New Read >>> The Way Home: Reflections on American Beauty

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Interior designer Jeffrey Bilhuber's latest & highly anticipated design book, The Way Home: Reflections on American Beauty, will hit shelves on September 20. This is Mr. Bilhuber's 3rd publication to date, and takes to showcase his polished style that graces the rooms of an assortment of residences -- city townhouses to country homes to waterside locales.

I have held onto the images of Mr. Bilhuber's 17th century home on Long Island, featured in the August 2009 issue of Vogue magazine. The interiors are just charming, layered with a great mix of period pieces, comfortable fabrics, natural materials, and interesting accessories. Check out more below....

Irene's Aftermath

Monday, August 29, 2011

We were due to be on an 8:30am flight into White Plains, NY on Friday morning. Thursday night, while packing & watching the news reports on the potential path of Hurricane Irene, our initial mindset of "not a big deal" became more serious as the idea of how might we get back home if the worst case scenarios became true, started to sink in. By 4am Friday morning, with no overnight changes happening to the strength & path of the storm, and certain that our return flight on Monday would be canceled, we decided to scrap our travel plans to Connecticut.

So very disappointing and worrisome -- not only because I was missing my father's birthday, but what if Irene turned out to be everyone's worst nightmare, and I couldn't get to my family in the event they were in trouble.....  

As Irene approached their coastal town, Saturday night into Sunday morning, conditions were downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm. Residents experienced power outages, down trees, and a great amount of heavy flooding and damage to the homes along the beach. Thankfully, my parents weathered the storm just fine -- their power remained on and no fallen trees on the house, just plenty of limbs scattered around the property. Seeing the local photos of streets covered with water & sand, its shocking to think these are the same roads that runners, bikers, and walkers use on a daily basis! Serious destruction happened at the end of the beach road, where homes sit with the LI Sound in front of the them and a creek behind.

Looking Down Penfield Road to the Penfield Pavilion Entrance -- the beach is still a fair distance away from this point beyond the roof line of the Pavilion

At the End of Fairfield Beach Road -- the back of the house is sliding into the Creek, the LI Sound is beyond (above) and looking at the house from the Creek side (below)

This home has forever endured structural problems....  it sits up from the water on the LI Sound side, but at any typical high tide, the waves come in right underneath.  Clearly, the exterior couldn't withstand Irene's wind & rain!

{Images Via Here & Here}

Chic Wet Weather Finds

Thursday, August 25, 2011

We are heading up to family in Connecticut tomorrow, and if Hurricane Irene has her way, we'll most likely be in for a very wet & stormy weekend.

But, overcast weather doesn't necessarily have to dictate a gloomy outlook on everything....  check out some of the chic waterproof accessories, both for fashion & home, that will brighten your forecast even in the midst of a gray day.

Gene Kelly & Singing In The Rain -- certain to put you in a good mood.....

Floral Delight ~ Emily Thompson

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Emily Thompson Flowers
{Image Via}

Emily Thompson's passion as a trained sculptor has helped her transition quite nicely into a career of floral design. Her pursuit of this alternate hands on profession, was sparked by crafting the flowers for a family member's wedding. A series of private parties, events, and weddings have followed, and in a span of 5 years, Thompson is recognized as a major talent in her field. She opened the doors to her own shop, a tiny space in the DUMBO neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY in the Fall of 2009. Her arrangements take influence from what is growing fresh in season as well as what she might forage from the landscape of an on-sight event -- berries, herbs, plants, etc....  Thompson's style seems to layer in an enchanting old world appeal through her addition these unexpected materials.

Exterior of Emily Thompson Flowers
{Image Via}

Emily Thompson (left) with her assistant, Aviva Rowley (right), in her DUMBO shop. Photographed for the NY Times, click here to read more.

A bridal bouquet (above) and detail photo (below) -- includes Black Radishes, Chamomile, Olive & Huckleberry Branches, Sweet Peas, Nasturtiums, and Laurel (Bay Leaves)
{Images Via}

NY Magazine featured the interiors of Emily Thompson's Park Slope home. She and her husband reside on the parlor floor of what was once an original mansion built for the Adams family -- heirs to the Chiclets gum fortune. Thompson's flowers nestle in perfectly, surrounded by the period details & vintage style of the historic space. Check out the images below....

Pictured in the Front Hall, Emily Thompson points out paintings by her great-great-aunt.
{Images Via NYMag}

Included below are arrangements created by Emily -- All images via Emily Thompson Blog

Arrangement (above) with detail photo (below)

Arrangement (above) with detail photo (below)

Arrangement (above) with detail photo (below)

Ralph Lauren ~ Father of the Bride

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Dylan Lauren

Dylan Lauren, daughter of legendary fashion designer & style icon Ralph Lauren, was married in June 2011 to Paul Arrouet at her family's estate in Bedford, NY. Fittingly, Mr. Lauren created Dylan's wedding dress and the details are featured in the August 2011 issue of Vogue magazine. Check out more below....

New Love >>> The Bakery at Cakes & Ale

Monday, August 22, 2011

The Bakery at Cakes & Ale and Cakes & Ale (the restaurant), Newly Opened Next Door Neighbors

The charming farm-to-table restaurant Cakes & Ale, located in downtown Decatur, GA, has picked up and moved closer into the heart of the Square. Along with this change of venue, brought the addition of a sister space next door to the restaurant, The Bakery at Cakes & Ale. Not even open a week, we stopped in Friday morning to sample their fresh baked goods & handcrafted cappuccinos.

The side by side storefronts were completely gutted and reworked to accommodate effecient design & fresh style needs. During the renovation process, upon peeling back existing Sheetrock, the crew uncovered an original painted sign on the left side wall of the soon to be bakery. The descriptive words were so fitting for the new space, that it was polished up and left to be the focal point of the room. Check out some photos from our visit below -- interiors shots & pics of our bakery treats.

The Historic Sign & Completed Space (above), Renovation Work (below). Click here to see more "before" photos from Cakes & Ale's blog.

{Image Via}

Counter seating and tables & chairs along the right side of the Bakery. We sat by the front window at the cutest 2-top, looking out onto the Decatur MARTA entrance....  great people watching!

Jim's "Monkey Bread" pastry & cappuccino, with lively view out onto the sidewalk

My unbelievable croissant & cappuccino

Billy Allin is the chef/owner of Cakes & Ale. We got to meet his wife, co-owner Kristin Allin (above), on our way out. Put Cakes & Ale -- both the bakery & restaurant -- on your list to try!

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