Sunday, January 31, 2010

Honoring the snow

With all the snow this weekend, I thought
I'd offer Amsale Aberras' NY loft.
image via Kikette Interiors

Saturday, January 30, 2010

I'm stealing this...

Designer Nicol Hollis' clever additions to the
San Francisco Decorator Showcase House
included this nautical rope as elegant tie-back.
Well... elegant in my opinion.
Photographer: Susie Nadler
image via Apartment Therapy

Friday, January 29, 2010

The Crispy Mister...

I was watching It's Complicated with Meryl Streep last night
(so-so movie, gorgeous house!) when Meryl's character
decided to whip up a delicious looking Croque Monsieur.
Craving time! Martha just posted a Crispy Mister recipe
herself in the latest issue of MS Living magazine. Must...
Have... One... Soon. Bon Appetit's May 2001 recipe follows.
One Hungry Chef (link under photo) creates an onion jam
for his version. Just sweat one small onion in a little olive oil
over medium heat until it begins to carmelize. Add 2 tbsp
red wine vinegar and simmer until all the liquid is absorbed.
Then season and remove from heat.
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 cup whole milk
Pinch of ground nutmeg
1 bay leaf
4 slices firm white sandwich bread
4 ounces thinly sliced Black Forest ham
4 ounces sliced Gruyère cheese
1 tablespoon melted butter
1/4 cup grated Gruyère cheese
2 teaspoons chopped fresh chives
Melt 2 tablespoons butter in small saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and stir 1 minute. Gradually whisk in milk. Add nutmeg and bay leaf. Increase heat to medium-high and boil until sauce thickens, whisking constantly, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Preheat broiler. Place 2 bread slices on work surface. Top each with half of ham and sliced Gruyère. Top with remaining bread. Heat heavy large skillet over low heat. Brush sandwiches with 1 tablespoon melted butter. Add to skillet and cook until deep golden brown, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to small baking sheet. Spoon sauce, then grated cheese over sandwiches. Broil until cheese begins to brown, about 2 minutes.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Collier West Twig Fetish...

If you've read The New Victorian Ruralist only a little bit,
then you still probably know just how much I enjoy a good
twig, branch, or plain old stick. I really can't explain it.
Perhaps Collier West shares my penchant for organic offshoots —
hence, the twig & branch chandeliers. $985 - $5000

Recycled Home...

Anyone familiar with this book? It was published
nearly a year ago by Ryland Peters & Small.
I have not flipped through it yet, but found this
kitchen particularly interesting. It is by Mark
& Sally Bailey, with what appears to be some
striking photography by Debi Treloar.

Lewis Carroll as the White Rabbit...

Just beautiful — so I had to share.

My heart literally beats a little faster...

... when I look at this photo. Stark, yes I know —
but what moody, visal impact this bed by Atelier
Haussmann creates as it monolithically (I think that's a word)
stands before that flourish of vintage-looking wallpaper.
I wouldn't have to sleep in it — I could just stand
and stare.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Just one more from Factory 20...

Victorian Architects Drafting Desk.

Give me just one afternoon...

Awe-inspiring library loft from Fat Brides.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Hitchcockian Installation...

Geremia Design, in San Francisco, conceived this beguiling
ceiling at Bloodhound with a mural of scattered birds
and Roost's Halo Chandelier (yes, Finderskeepers sells it).
Bloodhound is a SOMA neighborhood bar located
at 1145 Folsom Street in San Francisco.
The Halo Chandelier is great alone, but boy
those birds sure do put a NVR spin on things.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Trying to keep my mansions green, after I've Grey Gardens seen...

Image via Light Locations
As many of you, I've been a fan for years of the Maysles'
70's documentary Grey Gardens. So now it makes me
so happy to see Ms. Drew Barrymore having such success
with her performance as Little Edie. Both her Golden Globe
and SAG acceptance speeches were so full of passion and
genuine gratitude that I nearly teared up a bit myself.
I love seeing passion like that and cannot fathom the thought
of not having my own passion. Interior design is my passion.
Some have said that interior design
is materialistic and without meaning. I think it brings
dignity, functionality, and true quality to people's lives.
Besides, isn't it enough to genuinely love
what you do?
Little Edie certainly lived a passionate life.
To some, her life might have looked sad
and full of desperation — but I saw a woman
hell-bent on sharing her creativity.
Sure, there was squalor and instability.
Even in those times Little Edie
held her own, pinned artwork to the walls,
danced her dance, and clothed herself
in the most revolutionary costumes of the day!
The space shown above reminded me of Grey Gardens —
albeit a much cleaner and palatable version. Whenever
I think of the documentary, I also think of
Rufus Wainwright's beautiful song...
But beware my heart can be a pin
A sharp silver dragonfly
Trying to keep my mansions green
After I've Grey Gardens seen

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Ann Wood's Fantastical Creatures...

I do not do cute often — but I found these
creations to be so expertly crafted and "thought out"
that I had to share them. Besides, there is something
a little New Victorian Ruralist about them. Don't
you think?
Eternally Curious Willet
Mr. Guppy

Take a look at more of Ann's brilliant
creations at

Friday, January 22, 2010

More from the candy pot that is Factory 20...

