Sunday, January 30, 2011

Coral Infatuation

I have been drawn to coral as a nice decorative piece for a while now.  When I was in the US over Christmas I lucked out and found some beautiful faux coral mounted on a classic acrylic stand.  I have to admit that it looked a bit odd on its own in the store, but I was confident it would look great in the right setting.  It is now being stored in my Mom's guest bathroom for safekeeping until we return and it looks great!  I think it works just as well in her traditional colonial home as it will in my (future) more modern, eclectic home. 

Here are a few images of this beautiful accent piece that inspired it all:

I love how the red coral plays off the mustard color!

 This would make a great entryway table or in a corner of a living room, or on a landing.

{Nate Berkus}
I love this one because of the tray that I wrote about here but also the juxtaposition of the coral against the silver - so tailored and timeless.

Of course I love this one because I love beach houses!  More on that here.

So what do you think of coral and where do you use it?

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Oh, Aloe Vera

Just a bit of natural beauty for you today...from our trip to Portugal two years ago:

Photography by Barbara Jordan Dettweiler

Thursday, January 27, 2011

A Turkish Bath, IKAT Fabric and More

Last Fall my husband and I spent a long weekend in Istanbul.  We had an amazing time the whole weekend but a highlight for both of us was visiting a Turkish Bath, or Hamam.  The design was so stunning that I wanted to pass it along.  It is an experience I would definitely recommend! 

Photography by Barbara Jordan Dettweiler
This is how Suleymaniye Hamam looks from the entrance - not so exciting, but notice when it was built.  The 1550s.  Wow.  

 The surprise comes when you go inside the room, made entirely out of marble.  You are surrounded by incredibly hot steam and lie down on the marble slab in the middle of the room.  Sunlight streams in through the ceiling and looks like starlight.  That is heavenly enough, but then comes the massage and wash down, with intermittent splashes of cold water.  VERY refreshing!

I also shopped for textiles and specifically was on the lookout for suzani and ikat fabrics.  I found these three beautiful silk ikat fabrics in a smaller market near our hotel.  They will either become pillows or a table runner - well, probably a little bit of both!  This picture doesn't do them justice but it will give you the idea.  I love all of these rich tribal colors.

{hotel empress zoe, istanbul}
Our hotel was a funky little boutique hotel, made up of five former townhouses that are now combined, with gorgeous colorful Turkish fabrics throughout.  I'm not a big chain-hotel kinda girl, and luckily neither is my husband.  We both loved the winding little passageways through the hotel, its cozy courtyard and its overall unique charm.  Notice the cat - they could usually be found snoozing on some beautiful suzani fabric throughout all of the public spaces!  We also enjoyed its gorgeous rooftop terrace - that we had all to ourselves - where we drank in a view of the main mosques and some local Efes beer.  Ahhh...

Photography by Barbara Jordan Dettweiler
This lantern caught my eye in a little market behind the Blue Mosque.

Photography by Barbara Jordan Dettweiler
And a bit of architecture just for fun...

Photography by Barbara Jordan Dettweiler
I LOVE photographing doors everywhere I travel. 
If you're interested, take a look at my post about beautiful doors from our travels here

Photography by Barbara Jordan Dettweiler
 This was tile in the otherwise bland waiting area for the funicular that took us
up a hill to a hip shopping/eating area in the city...gorgeous!

Photography by Barbara Jordan Dettweiler
Turkey's signature pistachios: in pastry form.  YUM.

Have you been to Turkey or are you familiar with it?  If so, what are some of your favorite Turkish designs, architecture or experiences?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Beautiful Budapest Architecture

A couple of summers ago we went to Budapest for a long weekend.  We LOVED it.  It was only five days but it felt like a long trip packed with fun experiences.  Although I love Prague, Budapest has all the charm and energy of Prague without the over polished tourism.  My favorite unexpected part of the trip was how much I enjoyed the architecture.  Here are a few shots that I thought were particularly noteworthy.

This was a building in a gorgeous city park.  That window!

I always fall for a beautiful city balcony...even if
there is a bank on the ground floor.
Stuff like this was everywhere. 
Such a charming little touch while walking down the street.

I loved the grand statue but also all of the extended, hanging signs for various cafes, etc. 
So charming!

