Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Miette and Macarons

Since I had three weeks of high school French before accepting a post as the Feature Editor of our widely-read school paper (after I did that opinion piece on headbands versus hair scrunchies, let's just say Tom Brokaw courted me a little too heavily- show some restraint, dude), I am fully qualified to disseminate advice on correct French pronunciation.

The French cookie has one "o". Pronounced a bit like "macaroni" without the "i" and spoken from the back of your throat with your nose in the air and your pinkie finger extended. The pronunciation is enhanced by carrying a very, very tiny dog beneath your arm.

The French macaron is nothing like the clumsy old lard-butt coconut macaROON running around Paris in its white Reeboks looking for a McDonalds and asking for directions in loud English. Non!

The French macaron is like a puffy, crunchy, delicate cloud encasing a thin sweep of luscious creme. Like French women, it can smoke and not age. It can eat butter and not gain weight. It is effortlessly beautiful. We like to pretend we hate it, but actually we love it SO MUCH.

Anyways, Miette. First I loved them when, pre-hipster artist wallpaper designers (Timorous Beasties, ha!), they put up this sweet paper:

In fact, they were covered in shelter magazines (crazy antique ones likes Victoria and Cottage Living!) for their design and merchandising, not their cookies. I know it looks like a girlie explosion in there, but what do you want a bakery to look like? A Japanese nightclub? A modern art gallery? Non again! I want my cookie joints to look just like this. Like they're made entirely of delicately colored frosting and sugar.

Cookies and modernism do not go together. Like the Mother Goose rhymes of our childhood, where lollipops grew from the ground and witches' houses were edible (and dishes ran away with spoons, which I still find perplexing), ingesting sugar is equal parts fantasy and comfort.

Somehow Miette totally gets this. Just look at their merchandising (trees made of candy!)

And brilliantly, they've reinforced the fantasy of an edible building by making wallpaper cookies. Someone at Miette is a voracious reader of fairytales.
Oh yes, and their macarons? When I finally got to San Fran and tried them all I can say is that I keep trying to come up with excuses to go back....

Are you in a virtual sugar coma now? Raise your pinkie and repeat after me: mah-kah-(gargle)ron.

ps: some pics from Miette, others floating around the 'net without credits-if they're yours let me know so I can credit you

Monday, June 28, 2010


After re-watching Dan in Real Life, I can't get the sweet/tender/funny version of this song out of my mind.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

One Day Only-Rifle Paper Co. Discount!

Run real quick-like over to your computer. Oh wait, you're already there.
Click here to get 50% off a set of 8 botanical print cards from my favorite stationery store, Rifle Paper Co.!

Enter luckydaily3 as the promo code at check out.

Offer ends at 10:59 pm, ET, June 24th

From the Pages of Domino-Decorating with Craigslist

I often marvel at the amount of money people spend for new furniture they're not even that happy with. I think most people would prefer a more lived-in, eclectic, and unique look but aren't sure how to pull that together without looking like a hot mess, or they don't have the patience to look (or the vision to see dirty old pieces in a different light). Sometimes I wish people would just hand me a few hundred dollars and leave the house for the day, but that would make me a designer which I am emphatically not.

But to show how easy and cheap it can be to pull together just such a room, I gave myself a challenge: Take a room I love from the pages of Domino, and replicate the look using all Craigslist finds, for around $500 and in one day. That means no waiting around for weeks for something special to come up...all these pieces were available within the thirty minutes or so it took me to browse.

Here's our inspiration room:

And here is the Modernhaus dirt-cheap version:

A solid wood antique Duncan Phyfe extension table, $35

Or, for those averse to mixing classic with modern, this baby blue Parson's table, $95

Set of antique chairs, to be painted white (I like the idea of upholstering the seats in black patent leather remnants from Ebay, for a more rock 'n roll look), $50

For the heads of the table, these Eames shell chair knock-offs in black, $95 each

To get you started on your gallery wall, this unused pack of ten walnut frams, $15 (paint some out in white, black, or rough them up for a less uniform look-I suggest adding in some ornate thrift store pieces for variety). Frame fabric, wallpaper samples, kids' artwork, your own sketches, a to-do list, pages from books..don't be shy!

An antique faux bamboo-trimmed buffet cabinet, punked out in high-gloss black, $175

A Mid-Century Panton-esque chrome dome lamp for contrast on the buffet, $95

While the total is $560, I would expect to offer about $75 for the lamp and $140 for the cabinet without a hassle, which would bring our total to $505. Not bad!

