ask the price because I figured it would be more than I wanted to spend. However, the friendly vendor just to the left of the entrance announced it was only $5, to which I replied: Sold. It's a sweet little canvas, isn't it?

Severely Vintage

Last weekend, my sister's boyfriend and I had a day's adventure driving around Brooklyn looking at furniture and junk. As part of the day, we checked out the new indoor flea market in Dumbo. The market is much smaller than the outdoor flea market that takes place here in Fort Greene, but the selection of vendors in more carefully curated. (More about the other half of our day later...)

There were a lot of clothing vendors, which I am less interested in, but the furniture vendors who were there had nice things at mostly reasonable prices. One guy who had a particularly nice booth was Jeremy Hollingworth, who calls his furniture re-sale business Severely Vintage. Here's a link to some of the things he's selling right now--it's definitely worth checking out. Sadly, the yellow Emeco chair pictured above is already sold.

Murphy Beds in the NYT

If you've been reading this blog for a while, you know that I am a one-woman cheerleading squad for Murphy beds. Naturally, I was thrilled to see a Murphy in this week's Home & Garden section of The New York Times. The whole article about architect Gary Chang's amazing studio apartment.

Contractor Update

So, as is to be expected, my contractor has not turned out to be the dream contractor I hoped that he might be. Like Phil, the first contractor, getting Stefan to call me back is damn near impossible. T. who recommended Stefan keeps telling me that Stefan is just "working through the list of jobs," but would it really be so hard for Stefan to email me back once in a while? Hmmm? I'm going to give Stefan a big nudge this weekend and see if it inspires some action.

(Plus, he better get to work soon, or else he runs the risk of having me here at the apartment with him while he does the work. When I told T. this, he laughed and said: Stefan might like that--you'd be helpful!)

Happy New Year: A Post

A very funny commenter asked: Is your new year's resolution to not write any new blog posts? And you might think it were, but the truth is, I have been been bogged down at work the last few weeks. I promise to put together some more posts for the coming days, starting with a bunch of posts this weekend.

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