This was a lucky shot of the clouds over a turret on the afternoon of an amazing day.  We walked up the old stone walkway that led to the huge castle overlooking the city, following a beautiful market all the way up.  At the top was a medieval festival that was a blast for the kids (and us).  We played with the kids while enjoying a Dreher (Budapest's signature beer) on an extremely hot, but wonderful, day!

If you get the chance to see Budapest, go!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Kate Spade's Bedroom

Matters of Style blog published a great post today about grasscloth that I really enjoyed!  It inspired me to post a picture of my own.  

A while ago I came across an article about Kate Spade's home she shares with her husband in New York.  I was so taken with this particular photo that it has made it to the top of my dream house files.  I had already planned to use grass cloth in our half bath, but abstract art has now been added to the plans for that room.  Take a look: 

It feels to me both sophisticated and natural all at the same time - I guess it's the contrast that makes it so striking.  
(Love the lamp too, by the way)

What do you think?

Terrific Trays

Lately I have been seeing so many fun images with trays used in various ways that I thought I would sort through my archives in order to share a few of my favorites.  Here are some inspiring ideas that I have come across:
So sexy!  I would love this in a master bedroom or a living room for a little bit of edge.

 Very classy sofa table using a tray. 
(Notice also the glass apothecary jar on the coffee table that I wrote about here.)

This type of arrangement always looks classic and elegant with a great mix of masculine and feminine.  Notice the mint julep cup - I love those.  More on that in a future post!

I like this tailored yet natural look with the woven tray/basket.

 There is that sexy tray again.  How fun to use it as a cocktail bar! 

What a nice look for this classy bath. 
So crisp and clean - almost feels like a great hotel!

And what about this one?  I could picture this in the entry of a
great country house in New Hampshire.

The ever chic Hermes Orange in a great arrangement. 
Again, notice the apothecary jar as well as the zebra rug.  I think these two items could be used almost anywhere. 

Any other great ideas for trays in beautiful decor?  I have many more images so I think another post on this topic will follow sometime soon...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Apothecary Jars

My husband and I have a coin collection from our travels that is fun to look through once in a while.  The kids love them too - they are curious to see the designs of each country and then hear about the adventures for each location.  I thought that it would be neat to display the collection in apothecary jars, so on my trip to the US last year I bought several in different shapes and sizes.  They are safely stored away in the US, awaiting our return.  :)

Since then I have come across a lot of other great images using the jars in a variety of ways.  I love it when I buy something that be re-purposed so the look doesn't go stale.  I am excited to put all of these ideas to use.  The possibilities are endless, but here are a few ideas: 

Put candies in canisters for a playful kids' (or grown-up!) birthday party.  It also looks great in a range of colors within a hue to match the theme of a wedding, or in black and orange for Halloween, candy canes for Christmas, etc.
You get the idea!

How great it is this?  You could use them in a kitchen to hold pastas or other pantry items.  I love the whole composition actually - open shelving, beautiful vinegars on display - even the cookbook is one of my indulgent cooking faves:  Feast: Food to Celebrate Life

{Pottery Barn}
 This would be fitting for a wine tasting party or an Italian feast
paired with a variety of great wines.

{Martha Stewart}
A chic, simple, natural Fall look.  Not exactly apothecary jars but it could still work!

They look so pretty in a bathroom holding sand and shells, or a nice collection of bath soaps and salts.  I plan to use the soaps that I have collected on my travels through Europe in my canisters, including the ones I wrote about here from Portugal.

{Pottery Barn}
I love to go on forest walks with my kids to see what we can find, so I created something similar to this soothing Fall display with them this year.  It was a great way for us to explore nature, spend time together and bring the “design” home with us.  To glam it up a bit, the kids and I painted some pinecones and sticks with with a bit of matte gold paint.  It looked beautiful October through December!
I thought this was a really beautiful, easy way to smarten up a bath. 
Add an orchid in a pretty pot and some inexpensive glass bottles and you get instant elegance!

{Pottery Barn}
They are great paired with some simpler glass containers to hold holly, ornaments, cranberries, floating candles, pinecones, etc. on a table or mantel. 

And, of course, even empty they look stunning! 

Are there any other great ideas for these beautiful jars out there?


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...