To round out the design, here are some other pieces I would definitely jump on if I were really decorating this room:

A white Mid-Century wire lounge chair placed nearby, $95, with a fluffy sheepskin from IKEA thrown over

A cowhide rug for texture and to solidify the black, white, and wood color scheme $180

And possibly, this very Palm Springs-esque Mid Century metal leaf chandelier, perfect as-is in white, with the shades removed and round bulbs inserted, $45

Monday, June 21, 2010

Sand Bucket List

Tomorrow I'm going in for that oral surgery that I creeped you out with in a previous post. I'll say no more. Except, to gross you out, I'll just say "BONE GRAFT!" "INCISIONS!" "NEEDLES!" "IN MY MOUTH!"

As if I'm being executed tomorrow, I have this urge to do EVERYTHING I WANT TO DO THIS SUMMER TODAY before it's too late.

I intended to:

sleep in
walk the dog at the lake
paint my master bathroom
reupholster a bench
go out for Vietnamese French sandwiches
go to the beach
have a picnic in Mission Hills
go out for sangria and tapas happy hour at Costa Brava

I got a little stuck after number one. Now I'm skipping straight to number five. Hey, it's my bucket dude.

Friday, June 18, 2010

The view from here

I see the people I love, doing what they do best: showing up

for my littlest boy, who is not very little anymore. So long to elementary 36 my career as a bake-saling, room mother-ing, art docent-ing, field tripper extraordinaire is over.

I see the view I am most intimately familiar with: the window above my kitchen sink

The new acquisitions I want to keep for myself

I see a boy in love with music, playing "Norwegian Wood" on his daddy's Paul Reed Smith

A dog who loves his family

and a $10 bad-hair-day fedora for mama, impatiently awaiting its first beach day

What's your life looking like right now?

Monday, June 14, 2010

Liminal Advertising

It's the opposite of subliminal, right?

I sometimes forget to tell you about the rad pieces I have on Ebay.

By the way, I'm an awesome seller and you shouldn't hesitate to buy from me....I will carry your purchase on my head to your house if that's what it takes to get it delivered safely, and once there I will kiss your baby and mow your lawn. I even send extra gifts to courteous buyers because courtesy MAKES MY DAY!

But really, it's so important to buy from someone with experience, insurance, and a legitimate business presence on Ebay (that means they'll bend over backwards to make you happy, because it's how they make their living). Otherwise, you can be the unhappy recipient of all kinds of fraud and chaos.

Prices have really come down and there are some great bargains to be had, so don't be afraid to shop!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

A party in your hand

Anyone who thinks the internet is an evil, time-wasting, vapid receptacle for all that is wrong with society consider this: the internet is where I found this.
There are other fascinating combinations like Guinness chocolate, parsnip, flourless chocolate beet, and mango with buttercream and coconut.
And those are HOMEMADE THIN MINTS looking so foxy and rich down there!
Happy eating!

Friday, June 11, 2010

I know what you're doing, and it won't work

Dear husband and children,
I'm onto you. You think if you keep hiding my pens and "losing" your socks I will eventually go insane. But it won't work. I'm stronger than you. And I'll just keep buying more. More 12-packs of socks. More 72-packs of pens.

And even though they will all disappear before the week is out, I won't go crazy. I WON'T. You know what? I don't even care what you're doing with them. I don't even want to know. I couldn't BE less curious about the continuous disappearance of these household items.

If you want to tell me, fine. What is it? Some storage unit? You're putting it all in a storage unit, right? Somewhere there is a storage unit packed full of fifteen years-worth of pens and socks, right? Am I right?? That's o.k., I don't need to know. I don't even care. You can't make me crazy. You'll never get to me! A-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. A-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Forbidden Fruit

Under what circumstances is it acceptable to pay $400 for a pear?

An Italian, screen-printed, limited edition, Enzo Mari pear?
I hem and haw about buying new underwear, or pencils, or a new broom, but heck yeah I'm trying to add "La Pera" to the week's budget.

I was trying to find images of the print installed in a home to get a sense of the look and scale...there are hardly any and mostly in Japan for some reason. Here is a pretty cool interpretation of the original from a Japanese blog.

I thought the color and scale would be a cool contrast to my intricate Cole & Son wallpaper in the "foyer" aka place where we dump our crap and the dog goes to shed a full flokati rug of fur every night. Unfortunately this photo looks like Martha Stewart threw up near my fabulous wallpaper, but you get the idea...intricate meets graphic. Yellow meets green. Contrast.

Plus I'm totally into Enzo Mari since I scored his Animali puzzle at the thrift store last year. You could call me a collector. With a foyer.

Also appearing under "images, La Pera" on Google, this hot Italian musical duo who are obviously going unicycling after they finish the photo shoot. Fruity indeed.


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