Vintage Industrial Steel Table
Victorian Toilette Vanity Mirror
Toledo Early Factory Stool
Old Wood and Metal Painter's Stool
Tall French Wire Mesh Basket
So much more to see at Factory 20:

Words, words ...where are the words?

French Atelier School Desk
Farm Step Ladder
Early Century Pendant Light
Amish Pine Carpenters Work Bench
1920's Steel Pharmacy Cabinet
19th Century Industrial Bar Table
Factory 20 ( is an
absolute candy pot for all the New Victorian Ruralists
out there!

Perfect gift for your New Victorian Ruralist Sweetheart...

Hidden pleasure inside a treasure.
This pocket watch case is a detailed replica of the
splendid Edwardian original, but conceals
a charming secret—it’s filled with solid fragrance.
Apply to wrists, neck, or a love letter.
Wear it alone or layer with the other scents
we offer to create your own signature fragrance.
Tied with an elegant black satin ribbon.
Fragrances include Yuzu Flower, Cassis,
and Lily of the Valley. $29.00

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Big Window Challenge and Vintage Brass Flowers...

image via coco + kelley via Eddie Ross

If you are not familiar with Eddie Ross and his blog,
make sure you visit ( and take
a look at his amazing window display for
Elle Decor's Big Window Challenge
Cassandra Lavalle from Coco + Kelley
( shares more
photos and information at the Coco + Kelly blog.
By the way Cassandra, if you read this please
get in touch with me. I have some of the vintage brass
flowers I'd love to send your way. I agree, Eddie's ice bucket
bouquet is just lovely!

Farmhouse Bathroom...

What a nice change from all of those lifeless
hotel bathroom imitations. I understand the
desire for the sleek, spa-like, sterileness of
all new appointments — but look just how inviting
this little bath is with its random furniture &
finishes and all that light. Unfortunately, the
toile is all that distracts me.
Source unknown.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Small, full of character, and loaded with interesting things...

Matt Albiani / Domino June 2008
People, I beg you — experiment with your rooms,
fill them with things you enjoy, don't play copycat,
show off your personality, and forget the rules.
You will be rewarded.
Your house shall not be an anchor, but a mast
— Kahlil Gibran

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Industrial Country...

Lately, dark walls are certainly getting my attention.

I love the mix in Kevin Reiner's Ohio farmhouse.
images are via Country Living

Diet = Craving Pasta

Pasta with Peas, Cream, Parsley, and Mint
Bon Appetit, March 2008


1 16-ounce package large shell pasta or elbow pasta
1 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
1 16-ounce package frozen petite peas (do not thaw)
2 1/4 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese plus additional for serving
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1/2 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley, divided


Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup pasta cooking liquid. Return pasta to pot.
Meanwhile, bring cream to simmer in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add peas and simmer just until heated through, 1 to 2 minutes. Add 2 1/4 cups cheese and stir until melted and sauce thickens slightly, about 1 minute. Stir in mint and 1/4 cup parsley. Pour sauce over pasta and toss to coat, adding pasta cooking liquid by tablespoonfuls if dry. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to bowl. Sprinkle with remaining parsley. Serve, passing additional Parmesan alongside.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Mystery Mercury Pots...

Does anyone know what plant is nestled in these mercury pots?
lobster and swan for Once Wed

Classic and Modern combined...

Designer Tom Scheerer creates an ethereal mix in this
Brooklyn townhouse. I love the way the egg-and-dart
trim caps off the room and punctuates the entire scene.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Everyone keeps telling me not to paint...

... but I really do like dark cabinets.
I especially like Ralph Lauren's Surrey on
the cabinets in this kitchen photographed by
Don Freeman for Country Living.
Benjamin Moore's Night Shade was the color
chosen for Lindsey Buckingham's kitchen cabinets.
Lindsey's kitchen was featured in the March 2009
issue of Elle Decor and showcases those amazing
cement tiles from Mission Tile West.
The Murano glass chandelier was found on ebay.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Bathtub...

Designer Paolo Moschino pulled colors from
his artwork to create this serene haven of
cleanliness. The walls are Light Blue and
the wainscotting is Old White, both by
Farrow & Ball.
House Beautiful, August 2009

Su Blackwell's Art...

Alice Through the Lookingglass, 2007
Take a look at the the process. The image is lifted directly
from the page and brought to life.

Alice: A Mad Tea Party, 2006
Alice arrives at the teaparty. I love how the table
begins as a flat image on one page and then springs to
life on the next — prepared for Alice to take her seat.
12 Dancing Princesses, 2007

Pandora Opens Box, 2007

Visit Su Blackwell's website to see more of her
magical book-cut sculptures.

Diane Keaton's Kitchen Lamps...

Diane Keaton's kitchen was featured in the
November 2008 issue of Architectural Digest.
Each and every page was packed with marvels
of scale and genius design. I especially liked
the two ceiling lamps above the kitchen island.
Finderskeepers has a very similar fixture
hanging in its entrance. I'll have to post a
photo soon so you can compare. The scale
and shape are nearly identical, but ours is
without the stitching detail. One last thing —
those cacti!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Happy Birthday...

... to my partner in everything.

A True Treasure Trove...

I received this book as a gift for Christmas
(thanks Pam) and it sure is a feast for the
eyes and the imagination. Sibella Court
investigates what decorating a home
truly means. Inventive, inspiring, and
truly one-of-a-kind — this book
delivers the goods!