I received my latest issue of Style at Home (my favorite Canadian design magazine) and I fell in love with the home of design editor Samantha Pynn. I was all ready to post pictures of her home, but fabulous blogger All Things Bright & Beautiful beat me to the punch. She did a FABULOUS post on Mrs. Pynn's home and apparently it was something that one of my favorite bloggers - Emily of Design Smack, was going to post before she ended her blog. I miss Design Smack so much!!! You should definitely check out the rest of the pictures on All Things Bright and Beautiful. You won't be disappointed!!!!
I particularly love the bench featuring Alan Campbell's blue zig zag fabric. I actually saw these benches on sale at Restoration Hardware (looking MUCH different) a while back and thought of reupholstering them. I didn't buy them and now I am kicking myself for it. That bench is so damn chic! Here is a before picture of the bench from Restoration Hardware. It is called the Hudson Leather Piano Bench and it is available for $349. I wish it was still on sale :(
One of the most beautiful places I have ever had the opportunity to visit is Florence, Italy. I didn't think any place could be more spectacular than the south of France, but Florence just blew me away. The art, the food, the culture.....the place is magical! I recently came across pictures of the recently restored Palazzo Tornabuoni, which is a fifteenth century palace in Florence that was once the Medici family residence, and I felt heartsick for Italy all over again. Doesn't this place look spectacular?
Because I am originally from Arizona, I often have friends ask me where to eat and shop when they go for a visit. Over the years I have kept a list of my favorite places that I edit and add to regularly. I usually tell my friends about places that I love that I know they can't find anywhere else. For example, you would never catch me recommending PF Changs on a visit to Phoenix. I mean, I love PF Changs but you can get their lettuce wraps in virtually any city in the US. Plus, I tend to prefer more independent places anyways.
So today I was in a bookstore and found a travel guide called Eat, Shop, Phoenix. It looked pretty cool and so I flipped through the pages and then I immediately sat down and read the entire thing. Basically, it is as if the editors of the book went inside my brain and my computer and made a list of all the coolest places in Phoenix, except it is so much better than my list because there is amazing photography and tons of great recommendations on what to order or buy. There were even some restaurants I had never heard of but look absolutely amazing. Even though I am from Arizona, I still bought the book. I highly recommend it to anyone planning a trip to the Valley of the Sun (note that the fabulous resorts in AZ are so much cheaper in the summer!). I now plan on checking out the other Eat, Shop guides for cities like Boston, Paris, and Seattle.
My mom recently came back from Germany and I requested that she bring me back a few things that I can't get or can't seem to find in the States. First off is an extremely powerful sunscreen from French Company La Roche-Posay. It is their Anthelios 50+ Fluide Extreme with Mexoryl XL. La Roche Posay is now sold in the US but they don't sell this particular product - who knows why? I think this is the best protection against UVA & UVB rays on the market. In fact, Allure magazine just did an article in which some of the best dermatologists in the country said they use this product. That must mean it's good right? In Germany it is 17 euros but I have seen it being sold on Ebay for $60. Yikes!
Second, I had my mom bring back several kinds of Labello lip balm. I don't know what it is about this particular brand but I am crazy for it - especially the strawberrry and honey and milk flavored ones. You can get them anywhere in Germany and they are super cheap.
Finally, I always request Milka chocolate bars - but not just the plain old Milka bars which are very good (and can be found at Cost Plus). I stock up on the Choco & Rice flavor, which is absolutely addictive and delicious. I think I ate 2 whole candy bars in the span of like an hour. They are that good!
So those are a few things I had smuggled into the country that I enjoy. Are there things that you love that you can only find in another country?
You know that irresistible smell of warm freshly baked cookies? I have been to so many open houses where the realtor puts cookies in the oven to make the house smell good. It is supposed to make prospective buyers feel an emotional connection to the home or something like that. Anyways, if you love the cookie smell but don't want to bake or tempt yourself with the calories, may I suggest the Illume Boulangerie Tin candle in Vanilla Icing. I typically don't like really sweet scents but I swear this candle is like crack. If you head into your nearest Anthropologie store, you will see what I mean.
Due to my ever expanding jewelry collection, I am going to need a place to store all of my lovely new pieces. I think I have found the perfect solution with this Imperial Lacquer Box from Z Gallerie. You might want to check out Z Gallerie the next time you are at the mall too. I just stopped in today and they had a ton of stuff I was drooling over but ultimately resisted buying.
The lovely Erin of one of my favorite blogs Elements of Style has tagged me! Apparently this means that I have to list 6 things that are weird or unusual about me and then tag 3 more people. It was hard to narrow down the list because I have A LOT of weird things about me, but the following is what I settled on:
1. I have a subscription to 25 magazines, and I still want more! It is a sickness really.
2. I love weddings so much that I have seriously, seriously considered becoming a wedding planner.
3. I was featured in tabloid magazine UsWeekly once.
4. I don't like any kind of gourmet cheese. I like pizza, macaroni and cheese, grilled cheese, etc., but put a plate of fancy cheeses in front of me and I will likely gag. Does this make me Un-American?
5. I have moved 14 times in 25 years. I guess you could say I have become an expert packer.
6. Oh, and I am licensed to practice law in the state of California. No seriously! But don't hold it against me...
I now tag M.A. Belle, Girl Meets Glamour, and Visual Yummy. Apologies to you if you have already been tagged!
If the world were coming to an end and I had the ability to save only 3 stores, I would choose to save Target, Nordstrom, and Banana Republic. At Target I could get my food, toiletries, magazines, and so on. At Nordstrom I could get clothes, purses, shoes, and makeup. Nordstrom also has a coffee bar that I enjoy. And at Banana I could get clothes and fabulous costume jewelry. Check out some of the cute new earrings Banana has on itswebsite.
Cabachon Round Drop Earring.
Multi-hued Chandelier Earring.
Rose Quartz Earring.
Also, I am a strong believer in sun protection. I love looking tan but skin cancer scares the crap out of me. A smart way to save your precious face from harmful rays (in addition to sunscreen) is a fabulous hat. I happen to love this wide-brimmed straw hat from Banana. It is the perfect hat to wear to the beach or out on a picnic.
I have never been to Miami but hope to go one day soon. When I do make my way to South Florida, you can be sure that I am going to stop in the store Niba Home. Niba Home is run by Nisi Berryman, who was once the Miami City Editor for Metropolitan Home Magazine. Niba sells everything from high end furniture to decorative plates and fun pillows and throws. You can check out more amazing photos of this store at Niba Home'swebsite.