Monday, April 30, 2012

Stroll Around the Garden

We have been blessed with perfect spring weather for the last month- not too hot, managed to escape any frosts. The two week warmth we had in March accelerated the growth of the foliage and blooms and they have been slowly opening and remaining in the cool weather. Nice!

Here are my three favorite tulips. Unfortunately, I did not keep the name tags of the tulips, so I can't give you that information. (I know, my bad.)

I wish you could see this parrot tulip in person. The color is amazing- somewhere in between coral and red- maybe like watermelon?

Here is another parrot tulip in the deepest of burgundy. It looks different, depending upon the time of day and amount of sunshine. The first is early morning as the sun is rising, the second as you look into the blooms and the third is early evening, sitting in front of some bright pink tree peonies.

Lastly, here is a graceful, softly colored, very smooth looking tulip. When it opens itself to the sun, it turns into a totally different shape.

This is its early morning coloration, followed by two different views of the blooms in early evening.

Are your tulips still blooming?

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Outdoor Artistry

As far as the garden goes, I usually prefer a more natural approach. We rarely clip any bushes unless it is to keep them in a tidy state, but almost always within their natural bounds.  All of our bushes are hand-pruned- no bush wackers are allowed!

There are exceptions.

This collection of boxwood and taxus on an estate in the Dordogne area of France is quite extraordinary and a perfect accent to the home. I imagine they require at least a full time gardener.

Doesn't it look like they spilled a bag of marbles round bushes?

An Alice in Wonderland feel here, eh?

These bushes look like part of a puzzle expertly pieced together.

The reflection is even more compelling than the clipped bushes themselves. I wonder how often they need to drag the ladder out to prune them?

I am always up for an allée of trees, or in this case, an allée of trunks...

This is a nice end destination on the estate of the Castle of Leeuwergem in Belgium.

And how cool are these moss boulders? I wonder how long it took them to reach this state?

Are you into the clipped bush look?


Friday, April 27, 2012

Friday Elegance

Strolling through our Friday... 
Wouldn't this be a lovely way to begin the weekend?



Thursday, April 26, 2012

Magic Carpets

Filling my bi-annual fix of beautiful carpets and rugs. 
The available selections keep getting more dazzling. 
If you are into color, prepare to be wowed. 
And if you are into neutrals, rugs are a great way to pop in some color; 
when you tire of it, just roll it up for a while.
 Of course, you can still use a beige (and boring) rug instead.

  Perse from Chevalier édition

                                                             Marie Antoinette from Chevalier édition

                                                                Arabesque from Chevalier édition

 Kundan Silk Collection from Zollanvari

The Cranes from Florence Rug


Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Clean and Simple

With the hectic schedule of late, 
I have been in the mood for clean and simple, 
à la Belgique.

Lovely and serene.


Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Wisteria on Steroids

I have mentioned my appreciation of wisteria blooms before, a plant that I have only admired from afar and have never actually grown. We just never seemed to have the right location for such an aggressive grower. Well, I think one of those spots has been located, two blocks from my home. I don't know how I could have possibly missed it before:

This specimen has to be at least forty feet high, but I suspect it is even taller than that. I am standing at the base, shooting straight up.

This is only part of the vine's trunk (in the foreground):

The winds were quite brisk today, so if the blooms seem a bit out of focus, well, they probably are!

No wonder wisteria can force a roof right off of the building it covers! 
Apparently this tree does not mind at all.

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Houses of Veranda

Stunning colors. Sophisticated style. Patinas, flowers, details, design.
If you are a Veranda fan, The Houses of Veranda will not disappoint. The long-awaited, just-published book by Veranda's founding editor, Lisa Newsom, is a visual treat. I happen to be one of their half a million subscribers who appreciate the visual treats that Veranda offers.

What a photo- the green just flows.

Quintessential Saladino

Groin vault ceiling perfection

Scrumptious plaster walls

 Pure and lovely

Even the monochromatic speaks confidently.

Furniture with patina plus

I managed this far not to display the ever-so-famous gorgeous wood paneling that Veranda introduced us to... but, here it is... on the book cover!


Sunday, April 22, 2012

Pastel Sunday

We are spending time with our son today- what a treat! 
When the kiddos are grown and out of town, suddenly you just want to preserve every precious moment with them. 
Can't wait to be a guest in his home!

Have a good one!


Saturday, April 21, 2012

Spring Amethyst

Viewing this lovely table setting by Liz O'Brien in the May issue of HB reminded me of why I love the color amethyst.

The white anemones with black centers + sweet peas = gorgeousness.

How about a pair of vintage perfume bottles to coordinate? Don't they look like they belong on that table?


We liked amethyst so much we added damask panels in a custom metallic amethyst to our living room walls a few years ago. We still love them.

Mother Nature rewards us with lovely flowers in the same color vein. 


Lilac Sensation

Clean and contemporary in a classic setting

Are you an amethyst fan?


Friday, April 20, 2012

Let There Be (Beautiful) Light

With walls in steel grey, eggshell, white, chocolate martini and ebony, along with walnut stained mahogany floors, isn't this a stunning home? As seen in Est Magazine, I love its clean and sophisticated decor. And those light fixtures are to-die-for!

This is the home of Michelle James, the lighting designer, built in 1899 and just recently renovated.

Restraint and respect for the original details are evident throughout.

 The light in her home is visually arresting, especially with all of the natural light shining in.

Here are a couple of Michelle James' signature feature lights with vintage and salvaged components.



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